Letters to the editor

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In Chrystal King’s “Discrimi-Nation: African-Americans” article, she accurately described the plight of African-American students growing up and attending schools where, to see another face like theirs, is scarce. I too encountered situations of being forced to speak for an entire race when controversial issues such as racism or the use of the N-word came up in class, which can put people of any ethnic background in an awkward position.

King also accurately summed up the reasons why African-American students seek the camaraderie of others like them in a way in which I had never thought about before. I feel that, not only is encountering like faces in the education system vital for social interaction, but necessary to perform well, especially for young children. There is no greater feeling than that of understanding and unity.

This article and others to come of the same nature are necessary in order to gain a deeper understanding and perspective for what other people of different cultures go through on a daily basis. I feel that, although interaction within your own background is good, it is important to remain open-minded to the plight of other students.

When time is taken to address the issues that we all go through, no matter what race, then we can all come together in a consensus that we are not so different after all. I commend the Daily Sundial for taking steps to address the issues from the source instead of just making generalized assumptions, and am eager to read what others have to say.

Sincerely, Mary Nicole Randolph biology, freshman

This letter was written in response to an article published on Nov. 5 about the DREAM Act. Currently, students who have any drug convictions, no matter how trivial, are denied financial assistance. Male students who refuse to sign up for Selective Service registration are also denied this aid. In other words, American citizens who dare to practice liberty can be denied a university education (you’re practicing liberty when you refuse to sign up for conscription or when you engage in a victimless crime like drug possession).

What’s interesting about the DREAM Act is that it gives a privilege to non-citizens while American citizens are being increasingly disenfranchised. It’s part of a much larger pattern of globalization in which the meaning of American citizenship is being made increasingly irrelevant. And then taxpayers are being asked to foot the bill for the disintegration of their own country’s international borders.

However, there is an alternative to the DREAM Act. The governments of those students who are in the U.S. illegally can pick up the bill for them. California can send the financial assistance bill to those governments and they can pay for it. I’m sure State Sen. Gil Cedillo will be more than happy to do this. He is, after all, supposed to be representing California and not other countries.

Joseph Miranda graduate student, political science

This letter is in response to the article “Walking 10k towards awareness for AIDS” published on Oct. 23. I have to commend the people involved for unselfishly donating their time to help support a cause. I believe, however, the focus of this cause is misguided.

The majority of people who have contracted the HIV virus have done so through irresponsible choices. Having unprotected anal, vaginal or oral sex, or sharing needles for illegal drugs, with infected people.

People should be held accountable for these acts, not be given sympathy for them. It’s true that there is a small percentage of people who have contracted the virus unwillingly, and deserve support to find a cure, but marching for the majority says that it’s OK and that we support senselessness. A better solution to this problem is to educate people on the dangers of unprotected sex and intravenous drug use. It would be better to help educate the uninfected person on how not to contract it. Forget the cure. Go straight to the root of the problem. If people protected themselves from the virus, it would soon cease to exist.

In the article it reads, “AIDS is a disease that’s indiscriminate, affecting men and women, adults and children, straight and gay people.” This makes it seem like AIDS is in the same category as involuntary diseases such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, or different types of genetic cancers. It should be rightfully placed alongside diseases such as smoking-induced lung cancer or heart disease due to an improper diet.

The article also goes on to read, “But there are millions of people out there who didn’t wish for it and are still living with AIDS everyday.” This is clearly a misuse of the word “wish.” If someone doesn’t wish to contract AIDS, but still puts themselves at risk to the virus then that’s like wishing to be rich, but not doing anything to aid it.

I think a more dead-on statement is that once these people contracted the virus they “wish” they had been more educated on the dangers of their actions.

Sincerely, Nick Leggero, Senior Communications Theory