Letters to the Editor

Greek Life Stepping Up Its Community Support

During winter quarter, those who are involved in Greek life have attempted to break apart the stereotypical views that many students carry about fraternity and sorority life. From the explosive sounds thundering through the Bren as Greeks filled the seats cheering on the Anteater basketball team to the fabulous philanthropic events put on by individual chapters, Greeks have proven stereotypes wrong in many ways. However, the ball doesn’t stop rolling there, as more and more chapters dedicate their time to supporting their on-campus community as well as the city nearby. In particular, Phi Gamma Delta is putting on the “Irvine Fun Run: For Cancer Research” on April 4 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

This event is open to the entire Irvine community, with its main attractions being two invigorating runs around our very own Ring Mall; one run is a competitive one-mile race and the other is the “Fun Run.” The event’s festivities will include various members of the UC Irvine vendor fair, live music and more importantly, guest speakers from the event’s beneficiary, the Adolescent and Young Adult program, which focuses its efforts on cancer research for people between the ages of 15 and 39 who have cancer.

“It’s a great chance to bring our community together, especially for something we can all relate to. We all have friends, brothers, sisters who suffer from cancer. Why not make a difference and have a good time in the process?” said Salman Khan, a member of Phi Gamma Delta.

Cancer is one of the leading causes of death in the United States. But there’s a way to fix that: Spend this coming Saturday morning on campus with recent alumni, professors, community members and fellow students as they run for fun with the hope for a cancer-less future.

Sammy Kordi
IX Chapter President
Phi Gamma Delta

Associated Students of UC Davis Election Irregularities

To those unaware, several elections irregularities call into question the legitimacy of the most recent winter 2009 ASUCD elections results. The elections Web site experienced a glitch that allowed members of the public to see the vote tally for each candidate before the election’s close, which influenced the election’s outcome. Another Web site malfunction prevented many individuals from voting at the peak election hours of 6 to 9 p.m. on Feb. 19. As a result, the Elections Committee extended voting from the scheduled 8 a.m. to 11 a.m., yet failed to notify the entire student body. In the ensuing days, election’s outcome faced several challenges.

Throughout the whole election season, which lasted from Jan. 20 to Feb. 20, our campus newspaper, The California Aggie, adopted an unprofessional bias in its reporting of the winter 2009 elections. First, in its reporting of debates and events, The California Aggie focused exclusively on interviews of the opposing slate candidates, dismissing and devaluing the relevant voices of independent Senatorial candidates. If The California Aggie aspires to offer unbiased reporting, then it should have made a concerted effort to mention all the candidates’ names and stances on issues, instead of playing favorites by interviewing a select amount. The California Aggie should have striven for equal exposure for all the Senatorial candidates. Furthermore, it gave much of its opinion space to letters regarding The Green Initiative Fund (TGIF) — a major platform issue for some of the candidates.

However, most disconcerting is The California Aggie’s untimely declamation of the ASUCD elections complaint as “unfounded, weak,” amid a pending review by the Student Judicial Affairs (SJA). Richard Procter, the editor-in-chief, criticized students’ rights to voice their opinions at the Senate meeting following the closure of the election in question. More importantly, following the election controversy, in recent weeks The California Aggie has blatantly taken sides with the President and Vice President Elects Joe Chatham and Chris Dietrich, the two candidates the publication also formally endorsed during the election. This stance, though denied by the newspaper, has been obvious in its continuous printing of editorials, guest columns and opinion pieces of those siding with the “no on re-election” stance and choosing not to report on the “yes on re-election” perspective.

The California Aggie should refrain from publishing opinions while petitions are pending and decisions have yet to be decided. It must also stop being part of the story it is supposed to cover and tell the story through unbiased reporting instead of using the newspaper as a megaphone to support a particular side.

On the UC Davis campus, it is to the point where many students not only no longer trust their primary source of student news but also now are personally offended by the printing patterns of The California Aggie.

Lia Shepherd
Concerned UC Davis Student

Marijuana Legalization Would be Beneficial

Another beneficial component of re-legalizing cannabis (marijuana) that doesn’t get mentioned (Revolution Time: We Need Weed, Mar. 9, 2009) is that it will lower hard drug addiction rates. DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) will have to stop brainwashing youth into believing lies, half-truths and propaganda concerning cannabis, which will create grave problems in the future.

How many citizens try cannabis and realize it’s not nearly as harmful as taught in DARE-type government environments? Then they think other substances must not be so bad either, only to become addicted to deadly drugs. The old lessons make cannabis out to be among the worst substances in the world, even though it’s less addictive than coffee and has never killed a single person.

The federal government even classifies cannabis as a Schedule I substance, along with heroin, while methamphetamine and cocaine are only Schedule II substances. For the health and welfare of America’s children and adults, that dangerous and irresponsible message absolutely must change.

Furthermore, regulated cannabis sales would make it so that citizens who purchase cannabis would not come into contact with people who often also sell hard drugs, which would lower hard drug addiction rates.

Stan White
Dillon, Colorado