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Education

Bills to Restrict Campus Internet Access 656

Posted by emmett
from the please-define-specific-educational-purpose dept.
Slackrat writes "This article in the Arizona Daily Wildcat details the efforts of Rep. Jean McGrath, R-Glendale, to restrict dormitory visitation, require the installation of Internet filters, and allow students to to use campus Internet connections only for a "specific educational purpose" on all Arizona university campuses. And you thought banning Napster was rough." It goes beyond Internet access; opposite-sex dormroom visitation is on the block, too.
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Bills to Restrict Campus Internet Access

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  • Actually, this reminds me of an art exhibit that a student made at UCSB last year. She took hard-core porn that she found on the internet and used photoshop to place the images into popular advertisements that were scanned in from magazines. You know that RCA ad with the two dogs sitting in front of the TV? You couldn't imagine the filth they were watching. Anyway, I'm betting that her art work material-gathering research would have been banned under this bill. Censorship stinks.

    I have one question: Exactly what are students with high speed connections supposed to use their bandwidth for now?

  • McGrath said yesterday she has decided to remove another provision in the bill that would have required residence hall administrators to conduct random monthly inspections of all
    residents' rooms for prohibited items.

    That was nice of her 8-).
  • Wow, this is just what will be needed to ensure that our graduating college students are well-prepared for taking direction from "superior" individuals/corporations/governments rather than being able to think for themselves. What is this, 8th grade? 9th grade? *When* is this? 1955? 1957? INTERNET FILTERS?? I thought we were finally getting past this stuff. Guess not.
  • I couldn't decide if I should moderate up/funny or down/troll.
    So I just replied to say ROTFL
  • by TheLaser (122479) on Monday January 24, 2000 @11:32AM (#1341356)
    I am a new student at Arizona State University, and much of what goes on here politically is very confusing. One thing to understand though, there isn't really much behind these bills, they are just fodder for future political mudslinging... Banning co-ed dorms here would be entirely impossible because there is one dorm (the one I am currently in) that holds a huge majority of all on-campus residants, if it were to become male, or female only, there would be next to no other available space. There is very little chance of it actually occuring.

    I also doubt the internet restrictions will pass, and suspect they are also just political manuvering. I wouldn't put it past the legislature here to do something like that though, but it isn't much of a concern as the dorms aren't wired anyway, the only place we have internet access is in the computer labs.
  • by Michel (8815) on Monday January 24, 2000 @11:33AM (#1341360)
    If opposite sex dormroom visitation gets banned, I guess that means that gay/lesbian couples can still go at it to their hearts desire... ;-)

  • So people will go through a proxy server like the defcon proxy or anonymizer, at worst. I can't imagine this even getting to a functional level, as I've found priceless info on geoshitties pages from time to time. In any case, the tech will be gotten around if it ever becomes functional.

    as for no-opposite-sex visitation/restricted hours... riiiight. Who's enforcing those rules? RAs? Y'mean, fellow students? I've walked in the front door of dorms way past the witching hour. I've been smuggled in to women's halls. It's great fun to get around the security, why should this pleasure be restricted to only a few, when the entire nation could have the fun?

    I should add that any campus looking to implement these rules should also instigate "first-two-years-must-be-spent-in-our-dorms" rules as well, or they'll get to see some awfully empty dorms.
  • > McGrath responded to this scenario: a student
    > uses a campus Internet connection to decide
    > which political candidates to support. That
    > person is misusing university equipment, she
    > said, just as if she used her legislative
    > office phone to make long-distance personal
    > phone calls.

    I would guess that the "campus Internet connection" ISSUE will help students "decide which political candidates to support".... Not her for sure.

    Supposed to be "Just your Average Linux User" but it got chopped off when they upgraded....
  • My college tried to pass the same type of 'opposite-sex' dorm room visitation as well. We were able to have it killed very quickly when many students pointed out that this rule discriminated against heteros since gay/lesbian students could have their partners in their rooms without any restriction.

    10 years later this same campus has 6 co-ed dorms with only 2 same sex dorms.

    Somebody should ask the senator if this means he is 'pro-gay' and see how fast that gets re-worded.

  • Actually, this reminds me of an art exhibit that a student made at UCSB last year. She took hard-core porn that she found on the internet and used photoshop to place the images into popular advertisements that were scanned in from
    magazines. You know that RCA ad with the two dogs sitting in front of the TV? You couldn't imagine the filth they were watching. Anyway, I'm betting that her art work material-gathering research would have been banned under
    this bill. Censorship stinks.


    Interesting what exactly was the message? That television was bad/degrading? I however agree that censorship does indeed suck.

    I have one question: Exactly what are students with high speed connections supposed to use their bandwidth for now?


    Downloading the linux kernel and slashdot silly!
  • Fascism, n. A system of government marked by centralization of authority under a dictator, stringent socioeconomic controls, suppression of the opposition through terror and censorship, and typically a policy of belligerent nationalism and racism.

    -dumb dick

  • by AllynKC (88909) on Monday January 24, 2000 @11:40AM (#1341393)
    High speed internet connections have become a selling point for universities that have it in the dorms; and a major stumbling block for those universities that don't.

    Now, after investing who knows how much, they want to take away a large degree of that usability? These systems clearly have the bandwidth, so they can't claim that all the non-educational activity is stealing from students involved in educational research. Just another case of someone trying to superimpose his/her morals onto society. As long as no crime is being committed, the students should have full access to the internet.

    As for that visitation thing; get real. At my school, some dorm halls had that, and those who wanted it could live there, but they always had a tougher time filling those rooms than those on the rest of campus. Apply it to the full University system, and off campus landlords will be rejoicing.
  • While it does seem to smack of censorship to limit internet access at schools to specific educational usage, it doesn't seem totally out of whack.

    Given that bandwidth is a limited commodity, shouldn't that commodity be doled at an educational insititution *first* to those using for legitimate educational purposes? Tying up that bandwidth downloading porn, MP3s, playing games or anything else that's not specifically educational seems to be limiting network usage for people who are trying to do something educational with it.

    The answer is probably not in censorship per se, but in tighter control of bandwidth. When I was a CSci student many moons ago, we were given mainframe accounts with a specific allocation of connection time AND CPU utilization. If you screwed around and played games, you burned up your CPU or connect time and coulndn't do assignments unless you went and bought more time. Assigned time was pretty generous and I always had a bunch left over.

    Internet connections should have the same type of limitations. Each quarter you get X Mbytes of throughput. Use it for school or for screwing around -- but run out, and you're paying out of pocket. People who need more time (ie, I'm a CSci student writing networking software) would be granted more time, people doing internet-specific research could have their departments buy them time, and so on.

    There should perhaps be "peak" and "offpeak" time or similar models so that screwing around at 3AM doesn't "cost" as much as doing so in the middle of the afternoon.

  • Four years is not that long . . . enjoy your mental prison camp!

    And I thought that college was supposed to make a person liberal. When does life stop being a prison camp. We now have life being crappy from K-12 now we have life being crappy for 4 more years if you want to go to college. All I can say to this is ***************DOOOOOOOOOOHHHHHHH!!!!*****.

  • As both a computer science student and a Resident Assistant, I fall on both sides of this edict - those affected by it, and those who would(if in Arizona) be required to enforce it.

    Although RA's, in general, get a lot of flak for not "letting people have any fun", there is one thing that RA's generally have in common - we don't want to enforce more regulations then necessary.

    In this case, I have a whole lotta problems with this. In effect, a regulation like the one dealing with inter-gender dorm visitation would require me to stop people from having sex.

    I won't be doing that.

    Mind you, this isn't a moral judgement. If you want to have extramarital sex, so long as it's legal for you to do so(i.e., age of consent), I'm not planning to stop you. That's your choice. I'm not planning to pigeonhole residents who live for me just because some state senator decides that Sex Is Dirty.

    The network restriction is even more ludicrous. Porn viewers don't really hurt anyone. True, they take up shared bandwidth, but I doubt enough porn is shoved through ANY school's machines to make a noticeable difference in network traffic or available bandwidth. Second, this idea of filtering cuts to the very heart of free speech - in effect, you are preventing legitimate adults from using services that they have paid for in ways that are perfectly legal and don't hurt anyone. Some schools decide that they don't want porn on a school-by-school basis. While I may not agree with the decision, it's something that each school needs to decide. Personally, i don't see many schools deciding that monitoring porn habits is a good use of employee time.

    Finally, I don't think that filtering enhances "education" any more. Is Slashdot eduicational? Well, I don't have any classes that talk about it, so not really. Same with the Weather Channel Online, CNN Interactive, etc. Where do we draw the line between educational and non?

    The answer: Don't regulate it. If a school has a bandwidth problem, and they want to regulate, fine. But, don't regulate me because you have a "moral" problem with what I do, and because you're a state senator.
  • by bla (96124) on Monday January 24, 2000 @11:44AM (#1341411)
    what really disturbs me about this is her comparing using her phone at work to make personal calls to a student using university internet facilities. AFAIK, she is being *paid* by the government of AZ to do her job. the phone in her office is part of the equipment provided for her in order that she can do her job. but a student is *paying* to go to university. this is a state university and, as such, is funded by taxpayers. but isn't also funded by the students' own tuition? so shouldn't the students have some control over the equipment they're paying for? (disclaimer: i don't personally know about AZ, but a PA resident does have to pay tuition to go to Penn State). if students choose to waste their time downloading pr0n, what else are they hurting besides (potentially) their GPA? by virtue of the student paying for their education, i feel that they are in a state wholly uncomparable to that of a Company employee.

    and i'm not even going to comment on the blatant attempt to legislate morals here.
  • Half of school is what you do outside of the class room while naked with someone of the opposite sex.
    Okay, Internet connections are not being used for school work but that is a perk of living in the dorms. Living in dorm is kinda lame, but alot of places you have no choice.
    The downside of dorms are someone is always looking over your shoulder, you can't have alcohol or drugs, you have to be around people you don't like, and you lose a alot of privacy. What you get are friends, knowledge of parties and a fast Internet connection. Take any of that away, and living in dorms is like living with your parents but costs *alot* of money.

    I think this Republicain lady is alittle uptight. She probably was one those girls in the dorms that did not have sex, do drugs, drink or goto parties. So fo some wierd reason, she is taking it out on everyone else.
  • Wow, this is just what will be needed to ensure that our graduating college students are well-prepared for taking direction from "superior" individuals/corporations/governments rather than being able to think for themselves. What is
    this, 8th grade? 9th grade? *When* is this? 1955? 1957? INTERNET FILTERS?? I thought we were finally getting past this stuff. Guess not.


    Well I say that if they decide to put internet filters on that people should make sure that the sysadmin gets a little "review". Meaning that any slight infraction of the code and the syadmin should be booted out of a job. If they don't set an example then I guess everyone else can do what they want. Just connect via your isp or something and use they service via the university's initial network.
  • The most corrupt state in the USA? The one where all the spamming MLM pyramid-marketting comes out of (probably the only one where they're legal)? THEY want to get all high and mighty about internet access now?
  • by Sloppy (14984) on Monday January 24, 2000 @11:53AM (#1341442) Homepage Journal

    This is a great opening. Just start calling it the "Gay Collage Students Privacy Bill" and watch as support whithers.

    "So, senator, how are you voting on the Gay Collage Students Privacy Bill?"

    "The what bill?!?"

    "You know. The one that gets rid of those pesky girls. The ones to keep girls away from our horny studs so that there's less competition."

    "Um, uh, er... I .. uh .. hm. I have always supported the rights of gays to .. uh.. er. I uh.. I mean, I disapprove of .. uh. What bill is that again?"

    "You know. The one that keeps the horny studs from getting any pr0n and also keeps the girls away. So that when they just have do appease the monster, instead of choking the chicken or banging that luscious coed, they turn to their fellow man for help."

    "Um, er, uh... I'm not sure I like the sound of that bill."

    "Thank you, senator."


    ---
  • She said when she was a student at Arizona State University in the late 1950s...
    Isn't that the real problem? This looks to be just political grandstanding, about issues she isn't prepared to understand, looked at through a viewpoint that's a half-century too old. And you know what? Older people vote, and older people will believe her when she says that:
    the atmosphere at Arizona universities as "not conducive to learning." The primary indication of this, McGrath said, is the high number of students dropping out after their freshman year.
    Actually, the reason a lot of students are dropping out after freshman year has little to do with the school, and a lot to do with American culture right now, which proclaims that you have to go to college. So people get there, and a good chunk decide it isn't for them. That's where her drop-out figures are coming from.
    According to that article, neither the students nor the administrators want this bill, and she's pressing ahead anyway. Legislating morality, indeed. She just needs an issue to get popular on, there's an election coming up.
  • "McGrath responded to this scenario: a student uses a campus Internet connection to decide which political candidates to support. That person is misusing university equipment, she said, just as if she used her legislative office phone to make long-distance personal phone calls. On the other hand, the same student, viewing the same pages for a class assignment, is using the equipment properly, she said."

    Now, how is this furthering education? granted, college kids downloading pr0n all night long aren't really getting much of an education in anything other than human depravity and anatomy, but why is it that so-called "lawmakers" fail to realize the great potential set forth by the existence of the internet? After all, at what point in human history has so much information been instantly attainable by anyone on the planet? And just because *someone* finds it offensive doesn't mean it's not information. Another thing, will this exclude news sites such as Slashdot that report on a wide variety of topics? Will they individually go in and check to see that the Astronomy majors aren't reading news articles about Gaming or Open Source? I'm thinking the only way to get around such proposals, should they come about (which, although ludicrous, isn't quite as laughable as I'd like them to be) is to just not declare a major at all, which leaves your options pretty much open. I feel sorry for those students, and for myself, since I plan to move to Phoenix in a few months and hope to attend law school while there. I'm also wondering if this will create a big enough impetus among students to move off-campus, thereby skirting these rules. Could the universities really do without all that room and board income? Someone should get McGrath a calendar. My God, we're a few months away from the 21st century, and yet we're still having to deal with people in power who are afraid of one of the greatest achievements in human history. And one more thing, the students are all ADULTS, no matter how much those in power don't want to admit it. What's more, they are paying for the privilege to attend these schools, public though they may be. College is not like high school, where everything is paid for by local taxes or government bonds. Let people control themselves. Hell, those who are sitting around in a circle-jerk around the latest www.insert-euphamism-for-something-sexual-here.com all the time aren't going to be around too long anyway.

  • by calibanDNS (32250) <brad_statonNO@SPAMhotmail.com> on Monday January 24, 2000 @11:54AM (#1341449)
    I've heard rumors that Arizona is also considering banning students from taking classes. There have been allegations that some students have been encouraged to think both in and out of class. Several faculty members stand to lose their positions if they continue to encourage such anti-conformist behavior in the student population. It is rumored that one cafeteria worker has already been fired for asking a student to decided between regular and low-fat gruel.

    ~Caliban
  • I think the worst thing about her bill was not the internet access problem, but her talk of banning people of the opposite sex from dorm rooms. I don't know what puritanistic students she talked to ("we are only responding to the
    requests of students"), but I can't see this being received well by anyone on campus.


    Well I hate to say it but I think that the vast majority of these people are either Mormons or Strict fundamentalist sects of christianity or maybe Muslums of some sort. People having sex is not really that bad in terms of bring dowm the world or anything. People just don't think it a good idea. They just don't like picturing anything like that happening.

    I little way to defeat this is to use disguises and such. Have people wear sexually neutral clothing and just disguise your voice a little. Corny yes but it might work.
  • In related news Senator McGrath has introduced a bill requiring that running hot and cold water must be used for specific educational purposes. Also, inviting a member of the opposite sex into the shower is right out.
  • by Wah (30840) on Monday January 24, 2000 @11:56AM (#1341456) Homepage Journal
    you missed the worst part

    McGrath responded to this scenario: a student uses a campus Internet connection to decide which political candidates to support. That person is misusing university equipment, she said, just as if she used her legislative office phone to make long-distance personal phone calls.

    .and. the kicker

    On the other hand, the same student, viewing the same pages for a class assignment, is using the equipment properly, she said.

    I want this lady writing more Internet legislation she is "with it" and knows how "totally rad" this whole "Internet" thing is....

    I also read this as saying, "If you are an out-of-state student (i.e. not subsidized by the state) you have free reign to grab all the pr0n you want" It's not taxpayer money at that point (have you seen out of state tuitions?!), and therefore their purview expires.
  • by Hard_Code (49548) on Monday January 24, 2000 @11:56AM (#1341458)
    Isn't a college education supposed to _expand_ your mind? Isn't the reason you get treated like cattle (among other reasons), so that you can _interact_ with your _peers_ (of any, and all, races and sexes)? College, besides stuffing information into your brain, is there to _expose_ you to the _real_world_, not to teach you to close your eyes and stick your head in the ground singing the smurf theme song when anything slightly controversial is introduced to you.

    I don't see how cutting off access to peers and anything deemed "offensive" by the moral supremecy conducive to education. Um, shouldn't we be _exposed_ to and learn to _analyse_ "offensive" or controversial things?

    The only thing a stupid bill like this would do is raise a generation of closed-minded ignorant bigotted people. Hmm...maybe that is why it was proposed...

    Jazilla.org - the Java Mozilla [sourceforge.net]
  • by jd (1658) <imipakNO@SPAMyahoo.com> on Monday January 24, 2000 @11:57AM (#1341460) Homepage Journal
    As anyone who has listened to Sir Humphrey Applebey knows, politicians are -never, ever- brave. They pander to their voters, and follow "popular opinion", but that's about it.

    This is honestly the scary part of it. Clearly, there are sufficient votes in trying to pass these bans that it's worth infuriating large segments of the student population.

    (Mind you, the students have no union. The UK's NUS would blow something like this out the water faster than you could say "urp!".)

    First off, the best way to kill the bill is to kill the support. No votes, no risks, no bill. It's as simple as that. Whilst you fight on the facts, you'll risk losing, as voters don't care about the facts any more than the politicians do.

    Remember that. Voters look after number 1, and if that means voting for an ultra-conservative, then you can wave your rights good-bye.

    If that changes, though - if those same voters start to feel that they are impacted by this, somehow, they'll change their minds. Fast. Whilst it's someone else's problem - ESPECIALLY those "Pinko Socialist Students" who are so "stuck up" and "deserve to be kicked out of their ivory towers" - then why should Joe and Jane Bloggs give a damn? Far as their concerned, students are getting no better than they deserve. After all, learning and stuff makes people "stuck up and snobbish". It makes them "know more". In short, a lot of people think about as low of students as tech folk think of politicians, and the Right Wing thinks of Big Government.

    The only way to change the minds of those voters is to get them involved. Make the fight personal to them, somehow, and make sure that they are on the same side of the fence as the students. There's nothing like personal ego and vested self-interest to change someone's mind.

    Last, but not least, a call to all students in Arizona and surrounding States. Go on a Rent Strike, if the University's go ahead with this. Sure, they can threaten to kick you out, but no students equals no income equals no jobs for them. And their self-interest won't allow that. You can't lose anything but these paper-chains.

  • She said both of the Internet bills are designed to "get at the porn problem." She responded to First Amendment objections by saying that the proposals have been reviewed by lawyers, who found them constitutional.

    WHOA. This is a little disturbing. Even though this "bill" probably doesn't stand a chance of passing (how much would a campus wide "internet filter" and budget for enforcing student behavior cost?) I am worried that a legislator (and a group of lawyers) would even *think* like this. This is definitely a matter for concern.

    The most astounding thing about the internet (and the greatest potential) is the vast amount of information out there to be communicated. When we read books/magazines/newspapers we have to filter out useful information from the crap that is out there: the net is no different. If internet access is filtered, might as well check the library for some undesirable materials. Anyone for a book burning?

    The content that is on the net is a reflection of society as a whole, in my opinion. There is nothing on the net that you couldn't find in "The Real World". Trying to limit access is the same thing as censorship, a strict violation of the First Amendment.

    In my years in college (U. of Iowa), something similar was brought before the legislature that would have essentially limited research that the faculty could pursue. (I thought *that* was the most backward thing I had ever heard, until now...)

    Is this type of thing becoming common all over the country?

  • and you thought pr0n was bad.. look at her pic!

    (Score:0)
    by Anonymous Coward on 15:56 24th January, 2000 MDT

    http://www.azleg.state.az.us/images/jmcgrath.gif

    *gagging myself with an egg beater*


    Anyone willing to spend some time doing "creative" enhancements to that little ol' photo. Maybe there's a larger version or perhaps a full body one.
  • Exactly, this is just the usual go-nowhere dog-n-pony show that Republicans love so they can trot it out later to the dottering old blue hairs to show that they " are doing something " about the " moral crisis in America ".

    Why do they do this?
    Dottering old blue hairs vote and you don't...

  • ...of the disappearing "i,/i" tags...

    McGrath responded to this scenario: a student uses a campus Internet connection to decide which political candidates to support. That person is misusing university equipment, she said, just as if she used her legislative office phone to make long-distance personal phone calls.

    .and. the kicker

    On the other hand, the same student, viewing the same pages for a class assignment, is using the equipment properly, she said

  • She does have one good point. An alarming number of people, not just in AZ, come to college and dick around for a year, waste their parents' money, and end up getting kicked out. But there is much more to it than same-sex visitation and the internet. Students at good schools study like mad, even though they have similar visitation and internet priveleges.

    The point she is missing is students and their families pay for all those services through tuition and taxes. It's not like they're getting something free that should be restricted. When a student signs a housing contract, he is contracting for those services, and paying a bundle for it. There is no "free use of government resources" involved.

    Anyway, the article as much as states that her bills, like so many offered by crank legislatures, stand little chance of even coming to a vote, let alone passing.

  • by cybercuzco (100904) on Monday January 24, 2000 @12:06PM (#1341480) Homepage Journal
    rant

    Whether or not this person is serious about this bill, as some posters haqve suggested, is irrelevant. The attempt to clamp down on pornography, mp3's etc, is part of a larger trend of oppression of the young that is sweeping america. As america gets older, its polititians become more conservative, more restrictive, and more out of touch with the youth of america. This bill is evidence of that, the age of adulthood has been increasing along with the average age of the population. Once you were considered an adult at 18, capable of making decisions like whether or not you should drink for yourself, now the age in almost every state is 21. Has the maturity of americas youth changed? no, nothing has changed, merely the perception of polititans that we are children and therefore have no rights, and can eaisily be oppressed. The youth still have the vote fortunately, one of the problems is that we dont use it. We need to send polititans a mesage, that we can take care of ourselves, that we arent children anymore, and we wont take this kind of crap like censoring and filtering an internet that we are building ourselves as much as anyone else.

    /rant

  • by Bigwood (142702) on Monday January 24, 2000 @12:06PM (#1341481)
    I recently graduated from a mid-western college and lived under a very strict intervisitation policy that had been in place since the founding of the school: No opposite sex visitors in the dorms at any time except Friday and Saturday from 6 pm - 1 am.
    The dorm advisors were the enforcers and were actually sent on patrols through the halls between 1 am and 4 am to listen for the sounds of the opposite sex. (Sad, I know.)
    The students are overwhelmingly in favor of a change, but the president and board are children of the fifties and sixties. At that time, social biases kept men and women from developing friendships and pursuing the same majors. There was no need for mixed sex study groups. Few guys had friends who were girls or vice versa. The only opposite sex visitors were girl/boyfriends. The problem here is that the people who are trying to make these rules had a college experience that would be unrecognizable to most of today's college students.
  • opposite-sex dormroom visitation is on the block, too Sure, as if that's a problem for the nerds who only want the net access ;-)
  • by vlax (1809) on Monday January 24, 2000 @12:11PM (#1341494)
    ...one with far stricter rules than this bill would provide, and they had no luck with enforcement.

    There were no co-ed dorms. Students were not allowed to invite members of the opposite sex into their rooms. The rules stipulated no drinking, no smoking, no drugs, no dancing (you wouldn't believe the things Mennonites can talk themselves into), and absolutely-by-God no sex. RA's were expected to police the dorms to insure compliance.

    I can tell you from personal experience that a good third of the students drank, a large number smoked, plenty of pot was smoked in and out of the dorms, and dancing wasn't considered serious enough to elicit serious rule-breaking. As for sex, have you ever known any large group of single 18-24 yr olds stuck together to abstain? I can assure you this group was no exception.

    One of the English profs sang folk songs at a local bar, and a lot of her students showed up to listen to her. I caught my French advisor in a bar, drink in one hand, cigarette in the other. (I had snuck in on a slightly confusing foreign ID.)

    The pharmacy across the street from the college had a quite sizeable stock of condoms, cigarettes, booze, porno and even rolling papers. They filled an indeterminate number of birth control prescriptions. The college clinic was even willing to provide prescriptions for birth control, and under the table would point women to the Planned Parenthood office in the city if it was a little too late for the pill. (Confidentiality was in the clinic's charter.)

    Of the 16 guys on my dorm floor, there were at least 5 who received soft porn magazines through the college mail, two who could be relied on to have that month's Hustler, and one guy who got a variety of stuff with names like "Big Boobs and Classic Cars."

    The rules were not even dimly enforceable.

    This was before the 'Net and at a private, religious school. What on earth could lead this McGrath person to think that if a conservative, Christian college with the full legal authority to enforce whatever rules they saw fit couldn't keep the kinds of rules she has in mind, what leads her to think she can impose them through legislation when local college administrators are openly hostile to her rules?
  • by jsm (5728)
    Republican's are getting so bad these days I'm saddened to call myself one. I remember when republicans used to run their campaigns on the simple fact that democrats always screw up the economy, now they're just getting all uber-moral.

    Unfortunately, Republicans have been this way a long time, and their "less government" campaign promise has almost nothing to do with their actual voting record. I can relate to your position-- I sympathized with Republicans until I was about 20, when Reagan was in office and I saw some of the tremendous damage being done to civil liberties. He promoted a religious state, a police state, and a corporate state, and conservative politicians have unfortunately carried those banners ever since. The War on Drugs, a major Reagan legacy, is a good example of this, and it's also a good tool to harass political opponents. It was like the USA threw civil liberties by the wayside. I felt like I could be thrown in jail for opening my mouth about it. It was scary.

    I'm not trying to start flame wars or troll or anything, I'm just trying to relate a little history to people who have become adults in the 90's, who may not remember what it was like. Trust me, the 80's were a harsh time for little things like freedom of speech and freedom from police abuse. We have big and different problems now, but in many ways it's not as bad as it was then.

    I encourage you to explore third-party options. There are many out there, and surely some that match your values better than either of the big two. It's not a wasted vote-- if enough people vote third-party, they can become a voting block that big candidates pursue. Also, they get allowed into debates, which can ultimately mean they get elected.

  • Not about the no co-ed thing (since it descriminates against hetros but not homos), but about net filters and dorm searches. It's all paid for by tax payer's dollars. The net is too great of a learning tool to deny a university, but when it's funded by tax payer's dollars there should be some provisions so that it doesn't get abused. Bandwidth isn't cheap, and the tax payers shouldn't have to pay for it when it's just getting abused by l33t w4r3z h4x0rs and streaming video porn sites.

    ASU is renowned nationwide as a party school. If you've ever been there (I live 3 miles from it) you'll notice that they have these little blue lights all over the campus. Everywhere. Those are date rape/emergency phones. Attacks by drunken assholes happen so often at ASU that they had to put in call boxes everywhere on campus. They are literally every 30 feet, on every stairway, sidewalk, etc. It's no wonder they want to change the atmosphere there. They have every right to do so, for the dorms are owned by the state. As such they should have a right to look at their own property and make sure it's not getting trashed, just like a landlord in an apartment complex has the right to enter your apartment to make sure you are not violating the lease (pets, too many tenants, etc).

    There seems to be a lot of hypocrasy on /. Oh sure people bitch that the gov't spends too much money on dumb projects, but give us free net access and a grow lite in our dorm closet for our pot plants!
  • by quadong (52475) on Monday January 24, 2000 @12:13PM (#1341501) Homepage
    Except.... Most large colleges and universities have a fast connection. If I am downloading my porn at 100k/s, that means that someone downloading educational material is also getting about 100k/s. Since most educational material comes in the form of text, this is extremely fast. In fact, for 99% of academic work, I would say that 5k/s is more than sufficient. Given this, there really is no reason to restrict "other" downloads, since they do not significantly hamper "legitamite" ones. Remember also that the avaliable bandwidth has historically increased even faster than CPU speed, so even if it is congested now, wait a bit and it won't be.

    Add to this the additional headaches your suggestion would cause. Everyone would have to be educated about the new method and a lot of the non-geeks would take a while to undersatand. I would be pissed that the people who barely touch their computers are wasting an allotment of throughput that I could be using. Sysadmins would have to use valuable hours making sure the bandwidth sharing system was working and that no one was getting around it. Trust me, no one would like it.
  • by warpeightbot (19472) on Monday January 24, 2000 @12:13PM (#1341502) Homepage
    but she will never succeed in changing the behavior of college kids. The University of Tennessee has for years run dorm space with no opposite sex visitation allowed (the so-called Virgin Vault :) .... but that never stopped rebellious and resourceful Vol coeds (male and female) from sneaking into their opposite numbers' quarters in order to *ahem* discuss the Big Bang Theory. Nor does it prevent them from simply living off campus (or worse :) yet, in a Greek house) and thus circumventing all the restrictions altogether. (Alcohol is completely and totally prohibited on UT campus. Greek houses, however, are private property.... can you say, KEGGER?)

    What goes beyond all reason, though, is the censorship of political ideas. Is it not the function of an institute of higher learning to revel in the free exchange of ideas, and by doing so to expand one's mind? College students are, mostly, of the age of majority (at least to vote), and neither need nor desire protection from so-called dangerous ideas.

    The poor lady is deluded if she thinks she's going to do anything more than be a giant pain in the toosh to the good people of the State of Arizona. But I think it goes beyond that. The lady wants complete and total control of the still-malleable minds present in her state's universities, and she's like to get it if she's not stopped.

    By whatever means necessary.

    She thinks she has the right to impose her morals on adults. She would use the power of the state, which is the power of legal[sic] violence, in order to do so. This is doubleplusungood. She wouldn't get her way this time, as I've said, but that won't stop her from using increasingly more draconian measures in order to do so. And remember, she has the State's guns to back her up.

    The Internet censorship issue is more than likely provably a First Amendment violation. But I don't think we should have to wait that long for our freedom. McGrath has been exposed. She should now be removed as a representative and steward of the peoples' rights. I leave it to the people of Arizona as to how.

    --
    We cannot legislate against all the stupid things people will do. -- Jesse Ventura, Governor of Minnesota
  • by MattXVI (82494) on Monday January 24, 2000 @12:14PM (#1341507) Homepage
    This doesn't have anything to do with Republicans, and you know it. There are idiots in all parties. Clinton wanted to put all public school kids in uniforms. The Democratic state legislature in my home state (TN) forbid sorority houses from existing by applying anti-brothel laws to them. Of course fraternities zero restrictions. This law is courtesy of an old "blue hair" Democrat from Nashville.

    Stupid politicians are the norm in state politics, no matter the party.

  • This bill sounds like a horrible attempt to keep adults from using resources they pay for to research whatever they please. Internet access in dorms is not a state supplied resource, such as the phone line in the Congresswoman's office. The student pays for tuition and housing. Yes, the state does pay for a portion of the costs, but only for in state students.

    The idea of preventing this so called misuse of public resources is a farce. The cost of implementing and managing filtering would likely outweigh any cost savings.

    Where does ligitemate student research of medical issues come into play. Who decides what sites should be blocked. The software that's available is meant to block sites that are inappropriate for children. College students are adults! College students are there to learn.

    The idea of banning men from visiting women's dorm rooms and vice versa is even more rediculus. What are they going to do about homosexuals? Ban them from the dorms?

    I understand filtering internet access in primary and secondary schools. Those students are minors, and the school has a responsibility to make a reasonable attempt to not provide material the parents wouldn't approve of. However, when children become adults, they are supposed to have the right to make decisions for themselves. If mommy and daddy want to have someone watch over their young adults, and make sure they aren't doing anything they don't approve of, there are numerous private schools which provide a more controlled environment. The government should not be stepping in and censoring what adult students can see or do. I understand that pregnancy among freshmen girls is a serious problem, but banning dorm room visitation is an overly draconian solution. At what point do we teach people they are responsible for their actions.

    The internet is an exelent source of information of all kinds. These young people should have the chance to form their own opinions and make their own, informed decisions.
  • A log, huh? ;-) What for? In case it gets cold and you need to start a fire? I'm confused!

    ;-)

    Think you meant "Lock" there, pal.

  • Another key issue for McGrath is the use of government resources, paid for by taxpayers, for personal matters, she said.

    I wonder if the Representative has ever sent or received email from a family member while at the office...


    Newsbreak: McGrath has decided to extend her bill for preventing the use of taxpayer money to pay for personal matters at universities. The amendments include: banning all televisions, radios, microwaves, and all other electronics other than desk lamps and non-radio alarm clocks, to prevent the use of taxpayer money paying for the electricity used for those newfangled "electronic devices". Firing all the food service people and distributing and government rations , since learning does not require students to have a variety of tasteful food. Disbanding all student organizations, as they use taxpayer resources (university buildings, land, and power) to support personal activites. And the telephones in the dormitories will be modified to allow calls only to school staff. When asked if she wanted to prohibit personal conversations between students, as they were using taxpayer air, she replied "hmmm... I'll have to consider that one."

    She most obviously has no clue what the heck she is talking about. All the "personal" stuff has long been considered part of the college experience. It's part of the non-classroom learning and growing. Sure, the internet wasn't around before, but it is now, and it should be treated like any other service the school provides. They don't regulate the usage of the electricity or water, so why the information flow?
    ---
  • by technos (73414) on Monday January 24, 2000 @12:23PM (#1341523) Homepage Journal
    Back in the 'old days' when you were hand-feeding 'The Burroughs' with a five-inch deck of hand-punched cards and the mainframe cost was astronomical, that system made sense. Today, with bandwidth coming cheaply, use monitoring/enforcement makes no economic sense. By the time you research/implement such a beast, you've already spent more money than the connection costs in a year. Hiring the needed personnel to run such a system digs an even bigger hole; If they're qualified, a pair of 'em will run you more than the connection, every year. You may save a couple of bucks on bandwidth, but you're paying out more money to employees. Not to mention the faculty/student annoyance, pissed off calls to support, administrative overhead, etc.

    You don't spend $100,000 to save $20,000!
  • If it's so free, and it's all tax payer money, then why am I paying tuition? Why am I paying an extra fee on top of tuition to have this T-1 in my room? The taxpayers are not paying for my connection, I am. This is not high school. I am not paying $200 per semester to come here. I am paying several thousand dollars, so I have the right to see what I want on the connection I paid for. Bandwidth isn't cheap, I know, because I'm paying for it. A landlord has the right to make sure you are not violating the lease by trashing the apartment yes, but the landlord (as far as I know) does not have the right to change the definition of trashing during the duration of the lease. What if your landlord said one day "You can't use a TV because you might see something that I don't agree with?" Besides, downloading an extra 3 megs of MP3 is not trashing the connection. BTW, you know those date rape/emergency phones? EVERY COLLEGE CAMPUS HAS THOSE. I have been to four or five, including private colleges, and all have them. All I have ever heard of have them.
  • Set up Apache+mod_ssl to listen on the gopher port (70). Then https://server:70/proxy/http://www.foo.com and you're golden. There's a decent chance that gopher isn't blocked by the firewall, it's probably not monitored, and you've got SSL anyway.
  • I'm a foreign student studying in America, and the most important thing I've learnt from university education here is freedom, or the right to live your life as you want it.

    The freedom to make your own decisions - which must include the freedom to have sex in your dorm room or download porn over the Internet if you want. Letting students make their own choices is the only way they can grow into adults capable of making reasoned decisions. If you want to take children and turn them into capable adults, then you must treat them as such and give them all the rights which adults are entitled to.

    The freedom to choose is what separates a university education from high school, a great university from a mediocre one, or even a great and free country from a dictatorship. What she proposes will do the students in Arizona a great disservice.
  • Oh come now. This would never fly! The reason some (most [all]) people even go to college is to surf, get drunk, and get laid!

    Oh yes, and those nice pieces of paper which get you a good job.
    --
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 24, 2000 @12:31PM (#1341550)
    Likewise, Arizona students should be allowed to conduct random searches of state government offices. :)
  • For all of your who live in Arizona, I have one suggestion. VOTE! If all of the college students who think this is a really stupid idea vote when this state senator comes up for reelection, it would likely spell the end of her political career, and send a message to anyone else with ideas like these. If you don't like it, vote her out of office. Considering the percentage of the populous that actually votes, a large number of college students suddenly getting politically active would likely make a significant difference. Spread the word to students in her district, and do something about it.
  • Boy are you stupid. Did you know

    a) More Republicans than Democrats voted for the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the most important civil rights law of the century? and

    b) The only Senator or Representative in office ever to me a member of the KKK is... a Democrat. Senator Robert Byrd of West Virginia.

    Your flame only demonstrates your ignorance. What KKK members are you referring to?

  • ... that most American's were screaming and mocking Australia's Internet Censorship efforts (which everyone has been deathly about quiet since it supposedly went into effect on Jan 1 - I haven't noticed), and how it couldn't compare to the US's 'constitutionally guaranteed' right to do 'whatever we want'...

    :-)

  • Be loud about this issue in the upcoming Presidential and Congressional races. Find out what your candidates' stands are on censorware (such as in schools and libraries), and make sure all your friends and family know their positions too.

    If you can attend any public debates or other candidate appearances, ask the candidates as visibly as possible what they think about censorship and the right of adults to read whatever they want. If they say "not if the government's paying for it", have a response ready, perhaps "I'm the one paying taxes for it and I don't want the government to censor me or my children", or another response of your choosing.

  • Like, this is stupid. Are foriegners the only ones that thing that the United States of America is the land of the free? It seems that at every opportunity, I see LOTS of bills that look like they'd be more suited towards Nazi Germany rather than Washington DC.

    I'm probably going to burn some Karma on this one, but why not skip this slow slide into despotism; If history classes actually taught in the US, the electorate should be able to see in a second where all these bills lie. The erosion of personal freedoms is something that has happened in countless empires before the current holder of the title, and it appears that it will continue to!

    So, let's all save some time. It would appear from an outside observer's persepective (I'm Canadian) that some of the things your government would like include:

    • Unlimited Wiretap Capabilty for ALL communications; No warrant required.
    • Manditory indoctorination of students into Christian Dogma. Starting with the ten commandments and school prayer; We can move right to the Anti-Sex League next.
    • Continuing with this orwellian nightmare, we can start getting rid of all those nasty books. We need to protect the childern! Are you a child abuser! Wanting to have sex isn't natural!
    • Ooops. We can all return our guns now, too. Only criminals need those.
    • Encryption? That's ILLEGAL. It would break our network filtering!
    • And finally, let's make sure to get this started in the schools. That way, the adults of tomorrrow will be used to random searches on the road...

    YEEEESH. Wake up and smell where this heads, and it isn't pretty. More reason to concider a move to europe. Where they worked most of this stuff out in the _last_ revolution.

    Kudos!

  • (This is what I sent her. Feel free to rip off entire paragraphs, or even send a physical copy, which I did not do.)

    I recently became aware of a bill you have propsed concerning two seperate issues for university students. One is the preventing of guests of the opposite sex in their rooms. The other is concerning filters to be placed on university internet connections, to prevent unethical use. I felt it would be important to get a feeling of the people you are representing in this bill.

    First I'd like to address the issue of censorship. Who are you to propose what is 'proper' for a student to view? Most college students are 18 when they reach college, and hence are viewed by the state as an adult. As an adult, you are able to be tried for the death penalty, and have all the responsibility associated along with being 'an adult'. Because of all the pornography on the internet, I can understand your concern for wanting to limit internet usage for 'specific educational purposes'. But, who is to decide what is 'decent' for college students to view? In most college universities, it would be an over-worked administrator. Having been a network administrator at a State University, I can say that instituting this policy will be difficult and unrewarding. However, should each college
    administrator 'decide' what is 'educational'?

    For instance, being a party-independant canidate, I might block all access to Republican web pages, but let through an alternate candidates site?

    This has too much room for abuse and negligence. Also, it is censorship in it's purest form. By placing restrictions on students viewpoints, we limit their possibilites as individuals in this nation of ours. A universities choice in what they want to block on the internet is their choice. If they have half of their resources consumed by students going to a pornography site, I'm sure they will take care of the problem. A more conservative school might choose to block all non-educational sites.

    But any school that my son or daughter attends will have full access to any materials that are legally available on the internet. They are adults, and I will raise them with the accordingly appropriate values that I believe in. And as they are adults, they are competent to decide for themselves where their interests lie.

    The other issue is one of opposite sex visitations. This is also censorship in the expression of the students, and encourages sexism. And the same rules can be made as above with each school deciding. At the state-sponsored university I attended, there were coed and single sex dorms. I chose to be in a coed dorm, because it's important to be able to socialize with everyone, not just people of your own gender.

    I'm not sure if you are aware of this, but the best chance that people of this generation get to socialize is at college. Your best chance as a single guy is while at college, with a higher chance of the proposed mate being both intelligent and unmarried. This takes away a huge social element for today's youth.

    Also, it encourages males to be friends with other males, and females to be friends with other females. While in college, about half of my friends were female, and I would not restrict people's choice in friends. This encourages people to consider the opposite gender as 'different' which encourages sexism.

    Finally, any values I've instilled in my offspring I believe will reflect their behavior in the dormatories. and if I'm a good parent, they will behave as I consider to be proper. And that is my own decision, not my governments.

    This bill represents a blow to censorship, and obviously displays your distain for young adults everywhere. While your position in the Republican party might not rely on the youth vote for your current position, I encourage you to realize that Censorship in any form is the first step towards a Socialist state, and not a democracy. How soon till we start to censor state-sponsored atrocities, in interest of protecting adults?

    College students are adults and should be treated as such.

    Thank you for your time.

    Benjamin "Gonzo" Granzeau, age 25, male

    (Feel free to use any of the above message in the spirit intended. Also, if you would like to speak to me in person about the above topic, I would be happy to call you to help.)


    --
    Gonzo Granzeau
  • Sounds like what I would expect from Arizona. Ever go to school in Utah? You won't be employed after graduating but you will see a way of life like no other in this country. It's amazing that part of the country is on the same continent.
  • by Jonathan C. Patschke (8016) on Monday January 24, 2000 @12:54PM (#1341587) Homepage
    Heh, thought you were a free-thinking adult when you reached eighteen? Boy were you wrong! As for the lack of other-gender visitors, there are more than a few things you can say about that:
    • Sexual discrimination This is a biggy. Seriously. What's the difference between saying a man/woman can't go somewhere and saying a black/white/Indian/European person can't go somewhere? You can argue all day about intentions to do things not conducive to "proper" study habits, but there's no way to say that a guy's buddies aren't coming over to play N64 games and otherwise deter studying.
    • Discrimination Against Heterosexuals If the primary goal of this legislation is to stop in-dorm procreation, it's clear cut that this is a very narrow-minded way of doing it. Two counter-examples can be provided:
      1. Other-gender study partners
      2. Same-gender intimate partners
      I realize that homosexual and bisexual persons have endured similar oppressions in the past and still endure them today, but I think we can all agree that the way to harmonize this situation is to stop such personal micromanagement and let people decide things for themselves.
    • Lack of Jurisdiction While state colleges are publically-owned and under jurisdiction of the state congress, such a policy is discrimination by sex and, hence, unconstitutional. The power to deny freedoms based on gender is expressly denied in the US Constitution. Were such a bill to become law, it would be impossible to enforce if the defendant were willing to appeal to a higher court.
    • Hypocracy While senators and representatives may have strong opinions that sexual intercourse impairs proper study habits, and they may believe that they have the moral duty and power to prevent such actions from taking place, I would like to point out that any public officer in favour of such a bill that has received any sort of sexual favours in a public building, public office, or motor vehicle representing a public office is a hypocrite.
    Perhaps it's that I'm enrolled in a very liberal university (Rice, down in Houston), but I really can't see how lawmakers think that they can get away with such a blatant disregard for the principles upon which this country was founded. I mean, here at Rice, sexuality is regarded as part of life--your personal life. What you do behind closed doors with intimate partners is your business. Others, most-likely don't want to hear about it, nor do they care. I guess we have more of a community atmosphere down here than a "Students" versus "The Adults" environment. I don't know. I just really don't see any other way to be mature about it. If nothing else, we're adults dammit! We can think for ourselves, make our own money, wipe our own asses, and vote on whether or not these fascists will remain in office With regard to Internet access.... They actually have more ground here. The public pays for the Internet access for the education use within the public college. The only argument the students have in this scenario is censorship. Internet access is not a right (though I wish it were) and since state funds are being spent on it, they do have jurisdiction. However, if the public displays that such policing is not in their interests, legislatores will be wary to vote for an unpopular bill. It's still an oppressive regime of treating adults like children and it sickens me. I would suggest that any concerned students in these schools threaten to study elsewhere if this bill were to pass (IE: threaten beforehand so the universities put the heat on the state). Demonstrate! Be vocal! Show them that you mean it when you say. I am a voting adult! Dammit! Respect My Authoritah!!!
  • by Frac (27516) on Monday January 24, 2000 @12:54PM (#1341588)
    Coming from a city (Hong Kong) where every single school (as far as I know) requires public school kids in uniforms, perhaps I'm missing the point why uniform seems like some conformity suppression placed on poor kids. Why is it necessarily bad? And why is it acceptable when grownups in the army/navy wear uniforms? Is that suppression as well?
  • http://www.azleg.state.az.us/memb ers/jmcgrath.htm [state.az.us]

    jmcgrath@azleg.state.az.us

    As an ASU student, I am totally against these two bills. The day I heard about the dorm room proposal I hunted down her web site and fired off two emails stating as such.
  • This doesn't have anything to do with Republicans, and you know it. ... Stupid politicians are the norm in state politics, no matter the party.

    Weeeeelllllll... more accurately, it has to do with the pressure from the religious right, who are about twice (?) as likely to vote as everyone else. The religious right is quite strong in Tennessee, so politicians of all parties will court them. However, Republicans are historically much more likely to pander to them than Democrats. If you doubt this, then try to find a Republican politician in Tennessee who is willing to take a stand against the religious right there. Good luck.

    I've also known some pretty conservative "Democrat" politicians in southern states.

    I am neither Democrat nor Republican. It's true there are idiots in both parties, but as a whole, based on their national voting record, the Democrats have been much more concerned with civil liberties such as freedom of speech and assembly. Gun control is the only issue where this is reversed.

  • On the cost issue... students pay a substantial portion of their Universities funding in fees. Some also in taxes. I think they should more likely be looked at as shareholders with rights to pick and choose.
  • You'll just have more students moving off campus as soon as possible so they can browse the net, fuck, smoke pot and drink illegally in peace. Same as it ever was. Dorm life truly defines the word "suck" and really the only reason to stay in it would be the high speed net connections.

    Oh, and I expect it would also mean less students in state or out of state who'd be interested in going to college in the state. Of course you could probably also make a case that it discriminates against the lower income residents of the state who can't afford to attend college outside the state. Since the students with the most talent always learned more from exploring the network, the low income students with real talent could lose that edge which could cost them jobs in the future and keep them in their low income situation. Which probably suits Republicans just fine.

    With cable modems and DSL rapidly becoming more available, that high speed access is becoming less and less relevant.

  • by Commie (106979) on Monday January 24, 2000 @01:06PM (#1341607)
    It always amazed me as I continued through my academic years how little respect students were often given. Watching my younger siblings and their friends, it seems like its only getting worse (in high school with Columbine histeria and at college in general).

    The thing that bothers me most about it is - if you treat people like kids (IE - they aren't smart enough to make choices for themselves), then they tend to act like kids. It was amazing how many people I encountered in classes who were really thrown off by classes without rigid structure/due dates and spoon-fed material. I didn't think these people were stupid - they were just born in an educational system which never exposed them to thinking for themselves - this is just the same thing outside the classroom.

    The ol' "If you're old enough to be drafted and die in a war" mantra pops up, of course, but I don't think age is the whole story. People like Rep. Jean McGrath don't want ANYONE looking at porn sites, having sex before marriage (or whatever justification behind coed visitation restrictions), etc. These people want to enforce their belief system and their ideas on everyone. "Kids" are a great target, because society in general generally accepts kids shouldn't be exposed to some things for awhile.

    Problem is, college students aren't kids, and no one needs to be making their choices for them. It's particularly insulting for those students who are basically financially independent (via loans/grants/their earned income) - gee, everyones old enough to 1) Vote 2) Get drafted 3) Pay Taxes 4) Stand trial as an adult -- but we need to impose these limits on college campuses. It's always good to try and understand an opposing viewpoint, but reasoning like this will never make sense to me.

    Anyway this is just another good reminder for all of us to fight back the apathy and vote for the lesser-evil candidate.

  • It's kinda simple, really. It's a state run school, so they really don't have much say when it comes to being told what to do by the state government. I'm blessed with the luxury of going to a private university (and looking at some state run schools and wishing I were there...), since we provide the school with most of its income, they know better to do something like this. We can stand for some things such as banning Napster, or mp3s in general (effective spring term, here :( ), but "blocking sites that aren't educational" and "opposing opposite sex dorm visitations"... Do we really live in the 50's? To Jean McGrath, apparently.

    I'm sorry Ms. MgGrath, R-Glendale, but this is the 21st century. We are the future. If you're going to want to tell people what to do, most are smarter than to just lay down and let you have your way with them. The solution is simple -- enrollment will drop, and you'll be voted out of office next term. You seem to forget that nearly all college students are of legal voting age, and while we do not have much reason to vote, someone like you in public office would be enough to make me run out to the next poll and pull the lever for your biggest opponent.

    They are our public servants by definition, but most abuse the system, and others are so out of touch with reality... Sad :(


    _____________________
  • Just observing: McGrath pointed out that the students themselves are not paying for their Internet connection. Therefore they would not have a say in the matter, as the taxpayers are the ones who pay for the connection.

    McGrath is wrong. A good portion of school funding comes from tuition, room/board, and the like. WHen you factor in that the students pay taxes and tuition/room/board, then they probably pay an appreciable fraction overall.

    Also, at almost every university I've heard of, students pay for the in-room connection. As far as I'm concerned, that's close to ISP status.
  • Now I realize that many hair-trigger free speech advocates read slashdot, but I think that the principle behind the bill makes sense in a number of ways. It makes even more sense if you consider the geek angle.

    On the surface, having one-click access to porn in your room is different than having to go across the street to the gas station to buy a magazine. First difference: you don't have to pay to get access to internet porn (yes there are pay services, but we all know how much free stuff is out there). Second difference: you have an unlimited supply of porn on the internet. So in many ways the university is providing students with access to porn. If nothing else, this could fuel some addiction among those of little will power.

    On a geek level, porn is a huge, huge bandwidth eater. It's based around huge image galleries and movies. Restricting access to such services, and also restricting, say, downloads of files larger than N megabytes (such as 120 MB game demos), is a good idea from a system administration point of view. It has nothing to do with freedom of speech.
  • "Under a bill proposed this week by Rep. Jean McGrath, R-Glendale, students living in university residence halls would not be allowed to have guests of the opposite sex in their rooms, except for immediate family."

    So I can still bring my sister up to my room... sweet!

    "If you can't keep it in your pants, keep it in the family."

    - A.P.
    --


    "One World, one Web, one Program" - Microsoft promotional ad

  • by Dast (10275)
    PHOENIX-Under a bill proposed this week by Rep. Jean McGrath,
    R-Glendale, students living in university residence halls would be
    forced to work in labor camps every day, instead of attending class.

    When asked to comment, Rep. McGrath told reporters, "Since college
    students are such a burden on the state of Arizona, I thought we could
    get some use out of them." When the reporter informed her that
    students payed tuition to go to college, she replied "What? What is
    tuition? We get nothing out of them when they just go to class
    everyday. We have to put them to work."

    As for her inspiration for the bill, McGrath sites attending college
    in a Nazi Concentration Camp. She said when she was a student at
    Aussenlager Langenstein-Zwieberge in the late 1940's, students had
    "plenty of forced labor" outside of their dorm rooms, which she
    described as "gas chambers." She also said gas chambers underwent a
    "white glove" inspection each week, but now, no one cares how students
    maintain the state's property.

    --

    I feel for you geeks in AZ.
  • Yeah, you make a great point since education...especially at Universities, comes free of Charge! Oh, wait, thats right.....what the heck are all these bills I have for student loans....and what happened to all the money I made doing odd jobs while in school?!?!?!?!?!?! Before you go around waving that flag, remove your head from that self rightous place that it is....and remember, these aren't some general group of subsidized high school kids...they are adults, who pay considerably large amounts of money to attend a particular school. Yes I know, that the schools get money from the government....but not as nearly as much as they bilk from their student body, or from their contributors.
    As an aside, I can practically here the plumetting enrollment rates at UofA :-). If she keeps this up, she'll get what she wants: No students using the Universities resources other than proscribed by her. There wont be a UofA, due to lack of a studentbody, and as such, no impropper use of resources!


    Dimes
  • Like, this is stupid. Are foriegners the only ones that thing that the United States of America is the land of the free? It seems that at every opportunity, I see LOTS of bills that look like they'd be more suited towards Nazi Germany rather than Washington DC.

    Actually, no. Most foreigners see "the land of the free" as the sham it is. I don't look at the USA as free, I see it just as restrictive, if not worse, than *MANY* other countries. (I'm in Australia btw)

  • > I can tell you from personal experience that a good third of the students drank...

    Abilene, Texas. Home of three (3) colleges associated with fundamentalist religious sects, all "enforcing" rules very much like those you describe.

    Impact, Texas. Apparently a neighborhood that seceded from Abilene and ditched its anti-liquor laws in the process.

    On Friday nights the traffic used to back up for miles on all sides of Impact, with students on their way over from Abilene to visit the liquor stores.

    (A web search tells me that all this is just a footnote to history [utexas.edu], now.)

    And yes, dorm rooms were choked with cigarette smoke and strewn with "fuck books". And students I didn't even know used to ask me if I knew where they could "cop a bag", presumably because my mildly long hair among the greater crowd of gyrines marked me for a dope-dealing hippie.

    And there's that memorable day in the cafeteria, when I heard a skanky girl a few seats down the table summarizing her latest visit to the doctor for her friends without even lowering her voice, including his request that "couldn't she at least limit the number of her partners" to help get her problem under control.

    Oh, the foolishness of those who long for Legislated Paradise (TM).
    --
    It's October 6th. Where's W2K? Over the horizon again, eh?
  • by MattXVI (82494) on Monday January 24, 2000 @01:45PM (#1341677) Homepage
    David Duke ran as a Democrat in two elections and then tried as a Republican. He was thoroughly repudiated by the GOP and lost. Ballot access allows anybody with signatures and votes to run.

    I wonder how you feel, though, about out-and-out Jew-hating racist Democratic politicians like the Rev. Al Sharpton in NYC? He led a riot against a Jewish shopkeeper (who was killed by a rioter. Thanks, Al.) and has said many many nasty things about Jews (and whites, too, of course.) Has he been repudiated by the Democrats? NO, Mrs. Clinton, Al Gore, Bill Bradley, and all the other pay him homage, in search of the Black Racist constituency, I guess. Not a word of criticism. And how about Jesse Jackson calling New York "Hymie-town"? It's like calling Chicago Spic-town. Is he criticized? Shunned? Of course not! He is fawned over.

    You need to pay closer attention to who tolerates racists, and who repudiates them.

  • as most of the job hunt takes place online, what are graduating seniors to do with this? Universities are supposed to help you get a job, right? That's why each college has a fully funded career program to connect you with people who are hiring, right?

    So, what if I'm searching porno sites to find one that's hiring a webmaster? (...or a photographer? a programmer?)

    What if I'm doing research on net porn? IRC? Hell, my 130-page senior thesis for my undergrad degree was written on conversation on the Internet, IRC comprising a large percentage of the research; and I've written numerous other papers on email, textual decoration, and speech acts on-line, using exmaples from every-day interaction in IRC, IM, email, web-chat rooms, etc.--some of which have been published, so they're not crap.
    I mean, c'mon. Is the network going to pop up an alert dialog box on each log on, "Do you promise that your activities will be restricted to educational research and work? Y/N"
  • > Have you been to a University lately? We are
    > very much children in the eyes of the
    > University. We are ass fucked by these
    > institutions every day so why not this too.

    Actually...
    I picked up a copy of playboy a few months back
    for the first time in years, its the one with the
    jesse ventura interview.

    Anyway, they had an article on this. Anyone who
    is interested may wish to seek it out. It talked
    about how Parents and legislators are pushing
    universities backwards on the issues of students
    rights and some "ugly terms" like "in parentis
    locis" are making a come back.

    > Ben, who is dropping out as soon as my loans
    > are up

    If you want more freedom do just that. I did.
    A much better idea is to work for a University.
    The pay sucks but the atmosphere (in my
    experiance) tends to be more laid back and
    the benefits are nice (I get to take 2 free
    courses per semester)

    Of course...whether you are truely "free" or not
    at that point is even more matter of debate...
    perhaps just a slave to the allmighty dollar,
    without which you can not live,

    However, that would be more aptly discussed
    in a philosophy course :)
  • Okay, so I go to school in Utah. BYU no less. I won't argue about the "different way of life," but you're dead wrong about the job situation. A quick count of 34 of my friends who have graduated in the last 2 years shows the following:
    • 18 are in graduate school (MBA, PhD, or MD)
    • 14 are working (most got entry salaries >$50k per year)
    • 2 are "employed" as full-time mothers
    So slam the Latter-day Saint moral code if you want, but don't try to argue against cold hard facts.
    --
  • This is clueless. Driving a car, flying a plane, broadcasting on public airwaves, and practicing law and medicine are regulated simply because they all have a direct impact on other people. In the case of driving, flying, or practicing medicine, that impact can be physically devastating to other people. In the case of broadcasting, regulation is required to let everyone have their very own frequency. And in the case of law, regulation is required to keep incompetent lawyers from ruining their clients' lives.

    None of those have any resemblance to someone using the internet, or wanking over internet porn. Can you imagine needing a license to read books?

  • > much as driving a car without a license is illegal.

    Travelling is a RIGHT, Driving is a privilege. You DON'T need a license to travel.
    I travel without one, and have yet to be given a ticket for speeding or for driving without a license.

    Here is a list of DOCUMENTED rulings.
    Driver Licensing vs. the Right to Travel [cmu.edu]

    WHERE do the police get the jurisdiction to give you a ticket in the first place since the roads ARE PUBLIC!?

    Probably because you don't have the Manufactor's Statement of Origin for your automobile:

    Vehicle Manufacturer's Certificate/Statement of Origin [geocities.com]
    Manufacturer's Statement of Origin - Key To ownership [205.218.170.194]

    My automobile is NOT registered by the government, since it is MY property.

    When you buy a new autmobile, WHY does the goverment want you to surrender the MSO?
    Title transfer [mason.wa.us]
    Licensing your new vehicle in Washington [clark.wa.us]

    LOUISIANA OFFICE OF MOTOR VEHICLES VEHICLE REGISTRATION & TITLE [state.la.us]
    Massachusetts Title Law [state.ma.us]

    Speeding is NOT a crime, UNLESS you went to the government asking for permission (DRIVER'S LICENSE) to use their property (REGISTERED VEHICLE.) Remember Speeding != reckless driving.

    If you don't want to be harassed by the good law officers, you can get an International Driver's Permit, which is valid in over 200 countries. No Socialist Slave Number is required.

    Research the above links and see for yourself.

    Cheers
  • Then why does the US accept more immigrants than all other nations combined? Why are there several-year-long waiting lists to move here? If we opened the borders the country would grow by 100,000 a week.

    No offense, but you obviously don't speak for "Most foreigners".

  • Well said. You know what, i get NO money from the gov't. in reality, the gov't is making money off of me via the LOANS they have given me. Granted, the intrest rate is low, but its not free money, and i have to pay back more then i borrowed. The only free money i get comes from my school because of academic status. don't worry its not even a state funded school, not that schools really need any funding...they have students, and many ways of raping and selling their students to the varios companies in the neighbooring town.
  • most American's were screaming and mocking Australia's Internet Censorship efforts (which everyone has been deathly about quiet since it supposedly went into effect on Jan 1 - I haven't noticed)...

    Maybe you're the only Australian who can still get Slashdot...?

    Consciousness is not what it thinks it is
    Thought exists only as an abstraction
  • >Unless the students of Arizona State are somehow >different than the rest of the country than about
    > 5% of them voted in the last election. Which >means the other 95% voted her in by not voting at >all.

    I live a stone's throw from ASU, and I'd have to say this in their defense. More than 50% of these people were not old enough to vote in the last election.

    Of those that would have been old enough to vote, they didn't live in Arizona.

    One thing to realize about Arizona is that, generally, everybody who lives here has come from another state. This is even more so for ASU students.

    With all due respect to people who were born and grew up in Arizona, you at least know what I'm talking about.

    These persons may or may not have voted McGraff in, but you can't blame them for (1) not being citizens of that state and (2) not being old enough to vote in the past.

    Another thing that may shock you, is that it's not ignorance and apathy that's getting these people in office, but strong support! The scariest detail of all this is how popular these strict, controlling attitudes are! Those who believe in individual freedom and freedom from religion-based government often find themselves in the minority, and on the losing side of politics! These people are not being elected by default!
  • The Kansas state board of education decided that evolution would not be covered by the comprehensive state education tests. It was a administrative, not judicial, decision, and schools are still free to teach it, although that may vary with funding.
  • I don't think requiring school uniforms is some act of removing freedom or gaining security. In some sense, it's an act of teaching kids to follow instructions, and learn to control our id, so to speak.

    the clothes you wear didn't really dictate the education.

    I'm sure the army wouldn't win more wars if they can all dress the way they REALLY wanted to.

    I think one of the biggest problem in America is that everyone overreacts on their "freedom of speech", on people "trampling on their rights", on the government "removing their freedom", so on so on. Obviously some cries are very much warranted (like DVD vs. MPAA for example), but most of them are just unjustified whining that equates to a kid "losing freedom" because he's not allowed to watch TV after 10 at night.

    When people learn that not all restrictions and rules are oppression to our rights and freedom, maybe America's future will actually start turning around for the better.

  • Too late. This is ASU we're talking about.
    Tempe Arizona.

    Real estate for mundane, ugly places is already
    in the $150-200 per square foot range.

    Tempe is the "pretty" part of the Phoenix valley.
    Generally, Phoenix looks like central LA, while
    Tempe at least is bicycle friendly, has palm and fruit trees, and a bit of college-town atmosphere.

    As far as jumping the rush for buying up the rental property? Forget it. And you can already get USWest DSL pretty much anywhere in Tempe, and Cox cable everywhere else.

    Considering how flat the place is, Speedchoice (wireless net!) works quite well too!

    I think if real estate goes up any more, people will start leaving here to go to Berkely or NYU, because of the lower cost of living in the Bay Area and NYC!!!! It's already outrageous.

    The last apartment I looked at was a 1-br/1-bath,
    20 feet from a (noisy as hell) railroad crossing.
    $1350/month, minimum one-year lease. That's not quite like san jose or manhattan, but you get the idea.
  • Consider this: Remember how sex in high school had that little extra adreneline edge to it because of a (usual) lack of real privacy?

    Sure, it was terrifying to think that you might hear her parent's car drive up at any second while you were otherwise occupied in the living room. Then again, it was exciting as well.

    In fact, adding sneaking a member of the opposite sex into you dorm can be just as much fun. Of course, I wouldn't want to do it all the time, either.

    ----

  • by jsm (5728)
    I'm a libertarian Republican and as far as I am concerned, ASU students can fuck their brains out if they wish.

    Great! But then it becomes a matter of priorities: Would you rather vote for someone who didn't censor but (let's say) raised taxes to pay for schools, or someone who did censor but would cut your taxes?

    From your post, I'd call you more of a Libertarian than a Republican. Republican politicians support the religious right's agenda and stronger police powers, which Libertarians are against. I don't think Republican politicians vote very Libertarian at all, unless it happens to help large corporations who are their campaign contributors. Orrin Hatch himself said that if soft money were banned, it would be the end of the Republican party.

  • by Christopher B. Brown (1267) <cbbrowne@gmail.com> on Monday January 24, 2000 @03:04PM (#1341760) Homepage
    Evidently two of the parts of life that these students aren't being permitted to do are:
    • To learn to exercise self control, and
    • To learn to behave maturely

    If there is no option of making wrong choices, then it's not self control.

    From the news report, particularly:

    She describes the atmosphere at Arizona universities as "not conducive to learning." The primary indication of this, McGrath said, is the high number of students dropping out after their freshman year.
    and
    She said both of the Internet bills are designed to "get at the porn problem."
    it might be taken that there is some unusual problem.

    Is that actually the case? I would think it possible. Or is this merely a knee-jerk reaction that they've noticed some new way of "getting porn."

    As compared to the consideration that students could use the US Mail service to send a subscription card to get a subscription to Playboy or potentially something "racier."

    Actually, that suggests something comparable... I'd think that the institution is not permitted by US law to tamper with the mail. Considerable "games" could be played by using the mail service...

  • You obviously miss the news, which sees literally HUNDREDS of illegal immigrants arriving on Australia's shores every week. So many that we're running out of places to hold them while processing. Or that Australia has to knock back at least 80% of immigration applications?
  • by Christopher B. Brown (1267) <cbbrowne@gmail.com> on Monday January 24, 2000 @03:13PM (#1341767) Homepage
    Way back when, the cost of long distance service was pretty high.

    Today, I expect it costs the phone companies more to track and account for it than it costs for them to provide the service.

    This doesn't stop them from sending you bills.

    The parallel is quite clear: The "powers that be" care a whole lot more about control than they do about the economics of the matter.

    The same is true for organizational attempts to block things like phone sex services. Some organizations have concluded that it is mandatory to block the stuff. I'd think it cheaper to handle it after the fact, permitting people to abuse it, but making this a firing offense.

    There would be some losses resulting from people being stupid; these costs are not likely to be as high as the costs of setting up the pre-blocking system. A couple of other benefits come in:

    • Those employees that are trustworthy will appreciate being trusted.
    • By permitting employees to screw up, the organization can detect this, and perhaps prevent them from making BIGGER mistakes.
  • Evil.

    I don't use the word much, in fact, pretty much not at all.

    But then I saw this quote:

    McGrath responded to this scenario: a student uses a campus Internet connection to decide which political candidates to support. That person is misusing university equipment, she said, just as if she used her legislative office phone to make long-distance personal phone calls.

    On the surface, this is just plain stupidity: She doesn't live in her office, whereas students live on campus. The fact that students--not just the state, but students are actually taking money and paying for housing gives them some modicum of personal privacy that you don't really get when you have a home you can go over to after you're done with work.

    But this is something more.

    Any politician that would intentionally attempt to quell political discourse on the basis of inappropriate usage of government resources deserves all the wrath that an educated populace can bring to bear. Beyond the sexism and agism--which in and of itself is grotesque beyond description--is the presumption that the ability to learn and understand the policies behind the hype is not a right but a priveledge; not even a duty as a concerned American but a hindrance upon its social stability.

    Many have attacked the young as a means to win over the old; any damages that generational warfare might create are quelled by the fact that one wins more blocs from the old than even exist in the young. But this is beyond that. Every American, young and old, should look towards Mrs. McGrath as a symbol of total corruption--not from outside, mind you, but from deep within. For anyone who can believe that political discourse is something which much be controlled and quelled like just another hormonally induced phase has truly lost every last shred of respectability and honor as any kind of leader, and any lemmings that would accompany her sadly deserve whatever fate they may receive.

    I will donate $20 to whoever runs against her in the next election.

    Yours Truly,

    Dan Kaminsky
    DoxPara Research
    http://www.doxpara.com
  • Actually, the ABA (Australian Broadcasting Authority) has issued a few takedown notices, but won't tell anyone who they issued them to. See today's Australian [australianit.com.au] for details.
  • What rights of assembly and speech are the Republicans at odds with?

    Again, everything that the religious right is at odds with. You can't say "bullshit" on the air, or display nudity, or even talk about sex, and it's even hard to talk about breast cancer, pregnancy, or STD's (ignorance of which leads to serious problems for kids). Many fiction and nonfiction books are banned in schools by so-called "Christian" groups for even alluding to these topics.

    As far as assembly goes, the Arizona politician in question thought about prohibiting different-sex association. In Tennessee, I know people who are harrassed because they're not Christian, and their children are harrassed at school.

    I sincerely disagree. They are no more likely to vote than radical homosexuals or Pro-abortion types.

    Actually, I've seen studies that indicate members of the religious right are something like twice as likely to vote as others. Unfortunately I don't have any links to those studies, but I've seen more than one.

    I'm still wondering what a "radical homosexual" is. "Radical activist" maybe, but a person has no choice over whether or not they're gay.

  • As Thomas Jefferson told us, "The price of freedom is eternal vigilance." Overquoted, but none the less true. But most people don't care. Their freedoms are being taken from them silently, while they are too wrapped up in day to day life to notice the persistant, gradual changes.

    So how do you get them to notice they are being stripped of freedom? You project the current trend into the future--show them an exageration of what it could be like if they don't take a stand for themselves (by making changes in their state government in this case). Hopefully it will scare them. If juvenile rants help wake up even one college student, to convince him or her to start making changes now, then I am not going to keep my mouth shut because someone wants me to be sentimental about their past or wants me to hold their experience as something sacred. It isn't worth it.
  • This is possibly the single saddest example of legislative incompetance that I have ever seen. An elected official describing using the internet to learn about politics as an abuse of taxpayer dollars? What about all those silly direct mail surveys and bullitens that elected officials running for office send out to their constituants postage free because of the frankage privilage? I know that I learn a lot more about politics from the internet than I do from those. This person is fighting the single best, most legitimate use for the internet in the name of something silly about taxpayer dollars only going for what is on a syllibus. If all you learn in college is what is on that little white sheet they pass out in the first week of Psych 101, you will be a waste of taxpayer dollars for the rest of your life, not just while you're in school.
  • I remember what that felt like when I was still at college. For some of us, at any rate, the colleg authorities' attempts to segregate the sexes just made us more determined to defy them. How utterly pointless.

    I think there are two reasons why the older generation always tries this kind of thing on.

    In the first place, there's definitely an element of culture shock. Each generation of teenagers deliberately invents its own culture and the whole point of it is that it *must* be different fronm what went before. After thirty years the difference in accepted modes of behaviour between the two generations is rather significant.

    If this were all there probably wouldn't be any trouble (most of the time anyway) because most teenagers are sensible enough to exercise discretion in their illicit experimentations. There would be a moderate amount of drinking, pot smoking and sex going on behind the scenes but nothing really publicly obvious.

    But there is the second factor: that in any given generation there is a spectrum of personality types.

    Legislators, Judges and University administrators are very often going to be conservative control freaks, because that's what made them choose those careers in the first place.

    And in any given generation of teenagers there will be a small proportion of assholes who refuse to exercise discretion, who will seem hellbent on creating a confrontation with the aforementioned authoritarians, and thereby ruining things for everybody. You all know the type of person I'm talking about. Like the STD-ridden slut bragging loudly in public about how many partners she slept with that week (yuck). Or the halfwit who gets drunk and trashes the dorm then shits on the bonnet of somebody's car.

    These two personality types do not mix well.

    If only all college kids could exercise a little discretion and consideration for the sensibilities of others less...er...liberated...than themselves, and if only the authorities concerned could try to remember that one or two bad apples needn't be representative of the whole bunch. If only, then we could all just party on in peace.

    Consciousness is not what it thinks it is
    Thought exists only as an abstraction
  • by DGregory (74435)
    I agree.
    Think about this:
    University dorms cost more to live in than rent in an apartment (in 95 I paid $1000/sem to share a dorm room, and the next year I paid half of $450/mo+phone,electric for a 2 br apt.) I fail to see how $500/mo for ONE ROOM has to be subsidized by taxpayers money.

    And don't the students pay a technology fee? They started charging us $450/semester for some sort of technology fee. If the AZ students are paying one, then again, I fail to see how it's being subsidized by taxpayers' money.

    College students are adults. They can walk down to the porn shop and buy themselves a playboy. They LIVE in the dorm room, and if they didn't, they'd be old enough to get themselves an apartment where they don't HAVE opposite sex rules. This ain't the '50s anymore. This ain't a Mormon (or ) college.

    Even without the rules, students would still flunk out, they can find other things to waste their time with, or even buy a freakin dial up account for $12 a month to download their porn with.
  • If you notice, the reason that she claims that all this legislation came about was because there was a high drop-out rate among freshman. If Arizona is anything like my home state, hell if it's anything like my old high school, than there is a very simple reason why kids are dropping out freshman year. They were pipelined into going to college by high schools and states desperate to look like they're doing well in the "war against ignorance" or what have you. My mother teaches in a public school in a small county in rural Kentucky, and watches as kids who would never have had any interest or business going to college get shoe horned into their local state university by schools chanting the mantra "every student can do college level work."

    A number of my frinds from highschool have ended up dropping out and coming home to work or go to a local CC rather than a big state school, not because they are stupid but because they do not have the motivation necesary to go into a four year program at a major university. They were tired of it and ready to quit by junior or senior year in HS, and slapping "University" on the name of their school is not going to change that.

    Realizing that education really is a pipeline to success, I do think that we should encourage people to go to college. I am not mandating testing to decide who becomes a Morlock and whoe becomes the Eloi, but I think schools need to ditch the idea that absolutely everyone needs to go to college. There are any number of perfectly good people who don't want or need to go to college, or who aren't capable of keeping up with the work and requirements. Yeah, some people do party too hard their freshman year and that is what knocks them out of school, but I know personally people that has happened to, and it is as much because they didn't want to be there as it was that they just couldn't help themselves and needed government attention.

  • by Millennium (2451) on Monday January 24, 2000 @04:12PM (#1341822) Homepage
    They don't address the problem. All they do is cover it up, literally.

    Reminds me of a quote from Neil Gaiman's The Sandman. I can't remember the quote exactly, but here's a rough paraphrase: "The idiot may point out that the Emperor has no clothes. But the idiot remains an idiot, and the Emperor remains an Emperor."

    The point: uniforms may cover up a symbol, but they don't solve the problem behind it. It seems that, anymore, kids are being raised with a basic lack of respect for anyone or anything, the most important lack of respect being for each other. No uniforms will cover that problem up; only education will. Uniforms are a mere quick-fix.

    Now, you ask why it's acceptable when grownups in various professions wear uniforms? Here are a few examples:
    • Military uniforms are functional. Take trenchcoats, for example (they were invented in World War 1, as standard issue for armies in the trenches). Every part of those things serves a purpose, even the shoulder loops (to which grenades were attached.
    • Sports uniforms are there to serve the specific needs of the sport. Football uniforms are heavily padded, to protect the wearer. Most basketball uniforms are loose, light, and flowing, allowing for maximum maneuverability. And so on and so forth. So these, too, serve a purpose.
    • Emergency personnel uniforms have a variety of uses. Firefighters' uniforms protect their wearers from the searing heat their profession sends them into. Police uniforms vary depending on assignment; the simple blue uniform allows for easy recognition by civilians, riot gear protects the officer from makeshift (and sometimes not-so-makeshift) weapons, bomb squad uniforms protect the wearer from bombs.

    Those are just a few examples. And the point is, they all serve some purpose. School uniforms are nothing more than pretentious cover-ups for the real problems facing our schools and children today. I came from a high school with such a dress code, so I know what uniforms do and don't do. I've seen administrators use them as tools to manipulate the students. I saw one director who used them as an excuse to basically ogle and grope students, male and female alike (thankfully he didn't last long).

    Never once did I see uniforms stop anyone from ostracizing anyone else. They never stopped any fights, nor did they prevent any other kind of rule infractions. They didn't increase school spirit at all; if anything they lowered it. On the few days when the dress codes were relaxed, no one seemed to extol the "convenience" of uniforms; everyone dressed as themselves, and you know what? There was no evidence of the "fashion-slavery" uniform advocates claim happens when uniforms aren't present (that bit about "the kids all wear uniforms now anyway" is complete and total crap, and don't let anyone tell you otherwise).

    All the uniforms did was feed the school's ego. That's all school uniforms ever do. They suppres the individual in the very enviornment that's supposed to teach students to live, do, and think for themselves.

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