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Friday
March 30, 2007
The Daily Illini
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                              Opinions
neglect at Walter reed:
                                                                                                                           Editorial Cartoon PaT abbOTT, ThE DaILy ILLInI




disgraceful, un-american
Terrible conditions, treatment undermine
administration’s commitment to the troops
“We owe them all we can give                                                       many visits to the facility, fell
them. Not only for when they’re in                              sujay              prey to his sharp reading skills.
harm’s way, but when they come                                  Kumar              Now that I think about it, when
home to help them adjust if they                                Sujay can be
                                                                                   did the president start reading
have wounds or help them adjust                                 reached at         newspapers anyway?
after their time in service.” – Presi-                          opinions@             Sadly, this may be the first
dent George W. Bush                                             dailyillini.com.   time you’ve heard about Wal-
                                                                                   ter Reed.


E
     very Fourth of July, I burn         patients,” the hospital’s admit-             Why aren’t we upset that
     50 American Flags. When-            ted soldiers outnumber regular            our soldiers aren’t getting the
     ever I hear the word Con-           patients 17 to one.                       respect they deserve for risk-
stitution, I go on a rant about             Outpatients at Walter Reed             ing their lives on the front
how the government staged                are sent to one of five residenc-         lines? Isn’t what’s happening
Sept. 11. When soldiers return           es after treatment.                       at Walter Reed un-American?
from war, I welcome them back               If there is an overflow, some             Instead, we’d rather roast
with a parade of spit.                   are sent to nearby hotels and             Dick Durbin after he read a
  If I were to really carry              apartments. They spend 10                 memo about prisoner treatment
out any of those actions, it             months on average there, but              at Guantanamo Bay and said
would make sense to call me              many stay for far longer. In the          that “you would most certain-
un-American.                             summer of 2005, outpatients               ly believe this must have been



                                                                                                                         Greek philanthropy methods
  But if a premier American              peaked at 900.                            done by Nazis, Soviets in their
military hospital failed to pro-            The Washington Post jour-              gulags, or some mad regime ...
vide injured American soldiers           nalists spent four months inter-          that had no concern for human
with the care they desperately           viewing frusterated soldiers,             beings.” Durbin’s analogy was



                                                                                                                         miss the mark on charity
needed, what would you say?              family members, veteran aid               harsh, but not out of line.
  Walter Reed Army Medical               groups and current and for-                  An emotional Durbin later
Center in Washington, D.C.               mer staff members at Walter               apologized, saying, “Occasion-
houses injured soldiers who              Reed.                                     ally words fail us, occasionally
have returned from the wars                 Shocking stories of wound-             we will fail words.”
in Iraq and Afghanistan. The             ed soldiers managing other                   Durbin was right. Sometimes


                                                                                                                         a
Army’s top medical facility has          injured soldiers, memory-loss             we will fail words.                          few weeks ago on Feb. 20,                                                 aries purely wanted to give
been under fire for subpar con-          patients missing appointments                The Pentagon and President                Zach Good, a columnist                                 dan                back to the community.”
ditions, unsatisfactory manage-          and navigating quarters on                Bush should read over the last               for Pennsylvania State’s                               mollison              As a former fraternity mem-
ment and outpatient neglect.             their own, janitors serving               line of the United States Army        Daily Collegian, was quickly                                                     ber, I can relate with Good’s
                                                                                                                                                                                       Dan can be
  Complaints have been report-           as bilingual translators, drug            “Warrior Ethos,” a set of prin-       and quietly dropped from his                                  reached at         frustration. During my two
ed since 2004, but it was only           dealers lingering near hospital           ciples by which every soldier         paper for making some contro-                                 opinions@          years as a brother, I cared
after the Washington Post                entrances, and an incredibly              lives: I will never leave a fall-     versial posts on Facebook.                                    dailyillini.com.   deeply about my organization
ran an investigative series              complex paperwork process to              en comrade.                              Good’s firing is yet another                                                  and its well-being.
in February that the hospital            even be admitted to and dis-                                                    demonstration of how our gen-          society. In fact, Good acknowl-              But as time wore on and
came under public and media              charged from the hospital                                                       eration’s continuing embrace of        edges on his Web site (www.               as I began giving back to the
scrutiny.                                were thrust into the pub-                                                       the online world can affect and        zachgood.com) that “any time              campus community in my own
  It’s amazing how clear a sto-          lic sphere.                                                                     even thwart our real lives. The        an institution such as Penn               ways, I became increasingly
ry can get after appearing in a             The most decrepit res-                                                       controversy that Good’s com-           State can rally thousands—nay,            frustrated by the fact that my
nationally read newspaper.               ident hall at Walter Reed,                                                      ments have received heat for           millions — in the fight against           fraternity was more interested
  In the aftermath of the Post’s         Building 18, was reported to                                                    is a source of frustration that        a disease is truly a success for          in setting up social philanthro-
investigation, the Pentagon was          be mold-laden and rotten,                                                       rages both in and outside the          mankind.”                                 py events intended to improve
blamed for failing to cut costs          and a haven                                                                     Greek community: the nature               Then why are non-Greeks                our image among other Greek
and improve efficiency at its            for mice, cock-                                                                 of Greek philanthropy.                 like Good and myself critical             organizations (mainly sorori-
top-notch military hospital in           roaches and                                                                        Good has taken a lot of heat        of events like THON? Because              ties) than in creating events
the midst of war.                        bureaucratic                                                                    for criticizing Greek char-            we believe that charity events            that would use our group’s
  One month after the story was          indifference.                                                                   ity work. His controversial            that are based more on social-            incredible collective power to
published, the secretary of the             Less than a week                                                             Facebook posts were direct-            izing and self-promotion than             truly help the needy.
army and two other top-rank-             after the article was                                                           ed toward a widely publicized          on an earnest desire to help                 While Greek charity efforts
ing military officials including         published, the White                                                            event at Penn State called             others miss the mark regard-              may be flawed, it does no good
the commanding officer of the            House said that Presi-                                                          THON, in which members of              ing what charity is supposed              to completely denounce them.
center were removed.                     dent Bush “first learned                                                        fraternities and sororities raise      to be about.                              As Good points out, THON’s
  Since it opened in 1909, Wal-          of the troubling allega-                                                        charity contributions by host-            Good writes on his Web site            $5.2 million contribution to
ter Reed has treated wound-              tions regarding Wal-                                                            ing a 48-hour dance marathon.          that charity should be “an act            cancer research is a cause for
ed soldiers from every war.              ter Reed from the sto-                                                          The THON effort at Penn State          performed involuntarily, the              celebration, not complaint. But
Grotesquely described in the             ries this weekend in The                                                        raised 5.2 million dollars this        reward of such benevolence                it is important to recognize that
investigative report as a “hold-         Washington Post.”                                                               year for cancer research, and          being the inward satisfaction             there is a difference between
ing ground for physically and               Apparently, what was obliv-                                                  for criticizing the nature of this     one feels as a result of improv-          social philanthropy and chari-
psychologically damaged out-             ious to the President on his                                                    event has landed Good a com-           ing the life of another. Charity          table efforts that stem from a
                                                                                                                         parison to the KKK.                    is not a chore, but rather a labor        true desire to help others. To
                                                                                                                            I can relate with the heat          of love.” In respect to THON,             directly serve another requires
QuotE of thE day                                                                                                         Good has received. In response         Good reveals that “the condi-             far more thought, care, and
                                                                                                                         to my March 9 column enti-             tions under which THON began              empathy than fundraising for


“y
                                                                                                                         tled, “‘Sickened and disgust-          more than 30 years ago com-               self-promotion, and it deserves
         ou in the press certainly have had a lot to report lately. Take the current                                     ed’ by IFC inaction on serious         pletely spits on this theory.             far more respect.
         controversy. I have to admit we really blew the way we let those attorneys                                      issues” in which I critiqued the          According to the THON web-                Greek organizations have
    go. You know you botched it when people sympathize with lawyers.                                                     Greek approach to philanthro-          site (www.thon.org), “In an               long desired to receive more
                                                                                                                         py, I received an e-mail from a        attempt to rebuild its image,             recognition for their philan-
 -pReSident GeoRGe W. BuSh to laughter and applause at the White house Correspondents dinner Wednesday night.            frustrated fraternity man ask-         the Interfraternity Council               thropy efforts. When the Greek
                                                                                                                         ing me, “Was there no room in          started Dance Marathon in                 community goes beyond stag-


“i
                                                                                                                         the article to praise positive         1973.” Referring specifically             ing social philanthropy events
       t would be in the desert sands. Laser beams would shoot out of it so                                              aspects of Greek life? Why cri-        to the phrase “In an attempt to           and shaking cans on the Quad
       it would be the first thing people flying in would see.                                                           tique philanthropy, one of its         rebuild its image,” Good argues           and instead demonstrates a real
                                                                                                                         most positive attributes?”             that this statement “overtly              passion to have a direct hand
    -deSinGeR luCkman Van pieR on plans to build a 50-foot tall robot replica of pop singer miChael JaCkSon. The            Critics like Good and I can’t       proves that THON was some-                in creating change, then they
    pop star is thought to be considering making a comeback in Las Vegas.                                                deny the positive impact that          thing contrived for selfish rea-          will receive the recognition
                                                                                                                         events like THON have on our           sons, not because a few vision-           they seek.


lEttErs to thE Editor
    the next generation                  flagship university has become            and called them good. In an ide-     the current number of troops            HR 1591, thus cutting our off                Assuredly, anyone around the
                                         more difficult than getting into          al world, it would naturally fol-    deployed to and around Iraq. If         funding for our armed forces              world can create talent over a
   It’s pretty ironic that the           Princeton!                                low to use all such plants and       the U.S. withdraws soldiers from        and almost certainly extending            period of years, but in the four
Suntimes article “Brain Drain”              We need a diverse group of             give thanks. However, we do not      the Mideast then a mass rede-           the Iraq war into the term of the         years as a mathematics and
about Illinois losing too many           students, the opportunity and             live in an ideal world. What he      ployment would be the only way          next president.                           economics student here, I can
sharp grads appears on the same          consideration to be able to get           overlooked occurs only two chap-     to oppose Iran.                           Mr. Johnson has a habit of              ascribe many failures of myself
day my wife and I brought our            admitted into the U of I. As a fel-       ters later: Adam’s fall. Accord-        We have found our selves in          breaking campaign promises.               in obtaining knowledge in sever-
daughter down to Champaign to            low alumnus, I pray my daugh-             ing to the Bible, the whole earth    a rigorous game of chess where          When first elected, he prom-              al mathematical theorems just
visit the campus! We have spent          ter can advance her education to          is fallen as a result. See Genesis   every move we make can either           ised to limit his service in Con-         on the level of difficulty. I have
three days here at the U of I.           such a fine University as this!           3:17 and following, “Cursed is       help us or hurt us in this possi-       gress to two terms. Now the first         also watched many people strug-
   Our daughter Mandy has vis-              My daughter has won numer-             the ground because of you ...”       ble nuclear war with Iran. The          major vote of his fourth term has         gle with mathematical concepts.
ited the Illini Union, attend-           ous civic and educational awards,            Sadly, the goodness of the        Navy launch displays our air            broken yet another promise; to            Furthermore, proof and problem
ed a molecular biology lecture           has a wide range of talents and           earth has been marred by our         power and our troops stationed          bring our troops home safely “as          approach is more like an art than
class with about 300 students in         has appeared on television, radio         sin. No longer are all plants        Iraq displays our ground supe-          soon as possible”. How much lon-          a science.
attendance at Foellinger Audi-           and newspapers. By the way, I             good to eat (or to smoke). We        riority. By having showing Iran         ger are we going to give John-               I would conjecture that for
torium, a chemistry lab class at         may have not told you, she’s only         must make informed judgments         our war capabilities we may be          son a free pass? How many more            many students in the arts, math-
Noyles lab, toured the Anatomy           nine years old!                           about them. But since I know lit-    able to suppress any possibilities      troops have to be maimed or               ematics is just as difficult for
wing at Burrill Hall, visited the           I’m serious because she’s seri-        tle about cannabis, I will leave     of attacks.                             killed before he will do what is          them as painting on canvas is
music library at the Music Build-        ous. She desires to go to Cham-           that discussion to wiser heads                                               right? How much longer can the            for me. Furthermore, Sohn is
ing (she plays violin), the main         paign-Urbana and it’s never too           than mine.                                            daRRin SeymouR         American people sit idly by and           diluted in her knowledge of out-
library and the newer ACES               early to plan ahead and set your                                                                  junior in aviation   allow this travesty to go on?             sourcing. When I was in Afri-
library.                                 goals. Count on her being there                         Samuel W. CaRRoll                                                                                        ca last year, pots, which artists
   She toured the Krannert Art           and graduating with the Class                                  grad student                                                                JeFF enGStRom         traditionally made in Africa (I
museum as well as the Spurlock           of 2022. It’ll be sooner than you
                                                                                                                                Calling out the                                          alumnus ‘05      believe in Nigeria), were now
Museum’s history exhibits and
was granted a private tour of the
                                         think!
                                                           Randy F. Gollay
                                                                                       displaying strength                       congressman
                                                                                                                                                                                                          being made in China. Clearly,
                                                                                                                                                                                                          art can be outsourced, too. Art
Krannert Center of Performing                                buffalo Grove, Ill.             prudent                                                                 Column oversteps                     consumers can select different
Arts. She was inside a dormitory                                                                                           I am writing to ask my fel-                                                    designs from all over the world,
room and even toured the Sigma                                                       This letter is in response to      low citizens to call the office of         On Wednesday, Emma Claire              effectively “outsourcing” the art
Delta Tau Sorority House. She                 Biblical support of                  the article on the Navy launch in    Rep. Tim Johnson and ask him            Sohn wrote in her article “Have           to a different country.
was inside the locker rooms at
the Assembly Hall, visited the
                                             cannabis questioned                   the Persian Gulf. The article dis-
                                                                                   cusses the United States’ tactics
                                                                                                                        to fulfill his campaign promis-
                                                                                                                        es. During the campaign, John-
                                                                                                                                                                you hugged an art major today?”
                                                                                                                                                                that art is a very important
                                                                                                                                                                                                             Assuredly, her major of indus-
                                                                                                                                                                                                          trial design will mix parts of
Campus Recreation Center East              While I appreciate Stan White           used in order to subdue the cur-     son said he wants U.S. troops           human endeavor that has poten-            both left- and right-brain knowl-
and other subject classrooms             looking to the Bible to sup-              rent nuclear situation in Iran.      out of Iraq “as soon as possible.”      tial for income. I have hugged            edge; it is worth emphasizing
and various frequent campus              port the legalization of canna-             However, it does not touch         And yet, when presented with            an art major not too long ago —           that people who will win in the
haunts.                                  bis (March 27, “Pass cannabis             base on a major standpoint that      the opportunity to set a dead-          and I can’t agree with her more           economy of today are those who
   She now knows the U of I. I’m         law”), I am afraid his argument           the U.S. is using and has been       line for troop withdrawal, John-        in these regards. On the other            have both right- and left-brain
pleased that she is excited to           does not hold water. To fol-              using since this issue arose. This   son voted against bringing our          hand, Sohn clearly oversteps              knowledge.
attend here in the future. Her           low his line of reasoning: since          past summer I deployed to Balad      troops home. He would rather            her bounds by claiming that left-            An example would be com-
educational upbringing, resid-           the seed-bearing plant Deadly             Air Base in Iraq, and found that     tow the party line and do noth-         brained knowledge in the math             mencement speaker Jawed
ing in the Stevenson School Dis-         Nightshade was called good and            the main focus of the war in Iraq    ing while our troops are killed         and sciences “... is rooted in a          Karim who combined his com-
trict lends well to possible future      given to humans for food (Gen.            seemed to be the civil unrest of     and seriously injured in the sec-       knowledge base almost univer-             puter science knowledge with
acceptance considering Steven-           1:29), we should partake thereof          the country. Consequently, there     tarian war in Iraq. The majority        sally obtainable,” and that these         love of short film in his creation
son sends more of its students           with thanksgiving. This could             may be a wider focus for our         of Americans want our troops            skills are “... easily outsourced         YouTube.
to Champaign than any other              have dire consequences.                   presence.                            brought home safely now. But            to aptly educated individuals
high school in America. The                He is entirely correct that God           By remaining in Iraq we pose       because of Tim Johnson’s vote,          abroad.” I find these comments                  ChRiStopheR paul SteineR
demand to get into our states            blessed all seed-bearing plants           a strong threat to Iran due to       the President will be able to veto      offensive.                                                    senior in LaS


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