The Battalion. (College Station, Tex.) 1893-current, July 12, 1985, Image 2

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    Page 2/The Battalion/Friday July 12, 1985
Someone hod to
be the bod guy
The most controversial and disliked governmental figure
since Richard Nixon announced he’s packing his bags and leav
ing the Reagan administration for a career in private business.
David Stockman is leaving Washington.
Stockman, the former director of the Office of Management
and Budget, was known for his harsh proposals to control gov
ernment spending.
He managed to offend just about every special interest
group in the country, and even infuriated his own mother with
his scathing attacks against government-supported farm recov
ery programs. Any political career Stockman had planned was
virtually destroyed by his lack of popularity.
Yet it was for this same job of doing Reagan’s budgetary
dirty work that earned him respect. Stockman did what had to
be done. No one likes having to face budget cuts, but, as The
Battalion has learned this semester, sometimes they are nec
Stockman had the rotten job of pointing the finger at the
groups that needed to tighten their belts. He did his job with ad
mirable dedication. A known workaholic, Stockman frequently
worked around the clock to try to iron out budget problems. His
ability to withstand tidal waves of criticism and still attack his du
ties with dedication and determination was incredible.
Stockman will never win a popularity contest, but his meth
ods of foregoing politics to get necessary results did win him re
spect. He took the budgetary bull by the horns. Such courageous
acts are almost unheard of in the present administration.
True, Stockman did not completely stop the deficit from
growing, but he did slow its growth. Following in his footsteps
will require a big-footed successor.
The Battalion Editorial Board
Anticipating Live Aid;
keeping fingers crossed
I’m optimistic. I
hope that Live Aid
will make a differ
In my part-time
position as music
reviewer for At
Ease I am some
times asked for my
opinion on various
bands. Sometimes
my opinions will
start an arguement
I argue about the
music the band makes. The others ar
gue about the money the band makes.
Critical discussions of the band’s musical
ability and examinations of the lyrics in
their songs are often put aside with the
remark: “Well, they make a lot of mon
ey.” I believe that music is art, its pur
pose to entertain and enlighten. It’s nice
when an artist makes money so that he
can support himself and continue cre
ating, but he shouldn’t create just so that
he can make money. If an artist has tal
ent he should use that talent to make the
world a better place.
different starting times of the concerts,
some bands will be able to play in both
London and Philadelphia. Each band
will play for about 30 minutes. There
will be at least two stages at each stadium
and the acts will be scheduled so that
there will be as little time as possible be
tween acts. Videotaped appeals for do
nations will be shown between acts. Ap-
peals have been solicited from
performers Dan Aykroyd, Prince and
Joe Piscopo, and world leaders Marga
ret Thatcher, Ronald Reagan and Mik
hail Gorbachev. MTV and Houston’s
Channel 20 will broadcast live the entire
concerts while ABC will show concert
highlights later that night.
Mail Call
On Saturday a smorgasbord of artists
are going to try to make the world a bet
ter place. Some of the most popular acts
in pop and rock music will perform at
two giant benefit concerts, one at Lon
don’s Wembley Stadium and the other
at Philadelphia’s John F. Kennedy Sta
dium, designed to help the starving peo
ple of Ethiopia. These acts won’t be get
ting paid for their performances. In fact
these bands will spend quite a bit to
cover the expense of setting up their
own stage and sound equipment.
Yes, I’m looking forward to Live Aid.
Some of my favorite performers, in
cluding Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Dire
Straits, Paul McCartney, Eric Clapton,
Elvis Costello, Paul Simon, Mick Jagger,
Jeff Beck, David BowiejThe Pretenders,
Sting, U2, The Cars, Julian Lennon,
Tina Turner, Santana, Stevie Wonder
and specially re-united versions of Led
Zeppelin and The Who, are supposed to
be there. But I am also apprehensive.
The size of the audience expected at
Live Aid could cause problems. Rock
festivals have often been scenes of
death. At the Rolling Stones’ Altamont
concert in 1969, a young man named
Meredith Hunter was brutally mur
dered by the Hell’s Angels the Stones
hired for security. Mick Jagger and the
band watched helplessly as the Hell’s
Angels sliced Hunter into bits at the foot
of the stage. Even at Woodstock, a cele
bration of peace, three people died.
rison, Ringo Starr, Eric Clapton,[|
Russell, Billy Preston and Bob Di
brought in almost $250,000. Dueto
duction costs and legal hassels very
of the money actually reached Bai
desh. Paul McCartney’s Concert fot
People of Kampuchea, which feait
McCartney,The Pretenders, Elvis
rello. Queen, Rockpile, Robert f
The Specials and The Who, met with
lar problems.
Bob Geldof, organizer of Live
has said that all money received ft
ticket sales, donations and sale of
vision rights w ill go to directly [() hS||
pia. The bands will have to pay fori
own equipment and transportation
Live Aid will not finance any “olfn
live album, videocassette or other
aphernalia. One of the major probi
with the concerts for Bangledesh
Kampuchea was that the money war
tributed through horribly ineffe
United Nations’ organizations. Cd
and his organization will oversee the
tribution of Live Aid funds in Eihn|||
By now people are getting tird
hearing about Ethiopia. After
Aid, USA for Africa, NorthernLif i
Hearing Aid, the Christian artists’bf tS
fit single, the Spanish artists’benefm I
gle, the German artists’ benefitsii 1
and Joe Bob Briggs’ “We Are’ |'
Weird,” many people may wonderl
the Ethiopians can still be starvingi
people of Ethiopia have been fed
they need help so that they may
themselves. The procedes from
Aid will be used to help the Ethiofi the p
Letters to the Editor should not exceed 300 words in length. The editorial staff reserves the right to edit
letters for style and length but will make every effort to maintain the author’s intent. Each letter must
be signed and must include the address and telephone number of the writer.
The London concert will begin at 6
a.m. (our time) and last until 4 p.m. The
Philadelphia concert will begin at 11
a.m. and last until 10 p.m. Due to the
Live Aid is not the first attempt at a
benefit concert. In 1971 George Harri
son organized the Concert for Bangle
desh. The concert, which featured Har-
support themselves in the fuit
Maybe then, hopefully, we can
help feed the rest of the world.
Karl Pallmeyer is a senior journi jthou
major and a columnist for The Biz.« 5 r , a P,
ion. B fhe >'
MAft&aiES ,
GSS picture slap in
the Corps’ face
that the University public would be
more interested in.
It is evident, by the front page of
Tuesday’s (July 2, 1985) Battalion, that
you and some members of your staff
have absolutely no respect for the stu
dents, staff, faculty and especially
alumni of Texas A&M University. True,
the law states that we must accept the
Gay Student Services at Texas A&M;
that’s not the part that bothers me or my
colleagues. Are we going to be subjected
to this type of “news reporting” from
now on? Must we continually have our
faces rubbed in this situation? I am quite
sure there are other “news” pictures
This organization may have a march
ing band, but how can they associate
themselves with “The Fighting Texas
Aggie Band” comprised of CORPS CA
DETS that we are so proud of? This
banner that was featured in the photo
graph is a slap in the face to the entire
CORPS, especially the band.
By publishing this picture you have
alienated many of your readers. I hope
you are proud of that. You owe an apol
ogy to the CORPS and your readers.
Bryan McMurry
Graduate Student
who :
day si
■ Su?
[wo th
be all i
“been i
‘D and D’ not the root of all evil
Reality isrrt al
ways pretty, and
sometimes dealing
w i t h it c a n b e
harsh. When the
c hecks start
bouncing, the tests
start piling up and
the car won’t start,
it’s nice to slip into
another world, at
least just for a little
Loren Steffy
Some people go to the theater and
pretend they’re a muscle-bound illiter
ate rescuing MI As from Vietnam. Oth
ers select a tune that fits their mood and
crank up the stereo. And still others
may open a book or flip on the TV. But
some play Dungeons and Dragons.
D arid D is a role-playing game. Play
ers create characters on paper and put
them in a fantasy setting. They act out
the role of their character, having wild
adventures, battling hordes of monsters
and generally pretending to be some
thing they’re not. In D and D four-eyed
nerds can become muscle-bound charis
matic heroes and vice versa.
Misconceptions about the game con
tinue to grow. I’ve met people who
think it’s devil worship, and people who
think it’s the greatest escape ever in
The game can be played for an hour
or a lifetime, which is where the prob
lems arise. Many D and Ders, especially
younger players, frequently spend
hours or even days in this false environ
ment without ever coming up for a gulp
of reality. Obviously, the game is a mag
net for every type of looney tune the
world has ever known. But Rambo also
attracted its share of crazies.
However, most Rambo viewers were
playing with a full deck, just as most D
and D players are. Naturally, a select
bunch of less-than-full-deck players
have to spoil it for everyone else.
Over the past few years, several
crimes have been inadvertently linked
to the game. A student who plays D and
D shoots himself in the head and imme
diately the game is at fault.
Bothered About Dungeons and
Dragons (BADD) is an organization
formed by a mother who claims her son
committed suicide because of the game.
The concern over the D and D-crime
relationship is similar to the violent tele-
vision-violent crime fear of the early
1970s. A woman was doused with gaso
line and set on fire in the movie “Fuzz.”
The day after “Fuzz” aired on television,
the incident was reproduced on the
streets of Boston and Ghicago. There
was more to “Fuzz” than one violent in
cident, but critics immmediately at
tacked one portion of the film as pro
moting violent crime, instead of judging
the movie as a whole.
Mark Twain’s classsic “Huckleberry
Finn” is frequently picked apart and la
belled racist, while the over-all anti-rac
ism message is ignored.
And now the anti-Dungeons and
Dragons campaign is focusing on the
“harmful” effects the game had on a se
lect few, instead of considering the ben
efits as well.
Some people think Dungeons and
Dragons is devil worship, blqck magic or
just plain evil. Most of these misconcep
tions spring from ignorance. Parents
know TV, they know movies and to an
extent, they know music. But D and D is
a new concept for them.
My mother never understood that all
long hours I spent closeted in my room,
I was stretching my imagination and
creativity to its limit. She merely no
ticed the time I spent on it and won
dered if such an activity was healthy.
I recently came across my D and D
rule books when I was moving, and I re
alized what an influence the game had
on me. I haven’t played in several years,
but some of the effects — the beneficial
effects — still linger.
I opened the Players Handbook, a
guide for how tb create a character.
Page one explains how characters have
several attributes: Strength, Intelligence
and Wisdom. Prettv simple, at age 12 I’d
heard those words before. But they also
had Constitution, Dexterity and Cha
risma, new r and rather large words for a
By the time I was 14 the game had ex
panded my vocabulary two-fold and
made me practice my floundering math
skills (D and D first introduced me to
bell curves). My senior English teacher
exempted me from doing vocabulary
words. The game had taught me words
like “melee,” “tome,” “peity” and “avari
ce” long before school did.
The game introduced me to numer
ous authors including J.R.R. Tolkein,
H.P. Lovecraft, Michael Moorcock, Fritz
Leiber, Robert E. Howard, Lewis Car-
roll and Sir Thomas Malory.
If there was one force that kindled
my creativity it was Dungeons and Drag
ons. And it was that creativity that en
couraged me to be a writer.
Just like any good thing, Dungeons
and Dragons can be abused. Sure, many
D and D players have emotional prob
lems. So do many television viewers and
movie goers. Many do not.
D and D could be banned, and maybe
a crazy kid in Wisconsin wouldn’t have
crawled through some steam tunnels
and later killed himself, but the same
could be said for every movie, song or
TV show ever connected to a crime.
It’s absurd to deprive everyone of
television merely because one kid
watches one program and sets an old
lady on fire. If a kid can’t tell what’s real
and what’s “make believe,” his problems
started long before he encountered tele
vision or Dungeons and Dragons.
BADD will continue to try to blame
the problems of the few mentally dis
turbed people on a game rather than
face facts: the crimes they’re trying to
link to D and D were committed by
mentally unstable people who were just
waiting for something to push them
over the edge. Unfortunately that some
thing was Dungeons and Dragons.
Loren Steffy is a junior journalism ma
jor and the Opinion Page Editor for
The Battalion.
The Battalion
USPS 045 360
Member of
Texas Press Association
Southwest Journalism Conference
The Battalion Editorial Board
Kellie Dworaczyk, Editor
Kay Mallett, John Hallett, News Editor!
Loren Stefiy, Editorial Page Editor
Sarah Oates, City Editor
Travis Tingle, Sports Editor
The Battalion Staff
Assistant City Editor
Katherine Hut
Assistant News Editors •>*
Cathie Anderson, Trent Leopdi I
Entertainment Editors ■-
Cathy Riely, Walter Sirf
Staff Writers Karen Bloc!
Ed Cassavoy, JerryOsit
Brian Pearsi*'
Copy Editor Trent Leopold
Make-up Editor Ed Cassavof
Columnists Cheryl Clad
Karl Pallnictf
Photographers Greg Bailtt
Anthony Gasp®
was d
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- *
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