The Battalion. (College Station, Tex.) 1893-current, September 05, 1986, Image 2
Page 2/The Battalion/Friday, September 5,1986
(USPS 045 360)
Texas Press Association
Southwest Journalism Conference
The Battalion Editorial Board
Cathie Anderson, Editor
Kirsten Dietz, Managing Editor
Loren Steffy, Opinion Page Editor
Frank Smith, City Editor
Sue Krenek, News Editor
Ken Sury, Sports Editor
The Battalion is a non-profit, self-supporting newspape-r oper
ated as a community service to Texas A&M and Bryan-College Sta
Opinions expressed in The Battalion are those of the editorial
board or the author, and do not necessarily represent the opinions
of Texas A&M administrators, faculty or the Board of Regents.
'The Battalion also serves as a laboratory newspaper for students
in reporting, editing and photography classes within the Depart
ment of Journalism.
The Battalion is published Monday through Friday during
Texas A&.M regular semesters, except for holiday and examination
Mail subscriptions are $17.•14 per semester, $34.62 per school
t ear and $36.44 per full year. Advertising rales furnished on re
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Reed McDonald, Texas A&M University, College Station TX
A loan or alone?
Congress has been dragging its feet on passing a higher-educa
tion bill, and the delay may cause students in need of government
loans to look elsewhere for financial support.
The joint House-Senate conference committee on higher educa
tion had hoped to extend the existing Higher Education Act before
the three-week Labor Day recess, but it failed.
The committee must reach a decision before Oct. 3, when Con
gress adjourns, or the bill will have to be reintroduced when the new
Congress takes over in January. The current bill has been in the
works for nearly two years. The longer the delay, the less chance
higher education’s budget has of surviving deficit-cutting measures.
The Senate Appropriations Committee has developed its fiscal
1987 spending around the existing higher education budget. But the
committee also approved a 4.3 percent spending increase for higher
education, which means the bill may have to be rewritten.
Promoting ignorance won’t solvi
problems of American families
The House’s appropriations bill contains no provisions for
higher education because the House is prohibited from allocating
funds for programs that have not been approved or extended.
In addition, Congress has agreed to cut $395 million from Guar
anteed Student Loans over the next three years as a means of reduc
ing the deficit. But the Committee has yet to determine how the cuts
should be implemented. The reductions could have a devastating
impact on students who receive federally financed aid.
Students who receive loans after the Higher Education Act runs
out may find that loans they applied for at 8 percent interest actually
are financed at 10 percent. Also, students may wind up receiving less
money than they were originally promised.
Grumblings within the Office of Management and Budget and
the Education Department is that the bill, which would allocate $10
billion for higher education next year, is too expensive.
Uncertainties and disagreements abound within the committee.
But Congress has dragged its legislative feet long enough. It’s time to
work out the kinks in the extension for the Higher Education Act
now, before vital student aid is forfeited to bureaucratic stagnation.
“I think I could
be pregnant,” a
teen-age girl wrote
to an advice col
told me that 1
couldn’t get preg
nant if my ooyr-
riend and I did it
with our under
wear on, but I
think I am. Is that
agers abstain from premarital sex. If
that succeeds, the proolem is solved.”
“I’m not willing to go to other steps
like setting up climes in schools that dis
pense contraceptives without parental
• “Our goal should be to tell children
this conduct is wrong and explain why
it’s bad for them — not to teacn them so
much about sex that they can engage in
it in early adolescence.”
After reading this interview, I’d had
enough of generalities and couldn’t wait
until Nov. i or thereafter to get down to
this in Ask Beth, a column giving advice
to teen-agers, I was dumbfounded. I
1 am naive enough to believe
children will experiment with sex.’
if they don't know all the facts abev.
am ignorant enough to believe
more damage could be done (Ik
more advantage taken of them if:
don’t know what actually happens
i new cc
I sen by
didn’t really think it was possible that
anv of today’s flip teen-agers could be so
naive and ignorant.
But after reading comments by Gar
Bauer, chairman of a White House tas
force evaluating the effects of federal
programs on American families, I real
ized that such naivete and ignorance
was not solely reserved for today’s teens.
Many students’ educational futures are at stake — and uncer
tainty over financial aid could cause many would-be students not to
attend college. Congress has a job to do and less than a month to
Get to work, congressmen. Students need federal education
funds to be loaned, not left alone.
In the Sept. 1 issue of U.S. News and
World Report, Bauer, who said he
would reserve the specifics of his study
for his Nov. 1 report to President Rea
gan, discussed the generalities.
• to get i
specifics — specifically that if Bauer ex
pects to lower the number of teen-age
pregnancies by keeping youngsters ig
norant of sex or by limiting their ability
to protect themselves with contracep
tives, no government policy could be the
best government policy.
Certainly, Americans should not
teach their children that sex is “wrong”
or “bad for them,” something to be
whispered about in darkness and not to
Such Victorian thoughts and atti
tudes fell by the wayside, I believed, just
as I thougnt today’s teens knew preg
nancy could not occur without sexual
contact, but it seems I also am naive and
The problem then is not that
“wrong' or bad for teen-agers bn
adolescents often are not taughti
sex. They' don’t know it is usd:
means of reproduction, not tome::
its use for physical gratification,ei
sion of love, substitution for love,fit
Bauer xa\s the task force H
not . . . do away with social proj
that serve unwed teen-agers with
dren.” But it’s not willing to setup
ics in schools that dispense contr}|
lives without parental knowledge. E
“I can’t think of a worse mes&j
send to children,” he says.
The worst message, however, aim
has been sent. The message that
ignorance is OK.
in the 2
‘In general, we advocate ithat teen- ignorant.
All the task force has todotn
Cathie Anderson is a seniorjoumi: j
major and editor for The Battalion.
Tune in the mind Lon 9 " nes help MM prospe
Action for Children’s Television, a group that for years has tried
to get networks to improve children’s programming, has found an
effective method for achieving their goal, which could assist adults as
well as children.
ACT is producing “The TV-Smart Book for Kids” which advises
parents and children about wise-viewing decisions. It also enlightens
young viewers of the tactics and deceptions of advertisers, how much
' - - Ffe ‘ —- - -
stood in a line so
long it crossed two
time zones, the
equator and the
television is too much and how to differentiate between TV and real
The book has advantages over protests directed at network pro
grammers. It promotes education among parents as well as children.
The book makes both parents and children aware of how much tele
vision is consumed in the home and what effect it’s having on the
The long-term effects of the self-help publication could achieve
ACT’s other goal of improving children’s programming. The net
works, after all, respond to ratings. If young viewers and their par
ents become more selective about what they view, networks will be
forced to improve quality or drop in the ratings.
We could all learn a few lessons from “The TV-Smart Book.”
Television can be beneficial, but too often viewers turn off their
brains when they turn on the set. Through the book’s tactics, maybe
we can teach our children — and adults — to tune in their minds.
It originated at the Pavilion and spi
raled backward alongside the Sterling
C. Evans Library, backing up against an
other line winding out the back doors of
the Coke Building. The two lines
swirled together creating a formless
mob of disoriented freshmen, disgusted
seniors and disillusioned grad students.
No one avoids lines around here,
The human mass had eddies and cur
rents all its own, attracting two pave
ment preachers, a junkfood vendor with
cart and three stray pups.I kept looking
for Monty Hall to ask me what I’d give
for the prize behind door number
All I had to do was drop P.E. 199.
The human ribbon inched forward at
a dizzying 10 feet per hour. I clocked it.
The heat was sweltering, my feet
ached and I had about 29 other errands
to run before five that afternoon.
Welcome Back, Ags.
Standing in line is what students learn
best at Texas A&M. We stand in line for
football tickets, parking stickers, paying
fees, lunch, plastic money machines,
movies, concert tickets, books, drop-
add, paying traffic tickets, groceries,
mail, paying fees, senior rings, grades,
paying fees, football games, bus passes
and finding out we’re blocked in that
line and have to go stand in line some
After four years most seniors have it
down to an art.
The guy next to me set up a folding
lawn chair and umbrella, two ice chests
and ajam box for the duration.
Visions of Cotton Bowl ticket lines
swept before my eyes.
“How long you been here?” I asked.
“Just two hours,” he shot back. “I fig
ure we’ll make it inside about Friday.”
By now he had a calendar out and
was putting a big black ‘X’ through
Two girls ahead of us had a card table
set up with phones at their faces and
long extension cords disappearing un
der nearby shrubbery.
“Gosh, I don’t know, PJ.,” one said,
smacking her strawberry Bubblicious
gum. “We’ve been here since 10 already,
and I’ve painted my nails twice. Bur
gundy and hot pink.”
“If that’s the way you feel,” the other
one winces, “Go ahead without me, Jim.
But I’ve GOT to get this class or Dad
will have a cow right there on the living
Dad must have been an Ag major.
Labor Day lines at A&M are generally
as long as the horizon and as depend
able as the simmering August heat, but
they serve a purpose.
They are bona fide social events. Be
yond the heat and humidity, confusion
aside and entropy beside the point, Ags
generally see swarms of old friends and
meet plenty of new ones standing in
line. Conversations are struck, plans
made and Southwest Conference foot
ball evaluated. World problems are
solved. People mature, grow
in line at A&M. Couples meet,court
are wed. Families prosper. Aggieslx
Aggies. And the world of AggieJ
keeps spinning placidly on its maj
and white axis.
• Lines allow computers to *
down and cool off in air-conditii
comfort while students evaporate
• Lines allow professors to thro* 1
gether those last minute book ref |
and syllabuses before classes r
• Lines cross roadways through
campus, allowing traffic to bog and
campus police write more tickets.Fa [i
So cheer up and bring an icectitf
the next line you enter, happy in M
tion that you are helping Aggick
JeffL. Brady is a senior journalism 1
Find your own truths
Hooray for Karl Pallmeyer! For several months I have wanted to writes
letter praising this student who is not afraid to go against the prevailing
thought at this University.Sometimes it takes a lot of courage to be different
and not made in a mold. After seeing all of the letters in “Mail Call” criticizin!
his columns, I decided I had to write.
As I see it, opinion columns are supposed to provoke thinking, and from
the response he got it looks like he has achieved that. Four letters, most
accompanied by many signatures, show at least that many people tooktiniet® 1
think and write a letter.
Education cannot be only learning a given subject by rote without also
knowing how to read, spell, write and think. Far better if a university turns
out “world class” graduates than just be a “world class” university. The
reputations of its graduates would make it “world class.”
I have been associated with this University for a long time as a wife,
mother, grandmother and aunt of Aggies and employees of the University,
and I have always maintained there is not a better university anywhere. I
don’t believe, however, that because father, mother, teacher, minister,
senator or president state that a fact is true or a way of doing things is the
only way should make it true. They are only human and each person should
find his own truths for himself.
Letters to the editor should not exceed 300 words in length. The editorial staff reserves theri]
to edit letters for style and length, but will make every effort to maintain the author’sint<
Each letter must be signed and must include the address and telephone number of the writer