Monday, November 19

Letters


LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Power to heal

Editor:

Chieh Li Chieng’s thoughts on the trials and tribulations of
"pre-med" students at UCLA ("Pre-med blues: beyond MCATs," Feb. 2)
may have provided many readers with some comic relief (as it did
I).

Upon further reflection, these are serious matters to consider.
Chieng is correct to suggest that there is a sizeable and unique
group of individuals who subscribe to a philosophy that drives them
to attain the ultimate goal of "getting in" – acceptance to a
medical school.

And then what? For those of you unfamiliar with what is involved
in becoming a certified practitioner of medicine, what follows is
seven, perhaps eight, years of further study.

Chieng’s characterization of the "pre-med" student at UCLA as a
" … slobbering, brown-nosing, repugnant individual … " is a bit
exaggerated, but I suppose that there are indeed many out there who
fit the bill.

It may be humorous to poke fun at the means by which the
"pre-med" student hopes to accomplish his or her task, but we are
ignoring what truly matters. All too often, the "pre-med" student,
with the pressure to perform well academically, volunteers at the
hospital, engages in research activities, earns the distinction of
being published and loses sight of what it really means to be a
physician.

Consumed by multiple distractions, the prospective physician
forgets that matriculation to a medical school is only the
beginning, and not the end, of a long and difficult journey
ahead.

I challenge all who plan on a career in medicine (myself
included) to seriously ask themselves the following question: "Why
do I want to be a doctor?" Be sure of your answer to this question.
To pursue a career in medicine is to embark on a lifelong journey
of care and compassion for others; all other reasons and motives
are secondary.

For those who cite the status and financial security associated
with being a physician, you are after something that you do not
deserve. As for the rest of us, we must constantly remind ourselves
of the true meaning of medicine and its practice.

Ed Hui

Fourth-year

Biochemistry

Free speech for all

Editor:

I appreciated Roxane Márquez’s thoughtful Thursday, Feb. 1
column, "Reality of our Lives."

Sometimes I am angered about what I read in the newspaper, and
too many times, my first impulse is to complain. However, my claim
to uphold freedom of speech cannot be marred by the desire to quiet
others.

She is right. The only way we can fight the opposition is to
face it. Otherwise, we can convince ourselves that it doesn’t
exist. We can put blinders on and pretend everything is just fine,
which is a dangerous way to walk through life.

I thank Márquez for the insight on how tough her job is,
and the many choices she must struggle with. Her column has enabled
me to understand something I was never aware of; that is what we
expect fine journalists to do.

Heather Jue

First-year

Undeclared

Time to ditch Stick

Editor:

I have tried to keep quiet on this subject for far too long.
Let’s face it … Stick blows.

Do Aaron Saffa and David Sloves have naked pictures of the
Viewpoint editor? How else can you explain how a completely
unartistic, unfunny cartoon appears three times a week in UCLA’s
campus paper?

I really can’t believe that it takes two people to write this
cartoon. If it were funny, I might excuse the third-grade quality
artwork and, if the drawing were exceptional, I might not notice
the incredible lack of anything remotely humorous. But Stick has
neither, and I can no longer forgive it. Please get rid of it.

And to think I used to think Sinfest by Tatsuya Ishida was an
abhorration. Sorry Tat, I owe you a big apology.

Robert Ashworth

Fifth-year

Applied Math

Opposing ideas

Editor:

According to Garry Cope ("God vs. individualism," Jan. 31) of
the Department of Military Science – academic-speak for the U.S.
military – the reason war and other atrocities take place is
because too many of us do not accept God and Her/His covenants.

If this is the case, how does Cope explain his own participation
in such an institution of horrific violence as the U.S.
military?

I have a suggestion for Cope: Rather than preach peace and
righteousness while leading a life of war, why doesn’t he figure
out why there is such a tremendous gap between his supposed beliefs
and the life he leads?

Vincent Salvucci

Second-year

Math

Update on UC Regents

UC community:

I’m back again, and has there been activity in the realm of the
regents.

At the January meeting, 11 students were arrested for speaking
more than 60 seconds. These students will be sentenced March 4 in
San Francisco. If you think this a "tad bit" unfair, call Vice
President Wayne Kennedy at (510) 987-9029.

Aside from that, the faculty of the UC system was totally
disrespected by the board. After trying to arrange a meeting with
the regents for months, the board treated them like whining
children. Several regents told me they could care less what the
faculty said and would not change their minds.

Since the meeting, members of the California legislature sent
out a letter asking Regent Ward Connerly to excuse himself from
future discussion of affirmative action due to his obvious
political involvement in the California Civil Rights Initiative.
This has caused a stir on the board, and the Committee on Higher
Education in the Senate will hold a hearing Feb. 20. If you are
interested, call Stephanie Rubin at (916) 445-1353. A satellite
hook-up for students, faculty and staff can be arranged.

And finally, there has been some commotion on the student regent
end of things. Jess Bravin of Berkeley has been nominated to be
next year’s student representative to the board. The only thing
between Bravin and the student regent position is an action item on
the Feb. 15 agenda. SP-17 will be voted on at the next meeting, and
would ABOLISH the position of student regent! If you don’t like the
idea, call your local regent or the Office of the President.

Peace.

Ed Gomez

Student regent

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