Oregon daily emerald. (Eugene, Or.) 1920-2012, October 01, 1980, Page 4, Image 4

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    opinion
Back to morality on the field: fire Brooks
Rich Brooks has been incredibly lucky. If his
football team wins, it makes money, and he keeps
his job.
If legality or morality were to be considered,
Brooks would have been fired long ago. Whether
or not he is guilty of any wrongdoing, he is re
sponsible for the actions of his team, if only
indirectly.
Eventually Brooks will be fired. But not
because of phony credits, plane tickets or ttve
alleged illegal activities of his players. If the
current trend continues, so many of his players
either will be penalized, will transfer, or go to court
that the team will fall apart.
And Brooks will be fired for losing — at last, a
real moral victory.
Apparently winning football games is like
getting A papers — it's much easier to win by
cheating, if you don’t get caught. But in our
moralistic ivory tower resides a double standard.
Classroom cheaters are held in disgust while
gridiron cheaters are cheered as heroes.
That’s why college and college athletics don’t
mix.
In theory, college is one of the final bastions
of upright and moral behavior, where students
should learn to think and act responsibly. But
instead, college athletes learn how to get by. Like
professional athletes they are used and abused by
society. Administrators, financial backers and
fans generally have no regard for the college
gladiator.
In the end it’s the football players who lose.
The school pays the athletes to perform and
discards them after four years. Few athletes man
age to get the full benefit of their education. They
don’t have the time to study because they are
performing.
On the field, Brooks has done a good job. He’s
won football games, and that seems to be what
counts. But it shouldn t if the victory trek is an
immoral one.
Brooks should be fired, and the system
should be changed. As it now stands, the system is
geared toward satisfying the fans. The games
should be given back to the players.
Accomplishing this will require economic
change.
First, scholarships for athletes should be
banned. Student-athletes should be awarded
financial aid on the basis of need — just like
normal students. That would eliminate one of the
biggest costs of collegiate programs.
Second, the meat-market system of recruiting
high school players should be banned by requir
ing students to initiate contacts with prospective
schools. In addition to the tremendous savings, it
would eliminate recruiting violations.
These changes would be a start, but an inef
fective one if built upon a morally bankrupt foun
dation. It’s time to begin the excavation by firing
Brooks.
yq r s
Eye for an eye
“Justice is blind,” ‘an eye for
an eye ” The obvious answer to
the question of: “What can we
do about crime?” has been right
before us for centuries. Of
course the idea is controversial,
but what new approach
wouldn’t be?
The facts are overwhelming
that our present system is
grossly inadequate, expensive,
and does little if anything to
rehabilitate habitual criminals.
Especially those who perpetrate
acts of violence against others.
So, some drastic measures are
in order if we are to conquer the
increasing occurance of violent
crime in our “civilized” society.
Drastic measures must be con
sidered if we expect to adequa
tely deal with a drastic problem
— a festering problem that con
cerns each of us directly.
The time has come to deal
firmly with this problem of
violent intentional crime. We
must discontinue this ridiculous
pampering of hardenend
criminals in the guise of pro
tecting the violated civil rights of
the victims and their families by
these misfits of society.
We taxpayers are again faced
with the financial burden of
constructing new prisons. The
cost will be enormous and it is
an added cost that we can do
without. We can also do without
any more prisons. What we
really need is a new system that
will deter crime itself or there
will be no end to the number of
prisons we will have to con
struct — the present system is
self-perpetuating — this is not
the answer we need.
Capital punishment has never
been a deterrent against crime,
and probably never will be, but
consider for a moment the
ramifications of a prison system
that would “clinically” blind the
hardened, habitual, and violent
offenders — murderers, rapists,
etc., those who have demon
strated beyond doubt that they
should no longer be a part of
society unless a change in their
life-style is induced. Perhaps
through blindness they could be
forced to change and become a
constructive rather than a des
tructive force in our society.
Blindness could be the deter
rent we need. Of course the idea
is controversial, it's meant to be,
Page 4
but so is capital punishment.
The violent habitual criminal
cannot be allowed to return to a
society in the same capacity as
when he or she entered prison.
This individual will continue his
or her criminal ways unless
something is done to interrupt
the self-perpetuation of this
lifestyle and force these in
dividuals to become dependent
on the society they are so de
termined to destroy.
If all hardened criminals were
without sight there wouild be no
need for maximum security pri
sons — it would promote max
imum control, thus no rioting —
it would eliminate criminal sub
cultures within prisons or de
tension centers — above all it
would protect victims and wit
nesses from possible reprisals
by a convicted felon when
released. Yes, "Justice is blind"
— and the concept of "an eye
for an eye” is far from new.
Dennis Bissonnette
1130 Hoover Hill Road
Winston, OR
Anti-Reagan
It was with an increasing
sense of outrage that we read of
Reagan’s speech to the con
vention of the Veterans of Fo
reign Wars on Aug. 18
Reagan attacked Carter for
his "regrettable, unconsciona
ble, and insensitive" treatment
of veterans. But that same day I
went down to the Lane County
Republican Party headquarters
and read the National Repub
lican Party platform with respect
to veterans. There was not one
damn word about correcting
long-standing inadequacies in
Vietnam veteran benefits in
employment or education, no
mention of the need to support
the presumption that any Viet
nam vet who was exposed to
Agent Orange or other chemical
agents was disabled by service
related causes and is entitled to
compensation, and no talk
about the necessity to support
readjustment counseling and
other mental health services for
Vietnam veterans and their
families.
It's time to recognize that
Reagan has shown himself to be
a monumental hypocrite and
that people would dishonor the
noisog n\g
memory of the 57,000 Amer
icans and the millions of in
nocent Vietnamese and Cam
bodians who died in the Viet
nam War by voting for such a
deceitful militarist.
We call upon the local
members of veterans groups
such as the VFW, American
Legion, and Disabled American
Veterans to join us in repudiat
ing the national VFW’s endor
sement of Reagan.
Finally I want to say that the
American public may be indif
ferent to the past atrocities
which have been carried in out
in their name but we veterans
who have sacrificed years of our
time and often our health as well
as our very lives still care en
ough to flatly reject the cynical
rabble-rousing of a warmonger.
Dave Isenberg
University Veterans
Keep tickets
This graduate student resents
the financial vice president's
comment in the Sept. 29 Emer
ald.
The V.P. questioned if a peti
tion protesting the inflated ath
letic fee was valid. He said, "I
wonder of those who signed the
petition, how»many have
refused to pick up their free
athletic tickets?”
Well, Mr. Hawk, I signed and I
don't even want my free tickets.
I’m new here and didn't get to
vote against forking over $17 a
term for sports I could care less
about.
I resent the fact that my
money is unwillingly going off to
rinky-dink side areas that have
nothing to do with my expensive
education.
Because classes are so
reduced in these low-dollar
days, I'll be straightjacketed into
what courses I have to take for
the next three terms. It’s small
comfort to this non-jock that if I
had time left after taking six or
seven classes a term, I could go
watch amateur contests for
free.
So since I never desired tick
ets and won't use them, this
inflated fee doesn’t feel like a
trade-off to me. It feels like rob
bery.
If officials feel most students
really want to go to these sports
events, why didn’t they just sell
$20 or $25 yearly passes to raise
their money? Must be they
realize too many of us could
care less about their games.
Paul Strand
1261 E. 20th Ave.
Eugene
letters policy
The Emerald will accept
and try to print all letters
containing fair comment on
ideas and topics of concern
or interest to the University
community. Letters must be
typewritten, using 65-char
acter margins and should be
triple spaced.
Letters must be signed, the
author’s field of study (or
faculty status) noted and
should include address and
phone number where possi
ble.
Wednesday, October 1,1980