Letters to the Editor: Greek Series is Biased

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I am a white fraternity member and I never believed myself to be a racist, until of course, I read Ron Patterson's views in the enlightening article "Greeks Not 'Up the Hill'" (Dec. 6).

Seeing as my chapter's bylaws and philosophy never explicitly mention our duty to aid Patterson or any member of a minority group in all of their endeavors, I do suppose that symbolizes our desire to keep blacks and other minorities out of the Greek system.

Come to think of it, I guess it was kinda racist that one time when my brothers and I chased away a black rushee with burning crosses and Confederate flags, while wearing white robes and singing "Dixie." And wow, I suppose I do get a good laugh with my friends whenever I see a member of a minority ethnic group, especially after we all agree that we should "strip away every thing that he has ever had and take away everything that he has ever achieved."

My fraternity and every other one on this campus actively recruits all men that we believe would make fine brothers and friends, regardless of their skin color. Patterson is more racist than any of us are.

Ian Chintzer

UC Berkeley student

Dorm Fire Should Be Taken as a Warning

As a resident of the Clark Kerr resident halls, I would like to address some serious issues not discussed in The Daily Californian's recent article, "Dorm Fire Scares Sleeping Students" (Dec. 4).

One resident's claim that "the fire had been burning for nearly 30 minutes before the Berkeley Fire Department arrived," and other residents' claims that they smelled smoke 30 minutes before the alarms were activated makes me concerned over the lack of responsibility on their parts to call the fire department for help. I do not blame them for their apathy towards fire alarms, for every student knows that residents become conditioned to ignore the levity of fire alarms.

A problem equally serious as the possibly defective alarms is that of residents who choose to ignore and sleep through fire alarms, for this event shows that actual fires do occur in our halls and we need to respond to each and every alarm seriously. The malfunctioning of the alarms in this situation is a grave reminder to residents that tampering with and disconnecting any smoke detector in a room or suite results in disabling an entire section of alarms in the building. Thus, one's personal concern for not getting caught burning substances puts all of his or her neighbors at risk during a fire.

This incident is also a reminder to residents of the important role they play in maintaining the safety of their living environments.

Clark Kerr's Building 8 residents should be praised and acknowledged for their timely evacuation and patience throughout the two-hour early morning ordeal.

Molly Cundiff

UC Berkeley student


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