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The Ubyssey Apr 2, 1997

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 .**«. i
The seven day occupation
of Strangway's office over
Mina Shum shoots her
new film in Vancouver
Environmental double standards
take toll on developing world
feeling the gravity of the situation since 1918
by Trina Hamilton
t' ^ /
draft a
that would
Vaitmer City
Shell prodocts.
Local activists are seeking to hit Shell
Canada where it hurts—the bottom line.
^       The  Ogoni  Solidarity Network has
been organising weekly demonstrations at Shell gas stations since late
At issue is Shell Oil's Nigerian
operations.  Environmental destruction in Ogoniland—the Ogoni are one
of Nigeria's indigenous peoples—and
ties to the military government have
been well documented and reported. But
Shell Canada has repeatedly denied complicity with and responsibility for the
actions of its parent company.
The Ogoni Solidarity Network's position
is that if Shell Canada is serious about environmental and human rights, it should publicly repudiate its parent company and
change its name.
The Network has failed to convince some
people to turn away from Shell Canada stations. At one of their weekly demonstrations a passer-by remarked: "Why should I
care what's going on in Nicaragua?"
Presumably the demonstrators would
agree  that he  should  care  about what's
going on in Nicaragua, but more importantly—in Shell's case—he should care about
what's going on in Nigeria.
Sid Tan, director of the Sierra Club
Lower Mainland group and member of
the Ogoni Solidarity Network, asserted that "human rights and environmental atrocities should concern
Aft, .     everyone as members of the human
ft, */     species, and even more so when we
can do something about them."
he boycott campaign presses
on, and while the two-hour weekly
demonstrations may turn some
Shell   was   doing  business   in
South Africa during the apartheid regime—were quashed by
the Supreme Court.
The city resolved, "...not to
do business with Royal Dutch/
Shell and Shell Canada until
Royal Dutch/Shell completely
withdraws      from     South
Africa." Shell Canada subsequently took the city to court
and in 1994 the Supreme
Court of Canada ruled that
the resolution was not within the jurisdiction of the
city  as  defined  by the
Vancouver Charter, effectively   renouncing   the
city's   ability  to   think    -    _
globally, act locally.
After studying the case history
ofthe 1989 resolution, the Ogoni
Solidarity Network has drafted a
new resolution they believe will
circumvent some of the complex
legal arguments that hindered the
last resolution.
Specifically, they have attempted to link the concern for the devastation in Nigeria to the
Vancouver's jurisdiction to "provide for the good rule and government of the city." They argue that
Shell's actions have "harmed the
morality of Vancouver citizens."
They have also attempted to
avoid discriminating against Shell
Canada by targeting all "corporations or individuals doing business
within the City of Vancouver which
council is aware have explicit and
documented ties to environmental
and human rights abuses in any
part of the world that would constitute an unlawful act or violate the
helling out a boycott
Vancouverites away from Shell's
pumps,  activists are turning to
municipal governments to make an
even bigger dent in Shell's pockets.
Shell Canada currently holds an
exclusive contract to supply gas and
diesel fuel to the City of Vancouver.
The deal expiring on May 31, 1997.
The Ogoni Solidarity Network has
decided to lobby city council to pass a
selective purchasing policy resolution
that would prevent Shell from being
awarded the next contract. Such resolutions have been passed by various US
cities including Oakland, California, and
also by the State of Massachusetts.
City council's  attempts,  however,  to
adopt such a resolution in   1989—when
conscience, psychological well-being, and
moral principles of the citizens within the
City of Vancouver.'
his resolution may be the only chance
the Network has to prevent Shell from
being awarded the next contract.
Sid Fancy, Manager, of Purchasing
Services for the City of Vancouver, responded to initial inquiries about the contract by
acknowledging that as it stands now,
"Council has authorised the Manager of
Purchasing Services to accept the proposal
that will provide the city with the lowest
overall cost."
The Ogoni Solidarity Network has sent
their detailed legal justifications as well as a
draft resolution to all of the cities and
municipalities who will be joining
Vancouver to submit a co-operative Request
for Proposal for the 1997 gas and diesel
Will this effort have any effect?
Tan points to the outcome of a March
Council meeting of the City of North
Vancouver, explaining that while council
did not pass the resolution proposed by the
activists on the grounds that it is still legally contentious, members unanimously
agreed to instruct staff not to buy Shell
products. While legal concerns may prevent
many municipalites and cities from passing
the Network's resolution, the mere tabling
of such resolutions may add fuel to the boycott campaign.* 2   THE UBYSSEY, APRIL 2, 1997
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Tech fee campaign heats up
by Sarah Galashan
Students are about to be buried
with information on UBC's proposed $90 student technology fee
if student groups and administrators have their way.
Students will be given a chance
to vote in the phone-in poll being
held April 11-16.
The fee will support information technology projects for students at UBC. According to the
Advisory Committee on Information Technology (ACIT) the fee
will augment, but not replace, current UBC expenditures on information technology support for students. The fee will, proponents
estimate, raise roughly $2.7 million that will be allocated by a
committee on which student have
a majority vote.
Most student leaders seem to
agree that the fee proposal is
worth student approval. AMS
President Ryan Davies, who sat on
the ACIT committee, told student
council last week that the fee is
fair and worthwhile. He joined
several councillors in urging the
AMS to take an official position
calling for a yes vote.
But after much debate
council decided to take a neutral stance and provide students with as much information—both pro and con—as
A number of councillors
argued that there are reasons
to be concerned about the fee.
Graduate Student Society
council representative Jessica
Escribano, warned the fee
sets a serious precedent for
ancillary fees. "The question
is how is it funded," she said.
If students vote for the fee,
she said, it could send the
message that students are
willing to pay directly for services which have traditionally
been funded by government.
But, she added, the GSS is not
entirely opposed to the fee. "It's
not a straightforward 'vote no, this
is an evil fee'. I think both sides
should be presented to students so
that they can make a fully
informed decision."
But the major concern still
remains student turnout on a
campus where very few students
Sports fee vote delayed
Students will not be voting this term on a proposed increase to the student athletics and recreation fee, despite its inclusion in a Board of
Governors decision to let students vote on ancillary fee increases.
"It lets us concentrate on the [student technology fee] vote," said UBC
vice-president of student and academic services, Maria Klawe. "We were
concerned that two votes at once would cloud and confuse the issues."
Athletics Director Bob Philip said the vote had been put off because
the money wasn't needed immediately. "The technology fee needs its
money this summer to do the things it needs to do for the fall," he said,
"but Athletics was never asking for a funding increase for the 1997/98
The delay may also reduce the amount students are asked to pay,
Philip said.
"We'll take another look at it in the fall, and if we decide we still need
a fee increase and it needs a referendum then that's what we'll do, and
we'll make sure there's lots of information out there. If we find that we've
got other sources of revenue and the increase is going to be small, say
two bucks or something, then we may not need to go to the vote." ♦
MARIA KLAWE, UBC's VP of student and
academic services, is preparing to sell
students on the idea of a technology
typically take an interest in policy
The worst outcome, said student Board of Governors representative Jeff Meyers, would be a vote
with a small turnout. "We have
taken a major step by getting the
BoG to allow students this vote," he
told student council last week.
"Whatever we do, we have an obligation to make sure students get out
there and have their say."
Vote organisers agree. "If 95
percent of the student population votes against it [the BoG]
is going to have to take that
seriously," said Chris Hives,
university archivist and one
of the team organising the
Hives said the vote is more
a poll than a referendum.
Since no quorum has been
set, the Board will not be
forced to accept the referendum results, he said. But if
the numbers are overwhelmingly for or against, Hives
believes they will weigh heavily in any decision on the fee.
The UBC Registrar will
oversee the referendum and
students will be able to phone
in their votes either from
home or from one of the
many voting stations organisers hope to set up around
campus. ♦
by Ian Gunn
New lane opens up on the net
by Jo-Ann Chiu
Universities across Canada have
joined forces with private and
public institutions to build the
next generation of the Internet.
The initiative was spawned in
October 1996, when a group of
.American universities announced
a commitment to developing the
next stage of the Internet. Its parallel Canadian project, more popularly known as the Internet 2 project in the US, is called the CA*net
II. CA'net is the national backbone
infrastructure of Canadian cyberspace.
CA'net II organisers say there
are two fundamental aims behind
the project, including quality of
service and speed.
Jack Leigh, director of UBC
computing services and president
of BCnet, compares the technological concept behind CA'net II with
building a new lane on a cross-
Canada highway.
"It's   a   faster   lane   with   a ■
restricted number of on and off
ramps," he said.
For example, if a UBC student
sends data across the country on
that new lane, the data will only be
able to get off at the major universities which are hooked up to the
CA*net II. The data will not be
able to get off at the hospitals—at
least initially.
"The current Canadian Internet
is about 10 megabits per second
in the transit service and this one
will be about 155, and eventually
higher than that," Leigh explained.
According to Michael Hrybyk,
manager of telecommunications
central networking at UBC and
general manager of BCnet, everyone is already using CA'net, but
they don't know it.
"When a student's data travels
from campus to the US, it goes
from UBC to BCnet, the regional
network which is also run out of
UBC. Then it goes to the CA*net
links, which has some links to
Seattle and east-west to Toronto.
Then from there it goes to the
wider Internet."
Similarly, with the CA*net II, a
student will be using it, but they
won't know it. There are no special
procedures needed to gain access.
As long as the information is being
sent to another Canadian institu
tion also hooked to the CA'net II,
traffic will automatically segregate
itself, and is one of the keys to the
next-generation Internet.
If the information is being sent
to a typical commercial web site,
such as an JC-Files fan club, the
data will stay on the regular
Internet lane, amidst the traffic.
"If the web for The X-Files is in
the United States," Leigh said, "it's
possible you might traverse the
Internet 2 at some point."
Theoretically, UBC students
and faculty who conduct research
or collaborative activities could
see the results of the CA*net II
within weeks, said Leigh. The
problem is not in the technology,
as much as it is in the paperwork
and formalities to gain approval
and funding, which will delay initial installment.
"The technical questions are a
little bit easier than the organisational issues," Leigh said.
"CANARIE [the non-profit educational organisation facilitating the
development of the CA'net II) has
identified some funds, but they
don't have approval to spend the
funds in this way as yet." ♦ THE UBYSSEY, APRIL 2, 1997 3
President's office sit-in ends
by Ian Gunn
After six nights holed-up in the UBC
president's office, eight graduate student protesters called it quits last
Wednesday morning.
The students had been demanding
the university roll-back a 310 percent
increase in new international graduate
student fees and give all students more
say in fee issues at UBC.
From the steps of the Old
Administration Building protest organiser Jonathan Oppenheim told a group
of more than 40 supporters the efforts
had been worth it.
"We've mobilised a huge amount of
support and shown UBC what they can
and cannot do. We've built a network of
dissent, not just here but across this
province and across Canada."
He said the protest had achieved its
main goal of forcing UBC's administration to listen to student concerns and
give students a say in policy decisions at
the university.
"There's no way [the administration!
will be able to act in this irresponsible
manner ever again," he said. "We've
really shown them how students and
staff and faculty feel on these issues.
Next year they're going to have to have
no differential fees or else they're going
to see this thing happen all over again."
But UBC's vice-president academic
and acting president Dan Birch said the
sit-in had little effect. Only with its conclusion, he
said, could meaningful discussions between students
and administrators take place.
"I don't think they have achieved their goals through
the sit-in. But then sitting in is, perhaps, an entertainment; it draws some attention, but from -my point of
view it cuts off communication; it doesn't facilitate it."
The protesters were told, he said, that no negotiations on any issue would take place until the students
left the president's office.
Oppenheim conceded communication was one of
the main reasons for ending the sit-in. "We did feel
we had a gun pointed to our head and we couldn't
have any more progress while we were in there. Now
that we're out we can get on with the legitimate
process of negotiations."
But it seems unlikely that much will change on the
international graduate student fee issue..
UBC has no plans to revisit the policy, Birch said,
which has now been confirmed by the Board of
Governors at three separate meetings. "It was con
firmed at meetings in December, February and
March," he said, "which amounts to a first, second
and third reading."
Nor is the provincial government likely to step in
to help. Minster of Education, Skills and Training,
FIND US on the 2nd floor
._,_   _     ji»"«*i^^ Behind CIBC Bank
224-6225 University Village
2174 W. Parkway
Vancouver, BC
STUDENT PROTESTERS say good-bye as they leave Strangway's
office last Wednesday after a six-day sit-in. richard lam photo
Paul Ramsey, announced earlier this month that the
province's freeze on tuition fees for domestic students would be continued for another year. But he
made it clear that the freeze will not extend to foreign
Education ministry spokesperson Michael
Lancaster said there was little chance the government would step into the dispute. "UBC's Board of
Governors have the right and responsibility to set
fees," he said, adding that the government is unlikely to reverse a decision that does not directly contradict government policy.
And UBC's Dean of Graduate studies, Frieda
Granot, said the issue has moved beyond the fee
increase itself.
"We are working very hard now, since we didn't
win the first round, to try an offset the tuition fees...to
try to secure financial assistance and tuition fee
But Oppenheim warned that unless students see
some movement on the issue, there will be more
action here at UBC and elsewhere.
"Keep an eye out at SFU. Keep an eye out at UVic.
Keep an eye out across Canada. Because if there is no
movement by government or administrations then
you'll see people going into offices all over the place." ♦
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UBC criticised for hosting APEC
 by Douglas Quan
The divide between the university
and students opposed to the 1997
conference on Asia Pacific
Economic Co-operation couldn't
be wider.
This was evident at last
Thursday's university-sponsored
public forum on UBC's role in the
November summit. While UBC
representatives talked about
preparations being made to host a
day of meetings on campus, a
handful of students questioned
hosting the leaders at all because
of poor human rights records in
some APEC states.
"How can we invite people
involved in human rights abuses?" asked Katja Cronauer of
APEC-Alert. "The university is
inviting dictators."
UBC Public Relations Director,
Charles Slonecker, defended the
university's decision to host the
summit, arguing the importance
of Canada's "policy of engagement" with the leaders.
He added that while economic
development and trade liberalisation are the focus of the summit,
those with concerns about human
rights will have plenty of opportunities to be heard given that
media from around tlie world will
be attending.
There will also be an Non-
Governmental Organisation conference dealing with human rights
issues running at the same time
as the summit, he said.
But another student, Gurpreet
Singh Johal, argued that human
rights still should have been put
on the APEC agenda. "If Canada
doesn't put human rights on the
agenda, they're being hypocritical
because [they've said] one of their
key concerns in the Asia-Pacific is
human rights.
"How  many other opportuni
ties do we have for these 18 leaders to get together to talk about
human rights?" he added.
Slonecker said almost all of
APEC's 18 members have been
involved in human rights abuses;
it is a process of a country's evolu
tion, he said. "None of these countries have a clean, pure slate."
The entire APEC summit lasts
from November 22 to 26, and will
be held at the Trade and
Convention Centre. However, on
November 25, the leaders will
hold their meetings at the
Museum of Anthropology.
UBC Event Coordinator Eilis
Courtney said there should be
minimal disruption to students'
routines. However, access to Rose
Garden Parkade will be blocked
off that day.
The last summit UBC hosted
was in 1992 between US
President Bill Clinton and Russian
President Boris Yeltsin. ♦
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Columbia THE UBYSSEY, APRIL 2, 1997  5
by Robin Yeatman
Paradise Last: the Child murders at robin hood Hills
Apr 4-10 at the Ridge theatre
Murder has always been a fascinating topic; the more
gruesome, the better. Paradise Lost: The Child
Murders at Robin Hood Hills examines the trial of
three teenagers accused of the brutal murders of
three eight year old boys. Co-director Bruce Sinofsky
spoke to The Ubyssey about the various dungeons
and caverns he discovered while making the film.
Sinofsky and co-director Joe Berlinger first
became interested in making the film in June 1993,
when they came across an article in The New York
Times concerning the murder case.
"What intrigued us was the cult angle the article
took," Sinofsky explains. The murders were supposedly committed as a part of a Satanic ritual by three
teens: Jessie Misskelley, Charles Baldwin and
Damien Echols.
"We thought, let's go down there
and look into the human condi-
a a me*
tion, let's see what -.
kind of an environment creates such a
Initially, it looked
like    a   cut-and-dry
case. The police,  as
well as the press, were
completely convinced
of the guilt of the three
boys. Sinofsky was not so
confident in their culpability.
"It occurred to us within a day
or two that there was a bigger story
than what was being presented to the
public," he says.
Soon after their first trip to West Memphis,
Sinofsky and Berlinger presented the idea for their
film to HBO, who loved it: they had complete funding
for Paradise Lost within a week. They dove into their
work, spending countless hours interviewing the
many people who had something to say about the
case. This extensive list includes the accused and
their parents, the parents of the victims, the defense
lawyers, the prosecution, even people on tlie street.
It was a long, challenging process, which took an
emotional toll on the entire crew. "Person by person,
family by family, eventually we got access to all of
them. Some took two weeks, some took two days,
some took two minutes, some took nine months."
But all that time was a small price to pay for the
many touching, memorable moments the two directors caught on film. "We spent a lot of time with the
people. Perhaps for every hour we film, we spend
eight hours not filming," Sinofsky reveals. "A bond, a
trust, a knowledge of each other, a kindness towards
each other develops, and that allows to get some very
intimate moments that you see on film."
The cult theme is evident throughout the film.
Religion as a whole is questioned and explored as the
accused teenagers practised Wicca, a form of witchcraft. This is judged by the town as both evil and
satanic. But the film then reveals Christians of the
community who are obviously hypocritical, and have
no right to be pointing fingers at anyone else. The
film also presents people of true faith as an example
of what religious people shouldbe like. "Just because
you go to church doesn't mean you're a good person," says Sinofsky. "It's what you do the other six
days of the week that counts."
Both directors questioned the guilt of the accused
from day one. They believe that the lack of physical evidence presented in court was completely inadequate
grounds to convict the teenagers. "We still have to have
evidence other than hearsay to convict somebody," says
Sinofsky. "We felt that they didn't get a fair trial. If I was
on the jury I couldn't have convicted any of the three."
Sinofsky uses the OJ. Simpson "fiasco" as an
example ofthe miscarriages of justice in the United
States. "We always talk about justice being blind. It's
not blind. It focuses on the dollar bill and the amount
of power and influence that the defendant or their
attorneys have." Many people of West Memphis, living in trailers parks or run down neighbourhoods
don't have the money, power or influence sometimes
necessary to win in court.
Sinofsky believes that the extreme bias
and sensationalism ofthe press had
a definite effect on the jury pool,
and on the outcome of the
trial. Paradise Lost criticises  the  press  for  these
:■„   very reasons. "We do
::      have a responsibility
to present both sides
of the   truth,   and
never  once,  from
e do have alresponsihiUty
to present both sides of
the truth, and never
once, from the d0 we got there
to the day the trial ended, did
any reporter (and there were
dozens of them) ever question
the guilt ofthe kids.
the day we got there to the day the trial ended,
did any reporter (and there were dozens of them)
ever question the guilt of the kids. In their minds
they were guilty and that's the way they reported it."
Although Sinofsky and Berlinger are also a part of
the media, they believe they handled their power in a
more evenhanded manner. "We're not attacking
these people," he says. "Ultimately we do want people
to watch the film in the theatres and on television,
but we handle it with a sense of dignity and propriety
that other people don't do."
Most people seem to agree. All the participants in
the film were able to see the final product, and none
of them regretted their contribution. People on both
sides of tlie case felt they were portrayed in a fair
manner. In fact, Sinofsky and Berlinger are more
than welcome to return to West Memphis this summer, where they hope to start filming another feature
on the murder case. This film won't sit on the sidelines so much, but will be more proactive. They hope
to get an FBI profiler to look into the case and come
up with a more satisfying conclusion than the
Memphis court's verdict.
The making of Paradise Lost was not easy, but has
resulted in a powerful, insightful glimpse into
American subculture, religion, and the justice system. The four-year journey of Sinofsky and Berlinger
has notyet reached its end. "Our journey is like jumping out a window—with or without a net. And you just
hope that you're going to land on that flower bed as
opposed to a picket fence."♦
All Cases
CLAYTON BIJRNS   Ph.D.   222-1286
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Cimfflnr malfac cMAui canca
yrffiifilu  iiiuiiwj .*niw¥¥  «pwblii*^
by Robin Yeatman
Smilla's Sense of Snow
at Vancouver Centre
Subtle yet salient, stimulating yet
stodgy, Smilla's Sense of Snow
will stun you senseless. Bille
August's new film is a paradox
that both challenges and numbs
the intellect, what with its promising premise and lacklustre
Julia Ormond plays a surpri*
ingly youthful 37-year old Snull.i
Jaspersen,  an exceedingly biili-r
and    terse    individual    wIium-
Greenlandic descent has left her
longing   resentfully   for   her
homeland. The one person sin-
has   allowed  into  her  chilK
monosyllabic world  is  a s.\
year-old     Inuit    boy    from
Greenland, found face down
in the snow at the film's
beginning. Has he simply
fallen from the rooftop of
their   building,   or
did    someone
chase      him
off?  Smilla's
dedication to solving his murder
gives the film its thrust. With the
help of her mechanic neighbour
(Gabriel Byrne), Smilla braves the
dangers of both man and nature
to discover the truth.
The first major motion picture
to be filmed in Greenland, Smilla
feels like a foreign film, with
expansive snowscapes that are
quietly magnificent. Based on
Danish author Peter Hoeg's best-
selling novel, the film manages to
hold the audience's attention
most of the time.
However, the film begins to
lag, like a dog sled caught in
water. Ormond's laconic tone gets
tiresome as each slowly-ticking
minute makes you wonder if the
film will ever reach its end. Then,
boom, as though tacked on at last
minute, the ending is thrust upon
you in true Hollywood style. Bad
guy Richard Harris, amid ice and
explosions, needlessly explains
the entire story and unravels the
last two hours of intrigue, which a
modestly intelligent audience
would have already figured out.
One fun surprise is the
appearance of Juergen Vogel
(from the film festival's bomb
Silent Night), who plays the
pathetic yet playful Nils
Jakkelsen, cabin boy and eventual accomplice to Smilla.
\ However,    his    performance
does       not       significantly
redeem the film. The only
thing  Smilla's Sense  of
Snow  succeeds   in   is
'- leaving you cold.♦
«E2Sa 11E2I2»
v ST
-* r*'J
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XXXSpacejunk is a bad trip
by Richelle Rae
by Shawn Chappelle
Apr 10 at the Pacific Cinematheque
Shawn Chappelle is a man who
has taken the acid trip too far. The
Vancouver video artist has spent
the last five years exploring the
wonderful world of techno-manip-
ulation, but it's time he moved on.
XXXSpacejunk is billed as "Neil
Armstrong meets Bob Guccione—
and moon shot equals cum shot-
in Chappelle's space-age porn
odyssey," In this film Chappelle
explores the potential of a new
digitalised editing system. He
takes popular porn images, nice
standard ones like women holding their unnatural breasts wilh
lips parted in anticipation or—my
favorite—the little girl-white-pan-
ty-crotch shot, and combines
them with various space shots,
layering the images in a kind of
techno-psychedelic format. The
sound complementing Chappelle's montage is a combination
of static feedback and a woman's
voice saying, uh, something,
though I wasn't sure what.
The film is colourful and
abstractly entertaining. I stress
"abstractly,"    as    the    images
Chappelle has chosen seem arbitrary and lack any connecting factor. Chappelle's ideas are pretty
mundane no matter how fancy
the package in which they are presented; I don't think it takes any
stretch of the imagination to combine cheesy pornographic images
with shots of rocket launches.
This kind of film isn't innovative
or creative and would seem to
reflect a Beavis and Buttliead or
post-produclion-geek mentality,
XXXSpacejunk is one of several
films and videos by Chappelle
playing at the Cinematheque next
week; Chapelle himself will be in
attendance. ♦
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Managing Your Future 8 THE UBYSSEY, APRIL 2, 1997
'A.'*'- 'i £
'   ,   ' ■;,
.*    s. .
:\ ■
*     -.
' •     *.«  >"
* JVji1-. -
Nothing disposable about Michael Franti
*   Michael Franti spearheads
a new hip-hop wave.
The world is his to claim.
 by Paolo Santos Javier
In \,mcouver for his one-man Smokin   Word
Tour—a grab-bag show of spoken word, stand-up
ii>medy,  and personal history—Michael Franti,
ii'.'liteous leader of acclaimed soul/hip-hop outfit
ji ii iit
The Ubyssey with his brand of
i Ii1 mi-- .iih! life.
I'imiiIi --.i\ - Spearhead is not, as some might
iInnk a radical departure from his
work with the hardcore industrial   rap   band   Disposable
Heroes of HipIIoprisy. "It's a
natural progression,   much
like an artist's body of work,
wherein you see that each
painting is marked not by
change, but by development,"
Indeed, Kranti's songs continue to boast socio-political
lyrics.  But the  music has
changed—or progressed, as
he puts it: soulful bass lines
and sensual beats have replaced   the   sensory   onslaught of drum machines
and DHQH's patent, use of
controversial samples.
Lyrically. Franti's
opened himself up to
emotional and spiritual
concerns. In Spearhead's
second album. Chocolate
Supa Highway, he raps
about an old love he re
grets parting with ('U Can't Sing R Song'), of marijuana as a potent non-love-soother ('Ganja Babe'),
and offers the religion of Rastafari as man's
redemption from the urban inferno ('Madness in
Da Hood').
These songs also display Spearhead's deep-running affinity for Bob Marley and his music. "He's
always been a strong influence on me professionally, and privately," Franti concedes. In particular,
Franti hopes to emulate Marley's topical dexterity.
"Marley wrote from the heart. He wrote about
punks and Rastas partying together, he wrote songs
about heavy military engagement, how much he
loved God, missed his girlfriend."
So far, Spearhead has been rewarded for its
efforts. 'Positive,' which grapples with the anxiety
surrounding Lhe decision to get an AIDS test, was
chosen by the African American HIV/AIDS Program
ofthe Red Cross as the centerpiece for its teen outreach efforts in 1996.
Honoured by the recognition, Franti says he is
accountable for the quality and message of his
music, but how tlie public receives his art is beyond
him. "Although what I'm rappin' about is positive,
and others will say inspirational, understand that at
the end of tlie day, it's still just one man's view of
tlie world."
How can Franti, an artist whose work is rhetorical in nature, insist he doesn't expect his audience
to react in a particular fashion? "I can hope that they
think about the issues I raise, Lhe solutions I offer,
perhaps even agree with me. But I won't force them
to, nor will I take it upon myself to decide matters
for them. I'm not the be-all and end-all."
Fair enough. Franti will, however, admit to being
an imporLanl artist in the hip-hop scene, at least
insofar as he "spread the vibe."
"Hip-hop is tlie black people's 'world wide internet,'" he says. "It enables us to communicate
through music, voice, ideas."
Gangsta rap music, which Franti vehemently
defends, is legitimate hip-hop, as well. "One way or
the other, [gangsta rap] is informing the world
about the world. Do you honestly think much of
what you've seen on TV, the movies, videos about
life in the black ghetto would be as available to the
general public, were it not for the likes of NWA, Ice
Cube, or Tupac Shakur, who sang about the horrendous condition of blacks in the ghettoes at a time
when nobody cared to listen?"
He feels that the seemingly endless attack on
gangsta rap by right-wing politicians and private citizen groups stands to deprive a very real community of its strongest, if not only, spokespersons.
"Shakur and Kurt Cobain did the same thing. They
sang about life as they, and a hell of a lot of other
wrote about
, he wrote songs about
, how much he
loved God,
people, knew it, which was the shits."
Life as Franti knew it, growing up in California,
was a breeze compared to Cobain or Shakur. He
attended the University of San Francisco on a basketball scholarship, but a knee injury cut short any
hopes of a career in sports. This setback came as a
blessing in disguise, however, since Franti discovered in his sudden free time what would become
his two passions in life: poetry and music.
"I really got into all the English courses I was taking, especially when poetry was being taught. I read
all the books I could get my hands on. And my professors, who loved my enthusiasm, took me aside
and encouraged me with my writing. I just love
moving words to a rhythm."
Inspired by the musical nature of poetry, Franti
purchased his first bass guitar, learned how to play
it, then set his own words to music. Not long after,
he formed a punk band called the Beatnigs, whose
first ever gig, incidentally, was in Vancouver.
"We toiled in the '80s," he laughs in hindsight.
"We were so poor, after our shows we'd introduce
ourselves to some audience members and ask if
they could let us sleep on their floors to pass the
night. I'd have to phone up student newspapers like
you guys to get us profiled."
The breakthrough for Franti came after he
formed Disposable Heroes with Rono Tse. "Rap's
the perfect hybrid of poetry and music. It's not poetry per se. But it does utilise
many poetic conventions,
such as rhyme scheme,
puns, metaphor, and most
important of all, meter,
though a much looser,
free-flowin' kind."
The duo split up four
n years ago on a poetic note,
■ following   a collaborative
venture with Beat writer
William Burroughs on one of his records. Franti's
performed with Spearhead ever since.
"The group's like my own private company," he
asserts. "I have seven individuals who work under
me, and who I'm responsible for providing the
songs, the production, the management, the whole
With Spearhead, could Franti boast of having
reached a peak in his constantly evolving music
career? "Man, absolutely. I busted my ass to be
where I'm at right now." With the current success
he's enjoying, Franti won't likely be begging student
newspapers for a floor to sleep on any time soon. ♦
Take Control of Your
• Integrate social, economic and scientific dimensions of
contemporary environmental issues facing human society.
• Design your own curriculum of environmentally related
(In Environmental Sciences, up to 48 of 132 credits are electives.
In Environmental Studies, up to 57 of 120 credits are electives.)
• Core courses bringing together students in Arts and Sciences
for project-oriented problem solving in interdisciplinary teams.
Honours Undergraduate
Degree Programs at UBC
Applications are due May 30.
Normally, students apply to the program after their first
year of study, but application is possible after Second
Note: The admissions average quoted in the
UBC Calendar is currently under review.
For more information, contact:
Christina Chociolko   (Environmental Studies)
822-5130 (Until April 30, 1997)
Dr. Kathryn Harrison
Chair, Environmental Studies
c/o Dept. of Political Science
(604) 822-5540 fax
Dr. George Spiegelman
Chair, Environmental Sciences
c/o Dept. of Microbiology
and Immunology
(604) 822-2036
(604) 822-6041 fax
intensive courses run May through August.
no prerequisite! Students receive training in classical
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ERRLY. These courses fill up quickly with
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animation: VanArts offers state-of-the-
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strong industry connections & competitive
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seats are available...
% .  5
11HM-1PM.   C0LL(604)  682-ORTS
a film
UBC FilmSoc
7:00 PM
Wed-Thurs., Apr. 2-3, Norm Theatre, SUB
Endless Summer II
9:30 PM
»IWhlte5BB7 '   Bever|yHills c°p '
Vancouver, B.C. VW1Z1
Submissions Wanted
The Seed.The UBC Canadian Studies Student Asssociation undergraduate journal,
is now accepting submissions for publication in the premier issue in Autumn 1997.
All papers on Canadian subjects representing disciplines in the humanities and social
sciences are welcome. Artwork and photography related to or inspired by Canadian
themes is needed for the cover.
To send a submission: Hard copies on 3.5" floppy can be mailed to the above address.
E-mail submissions in plain ascii text to cookd@unixg.ubc.ca
For more information contact either: David Cook, cookd@unixg.ubc.ca 669-6114
Facility or
Facilty or Grounds
ph: 822-2173
fax: 822-6969
e-mail: tc@plantops.ubc.ca
Contact Plant Operations
by phone, fax, or e-mail to
report any campus building
or grounds problem and
request service.
Exterior Lights Only
ph: 822-2173
fax: 822-6969
e-mail: lightsout@plantops.ubc.ca
Please give complete details including CONTACT NAME and NUMBER
The world's smallest staff ad:
Agenda for April 2:
Last issue
BoD/CUP liason
The meetjnrj.starts jtJ2:3Q._
and is in SUB241K.
Consider yourself warned!
The Bait: A brand new Neon from Chrysler (approximate retail Even if you don't win, you'll still qualify for a $750 Graduate Rebate
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Edmonton • Canada • T6G 2N8 *
e.mail gradstudies@pharmacy.ualberta.ca
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screen again with Josh Hamilton,
her With Honors co-star.
Kelly admits the decision was
rather abrupt, but she likes working
with Shum. "Mina's got a great
vibrance. She's very excited about
her work. She loves what she does.
Great sense of humour. And my
belief," she adds, in an odd gender
switch, "is the director is the father
of the film, and all feelings on the
set are coming from the director,
and she gives off great vibes."
The crew is still abuzz over
Kelly's Irish dancing at the WISE
Hall the night before, but she laughs
it off. "I think I'm going to have to go
back and teach them a few things
about ceillidh dancing," she says,
though it's not clear whether she
means to instruct her crewmates or
the WISE proprietors.
passenger on
her own
by Peter T. Chattaway
It's lunch break on the
Coquitlam set of Drive, She
Said, the new film by Mina Shum, and we're waiting
for a chance to talk to the director. It's been almost
two years since Double Happiness became one of a
handful of indigenous films to last more than a week
in Vancouver theatres. Drive, with 75 sets, a $2.2
million budget, two relatively high-profile American
stars and the promise of an action scene or two,
promises to be even bigger.
But first we talk to Steven Hegyes, when he isn't
taking calls on his ever-beeping cellular. Hegyes—
like Shum, an alumnus of UBC—has made a name
for himself as a producer with a knack for juicy distribution deals. Double Happiness was one of the
first Canadian films to open simultaneously in
Canada and the United States, a strategy Hegyes has
repeated on Lynne Stopkewich's Kissed, set to
open April 11.
"It was a shameless promotional leverage," he
says. "It helped us to have Siskel & Ebert give us
two thumbs up the weekend before we opened.
(American distributors] New Line spent $60,000
on the trailer for Double Happiness. Well, there's
no Canadian company that would ever spend
$60,000 on a trailer, ever, because they just
don't have the market to support it."
Hegyes, who's also executive-producing Bruce
Sweeney's upcoming Dirty, has turned to UBC for
volunteer help in the past, and he hopes to continue fostering a relationship of sorts between
his alma mater and the industry itself.
"The film school and the film industry were totally foreign to each other when I was in film school," he
says. "They didn't have any kind of association. There
was no real screening for student films, either. When
I started there, I came down to the Robson Square
Media Centre for that year's screening, and one of
the film profs ran around the corner ten minutes late
with four or five films under his arm, dangling away.
There were, like, six people in the audience. I
thought, 'Boy, we gotta work on this.' So Lynne and I
started Persistence of Vision, and now we're thinking, if we make enough money, of establishing some
kind of PoV award to help out the people who are
doing it, 'cause it's a lot of work."
Ill egyes leaves to take care of business, and
I U I Moira Kelly pays our table a visit. Today, she's
UJ wearing what she calls her "Annie try-out
wig"—a bouncy, bright pink mop—so we can't take
her picture.
Shum invited Kelly, who has been in everything
from Chaplin to Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me, to
play the lead when a scheduling conflict with HBO
prompted Double Happiness star Sandra Oh to back
out a mere two weeks before filming began. Kelly
liked the script and jumped at the chance to share the
t last,  Mina  Shum.  For  a
"vibrant" director, she seems
pretty fazed. Time is short,
she only has a few minutes to talk
before she's called away. "They're
going to call me back. Lunchtime is
called by someone else. They just
put food in front of my face and tell
me what the schedule is."
Unlike the semi-autobiographical Double Happiness, Shum's new film
centres on a bank robbery
gone wrong and a hostage
situation turned romantic. For Shum, the new film is a wish fulfillment in
more ways than one.
"I think we all want to get taken hostage, occasionally, from our boring lives—or our exciting lives!
But whatever they are, we always want to change
channels. It's always been a fantasy of mine. I love it
when someone else orders for me, or takes me to
some show I would have never gone to see on my
Shum also relishes the chance to direct a more
action-oriented film. "I've always wanted to shoot
stuff that girls weren't told they were allowed to
shoot—break glass, crash cars, shoot people, all that
stuff. Nice girls tell stories about people who sit
around a dinner table, and I've already done that, so
this time I wanted to do
something that was
really challenging,
shoot it in anamorphic,
and come out with
guns ablazing."
Shum had originally
peppered her script
with cultural identity
jokes, but she took
them out when she had
to switch her leading
actress.   To   her   sur-
    prise, Shum found the
script had improved
now that she wasn't imitating her first film so much.
"It actually turned out to be a better script without the
Asian references in it, and if Sandra had come back
to do the film, I would have given her the new script
to play."
American stars, action scenes on 75 sets, and a
foray into the bank-robbery genre—Drive, She Said
sounds almost too mainstream to be true. Can it still
be as personal as her other films? The answer, for
Shum, is an emphatic yes.
"It's so autobiographical now, I think people are
going to come up to me and ask if / was ever taken
hostage! But if you want to draw parallels, that's
sort of what's happened to me. I was taken hostage
by Double Happiness and all the press, and I've
come out of it now and learned to like myself
"You go through the media circus and you have to
rediscover who you are, because everybody's telling
you who3'ou should be. There's no time for any philosophical discussion when you're only allowed to do a
soundbite. 'Lunch is over, Mina, you've gotta go back
and go direct your film.' So in the middle of that
thought, I'm gone."
And, with that, a production assistant beckons her
back to the set.«>
ve always
wanted to shoot
stuFF that girls
weren't told they
were allowed
to shoot
Dr. Patricia Rupnow, Optometrist
General Eye
and Vision Care
4320 W. 10th Ave.
Vancouver, BC
(604) 224-2322
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Brandon College established 1S99   *    Brandon Unmersity chartered 1967
St. John's College
St. John's College is a new residential graduate college that will
focus on international research themes and issues. The College
is the realization of a dream held by local and international
alumni of the former St. John's University in Shanghai (SJU) to
revive the spirit of their alma mater. SJU was operational
between 1879-1952, with a renowned international reputation
as one of the most prestigious and influential universities in
China. Its alumni can be found in key posts on both sides of the
Taiwan Strait, in Hong Kong, Singapore, and on every continent. Continuing in the tradition of its namesake, St. John's
Colle;ge will strive to build bridges between different parts of
the world, serving as an intellectual and social centre for
graduate student and senior scholar residents, and for other
members of the University of British Columbia and wider
community who share the scholarly objectives of advanced
international studies. Its aim is to create a vibrant international
community in which students from different parts of the world
will learn from each other in a collegia! setting.
St. John's College is located on the west side of the University
of British Columbia campus, close to ocean and forest. The
College is being developed in three phases, with completion of
Phase I by Sept. 1, 1997, and anticipated completion of Phase II
in 1998 and Phase III in 1999 on the 120th anniversary of the
founding of St. John's University. Upon completion, St. John's
College will have accommodation for 170 residents and will
include several lecture facilities, seminar rooms, as well as
dining facilities, lounge and social areas, and a landscaped
open air courtyard.
Upon completion of Phase I, the College will accommodate 35
graduate students, post doctoral researchers and visiting
scholars. In addition to these residential members, there will be
a number of members from various academic units on campus
and from the wider community who will enrich College life as
non-residential members.
Applications for graduate student, post doctoral researcher and
visiting scholar residential as well as faculty, graduate student
and post doctoral researcher non-residential membership are
welcome at any time. Residency in Phase I of St. John's Collge
will commence on Sept. 1,1997.
Call for
For further information or to receive
an application form, please contact:
Susanna James,
St. John's College
phone: 822-0533, fax: 822-5802
e-mail: st-johns@mercury.ubc.ca 1 2    THE UBYSSEY, APRIL 2, 1997
You're Graduating
• passionate about the arts
• a good organizer
• a persuasive promoter
• energetic and creative
• looking for a challenge
• able to leap tall
buildings in a
single bound
then consider
innovative, 10-month
certificate program.
Grant MacEwan
Community College
For more information, WRITE to
Arts Administration Program, GMCC,
10045-156 St. Edmonton, AB  T5P 2P7
or CALL (403) 497-4410 or 497-4415, or
E-MAIL: gintherheesr@picasso.gmcc.ab.ca
Registered students may pick up
registration guides for
1997 winter session:
7 * *ri! to 11 April
&00 am to 7:QQ pro
Brock Hall Lobby
Valid AMS Card Required
GateOne campus christian forum
Science: God's Thoughts or
Just Details?
Speaker: Rikk Watts of Regent College
plus jazz recording artists
Christine Duncan and Bob Murphy
Sunday, Apr. 6, 7:30 PM
\Regent College (University Blvd/Wesbrook Mall)
Nigeria's Ogoni get Shelled
Shell Oil has no problem with
devastating developing countries
like Nigeria, writes Scott Pegg, a
PhD candidate in Political Science
and member of the Ogoni
Solidarity Network.
 by Scott Pegg
While the term genocide has been diluted in recent
years by imprecise use, racism has suffered the
opposite fate—instead of being used too widely, the
term now suffers from being applied 'too narrowly.
In essence, racism is most often defined so narrowly that it only includes the most extreme manifestations of this phenomenon. If it's not state-sanctioned apartheid or Bull Connor turning the dogs
loose on school-children in Birmingham, then it
doesn't count as racism.
Canadians are especially susceptible to this narrow idea of racism. The 'kinder, gender' Canadian
self-image often fools us into believing that racism
somehow magically stops at the 49th parallel.
Witness the vitriolic reaction to track star Donovan
Bailey's comments on racism in Sports Illustrated. It
comes as no surprise, then, that most Canadians are
reluctant to consider environmental racism.
UBC STUDENT PROTESTORS demonstrated outside a Vancouver
Shell station last November, ubyssey file photo
I witnessed that reluctance when Dr. Owens
Wiwa, an international environmental and human
rights activist, came to Vancouver to speak about the
plight of the Ogoni people in Nigeria.
Dr. Wiwa, the younger brother of murdered writer
and Nobel Peace Prize nominee Ken Saro-Wiwa,
argues forcefully that the wanton devastation of the
Niger River Delta by European and American multinational oil companies is a classic case of environmental racism.
Though he was speaking before largely sympathetic
audiences, you could feel a tension enter the room
when he introduced the topic of environmental racism.
What exactly is 'environmental racism'? In essence,
it is a hypocritical policy of double standards-the
application of one set of standards by multinational
corporations to Western Europe and North America,
while employing greatly reduced and devalued standards in the developing world.
It is the fact that the policies behind
these double standards are conceived,
executed and justified almost exclusively by white business leaders and directed at countries inhabited by people of
colour that brings the charge of racism.
Perhaps   the  best-known   form  of
environmental racism is the international trade in toxic waste—waste that is
produced in the western world and shipped to some
of the poorest states in Africa.
In the case of tlie Ogoni, the main perpetrator is
the Shell Petroleum Development Company, the
Nigerian subsidiary of Royal Dutch/Shell. At some
sites in Ogoni, Shell has been open-air gas flaring
around the clock for more than 30 years.
According to tlie Nigerian group, Environmental
Rights Action, up to 76 percent of the gas from
Nigerian oil wells is flared. In tlie US, not even one
percent of oil wells are flared. In the UK, only four
percent are flared.
In developed countries like the UK and US, oil
pipelines are buried. In Ogoni, pipes run through villages, coming within metres of individual dwellings .
Although Shell operates in more than 100 coun
tries, 40 percent of its oil spills
from 1982-1992 occurred in
During that period, more
than 1.6 million gallons were
spilled from the company's
Nigerian operations. Many of
these spills have never been
cleaned up. In some cases, they
have just been burnt off, reducing huge parcels of once fertile
land to enormous piles of dead
black gunk.
If you don't think racism is
involved, imagine the response if
Exxon had just set the Valdez oil
spill on fire and left the remnants
sitting on Alaska's coast line.
But the consequences of environmental racism do not stop at
devastation of the land. Profits
from Shell's environmental racism serve to prop up Nigeria's military dictatorship.
There's a great scene in a British documentary on
Ken Saro-Wiwa where he is talking to a British farmer
who has oil on his land. Saro-Wiwa asks him where the
pipelines are and the farmer tells him how much care
Shell took to ensure that they were all buried underground so as not to disturb the pastoral landscape.
The wryly-humorous Saro-Wiwa then
asks him where the British army was when
they laid the pipelines. The farmer is incredulous. Why would the British army ever be
involved in such a matter?
In Nigeria, though, Shell pays the
Nigerian military to accompany its construction workers. On more than one occasion,
such military units have indiscriminately
fired on civilians with deadly results.
Oil accounts for about 90 percent of
Nigeria's annual foreign exchange earnings
and 80 percent of the federal government's
revenue. Shell operates the largest joint venture in the country and produces about 40
percent of Nigeria's crude oil output.
When Shell's environmental destruction
of Ogoni led to mass popular opposition
against its presence, the company responded by requesting and paying for the assistance of
Nigerian police and military units.
Subsequentiy, more than 2,000 Ogoni civilians
have been killed, dozens of villages have been burned
and thousands of refugees have been produced.
On 10 November 1995, following the conclusion
of a laughable kangaroo court, the Nigerian dictatorship hanged Ken Saro-Wiwa and eight other Ogoni
activists for non-violentiy protesting against the activities of this irresponsible corporation.
Two of the 19 other Ogoni leaders presently awaiting this same fate were originally arrested by Shell's
own security force.
After almost two years of denials, Shell has finally
admitted to making field allowance payments to the
Nigerian military. In two separate instances in 1993,
the company admits paying military units who were
present when Ogoni civilians were killed.
"We either win this war to save our
land, or we will be exterminated
because we have nowhere to run to."
Ken Saro-Wiwa
executed Nigerian author/activist
The Ogoni and other groups in the Niger River
Delta suffer today from the combined depravations
of environmental racism and military dictatorship.
For them, tlie stakes are clear. As Ken Saro-Wiwa
put it shortiv before he was murdered, "We either
win this war to save our land, or we will be exterminated because we have nowhere to run to."
For Canadians, however, the stakes are also clear.
We can stick our heads in the sand and pretend environmental racism doesn't exist or we can try to do
something about it. One way to start is byjoining the
international boycott campaign against Shell Oil.
Here in Vancouver, the OSN has been protesting
against environmental racism at local Shell stations
for 19 consecutive weeks now. To get involved,
please e-mail ogoni@vcn.bc.ca or call 873-8554. ♦ THE UBYSSEY, APRIL 2, 1997   1 3
RIVERS AND STREAMS in BC are under attack from pollution. Pristine waterfalls may soon be a thing of the
Urban streams threatened
by Kersi Regelous
Urban streams are among the
most threatened waterways in
British Columbia, according to an
annual list of the province's top
ten most endangered rivers.  .
The list, released by the
Outdoor Recreation Council of BC,
said that problems associated
with urban development such as
culverting, pollution and habitat
loss are the main reason for the
"The priority
has been on growth
and urban development
Streams were looked upon
as an obstacle to be
mark angelo
Outdoor recreation
Council of BC
Many of the streams used by
salmon species for spawning and
rearing have been lost due to silt
from construction sites and the
removal of streamside vegetation.
Others have been paved over or
redirected through underground
"Streams face a lot of threats,"
said Mark Angelo, vice-chair ofthe
Council. "As Vancouver has developed over the last century, the priority has been on growth and
urban development. Streams
were looked upon as an obstacle
to be overcome."
As a result, the city of
Vancouver has few natural
streams left. Steps, however, are
being taken to bring back some of
the streams that have been covered over, such as Tatlow Creek on
Point Grey and Hastings Creek by
the PNE grounds.
"I think that the rest of
the Lower Mainland can
learn from what has happened  in Vancouver,"
Angelo told The Ubyssey.
"It's important that we protect the rivers that we do
have, but we must also look for
new ways to restore waterways
that have been lost."
In its recent throne speech,
British Columbia's provincial
government introduced plans to
form Fisheries Renewal BC, a
project devoted to protecting the
province's fish resources. Angelo
said he was encouraged by the
initiative, but wants to ensure
that it is progressive and effective; he also wants to see the
urban stream issue addressed. ♦
Driven by the sun
by Noelle Ibrahim
In the basement of the Hennings
building, physics student Andrew
Booth is carving shiny metal into
conical shapes with a mysterious
greasy apparatus.
"Engineers do all sorts of
things," he says. "People think
we're just pencil pushers but it's
not true."
When he assembles the assorted metal components I see the creation resembles a wheel—a very
lightweight wheel, to be specific.
The wheel belongs to the first
Canadian collegiate solar car team
west of Ontario. Last September,
the project began under the management of Andrew Booth and
Matthew van Wollen, two fifth
year Engineering Physics students. UBC's team consists of
about 20 engineering students,
but Booth says this size is still relatively small—some collegiate
teams can have several hundred
The team's car will compete in
a four day racing tour from
London, Ontario to Montreal this
May. Victory requires an efficient
car and a sound driving strategy.
According to Booth, the purpose of the project is not so much
to apply solar technology to everyday   automobiles,   which   may
never be possible due to surface
area constraints, but "to show that
solar power can perform."
Driving strategy includes a tac- ■
tical   computer,   a  light-weight
aerodynamic build and low loss
engine, all of which ensure effi
What's the big deal about minimising energy loss? Well, it's
hard to win a race when your vehicle is supplied with the power of a
household hairdryer—all cars in
the race use clean, renewable
solar power.
UBC's car uses photovoltaic
cells, like the ones in your solar-
powered calculator. An array of
cells gathers energy from sunlight, and an eight square metre
surface area is required to gather
an adequate amount of energy.
This is the primary limitation of
the vehicle.
Another constraint facing the
design team is the universal
limit—budget. Although extensive
fundraising has been done both on
and off campus, Booth says about
$40,000 more is needed before
the end of May. Students can help
out through the Adopt-a-Cell pro
gram by donating $10—the
approximate cost of one ofthe 750
cells used to power the car—and
you can adopt, as your special cell,
any one from the car's array. ♦
AIDS Vancouver
Tickets on sale Marcin7
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One step Beyond
Mudgirl 14 THE UBYSSEY, APRIL 2, 1997
APRIL 2, 1997 • volume 78 issue 44
Editorial Board
Coordinating Editor
Scot! Hayward
Ian Gunn and Sarah O'Donnell
Peter T. Chattaway
Wolf Depner
Federico Araya Barahona
Richard Lam
Joe Clark
rhe Ubyssey is the official student newspaper of the University of British Columbia. It
is published every Tuesday and Friday by
the Ubyssey Publications Society.
We are an autonomous, democratically run
student organisation, and all students are
encouraged to participate.
Editorials are chosen and written by the
Ubyssey staff. They are the expressed opinion of the staff, and do not necessarily
reflect the views of The Ubyssey
Publications Society or the University of
British Columbia.
The Ubyssey is a founding member of
Canadian University Press (CUP) and firmly
adheres to CUP's guiding principles.
Al! editorial content appearing in The
Ubyssey is the property of The Ubyssey
Publications Society. Stories, opinions, photographs and artwork contained herein
(annot be reproduced without the
expressed, written permission of The
Ubyssey Publications Society.
Letters to the editor must be under
300 words. Please include your phone
number, student number and signature
(not for publication) as well as your year
and faculty with all submissions. ID will be
checked when submissions are dropped off
at the editorial office of The Ubyssey. otherwise verification will be done by phone.
"Perspectives" are opinion pieces over 300
words but under 750 words and are run
according to space.
"Freestyles" are opinion pieces written by Ubyssey staff members. Priority
will be given to letters and perspectives over freestyles unless the latter is
time senstitive. Opinion pieces will not
be run until the identity of the writer has
been verified
Editorial Office
Room 241K, Student Union Building,
6138 Student Union Boulevard,
Vancouver, BC. V6T 1Z1
tel: (604) 822-2301  fax:822-9279
Business Office
Room 245, Student Union Building
advertising: (604) 822-1654
business office: (604) 822-6681
Business Manager
Fernie Pereira
Advertising Manager
Jarnes Rowan
The shooting of Joe Clark s music video
way about to commence. The penultimate
rork star had enlisted the talents of Sarah
Galashan and Scott Hayward as directors.
Charie Cho was onset as the worry-set pro
durer and Peter T Chattaway was the art
director who kept insisting on an ever pre
sent Christian/Star Wars motif. "Luke is a
Jesus Christ figure'!", he insisted as Wolf
Depner interjected that the Ewoks were sim
ply the spawn of Satan. Sarah O'Donnell and
Ian Gunn had been strung up in the air as the
inevitable sacrifices, while Federico
Barahona rouldn t understand the appeal of
any of it Richard Lam was at tlie camera
awaiting the commands of Douglas Quan,
the bitchy third AD, who was awaiting the
commands of Keri Regelous, the bitchy second AD, who was awaiting the commands of
Jo Ann Chiu, the bitchy first AD, who was out
at the moment Richelle Rae. the PA, was sim
ply bored out of her mind while Andy
Barham lectured her, and Paul Kamon and
Pauio Santos Javier drank too much coffee.
Robin Yeatman was nowhere to be seen
while Harper Haddin was too busy chasing
after the handsome actors. Susan O'Donnell
was new on the set and a bit bewildered,
while Noelle Ibrahim, Trina Hamilton, and
Scotl Pegg were just glad to be extras on set
Wesley Chiang was walking out the door,
wbenjohn Zaozirny arrived and decided that
it was ail just a bit too much.
KICKING CORPORATE BUTT: UBC Culture Jammers symbolically portray
the plight of child labourers in countries where corporations take
advantage of cheap labour.
Children working for Nike in South East Asia make less than a
dollar a day, while Michael Jordan has a multi-million dollar contract
with the same company.
The protest was part of the week-long Corporate Butt-Kick Week
put on by the group, richard lam photo
Canada Post Publications bales Agreement Numbet 0732141
Crippled Statue,
a humiliation
I am unsure as to whom I should
address this letter, but I would
just like to say how outraged and
horrified I am at the current sight
of the Goddess of Democracy outside the Student Union Building.
As a proud UBC student of the
local Chinese community, I am
appalled that someone could
mutilate the statue in such a fashion. Nothing is sacred anymore.
I am tempted to believe that
the same people who label the
statue the "Goddess of Hypocrisy"
are responsible for this act of vandalism. Perhaps I am wrong and
I am more than willing to stand
corrected, but as it stands, those
people are the only people
inclined to make a mockery ofthe
student sacrifices of Tiananmen
Square in 1989. Notwithstanding
the mutilation of the statue, I just
simply do not understand the
logic of branding the goddess
"hypocritical" if she represented
hope and justice to the students
in Beijing. By demeaning her, you
are demeaning everybody who
stands for democratic rights and I
think I speak for many students
when I say that such a "label" is
just plain insulting. The goddess
has been humiliated and shamed
by Canadian students supposedly
believing in identical principles.
Perhaps I need not be so proud of
being a UBC student anymore.
Each day as I get off the bus, I
am greeted by a crippled statue
and reminded of her humiliation.
I have experienced this for over a
month now and I hope that this
short letter, although late, will
somehow help to expedite her
repair and her restoration to her
rightful place of honour.
Sara Wong
4th Yr. .Arts
University "sucking
corporate dick"
Victoria Scott's Perspective piece
(March 24, 1997) was totally brilliant. It glowed with passion and
energy, and everything she said
was so right.
To the Strangways and Pipers
of the world, university is indeed
'all about sucking corporate dick';
the humanities exist, not for the
enlightenment and development
of students' minds, but for providing job skills. Young people
who want an education and who
don't have rich parents have to
live in damp basement suites, eat
inadequate diets, and ride on BC
Transit's 'garlic wagons'. And I'm
glad I'm not the only one who
finds the new Koerner library
'crazy (and) fucked up'.
I've been on campus in one
capacity or another since the
early 1980's, and I've seen UBC's
administration make these problems worse and worse for the
average student. One thing your
readers might like to do is join
the SEC (the Student Environmental Center). Despite its AMS
affiliation, this group has been
active in protesting the erosion of
UBC's former ideals. Perhaps Ms.
Scott would consider taking her
energy and idealism to SEC headquarters in the SUB.
J. Boucher
a^rts, Class of 1988
Where is the Kiwi
I recently perused your 'Racy
Issue'. The tone was what one
has come to expect from your
newspaper. However, it inadver
tently served an important purpose by illustrating the schizophrenia that afflicts many writers
on multiculturalism. Those articles that were critical of the cur
rent state of cultural relations in
Canada (eg. 'When the Mainstream Says No' etc.) implicitly or
explicitly suggest the existence of
an Anglo-Saxon mainstream
majority which (apparently
because it is influenced by a
biased press) is closed-minded
and responsible for all manner of
inequality. This is in sharp contrast to such articles as 'I want to
study literature,   not  Britain's
which suggest that Canada is
presently very multi-cultural and
universities have simply failed to
acknowledge an actual societal
shift away from what might be
termed 'Anglo-Saxonism.'
This mirrors a split in the larger multi-cultural debate, in which
writers frequently wish to play to
both sides. They cannot decide if
more is to be gained by emphasising and vilifying the 'mainstream', or by suggesting that a
European mainstream no longer
exists. Thus, these incompatible
views exist side-by-side unchallenged.      '
Two further points present
themselves. First, it was very cunning of you to advertise an article
as 'what they didn't teach you in
History 12'. Canadian history, of
course, is taught in Grades 9-11.
Incidentally, I was taught about
many of those events. Second, I
was interested to hear that an
English student is advocating
reducing the amount of time
given to Shakespeare, Milton, and
Chaucer. She quotes 90 percent
as the amount of an English
degree dedicated to those authors.
If this is so, it is simply because
90 precent of English literature is
a footnote to these authors of true
and pervasive genius. Please tell
me when you find a post-colonial
New Zealand Shakespeare.
Matthew Mosca
1st year Arts op/fed
What happened to the environment?
'We are here to document the
end of the world." Thus spake
Carl Chaplin, a hardnosed
reporter from a BBC news crew
in Amman, Jordan shortly after
Saddam Hussein's troops evacuated Kuwait.
Environmentalist, painter and
former biologist turned peace
activist during the  Gulf War,
Chaplin went to the Gulf
with   Randy   Thomas,
founder  of the  Save
Georgia Strait Alliance
a year earlier. Like
Greenpeace,        they
made a doomed bid to
stop  a  pointless  war
before anyone got killed.
Fat chance. The vast roulette
wheel of western democracy was
turning, and the spin doctors of
our declining civilization had
thoroughly demonised Iraq for
the benefit of our otherwise somnolent masses. The Soviet Union
had imploded and America
needed a new enemy.
The departing Iraqis made
good on Saddam's promise to
set fire to the entire Kuwaiti oil
fields—practically the whole
country—and the dense, choking
smoke was blowing all the way to
the foothills of the Himalayas in
Nepal, several thousand kilometers away. On TV, it did indeed
look like the BBC crew was documenting Armageddon. When
Red Adair, legendary oil well
firefighter from Texas, saw the
scope of the disaster and concluded that there was no way we
could put the fire out—it was just
too damned big.
Up until the Gulf War, the
state of our deteriorating environment had been flavour of the
month, issue-wise, for almost two
years, following a couple of local
oil spills and a severe drought in
the great North American
Wheatbelt in 1989. There's nothing like having a mess in one's
own backyard to stir up local
interest in these things.
Jeff Gibbs started the
Environmental Youth Alliance in
1990 in response to the environmental crisis and wholesale pub-
he interest in it There was so
much interest among high
school students that the EYA
took off like a rocket, holding its
first big conference at Kitsilano
High in 1990.
In the late 1980s we began to
hear about a hole in the ozone
layer over the Antarctic. By 1990,
not only was that hole providing
environmentalists and scientists
with a very real 'end-of-the-
world' scenario, but similar
holes were discovered over the
northern hemisphere. Overnight
we were being advised to stay out
of the sun, wear dark sunglasses
and protective clothing, and
heavy duty sunblock.
I'd seen it before in Munich
in 1986. After the nuclear power
plant caught fire in Chernobyl,
Ukraine, it began vomiting
clouds of radioactive debris into
the upper stratosphere's wind-
belts and spreading into Europe.
We'd just had some of the
hottest years on record and sud
denly everybody began to take
Global Warming seriously—the
five hottest global temperatures
since we started keeping records
occurred between 1987 and
During this entertaining
event, we were advised to stay
inside with windows and doors
tightly sealed (despite soaring late
Spring temperatures), to remove
all dothing and shower immediately on returning home, and
thoroughly wash or or discard
our clothes. We were also
advised not to eat fresh leafy
foods or drink fresh milk, and
to take iodine supplements to
prevent thyroid cancer.
Radiation warning signs went
up on children's sandboxes and
everybody was advised to stay off
the grass for the next 30 years.
Arcane scientific terms like
Bequerel (a measurement of
radiation) entered the lexicon
of the vernacular. Farmers in
some districts of Sweden were
advised to forget about farming for a while—a long while as
it turned out—since Cesium
137 has a halflife of about 30
years. And in the best spirit of
Free Enterprise, the milk
Europeans were being advised
not to drink was rapidly being
converted to powdered milk to
sell to Third World countries
desperate to feed their citizens.
How well I recollect the
experts telling us the fire in
Chernobyl could not be put
out. Surprisingly enough it
was, with a lot of help from
Western Europeans desperate
to see an end to the two-
pronged cloud of invisible
particles raining down on
them from the clear skies
The fires in the Gulf were
put out, largely by Canadian
teams who either hadn't
heard Red Adair's remarks, or
had failed to understand them
properly. The mess is still
waiting to be cleaned up but
the sorry state of our beleaguered environment has fallen right off the political and
social agenda. Without a
major crisis, it's hard to focus
our attentions on something
as nebulous as impending
environmental doom.
For those earnest high
school students who once
joined the EYA and are now
about to graduate from university, the fact that they can't
find jobs after graduation
impresses them with a
greater sense of urgency than
ozone holes, climate change,
the decline of once bottomless
fisheries, the loss of farmlands, the millions of tons of
long-lived nuclear and chemical waste, the unparalleled
loss of species due to human
influenced extinctions, deforestation and uncontrolled
development, genetic engineering, decertification, overpopulation, and all the rest of
the environmental problems
we've created for ourselves.
There are many social and
economic crises facing us as
we approach the millenium,
most of them brought about by
the globalization of capital and
the freeing up of international
markets. And they all seem
equally threatening and ominous. But they will all seem pretty academic if we don't tackle the
environmental problems confronting us. Having a high paying
job will mean absolutely nothing
if there's no food to buy with the
money we're earning. As a
species, we do face extinction,
not in some nebulous netherland
postulated for a far distant future
in some esoteric Darwinian evolutionary space, but in our own
immediate future.
We may not be as fundamentally aware of it as we are of other
crises confronting us, like unemployment, poverty and homeless-
ness, but the environmental crisis is upon us. We may survive
this century. Our children may
not survive the next one.
—Andy Barham
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Student Bush Nights!
...Exclusive savings of 50% off forvancouver
Canucks & Grizzlies games
Vancouver Canucks
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Wednesday, April 9th @ 7:00 pm
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Sunday, April 6th • 12:00 noon
vs. Portland Trait Blazers
Thursday, April 17th • 7:00 pm
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WIpril 6th, come and cheer on Rookie oi the Year
candidate Shareef Abdur-Rahim. Join in the excitement as he performs in front of a spirited
group from his alma mater... the UC Berkeley Pep Rally band! After the game, see Michael W Jordan
- -    _ in Space Jam on the Orcai/ision screen., for free! ^^
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lor games listed on this llyer Offer cannot be combined with any other promotion Voting for a better
learning environment
April 9th- 16
The Student Technology Fee Question
Do you support the implementation
of a student technology fee of $90
per year for a full-time student?
The University is asking all students to help it create a UBC learning environment where all students have good access to
the information technology tools and resources they need to succeed in today's world of digital media and information. On
April 9th-16th UBC is holding a referendum on the proposed Student Technology Fee (STF). If you have waited in line to get
into our crowded computer labs, gotten busy signals while trying to dial-in, tried to get help from the desperately overworked staff on the help desk, or searched the campus in vain for up-to-date computers to access the web or play multimedia CD-ROMS, this fee is for you. All funds would go to projects that directly benefit students. The choice of projects
would be made by a committee on which students would have a voting majority and the committee would have representatives from every faculty to make sure that students from all parts of the university would benefit. Here are short answers
to the obvious questions. Additional information appears below and at www.ubc.ca. Send any additional questions you have
to stf@unixg.ubc.ca. I REALLY hope you'll come out and vote!
HOW much WOUld I have to payl        $90 per year, which works out to $7.50 per month. What a deal!
How much money would this fee raise and
who would decide how it is spent!
What will I get!
Why doesn't the University
pay for this itself!
Why doesn't the University get
someone else to pay for this!
Who chose $90 as the amount
and were students consulted!
Why have a referendum!
How do I vote!
Can I vote no!
Will this fee be tax-deductible!
How much money would this fee raise and who decides how it is spent? It will raise $2.7 million/year which will be allocated by a committee on which students have a voting majority.
Projects will likely include: new and enhanced computer labs, expanded dial-in access, better computer training and assistance for students, docking stations for laptops, classroom IT-instruction equipment and special prices for purchases of computer hardware and software.
UBC is already putting several million a year into IT access for students but it's not enough. With the budget cuts UBC is
facing there is no way to allocate any further funds. STF funds will augment, not replace, current University expenditures on
information technology support for students.
UBC is constantly working with industry and government to get funds to support student IT access, but what we get isn't
enough. We'll do everything we can to leverage the funds we get from this fee to bring in still more from industry and government.
The Student Information Technology Access Committee prepared the fee proposal and half its members are students nominated by the AMS and GSS.The originally proposed amount ($150) was reduced as a result of student input.The committee's recommendation was approved by the UBC Advisory Committee on Information Technology (ACIT), and proposed to
the UBC Board Governors by me (Maria Klawe).
The Board of Governors wants to know that you think this is worth doing before it approves the fee. (I sure hope you do!).
Phone (822-VOTE) any time between April 9 and April 16.
Yup! Just phone (822-VOTE) any time between April 9 and April 16. But I sure hope you vote yes!
Yes.The federal government recently announced that such fees are deductible.
Maria Klawe,VP Student and Academic Services
To improve information technology for all UBC
faculty, students and staff, ACIT asked its subcommittee, the Student Information Access
Committee (SITAC) to consider instituting a
student technology fee at UBC. SITAC is composed of ten undergraduate and graduate students and ten faculty/staff members from different parts of the University. It was very difficult,
especially for the student members, to accept
the idea of ANY fee increase, but after lengthy
discussions, an assessment of the state of student computing on campus and an investigation
of experiences at other universities, SITAC supported (14 in favour, one abstention) the STF
proposal that went forward to the Board.
Principles that SITAC members felt crucial to their support for an STF included:
• STF funds will augment, not replace, current UBC
expenditures on information technology support
for students;
• STF funds will be specifically dedicated to projects that will benefit UBC students;
• the allocation of STF funds will be made by a
committee having a voting majority of students;
• genera/ information technology infrastructure projects will not be supported by STF revenue except
where these projects are required by a specific
STF-funded initiative;
• a review committee having at least 50% student
members will be established in the third year of
the program to undertake a rigorous review ofthe
" and, that the fee will be universal, charged to all
students (graduate and undergraduate) both full-
and part-time.
In addition to student input from SITAC, the
idea of the proposed student technology fee
was the subject of extensive discussion at the
January 15th "Your UBC Forum" on student
fees. It has also been discussed extensively by
both the Alma Mater Society and the Graduate
Student Society and in their meetings between
their executives and theVPSAS. In late February
and early March four separate forums were held
to discuss the STF and other fee increases and
an e-mail address <stf@interchange.ubc.ca>
was established to which students could send
questions about the fees.
How was the $90 fee determined?
Based on the experience of other universities of
similar size and facing similar problems to UBC,
an STF of $ 150 per year was originally suggested. Subsequent discussions amongst SITAC
members suggested that the fee be set below
$100. In discussing the size of the STF, SITAC
members had to weigh carefully the ability of
students to pay against the decreased services
that would be provided by a reduced fee. It was
subsequently decided to establish the fee at
$90. Because the $90 covers a full year, it actually works out to only $7.50 per month.The proposed fee would generate an annual fund of
approximately $2.7 million which will be put
toward student information technology initia-
What are the consequences of not adopting an STF?
Given the Universityis current financial situation, the only alternative to establishing an STF
is to maintain expenditures on information technology at current levels and force students to
deal with the resulting problems individually and
simply purchase computer-based services as
their personal resources permit. This will promote inequities in access for students at the
University. In addition, this approach will result in
delays in effective use of IT in the curriculum
until such a time as students have provided
themselves with the necessary resources.
Moreover, as the use of IT in courses grows, students will have to endure longer lines to get into
inadequate computing labs, more difficulties in
dialing in to the UBC network and increasingly
inadequate computer training for students.


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