UC Berkeley Point of View
Which recent event related to the White House is the most troubling?
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berkeley.edu. Answers to previous surveys are available from the Point of View archive.
|'First of all, I am not a citizen so my opinions are probably different.
I think most people would say Katrina, but I am more interested in the
deaths in Iraq. With Katrina, when people look back, they might just say,
'Well, disasters happen.' But the Iraq war will be part of history, and
I think the deaths in Iraq are burned in people's minds. If 2,000 U.S.
soldiers have died in Iraq, just imagine how many native Iraqis have been
killed. And I do believe there are some people who are thinking about that.'
—Bernice Leslie, fourth-year bioengineering major. Hometown: Jakarta, Indonesia
|'All the things you just mentioned are smoke
screens by the liberal media and the left wing of the Democratic
Party. There are some reasonable Democrats, but the party seems
to have been hijacked by MoveOn.org, Michael Moore, and Cindy
Sheehan. The FEMA response to Katrina was no different than
its response to any other catastrophe: you heard the same complaints
after Hurricane Andrew. Valerie Plame [the reason behind Libby's
indictment] wasn't a covert operator; if she was, her husband
Joe Wilson shouldn't have been writing op-eds for the New
York Times. The Harriet Miers nomination — whoever Bush
nominates is going to get a fight, it's a no-win situation.
The 2,000-deaths marker in Iraq? Not to marginalize people
dying, but this number pales in comparison to a single Civil
War battle. Two thousand is a number: you can make a milestone
out of any number you want. If you're committed to an action,
you have to be prepared to take casualties.'
—Richard Ogar, Library Technical Services
|'The response to Hurricane Katrina - I think the government should have done something sooner, taken the warnings more seriously. I haven't been following the Supreme Court nominations, but I've always been against the war in Iraq, so the 2,000 deaths are important to me, too. I really hope that voters will remember these things and show their opinions in the next election.'
—Laura Ibarra, first-year student. Hometown: Fresno, CA
|'Well, they're all important, but none of them seems to be affecting the Bush Administration. In modern politics, it seems like something only affects you if you admit it, and they're not admitting anything. Basically, I think they're all a bunch of crooks. I realize that's an emotional response, but when you get down to it, I think anyone who thinks they deserve that amount of power and gets it, ends up becoming a crook.'
—Andrew Maizel, fourth-year molecular and cell biology major. Hometown: Los Angeles
|'To me, the failed Hurricane Katrina relief effort
is the most important out of all of them. We need to help our
own instead of running off to help other countries. And yes,
I think people will remember Hurricane Katrina when it comes
time to vote.'
—Charlotte Jones, Engineering Research Support Office
|'Hurricane Katrina really exposed this racial dynamic between blacks and whites, this myth of America. Katrina really showed that America is still vulnerable, still really struggling with this issue it was supposedly past. But I don't think any of the fallout will stick. The media does such a great job of moving on to the next thing every week that we all just forget.'
—Marco Iglesias, fourth-year rhetoric major and philosophy minor. Hometown: East Los Angeles
|'I am not really following any of those things. What is important to me is Proposition 73 in the California election next week. [Prop. 73 reads: "Should the California Constitution be amended to require notification of the parent or legal guardian of an unemancipated, pregnant minor at least 48 hours before performing an abortion on the minor?"] I think they should leave the law as it is. If they make it where minors have to tell their parents, those minors will get an abortion somehow anyway, and maybe risk their life to do so.'
—Angelica Fabular, second-year student (intended major: social welfare). Hometown: Los Angeles
|'You mean which is the most significant failure?
It's hard to say. The indictment is probably the most important,
but the response to Katrina is also perceived as a failure of
those that Bush chose to put in positions of responsibility.
As far as what is going to happen — will the indictment shed more
light on the setup for going to war in Iraq and how public opinion was
shaped? — I don't know. It depends a lot on what the Democrats do
—Niklaus Largier, professor, department of German