Campus civil rights leaders fear that if Congress confirms Clarence Thomas to the U.S. Supreme Court, affirmative-action programs might be in jeopardy.

At the National Conference of Black Lawyers in August, minority groups opposed Thomas' confirmation. Black attorneys said Thomas'confirmation would secure an already-solid conservative court, which is more receptive to claims of reverse discrimination.

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and the Women's Legal Defense Fund also opposed Thomas' confirmation.

The two groups cited Thomas' track record as the chair of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and as a U.S. Court of Appeals judge as reasons for not endorsing him.

UH Academic Advisor Alexander Brown said Thomas is not the best choice to fill the seat vacated by Thurgood Marshall.

Thomas' conservative perspectives will propel him to vote for decisions leading to the reduction of minority competitiveness in the job market, Brown said.

"He seems to have forgotten that it was because of affirmative action programs that black folks were able to go to the kind of schools that he attended," he said.

Although Thomas has not vocalized his objections to affirmative action, his unwillingness to support programs that would assist minorities in the workplace is implied, Brown said.

Thomas got to where he is today through the assistance of affirmative-action programs, he said.

Counsel of Ethnic Organizations Director Joel Richards said Thomas has forgotten where he came from.

"It's a reported fact that he received a minority scholarship through an affirmative-action program when he did his undergraduate work," Richards said. "Now having gone to college on an affirmative-action scholarship, he wants to turn around and say he is not in favor of affirmative action.

"I think that is kind of hypocritical," Richards said.

However, there are some minority leaders on campus who support Thomas' nomination.

African-American Studies Assistant Director Morris Graves said the NAACP has done many great things to improve the plight of minorities, but

added that he felt the group had erred in using race as a criteria for job eligibility.

Graves interprets Thomas policies differently than others. Graves said the supreme court nominee does not oppose affirmative action, but objects to programs which might foster job quotas and force employers to chose a job applicant on the basis of color rather than skill.

This situation can be a disadvantage because the individual might not have the skills necessary to move up the ladder and be stuck at a dead-end job, he said.

It is important to distinguish between affirmative action and quotas, Graves said.

"Affirmative action is a guideline to try and ensure that the workplace is reflective of the society at large in term of ethnicity. It doesn't mean that they'll hire a minority because of his or her color. Instead, they'll hire the best person for the job," he said.

Quotas require an employer to hire a specified number of blacks and other minority groups.

Interim Vice President for Student Affairs Elwyn Lee was a schoolmate of Thomas at Yale Law School.

Thomas is basically what he paints himself to be, he said.

"He is upfront and proud of his heritage and background," Lee said.

Lee added that Thomas strongly supports late civil rights leader Malcome X's belief that people should do things for themselves without assistance.

If an individual supports affirmative-action programs then he or she should not support Thomas' nomination, Lee said.








This season, Baylor has its first legitimate shot to reach a bowl game since Cody Carlson led the Bears to the Bluebonnet Bowl championshipship five years ago.

Only it may be the defense, led by tackle Santana Dotson, who will power the Bears to a bowl bid in 1991.

The Bears are returning 18 defensive lettermen, in

cluding seven starters, losing only four starters from last year's Southwest Conference-leading defense.

Along with Dotson, defensive end Robin Jones and linebackers Curtis Hafford, Lee Bruderer and Brian Hand will return to increase the strength of the Bear's defense.

However, one possible weakness in Baylor's defense is its secondary. The Bears lost three starters to graduation, creating a possible vulnerability against strong passing teams.

Another plus for the Bears is the return of nine offensive starters, including a front line that rates among the best in the country.

Returning guards Monte Jones and John Turnpaugh are both candidates for All-American honors and, along with center Scott Baehren, protect the Bear's I-veer offense.

Running the veer offense will be returning sophomore quarterback J.J. Joe. Joe performed well in 1990 after being called on near mid season to run the offense, however a broken hand caused Joe to miss the last two games.

Baylor has experienced depth in the quarterback spot with junior Steve Needham who split playing time with Joe last season.

Baylor graduated its top two tailbacks last year, leaving a considerable hole in that position. Junior David Mims, who carried the ball 64 times for 400 yards last year, will have to step up and play a more extended role in Baylor's offense.

Robert Strait is a strong fullback who scored at least one touchdown in each of Baylor's SWC games last year. His strength, combined with the strength of center Baehren, should provide the Bears with an important short-yardage threat.

Baylor should have an adequate passing game with some depth in the tight end and split end positions.

Split ends Lee Miles, who had 221 yards receiving last year, and Reggie Miller are both fast and capable of making the big play for Baylor.

Returning tight ends Alonzo Pierce and Mike McKenzie combined for 272 receiving yards in 1990.

Baylor also utilizes a tight end/wide receiver position called the X-back.

This position is filled by Melvin Bonner or Steve Stutsman. Stutsman is a blocking threat at 223 pounds, and Bonner was the Bears' second leading receiver last year.

Baylor's kicking game should be fairly strong with senior kicker Jeff Ireland and senior punter Kent Brentham both returning from good seasons in 1990.

If Baylor can score points, they have the potential to vie for an SWC title this year. However, they play both Houston and Texas away from home.

Baylor Head Coach Grant Teaff says the team is optimistic and he feels they can win any game they play.

"I know this team feels like it can compete for the Southwestern Conference championship, and that's what our goal is," Teaff said.









The Students' Association is seeking to fill a vacancy in the student regent position created by the organization last year.

SA members created the advisory non-voting student regent in December 1990. In the spring of 1991 Veena Sardana was elected the first student regent, but left UH to

attend graduate school at the University of Texas at Austin.

"The central idea behind the position is to be able to represent student interests on the board of regents," SA President Michael Berry said. "I think it's important that the regents actually see a student at the meetings who is a symbolic reminder of student interests."

Michael Little, SA's personnel director said the organization is looking for someone who is dedicated to the university and knowledgeable about campus and student interests.

Interested students can submit their applications this week. Berry will nominate a student regent for two-thirds approval by the SA in a future meeting.

Berry said he and other SA members hope the Texas legislature will eventually give student regents voting power.

"Part of the problem is that the Texas legislature failed again this session to create a student regent," Berry said. "You have nine regents already on the board, a student regent with voting power won't make that much of a problem."

Little said having a student regent is the beginning in working toward a voting position on the board.

"If nothing else, we've made a start and are giving the Board a chance to get used to a student regent," Little said.

But Chairman of the UH Board of

Regents Kenneth Lay is opposed to a voting student regent.

"From my standpoint, as a member of the board, we welcome and seek the advice of our consti

tuents," Lay said. "By the same token, I think it's a mistake to start carving up the board into a slot for students, one for alumni and one for faculty. We don't want a vulcanized board."

"I have no problem at all with an advisory student regent position, but we have a lot of constituency to serve," Lay said. "We always welcome the advice and participation of students."

In Utah, a statewide board of regents oversees public universities, and individual universities each have a board of trustees. In 1977, Utah required a student representative for individual trustee boards and the state board of regents.

"I have all the rights and privileges of any other board member, except that I can't vote for or serve as chairman or vice-chairman," said Doug Peterson, the student member of Utah's board of regents.

Peterson, a senior at Weber State University, said the student regent in 1989 provided the swing vote that changed Weber State from a college to a university.

Last year, Peterson said student influence resulted in only a 1 percent increase in student fees at Weber State. In previous years, increases were between 18 and 5 percent.

"It's been very beneficial in the state of Utah," Peterson said. "I'd like to see it happen across the U.S."









At a university where any effort at modernization helps, an attempt to update the campus telephone system may leave residence hall students disgruntled.

A new digital phone system should be in place by December or January, Tom Pennett, UH director of Residential Life and Housing said. This system, by Rolm Co., would replace the Southwestern Bell analog system in use on campus.

While the new system will improve campus telecommunications and data transmission by phone, it will also make the personal answering machines in the residence halls useless, maybe forcing residents to pay a phone fee.

Standard analog telephone equipment won't interface with the new digital system.

"We have always gone with whatever phone system the university is using. We haven't talked about a cost to students yet, but we're looking at providing it without an increase," Pennett said.

In place of resident's answering machines, a new phone-mail system would be available, but only at an additional charge.

The current residence hall phone system features three-way calling, but no direct-dial or long distance services. Residents are encouraged to get a phone card for long-distance service.

The proposed phone system would offer three-way calling, call forwarding and call waiting at additional charges.

Pennett said UH is currently negotiating with Rolm Co. on how to allow residents to contract for their own long-distance service with direct-dialing capability. If long distance is provided, law requires that consumers be given a choice of long-distance companies.

Along with activating the new phone system, residents may have cable television hooked up directly to their rooms for an additional charge.

Director of Telecommunications Gary McCormack said as the copper cable for the new system is put in place, fiber-optic cable will also be added. The cable will be used for a few computer interfaces at first, but McCormack said UH is looking toward the future with a fiber-optic system on campus.

"We're trying to position ourselves so we can move to that system in the future," he said.









Many health centers in the Houston area have recently come under scrutiny and the UH Health Center is no exception.

An informal Daily Cougar opinion poll shows numbers are split equally between students who praise and criticize the center. In general, students complain about the wait, the impersonal feeling of seeing a different doctor each visit and the medical fees.

"One day they were short-handed at the clinic -- it took two hours (to be seen)," said Leslie Harris, a senior majoring in psychology.

Jennifer Noid, a senior majoring in theater arts who is recovering from knee surgery, praised her doctor for his expertise, but complained about a fee for her post-surgical visit.

An equal number of students are happy with the center. Students who look beyond the inconveniences have expressed a devoted sense of appreciation for the health center services.

Many international students have commented on the value of the clinic and how reasonable the service fees are in comparison to medical fees in their native countries.

Gina Perlas, a recently graduated international student, said she thinks the health center fees are very reasonable. She also said she hopes alumni might also be able to use the campus clinic someday.

"It's a security blanket for all international students," Perlas said.

Health center estimates show that from July 1990 to May 1991, 105,261 students used the UH Health Center, which is located on the southeast side of campus.

With thousands of people using the health center, complaints are bound to arise, said Gail Pragger, assistant director of the health center.

"Students should be aware that there are limitations as to the number of students we can see, the number of staff members and the time available," Pragger said.

But for those who do have complaints, there will be a new outlet this fall. Pragger will head a new student group designated specifically to deal with student complaints, which is still in the planning stages.

A student must be currently enrolled at UH or its institutes to use clinic services. A limited number of services are also available to faculty and staff.

All students have the option to purchase the UH Health Insurance Plan when they register for classes each semester. The cost of the plan changes with the season, for the current semester the cost is $188. For the spring and summer, the cost is $260. While insurance for the summer semster alone is $112.

The actual costs of using the health center run: $4 for a scheduled appointment, $7 for the walk-in clinic and $15 for specialty services. In addition, all students pay a mandatory health center fee of $15.

The campus health center is staffed by licensed physicians, registered nurses, licensed vocational nurses, nurse practitioners, medical technologist, registered pharmacists, administrative personnel and student assistants.

Some of the services offered are the primary care medical clinic, nursing care and a pharmacy. Specialty services include the women's clinic, psychiatry services, dermatology, and orthopedics.








Have you ever really listened closely to a Jimi Hendrix solo and tried to figure out how he did that stretch? Have you ever gone to Heights Guitar or Rockin' Robin to see if you could buy whatever neat pedal it was that Stevie Ray Vaughan must have used?

You probably discovered it wasn't a pedal at all or that you yourself couldn't create that sound without setting your Fender on fire. Such is the difference between the masters of the guitar and the mere acolytes -- the ability to find the notes between the frets, that mystical land that blues men talk about, the light that blinds their eyes on stage.

Ian Moore, the wunderkind from Austin, has seen the light. It is difficult not to speak spiritually when talking about his music.

When he and his band, Moment's Notice, stepped out on stage at Fitzgerald's last Friday, I was somewhat skeptical. He looked like someone who walked through Pueblo to People with the wrong idea in mind. In fact, he looked like he had gotten a hair weave. Sort of a Terence Trent D'Arby affair. That comparison didn't really sink in until I heard him sing. But his Fender looked like it had seen some serious damage.

Then I discovered from whence the damage came. The man can play. And sing. Unadulterated passion. Exaltation.

There is a feel of untarnished purity and a sense of absolute reverence Moore exudes during a performance. And as his fingertips ran down the worn frets, I imagined I could see the sawdust fly.

At the tender age of 21, Ian's learned that touch, that way of attacking and bending the strings that no tremolo bar or pedal can duplicate.

Songs like "Paint Me a Blue Sky," a bluesy rendition of "Crossroads" and even a raging version of Mozart's "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" made the show not only a feast for the ears, but for the soul as well.

With Tuesday marking a full year since the death of guitar legend, Stevie Ray Vaughan, it is heartening to know that there is a man performing right now who can burn up the blues with the kind of fever Moore has.

It is exceedingly rare to find an artist of such staggering talent who has not, at a relatively young age, been tainted by the lure of the almighty dollar. But Moore, who has been performing around Texas and the Southwest for the past several years, has thus far been able to avoid the unseemly compromise which sapped the once formidable efforts of the likes of erstwhile blues heroes ZZ Top and the Allman Brothers Band.

Moore is on the frequent gunslingers program here in town and makes regular appearances at your Heights-area venues. Feed your soul.










Tuition. Books. Lab accessories.

These things melt the pocketbook of many students and put fun on hold because of a cash drain. Well, fear no more.

Here are some ideas for the cultivated student short on funds and longing for some stimulation.

For starters, the Houston Ballet will open its season September 5, with Papillon, the story of a shepherd in love with a maiden, and the witch who wants to keep them apart. Student tickets are available on the day of the show for a 25 percent discount with a student I.D. However, seating prices vary throughout the theater, so call 227-ARTS for more information.

If ballet does not appeal to you, check out the laser shows on Fridays and Saturdays at the Museum of Natural Science. Laser Depeche Mode, Laser Rush and Laser Floyd-Dark Side of the Moon have been extended due to demand. Depeche, showing at 7 and 9 p.m., is currently running through Oct. 5. Rush, at 8 and 10 p.m., runs through November 16. Floyd shows at 11 p.m. and runs through Nov. 2.

Tickets are $5 each and can be purchased at the door.

Before attending the laser shows, stop by the Art League of Houston and view their new exibit of works by Richard E. Flur. The show runs Sept. 5-28, free of charge. ALH is open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and is located at 1953 Montrose Blvd.

Closer to home, the Blaffer Gallery (located in the Fine Arts Bldg.) will open its new show The Sigmund Freud Antiquities: Fragments from a Buried Past on Sept. 6. A reception Thursday, Sept. 5 from 7 to 9 p.m. will be open to the public.

Photography buffs should check out the walls of The Contemporary Arts Museum (5216 Montrose Blvd). Its current show, Contemporary Latin American Photographers, features works by Brazilian photograher Sebastiao Salgado Jr., Cuban Raul Corral and many others. The show runs through Oct. 13. Admission is free at the museum, but donations of $2 per adult are accepted.

The Asia Society and Brazos Bookstore are honoring Nien Cheng, author of Life and Death in Shanghi. Cheng will speak about her book based on her personal experiences at Brazos Bookstore, Wednesday, Sept. 4 at 6:30 p.m.

Finally, comics are in the spotlight at the Museum of Fine Arts. Great American Comics: 100 Years of Cartoon Art runs through Nov. 10. The museum is not open on Mondays, so plan accordingly. Tickets are $1.50 at the door with a college I.D. However, on Thursdays admission is free.

That's it for now, but if you have any other suggestions, write them down and drop them off at the Daily Cougar offices in room 151 at the Communications Bldg.









While UH students were gearing up for the new semester, campus police have had their hands full with everything from an aggravated robbery to a rash of stolen property complaints.

In the most serious incident, last Wednesday night a man outside of a local fast-food restaurant was forced at gunpoint to give up his car.

UH Police Department Asst. Chief Frank Cempa said three black males in a light blue Delta 88 pulled up behind Andre Williams, 24, in the Wendy's parking lot at 2803 Cullen St. A suspect identified as a black male about 20 years old pointed a stainless steel 9mm pistol at Williams and told him to get out of his car.

Williams' car is a 1979 Oldsmobile 98.

"Sounds like a parts deal to me," Cempa said.

Sunday afternoon a man showed up in the police impound lot next to the UHPD station and told officers he wanted to pick up his car, which he alleged had run out of gas. When asked to show proof of ownership the man presented an expired car rental contract, Cempa said.

The car was reported stolen by the rental company in May 1991.

Twenty-seven-year-old Hisham Mohammed was charged with auto theft and turned over to the Houston Police Department.

Early Saturday morning, UHPD officers stopped two men who appeared to be driving while intoxicated.

After giving the driver a sobriety test, the officer noticed a gun on the floorboard of the car, Cempa said.

After running a check on the two suspects, officers discovered the driver was a convicted felon. The passenger "graciously admitted to having outstanding warrants," Cempa said.

Clement Moody Thomas, 28, of 3710 Southmore Blvd., will be arraigned Aug. 30, for two felony weapons possession charges.

There were two arrests for criminal trespassing in the Science and Research Building and the Moody Towers.

Six students reported car vandalism in UH parking lots, and one car was stolen.

UHPD also received reports for stolen property such as a video camera from the Heyne Building, a phone and anwering machine, bicycles and someone even used forged copy cards to obtain photo copies in the library.

"So far, no UH students have been charged in any of the thefts," Cempa said.









This season will be a rebuilding year for Texas A&M since only two

offensive starters return from last

year's bowl-winning season.

Nearly two-thirds of the roster is sophomores or younger. Head Coach R.C. Slocum said lack of experience will be a major concern for the Aggies.

"We lost a

great deal of quantity, and quality players off last season's team," he said. "This will be a very young squad, and we'll have to depend on some young people to mature in a hurry and play this season."

A positive for the Aggies is the return of starting quarterback Bucky Richardson. Richardson has led the team to two consecutive bowl games, including a Cotton Bowl win in 1988 for which he was named Most Valuable Player. He also received the same honor in last year's 65-14 rout of Brigham Young University in the Holiday Bowl.

Slocum said Richardson has the ability to make everyone around him a better player. "If I had to pick one player, a true leader, to build the team around it would be Bucky Richardson," Slocum said.

Protecting Richardson will be a problem as All-American center Mike Arthur and four other interior line starters are gone. Offensive lineman John Ellisor is the only other returning offensive starter, leaving a great void to be filled by young players.

The Aggie receiving crew is even less experienced than the front line with sophomore wide receiver Tony Harrison being the only scholarship receiver to have caught a pass in a game.

Slocum said the competition at the receiving positions should be intense.

"The opportunity for playing time is there for the young player who steps forward," he said.

The greatest loss to the Aggies, however, is in the backfield. A&M lost backs Darren Lewis and Robert Wilson who combined for more than 2,500 yards and 25 of A&M's 53 touchdowns last year.

Doug Carter is the only returning fullback with game experience. Carter averaged 5.7 yards a carry last year and led all backs in receiving.

"Carter is one of our better blockers, and he has good hands coming out of the backfield," Slocum said. "He has quick feet with a low center of gravity."

Former backup halfbacks Randy Simmons and Keith McAfee, who averaged 7.4 and 5.1 yards per carry respectively last year, will most likely see a great deal of action this year.

With five returning starters, the Aggie defense is in somewhat better condition than the offense.

It's strength will likely be the secondary with all-american cornerback Kevin Smith, cornerback Derrick Frazier and Safety Chris Crooms all returning starters.

However, the front-line starters are gone, so the Aggies may have some problems defending the run and rushing the passer.

The Aggies are looking for noseguard Pat Henry and defensive end Kevin Tucker to come back from injuries that sidelined them in 1990.

The Aggies will be hurting at the kicking positions, losing placekicker Layne Talbot and punter Sean Wilson.

Placekicker Terry Venetoulias saw some kickoff action last season, but will fight for the job with Parade All-American kicker Keith Waguespack.

Even with the lack of experience, A&M will be a threat to anyone they play, especially within the SWC.

"The Southwest Conference race will be as tough as ever," Slocum said. "The league is pretty balanced from top to bottom, and I would think we will compete," he said.








The current trend of global warming will be put on hold for several years because of the haze in the stratosphere caused by the eruption of Mount Pinatubo in the Philippine Islands, UH professors said.

Jim Benbrook, UH physics department chair and an expert on the greenhouse effect, said there is always a small amount of haze in the stratosphere from

volcanic eruptions and it takes decades to clear.

"The haze from the eruption will cool the atmosphere for a few years, but it won't change things in any dramatic way," Benbrook said.

The June 15 eruption forced the evacuation of 20,000 Americans affiliated with Clark Air Force Base, located just 10 miles east of Mount Pinatubo, and an additional 84,000 Filipinos.

The 4,750-foot Mount Pinatubo on Luzon Island erupted releasing a vast amount of sulfur dioxide gas into the atmosphere.

The volcano's sudden explosion also caused damage estimated by the Philippino government to be more than $100 million when it left the island blanketed with ash.

There will certainly be a slight cooling of portions of the earth if Mount Pinatubo keeps erupting every few years, said Elbert A. King, a professor in the geoscience department.

"The silica-rich volcanoes of Western North America erupt at high temperatures and are far more dangerous than Mount Pinatubo. Mount Pinatubo was a small one," King said.

The sulfur dioxide gas eventually reached the stratosphere, which is located between six to 15 miles above the earth's surface. There the gas combined with water vapor, producing super-cooled droplets of sulfuric acid and water, Alan Robock of the University of Maryland, a meteorologist specializing in volcanoes and climate stated in the New York Times.

These droplets form a haze that reflects and refracts sunlight, causing a cooling of the lower atmosphere. The bulk of the haze will usually dissipate after several years, Benbrook said.

An article in the New York Times reported the warming trend began around 1980 and was interrupted by the eruption of El Chichon volcano in Mexico in 1982.

The haze produced by El Chichon's erruption depressed the global temperature for four years, and the warming trend resumed in 1986, the article said.

The New Tork Times also stated the Mount Pinatubo eruption came at a time when global temperatures have been the highest since people began keeping records more than a century ago.

Scientists said the warming trend is caused by the amount of heat-trapping gases, mostly carbon dioxide, in the atmosphere and they expect the average global temperature to rise from two to nine degrees by the end of the next century. The current global average temperature is just below 60 degrees Farenheit.

Scientists agree that if the average temperatures do reach 68 or 69 degrees Farenheit, the result will be catastrophic damage to the ecological, climatic and agricultural systems.

James E. Hansen, of the Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York, said in a Times article that even with the next few years of cooling from Mount Pinatubo the 1990s will still be warmer than the 1980s because of the continuing greenhouse effect.


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