The redistricting war continues.

With a flood of media attention, demonstrations, and lawsuits, many Houstonians are still in the dark about redistricting means, Hispanic activists, led by attorney Frumencio Reyes, have filed a lawsuit calling for the abolition of the current Houston City Council makeup.

Currently, the city has nine single member districts and five at-large positions. The suit wants 16 single member district positions.

The current system, activists argue, is discriminatory against Hispanics, as votes for Hispanic candidates are negated in predominantly Anglo distiricts.

A decision against redistricting the city is on appeal in the Fifty Circuit Court of Appeals with a decision expected soon. Still, opinions are strong on redistricting.

Judge Al Leal, of the Ninth Harris County Criminal Court 9, has penned commentaries against redistricting. Leal said the issue is one of Hispanic leadership interpreting the political landscape without the public interest in mind.

"The Hispanic leadership fails to recoginze that there are lots of ways to elect Hispanics to office," he said. "Fielding competent and qualified candidates is one way to do it."

Leal dismissed charges of racism in elections as "traditional excuses."

"All people want to support those that are going to help them and be more responsive to their needs," he said. "People are fair; they all ant better government , lower taxes and better service and they'll elect those people to do the job."

The current plan is more valuable to candidates because it gives blacks and Hispanics representation and making them viable opponents for mayor.

"In addition, the current setup allows people to be able to go to other council members if they're having trouble," Leal said. "With 16-1, you have only one council member.

"This past year, we've made a turn in politics, a classic example of what I think we'll be running for public office and nothing precludes a gifted black or Hispanic candidate from winning office."

However, Frank Alvarez, one of the attorneys working with Reyes on the case, said Leal's assessments are overly idealistic.

"Redistricting gives Houstonians the opportunity to elect someone who will represent their areas' interest, regardless of race," Alvarez said. "Judge Leal's opinions are as they are because he has vested interest in maintaining the status quo, and he wraps himself in a flag to boot."

Alvarez maintained that should city redistricting pass, the county would be next.

"Judge Leal is worried about that," he said. "He is so out-of-sync with the Hispanic community that he may find himself in trouble the next time he runs. I hope he does.

"As far as I'm concerned, Judge Leal is so distanced from the Hispanic community that he has absolutely no credibility to say what is in our interests," Alvarez added.

Victories like those of Gracie Saenz, who defeated incumbent Beverley Clark last year to become the first Hispanic elected to an at-large City Council seat, Alvarez dismissed as chance.

"Gracie was running against a weak candidate and just barely got into the runoff," he said. "Had another Hispanic been running, she would have never made it. White voters were choosing the lesser of two evils."

Counter to Leal, Alvarez said redistricting gives a more representative voice to all communities.

"16-1 is very reasonable and also gives people a chance to attain public office," he said. "Blacks have the chance to elect five council members; Hispanics can elect four or even five.

"We've told the city that we won't touch the past election result, but bring the new plan in for 1993. But the city said no," Alvarez said. "The mayor (Bob Lanier) supports us, but what is ironic is that, if the court makes its decision in our favor, most to the current council will be booted out ant we'll need a new election."

Caught in the crossfire is Gracie Saenz. Saenz, who had been reported to support the 16-1 proposal, held a press conference soon after her election, voicing neutrality on the issue. Her announcement brought a maelstrom of response from Hispanic activists.

Senior aide for Saenz's office and campaign manager Mary Leal said Saenz's previous and current positions have been twisted by the media.

"Really her position hasn't changed since the very beginning of the campaign," Ms. Leal said. "She is not opposing the ideal and will do what the people want. However, she's bound by the city charter."

Ms. Leal admitted that she knew of "at the most, two occasions" when Saenz told people that she "had no problems" with 16-1.

"She still doesn't have a problem with 16-1, but wants the people to decide," she added.

Saenz was out of town and unavailable for comment.








Students and professors are fed up with leaky ceilings and poor ventilation in the Art and Engineering Annex building.

Ceramics Professor Huey Beckham said the building's inadequate ventilation is one of its most pressing problems.

"All of the windows are sealed," he said. "This make it very hard to ventilate and get rid of some of the toxic fumes."

The situation has been so unbearable, Beckham said, that he and his students have had to chip away areas around the window panes to allow for speedier dissipation of the fumes.

Deborah McNulty, a senior majoring in ceramics, equally upset by the building's condition, particularly the leaking roof. "The roofs leak and many graduate students lost work last semester because of it," she said. "For a graduate student to lose a piece they've been working on all semester is a substantial loss."

Beckham said the leaking roof is a problem throughout the entire building. "It leaks down the hall and over in the graduate area," he said.

Angela Patton, associate chair of the art department, said that while conditions are not optimal, the Art Annex is not endangering the health of students using the facility.

Patton said a May 1991 "air monitoring and safety survey" yielded favorable results. "There wasn't anything, according to the standards that were set for quality of air, that was problematic," she said.

McNulty denies that student and professors using the Art Annex are complaining without reason. "Every department is going to say they're under-funded, but I'd like to see and other department come here and try to work," she said.

Jacobs acknowledges that the best solution for the Art Annex would be to tear down the existing structure and rebuild from scratch.

"Every time I have an opportunity to put that in front of the higher administration, I do. I think that the administration, and beyond, certainly is aware of the fact that the art department has very particular kinds of needs," he said.

Patton maintains that the building has help up as well as it can under the circumstances.

"That building was never meant to house an art department, which is the biggest issue, " she said. "It wasn't designed as an art building."

The Art Annex, which was built in the 1940's housed military tanks during World War II.

Jacobs believes the building is no different that many others on campus. "It should be noted, just for fairness, the ARA is a building in serious disrepair, "








Homosexuals' rights organizations on campus and around the country are gearing up to fight the banning of gays and lesbians from joining the armed forces and collegiate ROTC programs.

Lt. Col. Robert Shaffer, head of the UH-ROTC program, said university policy does not allow activities occurring on campus to discriminate against students unless the law states otherwise.

"ROTC is in compliance with the current Department of Defense policy that homosexuality is incompatible with military service." Shaffer said. "This is an area that is otherwise required by law."

The U.S. Army and the ROTC ban homosexuals form their ranks because "homosexual behavior is inconsistent with maintaining good order and discipline." Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Colin Powell said.

In August 1991, Secretary of Defense Dick Cheney said homosexuals no longer posed a security risk. Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.), a member of the House Budget Committee and a strong supporter of homosexual rights, asked Powell at the House Budget Committee meeting on Feb. 5 to explain why homosexuals are still restricted from entered the military.

"It is difficult in a military setting where there is no privacy, where you don't get choice of association, where you don't get choice of association, where you don't get choice of where you live." Powell said, "to introduce a group of individuals who are proud, brave, loyal, good Americans, but who favor a homosexual lifestyle, and put them in with heterosexuals who would prefer not to have somebody of the same sex find them sexually attractive and ask them to share the most private facilities together."

Frank said he does not believe the military can continue to rationalize its position on homosexuals.

"They have a policy in search of a justification," Frank said. "I'm not satisfied. There aren't any good reasons for the policy."

The ROTC must also follow this policy since the Army dictates ROTC procedures.

Using taxpayers' money to find the ROTC and keeping homosexuals out is "ridiculous. It's forcing colleges to restrict access to their own students," Frank said.

Any gay or lesbian who is reasonable, well-behaved and intelligent should be allowed to serve in the armed service, Frank said.

Students who decide to pursue an Army career must sign a contract in the beginning of their junior year. The contract bans homosexuality, which can be construed as a breach of that contract.

UH-ROTC Advent Sgt. Tommy Armour said anyone in the military found to be homosexual will be automatically discharged, and they may have to repay any money earned depending on the results of a military board investigation.

Shaffer said he has never encountered this type of contractual problem since his arrival at UH in 1989.

Law or not, some students on campus do not feel the Defense Department policy is fair.

Troy Christiensen, past president of the now-defunct Oppression Under Target, a gay political group, said sexuality should not be an issue in the military. "ROTC doesn't have any place on campus if it's going to go against the non-discrimination policy the administration set in place."

Staff Sgt. Roy Gunnels, a third-year ROTC student, had no comment on the policy, by said, "I would have no problem serving with a homosexual man."

The National Organization for Women, which has had a resurgence at UH, plans to mobilize on of their campus studies task forces to see if the UH-ROTC will lift its ban on homosexuals.

Frank San Miguel, president pro tempore of UH's National Organization for Women chapter, said, "We will put student pressure on the university to pressure ROTC to let all students into the ROTC program."

Bruce Williams, a 22-year-old Rice University student, who is enrolled in the UH-ROTC program, disagrees, saying he would not feel comfortable serving alongside a homosexual man.

"I suppose it would be distracting," Williams said. "A lot of things in the Army are set on being organized and (homosexuals) could be disruptive to the functioning of the Army as a whole."

Tracey Brown, a member of the gay rights group Queer Nation, said the group is also planning to place the ROTC policy on its battle agenda.

"Anyone that has any kind of morals would not support (the policy)," Brown said. "I feel Powell is making homosexuals out to be people who can't control their sexual urges. That's ludicrous.

"Due to peoples' religious upbringing, homosexuals are being discriminated against," Brown said.








History professor Amilcar Shabazz will commemorate the 27th anniversary of the assassination of Malcolm X with a speech form 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday in the University Center.

To be delivered in the World Affairs Lounge, Shabazz's talk will focus on the emergence of Malcolm X as a national and international hero.

Shabazz first learned of Malcolm X when he was in junior high school and listened to recordings of his speeches. While attending the University of Texas at Austin, he further researched the leader's ideas.

Now he seeks "to emulate the higher qualities and aspects of his (Malcolm X's) legacy," he said.

"An unswerving commitment to the struggle for freedom, not only for African-Americans, but, ultimately, as a universal endeavor and, also, not to trample on the freedom of other s are perhaps the most important qualities with which I identify (to Malcolm X), " he said.

Leaders such as Jesse Jackson and Martin Luther King Jr. do not represent reality for today's African-American youth, he said.

Therefore, more young people are looking to Malcolm X as a role mode.

"Sensing the gap between the rhetoric and the image of leaders like Jackson and King, this has led them to search for some other role model like Malcolm," he said.

Rap music is a tool used by the youth culture to praise leaders like Malcolm X for their strong leadership and their inexhaustible fight for equality, he said.

"Music groups like Public Enemy use parts of his speeches to say that if you don't play by the rule so the game, a game which has historically ripped you off, then you are too strong. The system will persecute you by putting you on drugs, taking you to jail and even setting you against another brother, so black-on-black crime takes place," he said.

Shabazz believes economic and political problems within the African-American community have led its youth to believe in Malcolm X's commitment of not having to unquestionably accept everything handed out to them, he said.

When reading The Autobiography of Malcolm X, one witnesses the immense ideological changes he experienced, particularly in his views of white people, after he visited Mecca, he said.

"Here is a man who was engaged in a relentless struggle to look at himself seriously, critically and harshly, to question even his most fundamental beliefs," Shabazz said. "He stopped for a moment to say, 'Wait a minute. I need to change." Malcolm was courageous and self possess enough to do this."

Shabazz was a key member in a group who pushed to name a street in Harlem honoring the political figure. His efforts involved gathering supportive signatures.

Shabazz is friends with Yuri Kochiyama, who was present when Malcolm X was assassinated. In pictures taken right after the shots were fired, Kochiyama is the woman wearing dark sunglasses and cradling Malcolm X's head in her arms.

Shabazz also knows Bill Epps, a political activist in Harlem who worked with Malcolm X. Epps helped to publish the first set of speeches which were published after his friends death, Shabazz said.

"All these people have different stories to tell you , but they all say the same thing: that he was just a person struggling hard to living according to his own principles which he believed in until his death," he said.

Shabazz earned his bachelor's degree in economics at UT and hold a masters degree in history from Lamar University. He's working on a Ph.D at UH in southern U.S. history and the history of education.








We're almost six weeks into the semester and it's about that time when the workload of tests and papers really starts piling up in every class.

Thus, it is also that time for diehard procrastinators to find diversions. So, without further procrastination, we present you with this list of interesting events that should serve as suitable excuses for not preparing for nay of next week's assignments or exams.

First on our list is "Literature and Philosophy: An Open Discussion" at 1 p.m. Friday on the third floor of the Roy Cullen Building.

The first session will feature English professor Sam Southwell along with philosophy department members Cynthia Freeland, Sheridan Hough and Justin Leiber of the philosophy department.

The second session at 2 p.m. will feature David Mikics, John McNamara and Adam Zagajewski of the English department.

A fun and affordable event to attend at 8 p.m. Friday is the "Bettison Bash" at Heights Theater, 339 West 19th St.

This is a carnival featuring a variety of events including a bake sale, tarot readings, music and more.

Music will be provided by the Kingfishers, The real,. Sirens of Soul, and Stu Mulligan.

Admission is only $5 and all proceeds go to the medical and living expenses of James Bettison. Bettison, a local artist, contracted spinal meningitis last year, shortly after losing his home and most of his artwork in a filre.

Another event taking place Friday is the "Artwalk," 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. on the Strand in Galveston. It involves opening of 15 Spanish Art exhibits in Galveton's museums.

One exhibit is the pottery of Pablo Piccasso at Artists' Loft and Gallery, 2326 Strand, thrid floor. THis exhibit runs through March 3.

But if you attend this celebration, you might want to get a more complete prespective by attending a slide show on Columbs' allenged discovery of the Americas, sponsored by El Partido Nacional de La Raza Unida and Hijos Del Sol.

The slide presentation will be from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday at 6969 Gulf Freeway, Suite 440. For more information, call 641-0026.

You can also catch a play this weekend. Burn This is appearing weekends ------








"One like to believe in the freedom of music, but the glittering prizes and endless compromises shatter the illusion of integrity."

---Neil Peart

Nearly 20 years old, and forty- something, the indomitable rock dinosaur, Rush, crafted a dazzling concert experience of sound and sight before a sold-out crowd Tuesday in the Summit.

Say what you will about Rush, but the Canadian trio has outlasted its many critics and, admirably, has avoided what few big act bands manage to avoid - compromising its integrity. No small achievement in today's vapid market of top-40 fodder and pandering, style-over-substance commercialism.

A music industry anomaly, Rush has remained steadfast and faithful to drummer/ lyricist Neil Peart's sweeping philosophical insights and bassist/ keyboardist/ vocalist Geddy Lee's and guitarist Alex Lifeson's unique musical arrangements.

At the same time, the band has evolved and innovated with he stylistic trends punctuating modern music since the early '70s, but always retaining the trademark Rush sound, the mechanical fluidity, dramatic time-stop arrangements, Peart's awe inspiring percussion mastery, Lifeson's signet chord virtuosity and Lee's amazing fusion bass- and , of course, his oft-criticized, keening, nasal falsetto.

But Rush still sells a few tickets, as evidenced by the loyal, mostly twenty-something, hoards of hooting fans present Tuesday night.

Once past the opening act, Primus, which was interesting at best, proving, in nothing else, they are quirky and adept musicians, Rush's understated, yet technically-elaborate stage show opened before ecstatic, eager spectators with "Force Ten," form the '87 Hold Your Fire release.

And from the onset, it was apparent the band was honed, loose and in fine form. Every dead spot in the Summit seemed enveloped with suprising clarity of bombast, and even Lee's voice, which doesn't hit the high notes as it once did, was bold and piercing, sounding better than ever.

It was apparent, as the band broke into such crow favorites as "Limelight" and "Freewill," that technology would not serve as a barrier. The performance at once took on a footloose, intimate quality, as if the band, aware of its fond cult following, played right into the amorphous bond between artist and fans with heartfelt, rambunctious sincerity.

Lee frequently addressed the crowd, inciting rapt reactions with his offbeat humor.

Indeed, Rush used its expensive lasers, sound sequences and the rear projection screen, playing ingenious introductory interludes and footage above Peart's astounding percussion station, as and efficient, but not too overbearing, compliment in an altogether-brilliant sonic and visual experience.

Among the show's many highlights, some of the more notable numbers were the title track off the band's latest release, Roll the Bones, Peart's shimmering ode to the walk of life, and "The Big Money," a streamlined, masterful juxtaposition of mechanical music, which catapulted itself into the synaptic recesses of the crowd with powerful verve and ease.

Peart, quite simply, has to be one of the greatest percussionist who has ever lived. His solo was beyond description, leaving one baffled as to how one man could possibly have the power, stamina and inhuman dexterity to generate such sound from his shiny, myriad array of toys and trinkets.

Also worth mention were "Dreamline," from Bones, Peart's wistful, poetic commentary on wanderlust and the dreams of youth and "Xanadu," from A Farewell to Kings, with Lifeson's soaring guitar, wailing with perfect, striking sonority.

The only disappointments were the encore numbers, in which the band teased the audience with a jumbled medley of some of its older, classic tunes, leaving one with a feeling of dissatisfaction.

Nonetheless, for Rush fans, the show was more than worth the price of admission - and, for the truest of fans, the integrity of music still breathes.








The corporate Klansman's grayish-blue eyes shift from right to left. He masks his identity with a navy and ivory, pointed pin-stripe camp while satisfying his voracious appetite with a piece of watermelon. He rips the fruit apart with his hands while a black man, dressed in chef's attire, stands prepared to serve his bigoted customer.

The short film in which these scenes are contained, titled "Corporate Klansman," is being shown next to Gallery 2 in the screening area of the Contemporary Arts Museum.

Bert Long, the artist responsible for the 23 works on display at the museum in addition to a specially commissioned ice sculpture and the film, has assembled and impressive array of accessible works for his first Houston-area, one-man exhibit.

The Gulf War served as an inspiration for the artist as he saw, via television and newspaper reports, the destructiveness of the intense bombing campaign.

"War Window," a work he created in late March 1991, is arresting as a commentary on how both mankind and the environment continued to suffer when the war ended.

He used acrylic paint, charcoal and oil sticks, effectively when painting pastel-colored irises in such hues as lilac, lime green, mauve, fuchsia, yellow, and robin's egg blue.

The eyes are framed by a window, which remains transparent despite the steady downpour of a green sludge created by chemicals and warfare.

"14 1/2 minutes," a work featuring six photocopied portraits of Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein, is slightly reminiscent of Andy Warhol's brand of pop art.

While the war evidently seeped into his conscience, Long also found a wealth of subject matter during his year-long stay as a fellow of the American Academy in Rome.

"Griti," a work featuring a bowl of butter-soaked grits, with the word "Griti" emblazoned (in the colors of Italy's flag) just above the breakfast food, is a humorous take on the bewildered-homesick-American-visiting-unfamiliar-territory theme.

Other works displaying the theme of life in Italy are "Via Roma," "En Vino Veritas" ("In Wine Lies the Truth"), and "An American Artist in Rome."

The crucifixion and other spiritual themes such as damnation and salvation are expressed in such provocative works as "All Saints Night," "Lawdy Oh Lawdy I Have Seen the Light," "Crucifixion" and "Rolling Away the Stone."

The latter work, created by using acrylic pain, canvas-covered mahogany board and blood oranges, features a wooden cross that remains stationary as the darkening atmosphere, comprised of such colors as olive green, vermilion and yellow continues spiraling in a state of turmoil.

One of the most striking works in the exhibit is one which will be altered once the show concludes on March 1.

"Roma Ah Roma," a work that consist of a pile of leaves, pine cones, and pine needles, featuring a charcoal wall-drawing of a Volkswagen Beetle and a plaster-of-Paris eye, is a highly accessible work that demonstrates the artist's ability to create provocative, mixed-media works.

Long, who earned his teaching certificate from UCLA in 1975 and previously worked as an executive chef, used himself as a reference in several of his featured works/

The work titled "Bert from Houston, Texas" ("Painter FAAR") "after Frederick of Montefeltro" ("Duke of Urbino") "Homage to Piero della Francesca," features a self portrait of Long instead of Frederick II.

Overall, the exhibit is both stimulating and a rich mine for those who delight in studying the iconography of works. Bursting with color, the colleciton speaks to mankind's suffering and redemption.








Popular UH student William "Wally" Roberts, 27, died Sunday morning at his home.

Roberts had been confined to a wheelchair since a 1978 tobogganing accident in Alaska. He died of respiratory problem related to his spinal cord injury.

A Spanish major, Roberts minored in English and had studied Russian for four years.

His Russian instructor, Harry Walsh, said Roberts' varied interest included poetry and lexicography, and he spent time teaching students at two area high schools.

"Wally was always a delight," Walsh said. :"He was an excellent student, and he was loved by everybody who was with him in classes."

Roberts' hobbies included gardening and photography. He collected postcards, mechanical banks and stereoscopic cards.

"He kind of collected friends," said his mother, Patricia Roberts.

Roberts spent five years at UH. A tree in his honor will be planted at Lynn Eusan Park, donations for which will be accepted at Handicapped Student Services.

Roberts is survived by his mother and father, William Lee Roberts, and many relatives. A memorial service is planned for 11 a.m. Friday at the A.D. Bruce Religion Center.








Just one year ago, Americans sat mesmerized in front of their televisions as the Persian Gulf War played in their living rooms.

But according to some journalists who were there, the American publics perception of the war has been less than accurate.

Joseph Galloway, a senior writer at U.S. News & World Report, contrasted Americans' perception with the war's realities during a panel discussion Wednesday at UH.

Galloway and a team of reporters sought out the war's realities through more than 600 post-war interviews with soldiers, world leaders and administration officials, including President George Bush and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Colin Powell.

U.S. News published their findings in the book Triumph Without Victory earlier this month.

Galloway said the perception on the day of the cease-fire was: " We won an astounding victory. The Gulf States and the rest of the world could rest easy. Iraq has been bombed back into the Stone Age, forcibly pacified for years if not decades .... Surely, the overthrow of Saddam Hussein is only a few days away."

"The reality that General Schwarzkopf had planned a 144-hour ground war that encompassed the liberation of Kuwait and the destruction of Saddam Hussein's elite Republican Guard division in southern Iraq.

"That offensive was halted by President Bush prematurely at 100 hours because of faulty intelligence and false public perceptions of the level of destruction.

"Television film of the destruction on the so-called Highway of Death north of Kuwait City had raised the suggestion that t this thing was turning into a turkey shoot, that scores of thousands of Iraqi soldiers had been killed in this war.

"The presidents geo-political thinkers were telling him hat Saudi Arabia and Egypt especially wanted this thing stopped now," Galloway said.

Hence, the American military commanders stood by as nine Republican Guard brigades and 1,200 tanks withdrew north, untouched, Galloway said.

In reality, the Highway of Death would be better be described as the Highway of Dead Toyota. Later estimates of the Iraqi deaths were closer to 10,000 than the 100,000 estimated, he said.

As to the press' role in the war: "The military information bureaucracy was in complete control of where (journalists) would go, when they would go, what they would see and whether the reports of what they saw would ever see the light of day.

"The media coverage would be managed, controlled and massaged more skillfully than ever before," he said.

Under the pool system, only 140 reporters were allowed to cover 550,000 Americans and 200,000 allies. Some of the major battle of the war were fought without a journalist within 50 miles, Galloway said.

But Galloway doesn't blame the military for all of the press's problems.

In what he described as a "stroke of absolutely mean genius," the military put the media themselves in charge of deciding who would be assigned to each of the 15 reporting pools.

"The infighting and bickering were vicious, and we never really recovered from it," he said.

Only a couple of dozen of the reporters that had been sent to cover the war had ever covered military affairs before, and even fewer had covered a war, said Galloway, whole war coverage dates back to the Vietnam War.

:"But perhaps the worst sin was the last sin," Galloway said. The 1,000 correspondents packed up and left town a few days after the cease-fire.

Division commanders in the end begged Galloway's crew to interview their soldiers because there was a story to tell and no one to tell it to.

"In the end, the American public saw more and learned less than in almost any war of this century.

"Who knows? If there had been accurate reporting of the number of casualties on the Highway of Death, maybe the president wouldn't have been spooked into closing the war too soon," Galloway said.

Susan Warren, a UH alumna who was also on the panel, in a Houston Chronicle reported who was stationed in Israel during the Gulf War. While she did not have to deal with restricted access, she suggested that the Israelis concentrated on controlling perceptions.

The other panelist were Garth Jowett, professor of communication, and Jean-Luc Krawczyk, assistant professor of history. The even was hosted by Dr. Fred Schiff, an assistant professor in the journalism department.

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