CANCER RESEARCH UNFAIR TO WOMEN

by Katherine Bui

News Reporter

The cure for breast cancer has been researched using male patients.

In a recent conference hosted by the UH Women's Studies Program, several medical researchers, scholars, political advocates and health care administrators discussed concern over the application of male subjects in medical research of heart disease, AIDS and cancer treatment in women.

The seminar also included a workshop on the politics of women's health care, women and HIV/AIDS, women and mental health, women's access to health care, women and heart disease, and women and sexuality.

Dr. Kathryn Peek, director of the Gross Anatomy Program for the UH College of Optometry, said, "Women and men have different physiological and metabolic profiles. But traditionally, it has been assumed that results of research conducted using men can be extrapolated to women."

"The Women's Health Challenge: Take the Initiative" featured Dr. Vivian Pinn, director of the National Institutes of Health's Office of Research on Women's Health. NIH, which advocates support for women's health issues, is a federally funded program that initiates research on diseases effecting national health.

Pinn also serves as co-director of the Women's Health Initiative research, a 10-year study on heart disease, stroke, cancer, and osteoporosis ailments that inflict women more than 45 years old. The $500 million experiment, which encompasses 10 NIH institutes, will test 150,000 to 250,000 women.

Steve Geissen, from UH's Media Relations, said, "Pinn sits on the most influential position in America's medical research, and we were honored to have her speak at our university.

"It is so important for us to be an active resource in community concerns especially in health issues," Geissen said. He also noted that medical research is moving toward more studies based on women.

"If the scientists doing the research had had the privilege of living in a female body for a number of years, they would have been more inclusive of the female perspective," Peek said.

Besides the Women's Studies Program, the conference was co-sponsored by UH's College of Fine Arts, Humanities and Communication; the University of Texas Health and Science Center at Houston; UH College of Optometry; the Association of Women in Science; and the UH Graduate School of Social Work.

 

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COLLEGE PROGRAM HELPS KIDS IN MATH

by Rhonda Compton

News Reporter

Children who may not normally end up going to college may "Say Yes" to the possibility.

The UH Mexican-American Studies Organization, working with Shell Oil and the National Urban Coalition, are out to help elementary children in science and math with the "Say Yes" program.

JoAnne M. Favors, project director for the N.U.C., said, "Our goal is to educate urban children of color and girls in math, science and technology."

Recently students from Eighth Avenue Elementary spent a Saturday at UH with members from UH MASO who acted as mentors.

MASO members introduced the children to their first day of college and spoke of its benefits along with activities in math and science.

Romero Martinez, president-elect of MASO, said, "I can speak for most minority groups -- they need role models. These children are at an influential age and the program is beneficial to them."

Martinez said the program exposes children to college and shows them they can get there, with help from available scholarships and student loans. He said the children may think back and remember, "I made it through one day, I can make it through one more." Each child was awarded a certificate that stated they had successfully completed their first day of college.

Francisco Blasco, an art teacher at Hogg Middle School and a volunteer for the "Say Yes" program, said, "I volunteered for the program. Math and science were my strong points. I was doing it for free and I still would."

The volunteers receive training in the summer, said Blasco. People from Shell Oil and the N.U.C. come from Washington, D.C., and help with experiments in the program, he added.

Blasco said HISD, Shell Oil and the N.U.C. "give us everything for our lessons. They are very good about providing us with everything we need. We make sure everyone understands and all questions are answered."

"The children are very eager to learn and are interested in what you have to say. I feel satisfied knowing I helped bring a student one step further in their education," Martinez said.

The program brings parents and children together. They meet one Saturday a month from 9 a.m. to noon. The volunteers give the children "things they can try out at home, like kitchen science," said Blasco. "The program puts possibility in them," he said.

 

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FOOTBALL PLAYERS ALLEGE NCAA VIOLATIONS

by Dai Huynh

Daily Cougar Staff

Twelve University of Houston football players claim that last season they regularly practiced more than the maximum number of hours permitted.

According to NCAA regulations, student athletes are limited to a maximum of four hours of practice per day and 20 hours of practice per week. Practice includes training on the field, meetings and required film viewing.

Tracy Good, last year's senior inside receiver, said there were times last season when the team practiced at least eight hours a day.

According to Good, 25-30 hours of practice each week was standard. Some days, players spent four hours on the field and four hours in meetings, which included required viewing of football footage, he added.

"That's all you did -- you ate, slept, drank football," said Good, who is graduating and is no longer on the team. "You barely had enough time to eat or sleep.

"They drove us like cattle. Practice is necessary, but you don't have to go to extremes."

Many players interviewed said they didn't come forward earlier to talk about the amount of time spent practicing because they felt they had too much at stake -- their professional aspirations.

Former offensive guard Jeff Tait said during the 1992 football season head coach John Jenkins made the team practice about six hours a day and more than 20 hours a week.

"He had us practice two weeks straight without giving us a break," the psychology major said. According to NCAA regulations, coaches must allow players at least one day off a week.

Senior inside receiver Freddie Gilbert said, "It seems like I lived my life over there (in the Athletic Department). There was no time to spare."

Players spent too much time practicing and not enough time studying, he added.

Former players Tyler Mucho, Lawrence Mouton, Tim Woods, Stephen Harris, and three current players -- who asked to remain anonymous because they have fears of retaliation -- confirm there were periods last season when the team regularly practiced more than 25 hours.

A former UH football coach, who requested anonymity, said, "With the emphasis placed on winning in athletics, and the pressures put on the coaches to win, you almost force them (coaches) to cheat."

Jenkins refutes the allegations of violating NCAA rules.

"We have never done over 18.5 hours (of practice per week). This includes meetings and practices," he said. "As a matter of fact, I've got written statements and records from all the players indicating that it's well below the 20-hours limit."

The football players claim the program circumvents the NCAA rule by making players sign a waiver stating they practiced less than 20 hours a week.

Usually the day before the game, Good said, everybody is excited about playing, so they signed the waiver in order to play the next day. "And if you don't sign, you don't play," he added.

A football player still on the team spoke on condition of anonominity: "You have to sign it (waiver), or else you won't get your stipend checks. Most players need the money, so they're going to sign it."

Out of 14 players interviewed, only two disputed the allegations about practicing more than 20 hours.

Former linebacker Chris Pezman, a postbaccalaureate in finance who said he is hoping to become a graduate assistant in the Athletic Department, said the team practiced about 15 hours a week and no more than 20 hours.

And nothing would happen if a player didn't sign his waiver, he said. The coaches would just remind him to come by the office and sign it, he added.

UH President James Pickering said the university will conduct an investigation on the allegations made by the players.

"We are committed as an institution to play by the NCAA rules and regulations. We will continue to do that," he said.

NCAA Enforcement Director Mark Jones said other institutions that have violated the number of practice hours allowed were penalized for secondary violations.

When the NCAA investigates and finds universities violating the rules, it may determine that no penalty is warranted or require one or more of such penalties as:

1) Prohibition of the football head coach or other staff members from participating in any off-campus recruiting activities for one year.

2) An institutional fine for each violation, with monetary penalty ranging from $500 to $5,000.

3) A limited reduction in the number of financial aid awards that may be awarded during a specified period.

4) Recertification that the institution's current athletics policies and practices conform to all NCAA regulations.

However, if the institution systematically violated the time limits, the NCAA might consider placing the university on probation, Jones said.

If the NCAA were to investigate, it wouldn't be UH's first time dealing with the agency.

In 1988, former UH football players claimed they received thousands of dollars from then-head coach Bill Yeoman. The NCAA proceeded with an investigation and found UH in violation of NCAA policy. The university was placed on a 3-year probation, which included no bowl games for two years, no television appearances for one year and a loss of 10 scholarships in 1989.

Under NCAA bylaws, there are no set penalties for repeat offender who violate secondary infractions. The Committee of Infraction decides penalties, if any, on a case by case basis. Such violations often do not reach the committee for consideration. If a school reports a minor violation to the NCAA and corrects the problem, the NCAA might not take action.

Interim Athletic Director Billy McGillis was unavailable for comment.

 

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STUDENTS MAY GET VOICE BUT NO VOTE WITH BOARD OF REGENTS

by Ericka Schiche

Daily Cougar Staff

The Texas Senate recently passed Senate Bill 254, which acknowledges the need for students to serve in an advisory capacity on boards of regents.

To allay fears of students who are concerned about the future of higher education institutions, Sen. Jim Turner (D-Crockett) authored the measure, which would let students serve as liaisons to the boards.

Each of the 13 university systems, including the UH System, could have a student representative who actively participates in board of regents matters.

The bill states advisory student liaisons "may not vote on any matter before the governing board; or attend the executive meeting of the governing board."

Gov. Ann Richards -- just as she approves the regents themselves -- would have jurisdiction to select a student liaison for each system.

"Students spend hundreds of dollars each semester on fees set by their board of regents," Turner said.

"Students should be able to voice their opinions at the time when the regents are making such important decisions. The universities of this state exist for the benefit of our students, and student input to the university systems' governing boards is not only important for the students, but will result in better decision-making by regents and administrators like," he said.

The bill, co-sponsored by Sen. Gonzalo Barrientos (D-Austin), makes provisions for the position, which is not compensated, but gives the student liaison "the same rights as a governing board member to voice opinions, to make recommendations, or otherwise to participate in all governing board meetings."

A similar bill, sponsored by House representatives Steve Ogden (R-Bryan) and Sherri Greenberg (D-Austin), also addresses the need for a student liaison.

Much like the student regent positionthe liaison position amplifies the voices of students who might otherwise go unheard and adds another opportunity to represent their respective university communities.

Costs incurred by the student liaison will either be paid by the student holding the position or the students of the member school.

"If the bill still creates a non-voting liaison position, I am in favor of it," said Rhodes. "The Texas Student Association has been trying for 20 years to get it passed. Texas is one of seven states in the nation that does not have student regents of some type that represent the whole system."

Mitch Rhodes, who most recently held the student regent position at UH, said if the house bill passes, the likelihood that the student liaison could vote five or six years down the road will be greater. Jeff Fuller took office, replacing Rhodes, April 1.

 

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BLOOD TRANSFUSIONS ACCOUNT FOR ONLLY 21 CASES OF AIDS

The Gulf coast Regional Blood Center reports that statistics provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that since 1985, when blood banks began testing blood donations for the antibody to the HIV (the virus that causes AIDS) the number of AIDS cases associated with blood transfusion has become extremely small.

In those eight years, only 21 cases of AIDS in the entire United States have been contracted as a result of blood transfusion. There have been some 160 million transfusion in that same period.

Blood Center President Bill T. Teague is pleased with the data. "While we understand with any medical procedure there exists some risk, this information should allay the fears of many regarding the safety of the blood supply. Certainly no one should refuse needed surgery based on such concern."

The Blood Center is responsible for providing voluntarily donated blood and blood components to patients being treated in over 120 health care institutions in a 17-county area in and around Houston.

Of equal importance to those who donate blood or who have been asked to donate at company, church, or group blood drives, is the fact that there has never been a single case of AIDS reported as associated with giving blood. According to James M. Curran, M.D., assistant surgeon general and associate director of HIV/AIDS at CDC, "Blood donors need to be assured that there is no risk of HIV transmission through a blood donation."

 

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THE PRESIDENT SPEAKS

University of Houston President James Pickering will honor UH's Volunteers of the Years today at the Hyatt Regency Houston. Following the awards ceremony, the president will give his 3rd annual "UH Report to the Community."

The report begins at 11:45; community and university members are encouraged to attend.

 

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CAREER CENTER HAS HIGH RATE OF JOB SUCESS

by Brett Lindsay

News Reporter

UH's Career Planning and Placement Center, which boasts a 78 percent success rate, aids students who are interested in finding a job after graduation.

The Career Center also helps students with career decisions, finding jobs while still in school and showing them how to successfully market their skills in the professional world .

"The key is to start early," said David Small, assistant vice president for Student Services.

The 78 percent success rate is based on a survey taken three months after graduation. The survey only counted graduates who were looking for jobs in their major, and who had used the Career Center.

The success rate varied by major. Engineering topped the list with a 92 percent employment rate, while liberal arts majors only had a 25 percent employment rate.

"If I had the resources, I would very much like to do a study on all students who graduate," Small said. "I would like to do a comparison between those who used the center, and those who did not."

Students can also meet with advisors who can help with career decisions. They evaluate a student's aptitude, and show them their strong and weak points. "We teach them how to use the resources that are available to them," Small said.

The center also has a job bank that carries more than 5,500 listings per year and is used by an estimated 20,000 students annually. The network is updated daily with 20 to 30 new listings, Small said. About 450 corporations hold interviews and job fairs through the Career Center.

The center also teaches students interviewing techniques and networking skills and holds resume-writing workshops.

 

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CRIME IN LOCAL AREA

LIMITED, COPS SAY

by Robert L. Arnold

News Reporter

The area around UH known as the Third Ward is rampant with drugs and violence, but to police officers who patrol the area, the problems are containable.

HPD officer Chris Kratz patrols the Third Ward during the night shift. He said the area is one of the worst in Houston, but the crime stays mainly within the neighborhood.

Most of the crimes committed in the ward are drug related, said Kratz. "People get shot, stabbed and robbed because of bad drug deals or because the person is high," he said.

Officers have to be very careful when searching someone they suspect of wrongdoing because a court will throw out an evidence found on a person if the search was unwarranted, Kratz said.

Kratz said he often sees a group of people standing around and has a good feeling at least one of them is guilty of something, but he said an officer cannot search someone just because of a feeling.

An officer can conduct a "Terry Stop," named from the Terry vs. Ohio case. A "Terry Stop" occurs when an officer stops someone and searches them because of another crime the person committed.

Kratz said the most common Terry Stop occurs when a person commits a traffic violation and drugs or weapons are found in the car.

He said it is frustrating to see people who are known to carry weapons or drugs and drive away without being able to do anything.

"To be an officer a person must be extremely observant," he said. "It is very easy to become relaxed because there is so much crime a cop can become numb to the things they see."

Kratz said the amount of crime is large, but it tends to stay within the neighborhood, and the criminals prey more on each other than other people.

"There's a lot of times that we will get calls about a stabbing or a shooting victim and when we arrive on the site we find out that it was fight between ward residents. Even if one or more of the people in a fight are not ward residents, they are people who have been arrested in other parts of Houston," said Kratz.

He said most of the crime takes place north of South Street, away from campus and back into the Third Ward area.

The majority of the robberies occur within the homes and businesses in the Third Ward, said Kratz. Many of the stolen items recovered by the police have been used to purchase drugs.

"We (HPD) rarely have to work with UHPD. The only real problem with the ward affecting the campus is the number of cars being broken into," said Kratz.

Kratz said having the crime contained to one area makes HPD's job easier, because it is easier to remember faces, streets and areas that are more prone to problems than others.

"The amount of crime that occurs in the ward is scary, but if we can keep it contained, then I satisfied with the job I am doing and the job the department is doing," said Kratz.

 

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FUTURE LAWYERS SHARE REAL-LIFE LEGAL WISDOM

by Christine Law

News Reporter

Recently, UH Law Center students taught law to graduating seniors at 15 Houston-area high schools.

The program, titled "Now You Are On Your Own," is one of the few outreach programs of this type in the nation, said Sandra Rider Perdue, UH Director of Communications.

While meeting with the high school students, law students addressed "real world" problems the students may be facing or problems they may encounter once they are on their own, Perdue said. Basic laws that could protect the students' rights in those situations were explained, she said.

Some of the topics discussed included problems that could occur with renting an apartment, debt collection, employment, credit and buying a car.

"Since the kids are about to go out on their own, it is important for them to have an idea of what they can and cannot do," said Karen Trostel, a third-year graduate law student.

"It's amazing to me how very little people know about their rights," Trostel said. "I wanted to make sure that these kids realized they now had the responsibility of adults and that people may take advantage of them."

The program is part of the Law Center's continued effort to use its resources to better the community at large, Perdue said. Its goal is to help the students understand everyday law, and it has been designed to emphasize the importance of knowing legal rights, she said.

The way the law profession is set up, it is not easy for people to understand and to find law that is applicable to their problems, said Marcy Rosenberg, second-year graduate law student.

Aside from helping the high school students, the program also helps law students by getting them interested in public service, Rosenberg said.

In law school, students may be preoccupied about making money after they graduate, said Rosenberg. She said that by working in the program, she wanted to get centered and concentrate on law and its purpose.

The law students in the program had the opportunity to use what they learned to aid the community, said Richard Alderman, director of the program and UH professor of law.

Besides being involved with the program, Alderman has utilized his background in law to help the community by being the "people's lawyer."

Alderman works at Channel 13, explaining viewers' legal rights in short spots on the news shows. In addition, on Thursday nights at 8 p.m. on Channel 8, Alderman and area attorneys offer legal advice and answer legal questions from viewers who call in.

The high school program was sponsored by the Law Center's Community Outreach Program in cooperation with the Houston Bar Auxiliary and the Houston Bar Foundation. Alderman works at Channel 13, explaining viewers' legal rights in short spots on the news shows.

 

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EX-COUGAR PITCHER DRABEK

REALIZES BIG-LEAGUE DREAM

by Patti Warner

Daily Cougar Staff

As a 20 year old, Doug Drabek sat in the stands at the Astrodome along with his teammates and wondered what it would be like to pitch for the Astros.

This season, his dream finally came true as the former Cougar ace made his first appearance in an Astros uniform after signing as a free agent in December.

"When I was in college we would try to get up (to the Astrodome) as much as possible," said Drabek, now 30. "We would always wish that someday we would get to the point where we would have a chance to play here.

"It was a nice feeling thinking back to sitting in the stands wishing I could be here and now I am," he said.

Drabek pitched for the Cougars from 1980-1983 and compiled a school record 27 wins. Drabek is one of six Cougar pitchers to throw a no-hitter. His was on March 6, 1983.

"That is definitely one of my best memories," Drabek said. "The other would be when we went to the regionals. We got to go to Arizona. We lost, but it was exciting because it was the only year we were able to do that."

Drabek left Houston in 1983 after he was drafted in the 11th round by the Chicago White Sox. The New York Yankees acquired him in 1984, then traded him to the Pittsburgh Pirates after his 7-8 rookie season in 1986.

Drabek looks back on his days at Cougar Field with fondness and advises current Cougar players to hold on to their dreams.

"Probably the biggest thing is to just believe in yourself," he said. "If you keep working hard you never know what will happen.

"There are a lot of guys out here who went low in the draft. They never gave up, and all of the sudden they were up here at this level."

Although the Astros lost Drabek's debut 3-1, the Victoria native said it was a good beginning.

"I was happy with (the performance) except for the results obviously," he said. "I was pleased with the way the ball was moving, and I felt good about the breaking ball."

Catcher Eddie Taubensee had the best view in the ballpark of Drabek's homecoming.

"I think he pitched a pretty good game," Taubensee said. "He only gave up three runs, but we just didn't score any runs for him."

In his second start in New York against the Mets, Drabek recorded his first victory as an Astro and the 100th of his career.

Taubensee echoed the sentiments of others in saying that he was glad to see the 1990 Cy Young winner in an Astros uniform.

"He is a great asset to our team," Taubensee said. "He is a quality pitcher who can go out and give you seven or eight innings every night. This takes more pressure off everybody."

Phillies slugger Darren Daulton is someone who doesn't care to face Drabek in any uniform. Daulton, who led the National League in runs batted in last season, is batting .176 lifetime against Drabek.

"He's no fun," Daulton said. "He is the master of three or four pitches, and he can throw them for strikes at any time. He just doesn't give you a whole lot to hit."

When new Astros owner Drayton McLane signed Drabek to a four-year contract, Astros fans everywhere made plans for the World Series. That, says Drabek, is a lot for one man to deliver.

"I realized that just one or two guys can't change a team around," he said. "It's going to take everybody involved. A few guys can help, but it takes a team effort.

"The last three years in Pittsburgh, we had guys that picked up the slack when somebody was down and things like that. That's what we are going to need here," he said.

Only time will tell what Drabek will bring to the Astros, but one thing is for sure -- it will be his best.

 

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COLLINS, COUGAR TRACK TEAM LEAVE

MARK IN LOS ANGELES INVITATIONAL

by Sean Boyle

Special to the Cougar

The California sun witnessed shopping, sightseeing and several scintillating performances by the Houston track and field team this weekend at UCLA's Drake Stadium.

Senior Michele Collins registered two impressive victories in the sprints. Collins scorched the 100-meter dash in 11.58 seconds and overwhelmed the 200-meter field.

The SWC indoor champion in the 55-meter dash and the 200 is on course for a repeat performance of last year's outdoor conference meet where Collins mounted the victor's stand in the 100 meters.

In the 1,500 meter run, red-shirt junior Jim Reagan unleashed a searing 59-second last 400 meters to pull within two meters of first-place winner Alan Culpepper of Colorado.

Reagan's 3:52.33 is a personal best and the second-fastest time in the Southwest conference this season.

Sophomore Paul Lupi obliterated the men's 800-meter field in the last 110 meters. The transfer from New Jersey Rider College was boxed in for the first 600 meters before he ran through the crowd of 13 to zoom to the finish in 1:52.06.

Jennifer Standefer, 20, from Corpus Christi, ran a gutsy metric mile to finish fourth. The red-shirt sophomore has battled knee problems all season and even considered dropping out midway through the race.

Sheddric Fields anchored Houston's runner-up 400-meter relay and an hour later vanquished his competitors in the 100 meters with a time of 10.38.

Sophomore De'Angela Johnson claimed the women's 400-meter dash in a career-best 53.60.

High jumpers Carolye Asfahl and Katrina Harris tied for second place. Ashal moved from last to second place in the last lap of the 800 meters to finish at 2:16.93. Harris was only 1 1/2 inches away from an NCAA provisional berth in the high jump.

On the men's side, indoor gold medalist Ken Bigger won the high jump at 6 feet 9 3/4 inches.

Junior Patrik Juhlin won the men's two-mile run with a personal record 9:09. Vince Dietsch finished third.

Benford McKinney clocked in at 46.8 in the 400 meters to finish second.

Sophomore Jermaine Johnson finished in second place in the long jump and triple jump with jumps of 25-0 and 50-4 respectively.

Stephen Adegbite led halfway through the 110 meter high hurdles. He hit a hurdle and finished fourth.

Freshman Nathan Labus placed second in the pole vault with a personal best 16-0.

 

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AFRICAN-AMERICANS ANGRY AT KING TRIAL

by UH Media Relations

The latest results from an opinion survey of African-Americans reveal a great deal of confusion, cynicism and mistrust of the legal system in light of the second Rodney King trial.

The scientific telephone survey, part of a cpmprehensive, on-going study being conducted by two UH political scientists, is investigating the development of political and social attitudes in the African-American community.

The survey was taken before the jury decides a verdict in the trial of four Los Angeles police officers accused of violating Rodney King's civil rights. A follow-up opinion survey will be conducted after the trial has concluded.

"If a group believes suspects are guilty and there is supportive evidence, then the expectation is that in a democratic system there will be a conviction. But it didn't happen in the first trial, leaving a great deal of cynicism," said Christian davenport, an assistant professor of political science and co-principal investigator of the project.

Of the 81 percent of African-Americans questioned who feel the police officers are guilty, only 33 percent are confident the officers will be convicted.

"Anger in the community runs high. The perception garnered from the videotape is one of guilt by the police. When the first trial didn't reflect this, the only recourse left was collective protest," explained Davenport.

Despite the mood, Davenport said he doesn't expect renewed riolting, even if jurors find the officers not guilty.

"Massisve police and natioanl guard mobilization will have an effect. Most people aren't foolish; they know planned containment efforts are on a scale unheard of in recent history. It's the kind of thing you might expect in South Africa or South Korea, but not here," Davenport said.

Darren Davis, who is co-directing the study with Davenport, agreed with the assessment that a violent response is not likely in the event of an aquittal.

"If the police are found guilty, however, our survey indicates the mood in the African-American community will depend on the sentence," he said.

"If the officers are given substantial prison time there will probabaly be a rather passive response from African-Americans. Some faith may be re-established in the leagl system, but I believe it would be misplaced," said Davis.

No matter what the outcome, both Davenport and Davis hope issues raised by the Rodney King case don't just fade away.

"Deep frustrations have percolated to the surface, but among those we surveyed the feeling is that a systematic attempt is underway to appease and pacify, rather than actually address substantive problems," Davis said.

The telephone survey of 1,300 randomly selected African-American and Anglo Houstonians was funded in part by the UH Center for Public Policy, the UH African-American Studies Program and the Houston Defender newspaper.

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