Buhrer: No profit in turkey?

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Nov 212002
Authors: Colleen Buhrer

Only 33 more shopping days before Christmas, we are running out of time! And money, for that matter. Welcome to the season for consumerism.

Commercials went straight from political ads (thank God those are gone) to ads for Christmas. Now everything is colored in red and green, Christmas lights and evergreen trees. The malls of have been gearing up for Christmas since about Halloween, giving them only about two months worth of taking the public for as much as they possibly can.

Did anyone else notice that we have a whole other holiday before Christmas to go through yet? It is called Thanksgiving, and apparently to the manufacturers of toys, clothes, appliances, games, home furnishings and just about anything you could possibly buy, it doesn’t exist.

They all skip right past Thanksgiving because it does not promote consumerism as much as the other holidays do. Thanksgiving promotes giving thanks, spending time with family and sitting down to a good meal; other then buying the food, these aren’t things that necessarily put money into the economy so the holiday is simply skipped over.

At Halloween you buy candy and costumes and spend the money we should be saving for Christmas. Obviously, we know Christmas tends to be the most expensive time of the year for pretty much everybody in the nation.

This promotion of consumerism seems to be a recent trend. Due to the poor economy we have been experiencing there has been more advertising way in advance of things actually happening. It seems the time between the first Christmas ads and Christmas seems to be growing with each year as the economy gets worse and worse.

Nobody pays attention to the virtues of these holidays. There may even be little children out there who don’t know about the Pilgrims and the birth of Christ. The holidays are all about buying things and getting things and basically spending money, not the other non-expensive stuff.

In the Christian religions the celebration of Christmas was originally intended to be a celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ and the coming salvation for the world. In other religions, the celebrations around Christmas time were usually intended to have religious meanings as well. These things do not usually include buying and receiving as many presents as possible.

The true value of the season has been completely lost, as is shown by the mass of Christmas advertisements already in progress.

Another example of this is the Christmas in July sales seen every year. Seriously, how can this even remotely celebrate the true meaning of Christmas? It is simply expanding the season so that people will buy more things and companies will make more money.

I personally hate the Christmas season that is a result of this consumerism. Going out into public, driving down the road or going into any shopping establishment can be a traumatic experience for just about anyone. Everyone is stressed out, upset about all the money they are spending and just generally not nice.

The Christmas season is also supposed to be about giving and sharing and being nice, yet everyone is horribly mean. They yell and push and shove and say nasty things. The consumerist part of the season is just generally not something I like to be a part of.

So, why not celebrate Thanksgiving? Spend time with people who will be nice and friendly and loving and, hey, get some good food along the way. Why would you want to skip over a holiday like that?

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Ordinary people saving lives

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Nov 212002
Authors: Christin Nirschl

Not everyone can say they saved someone’s life at the end of the day, but members of the Larimer County Search and Rescue team can.

Although being a member of LCSAR is rewarding, it takes a lot of time, energy, and money. In addition, it is volunteer work.

“Most members spend about 400 hours working per year,” said Mike Fink, the Search Leader and Public Information Officer of LCSAR. “The volunteers buy their own equipment, which costs about $1,500.”

Each year, LCSAR affects about 6,000 people in the Rocky Mountain Region. The main purpose of the team is to rescue lost or injured people from the wilderness, but LCSAR also educates the public about outdoor safety.

The team responds to emergencies and disasters 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

“If I had the time, I think working with the team would be a great experience. I’ve heard some fun things about it,” said Nickie Emerson, a sophomore human development and family studies major.

The transformation from an ordinary person to a highly trained rescue worker is a rigorous and time-consuming process. First, the volunteers learn the necessary skills during weekly training sessions from February to June. Then, the volunteers must pass certain tests and evaluations.

“Most importantly, we make sure the members are team players, have the necessary skills and can withstand adverse conditions,” Fink said.

On average, LCSAR receives about 65 calls each year. Most of them are requests to search for missing people. There are about 60 members on the team, and most are between the ages of 25 to 45. “The job is very rewarding, challenging, fun and sometimes tragic,” Fink said.

LCSAR is a non-profit organization, so it depends solely on grants, donations, and corporate support. The group became a non-profit organization in 1978 because the police department couldn’t afford to pay the members of such a large team.

“If you like the outdoors, then being a rescue worker would be a great job,” said Justin Pauls, a first year student majoring in art.

The deadline for applications is up for this year, however, applications for the following year may be submitted. You must be at least 18 years old to apply.

FYI Box:

To request an application to work for the Laimer County Search and Rescue Team, call Catrina Mianecki at 720-341-5653. For more information about LCSAR, check out their website at www.fortnet.org/LCSAR/.

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Transportation tax fails by 10 votes

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Nov 212002
Authors: Collegian Staff

A tax proposal on the Nov. 5 ballot that would have given additional funding for various transportation projects in Fort Collins was struck down by 10 votes, according to the final election results posted by Larimer County.

A recount of the votes is currently underway for Fort Collins Issue 2C, as mandated by state law for any race or issue in which the difference in the outcome is less than 0.5 percent. The measure would have raised the sales tax in Fort Collins by 25 cents for every $100 and add a 1 percent tax on all new construction in Fort Collins besides unsubsidized housing. Final results show 19,496 people voted for 2C, while 19,506 voted against.

Final results of the issue were delayed from Nov. 5 until late Wednesday because of a hundreds of provisional ballots that were yet to be counted. This year was the first election where voters who were believed to be registered and did not receive an absentee ballot or were not on the list of voters in the precinct could fill out a provisional ballot and vote. The ballots came into play in close races like 2C and the 7th Congressional race between Democrat Mike Feeley and Republican Bob Beauprez. Beauprez prevailed in that race by 122 votes.

Some of the projects 2C promised to fund were the widening of sections of Lemay Avenue and Timberline road, improving the Mason Street corridor and repairing some damaged intersections.

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‘Operation Private Parts’ looks to expose video voyeurism

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Nov 212002
Authors: Erica Mirehouse

The Anti-Surveillance Defense Group, a group whose mission is to combat the worldwide proliferation of video surveillance cameras, launched a national research project last week.

The project, dubbed “Operation Private Parts”, will attempt to expose to a worldwide audience how secret video spying in public places has become a normal part of everyday life.

As part of the research, a group of free-lance photographers will fan out to each of the 50 states for the purpose of obtaining video similar to those now being used on many voyeurism Web sites. Voyeurism refers to images obtained without the subject knowing, usually for the purposes of sexual gratification.

“This project is not intended for sexual gratification or financial gain,” said Ron Brazil, Director of U.S. Operations for ASDG. “Instead, we want to show the ease with which ordinary people are being used to create sexually oriented video that is fueling the frenzy of Internet voyeurism Web sites.”

ASDG’s photographers have indicated doing activities in approximately 36 states at this time, Brazil said. Efforts will be made to obtain a cross section of society including politicians, newspaper publishers and editors, radio and television personalities, professional athletes, actors and actresses and a variety of other high-profile individuals.

“No one is exempt from the massive amount of secret video spying that goes on in public places,” he said.

According to the ASDG Web site, a majority of the general public is unaware of how out of control this secret video spying is in public places.

Most states have no direct laws handling video surveillance in public because of problems in the definition of a public place, Brazil said.

In April, Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., introduced a bill entitled the “Family Privacy and Protection Act,” which would create two new federal crimes of video voyeurism, one dealing with adults and one dealing with minors.

Under the bill, any person who uses a camera or similar recording device to record another individual either for a lewd or lascivious purpose without that person’s consent is in violation of the law. This bill has not yet passed and the issue of video voyeurism is still being handled on a state-by-state basis.

A recent Washington State Supreme Court decision declared up-skirt photography in a public place as lewd but legal, according to the ASDG Web site.

“It’s an outrage, I think that it would outrage anyone,” Brazil said. “Our wives, mothers, and children go out in public and don’t expect people to look under their clothes.”

The ASDG has also developed a line of personal video surveillance defense products.

“Our products will allow an individual to personally opt out of being photographed by any video camera within a specified range,” Brazil said.

They have marketed the Invizi-Shield, a compact device that is carried on the person and uses the latest in light technology to disrupt all video surveillance transmissions from video recording devices within a user definable range.

Experts predict the use of miniature video cameras will continue to increase at a rapid pace over the next several years.

There are already many of these mini cameras located on campus in the library, in the tunnel under College Ave., and in other undisclosed high security areas.

“We do not use the cameras to invade people’s privacy,” said Bob Chaffee,

CSUPD Police Chief. “The purpose of our cameras is public safety and public security.”

Franco Rodriguez, a senior Human Development and Family Studies major said, “I think that it is bad that people aren’t always aware of surveillance cameras but they may be helpful in certain situations.”

Rodrigez said Brazil’s system, which would cost $150, is not something he is interested in.

“The new technology to deter video surveillance is not something that I would purchase,” he said. “Not all cameras are used for voyeurism and most college students couldn’t afford the $150 anyway.”

Chaffee also urged caution when considering the personal surveillance defense products.

“As a consumer, I would recommend that you don’t buy anything that sounds too good to be true,” he said. “What does it do, make you disappear? It seems magical to me.”

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Cigarettes for Lollipops

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Nov 212002
Authors: Linda Lechler

Students on the CSU campus Thursday with suckers in their mouths may no longer be suckers for tobacco addiction.

Students traded cigarettes for lollipops on the Great American Smokeout, held on the Lory Student Center Plaza Thursday. The Great American Smokeout is an annual event sponsored by the American Cancer Society to highlight the dangers of smoking and challenge people to think about quitting tobacco use.

“The purpose (of the smokeout) is to bring awareness,” said Gwen Sieving, a health educator and counselor for CSU’s tobacco cessation program.

Sieving said the reality is that she does not want people to quit on that day, but to become aware of the resources available if people consider quitting or cutting back cigarette smoking.

“It’s not a ‘shame the smoker’ day,” Sieving said.

Along with information about available resources, Sieving and volunteers passed out “quit kits” for people serious about quitting. The kits included a CD-ROM about tobacco education, a personalized quit plan and decision making on quitting. The kit also included a booklet titled “It’s time to quit,” candy and a “bendy,” which is a bendable stick used to keep hands busy.

There are many resources on and off campus that are available for students, faculty and staff who want to consider a healthier lifestyle, Sieving said.

There are two main resources available on campus. The no-charge tobacco cessation program offers one-on-one counseling sessions with Sieving and other counselors. Also offered at CSU is Nicotine Replacement Therapy, or NRT, which includes the patch, inhalers and various kinds of gum, which are available for a charge at the Hartshorn Health Center pharmacy. Zyban, a prescription drug to help the cessation of tobacco use, is also available and costs $90 a month.

Sieving said she recommends people combine counseling with NRT.

“This (tobacco) addiction involves the whole person: mind, body and spirit,” Sieving said.

People need to realize that cigarettes are not their only option, she said.

For someone who is still a smoker but contemplating cutting back or quitting, Sieving said she recommends the person get as much information as possible before trying anything.

“All they have to do is call,” Sieving said.

The hardest part of the battle is just taking the first step, she said. For people who are interested in what counseling entails, Sieving said it basically starts out with data collection.

“It’s not about quitting,” Sieving said, “or about setting a quit date. It’s about accessing the right information.”

Questions to be asked during counseling include where the person is in the process, what his or her history is, why the person wants to quit now and what the person currently enjoys from cigarettes.

“Without good data, we don’t know where to begin,” Sieving said.

Off-campus resources available include Quitline and Quitnet. In TV ads,”Chuck the smoker” promotes Quitline , a free service offered over the phone. Quitnet is a Web site specifically for people in Colorado and includes confidential local support over the Internet.

The Great American Smokeout began in 1976 and is held annually on the third Thursday of November, although this is the first year CSU has had the funding to participate in the event.

Some students at CSU found the event to be helpful in their process of trying to quit tobacco use.

“I think it’s a helpful step for people who want to quit,” said Mercedes Hartman, a social studies teaching and European international studies major.

Some ex-smokers also agreed.

“I think it’s an awesome effort to help save people’s livelihood,” said Emily Hutchinson, a junior art major.

Not all students who smoked were willing to give up their cigarette for a lollipop, however.

“I think (the smokeout) is good,” said Niki Tejada, a sophomore sports medicine major. “A lot of people don’t want to give up their cigarettes because they are expensive, but it’s a cool thing because it’s one less cigarette they’ll smoke.”

Reach CSU’s tobacco cessation program at 491-1702

Reach Colorado Quitline at 1 800 639 QUIT (7848)

Reach Quitnet at http://co.quitnet.com

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Funding Board gives money to Wing Walkers

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Nov 212002
Authors: Zac Wiggy

The Associated Students of CSU Student Funding Board allocated $1,483.50 to the Wing Walker Honor Guard Thursday.

The Honor Guard presents the American flag at all CSU events that require it, including football games and the homecoming parade. While all members of the group must be in the Air Force ROTC program, the guard is considered a student organization and does not receive funds from the ROTC.

The group will use the funds to purchase equipment. Among the planned purchases are 50 rifle stocks and 10 berets.

This is the first year that the funding board has been allowed to allocate funds for capital improvements. All equipment purchased with these funds will be the property of CSU.

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Father of CSU alumna opens Thanksgiving dinner to students

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Nov 212002
Authors: Megan Fromm

This year, Frank Wright will not spend Thanksgiving with his family.

One of his daughters, Denise, who attends the University of Colorado, will be in Illinois with her mother. Wright’s other daughter, Susan, who graduated from CSU last year, is serving with the Peace Corps in Africa. Wright’s third daughter, Michelle, was a junior at Denver University when she was killed in a drunk driving accident.

Wright, who is now a practicing physician of emergency medicine, missed many a Thanksgiving serving in the Navy. But he refuses to spend this holiday alone. Instead, he is holding a dinner at his mountain estate just north of Fort Collins for any students who wish to come.

“I know I feel bad I can’t be with my daughters,” Wright said. “So I am trying to make up for it by doing something here.”

Wright knows many students, especially at large universities, cannot trek the sometimes hundreds of miles it takes to get home for the short break.

“Sometimes you don’t get to go home, which is depressing,” he said. He said he hopes the traditional turkey dinner he plans on preparing will bring the comforts of home to out-of-state students.

The dinner will include turkey and all the trimmings such as potatoes, stuffing, dressing, corn, pies and Wright’s favorite, bread pudding.

“I’m actually a pretty good cook,” he said, adding that students who wish to help prepare the dinner are more than welcome.

While alcohol will not be served, Wright said students over 21 can bring their own, asking only that those who drink do not drive home. The house, with a great room and fireplace, has plenty of room to house students who need to stay the night.

Hopefully, Wright can create a Thanksgiving as picturesque as Norman Rockwell’s illustration of “Freedom From Want,” which poses a family laughing and conversing as an elderly woman in an apron sets a golden turkey on the table.

“That’s what I want,” Wright said. “It’s a tradition that families get together over Thanksgiving and Christmas. If (students) can’t be with their family, they can be with an alternate family. They can come join me and my family (of students).”

“But,” he said, “I refuse to wear an apron.”

To RSVP and for directions or information, call 970-231-6446 or e-mail Wright at fjwright@juno.com.

What: Thanksgiving dinner

Where: estate home of Dr. Frank Wright

Info: Call 970-231-6446 to RSVP by Wednesday or for directions

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Buy Nothing Day encourages contemplating consumerism

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Nov 212002
Authors: Helyna Bledsoe

Thanksgiving break is usually thought of as a time for eating good food, spending time with your family, and getting some Christmas shopping out of the way.

But some CSU students have been promoting Buy Nothing Day to make sure Nov. 29, the biggest shopping day of the year, stands for something more than material pleasures.

“People automatically think that we are trying to corrupt the U.S. economy,” said Takashi Niisaka, an international student and anthropology major. “We want you to think and choose (your products) wisely.”

Tim Allen, sophomore civil engineering major, wasn’t too excited about the Nov. 29 Buy Nothing event.

“It’s not going to help our economy and that’s the last thing we need right now,” Allen said. “I’ll participate by buying things. But I see the point of thinking before you spend.”

According to www.adbusters.org, “more than a million people will celebrate 11 years of opposition on the unofficial opening day of the Christmas frenzy.” The plan is for citizens to analyze what they already have and what they need. Buy Nothing Day also hopes to encourage consumers to see where their monetary investments eventually end up.

“Buy Nothing Day is not an effort to destroy the economy,” said Bridget Beckett, senior anthropology major. “It’s to promote conscientiousness when purchasing.”

Beckett wants shoppers to look at the social, political and environmental effects of individual purchases so that consumers can decide if the production process is something they believe in and agree with.

“People will still go shopping,” Beckett said. “We hope that people become a little more thoughtful about their individual purchases so we’re not isolated individuals, even though we live in an individualistic society.”

For more information about Buy Nothing Day, debt statistics and alternative gift ideas for Christmas, visit www.adbusters.org or www.buynothingchristmas.org.

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AIDS quilt coming to CSU

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Nov 212002
Authors: Cara Mason

The AIDS Quilt is coming to CSU Dec. 1,2 and 3.

The quilt will be displayed in the Lory Student Center in the main ballroom. The quilt is made of 44,000 panels. Each panel represents someone that has passed away due to aids. Only 20 sections that are 12 feet by 12 feet will be coming to CSU due to available space.

The last time the quilt has came to CSU was in 1991. The Association of Student Activities Programming and many other organizations are involved in bringing the quilt to CSU.

One of the main reasons the quilt is coming to CSU is because World Aids Day is Dec. 1. If you would like to be a volunteer contact Jen Peters in the ASAP office at 491-2727 or email her at jenatcsu@aol.com.

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Nokhu is Fort Collin’s newest addition to restaurant scene

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Nov 202002
Authors: Christopher J. Ortiz

Christopher J. Ortiz

Nokhu On Canyon is Fort Collin’s newest addition to the booming restaurant scene. Opening three months ago at 211 West Canyon Ave, Nokhu has a different approach to dining. Theo Otte, co-owner and chief of Nokhu, described the food at Nokhu as exciting and fun to eat.

To start off with, the look of the restaurant is very distinctive. Otte described the restaurant as having a retro 60s vibe. The style of the restaurant is refreshing especially when most new restaurants try to impress their guests with flashy patterns and fabrics. I think people that come into Nokhu are going to find the setting refreshing, but elegant.

Something diners might notice at first glance is a huge vault door. Though it does not exactly fit with the style of the restaurant, it is something you often do not get to see when dining. The vault, left over from a bank that resided before the building was home to Nokhu, leads into a small, single-table room that used to be the vault. The room is usually reserved for small parties.

Nokhu also takes a different approach to how guests order their meal. Instead of the usual order of first appetizers, then salad, main meal and finally desert; Nokhu has gone away with appetizers with smaller portions of their meals; allowing guests to try several smaller dishes instead of being stuck with one large plate. So now if you want to try rock shrimp egg rolls, blue crap cakes and seared prawns, you can try all three in one meal instead of just having one for a main meal.

The name of the restaurant itself is unique. The name has a Native American connection. Nokhu is an Arapahoe word meaning “eagle’s nest.”

Instead of having a typical wine list with popular names, Otte and the restaurant have taken a different route and filled their list with names that might not be so recognizable with guests. To encourage people to try different wines, on Tuesday nights wine is half off.

Though I was not able to sample the food at Nokhu, I was impressed with the unique approach Nokhu On Canyon took on dining and I’m sure if the food is close to the great dining experience the restaurant offers, then it would have been enjoyed.

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