The University of Alabama

UA in the News: June 8, 2012

Reaction spreads after film canceled
Tuscaloosa News – June 8
Reaction to the cancellation of a film at the Bama Theater has spread internationally, with at least two Norwegian newspapers, including Norway’s largest, The Aftenposten, picking up on the story…No one is arguing that “Turn Me On, Dammit!” fits the definition of obscenity, said Matthew D. Bunker, Reese Phifer Professor of Journalism at the University of Alabama. As a foreign film, it carries no MPAA rating, though some deemed it R-rated…“The general tack under the First Amendment is that people can choose not to view things they find distasteful,” Bunker said. The law does not offer a clear answer, said Paul Horwitz, a First Amendment expert at the UA School of Law and author of “First Amendment Institutions,” which will be released in November by Harvard University Press. “Much depends on what is said and how. If the mayor says, ‘Of course you can show what you like, but I can’t promise you’ll be funded next year,’ then he hasn’t taken any punitive action but the Arts Council will get the message,” Horwitz said. “I think (the Arts Council) should keep in mind public taste. But they should do it by subsidizing a wide range of performances and occasions, not by canceling some shows because some people object to them, however much I may respect those objections…

Andrew Morriss: Shunning Canadian oil will push our best ally into the arms of China
Pioneer Press (Minneapolis, Minn.) – June 7
U.S. energy policies — specifically President Obama’s delay of a decision pending further environmental-impact study for a part of the Keystone Pipeline — are pushing Canada into a closer trading relationship with China. Just ask Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, who in January of this year told Mr. Obama that the delay meant Canada would focus on “diversifying” energy exports. Or ask Canadian Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver, who told the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. that same month that “we currently have one customer (the U.S.) for our energy exports. That customer has said that it doesn’t want to expand at the moment. So it certainly intensifies the broad strategic objective of the government to diversify to Asia.” Will China want to buy Canadian oil? Absolutely! China’s hunger for petroleum products will continue to grow. Chinese car ownership is still below U.S. levels of 1920. Even if all future car sales in China are hybrids and even if China’s frenetic economic growth slows, as Chinese car ownership rises, the demand for petroleum will soar over the next two decades. And India is also developing a taste for automobiles. If we don’t want Canada’s oil, there are many who do. This is a major mistake for three reasons … (Andrew Morriss is a professor at the University of Alabama).
Oregon Live – June 8

Coalition opposing immigration law outlines plans of attacking it
Auburn Plainsman – June 6
A plan to fight Alabama’s new immigration law, H.B. 658, has been set into motion by a collective of approximately 200 local, regional and national organizations…Wade Henderson, president and CEO of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. Henderson then outlined a two-pronged approach to tackling what he calls “the most vile, anti-immigrant law in the country.”…“If we can’t appeal to your humanity, then we will to your pocketbooks,” Henderson said. A study conducted by University of Alabama economist Samuel Addy in January agreed with this theory. In “A Cost-Benefit Analysis of the New Alabama Immigration Law,” Addy said the law could cost the state between $2.3 billion and $10.8 billion in annual gross domestic product, based on estimates that between 40,000 and 80,000 undocumented workers would flee. In December, the law’s champions pointed to the state’s unemployment rate falling from 9.2% to 8.7% as a sign the law was working and putting Alabamians back to work.

Lacey: America’s War on Mexicans Has Gone Too Far
Phoenix New Times – June 7
…Last year, Alabama one-upped Arizona and passed a tougher, meaner anti-immigrant measure. Research at the University of Alabama said the state could lose up to $10.8 billion and 140,000 jobs….

 

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