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Week of 19 November 1999

Vol. III, No. 15

In the News

The movement for universal pre-school has been gathering momentum because of the increasing number of women in the workforce. "It would benefit children, it would benefit parents," says Dr. Barry Zuckerman, professor of pediatrics at the School of Medicine, in the October 31 New York Times. "It's probably an appropriate societal response to these demographic changes that we've had," he adds. "It's literally an evolutionary process."

Warren Beatty has apparently reined in his presidential aspirations, but other seemingly as improbable hopefuls still publicly entertain thoughts of running. "In the past these media candidacies would have been thought silly," says Caryl Rivers, COM professor of journalism, interviewed on WBZ-TV's October 3 evening newscast. She says the proliferation of the news media offers new scope for a range of presidential aspirants. "But now there's so much time to fill and so much press that it's great grist for the mill."

In a November 1 USA Today story on a Supreme Court case concerning whether police officers can legally search a person who flees at their approach, Tracey Maclin, a professor at the School of Law, says, "There is a right to avoid police. It takes a tough hombre to do it, but you can just walk away." He says that under the Fourth Amendment, an individual can refuse to talk when approached by a police officer without a warrant. Maclin has written a brief on the case for the American Civil Liberties Union.

"Students think electronic mail is anonymous," says James Stone, director of consulting services in the Office of Information Technology, in a story in the Boston Globe October 31 about university responses to students' using the Web to harass people. "Students will say things electronically that they wouldn't say in person. They fail to understand that you're able to track down their identity."

"There have been a half-dozen killing sprees since Littleton, and I think there's a connection between them and the millennium," says Richard Landes, CAS associate history professor and director of the Center for Millennial Studies. He says in the October 15 CQ Researcher, "The people who committed these acts may not be into the millennium, but at least in some cases they were influenced by the recent intensification of apocalyptic and conspiracy thinking." He adds, "I hate to say it, but I wouldn't be surprised if we saw more of these violent incidents."

"In the News" is compiled by Alexander Crouch in the Office of Public Relations.