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62144 C=4 OT4O
Controversy arises over circumcising infants
By KELLY CLARK and KATHI DODSON
Collegian Science Writers
Should parents have their sons circumcised
when doctors say there are no medical
grounds for performing such a procedure?
Recently, the practice of circumcising new
born babies has become a topic of debate
among parents and memb6rs of the medical
field as an increasing number of parents and
adult males question the need for such a
Marilyn F. Milos, registered nurse and
director of the National Organization of Cir
cumcision Information Resource Centers in
San Anselmo, Calif., said circumcision is an
"outdated and barbaric ritual," and that no
medical reason exists for circumcising male
Dr. Gordon Avery, director of the division
of neonatology at Children's Hospital in
Washington, D.C., agreed that circumcision
is "one of the few operations which is decided,
primarily on religous and social bounds."
trip to Mars
By JEANNETTE GIBSON
Collegian Science Writer
No, this isn't a flashy headline to
catch your attention, it's an actual
contest that students, not scientists,
are invited to participate in.
The 1987 Mars Student Contest is
the fourth contest of this sort spon
sored by the Planetary Society, said
Chris McKay, the Mars Institute Con
"The Planetary Society," McKay
explained, "is composed mostly of
people who aren't professionally in
volved with the field of space explora
tion and research, but who are
interested in the subject on a nonpro
Louis Freedman, the executive di
rector of the Planetary Society said
that "the contest is primarily educa
tional and gives students the opportu
nity to work on a research problem
related to space exploration."
The society has approximately 150,-
000 members, and this year the stu
dent members, and any other student
who chooses to enter the contest, will
discover that the contest is different
from previous years.
This year, students may choose to
enter •in two different catagories:
• Contest 1 challenges students to
design an international Mars mission
of any proportions, with consider
ation of the technological capabilities
of the various space programs of the
space faring nations.
• Contest 2 requires students to
consider the social, political, and
economic benefits and problems as
sociated with an international mis
Having diabetes doesn't mean you stop living
By LAURA PACE
Collegian Science Writer
Lisa pauses and rolls up her sleeve,
holding the needle up to the light. She
taps it gently to remove all traces of
air and poises it above the spot
swabbed with alcohol. She slowly
inserts the needle into her vein and
pushes the plunger down, forcing the
liquid into her body.
Lisa is a University student who
must give herself three injections a
day without them she will die.
She is a diabetic. And as though
adjusting to college life were not hard
enough, she has a constant schedule
to follow with a rigorous diet and
She learned of her disease during a
routine physical in eighth grade. Ev
erything was normal,-she said, until
her mother mentioned that Lisa had
been going to the bathroom a lot, had
lost weight and was tired frequently.
Then Lisa was given a glucose finger
prick and was told she was diabetic.
ap maker practices the lost art of cartography
By CHRISTINE KILGORE
Collegian Science Writer
He's done everything from designing ash
trays, lighting fixtures, and the first jazz
record label, to studying zoology and drawing
pen and ink sketches, but never did he take a
course in cartography.
Yet, today, 86-year-old Richard Harrison is
one of the world's most renowned and expert
cartographers —.the non-automated art and
craft of map making.
Harrison considers himself one of a dying
breed because he still uses a drawing board
and not a computer to design maps. But with
his drawing board and much more, Harrison
has drawn every continent at least eight
times, designed a 25-foot long mural for the
New York Times lobby in New York City, and
Circumcision the surgical removal of the
foreskin, a fold of skin over the end of the
penis costs up to $2OO million per year and
causes the death of about 200 babies annually,
Milos said. Many parents do not understand
how or why the surgery is done, but they Milos said the organization'is seeking fur
agree to have it done because they assume it ther comments from men about areas such
is the normal, and therefore correct, thing to as: problems believed to be related to their
do. circumcision; the age at which the surgery
The United States is one of the only nations occured ; feelings upon the discovery that
left where more than half of male infants are "part of your body was cut off"; and prefer
still circumcised at birth without a medical ence of being circumcised or intact, perhaps
or religious reason, she said. In comparison, even considering foreskin restoration.
more than 85 percent of the world's males are However, Avery said, babies rarely die
not circumcised, she added. during circumcision, and scarring and
In Moslem and Asian countries circumci- dysfunction usually occur only when the
sion is rare, while in Israel it is almost procedure was done incorrectly, such as
universal, Avery said. when too much foreskin in cut away. The only
In America, circumcision is the norm but serious medical side effect of circumcision is
"perhaps becoming a bit less preponderous," hemorrhaging, which can cause the baby to
he said, comparing the decision to circumcise die, or the need for revision if the surgery was
a child to the decision a mother makes incorrect.
between breastfeeding or bottle feeding.
Over the past few months, NOCIRC has
sion to Mars, and to suggest how
these problems might be overcome
and the benefits maximized.
"This contest involves a social
component that was not part of the
contests of previous years," said Mc-
The social aspects considered in
Project 2 are as important the the
space program as the engineering
technicalities of Project 1, he added.
But why Mars?
"Mars is the planet the most like
Earth, and there might have been life
there billions of years ago." McKay
said. "We predict that within 5 to ten
years there will be an unmanned
sample return mission to Mars."
McKay noted that a manned mis
sion may be possible within the next
These facts may be especially im
portant to students interested in
space and this contest because it is
entirely possible that their entries
will be considered by the National
Aeronautics and Space Administra
tion for future missions to Mars.
"I read the papers and send the
ones that may or may not be feasible,
and the ones that are definately feasi
ble, on to people in NASA who are
working in these areas," said McKay,
who is a research scientist at NASA.
So far 300 students have requested
more information about the contest,
McKay said, adding that he expects
100 students to submit entries, and
approximately 10 of them to be out
"The students who write the best
papers are the ones who will likely
contribute to professional literature
"He said, 'Oh my God, you're a
diabetic,' and I thought I was going to
die," Lisa said. She said she felt a
terrible fear. "I cried and cried. I felt
like a freak."
She was then taught the "diabetic
exchange" diet and insulin instruc
tions and her close friends read
about diabetes to see what they could
do to help her, she said.
When Lisa decided to come to the
University, she sent Ritenour Health
Center a letter because they asked for
information if students have a disabi
But, Lisa said, "I didn't consider it
a disability because it didn't get in
Managing diabetes and campus life
can have its challenges, she said. For
example, most students like to stay
out late Friday night and sleep late on
Saturday morning. "You can't do
that," she said. "You have to get your
meals and insulin in, so you don't
But what about giving yourself a
seen his maps and diagrams published in
Fortune, Smithsonian Magazine and numer
ous atlases and books.
Armed with rolls of maps and sketches
during a recent visit to the University, Harri
son said his cartographic career began acci
dentally in 1932 when the copy editor of Time
magazine asked him to do a map because the
regular map man was off duty.
Having attracted the attention of the Time
editors, Harrison became a regular cartogra
pher, soon started making maps for Fortune,
and eventually began supporting himself as a
"As a free-lancer, I discovered a lot of
things in cartography which were just a
result of common sense," said Harrison, who
lives in New York City. "I never had any
training in cartography, and didn't have any
received letters from men complaining about
their circumcisions, he said, adding that such
complaints include scars, tightness, pain,
sexual dysfunction and a decrease in sensa
Non-circumcision does require an extra
effort for good hygiene, Avery said. Dirt can
on the subject one day," Freedman
Winners in each category will re
ceive $750 cash and an all expense
paid trip to Boulder, Co. this summer
shot as often as three times a day plus
doing a finger puncture to check
blood sugar levels?
"Most people say 'Oh I couldn't
possibly give myself a shot,' but the
needle is the smallest," she said. "If
you want to stay alive it's not big
Most of Lisa's friends remember
her disease only when she smiles and
says, "Time to shoot up!"
Bruce Rowland, a University parks
and recreation instructor who is cur
rently conducting a survey of Univer
sity students concerning their
diabetes and its relationship to exer
cise and physical activities, said dia
betes does not limit the activities an
individual can partake in. However,
diabetics must take special consider
ations when participating in some
For example, if diabetics decide to
go camping they must make sure that
they have adequate medical supplies
Lisa's roommate keeps a close
courses with any bearing, except maybe
some architecture courses.
"And when I've taught, I've taught stu
dents how to handle instruments and other
things you would never learn in cartography,
like shades and shadows," he said.
"If you know how to read contours and
shadows, you can make a very realistic map
. . . You just get the very best contour maps
available and interpret them. If you have this
training in shades and shadows, and pa
tience, there's nothing to it."
Harrison credits most of his training in the
area of "shades and shadows" to his formal
architecture training at the Yale School of
Fine Arts in New Haven, Connecticut, where
he had previously graduated with a bache
lor's degree in zoology and chemistry.
After graduating in 1930 with a degree in
architecture, Harrison found the field not as
for the upcoming Mars conference.
Entries should be sent to the Mars
Institute, The Planetary Society, 65
North Catalina Ave., Pasadena, Ca.
91106. Deadline is May 1, 1987.
watch on her: "I worry at night that
she might go into insulin shock.
Sometimes I yell, 'Lisa, are you all
Insulin shock occurs when the bod
y's sugar level drops below an ad
equate operating level. When this
occurs, the diabetic will often become
disoriented, and begin to sweat. How
ever, sugar levels can usually be
raised quickly by eating something
high in sugar such as a soda or candy
bar, Rowland said.
Diabetes has five forms which vary
according to the time of on-set and
the type of treatment, he said. Juve
nile diabetes is usually treated with
insulin shots and a diet while adult
diabetes is usally treated with a con
trolled diet and oral medication. In
addition, he said, treatment greatly
varies from individual to individual.
Lisa's advice to anyone who knows
or is a diabetic is to remember: "You
can live a basically normal life. Don't
think you're a freak. You don't have
to give everything up."
collect under the foreskin, and after puberty
it becomes necessary for the male to retract
or roll back his foreskin and clean off the
penis underneath it. But before puberty,
parents should not force the foreskin back to
clean it because that may cause bleeding.
Non-circumcision rarely increases the risk
of urinary and other infections, he added.
Adult men can be circumcised, but adult
circumcision represents a greater health risk
because it is elective surgery that requires
anesthesia and going on the operating table,
which are more risky than the circumcision
itself, Avery said.
The earliest records of circumcision date
back to 2400 B.C. in Egypt, Milos said, where
the pharaohs were circumcised as a measure
of cleanliness, and their slaves were marked
in this fashion. The Old Testement also men
tions circumcision, and the New Testament
explains the use of circumcision as an act of
At the end of the 1800 s, a masturbation
I guess that question didn't
mean a lot to me in 10th grade
biology, but I guess that all the
time I've been spending studying
for the MCATs lately has caused
me to daydream about why I want
to be a doctor and what the future
might be like for me.
All the controversy over the
attitudes and personalities of pre
sent physicians creates a question
of the integrity of the current
premeds' desire to practice medi
To me, the underlying reason for
someone to choose a career in
medicine should be a desire to help
people live the healthiest lives
possible, by curing sickness and
preventing it if possible. Isn't that
why there are doctors to begin
If anyone out there still thinks
that people go into medicine to get
rich, he ought to check out statis
tics like malpractice insurance
rates. Some doctors pay as much
as half of their entire salary for
insurance, and that's not even
counting income tax.
If it's money you want to make,
go into business.
Power and control also should
not be reasons for practicing med
icine. Control. of what? People's
lives? Admittedly, doctors do have
a certain amount of control in
some circumstances, such as the
operating room where once you're
under anesthesia, you're all
theirs. But still, the patient has the
ultimate say in what the doctor
will or will not do, and the doctor
must respect and obey these
wishes, even if it contradicts what
she or he thinks is best.
Another element of control that
is often wrongly associated with
medicine stems from the area of
genetic engineering. People fear
that someday doctors will be able
to clone people and all that kind of
nonsense. Personally, I don't think
it can ever happen, and even if
someone does find a way I would
hope whoever it is immediately
gets run over by a truck. We have
no business tampering with the
thriving as he had expected and got a job in a
decorating firm and later in the art depart
ment of another company before he returned
to maps and explanatory graphics.
"I've only worked two 9-to-5 jobs in my
life," said Harrison, whose father, Ross Har
rison, discovered and developed tissue cul
ture. "One was with Schenly Products, where
I designed labels and boxes, and the other
was three years with Fortune."
"Then just before the war started, I opened
an office across the street from Fortune and
did even more work for them. For a period of
about 20 years, I made at least '5O major
maps. In later years, I've done only about one
or two a year." •
Throughout his career, Harrison, who is
said to have influenced map-making as a
critic, has advocated the legibility and clarity
of map indexes and printed type on maps.
really do care
What is life? asked Warren
Lentz, Selinsgrove Area High
School biology teacher.
The Daily Collegian
Thursday, April 16, 1987
hysteria struck Victorian England, and many
believed that removing a boy's foreskin
would keep him from masturbating, which
was thought to cause diseases and physical
deformities during development. By the turn
Of the century, doctors realized that circum
cision would not prevent masturbation, but
circumcision continued as a religious ritual,
In 1949, researchers discovered that during
fetal development, the foreskin normally
develops with the glands, or the bulbous end
of the penis, and is connected by a common
membrane indicating that they are one
common structure instead of two separate
structures. She said the foreskin is believed
to have a protective function in babies be
cause it provides a barrier from urine and
feces retained in diapers.
Milos said that in 1968, a Danish medical
researcher discovered that the foreskin be
comes retractable by itself during normal
development and does not have to be remov
`Even if someone
does find a way (to
clone people), I
would hope whoever
it is immediately gets
run over by a truck.'
perfection that has already been
. Also casting a shadow over the
medical practice is the controver
sy over life-support systems and
extending the human lifespan to
dangerous numbers dangerous
in that the world could face serious
overpopulation problems. In the
long run, though, more people
would die because of food short
ages, and we'd be back to where
If we were smart, we'd try to
avoid these problems to begin with
by concerning ourselves with help
ing people to make the most out of
their natural number of years.
The legal issues behind life-sup
port systems are so extremely
touchy that it seems almost impos
sible to make definite laws con
cerning their use. I know that I
certainly never would want to kept
alive if I were otherwise dead.
What's life without consciousness?
"Troubled" would mildly describe
the state of my soul. But each
person can only speak for himself,
and it's up to the doctor to do his
best to remain neutral and leave
the decision to whom it concerns.
Prestige can play a part the goal
of becoming a doctor, but this is
more of a secondary reward for all
your efforts. The personal satis
faction of practicing medicine
should be the primary reward.
You're not going to have lots of
time to spend gloating over your
M.D. anyway. There will be zil
lions of more important things to
So what does the future medical
world look like? I feel confident
that there will be improvements in
the quality of practicing physi
cians, especially in the area of
doctor/patient relations. I have
good feelings about the current
premeds; at least most of the ones
that I. know seem to have honest
intentions. Hopefully there are a
lot more people like that all over
the country . . . and hopefully the
medical school admissions people
will be able to pick them out.
Kelly Clark is a junior majoring
in biology and a science writer for
"Railroads, national parks, town sites and
other points of interest people want to see on
a map can be distracting unless they're
categorized. This can be done through the use
of different types," said Harrison. "Complete
categorizing and indexing is very rare in
"Pictorial treatment is also not really good
cartography and is frowned upon. If you put
an elephant on the Congo basis, for instance,
it hides so much geography."
Harrison said most of today's cartography
is done by civil engineers who produce maps
automatically from raw data.
"But you can't allow yourself to be
enslaved by gadgets and computers. It's still
in the the brain, and you have to exercise it,"
he said. "My advice to students is not to study
the books too rigidly, but let your brain do a
little rummaging around."
Continued from page 1
when there were 169 fire-related inci
dents, 117 of them false alarms, Hand
But "false fire alarms continue to
be a problem in Hamilton Hall," said
Thomas Harmon, assistant director
of University safety.
Although residents other than
Brennan said there were a number of
fire alarms in Hamilton last week,
Hand said the University has records
of only one this month, at 4:57 a.m.
He agreed, however, there were a
lot of false alarms in the building last
semester, but said he does not know
who is responsible because no one has
come forward with any information.
When a series of false alarms are
pulled in a residence hall within a
short period, Hand said University
Police Services investigates. Howev
er, he could not remember whether
this has been done recently.
In East Halls shortly befoie
Christmas break, a number of alarms
occurred that were attributed to sys
tem malfunctions, Hand said.
But when the systems were left on
over Christmas break to test them, no
alarms went off indicating the
alarms before breaks had been pulled
Atherton Hall is another trouble
area recently for fire alarms.
"There are entirely too many fire
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drills," said Stacy Tibbetts (sopho
more-English), who 'refused to leave
his room in Atherton Hall last Octo
ber when a fire alarm went off. There
had been five that week, and three in
that day alone, he said.
"The University can spend money
raising the (Atherton) courtyard four
feet, but they can't make sure the
alarm works right," Tibbetts said.
The problem in Atherton was due to
"a run of bad (smoke) detector
heads," Hand said, adding that the
defective heads have been "pretty
much all replaced."
Tibbetts said he received a discipli
nary warning for refusing to leave the
building during the alarm.
Students have to exit a building
when an alarm sounds regardless of
the number of alarms that have been
sounded because the next alarm
could be a real one, Harmon said.
A warning or probation is the usual
penalty for pulling a false alarm, said
Donald Suit, director of the Office of
Conduct Standards. He added that he
remembered an incident during the
past couple years in which several
people suffered smoke inhalation in
juries because they ignored a real
fire alarm after a series of false
Pulling a false alarm is a first
degree misdemeanor punishable by
up to five years in prison and/or a
fine of up to $lO,OOO, Harmon said.
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Continued from page 1
tions report called an interrogation
center for the Pinochet government,
"On a number of occasions, this
colony has been accused of being a
concentration camp or torture cen
ter. As early as 1966, several individu
als reported that they had been held
in the colony against their will and
alleged that they had been abused
there before escaping," Rupert said.
" "It might be worth remembering
that Dr. Weisfeiler was a naturalized
U.S. citizen, born in the Soviet Union,
that his passport identified the Soviet
Union as his birth place, and that he
spoke with an obvious accent," he
Also attending the vigil was Under
graduate Student Government Presi
dent Todd Sloan, who said the event
increased student awareness of the
issue because few knew about the
missing professor, including himself.
Kati O'Neil, co-director of USG's
department of International Affairs,
said that besides being a symbolic
act, the vigil will begin what she
hopes is a continous student effort to
pressure congress into investigating.
But now "we need more University'
support to continue what we've
started," she said.
She hopes committees will be
formed to start letter-writing cam
paigns and to form a "homebase" to
work with congressional leaders .
By CINDY FREDERICK
Collegian Staff Writer
Getting motivated to study is
difficult for students anytime, but
the Golden Key National Honor
Society's Study-A-Thon will try to
get students hitting the books for a
The society is holding the third
annual event April 27 in the HUB
and sign-ups are being held
through today in the HUB ground
floor and in 101 Human Devel
Students will study individually
or in groups from 6 to 11 p.m. in the
HUB Fishbowl or Ballroom.
Last year's Study-A-Thon raised Sixty people are now registered.
$2,636 for Second Mile, an organiza- Donations, which are based on
tion that offers programs ranging pledges, are collected by partici
from summer camps to foster pants before the event. A minimum
homes for children and adolescents sponsorship requirement of $lO per
in need of emotional support. person is due the night of the event.
The Second Mile Foundation gets "It's mostly sororities who par
very little government funding for ticipate, but some fraternities, spe
its programs and relies on private cial interest houses and dorm
funding, said Jeff Goldsmith, Sec- floors also get involved," he said.
and Mile's director of development Prizes donated by local business
and community relations. es will be awarded. Individuals
The Study-A-Thon was first sug- raising the most money will be
gested by former Undergraduate awarded dinners and gift certifi-
Student Government President Da- cates, while the organization rais
vid Rosenblatt in 1984 while he was ing the most money will receive
a USG senator. The following year, $lOO.
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1. Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary.
2. Participant must be a student, matriculated in a degree-granting program at
The Pennsylvania State University to be eligible to win.
3. Participant need not be present to win.
4. The odds of winning are determined by the total number of entries.
5. Maximum entries; 4,000, limited to one entry per qualifying participant.
6. Drawing tickets will be available at the IBM PC FAIR Booth April 16, 1987
between 9:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Tickets must be filled in and returned to
IBM PC FAIR booth prior to the drawing. . •
7. Drawing will be held at 4:30 p.m. on April 16, 1987 at the IBM PC FAIR Booth.
8. Winners list will be provided by sending request to IBM ACIS, 472 Wheelers
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10. No substitute prizes, awards, or cash equivalents will be given.
11. Winners must supply IBM with IRS Form 1099 information.
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Golden Key took over the project.
Study-A-Thon Chairman Glenn
Lammi said that when USG ran the
event, about 300 participants took
Last year's Study-
$2,636 for Second
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on private funding.
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The Daily Collegian Thursday, April 16, 1987-3
SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) As Amer
icans rushed their income tax forms
into the mail yesterday, many with a
literary bent were putting the final,
heavy-handed touches to grandilo
quent prose to meet the deadline for
the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest.
"From now through Easter, I'm
just going to be reading and shaking
my head," said Scott Rice, the found
er of the contest for the worst writing.
The contest, in its sixth year,
searches out the writer who can come
closest to the turgid prose of Victori
an author Edward George Earle
The overall prize winner, which
should be announced in mid-May,
wins an Apple Mcintosh computer,
Rice said. But it's the glory, not the
prize, no doubt, that motivates such
writers as Kenneth C. Cundy of Ber
keley, Calif., who submitted:
"Something about her reminded
me of Paris perhaps the intoxicat
ing redolence of her Chanel No. 5, or
the sleek, exquisite lines of her Oscar
de la Renta original, or the scale
model of the Eiffel Tower that was
strapped to her shoulder."
IN A MUCI
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