The Central New Jersey Home News from New Brunswick, New Jersey on September 12, 1994 · 5
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The Central New Jersey Home News from New Brunswick, New Jersey · 5

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New Brunswick, New Jersey
Issue Date:
Monday, September 12, 1994
Page:
5
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THE HOME NEWS MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 12, 1994 A5 WORLD & NATION Growth parley was war of words 'The Associated Press - CAIRO, Egypt Persistent disputes over words and phrases point to the U.N. population con ference's biggest obstacle: finding common ground among nations with different languages, religions and customs. The last battles today on the conference s Program of Action will be over migration and repro ductive health and even the definition of family. All were delayed because the delegates spent most of last week debating a single paragraph of the document that dealt with unsafe abortion, a passage the Vatican strongly opposed and still has not endorsed. The program, ' a blueprint for population control over the next 20 years, must be completed in time to go before the convention at its closing session tomorrow. Unlike a treaty or convention, the program will be a consensus document that recommends pro grams but leaves it up to individ ual nations to adopt them. Forging that consensus, however, has not been easy. Volunteer work touted by Clinton The Associated Press ABDERDEEN, Md. Presi dent Clinton, worshiping in a mil itary chapel here yesterday, thapked the first recruits to his na tional service program for fulfil ling "our God-given responsibility to serve our fellow human beings" The president and first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton attended services at the Aberdeen Proving Ground, a weapons facility in central Maryland. The visit was designed to promote the president's AmeriCorps initiative, a sweeping collection of old and new community service programs offering college education to its workers. ". The program formally commences today when Clinton plans to swear in nearly 15,000 AmeriCorps recruits, capping his 2-year-old campaign for the service. Clinton spoke from the pulpit to a congregation of about 300. "'"This is. a special service that reaffirms our relationship to our God and our God-given responsibility to serve our fellow human beings," he said. 1 L Rift widens in Crimea The Associated Press SIMFEROPOL, Ukraine Crimea's president disbanded parliament yesterday, claiming all power on the restive peninsula for himself. Outraged lawmakers accused him of engineering a coup. The specter of two rival government branches claiming ultimate authority renewed fears of violence in the volatile Black Sea province, home of the powerful Black Sea fleet and important Russian military bases. Pope urges peace in Croatia The Associated Press ZAGREB, Croatia A frail but determined Pope John Paul II pushed ahead yesterday on his pil-grimage of reconciliation to the former Yugoslavia, urging Croa-tians to make peace with Muslims and Serbs. A crowd of at least 800,000 people turned out for an open-air Mass at a race track in Zagreb, capital of predominantly Roman Catholic Croatia, and the only stop on what the pope had planned as a wider tour to help heal the wounds of three years of bloodshed in former Yugoslavia. Schools' choice: Books or bricks Report cites crumbling classrooms The Associated Press WASHINGTON The broken doors, unlighted exits and other fire code violations that delayed the start of school for 82,000 Washington public school students are not confined to the nation's capital. With a stock of aging school buildings and tight budgets, school officials throughout the nation have been forced to make a choice. "It's almost a guns-or-but-ter situation; it's bricks or books," said Paul Houston, executive director of the American Association of School Administrators. In most cases, the books appear to have won. But sometimes those decisions backfire. Last year, asbestos kept New York City schools closed for the first 11 days of the new school year. In Washington, School Superintendent Franklin Smith said classes would begin today, three days late, because of a judge's order that any school with life-threatening fire code violations could not open. In 74 percent of large urban school districts, the average school building is more than 60 years old. In their 1992 report "School-house in the Red," the school administrators said old buildings . were a particular concern in the Southeast. Overall, the report said, 3 1 percent of the nation's schools were built before World War II U.S. again warns of imminent invasion The Associated Press WASHINGTON Administra tion officials repeated yesterday tnat tne ciock is ticKing ior Haiti s military leaders but appeared to differ on whether they must leave the country to avoid a U.S. -led in vasion. Secretary of State Warren Christopher also stressed that U.S. credibility is at stake in restoring democracy in Haiti, and that President Clinton is moving ahead with military plans despite the opposition of most Americans and mem bers of Congress to sending U.S. forces into Haiti. "Sometimes a president has a re sponsibility. He has to do what is in the nation s interest, Christo pher said on NBC's "Meet the Press. Christopher and U.N. Ambassa dor Madeleine Albright made clear, again, the administration's message that it has run out of patience with the military leaders who ousted President Jean-Ber-trand Aristide from power in a September 1991 coup. But there appeared some dis crepancy over whether Gen. Raoul Cedras and other top orh- cials would have to leave Haiti be fore the United States would call off its invasion plans. The restored democracy could deal with Cedras if he stays, Christopher said. Albright, however, said Cedras and his associates "have to leave. That has been made very clear. We have delivered the message." Christopher also strongly denied that the administration hoped to make political gains by staging an invasion shortly before the No vember congressional elections. Let me tell you that those charges are just pure baloney. There is just no partisanship in this situation." Sen. lohn McCain, R-Ariz., a leading critic of the proposed use of U.S. force in Haiti, said he agreed that Clinton would not launch an invasion for political reasons. But he warned that Christo pher's prediction that most U.S. forces would be replaced by a U.N. peacekeeping force within a few months were overly optimistic. and that 43 percent were constructed in the 1950s and 1960s. The report estimated that some 5 million children attend schools in substandard buildings. It cites buildings that are too old and overcrowded, too hot or too cold, need more insulation or window repairs or have faulty electrical or mechanical systems. A researcher at Georgetown University examining Washington public schools in 1991 found that children who attended classes in schools in poor condition had lower test scores than those at schools in fair or excellent condition. Education is traditionally a state and local responsibility, and the federal government has not played a significant role in the area of education infrastructure. Looking at the federal budget for the 1989-90 school year, Sen. Carol Moseley-Braun found that it included only 512 million for education infrastructure. That's one-thousandth of the total spending that year for elementary and secondary education. The crime bill passed by Congress last month includes nearly $ 1 0 billion for prisons. "We can build classrooms instead of prison cells, and enhance our society's return on its investment a thousandfold," the Illinois Democrat said last April when she introduced legislation that would authorize J 600 million to help schools repair buildings. WCTC 1450 AM Has A New Morning Talk Show! WCTC....Central Jersey's NewsTalk radio station is very proud to announce a major change.... For the first time in many years, WCTC has a new morning talk It's about time! The "New" Morning Talk Show GARY R'NEL & WALT PERCY Monday-Friday 5:30 AM -10:00 AM If you live in Central Jersey, this is your morning talk program to stay informed about "local" matters that concern you and where you live! Be a part of Central Jersey's exclusive morning talk radio program. Set your radio dial to 1450AM tomorrow morning and talk to Gary R'Nel and Walt Percy about what's on your mind. Call Gary GAME: Mortal Kombat Continued from page Al Sega Genesis, Super Nintendo, Game Gear and Game Boy was backed by a S 10 million marketing blitz that included 45-second previews in theaters nationwide, warning fans that "nothing, nothing can prepare you." Parents, though, may be better prepared for Mortal Kombat II which . features fight-to-the-death martial arts contests between mythical characters than they were for the original, which came out a year ago and has sold 6 million copies worldwide. That game and others like it whose violent themes were enhanced by lifelike, digitized human characters sparked a firestorm of protests on Capitol Hill and threats of federal regulation if the multibillion-dollar video game industry did not start policing itself. After a series of Senate hearings on the topic, manufacturers recently agreed on a voluntary, uniform rating system similar to Hollywood's. ' ; The new system, which will employ an independent ratings council, will not begin until mid-November, so it does not yet apply to Mortal Kombat II. Nor will it be in place when the next big video game featuring graphic violence "Doom Ik Hell on Earth," a follow-up to a game that has been hugely popular among PC users hits stores on Oct. 10. But the manufacturers of MKII Nintendo and Sega have voluntarily included advisories on their packages warning that the game may not be appropriate for players under 17. (Sega recom 1450 AM CentralJersey's Information Source & Walt tomorrow morning! mended the original version for children 13 and over, while the Nintendo version, which had less gore and flatter sales, included no advisory.) So this time around, said Parker Page, president of the Children's Television Resource and Education Center in San Francisco, parents are getting more information to help them decide whether their children should play the game. "While I'm sorry more dollars aren't going toward less violent video games, at least consumers know what they're getting into," he said. The new game, which its makers Acclaim Entertainment Inc. of Oyster Bay, N.Y. spent more than S50 million developing, promises more characters, better performance and more "fatality moves" that allow accomplished players to "finish" off their vanquished foes by severing their heads, ripping out their spinal cords or electrocuting them, among other options. The Sega and Nintendo versions are identical to the arcade version of the game. With the previous game, only Sega's home versions matched the arcade's gore content, and then only with a not-so-secret code. But not all the enhancements in MKII are gory, pointed out Acclaim spokeswoman Allyne Mills. The victors can also opt to give their adversary a gift, like a bunch of balloons or a cake, or utilize another function that will their foes into a baby. "It's the same graphics, which are still somewhat cartoonish," she said. "You're not talking about a technology that looks like movies yet." Why is the game so attractive? show host.. ..in fact, it's.a complete new "morning team" with a "new focus"... Central Jersey Issues & Fun! ft You will also hear all the information you need: Central Jersey traffic & weather every 10 minutes at the 5's Local & National News Sports & Business updates Extensive local information & fun. Just for Central Jersey! II sells "They put blood ; in it,'' said 1 1 -year-old Scott Yurchenco of the Somerset section of Franklin, As Yurchenco skillfully played the game at Toys R Us in East Brunswick, huge splashes; of scarlet punched into the electronic air. ;.. "We've decided to forgo games that are primarily about fighting,',' Yurchenco's mother, Ingrid Yurchenco. "These games seem to have no other goal than beating people up." At the Electronics Boutique in Woodbridge Center, a clerk who declined to give his namcsaid, "Mostly I see kids saying, 'Oh, great!' and the parents rolling their eyes" but purchasing the game anyway. Acclaim expects to sell more than 2 million copies of the game in its first few weeks, and total sales have been estimated at J 1 50 million by year's end. The home version of the original Mortal Kombat has exceeded $300 million in sales so far, according to published reports, making it one of the biggest hits in video game; history. The success of the first game-spawned a whole line of licensed products, including comic books, -action figures, trading cards, T-shirts and a movie now being . filmed and set for release next, spring or summer. , ... And it is unlikely players will have to wait too long for Mortal Kombat III. "It's probably a pretty good bet that there will be another addition ' to the family," said Roger Sharpe, director of marketing for Midway ' Manufacturing Co. in Chicago, makers of the arcade versions. ! Shannon Mullen is an Asbury Park Press staff writer. Home News staff writer Sarah Wood contributed to this story. 545-WCTC (545-9282)

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