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With Halloween fast approaching and “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” release coming, many people are excited to dress up as Star Wars characters. One costume, and character, that has always held my respect is Darth Vader, because he is, by far, the chief of the bad guys. Not to mention that swagger and that chic style.
As October starts to roll out, Halloween is upon us and we’re all riled up and in the spirit of spookiness. Whether we’ve been going to haunted houses, watching horror/thriller movies or helping our friend pick out a really creepy costume, we’re all in the mood to get a little scared. And it’s all for fun.
Too often, when people talk about sexual assault, they talk about the victim in terms of their relation to a man. They mention how the victim is “someone’s daughter” or “someone’s sister,” as if that somehow adds depth to the situation, when in reality it does the exact opposite.
We’ve heard the stories, watched the videos and sat through sex-ed classes. Consent is sexy. Consent is good. Consent is everything when it comes to having sex. But, it is only consent if the person is sober.
I’ve spent my entire life going to church. Both of my parents are ministers. My mother is on the board of directors for our church and my father teaches bible class. I’m a minister for the youth group at my church and, obviously, I’m a practicing Christian. Because of this, no one every really questions my actions or beliefs, when it comes to my faith—but, many people, who believe differently than me are subjected to bigotry and prejudice, simply for their beliefs. I think it’s time that we better educated people about the many different religions and, hopefully, spread some religious tolerance around.
The other day, while I was sitting in class, someone came in and sat in front of me. I overheard him complain to his friend about how his shower got way too hot that morning and his friend smiled and said, “First world problems,” and they both laughed. Now, I’m sure that we have all used this term before, but should it be used?
In first Democratic primary debate last Tuesday, Bernie Sanders declared to Hillary Clinton that “we’re sick and tired of hearing about your damn emails!” Now, ironically enough, more news has surfaced about these emails that suggest that former president George W. Bush and others may have committed treason. This doesn’t come as a surprise to many, since we’ve known for quite some time that the government lied about the presence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.
I wrote last week that I don’t think anything will stop the growing desensitization of violence in America. Like a drug, we keep having to up the dosage, up the intensity, in order to have any sort of reaction to what we consume in film and gaming culture. However, while I gave this ultimatum, there is, in my opinion, one potential scenario that would change this damaging progression. What if violence were an everyday aspect of our lives?
I am vehemently prochoice. Every woman in the world should have the right to an abortion for any reason. It is her body and no one else can decide what they should do with their own body. However, prior to an abortion, there is one thing a woman should think about before she has one—whether or not she really wants it.
“Nine million children die every year before the age of five,” says American author, neuroscientist and philosopher, Sam Harris. Most of which are caused by conditions that could easily be “prevented or treated with access to simple, affordable interventions,” according to the World Health Organization. This is a toll that any empathetic and compassionate human being would be saddened to hear of, yet to those who believe in the word of God, it is something we must simply accept as “His will.” As someone who considers himself to be a generally decent human being, I look at this number and feel disgusted by the thought that a supposedly all-loving God would allow this many people to suffer and die so young. It seems to me, then, that even the most basic of human morality is superior to that of religion.
Bernie Sanders took the victory in Tuesday night’s Democratic debate. The moment he walked out, the whole crowd roared and cheered and whistled for the independent Senator from Vermont. Although it could be said that he was preaching to the choir, considering the makeup of the audience, I think this excitement says something about his campaign—people are ready to start over, politically. The mainstream population is done with politicians with crocodile smiles, false promises and B.S. kowtowing to big money.
When it comes to violence in entertainment, American culture is lost in the depths of a rapid downward spiral. This is most notable in film and video-game culture. Their content has graphics, which—to their artistic credit—are becoming more realistic with the advancement of technology. However, it is this very realism that creates the shift between depictions of violence in the past and those of the present. As they become more “well done” and “epic” they are attracting more popular attention and are thus more ordinary than ever before.
One of the most challenging parts of coming to college is finding friends. As a transfer student and commuter, it was challenging for me to find my place here at first. I was trapped in the same routine of not really talking to anyone in class and going straight home afterwards, all while feeling deprived of the fun that the college experience was supposed to be about. I couldn’t help but think things would never change.
Often, picking a major can seem daunting. You’re straight out of high school, 18 years old and you’re expected to choose what path you want in life despite barely having experienced it yet. But you need to make sure you make the right decision.
There is a desire across the nation, by people who do not use its services, to defund Planned Parenthood. While some states are slowly pulling funding from the organization, there has been rise in the Senate and House of Representatives in Washington, DC to decrease all federal funding of the organization. The reasons why Republicans want it to be shut down is solely due to the abortion services the organization provides and absolutely nothing else. Their stance seems to be that, because they are “pro-life,” they cannot support an organization that provides women with abortions they may very much need.
HPV can be harmless in many instances, but in some women who contract it, it can develop into cervical cancer. And while only women can develop cervical cancer as a result of HPV, males can develop it and pass it on to their sexual partners and, since the disease takes years to develop and cause any problems, they might not even know that they have it. Because of this, women should get the HPV vaccine.
I think EMU orientation should include mandatory review of the basic lessons or life rules we all learned in kindergarten (if we attended kindergarten in this country). Since there are plenty of international students that did not live here when they were five years old and, since some of us haven’t been in kindergarten in more years than we care to count, review of these rules should be mandatory for all students (especially commuter students) upon entry to EMU. That will ensure everyone knows the behavior expected of them (even in the parking lots).
Last week I was among many other people who saw the viral video of a trans teen’s mom giving her her first prescription of hormone therapy. The mother does not explicitly say in the video what she has given her daughter after asking, “Do you know what it is?” as the girl reads the box she pulls out of a black bag. But the first site I saw the video shared by on social media, Hello Giggles, staff writer Natalie Southwick said that, “Erica Maison filmed a short video of her surprising her transgender daughter Corey with her first dose of hormone therapy… 14-year-old Corey had been waiting for more than two years to start hormone therapy.” Stories like this and the emotional videos tied with them warm many of our hearts—especially those of us who live in more progressive areas, like Ann Arbor. Unfortunately, this kind of parental acceptance is not the norm and I believe, in some cases, many LGBTQ+ minors will receive backlash from society’s move towards equality.
294. That’s the number of mass shootings, or “incidents where four or more people are killed or injured by gunfire,” that have happened this year, according to Christopher Ingraham of The Washington Post. 294 mass shootings, out of 274 days, as of October 1. When the number of shootings exceeds the number of days that have past, it is absolutely clear that there is a problem—not just with gun regulations and safety, but with the society that induces and perpetuates such violence through its lack of reasearch and education on the topic.
If the entire world lived like the citizens of the United States of America, it would require nearly five earths, as cited by Patrick James of Co.EXIST. Despite this staggering number, we are trying to aid others in moving up to our style of life. Development projects span across Northern Africa, giving the false promise that they can one day live lives like Americans if we can fix the underdevelopment caused by old European customs like the slave trade, as pointed to and addressed in more detail by Walter Rodney in “How Europe Underdeveloped Africa.”