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Ordinarily, politicians and pundits cannot be held responsible, but in this instance, that cannot be the case. The worst anti-Semitic massacre in U.S. history was driven by a hoax inflamed by a president and fanned by a politically-motivated apparatus of politicians and pundits to win a midterm election.
In the spirit of Halloween, it is due time to start getting excited about costumes — or at least the costumes that do not make you into a walking symbol of racism.
Anyone who attends Rutgers knows that as a community, we value acceptance and inclusivity very highly — we want to protect our fellow students from hate and prejudice. At the same time, being that we are a major public research institution, another one of our fundamental values is based in academic freedom and the spread of ideas. But in recent times, it seems those two values seemingly tend to clash.
When seeking to attain a position as a faculty member at Harvard Law School in the mid-1980s, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) formally notified administrators that she has Native American ancestry. At an event honoring the contributions of Native Americans during the World Wars, Trump insensitively referred to the senator as “Pocahontas.” In July, the president said that he would pledge $1 million to a charity of Warren’s choice if she were to release a DNA test that, "shows (she is) an Indian." Originally Warren intended to ignore Trump’s challenge, but on Oct. 15 she revealed that she had gone through with a DNA test and released the results to the public, which showed that she does, in fact, have some Native American blood — emphasis being on some.
On Nov. 6, New Jersey voters will answer the call to uphold their civic duties and reinforce the representative nature of our government. Not only will voters have the opportunity to use their inalienable right to form a government based on their will and consent by electing representatives, they will also be asked to decide the fate of a 500 million dollar bond for New Jersey schools.
The organization known as TED, which stands for Technology, Entertainment and Design, is a nonprofit devoted to ideas worth spreading. Twice a year, the organization holds TED Conferences, where they invite some of the world’s most profound thinkers and creators. As a subset of the overarching organization, there are TEDx programs, including one here at Rutgers, which too aims to promote ideas worth spreading in more of a local and self-organized community setting. On Oct. 15, TEDxRutgers held their annual "Speechcraft" event, where 10 students gave talks about their own ideas and experiences.
In November, Republican Bob Hugin will challenge Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) for his office, and all 12 of the House seats will be on the ballot. All 12 seats being open means that, depending on who gets out and votes, there could be some important changes to the state’s legislature. On the ballot, New Jersey voters will be asked about their approval of things like protecting students from lead exposure, expanding county and vocational college programs and the state borrowing $500 million to ramp up security in public schools.
New Jersey lawmakers are confident that a final bill proposing the legalization of marijuana will be passed before Halloween. Legislators have their eye on Oct. 29 as the day this big step will be taken. Though there may still be some issues to iron out regarding things like the level of taxation that should be attributed to the substance, it seems we are quickly approaching a big and positive change.
Some of Rutgers’ main values are diversity and inclusion, and the encouragement of communal support no matter one’s creed or color — we want to protect members of our community against hate and prejudice. As an institution of higher education and advanced research, though, our community also seeks to promote academic freedom and serious intellectual discourse. At this point in time, it seems clear that those two values are clashing.
Lisa Daftari, an investigative journalist and political analyst, is scheduled to speak at Rutgers on Oct. 16. at an event called “Radicalism on College Campuses." Daftari is a first generation American from Iran whose work focuses on Middle Eastern foreign affairs and counter-terrorism. Though by no means unqualified, her views are undoubtedly controversial and are interpreted by some as being hateful toward people of Muslim faith. As a result of this view, a Rutgers student recently started a petition to prevent Daftari from coming to the University to speak. By now, the petition now has more than 1,000 signatures.
The University is currently attempting to deal with issues arising from a persistent infestation of mold in the Psychology Department building on Busch campus. The issue, which some professors say has been going on for years, has forced professors to relocate from their offices, teaching spaces and labs and into new buildings. Included in the affected spaces, which are numerous, is the administrative office for Rutgers’ recently established New Jersey Autism Center of Excellence. This current issue is just one example of the consequences of seemingly neglectful and ineffective practices by the University to curb problems with infrastructure.
Less than 8 hours following NJ Advance Media publishing an article exposing Rutgers’ lack of action on certain sexual assault cases, University President Robert L. Barchi sent out a statement condemning the University’s policies. An investigative article written by Susan K. Livio and Kelly Heyboer recounted the experiences of several different victims of sexual harassment and assault that have come forward recently. One of these victims is Kristy King, a former graduate student at Rutgers, who claimed that Professor Stephen Eric Bronner, “sat across from me in a chair, too close. As we talked, he ran his hand all the way up the inside of my thigh.”
Though it may appear as though we have an unlimited supply of it, the world is arguably quickly approaching a global water crisis. As has been examined with regard to individual regions of the world, a water crisis can have ripple effects that are severely detrimental to all facets of a society. It has become apparent that climate change plays a sizable role in the prominence of water issues, and could lead to humanitarian crises of unsettling proportions. But what really is the extent of the issue, and is there anything a community like Rutgers’ can do to help?
For 50 years, Rutgers has been offering students financial help through the New Jersey Educational Opportunity Fund (EOF), and this week the University is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the program by hosting a commemoration ceremony, TED talks from EOF alumni and a celebration dinner. The fund exists to provide financial aid and other forms of support, such as counseling, tutoring and developmental coursework to students who come from backgrounds with educational or economic disadvantages.
The University’s Strategic Plan for “the new Rutgers” calls for an incremental increase in international and out-of-state students. As of right now, the University has the lowest number of out-of-state students in the Big Ten at approximately 18 percent. The plan is to gradually increase this number in the next few years until we reach the goal of 25 percent out-of-state students.
The Center for American Progress conducted a study regarding sex education in America's public schools. Said study found that the majority of students enrolled in these schools do not know how to effectively discern between healthy and unhealthy behaviors in relationships. The study found that only 24 states and the District of Columbia actually mandate sexual education, and only eight of those states, California, Hawaii, New Jersey, North Carolina, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and West Virginia, require discussion of sexual assault and the idea of consent within those classes.
In 2017, the Paradise Papers revealed that Rutgers has issued an irredeemable check to its students, a check that has come back marked insufficient funds. Rutgers was listed among the universities investing in EnCap Energy Capital Fund IX-C, a hedge fund based in the Cayman Islands that primarily invests in oil and gas companies, The Guardian reported.
If you use the internet, it is overwhelmingly likely that you have at some point encountered a meme. Memes have become an extremely common way for internet users to easily transfer information, most of the time with humorous undertones, to one another. The popularity of memes is somewhat of an enigma even to those who are familiar with them. The term meme was apparently first brought about in 1976 by Evolutionary Biologist Richard Dawkins to describe a spread of cultural information.
As of November 2016, approximately 62 million millennials were of voting-age in the United States, surpassing the 57 million members of Generation X and quickly approaching the 70 million Baby Boomers. The peak of eligible voters from the Baby Boomer generation was 73 million in 2004, but since then the group’s size has been declining. At the same time, the millennial electorate keeps growing and will predictably be the largest voting-eligible group soon. But simply being eligible to vote is one thing — actually getting out to vote is another. Millennials are known to be less likely to actually vote than older groups. But if mobilized, young people obviously have the ability to become a seriously powerful electoral force.
Technically, at this point in the month, there has been an average of more than one crime alert per week — which does not necessarily give us an accurate idea of how many crimes are actually occurring, being that some additional crimes may simply not be reported or may not appear in Rutgers crime alerts. Either way, it is clear that the crime experienced by students stems from both people affiliated with the University and those not affiliated. Because the seemingly constant rate of crime involves both Rutgers affiliates and New Brunswick residents, there is no simple fix on either end.