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Louis Ruziecki made clear in his column, “Defenders of Fidel Castro are in denial about his tyranny,” that he is no fan of the now-deceased Cuban dictator, Fidel Castro. Rightfully so, as Castro has demonstrated in his years that suppression of art and political thought were crimes against the state. It is certain that Castro imprisoned and executed many dissidents, although the numbers range from 200 to 20,000 people. To label Fidel Castro a tyrant is a reasonable action. However, should one follow this criterion for identifying tyranny, it ought to be applied to the whole, rather than a portion of the world.
What do you do about underperforming or poorly managed public school districts? How do you ensure the educational and developmental needs of children are being met? In an attempt to hold school districts accountable for fiscal problems, the 1987 N.J. state takeover law was enacted, granting the state government power to authorize partial or full intervention of local public school districts in distressed situations. N.J.'s state takeover law was the first of its kind — 28 states have followed suit with similar bills.
With the rising tensions brought by the incoming Donald J. Trump presidency and the United States’ imminent impact on the rest of the world due to the hyper-connectivity of globalization, it is not a surprise that scholars are looking at many ways to fully understand what the hell is and isn't about to happen in the world we live in today.
As this is the last column I will write this semester, I wanted to address an issue very close to home. Many times, when I identify myself as an advocate for women’s rights and feminism, a lot of people tend to find this in contradiction with my affiliation with the Islamic faith. For a lot of people, “feminist” and “Muslim” are two terms that just do not seem to fit right with each other. Why is this?
The world is rid of one less tyrannical dictator with the long awaited and deserved death of Cuban dictator Fidel Castro.
The events that have occurred surrounding the Dakota Access Pipeline Project (DAPL) over the past few months have been increasingly dehumanizing and downright terrifying. The kind of precedent it is setting for the way future government officials and corporations deal with issues surrounding indigenous rights and protection of water sources is a haunting one.
The internet wants to tell us that 2016 has been the worst year in human history. And although some pretty terrible things have occurred since last January, is it too absurd to think this is just us millennials being melodramatic? This isn’t too far-fetched of an idea.
Now that the presidential election is over and some time has passed, I think it is time to dive into the numbers to see exactly what took place on Nov. 8. How did the overwhelming favorite to win the election, former Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, lose in a historic upset to billionaire real-estate mogul, now President-elect, Donald Trump? What did the pundits and pollsters miss? A cursory analysis of Election Day can provide solutions to some of those questions. Surely it is impossible to analyze such a vast undertaking in one column, so I will split my analysis into two parts: One centering on the media and polls, and the other on economics and demographics.
When I see an interesting or just plain pretty sight, my first instinct is to appreciate it. I let the sight, the composition of my surroundings, the colors and the daylight flood over me as I take it all in. I feel this every time I go somewhere new, savoring Venice's canals and architecture and Paris's Eiffel Tower and mood. I feel it every single time I'm wandering by the River Thames and my eyes blink, opening to focus on the structure of London's Elizabeth Tower. Once I have had all my initial enjoyment, my next instinct is to capture a photo of it all.
I must say that I do not intend to normalize President-elect Trump’s divisive rhetoric by discussing his potential foreign policy team and policy blueprints. This is the reality we will have so it would be foolish to not discuss it. Before I am told to stop normalizing Trump, give Justin Trudeau a ring and tell him to stop normalizing Fidel Castro. I’ll wait. (I won’t, we all know that’ll never happen).
President-elect Donald Trump’s appointment of Stephen Bannon as senior counselor and chief West Wing strategist has made waves in the past couple of weeks. The choice itself isn’t too shocking, as much of Trump’s rhetoric is ideologically in line with what is now being coined as the "alt-right movement." The citizenry voted for a particular kind of messaging, affirming a right-wing source of media from a decade of unchecked radio shows and online journalism. Breitbart News, in particular, has been given a lot of credit for giving Trump the push and platform he needed to win the Republican nomination and the presidency.
The Dakota Access Pipeline has been a subject of major controversy and has come under intense public protest. This pipeline has become a hot topic on social media, with different outlets promoting propaganda that it threatens both the environment and the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe’s sacred lands. These claims, however, are inherently misleading and the use of memes and short videos allow these false narratives to be circulated.
Last week I walked into what has been the saving grace for recent black films. “Moonlight” is a biopic drama about the tumultuous life of the director, Barry Jenkins, and how he navigates growing up in poverty alongside understanding his sexuality. The protagonist does not go by “Barry” in the film -- instead his mother, bullies and lovers all know him as Chiron.
"KONY 2012" marked the rise of social media awareness campaigns. Subsequently, when a crisis gains enough attention, people would change their Facebook profile pictures to draw attention to an issue or to show solidarity for marginalized communities, a social media practice that’s still done today. With the emergence of social media activism, critics say that civic engagement has deteriorated into the limited engagement in the social media sphere, which is called slacktivism. Oxford dictionary defines it as: “Actions performed via the Internet in support of a political or social cause but regarded as requiring little time or involvement, e.g. signing an online petition or joining a campaign group on a social media website or application.” But in a time where much of our attention is spent in digital spaces, digital activism is both potentially effective and necessary.
In these dark times, one can expect little from their government.
It’s only been 13 days since the election results rolled in — 13! It feels like the world was turned on its head and has not been balanced ever since. Within the past two weeks, we have all felt a noticeable shift in our own and others’ behavior. In that time, I have managed to feel every emotion associated with unhappiness and anger one can think of and cycle through most of the stages of grief. Those who will be undeniably affected by Donald Trump being chosen as the President-elect have felt some variation of the same spectrum of emotion.
Mental health issues and illnesses are rarely spotlighted within the Muslim American community. Of course not all Muslim people suffer from mental health issues, but the truth is, many do and it’s very prevalent. Many Muslim Americans suffer from issues due to the occurrences in their lives, just like other groups — but many have had an increase in rates of depression, anxiety and other mental disorders due to the active discrimination and bigotry they face.
There we have it.
Just one year ago, I was in the midst of my junior year of college and I made the decision that I had to take a semester abroad. This was something I tossed around in my mind quite a bit, but this was also something that I never properly researched and acted upon. It always seemed nice. I imagine I am like so many other Rutgers students in this sense.
In a previous column I wrote “No matter who wins, half of the nation will be furious” — I think this point has held true. Donald Trump has won the presidency of the United States of America. Yes, a reality TV-star is now the face of the free world, and, in retrospect, Flava Flav or The Situation would’ve probably been more fun. The one thing on everyone's mind now is whether or not the cabinet will act as the newest contestants for The Apprentice. I feel an overwhelming sense of existential dread coming on, but that could also just be allergies or gas or the crippling fear that my country has abandoned me. I’ll keep you posted. The biggest surprise of this election did not come Tuesday night, but instead Wednesday morning when I woke to find that the trees were, in fact, not ablaze, the rivers did not run red with blood nor were the dead rising from their graves. Lamest rapture ever. I’m not sure which is sadder — the fact that this country has a demagogue in the highest office of power, or the fact that the people elected this demagogue democratically. For the first time since Trump announced his candidacy, I feel as though I’m the one who's out of touch. If roughly 25 percent of the nation wants to build a wall on the southern border, feels existentially threatened by the terrorism of radicals and finally pins all of our economic turmoil on the actions of immigrants, maybe I should as well? Just kidding, I shouldn't, and neither should you.