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COMMENTARY: Attacks on Omar must not silence debate

(03/27/19 7:31pm)

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), in recent weeks, has been harshly criticized for tweets she made regarding how lawmakers were influenced by the pro-Israeli lobby. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) threatened punishment against Omar for criticizing Israel. Omar responded to this by tweeting a Puff Daddy lyric, “It’s all about the Benjamins baby.” When she was asked on Twitter who she believes is paying Americans to be pro-Israel she tweeted “AIPAC!”

COMMENTARY: ISIS decline causes debate of citizenship

(03/12/19 4:00am)

The decline of ISIS brought along more security threats and international crises, both long-term, and short-term. The Caliphate was declared over after a series of prolonged losses, leading to both political and economic disasters within itself. In 2017, Iraqi forces reclaimed Mosul, the Caliphate’s most important stronghold, as the Syrian Democratic Forces took back Raqqa, another important city. 

Commentary: Government support does not undermine our philanthropy

(03/12/19 4:00am)

On March 5, The Daily Targum ran an op-ed titled “Solution to Poverty is in Individual Acts.” In it, writer Michael Vespa suggested that poverty in America could be reduced by taxing Americans less so that they can give more to charity because the government “has had no real progress” in combating poverty. But, the article fails to recognize the nuanced nature of charitable giving in the United States, and makes false assumptions about charitable giving.

COMMENTARY: Solution to poverty is in individual acts

(03/05/19 5:00am)

In the era of Bernie Sanders and Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, there is a growing commitment for more government intervention to help the less fortunate. Programs such as food stamps, housing vouchers and a multitude of others exist solely to help the less fortunate, but there have been unsatisfactory results. The consensus in Washington is clear. More and more government programs centered on helping the less fortunate are needed.

COMMENTARY: Media lacks coverage of conflict in Africa

(02/15/19 5:00am)

The year began in turmoil for the recently established Zimbabwean government, as it battles its worst economic crisis to date. The post-Mugabe era, in which President Emmerson Mnangagwa promised he would take a different economic and human rights approach, spiraled downward, with the aid of increased government debt and scarcity of foreign currency such as the U.S. dollar, which the country adopted as its national currency in 2009. This led to failure of the government to reach its national tax revenue, causing an increase in unemployment reaching approximately 90 percent. On top of that, fuel prices skyrocketed, causing public panic and backlash. 

COMMENTARY: Border wall may be immoral but it is definitely unnecessary

(02/05/19 5:00am)

During his campaign, President Donald J. Trump proposed to build a wall at the Mexican-American border. On Dec. 22, 2018, he shut down the government in response to the refusal for wall funds from Congress. More than a month later, he conceded to reopen the government without wall funds, making this the longest shut down in history. During the shutdown, there was considerable opposition to the wall questioning the wall’s morality, notably from Speaker-designate Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.,12) and Pope Francis.

COMMENTARY: Border wall is not inherently immoral

(01/25/19 5:00am)

Over the weekend a priest at my parish, usually known for thoughtful sermons, delivered a rather polarizing talk. As someone who is wary of political discussions in church, I cringed when the priest broached the issue of building a wall along the southern border. He quoted Pope Francis's repeated calls against the wall, urged that American Catholics should stand against this rhetoric as German Catholics should have done during the Holocaust and decried it as wholly immoral. 

ON THE FRONT LINES: South Asian Americans need more representation in media

(01/23/19 5:00am)

In a highly diverse and densely populated area such as Central Jersey, it is easy to overlook discrimination against certain minorities, especially South Asian Americans. Due to their accessibility and proximity to large international airports, big cities near the coasts are home to many South Asian American immigrant families. According to the 2010 United States Census, more than 528,000 Indian Americans lived in California, while more than 292,000 lived in New Jersey. This statistic is on a constant rise, and “Indians have a higher percentage as a ratio of a state's total population in New Jersey,” according to the census. These statistics also do not include all South Asian American populations from countries such as Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka and others. As any Rutgers student knows, South Asian Americans are a prevalent community. So, why are we so often misrepresented and mistreated?

ON THE FRONT LINES: U. ought to replace final exams with functional alternatives

(12/10/18 3:35am)

Finals week is as much of a legend on college campuses as it is a reality. For some, it can make or break their grades for the semester. It is not rare for a class’s only grades to be the midterm and the final, which puts a tremendous amount of pressure on students to perform well on their exams. With the mental health struggles many students face on college campuses, it is time to move away from high-pressure testing and move toward methods of assessment that take pressure off of students and are more practical and relevant to their fields of study.

COMMENTARY: We must confront Anti-semitism directly

(12/07/18 12:12am)

It has been weeks since the heinous Pittsburgh shooting in which 11 Jewish worshippers were massacred in their most sacred quarters by a Nazi terrorist. This past November also marks 80 years since the Night of Broken Glass saw the destruction of Jewish homes, schools and synagogues at the hands of the Nazis who would go on to slaughter 6 million of Europe’s Jews.

COMMENTARY: U. should adopt ‘Chicago Statement’

(12/04/18 11:54pm)

Our dear University has found itself in the news over the past few months. No, not because of our unfortunate athletics record or the unreliability of the bus system, but because of its policies with free speech. From the investigation of James Livingston, a professor in the Department of History, for a Facebook post to the deplatforming of a University-sponsored talk, it is clear that Rutgers problems with free speech are endemic to the great amount of ambiguity and interpretation of present speech codes. Though this might seem to be too complicated to resolve, the University of Chicago’s Report of the Committee on Freedom of Expression has already provided us with a format for the formal commitment that, "guarantees all members of the University community the broadest possible latitude to speak, write, listen, challenge and learn." In response to these recent controversies, the current administration should adopt the so-called “Chicago Statement” to bolster First Amendment protections on campus and facilitate a vibrant culture centered around the free exchange of ideas.

COMMENTARY: Lack of contract agreement is shameful

(12/04/18 12:35am)

Faculty, staff and graduate students have been working at Rutgers without a contract since July. The administration only agreed to bargain in March, and until recently would only do so for eight hours a month. Now, in New Jersey, home of the backroom deal, the administration has announced that it will say nothing substantive, it will ask no questions and it will put forward no proposals unless graduate students are excluded. Not only must graduate students remain silent, which they have been doing in bargaining sessions for the past several months, they are not even allowed to be in the room during bargaining. 

COMMENTARY: Unnatural gas is expanding under our noses

(11/27/18 12:05am)

Please wake up New Brunswick. There is a proposed gas compressor station coming to Franklin Township. You will smell it. You will taste it too, despite the Clean Water Act (CWA) of 1972 which authorizes New Jersey to protect headwaters and wetlands because they filter and flush polluted downstream waters while storing flood water. Its pipelines will cross headwaters and wetlands of the already-contaminated Cheesequake Creek and Tennent Brook. The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) lists more than 1,900 contaminated water bodies in New Jersey. We drink this water.

COMMENTARY: Without proper gun control, fear will continue to engulf Americans

(11/18/18 9:22pm)

I kept looking at one of the open doors of the classroom while the professor was lecturing on Scatter Plot. I feared an armed man could enter at any time and shoot us down to the floor. Then, I was planning in my head what ways to protect myself and alert the professor and my colleagues to the possible danger. While this captured my mind, the lecture became a mere noise in the background. 

COMMENTARY: Midterm elections are more important than people think

(11/05/18 1:31am)

Midterm elections in the United States are misunderstood and undervalued. A critical element to our democracy, midterms can prove to be the changing force in a current presidency, creating new policies and even standstills where the government can shut down as we saw in 2013. Midterms represent a symbolic step in our democracy that can serve to inspire the public to support a new candidate while ensuring incumbents do not shirk their responsibilities or their duties. Even with this information, it is curious that many young adults still choose to ignore the midterm elections in favor of waiting for the “more important” general election.