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Eerie connections between Love Canal, Flint

(02/03/16 2:06am)

Love Canal is a section of Niagara Falls, New York, where toxic chemicals were legally dumped and people suffered as a result. I thought that the situation in Love Canal ended in the 1970s. It seems like eons ago. Politicians were reluctantly involved in getting these people their lives back. Toxic chemicals no longer seeped into the bodies of children and adults. There were no longer cancers caused by the substances. Forty-five years or so ago, we dealt with the ordeal. Or so we thought.

Billionaires hold power in gun control

(12/07/15 3:16am)

Do you remember when a group of activist hedge fund managers successfully waged a brutal coup over at Olive Garden, toppling its longtime CEO Clarence Otis for his appalling crimes against Italian cuisine, including fried lasagna fritta and "Tuscan" hummus? If you're anything like me, you probably avoid Olive Garden like the plague, but the idea of Wall Street using its massive powers for good rather than evil probably warmed the cockles of your hearts.

Simon Deng, former Sudanese slave speaks

(12/06/15 8:59pm)

“In May of this year, I went on a hunger strike for 45 days in front of the White House and the United Nations,” Simon Deng told me on Monday, Nov. 16, as we walked up College Avenue toward Murray Hall, where he would be speaking. He was referring to his seeking of global intervention over the 28 new states that South Sudanese President Salva Kiir Mayardit wishes to implement in South Sudan, the world’s youngest nation. He explained to me that the creation of 28 new states has divided and torn apart many communities that were living peacefully amongst each other for ages, and are now suffering the continuation of war. Simon Deng, a native of southern Sudan and a victim of child slavery, is a leading human rights activist. He now lives in the United States and speaks about his life story.

In loving memory of Ezra Schwartz

(11/24/15 12:45am)

Next year and for the next four years to come, there will be an empty seat here at Rutgers. This past Thursday, Ezra Schwartz, was shot down by a Palestinian gunman when he was sitting in traffic. An 18-year-old boy from Sharon, Massachusetts, Ezra planned to attend the Rutgers Business School next fall, but was spending a gap year in Israel at the Ashreinu Yeshiva in Beit Shemesh, a city North of Jerusalem. In Hebrew, Beit Shemesh means the House of the Sun, and just like the sun, Ezra brought light to everyone that knew him. From Jewish youth groups like USY (United Synagogue Youth) to summer programs like Camp Yavneh, he made a difference in the lives of everyone he met. In fact, there are many people at our very University who knew him personally. After talking to several people on campus, freshman Reuben Dreiblatt, who went to Camp Yavneh as well, was able to sum it up most concisely: “It’s one thing to empathize with a community after a tragedy, but when you can see the face of one of the victims, when you can remember the sound of his voice and understand it will only ever be a memory for the rest of your life? It’s a whole different story.”

Asking for Obama defies Rice protests

(11/24/15 12:49am)

It is interesting that the faculty and students are so eager to push for President Obama as the commencement speaker for Rutgers 250th class. Not two years ago, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was invited to speak at commencement, but after faculty and student protests, she withdrew. Those protesters accused her of war crimes, supporting the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, indefinite detention and former President George W. Bush's drone program. Instead of addressing the validity of these claims, I will offer a few comparisons.

Missalloation of U. funds leaves classes lacking, sports proser

(11/19/15 9:16pm)

Why must Rutgers always snatch defeat from the jaws of victory? We are used to scandals involving football (remember Pernetti and Rice? Floodgate? The five players arrested for assault?). Similarly, we have grown accustomed to investigative reports confirming what we all know: The engine for runaway tuition is an outlandishly inflated and unaccountable upper administration (remember the 2007 N.J. state report of "Vulnerable to Abuse" that included Rutgers? Millions in fraudulent billing of Medicare by the medical school? An affair and drunk driving by Rutgers' previous president?) But neither the athletic program nor the administration has been successful by any objective standard, so in a sense we aren't surprised to see corruption accompany mediocrity.

Practice of whaling is harmful to ecosystem

(11/13/15 12:43am)

Whales are a vital part of our ecosystem, and harming their population has had a snowball effect on our environment. In 1982, the International Whaling Commission enforced a moratorium on whaling. This moratorium has not stopped some countries from continuing their practices of whaling. They say the killing of the whales are for scientific research and should be allowed. Therefore, whaling should not be completely shut down as this is an important practice in some cultures. Rather, we should incorporate a type of tagging and registering system that would be run by an international committee. This system would require that every whale that is proved to be used for scientific purposes be relinquished to the committee.

Negative reaction to new Starbucks cups devalues Christmas

(11/13/15 12:42am)

Starbucks Coffee's removal of Christmas decorations from their cups, making them plain red and the #MerryChristmasStarbucks campaign, has caused a lot of controversy. To be completely honest, I am glad Starbucks removed the Christmas decorations from their cups because I feel those Christmas decorations only represent the Christmas commercialism, not Christmas as in the birth of Jesus. As a Christian, I don't celebrate Christmas by having decorations, presents and treats. I celebrate Christmas because it is the birth of Jesus and I have fun with my loving family. I'm quite disgusted about #MerryChristmasStarbucks and everything it is doing in response to Starbucks' decision about their cups. In fact, the actions they are committing against Starbucks are insulting the Christian faith and making things much worse for themselves. If I was in Starbucks, I would just walk in, order my coffee and have kindness, courtesy and respect to the other customers and baristas, even if they have a bad attitude toward me. I'm not saying ban all Christmas decorations, but people shouldn't get so caught up in the Christmas decorations and commercialism without knowing what Christmas is truly about. I'm saying this to defend the peaceful and loving Christians in America while stopping all the Christians who use their religion to inflict fear into their friends and family members, and punish them severely for their sins. I am also not forcing anyone to convert to Christianity, but to teach people my faith and help them understand and appreciate my culture as well as other cultures too. I hope this can get spread because I want people to hear words from a Christian who inspires others and forgives those who don't believe.

U. history committee on disenfranchised, enslaved populations

(11/10/15 8:53pm)

Rutgers University begins today the yearlong celebrations that will culminate next year in the 250th anniversary of the University’s founding in 1766 in New Brunswick. Throughout the next 12 months, special events and programs will examine and celebrate the University’s revolutionary pursuit of teaching, research and service.

College is more about valuable education, not monetary investment

(10/21/15 1:22am)

The demise of the “student” must surely be near when education is now defined as a “purchase.” Indeed, this definition is merely a signpost of the problem's deeper roots. We, “students,” are not students anymore. We are customers. When the value of an experience lasting several years is calculated by predicted future income, or when the inherent worth of a field of study is now measured by its respective “job market,” the end of learning is clearly waving its sad flag.

Blind eye turned to Carroo’s violation of U. code of conduct

(10/09/15 12:06am)

If the average Rutgers student was to be accused of plagiarizing a paper for a class, he or she would be subjected to Rutgers’ plagiarism policy: “They could be suspended from the University for a minimum of one semester with the notation of ‘academic disciplinary suspension’ permanently placed on their transcript, not to mention failing the class and having to start all over again.” A University investigation of the student would take place and if found guilty, said student would face the consequences.

Professor Ward ideas on U. athletics prove to be misguided, simple

(10/09/15 12:12am)

Professor Ward’s comments in the Sept. 25 Daily Targum shocked me. His opinions article started out mistaken, and ended up horrible. He begins by complaining that Rutgers is known by its mascot. Fellow Big Ten member Michigan is known as the Wolverines, but also as one of the premier research institutions in the world, ranked No. 29 nationally by US News. The UCLA Bruins were No. 23, The University of Virginia Cavaliers were No. 26, and the University of North Carolina Tarheels were No. 30. Just because ones does not approve of the non-academia focused public recognizing a school for its mascot, does not mean it’s shameful.