GIVE AND TAKE
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GIVE AND TAKE
Language is important to communicate our thoughts, ideas, inspire actions and more. We have the responsibility to choose our words as we choose our actions, a lesson that President Donald J. Trump has yet to learn. Despite the freedoms bestowed upon us by the First Amendment, our words have consequences. The phrase "Language Matters" is something we have heard throughout our lives to remind ourselves that the words we use are important during our interactions. For this reason, it is crucial for us to learn languages other than English to communicate with different people in our globalized world. One such language is Arabic.
Every three years, the Organization for Economic and Co-operation Development (OECD) administers an exam that tests 15-year-olds on their performance in mathematics, science and reading. The Program for International Student Assessment ( PISA) evaluates students in 72 different countries and will be taken next in 2018.
It is always weirdly "meta" when a news organization is in the news itself. So it could be alarming to see The Wall Street Journal in every headline except for its own.
Recently, the United States Marine Corps has been under scrutiny over the issue of leaked nude photos within their Facebook group, Marines United. United States Marine Corps Gen. Robert Neller has addressed this issue by stating that an examination would proceed in order to identify this “subculture” that allowed United States Marines to post nude photos of their peers without consent.
White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Director Mick Mulvaney recently defended proposed budget cuts to prominent anti-hunger programs, including the popular Meals on Wheels America and school meal programs, stating that the administration will not spend money “on programs that cannot show that they actually deliver the promises …” He went on to claim that there is “no demonstrable evidence” that school meals help kids perform better academically. In the age of “alternative facts,” it comes as no surprise that an official from President Donald J. Trump's administration is making unfounded assertions about programs that help the poor. It is crucial that members of this democratic republic stay vigilant and review the evidence when such statements are made.
In previous articles, I have not been coy about my distaste for the unwavering support President Donald J. Trump has gotten among the “conservative” community. Whether it be self-proclaimed conservatives such as Gov. Chris Christie (R-N.J.), former Gov. Mike Huckabee (R-Ark.), Sean Hannity or the like, I have seen it as a betrayal to the conservative movement, and conservatism as a whole. Aside from my frustrations from the warping of conservatism to "Trumpism," there has been another group in Congress who have been virtually useless in their fight against the political left. Moderate Republicans are no strangers to the status quo. They talk a big talk during a Democratic administration, but when a Republican is in office, almost nothing gets changed. When something does get changed, it is often minuscule and has some leftist language included. An example of this would be none other than the American Health Care Act (AHCA.) The American Health Care Act, also known as “Obamacare lite,” was the Republicans first attempt at reforming the Affordable Care Act. A pathetic attempt by the moderates, which is problematic, to say the least.
Some people have argued over whether wearing leggings as pants is a fashion-do or a fashion-don’t. But recently, that is not the only debate these bottoms have been involved in. Aside from trying to claim leggings as a fashion faux-pas, United Airlines has come under fire for categorizing leggings as inappropriate clothing.
Rutgers University has a prestigious history of hosting inspirational and revolutionary speakers to share their wisdom with the students. Former President Barack Obama, Bill Nye and Toni Morrison are only some of the esteemed names on the list. But in 2011, Rutgers had something of a blip, and decided to spend $32,000 to have MTV’s former “Jersey Shore” star, Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi.
Friday’s great health care debacle with H.R. 1628, the American Health Care Act of 2017, was not only a source of troubling anxiety for many people (myself included) during the better part of the day, but also a poignant moment in history that will be remembered for years to come — the beginning of the end of the streams of incessant and rampant lies and empty, question mark-filled promises that are thrown out to the American people.
Looking at any social media site recently, one would notice that a disturbing headline had been popping up everywhere, indicating “14 black girls have gone missing in Washington, D.C. in a single day.” This information had been shared over 41,000 times. After this “news” had been spread, news outlets came out to clarify the truth behind the cases of the missing black girls.
This letter is in response to the recent articles covering immigration.
As a child, I became obsessed with knowing the lives and achievements of America’s Founding Fathers. I was fascinated with George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton and how they contributed to American history. What surprised me was that in efforts to appear more enlightened and avoid taking a direct stance on certain political issues, Founding Fathers such as Hamilton engaged in political cowardice publishing their opinions under the names of famous Greek and Roman authors. And to my surprise, this trend has seen a resurgence here on the banks of the Ol’ Raritan in the form of the Rutgers Conservative Union (and most certainly not in a good way).
If the voting public learned one thing from the 2016 Democratic Primary, it was that the Democrats are rarely ever neutral when it comes to selecting who will be at the top of their ticket. The 2017 race for governor of New Jersey is turning out to be no exception. Unlike in the Democratic National Committee, the New Jersey State Democratic Party Chair John Currie — the local equivalent of former DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz — is allowed to endorse a candidate, and he has. Along with all of New Jersey's chairs of 21 Democratic county parties, New Jersey Democratic State Committee Chair John Currie fell in line several months ago behind former Goldman Sachs Executive and DNC Finance Chair Philip D. Murphy: He is a multi-millionaire from Boston who has given more money to state Democrats (including Currie) than any other individual for several years running. Last summer, he declared his candidacy and loaned his campaign $10 million from his own personal fortune. This influx of easy cash has translated to a formidable campaign, and he has quickly become the establishment pick for governor.
Oregon was created as a white-only refuge, with a constitution that forbade black residents until 1926. Decades later, there is a statewide increase in racist vandalism and offensive comments, but authorities are struggling to answer the question: Where do you draw the line between the freedom of speech and hate speech?
WINNERS AND HEROS
Earlier this week, political commentator and notorious Facebook celebrity Tomi Lahren was suspended by The Blaze after she had appeared on The View and said she was pro-choice. Lahren, who has become famous for taking part in four-minute long rants on Facebook in which she complains and yells about various current events, most famously about Colin Kaepernick kneeling during the pledge of allegiance, was discussing politics on The View. When the topic of abortion came up, Lahren said that it was hypocritical to support limited government and be pro-life, stating that “I’m someone that is for limited government, so I can’t sit here and be a hypocrite and say … that I think that the government should decide what women do with their bodies.” This was shocking — not just that someone on Glenn Beck’s payroll would sit at a panel with Whoopi Goldberg and Joy Behar and validate their views on abortion, but especially that Lahren would make this dramatic shift in opinion, after Lahren had called the pro-choice movement “baby killers” in a previous video three months earlier. After making these comments, Lahren was been suspended for a week by The Blaze and her Facebook show remains temporarily inactive. It is unclear how long Lahren will stay at The Blaze and although it was never explicitly stated why she was suspended, it is obvious why.
Throughout the year I have often used my column to voice my discontent with various aspects of the American political scene. Last year was a year of change and 2017 is shaping up to exhibit the tangible results of those changes. At this point, it is impractical to assert which direction our country is going in as a result of these changes. However, if someone turns on the news or talks to a politically-obsessed friend or colleague with strong inclinations, they may believe the world is burning. Although there have been many things that have confounded me about the election and the current administration, I do not buy into the partisan hysteria that is projected by the media onto the populace. From my perspective, partisan hysteria — a tactic used by both parties and channeled through the media — is merely a symptom of polarization, which I have written about extensively. Recent history shows the disruptive tactics used by Republicans to block worthwhile efforts by the previous administration, and today we see those same tactics being employed by Democrats against the current administration. Hypocrisy cuts both ways in politics.
Think back to when you were in the fifth grade. You were about 11 or 12 years old and you were very impressionable, like a sponge absorbing everything around you. You were exposed to things you had never learned before and your mind was expanding with new knowledge. Now imagine being that fifth grader, and upon learning about slavery, you were put on a fake auction block and "sold" off in a mock slave auction.
As Republican leadership seeks to pass and sign into law the first full federal budget since 1997, the White House waded into the discussion with a proposed discretionary spending plan last week. President Donald J. Trump and Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney proposed a huge boost in defense spending and equally large cuts elsewhere in government. While this plan only covers about a third of the total budget it reveals the president’s misguided priorities that will harm the poor, the environment and American businesses.