Tag Archives: Opinions

Chance the Rapper wins three Grammys for new album

Chancelor Johnathan Bennett, better known as Chance The Rapper, won three awards this year, for best new artist, best rap performance in his song “No Problem” featuring 2Chainz and Lil Wayne, and best rap album for his album “Coloring Book,” at the 50th Annual Grammy Awards.

Continue reading Chance the Rapper wins three Grammys for new album


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Ready for school to be out, finals got me stressed out

By Nate Kahn

As the Whatcom community transitions from fall into winter, final exams are inbound. There are many on campus resources available for students, in order to help them study and succeed. One of those resources is The Learning Center in Cascade Hall.
The Whatcom Math Center has drop in tutoring hours ranging from Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m, with extended hours on Tuesday and Wednesday that take place in the library from 6-9 p.m. The Math Center has extended their hours on Fridays. The previous hours were 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. however, The Math Center is now open until 4 p.m every Friday.
Students can visit the math center and receive help from the center’s math tutors. Patrick Taylor is a Math major at Western Washington University. He works as a tutor for all levels of mathematics at The Math Center.
“As a tutor I have been through almost every class they are taking or have taken before, so I know how I prepared and I can give advice.” Taylor said
He explained that the tests and quizzes students take during the quarter are all based on a single topic, while the final tests are a combination of everything they’ve learned throughout the quarter. “All these tests are basically focused on one subject, while their finals their going into are mostly accumulative.” Taylor said. “That’s the biggest stress, how to prepare for an accumulative final.”
The Math Center offers drop in tutoring as well as scheduled one-on-one sessions with tutors. The Math Center also provides helpful workshops on test preparation.
“Other than offering free tutoring we also offer math anxiety workshops or test anxiety workshops, on how to prepare for tests throughout the quarter.” Taylor said.
Math anxiety is a symptom that many college student struggle with. Students often ignore or refuse to receive help from on campus resources due to a sense of pride.
According to Brown University’s Supporting Student Study Habits web page, “Students can fail to seek out help because they do not realize that they need it or because of feelings of intimidation, shame, etc.”
Tutors at both The Math Center and The Writing Center can able to assist students with any level of test preparation and essay composition, as well as help students cope with the stress and anxiety stemming from their workload.
Palena Lopathikov, a tutor at The Writing Center says that students experience stress during the process of writing college level compositions.
“They aren’t used to having college essays.” Lopathikov said.
She explains that students struggle with “The formality and formatting, different citation styles or they haven’t written in a while.” The Writing Center also offers help with resume writing and college applications as well as assignments for class. The Writing Center has tutors that can meet weekly for secluded tutoring. “You can schedule one-on-one sessions, you can even meet with them every week and have a scheduled time that’s yours.” Said Lopathikov.
The Learning Center has a team of tutors that can assist with assignments, as well as provide resources such as graphing calculators, textbooks and computers for all students. The center’s extended hours make tutoring availability accessible for students with different schedules. There are a lot of resources available at The Learning Center and they’re all free. It would to students’ advantage to make use of them. According to Lopathikov a lot of students she helps at The Learning Center didn’t know about the resources available to them, now those students, “use them over and over and again.”


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Racist tweets

By James Hearne

Editor’s Note:  

We have decided to run in this opinion piece quotations from Twitter posts which contain offensive and racist language.  The editorial staff was faced with the question of whether it was appropriate for the student newspaper to repeat this language and potentially perpetuate its use.  The decision was made to write the posts as they occurred in order to show their full impact.

By James Hearne

 

After all the hand wringing and sobbing of this past presidential campaign, I was about ready to put the whole thing behind me. I think “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” summed up my feelings with the title of their election night coverage: “Election Night 2012: This Ends Now!” The viral video with the little girl crying about how she didn’t want to hear any more about Mitt Romney or “Bronco Bama” spoke to me and to a lot of other people.

Yes, I was happy that “my guy” won, but I was even more pleased to know what exactly that meant. The policies that, I felt, were to the benefit of everyone in America now had a better chance of being put into law. I hoped that people who had voted for Romney, as angry and disappointed as they were, would respect the democratic process and acknowledge that with  a political process that is as free as ours is supposed to be, the old canard of “you win some, you lose some” will always apply. Yes, many people, including friends and family of mine were disappointed, but maybe we could put those behind us and look upon one another not as Democrats or Republicans (or members of the Green Party, or Libertarians), but as Americans and as people. Was I hoping this would happen? Yes.

Did this happen? Would I be writing this if it had?

Soon after all the major networks called the election for Obama, some who disapproved started vomiting every ill-considered, racist and just downright horrifying thought that crossed their minds. Blogs, comments on websites, Facebook profiles all had people registering their displeasure with the outcome of the election. And, as might be expected, none more so than Twitter.

Now, many of these were people who were generally upset with Obama’s policies or his administration in general, which is fine. Leaving aside the First Amendment, for the most part, I have no problems with people expressing a divergent point of view (even if the view is somewhat divorced from reality). And some of them are just funny, like Donald Trump’s call for revolution.

But then they come. You know who I mean. People like this: “Fucking Nigger won again.” tweeted user moriahrae1, a young woman who, according to her twitter information is a star athlete at her high school.

“Obama is IGNORANT, hence why I called him a nigger..[sic] now just because I said the word nigger means I’m racist?” Pondered user screachhhh. Hey, champ? It’s not that you used the word at all. If that were the case, my quoting this garbage would be racist. No, it’s the fact that you applied it to a person of color, trying to denigrate him by using a racial slur. (All of these were from a Jezebel.com post.)

The question I keep asking myself, however, is “why?” Not why do people say these things, for language and rhetoric such as this has always been with us and will be with us, regrettably, as long as humans have these things in their hearts; that is to say, a long time to come. But why do I have such a macabre fascination with reading these sorts of things, things which I find repellent? Seriously, what is my problem? I can’t figure it out for the life of me.

What is wrong with me?


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Clash of the editors…

For Libertarianism

By Katy Kappele

If it harm none, do as ye will.”  — The Wiccan Rede and the fundamental tenant of Libertarianism.
   Libertarians are commonly perceived as wanting to have sex and smoke pot all day, but as for me, neither of these things holds appeal.  I just think YOU should be allowed to if YOU want to.  What business does the government have telling me whom I can marry, what I can do to my body, what I should wear, or anything else about my own personal life?                

The party’s platform states that “all individuals have the right to exercise sole dominion over their own lives, and have the right to live in whatever manner they choose, so long as they do not forcibly interfere with the equal right of others to live in whatever manner they choose.”
   I’m encouraged that the country seems to be awakening to these beliefs. I believe in a free and peaceful country in which the government minds its own business.  
   A Libertarian government is a minimalist one. Minimalism in government reduces spending. For example, defense spending. The purpose of a standing army is to defend our freedoms in case of an attack, not to police the world!  In fact, the Founding Fathers made no provision for a standing army, because then what do they do all day? Hence the Second Amendment. The Founding Fathers thought that everyone should defend his country in a time of need. In a truly Libertarian society, pretty much everyone would be armed, so attacking us would be pretty risky!
   Critics of Libertarianism point out that there are no provisions for the environment and the poor.  The truth is that there are, people just don’t like our provisions because they require work.  And yes, you will hate me if you don’t agree with me — I am calling you lazy. Freedom isn’t free; it must be paid for daily in sweat and often in blood.
   But I digress. Strong private property rights provide economic incentives to protect our planet. If you pay for something yourself, there is pride of ownership and an incentive to upkeep.
   As for the poor, the government has no incentive to lift people out of dependency. But without welfare programs, the poor have the correct incentives to better themselves.  As I said before, freedom isn’t some magical thing conferred on us by a law, it’s a product of difficult, everyday labor.  Thomas Paine put it best in Common Sense: “What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value… it would be strange indeed if so celestial an article as freedom should not be highly rated.” 
   And yes, Libertarians do care about cooperation. We just don’t like to be FORCED to cooperate. After all, that isn’t really cooperation, is it?

 

Against Libertarianism

By Cutter Kilgore

 

Minimalist government, no programs to help the less fortunate, no standing army and everyone and his mother has a gun. So, pretty much like Afghanistan?

Why vote for a government whose policy is that government should have no policies? Deregulate everything and then what? Let corporations rule supreme?

Libertarians want to diminish or abolish government aid to students and seniors, and government programs like the Environmental Protection Agency, the organization responsible for holding companies to a minimum standard of ecological safety. And they want to sell $40 billion worth of government protected land to the states, who will likely sell it to oil companies to do with as they wish.

I guess Libertarians don’t see the need for protected national parks and forests and clean oceans and watersheds that we depend on?

In their world, corporations have full reign to police themselves. No emissions standards for cars or coal or energy-producing factories. Do you live next to one of those? Are you getting sick from the chemicals dumped into the air? Too bad! Move! There’s no government protection for you, because Libertarians believe that corporations are trustworthy enough to make the responsible decisions when it comes to your health and safety.

Libertarianism seems to appeal to a lot of young conservatives I’ve met: those disillusioned by the current state of politics. They want to believe in a just world where everyone is capable of governing themselves responsibly. They think that the poor and disabled who can’t work or pay for school probably are in their positions because they deserve it. Poor citizens are lazy and stupid, right?

Government programs like food benefits and low-income housing, Social Security…gone. The Libertarian answer to everything is “get a job, you lazy incompetent!”

Eliminate welfare programs? As if there’s something inherently wrong with someone who needs a little help. We ALL need a little help from time to time. Why vote for policies unwilling to provide it?

The Libertarian is the person who walks swiftly by the food bank with a disapproving look and tells you to better yourself by going back to school. Except they won’t approve government funds to help you do it.

But they’re right about one thing: everyone deserves personal freedom. This includes the freedom to clean air and a healthy planet. It includes the freedom to affordable health care and higher education and to not be looked down upon and called “lazy.”

I’m not in love with the idea of giving everyone a gun, deregulating government and vital services, and trusting that we’re leaving the country in good hands. “Everything will be all right,” says the Libertarian. “Trust me.”

 


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