Events & Issues

How to Fix Polarization in Politics

December 11 / Jongjin P.

There are a lot of negative things that many politicians tried to falsely spew during this election, from crime rates to murder rates to effects of immigration to effects of the Affordable Care Act. And despite all the positive claims that the candidates will unify the nation/their political party, polarization has been greater than ever. According to a July 16th, 2016 Washington Post article, 4 in 10 people in their political party say the other party’s policies are misguided and a threat to the nation. According to the Pew Research Center, “More than half of Democrats (55%) say the Republican Party makes them “afraid,” while 49% of Republicans say the same about the Democratic Party.” The nation is divided...

Awareness vs. Action

November 6 / Jongjin P.

On April 18, 2016, The Sympathizer*, by Viet Thanh Nguyen, won the 2016 Fiction Pulitzer Prize. To characterize the book, Nguyen himself writes in a The New York Times article, "The Hidden Scars All Refugees Carry,"** Many people have characterized my novel, The Sympathizer, as an immigrant story, and me as an immigrant. No. My novel is a war story and I am not an immigrant. I am a refugee who, like many others, has never ceased being a refugee in some corner of my mind."...

The Media: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

November 1 / Abhi S.

Nowadays, the media is very pervasive in our everyday lives. They influence what we buy, what we eat, what we wear, and even what we think. Essentially, if you take a moment to step back and think about it they control our very lives and I believe that this control is very dangerous for us and our future. I was just recently reading an article about why some media networks choose to cover certain events or people over other things and one of the main reasons is to generate more viewership and increase revenue...

Open Doors Lead to More Open Doors... Right?

October 17 / Jongjin P.

A recent poll by NBC suggests that Hillary Clinton has a 10-point lead over Donald Trump, and most analysts think Hillary Clinton will be the next President of the United States. Politics aside, if she does become President, this will be a new benchmark for U.S. history. Jodi Kantor for the New York Times has written that Hillary Clinton’s acceptance for nomination already encourages equal rights for women. Hillary Clinton has already made history by becoming the first female presidential candidate for the ...

On Trump and Discrimination

October 9 / Anonymous

In one of my church gatherings, a 16 year old teenage boy (who I will presume to call Jon for the sake of anonymity) came to visit just for a little time, while he was visiting the United States. He’s originally from South Africa and is extremely slim and speaks with a slightly broken accent. He came with his much older sister who speaks english fluently. After this visit, they were to go back to South Africa, though they hope to visit again because they really enjoy being here in the United States. During the gathering when we were sharing our prayer requests, they asked prayer for two things: safe travels and for the United States to elect the right President. This was surprising to me...

Finding Easy Support

September 27 / Jongjin P.

In my debate class, Arjun Ramani (‘17, state champion (‘16), 5th in the nation (‘16)) was giving me along with the rest of the class, advice on research. One of the tips he mentioned was that using Boolean terms, anybody can find any specific evidence for any specific argument they’re looking for. When I asked him further today, he clarified, “you can find anything.” And he’s absolutely right. For example, concerning the Syrian refugee crisis, if I need evidence that accepting Syrian refugees increase terrorism, it can be found easily...

The Sadness of Humor

September 17 / Jongjin P.

Donald Trump: it seems almost everyone has a strong opinion about this Republican Presidential nominee (Don’t worry, this essay won’t add to your oversaturation of Donald-Trump-related news filling your Facebook newsfeed, though I just realized that if I were to write about Donald Trump, I wouldn’t need to change the title). Though plenty of politicians and journalists have spoken and written about this man, there is one group that most people seem to pay attention to the most: comedians. Specifically, mainstream comedians who have a lot of viewership and...

The Disconnect

August 24 / Abhi S.

Philando Castile. Alton Sterling. This is not going to be another post about black lives matter and the recent shootings across the nation, something you might have figured out based on the title of this article. In fact, this article is going to be about something entirely different, but that is also somewhat related to what has occurred in Dallas and many other cities across the nation. Every day on the news, we hear about horrific incidents across the world, whether it be terrorist attacks or police shootings...

Closed Minds: Unproductive Political Discussion on Social Media

August 11 / Darren C.

Every time I log onto Facebook, there’s another post waiting for me. In the past week, I’ve seen shared: the NYT article “Donald Trump Reaffirms Warmer Relations with Putin,” the Onion’s “Trump Sick and Tired of Mainstream Media Trying to put his Words into Context,” the Daily Beast’s “Captain Khan Brigade Commander in Iraq: the Khan Family is Our Family” (complete with name-calling Trump an “opportunistic rat” who needs to “SHUT UP”), and Allen B. West’s “I have a PERSONAL message for the Muslim father whose son was killed in Iraq” (very personal, indeed)...

I am a Sociopath...and So are You

July 24 / Jongjin P.

“50 people died,” is what the New York Times article reported of the Orlando shooting. But that’s not entirely true. On June 13th, 2016, about 151,600 people died; that’s the average deaths of people per day. In consequence of the shooting, many issues have come up in forms of debates and conversation topics from gun control to equal rights to terrorism. After over multiple days, this topic is still relevant and still impactful...

Sexist Stereotypes and Precluding Women from Discussion

April 2 / Claire H.

In my math class last Thursday, a conversation was sparked about how women and girls “never actually mean what they say.” I hear this line a lot, and I think it’s sad how few people recognize why it is problematic. It goes hand in hand with the perception of women being catty, when men are instead perceived as assertive. This line plays directly into the trope of women being irrational, emotional, indirect, and unable to speak their minds. Women absolutely misspeak or misrepresent their intentions sometimes – everyone does! But I have never heard anyone say that line about...

Should the Government Have the Right?

August 23 / Abhi S.

On June 2013, Glenn Greenwald published the first of many articles about domestic surveillance. His source was a man named Edward J. Snowden. He used to work for the NSA. You may have heard of him, you may have not. Let me clear up one thing though. He is not the WikiLeaks guy. He is someone completely different. After working for the NSA for a while Snowden saw the scope of their activities and believed their mass surveillance...

The Redditocracy

July 5 / Linus L.

If you are an avid Internet Person and a fan of online communities like I am, last Friday, you might have noticed a little something that shook up a corner of the Internet known as Reddit. Although it was mostly short-lived, there was a controversy within the online forum that temporarily "shut down" a singificant portion of the website's communities. But let's back up a little, for those who aren't so familiar with Reddit...

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