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In the age of social media and of President Donald Trump’s administration, our bodies are out of our hands. Trump has already signed legislation intended to defund Planned Parenthood and other services providing abortions, placing self choice in the hands of the government. Police forces continue to brutalize communities, especially those of African-American men.
Among the countless animal videos, fashion ads and memes in my Facebook feed, I noticed one striking trend: a massive amount of political content. Then I noticed another: Throughout the hour or so I spent scrolling through my feed, every political status or shared article represented views that I already agreed with.
Dartmouth is a strange place. We could politely call the College “unique” or “exceptional,” but positive connotations would discourage any self-reflection on the strangeness of the place we inhabit. It should be obvious to anyone in the Dartmouth community that students, faculty and alumni have a special intimacy with the College rarely seen outside our borders.
Nothing is more in vogue than claiming that America is getting a “bad deal” because of free trade and all of the nasty pitfalls of globalization — namely, that ugly beast “outsourcing.” The truth is that 88 percent of American manufacturing jobs are lost to automation, not to foreigners or illegal immigrants.
The editorial “Resurrect the Liberal Arts” by The Dartmouth’s editorial board misses the mark in its call to “return to what Dartmouth does best,” leading readers to believe that Dartmouth has become focused on its graduate programs to the detriment of undergraduate education and satisfaction. The article points to the recent establishment of the School of Graduate and Advanced Studies and cites declining senior satisfaction, application rates and senior class gift participation as evidence for this conclusion. However, the board failed to consider other plausible explanations for these phenomena.
Islam is whatever a practicing Muslim says it is for them. Period.
We once used tribalism to describe the circumstances of ethnic conflict or to explain warring factions in failed states, but now the word is just as commonly thrown around in the political op-ed pages of the New York Times as it is in academic papers on foreign policy. It’s a useful term — a succinct way of explaining humans’ proclivity to group, categorize and create social identity. And it’s been remarkably apt at describing the worst parts of our political climate: hostility toward immigrants, anti-globalization, “America First” policies, bans on Muslim immigration and the increasingly visible white supremacy of the alt-right. All these issues clearly demarcate an in-group, such as whites or Americans, showing hostility to an out-group, such as Muslims.
An admitted student and his father walked through the admissions office door during one of my shifts last week. The father asked me, “Is Dartmouth a really big party school? Because if so, it probably isn’t the right place for my son.” I had no time to share with him everything I had on my mind. My brief answer to them was that Dartmouth is known for far more important things than its Greek culture and that while no campus will ever be perfect, the issues that plague us also plague every other elite institution in the country. I then passed them on to an admissions officer, who sat down with them for a lengthier conversation.
You probably haven’t paid attention to the French presidential election. I wouldn’t blame you. We have enough political turmoil here without worrying about issues across the Atlantic. Yet the effects of the election in France will have a substantial impact on the politics worldwide and already the election has changed the way Europeans approach and view politics.
On April 9, Women’s Grandmaster Sabina-Francesca Foișor became the U.S. Women’s Chess Champion. Not only is she the the first Romanian to clinch the title — a point of personal pride — she did so on her ninth attempt playing in the tournament, even after losing twice in the first four games.
I noticed something strange earlier this week: most of my Twitter feed was about something other than President Donald Trump’s tweets. Some TV show called “13 Reasons Why” had supplanted the president’s Twitter account — which had led on the site for as long as I can remember — almost overnight. I was intrigued.
Four years ago, it is my freshman summer, and I am running down Mt. Moosilauke, alone, in the dark, 90 percent sure that I am about to die. I am kicking myself for staying an extra hour at the campsite up the mountain with my trail crew members, knowing I needed to get down to the Lodge before sunset. My headlamp begins to flicker. I’m probably running from a moose, or a bear or a psycho-killer AT hiker, right? Wrong. I am running from a fictional, immortal mad-scientist called Doc Benton. Many of you may remember the story of Doc Benton from Trips — the scientist from the 1800s who threw the girl off the headwall in the search for immortality? The story wasn’t very scary surrounded by 150 sweaty teens, but alone in the woods, I am straight losing it. Eventually I make it down (only falling once) and run into the Lodge, sweaty and out of breath feeling like I just outran death; everyone else is playing cards and looks at me like I’m crazy. Honestly, I probably am.
As a young climate scientist, I often have trouble sleeping at night.
While avoiding writing this article, I began to clean out my room. It started when I saw an engorged duffel bag oozing under my bed and decided to investigate its long-forgotten contents.
Universal suffrage is arguably the most fundamental privilege accorded to American citizens. However, the grasp the United States has on the helm of global electoral freedom may be slipping. In 2015, the United States ranked 20th in the world in an Economist report on democracy that factored in “electoral process and pluralism,” but persistent unjust features of the American voting landscape caused Freedom House to rank the U.S. behind at least 61 other countries in electoral process in 2016. Gerrymandering, voter identification laws and the role of money in elections round out the pantheon of the most pressing threats to Americans’ abilities to shape the course of their nation. Despite the popular conception of America’s place at the forefront of international democracy, these patently anti-democratic laws and processes infringe upon freedoms that, per the rhetoric of U.S. exceptionalism, Americans ought to have.
I was recently informed that I’m no longer a millennial. The inexact art that is generational studies has apparently rechristened those born from 1995 to 2012 from the ever-aging “Millennial” generation to a new, vastly different “Generation Z.”
While finishing problem sets at a dimly lit desk around 1 a.m. this past Thursday, a phone notification called to me the arrival of a fresh batch of news from Vox Daily. Scrolling through the typical quotes and announcements, I noticed that the outspoken “brother” — as he affectionately calls everyone — Cornel West will be visiting campus on April 27 to deliver a lecture on the importance of the humanities in the President Donald Trump era.
I never imagined that I’d write a column in defense of kindness, especially in defense of appreciating small acts of kindness within the hyper-competitive, résumé-driven rat race of college admissions. I was dismayed after reading the April 12 piece by my colleague, Dorothy Qu ’19, that criticizes the New York Times op-ed “Check This Box if You’re a Good Person,” written by former Dartmouth admissions director Rebecca Sabky.
Americans spend an average of around $17 billion on Easter every year. With the copious amounts of food, clothing and gifts purchased for the occasion, the holiday provides retailers across the country with a vigorous revenue boost. Originally a religious and cultural tradition centered on modesty, humility and hope, this holiday is almost nationally celebrated and universally capitalized.
Many students choose Dartmouth because of the close relationships the school fosters between students and faculty. So, all peer mentors, trip leaders and other upperclassmen brimming with guidance will encourage freshmen to go to office hours — but what they don’t explain is how to actually go to them. As a freshman, office hours were to my academic experience what elusive secret menu items were to chain restaurants. To order Starbuck’s “Pink Drink” or In-N-Out’s “Animal Style” fries, you have to be aware of the item’s existence and confident enough to place the order. The actual fries or drink, regardless of taste, seemed to be a prize for attaining obscure knowledge and possessing self-confidence.