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Like many of my peers, I was baffled at the guest column published in The Dartmouth claiming that it was implausible that this year’s First-Year Trips director and assistant director could have disproportionately selected women for the Trips directorate based on merit alone. The author of the column “You’re Not Tripping” has every right to hold his views, but I am not going to legitimize them by repeating them here.
Though some may disagree, the College is not technically a business. As a nonprofit educational institution, one of Dartmouth’s core objectives is to provide the highest quality education possible to its students. For-profit institutions, on the other hand, prioritize seeking financial returns.
What do you do when your friends ask for new swears?
Thanks to today’s media messages, people learn to feel ashamed of their bodies before they learn basic arithmetic. Disney films, magazine advertisements and sitcom television instill a false conception that self-worth is determined by appearance, particularly in females. Being lovable by mass media’s standards means flaunting a flat stomach, flawless skin and a million and one other supposedly ideal physical attributes.
Classical music is generally thought of as a pretentious genre written by European men, for European men. Classically trained musicians typically spend their formative years of study learning works by canonical European male composers such as Ludwig van Beethoven, Frédéric Chopin and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart; only after do they get the chance to study more contemporary music.
Finding myself nostalgic for mundanities like London’s crowded public transport, I still keep my Oyster card in the back compartment of my phone, so that I see it every time I pull out my Dartmouth student ID to pay for a meal. Most people, including myself, who take a study abroad term in a city like London often come back to Hanover yearning for city life. I miss my go-to coffee shop where the disaffected barista flashed me a nod of recognition with every visit, taking the bus to Chinatown late at night for a bite to eat alone and the ease of meeting people my age outside the university at which I studied.
Dartmouth has a problem: It self-segregates. In addition to the various diversity offices and committees that Dartmouth will forever adore, the College has institutionalized affinity houses, such as the Shabazz Center, the Latin American, Latino and Caribbean Studies House and the Native American House. It also has race-specific Office of Pluralism and Leadership advisors and academic programs that divide race into neat compartments. For example, by grouping together African and African American Studies, the College combines ethnic studies and area studies, two very separate fields with very different histories and theories. Despite these fundamental differences, Dartmouth merges them solely based on racial identity.
I am privileged. This statement — rather, the implications of acknowledging its validity — have escaped the lips of countless individuals for whom the statement rings true. While some of us at Dartmouth may consider ourselves privileged, few rarely grapple with what that word means or its ramifications in our interactions with other students.
I am writing this contribution with some trepidation, as wading into a campus debate about an issue like First-Year Trips strikes me as a questionable idea for a faculty member. Nonetheless, one of my advisees asked me last week if I was aware of the controversy surrounding the recent selection of a Trips directorate. Since that time I have read the original Trips editorial as well as several responses. I do not have a dog in this fight, but as someone who teaches statistics at Dartmouth, I hope to see students on campus invoke statistical principles in their discussions and in public debates. Hence this letter.
America is a nation built by powerful ideas. In the 18th century, the Framers wove the democratic, individualistic ideals of the Enlightenment into the moral and constitutional fabric of the nation. In the 19th century, laissez-faire liberalism allowed free men and free markets to unleash an unprecedented wave of innovation and growth while uniting the country through commerce. In the 20th century, the revolution spearheaded by then-president Franklin D. Roosevelt brought the struggling masses back into civil society by establishing an expansive, ambitious welfare state and restoring America’s commitment to egalitarianism. In the 21st century, our nation must wrestle with the ramifications of these past revolutions and use new ideas to actualize our timeless values of liberty, equality and prosperity.
Affordability and accessibility are particularly valuable for college students, especially when it comes to food and dining options. With busy schedules and varying needs, students seek out options that are convenient. To make the most of Dartmouth Dining Services’ meal plans, students tend to eat at places that accept College dining dollars, like the Class of 1953 Commons or convenient campus snack bars. Many first-years rely on venues that accept meal swipes, particularly during their fall terms when the SmartChoice 20 plan is mandatory. As a result, local restaurants, which rely heavily upon student engagement, can be crowded out. Dartmouth and its students should support local restaurants through building community character and economic advantages.
Well guys, we did it.
Ryan Spector ’19’s Feb. 2 guest column titled “You’re Not Tripping” seems to me, and many others, to be a violent attack against women and women of color. Fortunately, the Dartmouth community has responded; several organizations — 40 at the time of publication — have voiced their support for the members of the Trips directorate. Those mentioned in Spector’s column and those who went out of their way to support them make this community strong.
This past Friday, a controversial guest column came out in The Dartmouth. The writer, a male undergraduate, suggested that his rejection from First-Year Trips Directorate amounted to discrimination, citing the 80 percent female composition of the directorate. The article provoked intense backlash.
Last year, the McDonald Centre for Theology, Ethics and Public Life at the University of Oxford announced a project titled “Ethics and Empire” to convene “a series of workshops to measure apologias and critiques of empire against historical data from antiquity to modernity across the globe.” The first colloquium took place from July 6 to 7, 2017, as the opening session of the five-year project. The project’s webpage justifies the need for such a project given the “intense public debate” surrounding issues of colonialism and its legacies in Britain and around the world. The project seeks to challenge the consensus it identifies in scholarship of colonialism that imperialism has been nothing but “wicked; and empire is therefore unethical” so “nothing of interest remains to be explored.” The webpage for the project cites the movement to topple statues of British imperialist and white supremacist Cecil Rhodes as evidence for this imagined scholarly orthodoxy that needs to be challenged, arguing that imperialism had often produced good outcomes around the world.
Freedom of speech and freedom of the press have always been polarizing points of discussion, particularly in recent years. It is difficult now to read any publication or witness any discourse, on TV or elsewhere, without there being an undercurrent pertaining to this freedom of expression. On both sides of the aisle, invisible lines are being drawn, partitioning categories of opinions and ideas that are allegedly “fake news,” conspiracies or subjectively considered to be wrong. Some may feel that open discourse is being suffocated. Others might contend that people are not doing enough to stifle unsavory discussion. A society must define what is out-of-bounds in terms of freedom of expression and ask where it ought to draw a line in limiting dialogue.
According to a 2017 Pew Research Center survey, about 67 percent of adults in America rely on social media platforms for their news, up 5 percent from 2016. I am part of that 67 percent — I get almost all of my news, both local and national, through Facebook.
In Florida, the “Voting Restoration Amendment,” also known as “Amendment 4,” has successfully been put on the ballot for this coming November. This amendment restores voting rights to people with felony convictions, except for those convicted of murders or felony sexual offence. Florida is currently one of four states in the entire country that permanently disenfranchises people who were convicted of felonies. This amendment would affect more than 1.5 million Floridians in a state that has a population of 20.5 million. According to The Sentencing Project, 27 percent of the country’s disenfranchised population lives in Florida. In order for the amendment to pass, at least 60 percent of the vote must be in favor of restoration. This is huge news and a step in the right direction, but it’s been a long time coming.
Maybe the Sun God has an origin story.
What was the State of the Union really about?