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On Jan. 22, The Eagle reported that eight anti-open borders flyers had been posted in two campus locations. The right-wing posters are inscribed with a twist on phrases used in recent sexual harassment movements, including #NoMeansNo and #MyBodyMyChoice. The posters hung up around campus carried the phrase "No Means No" and the hashtag "#MyBordersMyChoice," as well as links to The Daily Stormer, an American white supremacist and neo-Nazi website. Also depicted was a cartoon of an outstretched hand nefariously reaching toward an avatar of the United States as a browbeaten woman wrapping her arms around herself. The movement is partially coordinated and fairly widespread. It has garnered support from far-right figures such as cartoonist Ben Garrison, white supremacist and conspiracy theorist Jack Posobiec and conservative public figure Tara McCarthy.
Something immediately visible in this year’s Senate elections was the use of certain buzzwords that constantly permeate our campus culture, including diversity, unity and inclusivity. Almost all the campaign messages I came across featured phrases resembling either “creating change in communities” or “improving campus climate.” Slogans and campaign manifestos constantly stressed the importance of advocating for people of color, minorities and first generation students.
It only took several seconds and a single question from a seedy-looking political science major in a ponytail to expose the central deficiency of Jeff Chang’s “We Gon’ Be Alright,” the book that served as required reading for AU freshmen enrolled in college writing courses this fall. At an event with Chang in September, the student asked about an instance in the introduction that pertained to subprime housing foreclosures, in which Chang presented the foreclosure rates of two racial groups—African-Americans and Latinxs—in relation to that of whites as evidence of systemic racism. He asked why Chang did not include the same statistics for Asian-Americans, an ethnic group that had been mentioned in the sentence prior but not in the one with a thesis. After Chang’s flimsy answer and desperate deflection using the classic “I think the better question is…”, it was clear that the book—and Chang’s narrative—largely relied on the integrity of nitpicked evidence and colorful language.
With the occurrence of yet another mass shooting in Las Vegas, the gun control debate in America has arisen once more. Harry Enten of FiveThirtyEight stipulated that Americans have never been more divided on gun control. My interpretation of this statistic is that this is the result of political strife rather than actual public opinion.The National Rifle Association’s (NRA) power and influence in Washington is undisputed by anyone familiar with Washington, and the effect has been a constant so-called “divide” over gun control legislation that may not even be as intense as the NRA wants everyone to know.
There have been an intense number of attempts by Congressional Republicans to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA)—otherwise known as Obamacare—so far this year, including Sen. Rand Paul’s Obamacare Replacement Act, House Speaker Paul Ryan’s American Health Care Act, the July “skinny repeal” bill, and most recently, the Graham-Cassidy bill, all of which are either likely to fail or have already failed. At this point, Republican health care bills are essentially cock-and-bull, indefensible manifestos against Obama and the Democratic Party slathered with a couple Friedman-esque features. Comedians, news commentators, the vast medical organizations across America, politicians and citizens from all parties have lashed out against these fiscally conservative, state-oriented pieces of legislation as they get annihilated in the Senate.
About a month ago, a Wisconsin-based marketing solution provider named Three Square Market (32M) announced that, in partnership with a Swedish biohacking company named Biohax International, at least 50 workers would willingly undergo a procedure that would implant a microchip between the thumb and forefinger. It was the first time a company microchipped its employees. According to a statement released by 32M CEO Todd Westby, the purpose of the chip would be to “drive everything,” from opening doors to logging into computers.
A couple of months ago, I was talking to a friend about the American Health Care Act, Paul Ryan’s egregious Republican health care bill that hadn’t yet passed the House of Representatives.
Several weeks ago, a ransomware called “WannaCrypt/WannaDecript0r” hit computer systems across the world, affecting 200,000 victims in over 150 countries, according to Rob Wainwright, director of Europol. The malware encrypted patient/client data in computer systems running older Windows operating systems and prevented data from being viewed until a ransom in Bitcoin was paid.