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Last updateWed, 19 Feb 2020 2pm

Opinion

Volume 86 (Fall 2014 - Spring 2015)

Stick to Your New Year’s Resolutions

As everyone’s favorite time of the year, the end of the semester, approaches us, so do the resolutions to better ourselves in yet another upcoming fresh new year.

After the holidays come to a close, we get to experience the joy of looking forward to the new year. We get a fresh start, a reset option to life as we know it, an opportunity to set our goals for the upcoming 12 months and forget about them about a month in: these are what I like to refer to as New Year’s Resolutions.

This season is certainly my favorite all year and Christmas is in fact my favorite holiday, with New Year’s Eve coming in second. The cold weather, the shiny, unique white crystals swinging from side to side as they fall from the sky, the hot chocolate and holiday-inspired lattes topped with sweet old whip cream awaiting in closed areas filled with people embracing a hug of warmth as winter runs the streets of society: it never gets old for me.

Every winter I stand back and embrace it all in, imagining myself to be part of some sort of Christmas movie.

However, this season is great in every aspect: everyone has something to celebrate. Whether you are Catholic, Jewish, Muslim, or Christian, there’s a reason for you to be in family embracing the love and joy going all around.

By the time the last day of the year approaches our home, most of us have moved on from family celebrations to finding fun ways to welcome the new year.  Some look back and recall on all the happy memories from the ending year, some rather avoid the bad ones and look forward to a new beginning. Some are simply ready for the partying and fun.  Whatever the case may be, no one misses out on the New Year resolutions.  

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Snapchat Could Pay a Price for Introducing “Snapcash”

In recent years, more and more people are declaring themselves self-proclaimed photographers. First is was Photo Shop, then it was Instagram, now it’s Snapchat?

On Nov. 17, Snapchat announced they have added a new feature to the app, “Snapcash.”

According to a blog post on the company’s website, Snapchat teamed up with Square, an application that appears to help with payment processing on laptops, tablets, smart phones, etc.

With Square’s help, Snapchat is able to construct a payment system for its users so that snapchatters can exchange money with another through the application. The company has made it so that one can simply set up their debit card information in their settings as well as agree to their terms and conditions.

Well, actually, their terms and conditions is more or less their signature ghost icon with a large “I agree” banner and miniscule script confirming that the person about to agree is at least 18 years old.

Snapcash did not come say exactly what the money would be used for or why people would want to use it in the first place, but I can only imagine what people are thinking.

It’s safe to assume that Snapchat is monopolizing on the distribution of people’s nude photos.

With the amount of celebrity nudes that were leaked this past year alone, everyone is interested in seeing someone else’s body solely out of curiosity. So why not make them pay for it?

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Having One “Soulmate” Sounds Overrated

We won’t all visit China, not everyone will get to experience climbing a mountain, and not everyone gets the chance to perform in sold out arenas. So why is it that we as a society are so hung up on the idea that everyone will find one true love in the form of a husband or wife? And then stay with that one person until eternity?

For some reason, society has decided to enforce this ridiculous rule on itself and encouraged everyone to follow suit. For what reason? So that the divorce rate in the United States could be 40 – 50 percent according to the American Psychological Association?

The idea that every single person will find one true love, of their sexual preference, and then they will remain in a happy and loving relationship for the rest of their life is just not real. That is not to say some people will not experience this. It is also not to say that anyone who does not experience this is doing something wrong.

Society has made anyone who does not find this ideal feel like an outcast. This is what I believe forces people to settle for anyone who can create the illusion of a soul mate. They meet someone when they are young, settle because the rule is you meet your soul mate when you are young. But how is everyone going to find his or her other half by 30 years on this earth, when that isn’t even halfway through your life. There is still so much time to go other places and meet new people. I think it is possible that people rush into relationships before they have a chance to meet someone later on in life who would complete them.

Then there is also the possibility that not everyone gets to stay with their soul mate. Perhaps some people have to deal with the one that got away. Or some people are wasting their time with someone else and miss out on a chance to meet their real soul mate. But people are willing to settle for someone who isn’t everything to them. They in turn miss out on someone even greater. When it comes to your happiness, there should be no exceptions but the absolute best.

Then there is the question, who decided that everyone’s soul mate was a sexual partner? I think it is possible that some people’s soul mates come in the form of friends that have a stronger bond. We won’t all keep the same friends we have in college, let alone in kindergarten. People move, people change. Why is not as much value given to great friendships? 

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Stop Defining Self-Perception: See Yourself as More Beautiful

How many times have you looked in the mirror and not appreciated the person looking back at you? The same is true for countless individuals across the globe who continue to judge themselves for what they are on the outside rather than what they are on the inside. Take note from an incredibly powerful speaker, Shane Koyczan, in his speech “To This Day” where he states, “If you can’t see anything beautiful about yourself, get a better mirror. Look a little closer, stare a little longer, cause there’s something inside you that made you keep trying despite everyone who told you to quit.”

So who is to tell you what the definition of beauty is? We are all built to be of different sizes, of different shapes, having different skin colors. There is nothing about different that is wrong or ugly. The thing about being different is that you are unique.

The media has such an incredible impact on the way we view ourselves. A Kaiser Foundation Study found that one in every three articles in a teen magazine have a focus on appearance rather than self worth.

According to Teen Health and the Media, out of a survey of nine and ten year-old girls, 40 percent were dissatisfied with their bodies and in turn, attempted to lose weight. These children were polled after being shown a variety of music videos. By the time children reach the age of 17, 78 percent of all teenage girls are unhappy with their bodies. This leads to excessive sessions at the gym, depression, and eating disorders.

But why has so much changed over the past years? What happened to when the epitome of beautiful was Marilyn Monroe, who is known to have worn a size 12? According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the average weight of women over the age of 20 in America is 166 lbs, which is nowhere near the representation seen in the media. 

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Think Before You Judge Us: Not Your Stereotypical “Sorority Girl”

sorority-gs"She pays for her friends. She's so dumb. She parties too much. She only cares about her looks. All she says is 'Oh my god, I have the best Big. Or, 'Little, you're my favorite person in the entire world.'"

Sorority girls have been discriminated against since any of us can remember. We're constantly put down for being part of something bigger than ourselves, for wanting to be part of an organization that gives back to the school and the community. But why? What did any of us ever do to be hit with the "sorority girl" stereotype? I can tell you from personal experience, sorority girls are not "sorority girls."

It's time to set the record straight, we don't pay for our friends. Yes, we are a group of women of 55 or more, who pay national and local dues. We pay to be a national member of an organization, to donate to the philanthropies we hold close to our hearts, to network within a group of thousands of other women. Believe me, we do not pay for our friends.

We aren't dumb, either. Seven percent of individuals in the Greek community graduate from college, compared to the 51 percent of college graduates who were not affiliated with an organization. According to Pace University, in the United States, Greek's make up about 350,000 of college undergraduates. And on Monmouth's campus, the average grade point average (GPA) of Greek women is 3.2. That's .7 higher than the required GPA on campus.

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Feminism: Much More Than Just the American Girl’s Fight

By an official dictionary definition feminism is the belief that both women, and men, should have equal rights and opportunities. In America, women's fight for equality has been long and hard, but I'd have to say we are almost there.

I understand that there is still a wage inequality gap, and for that I condone women who keep fighting for that equality. There is no reason for women to not make equal pay to men, when they are doing the same exact job and working the same hours.

But when it comes to any other issue on the equality of sexes, we as American women have no argument. According to the Institute for Women's Policy Research, women make up half the workforce and are considered breadwinners in four out of ten families. Not only are most women raising families and working full time jobs, but more women in America receive college degrees than men.

Granted, America is not yet perfect on the issue of equality. People argue that there are not enough women CEO's or women in Congress. Ascending to these high level positions takes a lot of time and experience. In due time, when the numerous amount of women with college degrees start to move up the ranks there will be a definite switch.

One of my marketing and international business professors, Susan Gupta, mentioned how only 20 or 30 years ago it was unheard of that she was going to succeed in business. Now, her class is equally split in gender. As leadership roles switch to younger minded people, equality opens up. It does take time.

But when I see a woman in the Middle East put to death because she refused to marry a man three times her age, I refuse to stand with the women fighting in America because they feel they are treated unfairly or because it has just recently become a trendy topic.

Yes, there are instances of inequality, but it could be so much worse. We, as American women, do not go to sleep scared every night that we may be faced with some instance of abuse the next day simply because I am a woman.

Recently on the Internet, a woman posted a video of herself walking through New York City in a tight black t-shirt and a pair of jeans. People said nothing disrespectful but complimented her the whole time and she called it an argument for feminism. I wonder what the women who are beaten if they chose to leave the house in anything but a burka would say about that video.

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New Found Glory Gets a Totally Unfair Review by Alternative Press

Alternative Press, a music magazine for the alternative rock and pop punk music culture, reviewed New Found Glory's personal choices instead of reviewing their new record early last month.

New Found Glory announced on their Facebook page in Dec. 2013 that their guitarist, Steve Klein, would no longer be a part of the band. The band no longer felt they could work with him because of "personal difference," and that despite Klein's absence, the band would still be making music.

On Oct. 7, 2014, New Found Glory released their eighth album, "Resurrection," without Klein. Many of the songs included stories of their hardships with the former guitarist, including the title song "Resurrection," but there were other moments of the band members' lives reflected in some of the song writing as well.

In an interview with Fuse, guitarist Chad Gilbert opens up about having relationship issues with his girlfriend Hayley Williams, lead singer of Paramore, and how their hardships reflect in some of the songs on the album as well. Gilbert also reveals that bassist Ian Grushka's relationship with his ex-wife is talked about in some of the songs, too.

A day after the album was released, Alternative Press, who has reviewed multiple New Found Glory records in the past, spent the entire first half of "Resurrection"'s critique on Klein's absence.

The first three paragraphs of the review, which typically sets the tone for what any album review or article in general, were all about how Klein was kicked out of New Found Glory. Alternative Press even went as far to say that the band was "kicking him while he's down" with regards to some of the songs on the album.

For a music magazine known for praising bands in this particular music scene, they unnecessarily bashed a well-respected band. A band that has inspired others to form bands whose names are direct reflections of their appreciation for New Found Glory (i.e. All Time Low and The Story So Far). A band who received a full four-star rating on their previous album, Radiosurgery, only three years ago from Alternative Press. So why now, is this happening?

Is it perhaps that the younger, newer artists, the ones that are inspired by bands like New Found Glory are more musically relevant? Or maybe it's because Alternative Press is simply trying to change its readership and move towards a younger audience. If that's the case, then I fear for the music world.

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Let the Best of the Sports Season Begin: College Basketball

When it comes to college sports, two sports generally get the bulk of attention: football and basketball. Each sport has their arguments as to why they should be considered the king of college athletics, but is there really much of a competition?

A college basketball game is simply one of the most entertaining events a person can attend. From the tempo of teams going back and forth up the court, to the regular season spanning from November to March, to the many conference tournaments, to finally, the big dance itself, the NCAA tournament, college basketball has a lot going for it.

With Monmouth's men's basketball team tipping off its season this Friday in West Virginia, let's take a look at why the madness of college basketball makes it the number one sport in collegiate athletics.

Basketball, unlike football, has the advantage of having the action continue after every score. So while there are breaks for TV timeouts and fouls, basketball typically embodies a lot of energy. This represents the very nature of college: non-stop energy and fun. Watching a college basketball game gets intense when teams are going back and forth, trading baskets. This allows the college atmosphere to shine through as the student body is on their feet cheering for another basket every other minute, while cheering for the defense to block a shot or grab a rebound in between offensive possessions. When the game comes towards its conclusion this pace tends to slow, as the team that is behind tends to foul to remain in it. This doesn't kill the energy however, as things become even more riveting with every foul shot. This feeling of being on the edge of one's seat compliments the high energy felt throughout the game.

Another big part of college basketball is conference play. Typically, a team will play every team in its conference twice throughout the regular season. This leads to many entertaining rivalry games, as these teams are competing for the same goal of a conference title. The energetic atmosphere doubles when a conference rival comes to town, such as when Iona or Siena comes into the MAC this season. These games feel more important, and that is because they really are. A conference record is vital to a college basketball team's success and its placement in the conference tournament.

Not only is it more important, but it leads to many big-time matchups when it comes to the big conferences. This year the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) is loaded with many high profile teams, such as Duke, UNC and Louisville. Having any combination of these teams face off with each other, plus other big time ACC schools, leads to a very fun portion of the schedule to finish the regular season.

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Opposing Response from Last Week’s “To Go, or Not to Go to Class?”

I am not an avid reader of the Outlook. In fact, I had no idea how frequently, or on which day, the paper was printed until this week. My perusal of its pages has been part of a recent attempt to develop some semblance of a connection to the University and my classmates – outside of my own personal academic life – before I graduate in May.

When I read the op-ed "To Go, or Not to Go to Class? That is the Question" I became excited. Expecting a criticism of the all too frequent student absences on campus, I found myself thinking, "Could it be... another Monmouth student who is as appalled, discouraged, and frustrated with the overall lack-luster academic attitude of the student body as I am?"

Within the first few sentences of the article, however, I knew I was mistaken.

The piece begins, "How often do you find yourself sitting in a classroom and thinking, 'Wow this is what I woke up for?' We've all had those classes, mainly electives or graduation requirements, which feel like nothing more than a waste of time, credits, money, and most importantly, sleep. I understand that the University has certain requirements a student must fulfill so that he/she is considered well-rounded enough when entering the real world – or at least that's their excuse for stocking us with unnecessary courses."

To answer the writer's question: never.

I recognize that adequate sleep is important for college students, but to dismiss the amazing educational privilege afforded to college students in favor of an extra hour of sleep does not make any sense to me.

It does not matter whether the student lost sleep because of academics, or because they decided to binge on the latest season of their current Netflix vice. Sleep is important for college students because it ensures they will have the energy to attend college. Adult responsibility is not just the ability to say, "Screw class, I have more important things to do." It means planning and prioritizing your life so that you can both sleep and go to class.

Although somewhat pertinent, the issue of sleep deprivation is hardly the most glaring problem expressed in the opening paragraph. The sentiment that gen-ed and elective classes are a waste of time, or unnecessary, should trouble all members of the academic community.

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Kids of Illegal Immigrants: Entitled to Education?

While skimming The New York Times, I came across a very interesting subject: should children of illegal immigrants be entitled to public education? Taking into consideration that elections just took place, I found it to be perfect timing to discuss something a bit more serious. This topic offended me. Having been illegal for more than half the time I have lived in the United States, it hurt me to read that citizens like me are questioning whether my past self should be allowed to have an education.

If it were not for the fact that public schools do not require a child to prove a legal status in this country, I would not be where I am today- on my way to walk on stage with a B.S. in Chemistry, a minor in Informational Technology, and on the pursuit of my PhD in Chemistry! Could you imagine what would have become of me if I had not been allowed to attend elementary, middle, and high school? I did not gain my legal status in this country until my junior year of high school; prior to that, I woke up afraid every morning that this would be my last day as I knew it, that this would be my last day of education, that this would be last day in my road to the "American Dream."

What a beautiful thing, the "American Dream," is it not? Individuals from all over the world come to this land of freedom with hopes of the white fenced, two-floor house, the Benz in the front yard, pool in the back, and 2.5 kids.

Of course, we are all aware of the fact that this dream is not obtainable without some sort of higher education, correct? And, in order to be eligible for that higher education is it not a requirement to attend some sort of basic schooling, like high school?

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American Horror Story: Conceptualizing Ideas about Violence and Sexuality

ahsIt starts with the news. We see graphic images of people dying on a daily basis and we become accustomed to seeing violence in our everyday lives. Once we accept reality, violence finds it way to the big screen, television and soon, we become trapped. Trapped in a web of violence, but we don't see it that way.

Violence in the media is not something that makes us cringe much anymore. It has always surrounded us in various media outlets and no one has ever suspected it to be anything but the norm. What we don't seem to understand, however, is that violence is not a natural norm.

When it comes to portraying violence in the media, we normally don't think twice about. When we talk about adding another element to the mix, something like nudity, we reevaluate our choices. Seeing parts of the human body that we don't see every day scares us.

Just because we walk around with clothes on doesn't mean we don't know what's underneath them. With violence, we wouldn't know what a person who had been attacked violently looked like if the news didn't show us. So then why are we so comfortable with accepting the familiar as opposed to the unfamiliar?

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Contact Information

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and Instructional Technology (CCIT)
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Monmouth University
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07764

Phone: (732) 571-3481 | Fax: (732) 263-5151
Email: outlook@monmouth.edu