Last updateWed, 03 Mar 2021 2pm


Honest Hearts Produce Honest Actions

There are many morals that people hold close to them. Respect. Loyalty. Trust. Honesty. Today, I am here to talk about the gray area of honesty. Is it really the best policy? Or are white lies worth it in the long run? Most people will tell you to be honest because every lie catches up with you eventually. It makes sense. Think about it.

For example, remember that time you told your mother that she looked nice in her new dress and then your father came home and told your mother she looked like a grandma?

All you had to do was tell your mother the dress was hideous and that she is so beautiful you wouldn't want her to be caught wearing such an abomination.

However, you lied and now your mother is giving you the evil eye because you almost let her walk out of the house wearing a dress from 1953.

So, point of the story is not to lie, right? Well some people will argue that little lies are okay every once in a while. That those little lies are meant to avoid something bigger.

For example, you friend asks you to hang out but you want to hang out with your significant other so you tell your friend you can't because you don't feel good.

Then you and your partner go out to dinner and BAM there's your friend with his/her mother. Now, not only do you look like a big fat liar to your friend but his/her mother as well.

This can be argued from another angle as well and that is that sometimes people just cannot handle the truth. I will give you an example that all girls are inevitable for.

Don't you deny it either ladies because we all know you'll be lying. For example, one of your girl friends is dating this guy that you absolutely can't stand, for whatever reason.

Maybe he was a past cheater, maybe he hangs out with a bad crowd or maybe you had a secret crush on him in elementary school and never got over it. Regardless, you don't like the kid.

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The Effect Award Shows Have on Social Media

award_showsAs a college student who is active on social media, it may be common knowledge that Pharrell Williams wore a hat that resembles Smokey Bear's famous headgear on the Grammy's this past month. Or even that Jennifer Lawrence fell up the stairs when going to accept her Oscar last year.

But the real question is, do you even have to watch these award shows to know about what's going on live at the show? Do you need to watch the Grammy's or the CMA's to know that Taylor Swift sang a sappy or angry love song about one of her ex-boyfriends?

If you have Twitter or Facebook, you probably don't.

It drives my family and friends insane when I force them to watch these award shows, but no matter what they say, they sit through the show just to appease me.

This past month I was tasked with making the most difficult decision of my entire life: Do I watch The Bachelor Wedding Special, or do I watch the Grammy Awards?

As a reality TV junkie, I was at a crossroads being that both specials were on at the same time. Knowing that the Grammy's would be live streamed through the people I follow on Twitter, I chose to watch the wedding.

It wasn't really the most difficult decision of my life, but my twitter followers made this somewhat hard decision a much easier one.

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The Special Significance of Valentine’s Day

valentines_significanceWhen it comes to holidays, people tend to think of the major ones, like Christmas, Thanksgiving or Easter. Even smaller ones like Halloween or St. Patrick's Day might even make the list.

While all of these holidays all have some sort of cultural or religious significance behind them, one comes to mind that can raise a few eyebrows as to whether or not it has any meaning behind it.

Valentine's Day has always been viewed as a romantic holiday; a day to spend time with that special someone.

Yes every holiday has been commercialized to a certain degree. Thanksgiving and Christmas are the obvious ones.

On its face, Valentine's Day almost seems like a Hallmark creation invented to sell cards and candy.

Last Feb. 14, released some statistics about Valentine's Day. The news outlet projected that the average person would spend around $130 in total on that day. In addition, they anticipated that, across the country, $1.6 billion would be spent on candy, $1.9 billion on flowers and $4.4 billion on jewelry. The article also forecasted that 145 million cards would be sold and there were a whopping 1,400 different varieties of Hallmark cards available to choose from.

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“It Ain’t Hip to Sing About Tractors or Trucks”

The Traditional Sound of Country is Beginning to Transform More into Pop Music

country_to_popThere has always been a certain stigma attached to country music, that it's uncool because of its twangy sound and subject matter. To quote country singer Brad Paisley's hit single "This is Country Music," "It ain't hip to sing about tractors, trucks, little towns, or mama. Yea that might be true."

However, in the next line Paisley makes no apologies. "But this is country music, and we do."

Despite the pride for the genre that Paisley expresses in this tune, there has been movement in Nashville recently.

Record labels are now signing acts that are willing to stray from the traditional country sound and record songs that could best be described as a hodgepodge of elements taken from other genres.

Many artists now utilize an electric guitar sound, which is not always bad. But many have also adopted the same generic, computerized cadences used in rap songs, and some even use hip hop elements like AutoTune.

Because of this shift, the line between pop and country is now more blurred than it has ever been before.

Current country artist and judge on NBC's The Voice, Blake Shelton, angered fans of traditional country.

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The Constant Desire for Tanned Skin

Ninety plus weather, bright sunrays peeping through the palm trees' shades, warm sand hugging our toes. The ocean water singing to us waiting for us to dive in for a refreshing swim. Oh summer, how we miss you.

But what is it about summer, other than the warm welcoming weather and all that time off from school that we love so much? The sun-bathed skin color everyone achieves of course.

That natural glow we all get during the summer months is a glow many strive for all year long. What exactly is it about this tanned color skin that has people doing crazy things over the winter months?

Thousands of people are constantly spending money throughout the frigid winter to achieve or maintain that summer tan that comes out once a year. Of course without the sun's strong rays, people go to extreme, dangerous measures. Tanning beds and self-tanning lotions and sprays is the alternate to sun bathing.

What is it about this orange-like color that has people either deep frying themselves or bathing in chemicals that I'm pretty sure do not belong on their bodies?

Tanning salons make tons of money thanks to these color-obsessed individuals, which is awesome for the economy, but not so awesome for the human body.

If standing outside under the sun's natural UV light is extremely dangerous, what makes people think that lying in, what feels like a human over, being hit by rays all around is any healthier?

I personally have never been in a tanning bed or used self- tanning products; I'm more of a natural look kind of gal, but I do find myself surrounded by people who are into the tanning life.

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Let The New Semester Anxiety Begin

stessed_students"The things that have been most valuable to me, I did not learn in school," said Will Smith.

Society has brainwashed our generation into believing that school is the only doorway to success, that attending school is the best option we have as young adults.

What if I said society was wrong? Now don't misinterpret my words, I am not talking about education, I am specifically referring to school. As Will Smith agrees, the most important things in life are not learned between four cement walls in an hour long lecture.

We have recently started our spring semester at the University and I can bet my money that the majority would agree this by far has been the best start to a spring semester because of Mother Nature's wonderful touch.

Let's be honest now. The only reason we have not yet complained about our new classes and the dreading assignments is because most of us have not really had class all week.

Nonetheless, I would not place the spring semester top in my list of things I am excited for, especially not after the long, relaxing winter break we just had.

Compared to high school and younger students, I guess we are lucky in the sense that we get an entire month of a break while they only have a single pathetic week and half off.

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14 Things You Should Stop Doing in 2014

Take a look at your Facebook or Twitter feeds and tell me what you see. If you don't mention links to popular websites such as "BuzzFeed" or "Elite Daily" with posts about the hundreds of things you should be doing in your teens, twenties, thirties, then I'd call your bluff.

The millennial generation has grown accustomed to mainly consuming media in list form and relying on this practice to spoon-feed the guidelines to life. With that being said, here are 14 things that young adults should stop doing in 2014:

1) Having Regrets:

Have you ever wanted to try something but held back because of uncertainty or fear of what others may think? Newsflash! The best moments of your life typically begin one step outside of your comfort zone.

For example, many students that did not study abroad because of fear or doubt wish they did when they had the chance.

Be sure to take advantage of all the opportunities that are at your disposal while you can and not look back years from now with what-ifs.

2) What Others Think:

If you allow others' thoughts and comments dictate how you live your life, then you will waste all of your time scrambling to please everyone, which is merely impossible. All of that wasted time could have been spent on engaging in something that you truly enjoy and that makes you happy.

Remember what Dr. Seuss taught us when we were little, "we're all a little bit weird," so embrace it and just be yourself.

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The Key Word is Professional

When kids begin to play Pop Warner football, their parents try to teach them to be good sports. They tell them to always congratulate the other team, be gracious in defeat and that there is no "I" in team. Most of the kids who hear these speeches are around the age of nine. So one would think professional athletes would have good sportmanship. Well, someone forgot to tell Richard Sherman.

In the NFC Championship game a few weeks ago, Sherman tipped the potential game winning pass from Colin Kaepernick to receiver Michael Crabtree. This forced an interception that guaranteed Sherman's Seattle Seahawks a 23-17 victory over Kaepernick's San Francisco 49ers.

After the game was over, Sherman was interviewed by Fox Sports reporter Erin Andrews and he was not shy about sharing his opinions about himself and Crabtree.

"Well, I'm the best corner in the game," Sherman shouted into Andrews' microphone. "When you try me with a sorry receiver like Crabtree, that's the result you're going to get! Don't you ever talk about me!" When Andrews asked who had been talking about him, Sherman simply responded "Crabtree," telling the receiver not to talk about him and not to "open [his] mouth about the best or I'm going to shut it for you real quick!"

This interview has been the root of a lot of controversy over the last few weeks, morphing from a simple case of bad sportsmanship to the basis for accusations of racism because some fans took to calling Sherman a "thug" because of his actions. Some even went as far as to use the N-word in reference to the 25-year-old cornerback.

Sherman tweeted back to his detractors this past Monday, saying "Last night shows that racism is still alive and well... And that's so sad... At least some people respect MLKs dream." Sherman has since apologized for his actions, saying he was sorry "for attacking an individual and taking the attention away from the fantastic game by my teammates "That was not my intent," he said in a text to ESPN reporter Ed Werder.

This incident has simply been blown way out of proportion. Sherman was interviewed right after he was involved in a key play that led his team to their second Super Bowl berth in franchise history. He should not be made out as a villain and called a "thug" because he flew off the handle while being interviewed only minutes after a big win by his team.

However, his actions should not be condoned either. The overall reason why Sherman has caused such a firestorm of controversy is because American s hate a sore winner.

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Struggle and Sacrifice in the Land of Opportunity

A Call to Arms to Prevent Veteran Homelessness in the U.S.

vet2As fall transitions into winter, the mornings start to grow colder. The once verdant green leaves dwindle away and the light of day quickly descends into darkness. For thousands of people living on the east coast, nature's most beautiful moments are captured during this season.

For former Private Lenny Johnson, however, winter means combing the streets for a warmer jacket, a heavier sleeping bag or blanket to sleep with and a safer, quieter place to rest his head,

While we find the first frost to be quite the inconvenience when we go to start our cars on early December mornings, Johnson sees frost as a vivid reminder of winters spent shivering under the Route 80 overpass in Paterson, NJ, a place he has called home for over 12 years.

Instead of waking up in a warm, comfortable bed each morning, Johnson wakes up at dawn to the sound of cars and trucks whirring above his head while he struggles to regain warmth and solace in the confines of his torn and tattered blanket.

At any moment, the sound of screeching tires, the backfire of an engine, could send the 101st Airborne "Screaming Eagle" veteran into a flashback.

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Why do People Take Such Pride in a Team?

We cry, we cheer, we invest so much interest and receive nothing in return but a mixture of pride or disappointment. Why do we, as fans, put so much effort into a team that may never even notice us?

This can be explained for many reasons, but in summary, it is because we need to be a part of a greater element which in most opinions, is intangible by all means.

This thought first came to me while watching "Fever Pitch," a movie based off a novel written about a die hard baseball fan. In the movie, Jimmy Fallon's character says, "I like being part of something that's bigger than me. It's good for your soul to invest in something you can't control." To which his leading lady, Drew Barrymoore, replies, "You're a romantic."

Barrymoore does not realize that Fallon's character is not a romantic; he is, plainly put, just a fan. To those who are fans, their team is untouchable; nothing, and I mean nothing, can ruin your love for that team. This is reflected in Fallon's character as he explains that no matter what, they are there for you every day.

I believe strongly that this is one of the main reasons fans take such pride in their teams. I consider myself a die hard Phillies fan and big time baseball fan. Knowing that they will be there for me every night, I feel the need to watch them play from April through September.

As corny as it sounds, friends come and go, but baseball is always there. Then there is also the element of youth that sports bring to the table.

If you are a fan and look back on your life, you can say that you still have the same interest you had when you were 10 years old, maybe even five years old. In some sense, loving a team is a way to keep you young.

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Contemporary News Programs: A Critique

The increasing competition amongst various television networks has led to the emergence of programs that discuss more soft news, which is defined as lifestyle and appealing gossip stories instead of legitimate societal problems.

The increased prevalence of soft news shows is an alarming feature of the modern news telecasts, which tend to be slightly informative and biased.

Topics such as the latest fashion trends and celebrities' personal lives are discussed on popular news networks such as ABC and NBC. to further reel the viewers in.

I have noticed that typically morning news shows, such as "Good Morning America" and "The Today Show" have become more focused on entertaining the audience rather than informing them of important issues across the globe.

This entertainment is derived from discussion about Congress members' controversial personal lives, dressing styles, and even how their facial expressions may reveal their political inclinations.

Also, many news programs now have exclusive Twitter or Facebook pages where viewers can post comments and ask questions.

The tweets of a few extremely fortunate individuals will then be broadcasted during the program to be commented on.

This is clearly an effective participation technique meant to attract viewers. To me, this is analogous to a lottery system where one buys a ticket in the form of a tweet, and then follows the program for the sake of a reward—the recitation of that tweet.

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The Outlook
Jules L. Plangere Jr. Center for Communication
and Instructional Technology (CCIT)
Room 260, 2nd floor

The Outlook
Monmouth University
400 Cedar Ave, West Long Branch, New Jersey

Phone: (732) 571-3481 | Fax: (732) 263-5151