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Politics

New York Passes Marriage Equality Act as New Jersey Stands in the Shadows

New York Passes Marriage EqualityNew York State Senate passed the Marriage Equality Act, legalizing same-sex marriage across the state. It was signed immediately by Governor Andrew Cuomo on June 24, 2011.

One month after the law became legal, hundreds of young and old lesbian and gay couples, along with friends and family members, lined the streets of New York City to finally be wed.

"The state vote in New York to legalize gay marriage is an exciting move forward toward equal rights for lesbian and gay Americans," said Dr. Nancy Mezey, Associate Professor and Sociology Program Director at Monmouth University.

New York joins five fellow American states, and the Washington DC area, in legalizing same-sex marriage. Handful of countries like Canada, Argentina and Spain also recognize same-sex marriage.

Dr. Mezey, also a Director for the Institute for Global Understanding, commented, "The Republicans who broke rank and voted for gay marriage in New York showed a lot of courage and conviction...I think we will see more Republicans voting for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights as Americans in younger generations go to the polls."

One Republican State Senator, Mark Grisanti, said on the State Senate floor that he could not "deny a person, a human being, a taxpayer, a worker, the people of my district and across this state, the state of New York, and those people who make this the great state that it is the same rights that I have with my wife."

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Who’s Who in SGA: Mike Migliaro Sophomore Senator

SGA Mike MigliaroMike Migliaro is a sophomore majoring in Applied Communication. Migliaro is a Sophomore Senator and is also involved on the Human Relations Committee which works on public relations around the nearby communities and promoting events open to the public, such as the Big Event.

As a Senator, he gives his opinion on certain issues and votes on topics that should benefit the University community.

Migliaro became involved in SGA last year so he can get more involved on campus and make decisions that will benefit the University community.

“My involvement in the organization will help my time at Monmouth be so much more enjoyable. So far, in such a short amount of time, I’ve made great friends and am happy to be a leader on the campus. I suggest others to get involved with the Student Government Association as well. It’s a great feeling to know that your voice is heard and you make a difference,” Migliaro said.

The Sophomore Senator is looking forward to what unfolds this semester but is anticipating the BIG Event, after all the hard work that has been put into planning and organizing it.  

PHOTO COURTESY of Mike Migliaro

Sent to Jail: The Innocence Project

Sent to Jail1Picture yourself in a small prison cell. The long years have been passing. Thinking back on it, you can hardly remember when exactly it was you were put there, but you know one thing; you were innocent and you have been serving time in place of the true criminal.

There is hardly any hope and freedom may never come. It is in this type of desperate situation that organizations such as the Innocence Project step in.

Elizabeth Webster, the publications manager from the Innocence Project, was a guest speaker at the University last Thursday during Professor Susan Douglas’ class in the History Department.
Webster spoke about the mission of the Innocence Project, the type of work the organization does, and the inherent flaws in the current U.S. legal system.

The Innocence Project works on using DNA evidence to prove the innocence of wrongfully convicted felons, hopefully leading to their exoneration. The organization was founded at Yeshiva University in 1992 by two lawyers, Barry C. Scheck and Peter J. Neufeld. It began as a small legal clinic that used DNA evidence to prove innocence, but due to the growing number of service requests, it eventually grew to become the national non-profit organization it is today.

While the exact number is not known, the current percentage of wrongfully convicted criminals in the U.S. judicial system is high.

Webster said, “The figure is somewhere in the hundreds or thousands, suspected to be between three and seven percent of the prison population.”

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Why Politics Are Important Now More Than Ever

Why PoliticsMany of today’s youth choose not to follow the world of politics, thinking that the decisions made by politicians have no effect on them. What college students and young adults sometimes fail to recognize is that all decisions made by the politicians in office either directly or indirectly affect them now or will affect them in the near future.

The most recent prominent issues to politicians are job creation, healthcare, and overall government spending and interference.

At first glance, these issues may not seem like concerns that the average 18-24 year old should worry themselves about, but these issues do affect this age group. The job market has been a very tough place for Americans over the past few years. Teenagers who had a hard time finding a summer job, or are currently encountering difficulties in finding a job, know what the market has been like, however small the scale.

By having exposure to the tough job market, most would expect these young adults to show some interest in the policies politicians try to set forth in regards to job creation because today’s youth will soon feel the brunt of the uncertainty surrounding job security. However, not only do young adults not show interest in the policies enacted to create jobs, but many aren’t aware of the consistently increasing unemployment rate.

Decisions made by today’s political leaders about job creation have a direct impact on the youth.

The ability to secure internships, and most importantly, a job after graduation, is affected by the approach politicians take to create jobs now.

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Who’s Who in SGA Jackie Reed President Pro-Tempore

Whos WhoJackie Reed is a senior, holding the position of President Pro-Tempore on the Student Government Association’s Senate. She is a communication major focusing on the public relations and journalism cluster. Her position involves filling in for the Vice President of SGA if he or she in not present, and delegates tasks.

Reed joined the Senate as part of the fresh start program her freshman year. Originally, she saw the perspective of joining SGA as a good way to get involved and meet new people.

“I had no idea how passionate I would become about the organization or how far it would take me in my college career,” Reed said.

She described how she feels very fortunate to be able to work with a variety of student leaders, advisors, and faculty at the University.

“Senate has provided me with opportunities I never thought I would have.” Reed served as Finance Chair last year where she met with the leaders and advisors from many clubs and organizations on campus to allocate over half a million dollars for their programming. She also had the opportunity to work with fellow Senators and advisors to increase funding for club sports.

“SGA has allowed me to truly make a difference on this campus and be a voice for my peers. It is safe to say that joining SGA has been the best decision of my life. I’ve been involved, made a difference, and made friendships that will last beyond these four years,” Reed said.

She said that if she could give any advice to freshmen, it would be to get involved and find something they’re passionate about. For those thinking about joining Senate, Reed strongly encourages them to do so.

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How Will Fort Monmouth’s Closure Affect the Surrounding Community?

How Will Fort Monmouths Closure Affect the Surrounding CommunityIn 1917, the first 32 soldiers arrived at what was then called Camp Little Silver, after the near-by town. Once a potato farm, the location was considered ideal because it was close to river and rail transportation. It was named Fort Monmouth in 1925 and soon be-came a breeding ground for many technological innovations, such as radio advances and language interpreters.

Over the years, the Fort’s research teams devised radar that could locate enemy artillery and mortars. The Fort created a field television camera with a backpack transmitter, and a pocket-sized radiation detector. It also developed or improved systems for surveillance and air traffic control as well as night-vision devices.

The Fort’s garrison flag was lowered, rolled up and covered for the final time last Tuesday. This week, the property will be turned over to a 14-member force that will maintain and secure it while another government commission seeks developers for its 1,100-plus acres.

After 94 years of helping soldiers communicate with each other while keeping tabs on the enemy, Fort Monmouth officially closed last Thursday. The military intelligence base was the victim of congressional budget cuts and relocation. Thousands of jobs have been transferred to the Aberdeen Proving Grounds in Maryland.

“It’s a huge waste of money. Politicians were involved, so what do you expect?” said Joe Jenkins, a resident of Eatontown, whose mother, father and brother all worked at Fort Monmouth.

“They’re spending all this money moving it to Maryland instead of keeping it here where people need it. It’s going to hit a lot of people and businesses hard.”

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Ways Politicians Can Better Target Student Voters

default article imageWhen campaigning, politicians often overlook the importance of the young voters. During President Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign, he made it a point to reach out to today’s youth and to hear what they had to say. His campaigning led the youngest members of the United States’ electorate to vote, the majority of whom voted Democratic.

Young voters, especially college students, were a major component in President Obama’s road to the White House. In 2008, Rock the Vote, an organization supported by the University’s Political Science Club, promoted political involvement directed towards today’s youth.

The program was responsible for the largest youth voter registration drive in history. Also, according to CIRCLE, (the Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement), more first time voters participated in the 2008 election than ever before.

By going to events where there would be a large and youthful crowd, as well as influential celebrities, President Obama was laying the foundation and exposing an effective campaign strategy. His appeal to the youth only emphasized his campaign theme of hope and change.

The young, first time voters were looking for change, and by listening to their views and appealing to the youthful masses, President Obama marketed himself as the man who could give them what they wanted.

In order to attract young voters in the upcoming November elections, politicians should go to the places where their potential constituents spend the majority of their time, school. High schools and colleges are good places to begin. Speaking to students on a one- on- one basis helps politicians learn about the issues that pertain to and are on the minds of today’s youth.

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Recap of the Debate Team’s Summer in Arizona

Recap of the Debate Teams Summer in ArizonaBrandon Karkovice and Arielle Giordano of the University Debate Hawks competed in the Arizona Debate Institute at Arizona State University this summer. Karkovice said, “The debaters were almost as intense as the heat, but the week- long research was extremely beneficial.”

The program in Arizona prepared Karkovice and Giordano for the beginning of the 2011 debate season.

“I’m really excited and upset at the same time going into this year, because I realize now I’ve learned the things that have made me who I am at Monmouth, and now the following year is going to be icing on the cake, with maybe some cherries on top,” said Karkovice.

Karkovice said that one of his absolute favorite memories of belonging to the University community has been his time as a Debate Hawk.

“And now as captain, I can see that the scared and shy freshman I once was has grown into a strong, confident young man ready for law school,” he said.

Debate prepares students for vital professional skills, including picking apart arguments, criticizing papers, reading fast, and analyzing situations. Karkovice said that along the way, he met incredible people and the most influential teacher that has impacted his life, Dr. Joseph Patten.

Karkovice described that Patten has not only taught him about the discipline of political science, but about giving back to the community and helping others as well.

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Who’s Who in SGA: Oscar Sanchez - Vice President

Who Who in SGAOscar Sanchez, a junior, is majoring in Communications with a specialization in Public Relations and Journalism. His minors are Business Administration and Information Technology.

After college, Sanchez hopes to receive his Masters degree in Communication either at San Diego State, New York University, Boston University, or the University of Miami. Ultimately, he wants to work for a Public Relations firm, specializing in event planning.

Sanchez joined the Student Government Association after writing on SGA’s Facebook account the summer before his first semester at Monmouth and asked how he could get involved immediately. Sanchez was passionate and involved in his high school’s Student Council.

After meeting some of the SGA members during freshman orientation, he submitted his application through the fresh-start program. On interview day, Sanchez remembers being the first one called in to be questioned and knew he wanted to be involved in the organization for the rest of his college career.

SGA has allowed Sanchez to meet people who he would not have otherwise and to interact with departments on campus that he said he would not have known as an average Joe student. Sanchez said, “I’ve been able to plan events and watch them come to life. Last year I planned Springfest, and I was so glad that everyone had a great time. Giving back to the students and having that sense of accomplishment is an amazing feeling. I hope to continue to do that as Vice President this year.”

University Remembers, Comments on Sept. 11 10th Anniversary

University Remembers Sept 11 10th AnniversaryOn Sunday, America paid homage to the tragic events that took place on September 11, 2001. Ten years later, thankful citizens are continuing to move forward, but can never forget.

For many, the day began like any other. “I was in a cab heading to work. I had just dropped my daughter off at her first day of kindergarten,” recalled Charlie Johnston, a Manhattan resident. Johnston was headed to his office at the World Financial Center, across the street from the World Trade Center. The first plane hit while he was waiting at a stop light on West Street. “The building was on fire but I never saw a plane so I wasn’t sure what happened,” he continued. “I was very scared and didn’t realize we were under attack until the second plane hit.”

“I was in a meeting in my office,” remembered President Paul Gaffney II, who was still on active military duty and serving as the President for the National Defense University. The University is located in Washington D.C. approximately one mile from the Pentagon. “I had big bay windows facing toward the Pentagon that began to vibrate from the explosion,” said Gaffney. 

“We were about to start class when the principal pulled the teacher aside,” said Marc Yanneillo, a sophomore Communication and English major. In 2001, Yanniello was in the 4th grade.“

Another teacher ran in and turned on the TV,” he continued. The student body in Yanniello’s school was soon after given an explanation on the tragic events that would forever change the nation. “I remember thinking, what did our country do to make this happen,” he said.

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Christie Takes Disaster Preparations to a New Level

chistie disaster prepHurricane Irene moved past the Jersey Shore leaving a trail of destruction and causing major flooding throughout the state.

Thousands of customers in Monmouth and Ocean County were left without power, sometime for days due to the damaging winds and heavy rains associated with the storm.

Due to the preparedness of state officials and emergency preparedness organizations, residents went above and beyond, taking precautionary measures to stay safe be-fore and during Irene, which was deemed a tropical storm by the time it reached New Jersey.

Governor Chris Christie gained praise for his involvement towards the preparedness for the Hurricane. As soon as Christie began warning New Jersey residents that Irene was headed our way, his public relations staff organized a line of press conferences as well as online presences on Twitter and YouTube.

Christie’s voice appeared to be heard everywhere talking about the storm. He was a guest on “Meet the Press” and toured the state be-fore the storm. His involvement in relief efforts acquired praise, even from his critics. “Get the hell off the Beach in Asbury Park and get out. You’re done. It’s 4:30 PM. You’ve maximized your tan. Get off the beach. Get in you cars and get out of those areas,” Christie said addressing the coastline two days prior to the arrival of Irene.

"The storm was a political victory for the governor," Julie Roginsky, a longtime Democratic strategist, said. "You got someone who looks like he was everywhere all at once and had his hand in everything."

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Contact Information

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

MAILING ADDRESS
The Outlook
Monmouth University
400 Cedar Ave, West Long Branch, New Jersey
07764

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