The opinions presented below are solely the views of the author and do not represent the views of The News-Letter. If you are a member of the Hopkins community looking to submit a piece or a letter to the editor, please email opinions@jhunewsletter.com.

Why we should never forget Freddie Gray

April 27, 2017

Freddie Gray, a 25 year old black man, died two years ago on April 19, 2015 after sustaining a severe spinal cord injury while in the custody of the Baltimore Police Department (BPD). According to the state medical examiner’s office, he sustained the fatal injury during a “rough ride” in a BPD van that was transporting him from the scene of his arrest to the Western District police station. His death, one week after the arrest, sparked both peaceful and violent protests, garnering national attention.

STEM and humanities majors need to respect each other

April 27, 2017

In 2016 I tweeted: “concept: people at this fricken school actually respect each others’ majors,” and I hope to reiterate that argument more eloquently now. I’m a Writing Seminars major. You might hear that and think it’s pretty cool. I do, too. I love writing, with all its struggles. However, the reaction I get too often is one of almost-pity, disinterest and mild laughter.

JHU-A/Public domain
Gilman Hall is the main building for the humanities, and it shouldn’t be a joke.

Coming out publicly is a step towards equality

April 27, 2017

Two weeks ago, in The News-Letter’s Identity Issue of the magazine, I published an article entitled “Finding the courage to come out in the social media era.” Since then, I have received some incredible responses from friends, family, strangers and estranged Facebook friends.

Drone research at Hopkins is worrying

April 27, 2017

The American war machine has been ratcheting up since the election of Trump. Missiles attacking a Syrian government air base, the “mother of all bombs” in Afghanistan and the expansion of Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) on the Korean Peninsula. Underneath all these recent developments is the ever-present buzz of drones, flying under the radar.

 U.S. Air Force photo/Public domain
The Applied Physics Lab at Hopkins has developed new drone technology for the U.S.

Editorial: The University should divest from fossil fuels

April 20, 2017

A group of student activists, Refuel Our Future, has been pressuring Hopkins for six years to remove its investments in fossil fuels from the University’s endowment. In response to Refuel’s recent formal proposal to the Public Interest Investment Advisory Committee (PIIAC), the Office of the Provost hosted the JHU Forum on Divestment from Fossil Fuels on Monday.

 Iracaz/Public domain
The administration was too controlling of Bernie Sanders’ visit to Shriver Hall.

The Hopkins administration must back off

April 20, 2017

Ever take a campus tour? Even if you haven’t, you know what it’s like: your friends walking backwards, cutting quickly through Brody while ignoring the palpable malaise, telling you how many student-run groups there are — more than 400! It turns out that 20 hours per week on B-level isn’t too attractive to 11th graders, but the chance to lead monthly canoeing trips or work on the largest student-run fair in the country might be.

New guidelines violate our right to protest

April 13, 2017

The University administration released new “Guidelines for Free Expression” last week “to serve as a resource to you as you consider acts of public expression” on and around campus. While it is unclear which policies outlined in the document are new and which are compiled from old statutes, what is clear is that these “guidelines” are merely restrictions on our freedoms re-branded as “resources” and “support.”

The U.S. should grant international adoptees citizenship

April 13, 2017

Imagine coming to the United States as a baby, the adopted child of American parents. You grow up as an American. You never visit your birth country. You don’t speak any language besides English. Now imagine you’re adult trying to do something as routine as applying for a passport. Your application gets rejected. Why? Because it turns out you are not an American citizen. You never have been.

 fibonacci blue/cc by 2.0
Protesters rallied against the immigration ban, a dangerous precedent for adoptees.

SGA election’s high voter turnout is a sign of progress

April 13, 2017

Student Government Association (SGA) Executive Board elections took place over the weekend and drew a noticeably larger voter turnout. Last year, 1,371 voters participated in executive board elections, triple that of the previous year’s turnout. This year, the trend away from apathy continued, and 1,421 undergraduates cast their vote.

Editorial: Free Food at JHU offers sustainable solution to campus food waste

April 13, 2017

Free Food at JHU, a new food waste initiative, recently launched a pilot version of its program on campus that informs Hopkins students about leftover food after events. The initiative, started by recent graduate Nemo Keller and the Office of Sustainability, sends email and text message alerts with the amount of food left over and its location.

Trump’s Sexual Assault Awareness Month is problematic

April 6, 2017

On April 1, President Trump declared that April would be Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month, eliciting a collective “Seriously?” from the greater population of Trump resisters. Not only has Trump been accused of sexual assault, but Sexual Assault Awareness Month was established in 2001.

 Susan Sullivan/cc by-sa 4.0
The Engaging New Voices campaign poster features a protest.

 Azbounce4kids/cc by-sa 3.0
On Monday, RAB held an event with bouncy castles on the beach for RAB Week.

The campus programming model needs improvement

April 6, 2017

Three of my classmates walked into class 15 minutes late this Monday. The cause of their atypical delay was a “too fun to resist” bouncy castle that was on the beach. While 15 minutes of instructional time was lost, one could potentially argue that the memory of missing class to jump on a bouncy castle will probably stick around longer than the content covered in the same time. This is in no way condoning skipping class, but surely many can agree that there’s something special in these small moments.

Editorial: New Horizons can deliver the change that SGA needs

April 6, 2017

Student government at Hopkins needs to change. The Editorial Board has unfortunately seen the Student Government Association (SGA) stagnate, and students have undoubtedly lost respect for this critical institution. But because SGA is the only official representative of students, it must regain their respect.


Working class voters didn’t choose Trump

April 6, 2017

Since the election, there have been numerous articles trying to get to the bottom of the motivation of Trump voters. Are Trump voters the result of racism and xenophobia, economic anxiety or a mixture of both (spoiler: According to exit polls, the answer is racism)? And, depending on your answer to the question, how best can liberals and leftists reach out to them?

Hopkins misses the mark with diversity training

March 30, 2017

When I arrived on campus for freshman orientation in August, I was apprehensive. College was like nothing I was prepared for, it was a whole new space in which I needed to reestablish myself. But I quickly grew comfortable and was pleasantly surprised at all the social issues that the University seemed to take responsibility for.

 FotoosVanRobin/CC BY-SA 2.0
Eat your brownies, but don’t pretend that binging on chocolate equates to self-care.

Be cautious of using the phrase “self-care”

March 30, 2017

In the age of fragile liberal snowflakes, there’s a phrase that I see thrown around quite a bit: “Practice self-care.” Now don’t get me wrong, it is incredibly important to take care of yourself, but we need to examine what we actually mean when we say something like that. If eating a pint of ice cream instead of watching the news is your idea of “self-care,” aren’t you buying into the idea of being a fragile snowflake?