Opinion

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.


To hug or not to hug: What’s in a political embrace?

September 20, 2012

Ever since Scott Van Duzer—a Fort Pierce, Fla. pizza parlor owner—bear-hugged the President on one of last week’s campaign pit-stops, he’s become a household name among political pundits. He’s also made countless enemies among the general population; the registered Republican, who voted for Obama in 2008 and plans to do so again in November, says his heartwarming, meme-worthy photo op drew slanderous rhetoric from the Right, who regarded his off-the-cuff, “everyman” endorsement as a searing betrayal.  Within hours, Big Apple Pizza & Pasta’s Yelp! page was crawling with unsavory comments, including one user who cringed at the thought of “O’Hussain” visiting “Big Crapple Pizza.” These drew stubborn responses from Van Duzer, who stood his ground amidst the explosive weeklong controversy. “I don’t regret anything I did,” he insisted in one interview, marveling at how his five minutes of fame ignited a political firestorm. “It’s my vote, my voice, and I respect everyone’s opinion, but it doesn’t have to be as nasty as it’s become.”


America’s two-party system has failed democracy

September 20, 2012

The two-party system is so ingrained in American politics that rarely do citizens stop and question it. Election after election, charged “left” vs “right” rhetoric fills every American TV screen as incessant attack ads try to discourage indecisive voters from certain candidates. Regardless of the ineffectiveness and negative consequences of attack ads, there lies a more fundamental question about the modern American electoral process: is the two-party system the most effective and fair way to run the American democratic republic?


The Defense of Marriage Act and the long quest for equality

September 13, 2012

Throughout our nation’s lifetime, a contentious battle has unfurled every four years between the two major candidates for President of the United States. To say that this election is no different, however, would be a grave fallacy; this contest features an element never before seen during America’s brief electoral history. For the first time, one of the major parties– in this case, the Democratic Party– has voted to support same-sex marriage in its official party platform.


Letter from the editor: Mom is wrong

September 13, 2012

Opinions haven’t always gotten a good rap. Some 300 years ago, Voltaire argued that they’ve “caused more trouble on this little earth than plagues or earthquakes.” Not exactly a ringing endorsement.


Election spoiler? Gary Johnson’s shakeup

September 13, 2012

Could Gary Johnson be a spoiler in the 2012 elections? This two-term governor and businessman from New Mexico was a GOP presidential candidate before dropping out of the race after polling around 2 percent in the primaries. Following his departure from the race, Johnson joined the Libertarian Party and eventually received its nomination for president.


Safety campaign must extend reach

September 13, 2012

On Aug. 31 the University launched the Roads Scholar safety campaign, a distinctive display of thousands of yellow and white shoes on the corner of 33rd St. and St. Paul St. This new addition marks one of Hopkins’s latest attempts to tackle the dangers pedestrians face when crossing roads near campus.


A Community Liason is necessary

September 13, 2012

Since Student-Community Liaison Carrie Bennett retired last month, Charles Village residents and partygoers have witnessed an increase in the number of security officers on patrol. Bennett helped to shield Hopkins students from conflicts with Baltimore Police and Charles Village residents. In her absence, security officers and Baltimore Police officers have been appearing at off-campus fraternity parties for the first time in years. According to administration officials, a new student-community liaison has been chosen, but will not begin official duties until the end of the month.


Accusing liberals of being like Nazis or socialists is unacceptable

July 27, 2010

During the last year and half the right has constantly leveled a barrage of disgusting attacks at President Obama. Former GOP Speaker of the House and possible 2012 presidential contender Newt Gingrich called liberalist “the secular socialist machine” and said it “represents as a great a threat to America as Nazi Germany or the Soviet Union once did.” Rush Limbaugh not only claimed that “Obama’s got a healthcare logo that’s right out of Adolf Hitler’s playbook,” he claimed that the Democrats’ social policies were similar to those of the Nazis. Right wing economist Thomas Sowell accused Obama of being like the Nazis because of the pressure he put on BP to create a $20 billion compensation fund for those affected by the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Sarah Palin endorsed that editorial. Glenn Beck has claimed that progressives are similar to Mao Zedong, Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin, and Che Guevara. The list of conservatives who have accused Obama of being a social, communist, or Marxist is almost endless. Tea Party darling Rick Barber even created an ad that used a Lincoln reenactor to smear the Patient Affordability and Protection Act as “slavery,” followed by images of the Holocaust.


President Obama has brought change we need and it's time liberals appreciate it

July 26, 2010

When Barack Obama was elected president in November 2008 I was elated. I thought his presidency would usher in an era of positive change our nation has not seen since the New Deal in the 1930s or the Great Society in the 1960s. For a while I thought I was wrong as it seemed Obama was failing to achieve anything of note. Now I can see that I was right to be excited.


There is no reason to celebrate on July 4

July 2, 2010

On Independence Day in 1776 John Adams wrote to his way Abigail that “I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more.”


Stanley McChrystal deserves to be fired for his dangerous insubordination

June 22, 2010

In recent interviews with Rolling Stone, General Stanley McChrystal and his staff officers openly mocked the civilian leadership of the United States Government. While preparing for an event in Paris, McChrystal and his staff joked about how the general should respond if he was asked about Vice President Biden, who clashed with the top US commander in Afghanistan over sending more troops last year: “‘Are you asking about Vice President Biden?’ McChrystal says with a laugh. ‘Who’s that?’ ‘Biden?’ suggests a top adviser. ‘Did you say: Bite me?’”    


Senate candidate Rand Paul’s rigid ideology would allow segregation to survive

June 8, 2010

On June 5th an opinion by Kentucky Republican Senate candidate Rand Paul was published in The Bowling Green Daily News. In that opinion, Dr. Paul who is Ron Paul’s son, wrote that “If you watch any of my interviews, you’ll see I never stated that I did not support the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and I certainly never called for its repeal.”