Published by the Students of Johns Hopkins since 1896
June 12, 2024

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.



University silence on PIKE is negligent

Since the start of this school year, the Pi Kappa Alpha (PIKE) fraternity has been under a suspension imposed by the University. Several weeks ago, the Hopkins chapter of PIKE forfeited its charter, ceasing its official presence on campus. While under suspension, PIKE’s members were forbidden from functioning in any manner as the organization known as PIKE. They could not hold rush events or a pledge class, they could not create a new “PIKE house,” and they could not hold parties, mixers or any other event besides those associated with a pre-approved improvement plan that would condition their return to campus next school year. With their charter now surrendered, though, the fraternity is no longer recognized by the University or the general PIKE fraternity.


Wendland is an excellent choice for KSAS

A week ago, Beverly Wendland was named dean of the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences. The Editorial Board would like to formally express its support for the decision to name Wendland the dean, as we believe she is well-suited to tackle the challenges ahead and to blaze a new course for the school, fostering an atmosphere of interdisciplinary learning and inclusiveness necessary to achieve her stated goals, including “to train the leaders of tomorrow” and to make sure “that anytime a visitor comes to our campus, they leave wishing they could stay.”




America should be beyond orientalism

Who is ISIS? It’s just like U.S. President Barack Obama said during his speech directed to the UN: “No God condones this terror. No grievance justifies these actions. There can be no reasoning — no negotiation — with this brand of evil. The only language understood by killers like this is the language of force.” Obama calls upon the UN “for a new compact among the civilized peoples of this world to eradicate war at its most fundamental source.” Sound familiar? Replace ISIS with Al-Qaeda, and you’d have nearly the same words used by former President George W. Bush in 2003 just before the invasion of Iraq. History has a terrible tendency to repeat itself, and the discourse surrounding the Middle East, Islam and terrorism has not changed.


Feminism is about gender equality across society

I am confused. As a woman, I am perplexed by the word “feminism,” a word fraught with added nuances in meaning, thrown around hastily in complaint of a result; a word which has caused a cascade of movements that have worn on the public's ears. Feminism. In fact, I had to search the literal definition of it on Google, which only added onto my tangled thoughts and sabotaged my efforts to organize my beliefs. Regardless, I thought about the last time I helped my parents carry heavy luggage down the stairs. My sister called out, “Stop trying to be the man!” Her intentions were clearly out of concern — but why did my offer to help carry heavy suitcases suddenly change my gender? More so, why did my guy friend speak in a chipmunk voice and shimmy his shoulder when jokingly imitating a girl? It just doesn’t seem right.


Rush: looking in from the outside

Come second semester, many freshmen and a select number of sophomores wonder what it’s really like to be part of a sorority at Hopkins. I have no idea what it feels like to be a member of the social Greek community here. I have never participated in Panhellenic recruitment either. This is truly the understanding of sorority life from the outside looking in.


Showing up to the open forum is half the battle

The Hopkins administration has proven to its students, both old and new, that it is inept at handing sexual assault situations. Therefore, it is essential that students hold the administration responsible and demand transparency and answers. There have been major improvements; the administration notified the campus swiftly after a sexual assault was reported in November. However, it still has not earned the trust of its students, and students must continue to demand better from the administration. Unfortunately, the low attendance at a recent Q&A panel on sexual assault shows a potential disappointing lack of interest from students.


Campus Kitchen efforts are praiseworthy

The Editorial Board commends the Hopkins Campus Kitchen organization for all the work its members have done to fight food insecurity in Baltimore. In years past, Campus Kitchen has worked to bring leftover Meals in a Minute to local citizens in need. However, with the arrival of Bon Appétit, Campus Kitchen faced new challenges as it tried to develop a plan with the new management similar to the one they previously had with Aramark. Recently, Campus Kitchen’s food resources director has negotiated with Bon Appétit management and the two parties have finally reached an agreement that will put leftover Meals in a Minute in the hands of the hungry instead of the compost bin.


Selma event is a welcomed focus on diversity

In partnership with the Black Student Union and the Student Government Association,  Hopkins sponsored a free screening of Ava duVernay’s critically acclaimed civil rights film Selma on Wednesday at the Charles Theatre. The screening was followed by a panel discussion with a question and answer session. The panel, led by Provost Robert Lieberman, included prominent civil rights scholars: Taylor Branch, a 2014 Hopkins honorary degree recipient and the author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning trilogy on the civil rights movement, America in the King Years, and Nathan Connolly, the director of the University’s Program on Racism, Immigration and Citizenship and an assistant professor of history at Hopkins, whose work focuses on the connection between property rights and civil rights.


Domestic terrorism in the U.S. should be treated seriously

Over this past break I visited a friend of mine in London. While there, we took the Chunnel to Paris for the day, which happened to be a week after the shooting at Charlie Hebdo. Paris that day was a very different city from the Paris I remembered visiting the year before: Stores were closed, the streets weren’t very busy, sirens wailed and police officers carrying large guns patrolled the sidewalks. I was surprised by the somber mood. Yes, there had been a terrorist attack, but only 12 people had died. In my mind, it didn’t register as being that grave.


Marshawn Lynch's press conference was real art

I have only ever cared about football enough to be able to chat about it in the checkout line, to make a quip about my hometown Browns’ existential suckery and Johnny Manziel’s antics — the Ravens got so close, they’ll get ‘em next year, thank you, have a nice day. But my interest in football skyrocketed when I viewed a video containing the possibly most public piece of performance art since Pussy Riot pussy-rioted in Russia.


Marshawn Lynch's press conference was real art

I have only ever cared about football enough to be able to chat about it in the checkout line, to make a quip about my hometown Browns’ existential suckery and Johnny Manziel’s antics — the Ravens got so close, they’ll get ‘em next year, thank you, have a nice day. But my interest in football skyrocketed when I viewed a video containing the possibly most public piece of performance art since Pussy Riot pussy-rioted in Russia.


International adoption offers true options

Upon arriving to a doctor’s office, as a new patient, I am typically asked to fill out a thick stack of papers held together by a sterile clipboard. The papers ask for my basic information, such as my name, address, age, etc. But almost immediately, I begin to hesitate as I fill out the forms. The paper asks me, “With which race do you identify?” and “What ethnicity do you consider yourself?” I do not know how to answer these questions honestly. Part of it may be because I am a twenty-year-old in a society that forces me to question who I am everyday, but a larger part of it is because I am adopted. I was adopted from South Korea as an infant and came to my family in America at the age of five months.


Open party ban should be lifted

With spring recruitment currently underway for Hopkins sororities and fraternities, it is time to reevaluate the progress that campus Greek life has experienced since its previous struggles with safety at parties. In November, the Inter-Fraternity Council (IFC) met to address a sexual assault that occurred at a fraternity-sponsored event. Although those involved in the incident had no affiliation with the University or its Greek life, the IFC, in consultation with University administrators, responded by unanimously voting to ban all open parties until the end of the fall semester.


Remodeling Cooperstown: tainted players in a tainted league

This article, I know, may be outdated by now. But I recently saw in the news that Alex Rodriguez had hired Barry Bonds to become his personal hitting coach as he rejoins the New York Yankees. The irony of this partnership did not escape me. Rodriguez, who had to sit out last season as a result of his extensive history of performance enhancing drug (PED) use, is partnering with Bonds, the unofficial face of baseball’s PED era, to help him make a clean return to the game. This news also gave me a convenient reason to revisit the baseball Hall of Fame elections that occurred a few weeks ago.


The pervasive pitfalls of being a white moderate

In his powerful and articulate “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” (1963), Martin Luther King, Jr. wrote, “I have almost reached the regrettable conclusion that the Negro's great stumbling block in his stride toward freedom is not the White Citizen's Counciler or the Ku Klux Klanner, but the white moderate, who is more devoted to ‘order’ than to justice; who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice; who constantly says: ‘I agree with you in the goal you seek, but I cannot agree with your methods of direct action.’" Although the struggle for civil rights never ended, it has received mainstream news coverage, both nationally and locally, in recent months due to the murders of black men and women such as Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Tamir Rice and Tanisha Anderson.


Crooked Wood: Good morning Baltimore

Apparently New York City, my hometown, is “over” in the way 12-year-old girls signified the end of Uggs and leggings. First off, I reject this premise entirely. New York City is a complex organism that exists in various permutations for its multitude of residents and visitors. The observation, or rather pronouncement, is grounded in some reality. A significant part of New York is only available to masters of the universe. Every new plot of land that has a warehouse with any potential at all is consumed within minutes by developers and weeks later becomes a concert venue or luxury apartment. I have heard arguments that beyond its outlandish real estate prices, the city is too polished and too safe — the proverbial grit is gone. I grant you that New York has changed dramatically, and we’re not just mourning the dive bars and hole-in-the-wall eateries.


New approach needed to secure campus

A recent uptick in armed robberies has caught the University’s attention, not just because of their heightened frequency, but because they seem to be getting closer and closer to campus. Given that the University preaches student safety above just about all else, the Editorial Board believes extensive measures need to be taken in order to restore safety and comfort to student lives.


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