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When Johns Hopkins established the Johns Hopkins Hospital in 1889, he sought to provide quality healthcare and serve as an invaluable resource to the surrounding community. Yet recent reports on the conditions at the Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg, Fla. and the Johns Hopkins Hospital in East Baltimore illustrate an appalling failure to carry on our founder’s mission.
The week before Thanksgiving, Michael Bloomberg donated $1.8 billion to Hopkins, the largest ever donation to an academic institution, for use in financial aid for qualified low and middle-income students. In accepting the donation, University President Ronald J. Daniels stated that the University wanted to “recruit more first-generation and low-income students and provide them with full access to every dimension of the Johns Hopkins experience.”
If you listened to Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro following his 2018 “re-election,” you would probably think Venezuela was a utopian country with strong democratic institutions or at least a country on the right track. Maduro triumphantly proclaimed a “heroic, beautiful, popular victory, forged in the struggle.” When asked about his autocratic tendencies, Maduro snapped back, asking “Do they really think that people here are so submissive that they would put up with a dictator?”
We hope that our community is encouraged to have difficult conversations about socioeconomic and educational inequity. And we hope that we use Bloomberg’s donation as a springboard to think critically about the pervasive elitism and exclusivity in higher education.
This week, Refuel Our Future kicked off its campaign against donations to the University. We constructed a graveyard on Keyser Quad memorializing things we are losing to climate change and launched a social media campaign on Facebook. Now that our initial push has concluded, we want to take the chance to re-introduce ourselves as a club and explain why we chose the tactics we did.
Thanksgiving Break was a much-needed time to avoid thinking about school. And yet, just a few days into it, alum Michael Bloomberg made an announcement that immediately drew my attention back to Hopkins. Bloomberg explained in a Nov. 18 New York Times op-ed that he was giving $1.8 billion to Hopkins to be used for financial aid.
John Allen Chau, an American missionary and adventurer, was killed by the Sentinelese, a tribe of 50 to 200 individuals indigenous to North Sentinel Island, a remote island in the Bay of Bengal on Nov. 17. According to the diary he left behind, Chau was attempting to convert the Sentinelese, one of the last remaining uncontacted peoples, to the Christian faith.
As students at Hopkins, we are all residents of Baltimore City. It is easy to forget this when we talk about mental health at Hopkins, an indisputably academically stressful environment, yet a privileged population. In some neighborhoods in Baltimore, mental health stems from deep-rooted issues of segregation, poverty and socioeconomic disparities.
As the Editorial Board, we usually dedicate each week to holding people in power accountable, to mourning lives lost, to demanding change. But as Thanksgiving approaches, we also want to reflect on what we have to be grateful for — on the strides we’ve made not only in our country, but also in this city that we love and at our University.
Last week’s midterm elections brought a series of historical firsts, such as the first Native-American congresswoman, the first Muslim congresswoman and the first openly gay governor, to name a few. However, one “first” candidate that we’ve left out of the spotlight is Young Kim, who may be the first Korean-American woman elected to Congress.
I’m not into Asian men.” I can attribute this quote to several friends and acquaintances, and the funny thing is, many of them were Asian. Which begs the question: why? I sometimes ask that aloud. Usually the response would be a non-answer: silence, a topic change or “I don’t know, I’m just not into them.”
The News-Letter editorial, “How can we fight the rising tide of hate in our country?” includes many useful thoughts, especially on the evils of anti-Semitism and its incubation on social-media platforms such as Gab. But it also relies on a misreading of the First Amendment’s fighting-words exemption to argue that “hate speech” is constitutionally “unprotected.”
We are optimistic that this increase in youth voter turnout signals a greater investment in American politics. But our civic engagement cannot begin and end with voting in elections. We must do our part to be consistently and regularly informed, not just when when we check off boxes on ballots every two years.
Last month, Hopkins announced the end of its “Rising to the Challenge” fundraising campaign, which solicited over $6 billion in donations over the past eight and a half years. It seems like this money is going to a lot of good causes like financial aid, hiring new professors and new research projects. The generosity of plutocrats and commoners alike made this possible.
Every second, the equivalent of one garbage truck of textiles is either burned or dumped into a landfill, with an estimated lost value of $500 billion per year. And at what cost? The industry is plagued with dangerous working conditions, as exemplified by the 2013 collapse of a Bangladesh garment factory, which killed 1134 workers and injured about 2500 more. It’s also harmful to the environment, with textile production emitting 1.2 billion tons of greenhouse gases annually.
At times, we may wonder if standing in solidarity is enough. How can we fight the hateful tide engulfing our country? Right now, it is what we must do in order to support each other and rebuild our society on a foundation of love and understanding.
I hate that these words need to be said. A massacre against Jewish people took place last weekend. An armed shooter entered the Tree of Life – Or L’Simcha synagogue, yelling that “all Jews must die” as he broke into the Saturday morning prayer service. Eleven members of the congregation were killed and six were injured, including three police officers who responded to the scene.