The Pratt basement should be accessible to all students

The Pratt basement should be accessible to all students

BY OLIVIA MARBLE ’21

The day before my friend and I planned to audition for a cappella, we decided to rehearse together. We went to Pratt to use one of the practice rooms, but when we got there, all of the rooms on the first floor were full. For most students, this would not be a problem because there are plenty of other practice rooms in the basement of the building. But my friend had ankle surgery, leaving him unable to use stairs — the only way to access the basement.

Students and alums should not donate to Mount Holyoke College until it divests from fossil fuels

Students and alums should not donate to Mount Holyoke College until it divests from fossil fuels

BY JULIA KLUKOFF ’21,  ANNA BAYNTON ’21, RAVEN GEIGER ’18 AND JOSS CHILDS ’21 

The Mount Holyoke Climate Justice Coalition is an organization dedicated to fossil fuel divestment activism. Our ultimate goal is that Mount Holyoke College remove its money from the fossil fuel industry, and it is around this goal that our activism is centered. However, we have noticed that many students hold misconceptions about our cause and methods.

Exclusionary politics have international implications

Exclusionary politics have international implications

BY CASEY ROEPKE ’21

In a speech on April 27, 2016, then-presidential candidate Donald Trump addressed his foreign policy as making decisions to “put the interests of the American people and American security above all else … ‘America First’ [would] be the major and overriding theme of [his] administration,” according to the Washington Post. Although his statement rallied a large base of support, its nationalist rhetoric is extremely destructive to the international system of collaboration and collective security. 

Paul Ryan should never have become Speaker of the House

Paul Ryan should never have become Speaker of the House

BY LILY REAVIS ’21

Paul Ryan’s April 11 announcement that he will not seek re-election is indicative of a much larger problem — Ryan should never have been elected to Speaker of the House. In allowing him to even reach that position, the GOP has bitten off more than it can chew, and the effects are becoming increasingly obvious with the approaching midterm elections. 

If the E.U. stands for anything it must stand against Hungary

BY MADELINE FITZGERALD ’21

Too often, the most noble of institutions and the most admirable of ideas are the ones which, when instituted, quickly become the most disappointing and meaningless. Today, the EU clearly illustrates this phenomenon. Their website states that the EU aims to “combat social exclusion and discrimination” and claims that values such as equality and respect for human dignity “are common to the member countries in a society in which inclusion, tolerance, justice, solidarity and non-discrimination prevail.” These goals, however, belie a major issue. Hungary is a member country. Hungary, where a quasi-state-owned media promotes bigotry. Hungary, where the prime minister brags about his “illiberal democracy.” Hungary, where the government erodes liberty, in all its forms. If the EU truly stands for its claimed values, it cannot continue to stand with Hungary.

We need the College Republicans, but not like this

We need the College Republicans, but not like this

BY SABRINA EDWARDS ’20

 Sitting in Blanch, waiting to meet a staff writer, I overheard a group of students cold-calling community members to advertise The Conservative Women’s Summit. Another student approached them and began arguing with the group. Being both journalistically obsessed with a good story and super nosy, I listened in. The student who approached the group was initially met with respectful challenges to her ideas. This, I thought, was what campus discourse should be: multiple voices bouncing ideas around. However, as the conversation continued, the questions became more personal, the tone more biting. After that student left, the table joked for a bit and continued making calls. One student reached a caller and began to chat with them, complaining loudly about the “liberals” on campus. “They just don’t like confrontation,” she said. “They’d rather just cry.” 

Technology presents a danger in everyone’s daily life

Technology presents a danger in everyone’s daily life

BY SRISHTI MUKHERJEE ’21

I was one of the last people in my age group to get a Facebook account — or so I felt, at the age of 16 --— a fact that I felt greatly hindered my placement on the scale of coolness. I joined Instagram only a month before graduating high school, and I still only have 4,601 snap points on Snapchat. Despite this, I can no longer remember a time when I didn’t turn to these same social media platforms at the slightest boredom — for example, the boredom encountered while sitting on the toilet. I have begun to wonder whether it is time to delete my Facebook page entirely and relearn how to turn the lights on using a thumb and a switch, without any help from Alexa. 

Cis men are demonized on campus based on physical appearance

Cis men are demonized on campus based on physical appearance

BY OLIVIA MARBLE ’21

As a bisexual woman, I often feel very torn about the negative perception of cis men on campus. On one hand, I feel very connected to the queer community and I empathize with the general feeling of wariness towards cis men. But on the other hand, I am in love with a cis man, and the fact that people on this campus judge him solely because of his gender identity feels wrong to me. 

Past domestic abuse is always relevant in cases of criminal violence, but ignored by lawyers

Past domestic abuse is always relevant in cases of criminal violence, but ignored by lawyers

BY CHLOE JENSEN ’20

On March 30, Noor Salman, the widow of 2016 Pulse nightclub shooter Omar Mateen, was acquitted of all charges of supposed aiding and abetting. Mateen killed himself after committing this atrocity, but  victims and families of the massacre still wanted justice. However, the defense team, according to The New York Times, successfully argued that Salman did not reasonably withhold knowledge about the crime before it occurred, and the jury found her innocent. While the defense team based their argument on whether or not Salman knew about or withheld information about her husband’s crime, there was a huge aspect of the case that was largely left out of the courtroom: Mateen’s history of domestic violence and abuse of Salman. 

Letters to the Editor: Noche Latina

Dear Mount Holyoke News,

I want to offer a correction to your reporting of “Noche Latina” in the March 29 issue. The student PowerPoint presentation about sanctuary was about immigrant sanctuary and not sanctuary from Hurricane Maria and the Trump administration’s response to the catastrophe. My class, “History of Deportation,” visited Springfield resident Lucío Pérez in sanctuary at the First Congregational Church in Amherst. He has been there since October. The students also held a fundraiser for the Pérez family. 

Letters to the Editor: Peer Health Educators

Sex education is a field where inclusion of sexual and gender diversity is key. If the goal is  ensuring that those who have the least access to sexual health resources (sexual and gender minorities) receive the most knowledge, we need to provide information that is relevant to queer and trans populations. Despite this logic, many sex ed classes continue to only discuss heterosexual, cisgender encounters. This omission of trans and queer experiences in sex ed can leave queer people feeling uninformed — and results in serious  health consequences. For example, trans and gender nonconforming people are at higher risk for HIV infection than the general population. From 2009 to 2014, 2,351 transgender people were diagnosed with HIV in the United States, according to the CDC. Eighty-four percent (1,974) were transgender women and 15 percent (361) were transgender men.

Doing the work and the power of personal reflection

BY SONYA STEPHENS

The College’s Strategic Plan for 2021 articulates four priorities, one of which is: “Mount Holyoke will shape and sustain an increasingly diverse, global and inclusive community of students, faculty and staff in an environment of mutual respect in which all thrive and contribute to the flourishing of others.” Our distinctive diversity demands nothing less. And yet, like many colleges and universities, and like society more broadly, we still have a long way to go to fully achieve this aspiration. 

Letters to the Editor: In Defense of the FP Housing Article

Last week, the director of the FP program and a current FP scholar, who is the secretary of the FP Student Association (FPSA), responded to my article on FP housing in the March 8 issue of this newspaper. Since both articles claim to point out “inaccuracies” in my article, let me state clearly: I got every piece of information that appears in that article from either MHC newspaper archives or official sources. So, any “inaccuracy” began at the source. It would have been in the spirit of the honor code to acknowledge this, but that may be expecting too much at this stage. In this letter, I wish to give a few more details about this story. 

Trump’s comments on opioid addiction are problematic

BY OLIVIA MARBLE ’21

President Trump shocked the nation when he suggested using the death penalty against drug dealers as part of his outlined plan to combat the growing opioid crisis in a summit last month. The death penalty is almost exclusively used for homicide in the United States, making his statement incredibly unprecedented. While Trump’s plan to deal with this national emergency does include plans for treatment, they are vague, which is problematic because treatment accessibility is key in preventing more overdoses. 

Letter to the Editor: Frances Perkins Housing

I am writing in response to the recent Op-Ed article, “In Light of New Housing Lottery, Are Frances Perkins Scholars Really Considered Equal to Their Peers?” that was featured in your March 8, 2018 edition. As a current Frances Perkins Scholar (FP), I would like the opportunity to not only respond, but to also help clear up some inaccurate information that was included in this article. 

Letter to the Editor: Director of The FP Program

I am writing in response to the Op-Ed article in the March 8, 2018 edition entitled, “In light of new housing lottery, are Frances Perkins Scholars really considered equal to their peers?” As the director of the FP Program, I am compelled to answer the question and, in so doing, to correct some of the inaccuracies contained in the original article.

Polyamory should be taken seriously on campus

Polyamory should be taken seriously on campus

BY OLIVIA MARBLE ’21

One day, while my friends and I were having dinner, a friend of mine who is in a relationship said, “Oh guys, guess what? I have a crush on this girl in my class!” Even though I already knew he was polyamorous, his simple comment struck me. Throughout my relationships, I have felt a crushing guilt whenever I even recognized that someone other than my partner was attractive. Every time I have developed crushes on people while in a relationship, I pushed that person away because the guilt became too much for me to deal with. 

In light of new housing lottery, are Frances Perkins Scholars really considered equal to their peers?

In light of new housing lottery, are Frances Perkins Scholars really considered equal to their peers?

BY MRINALINI PANDEY FP

Right after I returned to campus from winter break, I learned about major changes announced by the Office of Residential Life to the Frances Perkins (FP) housing situation. It was decided that next year, all FPs will move out of their current house, Dickinson Hall, to non-residential apartments on 57 College Street, 3 Park Street and 17 Morgan Street. These three buildings will have no wi-fi, no laundry and no housekeeping. When I decided to inquire further into this rather alarming development, I learned from Residential Life that the decision is a “purely financial” one, but will supposedly create a community bond for FP students.