Chloe Jensen

Restricting inmate voting furthers disenfranchisement in communities of color

Restricting inmate voting furthers disenfranchisement in communities of color

BY CHLOE JENSEN ’20

This November, Democrats have the chance to vote out the Republican majority in Congress. For many liberals, this is an important opportunity to elect officials who will overturn many of the policies that Republican lawmakers have passed and replace them with their own more progressive legislation. An unrepresented voice in these elections will be inmates and former inmates, many of whom are affected by these very policies.

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. 

Mount Holyoke History department needs to take meaningful action to diversify academia

BY CHLOE JENSEN ’20

Since Feb. 11, the history department has attempted to address the protests in which students covered the boards of Skinner Hall with flyers demanding more faculty of color in the History Department. Like many responses to protests demanding more faculty of color, the history department claimed they were in support of the students’ demands, yet did not provide plans to implement change in the future. 

Millennials are the tech-savvy activists Baby Boomers and Generation X have long feared

Millennials are the tech-savvy activists Baby Boomers and Generation X have long feared

BY CHLOE JENSEN ’20

Scrolling through The New York Times website, I frequently see think pieces of a similar style about millennials. Although the specific topic varies, each of these articles seek to achieve one thing: to figure out who millennials are. Baby boomers and Generation X are obsessed with trying to define millennials. Whether it’s telling us we are the coddled and triggered generation, the technologically codependent generation or the generation with the most bizarre sense of humor, we have to be defined as a monolith, and more often than not, a negative one. Baby boomers and people in Generation X are also obsessed with asking what this means for them, and more dramatically, what this means for the planet.

Trump’s proposed SNAP bill perpetuates the “irresponsible, lazy and greedy” trope about welfare recipients

BY CHLOE JENSEN ’20

On Feb. 13, President Donald Trump proposed a new bill to enact major change on SNAP, the United States’ Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, otherwise commonly known as food stamps. In addition to a 10 billion dollar budget decrease, this bill will also provide families with pre-selected “Harvest Boxes.” If the bill passes, “Harvest Boxes” will give qualifying families a box of fresh, “100% American grown food” for half of their monthly food assistance, leaving families with only half of their original cash allowance, according to TIME.

Tranquility Room should focus on relaxation

BY CHLOE JENSEN ’20

When the dining expansion was first announced, many students were worried about how community members with sensory processing disorders would find places to sit, eat and cope. Thankfully, the College administration announced that there would be a tranquility room — a room without blaring music, students screaming about their hook-ups and the sound of dining workers yelling over the crashing plates and silverware. A room where students could dine in peace. Although the Tranquility Room in SuperBlanch is quiet, it does not functionally serve its place as a designated peaceful environment.

New prison book bans perpetuate oppression

New prison book bans perpetuate oppression

BY CHLOE JENSEN ’20

As the nation with the highest incarceration rate in the world according to the Population Reference Bureau, the United States is no stranger to the mistreatment of prisoners. With the United States’ problem with incarceration comes another issue: the lack of information that prisoners receive. At the end of last year, several states including Texas and New York began banning books in their prisons. Although these laws have operated in several states for many years, Texas’ recent bill received special attention for banning more than 10,000 books. New York’s bill was even more extreme: the state now is only allowing books from five vendors, which greatly limits the number of books prisoners can read and the knowledge they can acquire, according to Newsweek. 

New senate tax bill screws over the Mount Holyoke community

New senate tax bill screws over the Mount Holyoke community

BY CHLOE JENSEN ’20

Early on Saturday morning, the GOP passed a new tax bill that would damage the American middle class. Although there are many elements of this law to criticize, like the cuts to Medicaid and the 35 to 20 percent corporate tax decrease, its effect on academia, and specifically, graduate students is particularly aboherrent. 

“Queer” should not be a catch-all aspect of the LGBT acronym

“Queer” should not be a catch-all aspect of the LGBT acronym

BY CHLOE JENSEN ’20

One of the most pressing lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community issues has been whether or not to adopt the word “queer” as an umbrella term. Many LGBT people use this word because it is vague in nature. By definition, the word queer simply means to be deviant or unordinary. As an identity, the word means to identify as anything other than cisgender or heterosexual. While you are free to self-identify as queer, applying the term to the entire LGBT community reinforces it as a slur and inadvertently homogenizes the lives and experiences of the community.

Anthony Rapp’s credibility was based on his gender — and Spacey’s

Anthony Rapp’s credibility was based on his gender — and Spacey’s

BY CHLOE JENSEN ’20

This past October, actor Anthony Rapp alleged in a Buzzfeed article that actor Kevin Spacey made advances towards him when Rapp was 14 and Spacey was 26. In many ways, the response to Rapp’s accusation was immediate and heartfelt: many media outlets such as CNN, NPR and the New York Times placed the blame on Spacey, and Netflix pulled Spacey’s show “House of Cards.” This response differed from many celebrity sexual assault accusations, where a woman accuses a man of assault and is met with skepticism and no results. Rapp’s believability is based on two factors: first, Rapp is a man himself, and second,  that Rapp accused a man rather than a woman, further projecting the idea that gay men are predators. 

Mount Holyoke must acknowledge and understand the violent legacy that made alums say #MeToo

Mount Holyoke must acknowledge and understand the violent legacy that made alums say #MeToo

BY CHLOE JENSEN ’20

Many Mount Holyoke alums have been sharing their stories of sexual harassment at Mount Holyoke in Facebook alumni groups in response to the #MeToo social media movement. While the details of these stories range, their message remains the same: Mount Holyoke did not do enough to support students who came forward with accusations, or to prevent the attacks in the first place. In many ways, Mount Holyoke supports its students and alumni, however it also glosses over its dirty history of sexual harassment. 

Animal Welfare Association’s chalk messages use toxic rhetoric

Animal Welfare Association’s chalk messages use toxic rhetoric

BY CHLOE JENSEN ’20

Last Thursday, the Animal Welfare Association drew chalk signs with messages such as “#PlannedPetParenthood” and “Animal liberation = human liberation.” These messages imply that somehow, if we collectively stop mistreating livestock in factory farms and pets in animal shelters, that humans too will be free of the many inequalities among us. 

Hefner should not be idolized for his minor activism and objectification of women

Hefner should not be idolized for his minor activism and objectification of women

BY CHLOE JENSEN ’20

After the death of Playboy Enterprises owner and founder, Hugh Hefner this past week, many people said he should be acknowledged for his advocacy of the early feminist and LGBTQ rights movement. However, despite his early efforts to normalize LGBTQ people and the feminist movement, his support was built on the premise of profit rather than the movements themselves. Hugh Hefner is absolutely not the LGBTQ supporter or feminist icon that we need, and his exploitation and objectification of women makes that clear. 

Healthy coping mechanisms aren’t neurotypical

Healthy coping mechanisms aren’t neurotypical

BY CHLOE JENSEN ’20

When you’re struggling with depression or anxiety, it is very acceptable to passively deal with it through a slew of unhealthy coping mechanisms: binge-drinking every weekend, smoking cigarettes, developing eating disorders and self-harm, to name just a few. While students are struggling with their mental health, it is very socially acceptable for them to engage in gluttonous behavior while completely disregarding healthy and productive coping mechanisms and labeling them as “neurotypical.” This is toxic and maintains the attitude that healthy, self-care activities are only for non-mentally ill people.

Living Learning Communities should focus on learning and not on their location

Living Learning Communities should focus on learning and not on their location

BY CHLOE JENSEN ’20

While Mount Holyoke’s Learning Communities may be seemingly quirky and community-building, many of their interest-based floors prove to be an elaborate excuse to live in nice dorms, like Wilder or the Mandelles, and leave non-participating students with a higher chance of living in a lesser dorm. 

Student whining will not make laundry cheaper

Student whining will not make laundry cheaper

BY CHLOE JENSEN ’20

As a college student, I understand how every little thing seems to add up during the semester, whether it’s from washing laundry or adding extra Dining Dollars on your OneCard or buying textbooks. With the first week back at Mount Holyoke,  I saw many students outraged over the 50 cent price increase in laundry. 

The value of college for a low-income student

BY CHLOE JENSEN ’20

“As a low-income student, I see every step I take here as an opportunity to advance from where I came from,” Izabella Czejdo ’20 says. She has taken the time out of her busy schedule as a full time student, international relations liaison, dining hall worker and intern for the Naruna Center for Peacebuilding located in Amherst to speak with me. Growing up in a lower-income household, she feels, has taught her the true value of what it means to take advantage of opportunities that Mount Holyoke gives her, since she did not grow up with them at her disposal. 

The Jensen Column: How to be an ally to lower-income students

BY CHLOE JENSEN '20

While it may seem as though I only write this weekly column to complain about the Mount Holyoke economic elite, I do genuinely believe that many of our wealthiest students can and should reflect appropriately on their privilege in order to benefit low-income students.

The Chloe Jensen Column: College applications and low-income students

BY CHLOE JENSEN '20 

Elite colleges are fundamentally not designed for low-income students, which makes the application process unnavigable without help from an elite college attendee