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There you are. It’s Christmas morning and you’re surrounded by all of your loving family and friends. You’re ready to open presents and nothing can ruin this moment — or so you think. It’s a feeling that a lot of Princeton students inevitably face during breaks. You feel uneasy and you don’t know why. You feel like you should be doing something and then you remember: You should be studying for finals.
I generally keep a low profile on campus. I’m not really involved with much outside of my team, eating club, close friends, classes, etc. I apologize for the very personal nature of this piece as it is not something I am naturally inclined to do nor something I take any pleasure in. However, I feel the need to speak up due to the questions of the character of Ryan Ozminkowski ’19 in the current Undergraduate Student Government presidential election. To be completely transparent, I will be voting for Ryan, but I think Matt Miller ’19 and Rachel Yee ’19 seem like great people and candidates, and I encourage my fellow students to vote for whomever they think will make the best president. This piece is not an attempt to persuade your vote, rather a defense of the character of my friend.
I first met Rachel Yee ’19 exactly one year and five days ago. I was getting late meal with a friend after a particularly unhappy meeting with a counselor at Counseling and Psychological Services. I have bipolar disorder and despite CPS’s best, if limited, efforts, I was depressed as all hell. Rachel was going around talking to everyone. She was campaigning, I suppose, but I didn’t know that until later, and by then, I didn’t care. I didn’t care because Rachel did something that is unfortunately rare now. She asked me, a total stranger, how I was doing, and I unloaded onto her entirely too much personal information about how pointless my life was and how stupid I felt on a campus that was so smart and talented.
Despite the best efforts of students and faculty, the sordid saga of Professor Verdú may end not with a bang, or even with a whimper — but with inaction. Resolutions have been passed and petitions submitted calling for the University to respond to Verdú’s sexual misconduct. My colleague Ryan Born has gone so far as to call for his termination. Despite it all, the University has shown no intention of acceding to these numerous and full-throated requests. Perhaps that’s because it believes, as my colleague Liam O’Connor does, that Verdú’s punishment shouldn’t be retroactively altered “based on ever-changing popular will and political winds.” Whatever the reason, Verdú is here to stay.
Each day, we immerse ourselves in the same world. But this world presents itself differently to each one of us. In other words, my world is different from yours — as close as we are to our best friends and as well versed as we may be in the lives of our parents, we can never fathom someone else’s experience the same way that person can. Even if, theoretically, we were to spend our entire lives alongside another person, each of us engaging in the same experiences, these occurrences would still have different meanings, yield different emotions, conjure different reactions for each person.
It can be hard to evaluate candidates. Luckily, all undergraduates have access to the USG Winter 2017 Candidate Biographies document online. I will be pulling from this document extensively in the following election special. I will discuss each candidate in turn, starting with my endorsement of Yee, a discussion of Ryan Ozminkowski ’19, and my second choice in Matthew Miller ’19.
The world today is politically polarized and radically diverse, riffed by the divisions of politics, international relations, and conflicting ideologies. In this landscape, natural disasters are some of the only instances left in which global citizens form a unified, cohesive response. Individuals and leaders of different nations, faiths, and political ideologies overcome obvious differences, banding together to provide aid and security to those afflicted in these catastrophes. We saw such a response in Haiti and Fukushima, and more recently in Texas, Louisiana, and Puerto Rico.
The Republican Congress is currently debating, voting on, and passing extremely complex legislation designed to change the tax code. As of Dec. 2, the Senate version of this legislation was passed, and has seen a range of analyses ranging from the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, Forbes, Vox, and the Washington Post. This article will not be focusing on the Senate version, but rather the House version, which is still under debate.
“Wifi: No hardware installed.” The unwelcome message flashed across my computer screen last Thursday. After three hours of repeating the same futile steps to revive it, I decided to seek professional help. My computer spent the weekend as a guest at the Quaker Bridge Apple Store.
Ten years ago, in 2007, Whitman College was built. Designed by the Greek architect Demetri Porphyrios, this 250,000-square foot complex now houses 500 students each year, as well as a dining area and the Writing Center. Despite this prominent role in campus life, there is surprisingly little discussion within the Princeton community about Whitman’s architecture. Busy students and faculty walk, eat, and sleep in it without thinking deeply about the space itself.
Princeton students, as long as I’ve been a student here, have suffered from the unbearable condition of cancelled plans — plans later decided to be too troublesome or plans never truly intended to be honored. Things invariably come up that make that brunch date inconvenient: a deadline, an all-nighter, snow, a hangover. We carry a plan-cancelling device in our pockets, and an “I’m so sorry!!!!” text almost feels guilt-free. Princeton students need a little Shabbat.
Can protest make a difference?
In this petition, Princeton University graduate students call upon the University to oppose currently proposed federal tax legislation, and to keep our take-home pay from decreasing in the event that such legislation passes.
Many of us came to Princeton shackled with golden handcuffs, and we haven’t shed them yet.
Our country is in the midst of an examination of diversity and equality that, while not new, has taken on a new tenor and urgency over the last few years. The conversation has been particularly pronounced on campuses, including here in Princeton.
About a week ago, I had a conversation with a friend about the movie “Baby Driver.” My friend refused to see it because, according to him, “Kevin Spacey is in it and it turns out he’s a terrible man.” My friend is right: Kevin Spacey is a terrible man. But he’s still one of my favorite actors. The fact that he abused teenage boys, then reacted to their testimonies by coming out as homosexual deeply angers me. Yet none of this removes “American Beauty” from my Top 10 Movies List.
Offshore financial records dubbed the Paradise Papers were released on Nov. 5 by the German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung. The papers unveiled how moneyed individuals, power-hungry companies, and world-famous institutions shield their riches from the Internal Revenue Service. The leak revealed that a number of large college endowments, including Princeton’s, have been hiding their investments in offshore tax havens on Caribbean Islands.
It’s only Thanksgiving season, and I’ve already been rejected by three academic conferences, three a Capella groups, two fellowships, two summer internships, and one guy I really liked. I’m not even done yet; I’m applying for a multitude of other programs, with the hope that maybe I’ll be accepted to one for the summer. I once thought that rejection meant other people didn’t find me good enough — my voice doesn’t blend enough; I don’t have enough experience writing policy memos; I’m not pretty enough. Living with this idea can make life look pretty grim.