The Oberlin Review

Diverse Language Offerings Vital

Jackie Brant, Opinions Editor

December 7, 2018

Filed under Columns, OPINIONS

During this time of financial crisis at Oberlin, students understandably feel an urgent need to defend their interests against potential budget cuts. Everyone wants to save programs from being cut, and everyone has programs and classes they want to be added to the Oberlin experience. A frequent complaint from Oberlin students is about the lack of diverse foreign language options. Problems cited include a drastically underfunded Arabic language program and a lack of any African language or Hindi language programs. Overall, I agree with the general arguments in favor of adding more foreign languages to the Oberlin curriculum. These languages are useful for many post-grad careers, and Oberlin does currently offer a...

Don’t Be A Voluntourist

Kameron Dunbar, Columnist

November 30, 2018

Filed under Columns, OPINIONS

The first time I realized I was voluntouring, my group had just left a monastery and orphanage in Yangon, Myanmar, after spending about an hour surveying the grounds. Just before we left, we bestowed “ceremonial gifts” of pencils and school supplies through a dramatized exchange that was perfectly staged for the iPhone videos fellow Americans took. We left feeling good about ourselves, but the kids there barely benefited at all. This type of travel experience is not uncommon, and the issues noted here are not unique. The story of the Christian missionary who recently died after disturbing a remote island community close to India has brought several important concepts and considerations to a national stage: “mission...

Dear Senator Sherrod Brown, Please Run

Ilana Foggle, Columnist

November 30, 2018

Filed under Columns, OPINIONS

The time has come for politicians all over the country to decide whether or not they will be running for president in 2020. The process is starting now, before candidates officially declare their candidacy, so they can put together presidential exploratory committees, build campaign teams, and start hitting the campaign trail. People like Senators Kamala Harris, Bernie Sanders, Cory Booker, and Elizabeth Warren, as well as former Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick, have already begun the process of declaring their candidacy. However, there is one person who is missing from this robust list of qualified candidates: Senator Sherrod Brown. Unlike many of my past articles, this article is not a call-to-action for Oberlin...

Oberlin’s Foreign Language Offerings Fall Short of Demand

Ananya Gupta, Managing Editor

November 16, 2018

Filed under Columns, OPINIONS

Despite the availability of an annual Winter Term project, two Shansi opportunities for graduates, and two study abroad programs in India, the languages of Hindi and Urdu are left out of the Oberlin academic scene. Over half a billion people speak Hindi globally, second only to Mandarin Chinese. While this number is largely concentrated within the Indian subcontinent, it is also spoken in countries such as Mauritius, Fiji, Suriname, Guyana, Trinidad & Tobago, Nepal, and among immigrants in the U.S., U.K., and Australia — to name only a few. This figure surpasses the number of global Spanish, Italian, Russian, French, German, Japanese, and Arabic speakers — all languages which are, at least to a certain...

Wildfires Highlight Inequity in Environmental, Climate Crises

Nathan Carpenter and Jackie Brant

November 16, 2018

Filed under Columns, OPINIONS

In recent weeks, footage of the fires currently raging through the state of California has appeared in the news and on social media. We have seen houses destroyed, communities devastated, and families left without clear options. As of Nov. 11, more than 1.5 million acres had burned — the most ever recorded in a single fire season — which has caused nearly $3 billion in damages and control operations and has killed more than 50 people and left more than 130 people missing. Even as firefighters across the state are working overtime to get the blazes under control, communities and neighborhoods continue to be overwhelmed. The threat has caused some wealthy homeowners to take matters into their own hands by hiring...

Voter Suppression Threatens Democracy

Ilana Foggle, Columnist

November 9, 2018

Filed under Columns, OPINIONS

After more than a year of local and state politicians campaigning around the country, the midterm elections are finally over and the results are in. The much-discussed “blue wave” dominated in states like Nevada, Wisconsin, and Michigan, but failed to reach key races in Florida, Texas, Georgia — and Ohio. Regardless of whether or not you are pleased with Tuesday’s outcome, now is not the time to rest. The midterm election results show us a couple of things. First, there are many voters in key states who are discontent with the Republican Party and have mobilized to create change. This phenomenon was exemplified in Texas, where Democrats campaigned on both a state and national level for Representative Beto...

Ohio Residents Should Have Taken Chance on Issue 1

Jackie Brant, Opinions Editor

November 9, 2018

Filed under Columns, OPINIONS

Regardless of how these midterm elections went overall, there are many outcomes that we all can and should be proud of. The U.S. went from having its lowest voter turnout rates in midterm history in 2014 — with just 34 percent voter participation — to one of the highest, with almost 50 percent of eligible residents turning out to vote. An estimated 114 million people cast votes, the first time in U.S. history that a midterm election collected over 100 million votes. Some broken barriers include two Muslim women being voted into Congress for the first time in U.S. history, along with the first Native women and the first Korean woman. Colorado elected the nation’s first governor to be an openly gay man. Several...

SASA Rings in Diwali Celebration with Unique Gusto

Ananya Gupta, Managing Editor

November 9, 2018

Filed under Columns, OPINIONS

On my third Diwali at Oberlin, I had one of the best Campus Dining Services dinners in my three years on campus. Diwali is the Hindu festival of lights, a celebration of the triumph of good over evil in the battle between Lord Ram and the demon Ravana. Stevenson Dining Hall exceeded all expectations last Wednesday with their Diwali-themed vegetarian/vegan station featuring chana masala, yellow basmati rice, and paneer butter masala. Particularly in the absence of the India Garden restaurant, this meal was surprisingly soul-satisfying, abetting some of the homesickness I feel this time of year. Despite having past experiences with perhaps unintentionally appropriating international cuisines, CDS went about Diwali the...

Speak Up, Support Survivors, Vote in November

Ilana Foggle, Columnist

October 12, 2018

Filed under Columns, OPINIONS

Leading up to the midterm elections, Ilana Foggle will be writing articles for the Review about local candidates and issues to increase awareness of Oberlin and Ohio politics. Editor’s Note: This article contains mention of sexual assault, sexual abuse, domestic abuse, and victim-shaming. Meet Jim Jordan. Republican Jim Jordan has been the representative for Ohio’s 4th Congressional District since his election in 2006. In 2015, Jim Jordan founded the House Freedom Caucus, a group of the most active conservative and libertarian members of Congress. Since his election, Jim Jordan has voted against reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act and funding enforcement of equal pay for women. He has voted to r...

Oberlin Students Must Evaluate Their Place in Local Elections

Jackie Brant, Opinions Editor

October 5, 2018

Filed under Columns, OPINIONS

As critical midterm elections approach, Oberlin students need to again consider where and how we will vote. Many of us are transient residents both in Oberlin and Ohio more generally; thus, we need to think about what our role in these communities should be. Consider Issue 11, which will be on Oberlin’s ballot this November. It’s the first phase of a levy that would consolidate Oberlin City Schools into a single building by 2025, increasing the tax burden of many Oberlin homeowners. Because of its impact on local taxes, Issue 11 is highly controversial. Many Oberlin residents feel that their taxes are already too high, and that has driven people out of town in the past. A significant percentage of the city’s...

Hello Safety, Goodbye Security: An Unexpected Budget Cut

Madisyn Mettenburg, Production Editor

September 21, 2018

Filed under Columns, OPINIONS

Like any first-year reluctant to abandon the air-conditioned luxury of their home, Campus Safety — formerly known as Safety and Security — has certainly been dragging its feet on its move to Dascomb Hall. While no one quite knows when they will move into Fourth Meal’s decrepit shell, even less is known about its sudden rebranding. Why the switch from Safety and Security to merely Campus Safety? Is it because now, in the midst of a budget crisis, “security” is the latest tenant to be sacrificed at the deficit’s jeweled altar? And what acronym can we possibly revere now, with the snappy “S-’n’-S” struck down alongside it? Students living in South Hall have been some of the first to feel the effect...

Oberlin Must Take Next Step in Sexual Misconduct Prevention

Jackie Brant, Opinions Editor

September 7, 2018

Filed under Columns, OPINIONS

Editor’s Note: This article contains discussion of sexual misconduct and sexual assault. As the school year begins, it is imperative that students keep in mind the prevalence of sexual misconduct on campus and do what they can to minimize it in our community. Over 50 percent of sexual assaults on college campuses happen between August and November. Around 11 percent of all college students will be victims of sexual assault during their college careers, and 70 percent of campus survivors know their perpetrator prior to their assault. Further, 23 percent of women in college report that they have experienced some sort of nonconsensual sexual contact. More than 50 percent of these victims do not report the act, as th...

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