The Oberlin Review

Religious Beliefs Exploited for Personal Agendas

Kushagra Kar, Production Editor

October 4, 2019

 Religion is the oldest form of control. From the implicit consequences of pre-colonial missionary efforts to the tangible control over rhetoric shaped by King James’ Bible, the pervasiveness of religious institutions throughout history cannot be ignored. By placing themselves in positions of religious authority, individuals enable themselves to construct generalized structures of life that actively define community. Even today at Oberlin, we find organized religion influencing the periphery of our lives, both personally and over intangible distances. Faith is meant to be positive, both within individualistic moral contexts and in broader social implications. Corruption and informed cruelty manifest when bigoted...

One Oberlin Implementation Compromises Catholic Values

Claudia Baker, OC ’19 and Thomas Valle-Hoag, OC ’19

October 4, 2019

 Many voices have already spoken up regarding the austerity measures recommended by the Academic Advising Program Review steering committee, an effort now known as One Oberlin. In the interest of highlighting a plurality of views on the subject, we want to speak against the austerity measures as Catholic alumni and former community members of Oberlin College. We do not claim to have all the answers and we certainly don’t claim to be experts in economics. We want to speak out from a moral and ethical perspective, supported by the social teaching of the Roman Catholic Church. It is a well-established axiom in the social teachings of the Church that the economically disadvantaged among us deserve, and are indeed entitled ...

Nuclear Power Requires Critical Analysis

Shogo Ishikawa, Contributing Writer

October 4, 2019

The dangerous narratives employed in the article “Ishikawa Employs Dangerous Nuclear Narratives, ” written by Production Editor Christo Hays, surprised me (Sept. 27, 2019). Hays claimed that most of nuclear power’s existing problems, such as issues of waste disposal and fuel rod cooling systems, can be improved and fixed through technological development. Hays stated that the Fukushima nuclear meltdown of 2011 was “the result of fuel rods overheating and reacting with water-based coolant to create explosive hydrogen,” and continued, “New fuels and coolants eradicate this possibility.”  First, it is difficult or even impossible to specify the cause of a nuclear meltdown. Hays has forgotten the simple fact that nuclear me...

Ishikawa Employs Dangerous Nuclear Narratives

Christo Hayes, Production Editor

September 27, 2019

 For those who don’t keep up with the weekly jabs published in the Review’s Opinions section, here’s the short of the nuclear energy debate that has graced the past two editions: College third-year Leo Lasdun wrote a pro-nuclear energy article in which he cited a NASA study claiming that nuclear energy saved 1.8 million lives between 1971 and 2009; this was in support of his broader claim that “the future is nuclear” (“Nuclear Represents Best Option,” Sept. 13, 2019). The following week, College second-year Shogo Ishikawa penned a broadside in response, casting doubt on NASA’s analysis and aspersions on Lasdun (“Lasdun Overlooks Downsides of Nuclear,” Sept. 20, 2019). Not only are Ishikawa’s claims u...

Climate Activism Must Be Universal, Inclusive

Theo Canter, Contributing Writer

September 27, 2019

 Last Friday’s Climate Strike left me and many others who participated in it with a sense of rising optimism and hope. With participants numbering in the millions worldwide, it was one of the largest social protests in recent years.  Soon after students walked out of class Friday morning and gathered around the Tappan Square bandstand, a wide variety of powerful speakers — ranging from high school students, to college students, to adult community members — made their voices heard.  Having been to many political gatherings and protests, especially in the past few years, I felt that this one in particular was different. This was not like Matthew McConaughey’s 2003 Saturday Night Live sketch, “Protest...

Lasdun Overlooks Downsides of Nuclear

Shogo Ishikawa, Contributing Writer

September 20, 2019

 Many people have read the article “Nuclear Represents Best Option” by Leo Lasdun, which was published in the Review last Friday. This piece is a direct response to that article and an attempt to encourage further discussion regarding nuclear energy and U.S. energy policy in the future. Lasdun uses four main points to support his argument that nuclear energy is the most realistic option for energy production in the United States: nuclear power is emissions-free, which is pertinent given the rise of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere; is economically feasible due to the fixed cost of existing nuclear power plants; has high energy production efficiency compared to other energy sources, such as solar, wi...

Oberlin Should Pioneer Network Studies

Max Herman, OC ’89, Contributing Writer

September 20, 2019

 The recent One Oberlin report states that for Oberlin to flourish, it must “pioneer a new, more relevant curriculum and educational experience for our 21st-century students.”  To this end, Oberlin should seriously consider the academic field of Network Studies. It is not yet prevalent in higher education, but Oberlin could both lead and benefit from its development. Like any concentration, Network Studies would adhere to the traditional liberal arts disciplines, but engage with them from a unique perspective. The core content would, of course, include the impact of networks in society; recent advances in network science, theory, and technology; as well as address the constantly-evolving network structures...

Retribution, Restitution, and Race in Ohio

Ava Zuschlag, Contributing Writer

September 20, 2019

 Five years ago, Tamir Rice is shot and killed. In the aftermath, several things happen. The two officers who responded to the call, who fired the shots, are temporarily reassigned to more menial positions. Tamir’s family files a wrongful death suit against the officers and the city of Cleveland. Almost a year and a half later, “in an effort to reduce taxpayer liabilities,” the city agrees to pay the Rice family a six million dollar settlement.  This year, a thirty-minute drive away from Cleveland, Gibson’s Bakery wins damages for defamation. After a shoplifting incident ended in violence, student accusations of the shop owner’s racism negatively affected the business. In the judgement, the jury awards ...

Nuclear Represents Best Option

Leo Lasdun, Contributing Writer

September 13, 2019

 If you watched Chernobyl, HBO’s harrowing dramatization of the 1986 nuclear catastrophe in Ukraine, you probably noticed brooding scowls, gloomy stoicism, and pointed downtroddenness. It’s not surprising that a show targeted toward a mainstream audience would play up the tropes surrounding the murky idea of “nuclear” in many American minds. In fact, for a lot of us, these tropes of disaster, despair, and cold weather make up the entirety of our understanding of nuclear energy. I’ve been skeptical too, probably a direct result of playing the “Nuketown” map on Call of Duty as a kid. But I’m happy to say I’ve reviewed more accurate literature, and confidently believe that the future is nuclear.  Right no...

The Hotel at Oberlin’s Retail Space: This is Not a Metaphor?

Madisyn Mettenburg, Production Editor

May 10, 2019

 Last Friday, the Review missed an opportunity to report on a truly remarkable piece of sensationalism: a gold Prius, driving through three panes of glass at The Hotel at Oberlin on Thursday, May 2. Here were all the makings of a great story: drama, action, intrigue, no one getting hurt — and yet my colleagues at this publication let you down. For the sake of “not enough facts” and “come on, this isn’t a story,” we settled on something like “a picture speaks a thousand words.” You can see for yourself the grainy cellphone image of the incident, published last issue. Technically, it gets the point across. But in the crash’s immediate aftermath, something struck me. As I stood there watching the b...

OSCA: The Problem and Opportunity

John Petersen, Contributing Writer

May 10, 2019

 “Oberlin’s relevance as an institution is more important today than it’s ever been.” So said President Carmen Twillie Ambar in the pages of the Review at the time she became our 15th President (“Off the Cuff: Carmen Ambar, President of Oberlin College,” Sept. 1, 2017). I think just about every student, alumnum, and faculty member strongly agrees with her on this point.  And at the same time, I think most of us have also been convinced that Oberlin College needs to tighten its belt in order to achieve financial sustainability so that we retain our ability to positively impact the world well into the future. So the question that the Academic and Administrative Program Review steering committee members and th...

Community Should Promote Oberlin’s Green Fire Station

Devlin O’Keefe, Julia McCormick, Bella Tuffias-Mora, and Clara Zucker

May 10, 2019

 Founded in 1853, Oberlin’s Fire Station has a long history of assisting its residents in times of need. However, many are unaware that the Oberlin Fire Department is dedicated to the Oberlin community in ways beyond protecting its citizens from fire and accidents. As the City of Oberlin planned for a new station, they pushed for this facility to become the first LEED certified fire station in Ohio.  LEED, which stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is a program that awards certifications to newer buildings that are especially environmentally conscious. The program uses a point system; the more points the building has based upon green initiatives, the higher their rating is. As of 2009, th...

Established 1874.