The Oberlin Review

Philosophy Degree Gives Students Major Edge in Work-Force

Jackie Brant, Opinions Editor

March 30, 2018

Filed under Commentary, OPINIONS

As a Philosophy major, I have heard all the jokes. One of my personal favorites: “What’s the difference between a large pepperoni pizza and a philosophy major? A large pepperoni pizza can feed a family of four.” Countless people have looked at me, puzzled, asking me about my post-graduation plans. It has been included in many — often misinformed — lists of “the most useless majors.” While I admittedly do have a personal bias in this matter, the idea that philosophy is a useless degree is simply false. I could talk all day about why I love philosophy — all the different perspectives on the world it offers, new ways to think about our surroundings, the admirable rhetoric often used by philosophers, the...

Current Gun Control Debates Give Inadequate, Ineffective Solutions

Jonathan Karpatkin, Contributing Writer

March 9, 2018

Filed under Commentary, OPINIONS

This op-ed is both a response to Jacob Britton’s letter disputing the constitutionality of a federal ban on AR-15s and similar weapons (“Founding Fathers Would Approve of AR-15 Sales,” The Oberlin Review, March 2, 2018), and an expansion of my own views. Throughout his letter, Mr. Britton misrepresents not only constitutional law but also the history of firearms. As someone with comparatively extensive knowledge of guns and gun control, I feel it’s my responsibility to, foremost, correct the record with regards to Mr. Britton’s letter, but also to present my take on the current gun regulation debate. Mr. Britton first assumes that the Supreme Court’s review of amendments is restricted to interpreting the inte...

Student-Athletes Should Not Skip Vital Gender Inclusivity Training

Katie Lucey, Production Editor

March 9, 2018

Filed under Commentary, OPINIONS

Recently, there has been a lot of debate surrounding the athlete/non-athlete divide at Oberlin. I believe that one of the most preeminent ways students can bridge this so-called “divide” is by challenging themselves to enter new and possibly uncomfortable spaces. We should all be willing to put in the work to support other students’ interests and identities — whether this means going to a featured concert, attending a sports game, or taking a workshop on privilege and oppression. Bridging this so-called divide is contingent on how much each individual is willing to step outside of their own social circles and learn about others. This past week, the Athletics department required all student-athletes to attend ...

Britton Cherrypicks Statistics, Presents Narrow View

Roman Broszkowski and Julia Peterson

March 9, 2018

Filed under Commentary, OPINIONS

Last week, the Review published a letter to the editors that raised a number of points about gun violence (“Founding Fathers Would Approve of AR-15 Sales,” The Oberlin Review, March 2, 2018). Given that several claims in this letter do not stand up under closer scrutiny, we felt compelled to respond and offer the evidence and context that Jacob Britton’s letter lacks. In his article, Britton states, “The fact that the United States has significantly lower homicide rates than other countries with stricter gun laws should be enough for anyone to remember that safety is in the hands of those who are the most responsible.” While it is true that El Salvador, the country with the highest rate of intentional homicide...

Students Shouldn’t Bear All Cost of Incoming Financial Decisions

Duncan Reid, Contributing Writer

March 9, 2018

Filed under Commentary, OPINIONS

After listening to President Ambar’s presentation and going over the notes, one thing kept repeating itself in my head: That just doesn’t add up. President Ambar mentioned that our tuition is similar to our peer institutions, and thus a 3 percent increase is reasonable. While our tuition is roughly similar, what students pay, including fees, is not. The average net price that Obies pay, including financial and merit aid, is around $45,000 per year, according to College Factual. The average net price per student at Oberlin’s peer institutions is far less — anywhere from $21,841 at Amherst to $32,763 at Kenyon. That doesn’t add up. A year ago, incoming first-years were told that they had to buy into a more expens...

300-Meal Plan Scams First-Years Out of Tuition, Meals

Ilana Foggle, Contributing Writer

March 2, 2018

Filed under Commentary, OPINIONS

On April 21, 2017, I came to “All Roads Lead to Oberlin” after putting down my deposit for Oberlin a week earlier. I wanted to meet fellow incoming Obies, learn more about my home for the next four years, and convince my dad that, contrary to popular belief, going to Oberlin would not make me turn into an elitist hipster. After an early morning flight, my dad and I trudged onto campus. I was wide-eyed, excited, and eager to commence the next chapter of my life. We started the day with a speech from Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences Tim Elgren. He talked about his hopes and dreams for our incoming class and what made Oberlin so unique. In the middle of his speech, at least a dozen Oberlin students barged throug...

ObieHub Rams Expectations Hard

Madisyn Mettenburg, Production Editor

March 2, 2018

Filed under Commentary, OPINIONS

To anyone disillusioned with democracy — which is to say, anyone who has been keeping up with even a fraction of the hellstorm coming out of Washington — the Oberlin College administration’s decision to let the people pick a name for the new student website may have seemed fraught. PRESTO, Oberlin’s beloved, clunky mess of a registration website, was certainly due for an upgrade. Its preferred browser was Internet Explorer, and without the student-made class directory called OPrestissmo, it was nearly impossible to navigate. In keeping with Oberlin aesthetics, PRESTO’s longevity may have stemmed from its cool factor of being so useless and obsolete — vintage, if you will — but regardless, it was time f...

Appeasement Policies Will Not Fix Doping

Duncan Reid, Contributing Writer

March 2, 2018

Filed under Commentary, OPINIONS

Four years ago, in something out of an Ian Fleming novel, the Russian government engaged in a conspiracy to successfully facilitate Olympic athletes doping and cover evidence that makes what Lance Armstrong did at the Tour de France look like petty crime in comparison. The world was appalled when the operation was uncovered. Stories of KGB agents breaking into the Sochi Doping Control Center — the building where doping tests occur — to swap urine samples, whistleblowers seeking asylum, and a systematic doping program that involved the highest levels of the Russian government flooded the airwaves. The International Olympic Committee and the World Anti-Doping Agency quickly convened special commissions to investig...

Gender-Neutral Bathrooms Mark Key Step Forward

El Wilson, Opinions Editor

February 23, 2018

Filed under Commentary, OPINIONS

The new gender-neutral bathrooms around campus are a triumph of student activism. Last semester, I was thrilled to receive an email from Title IX Coordinator and Director of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Rebecca Mosely asking if I would like to participate in a meeting about designating more bathrooms in academic buildings as gender neutral. For years, transgender students have protested the lack of accessible bathrooms around campus. There were many buildings on campus, including Stevenson Dining Hall and King Building, that didn’t have a single gender-neutral bathroom. Although Oberlin’s policy states that students can use whatever bathroom fits their gender identity best, this still makes many bathrooms inac...

Mass Shootings Prove More Complex Than Proposed Solutions

Lucille Eleanor Nguyen, Contributing Writer

February 23, 2018

Filed under Commentary, OPINIONS

Like every other American, I was shocked and horrified to hear the news that 17 people had been killed in yet another mass shooting. The stories of the brave people at Marjory Stoneman High School who gave their lives to save others — like Peter Wang, only 15 years old, who was killed holding open the door so that his fellow students could escape to safety — are a testament to the indomitable human spirit that persists in even the worst of circumstances. They deserve our memory, our respect, and our action. Something should be done. Something needs to be done. Something has to be done. Unfortunately, I’m not sure that the legislative proposals that are being put forward today by our representatives would even b...

Students Against NEXUS Must Stay Active, Should Refocus

Patrick Wai, Contributing Writer

February 23, 2018

Filed under Commentary, OPINIONS

At the town hall meeting Tuesday, the turnout against City Council’s settlement with NEXUS was amazing; not only were all the chairs filled, but students lined the walls with signs in opposition to the settlement. After the Council opened the floor to anyone to speak, numerous townspeople and students lined up to speak against the settlement. Students spoke out against the fatalistic attitude of submitting to NEXUS and reminded the Council that the Oberlin Community Bill of Rights rejects a settlement of this type. I even spoke, which surprised me. After the public opinion section, the Council moved to the vote. Students began chanting, echoing the same sentiments of the public forum; this led councilmembers to leave the ...

Financial Solutions Require Active Participation from Students

Meg Parker, Contributing Writer

February 23, 2018

Filed under Commentary, OPINIONS

Oberlin’s financial strife is not news. Enrollment in private liberal arts colleges is down across the nation, the financial crash of the late 2000s hit Oberlin hard, and we have been living beyond our means a for too long. The budget deficit was reduced to $3 million this year but is expected to increase to $9 million next year if the market behaves as predicted. Fretting, discussing, and occasionally ranting about the institution’s financial outlook and fiscal management has become nearly routine practice for students, faculty, and staff during my six semesters at Oberlin. We are quick to ask why some departments are more expensive than others and where funding for departments comes from and to question the validity ...

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