The Oberlin Review

Seize Spring Days for New Oberlin Experiences

The Editorial Board

March 16, 2012

The days are full of sunshine, the grass is growing green, and when the balmy breezes start blowing over Plum Creek, it’s hard not to feel like Oberlin is letting out a contented sigh. (Especially since the weather around this time last year was a nonstop mix of snow and rain.) As your editorial staff ponder our last issue before spring break, in the final year many of us will be on this campus, we feel a good amount of nostalgia, and we would like to try to put it to productive use with a list of things we think everyone should do at Oberlin before they leave. Open observing on the roof of Peters the first and third Fridays of every month: Look at Jupiter, binary star systems and the craters of the moon from the...

Editorial: In Our Backyard? No Fracking Way!

The Editorial Board

March 9, 2012

One thing is on some restless students’ minds as springtime rolls in. By most accounts, it’s a dirty business. It seems like everywhere around us people are doing it — right in our own muddy Ohio backyard. Let’s talk about fracking. The process of induced hydraulic fracturing is getting energy companies increasingly hot and bothered about the prospect of untapped natural gas reserves, particularly in the Marcellus Shale that extends across a large portion of New York, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and eastern Ohio. Despite what would seem like a love-at-first-sight relationship for anyone interested in cheap energy, questions about fracking’s safety, environmental impact and effect on the continuing U.S. reliance...

Accessibility of College One Cut We Can’t Afford

The Editorial Board

March 2, 2012

Thursday, Mar. 1 saw the shutdown of the University of California, Santa Cruz in the midst of a student-organized protest of the governor’s proposed state budget cuts for higher education that would bring drastic increases in tuition and fees for this year and the near future. All vehicle entrances to campus were blocked by groups of student protesters: some with tents, others with giant yellow tarps decorated to look like the school’s Banana Slug mascot. Four students now have minor injuries after a run-in with a determined car that drove away bearing the spilled paint and kick marks of the protesters’ retaliation. Classes were rescheduled beforehand or canceled as administrators tacitly showed their support for...

Coffee-Fetchers of the World, Unite!

The Editorial Board

February 24, 2012

Career Services is bogged down with appointments earlier than usual this year. Even as snow continues to fall on Tappan Square, Oberlin students are trying to secure their summer plans, which in many cases means an unpaid internship. Recently, however, that go-to answer for “What are you doing after May?” has started to be contested in courtrooms and commentary pages across the country. At the beginning of February, an Ohio State University alumna who served as an intern for over a year at Harper’s Bazaar filed a lawsuit accusing the Hearst Corporation of exploiting her full-time work doing various administrative tasks for the fashion magazine. Last year, two interns who had worked on the production of Fox Searchlight’s...

Obama Fails to Convince (Birth) Control Freaks

The Editorial Board

February 17, 2012

The recent controversy over federal health insurance law and contraception, with socially conservative institutions like the Catholic Church demanding the right to exclude contraceptive coverage from their employees’ insurance plans, gives us a number of promising editorial angles to pursue. We could highlight the fact that yet again, an Obama-approved policy endorsed a few short years ago by many moderate Republicans has been abruptly recast as a radical attack on American freedom. We could point out the absurdity of hearing lectures on victimless, consensual “sin” from an institution that has enabled and covered up mass-scale sexual abuse of children. We could simply dish out a righteous smackdown to the social-conservative...

Internet Defeats Piracy Bills

The Editorial Board

February 10, 2012

This Winter Term, you didn’t need to be on campus, in the country, or even tuned into the news to witness the beginnings of events that stand to have far-reaching implications for Oberlin students. You just needed to want to Google something or look up a Wikipedia article on Jan. 18. That day, several major websites “blacklisted” themselves to let their sentiments be known as Congress considered enacting stringent new online intellectual property protections, the Stop Online Piracy Act in the House of Representatives and the Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property Act in the Senate — otherwise known as SOPA and PIPA. Thanks to slick informational videos shared...

Editorial: Mugging Shouldn’t Fray Town-Gown Connection

The Editorial Board

November 11, 2011

The attack last Sunday on History Professor Gary Kornblith was bizarre and virtually unprecedented. A professor being mugged by what looked like two 15 year olds? In the middle of the day? In an academic building? It’s hard to imagine that something like this could happen on our campus, and even harder to wrap one’s mind around that fact that it did. The incident provokes one obvious question — how did this happen? — which leads to the next obvious question: What should be done to prevent violence of this nature in the future? The important thing about this particular attack is not necessarily what makes it so alarming (that it took place in broad daylight in a very public area) but that the divide between...

Editorial: Rushdie’s Comments Highlight Potential of Literary Thinking

The Editorial Board

October 14, 2011

“How do you write about a world that makes no sense?” Sir Salman Rushdie’s question nearly faded into the fabric of his convocation speech — partly an account of literature’s functions through history, partly a commentary on modern politics and media from an internationally meta-renowned storyteller (excuse the cheesy literary joke: one of his novels, Midnight’s Children, won the Booker of Bookers). His is a question constantly faced by journalists, but also by all literate people in this sprawling, multifaceted, globalizing society of ours. Yes, Rushdie deserves his reputation as a great figure of our times, but for anyone who has read or heard him, it’s clear that this isn’t a function of his fame...

Editorial: Oberlin Journalism Lacks Academic Support

The Editorial Board

October 7, 2011

The assertion in this week’s Diatribe that the Diatribe itself represents a “tasteless ornament to [this] publication’s already insubstantial content” leaves us feeling somewhat conflicted. While we as editors spend a substantial amount of time, energy and thought on the Review every week, we recognize that the paper’s overall quality waxes and wanes with each new issue. We can recall more mistakes and oversights this paper has made over the last few years than almost anybody on campus — and not only the larger ones that have inspired hurricanes of criticism (hint hint), but the little layout errors, typos and forgotten corrections that grate on nobody’s nerves so much as ours. On a less superficial level, A...

“It Takes Balls to Execute an Innocent Man”

The Editorial Board

September 23, 2011

On September 21, the state of Georgia executed Troy Anthony Davis for the murder of Savannah police officer Mark MacPhail. Davis’s story attracted worldwide scrutiny when the prosecution’s case against him unraveled after his conviction, with seemingly no acknowledgement from Georgia’s criminal justice system. Of the nine eyewitnesses whose testimony established that Davis had killed MacPhail, seven have since recanted, while one of the remaining two, Sylvester “Redd” Coles, has been heard by several witnesses admitting to the crime himself. One of the original jurors was quoted by CNN as stating flat out: “If I knew then what I know now, Troy Davis would not be on Death Row.” Georgia’s intransigence...

Sour Memories of 9/11

The Editorial Board

September 16, 2011

Last Sunday, on the 10th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks, New York Timescolumnist Paul Krugman decided to remember the occasion on his blog in a way that, shall we say, turned a few heads. In a post titled “The Years of Shame,” Krugman wrote that because of its exploitation for purposes of military adventurism abroad and Republican political advantage at home, “[t]he memory of 9/11 has been irrevocably poisoned; it has become an occasion for shame. And in its heart, the nation knows it.” His post elicited a predictable flurry of outrage from the right, with former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld tweeting that he had cancelled his subscription to the Times after reading it. Such words...

Editorial: Oberlin’s Favorite Super Senior

The Editorial Board

May 13, 2011

When this year’s graduating class were first-years four years ago, we entered college alongside another first-year of sorts — when Marvin Krislov began as Oberlin’s 14th president in July of 2007, one month before the class of 2011 arrived on campus for Orientation. Being the president of Oberlin College is not an easy job. Ours is an academically accredited institution that caters to the most anti-institutional of students. In a school defined by its resistance to authority, being the authority requires one to walk a narrow line. President Krislov has done an excellent job in his own right, and his predecessors make him look even better. After all, who among us celebrates the exploits of Nancy Dye or S....

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