The Oberlin Review

On Reproductive Rights, Obama Abandons His Base Once Again

The Editorial Board

May 3, 2013

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

Back in November, Barack Obama rode a massive victory in the battle for the female vote 55 percent to 44 percent for Mitt Romney nationally, and that gap was even larger in swing states like Ohio — to a second term in office. Admittedly, Mitt Romney (and, really, every level of the GOP) made things a bit easier by systematically alienating himself from women across the country, but the Obama campaign successfully positioned its candidate as the Enlightened One—binder-free and ready to lead American society into the 21st century. He consistently pledged support to Planned Parenthood and reproductive rights, and has recently come to the defense of scientific integrity unmarred by political maneuvering on topics...

Dialogues on Diaspora Spring to Life in Work of Aisha Cousins

Kelsey Scult, Staff Writer

February 22, 2013

Filed under ARTS, Features, Visual Art

Brooklyn-based artist Aisha Cousins, OC ’00, is exhibiting elements of her several year-long performance piece “From Here I Saw What Happened and I Could Not Understand (The Story Skirt Project)” in the Baron Gallery, opening this Friday night. Her work is engaged in constant conversation with black audiences in an exploration of their ideas of beauty and the different realities of modern black life, and the work to be featured in Baron is no exception. In her last project “Diva Dutch,” she processed these questions by enlisting black women from around the globe to ask local hairdressers to braid 15-foot-long cornrows, which they then used as a double dutch rope by connecting them to the braids of other black...

OTC with Jim Margolis, OC ’78, and Senior Advisor to President Obama

Elizabeth Dobbins, Staff Writer

February 15, 2013

Filed under NEWS, Off the Cuff

You’ve been involved in some international elections in Africa, Europe, Asia and Latin America. What are some of the challenges of working on international elections? The part that I love about international work is that I learn as much as I’m able to give in terms of advice and counsel because [I’m] just in an entirely different place with all sorts of different issues. So, for example, in Mongolia, you’re working in a country where the majority of the people are still living in yurts … and a lot of people are still riding around on horseback, and it’s not like television is going to be the medium through which you communicate. It’s going to be for a very small part of the population, and instead it...

After Too Many Free Passes, Obama Must Answer for White Paper

The Editorial Board

February 8, 2013

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

First, it was the financial disaster he inherited upon taking office. Then it was the impossibly obstinate three-ring circus known as the House of Representatives. Then it was his re-election campaign. Then it was the entirely self-imposed fiscal cliff crisis. For the past four years, left-of-center mainstream media pundits have defended Barack Obama time and time again against accusations of passivity (if not downright timidity). Now, following one of the boldest modern inauguration addresses, the clock has been reset and the waiting game will begin again. The leaking last week of a 16-page memo from the Justice Depart- ment detailing the White House’s drone strikes on suspected al-Qaida operatives should serve...

Romney Voters Shouldn’t Feel Shamed, Pressured By Fellow Students

Elizabeth Bentivegna, Contributing Writer

November 9, 2012

Filed under Commentary, OPINIONS

I am not a monster. I am not a selfish bigot, or an enemy of the poor, or a narrow-minded idiot. I am not a racist or a sexist and I am not against queer people. I am not an evil human being. But for some reason, on this campus, the fact that I voted for Mitt Romney makes me all of these things. I am a moderate. I waited until Election Day to cast my vote and made an informed decision before I did so. I knew the facts, I did my research and, in the end, my gut told me that Romney was the candidate that would be best for me and for my country. My parents are conservative and my closest friends are liberal; I had good sources for both viewpoints and I considered both equally. I am queer, I am a woman, and I cast...

Spontaneous Tappan Party Celebrates Election

Spontaneous Tappan Party Celebrates Election

November 9, 2012

When CNN projected an Obama victory late Tuesday night, the ’Sco exploded. The approximately 100 students in attendance cheered, hugged, screamed, laughed and began belting out the national anthem. “Everything is better!” said College sophomore Annie Winneg. The festivities had only just begun. A plastic garbage barrel’s hollow, persistent thumping provided a baseline for the screams and car horns which erupted into the previously quiet night. Packs of cheering people wandered in a...

Election Results Should Be Wake-up Call to GOP

The Editorial Board

November 9, 2012

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

If ever there was a vulnerable incumbent, Barack Obama would seem to fit the bill. With unemployment hovering around eight percent and a still-lagging economy, the GOP was handed a golden opportunity to wrest the White House back into its control (for a nice contrast, look at the electoral upheaval that took place in Europe amid its economic meltdown.) Yet Mitt Romney — a man who has essentially been running for President full-time for the past decade — fell just short again on Tuesday, and it’s time for the Republican Party to take a long look at itself. Amid all the euphoria of the last couple of days, it bears restating that the GOP probably lost this election more than the Democrats won it. Certainly Obama...

What Now? Reflections on Obama’s Victory

Sean Para, Columnist

November 9, 2012

Filed under Columns, OPINIONS

In case you haven’t heard, Barack Obama was reelected President of the United States on November 6. Along with slight gains in the House of Representatives and Senate, this represents a significant achievement for the President and the Democratic Party, and an opportunity to finally push past partisanship and confront the major issues our nation faces. The question now is, what are these issues, and how should they be dealt with? The most pressing short-term issue is the debt crisis. Unless a solution is found before the end of 2012, automatic tax increases and spending cuts to lower the deficit will go into effect and could arrest the economic recovery. It is imperative that this does not come to pass. Congressional...

The Game Is Changing: Can Obama Handle The New Middle East?

Sarp Yavuz, Arts Editor

September 28, 2012

Filed under Columns, OPINIONS

Whether or not Obama wins the election, the U.S. needs to readdress its approach to the Middle East if it is to maintain regain its watchdog status. The United States’ expansionist policies seem to have stagnated, particularly in the Middle East, and the aftermath of the election will perhaps determine whether or not troops will be sent to Iran or Syria. Last seen shaking hands with Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan in an attempt to bridge the ever-widening gap between the West and the Middle East, Obama, along with an army of public relations experts, has been trying to minimize the damage created by the absurd Innocence of Muslims, a film created to ridicule the life of the prophet Muhammad. The biggest issue here...

Neither Candidate at His Best in First Presidential Debate

Eli Rose, Opinions Editor

September 28, 2012

Filed under Columns, OPINIONS

On the night of the first scheduled presidential debate, Obama opened by addressing Michelle with something like a joke. “And so I just want to wish, Sweetie, you happy anniversary and let you know that a year from now we will not be celebrating it in front of 40 million people.” On one level this statement is just something a politician would say. It’s just another manifestation of the message that candidates for all public offices try their hardest to send. Look, my family is just like yours; look at how much we love each other. Romney’s biographical video at the RNC was sending this message almost frantically. On another level, it sounds very tired. The statement is ambiguous about what, exactly, will...

Debate Introduces Congressional Candidates to Lorain County Voters

Matthew Benenson, Staff Writer

September 28, 2012

Filed under Community News, Features, NEWS

Three candidates for the newly drawn Fourth Congressional District came to Oberlin on Tuesday for a debate hosted by the League of Women Voters of the Oberlin Area. With over 100 Lorain County residents and students in attendance, Republican Congressman Jim Jordan, Democratic challenger Jim Slone and Libertarian challenger Chris Kalla sat down at First Church to talk to about their stances on the economy, education, health care and the environment. Andrew Young, editor of Elyria’s Chronicle Telegram, Roy Church, Lorain County Community College president, and Bruce Simonson, College Geology professor and League member, asked the questions. Following the prepared questions, Sharon Soucy, Oberlin City Council vice...

‘Documentary’ Sheds Disturbing Light on Racial Perceptions of Obama

The Editorial Board

September 28, 2012

Filed under Editorials, OPINIONS

You didn’t watch Dreams From My Real Father: A Story of Reds and Deception so much as it washed over you in a wave of disbelief. A pseudo-documentary purporting to expose the “true origin of Obama’s life and politics,” Dreams From My Real Father tells the story of how President Obama’s father was a card-carrying member of Communist Party USA — not a goat herder from Kenya who came to America in search of an education. The film, copies of which have recently filled many of the OCMR’s mailboxes and trash bins, contains some familiar far-right tropes from the last few years: Obama’s friendship with Bill Ayers, his ties to Reverend Jeremiah Wright, his hidden socialist and Islamic beliefs. But it soon...

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