vol. cxxii, no. 54
Thursday, April 19, 2012
Paul advocates small government to raucous URI crowd Lottery By Adam toobin Senior Staff Writer
“The revolution is alive and well,” declared Texas Rep. Ron Paul, a candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, upon seeing the more than 2,000 supporters who attended his rally at the University of Rhode Island Wednesday night.
city & state
Tom Sullivan / Herald
Ron Paul vowed to continue his campaign Wednesday, despite trailing in polls.
Paul is in Rhode Island campaigning in anticipation of Tuesday’s Republican primary. Though most political analysts have dismissed Paul as a viable contender for the Republican Party’s nomination, Paul said he plans to keep fighting in every state until he has enough delegates to be his party’s nominee. Paul voiced his opposition to the United States’ prohibition of drugs and said he is encouraged by efforts by states to confront federal law
on the subject. “This is where I am cautiously optimistic that one day, we’re going to wake up, and it might be that the states will grab hold of nullification,” Paul said. Businessman Barry Hinckley began the event with an effort to drum up support for his candidacy against Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., a pitch that was met with heckles from members of the crowd. He won back the crowd when he lauded Paul’s consistent support of conservative economic policy and called him “the founder of political honesty.” Paul primarily discussed topics that have helped him sustain his famously loyal following through his three presidential campaigns — the dissolution of the Federal Reserve System, opposition to the country’s military-industrial complex and legalization of currently prohibited
$45 million will go to the State Police. The East Providence and North Providence police departments will split $120 million, and another $60 million will go to the state attorney general’s office. The funds are being distributed across the state based on law enforcement officials’ time commitments, said Joseph Tavares, chief of police at the East Providence continued on page 4
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Brunonians are not known for being passionate sports fans — but do not tell that to Chris “Boomer” Berman ’77 P’08 P’09. The former history concentrator, a long-standing anchor for ESPN and one of the most well-known personalities in contemporary sports media, returned to College Hill Wednesday night to share stories of his Brown experience in front of an intimate crowd in MacMillan 117. “I travel the United States all the time, so it’s nice to have a home game,” Berman said. “Tuition’s gone up since I was here in 1977, but the food is the same in the Ratty.” After cracking a few opening jokes, Berman chronicled his start in sports media as an announcer for WBRU. Of the many games he covered, Berman recalls Bruno’s run to its first-ever Ivy League football championship in 1976 as some of the most exciting. “I remember the plays like they were last week,” Berman said. “These are some of the best memories I have.” Berman also described his early days out of college, including his less
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news....................2-3 CITY & State........4-6 Sports............7-9 editorial............10 Opinions.............11
city & state Of the $230 million the state will receive, $5 million will go to the Rhode Island National Guard, and
As Simmons departs, S&J plans remain stagnant By Joseph Rosales Senior Staff Writer
The University has offered an internal candidate the position of inaugural director for the Center for the Study of Slavery and Justice after its second final candidate in five years declined to take the offer last semester. The candidate’s name will not be released until the decision is finalized. The creation of the center — which will be devoted to researching the history of slavery and modern injustice — was one of many recommendations put forward in a report by the University Steering Committee on Slavery and Justice in 2006. The committee also recommended creating a fund dedicated to improving educational outcomes for children in Providence and creating a memorial to commemorate the University’s connection to the slave trade. While a sculptor was
Train change The MBTA will increase subway, bus and rail fares
City & State, 4
selected in February to design the memorial, donations to the Fund for the Education of the Children of Providence have stalled. As President Ruth Simmons — who was instrumental in initiating the slavery and justice discussion on campus — prepares to depart this summer, many of the recommendations in the report have yet to be fully realized. History of the report
Simmons’ interest in discussing the University’s historic ties to the slave trade was evident early in her presidency, said Jim Campbell, former associate professor of American studies and chair of the steering committee. During her first Convocation speech, Simmons “discussed at length” the issue of reparations for slavery, a hotbutton topic at the time, Camp-
Courtesy of Brown University
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Six years later, many of the recommendations from the Slavery and Justice report have not yet come to fruition.
Four athletes play for two varsity teams
By sam wickham Sports Staff Writer
Rhode Island will soon receive $230 million due to local police efforts in a $500 million federal investigation involving Google. The Rhode Island task force for the Food and Drug Administration’s Office of Criminal Investigations played a leading role in the investigation, which involved illegal advertisements for Canadian prescriptions run on Google’s search
engine. The investigation into the ads — which pointed online visitors to websites where they could buy illegal Canadian prescriptions — resulted in Google forfeiting the revenue they received from the ads.
By Elizabeth koh Senior Staff Writer
This year’s summer assignment process will find housing for 324 students following the housing lottery’s second and final session Tuesday, said Richard Hilton, assistant director of the Office of Residential Life. That number — which includes both those students who chose not to select housing and those who did not attend the lottery — is about 30 to 40 students higher than it was last year, he said. Of those students, 260 are rising sophomores, he said. “There could be a bunch of different variables” to account for the increase, Hilton said, citing possibilities like more rising seniors selecting on-campus housing or a higher number of rising juniors not going abroad. Hilton noted the changes in housing assignments, such as the decision to make Hope College and Littlefield Hall sophomoreonly, but he said the changes did not make “a large difference.” Student reactions to the housing lottery were largely disappointed. Yongha Kim ’15 and five other
Berman ’77 Google probe yields $230 million reminisces about path to ESPN By Mark Raymond Senior Staff Writer
pushes more into summer assignment
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2 Campus News
Gender gap persists among tenured faculty
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Chicken Pot Pie, Zucchini and Parmesan Sandwich, Garlic and Butter Infused Rice, Green Peas
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Shells with Broccoli, Sweet and Sour Saute, Green Peas, Steamed Vegetable Melange
The Brown Daily Herald Thursday, April 19, 2012
By Alexandra Macfarlane Senior Staff Writer
Though male and female professors who apply for tenure are approved at similar rates across divisions, far fewer women are currently tenured in the life sciences, physical sciences and social sciences, according to data from the office of the dean of the faculty. “I suggest that it is the hiring process that is lopsided — not the tenure rate,” said Kenneth Breuer, professor of engineering and chair of the Tenure, Promotions and Appointments Committee. Data shows that the University must work more to reach out to women during the initial hiring process, he said. There is no statistically significant difference between tenure rates for male and female assistant professors and hires — 66 percent of male assistant hires receive tenure, compared to 75 percent of female assistant hires. But the percent of currently tenured faculty members between men and women is significantly different — 73 percent of tenured faculty members are male, while 27 percent of tenured faculty members are female. Among untenured faculty members, 61 percent are male, and 39 percent are female. Of 501 tenured faculty members at Brown, 365 are male, and the remaining 136 are female. The University has 119 untenured professors, 71 of whom are male and 48 of whom are female. Within specific divisions of the University, tenured females are far less represented in physical sciences, life sciences and social sciences. In the humanities, men and women are more equally represented within the tenured cohort, according to the data from the office of the dean of the faculty. In the physical sciences, 10 per-
cent of tenured professors are female, and in the life sciences, 30 percent of tenured faculty are female. In the social sciences, tenured faculty are 32 percent female. Women represent 41 percent of the tenured faculty in the humanities division. The numbers “don’t surprise me — they disturb me,” Breuer said, adding that he was struck by the gender difference between tenured male and female faculty members in the social sciences. With this discrepancy in mind, the University is committed to hiring women in fields where they are minority candidates, said Kevin McLaughlin P’12, dean of the faculty. He added that women are not a minority in the humanities departments such as language and literature. One reason for the difference could be that some faculty members who were hired in the 1960s are still teaching. Since then, the University has undergone “a transformation of the demography of the professoriate,” McLaughlin said. For the difference between men and women who go up for tenure, the “single biggest thing is the pipeline to begin with,” said Timothy Herbert, professor and chair of geological sciences. Women are underrepresented among tenured professors because they either take themselves out of the tenure track — a factor he said may be due to lack of encouragement — or because they were not equally represented in the initial hiring process, he said. Herbert said the University must assure women they will receive support if they choose to take time off for family reasons. Due to recent changes to policies for teaching relief for parents on new children, both men and women can take time off when they become parents, according to the faculty handbook.
Female faculty members are concerned about having children during both the PhD process and the years when they are up for tenure, and so they may postpone the decision to have children until they receive tenure. That process can last until a woman is around 40, McLaughlin said. Many female faculty members take advantage of both the teaching relief and the new option to extend tenure review by a year in order to have more time for children, he said. Sydney Blattman ’15, who is deciding between studying chemical engineering and biochemistry, said she has not yet noticed a discrepancy between male and female instructors. She said she tends to seek out female professors as role models and for help in classes, adding that she will probably lose that resource as she continues in her field. The lack of female representation is motivation to continue, Blattman said. “In order to encourage female students to continue, it is important to have female professors,” she said. As more and more graduate and Ph.D students are female, women will represent more of the professoriate in all fields, Herbert said. In his department, 50 percent of most recent hires were female, he said. It takes a lot of time for the faculty composition to evolve, he said, adding that he hopes female students will have patience. “It’s upsetting to hear these numbers,” said Rosalyn Price ’14, who plans to go into biology. Women are the best role models, she said, adding that though being a minority in her field may pose challenges, she is happy to work where women are less represented. There are many women in her classes at Brown, and “there is a lot of possibility for change,” she said, adding that the disparity has not discouraged her from pursuing her academic interests.
On summer assignment, a long wait ahead continued from page 1 first-years had two quads and two doubles to choose from when their number — 635 — was called at the lottery. Because the group did not want to split into a quad and a double, they elected to enter the summer assignment process. Students with the number 644 and upward opted for summer assignment or were no-shows. “To be honest, I’m not happy that I don’t have a room right now,
but I think it will turn out okay,” Kim said. “We’re just hoping for the best right now.” Mark Villanueva ’15, who entered the housing lottery by himself, chose not to attend after receiving a bad number. “I knew my chances of getting a high number were (a) slim, and the chance of there being any singles left were (b) also slim,” Villanueva said. “It seemed like I hadn’t done my homework.” After hearing from friends that
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the summer assignment process could yield singles, Villanueva decided not to attend the lottery. “I was like, ‘Eh, forget about it, I’ll just go and take my shot with the summer assignment process,’” he said. Villanueva said he hopes to be assigned a single for the upcoming year. Some first-years had better luck. “Knowing where I’m going to live has a lot of comfort to me,” Andrea Chin ’15 said. She and three other students — who collectively had a number in the low 640s — snagged a Minden quad, one of the last rooms left in the lottery Tuesday night. “I was worried that if we did get summer housing that I wouldn’t be with my friends.” But others have a long wait ahead — the University does not inform students of their summer assignments until late August. “That sucks,” Kim said. He said he hopes he will be able to room with at least one other member of his housing group. “I just don’t want to be separated,” he said.
Campus News 3
The Brown Daily Herald Thursday, April 19, 2012
S&J initiatives yet to be implemented Israeli colonel describes action on the ground continued from page 1
bell said. At the time, universities across the country were afraid to consider the issue due to fears of legal action or incurring the national spotlight, Campbell said. “What most universities did in this circumstance was they just ducked,” he said. “But Ruth took exactly the opposite approach. She basically said, ‘This is a teaching moment.’” Simmons wrote a letter in April 2003 inviting members of the University community to join a committee dedicated to researching the University’s historic ties to slavery. The 17 professors, deans and students selected by Simmons formed a steering committee, which spent the next two years meeting, researching and developing the report published. While the report mainly outlined the University’s long-standing connection to slavery, it also recommended initiatives like creating the Center for the Study of Slavery and Justice, establishing a fund to help the children of Providence and developing more seminars that discussed racial issues. But Campbell wrote in a follow-up email to The Herald that the most positive effect of the report was uncovering previously little-known history. “Probably the most obvious outcome of the committee’s work was simply providing the Brown community with a richer, more complex understanding of the University’s history, an understanding that encompassed aspects that had previously been neglected or suppressed,” Campbell wrote. Lack of progress
But six years after the report’s release, few of these recommendations have been successfully integrated. The University offered the center’s directorship to a “pretty well-known professor from Harvard” last semester, but he turned it down, said Provost Mark Schlissel P’15. Simmons said the University was forced to withdraw its offer to this candidate in the fall “in the interest of moving ahead with the center.” Prior to that, the University offered the position to “a notable historian” but after accepting the position, he later turned it down due to personal reasons, Simmons said. The University decided that rather than starting a third external search, it would be best to look for an internal candidate, Schlissel said. “It’s taken far too long to be able to act on what was a very good idea coming from the Slavery and Justice report several years ago,” Schlissel said. He declined to name the internal candidate or that individual’s department but said the University hopes the candidate will commit before the end of the semester. Simmons said she would have liked to conduct an internal search from the beginning. “I always thought we could start this very well with someone who’s already at Brown, and I must say
I’m happy that it evolved to this point because that will be the best way to get started,” she said. Campbell said universities tend to move slowly when enacting major projects, so the lack of a director for the center is not unusual. After the committee released the report, another committee was issued to discuss the center specifically, which took time, Campbell said. “Recognizing that Brown is an institution that has existed for two and a half centuries and that we hope will exist for at least two and a half more, six years doesn’t seem so long a time,” Campbell said. “I know that the slow pace at which universities move can sometimes be frustrating to students, but it’s not an entirely bad thing.” “Things take a long time in university life because of the processes that we use,” Simmons said. “People want to have an open process that includes lots of people and that is democratic and that is careful. Invariably, they are very impatient with the results because when you do that things take longer.” The Fund for the Education of the Children of Providence has also seen little progress since its inception. The fund has only raised $1.26 million of its $10 million goal, said Joan Sorensen ’72 P’06 P’06, a Corporation member and member of the committee that oversees the fund. Chancellor Emeritus Artemis Joukowsky ’55 P’87 said donating to the fund has been overshadowed by larger initiatives such as the Campaign for Academic Enrichment, which raised $1.61 billion over the course of five years. “That’s what happened — you come up with a whole long list of wonderful things you like to do, and some of them get left behind,” Joukowsky said. “I just think it hasn’t been out in the limelight,” Sorensen said, adding that it was expected to take a long time from its inception. “I’m mystified by it actually,” Simmons said. “I thought it was an exciting project.” Simmons said she feels it will take a “commitment from the community” and a different marketing campaign in order to increase donations. “I’ve said to the University I will do whatever I can once I step down to help with fundraising,” she said. Joukowsky said the committee is hopeful that it will reach its goal within the next five years, but that “it’s impossible to put a date up.” He added that though it has been a struggle, the fund committee is persevering and will continue to seek donations. “We have never given up,” he said. “It is a permanent commitment of the University to raise that money in order to show our commitment to a population that was in some ways disadvantaged by the legacy of slavery.” Simmons’ legacy
While Simmons is preparing to step down at the end of the school year, she said she is not in a rush to complete the recommendations before that point.
“I feel a sense of urgency about getting a director who will have all the right experience and energy and vision to get the center off to a good start, and whenever that happens will be good,” Simmons said. “There’s no urgency at all.” Few people see the extended timeline as a dent on Simmons’ legacy. “I think her legacy is enormous,” Schlissel said. “She’s basically changed Brown’s level of aspirations and sense of the importance of its mission and relevance to other universities. I think this is just a tiny fraction of the overall impact she’s had at Brown.” Simmons’ departure before the center’s completion does not diminish the impact of the original proposal, wrote former Provost David Kertzer ’69 P’95 P’98 in an email to The Herald. “There is no reason that the delay should detract from the ambitions of President Simmons’ initial proposal for the center,” Kertzer wrote. “I expect this will be one of many important legacies that President Simmons leaves to Brown.” The report has also influenced other universities, Simmons said. “The real benefit of the process frankly has been the visibility it has given Brown because, for the most part, Brown is credited with spurring activities at different universities and institutions related to reconciling their history with slavery and civil rights,” Simmons said. “By far the most important benefit of the report has been that. I think the campus still understands relatively little about the impact of the report across the country and around the world.” Emory University also had discussions about its connection to the slave trade a few years before the University’s report, said Emory Provost Earl Lewis. The Transforming Community Project, a five-year program that involved community lectures and guest speakers, culminated with a conference that invited Simmons as a keynote speaker, Lewis said. “I do think that the response to the conference last year indicates that there are quite a number of campuses that share an interest in how institutions have been shaped by their early connection to slavery,” said Gary Hauk, vice president and deputy to the president at Emory. Though a director has not yet been named, Simmons said she is optimistic about the center. She added that a physical space has been identified but denied giving specifics. But constructing a new building is “an enormous undertaking,” and the scope of the center does not require a separate building, she said. Simmons said the center’s focus will be decided once the director is named. She said she is not sure what role she will have, if any, at the center, and that the decision is entirely up to the inaugural director. “Wouldn’t that be nice?” Simmons said of having a potential role in the center. “I will do whatever I can to help the center.”
By James Williams Contributing Writer
In an attempt to dispel what he called the media’s unfair portrayal of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and discuss the Israeli Defense Forces’ code of ethics, Israeli Colonel Bentzi Gruber delivered a lecture titled “Ethics in the Field” to about 20 students and community members at Brown/RISD Hillel Tuesday evening. The lecture focused on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in Gaza as a means to present the ambiguities involved in urban warfare. Gruber also screened footage from actual operations to punctuate and supplement his narration. Gruber, vicecommander of a reserves armored division of around 20,000 soldiers, has presented this lecture at various universities around the world. Gruber began the event by emphasizing the typical amount of time for decision-making — eight seconds — available to Israeli Defense Forces soldiers and the factors that affect those decisions. The Israeli Defense Forces’ code of ethics plays an integral role in decisionmaking, Gruber said. The code of ethics is composed of three basic values — necessity, distinction and proportionality. The tenet of necessity states that force should be used only to accomplish the mission and should not be applied to extraneous pursuits. The second tenet, distinction, stresses the importance of distinguishing between combatants and civilians so that innocent people are not harmed. The third tenet, proportionality, seeks to minimize collateral damage in proportion to the immediate threat. After outlining the code of ethics, Gruber provided narration to accompany a clip depicting an explosive-loaded truck being tracked by an Israeli drone. The combatant in the truck hears the distinctive noise of the drone and diverts the truck toward the nearest building, even as a laser-guided missile hurtles towards the truck. The soldiers guiding the missile direct it sideways into the ground, rather than risk killing innocent people, Gruber said. The Israeli Defense Forces’ efforts to minimize civilian casualties even extend to airdropped paper evacuation announcements, text messages and calls to occupants of the target and surrounding locations, Gruber said. Sometimes occupants of a targeted house call their neighbors over to have a barbecue on the roof in order to prevent the Israeli Defense Forces from blowing it up, he noted. Rather than blow up the building and cause high civilian
casualties — an action the Israeli Defense Forces are frequently accused of — they execute a tactic known as roof-knocking, Gruber said. Soldiers guide very accurate laser-guided missiles to the edges of the roof to scare away the people on the roof. The Israeli Defense Forces only detonates the building once all of the civilians have vacated the scene, Gruber said. Gruber said Palestinians employ terrorist tactics — seeking out coverage by altering their path to hit populated areas and shielding themselves with children — because they know the Israeli Defense Forces will not risk civilian casualties. He punctuated his description with footage of combatants acting out those tactics. Before launching into his conclusion, Gruber described the Chesed in the Field charity program he organizes each year. The program pairs soldiers with terminally ill or disabled individuals to extend a hand to those typically marginalized in their society, thereby instilling community values and social responsibility in soldiers, Gruber said. Gruber criticized the media’s portrayal of the Israeli Defense Forces several times throughout his presentation, relating anecdotes of his being vilified and denounced as a war criminal at other college lectures. As his talk came to a close, he asked members of the audience to relay the message he presented. Often terms are used to describe the Israeli-Palestinian conflict that are more applicable to traditional wars, said Zachary Ingber ’15, vice president of Brown Students for Israel. Gruber has experience on the ground in a unique situation in which combatants are not easily recognized, Ingber added. Student reactions around campus to the lecture were mixed. Many news services can be somewhat biased in their portrayal of Israeli actions, said Alon Galor ’15. It is helpful to have someone who has been on the battlefield present the difficulties inherent to this type of warfare and to remind students that these soldiers have a limited timespan to make their decisions, he added. Max Kaplan ’15 said Hillel tends to showcase extremely pro-Israel perspectives without presenting the other side of the story. And though he said he usually agrees with the views presented, it is important to hear another side of the debate. But Kaplan said Gruber’s talk was still valuable because Israel’s role in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is often misrepresented in the media.
4 City & State
The Brown Daily Herald Thursday, April 19, 2012
Unemployment, state size may contribute $230 million could be to high R.I. depression rankings ‘win-win’ for R.I. police By Corinne cathcart Contributing Writer
Rhode Island has racked up a series of depressing rankings over the last year — it has been named the state with the highest rate of serious mental illness, illicit drug use and suicide attempts in the nation. While the results indicate Rhode Island may be one of the bleakest states to live in, local health care experts say that these rankings alone may not tell the entire story. Robert Swift, associate director of the biomedical alcohol and addiction department, recently took part in a panel about the rankings led by WRNI reporter Megan Hall. The state’s older population and high unemployment rate could be partly to blame for these high rankings, he said. With 11 percent unemployment, Rhode Island currently has the second-highest rate in the country, only behind Nevada. Young adolescents do suffer from “blips” of serious depression, Swift said, but those over the age of 65 — a significant portion of the state’s population — can suffer from illness on a more permanent basis. The unemployment rate can also be a huge impetus behind depression, mental illness and illicit drug use.
Swift also attributed results to the survey methods and modes of measurement used to collect and analyze data. The survey that was used to determine the mental illness ratings was mainly a “symptomatic survey,” not a “diagnostic survey,” he said. A symptomatic survey question may ask: Have you ever had thoughts of suicide? A significant number of responders would answer “yes” to this question, Swift said, but many of those responders could be average people who have had thoughts of suicide at one time in their life. These types of questions can “set up maximum shock factor” by boosting poll results indicating depression, Swift said. Jim Gillen, manager of the Providence Center’s Recovery Services — one of the largest mental health and addiction centers in the state — said the rankings could be largely linked with the state’s high unemployment rate and high rates of military redeployment. But he also said it is partially a result of Rhode Island’s small size. “Because our state is so small,” he said, “we have excellent accessibility and availability of services, so reporting of mental illness is really good.” Swift also said that particularly with Rhode Islanders, “it’s hard to get off the grid, it’s hard to hide when you have these
problems.” Gillen also noted that Rhode Islanders are “good at asking for help,” adding that the state may have “the highest rate of suicide attempts, but a low rate of successful suicides.” Swift also said admitting problems with substance abuse and mental illness “was less stigmatized in Rhode Island.” The rankings are in contrast to those measuring happiness at the University in recent years. The University’s student body has consistently ranked in the top of “happiest students” polls, ranking third in the Princeton Review Poll last year. Gillen was baffled by the inconsistency, but Swift said that, though it seems bizarre, it makes sense since typical stressors for students are not consistent with those of other Rhode Islanders. Brown students are young, making them less likely to experience consistent mental illness or depression, Swift said. In addition, “Brown students don’t have to worry about the 11 percent unemployment rate by and large,” Swift said. Students who need jobs to pay for their education can easily get them through student employment, he said, sparing them from the dismal employment opportunities in the rest of the state.
continued from page 1 Police Department. The investigation originated when “information came to the attention of the Rhode Island task force,” Tavares said. “(The investigation) started in Rhode Island, and that is where it continued.” Departments have submitted plans detailing how they would like to spend the funds, though they have not yet been received in full. The money cannot be used to cover salaries or fill budget gaps and must instead must be used for expenses such as equipment, infrastructure and training. The expenditures must first be submitted and approved by the Department of Justice before the funds can be used, said Amy Kempe, spokesperson for Attorney General Peter Kilmartin. Kempe said the attorney general’s office is looking to invest in information systems, citing the office’s use of paper time cards as a practice in need of an upgrade. The East Providence Police Department will likely spend the funds on equipment, vehicles and other areas in need of improvement, Tavares said. He said the money will help the department and the city financially, but it is not a cure-all. “To say that the city or the police department is never going to have money problems would not be accurate,” he said. “But if (the funds are) spent in the right way, we should not have vehicle or equipment issues going forward.” Tavares added that about half the money will be invested, and
some may also go toward constructing a new buildings for the police department. The North Providence Police Department has similar plans for the money, said Captain Paul Ricci, administrative commander of the North Providence Police Department. The department is considering building a new headquarters, since the current facility was built sometime in the 1970s, Ricci said. Funds may also be used for a training academy that would be shared with other law enforcement departments in the state, he added. The State Police is discussing the facility with North Providence and East Providence, according to Captain Mike Winquist, detective commander for the Rhode Island State Police. “This is still in its infancy,” Ricci said. “We want to figure out ways to help out law enforcement — not just here, but statewide.” Tavares also expressed a desire for the money to help departments across the state. “The whole idea is to make this a win-win for everybody,” Tavares said. “We want to make differences in people’s lives.” The process for receiving and spending the funds will be slow and deliberate to avoid legal complications that could arise from misuse of funds, Ricci said. Tavares said there is a possibility the police departments could be granted waivers to use the funds in unspecified ways, but it remains unclear whether the departments will pursue this option.
Fare hikes approved in new MBTA budget By Gadi cohen Staff Writer
The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority voted 4-1 to approve a new budget in early April that will raise public transit fares by an overall 23 percent starting July 1. According to the MBTA — which operates bus, subway, commuter rail and ferry services in the Boston metropolitan area — the fare increases were necessary in order to help close a $185 million gap in next year’s budget. The new plan increases most bus fares by 25 cents, subway fares by 30 cents and commuter rail tickets by an average of 29 percent. These changes will increase the cost of commuter rail tickets between Providence and Boston. “We understand that even these moderate changes we are proposing today will have a significant impact on some of our customers, and we appreciate that,” wrote Richard A. Davey, Secretary and CEO of the Massachusetts Department of Transportation, and Jonathan Davis, acting general manager of MBTA, in an open letter to MBTA customers
March 28. “But we have an obligation to balance our books and to be honest with each of you about the cost of service.” MBTA officials considered proposals that would have increased fares by a larger percentage and cut weekend and late-night service between Providence and Boston, but they ultimately settled on a less severe option that will not fully alleviate the organization’s budget deficit. Critics of the fare increases have argued that the Massachusetts legislature should have intervened in the MBTA budget to prevent the fare increases. Steve Damiano ’12 travels to Boston twice a week for an internship. For his trips, Damiano takes the commuter train from Providence to South Station before boarding the Red Line to Cambridge. “The fees seem like they will only convince more people not to use public transportation and to drive in to work instead,” Damiano said. “If I was still in high school and had a similar internship opportunity in Boston, I might have second thoughts about taking it due to the increased cost of the monthly pass.”
City & State 5
The Brown Daily Herald Thursday, April 19, 2012
Paul inveighs against ‘too many laws’ RIDOT extends commuter continued from page 1 drugs. Almost as soon as Paul came on stage, the crowd was chanting, “End the Fed.” The Fed’s power to print money without backing the currency in precious metals is tantamount to “counterfeiting,” Paul said. Paul voiced his opposition to the war in Afghanistan, another position that resonated with the crowd. “There was a time when they used to paint the label that if you didn’t vote for all these wars, then you didn’t like the troops, you were unAmerican, you were unpatriotic,” Paul said. “But guess what? If that’s true, why do we get the most support from the troops?” If the U.S. only went to war when Congress passed a declaration of war — as the Constitution dictates — America would not have been at war since World War II, Paul said. “No more wars without a declaration, and let’s get our troops home,” he said. “I pledge allegiance to Ron Paul,” a female supporter shouted in response. Paul disparaged President Obama for signing the National Defense Authorization Act as well as the FISA Sunsets Extension Act of 2011 — an extension of the Patriot Act, legislation that has spurred controversy for expanding the federal government’s powers to address security threats. He also challenged the constitutionality of targeted as-
sassinations of American citizens overseas without due process, actions he said the Obama administration has taken. Paul criticized the war on drugs, comparing the prohibition of certain drugs to the United States’ failed prohibition of alcohol in the early 1900s. “I think we should come to the same conclusion that we came to after we tried the prohibition of alcohol, and it failed — to repeal the prohibition,” Paul said. Everyone has the responsibility to protect themselves from the dangers of drug use, in the same way everyone has to take care of himself or herself behind the wheel of a car, he said. “The government owns you if they think they can protect you against all personal injury,” he added. The U.S. accounts for 5 percent of the world population but has 25 percent of the world’s prisoners — well over half of whom are non-violent, Paul said. Since Americans are not inherently worse than people anywhere else in the world, he said, “I would say we have too many laws.” “There were 40,000 new laws passed” this year, Paul said. “I would like to be the first president ever to repeal 40,000 laws,” he added to much applause. Paul also criticized the entitlement system as ineffective and impractical. “The entitlement system is motivated by a lot of good intentions, but good intentions
aren’t necessarily good intentions — sometimes, they’re distorted,” he said. “I believe that if you have humanitarian instincts — you don’t want people starving in the streets — the only political solution to that … is to have a free society and a prosperous society, and you will be able to take care of those problems much better than any other system available to us,” Paul said. The crowd reacted positively to Paul’s remarks. “I love everything he said about the Fed and the NDAA and repealing things — he’s here for freedom,” said Jen Bach of Cranston. “I absolutely love Ron Paul,” said Stephanie Beels, a student at Salve Regina University. “I’m actually taking a bunch of philosophy classes, and he says everything that any of the old philosophers talk about — his fundamentals are rooted in John Locke’s philosophy,” she said. “The whole purpose of the U.S. is everyone has individual liberty, and you can live the way you like, and we’ve strayed so far from that,” said Rob Ellis, a North Kingston resident. “People in Washington trying to tell people how to live your life — they think they know how to be in your bedroom.” “Whether or not Ron Paul is elected, or gets on the Republican ticket, I think he’s already won,” he said. “He’s already winning the hearts and minds of so many young Americans.”
Berman ’77 hails universality of sports continued from page 1 glamorous beginning years at ESPN in 1979. At the time, ESPN only had about 80 employees and was focused on broadcasting University of Connecticut sports. Berman has been part of the media company’s meteoric rise — 8,000 people now work for ESPN, and its channels are broadcast worldwide. “The first game we broadcasted was men’s professional slow-pitch softball … brought to you by Budweiser,” Berman said. “We did the wrap-up show, and I had hair then. I looked like Ron Burgundy.” For those in the audience, Berman’s perspective on life after college
was refreshing. “I thought it was really cool to hear the history of Brown through his experiences,” said Matt Barnes ’13. “He’s got all of these cool stories, and it’s interesting to hear his take on Brown’s athletic history.” “It was a great opportunity to see a Brown alumni who didn’t necessarily follow my path as a student-athlete but who was still very involved with athletics,” said Eric Robertson ’13, who will be co-captain of the men’s soccer team next year. “It was great to learn about his journey after Brown.” Putting his jokes aside later in the talk, Berman gushed about his passionate relationship with sports.
“You can be old or young, male or female, rich or poor — it really doesn’t matter,” Berman said. “You can have the same conversation about the (Boston) Red Sox, whether a guy is shining your shoes or whether he’s a millionaire. … That’s what I have found to never change in my 30 years.” At the end of the talk, Berman channeled his alter ego “The Swami,” who normally predicts football scores every weekend. “The Swami” imparted some Brunonian wisdom before departing. “Always put energy into everything you do,” Berman said. “That energy — and this place — will serve you for the rest of your life.”
Speaker relates science to belief in God continued from page 12 which Dumbledore explains to Harry that just because something is happening inside his head does not mean it is not real. “Evolutionary psychologists can tell you why you think your mother loves you,” Barrett said, comparing the belief in a mother’s love to the belief in God. Just because they can explain that through science, it does not mean her love does not exist, Barrett said. Human belief in God may actually serve as weak evidence for God’s existence, he said. If there was no God, the probability that so many people evolved to believe in one God would be lower, he said. This is where their beliefs di-
verge, Miller told The Herald. While Miller said he agreed with Barrett’s assertions that science and religion are compatible and that biology explains the origin of religious belief, he does not see those beliefs as “weak evidence” for the existence of a God. Barrett clarified that his work in the realm of cognitive science is not what compelled him to believe in God. Like many Christians, he had the strong impression that there are “deeper meanings and purposes in events” and likes the idea that there is a “law-like and regular” force in the universe. After Barrett’s talk, Miller posed a few questions for Barrett and then moderated a question and answer
session with the audience. Barrett said he thinks constructing a society without some form of religion or spirituality would be nearly impossible. Despite a marked drop in Christianity over the past 30 years, specifically within the United Kingdom, beliefs in other spiritual forces like ghosts or astrology have nearly doubled, he said. Barrett said evolution can probably also explain why some people do not believe in God, but more work is needed on the topic. “Suppose we do come up with such an explanation,” Barrett said. “Then we’ve explained away God and explained away not-God. Clearly, we haven’t explained away either one.”
rail to North Kingstown By Jasmine Fuller Contributing Writer
Next Monday, at 4:50 a.m., a Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority train will embark from the Wickford Junction train station, marking the opening of a new commuter rail station in North Kingstown. United States Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood, Gov. Lincoln Chafee ’75 P’14, Sen. Jack Reed, D-R.I. and Rep. Jim Langevin, D-R.I. will be present for the inaugural departure, said Bob Cioe, the station’s developer. The opening day will include a ceremonial train from Providence to Wickford Junction at 10:15 a.m., he added. “We’ve been planning this for 25 years,” said Jim Eng, the Rhode Island Department of Transportation’s project manager for the station. It was planned with the goal of reducing traffic on Interstate 95 and Route 4, since many Providence workers commute from Narragansett and Exeter, he added. Last September, the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority authorized service cuts, and the MBTA approved fare hikes and service cuts April 4. But when the Wickford Junction station was planned, budget issues were not a concern, Eng said. “Right off the bat, we don’t think that it’s going to make money because we just don’t expect public transportation to make a profit,” Eng said. “The main goal is to get cars off the road.” The station received 80 percent of its funding from the federal government and 20 percent from the state, Cioe said. Cioe and RIDOT began working together on construction and planning in 2010, he added. RIDOT is currently looking to further expand the commuter rail line to Kingston and Westerly, Eng said, but planning for the additional phase is only in preliminary stages. RIDOT received two awards April 12 from the Construction Management Association of America’s New England chapter for the new Wickford Junction station and accompanying parking garage, according to RIDOT’s
website. One of the awards was an achievement award, given because the Wickford Junction project used only $25 million while incorporating innovative features like “the mill-like facade,” Eng said. The second award was presented to Eng for overseeing development of the Wickford Junction station, RIDOT’s first design-build project, he said. In a design-build project, there is no time-consuming bidding process for the contractor, and project components are constantly being planned and built. This setup made for efficient use of time and money while allowing for greater collaboration, Eng added. The four-story garage touts features such as automated entrance and exit payments, electric car-charging stations and LED lights and sensors to reduce energy consumption, Cioe said. “It’s very, very green at this particular station,” Eng said. A unique facade, designed to resemble and celebrate North Kingstown’s historical Lafayette Mill and the town’s once-booming textile industry, is featured on the new station and garage, Cioe said. “I think you’ll agree that a concrete garage would look out of place,” he added. Surrounding the station is “a transit-oriented development site” consisting of a Walmart, Staples, bank and strip mall, Eng said. He added that Cioe, who owns the site, ultimately plans to add three residential or retail buildings to the complex. Cioe said he will continue to develop the shopping center when he feels there are customers to patronize it. RIDOT is expecting 500 or 600 riders daily as the station’s operations begin and anticipates additional riders as the station becomes established among commuters, Eng said. The station will service 20 trips daily — 10 departing to Providence and 10 arriving from Providence, Cioe said. The train will operate Monday through Friday, allowing riders to travel from North Kingstown to T. F. Green Airport, Providence and onward to Boston, Eng said. Service may be expanded depending on commuter demands, he added.
6 City & State
The Brown Daily Herald Thursday, April 19, 2012
Cicilline ’83 apologizes for campaign slip Redistricting plan divides Democrats last week, he stressed tails,” Schiller said. Voters in the Providence city council the importance of the Democrats first congressional district will By sona mKRttchian Senior Staff Writer
Following weeks of criticism from opposition and plummeting approval ratings, Rep. David Cicilline ’83, D-R.I., publicly apologized last week for misleading voters about the city’s finances during his tenure as Providence mayor. While campaigning for Congress in 2010, Cicilline claimed Providence was in “excellent financial condition.” But in February, when Mayor Angel Taveras declared that the city was facing a $120 million structural deficit and the threat of bankruptcy, Cicilline’s claim was proven false. Taveras has stated the city will likely declare bankruptcy if the deficit is not closed by June. “I was overly optimistic about some of the challenges we faced,” Cicilline told The Herald. He added that he “accept(s) responsibility for every decision” he made during his terms as mayor. Wendy Schiller, associate professor of political science and public policy, said Cicilline’s decision to come out with this apology was a risk because it allows his opposition to press him further on the issue, but she added that she is “not sure if he had a choice.” When Cicilline visited campus to speak at a meeting of the Brown
reclaiming leadership in the U.S. House of Representatives — a feat that can only be achieved if the party gains an additional 24 seats. But current polls show that Cicilline risks losing his seat in a historically liberal district to a Republican challenger. Brendan Doherty, Cicilline’s Republican opponent and former superintendent of Rhode Island state police, said in a press release last week that the incumbent evaded the question of his involvement in Providence’s financial decline for “nearly 18 months.” Doherty said Cicilline has yet to accept full responsibility for his involvement in the city’s fiscal crisis. “David Cicilline’s deception and mismanagement contributed to this crisis, and the consequences are real for municipal employees,” Doherty said in the press release, calling Cicilline’s apology “too little, too late.” Doherty is leading Cicilline by 15 points, according to the latest poll conducted by WPRI-12. “I’ve been fighting for things I know will strengthen the middle class of our state,” Cicilline told The Herald. At this point in the race, the only hope Cicilline has is to be “saved by the Democratic coat-
already be voting for President Obama and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., and if Cicilline is lucky, they will just opt to vote the party line, she added. Adding another dimension to the race, Anthony Gemma, a local businessman, announced April 15 that he would be running against Cicilline in the Democratic primary. Gemma campaigned unsuccessfully for this seat two years ago, finishing second in the four-way primary and losing to Cicilline by 14 points. Few details concerning Gemma’s campaign have been revealed. After announcing his candidacy, Gemma drove off, refusing to speak to the press. A representative of Gemma’s campaign could not be reached for comment. But during his speech announcing his candidacy, Gemma said that his experience in the plumbing and media-buying businesses will aid him in facilitating job creation at both the state and national level. “I won’t have to apologize for lying so I could win your vote under false pretenses,” Gemma said at the press conference. Based on Cicilline’s current poll numbers, a different Democrat is needed to beat Doherty, Gemma added.
By Adam toobin Senior Staff Writer
The Providence City Council recently passed a redistricting proposal outlining the city’s plan to redraw its 15 wards to account for changes in local demographics. Proposed redistricting plans — a decennial requirement following each census — were controversial this year in part because they will determine allocation of the land made available by the rerouting of Interstate 195. The council’s attempts to delineate the boundaries of the city’s wards have come under public scrutiny. A dispute over changes to the representation of the Downtown neighborhood is at the center of the controversy. Downtown is currently split between Ward 11, a central district that also claims Federal Hill and Ward 13, which contains a large part of Upper South Providence. The new lines will consolidate Downtown and place almost all of it in Ward 1 — the same ward that represents the residents and students of Fox Point and parts of College Hill. Councilman Kevin Jackson — a critic of the redistricting plan and one of the seven dissenting voices in the 8-7 vote that ultimately confirmed the new lines — said he thought the representative of Ward 1, Councilman Seth Yurdin, used his power as council majority leader and the chairman of the Committee on Ward Boundaries to redraw the lines in a way that would incorporate one of the most promising areas of Providence into Ward 1. The relocation of Interstate 195 opened 40 acres of land — including the Jewelry District often touted by the mayor and other officials as one of the great hopes for the city and the center of its future knowledge economy — which will become a part of Yurdin’s Ward 1. “It does not take a rocket scientist to figure it out,” Jackson said. About 100 people protested at a public hearing before the council approved the proposal March 26, the Providence Journal reported. Carrying signs with slogans such as “Evil Power Grab” and “Still Waiting for My 40 Acres and a Mule,” protesters said the new lines provided Yurdin with too much influence and removed minority neighborhoods from areas with increased economic opportunity, the Journal reported. Yurdin said he rejects the notion that the redistricting plan benefits his district disproportionately. The redistricting was successful because it
corrects a number of problems with the old boundaries, Yurdin said. The new plan creates six wards with a majority Latino population and combines the voices of voters in the Downtown neighborhood to help them speak collectively in support of their interests, he said. Every ward in the East Side, including Ward 1, has experienced a population decrease over the past 10 years, leading to legislative efforts to correct for the change. “Now the Downtown voters are able to affect who the elected representative is in Ward 1 because they can push as an interest group,” Yurdin said. He added that historical precedents support placing Downtown in Ward 1 since the district only became separate as recently as 1990. But removing land ripe for development from council members who had represented the area unfairly denies them the benefits of seeing expansion within their Ward, Jackson said. College Hill, part of Ward 1, does not need the jobs as much as Ward 11 and Ward 13 do, he added. “Those are the people who need those potential jobs,” Jackson said. “That should have been where that land was continued to be represented.” Councilman Sam Zurier said he did not think the location of a development project will help the particular district any more than the overall city. “When someone wants to put in a development, it should benefit everyone in the city, not just people in a neighborhood,” he said. “If someone wants to start a development in the piece of Downtown that’s in my ward, in order to gain my support, they have to produce a benefit for the people in the other sections as well,” Zurier said. “We each as legislators are tasked at looking at the whole picture and serving our constituents and this is a good map for all of our constituents,” Yurdin said. Despite Yurdin’s commitment to Providence as a whole, Jackson said it is impossible to separate development and politics. “Let’s be honest, anyone who’s telling you that politics doesn’t play a part in economic development, then they’re lying,” Jackson said. Jackson said the whole city benefits from development in any district, but the community inside the specific boundaries stands to receive more from company donations for local projects like social services and arts.
Sports Thursday 7
The Brown Daily Herald Thursday, April 19, 2012
Athlete of the week: Thompson ’13 powers softball to wins By alissa Haddaji Contributing Writer
After a difficult start to the season, the women’s softball team earned two bounce-back victories last Sunday over Dartmouth, thanks in large part to the offensive power of shortstop Stephanie Thompson ’13. Thompson is currently one of the best batters in the nation, sitting in second place nationwide with a .480 batting average. Thompson hit a walk-off RBI single in the second of Sunday’s victory. For her outstanding performance at the plate all season, The Herald has named Thompson Athlete of the Week. Herald: Could you tell us a little bit more about the game against Dartmouth? Thompson: Sunday were good games. We got slapped by them on Saturday, so it was not the overall best weekend. But the end was good, and it was a good finish to take into next weekend. Especially for Harvard — we need a little momentum to go there, because (there are) going to be tough games this weekend. The first day, we were just struggling a little bit — we could have won some of those games — but the second day we turned it around, and we showed a lot of fight like we’ve been showing all season, coming back and winning both the games in the last inning. We have a bunch of talent — we just struggle
trying to finish and win games. You did incredibly well at the last game. What did you feel just after the final point? I was the runner one of the times and the hitter the second time. At the first game, when I was the runner, they walked me, so I didn’t really do much — I just ran the bases. (Alyssa Caplan ’13) was the one who hit it, she had a great at bat. Previously, a couple weekends ago, she had another walk-off home run against Princeton so everyone was excited to see her back in the box in a game-winning situation. Then in the second game, we put everything together again and got a bunch of hits in a row. I ended up getting the game-winning hit — I hit it to the shortstop. What did you feel while when you realized that your hit secured the win? I was just excited to get a good piece of the bat on the ball, make something happen. I did not really care how it happened — I was just happy we won. A win is a win, so that is exciting. My coach said after I hit it, “That’s how to hit the ball through somebody.”
How did you first become passionate about softball? I have an older brother who played sports. I have played sports all my life — in high school I played basketball, softball and volleyball — so I have always been active. I kind of joke around with my family saying that I didn’t really have an option and that if I wanted someone to play with me, I had to play sports, or else no one would play with me.
What do you think makes you a good player? I played for so long, but the difference now is that I understand the game so much more than I did
Is there any athlete you admire? My brother, truthfully, is probably the biggest one. … He’s a pitcher who didn’t hit, so it is not remotely
UCS presents finalized proposed code changes By Margaret Nickens Senior Staff Writer
Daniel Pipkin ’14, the liaison between the Undergraduate Council of Students and the Undergraduate Finance Board, presented a proposed change to the council’s code general body meeting. The changes are the result of an investigation conducted by a joint committee tasked with reviewing the relationship between the council and the Undergraduate Finance Board and with determining a better funding structure for the council. The two council members on the committee, Holly Hunt ’13 and Nick Tsapakos ’13, presented their findings last week. The proposed code changes were finalized this week following meetings with UFB and council leaders, Pipkin said. Few of the changes were modified from what was presented last week, aside from reducing funding for publicity from $100 per event to $25 per event and naming the UFB vice chair as the council’s budget representative. The council will
when I was younger. You have to know that in baseball or softball you fail often — it is part of the game. The best hitters get a hit three out of 10 times. Seven of those times, you are failing, so you really have to be mentally focused and have a decent mindset to accept those seven times you get out and still be positive and confident. Once you lose your confidence, you’re screwed, really. ... You need to learn that when you make a mistake, you have to focus on the positive things to take from it and to let it go. You cannot let it hang over you and affect you the rest of the game. Freshmen come in a little less mature, and you can see them getting mad. So it is very mental in so many ways.
vote on the proposed code changes at next week’s meeting. Kisa Takesue ’88, director of the Stephen Robert ’62 Campus Center and student activities, also attended the meeting to garner student feedback about the campus center. She focused her discussion on the Leung Gallery, addressing the possibility that the room may be used for receptions in the future. Some members expressed concern about taking the space away from students, though many said they would support making the room reservable on Fridays and Saturdays. Anthony White ’13 discussed the council’s work on implementing a Student Advocacy Program to assist students in handling issues with the University administration. He said he has looked at similar programs offered at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the University of California at Berkeley and has begun discussing the idea with members of the administration, who he said seemed receptive to the idea.
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Alissa Haddaji / Herald
Stephanie Thompson ’13 has a .480 batting average, the second-highest nationwide.
what I do, but he has definitely been the biggest one who has helped me. When I was in high school, he used to take me and pitch me softballs in afternoons and practice with me. He has helped me with the mindset of the game, because he was a
pitcher and knows about how to strike somebody out. He helped me learn what the pitcher is probably thinking in certain situations. ... On days when I struggle, he is the one I will call. He has definitely guided me down this path.
8 Sports Thursday
The Brown Daily Herald Thursday, April 19, 2012
Athletes pull double duty for love of the game By nikhil parasher Sports Staff Writer
Being an athlete in college requires practicing for three to five hours a day, competing and potentially traveling on weekends — all in addition to attending class and doing homework. Balancing these athletic commitments alongside academics is normally a sufficient challenge for anyone, but for four Brown athletes, one sport is not enough. These four athletes engage in a total of eight different sports at Brown. TJ Popolizio ’12 wrestles and plays soccer, and Megan Nolet ’14 swims and plays water polo. John Spooney ’14 runs track and plays football. John Sheridan ’13 plays baseball and won the 55-meter dash as an unattached athlete at a Brown-hosted track meet last December, and he said he aspires to join the track squad. Welcome to the teams
Though the four athletes said they love both of their sports, only Spooney knew during the recruiting period that he would be competing for two squads. Popolizio was recruited by the wrestling team and committed to it with the understanding that he would have the opportunity to try to walk on to the soccer team, which he successfully did the summer before his freshman year. Brown was the only school that offered him the possibility of playing for both teams, he said. Nolet, a marine biology concentrator, wrote in an email to The Herald that she was recruited for swimming and did not know playing water polo would be possible. She was unaware that women’s water polo is a spring sport, whereas swimming is a winter one — meaning potential conflicts are minimal. She joined the water polo team at the end of the swim season during her freshman year, when she was approached by men’s and women’s water polo Head Coach Felix Mercado, she wrote. Sheridan did not run track in high school but said he was inspired to do so in college because of his father’s experience with the sport and his feeling that he missed out on the opportunity to run in high school. “I think the biggest part of (why I wanted to run track) was my curiosity,” Sheridan said. “My dad ran track in college, and I was always curious about how much speed I have.” Time management
Of Brown’s current multi-sport athletes, only Spooney said his practices and games for the two sports never conflict. But Popolizio has not been so lucky. Soccer is a fall sport, and wrestling is a winter one, but Popolizio said wrestlers start practicing full time in mid-October, during the heart of the soccer season. He said he joins the wrestling team only after the soccer season finishes, causing him to miss “a good chunk of the wrestling season.”
He then stays with the wrestling team through the remainder of the season. In the spring, Popolizio first lifts with the wrestling team and then goes back to train with the soccer team. Spooney, who is also a neuroscience concentrator and wants to be a doctor, also said it is very difficult to be a multi-sport athlete at Brown due to the challenges of balancing training, studying and having fun. “It takes a lot of motivation, lot of perseverance, really,” Spooney said. “But just keeping yourself grounded and motivated really helps. And having a good support system, which I think Brown has.” Sheridan, who is doubleconcentrating in economics and public policy, said he knows being a multi-sport athlete is not easy and that he is worried about the potential burden joining the track team would add to his schedule. Yet, like Popolizio, Nolet and Spooney, Sheridan said the love of the game motivates him, and he would definitely join the track team if he could. “I think, ultimately, if I was given the chance to play two sports here, I would definitely do it,” Sheridan said. But Sheridan said right now he cannot join the track team due to Title IX conflicts. More female athletes would need to be recruited to the squad to adhere to the standards of equal opportunity between male and female athletes. Love of the game(s)
Though balancing the time commitments of both sports can be a challenge, Popolizio said his soccer training helps him with his wrestling, and vice versa. “I would say I’ve got pretty good balance for a soccer player, and a lot of that comes from my experience with wrestling,” Popolizio said. “And as far as the other way around, I definitely have some athleticism that I gained from soccer.” Spooney said his football and track training complement each other. “Football is more of a quickness type of training, while track is definitely speed,” Spooney said. “I think they both help each other, and one keeps you in shape for the other.” But Popolizio also said the differences in the types of training soccer and wrestling require, coupled with his alternating focus on the two sports, also have disadvantages. “I’m noticeably weaker when I show up for wrestling after playing soccer for four months,” Popolizio said. “And the other way around, when I jump back into soccer, I have a hard time maybe going for 90 minutes.” Popolizio has also been having recurring knee problems due to constant wear and tear from the two sports and has been delaying possible surgery. But rather than dropping both or focusing on one, he still prefers to tough it out and play both sports.
“There’s always a part of me that feels that I am missing out by not specializing in one of the sports,” he said. “But, that being said, it’s been the two sports I’ve played my entire life. And my dream really was always to try to go to the best school I can and try to be able to do both.” Men’s soccer Head Coach Patrick Laughlin said Popolizio only plays to his full ability and always needs to be doing something. “There’s only one way he knows how to compete — and that’s fullout,” Laughlin said. “I asked him, one time when he came back from wrestling in the spring, to take a week off to let his body adjust. And two days later I saw him running on the street. And he just couldn’t take the time because he’s so used to doing things that he had to get out there and get going again.” Laughlin said not everyone can be a multi-sport athlete. “It takes someone with a great deal of athleticism, a huge competitive edge and a real desire to be able to do two sports and be a student here at Brown,” McLaughlin said. Ultimately, despite the extensive effort required to play multiple sports at Brown, Popolizio, Sheridan, Nolet and Spooney are motivated by their passions for athletics. “Managing two sports and four classes gets to be a lot of work, and sometimes I think I am in way over my head with my endeavors,” Nolet wrote. “People ask me why I do it, and they usually say I am crazy. … I tell them that it is worth it to me.”
Emily Gilbert / Herald
Megan Nolet ’14 was initially recruited for swimming but grew to love water polo.
Emily Gilbert / Herald
TJ Popolizio ’12 misses parts of wrestling season due to his soccer commitment.
Emily Gilbert / Herald
John Sheridan ’13 said he aspires to join the track squad after winning the 55-meter dash as an unattached athlete.
Emily Gilbert / Herald
Though John Spooney ’14 does not have to deal with sports in the same season, he said it’s a challenge to balance both.
Sports Thursday 9
The Brown Daily Herald Thursday, April 19, 2012
Bears lose out to Ivy competition By connor grealy Sports Staff Writer
The men’s golf team fell flat this weekend at the Princeton Invitational hosted at the par-71 Springfield Golf Club. The team shot a 54hole 905, putting them in 11th place in a field of 14, which was led by Yale’s 858. It was a step backwards for the Bears after an impressive showing in their previous outing at the Yale Invitational, where Bruno finished only five strokes back of the Elis. “It was a disappointing weekend,” said captain J.D. Ardell ’13. “We didn’t play great last weekend (at the Yale Invitational) but we showed signs of potential to only lose by five to Yale. For them to go on and win (by 47 strokes) this weekend is very disappointing.” Brown came in last among the Ivies — the closest conference opponent was Cornell, which finished eight strokes ahead of Bruno. In the entire field, the Bears only beat out non-conference opponents Rutgers University, St. Joseph’s University and Rider University. “To finish last among the Ivies is very disappointing,” said Head Coach Michael Hughes. “We were having a very hard time finishing our rounds. Against our competition, you have to finish out your rounds strong.” Hughes pointed out the “mental mistakes” in the final holes, which he said gave back strokes to the field. “We could have finished with a 294 or 295, but against our competition you have to finish out — a 301 or 302 won’t do it,” Hughes said. “It’s my job to make sure these mental
mistakes don’t become a problem. I thought we had a chance to shoot a good score, and unfortunately we didn’t.” Remaining focused on the game, first-year Justin Miller ’15 came in as Brown’s top scorer yet again, placing 20th individually in the tournament with a 222 for the weekend, including a final round 71 — the only Brown player to break even in any round on the weekend. Transfer student Nelson Hargrove ’13.5 finished strongly in his second tournament for the Brown squad, coming in as the second lowest scorer with a 229. “I think it bodes well that Nelson has entrenched himself here in the lineup,” Hughes said. “He shot 76 Sunday with a few bogeys he could take back.” Ardell followed closely behind, carding a 231. Peter Callas ’14, who shot 232, and Jon Greb ’15, who shot 234, rounded out Brown’s scoring. The players will be able to finetune their game at the Century Classic April 21 and 22 in Westchester, N.Y., before they take on the rest of the Ivy League for the conference championship a week after. “The more competitive rounds, the better,” Ardell said. “We’re all working towards preparing for the Ivies.” Members of the team are looking forward to the final weekend of the season, when they will travel to Absecon, N.J., to partake in the Ivy League Championship. “Our season comes down to one weekend at Ivies,” Ardell said. “We definitely have the talent to compete and win.”
Beasts of the East: NBA playoff preview By sam sheehan Sports Columnist
The time is first semester of this school year. One of my housemates and I gather in our living room on a Monday night. He opens up his laptop, and I grab one of the three felttipped markers we have lining the base of our giant whiteboard. This whiteboard will go on to host a giant Final Four bracket and my sister’s original Spongebob Squarepants art, but at this particular moment, it has a much greater purpose. As I write “Week 10” and number the space underneath one through 32, my housemate starts throwing names at me. We agree the Green Bay Packers are number one and begin to argue about the second. We could go with the Baltimore Ravens, the New Orleans Saints or any number of other teams. We had just dropped the New England Patriots several spots the week after their loss to the New York Giants, but we had to decide if a win over the floundering New York Jets was worth bringing them back near the top. Yes, we were trying to figure out the best teams in football — who was going to make it that didn’t deserve it and who wasn’t going to be at the big dance but deserved a ticket. The thing about football playoffs is that just north of onethird of the teams actually make it. Therefore, you’ve got to be a good team — or exceptionally lucky — to make the playoffs. Then you have the NBA playoffs. In basketball, more than half the teams make it to the playoffs, and almost every year a team with a losing record somehow makes it in. The thing about basketball — much like football or any other sport — is that no matter how great the talent discrepancy may be, a playoff series will always come down to match-
ups. It’s for that reason that the NBA playoffs always manage to be entertaining regardless of the supposed difference in ability. I ran through some scenarios and, if you are a fan of game sevens, these are the match ups that you should be hoping for come the first round of the playoffs in the Eastern Conference. No. 1 Chicago Bulls vs. No. 8 New York Knicks
With a thunderous victory over my own Boston Celtics two nights ago, there’s not a great chance that the Knicks slip as low as eight unless they really blow their last few games. That’s a shame, because this is a Knicks team that would match up better with the Bulls than anyone in the league. The primary strengths of both of these teams is their benches. Both teams flourish when the bench comes on the floor, whether it’s Omer Asik and Taj Gibson for the Bulls, or Steve Novak, Jared Jeffries and J.R. Smith for the Knicks. Carmelo Anthony can go basket-for-basket with Derrick Rose, and these benches could play each other to a draw, leading to some truly interesting basketball. No. 2 Miami Heat vs No. 7 Boston Celtics
Again, a very unlikely matchup, as the Celtics would have to really fall apart and the Philadelphia 76ers would have to catch fire. In fact, this might be impossible by the time this is published. But I honestly believe that no team in the NBA stacks up as well as the Celtics do against the Heat. Emerging elite perimeter defender Avery Bradley has proven that he can keep Dwyane Wade in check. Rajon Rondo has proven that he can be a tripledouble threat against the Heat. Kevin Garnett has proven that he can outplay Chris Bosh when it matters. Even though LeBron James has had some monster games against the Celtics, they’ve still won every matchup since Garnett’s switch to center. In the likely event that this series doesn’t happen in the first round, keep an eye out for it in the second round.
No. 3 Indiana Pacers vs. No. 6 Philadelphia 76ers
The Sixers have been a mess to close out the year, but let’s not forget this was the same team that some analysts had ranked as high as second in the league earlier this year. These Sixers are a strange team, with no truly elite scoring threat, but they play some of the best defense in the league, which always gives the team a puncher’s chance. The Pacers this year are considered the best team that doesn’t have a realistic chance to win the NBA title. Though the emergence of Paul George and scoring ability of Danny Granger have been a boon to this team, they would struggle against a similarly deep and blue-collar Sixers team that is really their mirror image. This scrappy series would almost definitely go to seven. No. 4 Atlanta Hawks vs. No. 5 Orlando Magic
Deja vu! The Hawks upset the Magic in a similar series last year. The difference this year is enormous, as the Magic will likely be without Dwight Howard. But the Magic are 3-1 (before Wednesday’s game against the Celtics) since Dwight hurt himself, and I like the scrappy “we’ll show them all!” attitude this team is sporting. They’ve been so torn apart by Howard’s free agency drama all year — they’re playing almost in spite of him at this point. The Hawks are a solid team by all means, but if they underestimate this short-handed Magic team that is always a threat to get hot from the three-point line, we may be in for quite the series. Not to mention the bad blood. Also, Zaza Pachulia will probably punch someone. That’ll be cool, too. Check back in for the West preview next week. Sam Sheehan ’12 thought Zaza Pachulia was out for the year after James Bond dropped him out of an airplane. Wait, that was Jaws. Talk sports with him at sam_sheehan@ brown.edu or follow him on Twitter @SamSheehan.
comics Chester Crabson | Tess Carroll
Fraternity of Evil | Eshan Mitra, Brendan Hainline and Hector Ramirez
10 Editorial Editorial
The high cost of the highpriced Thayer apartments
The Brown Daily Herald Thursday, April 19, 2012
by a n d r e w a n ta r
Last month, the Gilbane Development Corporation submitted plans to construct a four-story apartment on Thayer Street. Aimed primarily at students, the building would serve as luxurious off-campus housing — including private bathrooms for each bedroom, yoga studios, fitness facilities and other amenities — minutes from the main campus. If approved, filling the 277 beds, at a cost of more than $1,000 per month, would begin in 2014. The plan must be approved by the Providence City Council, and for several reasons, we hope that they do not approve these apartments. Not only would the building itself be out of place on Thayer, but also more worryingly, it could exacerbate socioeconomic segregation among the student body. When the Gilbane Corporation presented the plan to the College Hill Neighborhood Association last week, local neighbors expressed concern over the size of the development. It is true that if confirmed, this building would replace more modest two- and three-story houses on the block. This would drastically alter the immediate environment, contributing to a sense of density and development on Thayer. It is certainly important, especially with tensions between Brown and Providence having been already heightened, to take the neighborhood’s concerns into consideration. The proposed project is wholly independent of the University, but public resentment towards the development would easily extend to the University and the student body. What is even more concerning is the effect that this apartment complex could potentially have on socioeconomic segregation on campus. If approved, these apartments would price out many students. While most off-campus housing represents a cheaper living option than on-campus dormitories, these apartments would be significantly more expensive than the cost of living on or off-campus. The students who could afford these apartments would likely be among Brown’s wealthiest, and they could inevitably be forced into having to choose between living with a diverse group of friends or enjoying the tempting amenities of these apartments. Other schools have seen similar results from the rise of luxury private apartments. For example, a 2009 op-ed in the University of Wisconsin’s Badger Herald lamented the development of pricey dormitories that appealed mostly to wealthy East Coast students, noting that these dorms fostered “tension, stereotypes and hostility based mostly on ignorance and a lack of interaction and communication.” In a recent Herald poll, 44 percent of students said their friend group consisted mostly of people from their similar socioeconomic status. Socioeconomic segregation persists on campus, and the Herald poll shows that some Brown students already struggle to expose themselves to people from a variety of economic backgrounds. This proposed development would represent a worrisome step backward if approved, potentially further driving a wedge between those students who can afford this top-notch housing and those who cannot. As any rising senior can attest, deciding whom to live with can be a time of high drama that strains even the closest friendships. If these apartments are built, their high cost will only aggravate these pressures — and the result could be increased socioeconomic segregation. We hope Providence considers the effect this development will have on the Brown student body and rejects the plan. Editorials are written by The Herald’s editorial page board. Send comments to email@example.com.
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quote of the day
“Tuition’s gone up since I was here in 1977, but the food is the same in the Ratty.” — Chris Berman ‘77, ESPN sportscaster See berman on page 1.
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The Brown Daily Herald Thursday, April 19, 2012
Heroin chic is back Cara DOrris Opinions Columnist Fashion and style are more than just clothing — they’re a way of representing yourself. And Brown is probably the most fashionable school in the Ivy League. But as the weather gets nicer, take a minute and look around campus. Yes, there are many different styles and body types, but do you see a trend of baggy clothes and emaciated limbs — a waifish, androgynous, broken-doll sort of look? We all know someone like this. Think of a young Kate Moss. They call this “heroin chic,” the forerunner of “hipster.” The original models were often strung out in crumbling poses, wearing the blank stares of glamorized drug addicts. The fashion industry was forced to give them up after the ’90s and the arrival of healthier-looking models like Gisele — when abs became cooler than atrophy. But I think atrophy is back at Brown, and there is a new model representing the resurgence. He has no hips or curves. He has long white hair and pale angelic skin, and he wears a size 11 shoe. He is all angle and bone, with the smallest hint of an Adam’s apple. They call him the most beautiful girl in the world. With the face of a woman and the body of a young boy, Australian model Andrej Pejic has had rich success modeling women’s
clothing. Last spring, he walked in both the men’s and women’s Paris fashion shows. He appeared in numerous Vogue editorials and was even the poster girl for Hema’s pushup bra campaign. Pejic was named the 98th “Sexiest Woman in the World” by FHM men’s magazine last year. Even though the title was a hostile joke aimed at transgendered individuals, some see this as something positive — that the fashion industry is becoming more sexually progressive. But the fashion industry is delusional.
slaughtering themselves. Their bones won’t thin from early osteoporosis, and they don’t have periods to lose. They usually don’t have to resort to purging or cocaine and amphetamine abuse to stay thin. People were outraged when the Daily Telegraph reported that weeks before a show, Victoria’s Secret model Adriana Lima consumed only liquids and worked out twice a day. Twelve hours before the show, she claimed she consumed “no liquids at all — sometimes you can lose up to eight pounds just from that.”
What does it say about our cultural body expectations when a guy is the best model for clothing created for women? Pejic doesn’t represent a new type of man: confident, powerful and flexible with his sexuality. Pejic represents the resurgence of the fetishized Kate Moss look that may have spawned millions of eating disorders on campuses nationwide. He is a more perfect anorexic woman. The industry is using severe androgyny to cheat the issue. Think about it. What does it say about our cultural body expectations when a guy is the best model for clothing created for women? Because even though he diets and exercises daily, 20-year-old Pejic still has the metabolism of a college guy. Though difficult to maintain, his threadlike figure doesn’t challenge biology. Men can maintain exceptionally low body fat percentages without
But Lima’s tactics are not uncommon. We would like to think that anyone could achieve a model’s look with proper nutrition and exercise. The reality is not so comforting. Some models are constantly fighting with their bodies to stay dangerously underweight. As I look around College Hill, it disturbs me to think some of us are trying to emulate these models. We forget about some recent anorexia-related deaths in the fashion world — like French model Isabelle Caro, who died at 68 pounds last November. We forget that heroin chic owns its name for a reason — the models are beautiful but fleeting. They die at the end. That is why Pejic’s timing is perfect. He
can provide the fashion world with the body they want without putting his health at risk. But real women can’t do that. What’s unsettling is that some think Pejic’s success will inspire more male models to start crossing over. According to the New York magazine feature on Pejic, fashion journalist Cator Sparks doesn’t “think it’s a shtick anymore. The white girl is dead – or at least she needs to amp it up a little bit.” If models like Pejic further influence the fashion industry, what will real girls at Brown have to do to compete? How far will they go to “amp it up?” Don’t get me wrong. I’m thrilled Pejic can wear women’s clothing without being labeled transgender or transvestite. I don’t think he should even have to identify with the male or female gender. However, until the world runs out of women, we don’t need to ask a skeletal man to model bras. It’s a sticky issue. Yes, models like Pejic may be role models for those who feel imprisoned by the gender binary. That’s very positive. However, just look around campus. I am afraid Pejic will also become a role model for anyone who is interested in fashion. I am afraid he represents the resurgence of a disturbing trend on College Hill: bony, hipless, and curveless — the ideal girls must have the impossible bodies of boys. If the fashion industry names Andrej Pejic the ideal girl, heroin chic is back. The ideal girl is a guy. Cara Dorris ’15 can be reached at email@example.com.
Keep sticking up for Rhody, Governor Chafee Garret Johnson Opinions Columnist The Brown community should be very proud of Gov. Lincoln Chafee ’75 P’14. Despite being a supporter of President Obama, Chafee recently stood up to Obama’s Justice Department to assert Rhode Island’s right to handle its own criminal cases. The dispute is over Jason Pleau, a Woonsocket man who allegedly killed David Main in 2010. Pleau has already said that he will plead guilty to state murder charges and spend the rest of his life in prison without the possibility of parole. Chafee wants to try Pleau in Rhode Island state court, but the Justice Department is attempting to take Pleau’s case from the state and pursue a federal sentence. Rhode Island does not have the death penalty, and while federal prosecutors have not said whether they will pursue capital punishment for Pleau, one has to wonder why else they would want the case. The issue here is not Mr. Pleau. He is a disgusting criminal who deserves to spend the rest of his life in a cell. His premeditated assault, robbery and murder of Main were violent, despicable and gruesome acts. Rather, the debate here is whether a state still has the right to try its own cases, and whether a state’s stance on the
death penalty still has the right to be respected. I applaud Chafee for standing up to Obama, a political ally, to defend the rights of his state. Chafee is the first governor in history to refuse to transfer a state prisoner to the Department of Justice, the Boston Globe reported. Chafee told the Globe that his steadfastness comes from his belief that both other states and the federal government must recognize a state’s ability to enforce its own policies enacted into law by
to see its other rights go away as well. If the federal government can arbitrarily impose the death penalty on a state case, who is to say the federal government could not impose stringent anti-abortion laws on a socially liberal state? For another example that may be closer to many Brown students’ hearts, who is to say that the federal government could not unilaterally impose tough marijuana policies on a state like Massachusetts, where the drug is decriminalized? In defending Rhode Island’s right to
As someone who is thoroughly sick of partisan dribble, I love to see an unaffiliated state leader bridging partisan gaps.
democratically elected officials. Without strong governors like Chafee, the federal government would be able to unilaterally impose the death penalty in any case where the Justice Department wants to intervene. As with all situations involving federalism, the individual case is just one indication of a larger, scarier principle. Rhode Island must retain the right to punish in-state crimes by the methods its legislature approves. If not, it may start
not execute its criminals, Chafee has created an unlikely coalition of supporters. Conservative states’-righters and liberal, anti-death penalty activists have come to the Independent governor’s side. As someone who is thoroughly sick of partisan dribble, I love to see an unaffiliated state leader bridging partisan gaps. I’ve admired Chafee’s courage since he decided to run for governor as an Independent. I’ve admired his willingness to propose tough solutions — the man
ran his gubernatorial campaign on tax increases and still managed to win. The case of Jason Pleau is yet another example of Chafee’s willingness to do what is right rather than what is politically expedient. Chafee is far from an anti-Obama ideologue. In fact, he is a co-chair of the president’s 2012 campaign. But he saw his state’s rights being infringed by the Obama administration, and took action. He didn’t care who was in the White House, because his responsibility is to the people of Rhode Island and not to a political party. The importance of Chafee’s independence cannot be overstated. It gives him the ability to analyze situations and do what’s right, rather than what his party elders tell him is right. Chafee has shown his political integrity in more cases than just the Jason Pleau affair. While many lawmakers in Rhode Island bicker about the fiscal crisis in the state’s cities and towns, Chafee has declared that he will not kick the can down the road. He has proposed serious pension reform that the Providence Journal called “a remarkably broad initiative” full of “good ideas.” To Chafee: Keep up the good work. You are representing Brown well in the world of politics, and you are living proof that effective, non-partisan government still exists in America. Garret Johnson ’14 suggests that after Gov. Chafee finishes reforming state pensions, he turn his attention to the Brown housing lottery.
Daily Herald Science the Brown
Thursday, April 19, 2012
Speaker links cognitive Study shows efficiency of bat flight science and religion By Kate Nussenbaum Senior Staff Writer
Science can explain why humans believe in God, but that explanation does not discredit God’s existence, Justin Barrett, professor of psychology at the Fuller Theological Seminary, told an audience of about 250 at the University’s third annual Veritas Forum in Salomon 101 Wednesday night. The forum seeks to “engage students and faculty about life’s hardest questions and the relevance of Jesus Christ to all of life,” according to the organization’s website. Barrett studies the cognitive science of religion and has authored three books on the topic, including one published in 2011 titled “Cognitive Science, Religion and Theology” and one published in March entitled “Born Believers: The Science of Children’s Religious Belief.” “Why do people believe in God?” Professor of Biology Ken Miller ’70 P’02 asked as he introduced Barrett. “Is religion a form of conditioning that we impose upon our children, surviving only because of the insistence of powerful cultural actors?” Or, Miller continued, “is there something innate in the human psyche that compels us to seek reason to believe?” Barrett’s talk drew on scientific evidence that supports biological rather than cultural foundations of religious belief. He began by pointing to the existence of religious beliefs in a wide range of communities and proposed that the way the human mind naturally responds to the environment accounts for religion’s universality. To understand the way the mind works, one must discard the commonly used “sponge model,” he said. Rather than just soaking up everything, the human mind processes ideas through two systems — a fast system, which accounts
for immediate, gut intuitions, and a slow system, which further examines ideas from the fast system, Barrett said. “Unless you have good reason to think that (the fast) system is mistaken, that’s the way you form your belief,” Barrett said. The human mind has “conceptual gaps,” which seek to be filled with causal explanations, Barrett said. But only some explanations will fill those gaps well enough to pass through the more critical “slow system,” Barrett said. The existence of some type of God appeals to the mind partly because of its ability to identify things in the environment with agency, such as people and animals. This device, Barrett said, was crucial evolutionarily because it makes us attuned to “actors” that could potentially be threatening to our survival. That same device “gives us reason to think there’s an agent around that later investigation shows can’t be a normal human or animal type of agent. It must be special,” he said. Barrett said there are also other “developmental biases” that cause people to believe that there is some “super-knowing, super-perceiving and perhaps immortal” God-like figure. For example, experiments have shown that young children believe that everyone around them is all-knowing because they have not yet developed the ability to understand other people’s mental states. This non-religious feature of children minds could explain their ability to conceptualize and believe in one or more gods, Barrett said. But some scientists say the very fact that belief in God can be explained by evolution renders God unreal. In other words, if we know why we believe in God, then we know God is not real. In response, Barrett quoted one of the lines from the seventh Harry Potter book, in continued on page 5
By Jessica BRODSKY Contributing Writer
Powered flight in nature has only evolved through four stages. The earliest stage, the pterosaur, was a flying reptile that is now extinct. Today, insects, birds and bats represent the remaining evolutionary stages. But as far as wing structure goes, bats have the upper hand. Compared to their fellow flyers, bats are the most energy-efficient flappers. While birds flap with outstretched wings, the hand-like structure of bat wings allows bats to fold their wings during the upstroke. This strategy reduces the total energy expended during flight by 35 percent, according to a study published April 11 in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B. But since each energy-saving wing includes an elbow, wrist, three digits and thumb, bat wings are relatively heavy, accounting for up to 30 percent of the bat’s total weight. The bats’ flapping strategy compensates for the heaviness of their wings, said Attila Bergou, postdoctoral research associate and co-lead author of the study. The other lead author, Daniel Riskin, completed his postdoctoral research at Brown in 2010 and is currently the co-host and producer of the television show “Daily Planet.” The study was funded by the U.S. Air Force. “There is growing interest in the energy cost of flight,” said Professor of Engineering Kenneth Breuer, one of two senior authors on the study. Sharon Swartz, associate professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, is the other senior author. Breuer and Swartz have been studying bats for over a decade and use a robotic bat to measure the force of bat flaps. They work with a range of experts, including biologists, engineers, physicists and computer scientists. Breuer described the interdisciplinary nature of his work as a “mixing of cultures that makes our life fun.” Understanding bat flight may
Courtesy of Kenneth Breuer and Sharon Swartz
By folding wings toward their bodies on the upstroke, bats use 35 percent less energy and reduce aerodynamic drag, compensating for heavy muscular wings.
hold the key to the future of small, unmanned flying vehicles. “Here’s how one organism solves the problem of heavy wings in flight in nature, and it seems to be a pretty good way of solving it,” Bergou said. “It gives a hint at what might be a good idea to mimic.” It is much easier to mimic the elastic membrane of bat wings than the feathers of bird wings, said Geoff Spedding, professor of aerospace and mechanical engineering at the University of Southern California. But the efficiency of flapping wings decreases as scale increases, explaining why there are no airplane-sized bats in the sky. The researchers focused on data collected eight years ago from six species of bats, including video footage of bats flapping in a wind tunnel. Though the data were not initially collected with the current study in mind, “that’s how science goes,” Breuer said. The growing interest in the energy
cost of flight inspired the team to use the footage to create a model of the flapping pattern. With this model, they determined the energy cost of folding wings and compared it to the cost of flapping with outstretched wings. “Evolution has devised strategies to save energy, and this is one that is particularly appropriate for an animal like a bat,” Breuer said. Both Bergou and Breuer said working with bats is not an easy task. Each bat has a distinct personality, Bergou said. Some are very clever, grasping within hours what researchers want them to do. Others are stubborn, refusing to cooperate. But the fickle nature of their test subjects will not deter the researchers from continuing to study bat flight. Bergou is currently studying bat maneuverability, while Breuer plans to study the interactions of these energy-efficient flyers. “Nature has a lot to teach us,” Bergou said.
Protein’s location connected to cancer cell survival By Alyssa Bianca Velasco Contributing Writer
What do real estate and the cancerous protein survivin have in common? The answer, according to a recent study by University researchers, is location, location, location. Just as location is a key factor in determining the value of a property for homeowners, it is a key factor in determining the value of survivin — a protein involved in breast cancer progression — to cancer cells. While previous studies have focused on the overexpression of proteins linked to tumor development, a study by a team of Brown researchers published last month in the Journal of Biological Chemistry is the first to suggest that location, rather than quantity, of a protein can influence cancer cell survival mechanisms. When survivin is exported from
a cell’s nucleus — the DNA-containing core — to the outer fluid region of the cell, known as the cytosol, it makes cancer cells immune to classic treatments, such as chemotherapy and radiation. But contained in the nucleus, it is unable to accomplish this function. “Nuclear levels are more tightly controlled by other factors and perhaps have more checks and balances to regulate them,” said Rachel Altura, principal investigator and associate professor of pediatrics at Alpert Medical School. But outside the nucleus, survivin prevents cell death, thus allowing breast cancer cell proliferation. “Survivin is truly unique in this regard,” said lead author Matthew Riolo GS. “Our research helps point out that maybe expression level is not enough when predicting cancer outcome.” The study details the mechanism of survivin’s export from the
nucleus and examined cancer cells from both mice and humans. When survivin contains an acetyl group, it is restricted to the nucleus. The protein HDAC6 removes this acetyl group, allowing survivin to escape to the cytosol. HDAC6 is regulated by the protein CBP, which is in turn regulated by estrogen levels. The study is “a very timely one of immediate interest to a wide audience,” said Ed Seto, senior member of the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute who was not involved in the project. The findings of the research can implicate new molecular targets for potential breast cancer therapies. Currently, Altura and colleagues are collaborating with a biopharmaceutical company, Karyopharm Therapeutics, to develop novel drug therapies that prevent survivin from relocating to the cytosol. The strategy is to inhibit broad classes of molecules that mobilize
Courtesy of Altura Lab
Inside the nucleus, survivin behaves. If it escapes, it can give a cancer cell great longevity. The darker area, above, is a protein that helps survivin escape.
survivin, thus confining it to the nucleus, where it seems to be innocuous. But in inhibiting a wide range of molecules, “there is always a concern that inhibiting a protein
involved in cancer may have secondary undesirable effects,” Riolo said. To prevent some of these potential side effects, the eventual goal is to develop more selective drugs, Altura said.