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THE BROWN

vol. cxlviii, no. 68

Assault, robbery add to crime spike

UCS to focus on strategic planning The Council will also work to improve the advising experience and student-alum relations By MAXINE JOSELOW

Three have been arrested after a group of teens attacked two couples on Thayer Street Friday

SENIOR STAFF WRITER

By JILLIAN LANNEY SENIOR STAFF WRITER

Four adults walking near the intersection of Thayer and Olive streets were robbed and attacked by a large group of teenagers around 11 p.m. Friday, the Providence Journal reported. The two male victims suffered “facial injuries” from the assault, and one of the men was admitted to Rhode Island Hospital, Providence Police told the Journal. Simone Riberon, one of the women who was robbed, told WPRI her “purse, jewelry and cellphone” were stolen. The two couples were returning from dinner when they were allegedly attacked by a group of eight adolescent males, WPRI reported. Riberon told WPRI the males began “verbally harassing” her and her female friend as they walked home. Her husband and her friend’s boyfriend attempted to stop the harassment, at which point the incident became physical. Providence Police officers looked at video footage taken by two female bystanders of the attackers “punching and kicking” the two men to identify suspects, the Journal reported. Three suspects have been arrested so far, Providence Police told WPRI. The Providence Police Department could not be reached for comment.

since 1891

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 2013

EMILY GILBERT / HERALD

UCS President Todd Harris ’14.5 looks to focus on collecting student input.

With the first Undergraduate Council of Students meeting set for this week, leaders said the Council will likely focus its efforts on gathering student input about President Christina Paxson’s upcoming strategic planning report, improving advising and fostering studentalum partnerships this year. Though the Council’s first general body meeting will not occur until Wednesday, its leaders have already met to discuss priorities for the coming year, said UCS President Todd Harris ’14.5.

The Council pursues different priorities each year, depending on its leadership and issues currently concerning the student body. Last year, under former UCS President Anthony White ’13, the Council focused on the University’s financial aid policies, The Herald reported at the time. The priorities that UCS leaders outlined for this year are not conclusive and will be influenced by student feedback in the coming months, said UCS Vice President Sam Gilman ’15. “None of this is final,” Gilman said. “The student body turns over 25 percent every year, and there are a bunch of students here who might care about different things. The agenda may change.” Talking strategy The Council will likely spend

Blue Room patron shatters door Thayer

struck by power outage

The glass broke when a student tried to push open the sliding door after the eatery closed By EMMA HARRIS CONTRIBUTING WRITER

The glass door at the Blue Room was shattered at around 5 p.m. yesterday as a student leaving attempted to push open the sliding door, said Lena Barsky ’14, who witnessed the incident. Small pieces of glass spread from the door “all the way to the counter, a good four feet on either side,” Barsky said. » See DOOR, page 5

By SABRINA IMBLER SENIOR STAFF WRITER

DAN ZHANG / HERALD

After the crash, many students ran to the scene, and some onlookers attempted to take pieces of the glass, said Lena Barsky ’14.

Activists promote divestment throughout U.’s history

By HANNAH KERMAN STAFF WRITER

After a year of petitions, rallies and protests to divest Brown’s endowment from the nation’s 15 largest coal companies, President Christina Paxson acknowledged the movement last May but deferred any decision. On a campus known for its political activism, this most recent movement is only one in a past full of student-led campaigns calling for reconsideration of the Uni-

FEATURE

LYDIA YAMAGUCHI / HERALD

Students repeatedly rallied to protest Brown’s investment in coal companies, and the Corporation will vote on divestment in October.

versity’s funding. Protests from the past Divestment at Brown surfaced in the 1980s as a tactic to garner awareness and support against apartheid in South Africa. Students at more than 150 universities across the country staged similar campaigns, and the success of the national apartheid movement also led the way for a divestment campaign at Brown against Big Tobacco in the 1990s. In 2003, the Corporation announced its divestment from tobacco companies following a recommendation from the Advisory Committee on Corporate Responsibility in Investment Policies. ACCRIP provides advice to ensure the University’s investments align with its ethical principles. The divestment movement has » See DIVEST, page 3

The write time

Psych Services

Intolerance

The Writing Center has a new online scheduling system for students

The new director is focused on ‘destigmatizing mental health issues’

Jessica Steans-Gail ’16 responds to Dorris’ ’15 critique of gluten-free diets

NEWS, 4

NEWS, 5

COMMENTARY, 7

weather

Students have rallied for divestment on issues including apartheid, tobacco and coal

inside

much of its time in the first two months of the semester gathering student feedback on the strategic planning process. Paxson will release a draft of the strategic plan — a document expected to shape her agenda for the University over the next decade — to the community later this month. Students will have about a month to provide feedback on the strategic plan before it is reviewed by the Corporation, the University’s highest governing body, at its meeting in late October. “It’s a really quick turnaround. Students only have one month to talk about the future of Brown’s education over the next 10 years,” Harris said. “We want to make sure we get as many student voices involved in the process as possible.” The Council will sponsor a » See UCS, page 2

Students reported a power outage lasting from approximately 3 a.m. to 5:40 a.m. in several buildings both on and off campus Sunday. After receiving several calls reporting the blackout, the Department of Facilities Management contacted National Grid to resolve the issue, wrote Marisa Quinn, vice president of public affairs and University relations, in an email to The Herald. Representatives from National Grid were unavailable for comment regarding the scope of the outage. “I was just about to fall asleep when we noticed the fan and everything had stopped,” said Grace High ’14, a resident of 315 Thayer St., one of the buildings affected by the outage. “When we woke up, the power was back on.” The blackout disabled swipe access for students living in the building. “We could hear people yelling outside to be let in,” said Daniel Gutierrez-Jimenez ’14. “It’s a good thing we were still up.” The residents of 315 Thayer St. reported no prior power outages this year. No one from Facilities Management could be reached for contact. t o d ay

tomorrow

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2 arts & culture

HIAA department welcomes three new profs

calendar TODAY

SEPTEMBER 15

12:30 P.M.

TOMORROW

SEPTEMBER 17

4 P.M. Heavy Petting

Social Entrepreneurship in Action

Wriston Quad 7 P.M.

Watson Institute 8 P.M.

“My Neighbourhood” screening

Telescope Observing Night

Wilson 309

Ladd Observeratory

The new faculty members offer diverse perspectives following the department’s external review By STEPHANIE HAYES CONTRIBUTING WRITER

menu SHARPE REFECTORY

VERNEY-WOOLLEY

LUNCH Fried Clams on a Roll, Tomato Basil Pie, Sauteed Green Peppers, Snickerdoodle Cookies

Fiery Beef, Vegan Stuffed Acorn Squash, Spanish Rice, Roasted Red Beets, Pineapple Upside Down Cake

DINNER Hot Roast Beef Au Jus Sandwich, Stuffed Shells with Meatless Sauce, Indian Chickpeas, Nacho Bar

THE BROWN DAILY HERALD MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 2013

Grilled Boneless Porkchops, Vegetarian Gnocchi Alla Sorrentina, Baked Sweet Potatoes, Squash Rolls

sudoku

Following a string of summer building renovations, the University’s Department of History of Art and Architecture continues to welcome change with the appointment of three new professors. The new faculty, Assistant Professors of History of Art and Architecture Courtney Martin and Itohan Osayimwese and Professor Anthony Vidler bring with them a wide range of expertise, including that in areas not previously offered by the department. The appointments followed an external review of the department, which prompted a reexamination of its future direction. “We were thinking very carefully

» UCS, from page 1

crossword

campus-wide forum to seek student feedback on the draft of the strategic plan, Harris said. The Council will also conduct its campus-wide fall poll a month earlier than in past years to allow students’ responses to be incorporated into the strategic plan, he said. In addition, members of student groups that share an interest with one of the six strategic planning committees will be invited to the Council’s general body meetings for the first time, Gilman said. For example, members of Brown for Financial Aid will likely be invited to the general body meeting that features presentations by representatives of the strategic planning Committee on Financial Aid, he said. Several student group leaders told The Herald they hope the Council will help foster awareness of the strategic planning reports among undergraduates. “I hope UCS plays a role in

not just about replacing faculty, but also about where we were moving as a department,” said Sheila Bonde, chair of the department. “It’s a very exciting moment for us to rebuild and have three new energetic people.” Martin arrived at Brown from Vanderbilt University, where she worked as both professor and researcher. She specializes in contemporary art, particularly British diaspora, though her expertise extends back through the 19th Century. Martin will offer a range of courses in the years to come, including the course HIAA 0870: “20th Century British Art: Edwardian to Contemporary” this semester. Osayimwese, who was previously at Ithaca College, has a dual speciality in German colonial architecture and African architecture. “(She) really brings Africa to our department,” Bonde said, “and that’s very exciting as it’s something we’ve only rarely had covered by visiting professors.” This semester, Osayimwese will teach a lecture course

entitled HIAA 0770: “Architecture and Urbanism of the African Diaspora.” Having spent his entire career broadening the study of architecture to one with an interdisciplinary view, Vidler is now working with both the humanities and history of art and architecture departments. His areas of expertise include the theory and practice of architecture and 18th century Walter Benjamin. He is presently researching the architecture and related arts in the immediate post-World War II period, and he will teach a related seminar this semester — HIAA 1180 S02: “The Brutalist Epoch: Architecture, Art, and Culture 1945-1975.” As both a trained architect and architecture historian, Vidler said he hopes to “bring an inside view to these studies.” Students concentrating in the department expressed mixed emotions about the new appointments. “I loved Professor Kriz,” said concentrator Grace High ’14, referring to Professor Emerita Kay Dian Kriz, who retired last year. “So I am always » See ART, page 3

ensuring that the student body as a whole knows about the (strategic planning) process and is aware of how important it is,” said BFA President Alex Mechanick ’15. “When the strategic planning report is released, I feel like a lot of students won’t know or care about it,” said Marguerite Joutz ’15, a member of the Brown Conversation, a group that aims to promote dialoge on campus about University issues. “I would hope that UCS educates people about it.”

would work this year to improve firstyears’ experiences with their advisers and Meiklejohns. Several undergraduates told The Herald they would welcome improvements to the current advising system. “I feel like my Meiklejohn and my adviser only met with me out of obligation,” said Carolynn Cong ’16, adding that she hopes the Council ensures that advisers and Meiklejohns are enthusiastic about helping their advisees. “I think anything you can do to improve advising would be good for the student body,” said Olivia Watson ’16. “I feel like that’s a big reason why I came here, to have a one-on-one relationship with my adviser and to have resources like my Meiklejohn.” The Council also has its sights set on increasing interaction between undergraduates and alums. Gilman said Council members would work with Paxson’s office to create more opportunities for students to engage with alums, such as mentorships, internships and meetups. UCS Student Activities Chair Alex Drechsler ’15 said he would also work to make the student group coordination website MyGroups more conducive to connecting undergraduates with alums, adding that UCS may replace MyGroups with another student group organizing software. Several undergraduates told The Herald they supported the Council’s plans for engaging alums. “Alumni would be great if I needed a job,” said David Weinberger ’16. “Even though we have a lot of events on campus that seem geared toward careers, like career fairs or events at CareerLAB, I think everyone could benefit from more of that,” Watson said. “Alumni could be resources outside of CareerLAB.”

Advising and alums The Council will also work on initiatives spearheaded by Harris to reform the undergraduate advising system and encourage student-alum interaction this year. In his campaign for the presidency last spring, Harris said he would focus on improving advising and connecting students with alums, The Herald reported at the time. Harris said the UCS Academic and Administrative Affairs Committee

Thanks for reading!


university news 3

THE BROWN DAILY HERALD MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 2013

» DIVEST, from page 1 continued to grow since then. Addressing issues including genocide in Darfur and human rights violations in Palestine, students have launched a number of divestment campaigns at Brown and across the United States. The Darfur genocide sparked student demands to divest from companies supporting the Sudanese government’s actions in the region. In February 2006, the Corporation divested, following an ACCRIP recommendation. Students organized another successful divestment campaign in 2010 when they asked the University not to reinvest in HEI Hotels and Resorts, which had restricted its workers’ ability

to unionize. Brown students in support of divestment held a fake wedding on the Main Green to symbolize the union of the Corporation and HEI that would occur with renewed investments. Students for Justice in Palestine similarly called for divestment from Boeing and the construction company Caterpillar, which an SJP pamphlet said supplied the Israel Defense Forces with planes and bulldozers respectively. SJP brought a banner to the Main Green rhetorically asking students, “Do you want your University profiting from apartheid?” to support its cause and link divestment in Israel to the 1980s apartheid divestment. In 2012, ACCRIP encouraged dialogue on the issue in a letter to the

DAVID DECKEY / HERALD

List Art Center, home of the Department of History of Art and Architecture, will welcome three new professors this semester.

» ART, from page 2 sad to see someone I loved go, but it is always exciting to check and see if a new professor has unusual interests that also interest me.” Many history of art and architecture concentrators expressed a tendency to shop classes with new professors, rather than sign up immediately, and some admitted to having poor experiences with visiting professors.

“The professor is just as important as the material for me,” High said. Bonde said there was a lot of excitement about the new areas of art history offered and the new faculty appointments. “We tried to involve our graduate and undergraduate students in the search process and asked them for feedback,” she said. “So this was really a community looking for new members to join us.”

Corporation but did not take a position on possible divestment. Since then, there has been no change in Brown’s investment. Divestment today Divest Coal is part of a nationwide movement and has spanned more than 300 college campuses and 100 city and state campaigns. To build its campaign at Brown, Divest Coal looked to prior divestment efforts in tobacco, Sudan and HEI as the “models that have worked under the current system, where there is a need to go through an administrative process,” said Divest Coal member Ryan Greene ’16, who joined the Divest Coal movement at its inception during his

first week of school. The size of the 1980s campaign “was a big part of what made it powerful,” Greene said. After rallies and protests throughout the winter and spring of last year, the Corporation acknowledged an April 2013 recommendation from ACCRIP supporting divestment from the 15 coal companies at its biannual May meeting. Some college administrators have argued divesting from coal could have negative effects for universities. Christianna Wood, a trustee of Vassar College, said in a New York Times article this month that divestment could cause colleges to lose both money and a voice in company proceedings. Divest Coal members disagreed.

“The question at hand is not whether or not Brown is going to lose money — that’s not even part of the consideration,” Greene said. “The main thrust of divestment is that you’re able to erode the social license of these companies through collective action — schools, cities, churches — that can lead to real change,” said Tammy Jiang ’16, another Divest Coal member. Divest Coal members said they are eagerly looking forward to the Corporation’s October meeting, which may promise a decision on the divestment issue. “There is going to be a lot (of) pressure on the administration to vote yes to divestment in October,” Greene said.


4 university news

THE BROWN DAILY HERALD MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 2013

Writing Center launches new online scheduling system Students can now create and cancel Writing Center appointments through the center’s website By RILEY DAVIS STAFF WRITER

CAROLINE GRANOFF / HERALD

The Writing Center schedules approximately 4,500 one-one-one student conferences each academic year. The online system will automatize confirmations and reminders for students’ meeting requests.

The Writing Center transitioned to a new online sign-up system this fall, allowing students to schedule appointments directly through the center’s website instead of by emailing the coordinators. The Writing Center collaborated over the past year with Applications Developer and Analyst Jason Orrill to create a new electronic sign-up system to save time on both the students’ and administrators’ ends. Under the previous system, “the appointment books were basically set up in Google Docs, and the notifications were either sent out by myself or the receptionist,” said Writing Center Coordinator Janet Peters. The new system allows students to log into their applications using their Banner IDs and passwords and view an online appointment book, Peters said. Available time slots are blank, while taken ones are filled in. Students can mark when they are available for appointments by selecting their desired time slots. Students are asked to fill in certain required information — the type of writing they want to discuss, the subject area, document length and the part of the essay on which they wish to

focus — directly below the scheduling calendar. The new form also allows users to request a specific Writing Center employee, Peters said. Upon making the appointment, students receive an automatic confirmation email summarizing their appointment information. Another reminder email is also automatically sent to students 24 hours before their appointments. The change in sign-up systems has not been widely publicized to students, but many who have used the new online system said they found it to be a marked improvement to the email-based one. “I love (the new system),” said Joshua Jackson ’16, who added that he had “dreaded” scheduling appointments with the Writing Center last year. “It was really unorganized and you had to wait for them to respond to you. The new system takes a lot less time and is way less work.” Jessica Velasquez ’15 used the Writing Center last year and found no issue with the old sign-up system, she wrote in an email to The Herald, but she added that she would also like to see how the new system works. “I used the Writing Center for almost every single major paper I had,” she wrote. “I’m very interested to see how (the new system) works now.” Students can also cancel appointments through the scheduling application, Peters said. Before, they had to call or email to cancel their appointments. “We average 4,500 conferences in an academic year,” Peters said. “This new system is much easier and much more streamlined for everyone.”


university news 5

THE BROWN DAILY HERALD MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 2013

New director takes helm at Psych Services

necessary process given the importance of the role, Belinda Johnson said. “I’ve known (Nelson) for many years, and I have always admired how skilled clinically she is and how devoted she is to the students she works with,” she said. Psychotherapists working at Psych Services cited Nelson’s experience with the University’s brief therapy model and her long-standing interactions with students and staff as assets that make her well-suited for her new role. After working at the University on and off since 1988, Nelson said she has a thorough understanding of Psych

Services operations and campus culture. Multiple therapists in the office said the transition has been smooth, which Aleta Johnson, part-time psychotherapist in the office, said is not a given, even when internal applicants are selected. But Nelson has proved herself a unique candidate, Aleta Johnson said. She is currently working on new outreach initiatives for Psych Services, though the extensiveness of available resources is a limiting factor. Some have criticized the shortterm model of therapy Psych Services offers, Nelson said. But she said the limited number of individual sessions available to each student — seven over the course of each academic year — is due to tight resources. The office cannot add more staff members at this time, Nelson said, but she added she is cognizant that the issue sparks student concerns. Nelson said she is primarily interested in implementing changes to make the office more accessible by increasing outreach throughout the wider University community, including students from groups that do not typically frequent Psych Services, like varsity sports teams. “I have a very strong belief in normalizing and destigmatizing mental health issues,” she said, proposing workshops and orientations designed to encourage reluctant students to pursue one-onone counseling sessions and use the office’s resources. Nelson also said she aims to help advisers and faculty members feel more confident in their knowledge of how to best help students in distress, and she plans to revamp the website. Belinda Johnson said she hopes Psych Services continues to adapt to changing circumstances both inside and outside Brown and does not expect her former office to stay the same. “That would be stagnation,” she said.

towards putting in a performance for 90 minutes.” The Bears and the Pride managed one shot apiece in the first overtime period, but neither threatened the goalkeepers. The game winner came in the 108th minute, when a powerful shot from 20 yards out snuck past the Brown keeper to complete the comeback, 2-1. Bruno will travel to play 2012

National Champion Indiana (2-3-1) Friday and Butler (4-1-1) the following Sunday. The Bears were victorious in their last meeting with the Hoosiers in 2010 posting a 2-1 victory. “Moving forward, we have to learn to complete games,” Kuntz said. “And we’re going to try to do that against Indiana and Butler … It’s another chance to prove what kind of team we are.”

one knows they slide, Barsky said, noting that the external doors to the Stephen Robert ’62 Campus Center have handles, which makes it clear that they push open. Immediately after the door shattered, everyone in the vicinity ran to look, Barsky said, adding that onlookers were initially shocked and did not seem to realize what had happened. People then started to run and take pieces of the glass, she

said. “They had to be shooed away.” A Brown Dining Services worker started cleaning up the glass first, and facilities did not arrive for a while after the incident, Barsky said. The situation could have been dangerous, she added — “People are bad at glass safety. People in flip flops were walking by the glass.” Dining Services did not offer any comment on the status of the Blue Room.

ALAN SHAN / HERALD

Nelson said she hopes to destigmatize mental health issues and make the Psychological Services office more accessible to hesitant students.

Sherri Nelson, former associate director of the office, hopes to oversee new outreach programs By ANASTASIYA GORODILOVA CONTRIBUTING WRITER

Sherri Nelson assumed her new position as director of Psychological Services in July. She replaced Belinda Johnson, who held the role for more than two decades. Nelson, who previously served as associate director, was offered the position after a national search — a

» SOCCER, from page 8 left was headed home to tie the game at 1-1. Hofstra continued to press the Bears’ backline, firing 10 shots in the second half alone. “We have to be able to put together a complete performance,” Laughlin said. “If you look at the two games this weekend, there were some great moments, but we need to work

» DOOR, from page 1 “There was a very loud crash, like a gun shot,” said Paige Vance ’17. “No one looked injured, but we can’t say for sure.” There were still a few people inside the Blue Room waiting to pay at closing, said Barsky, and the doors were closed to prevent new customers from entering. Because the doors are always closed, no

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6 commentary

THE BROWN DAILY HERALD MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 2013

EDITORIAL

The rise of the universityindustrial complex The Herald reported this past week that the hiring of new Chief Information Officer Ravi Pendse may spur an increased emphasis on corporate funding of university research. Such funding is particularly attractive during this period of economic hardship — federal research agencies experienced significant cuts this past year, which were in turn passed on to the universities whose work they sponsor. It is completely natural for researchers to seek out alternative funding sources in the wake of sequester-induced uncertainty, but collaborations between universities and corporations are fraught with potential impropriety and perverse incentives. Private funding of scientific research is a necessary evil and one that calls for constant monitoring — and the University should be cautious with any increase in this practice. Questions of outside infringements on academic freedom are nothing new, and critics who call for a complete halt on all university-industry collaborations are naive to the reality of the situation. While the University may bemoan its relatively small endowment compared to those of its peer institutions, at $2.5 billion dollars, it is roughly the size of the Gross Domestic Product of the entire nation of Aruba. The University itself is a brand, and research advancements not only provide public recognition but also attract high-quality students and faculty members, along with further funding for research. Our collaboration with corporate partners is miniscule compared to Stanford University’s — the school just announced it is creating a start-up incubator, StartX, that will actually invest in its own students’ companies. A New Yorker profile this week described Stanford’s computer science department as the “Kentucky basketball team” of the school, a “way station for the country’s finest talent,” as it questioned whether the heady influence of Silicon Valley would fundamentally change its approach to undergraduate education. Industry funding may provide stability in a financially unstable time, but such security comes with significant ethical concerns. Recently, the University itself has experienced two events that illustrated the risks involved in accepting private funding: one in the 90’s with Associate Professor of Medicine David Kern, and the other in 2001 with Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry and Human Behavior Martin Keller, department chair at the time. Kern was fired by the University after publishing a report implicating Microfibres, Inc., a donor to Memorial Hospital of Rhode Island, in creating an unsafe work environment that led to dangerous lung conditions. Keller, who retired last year, accepted money from GlaxoSmithKline to fund a pharmaceutical study eventually determined to be fraudulent and guilty of understating the risk of adolescent suicide in the antidepressant Paxil. Such incidents demonstrate that there are not only ethical and academic risks to participating wholeheartedly in the rise of the university-industrial complex, but also that such events may result in publicity so negative it defeats the purpose of participating in corporate-funded research in the first place. If we are to continue to pursue and expand outside sources of funding, we must ensure that our regulation of potential conflicts of interest keeps pace. Lawrence Larson, dean of the School of Engineering, acknowledged in last week’s article that “there are risks any time you have sponsored research,” but he added that the University “mitigate(s) those risks carefully.” This minimizing of risks must be continual and thorough in order to protect the University from allying itself with morally dubious sources.

I VA N A L C A N TA R A

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

TWC name carries historical importance To the Editor: As a Brown alum who spent more days than he can count in the Third World Center and its various programs, I am a bit skeptical about the move toward a name change that threatens to dilute the great historical and political meaning embedded in “Third World Center.” Princeton’s move from “Third World Center” to the “Carl A. Fields Center

Q U O T E O F T H E D AY

“There was a very loud crash, like a gunshot.” ­— Paige Vance ’14 See DOOR, page 1.

Join The Herald! Info sessions at 195 Angell St., between Brook and Thayer: Today, Sept. 16 at 5:30 p.m. Tomorrow, Sept. 17 at 8:30 p.m.

Editorials are written by The Herald’s editorial page board: its editor, Rachel Occhiogrosso, and its members, Daniel Jeon, Hannah Loewentheil and Thomas Nath. Send comments to editorials@browndailyherald.com.

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for Equality and Cultural Understanding” is hardly a fitting consolation in my eyes, nor an example Brown should follow. If and when it comes to changing the name of the TWC, my hope is that Brown continues to properly honor its legacy of resistance and student-led struggle without watering down this important history. Robert Smith III ‘09

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commentary 7

THE BROWN DAILY HERALD MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 2013

A big (expletive) deal SCOTT FREITAG opinions columnist

Discussion of the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, draws strong opinions in favor and against. For college students, the law may seem like an unintelligible mess. But what does it really mean for the average twenty-something? Republicans will tell you Obamacare is a financial strain on business, making it harder for recent college graduates to find jobs. But Democrats will respond that the law allows you to stay on your parents’ plan until age 26, providing additional coverage to millions of young adults. Economics doesn’t have all the answers — especially when it comes to health care. But economics does try to ask the right questions. Why is the current health care market failing, and what does the Affordable Care Act plan to change? The United States’ free-market approach to private insurance simply hasn’t worked. Not only has the country lagged behind in most qualitative measures — we are 37th in the world, according to the World Health Organization — but we also spend more per person than any other country. In theory, markets produce goods and services at efficient prices and

quantities. But failures in the health care market have led to the underprovision and overpricing of services, or as economists call it, a Pareto inefficient result. Private competitive markets are unable to provide health services efficiently due to issues like adverse selection, moral hazard and ethical concerns. The role of the government should be to correct for and remedy these market failures, in order to achieve a more socially optimal result. The market failures of adverse selection and moral hazard are created by the informational asymmetry that exists between the purchaser and provider of health care. Adverse selection occurs when buyers of insurance have more information about their own risk and behavior than insurance companies. The insurer is unable to price premiums at an actuarially fair rate because those who are sick are more likely to buy insurance than those who are not. This can result in insurance companies having more costs in claims than revenue generated in premiums. If insurance companies respond by raising their rates, healthy people will drop out of the market while sicker people remain. This cycle may eventually lead to a rate so high that no one will buy insurance — a death spiral. But the more likely result is that insurance companies will offer one very expensive, comprehensive plan and one cheap, bare-bones plan.

This is known as a separating equi- ed Kingdom, for one. Controversy librium, which will reveal buyer in- over these systems is largely philoformation to insurance companies, sophical and not economic. leading to higher uninsurance rates. The individual mandate, which Moral hazard is defined as a be- was established by the Affordable havioral distorCare Act, penaltion away from izes all individuthe social opti“Why is the current als who do not mum. In health have health insurhealth care market care, moral hazance. By mandatard means that failing, and what does ing that all indiinsured patients join the the Affordable Care viduals — who are shieldhealth insurance Act plan to change?” pool, the governed from the costs of services — are ment aims to remore likely to ask duce adverse sefor treatment. Similarly, doctors are lection. By preventing healthy people more likely to order tests and pre- from dropping out of the health care scribe medicine to the insured. This market, insurance companies can ofresults in wasteful, sometimes inef- fer a more actuarially fair rate, ensurfective care. Insurance companies try ing that the supply of those insured to reduce moral hazard by monitor- is large and includes enough people ing their patients’ and physicians’ ac- with lower expected expenditures. tivities, but breaches in contracts are The idea is to make the market sufoften impossible to determine and ficiently heterogeneous. difficult to prevent. To some people, this is nothThe ethical concerns associat- ing more than a redistribution of ed with health care and the role the wealth from those who are healthy government should play in deliver- to those who are sick. But can health ing health services is highly contro- be determined by choice, or is health versial. The altruist model is based something we are born with? Ecoon the idea that government should nomics doesn’t claim to answer this provide and protect god-given question. rights, including health care for all. One way to reduce some of the Many examples of socialized health problems associated with moral hazcare abroad have proven largely suc- ard is to design payment mechanisms cessful at delivering higher standards that reward providers for delivering of quality at much lower costs — the only high quality, necessary care. The National Health Service in the Unit- difficulty is designing policy that ac-

knowledges that what may be highvalue care for one individual may not be for another. The Affordable Care Act aims to improve quality measures by funding new research and releasing ratings data on procedures and physicians. The law also includes new programs that incentivize highvalue care, including bundled payments — single payments per episode to providers, designed to encourage coordinated care and eliminate wasteful treatment. In its entirety, the Affordable Care Act is a confusing 2,700-page document whose legacy is still uncertain. Regardless of your opinion and despite the imperfections of the law, the Affordable Care Act will expand coverage to millions of Americans, many of whom are in their early 20s. For college students, this should come as relief. There are over 50 million uninsured Americans, with young adults leading the way. Whether the Affordable Care Act is a step in the right or wrong direction depends on your beliefs. But in a bipartisan, gridlocked Congress, where no steps at all has become the norm, Obamacare is a noble attempt at reform. It truly is, in the words of Vice President Joe Biden, a “big (expletive) deal.” Scott Freitag ’14 specializes in current economic issues. He can be reached at scott_freitag@brown.edu.

My intolerance isn’t a fad JESSICA STEANS-GAIL guest columnist

As someone with a gluten intolerance, I couldn’t help but take offense at some of the opinions expressed in Cara Dorris’ ’15 recent article, “Are you Gluten-Intolerant or Just Intolerable?” (Sept. 6). I never understood the concept of chronic pain before. The only pain I had ever experienced came as a fleeting illness or minor injury — until my stomachaches started. For four years, I was unable to eat without crippling pain akin to the uncomfortable fullness that comes with massive overeating, combined with a constant sharp sensation. Eventually I couldn’t eat a handful of blueberries without feeling them in my stomach for the rest of the day. I’m not saying that my stomach pain was the worst problem in the world, but it was not a pleasant experience. None of the doctors I saw were able to solve the problem. My sister and mother both have celiac disease, so I was tested

for it every few years, but the results In her column, Dorris belittles my were always negative. It never oc- pain and discomfort and portrays curred to me that gluten might ac- my lifestyle decisions — made to altually be the problem. leviate my pain — as a desperate atThis summer, I met with a nu- tempt for attention or to be part of tritionist who informed me that a fad. I resent the implication that though I don’t have celiac disease, giving up my favorite foods was I might have a gludone voluntarily, ten sensitivity or let alone in lieu of “I resent the intolerance. At that yoga. comparison point, I was willing With that said, to try anything. I between a gluten- I agree with many stopped eating gluthe points Dorintolerant dinner of ten despite knowris makes in her guest and a South column. Cutting ing exactly what it meant giving up out gluten has beBeach dieter.” the cake at birthcome one of sevday parties, the baeral new fads degels at brunch and signed to promote the cookies from coworkers. But the health and/or weight loss. It is also immense relief I got from removing true that this fad results in large part these items from my diet made the from a lack of public understandsacrifices worth it. Cutting out glu- ing about the actual health value of ten has made a world of difference gluten-free products. While many for both my stomach and my qual- believe gluten-free bread makes a ity of life. sandwich healthier, the reality is I am not someone who ever pub- that gluten-free bread has far fewer licly discussed my stomach prob- nutrients and health benefits than lems, and I certainly don’t think whole wheat bread. that having a small dietary restricThe lowest calorie option — the tion affects my identity. That’s why one I assume Miley Cyrus chooses I was so offended by Dorris’ article. — is cutting out the bread entirely.

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The term gluten-free has become synonymous with “healthier” and is certainly an example of fad-dieting. But there is a big difference between giving up gluten for these reasons and for the very real health benefits that come from a gluten intolerance. Sure, I never got a blood test proving with certainty that my body reacts negatively to gluten. I do have only my “feelings,” as Dorris puts it. But I resent the implication that I invented my problem. I also resent the comparison between a gluten-intolerant dinner guest and a South Beach dieter. For starters, it is obscene to assume that everyone with a gluten intolerance — or on South Beach, for that matter — pitches a fit if their dietary needs are not met. Furthermore, I find it hard to see the parallels between these two situations. One in-

dividual has altered his or her eating habits to avoid feeling ill, while the other has done so to lose weight. I don’t serve shellfish to someone with a shellfish allergy. No one chooses to have a negative reaction to shellfish and inconvenience me. I understand the frustration with fad dieters and even people with genuine food intolerances or allergies who obsessively remind people they can’t eat nuts and fear every muffin is a peanut in disguise. But I also recognize the difference between the individual who forsakes a food group due to harmful bodily reaction and the girl who gives up peanut butter because of the calories. Jessica Steans-Gail ’16 can be reached at jessica_steans-gail@brown.edu.


daily herald sports monday THE BROWN

SCOREBOARD

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 2013

FIELD HOCKEY

M. SOCCER

W. VOLLEYBALL

Brown 3 Vermont 1

Washington 1 Brown 0

Brown 3 Holy Cross 0

Maine 6 Brown 0

Hofstra 2 Brown 1

Brown 3 Bryant 0

W. SOCCER

UCF 2 Brown 0

W. CROSS COUNTRY

5th - Dartmouth Invitational

M. CROSS COUNTRY

3rd - Dartmouth Invitational

W. GOLF

4th - Dartmouth Invitational

M. SOCCER

Bruno loses second weekend contest in double overtime Head Coach Patrick Laughlin cited a need to ‘put together a complete performance’ By SAM WICKHAM SPORTS STAFF WRITER

The men’s soccer team registered two hard-fought losses this weekend after falling to the University of Washington 1-0 Friday night at home and to Hofstra University 2-1 in Hempstead, N.Y. Sunday in double overtime. The No. 25 Bears (1-2-1) came close to scoring on several occasions against the No. 10 Huskies (4-0-1) but could not find their way through an organized back line. Bruno took an early lead against the Pride (2-2-1) but failed to recover from a late strike with three minutes remaining in the second extra period.

JESSE SCHWIMMER / HERALD

The men’s soccer team lost two close games over the weekend to Hofstra University and the University of Washington.

Brown 0, Washington 1 The Bears had difficulty breaking through a solid Huskies defense Friday night. Bruno seemed to get off on the perfect start after finding the net in the first minute, but the goal was revoked, leaving the Huskies midfield with possession for much of

the time left in the half, keeping the Bears from stringing together passes. “We were up against a really strong opponent,” said Head Coach Patrick Laughlin. “I thought the players did an excellent job especially in the second half. We showed our grit.” The first goal came at the 35-minute mark off a corner kick by the Huskies. A ball to the back post was nodded across the face of the goal and found its way through the crowded penalty area and into the net, giving Washington a 1-0 lead. The Huskies outshot Bruno 7-0 in the first half. “They were playing with three in the center midfield and we were playing with two,” said co-captain Jack Kuntz ’14. “As we figured out how to defend our three with their two, we pushed forward better.” The Bears came out with intensity in the second half, pressing the Husky midfield higher up the field. Bruno’s offense found success down the flanks and nearly scored several times from early crosses into the box. “We took hold of the game,” Kuntz said. “We had two or three really good chances, but their goalie came up with some pretty big saves to keep us out.” The momentum seemed to turn

in Brown’s favor in the 72nd minute after Jose Salama ’14 was fouled outside the box. His resulting free kick deflected off the wall, forcing the Huskie goalkeeper to make a reflex save across his body. “It was unfortunate we couldn’t get the goal,” Laughlin said. “But we really showed we could compete with them.” Jack Gorab ’16 and Daniel Taylor ’15 were also active offensively in the closing minutes, registering two shots apiece, but Bruno could not beat the Husky keeper before full time. Brown 1, Hofstra 2 Bruno was the dominant team in the early stages of Sunday’s match, managing a 1-0 lead thanks to a goal from Gorab in the 10th minute off a rebound from Taylor’s shot on goal. “It was good to get the first goal, which is something we haven’t done since Bryant,” Kuntz said. “Unfortunately, we weren’t able to hold on.” The Pride worked back into the game, outshooting the Bears 8-7 in the first half and forcing two saves from Josh Weiner ’14. The pressure on Bruno’s goal finally broke in the 66th minute when a cross from the » See SOCCER, page 5

M. WATER POLO

Bears finish 3-2 in Bruno Fall Invitational, prepare for first road games Nick Deaver ’15 scored back-to-back goals in the final minutes of a lategame thriller against Navy By GEORGE SANCHEZ SPORTS STAFF WRITER

The No. 18 men’s water polo team won its first three games of weekend but fell short in its last two, finishing with a 3-2 record at the Bruno Fall Invitational held in the Katherine Moran Coleman Aquatics Center. This was the second weekend in a row Bruno hosted some of the country’s top teams. The squad faced off Friday against the Cal Lutheran Kingsmen in its first match of the tournament. Jake Wyatt ’17, Warren Smith ’17 and Luke Irwin ’17 all completed hat tricks, and Matty Gallas ’16 added two steals, three assists and a hat trick to the scorecard to help the Bears beat the Kingsmen with a final score of 14-5. “In every game, the freshmen rose to the challenge — they have had some of the biggest games of their lives in the past two weeks but are still contributing as major players on our team,” said Nick Deaver ’15. “I am ... proud to have them on my team.” Bruno’s first match Saturday was

against the No. 17 Navy Midshipmen, where the Bears entered halftime with a 5-2 lead. But the Mids answered back, tying the game at 9-9 with fewer than five minutes left. Deaver went on to score back-to-back goals, helping the Bears reclaim the lead, which the team kept to finish the game with a 12-10 victory. Deaver scored a total of five goals during the game, while also tallying three steals and three assists. “Deaver had a great game — we were shorthanded without many seniors,” said Head Coach Felix Mercado. “He took a leadership role in the water.” The final match on Saturday featured a shutout Bears victory over the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Engineers, as the visitors were blanked 14-0. Smith scored five goals during the game, finishing the day with a total of nine. Walker Shockley ’14 made eight saves in the match, also adding two steals and an assist. In the final day of the Bruno Fall Invitational, the Bears faced off against the defending Collegiate Water Polo Association champions, the No. 12 St. Francis Brooklyn Terriers, and the No. 3 University of the Pacific Tigers. The squad lost both matches with final scores of 11-9 and 20-4, respectively. The first game on Sunday against

JESSE SCHWIMMER / HERALD

Luke Irwin ’17 completed a hat trick, contributing to Bruno’s win against the Cal Lutheran Kingsmen last Friday. the Terriers featured a 7-4 Bruno lead at the beginning of the third quarter. But St. Francis capitalized in the second half, scoring seven goals and limiting the Bears to just two, deciminating Bruno’s advantage. Deaver added three goals during the game, but it was not enough to overcome the Terriers’ veteran savviness. “Even though it was a loss, it is a good testament to our will and

strength,” Deaver said. “Two of our best players were out with injuries, and we still found a way to stay competitive.” “We made many critical mistakes offensively. As a veteran team, St. Francis took advantage of those mistakes,” Mercado said. The afternoon proceeded with a match against the third-ranked Tigers. The Bears fell to an early deficit as

Pacific tallied up 11 goals in the first half alone. Bruno’s struggles continued in the second half — the squad was held to just three goals, while the Tigers poured in another nine. Bruno’s efforts continue this weekend as the squad heads to New York for a rematch against St. Francis Brooklyn, as well as games against the Fordham Rams and the Iona College Gael.


Monday, September 16, 2013