In ‘Doge’ we trust: How does your Cyprocurrency soars garden grow?
The Collegian Th FEATURE, PAGE 5
OPINION, PAGE 3
Issue 12 • Friday, May 7, 2021 •
BLACK. LIVES. MATTER. Does a guilty verdict for former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin represent a shift in the narrative of racism and racial violence in this country? BY HANNAH WORKMAN
n the same month former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was convicted of the murder of George Floyd, the city of Minneapolis also mourned the death of Daunte Wright. Wright, a 20-year-old unarmed Black man, was shot and killed by former Brooklyn Center, Minn., police officer Kim Potter during a traffic stop on April 11. The incident occurred less than 20 minutes away from where Floyd was killed last May. The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) President and CEO Derrick Johnson released a statement in response to the killing of NEWS Wright on April 12. COMMENTARY “Daunte Wright was shot and killed yesterday, just north of where George Floyd was suffocated less than a year ago,” Johnson said. “Both were fathers, both were Black men, both died at the hands of police. Whether it be carelessness and negligence, or a blatant modern-day lynching, the result is the same. Another Black man has died at the hands of police.” Brooklyn Center Police Department officials said Potter mistook her handgun for her Taser when she fatally shot Wright. Potter has been charged with second-degree manslaughter by the Washington County Attorney’s Office. Wright’s death serves as a somber reminder that the fight to protect Black lives isn’t over yet. An investigation by National Public Radio (NPR) published in January 2021 found that police officers have fatally shot at least 135
See BLM, page 8
Enrollment remains an issue as semester ends BY ARIANNA JUAREZ Staff Writer
The Delta College Board of Trustees received a report on enrollment declines on campus from Dr. Lisa Aguilera Lawrenson at its April 21 meeting. From spring 2020 to spring 2021, Delta College has seen a drop in student enrollment of 10.4 percent. Meanwhile, unit enrollment from spring 2020 to spring 2021 was down 11 percent. Lawrenson, Delta’s vice president of Instruction, discussed how the COVID-19 pandemic has negatively impacted enrollment numbers at nearly all community colleges in California. Enrollment in California community colleges had largely remained stagnant over the last decade until the pandemic hit. Then, enrollment started drastically decreasing. “System-wide, enrollment has dropped 16.8 percent between fall 2019 and fall 2020 across the whole California community college system,” said Lawrenson. The board was also presented with information about how statewide community college enrollment has declined by student ethnicity. Native Americans, African-Americans, and Hispanic students saw the steepest drop in enrollment, at 18 percent, 15 percent, 12 percent respectively.
Read more at DELTACOLLEGIAN.NET
Town hall looks at plans for Fall return to campus BY HANNAH WORKMAN News Editor
A Delta College Town Hall meeting with President/Superintendent Dr. Omid Pourzanjani and members of the Executive Cabinet took place on April 29. Pourzanjani opened the meeting with an overview of the events that have transpired since the institution moved to remote instruction in March 2020, including the COVID-19 pandemic, the Black Lives Matter protests and “one of the most contentious national elections.” “We’ve been through a lot this past year and we’re all still here, thank goodness,” Pourzanjani said. “We’re all still here for the same purpose, which is to help our community members achieve their educational goals and dreams.” Pourzanjani then transitioned to discussing plans for the Fall 2021 semester. He pointed to California Community Colleges Chancellor Eloy Oakley’s recommendation for reopening, which includes adding more hybrid courses in the fall and planning for a full return in the Spring 2022 semester. “We will take all of this to our Board and they will set the guidelines for us and determine how we proceed,” Pourzanjani said. Pourzanjani also offered his own recommendations for the institution’s reopening plans.
See TOWN HALL, page 8
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KILLER INFATUATION New media bringing infamous cases back to the public foray, but romanticizing is wrong BY DOMINIQUE WILLIAMS
Editor in Chief
ith Netflix’s release of the Son of Sam documentary this week, it’s important to remind people that serial killers are not intriguing, intelligent nor attractive. Being “obsessed” with true crime is not a personality trait. Romanticizing serial killers is not only dangerous, it’s
insensitive to the victims and their families. You wouldn’t think that anyone would find people who brutally and senselessly murder multiple people appealing, but some serial killers actually have fan bases. Richard Ramirez, a California serial killer, as sick and twisted as he was, was written to and visited in prison by multiple fans — one of whom he married. Cult leader Charles Manson not only had followers that were somehow entranced by him, he was able to convince them to murder for him. Manson’s cult was even dubbed a “family.” Despite confessing to 30 murders, notorious serial killer Ted Bundy has been described as “attractive” and “intelligent” and was proposed to by multiple women while he was in prison. Imagine your loved one being murdered and for the rest of your life you had to hear people describe their killer as “hot.” Many books have been published and a number of movies and documentaries have been produced highlighting serial killers and their lives. Stand up comedian Karen Kilgariff and Cooking Channel host Georgia Hardstark host a true crime comedy podcast
called My Favorite Murder. Just the name and description of the podcast themselves are extremely insensitive. On January 24, 2019, Netflix released a series documenting Ted Bundy’s life called “Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes.” While the documentary itself was strictly informational, people’s responses to it were inappropriate. Netflix released a statement four days later on Twitter addressing people calling Ted Bundy “hot.” “I’ve seen a lot of talk about Ted Bundy’s alleged hotness and would like to gently remind everyone that there are literally THOUSANDS of hot men on the service -- almost all of whom are not convicted serial murderers,” Netflix wrote. Giving these killers a platform to describe their childhood and motivations only creates an opportunity for the public to sympathize with them. Convicted serial killers don’t deserve sympathy. They don’t deserve to be able to explain themselves or even try to give reason for what they did. There is no reason to invade somebody’s safe space and take their life. There is no reason to take somebody’s child away from their parents, or make a child live the rest of their life without a mother. By romanticizing these murderers, people are taking away from the horror of their crimes and the impact the murders have had on the victims families. It’s a problem that we know the names, acts and background stories of serial killers and very rarely know the names of their victims. The victims should be memorialized, their killers should rot nameless in prison.
NETFLIX BRINGING SERIAL KILLER STORIES TO SCREEN
Ted Bundy is a notorious serial killer in the 1970s. Actor Zac Efron played him in the 2019 movie posing him as an attractive heartthrob.
David Berkowitz a serial killer from Brooklyn, Richard Ramirez is not only a serial killer but a serial rapist, kidnapper, and burglar from El Paso, New York pleaded guilty to eight separate shootings, leaving him with six life sentences. Texas that has killed 14 people, and tortured 24+.
The Collegian The Collegian is the student newspaper of San Joaquin Delta College in Stockton, Calif. The paper is published six times a semester. As a First Amendment newspaper we pride ourselves on a commitment to the students of Delta College while maintaining independence. We reinvigorate the credo that the newspaper speaks for the students, checks abuses of power and stands vigilant in the protection of democracy and free speech.
The Collegian is a member of the California Newspaper Publisher’s Association and the Journalism Association of Community Colleges.
STAFF DANTE CAMACHO CAITLYNN COLEN CHLOE GAMBLE MATTHEW JANG ARIANNA JUAREZ NOAH VANDYKE
DOMINIQUE WILLIAMS Editor in Chief/Feature
HANNAH WORKMAN News
ROBYN JONES Opinion
MULTIMEDIA TECH MATTHEW WILSON
ADVISER TARA CUSLIDGE-STAIANO
ESPERANZA HERNANDEZ-MUNOZ Entertainment
DAVID VICTOR Sports
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EFFORTS TO RESTRICT VOTING INTENSIFY BY ESPERANZA HERNANDEZ-MUNOZ
fter a very tense and historic election season, we are now seeing changes to voting laws proposed — and passed — in different states. New laws established in the state of Georgia, in particular, have caused an uproar. This comes after the results of the 2020 presidential election were wrongfully refuted and contested by the sore loser of the election, feeding a false narrative to his supporters who believed his baseless claims. Misinformation was spewed out about the democratic voting process after the loss to current President Joe Biden. There was no voter fraud as former President Donald Trump claimed. The votes that took longer to count were those of early voting as in many states many were not able to be open and counted until the final polls closed. Now we are seeing the consequences of those false voting claims. Both Georgia and Florida have passed restricting new voting laws making Georgia the first state that flipped blue to do so. According to a New York Times Georgia voting law breakdown, some of the new obstacles voters will face is less time to request their absentee ballots, voters will need to provide more information, sending absentee ballot applications to all voters is illegal, limiting the number of drop boxes, and making it illegal to hand out food and water to those in voting lines. All of these things are absurd. One would think they would find ways of making the voting process easier and more accessible to all communities. Especially in today’s climate, the Black community is fighting to be heard and this new bill put in place in Georgia is limiting their opportunities to have their voice heard through their votes. According to a New York Times Georgia voting law breakdown, some of the new obstacles voters will face is less time to request their absentee ballots, voters will need to provide more information, sending absentee ballot applications to all voters is illegal, limiting the number of drop boxes, and making it illegal to hand out food and water to those in voting lines. Similar to Georgia, Florida would also be limiting the amount of drop boxes and the people who could pick them up, require more information to identify those voting through absentee voting. Additionally, all absentee ballots would have to be specifically requested. It would also build upon an already established law stopping people from providing “influential bias items” within 150 feet of voting locations. All of these things seem not to be a big deal but, the voting format works so why change something that works? What makes these new laws absurd is that they negatively impact specific communities. One would think they would find ways of making the voting process easier and more accessible to all communi-
ties. The new laws primarily affect the black community, which was a key demographic for current president Joe Biden’s victory. All these new information requirements are just tiresome and are just a way of making the voting process longer and confusing. Not only that but year after year we see on the news tremendously long voting lines especially in minority communities where people are in lines for hours. This is why it is hard to believe that people will not be able to be given basic necessities like food and water while they wait to exercise their fundamental right to vote. The limitations of drop boxes would limit a form of voting by providing less places to drop off one’s vote. Limiting options makes it difficult to exercise one’s right. They would be making it harder, making people go out of their way to find a drop box among the limited amount provided. If anything they should be placing more drop boxes to make sure as many people have easy access to drop off their vote and do not have to go far to do so. It is also not a coincidence that this comes after absentee voting played a major role in President Joe Biden’s victory with many people wanting to stay safe and voting early. Most of the absentee votes were for Joe Biden as he encouraged more people to vote in this form to stay safe. Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp may publicly say these new laws make it “harder to cheat,” after he caved to Trump’s baseless claims and the battleground state turned blue. Yet that is simply false. If it weren’t, why include a law making bringing basic necessities to someone in line a crime if not to discourage those who find themselves in long lines from voting? The state of Georgia is now facing the consequences with sporting events such as the MLB All-Star
game being pulled out of the state. Large companies and CEOs have also spoken out against the new voting laws. Companies like Delta Air lines and Coca-Cola both condemned the new laws. “We want to be crystal clear and state unambiguously that we are disappointed in the outcome of the Georgia voting legislation,” said Coca-Cola CEO James Quincy in a statement. “Additionally, our focus is now on supporting federal legislation that protects voting access and addresses voter suppression across the country. We all have a duty to protect everyone’s right to vote, and we will continue to stand up for what is right in Georgia and across the U.S.” When speaking to CNN about previously labeling the new voting laws passed in Georgia as “racist,” Chip Bergh CEO and President of Levi Strauss & Co. said: “Voting is a very hard fought and hard one right for all Americans and i think what we are seeing is a backlash to the record voter turnout in 2020 and the baseless false narrative of voter fraud. And these moves in the 47 states that are considering these legislations and the legislations that just passed in Georgia are trying to restrict voters’ access to the polls and it is disproportionately hurting black and brown communities.” Let’s hope that outspoken corporate America is here to stay for many reasons, one being employees should have transparency with the companies they are working for and if voting rights are being threatened people need to know they have the support of companies they back. People should know where large dominant companies in America stand because if they are able to back candidates with donations they should be able to support the public’s right to the democratic vote.
Cryptocurrencies: Worth investing in? BY ROBYN JONES
ryptocurrency is a digital form of money that allows you to pay for stuff electronically. Crypto currencies such as Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Dogecoin have now made their way around to Generation Z. Cryptocurrency is another form of investment that many people partake in. Bitcoin is a famous example from 2009 has helped many people book hotel rooms on Expedia, shop for furniture on overstock, and buy Xbox games according to CNN Money. But with all the cryptocurrencies gaining new interest after years of volatility,is it really worth the investment? Just like any investment there is a high risk. The value could plummet leaving you broke, scams can rob you blind, and because of the lack of regulations there is a high possibility of price volatility and manipulation. “Crypto regulations are complex, disorganized, and haphazard. One area of particular concern for investors is tax treatment. A lack of regulation or what some term as regulatory greyness means some investors are scared off investing because they don’t have a clear understanding of what tax obligations require consideration or what records must be kept,”
said Anthony Black, editor of Blockchain, a cryptocurrency exchange explorer service that supports all cryptocurrencies. I personally never took the risk of investing my own money into cryptocurrencies, because of the high risks that are readily available. I do believe that investing is important, but you need to read into what you’re investing in. My friends are all about cryptocurrencies; specifically Bitcoin and Dogecoin. They go on and on about how it is on the rise, how they receive money, and mainly how everyone is doing it. What they failed to do is understanding what they are truly investing in, and if they are making the right decisions. According to ABC everyday, an online news website; bitcoin is not a good asset, because “It doesn’t produce earnings or cash flow like a business or rental property,” not only that, but paying interest Dogecoin is a satirical homage to Bitcoin. It was named could bleed you dry. after internet meme based around a Shiba Inu When paying interest to cryptocurrencies it introduces you to counterparty risk, “if your compafor example is one of the few poor choices that is ny lending your Bitcoin goes bust, you can end up protected from conducting illegal business, because losing money.” of the forensic analysis that blockchain has helped According to Investopedia, the transactions authorities arrest criminals. investors make through cryptocurrencies, “makes I don’t believe i’ll ever invest in cryptocurrency, them well-suited for a host of illegal activities, such because of all the high risks that are still present. as money laundering, and tax evasion,” but Bitcoin
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LH Horton Gallery showcases student art BY ROBYN JONES Opinion Editor
On April 22, the San Joaquin Delta College’s LH Horton Gallery hosted their 22nd annual Student Art Exhibition via Zoom. In total, 44 students entered 143 pieces of artwork, while 35 students and 64 pieces of artwork were selected to be showcased. “Artists and awards were selected by our juror Professor Marty Azevedo from Stanislaus State University,” said Gallery Director Jan Marlese. Mia Hill,a 23-year-old Delta art major, was one of the selected artists for the showcase. She entered as a declared portfolio awards participant with her main focus as ceramics. This spring semester she entered a Korean and Guarmanian bowl with mimbres style. Her bowl is painted black and white with different hand painted symbols and drawings. In an interview with Hill she mentions that, “this was my first art show, and I loved it! It feels like a whole other world for me to be part of the art community,” she said Brendon Parker was also a finalist. Parker’s background is heavy in the film and Polaroid community. “I’m quite active in the Polaroid and instant film communities, on Discord servers and on Instagram. The community is awesomely welcoming and diverse, I’ve made several fantastic friends,” he said. Although this is not Parker’s first art show this is his first time entering under photography. Some may call it begin-
Shown above is the artwork produced by artists interviewed. Portfolio award wining drawing by Kimberly Juarez “Eyes of the Brain”. Ceramics entry “Korean and Guamanian bowl with Mimbres style” by Mia Hill, and Portfolio award winning photography entry “Orchid for Reine” by Brendon Parker. IMAGES COURTESY LH HORTON GALLERY
ner’s luck, but his Polaroid piece called “Orchid for Reine” won the portfolio award in the photography category. In the photo Parker beautifully captured a pink Orchid with a gorgeous burnt orange background. “Through shooting Polaroid I’ve found the joy of creating art, not for others’ approval, or even to be ‘good’ at it, but for my own fulfillment. Be it flowers from around the neighborhood or my own cats, there’s always
something beautiful to capture,” Parker said. Along with Parker, 21-yearold Kimberly Juarez, a 4th year delta student, won a portfolio award in the drawing category for her art piece called “Eyes of the Brain.” A hand drawn portrait hidden behind a swarm of lines and mini pictures. This is Juarez’s third time entering the art show. In a email interview Juarez briefly explained her experience partak-
ing in the exhibitions. “The first time I applied for the art show [in 2018], I didn’t get any of my paintings in the show,” she said. “I was a little sad, but I knew that there were more years for me to enter and try next time. The second time I entered in 2019, one of my paintings was in the art show and I [was] so happy that I was able at least to get one of my artworks in the show and I enjoyed myself that night. This
year for the art show, I decided to enter my drawings to the art show as I didn’t have any paintings to enter with and thought it would be a good chance to do a different medium.” Juarez “was shocked to win the Portfolio award for drawing.” With this being her last year attending Delta, she said she was “grateful to have gotten this opportunity and leave with a win at the end.”
MULTIMEDIA COURSE EXPLORES COVID FALLOUT BY THE COLLEGIAN COVI D-19 has changed and reshaped the lives of people living in San Joaquin County. Since March 2020, the pandemic has, at baseline, has meant physical distancing, lack of interaction with others, temporary business shutdowns, permanent closures, and nearly 600,000 deaths nationwide. For Spring 2021, the Multimedia Storytelling course has asked friends, family, and strangers what the cost of COVID-19 has been in their lives through socially distanced and virtual reporting. These are two of the stories reported. Read more at deltacollegian.net/costofcovid
Pandemic takes away high school right of passage BY BRIANNA SALCEDO Multimedia Storytelling
Senior year of high school is one of the most memorable year of a person’s life. It’s full of events and recognition for working hard the previous 12 years. It can be one of the best years of a person’s life. For the class of 2020, the COVID-19 virus stripped away the final months of the big year as schools shut down in the middle of March 2020. Then seniors were forced to stay home and switch to distance learning. “In the beginning of the lockdown, I was extremely depressed and was not motivated to do any of my schoolwork,” stated Genevie Smith,
who is now a freshman at Delta College. “I would stay home and watch Netflix all day because I felt there was no point in doing anything else which is rare of me. I was involved in sports and always active. ” She continued. During the lockdown, activities were minimal. There was nothing to do for Smith other than go to the park with a few friends. “My family was extremely terrified of the virus in the beginning of the pandemic. I did not care; I just wanted to go out and make memories, but I was not allowed to. So, I would stay home with all my stuffed animals,” Smith said. “My friends and their parents did not care. While I was sitting at home, bored, I would constantly see them post on their so-
cial media out and about with each other. The most they would let me do is go on a run at the park, but no one was there, and all the equipment was closed off by caution tape. At that time, I felt as if I am wasting time staying home when I am in my prime ages.” Smith was not the only one who felt this way. Seniors around the world missed out on the end of their senior year, and most importantly, graduation. “I looked forward to graduation for 12 years, and suddenly the reality of walking the stage was taken away from my classmates and me. We did not work hard for years to pick up a diploma in a drive-thru at the school. I wanted my real graduation,” said Smith.
Death of family member makes ‘new normal’ impossible for some being able to hug them and enjoy their presence again, Stockton resident Muhammad Khan won’t be able to do so. The pandemic came as a shock to ev“The last time I spoke to my aunt was eryone and derailed the lives of most. on Facetime for a short period of time People continue to wait tirelessly for while she was at the hospital and next when things can go “back to normal.” thing I knew was that she passed away. However, for those who have suffered It’s been very hard on my family,“ said the loss of loved ones, family members, Khan. or friends life will never again be norKhan said his aunt Farha Youssef was mal. loved by many and one of the things While many look forward to meet- that saddens his family and him the ing once again with loved ones and most is that not everyone was able to BY ITZEL ESPINOZA
attend the funeral because of Covid-19 restrictions. One of the hardest things to face is the fact that they weren’t able to say their last goodbyes or be with her one last time. “We never got the chance to see her, we never got the chance to touch her again, for our family as a whole it’s heartbreaking we weren’t able to give her a hug or anything,” said Khan. One of the things Khan is grateful for is that although other members of his
family including himself got Covid-19, they were able to recover. Families like the Khans will continue to do their part in staying safe and encouraging others to get vaccinated as a means to reduce the risk of more deaths. “My hope is that people are taking the pandemic serious and it doesn’t take them losing a family member to see that Covid exist, and although Covid seems to be going down that people continue to be careful,” said Khan.
5 FEATURE 050721
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Lockdowns fertile ground for home gardens garden. Underwatering can kill plants, as can overwatering. A successful garden requires light, Cardoso said that the water, nutrients and time — somenumber one mistake new thing that many people have had over gardeners make is overwathe past year. tering. The nation-wide lockdown caused “Remember just as much is by the COVID-19 pandemic has not happening under the ground only given us ample time to delve into as is happening above. Actunew hobbies, it has shown people why ally go out and see if the soil it’s important to be at least somewhat is saturated before you waself-sustaining. ter again. The plant needs to The beginning of the lockdown ‘breathe,’ overwatering does gave us limited access to important not allow for proper ‘breathresources like toilet paper and food, ing,’” Cardoso said. from fresh and crisp to canned or froThe general rule of thumb zen. is to water in the morning Skills such as canning, preserving and around one inch of water and gardening became increasingly per week. popular as citizens started realizing Some plants thrive on that outside resources we rely on can Raised garden beds, like the ones displayed at Delta’s garden, are beneficial to gardeners whose ground more or less water, though, soil is not suitable for planting. Some gardeners also prefer raised beds for the look. PHOTO BY easily become unavailable in emerso be sure to do some reROBYN JONES gency situations. search to really know what’s While some people have been garbest for your plants. A lot of fruits and vegetables can be grown in pots dening for a long time, the pandemic Lastly, soil type and nutrients can determine how has certainly inspired more people to start growing on a patio or balcony if space is really limited. much fruit your plants will yield. Tomato plants can be successfully grown in confruits and vegetables. Of course you can purchase fertilizers and amendJulie Morehouse, the owner of Stockton’s In Season tainers, as can strawberries and peppers. ments from a nursery or hardware store, Cardoso said Whichever growing medium you choose, the most Market and Nursery, said that there are tons of new he recommends using a fertilizer that is high in Nitrohome gardeners, especially young families with kids important thing is that you plant your garden where gen, but there are a lot of natural ways to add nutrients out of school who are looking for something to do and there is plenty of light. While growing a plant from seed can be rewarding, to your soil. something to help themselves be more self-sustaining. Scraps from your kitchen can be added to soil mix“The shutdown last year scared the hell out of a lot Delta plant science professor Travis Cardoso said that tures to create compost. of people and they are looking for ways to contribute it is always easier to grow from transplant than from Coffee grounds, vegetable scraps and egg shells can to their security. And gardening is a great way,” More- seed. “If you want the challenge from seed, please make all be used to create a nutrient-rich compost. house said. The list of ways to grow a successful garden is endAspiring Stockton homesteader Maile Bruns said sure you read the packet. After you see the germinaless, but the three major components — light, water that it’s important to her to be self-sustaining because tion take place, you can thin to the proper spacing inand nutrients — are the simplest ways to ensure a garit gives you the freedom to make sure you can care for dicated on the back of the packet,” Cardoso said. When starting from seed, place your pots or seed den that keeps on giving. yourself and your family. “Start where you are. Work with what you have. “You never know what may happen from day-to- starting kit next to a window where the seedlings can Ask questions everywhere you go, gardeners love to get 10 to 12 hours of light a day. day as we have seen in the last year,” Bruns said. talk about their gardens and their experiences. Even Grow lights and heat mats can be used in place of Morehouse said that since the pandemic started, if all you have is a small patio, you can grow vegetanatural sunlight if preferred or you lack space. sales have been very good. If direct sowing your plants or transplanting live bles in a container. Big message is just pay attention. As gardening has gained popularity, sales for both plants, place them in an area that gives them as much Check your plants every day, because they change seeds and live plants have increased. So, once you have the seeds or the plants, how do sunlight as is preferred by the plant. Google is helpful often. Look for water issues [and] pest issues before with determining how much light individual plants they get out of hand. And ask for advice, if one person you grow a successful garden? doesn’t have the answer, someone later on surely will,” Raised garden beds are popularly used by people require. Aside from light, water is essential to a productive Morehouse said. who don’t have designated planting space. BY DOMINIQUE WILLIAMS Editor in Chief
Top left: Keeping potted plants in a greenhouse until they are ready to go in the soil is a good way to ensure that the plants’ growth isn’t stunted by shock. Top middle: Overcrowding your plants can result in poor root growth and nutrient deficiency. Top right: Garlic chives self seed by budding flowers and spreading their seeds around the soil they’re planted in. They’re edible, too! Bottom left: Broccoli bolts (goes to seed) when it’s soil temperature is hot. Bottom middle left: Proper spacing is necessary to prevent overcrowding. Bottom middle right: Three stages of strawberry life can be seen. The plant flowers, the flower turns into a little green strawberry, and the strawberry turns red as it ripens. Bottom right: Milder peppers, like this banana pepper, produce faster than hotter varieties. PHOTOS BY DOMINIQUE WILLIAMS AND ROBYN JONES
6 ENTERTAINMENT 050721
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‘Mortal Kombat’ leaves some viewers in the dark BY ESPERANZA HERNANDEZ-MUNOZ
BO Max’s newest big release is a video game turned movie, “Mortal Kombat.” The movie premiered on the streaming service on April 23. With films adapted from video games there are certain expectations for fans of the video game going into the movie, but of course just as the movie adaptations of books there are going to be some differences and not every fan will be satisfied. Then there are clean slates, those who go in not knowing a single thing about the movie’s basis. Video game fans who hoped the movie would explore the rivalry and bad blood in depth will be very disappointed as, for the most part, the film assumes the audience knows the history between the two characters. This also leaves the newcomers alone to figure out the history of the “Mortal Kombat” confrontations and the variety of realms and champions. As I myself went in with no previous knowledge of “Mortal Kombat” and with no background of any of these characters there was a great disadvantage. There were many moments that raised questions, such as when the Outworld and the threats it posed for champions in the Earth realm were introduced. Viewers are expected to already have knowledge of the Outworld, leaving those with no prior exposure to the video games without context. The movie begins at the Hanzo Hasashi compound in Japan in 1617 where the sense of peace is soon disrupted by the first confrontation of the film which introduces the notorious soulless killer that is Sub-Zero. The introduction of Sub-zero perfectly captures the essence of the character. Clearly a character with no remorse as he does not care who he hurts. He is ruthless, strong, full of hatred and remains this way throughout the movie. This is where many viewers who have no prior knowledge of “Mortal Kombat” are at a disadvantage as they do not know the history between the characters and which characters were in the original video game. From the very first confrontation
between Sub-Zero and Scorpion it is clear there is a long history between the two and that they know each other well. From the way they speak to one another and the hatred demonstrated as they fought. From the very beginning viewers are shown that the movie is very graphic in its fighting and death scenes. The viewers can also see that the movie is also very congested; it has so many characters that not all of them get enough screen time to become memorable. This could also be a disappointing factor for long time fans: they just try to fit in so many characters that many get lost. The movie focuses on the Earth realm champions even adding new characters — most likely to move the story along and to have a main focus in the movie. The addition is Cole Young (Lewis Tan) an family-oriented amateur MMA fighter. Cole joins Jax, a fellow Earth realm champion who, along with his previous military partner Sonya, are aware of Jax and Cole’s champion status. Sonya introduces Kano as a mercenary who can easily be described as the worst of the worst. Sonya has him locked up as he has the same dragon marking as Cole and Jax. In Cole the audience has a strong family oriented character, who struggles to find his place within the “Mortal Kombat,” world. Through Cole the
SCREENSHOTS COURTESY OF EPK.TV
audience is immersed into this world and learns with him. Sonya is a fighter who for so long has investigated and learned as much as she could about “Mortal Kombat.” Her character is at times pushed aside as she is not a champion and she has to fight to earn her place. Kano is a very unlikeable character as he is selfish, easy to manipulate, and abuses the power he is given. That is what is great about him, his chaotic nature and deceitfulness . No matter how much of an unlikeable character viewers must admire how well the character was portrayed as he is meant to be unlikeable,
loud, and always wanting attention. The rivalry between Kano and Sonya is arguably one of the movie’s most entertaining story lines. The movie does not disappoint with all the training, fights, and confrontations. By the final battle scene when we finally see the full opposition instead of just Sub-Zero and all of the champions it has been built up to be this huge battle that will surely not disappoint viewers. The war in the final scenes is fought on multiple fronts; we see each champion facing their own battle and ultimately come together.
ket, located at 2505 W. Turner Road in Lodi provides fresh, farm-to-fork food. The pandemic didn’t force the cafe to close completely, but it still presented challenges. Karena Orozco, the manager at the cafe, said that they were able to stay open this entire time due to having a to-go option even before COVID-19 struck. The hardest was keeping their staff, but they were able to keep more people working by coming up with new ways to serve guests and having more outdoor seating. Orozco said that “thanks to our local customers and the community, business has been booming and sales have gone back to what they were before”. House of Coffees, located at 239 N. Ham Lane in Lodi, is owned by Sami Oliver-Terra, a coffee fanatic who wanted to make a place that felt comfortable and homey with a boujie vibe to it. This store has actually been here for 30 years and the previous owner asked her if she wanted to take over the ownership of the store. She and the past two owners are wonderful friends which she feels as if it shows the strength of the community. She found it easy to stay in business as for the past three years they have had outdoor seating as well as coffee to-go.
The part that really kept her in business was how seriously the local community has been taking supporting local stores. She is very passionate about her job and said that she “loves being part of the shop’s life story, community, and I couldn’t say no to being a part of such a wonderful shop and location”. Angel Ra, located at 10 N. School St. Lodi, is owned by Angel Ra. Her store is a chill, artistic boutique that sells crystals, plants, handmade jewelry, candles, and much more. Ra opened her store in late 2019 — just a few months before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. She was able to keep her doors open with local support, her friends and family checking in on her and having “lots of good energy and vibes around”. As a result, she feels more confident about her business. “I was able to make it through COVID affecting me as I had opened, so I feel like I can make it through anything thrown my way,” she said. If it weren’t for her “kind, sweet, and cool customers,” she would’ve had to close her doors. Not only can you visit her store in person, but she now has a website at shopangelra.com and Instagram and Facebook pages @shopangelra.
Local businesses finding new ways to stay open BY CHLOE GAMBLE Staff Writer
As COVID-19 hits each and everyone in their own ways, businesses have been struggling to stay open. Mom and pop shops compete with chain corporations to stay open and provide for their communities while following the guidelines, the expenses of staying open and keeping money afloat has shut down lots of businesses around San Joaquin County and other local counties around it. “With so many local stores it can be hard to choose just one” said Liam Cochrane, who enjoys going out with his girlfriend and seeing what’s around. “I find that local businesses have a warmth and homier feeling than corporations. It feels as if they put more thought and time into your experience than just a grab and go deal. I’m so glad to see my favorite places are still open so I can take my girlfriend and have some fun little dates.” He loves the area and when traveling, he enjoys going to local stores more than chain corporations. However, local communities have been shopping and supporting businesses since lockdowns and quarantine began. Some of these businesses started as little ideas that grew into stores, some are small little shops off of oth-
er businesses, and some are the dream stores that the owners wish to keep open as they love the community. All of the stores that were interviewed have been able to stay in business due to the community and shoppers all around the area. Jennifer Pratt, the owner of The Local Collective at 11 S. Sacramento St. in Lodi, had to close her store for six months but was able to stay open with selling jewelry from her Etsy store. She stated that she had to pivot her sales a bit. Handmade items like candles, jewelry, incense, and soaps are usually seen in her store, but she is now selling vintage items as well. “I have always wanted a store unlike any other,” Pratt said. “I want a space for artists and a chance to open my own store. I love the community and I am so happy that I was able to open a store here in Lodi as there isn’t anything similar around.” Her store has a boho, eclectic, hippie vibe and is growing each month, when the opposite could have happened because of the pandemic.. “I might have had to close my doors. I am just so grateful for [the community’s] support,” she said. Pratt’s online storefront can be found at www.herprettythings.shop, and the store’s Instagram is @Localcollectivelodi. The Town Corner Cafe and Mar-
7 SPORTS 050721
The Collegian • deltacollegian.net/sports
Track athletes overcome pandemic woes to sign BY ROBYN JONES Opinion Editor
Delta water polo players Whitney Lee, left, and Alexis Acosta, right, during a Fall 2019 game. The two are among several Mustangs moving on to a higher education program after a 2020-21 season without competition. COLLEGIAN FILE PHOTOS BY PAUL MUYSKENS
Delta student-athletes commit BY DAVID VICTOR Sports Editor
Student-athletes are committing to four-year schools even though they were unable to compete this year due to Delta’s decision to cancel participation in spring competition amid the COVID-19 pandemic. To make up for a season without official competition, sophomores are getting attention from four-year coaches through training videos as well as using stats from their freshman year to get signed to a athletics program at a four-year university. Several players from Delta’s baseball team are moving on to higher education programs. Among those committing are pitchers Kohl Drake and Nate Morris, as well as catcher Carson Stevens. Drake pitched 19 strikeouts in 2020 and is transferring to Lipscomb University, while Morris pitched nine strikeouts and is committing to East Tennessee State University. Stevens scored 10 runs and batted in five during the 2019-20 season and has signed with California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo to continue his college athletics career. Committing to four-year schools is still a major challenge for the players as athletes at higher education institutions are not being charged a season of play, meaning fewer options for those transferring from community colleges. Known for transferring players to Division I schools, the successful history of Delta’s baseball program is the main reason
All three players were a part of the team when it placed third in the state championship in 2018 as freshmen. Now committing to Concordia Irvine University, Lee scored 22 goals and gave one assist during the 2018-19 season. Alford scored 11 goals and gave two assists in her freshman year with the Mustangs and has signed with the California State University in Sacramento to continue her education and career in college athletics. Acosta scored four goals in 2018 and is now committing to CSU Chico. The Mustangs women’s soccer team sees player Scylla Alavizos moving on after committing to UC Merced. During her freshman year, Alavizos won the Big 8 Conference Championship and made it to the final four in the California Community College Athletic Association (CCCAA) State Championship tournament with the Mustangs in 2019. Many athletes were still able to transfer Women’s water polo player Whitney Lee comlast year even after the pandemic cut the mits to Concord Irvine University. IMAGE season short. COURTESY DELTA COLLEGE ATHLETICS “[For] 2019-20 we were right around 90 student-athletes that moved on to a fourwhy players have been able to get signed. “We are moving on some [players] year and continued their athletic career,” thanks to the reputation of our program,” said Director of Athletics Tony Espinoza. With the COVID-19 pandemic limsaid baseball head coach Reed Peters. “The Division I schools all gave their players iting transfer options for athletes, it’s extheir year back last year, so most programs pected that the number of students movare severely impacted with five years worth ing on to a higher education program will be low compared to previous years. of players.” The athletics department is expected to Delta’s women’s water polo team has also seen several of its players committing have the number of student-athletes signthis year, which include Whitney Lee, Jor- ing with four-year schools for 2020-2021 by early May. dan Alford and Alexis Acosta.
The past year was marred by the COVID-19 pandemic, with cancelled practices, inability to use on campus equipment and no competition. With a short season in store for the Mustangs, what does this mean now for student athletes that are transferring? Alexis Pagala is a thrower for San Joaquin Delta College’s Track and Field team. Pagala is one of the transferring athletes that had to deal with a stressful year, due to the abrupt stop in all activities. Pagala was able to continue training in 2020 until now, talking to coaches in Southern California and receiving offers for her to come throw for their team. As a result of all her hard work she accepted the offer to throw at UC Long Beach. On May 8 Hartnell college will be holding a scrimmage for the Mustangs to participate in, followed by another scrimmage on May 14 at Santa Rosa College. Pagala said the upcoming scrimmages, “can only help every athlete find the schools they want to go to, because now we have that opportunity to show off our skills within each event we partake in,” she said. Pagala is “working on making marks, and training for the competitions,” because of the high expectations she set for herself. Having time off from a full season is tough, because of the new personal records that athletes have yet to make for college coaches to see.
The Collegian Ask questions. Explore programs. Do more in your time at San Joaquin Delta College Be part of something bigger. Enroll in MCOM 11 Newswriting for the Fall semester to begin your major-related coursework for the Associate of Art for Transfer in Journalism 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Tuesday/Thursdays on campus
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8 NEWS 050721
The Collegian • deltacollegian.net/news
Degree redesign in works after social backlash BY DOMINIQUE WILLIAMS Editor in Chief
Delta College graduates will be receiving an updated diploma design after this semester, according to a report before the Board of Trustees on April 20. Vice President of Student Services Dr. Lonita Cordova said she worked with public relations marketing department members Alex Brietler and Tim Huynh to redesign Delta graduates’diplomas following negative feedback on social media. Cordova said that the feedback they got was that the diplomas didn’t look as official as most degrees and diplomas. “As we did a little bit of exploration we realized that the font that is a part of Delta College branding is newer and progressive. There were students that were wanting to see some of the Old English on the degree,” Cordova said. The new design will combine Old English in combination with the newer text from Delta’s branding standards. The design team is also looking to put foil over the Delta College seal to look more like an official
to have received one at all. In response, Aguilar said that earning a college degree is difficult and not everyone does it. “I didn’t work as hard as I did for only myself. I did it to break barriers in my family and community. When I showed my family my diplomas (most with backgrounds in media/print/ marketing/graphing design/ visual arts) I received less than enthusiastic responses. None of them are eager to have this on a display [...] I can’t express how invalidated this makes the last three years of my life feel,” she wrote. Aguilar said she worries that Delta isn’t going to get the An illustration of the degree redesign. SCREENSHOT TAKEN FROM recognition it should for being BOARDDOCS a really good educational public seal. official. I worked for years to get service, adding that a diploma On Feb. 5, Delta graduate these. There’s no embossed seal, it’s is a sign of professionalism and Vivienne Aguilar posted a picture printed on plastic looking paper, looking at the degrees and them on Delta’s Facebook group page and the logo is highlighter yellow. not being professional doesn’t showing the old degree design she The fonts look too similar to the make her feel, nor does it look expected to receive compared to ones I’ve used for research papers,” like she earned it. Rather, it looks like something that could’ve been the newly designed degree she did Aguilar wrote. receive. Aguilar received many printed by anybody. “It kind of makes every final “I’m shocked that my high supporting comments on her post, and every test and every paper school diploma was so much while some others said that even feel a little less important. My more elaborate. The look of my if the diploma wasn’t the same as professors pushed me to be really AA degrees are unsightly and they used to be, they’re still happy
TOWN HALL: Fall course catalog to include online, in-person and hybrid options
One of those protocols includes routine cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfection of office spaces and other “My first recommendation is that we did a lot of populated areas. work to put everything online, and I would hate for us Vice President of Administrative Services Dr. to give all of that up and then go back to exactly how Amanda Preston-Nelson highlighted the work the things were like before the pandemic,” Pourzanjani facilities and maintenance team has done to ensure said. the safe operations of the campus. According to Pourzanjani, the institution is “Our team has remained on campus throughout considering offering more certificates and programs the pandemic. The routine cleaning and maintenance “fully online,” and expanding wraparound services. that they typically conduct as part of the normal “Before we put random courses online and we operations has been enhanced to follow CDC didn’t have complete programs or services, so I’m just guidelines,” Preston-Nelson said. asking us to consider having a more comprehensive, Preston-Nelson said routines include cleaning more intentional and thoughtful online offering,” high-touch point areas such as desks, tables, Pourzanjani said. lightswitches, chairs and door handles. Assistant Superintendent/Vice President “We really are trying to do everything we can to of Instruction and Planning Dr. Lisa Aguilera make sure that we lessen the spread of this virus on Lawrenson said 70 percent of classes are being campus,” Preston-Nelson said. scheduled online for the fall semester, while 11 Pourzanjani ended the meeting with the percent of classes are being scheduled for in-person acknowledgement of the work Delta College and 19 percent hybrid. employees have done throughout the course of the “We’re looking to increase our offerings to include pandemic. as much access as we can for the fall, but please “None of us have been in a pandemic before, bear in mind we are still subject to social distancing but I think we have all worked together to keep our guidelines and the protocols that we have established,” students and employees safe,” Pourzanjani said. Lawrenson said.
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rigorous in my studies and they put a lot of effort into everything that they did and so seeing the final diploma have little to no effort behind it is super discouraging to my process and to my time at Delta,” Aguilar said. She said she doesn’t look at her diploma because that type of visual doesn’t remind her of anything that she actually went through. “It just reminds me that Delta, at the end of the day, is a business and that that’s what they wanted to push out. That was a product for them. It wasn’t something enjoyable for them because I can’t imagine anybody being proud of that,” Aguilar said. Cordova said the design team is working on making the diplomas more agreeable to students. “We’re working on a folder to give to students. The nice leather folder with the embossed San Joaquin Delta College that the degrees will be able to be housed in. That was our way of ensuring that our students were happy and felt as though they had that traditional, as well as a little bit of progressive flavor in their degree.”
Delta unveils program to provide paid internships BY DANTE CAMACHO Staff Writer
Delta College is launching an initiative that will subsidize 1,000 internships for Delta students entering the workforce. The program aims to match students with employers for 12 week internships in a variety of fields. The program has $4 million available to pay student’s wages and cover liability, according to a press release on Delta’s website. The program’s goal is to prepare students “for a diverse range of careers.” Half of the money is being provided by Delta College. The other half comes from San Joaquin
County. Michelle Castanon, manager of the Workforce Development Center, explained some of the details of this program, including how potential employers are being made aware of the internship program. “Delta College is using multiple sources to promote and market the 1,000 internships initiative… publicity has included media press release, social media posts, postcard mailers, electronic e-mailers, and upcoming informational webinars.”
Read more at DELTACOLLEGIAN.NET
BLM: Chauvin conviction, police conduct investigations mark start of change continued from PAGE 1
unarmed Black men and women nationwide since 2015. That number continues to rise. In April alone, Wright, Andrew Brown Jr., a 42-year-old Black man, and Ma’Khia Bryant, a Black 16-year-old, were all shot and killed by police officers. Attention has also been placed on the excessive use of force against people of color more broadly as Adam Toledo, a Hispanic 13-year-old, was shot and killed by a police officer in April. The excessive use of force on people of color, especially Black people, has sparked calls for change and police reform. The Black Lives Matter movement began in 2013 with the use of the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter on social media after George Zimmerman was acquitted in the killing of Trayvon Martin, a Black 17-year-old. The movement continued to garner national attention in 2014 following the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner, two Black men who also died in police custody. After Floyd’s killing, the Black Lives
Matter movement went mainstream. The hashtag #BlackLivesMatter was shared more than 100 million times in the month after Floyd was killed, according to a report from Kivvit, a communications firm. Summer 2020 saw protests of racial injustice sweep the nation. Demonstrations in multiple U.S. cities drew thousands of people denouncing racial inequity and police brutality with chants of, “Black lives matter!” During his campaign trail in the 2020 election, President Joe Biden proposed creating a national police oversight commission within his first 100 days in office. April 29 marked the passing of that milestone, but the commission has yet to be launched. In a recent statement to USA Today, domestic policy adviser Susan Rice said the administration made the decision to forgo the commission in favor of signing the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act into law. According to Rice, the decision was made after the administration consulted with activist groups, mainly the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund
and the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. “The George Floyd Justice in Policing Act seeks to hold our system of justice accountable at a time when transparency and liability are lacking,” Johnson said. “We’ve witnessed far too many deaths at the hands of law enforcement with little to no recourse. It is long overdue that we reimagine public safety in our communities and rethink policing; this piece of legislation aims to do just that.” Provisions in the bill include requiring federal uniformed police officers to have body-worn cameras, prohibiting federal police officers from using chokeholds or other carotid holds, and mandating that federal officers use deadly force only as a last resort and that de-escalation be attempted, among other provisions. The bill passed the House of Representatives in a 220-212 vote on March 3. It has not yet been voted upon by the Senate, though Biden encouraged Congress to send him the bill before the upcoming one-year anniversary of Floyd’s death. On April 21, Attorney General Merrick B. Garland announced the Justice
Department opened an investigation into the City of Minneapolis and the Minneapolis Police Department. “The investigation will assess all types of force used by MPD officers, including uses of force involving individuals with behavioral health disabilities and uses of force against individuals engaged in activities protected by the First Amendment,” a statement from the Department of Justice read. “The investigation will also assess whether MPD engages in discriminatory policing.” In addition, an investigation into the Louisville Police Department was announced by Attorney General Garland on April 26, following the March 2020 killing of Breonna Taylor, a 26-year-old Black woman shot and killed by Louisville police officers in her apartment. Despite these movements, people of color continue to be killed by police officers. Many had hoped the conviction of Chauvin would bring changes to policing, but ending police violence and developing racial justice will take more action than criminal charges to a former police officer. A conviction is only the beginning.
Issue 12 of The Collegian, the student newspaper of San Joaquin Delta College in Stockton, Calif. for the 2020-21 school year.
Published on May 7, 2021
Issue 12 of The Collegian, the student newspaper of San Joaquin Delta College in Stockton, Calif. for the 2020-21 school year.