A vintage Matt Jones effort
On track for new transportation
The senior had just two points but locked down Michigan State’s best player | Sports Page 11
Wake County’s transit plan could benefit the Duke community | Page 2
The Chronicle T H E I N D E P E N D E N T D A I LY AT D U K E U N I V E R S I T Y
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2016
ONE HUNDRED AND TWELFTH YEAR, ISSUE 38
‘WE SMELLED A SPURT’
Blue Devils use second-half 11-0 run to down Michigan State
Additional committees formed to address bias Claire Ballentine The Chronicle
not relinquish. Senior Matt Jones also forced a Spartan turnover in the middle of the run by deflecting the ball off Michigan State star Miles Bridges to send the crowd into a frenzy. “Grayson started off with an and-one, and then we went to Frank three times in a row. You can feel Cameron start to come to life after each one,” graduate student Amile Jefferson said. “It seems like six points, but it’s more like 12, 14
Both a steering committee and an advisory committee to the steering committee have been created as the result of the University’s task force on bias and hate issues. Six months after the task force on bias and hate issues released its final report, a steering committee is working to implement the recommendations. The task force reviewed Duke’s policies towards bias and hate issues for a seven-month period between November 2015 and May 2016. The University established a steering committee in September, which has been studying the task force’s recommendations and putting them into practice. Larry Moneta, vice president for student affairs and head of the committee, said he is happy with the work that the steering committee has done so far. “We’ve become more effective and efficient in responding to [instances of bias and hate],” he said. “I feel good about progress we’ve made since the Spring.” The steering committee also includes Ben Reese, vice president for institutional equity, Emily Klein, professor of earth sciences, as
See M. BASKETBALL on Page 12
See BIAS on Page 4
Jack White | The Chronicle The Blue Devils broke a 48-48 tie to take control despite only utilizing a six-man rotation against a deep Michigan State squad.
Amrith Ramkumar The Chronicle Freshman Frank Jackson showed he liked the big stage during Duke’s Champions Classic loss to Kansas earlier this season. On Tuesday, he showed that performance was not an aberration. The Alpine, Utah, native energized the Blue Devils during a key 11-0 run that broke a 48-48 tie and propelled No.
6 Duke to a 78-69 win against Michigan State Tuesday night at Cameron Indoor Stadium as part of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge. Jackson had 11 points and was one of four Blue Devils in double figures—junior Grayson Allen led the way with 24 points thanks to a hot start to the second half. Two Jackson drives gave Duke a 5548 edge with 12:50 left in the game, and a Luke Kennard jumper and pair of Allen free throws capped the spurt to give the Blue Devils a lead they would
Randolph County: Exploring Durham’s political opposite Frances Beroset and Bre Bradham The Chronicle A recent Washington Post interactive lets users identify the closest county that voted the opposite from their own. The Chronicle traveled to Durham’s closest opposite, Randolph County, to talk with local residents about their votes in the 2016 presidential election. Randolph County, about an hour-and-a-half drive from campus, is home to approximately 140,000 people. Ironically, it was also home to Trinity College before the institution moved to Durham in the late 1800s, eventually becoming Duke University. Although nearly 80 percent of Durham County’s voters supported Hillary Clinton— her largest percentage of votes in any
North Carolina county—about 80 percent of Randolph County’s residents went the other way. In Randolph, Trump earned a larger percentage of the vote than either Republican candidate Mitt Romney in 2012 or John McCain in 2008. Several Randolph residents couched their support for the president-elect in economic terms. Mild-mannered retiree Jesse Hembree works part-time at the Blue Luna Tattoo Company in Asheboro, where Randolph County’s government is located. He voted for Trump because he believed it would benefit the working-class. “I think that the working man needs a break and has needed a break for a long time,” Hembree said. “I think it’s not so much about building walls, exporting out people from other countries, even though it’s been
INSIDE — News 2 Sports 11 Classified 13 Crossword 13 Opinion 14
done in the past. Even though a lot of people took that to heart. “ On election night at Duke—where the majority of students supported Clinton— several students expressed their dismay and fears about deportation and anti-Muslim rhetoric. Hembree, on the other hand, did not anticipate Trump’s policies requiring people to be fearful. “A lot of people took it personal,” he said. “Like, because they have a heritage from another country. They’re afraid they’re going to be asked to leave or their family’s going to be asked to leave. I don’t think that’s the case at all.” And Hembree said he still believes in the American dream for everyone. “Everybody here has a right to live here, See RANDOLPH on Page 4
Serving the University since 1905
Bre Bradham | The Chronicle Mike Jones, owner of Mike’s Chicago Dogs in Randolph County, said he voted for Trump.
© 2016 The Chronicle
2 | WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2016
Wake County Transit Plan speeds toward Durham
Allen Qiu | The Chronicle
Cara Leigh Downey The Chronicle The Duke community may stand to benefit from the passage of Wake County’s transit tax. During the elections earlier this month, the county—which includes Raleigh— passed a measure that allows a half cent increase in the local sales tax that will help fund the $2.3 billion Wake County Transit Program. The tax is expected to take effect this spring. Tim Maloney, director of Wake County Planning, Development and Inspections, described Wake County’s transit plan in “four big moves”: connecting the region, connecting Wake County municipalities,
improving frequent, urban mobility and increasing access to transit. The plan will initially expand bus service within the Raleigh area and create dedicated bus lanes on high-frequency corridors. Longer term, the revenue will help finance a proposed 37-mile long commuter rail system, linking Raleigh and Durham with 12 proposed stations along existing tracks, including a stop near campus. This would be in addition to the Durham-Orange Light Rail project, which would connect Durham and Chapel Hill. Commuter rail trains are larger and run at higher speeds than light rail systems. “When we created this plan, one of the big recognitions was that our demographics in the Triangle region continue to change,” Maloney said, noting
that populations of both children and older people are increasing. These changing demographics are bringing people to the region who have lived in areas with more extensive transportation systems, which creates a larger demand for an improved system in the Triangle, he noted. “We have a lot of migration from areas across the country where people have experienced certain levels of transit that, when they get to our area, we don’t have or don’t provide,” Maloney said. Despite the demand, there is uncertainty about whether the Duke community will take advantage of the system when it connects to Durham. Sophomore Carly Mirabile spent the past summer riding the subway in New York City. Mirabile said she had an good experience with the city’s public transportation system overall. However, despite expressing excitement about the prospect of an improved transportation system in the Triangle, Mirabile said she doubted many Duke students will regularly make use of it. “I want to say I will use it a lot, but I know I will only use it if I have somewhere exciting I am going to,” Mirabile said. Concerns about the proposal extend beyond the student population. JoAnne Van Tuyl, associate professor of Slavic and Eurasian Studies, commutes to Duke from Orange County, which would be connected to Duke via the light rail system. Van Tuyl expressed her approval of the new tax, but also said she doubted whether Duke faculty will take advantage of the commuter rail to Raleigh. “Faculty really guard their time—not that it’s more valuable than anyone else’s,” Van
Tuyl said. “I think that everybody’s heart is there but when it comes down to practicality, it’s pretty different.” College students outside of Duke also doubt the likelihood of students using the system. Jackson Kilgore, a sophomore at North Carolina State University, said he does not think that the Wake County Transit Program will have much of an effect on the region’s college student population. “If I want to ever come to Duke, I would definitely take it,” Kilgore said. “But other than that, I wouldn’t really have much use for it.” Despite doubt about how much the Triangle’s college community will use the new public transportation system, Mirabile, Van Tuyl and Kilgore said they still support the program’s funding and are excited about its implementation.
Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons The transit plan would potentially create a commuter rail system in the Triangle area.
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Racial earnings gap returns Study shows temporary gun removal law lowers suicide risk to 1950s levels, study finds Rachel Sereix
Duke researchers have recently discovered that an innovative Connecticut gun law might help reduce gun-related suicides. The legislation allows police to temporarily remove guns from a person deemed to be at imminent risk of harming themselves or others. Looking at 762 Connecticut residents whose guns were removed between 1999 and 2013, researchers from Duke and several other peer institutions studied the law’s actual effectiveness. “We got interested in studying Connecticut because it was the first law of its kind, it was the pioneering law that implemented this civil court action with a public safety purpose,” said lead author Jeffrey Swanson, a professor in psychiatry and behavioral sciences. “Other states were interested in it but were looking to some evidence for whether this works.” When guns are involved in mental health crises, the likelihood of a lethal outcome increases, Swanson said. In recent years, this has been a hotbed for debates about gun policy—especially after the Virginia Tech shooting in 2007 and the 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School. The Connecticut law required notice of all gun seizures be given to the state mental health authority, which meant researchers had faxes of the reports in order to construct a database. “Connecticut is an interesting place to study because of its innovative and fairly progressive mental health system and also because of the
Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons The law allows police to temporarily remove guns from people deemed to be at risk of harming themselves or others.
availability of data there,” Swanson said. Forty-nine percent of gun removal cases were initially reported to the police by an acquaintance, of which 41 percent came from family members and eight percent came from employers and clinicians. The other 51 percent were reported by people who did not know the person concerned. Threats of suicide or self-injury were reported in 61 percent of the cases, and the study found that implementation of gun removal laws is in fact correlated with a reduced likelihood of suicide. The study highlights the potential of this policy to target specific individuals who can See GUN REMOVAL on Page 4
discrimination in the labor market. The second way would be to focus on the general labor market conditions for the poor in the economy, for whom earnings have been stagnant and work has been harder to acquire. “Because of remaining racial differences in education and school quality, black men are over-represented in this part of the labor market,” Bayer wrote. “And so [they] have been especially hard hit by the collapse of the less skilled part of the economy, especially in the Great Recession.” Charles said several aspects of the study make it particularly innovative.
A new study shows that the gap in median earnings between black and white men in the United States has risen—to what it was more than 60 years ago. The incomes of African Americans in the upper level of the earnings distribution have converged to those of their white counterparts, the study found. However, the gap in median earnings between black and white men has increased in the past several decades, and is now back at 1950 levels. Duke economist Patrick Bayer co-authored the study with Kerwin Kofi See EARNINGS on Page 4 Charles, interim dean at the University of Chicago’s Harris School of Public Policy. “It’s astounding that, in terms of economic rank, a black man in the middle of his economic distribution is no closer to his white counterpart in terms of earnings than was his grandfather,” Charles said. As to the reason behind the large earnings gap, Charles explained that increased educational attainment by black men has been matched and even exceeded by white men. Bayer noted in an email that the research finding shows a “renewed need to address the substantial racial inequality that persists in the country.” Bayer argued their analysis points to two broad ways of reducing racial inequality in the earnings gap. The first is to directly address racial differences in skills and opportunities—by increasing job Courtesy of Duke Photography opportunities in historically black cities Patrick Bayer, a professor of economics at and neighborhoods and by reducing racial Duke, co-authored the study.
Courses with Openings for SP17
Distinguished Speaker Series
AMI 201 Intro to Film Studies
T 3:05-6:05 Th 3:05-4:20, Carr 103, Instructor: McCarty Basic film theory and history of motion picture technology. Introduction to experimental, documentary, and narrative forms of Third World, European, and United States cinemas. Basic film theory and history of motion picture technology. Introduction to experimental, documentary, and narrative forms of Third World, European, and United States cinemas
AMI 215 Animated Film
Doug McMillon President and Chief Executive Officer Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. Wednesday, November 30, 2016 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM Geneen Auditorium The Fuqua School of Business The university community is invited to attend.
MW 3:05-4:20, Biddle 101, Instructor: Herbert Evolution of animation from the philosophical “toys” of the late eighteenth century to the major international entertainment form of today. Special focus on American animation as it evolved from inspired individuals like Emile Cohl and Winsor McCay to a full-blown industrial model allowing for the creation of the animated feature and contemporary special effects.
AMI 429S Historical Documentary Production
W 1:40-4:45, room TBA, Instructor: Orenstein This course examines the use of archival film footage and photographs in historical documentaries about struggles for social equity in America, then guides students in producing their own individual short historical documentaries.
4 | WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2016
GUN REMOVAL from page 3
EARNINGS from page 3
BIAS from page 1
harm themselves or others but are not restricted by law from purchasing a firearm, Swanson said. “Gun seizure laws can be effective without stigmatizing people with mental illness. The message is that anyone can find themselves in a tough spot in life, during which time their risk for suicide increases,” wrote Michael Norko, associate professor of psychiatry at Yale University, in an email. “The law did not take guns away from people with mental illness; it temporarily removed guns from people at imminent (and hopefully temporary) high risk.” Norko emphasized that the data can address concerns by gun rights activists, because the number of people who had guns seized was a small minority of the population. “The number of people affected by gun seizure represented about 0.07 percent of the total population in the state who possess firearms,” he wrote. “That percentage describes the level of intrusion on 2nd Amendment rights, which can be balanced against the prevention of suicides—which we estimated at one prevented suicide for every 10-20 firearm seizure events.”
“Firstly, we take very seriously into account the idea of zeros—that is, people who do not work at all,” he said. “A lot of past research on labor-market gaps have focused on blackwhite and male-female differences in wages, which by definition ignore people that don’t work.” The duo also expanded how it measured inequality. For example, Charles and Bayer focused not only on median earnings gaps but also gaps at various percentiles of the distribution—to understand how changes among top earners differ from those in the middle. Analyzing regional trends and exploring how geography plays a role in driving racial labor-market differences could be a future course of study, as could looking at the earning differences between black and white women. “I am hopeful that information about the median earnings gap might have some effect on the policy debate, which is the most an academic can hope for,” Charles said. “My hope is that it will affect scholarship and thinking about what the state of black relative economic performance is.”
well as Michael Schoenfeld, vice president for public affairs and government relations. The new vice provost for faculty advancement, a position which has yet to be filled, will also be included in the committee, Klein said. The steering committee established four working groups to focus on different aspects of the recommendations—better data collection on bias and hate incidents, developing campuswide policies, improving communication and reducing bias in the curriculum. Klein also noted that an advisory committee to the steering committee has just been formed and will be chaired by Kathryn Whetten, professor of public policy and global health, and Paul James, assistant vice president of diversity, equity and inclusion. The advisory committee will include four students—two chosen by Duke Student Government and two by the Graduate and Professional Student Council—along with four faculty members and two staff members. “We are in the middle of setting up what should be improved systems of reporting and response to instances of bias and hate,” Klein said. Moneta said the committee is potentially considering an annual report about instances of bias and hate. The group is in the process of updating the task force’s website, he noted. There have been no new posts on the website—which displays the work of the task force—since early September. Moneta explained that the website will soon be updated to include ways to report incidents and provide information about the group’s data collection as well as meeting minutes. “It’s a robust way to keep public informed of incidents that occur and the University’s response to it,” he said.
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if they made it here, and they’re given an opportunity to succeed,” Hembree said. That’s why everybody wants to come to the United States, because they’ve got that opportunity to succeed—you know—land of the free, home of the brave.” Mike Jones, owner of Mike’s Chicago Dogs and More, said he supported Trump in the election. His restaurant is just down the street from the county’s Republican headquarters. “I have a few liberals that come in here,” Jones said from behind the counter of his restaurant as he watched a re-run of Game 7 of the World Series. “But most of the people that come in here are conservatives.” Although he described himself as a conservative, Jones said he’s “equally pissed off at both parties.” “For me it came down to a choice between very, very high risk and total disaster. And I went for the high risk,” Jones said. “The fact that Trump is not a politician was appealing. Career politicians have gotten us into the mess that we’re in, and the country is ready for change.” Neither Jones nor Hembree was surprised by Durham’s strong showing for Clinton. Jones added that the Triangle has a “strong reputation” for being liberal. “Well, I would say probably 70 percent of the population in that county are in a higher tax bracket to begin with,” Hembree said. Trump supporters in Randolph County cited fears about the Islamic State terrorist organization as a major contributor to their votes. Jones said that the government was doing nothing to vet refugees coming into the country. Fact-checkers have established a vetting mechanism, but criticisms remain. “The internet has got a lot of information,” Jones noted. “Not all of it is true, but if a fraction of what’s on there is true, then the fact that there are al-Qaeda cells already in various states, including North Carolina, that’s something to be very concerned about.” Public Safety Secretary Frank Perry recently said North Carolina has one of the top three terrorism-prevention programs nationwide, ABC11 reported earlier this month. Hembree said he hoped Trump’s election would be a wakeup call for Americans. “I think it’s a good thing, in some ways, that Trump got in, because he will stir the pot and cause people to not be so complacent with the government they have,” Hembree said. But there were still some non-Trump supporters to be found. Inside the local laundromat, Pamela Martin said she supported Bernie Sanders, although she did not vote this year. She said that Clinton has “had her chance” and that she is “shady,” questioning why anyone would vote for her. Martin raised doubts about recount efforts underway in Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, urging people to give Trump a chance. “The people spoke. I didn’t—but the people spoke,” she said. She thought a lot of people in the area voted for Trump because of the lack of a better candidate, calling him “the lesser of two evils.” Martin also said she sent Trump an email telling him that she will support him, but that she wants him to try to unite the country before Christmas.
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2016 | 5
VOLUME 18, ISSUE 11
NOVEMBER 30, 2016
Duke students have been protesting for
almost 50 years, page 7
Former Duke professor brings films to Durham theater, page 8
U.S. Poet Laureate
Juan Felipe Herrera discusses his work, page 9
R 6 | WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2016
recess editors All I want for Christmas is...
Dillon Fernando ............ Mariah Carey Christy Kuesel ..................... validation Aditya Joshi .............................SXSW Drew Haskins ..................enthusiasm Jessica Williams ..............knife & fork Tim Campbell ....................... taco bell Kirby Wilson ............ a local arts writer Alex Griffith ................ the old weeknd Georgina Del Vecho.............. Frozen 2 Will Atkinson .........homeless sweaters Nina Wilder ..............................Hillary
It all started when my British boyfriend called me ‘uncultured swine’ for eating my chocolate chip pancakes wrong at Pitchforks. Aside from cutting too many chocolate chips into one bite, I didn’t realize that there was a wrong way to eat pancakes—and I certainly didn’t care much to learn the right way after a long night of essay writing. Utilizing the practical American singlehand method, I used my fork to both cut and pick up the pancake bites. Why dirty a knife if the pancakes were soft enough to just cut with a fork? He didn’t see it the same way, though—each turn of my fork in dividing the pancake was a personal affront to generations of his tea-drinking kind. What was the point of knives at all if people weren’t to use them? In wondering the answer to that question, I realized he was right; it is much more aesthetically pleasing and efficient to eat with two hands rather than one. The cutlery-switching-onehand-American method looks much more awkward, and requires a lot more effort put into eating a meal. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to eat with two hands, though—I just didn’t know how. I’d always considered myself to have good manners—never eating messily and always holding doors open for others— but I could never master the skill of eating with two hands. I learned how to use chopsticks with little difficulty in a few tries before I turned ten; but now, a decade later, I still can’t eat with my fork in my left hand without dropping food in my lap. Since the pancake incident, I’ve tried to practice eating with two hands whenever I remember—but I’ve had no success. The fork still feels like Jello when I put it in my left hand, and
I haven’t gotten used to the feeling of holding silverware in both hands throughout an entire meal. That didn’t matter much on campus, though—no one walking through the Loop would ever notice if you were eating your mac ‘n’ cheese nuggets with one hand or two. That all changed when I did Duke in Oxford last summer. If eating pancakes at Pitchforks was peewee t-ball, dining in the Harry Potter-esque dining hall at Oxford was the big leagues of manners. The Great Hall exuded refinement, with wood-paneled walls and painted portraits of past heads-of-college. It didn’t help either that all of the plates
editor’s note were printed with the college’s motto: “Manners Makyth Man.” What kind of a motto is that anyways, besides a really old one? What about courage, intelligence, integrity… or any other positive attributes, for that matter? Why manners? Since I couldn’t eat with two hands, was I not a man? Or, well, a woman? I’m still unsure. With those plates glaring up at me each time we ate a fancy meal—like my short mom when I’ve said something she disapproves of—I’m surprised I didn’t scare myself into learning how to eat with two hands. At the end of the sixweek program, I still hadn’t mastered the skill, in spite of the embarrassingly many bites of vegetables that fell on my lap
during practice attempts. That was okay, though—maybe it wasn’t meant to be. Maybe I’m destined to never eat comfortably with both hands, or maybe the next time I eat chocolate chip pancakes I’ll magically pick up the skill. Either way, at least I can say I’m trying. That’s what I think “Manners Makyth Man” actually means—not that someone isn’t a “man” if they don’t have a the right set of manners, but that endeavoring to have better manners make a person try and better themselves. Especially as face-to-face contact time continues to diminish due to technology, and because ‘chivalry is dead,’ it is more important now than ever to try and keep having manners. The point I’m trying to make isn’t that manners are good. That would be lame. But I do think it’s important to try and remember—and try and better— manners every once in a while. Most girls I know melt whenever a guy holds a door open for them on campus, and when a friend has bad manners during a meal it’s definitely cringe-worthy. So, it’s good to sometimes be aware of manners…no matter how many chocolate chips you drop in your lap in the process. ––Jessica Williams
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WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2016 | 7
Duke students and the art of the protest Will Atkinson The Chronicle
The last year has seen a wave of protests on college campuses. From Yale to Missouri, students have garnered a fair share of attention for demonstrations against institutional racism and microaggressions, prompting nationwide discussions about race, higher education and free speech. Duke was no exception. On April 1, 2016, nine students began a week-long occupation of the administrative Allen Building in the wake of reporting on the now-infamous Tallman Trask incident. A list of demands by the students included the resignation of Trask and steps to improve the treatment of workers on campus. But the demonstrations at Duke paralleled other demonstrations nationwide only in that they happened to fall during a period ripe with discontent. To brand the most recent Allen sit-in merely as an extension of similar efforts elsewhere on one hand or as an isolated incident on the other would be to minimize its impact and ignore a legacy of activism at Duke that involves students, workers and faculty alike. In this political moment, the art of protest has become more relevant than ever. Already, organizations like the Council for Collaborative Action have set up rallies for solidarity following Donald Trump’s election, while Duke Students and Workers in Solidarity—which has its roots in the April sit-in—has only intensified its efforts toward fair treatment of workers and administrative accountability. It is worth investigating, then, how protest has shaped the university’s history.
“A dirty word” Fifty years ago, Duke was a Gothic cocoon on the outskirts of Durham, both sheltered from and indifferent to the poverty surrounding it. The South had begun to desegregate, but the overwhelmingly white institution was behind the curve. As Peter Applebome Trinity ‘71, a former Chronicle writer and current New York Times Deputy National Editor said, “activism was little more than a dirty word.” This is not to say activism was nonexistent. The silent vigil of April 1968 marked the first instance of protest as a visible, effective force on campus. Following the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr., nearly 1500 students occupied the main quad. Although a primary goal of the vigil was to mourn King’s death, it was driven equally by efforts to address Duke’s legacy of racism and segregation. And although students made up the bulk of participants in
the vigil, it was undergirded by organization on the part of campus workers. In what has become a common theme in activism at Duke, workers, as much as students or faculty, were agents of change. “At its very core, it’s groups of workers who are organized, who say, ‘you, students, you can make signs, you’ve got institutional protections; come here and throw down with us,’” Lara Haft, a DSWS organizer and one of the nine students who occupied Allen Building in April, said. “Then the students say, ‘yeah, sounds good,’ and the faculty leverage their power.” The 1968 vigil set an example for the collective power of those three factions— worker, student and faculty. Even before King died, members of the Local 77 labor union had collaborated with students to plan a demonstration. The unexpected tragedy only compounded those plans and wrapped up with the vigil came
The Chronicle Duke students have been participating in protests, from vigils to sit-ins, for almost fifty years.
demands for Duke’s President Knight to resign from his segregated country club, appoint a biracial committee to ensure fair treatment for all within the university and work toward a $1.60 minimum wage for university workers. On the quad, students ran the vigil like a factory, sitting in neat rows of fifty and mass-producing snacks. Many faculty members showed solidarity by supporting class boycotts or joining rallies. Apparently pressured by alumni to give some sort of explanation for what was transpiring at Duke, Frank Ashmore, then vice president for institutional advancement, gave a speech to the Greensboro Alumni Association that was later published in the Chronicle. “The group of students were in a frame of mind different from any seen before,” Ashmore reportedly said. “It was a mixture of guilt, depression, commitment and idealism.” The silent vigil brought to light institutional issues and student-worker collaboration that would dictate the movements toward change to the present day. “It ain’t over yet” The most obvious antecedent to the 2016 Allen sit-in occurred not a year after the 1968 vigil. Known as the Allen “takeover,” the events of February 13, 1969 brought some of the same issues addressed in the vigil to a head and ended in violent fashion. At 8 a.m., about 75 students from the Afro-American Society occupied the Allen Building and presented a list of thirteen demands, which included increasing See PROTEST on Page 10
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8 | WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2016
Bill Brown brings films to UNEXPOSED Microcinema Nina Wilder The Chronicle
As a person who loves movie theaters and the atmosphere that they can cultivate, I find myself griping about the lack of engaging cinemas within the Triangle Area often. The Rialto Theatre in Raleigh and the Carolina Theatre in Durham each offer distinctive arthouse theater-going experiences, but I can’t help but notice a dearth in the number of cinemas that offer immersive viewings of movies. So when my film professor notified his students that Bill Brown, a filmmaker and former Duke professor, was bringing his 16mm short films to the UNEXPOSED Microcinema, it piqued my curiosity. Microcinemas are typically little theaters or screening rooms that emphasize works made mostly by small-time filmmakers on a small-time budgets. In terms that Durham hipsters can relate to, they’re cinematic microbreweries–ironic, given that UNEXPOSED is located down the street from an independently-owned brewery. Crammed into that tiny screening room is a communal viewing experience of movies that wouldn’t normally make the silver screen’s cut. Tucked in a seedier part of downtown Durham’s sprawl, UNEXPOSED is essentially a cement-walled room dotted with a few dozen foldable chairs. The interior lacks climate control (be prepared to sweat in the summer and shiver in the winter) and the exterior is sketchy, but there’s also something strangely charming about the space. Perhaps it’s the quiet hum of the film projector or the faint
scent of beer and marijuana that hangs in the air, but the microcinema is magnetic and spirited. You’d feel cool if you told to someone that you spent a night out there. UNEXPOSED has a niche pull–the space is mostly occupied by Duke’s experimental and documentary arts MFA students (and whichever fortunate friends they decided to drag along). In fact, the MFA students programmed the screening of Brown’s films with enthusiastic support from the owners of the microcinema. Brown is a revered figure around documentary and experimental film enthusiasts. Jeremy Smyth, one of the twin brothers who owns UNEXPOSED, admitted that Brown is “40 percent of the reason” that he and his brother decided to move to Durham to establish their microcinema. After leaving Duke, Brown decided to take his talents down Tobacco Road to teach at UNC, but the invitation to screen his films last Sunday and mingle with the current MFA students was hard to turn down. Of his wideranging filmography, Brown decided to show two of his films that hold a special salience in light of the recent election. “Confederation Park,” made in 1999, explores America’s northern border with Canada, while his 2006 film “The Other Side” probes America’s southern border with Mexico. Brown primarily creates short, personal films that are both documentaries and essays. His peculiar, lilting voice narrates shots of whichever city or landscape he’s exploring, softly dispensing philosophical musings that
Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons Former Duke professor Bill Brown has brought his short films to UNEXPOSED Microcinema.
may directly parallel his subject or not. These verbal mediations are especially apparent in “Confederation Park,” as Brown makes connections between the Québécoise separatist movement and the divisions that are apparent in his own mind. He can’t quite formulate a judgement on what he’s studying—the uncertainty apparent in his voice. In “The Other Side,” Brown makes his intentions clearer: it’s a more forceful and critical study of the border, examining its shifting politics and geography through compelling observations. “It’s a film that I wish dearly would make us nostalgic or kind of regret a certain kind of relationship we had to the border,” Brown told the crowd in a short speech before the screening. “It doesn’t seem like that’s the case.” By speaking to undocumented immigrants who made the treacherous trek across the border and activists who
offer whatever modicum of help that they can for those individuals, Brown lays bare the hypocrisy of America’s attempts to paint undocumented immigrants as criminal or threatening. Who’s the real criminal, he muses: the person trying to make ends meet for their family or the government that relentlessly pushes crossing undocumented immigrants into the perilous throes of the desert? Blurring the line between documentary and personal filmmaking, Brown’s films are vignettes of the North American landscape, and its tenacious changes and continuities. The small insights into Brown’s head also make his movies privy to the human psyche, an intimacy that’s easily reflected in the atmosphere of the UNEXPOSED Microcinema. Arena and medium go hand-in-hand like old friends, creating a cinematic experience that’s both familiar and curious.
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Recess interviews: U.S. Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Herrera Jessica Williams The Chronicle
The United States National Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Herrera visited Duke’s Rubenstein Library Nov. 17 to read selections from his poetry and other works in both Spanish and English. Herrera is the first Mexican-American and Latino to be named poet laureate. The Chronicle sat down with Herrera to discuss his writing process, his activism and the subtle beauties of life. The following interview has been edited for clarity. TC: What is it like being the Poet Laureate? What do you do on a normal day? JFH: On a normal day I’m traveling, I’m at an airport and I’m meeting students—I go to the campus, I’m on an interesting car ride or taxi ride. I meet Pakistani taxicab drivers, and they tell me about the poetry in Urdu and sing songs, or others tell me about Puerto Rican percussion. I listen quite a bit to the audiences and the people I meet at the signature table, which is interesting—that’s where a lot of things are shared. It’s like a little visiting place that lasts maybe five to ten minutes with each person. Which makes it a very long event, but that’s okay. I also discover a lot of great artists. I’m kind of like a talent scout, without wanting to be. So I see eight-year-old and eleven-year-old poets at readings and community centers, and I go, “Geez, eight years old! Standing up there and reading poetry so well and so expressive. I can’t believe it. One was in Albuquerque—the eight-year-old—and the eleven-yearold was in San Diego. I recruited both of those young girls to come to the Library of Congress and read their poetry. I thought, I don’t want them to wait till later—I want them to be acknowledged now, and I want them to feel that they’re worthy as writers and poets, and the only way I know how to do that is to bring them to the Library of Congress. And they went, and everybody was astounded. I hope that was good for them and their families and for their schools…and for other girls looking at them, Latina girls looking at them, thinking, “Oh, a poet? What is that? Oh yeah poetry, okay. They’re the same age I am, and they’re at the Library of Congress? Wow.” I want them to be role models too. TC: As immigration was a major subject of debate leading up to the election, and then obviously because of the election results—my question to you is, as a the son of migrant farm workers and as a Mexican-American, have the results changed the way you view the nation or the way you view your own writing? JFH: That’s an interesting question. It’s probably influencing me right now as we speak. But I’ve been writing about it all my life. It’s such an odd conversation, because it has a little bit of everything in it—there’s issues of power and culture, it has issues of labor, it has issues of law, it has historical issues, it has issues of land which are never spoken about. You know, Mexican land grants—the treaties of 1848—they were never honored. So in other words, you have all this land that was once Mexican and Indian land, and it’s no longer ours. And it’s important to know that because, in a way, we’re kind of migrating to our own land. It’s a historical trail—it’s not unknown territory. So, even though we’re called aliens, we’re not alien to the land. It’s a terrible word; it’s a word to not ever be used. So, I feel like I want to clarify things, and I am writing much more about it. TC: As the Poet Laureate, you’ve talked about how it’s a way to connect with people and spread your message. What sort of advice would you give to student writers who what to be able to do what you’re doing? JFH: Continue writing, and follow your creativity and your curiosity and your love for poetry, and how you like to get up on stage and daring yourself to read out loud. This whole thing is not an A-Z; it’s kind of spiral-shaped and jigsaw-puzzle-shaped and cartoon-shaped, and it’s also seriously shaped. And it’s also all those things that involve cafes and getting on stage and having friends that are just as nutty as you. You hang out late and you share poems and you call each other late at night and you go, “Oh, I got a new poem Juan Felipe! Do you have time? Can I read it to you?” And I go, “No I don’t have time, but go ahead and read it to me. I’m totally burned out, what is it?” And then they read me the poem, and that’s what we do. But the key is to be fully accepting of yourself and letting yourself be enamored with the poetry, and whatever it is you’re doing with language, because you just love it so much—you don’t know why, and you don’t know if you can really write good, but that doesn’t matter anymore. Cause this is what you love. Then you just follow it—you just follow that golden path. An abbreviated version of this interview appears in print. To view the entire interview, visit dukechronicle.com/section/recess.
Sujal Manohar|The Chronicle U.S. Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Herrera visited Rubenstein Library last Thursday to read selections from his poetry.
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10 | WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2016
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PROTEST from page 7 black representation in the student body, setting up the department now known as African & African American Studies, ending mistreatment of black students by police and granting the occupying students total amnesty. “We seized the building because we have been negotiating with the Duke administration and faculty concerning different issues that effect (sic) black students for 2 ½ years,” read a statement by the Afro-American Society after the sit-in began. “We have no meaningful results. We have exhausted all the so-called proper channels.” The takeover ended ten hours later after police were summoned to the campus. Even after the 75 students had exited the building peacefully—chanting, “It ain’t over yet, baby!”—police unleashed tear gas on them and the crowd that had gathered near the main quad, much of which had gathered in solidarity with the students inside. The parallels between the 1969 and 2016 sit-ins are striking at first glance. In many ways, they demonstrate just how little has changed in the intervening 47 years. (A freshman interviewed during the 1968 vigil may have said it best: “It takes a long time to get things changed at Duke.”) One cannot read, for example, the calls by the 1969 protesters to end police brutality without noticing the resemblance to current events. And the call for a more fair minimum wage has not changed—only this time it was $15, not $1.60. Haft was quick to note, though, that the two sit-ins differed in a key respect: while the 1969 takeover was orchestrated by a black affinity group, the Afro-American Society, the organizers of the 2016 sit-in, DSWS, have a proworker vision while aiming to represent the interests of all marginalized groups. Increasingly, protest movements interconnect the struggles of many. “With the people power that we generate, we’re not just single-mindedly going towards this anti-racist, pro-worker vision,” Haft said. “We understand that we cannot be free until black people are free, and until workers are treated with dignity. But also that our liberation is tied up with the liberation of [all]—everybody has to be free, period.” “They know we’re coming” Between 1969 and 2016, a number of protest movements have effected real change at Duke. Although it often goes unseen, activism and administrative pressure is often necessary to bring about reform. A zine published by Haft and DSWS earlier this year chronicled some of the progress made by workers and students in the last 50 years. The last official “protest” acknowledged in a 2013 online exhibit on Duke’s black history took place in 1975, yet an investigation of the gains made since then—like the establishment of the Mary Lou Williams Center for Black Culture, the 1985 resolution to double the number of black faculty and the decision to cut ties with South Africa during Apartheid—reveals they were only possible through protest. Indeed, Duke’s history is filled with instances of protest, many of which go unremembered even if their goals succeed. Speaking on the April 2016 Allen sit-in, Haft acknowledged that while many of the demands of the nine students have not been met, one of the most powerful victories of the protest—aside from a push to a $13 minimum wage for full-time employees—was inspiring fear in the administration. “They know we’re coming, and they know we’re winning,” Haft said. It may take a long time to get things changed at Duke, but, as in society as a whole, protest has proven to be an essential tool in enacting those changes. In a year as turbulent as 2016, this is a lesson worth remembering. and microaggressions, prompting nationwide discussions about race, higher education and free speech.
THE BLUE ZONE
BEYOND THE ARC: DUKEMICHIGAN STATE sports.chronicleblogs.com
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2016
VINTAGE MATT JONES
Jones’ lockdown defense frustrates Michigan State’s Miles Bridges Sameer Pandhare The Chronicle With 2:07 remaining in the game, senior Matt Jones stepped up to the free throw line with a Blue Devil victory well in hand. The forward’s shot was well off the mark and yet another bad miss on a night the Duke co-captain finished with just two points on 1-of-7 shooting. Judging by the box score, Tuesday night was Jones’ worst performance of the season. But in reality, it was arguably his finest. Tasked with guarding 6-foot-7 freshman superstar Miles Bridges, Jones rose to the occasion with a standout performance on defense in Duke’s 78-69 victory against the Spartans. Although the contest marked Jones’ first time scoring in single digits all season, head coach Mike Krzyzewski was all smiles when asked about the co-captain’s performance. “He’s one of the best defenders in the country,” Krzyzewski said. “We put him on every outstanding player that we play against and no one ever notices that I guess. But he had a spectacular two-point performance tonight.” Entering the game with graduate student Amile Jefferson and sophomore Chase Jeter as the team’s only post players, the Blue Devils faced a dilemma matching up man-to-man against the Spartans’ bigger frontline. Bridges—who came into the game as a 40-percent 3-point shooter and also boasts an imposing 230-pound frame—figured to be a nightmare matchup for a Duke team that still relies on a guard-oriented rotation. But Jones quelled those fears by matching Bridges’ physicality and holding the freshman to just 11 points on 4-of13 shooting. The senior put to rest any possible thought of going to a zone scheme and proved that he could stand in for 40 minutes against a player many believe will be selected early in the first round of the 2017 NBA Draft.
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2016 | 11
Cautiously optimistic During Duke’s Senior Day festivities before its matchup with North Carolina Nov. 10 at Wallace Wade Stadium, it was evident why the Blue Devils’ season had gone off the rails. It seemed like every senior that walked out to shake head coach David Cutcliffe’s hand was in sweats with his arm in a sling or ether using crutches or a scooter to get around. Team captains DeVon Edwards, Thomas Sirk and Jela Duncan and departing seniors Anthony Nash and Breon Borders—five of Duke’s best players—could not take the field for the final home game of the season. They could only watch from the sidelines as a group of mostly freshmen and sophomores played an excellent football game to take down the then-No. 15 Tar Heels 28-27 and inject some life into a disappointing season. But Duke did not win again the rest of the year, dropping its last two games in blowouts on the road to fall short of the postseason for the first time since 2011. It was not hard to see the team’s losing campaign coming, considering all of the key pieces it lost from last season’s Pinstripe Bowl champions. The Blue Devils’ 4-8 record this year did not surprise me, but I was surprised at how they got there. Duke looked even worse than I thought it would to start the season. Its 34-20 home loss to Virginia was one of the worst performances of head coach David Cutcliffe’s nine-year tenure in Durham, with redshirt freshman quarterback Daniel Jones throwing four first-half interceptions against a Cavalier squad that won only one other
Jack White | The Chronicle Even though it took him almost 35 minutes to score Tuesday, Matt Jones was arguably Duke’s most valuable player.
“It’s kind of what I’ve been doing. Ever since the [2015 national] championship game, it kind of just gave me confidence,” Jones said. “I’m a senior now, and I take pride in guarding the best player and ultimately taking him out of the game.” Although Jones’ toughness was key to keeping Bridges at bay, Jones also put his veteran savvy on display and appeared to be in the freshman’s head by the end of the night. As he struggled to find his shot and make the highlight-reel plays he had through seven games, Bridges was visibly frustrated on the court for much of the second half and eventually fouled out with 12 seconds remaining. The result was yet another tense exchange between Michigan State head coach Tom Izzo and his leading scorer—a familiar conversation that was visible on the sidelines from the opening tip. In a role reversal from what has been
Khloe Kim | The Chronicle Freshman Frank Jackson scored on consecutive drives before setting up Luke Kennard as part of the Blue Devils’ 11-0 run.
normal in recent matchups between the two storied programs, it was the Spartans that faced growing pains with their youth and the Blue Devils that capitalized on experience. “I didn’t think Miles played as hard as he’s been playing,” Izzo said. “He’s been playing very hard, but he just got caught standing around a lot. He played harder at some times and made some phenomenal plays and then he kind of drifted.” Despite the struggles of its top scorer and more turnover problems, Michigan State made the Blue Devils work for the win. But Duke wrestled control of the game away from the Spartans to break a 48-48 tie, with Jones providing one of the many highlights in the game-defining 11-0 run. After consecutive baskets by freshman Frank Jackson ignited the Blue Devils and sent Cameron Indoor Stadium into pandemonium, Jones added fuel to the fire as he snuck back into the play as Michigan State looked to inbound the ball. The result was one of the Spartans’ 18 turnovers on the night and another possession for the Blue Devils, which resulted in two more points on a jumper from sophomore guard Luke Kennard. “The way that he plays defense, the way that he leads our team on the defensive end, it’s something special, and it’s something that not a lot of people—they don’t see that, and it’s really a big part of what we do as a group,” Kennard said. Although Jones had a potential mismatch of his own on the other end of the floor with the slower Bridges looking to stick with the guard on the perimeter, the DeSoto, Texas, native was content letting the offense flow through junior Grayson Allen and Kennard. See JONES on Page 12
See FOOTBALL on Page 13
Juan Bermudez | The Chronicle Daniel Jones started slow but wound up passing for 16 touchdowns and running for seven more as a redshirt freshman.
M. BASKETBALL from page 1 points because of how much our crowd gets into it.” The Spartans got within six before Jackson hit a corner 3-pointer with 9:48 left that had head coach Mike Krzyzewski flying off the bench to celebrate. Although Duke (7-1) pulled away in the second half, the Blue Devils were unable to build a lead larger than five points for much of the game thanks to Michigan State’s stifling perimeter defense. The Spartans (4-4) held Duke to 2-of-11 shooting from long range in the opening half to go into the locker room tied at 35, but had no answer for Allen and Jackson early in the second period. After going 2-of-10 from the field in the opening 20 minutes, Allen made four of his first seven attempts in the second—including a pair of 3-pointers—to spark the home team. His shot-making set the stage for Jackson’s consecutive drives, and the Blue Devils fed off the energy to take Michigan State out of its offense. A preseason All-American, Allen is still battling through a toe injury, but he made 5-of-11 3-pointers to offset a 2-of10 effort from two-point range. “Grayson does not practice one second, so when he’s out on that court...it’s a gutty performance,” Krzyzewski said. “That kid has played unbelievably.” The Spartans went inside for their offense early and often, but committed 18 turnovers in the game to fuel the Duke offense in the second half. As has
12 | WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2016
been the case for much of the season, Michigan State struggled to initiate its offense once the Blue Devils increased their defensive pressure. Spartan freshman star Bridges entered the contest averaging 17.4 points per contest, but went just 4-of-13 from the field for 11 points with Jones as his primary defender. Although Jones did not score until the 5:30 mark in the second half, his defensive effort was key against a Michigan State squad with few other consistent playmakers. Despite the Spartans outshooting Duke from the field, 3-point range and the free throw line and outrebounding the Blue Devils, Duke’s nine extra shot attempts in the second half thanks to Michigan State turnovers proved to be the difference in the game. “I definitely felt [Bridges’] frustration,” Jones said. “Obviously, I knew I couldn’t use that and fall asleep or anything like that, but I just wanted to make it hard for him, and that’s ultimately what happened.” The Spartans used 11 players compared to the Blue Devils’ six, but had no answer for the Duke guards after halftime and frequently got outmuscled by Jefferson inside. The graduate student posted his fourth double-double in his last five games with 17 points and 13 rebounds despite dealing with foul trouble, giving his team the flexibility to utilize both three- and four-guard lineups throughout the game. Kennard also had another strong game with 20 points as the Blue Devils used a 16-2 edge in second-chance
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Jack White | The Chronicle Graduate student Amile Jefferson notched his fourth double-double in his last five games Tuesday night.
points to prevail, led by their veteran core despite the limited rotation. “We know [Krzyzewski] has a lot of confidence in all of us,” Allen said. “His confidence in us never stops and he just tells us to keep going no matter how many shots you’re missing, and down the stretch, he knows that me, Matt and Amile have played with him for a while, Luke—this [is] his second season—so he has that confidence in us that in the game, we can bring it home.” Duke will return to the court Saturday evening to host Maine before another highprofile game against Florida at Madison Square Garden next Tuesday.
JONES from page 11 In a year in which many wondered what role Jones would play with a highly-touted freshman class coming in, the captain is tied for the team lead with an average of more than 35 minutes per game. But despite not capturing headlines with his defensiveminded skillset, Jones’ presence on the court continues to prove his worth. “A great example for people playing any game is that when you’re all about winning, you’re really important,” Krzyzewski said. “Matt Jones is only about winning. That kid is a beautiful kid and a great leader for us.”
FOOTBALL from page 11 game all season. The Blue Devils turned a corner after that loss, though, in a resurgence sparked by a first-year signal-caller who gives reason for future optimism. In Duke’s last seven games, Jones threw 10 touchdown passes and just one interception, and he finished the year with four ACC Freshman of the Week honors under his belt. If the Blue Devils return to a bowl next season, Jones’ newfound discipline under center will likely be a big reason why. The improved level of play did not always translate into victories, but Duke competed well during the most difficult part of its schedule. The Blue Devils held then-No. 7 Louisville to its secondlowest scoring output of the season in a close 24-14 loss and came within three points of then-No. 23 Virginia Tech before the breakthrough victory against North Carolina. Sixteen of Duke’s 22 starters on offense and defense against the Tar Heels will be back next year and showed why the Blue Devils have the potential to compete with almost any team on the 2017 schedule and win seven or eight games. But the last two weeks of the season revealed lingering question marks that could derail Duke again next year. The Blue Devils’ offensive line gave up a season-high five sacks in a 56-14 loss to Pittsburgh Nov. 19, and it surrendered three sacks in the season-ending 40-21 loss at Miami. Duke will return three starters on its offensive line, but will have to go without starting left tackle Gabe Brandner in spring camp while he
recovers from a broken ankle. The most glaring weakness remains in the kicking game. The Blue Devils made the fewest field goals in the FBS this year, as true freshman A.J. Reed was just 3-for-10 on field-goal attempts and missed one in each of Duke’s last two games. Cutcliffe is unlikely to use another scholarship on a kicker, so Reed either has to get a lot better or the Blue Devils will have to find a capable walkon to take over kicking duties next season. Cutcliffe and his staff will also need to make offseason adjustments as they incorporate young talent on the
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2016 | 13
defensive line and in the secondary to make up for the loss of defensive tackle A.J. Wolf. The ACC Coastal Division is only getting better. The Blue Devils capitalized on a weak year for the conference foes to win the division three years ago, but that era appears to be over. New head coaches Mark Richt and Justin Fuente have Miami and Virginia Tech on the rise again, Larry Fedora has molded North Carolina into a perennial ACC contender and Georgia Tech and Pittsburgh will both be solid opponents. Throw in a conference game against
Florida State and a nonconference showdown with Baylor, and next year’s schedule might be even tougher than this year’s for Duke. Jones may lead the Blue Devils to a couple of surprising upsets like he did this year, but Duke cannot afford to once again lose to teams it should beat like Wake Forest and Virginia, to get back into bowl consideration. I expect a more experienced team to string together solid performances more consistently next year. But as they ready for 2017, the Blue Devils now know all too well not to take the postseason for granted.
The New York Times Syndication Sales Corporation 620 Eighth Avenue, New York,Chang, N.Y. 10018 Carolyn Ian Jaffe and Khloe Kim | The Chronicle For Information 1-800-972-3550 Redshirt senior captains Thomas Sirk, Jela Duncan and DeVon Edwards all missedCall: significant time during an injury-plagued 2016 season. For ForRelease ReleaseWednesday, Tuesday, November November29, 30,2016 2016
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Edited by Will Shortz 1
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Online subscriptions: Today’s puzzle and more than 7,000 past puzzles, nytimes.com/crosswords ($39.95 a year). Read about and comment on each puzzle: nytimes.com/wordplay. Crosswords for young solvers: nytimes.com/studentcrosswords.
T H E I N D E P E N D E N T D A I LY AT D U K E U N I V E R S I T Y
An obstruction of justice
fter December 19, all healthcare facilities, abortion clinics and hospitals in Texas will be required by state law to properly bury or cremate fetal remains. Despite intense debate around the new legislation since it was first proposed in early July, Republican Governor Greg Abbott swiftly approved the law this month. In defending the new legislation, he asserted that he did not believe fetuses should be “treated like medical waste and disposed of in landfills.” While the law can be viewed as a compromise intended to make amends for ideological differences, it presents an unjustified barrier to a constitutional right to abortions, even before questions of the abortion issue itself enter the conversation. The law introduces a new emotional cost to women undergoing a procedure with implications that may already be weighing them down. Aside from the obvious reality that the aftermath of an abortion becomes more formalized and salient, the legislation eliminates the notion of choice that is essentially important to those who disagree with the state’s stance on abortion. It also further removes women from the abortion debate and could be weaponized to dissuade women from getting abortions by making the process more emotionally
“Drain the swamp!” — “Zach Heater,” responding to ‘Opening the Board of Trustees,” published November 28, 2016
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taxing for them. More broadly, the law is a sleight to the landmark Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade. In 1973, Roe v. Wade established the constitutionality of abortions and has protected a woman’s freedom of choice in such decisions ever since. Just this year, the Supreme Court’s decision in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt against Texas’ restrictive abortion access laws further bolstered the precedent set by the 1973 ruling.
Editorial Despite the history of precedents in defense of abortion in our nation’s highest court, Texas is not the only state that has moved to create emotional barriers for women seeking access to abortion. In Missouri and five other states, women are required by state law to wait until 72 hours after a mandated ultrasound to receive an abortion. In North Carolina, women are required to receive mandatory ultrasounds before abortion procedures. This Texan law is part of a national trend in red states to emotionally restrict constitutionally protected female reproductive rights, not unlike difficulties
introduced in some states to voting rights. Such a forceful mandate codifies a specific ideological and moral stance on abortion. By law, it directs women and state health care providers to treat fetal remains as once-sentient beings complete with human burial rites. Duke students have historically enjoyed greater access to birth control and abortion. Duke was one of the first universities to institute an interest-free abortion loan fund for students in 1971. It may seem difficult to grasp the severity of seemingly provincial Texan politics. In light of President-elect Donald J. Trump’s campaign promises to repeal Roe v. Wade and have the legality of abortion “go back to the individual states,” however, the national trend takes shape, emboldened by the results of the election. This movement by Republican state legislatures is sure to be the first of many political changes we see in the next two to four years given how the Republican voter base swung in the general election and how the GOP came back together in some ways as a result. Voters and minority leaders in legislatures must continue to remember their commitments to the constitution and the larger historical picture.
Relating to relationships
14 | WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2016
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t the beginning of the year, freshmen were told that 31 percent of Duke students are in committed relationships and that 75 percent of students were interested in a relationship. This statistic, collected as part of the Duke Social Relationships Project conducted by Stephen Asher across four years of Duke students, looks legitimate at first. The survey, however, was conducted at the beginning of each year, when many freshman were still in long distance relationships, before the infamous “turkey dump.” According to Urban Dictionary, the “turkey dump” is defined as when “a student returning from college breaks up with their significant other from high school. So-called because it traditionally takes place over Thanksgiving break, the first time most students return from college.” Journalist Dan Savage said in a rant, “You’re a cad if you break up around Christmas. And then there’s New Year’s—and you can’t dump somebody right around New Year’s. After that, if you don’t jump on it, is Valentine’s Day. God forbid if their birthday
The weeks after we stopped talking to each other, I hid behind other people or walked in the opposite direction when I saw him on campus. The same person who had comforted me through the “FOMO” and discomfort of being an introvert, who had made adjusting to college just a bit easier, was now off-limits. But for the most part, it was a relatively unemotional event for me. After a few days of pining and realizing how much I missed the comfort, I was over it emotionally. Rationally, however, I questioned my decision repeatedly, and I was mentally pushing away the questions that people had been asking me in the weeks past and were asking me now. “How are you not feeling absolutely devastated? You were with him for over 2 years.” “Are you sure you didn’t come to Duke just to be with him?” “Do you know what other people would give up to be at the same schools as their boyfriend or girlfriend?” “Are there even any other guys you’re interested in?” We booked the same flight home over
FANGIRLING should fall somewhere between November and February—then you’re really stuck. Thanksgiving is really when you have to pull the trigger if you’re not willing to tough it out through February.” In my case, I came to Duke with a boyfriend…who was also coming to Duke. A few weeks in, I realized that I just wanted a break. It wasn’t the realization that I was going to be busy, or the distance—if anything, we were in even closer proximity than we were in high school—but it was merely the idea that I wanted to experience different things because, well, college. Did it really take a month at Duke for me to realize this? I don’t know. There are websites with messages for dumpers and dumpees and appropriate e-cards related to the turkey dump, and articles full of advice and analysis on this phenomenon. And yet it seems to be undocumented at Duke. With a simple search on The Chronicle’s website, I was surprised that no one had written about the breakups I saw so often amongst my peers. And perhaps with good reason—to be fair, most of the breakups I’ve seen (including mine) happened before Thanksgiving, and personal relationships are meant to be personal. But for many of my fellow freshman, leaving significant others is a reality along with college, perhaps as instrumental as doing laundry for the first time or sitting in a lecture hall with hundreds of other students.
Thanksgiving and on the plane, our conversation was surprisingly normal—the same babble about courses, extracurriculars, current events and home that I could have had with anyone. In high school, my relationship was the only one in my friend group, and it was almost taboo to talk about relationships. Since I’ve gotten to Duke, I’m surprised about how normal it can be to start a conversation about relationships, the number of people who offered to listen and give advice. Over Fall Break, I ended up part of this sort of conversation at 4 a.m.: one had broken up before college, one had been on a break, and one had been in a relationship. In many ways, hearing these perspectives characterized my first few weeks at Duke. Many of the problems I’ve faced in my life have been simple, in that if I gave them enough thought, I could figure them out. Relationships are the one aspect that I’m not sure this applies to. I don’t know much more than I did my freshman year of high school. It’s tempting to shy away from that uncertainty for more concrete and foreseeable things, yet at times, I wonder if it’s this inexplicable and sometimes illogical deviation from rational acts that make us human. Amy Fan is a Trinity freshman. Her column, “fangirling,” runs on alternate Tuesdays.
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WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2016 | 15
Refusing to try: Medicaid Preferences, primaries and expansion in NC voting: A reconsideration
wo weeks ago, I wrote a column in which I considered the future of the Affordable Care Act in the hands of a Trump presidency. I acknowledged then that I was no expert on the politics or policy of the American health care system and I’ll do so again now. This week I’m writing about Medicaid expansion—the most thrilling political conversation-starter out there (a guy can dream, right). In January—shortly after returning to campus for my first spring at Duke—I woke up early to do some reporting. That Sunday, I walked to the edge of East Campus among sporadic flurries of snow and made my way to Watts Street Baptist Church. I was there
have effectively thwarted any forward movement on Medicaid expansion, citing fiscal concerns as the hold-up despite the federal government’s promise to shoulder a majority of expansion costs. Conservative state leaders have called for the reform of the existing state Medicaid system, which has “consistently overspent its budget by billions of dollars,” before any sort of expansion takes place. Cutting out overspending is an important goal, but not at the cost of human life. It’s estimated that 300,000 North Carolinians go uninsured because they fall into the “Medicaid gap.” Without access to regular preventative care, people with life-threatening
s people went to the polls on election, they were faced with two options, to disastrous results. Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are seen unfavorably by about 55.3 percent and 57.8 percent of Americans, respectively. Secretary Clinton and President-Elect Donald Trump were two of the most disliked candidates in modern American politics. How did we get here? At first glance, this might seem perplexing, given that “the people” nominated them in the first place in decisive primary elections. However, a closer looks shows that something else is probably going on here—something that requires a thorough analysis.
David Wohlever Sanchez
THINKING TOO MUCH, FEELING TOO LITTLE
for a guest sermon by Duke alumnus, Rev. Rodney Sadler, who received his Ph.D. in Hebrew Bible and Biblical Archaeology from the Divinity School in 2001. Martin Luther King Jr. Day was the following Monday and Sadler’s sermon was a celebration of the legendary civil rights leader’s life and legacy in an America still learning to recognize and mend racial divisions. After the service, Sadler—who has been deeply involved in the North Carolina NAACP’s health care advocacy and activism— briefly spoke with me about the Affordable Care Act’s implementation in North Carolina and the obstruction of Medicaid expansion by a Republican state legislature. “Not only is it wrong politically, it’s wrong morally; what we’re doing is hurting people and we want to find a way to lift people up,” said Sadler. Lifting people up certainly seemed to be the law’s initial intention. Originally, the Affordable Care Act expanded Medicaid eligibility in all 50 states, extending the program to individuals with incomes up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level—meant to begin in 2014. But in 2012, the Supreme Court simultaneously upheld the Affordable Care Act and gave states the option to opt out of expanded Medicaid, thus placing the decision of whether to participate within the purview of the country’s state legislatures and governors. 31 states have taken up the federal government on its offer to support expanded Medicaid, while the remaining 19 states have blocked the measure. The decision on whether or not to implement has been largely divided along party lines. Only ten Republican governors—including Vice President-elect Mike Pence—elected to expand Medicaid under “Obamacare.” And, unfortunately, none of the ten was named Pat McCrory. Only a couple weeks into 2016—months before the passage of House Bill 2 and almost a full year before the Tar Heel State cast the majority of its ballots for Donald J. Trump— Sadler told me, “North Carolina has a history of progressive politics that have helped people and made us a light in the South, but what has happened under this new administration is we’ve gone backwards.” Reconstruction up until 2011, Democrats maintained control over at least one chamber of the General Assembly, but for the past five years, Republicans have enjoyed the elusive majority. Similarly, the North Carolina Governor’s Mansion was occupied by Democrats from 1993 to 2013, when McCrory got the keys. Since then, Republicans—armed with supermajorities and the governor’s office—
medical conditions are forced to rely on the last-resort of the emergency room. As Douglas McCarthy—senior researcher at the Commonwealth Fund—notes, there is a clear and significant relationship between “access to care and quality of care.” “Many of these people have chronic illnesses like diabetes and heart disease… so [Medicaid expansion] is an opportunity for them to get help, but [the Republicans] refused it,” said Sadler. And if the preservation of human life isn’t worth the extra dollars, doubtful Republicans should look at the economic upside of Medicaid expansion. A 2014 study by the Cone Health Foundation found it would generate over 40,000 jobs and allow the state to collect more than 21 billion dollars in federal funds between 2016 and 2020. North Carolina would have to cover around 1.7 billion dollars in new Medicaid costs, though these would be offset by increased state tax revenue. What’s more, according to a study from the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, rural hospitals located in states with expanded Medicaid had improved chances of turning a profit. Despite all that, it’s hard to be optimistic about Medicaid expansion’s prospects in North Carolina. Even if Roy Cooper wins the protracted gubernatorial race, he’ll face a General Assembly with Republican majorities in both chambers—35 seats to the Democrats’ 15 in the State Senate and 74 to the Democrats’ 46 in the North Carolina House. And if the state legislature and governor were somehow able to get together on expanded Medicaid, the whole thing might be torn to bits by the Trump administration’s switch to block grants for Medicaid—a measure which could very well entail problematic cuts in federal funding. Whatever becomes of Medicaid expansion under the impending Trump presidency, I hope we might learn from the lack of compromise by our state legislature and governor’s office over the past few years. Citing fiscal concerns and reform as justification for rejecting federal aid—aid desperately needed by a sizeable population of North Carolinians—is a little like turning the fire truck away from your burning house because you haven’t yet been able to patch the hole in your leaking garden hose. Like a lot of things, the best way to start making Medicaid expansion work is to actually put some effort toward it. And if these people are unwilling to make that endeavor, maybe they should stop running for office. Jake Parker is a Trinity sophomore. His column, “thinking too much, feeling too little,” runs on alternate Wednesdays.
The fact that the general public dislikes the candidates at such high levels might indicate that our electoral system is broken and failing to do its job. The current thought is that the purpose of a primary is to select nominees who reflect the preferences of those in the party. This is an ethical dilemma that comes to the root of our political philosophy, which professes that the people are the sovereign and our leaders are accountable to us. When our preferences are being so egregiously represented by the choices available to us on the ballot, something is clearly amiss. This indicates at least three considerations we must make to ensure that our elections properly reflect the collective voice of the people. First, we need to look at rank voting and other innovative methods that more fully reflect the preferences of the electorate. Rather than having people cast a vote for only one person, voters would have the chance to rank their preferences, creating a fuller representation of the voice of the public. The most promising system seems to be the instant-runoff style, where “ballots are initially counted for each elector’s top choice. If a candidate secures more than half of these votes, that candidate wins. Otherwise, the candidate in last place is eliminated and removed from consideration. The top remaining choices on all the ballots are then counted again. This process repeats until one candidate is the top remaining choice of a majority of the voters.” One advantage is that the vote wouldn’t be so easily split between candidates with likeminded supporters. For example, this year, people whose first choice is Gary Johnson but prefer Secretary Clinton to Trump could rank Johnson first, Clinton second and Trump third, without enabling a Trump victory like they would now. Countries like Australia, the Republic of Ireland, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, India and Canada use instant runoff voting to at least a degree, with good results. The voters of Maine voted on a ballot initiative to implement ranked-choice voting. Our own Duke Student Government utilizes rank voting. Clearly, this is something to consider. Second, we must reevaluate primary eligibility requirements and how primaries
are conducted in general. In a recent Gallup poll, it was found that about 42 percent of Americans self-identify as independents. However, 24 states utilize completely closed primaries, and five more states feature Republican primaries that are closed. The rest are a mixed of semi-open and open. The system as it stands opens us up to all kinds of problems. Some partisans reject this proposal, but one recent poll found that 63 percent of Democrats would prefer an open system. Existing restrictions at least deserve a second look. We must also revisit the existence of the Democrats’ superdelegates, whose purpose remains unclear. The relic of a bizarre 1980
Democratic primary battle, superdelegates at least pose the potential to not only skew perceived advantage in the race but also create undemocratic outcomes. Even though they did not swing the 2016 Democratic primary, it was a little unsettling that Secretary Clinton had a 45:1 superdelegate advantage over Senator Bernie Sanders back in November 2015. The 712 superdelegates make up under a third of the total needed for nomination, but their need for their existence is still unclear. For what ought to be a decision by the people collectively, superdelegates are at best unnecessary and at worst dangerous to democracy. Lastly, we must encourage political participation and voter education. In our most recent presidential primary cycle, 57.6 million people turned out to vote. However, 129,085,410 people turned out to vote for president in the 2012 general election. What that meant this year is that only 9 percent of Americans voted for Trump in the primaries, but 100 percent of voters saw him on the ballot. Part of the solution involves opening up primaries, but driving up voter participation in primary elections ensures that our choices on the general election ballot more closely match the preferences of the electorate. Something about our voting system is just off. And this isn’t all—we also face issues with voter education, voter registration, voter turnout, gerrymandering, and many others. And since the stakes are so high, deciding who gets the power to impact millions of people both here and abroad, this is an issue that must be brought front and center as soon as the dust settles in this election cycle. Status quo bias is no excuse to avoid these topics, especially when we consider how dangerous the our current system has become. So on Tuesday, we voted; but now, we must take a step back, look at where we’ve been, and finally ask ourselves those essential questions: how did we get here? Where will we go? David Wohlever Sánchez is a Trinity sophomore. His column, “simple complexity,” runs on alternate Wednesdays. This column was adapted from a piece published in the Duke Political Review on Nov. 7.
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16 | WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2016
A Fracked Gas Power Plant at Duke University? The accelerating climate crisis requires leadership – not an expansion of fossil fuels.
• The proposed Duke Energy power plant would increase campus greenhouse emissions by 61%. • It would increase local air pollution, barely improve campus power reliability and perpetuate the climate-destructive fracking boom. • Methane leaking and venting from US natural gas operations is making the climate crisis rapidly worse. It’s likely a key factor in the record-breaking, three-year global heat wave. • A large excess of regional power means the plant would unnecessarily boost rates for all Duke Energy customers. • The University has many clean energy options, including huge solar power potential at prices lower than it’s now paying for electricity. See NC WARN’s report on an alternate path for Duke University: bit.ly/2eSvrbV.
Building People Power for Climate & Energy Justice
Take Action! Urge Duke University President Richard Brodhead to reject Duke Energy’s expansion of climate-wrecking fracked gas on campuses. Tell him to join Stanford and others using climate-protective energy solutions: President@duke.edu. President Brodhead, we need your leadership to help avert runaway climate chaos.
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