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Admin Quits Over Sex Abuse Claims

Photo Spotlight

By HARRY HUGGINS Editor-in-Chief

Despite passing a criminal background check in 2011, Br. James A. Ligouri, former associate vice president and executive director of Fordham’s Westchester campus, resigned July 20 after a claim that he sexually abused a child was made public. According to a story posted on the website of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP), the alleged victim, known as John Doe, filed on July 19 a claim in bankruptcy court alleging sexual abuse by Liguori. The alleged incidents occured in 1969, when the victim attended the Cardinal Farley Military Academy in Rhinecliff, New York. Liguori is a member of the Edmund Rice Christian Brothers, formerly known as the Irish Christian Brothers. Two days later, on July 21, Fordham sent an email to the community expressing their awareness of the allegations against Liguori and his subsequent resignation. The email from Father Joseph M. McShane, S.J., said Liguori passed a criminal background check when he was hired in 2011. Fordham uses A-Check America for background checks on new hires. One recent hire who wished to remain anonymous described the background check process as rigorous, asking for all employers from the last seven years, and even addresses from when she lived out of the country. Fordham’s employment application does ask for applicants to list any convictions, but does not ask for pending lawsuits or bankruptcy claims. According to various sources, Liguori was able to pass his background check because he was never convicted of a crime. A representative from the law see BACKGROUND CHECKS pg. 3



As we return back to Fordham College Lincoln Center, the progress of the construction stands out among the scenery. During the summer, the construction continued and the new building took shape. The new dorms and law school building will open in 2014.

Fordham Among Top 50 Schools For Veterans By MEHGAN ABDELMASSIH News Co-Editor

Fordham was the only university in New York City to make it to the top 50 of Military Times’ Best For Vets ranking. Falling under the G.I. Bill cap, having a relaxed residency and costing under $250 per credit are just some of the categories that make up the Best For Vets ranking. The Yellow Ribbon Program provides additional financial assistance to those in need over and above basic veterans benefits. The Post 9/11 G.I. Bill had, at a previous time, allowed veterans to receive financial assistance based on the highest public institution tuition in one’s respected state. The Yellow Ribbon Program was created with the intention to supplement the veterans’ benefits that are available for education. Veterans who have served

a full three-year commitment are eligible for the Yellow Ribbon Program. The Yellow Ribbon Program is optional; not all universities participate. “There is a major dual benefit to being in school as a veteran on the G.I. Bill, financial security and not having to worry about student loans,” said Philip d’Aff lisio, Fordham College at Lincoln Center (FCLC) ’15 and former U.S. Army Staff Sergeant and Counter Intelligence Agent for the Special Operations Command. “Fordham’s completely open Yellow Ribbon program was a huge deciding point,” d’Aff lisio said. When Congress cut the standard funding for veteran aid to $17,500, many universities reduced their participation in the Yellow Ribbon Program. Universities and colleges across the nation did not have the available funding to provide student veter-

ans with more aid to make up for the reduction that Congress enacted in 2010. Fordham, however, did not reduce its participation. In some states, such as New York, public institutions’ tuitions are high, which resulted in veterans receiving more aid than others that reside in different states. In 2010, Congress addressed the financial inequities that face student veterans. Instead of basing aid on a state-by-state basis, Congress created a standard level of aid that would stretch across the nation. The maximum amount of aid that a student veteran could apply for amounted to $17,500 by 2010. The $17,500 amount constituted a considerable reduction in some states, one of them being New York. Michael Gillan, Ph.d, associate vice president and co-chair of the Fordham Vets Task Group said, “Fordham has not reduced funding or the number of stu-

dents eligible for funding. The only restriction that Fordham has placed on its participation in the Yellow Ribbon Program, of course, is that the student vet needs to be admitted, but once admitted they can count on that support.” Although the Best of Vets ranking demonstrated what separates Fordham’s commitment to veterans in comparison to other institutions, it is the simple word-of-mouth communication that has spread the good word about the veterans program at Fordham. “The reason that we have done well and drawn vets to us is firstly because of the university’s reputation; secondly that we were out there early to make a strong commitment to the education of these young men and women see VETERANS pg.3






Hebrew Homeland

Chinese Adventure

Row Rams Row!


Voter I.D.’s



A poem about what it means to really be in Israel.


A student experiences Chinese politics and culture first-hand.


Fordham rows to gold in the largest regatta in the U.S. PAGE 18

Fordham alumni shows off musical talent.


Regulations become stricter for people to vote. Unfair or justified?



August 23, 2012 THE OBSERVER


Students Share Summer Research Experience By RICHARD RAMSUNDAR News Co-Editor

At the beginning of the summer, 23 students at Fordham College at Lincoln Center (FCLC) received the Fordham Summer Research Grant. The grant allowed students to travel abroad and conduct research with a student chosen budget. The Observer sat down with Evangelos Razis, FCLC ’13, and John Wu, FCLC ’14, two of this year’s recipients.

EVANGELOS RAZIS OBSERVER: What did you research

and what was your research experience like? E.R.: My work focuses on the roots

of the current debt crisis in Greece. Most people who have covered the situation have done so either from the narrow perspective of an economist or, dubiously, of a cultural critic. I’ve argued since the start that this is first and foremost a political crisis. This project was an opportunity to pick up my research where I had left it off a few years ago—illustrating that the problem can be traced back to a social pact reached in the 1980s that consolidated modern Greece’s very young democracy. OBSERVER: Did you work solo, with

other students or with a professor?

E.R.: Because I had spent most of my

summer abroad, my research was carried out independently. Going forward, though, I’ll be working with Dr. Marcus Holmes to prepare a paper that I’ll be submitting to academic journals for publication. OBSERVER: Why did you want to

get involved with the Fordham Summer Research Grant? E.R.: Well, my academic career has so far centered on research. I am grateful that the University has supported me the way it has, namely, by giving me the resources needed to grow as an intellectual. I think of myself as an aspiring political economist, and I wouldn’t know half of what I know about my field if it wasn’t for the summers I spent engaging with the work of some very important thinkers. It was only logical to reapply for the grant this summer. OBSERVER: What did you learn

from the research experience? E.R: I learned more about my

research subject. I was able to refine my argument and add another layer of nuance. But, in general, I was able to better appreciate the different perspectives that the people I read were bringing to the table—and just as importantly, realize the limits of those perspectives. I don’t really respect disciplinary boundaries, so a good deal of what I


The recipients of the 2012 Summer Research Grants pose on the Outdoor Plaza. The grants helped them expand their studies outside of Fordham.

do involves reading the arguments people put out and squaring them with my own. Because the Greek crisis is such a new subject, and there’s not a lot of literature out there, the difference in perspectives is a bit more obvious. I also realized how unique my own work is. You’d be surprised how many people ignore history.

JOHN WU OBSERVER: What did you research

and what was your research experience like? J.W: I am a math major and con-

sequently my research is in math. Bluntly, my research is on Conformal Blocks. If you do a Google search, I think you won’t be able to find something like a Wikipedia page that often does a good job at explaining or at least illustrating subjects in math to people who aren’t in the field. The concept of Conformal Blocks is a subject of study for mathematical physicists, which I am not. What you “need” to study Conformal Blocks, however, is found in math. For at least my purposes and level of knowledge, what one needs is to know about Lie Algebra and Linear Algebra. In short, a Conformal Block

is a sort of function that takes a Lie Algebra, an integer called a level, and a vector called a weight and gives you either an integer or vector, depending on something called a Conformal Block’s Chern class. At the moment most of the uses for Conformal Blocks are found in string theory, I think. The professor (a mathematician) that I worked with thinks that Conformal Blocks can be used in other fields if more research was done on them. Like any experience that takes so much out of a person for so long, it is a hard feeling to describe. Because I am just an undergraduate, most of the work that I’m doing seems inconsequential and incomparable to just how much people have already done. The experience I’ve had revealed even more of the already bewildering world that I am stepping into. I worked for most if not all of the summer and it was a very rich experience. Even so, I was grateful to be a part of something. OBSERVER: Did you work solo, with

other students or with a professor?

J.W.: I worked with Professor David

Swinarski. During the first half of the summer, I worked with a group of four other students. Two of them had more experience in the subject than

I did and had grants from outside of Fordham, another was pretty much in the same position as I was (similar level of experience and grant), and we had a freshman who was around to get some experience but was not really out to find results as the rest of us were. During the second half of the summer, we split into groups because we wanted to pursue different projects but since there were five of us, I ended up working alone. OBSERVER: Why did you want to get

involved with the Fordham Summer Research Grant? J.W.: I wanted something to do over

the summer that was infinitely harder than any job I’ve ever had and didn’t pay anywhere near as much. I’m kidding. I wanted some experience that would be better than just getting a job over the summer for some extra money. Because I am planning on moving on to graduate school, research seemed perfect especially if I get to do research in math. What could be a more meaningful experience than actually contributing to something that you’re interested in? OBSERVER: What did you learn from the research experience? J.W.: I considered the math I learned

because I never would have seen it as an undergraduate. Even being exposed to the nomenclature and process of mathematical proofs was also extremely helpful. There isn’t anything specific I can point to when it comes to experience from working in a group but I’m sure I learned something, even if I didn’t really notice. There were small anecdotal things that I learned over this summer that will probably stay with me. I learned that organization is essential if you plan on stuffing two semester’s worth of material into a month and if you’re planning on using that information regularly. I learned the library is extremely loud in the middle of August because people are organizing shelves or there are inexplicable noises coming from the walls. I learned that my math professor used to be an English major. I learned that waking up an hour later than usual because your professor was busy in the morning is much more invigorating than learning that “class was cancelled” even if you get more time out of the latter. I learned that even after you’ve experienced how brilliant your professor is, you can still hear him say “I didn’t know that until this summer.”

to be extremely valuable especially

New Faculty Excited To Join FCLC Community By MEHGAN ABDELMASSIH News Co-Editor

Fordham welcomed eight new professors to the faculty at the Lincoln Center campus this academic year. In addition to the new professors, there will be three transfers from the Fordham College at Rose Hill (FCRH) to the Fordham College at Lincoln Center (FCLC). The new professors will be located in the English, political science, theater, psychology, philosophy, sociology, anthropology and modern languages departments. Andrew Rasmussen, Ph.D., will be joining FCLC as a new hire in the department of psychology as an associate professor. The student body attracted Rasmussen to the Lincoln Center campus. “Although both campuses are known

to be good, I understand that students at Lincoln Center have more life experience,” Rasmussen said. Giorgio Pini, Ph.D., is a transfer professor from Rose Hill to the Lincoln Center campus. He will be teaching in the department of philosophy. Since 2005, Pini has been teaching at the Rose Hill campus; however, in 2009, Pini took the opportunity to teach a course at Lincoln Center, which left a positive impression upon him. Not only was the student body a factor for his decision to transfer, but so was the faculty at the Lincoln Center. “I found that students came from very different backgrounds and perspectives. A lack of uniformity makes the discussion in class more challenging but also more exciting,” Pini said. Theater Program Administra-

tor Carla Jackson is a graduate of Fordham’s Theater Performance Program, which acquainted her with the faculty and staff prior to her employment. She attributes her success in obtaining a masters in theater management from Yale from her experience at Fordham. Melinda Caron, Ph.D., was a visiting professor at Fordham before becoming an assistant professor of French and comparative literature. “The cultural effervescence of our campus emplacement makes it a fascinating place to evolve, discuss and think,” Caron said. The following professors will also be new to the faculty at FCLC this fall: Andrew Albin, Ph.D., Shonni Enelow, Ph.D, Christine Fountain, Ph.D., Professor Sarah Lockhart, Assistant Professor Dennis Tyler, Jeanne Flavin,

Ph.D., and Jeffrey Flynn, Ph.D. The new hires at FCLC add a unique touch to the current faculty. Their accomplishments are diverse, ranging from producing August Wilson’s plays on and offBroadway to working with West African communities within New York City. The new professors have goals of their own while teaching at FCLC. “As a French professor, I am planning to organize theatre events, and I am very excited to have the opportunity to do so,” said Caron. As a theater program administrator, Jackson is looking forward to watching her students develop their talents and full potential as creative adults. Pini is looking forward to working in Manhattan, as opposed to his former location at the Rose Hill campus. The

opportunity to interact with the law school and the International Institute of Humanitarian Affairs has also made Rasmussen excited and optimistic about his work at FCLC. Leonard Cohen, Neko Case, John Prine and Nat King Cole are just a few of the favorite musicians that the new faculty members to FCLC share. Pini has an ear for Pavement and Sebadoh. “My teenage son is an amazing classical/ rock guitarist. I am his biggest fan,” Jackson said. The new faculty hires take the stage at the beginning of FCLC’s academic year this fall. Operating in a number of different departments, the newest members of the Fordham community will be putting their hopes and goals into motion.

THE OBSERVER August 23, 2012



Seniors Face Issues with Financial Aid By RICHARD RAMSUNDAR News Co-Editor

This fall, many Fordham College at Lincoln Center (FCLC) seniors are facing issues keeping their financial aid and scholarships, leading to run-ins with the Office of Financial Aid and Enrollment Services. Some seniors have said they are having trouble keeping the aid they had from previous years. Carl Bhamdeo, FCLC ’13, said, “This year, I’ve been having problems with their Quality Assurance process. Previous years, the problem has been with other things.” Others like Nazia Kamruzzaman, FCLC ’13, have a different issue. Kamruzzaman said, “I still pay for education regardless of the scholarships and grants I have and all of my paychecks go to my loans, which leaves me with nothing. It would be helpful to have my aid cover more of my tuition.” The Office of Financial Aid at Fordham has not released an official response to the issue. Francoisline Joy Freeman, senior assistant director of student financial services, was unable to respond to questions, citing the busyness of the beginning of the semester. Jaunita John, FCLC ’13, said, “I have had to visit the Enrollment Services window a few times and make some calls to them this summer to get my scholarship infor-


A student expresses confusion as he visits the Office of Enrollment and Financial Services.

mation sorted out. The financial aid office answered my questions each time I approached them, but I’m still waiting to have all of the

information finalized. I would advise other students to keep checking their online account to make sure everything is updated and to


firm representing Doe said that there were never any formal charges filed against Ligouri. Robert Hoatson is co-founder and president of Road to Recovery, a survivors network for victims of sexual abuse by priests. He was contacted by Liguori’s alleged victim in 2008 and worked with him before Doe decided he was not ready to continue with litigation. The lawsuit stems from the aftermath of Doe’s allegations. Although the Brothers stated that they could not substantiate Doe’s claims after completing their own investigation, they did offer to cover the costs of therapy, according to an article on LoHud. com. When the Brothers refused to cover more than one therapy session per week, Doe made his claim to receive the two or three sessions he believed he deserved. Hoatson said that during his time working with Liguori and the Brothers, there was nothing explicit that would hint at him sexually abusing a child. “I didn’t

have any knowledge or suspicion of him having abused anybody,” Hoatson said. “He was a climber; he endeared himself to the higherups, and was moving up the world of leadership at various levels.” The Edmund Rice Christian Brothers have made headlines recently as a series of sexual abuse allegations against them became public. According to Michael Reck, an attorney working on similar cases against the Brothers, these allegations are all coming out now because of the organization’s bankruptcy filing. With lawsuits against the organization piling up across the country, the organization’s attorneys decided that filing bankruptcy would be a better option than going to trial on all of them. As part of the bankruptcy procedures, claims against the Brothers had to be filed before Aug. 1. Reck said a little more than 400 claims came in as a result of them, including the claim involving Liguori. “One question is why didn’t someone come forward earlier,” Reck said. “The answer is because they were hurt as children. Most

people are not able to fully comprehend the nature and effect of what happened. A lot of people can never talk about this. The ones that do, it’s a little later in life.” In New York state, however, waiting has consequences. Due to the New York statute of limitations, it would be too late to litigate now something that happened in 1969. “Organizations like the Brothers will essentially placate the survivor,” Reck said, “and once they know the statue of limitations has passed, they’re essentially left out in the cold. Even if it was reported to the police, they wouldn’t be able to prosecute because the statue of limitations is so strict that if you don’t report by age 21, there’s very little you can do.” In his email to the Fordham community, McShane also expressed the seriousness of these claims. “Fordham’s primary concern is always for the victim in such cases,” McShane said. “It could not be otherwise. I know that you keep anyone who has been so victimized in your thoughts and prayers.”

call the office each time they have a question,” John said. According to Insidehighered. com, Congress cut $10 million out

of funding towards the TRIO program, a collection of federal outreach programs that is also one of FCLC’s grant programs. Congress will channel that money into grants for Upward Bound high school math and science programs in hopes of motivating more students to major in the math and science fields. These cuts may correlate to the issues some of Fordham’s students are experiencing this year. According to The New York Times, New York college tuitions have increased due to drastic cuts of state aid. The issues affecting FCLC students this year have occurred in the past. According to Lesley Massiah, financial grants such as the Pell Grant suffered a loss of 1.3 billion dollars. The Supplemental Education Opportunity Grants (SEOG) program faced financial cuts as well. As a result, shortages of cash for the Pell and SEOG were expected in 2012-2013. The cuts are likely to affect both undergraduate and graduate students. Last year, Bob Howe, director of the Communications News and Media Relations Bureau, released a statement saying, “While the current Pell Grant shortfall received a healthy boost from the debt reduction package, it still faces a $1.3 billion shortfall for award year 2012–2013.”

Fordham Greets Vets VETERANS FROM PAGE 1

when they were returning home; and thirdly simply that good old word-of-mouth,” Gillan said. The FCLC campus has the highest number of student veterans in attendance in comparison to the Westchester and Rose Hill campuses. The high number of veterans at Lincoln Center can be attributed to the availability of the law school and graduate schools. In total, 264 veterans are attending Fordham as of the Fall 2012 enrollment year. The number of new veterans that are enrolled at Fordham for the Fall 2012 year is 38. “I chose Fordham, as I am familiar with the academics of a Jesuit institute, their desire to teach and my desire to learn. I chose New York for the opportunity it presented for independence, education, and culture, as well as a short ride home to my parents,” d’Aff lisio said. “The only setback is we have been to war many of us, we have seen the cold, hard face of reality. Unrelenting in miseries, we have survived, and now we are here, in a

With its Yellow Ribon Program and many veteran students, Fordham has achieved a status as a veteran-friendly institution. peaceful environment.” As part of the Fordham Veterans Initiative, a Veterans Entry Adviser assists student veterans that are interested in applying to Fordham. The role of the entry adviser is to help prospective veterans smoothly apply to their desired program, whether at Rose Hill, Westchester or Lincoln Center. In the message from the Veterans Entry Adviser, Anne Kelly Treantafeles said, “We understand your commitment to service and want to help you and your family members earn a degree that will serve you well for the rest of your lives.”

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Monique John August 23, 2012 THE OBSERVER




ust like the city that houses it, Fordham College at Lincoln Center (FCLC), is full of opportunities for new and returning students alike. When thinking about these opportunities, and as a new crop of students arrives, we at The Observer are reminded of the words of Fordham President Rev. Joseph M. McShane, S.J.: “We don’t insult you with low expectations.” In fact, based on our Jesuit principles, FCLC stresses the accomplishment of great things. Life at Fordham has its bad parts too, as the resignation of Br. James A. Liguori reported in Harry Huggins’ article, “Admin Quits Over Sex Abuse Claims” on page one. There are also perennial problems like the financial aid situation in Richard Ramsundar’s article, “Seniors Face Issues With Financial Aid” also on page one. But these lows only look so bad when compared to our highs in student leadership and stellar academic performance. As a part of the Jesuit concept of Magis (meaning greater glory of God) high expectations are something we become accustomed to at FCLC. These expectations are set in many areas of FCLC life, with our array of award-winning clubs,

FCLC is an institution built upon years of excellence, but we must remember that there is always room for improvement. like The Observer, our professors who are leaders in their respective fields and a range of rigorous yet rewarding academic areas. With more than 50 student-led clubs on the FCLC campus alone, our students’ involvement in these hyper-local communities helps FCLC thrive by not only directly aiding our direct student body but also by helping people outside our two buildings. Local service outreach programs are important in representing our Jesuit traditions as well as building a sense of morality that can help us avoid horrible incidents like the allegations against Liguori. In addition to the clubs on campus, student-led service trips and study abroad

Online Round-Up

programs like that featured in Jewel Galbraith’s “A Spring Course, A Summer Adventure” on page 14 help to build a sense of globalism, foster an international community on a larger scale and create more cultured, sensitive and understanding citizens who can continue to do more good beyond their four year experience at FCLC. FCLC is an institution built upon years of excellence, but we must remember that there is always room for improvement. This room for improvement is the driving force behind the creation, implementation and internalization of high expectations for our entire community, including students, professors and faculty members. The Observer strongly urges all students to try out a few clubs this year, even if it’s not with us. Clubs go a long way toward finding a place in the FCLC community and they’re a great way to meet friends in your first few weeks. Most importantly, it will give you the chance to strive for excellence in a mission that you love, contributing something that makes this school a little better for the everyone in the Fordham community.

Blog Round-Up

Beer Meets Brooklyn VIDEO The Observer’s OBS TV visits the Brooklyn Brewery to talk to co-founder Steve Hindy about the infant stages of the brewery. Hindy, who began as a war correspondent for the Associated Press in the Middle East in the late 1970s, was inspired by American diplomats who imported ingredients to make their own brews. A number of years later, Hindy is now the head of one of the largest distributors of craft beer in the United States and the world.

Famous Authors Turn To A New Page PHOTO SLIDESHOW Who knew “Les Miserables” author Victor Hugo could paint? The Observer looks into the artistic and visually stimulating world of literature’s most well known authors who could paint and draw a thing or two. And we’re not talking about stick figures here; Rudyard Kipling astounds with pen and ink while Kurt Vonnegut sketches his initials into his own self-portrait. Watch out, Van Gogh.

You Get What You Pay For When buying luxury goods, don’t forget to ask, “Is it really worth the price?”... Read more

The Eurozone’s Future? Last week, an Italian newspaper stirred up something of a controversy. Il Giornale–a daily owned by Paolo Berlusconi, brother of the former prime minister–printed a headline... Read more

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THE OBSERVER August 23, 2012

Discrimination is Discrimination

Observer the

Fordham College at Lincoln Center 113 West 60th Street Room 408 New York, New York 10023 Tel: (212) 636-6015 Fax: (212) 636-7047 Editor-in-Chief Harry Huggins Managing Editor Ian McKenna News Co-Editors Richard Ramsunda Mehgan Abdulmassih Asst. News Editor Gabriela Méndes-Novoa Opinions Editor Monique John Asst. Opinions Editor Alissa Fajek Arts & Culture Co-Editors Olivia Perdoch Clinton Holloway Asst. Arts & Culture Editor Brian Bruegge Features Editor Jewel Galbraith Asst. Features Editor Rex Sakamoto Literary Editor Salma Elmehdawi Sports Editor Michael McMahon Asst. Sports Editor Joe Sporacio Copy Editor Anna Luciano Asst. Co-Copy Editors Clinton Holloway Zoë Simpson Layout Co-Editors Amanda Fimbers Tayler Bennett Photo Co-Editors Sara Azoulay Ayer Chan Online Editor Ariella Mastroianni Multimedia Producer Mike Madden Business Manager Mujtaba Mahmood Blog Editor Nick Milanes Asst. Blog Editor Nina Guidice Faculty Advisor Prof. Elizabeth Stone Faculty Layout Advisor Kim Moy Faculty Photo Advisor Amelia Hennighausen PUBLIC NOTICE No part of The Observer may be reprinted or reproduced without the expressed written consent of The Observer board. The Observer is published on alternate Thursdays during the academic year. Printed by Five Star Printing Flushing, N.Y

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Black Conservatives Must Rethink Anti-Gay Views in a Larger Context Monique John Opinions Editor

“Adam and Eve NOT Adam and Steve!” is a line my pastor has bellowed in the sanctuary every now and then on Sunday mornings. The soundwaves radiate throughout the pews, just tapping the stained glass windows enough so they don’t crack. Mahogany bald heads and lavish, wide-brimmed hats wrapped in ribbons nod in agreement. Some bold people clap their hands vigorously, yell affirmations or even stand as a testament to the power of his words. I, on the other hand, sit still. Silent. I am not moved by statements like these in the way my fellow church-goers are. I am turned off by them. But I do not protest. I do not even raise an eyebrow to show my disdain. I just sit quietly to avoid bringing attention to myself. This is one of the unwritten rules for participating in my black church community: If you’re young and you disagree with the church’s teachings, but still want to participate in the church, keep your mouth shut. You do not gain respect for being a non-conformist. My church community’s staunch anti-gay views are just something I have had to overlook to stay involved. But all summer, those anti-gay views were something I couldn’t ignore. Dan Cathy, president and chief operating officer of Chic-filA, the Christian fast food chain specializing in chicken, said in interviews that his company operated on “biblical principles” pushed for the traditional family, as evinced by their support anti-gay organizations like the Marriage & Family Legacy Fund, the National Christian Foundation, Focus on the Family and the Family Research Council. found that his company donated over $2 million to these organizations. On marriage Cathy said, “I think we are inviting God’s judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at Him and say, ‘We know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage.’ I pray God’s mercy on our generation that has such a prideful, arrogant attitude to think that we have the audacity to define what marriage is about.’” What’s funny is that Cathy’s statements were vague and harmless since they’re so open to interpretation; he didn’t explicitly say anything disparaging or threatening to anyone identifying as LGBT. He could have been talking about swingers or polygamists or people who get married at a Vegas chapel after too many vodka shots. But opposing liberal activists, bloggers and celebrities pounced once Cathy’s “anti-gay” comments surfaced, as well as conservative organizations and politicians like Mike Huckabee


Blacks supporting Chic-fil-A betrayed a group that has faced forms of discrimination similar to their own.

that supported Cathy’s Christian values. The once presidential-hopeful was so enthusiastic about the COO’s comments that Huckabee organized a “Chic-fil-A Appreciation Day” for Aug. 2, in which patrons were encouraged to buy products at their local Chic-fil-A to show their support of Cathy’s comments. It was a nationwide phenomenon—Huckabee’s Facebook timeline is full of photos of Chicfil-A restaurants from Colorado to Illinois to West Virginia with lines for days. In all of the excitement of various articles and protest kiss-ins, college students were now getting more involved with classes starting soon. Advocacy from LGBT student groups has lead schools across the country such as Emory, Duke, Davidson and possibly the University of Maryland to closing down Chicfil-A locations on their campuses. But my favorite group involved in the Chic fil A controversy are black conservatives trailing behind Huckabee. Project 21, a sector of African American professionals in the National Center for Public Policy Research and the Coalition of African American Pastors (CAAP) have spoken out against politicians like Mayors Rahm Emanuel of Chicago and Thomas Menino of Boston that have prevented Chic-fil-A from opening restaurants in their districts. The CAAP has also developed

a campaign called the “Mandate for Marriage,” demanding President Obama to stop supporting same-sex marriage to gain more support from black voters in November. I agreed with Project 21 and Rev. William Owens of CAAP when they criticized opponents for being intolerant when they prevented Chic-filA opening up stores in their cities. Chic-fil-A is a business that has the right to the opportunity to serve people their food items wherever they please. However, I see several things wrong here. First there is the almost embarrassing, familiar visual of droves of (conservative) blacks running to the nearest Chic-fil-A franchise to get their hands on some greasy goodness, showing their love for an old white man. I say “almost”because in reality, regardless of skin color everybody loves chicken. The second problem is that black conservatives are crippling their own efforts for the black community by supporting Chic-fil-A’s sponsorships. As Kristen West Savali brilliantly points out in her op-ed, “An Unholy Alliance: Black Folk and Chic-fil-A” in Clutch Magazine, the donations that Chic-fil-A is giving to anti-gay organizations are ultimately supporting conservatives that attack policies and resources aimed to help black Americans, like Obama’s healthcare reform.

However the biggest problem I see in this is at the core of the issue, blacks attacking the LGBT community, even though the two groups both have histories of discrimination. At a conference for the National Press Club on July 31, Owens talked himself into a trap when he compared the backlash against Chic-fil-A’s biblical views to the struggles black activists faced during the Civil Rights Movement. He lamented over people trying to silence blacks, denying them basic resources in education and housing, and targeting them for hate crimes. I believe that no other race has suffered as much as black people have. Look closely at the gaps in academic and economic achievement, the frequently misrepresented historical narratives, and Du Bois’ never ending double consciousness and you’ll think the same. But blacks are not the only ones who have suffered. Just as blacks have to fight stigmas that they are sub-human, mentally inferior and criminal sexual deviants, LGBT people have to fight stigmas that they are mentally ill, potential child molesters, and have to run from homophobes literally out to kill them. The black struggle is not the LGBT struggle. But experiences of oppression can only be cured with solidarity. Black conservatives don’t need to march in pride parades. They just need to let LGBT people march and marry

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August 23, 2012 THE OBSERVER

Revisiting Gun Control for Fall Elections Recent Surge in Gun Violence Proves that Weapon Use Needs Stronger Regulation NINA GUIDICE Staff Writer

The recent years in the US has been plagued by gun violence. In 2007, 32 people were murdered at Virginia Tech. At Fort Hood in 2009, 55 people were shot by a former Army psychologist, leaving 13 dead. In 2011 in Tucson, AZ, six were killed and 12 wounded, including Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. And just this summer, 12 were killed and dozens more shot at a midnight screening for “The Dark Knight Rises,” another six were shot at a Sikh temple less than a month later. Mass shootings, assault with deadly weapons, unprovoked “self defense”—you name it. The events are traumatizing and subsequently dramatized, and then the world moves on as if it were the same as a brush fire or a hurricane. They’re not the same thing. Gun violence is preventable. You can’t be pro-natural disaster the same way you can be pro-gun. Gun violence happens and it shouldn’t. We live in a country where the color of the leotard of our Olympic champion is enough to spark controversy. So where’s the controversy over gun control? Where’s the outrage, the national conversation? The problem with the national conversation of gun control is that there isn’t one, and this being an election year, the political elite have “more important things” to concentrate on, like massive unemployment, slow economic recovery and healthcare reform. Fair enough, but it’s not enough. The victims and families of these shootings deserve more. An apology, a casual “sorry your loved ones died,


A mourner pays tribute to those killed in the massacre at a movie screening of The Dark Night Rises in Aurora, CO.

sometimes that happens” isn’t going to cut it. It’s disrespectful and irresponsible that the debate about gun control has been shunted to the side. Political pundits on 24-hour news channels don’t get to decide that now isn’t the right time for the gun control debate just because it’s an election year and Mitt Romney’s gaffes are more fun to talk about. When asked about “The Dark Knight Rises” shooting, President Obama said, “These kinds of terrible and tragic events are happening with too much regularity for us not to do some soul searching and examine ad-

ditional ways that we can prevent such violence.” He’s right. When anything, it doesn’t matter what it is, harms the American public repeatedly and horrifically, something should be done about it. Senseless mass shootings are terrible. Mayor Bloomberg has repeatedly criticized both presidential candidates for not speaking out to advocate gun control legislation saying, “The fact that criminals, terrorists and other mentally ill people have access to guns is a national crisis.” This is true. Sane people don’t conduct mass shootings, and the fact that there aren’t stringent,

nationwide steps put in place to prevent those not of sound mind from obtaining weapons is abominable. Obama and Romney, if either of you are going to be my president, and if I’m going to cast my vote for you to be one of the most powerful people on earth, the leader of the free world, I want to know certain things. I want to know your views. I want to know what laws you’d like to enact. I want to know how you’re going to protect me and the people I love from being slaughtered by a gunman with military grade weapons. Presidential candidates dodge

questions all the time, and though it’s infuriating, it’s an accepted necessary evil of the political process. Some issues however, like gun control, are too dire to put aside. We have to talk about it, asking questions like: What does “well-regulated militia” mean? Does the Second Amendment protect concealed assault weapons? Do military grade weapons fall under the amendment? Do background checks and waiting periods lower crime rates? Does gun control lower gun crime? Someone (me) is asking these questions. Candidates, please answer them.

Young Hires’ Biggest Hurdle: Ageism Discrimination Against Young People in the Workplace Needs to be Taken More Seriously a requirement for success. In the process of doing so, we are undermining our potential and feeding into the notion that one needs years in order to gain respect.


Contributing Writer

It wasn’t until the fall of last year that I began to worry about finding a job. I had always felt confident that my skills and hard work would eventually lead me to a strong career after college. Occasionally whispers of “recession” and “unemployment” would awaken a few butterflies in my stomach, but they were easily dismissed. With two solid internships under my belt, good grades and language skills to boot, I obviously had nothing to worry about. Job hunters would be vying for my attention when the time came, wouldn’t they? I soon found out just how wrong I was. Our generation has a new evil to face in the job market, and it’s not the economy. It’s our age. Ageism is a culturally constructed attitude that permeates our daily interactions in ways that are sometimes too overt to ignore. To many potential hirers, a young age spells out one thing— inexperience. Too many times have I witnessed a completely qualified, ambitious individual turned away from an entry-level job in favor of a more senior candidate with a graduate degree. In an ideal world, shouldn’t these older candidates be placed in the higher positions for which they also qualify? In my personal experience with two internships, I was often disturbed by the way my peers treated me. Others will adopt condescending or patronizing tones when speaking to a younger hire, as if subject matter must be simplified in order for us to understand it. I have encountered anger from older hires when I am

Ageism is a force to be reckoned with, and we must acknowledge how it affects our daily interactions.


Determined and talented young working individuals prove that youth does not hinder their capabilities.

given more responsibility—and what for? We are tasked to do the jobs which we are qualified for. Clearly, something is amiss in the working world. Many of my peers share this sentiment. Monica, 23, recently entered the job market after graduating with a solid 3.7 GPA in business studies from New York University. While she managed to land an impressive position with a bank in New York City, she felt discouraged from the start among her colleagues. “I felt like my age held me back. As the new hire, I was assigned the most menial tasks. I felt that I did not have the proper standing to voice my ideas.

My initiatives were not recognized, and I felt as though I was working as an intern rather than a budding professional.” Monica and I have no doubt that our years are putting us at a disadvantage. As students preparing to leave the academic world behind, we must all be ready to face this kind of discrimination with our heads held high. Age discrimination against the young is real and it is becoming increasingly relevant. According to a study by The New York Times, the unemployment rate for 20-24 year olds was 13.2 percent in April 2012. Compare this to the Department of Labor’s reported statistics for older

age groups: the unemployment rate was 6.3 percent for workers aged 25 to 34 in September 2012, which in turn was almost double the 3.9 percent unemployment rate for employees 55 and older. The proof is in the numbers. As graduation approaches, we feel immense pressure to cover our resumes with a list of impressive achievements and skills that may be unrealistic for us to have so early in our careers. Some scramble to balance multiple internships with a full course load out of fear for their prospects, while many others have opted out of the job hunt altogether, convinced that a graduate degree is

The solution lies in our attitudes, and in our awareness. Ageism is a force to be reckoned with, and we must acknowledge how it affects our daily interactions. We must work to build the perception that our generation is qualified, innovative and hard working by refusing to settle. And so, to my fellow graduating class, I say this: Continue to aim high and have the ambition to apply for the jobs for which you are qualified. Practice assertiveness in the workplace. Have the courage to suggest new ideas and voice your expectations. Demonstrate your education; it’s something older employees may have begun to forget. Most importantly, utilize your individual skill set with confidence. Each of us has something unique to bring to the workforce. With our actions, we can remind firms that younger hires bring creative energy, fresh perspective and willingness to break new ground, traits that are indispensable in a slouching market. We’ve worked hard to begin molding ourselves into the successful professionals of the next generation, and we deserve nothing less than the best.


THE OBSERVER August 23, 2012


Despite Doubt Our Generation Will Succeed Alissa Fajek

Asst. Opinions Editor

The setting is early 2000s and it’s a blistering June morning. It’s your middle school commencement ceremony. You sit alongside your peers, awkward and uncomfortable, waiting for a change. You’re headed up to high school and you’re convinced your life will do a complete 360. You imagine getting your braces off, trading your glasses for beer goggles and your bike for a new set of wheels. Your principal is giving the graduation speech, saying that you all are the future. Fast forward near a decade, and your time has come—you’re an adult. Our generation is unlike any that has come before or after us. We have opportunities and grew up with limitless information right at our fingertips. It is a changing world, and we are in the driver’s seat. This alone should make us the strongest, most powerful generation to date. However, many people of the older generation disagree. Robert J. Samuelson of The Washington Post was reported in Newsweek as calling our generation “generation screwed,” and Samuelson himself preferred “generation squeezed” to describe our current societal standing. Samuelson explained that this is because of the lingering effects of the recession on the job market and the economy. His concern for our generation is that we are not able to handle what is coming our way and therefore will not live up to the notion of having a “better future” than the generation prior.


Today’s young people have technological skills that put them at an advantage in the workforce.

My response is that our generation is not “in trouble,” because we are a mob of slackers, but because the older generation has created this doubt in us. I take the accusations about as seriously as the older generation in the ’50s and ’60s who deemed rock n’ roll as the soundtrack to satanic worshipping—this is just the ignorance of a generation too different to understand its succeeding one. When this is changed, or more of the older generation retires, the younger generation will undoubtedly not only fill their shoes, but make room for our own growth and succeed in these positions. Furthermore, we are technologically more advanced than generations prior, and so have a competitive edge

in today’s workforce. It would only make sense that we would be in the lead in the job market, except for one problem: The ball isn’t in our court. We are out there with skills that are definitely valuable in many job markets. We’re trying. The problem, though they fail to believe so, is our elders. Many employers will not hire young people because of lack of faith in our generation to get a job done, or hire those with little to no experience. As Kat Kaze points out in her article, “Younger Hires’ Biggest Hurdle: Ageism,” this becomes a very frustrating rotation of getting denied for jobs and getting told you need more experience but no one will hire you to give you experience because of the ageism that exists in certain career pools.

Also, let’s not forget that we are a financial mess because of our predecessor’s actions, not our own. As a younger generation we sat back and watched, unable to alter the situation that would one day become our own to handle. It is bad enough that we are stuck in the turmoil that was caused by them, but then to be looked down upon for being in is truly a shame. Our generation is already on its way to changing things, but navigating the financial issues of today to create a better future will take time. We are starting families later and prioritizing our degrees and careers in ways that older generations did not. The older generation should see that we have been faced with much more at a younger age than they did, and

we are still working through it—only serving as proof that we are determined and strong and they should have faith in us. Many job markets, such as those in advertising, music, journalism, public relations, etc., are actually searching for younger people because our world is becoming more and more digitalized every second of every day. Because we’ve grown up in such a technological revolution, catching on to these advances like social media and computer programs is a cinch to us, whereas it is quite complicated to someone who has to learn it brand new and isn’t accustomed to it. In my own experience, my familiarity with computers, social media and technology has only helped me achieve in my field of study. Last year, as a freshman at Fordham, I quickly climbed the rungs of the non-profit organization Girls Who Rock to become the director of technology. I ran the website and managed many social media aspects of the organization. Girls Who Rock is entirely made up of women under the age of 30, and youth is our most valuable asset as professionals because of our familiarity and natural ease into social media. If more young people were given the same opportunities, it would be seen that we are capable of much more than what is thought. I am a determined young woman and so far, I’ve been successful in all of my endeavors. Not despite my age, but because of it. The older generation may be afraid for us, but that is merely a parental instinct kicking in or a severe lack of faith in us. When they see how we handle all that they have left us with, maybe then they realize how strong we actually are.

Are the Stricter Voting Laws Fair to Americans? POINT


Yes, Voting Integrity Must Be Protected

No, They Impede the Democratic Vote

Will Bergesch

Contributing Writer

The squabbling about the voter ID laws that has gone on for weeks has left me bewildered. These laws now require some type of official ID to vote. These laws (written by Republicans) are controversial because they will likely limit voting by minorities, senior citizens, young adults, college students and the poor—all constituencies expected to largely cast their ballots for President Obama on Election Day. The GOP’s defense is that the laws are not political and are necessary to prevent voter fraud. Democrats, on the other hand, respond saying that there have been fewer than—for example, in Pennsylvania since 2004—four reported cases of voter fraud, out of four million ballots cast. The reason I’m perplexed however is this: We’ve already had this argument, way back in 2008. Gather around children, and I’ll tell you the story of Crawford v. Marion County Election Board. It’s riveting. Trust me. A 2005 Indiana law requires all voters casting a ballot in person to present a US or Indiana photo ID. Under the law, voters who do not have a photo ID may cast a provisional ballot, and their votes will be counted if they visit a designated government office within 10 days after the election, either bringing a photo ID then, or signing a statement saying that they cannot afford one. This case, decided in 2008, saw the conservative wing—Justices Roberts, Kennedy, Alito Scalia and Thomas—of the Supreme Court come together to support it. The actual “majority opinion” however, was written by one of the leaders of the liberal wing of the court, Justice Stevens. Obviously someone should object if a Republicancontrolled legislature is passing a law that will swing the pendulum their way in an election. But why not the individuals, who are being marginalized? Where are they? I want to hear from them, not the Democratic Party—not from politicians and pundits whose political future is potentially going to suffer. That’s because if it’s the Democratic Party doing the objecting, then it’s not really about the issues of “fairness” or “equity” anymore is it? No. It’s more

an issue of “We’re angry that they’re making us lose.” I want to see people—who are actually going to be denied their right to vote—protesting in the streets, rather than partisan spin doctors protesting on Channel 46 in “The Situation Room” with Wolf Blitzer. Otherwise, all I’m getting is that one side is angry because the institutional goal of their party (to be elected) is in danger. It kind of undermines the whole “justice” and “equity” deal. I don’t see those people. Perhaps it’s because the Crawford case was making a fair point when it noted that there was an equal difficulty on the other side in producing anybody who seemed categorically unable to vote as a result of the new law. So then, let’s examine the actual issue of voter fraud. After all, that’s gotta be a pretty solid slam dunk. If there’s no voter fraud, then that’s just a fact. Right? Well that one isn’t nearly as simple to explain either. Or at least, it shouldn’t be. The whole “only x-number of reported cases” (where “x” is a small, small number) makes a good sound byte, but whenever I hear it, I always chuckle a little bit to myself. Talking about “detected cases of fraud” always strikes me like talking about “thieves who have been caught.” The problem isn’t the ones we’re catching, it’s the ones we’re not catching. As a philosophy major I’m not going to ask you to accept an argument that says “the lack of evidence is proof of a problem.” But think about the “potential for abuse” in light of the fact that the Indiana case noted that over 44 percent of the names registered on the voting rolls were duplicates, or deceased. Like the court, I am of the opinion that you can impose burdens in response to a legitimate problem. It’s just that for me, the risk of fraud is a legitimate enough problem. Why would anybody in their right mind wait for this to “get worse” when it can be nipped in the bud now? In the event that were to happen, as the court noted, then nevermind the burden or the impact on the outcome of a close election; the impact would lead to a general loss in confidence in the institution of voting, altogether. The different ways in which Indiana’s law in 2008 or Pennsylvania’s (and any other states’) law affects different individual voters are no different than the ways that any law differently impacts any particular American. Those arguing that “people will be refused a fundamental right” have got to acknowledge that the same importance they attribute to that fundamental right swings the other way too—it’s kinda worth protecting. Just a little.

NINA GUIDICE Asst. Blog Editor

If it looks like voter suppression and acts like voter suppression... do we still call it anti-voter fraud legislation? I’d say no. In recent years, and especially in the upcoming 2012 elections, legislation has continually been put in place to promote the requirement of voter identification. You need a photo ID in order to vote, otherwise you’re probably a fraud, so say supporters of the legislation. The crux of the matter is that strict voting laws, especially voter ID laws, address a problem that doesn’t necessarily exist. Yes, voter fraud does happen. And yes, stricter voting laws, in theory, protect elections from voter fraud. Furthermore, having photo identification has its advantage. It gives a citizen immensely more freedom than a citizen who goes without. But voter fraud does not as much as supporters of voter ID laws claim. Opponents of voter ID laws aren’t arguing that identification is a bad thing. They’re arguing that for the purpose of the law, they’re largely unnecessary and even harmful to the efficacy of the elections. Voting has its costs to begin with that the average citizen has to take into consideration. These costs include the cost of transportation, taking time off work, finding a babysitter and being an informed voter. There isn’t much a government can do to increase the benefits of voting, so it remains the job of the government to reduce the costs as much as possible. However, voter ID laws, and other stringent voting

requirements, put undue burden on a significant portion of the population. These burdens naturally force people to opt out. A population that often has to opt out is the ten percent of Americans that lack what would be considered an acceptable ID. Those in that 10 percent tend to be of low income, elderly, urban residents—some coming from immigrant homes— that tend to vote as Democrats. According to one study by the Brennan Center, approximately 500,000 otherwise eligible voters live more than 10 miles from the nearest voter ID distribution center and are without easy access to transportation. Race and wealth play a big role, as voter ID-issuing offices are often placed in areas that are outside the neighborhoods of minority groups and far away from poorer areas. Some are open at irregular hours. To obtain those IDs, you need documents, and for those that don’t have them, they have to cough up more money. So then, the “free” voter ID cards aren’t necessarily free. The statistics make it obvious that these laws have partisan, rather than civic, undertones. Proponents are overwhelmingly Republican, and the laws hinder the Democratic vote in the upcoming 2012 elections. The implementation of these laws keeps otherwise eligible, responsible voters from going to the polls, and that’s what’s wrong about it. That old axiom, “rather 100 guilty men go free than one innocent man be imprisoned” easily could be altered to describe those affected by voter ID laws. If the laws keep even one rightful voter from the polls, they are a failure, and any law that fails to honor the citizens of the United States shouldn’t be a law at all.

Arts & Culture

Clint Holloway, Olivia Perdoch, oliviaperdoch@gmail. August 23, 2012 THE OBSERVER

FCLC Alum Rocks Out with “Family Band” of Sorts

By MIKE MADDEN Multimedia Producer

Even though no one is related, Doug Zambon, Fordham College at Lincoln Center (FCLC) ’11, talks to The Observer about the family-like closeness of his band, The Vansaders, and his musical experiences at Fordham. OBSERVER: Tell me how you be-

came involved with The Vansaders. DOUG ZAMBON: We’ve been

together for a year-and-a-half with some member changes and different names. We had one guitarist, then a different guitarist, a keyboardist. We changed a lot since then. The bass player and guitarist saw me playing at an open mic. So we started talking and decided to start something up. OBSERVER: The name “The

Vansaders” comes from the last name of your drummer. How did you guys come to agree with that? You could have been called “The Zambons.” D.Z.: We shot around so many

ideas and none seemed to be OK with anybody. Then we kind of shouted out (the last name of the drummer) and we said, “Hey that’s cool. We’re friends. We can be a family,” (laughs). The drummer at first didn’t really know what to think because he knew his name was going to be on T-shirts and stuff like that. But then he came around and settled on it.


OBSERVER: Did playing club

Doug Zambon, FCLC ’11 (left with sunglasses), poses with his band, The Vansaders. Zambon plays guitar.

D.Z.: Definitely. Fordham was

folk bands like Mumford & Sons and The Avett Brothers. There’s so much electronic stuff now and I think people are turning more to the traditional sound and going with that.

events and fundraisers at Fordham cultivate your playing in any way, be it live or with other people? really good with having events to perform at. To improve as a musician and performer, you need to be put in that situation all the time. Fordham definitely facilitated that. OBSERVER: The band has a rol-

licking, Americana punk sound. Do you think that type of style is making a comeback, is in decline, or do you think it’s always been there? D.Z.: I feel that there have been

acts that display this country-ish, punk rock stuff before. Frank Turner does it and so does Andrew Jackson Jihad. There’s definitely a scene for it. Then you got the other end where it’s straight up

OBSERVER: Did you ever feel a

sense of community with Fordham’s music scene or musicians? D.Z.: There were so many people

during my time there where I could just go to their dorm room and start playing with them during the day. I was impressed by the closeness of the community. So many people had a similar experience as I did. There would room jams with 10 people with instruments hanging out all the time. That’s crazy to me. I wasn’t expecting that at all. I hope it’s still like that.

OBSERVER: So it’s safe to say you

weren’t expecting this strong of a music scene/community at Fordham when you arrived?

D.Z.: I was really hoping it would.

A school in the city like Fordham would most likely have a music scene but I didn’t know if it was gonna be fun, have a style. I thought it was just gonna be DJs spinning stuff all day. Since that’s not what I do, I didn’t know if it was going to work but, fortunately, it did. OBSERVER: Who do you cite as

influences on your guitar playing? D.Z.: All sorts of stuff. I really like

Willie Nelson. I think he can play really well. He’s a lead player with a nylon string guitar. I still play a lot of blues, so all those guys are

big influences on me: B.B. King, Rory Gallagher and Peter Green. They’re all influential to me. I got into jam bands like The Allman Brothers for a while. This band opened me up to rhythm guitar too. I grew up playing lead guitar. Once I started playing with these guys, I realized I had to brush up a bit. It made me a much better guitar player. OBSERVER: Did you write songs

for the EP or was it done as a collective? D.Z.: We all contributed to the

songs musically, lyrically and melodically.

OBSERVER: There are probably

more than 100 upcoming bands in New York City at any given moment. What do you guys bring to

the table? D.Z.: We write songs about good

times. Or good times gone wrong (laughs). The kind of music we play makes me bouncy and I feel it makes other people bouncy. It’s fun; it’s danceable. We get the crowds drinking and dancing. A lot of bands have different feels; some are more mellow. I love mellow music but I’m glad the stuff we worked on is up tempo, kind of “jumping around” type stuff. OBSERVER: What’s next for you

and The Vansaders?

D.Z.: We’re gonna play as much as

we can. Keep writing songs. We have a full-length record, but we took some songs from that to make the EP.

All the World’s a Stage: Interactive Play Provides a Night To Remember By CLINT HOLLOWAY Arts & Culture Co-Editor

A blend of several modes of artistic expression, as well as a subversion of their predicted functions, interactive off-Broadway play “Sleep No More” conjures up a thoroughly original and utterly beguiling experience. While it is not as frightening as the title makes it out to be, “Sleep No More” makes for a night that is hard to forget. The format of “Sleep No More” is quite unlike anything you have encountered before. While it acknowledges Shakespeare’s “Macbeth” as inspiration, there is no clear, definite plot to the events that it presents. In addition, the performers that populate the space do not even speak. Instead, “Sleep No More” offers a less straightforward and more abstract experience. Attendees are handed masks and given free reign to explore several floors of the McKittrick Hotel, a Chelsea warehouse that has been painstakingly transformed to resemble parts of a hotel from the early 20th century, and expected to observe the wordless yet expressive trysts and interac-

tions of its inhabitants. The fact that there are more than a dozen actors simultaneously performing within the space means that you see happenings that others won’t and may be inclined to follow the travails of one particular performer— the experience to be had is completely subjective. You are given the enticing opportunity to make the story up for yourself. And what an intense and immersive story it is. Although the space that the work takes place in is called the McKittrick Hotel, it also includes unsettling areas decorated to resemble locales such as a graveyard and an insane asylum. The activities of the inhabitants, which include everyone from a man methodically sewing to a particularly athletic couple partaking in a round of erotically charged acrobatics in a cramped phone booth in the hotel lobby to what can best be described as a strobe light dance party, are all laced with differing levels of eeriness and uneasiness. We do not know exactly what these figures are up to and what the motivations and ramifications are, but it does not feel right. The per-

formers remain steadfastly unaware of the attendees with the exception of a few instances when a performer may break the fourth wall when a lucky audience member is brought to his or her attention, resulting in a temporary connection that may involve taking the audience member by the hand and parading the audience member around the vicinity or making the audience member the subject of the actor’s gaze. One may interpret the audience of attendees, roaming around the premises in masks and watching over the proceedings, as the ghosts that are conjuring up the unsettling atmosphere of the events that unfold. “Sleep No More” is not some terrifying haunted house attraction; the effect is creepy but not too much so as to keep it from being at times playfully enjoyable. While esoteric, it is a fully satisfying experience. The fact that you are not able to see all the happenings and know all the events actually adds to its power; upon leaving the McKittrick Hotel you may feel that you are leaving another world shrouded in mysteries and secrets that are just starting to reveal themselves.


“Sleep No More” is a unique work of theater that gives the audience an unsettling and immersive experience.

THE OBSERVER August 23, 2012

Arts & Culture


So a Journalist and a Brewer Walk Into a Bar… Steve Hindy, a Journalist-Turned-Brewer and Co-Founder of New York’s Brooklyn Brewery, Shares his Passion for Historical, Craft Brews Straight out of BK. Cheers. By MIKE MADDEN Multimedia Producer

It’s not every day a brewer can say he’s shaken hands with a dictator or been taken prisoner. But for Steve Hindy, co-founder of the once home-brewed, now internationally renowned beer powerhouse, Brooklyn Brewery, it wasn’t always barley, hops and yeast. Hindy’s story is somewhat Hemingway-esque; the young college kid who becomes a war correspondent; the numerous meetings with generals and soldiers; an observer of death at every turn; the exchanging and enjoyment of beer recipes in Saudi Arabia by American diplomats; starting one of the most recognized breweries in the world. It sounds romantic and it certainly is, but the path that led Hindy to where he is now was no yellow brick road. For most breweries that have come and gone, many resorted to the “family business” mentality, which meant keeping a tradition alive that included preparing an heir responsible enough to continue the work that his father’s father started. For Hindy, there was no family of his own yet. He was just a young kid in an Associated Press (AP) office in Newark. In February of 1979, Hindy took on the responsibility as one of the AP’s Middle East war correspondents. He studied Arabic and was soon in the middle of war-torn Beirut, reporting on the hostage crisis and revolution in Iran. He was then kicked out of Iran until he found his way back in while embedded within the invading Iraqi army. Hindy soon found himself stationed in Cairo, Egypt where he met American diplomats posted in Saudi Arabia. Because of Islamic rule, alcoholic beverages were prohibited in the country, leaving the American diplomats to take matters into their own hands and start home-brews themselves by obtaining the required ingredients through the diplomatic mail. “There was good beer in Egypt, but the homebrews were better than the local beer,” Hindy said. Fed up with sharing the life of a war correspondent, Hindy’s wife threatened to leave him and take the kids if he didn’t come back home to the US. He chose his family over his job and soon took a position at Newsday with an apartment on the Upper West Side. Although he was back stateside, Hindy remained inspired by the tastes and aroma con-


Steve Hindy, co-founder of Brooklyn Brewery (top). Hindy started as a war correspondent for the Alternative Press in the Middle East (right).

cocted by the American diplomats and was soon buying equipment to support his mini brewery at home. As Hindy perfected his early recipes (of which you can actually purchase as kits through Brooklyn Brewery and brew yourself), so did his relationships with his friends and neighbors in giving out some of his homebrew. His close friend and fellow co-founder of Brooklyn Brewery, Tom Potter, a young banker with a Master’s who had been looking to start his own business, was confronted by Hindy in effort to persuade him to drop everything to start a brewing business. “He thought I was a lunatic,” Hindy said. In 1986, Potter attended the Craft Brewers Conference in Portland, Ore. According to Hindy, there were fewer than 30 craft breweries in the whole country. “Tom went in his Brooks Brothers suit and all the entrepreneurs wanted to talk to him not realizing by the end of the afternoon that he was ready to chuck his suit and come with me to start Brook-

lyn Brewery.” Soon after, the duo raised a half million dollars from friends and colleagues to get off the ground. All they needed was a base of operations. With a wife and two kids to look after, Hindy moved from the expensive Upper West Side to the Park Slope section of Brooklyn where he later learned of the impact of Brooklyn’s hand in the proverbial beer barrel. According to Hindy, there were 48 breweries in Brooklyn alone dating back 100 years. “It was a major brewing center bigger than St. Louis, bigger than Milwaukee. But none of those breweries [in Brooklyn] promoted themselves as ‘Brooklyn Breweries.’” With the last of the early German Brooklyn breweries closing down in the mid-1970s, Hindy chose not to submit to a dying tradition but rather resurrect a part of Brooklyn’s glory days. “Part of our mission in starting the company was to bring brewing back to Brooklyn.” Although the Brooklyn Brewery of today wasn’t built on day one,

Hindy struck a contract with the brewery in Utica to produce Brooklyn Lager which was based upon the recipes produced in Brooklyn more than 80 years ago. After the beer was processed, it was transported to Brooklyn and sold door to door to various bars and establishments. The present factory built in 1995 and opened in 1996, is, according to the Brooklyn Brewery website, responsible for distributing beer to 25 states and 20 countries. Most recently, the factory went through an expansion that would double the capacity in 2012 and quintuple it in 2013. Garret Oliver, one of the world’s best and chief practitioners of the craft and Brooklyn Brewery’s brewmaster, released the “Oxford Companion to Beer,” a what-youneed-to-know about the beer and

brewing universe. In many ways, Hindy is at the head of what once was a lost empire; a man who brought back an art of crafting personal, local brews whose taste and camaraderie have been recognized not only as a proud element of New York, but also of the world. Perhaps it’s the journalistic characteristics that have been honed over years in the Middle East and transferred over to the craft beer world; an attention to detail, an over-aching concern to make your product interesting and exciting, and a piece of passion that allows friends, acquaintances and enemies alike to discuss and converse over. But at the end of the day, it’s the journalist turned brewer who enjoys the drink or two the most.

Anticipated Fall Film Disappoints With Predictable Script By CLINT HOLLOWAY Arts & Culture Co-Editor

The common misconception that “women aren’t funny” has taken a serious beating in recent years as a plethora of females working in various mediums have proven to be intelligent, complex and, yes, able to make you laugh. Following in the footsteps of last year’s mega-hit “Bridesmaids,” “Bachelorette,” a film to be released this fall, offers another take on the shenanigans of women preparing for a wedding, with results that are mixed, yet engaging. The movie opens with high school friends Regan and Becky (played by Kirsten Dunst and Rebel Wilson, respectively) having lunch, with the latter revealing to the former that her boyfriend has proposed to her. Despite Regan’s jealousy and resentment over the fact that the overweight and plainlooking Becky is getting married

before she does, she takes on the duties of maid of honor. Two of their other best friends from high school, Katie (Isla Fisher) and Gena (Lizzy Caplan) are invited to also serve as bridesmaids. While trying to blow off steam by snorting cocaine the night before the ceremony, the three bridesmaids accidentally end up tearing the bride’s dress. This leads them on a frantic race around the city to get it fixed in time, leading to mishaps of various levels of humor and taste. The fact that the film shares a similar plot with “Bridesmaids”, as well as cast member Wilson, makes it impossible not to compare the two. However, it would be a mistake to label “Bachelorette” as a cheap knockoff— it is actually based on a 2008 stage play that was written by the film’s writer and director Leslye Headland. The movie is also set apart from the silly, zany tone of Bridesmaids in the way it hints at the much darker aspects of

what the humor implies on the surface. Beneath the main characters’ pretty faces and caustic wit lie endless layers of self-destructive behavior and substantial self-esteem issues. These are women who, despite graduating high school over a decade ago, have never quite been able to get over the problems they faced during that time. That being said, “Bachelorette” never quite embraces these more serious tendencies and simply reverts to being a mostly routine comedy. What elevates the predictable material is the cast, who are able to pull off some of the script’s more outrageous hijinks with admirable energy and aplomb. So while “Bachelorette” may not amount to much in the end, storywise, it makes for a decent showcase for the actors’ comedic talents. “Bachelorette” is now available to watch on iTunes and opens in theaters Sept. 7.


Things go wrong and chaos ensues the night before the wedding in Leslye Headland’s “Bachelorette.”


Arts & Culture

August 23, 2012 THE OBSERVER

PHOTO FEATURE This summer, both photo editors traveled to their “homelands.” While Ayer Chan returned to her home in China, Sara Azoulay took her first trip to her father’s home country of Israel. Their photos explore the people, beauty and the joy of summer in both countries.


A child waits on a bench outside of his school for his parents to pick him up in Macau, China.


A man rests his feet on a hot day in an underpass in Jerusalem.


A boat crosses the Victorian Hopper River in the early morning in Hong Kong.


In Macau, China, this is a famous market to get meats.


In the Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem, a merchant sits outside his shop of gifts.


Children cross the schoolyard of an Orthodox Jewish school inside the Old City of Jerusalem.

THE OBSERVER August 23, 2012

Arts & Culture




Tourists sit outside the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in the Christian Quarter of the Old City.


Two people commute through the deserted lands of Northern Israel. AYER CHAN/THE OBSERVER

People and markets fill the streets of Macau, China.


A group of men jump into a creek in Northern Israel.


An elderly woman sells corn on the streets of Guangzhou, China.


A small fishing boat crosses the Pearl River, in the south of China.


August 23, 2012 THE OBSERVER

Observer the

Editorial Board 2012-2013

Harry Huggins

Ian McKenna

Editor in Chief

Managing Editor

Major: Communication and Media Studies Last Text Received: “HAHAHA” -Ex-Opinions Editor, Colleen Thornhill Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Shake Shack. Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: The free birth control. Fordham Freak-out Moment: “ROCK ME LIKE A HERMAN CAIN.”

Major: Undeclared
 Media Addiction: Kelly Oxford’s Twitter and tumblr are my life Last Text Recieved: “Late to work. Yolo.”
 Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Mee Noodle Shop
 Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: Uploading with Ariella Fordham Freak-out Moment: Waking up late for my Calc final. Don’t worry, I aced it.

Richard Ramsundar

Mehgan Abdelmassih

Major: Undeclared Media Addiction:The RSA.ORG Last Text Received: “Did you happen to catch wrestling this past Sunday?” Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Chicken & Rice Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: The E-Board (They’re awesome) Fordham Freak-out Moment: When I realized that Fordham did not sell Snickers candy bars in the cafeteria

Major: Middle East studies Media Addiction: Streaming Al Jazeera English on my iPhone when I should be snoozing! Last Text Received: “yes yes perfect. We both have a day off!” from my best friend Cat Skolnicki Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: I love getting a Lemon Biscuit or Strawberry Mousse Cake from Cafe Sabarsky located in the Neue Galerie Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: Being in a room full of people with a tip notch sense of humor Fordham Freak-out Moment: Meeting Chuck Todd at the Money, Media and Fight for Democracy Soul event

News Co-Editor

News Co-Editor

Gabriela Mendes-Novoa

Monique John

Assistant News Editor

Opinons Editor

Major: Communication and Media Studies Media Addiction: Callejeros Viajeros (spanish docureality show that visits and explores different countries and their different cities), Spanish Elle and other fashion magazines. Last Text Received: Noemi: gabi, el jueves estas libre? igual hago cenita por el cumple (are you free thursday? i might throw a birthday dinner) Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Farmer’s Market and Murray’s Cheese Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: The feeling that I’m really part of the school. Fordham Freak-Out Moment: Finals! I always freak out during finals.

Major: Communication and Media Studies and African American Studies Media Addiction: Clutch Magazine; “Black Folk Don’t”; “Adorn” by Miguel Last Text Received: “You need to keep your stalkers’ numbers handy so you know when they are calling you” Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Miss Mamie’s Spoonbread Too Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: Production Night. It’s a party It’s a party ayyy.... Fordham Freak-Out Moment: The night I got my first check for the Casey Feldman scholarship. Can someone say happy dance?

Alissa Fajek

Olivia Perdoch

Assistant Opinons Editor

Arts and Culture Co-Editor

Major: Communication and Media Studies (Journalism) Media Addiction: Quoting every imaginable episode of Friends in everyday life, and #twitter. Last Text Recieved: “Call me!” -from Mo to talk story ideas.! Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Cafe Lalo, 2 Bros Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: The people! I would never have met some of the great, hardworking, entertaining people that make up our staff if I hadn’t joined the Observer. Fordham Freak-Out Moment: Having to write this...

Major: Communication and Media Studies and Visual Arts Media addiction: for finding new music daily Last Text Received: “love you” -my mom Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: The Meatball Shop in Williamsburg Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: Getting to interview so many awesome people doing cool things in NYC. Fordham Freak-out Moment: Pretty much every time I look at the tuition bill...

Clinton Holloway

Brian Bruegge

Arts & Culture Co-Editor Assistant Copy Co-Editor

Assistant Arts & Culture Editor Major: Communication and Media Studies and History Media Addiction: Paul Simon Last Text Received: YEAHH!!! Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Rockaway Taco/ Vanessa’s Dumplings Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: I get to stay up past my bedtime Fordham Freak-out Moment: My AP Scores still haven’t shown up on my transcript…

Major: Film Media Addiction: Homeland, Vulture, The Walkmen Last Text Recieved: “Mom’s cookies are ready.” Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: $.99 Pizza Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: The accomplishments and camaraderie of the staff Fordham Freak-out Moment: Free laundry machines.

Jewel Galbraith Features Editor

Major: Philosophy and English Media Addiction: Scott Aukerman’s Comedy Bang Bang podcast Last Text Received: “my moat! my castle! I need you! come to me!” -- from my friend Natalie, Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: I’d be lying if I didnt’s say Chipotle Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: The fantastic editorial board! Fordham Freak-out Moment: You may have read about it in my column last year -- I threw up on the Ram Van

Rex Sakamoto

Assistant Features Editor Major: Computer Science Media Addiction: White Collar and Modern Family Last Text Received: “No worries! Yeah we can!” Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Stand 4 Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: Sitting in the big office chairs. Fordham Freak-out Moment: Being stopped, frisked, and handcuffed by the police for supposedly leaving an “unidentified bag” in a subway station.

Mujtaba Mahmood Business Manager Media Addiction: Suits, Top Gear, Archer, and Jalopnik. com Last Text Received: “Bloody mary, full of Vodka...” Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Brass Monkey Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: Beaing better than the Ram Fordham Freak-out Moment: Walking into a final, an hour late.

THE OBSERVER August 23, 2012

Salma Elmehdawi


Michael McMahon Sports Editor

Literary Editor Major: English and Middle East Studies Media Addiction: US Weekly Magazine Last Text Received: “Whaddup!” Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Pio Pio Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: Observer Dinners and Retreats Fordham Freak-out Moment: Having to empty out my locker at the end of the year.

Major: Mathematics Media Addiction: HBO’s Newsroom, Philly Magazine’s Birds 24/7, and the Avett Brothers Last Text Received: “Rehab, How it Ends, The Sun Keep” (a set list from my band’s show) Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Trattoria Trecolori Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: Being able to put all of my obsessive blog reading to use! Frodham Freak-out Moment: Strangely enough? Finding out that the assistant sports editor position I thought I’d applied for was actually the editor position.

Joseph Sparacio

Sara Azoulay

Major: Political Science Media Addiction: Suits Last Text Received: “Where do you wanna eat dude” Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Moumouns Falafel Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: Seeing the finished project of something that you’ve worked hard to write or edit Fordham Freak-out Moment: When I walked into the wrong classroom and spent 15 minutes sitting there taking notes before leaving

Major: Communication and Media Studies and Anthropology Media Addiction: I watched all five seasons of Mad Men this summer... Last Text Received: “Should I carry him on the airplane” Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: To narrow it down: on 9th ave, q2 has good thai food. Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: Seeing the finished product of our hard work. Fordham Freak-out Moment: I fainted on an airplane when I was on an Observer trip to a journalism conference in California.

Ayer Chan

Ariella Mastroianni

Assistant Sports Editor

Photo Co-Editor

Photo Co-Editor Major: Business and Photography Last Text Received: “Well Ayer needs her beauty sleep too, no?” Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Chinatown Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: We are “not” crazy. Fordham Freak-out Moment: Rams Cafe’s pizza.

Amanda Fimbers

Online Editor

Major: Philosophy and Communication and Media Studies Media Addiction: Instagram Last Text Recieved: “Goodnight peanut” Favorite place to get food in the city: Melvin’s Juice Box Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: Having to know what is going on at our campus Fordham Freak-Out Moment: the beginning and end to each semester. How did I make it this far?

Tayler Bennett

Layout Co-Editor

Major: Communication and Media Studies, minor in Business Media Addiction: Mad Men Last Text Received: “What’s wrong with his face? He looks like a bottom dwelling fish.” Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Penny Farthing, Vynl Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: The people, hands down. Fordham Freak-out Moment: Designing the cover of last year’s Creative Writing Awards...

Layout Co-Editor

Major: Communication and Media Studies (Journalism) and English major and a Creative Writing minor. Media Addiction: Bloglovin’, The Coveteur, and pictures of kittens Last Text Received: “You don’t want to work there. Just be happy!” Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: B.A.D Burger or Food Swings Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: Getting to work with all these people in the wee hours of the night when people get crazy! Fordham Freak-Out Moment: When I got an A in science......what?!!??!?!

Mike Madden

Nina Guidice

Multimedia Producer

Assistant Blog Editor Major: Political Science Media Addiction: Breaking Bad. I AM THE DANGER. Last Text Received: “my teeth are unwise” -- from a friend on pain killers whose wisdom teeth were removed. Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Tuck Shop, the Australian pie place at the nexus of the universe (corner of First and First) Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: The freedom of blogging! Fordham Freak-out Moment: Remember that time I printed out a final paper in class the day it was due? I do.

Nicholas Milanes

Annie Luciano

Blog Editor

Copy Editor

Major: English Media Addiction: Spotify Last Text Received: “Ripley misses you. She’s sitting in your shoe and meowing.” Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Cubana Social Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: Watching Harry dance during meetings Fordham Freak-out Moment: Impulsively taking a bus to Philly to interview a U Penn grad student for my Science Journalism class (on no sleep).

Major: English and Communication and Media Studies Minor Media Addiction: Toddlers and Tiaras Last Text Received: “I would be Hamster Spice”-from my sister Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Halal carts Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: Finding out what’s going on around school and meeting new people. Fordham Freak-out Moment: When I set off the fire alarm cooking an egg.

Major: Communication and Media Studies with a focus in Journalism Media Addiction: Imgur Last Text Received: “Hemorrhoids. That is all.” Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Cafe Mogador Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: Music Production nights with DJ Harry “Poppa Bear” Huggins Fordham Freak-out Moment: When I asked former Editor in Chief Faith Heaphy to marry me via a desktop photo in the office. She said no.

Zoe Simpson

Assistant Copy Co-Editor Major: Sociology and Women’s Studies Media Addiction: Youtube Last Text Received: “How are you lady?” Favorite Place to Get Food in the City: Wondee Siam II Favorite Part About Working With the Observer: Reading through all the articles Fordham Freak-out Moment: The moment I realized I’d had three allnighters in one week… and it was only first semester freshman year.


Jewel Galbraith August 23, 2012 THE OBSERVER

A Spring Course, A Summer Adventure

By JEWEL GALBRAITH Features Editor

At the start of last semester, international studies major Heather Foye, Fordham College at Lincoln Center (FCLC) ’14, didn’t know much about China. But by midMay, she was standing atop the nation’s Great Wall. Two weeks later she returned to the United States, armed with a much more personal understanding of Chinese culture and politics. Foye spent two weeks in China this summer as the study-abroad component of a spring semester political science course called China and the United States in the Era of Globalization, taught by Professor Thomas De Luca, Ph.D. Every Wednesday night last semester, the class met for three hours in Lowenstein, where Foye learned about the changing political relationship between the U.S., the political giant of the past century, and China, this century’s fast-rising powerhouse. But when Fordham’s classes let out for the summer, Foye’s real coursework began. De Luca’s class traveled halfway around the world to Sun Yat-sen University in Guangzhou, where they would live with Chinese students and hear lectures on political science from Chinese professors. In preparation for the trip, the classmates did readings, engaged in political discussions and went on class-specific outings, like a screening at the Asia Society of a documentary about Richard Nixon’s historic visit to China in the 70s. On the last day of class, the students ate Chinese food and discussed their upcoming adventure. Then, it was time to set off for their first stop— sightseeing in Beijing. Wonders of the world Foye and the group boarded a plane for China on May 21, and by nightfall they were in the capital city, enjoying a typical Chinese meal and entertainment by singers and dancers in traditional Chinese garb. The next few days were devoted to visiting some of China’s most famous attractions: the Forbidden City, Tiananmen Square and the Great Wall. Foye’s favorite was the wall, where the group split up, half


Heather Foye, FCLC ’14, and Janet, her Chinese roommate, pose in smocks and hats in an electronics factory.

of them (including Foye) choosing to scale the giant monument. The day was hot and the walk was steep, but Foye was impressed with the astonishing mountain vistas and the Great Wall itself. “I can’t even put into words how it was to see one of the wonders of the world,” she said. “It just goes on for miles and miles.” Foye hadn’t been particularly close with her classmates over the course of the semester in New York—the classroom atmosphere just wasn’t conducive to making a group connection, she said. But as she trekked up the Great Wall with her peers, the group began to click. “Struggling up that hill was definitely a way to bond with people,” she said. Soon, though, the Fordham students would have another group to bond with—the students at Sun Yat-sen. Foreign friends Sun Yat-sen University has three campuses in the city of Guangzhou and is home to around 36,000 students. The school itself, Foye said, was in the middle of a city, like Fordham. But Sun Yat-sen is much bigger, she explained, with a campus

feel. Upon arrival at Sun Yat-sen, Foye was paired with a Chinese roommate named Janet. Janet brought Foye a cake as a welcome gift, and the two became fast friends. They began every morning by eating breakfast together at the university canteen, where Janet would encourage Foye to try new Chinese delicacies each day. When she learned that Foye was a part of Fordham’s a cappella group, Janet took to singing American songs. Soon the two were chatting nonstop. Foye was grateful to have such a friendly Chinese host to welcome her into a country that was so new to her. “She made my experience so much better, having someone to talk and bond with,” Foye said. “She was exactly how a host should be.” Foye was surprised by how well the Chinese students spoke English and how easy it was for the two groups to carry on discussions about advanced political topics. There were a few minor cultural gaps that reminded Foye that the two groups came from different societies. For example, Janet refused to drink her beverages cold, since in China cold

beverages are seen as less healthful than warm ones. Even during the heat of late May, the Chinese students drank hot tea with every meal, Foye said. But more striking than the Chinese students’ culinary idiosyncrasies was how hard they worked to make sure that the Fordham group had the best trip possible. They were unfailingly kind and excited to chat with the American group, and even got the Fordham students into the university’s big performance event of the semester—a singing competition—without tickets. “The Chinese students we met were so open and willing to make us comfortable,” Foye said. A new perspective In class at Sun Yat-sen, the students heard a lecture from a new professor every day. One detailed the election systems in urban Chinese villages. Another focused on female sex workers in Guangzhou and the dilemmas rural Chinese women face when moving into cities. Foye learned that rural women who lack formal education are often forced to choose between working in factories

or as sex workers, and many choose the sex industry because if offers shorter hours and higher pay. Foye said she was struck by the differences in the roles of women in politics between China and the United States. Though China has modernized quickly over the past hundred years, women there have not made the strides in government that women in the United States have. Of the 30 most powerful government officials in China, all are men, Foye said. Despite some of the less democratic systems in place in China, Foye was impressed by the open political attitudes of her Chinese peers. At first, Foye expected that the Chinese students wouldn’t be as receptive to open discussion as their American counterparts, due to their exposure to the intense restrictions on free speech imposed by China’s communist government. She found that the reality was just the opposite. “The students were very willing to hear other opinions and admit that there are flaws in their system,” she said. That revelation, she said, gave her faith in the possibility of a positive relationship between the United States and China for future generations. By the time she left China, Foye had new Chinese friends and a new understanding of how China operates politically. The experienced sparked her interest in China and surrounding Asian nations, and she hopes to learn more about them as she continues her study of international politics. She remembers climbing the Great Wall and meeting Janet as highlights of an adventure that helped her scrape the surface of knowledge about the Chinese political system. Now, she plans to delve further into the subject. “I think [the trip] was a good beginning step,” she said, “but there’s so much more to learn.” Anyone looking to follow Foye’s path and gain firsthand knowledge about China’s politics can look to go on this year’s trip. The same fourcredit political science course that Foye took will be offered again this spring. Students can opt to participate in just the trip or both the class and the trip, which will take place from May 20 to June 2, 2013.


Underground Dining at the Baoery By REX SAKAMOTO Asst. Features Editor

Pop-up restaurants are temporary restaurants that usually operate out of a home, a vacant factory or another established restaurant. Usually they only have service for a couple days before closing up shop. Pop-ups make use of Twitter, blogs and other social media to let their customers know where and when they will be serving their food again. Pop-ups range in prices from just a few dollars to a couple hundred dollars per meal. One of the newest pop-ups to make an appearance in New York is the Baoery, which uses the Chinese bun-like delicacy called bao as its culinary inspiration. A couple of friends from Williamsburg decided that they would like to share the delicious culinary treats they made for each other with NYC. What started off as an idea at a dinner party has now turned into a reality for the Baoery. The pop-up made its debut back in June and since then has made three more public appearances. When I went to the Baoery

it was based out of the back patio of the Trophy Bar in Williamsburg. Each bao is packed with sweet and savory flavors. The Baoery serves four different types of baos plus two dessert baos. My favorite was the Blessed Beef Bao, which was filled with braised beef and bok-choy and topped with crispy onions. The Lop-Cheong Bao had sweet Chinese sausage and meaty shiitake mushrooms glazed in a BBQ ginger sauce. Spicy Dick’s was filled with spicy chicken katsu and topped with cabbage slaw and scallions. While this bao had the best flavor, it was hot. They also have a vegetarian option called the Glazed Sesame Tofu Bao, which was filled with a deep-fried tofu katsu and topped with a sweet and spicy sauce and cucumbers and cilantro. These succulent treats were addicting and I gobbled up all of them. The Baorey’s team of five takes three days to prepare for each round of pop-up service, but the process has become smoother every time they pop up. The Baoery makes everything from scratch except for the steamed bao,

which is purchased from the Lotus Company. Grace Danico, one of the Baoery’s founders, commented, “the experience has been crazy.” The pricing was reasonable: $4 for one bao or $7 for two. Drinks are available inside at the bar. Happy hour is from 4 p.m.- 8 p.m. and drinks cost $4. Later in the evening, the guest band Onra made an appearance and played for a couple hours. I thought that this would my first and last time ever at the Baoery, so I was glad to hear that they already have their next appearance planned for Thursday, Aug. 30 at 6 p.m. at the Trophy Bar. You can find more information about the Baoery on their Facebook page or online at


Baoery Great Price: $ WHERE: 351 Broadway, Brooklyn, NY



Clockwise from top: dinner baos and dessert bao, a view of the Baoery’s kitchen, customers sitting on the Trophy Bar’s patio, the Baoery’s menu.

THE OBSERVER August 23, 2012




From left: Morton Williams, Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s, three grocery stores that are located within a 15 minute walk of the Lincoln Center campus.

A Hungry Lincoln Center Student’s Guide to Buying Groceries By IAN MCKENNA Managing Editor

Before moving to Fordham College at Lincoln Center (FCLC) about a year ago, I was accustomed to food showing up in my pantry. I didn’t know how much to pay for mayonnaise or what kind of vegetables you need to make a salad; basically, I didn’t know how to go grocery shopping. Living on your own for the first time can be daunting, especially when you really don’t know anything about the real world like I did. I had never heard of a Trader Joe’s and Whole

Foods was too sophisticated for my small, rural town in New Jersey. So, in order to make your transition here to FCLC easier, I’ll give you a quick and dirty comparison of the three most popular food stores around our campus. As for prices, I looked at the total amount of money spent for a decent party for 5-6 people (drinks, potato chips, tortilla chips and salsa and two appetizers). Maybe with this information, you could even throw a little getting-to-know-you floor party.

Morton Williams

Whole Foods

Trader Joe’s

Location: 917 9th Ave. (between 58th St. and 59th St.) Ambience: Morton Williams offers a more traditional supermarket experience for those who are accustomed to Stop & Shops, Shop Rites or A&Ps in suburban America. With white tile, bright fluorescent lights and tight aisles, this no-frills shopping experience can sometimes be frustrating. The fresh produce section is especially small compared to the other stores mentioned, but the vast array of foods (read: they have junk food) is often a comfort for people who aren’t truly ready to throw out all of their bad eating habits just because they have moved to a city that has. What I Overheard: “Foster’s. Australian for beer. Gotta get me some of those.” Principles: The Morton Williams website makes it clear that this family-owned chain with twelve stores in the New York metropolitan area serves the community with “each store designed to reflect the needs of the individual neighborhood.” Personal Opinion: While usually not my first pick for weekly groceries, I often find myself wandering in with friends late at night to pick up quick things to eat like popcorn for movie night or Oreos for watching TV.

Location: 10 Columbus Circle (The Shops at Columbus Circle) Ambience: Whole Foods’s location in one of the more expensive shopping centers in Manhattan is impressive, if not a little daunting. The entrance, an escalator embedded in the front lobby of The Shops at Columbus Circle, pulls you down into the world of chickpeas and vegan sausage patties. Shoppers can be split into three groups: Upper West Siders on their way home from work, physically perfect specimens in workout clothes picking up dinner and a plethora of slow-moving elderly people. Equipped with salad and hot food self-serving stations, a sit-down eat-in restaurant and even a bar, this Whole Foods is often filled to the brim with people. What I Overheard: “Mom, can we please stop at the TOMS rack?” Principles: Whole Foods, according to their website, stresses quality in conjunction with ecologically-conscious decisions in manufacturing and production. Whole Foods “seeks out the finest natural and organic foods available, maintain the strictest quality standards in the industry, and have an unshakeable commitment to sustainable agriculture.” Translation: Bring your reusable bag and don’t expect to find Pop-Tarts here. Personal Opinion: While I do appreciate their emphasis on eating healthy and living a green life, I choose to support that cause without spending my money at Whole Foods. While I find it good to stop by for fresh fruit occasionally, I can get more from my money elsewhere. The convenience, however, of being a block away is often the deciding factor for some college students, whose schedules don’t allow for constant bargain hunting.

Location: 2073 Broadway (at 72nd Street) Ambience: New York-specific painted decorations add character and fun to a rather menial task. Employees, usually adorned with tropical tops and accessories, are friendly and helpful. A detail-oriented eye will enjoy the puns, jokes, and witticisms scrawled on price tags and labels. What I Overheard: “I’m pretty sure I have had lentil soup every day this week. ” Principles: Trader Joe’s prides itself on “hard-to-find, great-tasting foods” while still maintaining reasonable prices, according to their website. Their dedication to customer service, ability to buy directly from suppliers and refusal to charge supplier fees come together in their core mantra: “Everyday prices on all of our great products — no sales, no gimmicks, no clubs to join, no special cards to swipe.” Personal Opinion: Trader Joe’s is always my pick. The fresh fruit, the great frozen meals and the warm environment make it a great place to shop. Plus, it isn’t too hard on your wallet.

Cost of a Party: $29.52

Cost of a Party: $34.42

To find out the item-by-item the cost breakdown for a party at each store, go to

Cost of a Party: $28.52


First Impressions Die Hard, Braids Included JEWEL GALBRAITH Features Editor

The first day of school: It’s like a scary version of Christmas morning. You wake up early and are ready for surprises. That initial class session means everything in the eyes of your professors and your classmates: Are you on time or late? A good student or a slacker? Welladjusted, or so painfully awkward that no one will sit in the desks adjacent to yours? It’s a first date with 20 other people and a syllabus. So yes, I’m a little nervous about making good first impressions this August 29. But not too nervous, because I happen to be very, very good at first impressions. Let me cut to the chase: I showed up on my first day of middle school with a full head of cornrows. I know what you’re thinking: But Jewel, weren’t you a tiny white girl with overly long brown hair and a pronounced overbite? The answer to your question is yes. But I had just gone on a trip to visit my grandfather in the Bahamas, and when I found out that getting my hair done into dozens of tiny braids with beads at the end was an option, I was not going to pass that up. Besides, they looked good with my two different Tweety Bird T-shirts. So I traipsed down the halls of my 300-person middle school, where I knew none of the students,

hair clacking. I told anyone who would listen that my main interests were stuffed animals and the movie “Shrek.” After about a week of that winning behavior, a girl wearing a T-shirt that said “Taurus” invited me to an exclusive club for “cool kids.” She handed me the official decoding sheet for the club’s secret messages, with my name spelled wrong right on the front of it. It was only a few days into sixth grade, but “Jewl” was in and everybody loved her. My braids did have to come out eventually, and with that came the possibility that my meteoric rise to extreme popularity would come to an end. Fortunately, I had enough classy, timeless style to carry me through the year. Case in point: my fleece outfit. It was exactly what it sounded like— an outfit made entirely of fleece. The torso portion was a blue and green striped fleece pullover from The Children’s Place. I accessorized the pullover with a black fleece over-the-shoulder bag, which was usually full of pencils and trash. I pulled the entire ensemble together with a pair of black, flared, fleece pants from Old Navy. The look was both cute and static-y. Right now you’re probably wondering why more people don’t wear all-fleece getups these days. I’ll tell you from personal experience: Fleece does not dry well when you spill yogurt all over it in the middle school cafeteria. I made a couple other solid fashion choices throughout the sixth

grade, including a pair of pants so big that when they fell down in the hallway, I had to fashion a belt out of things I had in my backpack (two stretchy headbands and a green carabineer). But my real crowning glory of first-impression-making was my first semester of college. I managed to get sick with a chronic death-cough immediately upon arriving at Fordham. It was a great way to meet people. Everyone remembered my name (“girl who won’t stop coughing in class”). My new friends and I got to enjoy the fun college bonding experience of everyone refusing to share food with me. And my cough was a huge benefit for my roommate, who could use my wheezing as a creepy, middle-of-the-night alarm clock. These days I feel like a pretty big success knowing that everyone in my life knows me either as excessively braided or sickly. But sophomore year day one leaves me even more room for triumph. I’ve already thrown up on a Ram Van, but there are certainly some other moves I can pull to clinch my status as cool and sought-after. So if you see me tripping on my own feet in the hallway or spilling a bottle of water on one of my professors, be sure to say hi. And if you’re reading this before August 29, don’t worry about your first day too much— relax, be yourself, and if you need an eye-catching hairdo to top off your outfit, call me up and I’ll help you brainstorm.


I pose in the Abacos Islands in the Bahamas, sporting the bold new hairdo I would eventually wear on my first day of sixth grade.



August 23, 2012 THE OBSERVER

Four Fresh Ideas for Fall Fun in Manhattan and Beyond By REX SAKAMOTO Asst. Features Editor

As fall approaches, crisp autumn breezes replace the muggy summer air. Around the city, the leaves start to change and people start to bring out their warmer clothes. As classes begin, new friends are made and old friendships rekindled. To me this season of change is the best time of the year to explore New York. So get inspired by these activities and day trips, and don’t deprive yourself of an adventurous New York fall. Fashion’s Night Out (FNO)

Sept. 6, 2012 Time: TBD Website: http://fashionsnightout. com/ The fourth annual FNO promises on their website to be “bigger and better than before.” On this special night, brand name clothing lines and smaller boutiques invite people to immerse themselves in the latest trends and score deals on clothing and makeup. Last year, my friend bought a $5 grab bag from Guess and received a $25 Guess gift card, assorted cosmetics, cosmetic accessories and coupons. Many stores have photo booths, provide free food, give away clothing samples and host celebrity appearances. Be sure to look online at the stores’ schedules to see what events appeal to you. Get there early because it is crowded, but it is also tons of fun. New York Botanical Gardens

Hours Tues.-Sun. 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Admission: $20 If you’re hoping to enjoy the natural wonders of the fall season, ride the Ram Van up to Rose Hill then cross Southern Boulevard to the New York Botanical Gardens. The meandering walkways beneath the fire-colored trees allow you to experience autumn to its fullest degree. On Sept. 23, the gardens will be hosting the “Edible Garden Festival.” The event will celebrate autumn’s bounty with food tastings and more. Later in October there will be a “Haunted Pumpkin Garden” that will feature Food Network’s Ray Villafane, who


Clockwise from top: The Enid A. Haupt conservatory at the New York Botanical Gardens, the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island Museum.

will be carving giant pumpkins into scary creatures. You can find more about these and future events on the garden’s website. Day Trip to Fire Island

Check the LIRR for train schedules Check the Davis ferry website for ferry schedules http://www. Fall is a wonderful time to visit the pristine beaches of Fire Island. Just after Labor Day, this 100-mile-long,

nationally protected island is a peaceful place to ride a bike, take a walk, go fishing or collect seashells. In order to get there, take the LIRR to Patchogue station then take Dave’s Ferry to Fire Island. The total travel time is about 2.5 hours. You can either pack a lunch or buy one from CJ’s in Ocean Beach. If you want to get around the island you can rent a bike at Schooner’s Inn Bike Shop for $25 for the whole day. Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty

Website: http://www.statuecruises.

com/ Admission: $17 Visit the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island and learn how New York became the global city it is today. Take the 1 train down to Battery Park and hop on the ferry. The trip to Lady Liberty takes about 20 minutes so sit on the deck and enjoy the breeze. Once the ferry docks, you can disembark and take a photo next to this iconic NYC landmark. If you want to make a trip to the top of the statue, you will

have to book a spot in advance. Next, hop back on the ferry and continue to Ellis Island where you can tour the retired immigration facility with a 40-minute audio guide. Afterwards you can watch the 45-minute video presentation or continue to the third floor where there are artifacts of what different immigrants brought with them from their homelands. The whole trip costs a total of $17 and you can ride the ferry for the whole day and hop on and off whenever you want.

The Best Of Fordham’s Hydration Stations By JEWEL GALBRAITH Features Editor

There are plenty of factors that go into choosing one’s perfect college, but we can all agree that one is most important— access to water fountains. And most of us at Fordham will say that we did not choose to attend this school so we could spend four years with a dry throat and parched lips. No, Fordham is a veritable treasure trove of artificial springs that provide water that is both delicious and nutritious. But with such easy water access at every turn, the question becomes which of our many fountains to use. Here at The Observer we know that not all drinking fountains are created equal: some have a better flow, others a more ideal temperature. Appearance and novelty factor are primary concerns as well, and the importance of placement and ergonomic capacity should not be overlooked. So with your thirst in mind, Jewel Galbraith, the Features Editor, set out to test every Lincoln Center fountain against the most stringent drinking standards. Here are the results. Best for drinking with a buddy

Highest flow


Lowenstein’s 11th floor fountain.

If you’re a thrill-seeker who enjoys taking water drinking to new heights, look no further than the drinking fountain on the 11th floor of Lowenstein. Located to the right of the elevators, this fountain looks unassuming with its regular metal exterior and loose on/off knob. Don’t be fooled— it projects water up and diagonally backwards higher than any other Fordham fountain. This geyser-like quality is perfect for those who don’t like to get too close to the spigot (germophobes, this one’s for you), but sip at your own risk, because with great water height comes great splatter potential.


This fountain can accomodate two people and a bottle.

Best appearance


The fountain on the 12th floor is attractive and functional.

They say looks aren’t everything but hey, it’s hard not to appreciate the shape of an attractive water fountain. So if finding the most aesthetically pleasing water dispenser is your game, head up to the 12th floor of Lowenstein. Overlooking the stairs that lead up to this oft-forgotten floor, the fountain blends in with the rest of the classy décor. Its bronze color and delicate, sloping form are unique among the fountains at Lincoln Center. Be careful when judging a fountain by its cover, though— its short stature and low flow require a lot of bending over, especially for taller waterseekers.

Picture this: You and a friend are heading back to McMahon after a long day of classes. It dawns on both of you at the same time: You’re thirsty. You could let the situation escalate into a relationship-ending fight over who gets to drink first, or you could stop by the water fountain between the mailroom and the McMahon Hall lobby. This drinking station has not one, but two water fountains to accommodate your social sipping needs. As an added bonus, this fountain is a runner-up for best special feature... it also has a special spigot for filling your water bottle as you set off for class in Lowenstein.

Best special feature

Despite what the masses may believe, water fountain connoisseurs know that sometimes, the goal isn’t just a quick rehydration session. That’s why you should check out the drinking fountain on level two of Lowenstein. Above the tap that provides crisp, cool H2O for your regular water fountain experience, this fountain features a motion sensor-activated spigot for filling water bottles. The sleek design can accommodate even the tallest bottles, and the console also has a counter that tracks the number of plastic bottles JEWEL GALBRAITH/THE OBSERVER saved based on how many reusable bottles it has filled. Whether you’re an eco-conscious water aficionado or Use this high-tech water just someone who needs to fight thirst for an extended bottle filler in Lowenstein. period of time, this fountain is for you.


Salma Elmehdawi August 23, 2012 THE OBSERVER

Two Fordham seniors left New York City behind this summer to embark on exciting personal journeys to the Middle East. These poems capture the excitement of experiencing a new environment and the emotions that come along with it.


In Istanbul The Azann was my alarm clock Majestic mosques were my skyscrapers. The crisp blue Bosphorus embraced me Turkish became my tongue. In New York I wake up to the sounds of taxis All around me are tall buildings without meaning. The Hudson cannot be touched English reclaims my tongue.



A small girl speaks Hebrew a mask of innocence with the sound of severity. The Wind A soldier holds his uzi standing tall obedience paves his fate. The Fire I can see the grey walls dividing up the land and I hold my breath dividing up the land not in fear, but in pain. The Land And in the water, the land is under and it no longer matters the salt will heal your wounds. The Water My father, living in the streets and fighting their war, learned that there is nothing to fear So the wind holds the flag, the land stays hot with the fire, the water is calm And the fear in the air Passes by



Mike McMahon August 23, 2012 THE OBSERVER

Coach Moorhead Talks Football 2012

By MIKE MCMAHON Sports Editor

The Fordham Rams enter the football season making progress and showing of promise. In their second scrimmage, held Aug. 17, the offense managed nine touchdowns. The defense opened the game with a three-and-out, stuffed a run on thirdand-two and blocked a field goal attempt. New head coach and former Fordham quarterback Joe Moorhead brings his expertise and enthusiasm to the team, and his one-time dominance as the Rams’ signal caller should certainly aid the team in answering their biggest question: Who will be the opening day quarterback? Last season’s main competitors for the job, Ryan Higgins, Fordham College at Rose Hill (FCRH) ’13, and sophomore Peter Maetzold, FCRH ’15, have both returned. “The two of them were neck and neck in spring ball and are still neck and neck,” Moorhead said after practice Aug. 12. “Both Ryan and Pete went an identical 13-19 in our first scrimmage. We’re going to keep plugging away until we have enough information to make a decision about who gives us the best chance to win.” Making a decision on the quarterback competition hasn’t gotten any easier for the new coach, either, with the addition of University of Connecticut transfer Michael Nebrich. Nebrich went 8-for-9 passing for 63 yards in the aforementioned scrimmage, his first as a Ram, and chipped in an additional 20 yards rushing. In the same scrimmage, Higgins went 7-for-9 for 77 yards and two touchdowns, while Maetzold had the biggest day in terms of yardage and completions with a 13-for-18 for 131 performance. While the battle behind center has yet to be settled, Moorhead has seen some encouraging efforts toward other positions since taking over. “Training camp has been going well,” Moorhead said. “The team did an excellent job in spring ball, learning the systems and working hard to execute them. They showed great focus. On the offensive side of the ball, running back Carlton Koonce (FCRH ’13) was impressive in spring ball. He’s picked up where he left off, doing a great job in camp, run-


The quarterback competition is heated, with all competitors faring well so far in camp.

ning routes. Defensively, Pat McGee (FCRH ’13), Mike Martin (FCRH ’13) and Ian Williams (FCRH ’14) have all looked good,” Moorehead said. For an unsettled roster led by a new coach, talent isn’t the only issue. How the team responds to criticism and adversity is just about as important. After a rough day in camp, the 2012 Rams showed promise in that department as well. “Well, Saturday’s practice was sub-par,” Moorhead said. Already becoming known for his post-prac-

tice notes, Moorhead reportedly had nothing to say following the next day’s practice. “We told them the expectation level that the staff has for them at practice, and they came out the next day with play and purpose. There was great competition. We’ve talked about earning the right to win.” The scrimmage on Aug. 20, the last day of camp, was all about earning that right. Pitted full teams, one maroon and one white, against each another, looking to emphasize com-

petition. While the quarterback competition became no clearer, it was, again due to solid efforts by each competitor. On the other side of the ball, the maroon defense forced consecutive 3-and-outs to start the game. The promise continues to show for this team, but promise only goes so far. Now it’s all about the regular season. As for the season opener, the Rams will be facing off with Lock Haven University, a team that went winless last season. Such an opponent car-

ries the concern of being overlooked, but Moorhead isn’t worried. “We’ve talked about how we’re going to perform to our highest level. As a team, we need to focus on Fordham. Lock Haven is returning a bunch of starters, including a 1,000 yard rusher. If we want to compete, we can’t afford to look past anybody.” If the approach and the feel around camp this summer is any indication, these Fordham Rams stand more than a good chance to improve on last season.

London Summer Games a Swimming Success By MIKE MCMAHON Sports Editor

It started off shaky, to say the least. Michael Phelps, crown jewel of the U.S. Olympic swimming dominance, started off the Games of the XXX Olympiad with a fourth-place finish and a silver medal in his signature event. The tone of the media coverage shifted quickly from expectant and optimistic to an unpleasant, weigheddown melancholy; it was as though the verdict was in, and the world’s best swimmer failed to go out on top. Now, the verdict truly is in, and the U.S. swimmers have turned any fear of disappointment squarely on its head. Phelps, now the most decorated Olympian of all time, went on to sweep his remaining events. He didn’t just surpass the career number of eighteen total medals held by Soviet gymnast Larisa Latynina, he smashed it, finishing with 22 medals, 18 of them gold. If that number jumped out at you, then rest assured: Yes, Phelps does have as many gold medals as the former total-medal record holder has Olympic medals of any kind. His 19th, the record-breaker, was won in the 4 x 200 meter freestyle relay. It was, as is only fitting, a gold

medal. Latynina, who was present at the race, asked to be allowed to present the record-breaking medal to Phelps and called him “deserving of the record.” He is, by measure of both sheer numbers and by the respect of his fellow Olympians, the greatest. And yet, his was hardly the only mind-blowing performance of these summer games. Ryan Lochte, Phelps’s teammate and competitor, bested the all-time champion in their first event. While Phelps just missed the podium, Lochte took home the gold in the 400 meter individual medley. By the end of the London games, Lochte earned five medals, bringing his career total up to 11 (behind only Phelps in all-time swimming medals). While the talk leading up to the games centered around the competition between Phelps and Lochte, it was the U.S. women who took London by storm, smashing records and grabbing golds left and right. Swimmers Missy Franklin, Rebecca Soni, Allison Schmitt and Dana Vollmer each broke world records. The four teamed up to break the record and win the gold in the 4x100 meter medley relay, three of the four women set individual records as

well. Missy Franklin, the 17-yearold, set hers in the 200 meter backstroke. Rebecca Soni did so in the 200 meter breaststroke, becoming the first woman to swim it in under 2 minutes and 20 seconds, and Dana Vollmer broke the record in the 100 meter butterf ly. Perhaps the most amazing performance, however, was remarkable for a different reason. It was still a number that stood out, but this time, it was age and not just time. Katie Ledecky, a 15-yearold from Washington, D.C., won the women’s 800 meter freestyle, breaking the American record that had stood for over 13 years. Her personal-best time in the Olympic finals stunned announcers and viewers alike, as it showed a fivesecond improvement in less than a month. Some said that the US was always expected to dominate the swimming events in 2012, but they overlooked just how remarkable that dominance turned out to be. From shocking newcomers to the crowning of the greatest of all time, the Games of the XXX Olympiad will be talked about for decades to come. The U.S. swimmers have made sure of it.


Phelps stands triumphant at the London games shortly after winning his record 22nd medal.

THE OBSERVER August 23, 2012



Women’s Freshmen Four Grab Gold at Dad Vail By MIKE MCMAHON Sports Editor

After a long, grueling spring rowing season, the women’s freshmen four managed an incredible feat: They took home the gold medal at the Aberdeen Dad Vail Regatta. Dad Vail is the largest regular intercollegiate rowing event in the United States, and this particular gold was won in no conventional fashion. On the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia, PA, the team consisting of Ashleigh Aitchison, Tecla Di Francesco, Alixandre Azizi, Nicole Arrato and coxswain Rachel Sortino, all Fordham College at Rose Hill (FCRH) ’15, gathered to race, fresh off of a radical shift in their routine. “Just a week before the Dad Vail, Head Coach Ted Bonanno announced that the traditional varsity eight boat would be broken up, putting the team’s priorities upon fours instead,” Arrato said. “We had three days of rowing in this lineup before the biggest regatta of the year.” When asked just what the gold medal meant to her and her teammates, Arrato seemed triumphant. “It proves that a year of hard work, waking up for 6 a.m. practices six days a week, listening to the wisdom of our coaches and perseverance both on and off the water can go a long way,” Arrato said. A long way it went, indeed. After posting the top times in both the first heats and the semifinals, the team put forth its best effort in sprinting the last 500 meters of the


The women’s freshmen four blew away the competition over the final 500 meters.

final, finishing more than a boatlength ahead of their closest competitors. “It was an awesome and thrilling experience coming down the Schuylkill River knowing we were in contention for the gold medal,” said New Zealand-native Aitchison. “As our combination had only been put together the week prior,

we had all thought we would be lucky to get a spot on the podium. When we crossed the finish line, we were all giddy with excitement, sending high-fives up and down the boat. I don’t think any of us could stop smiling that day.” It’s almost funny now to hear that this team would be “lucky” to grab a medal, but perhaps it is exactly that attitude that propelled

the team to win by a margin of more than four seconds. The hundreds of Olympic races won by tenths-ofa-second shed some perspective on just how dominant of a victory these women achieved. At the end of the day, though, they knew this was a total team effort, and credit was given where credit was due. “The girls and I are deeply appreciative for the support of our

parents, coaches and the Fordham Athletic department gave us throughout the year,” Aitchison said. “This could not have been possible without them.” Given the height of the accomplishment, the size of the stage and the youth of the team, there is much promise that the Fordham community can continue to celebrate victories like these in seasons to come.

Yanks Feeling, Looking Dominant as Fall Rolls Around By MIKE MCMAHON Sports Editor

With year after year of playoff berths, division titles and legitimate shots at yet another World Series, it becomes somewhat easy to overlook the Yankees position in the American League (AL) race. This year’s Yankees team, however, is as loaded as ever when healthy, and overlooking them fast approaches dangerous. The Yankees are first in the AL and third in the Major League in win percentage. They sit atop the division, five and a half games ahead of second-place Tampa Bay. Most importantly, they dominated the next best team in the AL, winning the mid-August series with the Texas Rangers in decisive fashion. The first win came by way of walloping offense, with the Yanks outscoring the Rangers, 8-2. The second showed off the team’s pitching prowess, with Hiroki Kuroda pitching a 3-0, twohit shutout. The right-handed Kuroda has done much to silence critics as the summer has rolled on. While many questioned the decision to sign the 37-year-old longtime National Leaguer to a $10 million dollar deal, Kuroda has been arguably the most consistent pitcher the Yankees have


The Yankees, though a few games behind last year’s pace, sit atop the division with a bigger cushion in 2012.

had, especially when it has counted. After taking a little while to settle in, Kuroda has had a fantastic few months, posting a 7-2 record since

the start of June. His 11 wins and 3.08 ERA are good for ninth and eighth respectively in the AL. Thanks (in no small part) to con-

tributions from players like Kuroda, this Yankee team has been able to weather storms that would have sent shudders down the spines of die-

hard fans had anyone forecast them. While third baseman and powerhitter Alex Rodriguez was out nursing a broken hand, replacements at the position have combined for a stellar .388 batting average. Perhaps unthinkably, even the loss of an alltime great closing pitcher in Mariano Rivera has been well-survived, with relief pitcher Rafael Soriano thriving in the role of closer. Soriano has converted 28 of his 30 save opportunities on the season. With all the success that the backups and newcomers have had, it seems like the Yankees have received the classic blessing in disguise so often seen in sports, for both their short- and long-term plans. Speaking just for the remainder of the season, the Yankees now know their depth and can play to their situational strengths, even giving players rest if they feel it makes sense. Going forward, they finally know that life after Rivera won’t be the unimaginable disaster that many fans (and perhaps even management) have feared. But now, Yankees fans aren’t interested in that much foresight. Who could blame them? With the way the season is going, there’s really only one thing to focus on... bringing home World Series number 28.

Sports Round-Up Check back here in coming issues for pulse-checks on all Fordham teams!



August 23, 2012 THE OBSERVER

save up

to 90%

on used textBooks

and 30%

on neW textBooks

Being of no trust fund or athletic scholarship, i will hereby spend less for my textbooks and thus enjoy a life of not raiding couch cushions for extra spending money.

Fordham Observer Issue 8 2012  

The Student Voice of Fordham College at Lincoln Center

Fordham Observer Issue 8 2012  

The Student Voice of Fordham College at Lincoln Center