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NUACHTÁN SAOR IN AISCE VOL.19 Issue 12. 10 APR 2018

Student Independent News

Students vote to stand together against sexual violence at USI Congress 2018 By Martha Brennan USI’s 2018 Congress saw hundreds of policy motions voted on last week– on everything from mental health

to union policies to repealing the 8th amendment. The most notable debates over the four days included equality for transgender and non-binary students, the Palestinian conflict and

USI President Michael Kerrigan speaks at USI Congress 2018

the repeal discussions. Lines of students gathered at opposite sides of the podium to voice their opinions on the various motions of the week and fiery debates often ensued. However when the topic of abusive relationships and sexual violence came up no one stood on the opposing side of the room. Instead what seemed like an endless line of students quickly formed at the left side of the room to urge the passing of the motion to support anyone who had experienced sexual violence. The delegates were a mix of female, male and non-binary students. They all attended different universities and grew up in different places. They were of differing ethnic backgrounds and religions. Some wore pink, some wore black, some had brightly colored hair and others wore tracksuits and runners. They all had one thing in common: they had been directly affected by the matters in the motion proposed and felt it was time to have their voices heard.

Hearts broke around the room as delegates relayed their very personal stories, the first time many of the speakers told their stories at all and their wishes of remaining anonymous have been respected. Some delegates spent years in abusive relationships not knowing how to get out. Others spoke of horrific acts of violence that they had to devastatingly experience, such as being raped in a nightclub bathroom or being sexually abused by someone they trusted. One male student from a rural background spoke about his own suffering from domestic violence. A delegate from DIT announced some shocking statistics to the room, such as how 30% of people in Ireland were affected by sexual violence and harassment and how only 8% of cases are reported to the Gardaí. Delegates bravely stood up to remind the room that they were not just a statistic. “I am not a number. I am human, and I will not be silenced,” one said.

UCC carried out a survey in their university last year that showed 1 in 7 of their students had been affected by sexual violence. “We need to make damn sure that things start to change,” CIT Students’ Union Vice President for Welfare Stephanie Fogarty told the room when she urged the passing of the motion. NUI Galway delegate Cameron Keighron and incoming NUI Galway Students’ Union Welfare Officer Clare Austick also spoke to the room on the motion. Cameron urged the need to teach about consent when students first enter university, while Clare told the floor that she wanted to tell anyone affected by the issues “You are strong, you are valuable, and you matter,” she said. Many delegates spoke of the recent trial of Ulster rugby players Paddy Jackson and Stuart Olding. They said that as members of their college Student Unions’ they wanted to urge any student affected to come to them because “you will be believed.”

“It transcends gender”: NUI Galway researcher welcomes consent education overhaul By Sorcha O’Connor Doctoral Researcher at NUI Galway School of Psychology and Consent Programme facilitator Elaine Byrnes has welcomed the move by Education Minister Richard Bruton to review Relationship and Sexual Education (RSE) in Irish second-level schools. Ms Byrnes told SIN her experience piloting a six-week module to TY students in colleague Richie Sadlier’s alma mater has indicated that this shake-up must go beyond a mere review of the current approach to RSE for teens.

“We need to overhaul RSE as it is delivered now. What Richie and I are doing is piloting a six-week programme in his alma mater. That goes far beyond what is currently offered by RSE and for us the feedback on that has been really positive … both from the boys and their parents, and from the school,” she explained. Ms Byrnes expressed that she thought it would be a “challenge” to expect teachers to deliver such RSE modules in schools and that in her experience, the relationship between facilitator and students is very different to the teacher relationship.

She outlined how challenging traditional gender roles is significant in the conversation on consent, saying there appears to still be an attitude that the onus is on males to get consent while females are perceived as the “gatekeeper” or more passive. Ms Byrnes emphasised that consent is mutual, with respect being of paramount importance. “For me, consent is mutual and bidirectional and that is something that surprises people when you say it to them because we are so societally attuned to that traditional script where males are perceived as predatory and females perceived as passive

- and it is 2018, how are we still adhering to those traditional scripts or traditional gender roles?” she said. “That is what we challenge, and we instil in the boys that all communication of consent reflects is respect, respect for ourselves and respect for others, and respect for our boundaries and understanding and identifying someone else’s boundaries and respecting those.” Ms Byrnes explained that this programme was not tailored to boys and said she would be having the same conversation about consent with girls if she was in a girls’ school. “It transcends gender, it transcends

sexual orientation, it transcends identity, it is not a gendered issue. How I would approach a sexual health module in a girls’ school would be exactly the same as I approach it in the boys’ school, we just happen to be piloting it in this one school at the moment,” she said. “It is very interactive and peer-lead,” she added. Meanwhile, she indicated that the introduction of a new approach to RSE at second-level should not negate the necessity for such courses at third-level. “We could look at third-level consent workshops as a refresher for what people have done at second-level,” she said.


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Welcome back to campus! Hopefully you enjoyed your Easter break and are ready to take on the final workload ahead of you before summer arrives a n d another college year comes to a close. This time of the year also means that this is the last issue of SIN for the semester, which is hard to believe. We’re scratching our heads as to how time managed to pass so quickly – it literally feels like two weeks ago that we were scrambling to get our first issue of 2018 into SIN bins across campus. As ever, we have pulled out all the stops to provide you with the most varied and diverse range of student news and issues across the paper, dissecting everything from world affairs to how exactly you should style that new pair of Mom Jeans you bought last week. The main news of the fortnight was the acquittal of the four defendants in

NEWS AND FEATURES EDITORIAL: CONNELL MCHUGH The final issue of SIN for the year means a few things; exams are right around the corner, the library is full of students and we are all wishing we had just a few more weeks in college to ‘study’, when we really just want to have the craic for a while longer. In any case, we have all the latest campus news and some final features to keep your mind away from exam stress. Rachel Garvey takes a look back on her first year and questions whether she would do it all again – read on to learn more about her experience coming through the Access Course. Moving home for the summer can be a dread for some of us, particularly the lack of freedom and independence that comes along with moving back in with the family for the summer. Amy McMahon gives us her two cents on that topic. The India Society recently held their Holi festival celebrations and the photos that were taken definitely provide some colour to the section this week. Martha Brennan also brings us extensive coverage from USI Congress. Thank you to all who have read the paper this year, particularly to those who read the section each week. It has been a pleasure being the Features editor for the year.

the Belfast rape trial. This sparked national debate around consent and I spoke with Doctoral Researcher from the School of Psychology Elaine Byrnes to hear her opinion on the proposed shake-up by Minister Richard Bruton of sexual education in Ireland in the wake of the trial. Meanwhile Martha Brennan reported on the #IBelieveHer rally that was attended by NUI Galway Students’ Union in solidarity with victims of rape and sexual assault. Martha has had a particularly productive fortnight as she also headed to USI Congress in Ballinasloe over the break to report on the goings-on at the annual meeting of Students’ Unions and third-level student activists. You can see her main report on the front page, and flick ahead to page 9 for a read of her daily roundups from the event. Facebook are in hot water of late with the revelation that around 80 million people’s data was passed to Cambridge Analytica and used for political gain. Being honest, I can’t say the news surprised me – reading the small print is probably something we all negate to do, and we can’t deny we

OPINION EDITORIAL: TEODORA BANDUT Dear readers and fellow students, we’ve done it. The academic year is almost behind us, and 2017 also seems bizarrely in the distant past. For some of us, this will not only be the last time writing editorials for the college newspaper but also the time we say goodbye to this everfriendly university. A new era could begin and feeling a little bit emotional might not be out of the question. What better way to keep the impending feelings of nostalgia at bay for a little while than perusing through some work carefully put together by some inspired – and opinionated - NUI Galway heads. This time, we’re taking on Facebook and its benefits versus drawbacks in light of the emerging controversies, as well as the beauty industry and its intentions. We answer the question of whether the Pope’s upcoming visit should still be of any concern to lay people and also why we should give up the ubiquitous water in a bottle. A brave student will also take on Putin, see for yourself how it all goes down inside! Have a fantastic summer.

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have all agreed to terms and conditions on apps just to see who our celebrity twin is. What did we think was going to happen? As Mr Weasley always warned Harry and the gang, we should never trust anything that can think for itself if we can’t see where it keeps its brain. Predictably, giving up Facebook has since become a common conversation over coffee, so this fortnight our contributors go Head to Head on the matter. Repeal the 8th is of course another ongoing debate and Claire VanValkenburg spoke with students across campus to gather their views on the topic. She also reflects on the current Irish abortion laws as an American student studying abroad here in Ireland in her biweekly column Clarifications. In the Fashion and Lifestyle section, Brig Fox returns with her final Lost Looks decade – 90s grunge. Think Kurt Cobain, checkered shirts, eclectic makeup, she’s got you covered. We also have all our usual film and TV reviews, and Marie Coady caught up with Galway singer Agu to learn more about this emerging talent. Lastly, the sports section is packed to the rafters with analysis of everything from rugby to NBA. Graham Gillespie speculates over who he thinks could be the PFA player of the year, while Luke Gannon takes a look at what to expect from the World Cup this summer in Russia.

FASHION & LIFESTYLE EDITORIAL: AMY McMAHON And just like that the year is over. I can’t believe our final issue of SIN is out, and what an issue to finish with! We have plenty of pieces tailored to the upcoming dreaded exam season. Fiona Lee talks us through her helpful tips on getting a good night’s sleep. Tarryn McGuire advises us on how to make your daily makeup brighten and conceal any exam darkness and dullness that can occur from all-nighters - learn how to get your glow back, laptop screen aside… Brigid Fox is back with her final Lost Look piece of the year, not to be missed. She also gives her opinion on the latest denim trend hitting the highstreet, Mom Jeans. For this issue I spoke to Blogger and YouTuber Emer Rutherford from Penneys to Prada. I quizzed her on everything from social media pressure, must have pieces and advice for any budding bloggers – worth the read! Finally, I want to thank everyone that has contributed to the Fashion & Lifestyle section over the year. You’re a brilliant bunch to work with and it was a fun year overall.

It goes without saying that this is one jampacked issue. It also happens to be my last issue as editor of this fine paper that I have been involved in since I started here in NUI Galway in 2014 – so excuse me for a second while I get a tad emotional. I remember writing my first editorial in September 2016 and reminiscing about the first SIN meeting I attended. Now, here I am two years on, give or take, and I’m signing off on an experience that has really helped carve out the path to my dream career. There are so many people I’d like to thank that have helped me every fortnight to pull everything together and made it all possible. Firstly, a massive thank you to all the subeditors I have had the pleasure of working with: the class of 2016/17, Cathy, Cathal, Eoin, Georgia, Dee, Aisling, Saoirse, and Trevor, and this year’s gems Amy, Teo, Connell, Graham, and Michael. You always had brilliant ideas and enthusiasm, and I really couldn’t have done it without your help. To Aine Kenny and Marie Coady who have come on board this semester as online editors and really boosted the online presence of SIN, another huge thank you to you. And of course, there’d be no paper if we had no volunteers to give up that extra hour (or five) to write articles and pester fellow students for Vox Pops! Thank you so very much to

ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT EDITORIAL: MICHAEL GLYNN Well here it is, the final Arts and Entertainment section of the college year, and can I say it has been an absolute pleasure to be its editor this year, we’ve had a lot of fun and the talent that has submitted into this section has been immense. Without further ado let’s dive into what we have coming up this issue. Out the gate we have an interview with the talented Galway-based Agu. We have an article on the Snapchat revenue loss debacle and our steadfast loyalty to celebrity opinion. Next up a piece on the newly opened Pálás Cinema in Galway, possibly the next big hotspot for film fans of all ages. Not too long after the ten-year anniversary of The Big Bang Theory we have now been given Young Sheldon, read on to hear all about it. Finishing up the section we have a list of films and tv-shows on Netflix for when you’re procrastinating that final assignment, and a review on Saoirse Ronan flick Ladybird. Happy reading folks.

anyone who has ever put pen to paper over the past two years, the hard work hasn’t gone unnoticed. I also need to give a shout out to my friends and boyfriend who dealt with me freaking out at 11:45pm every second Thursday when I had no photo to put on the front page. They’ve seen a side of me that probably no one ever should. Lastly, I’d like to say thank you to Shannon Reeves, the man who makes the paper look as slick as it does, and to Chris Newell and everyone in NUI Galway Students’ Union who picked me to steer the SIN ship two years running. I am incredibly grateful I had the opportunity to do this and as I start in pastures new, the experience I gained in NUI Galway will certainly stand to me - it’s already opened the door to the INM offices in Dublin! To whoever takes over next year, I wish you the best of luck. It’s a stressful job at times but honestly, it is such a good training ground for what’s to come, it’s so worth it. Besides, there’s always something happening in NUI Galway – you won’t be stuck for news. That’s it from me, anyway. Best of luck to everyone in exams, I’ll be right there with you, probably wishing I could write an essay as long and as quickly as I write articles,

Sorcha. SPORT EDITORIAL: GRAHAM GILLESPIE It may not feel like it but we have already reached the final issue of SIN for the college year. We sign off the year with a bang with eight great articles for you all to get stuck into. With it being the last issue, we look ahead to summer of sport ahead of us as Luke Gannon previews the World Cup and Mark O’Connor previews the NBA playoffs. Luke also looks at the idea of an intercounty intermediate football Championship after GAA president John Horan stated it was one of his aims. Mark Lynch meanwhile writes about Jose Mourinho’s and the Irish Rugby team’s futures, while David Naughton updates us on Galway United’s season so far. Also Gary Elbert keeps us abreast of all things boxing and MMA, and to round us off, I give my take on the battle for PFA Player of the Year. Sincerest thanks to everyone who has contributed throughout the year. You have all made my life easy. If anyone in the future wants to get involved contact me at sport.sined@ gmail.com. Best of luck in the exams everyone and have a great summer.


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NUI Galway’s India Society Holi Festival 2018 - an event with colours and a cause By Anuradha Kar Photo credit: Harsha Sabarad and Riyazul Aboobucker “Holi Hai!” These are the words that millions of voices in the streets of India roar with when they welcome the most colourful festival of the year, Holi, with friends, family and strangers alike. Revellers from all sections of the society take the day off to meet and smear each other with a rainbow of coloured powders, share traditional food and dance together. Apart from merry-making, Holi conveys a myriad of messages that have been associated with the festival over the centuries that it is celebrated. Holi signifies the triumph of good over evil, it symbolizes the arrival of spring, fertility and above all, love. Love that surpasses boundaries, continents and cultures, now that Holi is celebrated in almost every major city of the world. From Paris to London to Los Angeles, Holi is the face of Indian culture to the global community. NUI Galway’s India Society celebrates Holi every year as one of its most anticipated events

and takes great pleasure in welcoming a large number of international students of the campus. The event took place on the green opposite NUIG Kingfisher Gym on March 8 and was very much an international event like every year, with yummy treats and beats of Indian music to dance to, while nearly 80 kilos of powdered colours were arranged for use during the event. In addition to celebrating the Indian cultural event with full traditional flavour, the India Society also took up the opportunity of the Holi 2018 celebrations to contribute towards a social cause. This year, NUI Galway’s India Society collaborated with the Hope foundation, a charity organization in Ireland, for their fundraising activities during the Holi event. For this, entry tickets were kept for the event (in all other years the event had free entry) and all proceeds from the Holi ticket sales were contributed to this charity. The Hope Foundation, as described on their official website, rescues abused and abandoned children from the streets and slums of the metropolitan city of Bengal and works for building better futures for children and vulnerable families. There are a large number of children in Kolkata who are street dwellers, with no provision for healthy food, water and healthcare. Their lives are uncertain as they hardly receive proper education and there exists high risk of abuse, exploitation and child trafficking. The Hope Foundation works for addressing these social challenges by visiting the slums and streets to bring life-changing services

and support to the poorest children. They run 60 projects in Kolkata, 12 of which are protection homes. The goal of this charity organization, with their Headquarters in Cork, is to break the cycle of poverty through the provision of healthcare, crèches, counselling, life skills, training, drugs rehabilitation, access to education and whatever supports are needed. More information about the India Society and its events can be found at NUI Galway’s official societies website. Visit hopefoundation.ie for more information about Hope and the charitable work they do.

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4  NEWS & F E ATU R ES

SIN Vol. 19 Issue 12

A FOND FAREWELL: a final word from By Rebecca Fisher As this academic year draws to a close, a year brimming with human rights debates, countless storms and an abundance of free Freddo bars, we can’t help but reminisce on the year at hand and those who shaped each and every facet of it. It is undeniable that the Students’ Union here at NUI Galway is the beating heart of engagement, advice and encouragement for students from all walks of life. I caught up with president Lorcán Ó Maoileannaigh, Education Officer Andrew Forde, and Welfare Officer and incoming President Megan Reilly to discuss this year’s student administration, its highs and lows, and to reflect on what has undoubtedly been another unforgettable year here at NUI Galway.

What has been your greatest accomplishment throughout this term in office? MEGAN: “I have to say I think it’s been the one on one stuff for me, like being able to make improvements in students’ lives, as in people feeding things up to me so then I can take it to the university level, but also just being able to keep

the start of an on-campus music festival which will hopefully grow next year and that we’ll have something similar to Trinity Ball here, next year. Starting something like that from scratch takes a lot of time but it’s important that just because you can’t do it in your own year… I mean I’ll still be a student next year, so I’ll enjoy it! Lastly, the relationship with the university. So obviously, we’re here as a union to see where the university is lacking in terms of supporting the students here on campus and off campus, and there’s a time and place for everything, and in a lot of things that we do, we’re working in cooperation with the university as opposed to against the university. I think that we’ve struck up a very good rapport with the university, we work together on a lot of projects, we come to them with our ideas and we find a way to work together, especially with the new University President, we now have something that was completely unheard of before this - we now meet every four to six weeks, have a sit down meeting just myself and himself which is great because before this when the President of the union and the President of the university met, it tended to be when matters got to boiling point,

NUI Galway SU encourage students to take part in this year’s national survey people in college or make their college experience better. I know that’s kind of corny but it’s true. “ LORCÁN: “I’m going to answer in three parts. There are things that have taken immediate effect, there are things that we’re kind of planting the seeds for next year and the relationship with the university as well. In relation to what has taken immediate effect, the big part of my manifesto last year was the meal plan service, now there’s a six-week meal plan service online, you have video tutorials and now you have a bus running from student accommodation to Lidl where you get your shopping recipes, so students have no excuse in terms of cooking for themselves and cooking healthily. Secondly, in terms of planting the seeds, we have put together the kind of

per se, so now I think there’s a great relationship there that can be built on in years to come.” ANDREW: “I think the clearest example would be how we extended the library opening hours during exams. That was something that students asked for that we promised and delivered on and I think it was very telling and it shows what a union can do. I think not as tangible, but one of the things I would be proudest of is the day to day case work. You don’t see it, but you have students coming in here who have to appeal an exam or who can’t get their SUSI grant and the most rewarding thing is when you take that fight and you champion their cause and you get a win for them, you don’t get to talk about it or celebrate it but you can really see how this role can have a real impact on people’s lives.”

The full NUI Galway SU executive

What is something you had hopes to achieve this year but didn’t due to time constraints, resources or other priorities? MEGAN: “What you kind of find with the job is that you come in with so many ideas in your manifesto, and you try and stay as true to that all year as you possibly can, but then there’s things that always crop up throughout the year, that you’re like, oh wow and you start to uncover more and more, like projects I knew that I could take forward, some of them I am hoping to be able to take forward into next year. The big one for me has been seating. When I came into the job I was originally talking about nap spaces and then that kind of evolved into just a general sense of needing a friendlier university, just in a tangible, physical sense and the more I’ve talked to support staff and student services and people even in academia, the more everybody seems to recognise the need for this. It just seems it’s such a large scale project, so what we’re doing is we’re starting small and we’re hoping to work with buildings to redevelop some areas.” LORCÁN: “I think my biggest regret would be the bus service that I was hoping to get from student accommodation for nursing students who are first years and second years to go to the hospital during the winter months. The idea behind it was last year, there was a lot of first and second year students living in Cuirt and Gort who were nursing students, who during the winter months had to be in for around half six in the morning, and I thought that was quite unfair. But this year when we did our research to see whether it was feasible, we just found that all the first and second year nursing students weren’t as compact or living in the same areas,

so it wasn’t feasible in the end. That was something that I really wanted to hit home on, so that was quite disappointing. It’s important to know that when you do get kind of knocked back, you still made a promise to these students that you’ll make a difference, so what we’ve done now is students, before they go on placement, the aim is that every student in a healthcare course will receive mental health first aid training before starting. It’s nowhere near the same, but still if you make a promise to students you still want to follow through on it, you know? Do something.” ANDREW: “There’s two things that I set out to do that won’t be achieved in this academic year, but the groundwork is set, so for the next executive, I believe it’s very achievable. The first of those is the exam carry over. So at the moment if you fail a five credit module in August, in a repeat, you have to repeat the academic year, that has a very big financial cost,

€1,824, but in other institutions like in UCD or in Maynooth, if you fail a five credit module in your first year, you can actually carry that over into your second year. So, it would mean that for a lot of students who only have one fail on their transcript, they can pursue and go forward. I’ve had success to date in having the President agree in principle, in having the Dean of Arts agree, and in having a conversation with NUI Galway about this, but it’s the responsibility of my successor now to come in and try to drive that home. The second thing is, this year we changed the language that we use around post graduates, so we’ve really tried to engage the post graduate community, master’s students and PHD students in a way that we hadn’t really done before. A lot of that has come full circle, we now have a postgraduate research and a postgraduate taught rep, we have engaged with them a lot more, and what I’m pushing for is that we’d have a dean within the university who

Megan with fellow activist Georgia Feeney at the March for Education in October


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Andrew Forde, Education Officer, Lorcán Ó Maoilleanaigh, President, and Megan Reilly, Welfare Officer will be responsible for ensuring that post graduate courses are up to quality and up to scratch, and again that’s something that we’ve gotten agreed in principal, but it’s up to my successor to drive that home as well.”

How do you think this term in office has developed you personally? MEGAN: “So many ways. I just feel like I’ve experienced so much, this job is so multi-faceted, you’re doing campaigns but you’re also seeing people one on one, and then you’re learning how to develop your professionalism through sitting on university committees, so I know I can take all of that into my personal life. For me, it’s taught me how to use my own time efficiently and effectively. It’s kind of taught me how not to deplete my own resources so much because you’re always going to have people asking things of you, but it’s like, how do you prioritise your own stuff and deliver

to the best of your ability with the jobs? What I’ve learned personally is I need to be at my best to be able to help other people. It’s fairly obvious but we actually all neglect our own self-care, especially when you’re in a job, or even student life when it’s very intense, but this year taking it to the professional level just really taught me, personally, how to manage all that stuff.” LORCÁN: “I would say my professionalism, I thought going into this job that I kind of carried myself quite well but when you’re sitting at a governing body or Údarás, which is the top committee of the university, you’re sitting there with Deans and people who are respected all over the world, never mind even the country, and you have the same speaking privileges as them - it’s a very steep learning curve, in terms of how to speak, when to speak and what to speak about. From that perspective, that’s what I’ve kind of gained most from it. I definitely haven’t learned time

management; I can admit that. I think my professionalism and how I carry myself has really improved. I think accountability as well, it kind of makes you realise when you’re put on the spot and when you’re made aware that there are, in the morning, say ten people waiting on a response from you since yesterday evening, you need to make sure you’re getting back to everyone, so I think my accountability has improved as well.” ANDREW: “I think it’s an unbelievable opportunity, for me the greatest thing I wanted to prove to myself was that I could be consistent. This job is very demanding, you’d be working crazy hours, you’d be working weekends, you work the job but you do it because you love it and what I learned of myself and what this job gave me the opportunity to do is to be consistent because you’re always out batting for someone else, if you don’t answer an email or if you don’t go and lobby for someone, it’s not you who fails, it’s the person who has come to you and asked you for help. That’s matured me a lot, it’s stopped me from going out as much as I used to, but it’s made me a more consistent person, so I’m really grateful for that.”

What are some hopes and advice you have for your successor? MEGAN: “People always say, and I never understood it until I got into the job, but you want to leave someone behind who’s going to be better than you, which I know sounds like a bit of a weird concept but, what I would hope for Claire is to give her really good comprehensive training and to set her up with all the contacts that she needs to hit the ground running. Also, in terms of advice, everyone makes the job their own, everyone does it differently because everyone deals with students differently and this job gives you so much scope to do things. What I would say is don’t limit yourself to what’s been done in the past. Defi-

Lorcan and Megan at the launch of Marchathon last month

nitely branch out, do new things, make it your own, get your own feel for it and whatever suits you. It’s a wonderful job, where you’re able to do that and bring your own sense of style to it, so I think all of those things.” LORCÁN: “In this job, because it’s only one year, you only get one shot at everything. One fault and it’s an admitted fault of the union, but there’s nothing we can do about it, is institutional knowledge. So, if there’s a project, a perfect example is anonymous marking, that came up seven years ago, then someone, somewhere along the way dropped the ball and then last year’s executive picked it up again and now it’s in place. The idea is that the person coming

make what impact he wants to make. It’s a massive opportunity for anyone who wants to take it.”

What comes next for you? MEGAN: “I don’t know; I might go on holidays. Look I want to take all my experience this year, and all the training I know Lorcán is going to give me and absolutely give it my best shot. A year is such a short time, even though I’ve already been here doing the welfare job but there were things this year that I kind of knew I had a taste for and wanted to do more, which is why I really felt like with that leadership. I know I can take this forward and I really want to do this so, for me it’s going to be about giving it my all. Building a really strong

NUI Galway Education Officer Andrew Forde with students campaigning against student loans in is able to learn from the mistakes of the person who came before, not even the mistakes but things that they’ve learned, things that they did that worked well, so that even when Megan is here in September and orientation is going on, and all these other committee meetings are starting and her first Údarás, what I would say is most important is that I’m only a phone call away, that I definitely haven’t just left, goodbye, handed over the key and slán go fóill. I think that’s one of the most important things, that your successor knows that you’re still there, because as much knowledge you will have gained throughout the year its near impossible to give that to the person over the next three months. They’ll always be something throughout the year you know? Like me, this year I called Jimmy probably every second week, just to check in and to say; “this is happening, do you have any additional information you can give me?” and he’s always there and I’d like to make sure that’s the same for next year.” ANDREW: “I think it’s really important that everyone who comes into this office makes it their own. There are some things that every officer has to do, the basic work and responsibilities that the job demands, but I would encourage my successor to embrace his ambition, to go forward and try to achieve what he set out to do in his manifesto and to know that the office is his, so he can

team is really important, we have a new exec next year and a lot of changes coming in so I want to be the one to make sure that all of that runs smoothly and that we just continue to be stronger.” LORCÁN: “So I have two years left in college, so I’m going back to med, and it won’t be exactly going back to the lecture theatre because I’ll be permanently on placement from then on and I’ll just be across the road I suppose, waving from the operating table. I mean as immediate past president you’re still kind of around in terms of the board of trustees and that kind of thing, so your finger isn’t on the pulse but you’re still around every few months. So that’s me, I finish July 1, I’m taking July off and then I’m back in the emergency department for an elective in August and then my course starts back in September.” ANDREW: “I am travelling to Chile, so I’m going as far away from Galway as I can. I’m a man from the west you see, I went to school in Galway, I did my undergraduate in Galway, I did my postgrad in Galway and I’ve been working for a whole twelve months here in the students union, so I need to broaden my horizons and then hopefully I’ve applied as well to take up a placement in the European Parliament, so the idea is to take the baseline experiences that I’ve learned from this job and the want and desire to make an impact, take those inspirations with me and then try and use them in bigger and better places.”


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SIN Vol. 19 Issue 12

#IBelieveHer: NUI Galway SU attend rally in solidarity with rape and sexual assault victims By Martha Brennan NUI Galway Students’ Union attended the ‘I Believe Her’ rally in Galway on Thursday 29 March to stand in solidarity with any NUI Galway students who have been the victim of rape or sexual assault. Cries of outrage were heard across the country that afternoon as thousands attended rallies in various cities following the acquittal of Irish and Ulster Rugby stars Paddy Jackson and Stuart Olding, along with two other men, in Belfast Crown Court Wednesday 28 March. The nine-week trial was one of the most publicized Irish crimi-

nal trials in recent history and the case became a common conversation topic among Irish students. An abundance of commentary followed the verdict on Wednesday. All men were found not-guilty and the victim’s experiences in court have been condemned by many as the now 21-year-old woman spent eight days being cross-examined by four different prosecutors. While the student’s name has remained anonymous thanks to the legal system, the case has highlighted many difficulties surrounding sexual assault cases. The Students’ Union hopes that this will not deter victims from coming forward.

SU President Lorcán Ó’ Maoileannaigh posted a video on the SU Facebook page yesterday afternoon explaining why the Students Union attended the rally, which was organised by Galway Feminist Collective. “Because of how public this trial was it will evoke a lot of painful memories for survivors of rape and sexual assault,” he said. “We have had students come into us in the union who are survivors of rape and sexual assault and the sad thing is that they’re not asking us how I report but should I report? “If that doesn’t send a shiver down your spine I don’t know what will.”

Students gather outside the courthouse in Galway for the #IBelieveHer rally

Around 200 people attended the rally outside Galway Courthouse with a sea of signs painted with support for the young woman. The event coincided with other rallies around the country in Cork, Dublin, Belfast, Dundalk and Waterford. Galway Feminist Collective thanked those who came to support the rally yesterday on their Facebook page and commended survivors who spoke at the event. “It was inspiring to see people of all ages ready to take action to demand change.” the post reads. “We’ll be organising spaces for survivors to come together and also a space for people to discuss community responses to violence.” Other Students’ Unions across Ireland also showed their support at the rallies yesterday and many have stressed the importance for universities to provide consent classes, such as the mandatory classes Trinity College and Queens University have previously introduced. Ó’ Maoileannaigh told SIN that the SU wants to stress to NUI Galway students the importance of not being

New book launched offering ‘1000 years of career advice’ to graduates By Sorcha O’Connor A former NUI Galway student has published a new career advice book for graduates, exploring the paths taken by 100 different third-level graduates over the past 10 years. Paul Murphy authored the guide for students “1000 Years of Career Advice” with the intention of instilling knowledge and confidence in the heart of any young college-leaver. The book was downloaded 1,252 times on its first five days on Amazon and reached the top spot on the site’s Education and Careers charts. It is also available in paperback. “The interviews contain three sections; what the interviewees did in university and why, the jobs they’ve done since they graduated 10 years ago, and what they have learned and their advice for a younger generation,” Paul told SIN. “The interviewees are all in their 30’s and work in a wide variety of industries, companies and countries.” He explained that the book includes interviews with people who work in 16 different professions including Accounting, Commerce, Compliance, Engineering, Health, HR, IT, Banking, Law, Science, and Teaching. Those interested in reading a few snippets of the interviews included in the book can also visit Paul’s blog 1000yearsofcareeradvice.com. deterred from reporting assault because of the case and that they want to make sure that any victim of rape or sexual assault knows that the Union is there for them and they can seek support at any time in a safe and anonymous environment.

The Union posted the following before attending the rally yesterday on their Facebook page: “We are here to support students who have been affected by sexual assault and rape. We want those students to know that they are supported, and they are believed.”

Second place for first-ever original GUMS musical at Intervarsity level By Sorcha O’Connor They wowed us earlier this year with their week-long run of The Producers in the Blackbox Theatre, and last month Galway University Musical Society (GUMS) did it again, nabbing the runner-up spot at Musical Inter-varsities. The event held in UCD over 23 and 24 March saw musical societies from across Irish universities compete to be crowned the best in all the land, with NUI Galway threading the boards with their performance of the original murder-mystery musical The Greenbrier Murder of 1982. The piece was written and composed by Third Year Drama, Theatre and Performance student Patrick Conneely, the GUMS star who lead the society to roaring success as Bobby

Strong in last year’s production of Urinetown. He told SIN that seeing his work come to life over the past few weeks was “really exciting” and something he would remember for a long time to come. “Hearing the cast sing each song for the first time or watching a scene develop over time was really satisfying. One of the best advantages we had was that the entire cast and crew were extremely enthusiastic, so new ideas were constantly flying around,” explained Patrick. “So many things changed over the few weeks but eventually everything clicked into place and we were ready for the stage.” This was the first time GUMS performed an original musical and Patrick explained that it went down a storm on the day. “We were all excited to be

the first to do it. We competed against CIT, UCD, DCU, Queens, Trinity, and Maynooth up in Dublin on 23 of March and we placed second overall. We were delighted with this result but the response we got from the audience and the other colleges felt like our real victory - there were moments where dialog and lyrics could not be heard because the crowd were laughing or cheering or clapping too much. It was a very nice problem to have!” he said. Asked about the creative process behind the piece, Patrick said that an 80s themed musical was always something he had in the back of his mind, but he changed the setting a few times before settling on a glam but gaudy hotel. “I’d been thinking about doing some form of original musical for ages but never set-

tled on an idea until this project. I always wanted it to be set in the 80s and I always wanted there to be a dark sense of humour in it; I liked the idea of a musical starting out really happy and chirpy but then almost instantly turning dark and grisly,” he said. “The idea of a murder happening almost straight away in the story seemed really grim but really funny. I thought of a good few different settings like an aeroplane or a restaurant but a luxurious hotel seemed like the best choice in the end.” The cast has been inundated with requests for an original cast recording of the show since their success in Dublin and fans can expect to see the five original songs appear on Spotify over the coming weeks. GUMS auditor Aisling Bonner was a part of the troupe who performed in UCD. She told SIN

GUMS were this year’s runners-up at Musical Inter-varsities in UCD that the “electric” atmosphere in UCD really set the tone for their performance. “The feeling coming off stage after the performance was something I will never forget. If I could have bottled the sound of the audience roaring and banging their feet I’d play it all day long - we all felt like Beyoncé,” she laughed. She was thrilled to get the

opportunity to perform one last time before her graduation this year and said she was honoured to be involved in the competition. “Being part of the first cast to perform an original musical is genuinely an honour and the feeling of doing Patrick and the rest of the production team proud was definitely what drove us in the end,” she said.


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CLARIFICATIONS: Dear Ireland, the world is watching By Claire VanValkenburg It’s a funny thing to feel completely prepared to live abroad. Then realise after saving for years, buying outlet converters, and booking a plane ticket across the Atlantic that you forgot about one thing: contraception. Four days before I left the country to study abroad at NUI Galway, I was watching Irish documentaries. It was there, in the deep recesses of the nerd side of YouTube that I learned abortion is illegal in Ireland. According to article 40.3.3 of the constitution, a woman in the Republic of Ireland can have an abortion (only) if it is necessary to save her life due to fatal foetal abnormalities or a risk of suicide, but cannot obtain an abortion in the case of rape. A pregnant person has access to information about medical procedures abroad, and traveling to another country to have the procedure is not restricted. I hastily called the women’s health clinic and took the only available appointment that day. I sat there in the open-backed hospital

gown on the cold, faux-leather table and explained to my provider that I had no intention of being sexually active while studying abroad, but a lot can happen in five months. No one plans to be sexually assaulted, but I figured I could plan to be as safe as possible. My doctor explained that if I were to have an unplanned pregnancy while abroad, I wouldn’t be able to travel for medical procedures outside of Ireland because of insurance policies. Unfortunately, I left the clinic feeling defeated. There were no contraceptive options available that she could offer in the next four days would suit my needs. I decided that while I lived abroad, as far as I could control, I would just have to remain abstinent. I wanted to understand what it was like for my peers at NUI Galway who grew up living under the current constitutional legislation. I yearned to discover what was at the heart of the issue, and how students felt about the prospect of changing the constitution. So, I set out on a mission to find NUI Galway

students who were passionate about both sides of the issue. Mia Dovel is a second-year student studying Biomedical Engineering. She is also the auditor for NUI Galway’s Life Society. “This referendum will possibly be the most important thing we are asked to vote on in our lifetime,” Dovel said. “We’re voting on who gets to live and who doesn’t.” According to Dovel, a foetus has a right to life, and it is the people of Ireland’s responsibility to protect that right. Providing childcare and supporting people who become pregnant is how Ireland should handle crisis pregnancies. “The main reason women get abortions is not because they want to, or because they see abortion as a good option; it is because they feel like they have to,” Dovel said. Third-year Communications through Irish student and Repeal the 8th campaigner Jessy Ní Cheallaigh agreed, saying that pre-natal care is important and should be supported, but that for many mothers affording care is simply not a reality. “People think we’re ‘pro-abor-

Coming through the Access course helped me achieve my goals By Rachel Garvey There has been this question I have kept asking myself lately and that is “Would I do first year all over again?” If I’m honest my answer is still undecided. One part of my mind is wishing I could do it all over again, to maybe work that bit harder, to read the required readings for law (I’ll put my hands up and say guilty as charged because I never read those readings). The other half of my mind is telling me no, that I tried my best and that I could do no more. I put in the effort to get any assignments or essays in on time, sometimes a week before they were even due. I wasn’t a model student, but I did work hard for my place in college all thanks to the NUI Galway Access Course. Reflecting back on something one of my head lecturers stated to us on the first day of Access has and will forever stick with me: “If you can’t make the effort to attend this Access Course for yourself then make the effort for the person who’s place you took”. The Access Course had a limited number of students and a large number of people were turned down just so myself and

40 others or so could be there that day and I knew one thing for sure, I would never think twice about wasting my precious place. My goal was to become an actual registered student of NUI Galway and nothing would have stopped me from fulfilling that goal. The first day of First Year in general is something I will never forget. Even though I came through Access and had gained the knowledge and experience of the way NUI Galway worked, I was still anxious as hell and part of the anxiety was focused on whether my picture on my student card turned out nice or not. It dawned on me that I wasn’t going to be in those small classrooms in the Arts Millenium Building anymore, I wasn’t going to feel that familiar sense of ease when talking to my tutors about upcoming assignments and I wasn’t going to be seated beside a friend or a familiar face anymore. However, that feeling of realisation dawning on me was the best feeling ever. I would get to meet new people and make a whole new group of friends. I was going to work hard in my subjects and I would join societies and take part in volunteering events and that is

exactly what I did. I forced myself outside my comfort zone and let my guard drop. Little by little I felt my anxiety starting to disappear. I had taken part in the NUI Galway’s Teddy Bear Hospital in Bailey Allen Hall, a volunteering event which taught kids that hospitals and doctors aren’t all that scary. My friend Vicky and I did nothing but smile and help the kids to get their sick teddy bears all better again. Apart from volunteering and taking part in events, there was a more humorous side to my first year experience - well, humorous or awkward as hell when one of your good mates comes up to you and introduces you to another guy and this particular guy is indeed your ex, or when you are in the middle of a quiet lecture scrolling through your phone and one of those videos on Instagram plays at a loud volume and all you can hear is SpongeBob SquarePants talking about Krabby Patties! College really isn’t all that scary. Try and have as much fun as you can. It’s all part of the student life. Despite only being in First Year I really don’t want this student life to end even though I was anxious about it starting.

tion,’ and it’s like yeah we are but we’re also ‘pro-keeping-the-baby,’ we’re also ‘pro-adoption,’ we’re also ‘pro-whatever-you-want-to-do.’ We believe there should be better child services but at the moment in Ireland there’s none of that,” Ní Cheallaigh said. Ní Cheallaigh said she believes in free, safe, and legal abortion access and does not view a foetus as a person because it is dependent on the mother to survive. “The term ‘pro-life’— I don’t agree with that at all because you’re only pro-life of a foetus, not of a woman,” Ní Cheallaigh said. “I don’t see that as a person, I know it has the potential to be a person, of course it does, but without the mother it cannot work, so that mother should take full priority.” Eventually I began to see the crux of the issue. People like Dovel see the amendment as a preservation of human life, and that by keeping abortion illegal and focusing on childcare accessibility, Irish women can have safe and healthy pregnancies. Whereas people like Ní Cheallaigh view the amendment

as one of the last laws keeping Irish women from having full control over their bodies, and that childcare accessibility comes after bodily autonomy. Currently, the 8th amendment states the rights of a foetus are equal to that of a pregnant person’s. “The repeal campaign talks a lot about the woman but fails to ever give value or dignity to the human life growing inside her,” Dovel said. If a yes vote passes, the current wording of the 8th amendment will be replaced with rhetoric that allows for the legal termination of pregnancies up to 12 weeks when certified by a medical practitioner. “The pro-life side will often put on their billboards pictures of the foetus, pictures of the womb, and they don’t zoom out and look at the woman with the womb. They’re seen as incubators,” Ní Cheallaigh said. Swellar Zhuo, a third-year visiting student from New York, said the issue has gained international attention, and people all over the world will be watching when the votes roll in.

“I think that’s the fear for anyone traveling abroad or anyone seeking asylum. You come here and you realize this option is not available to you, and that that might actually push some people away from coming and experiencing Ireland,” Zhuo said. But there is one thing every student I talked to agreed on: voting. The first opportunity to vote on the issue in 35 years marks a decisive moment in Ireland’s history. It even affected me, a foreign study abroad student from over 4,000 miles away. According to Ní Cheallaigh, “it all depends on young people, registering people to vote, and making sure they actually vote on the day.”


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Moving back home for the summer By Amy McMahon Let’s be honest. No student is ever 100% happy moving home for the summer. Giving up your freedom, not seeing your best friends for months and the lack of Boojum deliveries at the click of a button are some of the main reasons for not wanting to go home. Why on earth would you want to give up those perks and privileges? But don’t worry, we are here to help with the transition. It’s not about winning the battles, focus on winning the war. Bare this in mind at all times. Returning home to siblings, that were living happily at home running the house by their rules, is never easy. They were probably planning to take over your room while you were away or blocking you from the Netflix account. Try not to get caught up in sibling spats over the remote or ‘borrowing’ each other’s clothes. You need to present a united front to your parents. Your parents need to see you as the bigger person. Remember you’re living under their roof again, which means their rules. Dad is your taxi man and mum is the chief organiser. Offer your

mum a cup of tea every now and again and she’ll be on your side. An invaluable addition to your troop. You will probably need your dad for lifts to and from work and the 2am night club pick up. Keep them sweet, a little goes alone way. Ease into your transition by making time for yourself. After months away from home enjoying your independence, try to keep some after you return home. Get a summer job and you’ll have your own money to spend, not relying on your parents. Make plans to visit your friends from college. Whether you live in Wexford and your friend is from Donegal, find the time to meet up. Dublin is usually the most convenient meeting point with exciting events every week. Group chats and video calls are great for keeping in touch as well. Try the app House Party, it’s free and allows up to eight callers in a group. No more excuses. Overall, keep the peace as best as you can. Nobody will welcome a moody twenty-something year-old into the house with open arms. No demands, no fights and most importantly, no family Monopoly nights.

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SIN Vol. 19 Issue 12

Drugs & Alcohol Awareness Week opens honest dialogue around substance use By Pierce Fox and Sandy Brun NeuroSoc NUI Galway in collaboration with NUI Galway Students’ Union created a Drugs and Alcohol Awareness Week which ran 12-15 March. The week was established to raise awareness, inform students, and provide a safe space to have honest conversations about alcohol, drugs, the relationship between them, and how to reduce the risks involved in consuming intoxicants. The week began with a talk called “Drugs: When fun is in the rear-view mirror” which was aimed at helping people recognise someone having difficulty with substances and how to react in a safe and compassionate manner. Following on from this Guy Jones, senior chemist with UK-based NGO The Loop, presented a talk called “What to do about the elephant in the room”. This talk was about substance use and examined the idea that it is an individual choice and not a moral failing. He then followed on with the practical issues arising from substance use and how best to reduce the risks involved. There was an extensive Q&A session at the end which people enthusiastically engaged with. To round off the week a panel discussion was organised. It brought a diverse group of people together including Head of Pharmacology and Therapeutics NUI Galway Prof John Kelly, Dr Padriag MacNeela of the School of Psychology NUI Galway, Noel from the Galway Divisional Drugs Unit, Neil Wilson, Education Officer with West-

ern Region Drug and Alcohol Taskforce, and Guy Jones from The Loop. Each member had different backgrounds and interactions with substance use, leading to a lively yet informed discussion. The rationale behind the week was the need to help young people such as the student population here on-campus to be aware of how to practise safety while on the “sesh”. As it stands currently, due to regulatory and legislator stances, the education, training and research on alcohol and drugs and their impact on a communal and national level is very limited. Due to drugs gaining more popularity and research substances flooding onto the market, an increase in drug-related harm, diseases, crime, and deaths contribute to exhausting resources and wreak havoc in communities across Ireland. It is for this reason that the Drugs and Alcohol Awareness Week was created, a people power initiative to help plug a gap in social knowledge and push for change. Some of the main take-aways from the week were not to take substances to compete with others, to look after yourself and your friends on nights out, and that medics are you friends. Be honest with medics if you or someone you know gets into difficulty on a night out. If you or someone you know begin to feel unwell after taking a substance or if someone loses consciousness, call 999 immediately. More information with regards to drug and alcohol safety can be found at spunout.ie, drinkhelp.ie and wrdatf.ie

NUI Galway’s first ‘Sim Wars’ shortlisted for national society awards By Martha Brennan After winning Best Intervarsity at NUI Galway’s recent Society Awards, the newly founded Emergency Medicine Society (EMS) will go on to the national society awards, BICS, later this month. EMS’s ‘Sim Wars’ beat out numerous other intervaristy events held by NUI Galway this year to win the college title and it has since been shortlisted for the BICS award, along with DIT’s DJ society and IT Tralee’s Events society. ‘Sim Wars’ took place on March 10 on campus and welcomed students from every medical college in Ireland. It was the second year of the intervaristy competition and NUI Galway’s first time hosting the event- having taken on the annual competition after winning last years ‘Sim Wars’ in UCD. After weeks of preparation, 15 teams of medical students came from all over the country to compete against each other win the title. Competitors were presented with simulated emergency situations and were judged by a panel of nine expert judges on their response. The emergencies were presented on both mannequins and live actors and examples included a cardiac arrest, a pulmonary embolism and internal bleeding after a fall. Teams were scored based on skills, teamwork, judgement and communication. The top two teams competed against each other in a live final in the Bailey Allen at the end of the day, where they performed another response in front of 130 members of the public.

NUI Galway entered three teams in the competition, who met weekly in the lead up to the event and worked with doctors from UHG to prepare. Though NUIG performed well, UCC walked home with the prize and will host next year. Genevieve Callander, auditor of the society, told SIN that the event was a lot to take on but the committee were proud of the competition they put on. “As we are a new society some of the organization put forward challenges,” she said. “There were multiple heats at the same time which needed to run smoothly so time management was a big challenge for example. But it went well and I think we really improved the event and we are delighted that we are being recognized for this.” The society hosted over 90 contestants, doubling last year’s number, and got more colleges involved. Genevieve said the event deserves to win the national award because it “not only aimed to help students develop and showcase their skills but also allowed students to get to know their peers from around the country”. The live final also gave the wider community the chance to learn more about what goes on in an emergency department. NUI Galway societies are nominated for 11 BICS awards in total. The Comedy and SVP societies were also shortlisted for their collaborated event for the best mental health promoting event. The awards will take place in Cork on April 13.


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As it happened: USI Congress 2018 By Martha Brennan

DAY ONE

The Union of Students Ireland’s (USI) annual Congress kicked off Tuesday 3 April in Ballinasloe with over 300 student delegates from across the country arriving for the three-day event, with 19 from NUI Galway. First on the agenda was the launch of ‘Students for Choice’ campaign. Michael Kerrgian, current USI President, warned about the ticking time limit before the vote he announced the launch of the campaign and asked that “the students of Ireland stand as one on this issue.” The topic of capping the number of students within Irish universities was a highly contested subject during the debates. The USI’s current mandate is that they will campaign against any sort of cap. NUI Galway’s first delegate to speak was Eoin Walker, who thought that certain caps were needed in college, saying that there was “no point in dancing around the issue”. His colleague Muireann O’Sullivan joined the other side of the debate. She told the room about how she was a HEAR and DARE student who would not be where she was if there was capping, because these would be these college places would be first to be cut. This motion was also passed and will be carried on next year. We heard our first full-time Students’ Union officer speak when Megan Reilly suggested an amendment for a motion to support part-time students, a topic she spoke a lot about in her recent successful campaign for NUI Galway Students’ Union President. The next highly contested debate was about public funding for private schools and whether or not the USI should continue to campaign against it. Nearly 20 different delegates spoke for or against the funding including NUI Galway’s Alex Coughlan, who argued passionately against using tax payer money for private schools. Haley Myatt covered the first proposal from NUI Galway, speaking about how international students are not “here to fund universities”. She said that more support is needed, especially for the students who pay double or nearly triple fees. This motion also passed. The last NUI Galway delegate to speak was Sinead Ruane. Sinead, who is the auditor of GiG Soc in NUI Galway, proposed to carry the motion on LGBT mental health. Sinead highlighted the importance of focusing on the mental health of members of the LGBT community and said that, “it is really important that our officer boards work with LGBT communities” so that proper policies and procedures are put in place. This motion also passed. In the evening, hustings were held for the USI nominees for next year.

DAY TWO

It was good news for Longford girl Síona Cahill 4 April as she was deemed elected USI President 2018/19 on Day Two of USI Congress 2018 in Ballinasloe. However, the day was not without its controversy. A call was made to stop social media trolling against delegates during the afternoon. Fake twitter accounts were created by someone at the event that were insulting certain delegates this afternoon and those in charge needed to step in to warn against any insulting of other delegates and urged people to only express their opinions on the floor. Day Two was dedicated to academic affairs, welfare, union organisation, the Irish language and equality – a jampacked schedule with many motions being pushed because of time limits. Numerous motions had to be “9A’d”: a system where a vote is called on whether to move on from the debate without letting all speakers finish. Gender equality in the finance committee was the most contentious issues debated. Alex Coughlan of NUI Galway gave a passionate speech about cutting out gender bias. “We are all raised to be discriminatory. A guaranteed gender balance makes sure that we check ourselves and that women of every creed and every nationality get represented,” Alex concluded. The motion passed. The debates on Welfare policies got off to an emotional start when LIT’s SU President spoke about losing his colleague and proposed a motion for the importance of mental health for SU officers. NUI Galway’s incoming SU President Megan Reilly spoke for the motion and highlighted its importance, this motion was also passed. Georgia Feeney took to the podium again to speak on introducing timetabled wellness hours for students. She told Congress that students were developing bad habits in university because of packed course schedules and that these habits will carry on beyond university. “It’s a nasty cycle,” she told the floor. The motion was forwarded to next year’s council. We heard from our SU President for the first time during the last motion discussed in Welfare. Lorcán spoke on the importance of educating students about the dangers of smoking and debated for national campaigns on smoking cessation. Later in the day policies for Irish were discussed. Grainne Hamill proposed a passed motion on the inclusion of Irish in USI roadshows and spoke about the importance for the USI to strive to include Irish in all campaigns. The evening session covered Equality and Citizenship and offered lively debates with many passionate speeches including two from NUI Galway del-

egates early on about the importance of gender recognition. Cameron Keighron told everyone about his own difficulties as a transgender student in university. Cameron told the floor that “our colleges are failing our trans and nonbinary students”. Alex Coughlan spoke after Cameron and received a standing ovation from the floor after a well-expressed speech. Alex explained how the chance was never given to them to “explain who I am” in college and that a student card should match a person’s identity. “There were no options for me to exist safely in my classrooms because I couldn’t be myself when my records didn’t match my real self,” Alex stated. “We are queer, we are here and we aren’t going anywhere until our universities recognize us for who we are,” Alex concluded to cheers. Clare Austick proposed a universal learning design on behalf of NUIG toward the end of equality discussions. She explained how it would improve accessibility to learning for students and dismantle barriers. “We are all so diverse and unique in our own way so why is there only one way of learning?” she said. Clare also proposed a motion for University of Sanctuary. Both motions were passed. Victoria Chihumura brought all to their feet during citizenship discussions when she shared her personal story about direct provision. Victoria called for an end to direct provision and for the Irish government to be held accountable for the system. “The government needs to apologize for the trauma that they’ve caused to the hundreds of thousands of people in direct provision,” she stated. The motion was unanimously passed.

The evening concluded with a passionate speech from ITT SU President Jason Kavanagh on the topic of the 8th amendment. Kavanagh shared a very personal experience with abortion and discussed the suffering that he and his loved ones went through because of the amendment. He told the standing audience that the 8th amendment “doesn’t affect you until it does” and made the first contribution to the floor swear jar with his conclusion: “The 8th amendment doesn’t belong in our f***** constitution”.

DAY THREE

Day Three of Congress Thursday April 5 went at a slower pace compared to the long day of motions the previous day. NUI Galway SU President Lorcán Ó Maoileannaigh told the floor about Galway’s struggle with the accommodation crisis and spoke about students’ struggles with finding somewhere to live in Galway. He spoke about the students living in hostels and told the floor about how he got a call this year at 1am from a student who had to leave their hostel and had nowhere to go. Lorcán said he himself couldn’t find accommodation for three months at the start of this year and urged congress to pass the motion to adopt the Coalition for Homelessness and Housing policies so that more can be done. Former NUI Galway SU President and current USI Vice President for the BMW region Jimmy McGovern proposed the next motion in national affairs. McGovern spoke about sustainability and carbon tax and the importance of the USI working with campaign groups to actively lobby government on meeting sustainability targets. NUI Galway delegate Eoin Walker backed McGovern

on the motion saying: “This is not a student issue or any particular person’s issue. This is a global issue and it is the most important issue”. The motion passed unanimously. The Palestinian conflict was the main discussion in international issues. Passionate arguments went back and forth between delegates until voting and the motion was passed. NUI Galway delegate Alex Coughlan returned to the podium to speak about the marketisation of third-level education. Alex debated vehemently and warned of the damage it can do. “We need to protect our education,” Alex said. NUI Galway’s Grainne Hamill and Eoin Walker spoke against the motion for accreditation for class reps. However, the motion passed after much debate. Andrew Forde took to the microphone again to stress the importance of introducing a USI part-time Postgraduate officer. “As USI we tend to be miles ahead of the rest of the country on a lot of issues…but for some reason we are falling behind on postgraduate issues.” The proposal was passed to introduce the new position. Perhaps the most solemn moments of USI Congress 2018 came with the motion on abusive relationships, sexual violence and harassment. Numerous delegates also came up to share their very personal stories to motivate the room to vote for the motion. The Vice President for Welfare closed the arguments by stating: “We are strong. We are united. And we do not accept rape cultures anymore.” No one contested the motion and it was passed to a valiant floor of students standing in solidarity against sexual violence.

Siona Cahill was deemed elected new USI President


TUAIRIM 

April 10 2018

HEAD to head

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The Cambridge Analytica scandal should result in us all deleting Facebook

Facebook has value, we shouldn’t jump ship now

Everyone should stop using Facebook

By Stevie Buckley

By Mícheál Óg Ó Fearraigh

Facebook – an app we all want to delete sometimes, particularly now that it has emerged that users’ data was passed on to third parties. However there are still reasons to keep this nifty little social network in your pocket. Like many people in this university who aren’t from Galway, you may be living away from your family and friends. You wouldn’t think it feasible to completely abandon your friends and family at home, so why should you? As well as this, a lot of us have online friends from around the world and have to find a way to keep in contact with them. What better way to do this than Facebook and Facebook messenger? A lot of people use Facebook as a news source, for everything from Repeal the 8th to missing people to the release date of your favourite singer’s new album. Yes, Facebook can be seen as an unreliable news source, but many people use it as a news source anyway. You can

like pages belonging to reputable newspapers and magazines to make your news more reliable. Facebook is a great place to get the news your friends and family want to share with you, as well as news from pages you follow. On Facebook, you can catch up on people’s lives and people can catch up on yours. You can share people’s happiness, sadness and anger if people choose to show those emotions. You can react to people’s pictures and posts and comment on them, so your friends know what you’re thinking about when you see what they decided to share with their friends. It’s a great way of getting closer to people and consolidating close friendships you already have, especially if you physically cannot speak to that person face-to-face. Facebook is one of the easiest ways to share something with a large group of people. If you want to share something with all your friends, all you have to do is type something or take a picture and then press a button to share it with your friends.

Voila, all your friends now see whatever you wanted to share with them. There are also groups of people with a specific interest that you can join on Facebook. These people can be from all over the country and even all over the world. There are groups for everyone, from grammar pedants to podcast fans to science lovers. These groups are a great place to share amusing things related to that particular interest or even gain some tips and tricks on how to do things related to this interest. These groups sometimes even plan to meet up in real life, so you can make real life friends. Facebook is a great way to get in contact with people, from family you’ve had since you were born to new friends from all over the world as well as being a great way to get news and learn new things. It would truly be a shame to cut such a resource out of your life and become completely out of the loop. If they tighten up security to protect our data, I don’t see a problem with using the platform.

The time has come to give up on Facebook. It had already taken up too much of our lives and given our info for targeted-marketing, but they’ve finally gone for all-out political manipulation. For anyone not in the know, Facebook has come under a lot of fire for selling users’ information to a company called Cambridge Analytica. In their own words “Cambridge Analytica uses data to change audience behaviour”. Troubling-sounding slogan aside, it seems that Steve Bannon was involved in their creation and he used the company to try and ensure Donald Trump would win the US Presidential Election in 2016. The way they did this is put up polls and questionnaires on Facebook which would allow them to analyse your data and your friends’ data. If they thought you could be persuaded to vote for the man who seems to have an uncanny ability to appear in seemingly every news story, then they would target you and distort your newsfeed with half-truths and lies, or at the very least present

facts to you in such a way to portray Hillary Clinton unfavourably. The reason they could do this was because up until 2014 there were apps (Farmville, for example) that could take not only your information but your friends’ info as well, and that this information could include private messages. Now it seems that Facebook purposely ignored or colluded with Cambridge Analytica to pass on that data and, in turn, fake news was designed to target swing voters on the issues they cared about so that people would vote for whoever Cambridge Analytica were hired by. In other words, people were and are being manipulated via social networks into voting for people. Now there are people out there who will think that the only people in the wrong here are Alexander Nix and his company, however, it was recently revealed that back in 2004, Mark Zuckerberg had an IM conversation that went like this: “Zuck: “Yeah so if you ever need info about anyone at Harvard, just ask. I have over 4,000 emails, pictures, addresses, SNS.” Friend: “What? How’d you manage that one?”

Zuck: “People just submitted it. I don’t know why. They ‘trust me’. Dumb f***s!” Now I can believe that people are capable of change or that perhaps Zuckerberg was simply bragging to his friend about his newfound popularity on the world-wide web but Sandy Parakilas, the platform operations manager at Facebook between 2011-12, has said that executives tried to ignore where the information that was being leaked was going, so that when revelations like this would happen they would have more solid legal grounding. In the words of the 1973 short film Television delivers the People: “It is the consumer who is consumed… You are the end product”. Now I am quite fond of Facebook myself, it’s a great way to communicate with friends and family abroad and I do like a good meme but if I’m in danger of having reality being distorted by some politician I’ll just use email or write letters. Facebook already has too much control over our lives. Are we now going to let it literally govern it?

A note on Putin’s re-election By Gary Elbert

The re-election of Vladimir Putin was met with much chortling and cynical guffawing here in the West, coming swiftly after the startling Salisbury nerve-agent attack on a former Russian spy and his daughter. Putin’s election charade is generally viewed as a rigged affair, offering only a polished veneer of actual democracy that veils a state gangsterism systemic within the Kremlin. For anyone who has read former chess master Garry Kasporov’s book ‘Winter is Coming’, this latest solidification of Putin’s reign may inspire particular terror. Kasporov portrays Putin as a sinister and cunning Machiavellian figure intent on testing and corrupting the tolerance of Western nations.

Russia’s downgraded geopolitical status after the Berlin Wall collapse and the drunken Yeltsin years has certainly been transformed under Putin. Russia has become a player again. Kasporov chastises the naivety of George Bush Jr and even Obama’s reticent foreign policies as strategic disasters that have emboldened Putin. Crimea’s annexation, the Trump presidency, ex KGB agents assassinated, Russia’s support of Assad in Syria; these are diverse but incremental events of global significance that certainly allude to Putin’s progressive ambition in recent years. An Oliver Stone documentary aired last year sought to offer some insight into the mind of this charismatic leader yet in truth the viewer could only depart the

experience with grudging admiration for Putin. This is a serious political operator who despite the relentless avalanche of negative propaganda from the West can stand over a reinvigorated Russian economy and an element of control not seen since the early days of the Cold War and the Gulags. Some may possibly argue that the sole method of ruling Russia is with an iron fist such is the weight of its historical patterns of interpolitical violence where the lines between organised crime and constitutionalism is forever blurred, and where the concept of human rights is treated as a frivolous after-thought. At least that is the message us Westerners have been bombarded with. A cultural snobbery towards Russia emanates from our media behemoths not

dissimilar to 19th century style bastardised Darwinism when considering third-world countries. Where Putin excels is pointing out the myriad hypocrisies inherent in western criticism of his methods of power and control. It’s difficult to sneer at the imbalance of the RT television network when one analyses the concentration of media ownership in the West. Indeed our own unelected Taoiseach Leo Varadkar certainly pulled a Putin-esque stunt with his hefty multimillion strategic communications unit. This Orwellian set up will come in handy in explaining why a tiny neutral country like Ireland is contemplating expelling Russian diplomats due to the attack on Sergei Skripal in Britain. It’s a pattern of action running parallel to Democrat attempts in

America to uncover possible Russian interference in the US election in order perhaps to divert attention from their own incompetence in losing an election to who a man many deem an inarticulate sexist. Since when did Irish politicians decide to involve itself in disputes between Britain and Russia? An Irish Times piece over the weekend cited Garda concerns over plans to expand the Russian embassy in Dublin which they fear may be linked to the presence of tech companies here. Strange how this concern has suddenly appeared now as Varadkar plans to dance to the tune of Theresa May. Leo might not be ordering assassination but the housing, health, and mental health policies of incompetence he stands over are certainly destroying more lives than they are saving, leading

to a fragmented social fabric and an ever-increasing erosion of faith in public institutions. The Putin problem is, according to Kasporov, a monster that has been allowed to grow and expand due to Western insularity and neo-liberal diplomacy. Perhaps Varadkar, like the rest of us Westerners, should focus on the issues on his own doorstep rather than making grand chess moves on a geo-political board he simply does not belong on. Putin is portrayed as a threat to Western democracy. He serves as a useful bogeyman to divert attention from the real political issues of our countries, namely the collapse of the left wing movement’s political relevance and a concentration of media ownership and political incompetence that is proving to be fertile ground for far-right lunatics.


12  O PI N IO N

SIN Vol. 19 Issue 12

SOUTH AFRICA: Whose land is it anyway? By Eoin Molloy Issues pertaining to the colonial dispossession of indigenous populations are ordinarily confined to the pages of voluminous historical tomes, stacked high in some obscure corner of a library shelf. However, such is the current state of affairs in the Republic of South Africa that land, and the escalating number of vicious attacks perpetrated against those who own it, is a matter of constant national debate. The issue was catapulted into the international spotlight in March, when Australian home affairs minister Peter Dutton advocated fast-tracking visa applications for ‘persecuted’ white South African farmers, who deserve the protection of a ‘civilised country’ – the obvious inference here being that the RSA is no longer a country which protects minority citizens from harm. This suggestion was quickly rubbished by the South African government, who denied any such problem. However, the statistics seem to say otherwise. For the year ending 2016/17, the South African Police recorded 638 attacks on small-scale farms, with over 74 of these culminating in murder. A South African parliamentary debate from the 14th of March 2017, which is available on YouTube, underlined the fact that these attacks are ‘not normal criminality’ and are usually accompanied by ‘brutal torturing in the most barbaric way.’ In one chilling case mentioned by MP Anette Steyn, 62-year-old farmer’s wife Nicci Simpson was tied to a chair and tortured with an electrical drill. Her three assailants drilled holes in her feet,

legs and knees. Her ribs were broken, and ment audit from 2017. Since there is an she was stabbed multiple times. By some ongoing pattern of seemingly-coordinated miracle, she survived the attack. attacks designed to intimidate farmers, Acts of sheer brutality like this are one would have to conclude that there is at all too common in the Republic of South least somewhat of a racial element afoot. Africa, a country where 44 murders occur Johan Burger of the Institute for Social every single day. In Walkerville outside of Studies insists that the attacks are motiJohannesburg, a 12-year-old boy named vated by greed and resentment, and not by Amaro Viana was drowned to death in racial hatred. That said, the horrificallyscalding water after witnessing the mur- brutal methods employed by attackers in der of both of his parents in an apparent these cases is certainly indicative of menace botched robbery. His murderers smiled that reaches far beyond a desire for mere in court as they confessed to their crimes. material gain. One need not boil another In a similar incident, British woman human alive in order to steal their wallet. Sue Howarth and her husband Robert Worse still, radical Marxist parliamenLynn, originally from Belfast, were tied tarians like Julius Malema of the Economic up by intruders in their house at 2am, tor- Freedom Fighters (EFF) party have fanned tured with blowtorches for hours before the flames of racial resentment by repeatbeing driven to a quiet roadside and sum- edly calling upon their followers to ‘retake marily shot. Mr Lynn managed to survive land’ from whites. Indeed, just last week a coalition of the African National Congress the incident despite being shot in the neck at point blank range, flagging down a pass- (ANC) and the EEF voted to allow exproing car early the next morning. priation of land without compensation Crimes of this barbaric nature would wherever it is in the public interest to do so indeed cause convulsions throughout any – a resolution which appears to sound the civilised country, yet in South Africa they death knell for white farmers in the country. seem to simply form a rather sanguine To enable expropriation without backdrop to a widespread culture of compensation would be somewhat morviolent resentment. There are protests ally defensible were it possible to prove against the attacks, but there is very little that white South Africans came by their by way governmental intervention. land by ill means. Indeed, the rhetoric of Since the South African government politicians like Malema is grounded in a no longer collect ethnically-based crime grand notion of resistance against colonial statistics, the question as to whether or oppression, not dissimilar from our own not there is an element of racial hatred experience in Ireland. But this is a drastic to these attacks remains obfuscated. oversimplification of the situation, the Whites own 73% of the land in the coun- history of land ownership in South Africa try despite making up less than 10% of is far more patchwork and nuanced than the population, according to a govern- it is often portrayed.

The Dutch established their first port in modern-day South Africa in 1602, to provide respite and food for merchants circumnavigating the Cape of Good Hope. They encountered the indigenous Khoikhoi and San peoples, who were nomadic hunter-gatherers and pastoral farmers by nature. Violent clashes between the Dutch and these native tribes were quite frequent, up until 1671 when the Khoisan peoples were effectively bought out of their land by the colonists. In and around the same time, the Bantu peoples of Central Africa migrated south and began to settle in South Africa. These people, most commonly known to us as the Zulus, intermingled and conflicted with the Khoisan in much the same way as the Boers did. South African Historian George Stow in his book, The Native Races of South Africa: A History of the Intrusion of the Hottentots and Bantu into the Hunting Grounds of the Bushmen, the Aborigines of the Country, posits that there was quite enough land to support all of the newcomers to the peninsula and indeed, that large-scale colonial dispossession never occurred in the way we might imagine. Since most modern black South Africans are descended from the Bantu expansionists, who played as pivotal a role in displacing the indigenous Khoisan as the Boers, is it moral for politicians like Malema to boil down the fractured and tumultuous history of South Africa into a binary dichotomy of black versus white? History teaches us that radical ideologues have always been quite willing to

exploit simplistic interpretations of their nation’s own history to stir up internal tensions as a means of bolstering their own political power, and Malema and his ideological contemporaries are no different. Few countries have suffered more anguish than the RSA. From the tumult of the colonial era, through the horrors of the British concentration camps against natives during the Boer War, right up to Apartheid – one would think that South Africa’s power brokers have had enough of bloodshed and disharmony along antiquated tribal lines by now. The fundamental question at play here is that of identitarianism and the politics of resentment. It is in no way morally defensible to kill and terrorise descendants of Boers for the supposed crime committed by their ancestors in first settling the land. This logic is not far removed from the Stalinist purges of 1930s Russia, where up to six million Kulak peasants were slaughtered for being materially well-enough off to hire paid labour to help with their farms. Derided as capitalists, the Kulaks were deemed to be deserving of their fate by those who resented their success. This example shows that when identitarianism and the politics of resentment dominate national debate, mass murder is the only plausible outcome in the long run. We can only pray that this dire situation, and the apparent unwillingness of the South African government to rectify it, is not the pre-cursor to outright genocide it appears to be.

Only worth it if you’re perfect: why L’Oreal attitude is damaging to us all By Áine Kenny Last month, beauty blogger Kadeeja Khan, aka @emeraldxbeauty on Instagram, claimed she was fired from a L’Oréal project for having “skin issues”, according to their statement. Khan was understandably distraught when she was informed of the bad news via email. She called out L’Oréal publicly on Instagram, saying “I’m already use to ‘trolls’ trying & bring me down. But coming from a global international brand? .. Really hurt. It honestly made me feel like their really isn’t any room in the industry for people like me. It made me feel that “you’re worth it” - if you’re perfect.

L’Oréal hit back at the claims, saying their casting agents “wrongly cast bloggers with skin conditions for a photo shoot,” and then poor communication ensued. I don’t understand why L’Oréal used the word ‘wrong’. What the beauty giant is essentially saying here is that imperfect skin with blemishes is not considered the norm, and don’t meet the standards they expect. This revelation must be incredibly damaging for people with acne. Acne is not something people can control easily. The majority of people’s skin isn’t perfect, with many of us suffering from breakouts. Khan has 147k followers in Instagram, and she isn’t afraid to bare her acne scars and spots. So why should a global leader in the beauty industry be afraid to?

At the end of the day, we all need help in concealing spots from time to time. If beauty companies continuously hire models with flawless skin, this will result in their customers becoming alienated. I am sick of seeing ads for concealer showing a model applying it to one CGI spot on an otherwise blemish-free face. We need more products with better coverage, and this will never happen if all the foundations and concealers are geared towards Gigi Hadid types with a constant dewy, fresh glow. Melanie Murphy is a prominent Irish YouTuber whose video revealing her acne made her channel gather speed way back in 2014. It is so important for acne-positive vloggers to have a platform. Acne can be extremely

disheartening, not to mention painful if one has cystic acne. The success of these beauty bloggers and YouTubers show young girls and boys out there that skin conditions don’t have to ruin your life. Of course, there is also the argument that make-up has become so commercialised and commodified it is harming young people’s self-esteem. If one needs to wear make-up in order to have self-confidence, is this truly healthy? However, who are we to judge others’ decisions? Make-up is not harming anyone, and for many, it is an art form. Not to mention acne-positive beauty gurus such as Khan are keen to clarify they don’t ‘need’ to wear make-up, they want to. Models such as Briana Lopez and

Belle Lucia have already taken to Instagram to show their acne, unfiltered and all. This undoubtedly is a major help to people suffering from low selfconfidence when their acne is at its worst. It also provides a contrast the photoshopped, Facet tuned efforts of some of their counterparts. It is time for make-up advertisements and beauty giants to stop beating about the brush(!) and start portraying real skin. Real skin includes moles, scars, freckles, spots, rosacea and vitiligo. In the case of vitiligo, the beauty industry has taken a few tentative steps forward with Winnie Harlow. It is time for them to ramp up their efforts in other areas to make sure their models are reflective of their consumers.


TUAIRIM 

April 10 2018

“This referendum will possibly be the most important thing we are asked to vote on in our lifetime” By Claire VanValkenburg There’s a slight chance you may have heard about the 8th amendment referendum that is set to take place at the end of May. SIN wanted to know how NUI Galway students felt about the referendum, and what aspects of the issue they cared about the most. So, we sat down with students from both sides to get to the heart of the issue.

Mia Dovel, Second Year, Biomedical Engineering This referendum will possibly be the most important thing we are asked to vote on in our lifetime. We’re voting on who gets to live and who doesn’t. As young people, we should care even more, because the decisions we make today will determine the Ireland in which we are going to live. At the heart of this debate, is love and compassion. We need to support women in crisis pregnancies. The main reason women get abortions is not because they want to, or because they see abortion as a good option; it is because they feel like they have to. They do not have the support they need to carry on their pregnancy. We need to work to provide women with any financial, emotional, or practical help these women need to support their pregnancies. To be clear, abortion is bad for women. The early feminists believed that abortion was the ‘ultimate exploitation of women’. Instead of offering women a violent solution to a distressing situation, we need to offer them love and support. In the discussion of abortion there is one voice that is left out. That of the silent victims, the babies in the womb. The most vulnerable and innocent members of our society are being targeted before they get any chance at life. The 8th amendment ensures that, provided the mother’s life is not at risk, her baby is given every chance possible. The repeal campaign talks a lot about the woman but fails to ever give value or dignity to the human life growing inside her. While the prolife view may not appear to be a popular view, there is a silent majority of prolife people that are beginning to speak out. Young people are out on the streets of Ireland, canvassing and winning people over to the prolife cause. I am confident that we will win a no vote, and that we will save the 8th amendment.

Jess Ramtahal, Second Year Visiting Student, English and French People pay mind more to the people that use it as a form of contraception rather than looking at the cases of women that it actually impacts and effects, like they don’t care about those stories. They just care about ‘Oh, she used it as a form of contraception, every woman must do that.’ It’s not like that. I got here [to Ireland] and I kept seeing all these things on the news that were like, ‘Repeal the 8th!’ and I was like, ‘I don’t know what that is,’ and then I started looking into it and I started learning about it - I have

13

What do NUI Galway students have to say th about the 8 ? this ethics class and that’s where I started learning about it - and I learned that you have to prove that you’re suicidal to get an abortion, so that’s when I kind of opened into it. Honestly it made me really mad, because people think women only use it as a form of contraception and people think you can brush it off later. Having an abortion is not a light experience, even to this day it bothers me. It’s not a light experience and people don’t acknowledge that. I think it comes down to older generations and younger generations, and who actually shows up to these votes because there’s so much of the older generation opposed to it. Whereas like the younger generation is like, ‘this is our right.’

Swellar Zhuo, Third Year Visiting Student, Rhetoric & Writing and Sociology They [pro-life voters] think it’s a cop out. They think that if they legalize it [abortion] women can be as promiscuous and as scandalous as they can, and then use it as a form of contraception. But in countries where it is legalized their abortion rate has gone down. It’s not an issue of if abortion is right or wrong, it’s an issue of can we make it safe and legal or do you want it unsafe and illegal. I think that’s the fear for anyone traveling abroad or anyone seeking asylum is like, you come here and you realize this option is not available to you. And that that might actually push some people away from coming and experiencing Ireland. I think it’s going to be a 50/50 [vote]. In the beginning we were very hopeful that it would pass because we were like ‘well, it’s common sense, you’re expanding women’s rights, you’re giving them a safer option,’ and after talking to people that grew up here their entire lives you realise that there’s actually a lot of people who are socially liberal that have some conservative beliefs in them. And this is one of the issues they hold dear to their heart because they see an unborn child’s right equal to the mother’s life. They see a life to it. I honestly don’t know if it will be passed, and I think if it doesn’t it’ll be many, many years before another referendum comes around.

Jessy Ní Cheallaigh, Third Year, Communications through Irish (Cumarsáid) Even if the 8th is repealed it’s going to be a number of years before we get proper abortion care, but it’s such a difficult thing for anyone to do. No one takes the decision lightly. I think that’s something that’s always mis-conveyed in the other side is like, ‘oh yeah sure women will just be using it as a form of contraception, or people will be having abortions on their lunch break,’ but it’s like no one would ever want to have an abortion, not even the mental trauma behind it, but also the physical pain. Some people have really bad reactions to it, like heavy bleeding. It’s not like ‘I want to have sex without a condom because I can get an abortion,’ no one does that. I

would agree that there should be more services for pregnant people, there should be more support for women who are dealing with tough pregnancy. And see that’s the thing that gets mis-conveyed as well is like people think we’re ‘pro-abortion,’ and it’s like yeah we are but we’re also ‘pro-keeping-the-baby,’ we’re also ‘pro-adoption,’ we’re also ‘pro-whatever-you-want-to-do.’ We believe there should be better child services, there should be better maternity care in general, and better treatment if you are pregnant. We totally agree with that as well but at the moment in Ireland there’s none of that. I understand that if it was a perfect world where people could bring up babies without any money that would be great, but it’s not, and that’s just a reality. For some women it just isn’t an option to have a child, it’s not possible. If it forces someone to go hungry or if it forces someone out of their house you know, there’s many, many reasons, and it’s not just money, that’s just one of the reasons it could be. It’s so personal, every reason to have an abortion is totally individual, it is totally dependent on different factors in that person’s life and you have no idea of those factors whatsoever, so how can you say if that’s right or wrong thing to do for her. It’s human rights, women don’t have the same human rights as men because we’re able to get pregnant and that’s what’s wrong. That’s kind of, for me, the basis of it all.

Peter Ennis, Final Year, Business Commerce International with German It will pass, yeah. [Abortion is] probably the most pressing issue in Ireland for people our age, but probably not for people that are in other age groups. I don’t really know what it means to me, I just feel it needs to be passed, that’s it really. It’s probably more [meaningful] for girls because it relates directly to them, but obviously it is an important decision for everyone to make.

Vinny, First Year So far what I’ve seen is that younger people want it to pass, they want more rights for themselves I suppose later on, they don’t want to be shackled down by the older generations, which is what tends to happen around, when it comes to politics. You’ve heard about the pope coming? I think the pope is coming to reinforce the fact that it’s against the Christian doctrine, there’s the meeting of the families as well. I think the pope’s visit is very political in that sense, because he doesn’t want it to pass because obviously the Catholic church is against it heavily. But as long as the young people can go vote, we should get it passed. I want it to pass personally, but I try not to get involved too much.

Katie Browne, Final Year, Commerce I think it will pass, I hope it passes. I think it’s really unfair for girls to have to put up with people making decisions for them. I think it is really important that girls have that decision to make.


14  O PI N IO N

SIN Vol. 19 Issue 12

Is there hope for the Pope? By Cathy Lee When it was announced that Ireland was to receive the Pope in late August, once again we were reminded of the reality of the ongoing process of Ireland separating Church and State. For decades, Irish citizens have felt the effects of a constitution being filled with heavy church teachings, values and beliefs given a platform so high that it infringes on the choices of people, regardless of their religious or non-religious background. We live in a changing Ireland, and how this visit is handled by those in power, will do a great deal in defining this position going forward. To correctly handle the Pope’s visit, we must first recognise how Ireland has changed since the visit of Pope John Paul II in 1979. Almost 40 years later, we live in more secular times where Ireland should no longer be defined as “a Catholic country” as it has been on numerous occasions in the past. Today, we are open to

others, the various minorities regardless of creed or race in the true honour to the land of a hundred thousand welcomes. I don’t take a position to say that the Pope should not be welcomed or allowed to visit, as that would just be another form of exclusion or intolerance and so, this is not progress. The Pope is a world figure, it would not be in Ireland’s best interest to deny him. We even saw last month, our Taoiseach rubbing shoulders with US leader Donald Trump for St Patrick’s Day, which was met with a mixed reaction. Just because Trump does not represent the position of the majority of Irish people, this does not mean that such visits of a political nature should be boycotted or denied. The same is true of the Pope. Sometimes respect has to be given to those we may not agree with in order to receive respect back, just as long as we don’t act like something we are not. Maybe it is just a case of

keeping up appearances but in my view if the Pope’s visit is to be correctly handled, honesty is key. We need not play false roles in pretending that every person in Ireland prays under a candle to the Pope each evening, because this simply isn’t true and does not represent Ireland in 2018. Although this will not be a formal state visit, but as part of a larger World Meeting of Families, there are talks of civil protesting of the summer events, particularly from those who are survivors of institutional church abuse. I think anyone in this position should be entitled to do that. We are a mixed country, from those who will celebrate the Pope’s visit here and those who may not even be aware of it. What we are all aware of are the wrongs we have seen from the Church in this country’s past and we derive our own position on people and their background from this. But

there can be nothing worse than keeping a fire burning instead of trying to find a new more tolerant way forward. This is not to suggest forgetting past atrocities but progressing in a way that this hurt does not define us as a whole country. We have marriage equality in this country, we may see the 8th Amendment repealed in the upcoming months. The political space is becoming a secular one, and so the Pope should be treated as a guest to this country like any other, with no entitlements or elitism. One thing that should remain in our minds however is that recently our previous President Mary McAleese was denied entry to a Vatican meeting for

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Step 2

Step 3

Brown Rice Mixed Leaves Sweet Potato Cubed & Roasted

Pulled Pork Rotisserie Chicken Tofu Tuna Flakes

Cheddar Cheese Quinoa Miso Kale Slaw Roast Vegetables Red Onion Sugar Snap Peas Broccolli Shredded Carrot

Body

Base

3 Garnishes Feta Scallions Pak Choi Kimchi Chickpeas Sesame Seeds Sunflower & Pumpkin Seeds

Dressing Asian (Spicy), Balsamic, French or Lemon & Tobassco

and 1979 but of course only time will tell how this is going to go down in August. I just hope, that we won’t digress and revert back to an unhappy time of unquestioned Catholicism in forgetting all the progress we have made, both politically and socially.

Micro-plastic found in bottled water: why we should finally give up this environment-damaging practice By Tarryn McGuire

BIA BOX Treat Yourself

her political views. There is no defending this move from Pope Francis and I don’t think any Irish leader should forget this most recent action when the Pope comes to visit us. It’s true that we have moved on from the days of the Eucharist Congress

A recent study has found high levels of microplastics in bottled water and has discovered that 90% of the world’s most popular bottled water brands contain tiny pieces of plastic. The most common type of plastic fragment found was the same type of plastic used to make bottle caps- polypropylene. The bottles that were used in this study were bought all across the world, in the US, China, Brazil, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Lebanon, Kenya and Thailand. Nile red dye was used to fluoresce particles in the water as the dye tends to stick to the surface of plastics but not most natural materials. This bright red colour clung to all the plastic particles in the water, making the plastic contents of the water very clear to the observers. The scientists involved in this experiment stated that they “found roughly twice as many plastic particles within bottled water” compared with their previous study of tap water. In just one bottle of Nestlé Pure Life, concentrations were as high as 10,000 plastic pieces per litre of water. Of the 259 bottles tested, only 17 were free of plastics, according to the study. A spokesman for the World Health Organisation spoke out and stated that although there was not yet any evidence on

the impacts on human health, it is an emerging area of concern. So, does this mean that we should finally give up on this environment-damaging practise? And even if bottling companies make any changes, is it still worth buying bottled water? Besides, micro-plastic is only one of many reasons to stop drinking bottled water. Companies that use singleuse bottles to package their water have no concern for the uncertain future: they do not seem to give the long-term effects of climate change and the endangered watershed a second thought, the only thing these companies are interested in is profit. These companies promote their “healthy” products to their customers and end up selling it at prices that are 240 to 10,000 times higher than what those customers pay for their own tap water. Drinking fountains were once an amenity found all over schools, hospitals and cities. However, vending machines seem to have stolen their places, forcing citizens to buy bottled water because these fountains happened to lapse into disrepair. Many schools, hospitals and Government buildings found it too expensive, or simply lacked the funds to repair the old pipes for these fountains, and so this modern infrastructure lost its place in our communities. Now people turn to corner shops,

supermarkets and vending machines to purchase their daily water bottle. I’m sure I don’t even need to mention how few of these bottles actually end up being recycled, with most of them ending up piled high in landfills, floating around in stagnant rivers, or lodging themselves in various underwater environments, disrupting marine life and causing horrific environmental damage. Although many people believe that bottled water is cleaner and purer than their tap water, this isn’t the case. Many bottled water companies advertise their product as being sourced from “natural springs” or other theoretically pure sources. However, about 45% of bottled water is taken from the exact same places that your tap water comes from. So, they are essentially the same thing, although now we know that the bottled water contains microplastic particles now too, so which option really wins here? The human race spends collectively around $100 billion dollars a year on bottled water, it’s as if we have forgotten about the absolute luxury of running water. NUIG has a number of water coolers located around the school, as well as specific recycling bins for plastic. If you haven’t gained anything from this article, I hope that you will at least take advantage of these facilities and work towards creating a better future for years to come.


WHAT YOU SEE IS JUST THE TIP OF THE ICEBERG

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Tuesday 5-7pm • Wednesday 5-7pm www.su.nuigalway.ie twitter.com/NUIGSU Contact the Studentfacebook.com/NUIGalwayStudentsUnion Health Unit to make your appointment Funded by the Student Projects Fund www.su.nuigalway.ie

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16  FA SH IO N & L I F EST Y L E

By Amy McMahon

SIN Vol. 19 Issue 12

with Emer Rutherford from PENNEYS TO PRADA

This issue Irish Blogger and YouTuber Emer Rutherford answers our must know questions on the hottest summer trends, social media pressures and even adds some advice for budding bloggers. Take notes!

Q: What inspired you to start your blog? A: As I was finishing school and going into a computer degree, I knew I wouldn’t be doing much writing and as it’s something I love to do, I started my blog to keep it up.

inspiration from so many different people with all different styles and use that to create my own style.

Q: Has social media impacted how you blog /upload to your new YouTube channel? A: Not really. I think social media is great to inspire you, but I

Q: Wardrobe essential? We all have one! A: Has to be a good biker

think it’s very important to have your own style and identity both in blogging and YouTube.

jacket, they’re just so easy to throw on over any kind of outfit, be it dressy or casual.

Q: You have 35.7k insta followers and still growing! Do you ever feel pressured to upload content to Instagram regularly, or to a certain standard? A: I sometimes do feel pressure, but that’s when I know I need to take a step back and maybe a few days offline. I think you should always enjoy social media and it should never been too serious.

Q: What are your top tips to getting the perfect OOTD photo? A: Take 100 more photos than you think you need, it’s all about the options!

Q: What are the spring summer trends you are most looking forward to? A: Lots of tropical prints and bright colours. I’m just very excited

Q: What advice do you have for any budding bloggers? A: Do it because you love it and have patience. I think if you’re getting into blogging because you want hundreds of followers or loads of free stuff straight off the bat, you’re going to be sorely disappointed because it takes a lot of time and hard work to build any sort of following.

Q: What can we expect next from you? A: I honestly don’t know! I’m finishing up college at the end of April and I don’t really have much of a plan after that which is actually kind of exciting.

to wear skirts and dresses again!

Q: Who is your style icon? A: I don’t think I have one particular ‘style icon’. I love to take

MOM JEANS

on the rise By Brigid Fox

Mom jeans are making a comeback. What next, Grandma crop tops? Maybe give it a couple years. Wave goodbye to skinny jeans and distressed designs, Mom Jeans are the new sheriffs in town. No longer will our leg circulation be cut off by the restriction of skinny jeggings, so long are the days of low rise style trousers. A trend that stems from forty-something year old suburban mothers on their way to soccer games with orange slices has somehow done a complete one-eighty and is a look everybody craves. Celebrities seen in support of this movement includes Jessica Alba, Gigi Hadid, Zooey Deschanel and countless others contently modelling the trend in their day looks. So, how can us broke students follow in pursuit of this recycled trend? Pretty easily actually. Many clothing stores and brands have changed up their skinny style regime for some of these hip loving mom jeans. In a variation of styles and colours Penney’s, Missguided, Zara and Pretty Little Thing offer mom jeans at a reasonable price - now there is no excuse! T-shirts, crop tops, shirts, boots, stiletto heels, this look works with them all. Dress up, dress down, their versatility is exceptional (no wonder mothers loved them.) SIN picks: • (Left) Missguided €41 • (Right) Zara €29.95

Find Emer on Instagram @penneystoprada, follow her blog penneystoprada.com and her new YouTube channel “Emer Rutherford – Penneys to Prada”.


FAIS EAN

April 10 2018

7

NÓS MAIRE ACHTÁLA 

Makeup hacks to look stress-free during exams By Tarryn McGuire It should go without saying that you should get at least 8 hours sleep, eat healthily, take time to relax and wash daily during the exam period... however, we all know that’s all going to go out the window come the first week of our exams. Although we may not feel so great at this time, it doesn’t mean we can’t look good while we suffer on. Maybe it’s just me but popping a bit of make up on and running a brush through my hair always helps me to feel a little more human when I’m looking like something out of the walking dead! If you’ve had a few sleepless, stressridden nights spent crying over your upcoming exam, meet your new best friend: flesh-toned eyeliner. Running a pencil over your waterline with a shade that’s just slightly darker than your natural skin tone will beautifully cover up the red that’s currently rimming your eyes. If you want to go for a subtler look I’d advise using a matte shade but shimmery ones will really brighten up those eyes too. The wonder pencil by NYX is perfect for this, and as an added bonus, you can also use it to conceal flaws and blemishes as well as lining your lips against lipstick bleeding and fading. What more could you want? Do you get the feeling that your undereyes are slightly more of a purple-red colour than normal? The best way to correct this is to try a peach- or yellowtoned concealer or corrector. Peach helps to make the skin looks more natural, but yellow is much more brightening. I would highly recommend the Makeup

Revolution Conceal and Define Concealer as it is super affordable and comes in a great range of shades! If you’re tired, there is no doubt that your skin is showing it too. Hopefully by helping your skin to look more refreshed and awake, you’ll start to feel more alert too! Try to create a dewy glow with a refresher spray like the Mario Badescu Facial Spray with Aloe Herbs and Rosewater. Between you and me, keeping it in the fridge overnight will really help give you that extra boost as it should help to cool and depuff the face too. A quick application of mascara will

really help to open those eyes up and make it look like you had a great sleep, studied well and are totally ready to ace this exam... even if that may not be the case at all. My favourite budget mascara at the moment is Essence’s “lashes of the day super volume mascara.” This is very inexpensive and curls my lashes perfectly, giving them way more volume and length. Last but not least, and although not makeup related, it is really important to stay hydrated as you study. Knocking back a few litres of water can really help rejuvenate your skin when it is dry and tired from the air con in the library.

17

Finger piercings: Are engagement rings a thing of the past? By Tarryn McGuire It’s crazy to think that in 50 years’ time we might be passing down an heirloom to our grandchildren and reminiscing about our wedding day as they hold a crusty old piercing in their hands. Dermal piercings are becoming more and more popular and even more so in a romantic sense. These piercings make it appear as though the diamond is sitting on top of your skin. However, the secret is that the base anchor is pierced through the skin first, remaining under the surface of the skin and the decorative stud is then placed on top. Dermal piercings are becoming somewhat of a symbol for commitment, maybe its because pain is love or that dermal piercings leaves scars when removed, who knows? As always, there are two ways of looking at this emerging trend. Traditional engagement rings can come with a hefty price tag - in fact, the average engagement ring in the UK can cost more than £1,000, while these piercings could save a huge amount of money for couples (depending on the size of the diamond stud of course) as they cost about £70-£100. Not to mention the added of bonus of never having to go through the whole ring sizing process. Be that as it may, the dermal engagement piercing comes with its own set of faults. According to the British Association of Dermatologists “If the piercing is not deep enough there is a risk of it moving, known as migration. If it is too deep the skin begins to grow over the piercing, known as embedding. Other risks include inflammation, scarring and infection – particularly if it is on the hands, as is the case with these particular piercings.” So not only can this piercing be ripped out of your finger, but it could also become embedded in your skin. They also mentioned that “another problem with having a dermal piercing on your hand is the increased likelihood of it catching on something.” To create a visual for you, imagine you’re running late and you can’t find your keys. You

Top tips to get a good night’s sleep before exams By Fiona Lee The most beneficial thing when trying to get a good night’s sleep is to be patient. Don’t fall into frustrations and set high expectations for your night’s rest. You’ll sleep eventually. Worrying too much about utter relaxation is a baffling thing, but something we struggle to realise. However, if you need extra help try the following top tips. You’ll be fresh as a daisy and exam ready in no time!

HEADSPACE This is an app that talks you through short meditations. It has recordings for motivational talks, dealing with grief, and a host of others, but I found the basic one would always help me fall asleep. It makes your entire body feel heavy with slumber. I recommend this particularly for anyone suffering from stress or anxiety.

PODCASTS I discovered this from a pre-lecture chat with a fellow student. It’s called ‘Sleep With Me’, and no, this was no brazen remark! This podcast lasts an hour and it consists of a man telling a dull story which progressively becomes more boring and quieter as it goes on. The idea entertained me; after weeks of insomnia I had fallen asleep before the dreary introduction had ended. It’s an odd thing, but if you don’t mind possibly getting tangled in earphones, it’s a great option.

THE USUAL NAGS The ones you tend to overlook, on purpose. Eliminate screens! Don’t eat sugary food! Do some exercise, a brisk walk after dinner perhaps, or even leave your home briefly at

some point in the day to breathe in some air that isn’t stale and questionable. This point is moot really, as no one will truly take it on board. However, I hope I can shed some light on your destructive habits that we you are too lazy to fix. Maybe there’s hope for some out there…

HOME REMEDIES The little tricks you may hear from the sweeter and wiser generation of the household. A bit of lavender oil on some cotton wool should knock you right out. Some warm milk is a classic choice, you could chance some cocoa too. Taking a bath is also a good tip, despite being dismissed often. The fact that less and less people advocate taking time to have a bath these days is criminal, and I will not rest until each and every one of you bathe (I don’t require proof, your word is enough, please).

eventually remember that you put them in your jeans pocket not so long ago, and naturally you plunge your hand into your pocket to retrieve them. Alas, as your hand slides in, your piercing gets caught on the edge of your pocket but before you realise, your hand has already reached the bottom of your pocket and is grasping your missing keys. The piercing will have been caught and dragged a few centimetres before being ripped out of your finger. Enticing, right? In light of these cons, many piercing studios don’t even consider doing dermal piercings on peoples’ fingers. If that doesn’t scream unsafe, I don’t know what would. So while they might look cool to some of you, due to their safety hazards and the reluctance of certain piercings studios to ‘pierce’ fingers, we don’t really know if these will take over traditions and replace wedding rings just yet!


TOGHCHAIN

CML #NUIGSU18

A N RA C H A IDH TÚ S A N IO M A ÍO C H T?

Ionaid Vótála ar an gCampus Polling Stations on Campus Thursday 12th April 2018 Déardaoin an 12 Aibreán 2018 An Bhialann 10:00—18:00 Áras na Mac Léinn 11:00—20:00

SU CML TOGHCHAIN

ELECTIONS

A N R A CHA I D H T Ú SA N IO M A ÍO C H T?

WI LL Y O U R U N ?

Áras Inealltóireachta Alice Perry / Alice Perry Engineering Building 12:00—15:30 Friars 13:00—16:00

SU

How To Vote

Cén chaoi vótáil

You will receive ballot papers.

Gheobhaidh tú pháipéar ballóide.

The ballot paper contains the name and photograph of each candidate listed alphabetically.

Beidh ar an bpáipéar ballóide ainm agus grianghraf gach iarrthóra agus iad liostaithe in ord aibítre.

There is also the option to vote for “Re-Open Nominations” if you do not wish to vote for any candidate.

Beidh de rogha agat vótáil do “Athoscail Ainmniúcháin” freisin, mura mian leat vóta a thabhairt d’aon duine de na hiarrthóirí.

Consider each ballot paper separately. NUI Galway Students’ Union uses the Proportional Representation system. That means you can rank your candidates based on preference by placing a 1,2,3.. etc in the boxes alongside their names.

Breathnaigh ar gach páipéar ballóide as féin. Úsáideann Comhaltas na Mac Léinn, OÉ Gaillimh Córas na hIonadaíochta Cionmhaire. Ciallaíonn sé sin gur féidir leat na hiarrthóirí a rangú de réir do rogha féin ach 1, 2, 3... srl. a chur sa bhosca in aice lena n-ainm.

The important thing is to express a clear preference. If you would like to vote for just one candidate, put the number 1, or a clear mark, next to their name.

Is é an rud is tábhachtaí rogha shoiléir a chur in iúl. Mura mian leat vóta a thabhairt ach d’aon iarrthóir amháin, cuir uimhir a 1, nó marc soiléir, in aice lena ainm.

You must have NUI Galway ID. Other forms of ID are not permitted.

Ní mór duit do chárta aitheantais OÉ Gaillimh a bheith agat. Ní ghlacfar le foirmeacha aitheantais eile.

ELECTIONS WILL Y OU R U N ?

Avoid writing anything else on your ballot paper or it Ná scríobh aon rud eile ar do pháipéar ballóide ar fhaitíos might be deemed to be a spoilt vote and removed from go measfaí é a bheith ina vóta millte agus go gcuirfí as the election count. an áireamh é. www.su.nuigalway.ie facebook.com/NUIGalwayStudentsUnion twitter.com/NUIGSU www.su.nuigalway.ie

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FAIS EAN

April 10 2018

7

NÓS MAIRE ACHTÁLA 

LOST LOOKS: 90’s GRUNGE By Brigid Fox Music and fashion have always been big influencers in our world. The way we dress, how we act, what we listen to, their reach is endless. But is there a connection between these two trendsetters? Can what we listen to stretch even further into our style and look? The purpose of this series is to show that, well, yes they can. As musicians gain recognition for their obscure, inviting sound, we too get inspired by the clothing they wear, the hairstyles they make iconic and their ability to transform the society around them. David Bowie, The Rolling Stones, Elvis Presley; the many artists that have made an appearance in these articles gave us an insight into the bond between sound and style like no others. With wild hairstyles, eccentric patterns and shaking hips, these vibrant characters (along with countless others) are not just talented musicians. Their influence spread further than ever imagined, musically, socially and within the fashion world. The end of this university year means the end of this Lost Looks series. So to conclude this column, I’ll be taking a look at 90’s grunge and the endless impact it has made on generations then and now. Grunge as a genre collaborated punk and rock music to create a harsher, more angst sound that captured teenage fury eloquently. From fashion, movies and literature to even politics, grunge grew from nothing to everything in a very short space of time. Grunge’s “fusion of many styles” is one of the key reasons for its popularity. With artists like Nirvana, Pearl Jam and Soundgarden at the forefront of its success, grunge was the voice of an angry, adolescent generation that had something to say. Its music and lifestyle focused on credibility and one’s expression of self, dealing with issues of loneliness, boredom and isolation - emotions and ideas that their audience too experienced. The fashion had a similar, careless attitude. Opposing the 70’s glam-rock customs of costumes and flamboyant outfits, grunge was low-key in fashion, but strong in influence. Seattle, Washington in the 90’s was the perfect spot for finding this underground rock music. Its location was important as it “became a synonym for a new mass revolt against traditional values in popular culture.” Seattle brought

killer bands like Pearl Jam, Alice in Chains and Nirvana to the stage and in turn became the birthplace for their music. In Rad’s The Contribution of Grunge to Social Change, his explanation of what grunge represents highlights its role in society. The mainstream success of the grunge phenomenon seems misplaced here above all other genres discussed in previous columns. Grunge as a focus on social issues, the devastation of youth and boredom, gathering mainstream success was never part of the act. Julianne Escobedo, a cultural writer believes Kurt Cobain, one of the primary influencers of this genre to be responsible for this cross over: “not only did he make it okay to be a freak, he made it desirable.” Nirvana’s song Smells like Teen Spirit in 1991 was considered an “anti-anthem” for those “discontented with their lives”- a possible indication to its fame. To a teenager full of misplaced angst, frustration and harrowing emotions, Nirvana, along with other grunge artists, gave a sense of empathy to those feelings. Grunge fashion brought checkered shirts, baggy jeans and a careless sense of style. It was like even having clothes on was too much of an effort for these musicians! This style can be seen on musicians like Kurt Cobain and Eddie Vedder. Ironically, this stylebut-not-actually-a-style-style has revisited the fashion world and the 90’s grunge look is a desired styling statement today.

This is quite ironic seeing as grunge was never about trending styles or fashion shoots, it was about a sense of rebellious freedom in not giving a damn about appearances, possibly something lost on generations since. This is why its upsurge in the fashion once more is interesting, proving the influence musicians and bands can have socially then and now. Women of rock, more specifically grunge, made their own waves in the music and fashion world at the time. Bands like Hole, Garbage and The Cardigans with female fronting musicians told stereotypes, social norms and conventional fashion to shove it. Hole’s lead singer, Courtney Love, married to the late Kurt Cobain gave a feminine look to nineties grunge. This Doll Parts musician can be seen styling silk laced dresses with bare feet at Hole concerts or posing with shift, doll-like dresses in photographs. Her iconic bed head hairstyle and imperfect red lips are also key looks for this nineties style. The 1993’s Wisconsin based band Garbage and lead singer Shirley Manson also brought some iconic grunge looks that perfectly represented the genre’s style. Seen modelling both a pink bob hairstyle along with careless, messy, long hair; Manson’s hairstyle shows the careless nature of this genre. Styling leather skirts and dresses, an eye-catching leopard print faux fur jacket, finishing off her looks with biker boots, she could be considered one of the most fashionable musicians to come from nineties grunge.

The inspired looks for this final column gives two separate styles of 90’s grunge that best represent the genre. The first is a genderless style focusing on the clothing of bands like Nirvana and Pearl Jam. The orange checkered shirt and Levi’s denim jacket (bought for 16 euro in COPE Galway charity shop) are obvious links to the grunge lumberjack inspired style. The ripped jeans offer a modernised grunge look but if you wish to stay true to the genre blue, faded, baggy jeans would be your go-to-choice. Beauty-wise, as grunge was carefree, natural to no makeup suits this look perfectly. The second style is feminine focused taking inspiration from previously discussed artists. The purple leather skirt (New Look) offers the angsty styling to this genre’s look. Worn with an oversized, green jumper (Topshop) again, the key element for this look is to represent rock and rebellion. I’ve styled this with big boots, blue lipstick and natural hair. There is little to dispute when it comes to the impact of nineties grunge then and now. It was a genre that expected little and received so much. The style and sound of these artists are sure to reappear time and time again inspiring further generations with their attitudes and demeanour. As a final parting for this series I would like to direct a thank you to those who have enjoyed the articles and I hope you gained an insight into the styles of the past and their influence of our fashion today.

19


NÍL ACH AN CHUID IS LÚ DEN SCÉAL AR EOLAS AGAT

Hepatitis Chancroid Trichomoniasis HIV AI Human Papillomavirus Genital Warts Herpew Gonorrhea Chlamydia Hepatitis Chancroid Trichomoniasis Human Papillomavirus Genita FAIGH AN SCÉAL IOMLÁN, FAIGH AN TÁSTÁIL Beidh Clinic STI faoi rún á reáchtáil SAOR IN AISCE san Aonad Sláinte Mic Léinn, Áras na Mac Léinn

An Mháirt, 5 - 7 i.n. • An Chéadaoin, 5 - 7 i.n. www.su.nuigalway.ie twitter.com/NUIGSU Déan teagmháil leisfacebook.com/NUIGalwayStudentsUnion an Aonad Sláinte Mic Léinn le coinne a dhéanamh Arna chistiú ag Ciste na dTionscadal Mic Léinn www.su.nuigalway.ie

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C U LT Ú R

April 10 2018

7

SIAMSAÍOCHT 

21

FROM GDYNIA TO GALWAY: SIN meets singer-songwriter Agu By Marie Coady Growing up in a generation where many refuse to answer the door without a warning text, it’s pleasantly surprising when Polish-born musician Agu rejects a café meeting in favour of a fireside tête-à-tête. I’ll soon find out she’s no stranger to playing MC; she used to host live music in her living room to promote local artists. Bear in mind that hers is a standard suburban Galway house where it’s a miracle if you have room for a sofa, never mind musicians and their equipment. 33-year-old Agnieszka ‘Agu’ Jones is a tranquil, funny and reflective interviewee as well as a warm hostess. She enquires about my college course, which leads us to the show she hosts every second Wednesday at 10pm on Flirt FM, The Oh! Zone, alternating with Ailbhe Jagodic. She plays a mixture of genres from ambient to electronic to choral music. “I try to make the playlist so that it’s good for relaxing at night,” she explains. She loves having her own radio show, although the small talk between songs flusters her somewhat. “I’m always very nervous since English is not my first language. When I speak on the microphone my English gets much worse… And then I listen to myself and I’m like, ‘Holy f **k!’” Apologising for swearing, she continues. “This is also why usually when I perform, I don’t really like speaking much. I’m kind of introverted, so when there are people in the

“There are things you can express better in one [language] and other things you can express better in another, if that makes sense. And after living abroad for a really, really long time, it becomes much harder for me to speak my mother tongue”. “My Czech is probably, at this stage, better than my Polish,” she admits, “but it’s still not my mother tongue. It’s still a foreign language. It’s like I’m hanging somewhere in between and sometimes I get lost in those languages”. Agu hails from Gdynia, a port city on the Baltic coast. She moved to Prague at 19 to study Czech and fell in love with the city, dabbling in amateur theatre as well as music. Her family likes to tell a story she explains: “I don’t know how much truth is in it really - but they say I started singing even before I learned how to talk, that I was a tiny infant lying in my crib and they would watch a TV series… and after a couple of days, my uncle was like, ‘[Gasps] She’s singing the theme song!’” “I don’t think I was really singing,” she adds. “It was probably more like me trying to imitate some sound…” Remarkably, she didn’t start writing her own songs until her late twenties. “For a long long time, I had a huge psychological block,” she remembers. “I always said, ‘I’m a singer… I can sing whatever you want. You want me to sing jazz, I’ll sing jazz. You want me to do a pop song, I’ll do a pop song. You want me to sing opera, I’ll give you an aria, but I’m never going to write a song.’”

The biography on Agu’s website simply states, “Her language is music”. She attributes this to the challenge of writing in English, Polish and Czech. “There are things you can express better in one language and other things you can express better in another... It’s like I’m hanging somewhere in between and sometimes I get lost in those languages” audience it’s much easier for me to connect with them through music than through, you know, speaking nonsense”. This is evident from catching her live show. She’s a low-key presence on stage, but an enthralling one all the same. Her stirring vocals fold into her atmospheric guitar work that blends elements of folk and ambient music. She plays with various “electronic toys” to transform her acoustic instrumentation and singing into ethereal and stirring soundscapes that envelop the audience. However, Agu isn’t confident about her skills as a lyricist. The biography on her website agumusic.com simply states, “Her language is music”. She attributes this to the challenge of writing in English, Polish and Czech.

Agu’s friends recognised her ear for melodies and harmonies and encouraged her to make music, but it still took a while for her to warm to the idea. “I guess it was just growing inside me and at a certain point I just started writing songs, one after another,” she says. “Something changed, like a barrier fell down, and a lot of new songs just started coming to me… I don’t even feel like I am creating them, I feel like they come from somewhere else and they just need to be put on paper. They had a very therapeutic function I’d say. Whatever I needed to process within me just went on paper.” She released her debut album Ke Světlu (‘Towards the Light’) in 2015, generating buzz in the Czech music scene.

“I would do about 70, 80 gigs a year. When I started out I would play for free or pass a hat or whatever. And then it slowly started growing, I started getting offers for actual gigs for actual proper money and it started going really well.” So why did she choose to start all over again as an unknown artist in Galway? That old chestnut: love. A love that, unfortunately, didn’t pan out. Nevertheless, the move brought her a new beau in the form of local musician and producer Tony Higgins, with whom she is working on her upcoming album. New single ‘Ines’, in which Agu sings of transition and rebirth, is their first collaboration. However, love is not a topic Agu touches on too often in her music: “I think I wrote my first love song two weeks ago!” Instead, she cites her motivation for the album as “different changes you go though as a human being. Or for me, more as a woman… So far, most of the songs reflect certain periods and

certain episodes from my life, certain events that changed me as a person a lot”. She doesn’t want to reveal too much, but does say this: “So far, every song that I wrote, the title becomes a female name. And they all mean a lot to me. They’re all very personal confessions, like me kind of opening my heart and just [being] like, ‘Here I am completely naked. This is what I am, or this is what I was, or this is what I would like to be.’” The album is untitled and still in its infancy. Agu is hoping to put one more single out before its release in summer or early autumn. Three years of planning has been put into it – “It’s high time to release something!” Still, she’s trying not to stress about it too much. “A wise person once said, ‘Music is like a fart. If you push too hard, it becomes crap.’” Agu can be found on Facebook @agusounds and on her website agumusic.com. You can also follow The Oh! Zone on Facebook @ohzoneflirtfm.


22  A RT S & E NT E RTAIN M EN T

SIN Vol. 19 Issue 12

PÁLÁS CINEMA: a new home for Galway film-lovers

Fans flock to delete Snapchat alongside their Idols

By Martha Brennan

By Orla Carty

The long-awaited opening of Galway’s Pálás cinema finally took place last month, with the art house cinema opening its doors at the end of February. Mired in controversy for nearly 14 years, the building stood ominous over Spanish Arch with many wondering if anything would ever come of the much anticipated ‘cultural hub’. Now finally screening various films to the people of Galway, the amazing thing about Pálás is how different it is to Galway’s other two cinemas. Spanning five floors the modern, open - plan building is as much an art piece as it is purposeful. Various light fixtures adjourn the concrete - cast hallways that are lined with colorful glass windows. The screening rooms are all decorated differently with a different theme and color scheme in each. With three screens the cinema seats 321 people and the building also houses a bar and small restaurant. General Manager Katie Walsh told the press at the launch that the hope behind the project is that it will bring a new type of experience to cinema goers. The cinema is the first selfscanning ticketed cinema in the country and the first cinema in Galway to have an in-house bar and restaurant. “We have a big focus on food and drink here,” said Walsh. “We’re offering hearty Irish - food in our restaurant and everything is locally sourced.” The box office also acts as a coffee bar and opens early in the morning. You also don’t need to line up at a ticket desk because tickets are also sold at the bar and restaurant and online where you can choose your seats. The cinema also differentiates itself with the eclectic mix of films that are on offer, such as a Vivienne Westwood documentary and numerous Wes Anderson selections that are now screening. Pálás is the new home of the Galway Film Society and Galway Film Fleadh and it plans to offer viewers both Irish and international films along with everything

from recorded theatre to cult classics, foreign language movies, ballet screenings and documentaries. Charlene Lydon, programmer for The Lighthouse cinema in Dublin and now Pálás, said that the cinema is especially excited about the “excellent line-up” of Irish films that they have in store. She said that the cinema is mirroring its sister cinema The Lighthouse a lot right now but that they will be trying to get a better sense of what Galway cinema-goers want to see during these first few months. The cinema opened with three big Oscar nominated films that were also showing in other cinemas - I,Tonya, Lady Bird and The Shape of Water - but has since started showing less common films as well, such as Sergio Leones A Fist Full of Dollars. The cinema has also been screening old classics, such as Grease for its 40th anniversary. They will also be screening work by the Galway Film Society from April. “We’re really excited about what’s to come,” Lydon told the press gathered at the launch. “Watch this space.” The cinemas development has been a well-documented saga in recent history. The project was the subject of many reviews and sparked a copious amount of criticism after years of funding failed to see the cinema finished. Millions were poured into the project from various sources with the total cost before opening being somewhere in the region of €9 million. Many have waited years for the art-house cinema so there has been great excitement and curiosity since the opening. “It’s been a long journey,” said Element Pictures’ director Andrew Lowe at the launch. “But we’re really excited and proud to finally open our doors to the people of Galway.” There is a discount for student tickets which are €8.50 and you can park in Hynes car park for €4 in the evenings.

Snapchat has been one of the most popular social media platforms since its launch in 2011. But in the past few months its reputation has plummeted, with a landslide of user’s reverence for the instant photo messaging diminished to the point of actual deletion. Snapchat’s recent update certainly may have damaged the app’s reputation, with a confusing new layout that makes it more difficult to catch up with the stories of people you actually know, and plugs those of D-list celebrities and news sites. But is that the only thing that has caused this mass exodus? In the past couple of weeks two mega celebrities denounced the app. Kylie Jenner and Rihanna have huge, loyal fan bases. Are these fans perhaps hanging onto their words a bit too tightly? Kylie Jenner recently fallen in line with the opinion of us regular folk, dissing the update with a tweet. “Does anyone else not open Snapchat anymore? Or is it just me... ugh this is so sad,” she wrote. Her words may have spoken a lot of our inner feelings, but they also cost Snapchat an estimated $1.3 billion, according to TMZ. Her fans took her words to heart, refusing to open the app anymore if she did not. Meanwhile, Rihanna was scrolling through her own Snapchat to find an advertisement for a game that showcased domestic violence. Posed with two options the user was asked to choose to punch Chris Brown, or slap Rihanna, referencing the abusive incident that occurred between the two in 2009. Ri - ri rightly called out the app, writing: “Now SNAPCHAT, I know you already know you ain’t my fav app out there! But I’m just trying to figure out what the point was with this mess! I’d love to call it ignorance, but I know you ain’t that dumb!

You spent money to animate something that would intentionally bring shame to [domestic violence] victims and made a joke of it!!!” Fans understandably rose to her defence, many deleting the app as per her recommendation. This time the cost was estimated at almost a $1 billion. A few other famous faces have taken their turn to criticise the app, including Chrissy Teigen, Suzie Nguyen, and Marques Brownlee. Similar to the rest of the population, some sided with Rihanna and deleted the app on moral grounds, while others simply disliked the update, like Kylie. Whichever point of the view they have, the result is the same. Many of us here in NUI Galway have fond memories of YikYak, an app that relished during its glory days, with student scrabbling to chuckle at the latest posts in between glances at their lecture slides. Until the dreaded day it updated one update too far, that is. Are we not looking at a similar demise, but this time globally, with Snapchat? The biggest difference, however, is that this time the app has had a few helping hands in its self-destruction. While the dedication of fans to their idols is admirable, it does beg the question of whether praising celebrities to the point of following suit with whatever decisions they make is a bit too far. How many people truly saw that Rihanna was highlighting an important issue, and how many just fell in line because of who she was? It is worth wondering whether these people would have deleted the app if they had come across the advertisement themselves. Kylie is the one who actually caused a larger loss, and all she did was point out that the update sucked something countless people had already done. They sure didn’t cost the app a billion dollars.

West Works Theatre Company presents Sarah Kane’s 4.48 Psychosis By Sorcha O’Connor Two NUI Galway Drama students will perform in new theatre group West Works Theatre Company’s production of 4.48 Psychosis in Gallery 126 this month ahead of Mental Health Month in May. Aoife Delaney and Anna Doyle will take to the stage in Sarah Kane’s controversial and poignant mental health drama which runs from 16 – 21 April. The play aims to tackle taboos that still exist around mental health and institutional treatments.

Producer Féilim O’hAoláin told SIN that this stripped-back performance was set to be a “truly thought-provoking” experience for the audience. “Kane’s poetic narrative removes character references, locations and times opening a whole series of amazing challenges for theatre makers bringing her work to stage, or in this case to the gallery floor,” said Féilim. “Director Kieron Smith has decided to use just two performers, Aoife Delaney and Anna Doyle of NUIG Drama department to bring Kane’s poetic

and hard-hitting exploration of mental health into a new creative force. This is part performance art and part theatre, there are no seats and the set stripped back with a haunting soundscape by composer David McEntee,” he explained. “A fearless and unorthodox portrait of an experience of clinical depression”, director Kieron Smith described the play as a chance for the audience to learn more about the struggles of someone dealing with mental illness. “It’s an invitation to step into the

shoes of another. For me 4.48 Psychosis has always being rooted in love. It’s Kane’s love of life that shines bright amongst the fragmented world she presents us as creatives and audience alike,” he said. Matinee performances will take place 3pm daily, with evening shows at 8pm. Tickets are available for purchase from the Town Hall Boxoffice, or online at www.tht.ie. 4.48 Psychosis is kindly supported by Galway City Museum, Town Hall Theatre, 126 Gallery, and Galway City Council.


April 10 2018

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SIAMSAÍOCHT 

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LADY BIRD: a refreshing addition NETFLIX: what to watch when to the coming-of-age genre you need a By Áine Kenny

The intricacies of the mother and daughter relationship are explored expertly in Greta Gerwig’s directorial debut Lady Bird. Christine or Lady Bird, as she calls herself, longs to be different. She wants to be popular and cool, and her ‘squeezed’ middle class family can’t provide the funds for the lavish lifestyle she desires. She clashes with her mother Marion frequently. The film touches on some poignant themes like class, race, gender, sexuality and mental health, but it doesn’t exhaust itself trying to explain them. Anyone who has been a teenage girl will relate to Lady Bird. Her poster-bedecked room and scribbling of her boyfriends’ names on the wall of her bedroom are so inexplicable yet familiar. Not to mention her teenage narcissism. Yet, the film is inherently sad. Marion and Lady Bird fail to have a face-to-face, cathartic reconciliation. They can’t explain themselves to each other, even when they try. “My mother was an abusive alcoholic” and “maybe this is the best version of myself” falls on deaf ears. The setting of the film is exquisite, both in time and place. I loved the sleepy nature of Sacramento, and I didn’t realise one could be nostalgic over 2002. Gerwig gets everything right, from the shell necklaces to the ugly loose jeans. The cinematography is beautiful too, one scene in particular focuses on the casinos and bright lights of Sacramento, accompanied by a hazy

score. Lady Bird is her senior year of a Catholic all-girls school, and the uniforms and nuns will be a familiar sight for many Irish women. What was amazing about this film is that it wasn’t a comedy, but the quips were hilarious. Lady Bird’s weirdness and By Mícheál Óg Ó Fearraigh desperate need to impress bad-boy Kyle leads her to accidentally say “I’ll kill your f ***ing family,” and he replies dryly “Well, I spent a while thinking over what to review for my final my Dad is dying of cancer so it seems like Gods already doing entertainment article for SIN (don’t cry dear reader) and that.” Dark jokes stemming from teenage awkwardness were the I thought Grief is the Thing with Feathers would be a highlight of the film. nice way to go out, alas, it was something I could not Lady Bird isn’t overtly feminist but I came away feeling as if I get my head around. Instead I’ve elected to review some had finally seen a film which understood women. Lady Bird and more obscure things on Netflix that I could not bring up her best friend Julie openly joke about masturbation and Lady earlier and I’ve tried to categorize them. I’ve included Bird’s first time having sex is predictably awful, with Kyle lasting some of my favourites that I think could do wonders for less than one minute. Gerwig strips away the your brain when it’s getting overworked with long hours romantic notions that many coming-of-age films in the library – we all need to switch off at some point! suffer from. Laurie Metcalf and Saoirse Ronan were both entirely believable. Ronan even had acne I’m a big fan of contemporary stand-ups like John scars which weren’t airbrushed away. Metcalf Mulaney and Jimmy Carr but for me I like the more oldplayed the fraught, emotionally drained mother chool guys like Norm MacDonald and Dave Chappelle perfectly. I felt distraught when she realises she who are back and better than ever. has let her stubbornness get the better of her, Norm Macdonald is a very hard man to market as he and frantically drives back to the airport only goes out of his way to make his comedy pure as in, even to realises Lady Bird has already gotten on her if they are simple jokes it is all about what he finds funny plane to college. rather than what the mainstream does (expect rambling, The ending of the film was abrupt – but we folksy kinds of stories). won’t spoil it. If you have been paying attention to comedy for a  8/10   while then the name Dave Chappelle is not a new one to

study break

Stand-up

Young Sheldon promises to entertain and fill in TBBT’s gaps By Ashyle-Claire Cota Created by Chuck Lorre and Steven Molaro, Young Sheldon premiered on RTÉ on 2 March 2018, about a week after the first episode aired on E4 on 22 February. When The Big Bang Theory reached the ominous ten-year mark in September 2017, what could be better than the release of this prequel childhood narrative of the oddest of the nerdy social misfits. Ten years is about as far as beloved sitcoms such as Friends and Frasier lasted. Young Sheldon could be compared to spin - off prequels such as Rock and Chips which featured Young Del Boy from cult classic Only Fools and Horses in that it can stand alone as well as explore many unanswered questions from the original series. Although it has its lighter moments, Young Sheldon is not a formulaic sitcom, filmed with a live studio audience in the way TBBT is. It’s shot in various locations as the tale of just how Sheldon became Sheldon, starting from a cross-section of his life at nine years old; starting high school as a precocious, prepubescent child and living with his twin sister, older brother, parents and Meemaw. What made The Big Bang Theory so beloved was not so much the quality of its comedy as its escapism and relatability for geeks, specifically scientists and sci-fi lovers, at a time when there weren’t many of these types of shows about intelligent, grown-up, maybe sheltered adults trying to navigate social and romantic relationships. Usually the nerd was the side character, played off for comedic effect or merely an instrument in saving the greater projects of the dominant social classes, before the revolutionary Age of Information. It linked closely the world of advanced academia with seemingly childish recreational pursuits such as comic books, card, board and video games.

Young Sheldon additionally follows the sentiment of nostalgia portrayed in shows like The Goldbergs which restage a lost generation from a modern standpoint, complete with numbers like ‘The Walk of Life’ by Dire Straits or ‘Faith’ by George Michael. Executive Producer Jim Parsons’ own voice-over helps ground us back to the present with the older Sheldon’s own reminiscent commentary. We see the beginning of his interactions with the world around him, his many quirks as they start to develop and his reasoning behind them. Of course, there’s references a-plenty; Easter Eggs from the mother show but also physics, religion and maths. Whereas in The Big Bang Theory, much of the primary focus is on Penny and Leonard’s relationship, Sheldon now gets a series all of his own, a chance to come to the fore and explain himself from a time of relative innocence, before he became so cynical and irritating. It’s still a little jarring when we hear him spout mature facts and information before his time. The library scene where he learns how to make friends by reading a self-help for adults can be contrasted to the scenario where grown-up Sheldon tries to find the same formula - by reading an illustrated picture book for children. The same allusions to apes are made; the people who are ordinary in comparison, like domesticated but skittish cattle. The established opening sequence is of a Texan cow approaching the child prodigy (Iain Armitage) who tries to back off. It’s interesting to see his early experiences with faith. At first he neither dismisses nor upholds the validity of religious belief, for example in the existence of God. Overall, this series can be viewed as a much - needed filler, albeit with child actors, particularly for those who thought The Big Bang Theory was getting stale. It’s set for a second season, looks a treat and, while not entirely family-friendly, will probably have a thing or two to make your parents murmur in appreciation.

you, as himself and Jerry Seinfeld are probably the two most influential stand-up comedians in the last 30 years. Now out of semi-retirement he is teaching the youngsters once again what it means to be the best. Finally, Jerry Seinfeld’s Comedians in cars getting coffee is also now on Netflix and you can see the genius, who brought us Seinfeld, talk to legendary comedians, past and present, as well as former US president Barack Obama.

Sit-com Not that one can possibly tire of watching Rick and Morty, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia or Friends but should you want to watch something a little different, why not try Don’t Trust the B- in Apt 23? This show follows an engaged woman (Dreama Walker) who thinks she knows how her life is going to go but upon moving to New York City she finds that no-one told her life was gonna be this way (shaka shaka). She befriends possibly the most awful person in New York (Krysten Ritter) and learns the trials and tribulations of the Big Apple (warning: this a much meaner-spirited, cynical view of the world than that of Friends). It’s been over for a while and there’s only two seasons but it’s worth a watch. The other semi-sitcom-y thing I’d like to recommend is Crazy Ex-Girlfriend. This musical comedy series about mental relationships and life in your late twenties/early thirties is a critical darling stateside. The star/co-creator of the show used to be a writer on Robot Chicken and the other creator wrote The Devil Wears Prada so try and imagine a pseudo-combo of the two.

Miscellaneous There were a couple of other categories I wanted to throw in but instead I’ll just mention a couple of movies and TV shows I couldn’t think of how to categorise but deserve a mention all the same: The Trip; Cowboy Bebop (Dub); Teen Wolf (MTV series); Over the top (Sly Stallone); the Kung Fu Panda movies; Samurai Champloo (Sub); Super Troopers. Finally, the last thing I would like to wholeheartedly recommend is watching Madagascar 3 at 2AM (why you are up that late is up to you.)


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April 10 2018

25

De Bruyne and Salah Galway United sitting neck and neck in Player pretty in Division One table of the Year battle By David Naughton

By Graham Gillespie In recent times, an unusual trend in football fandom has ascended into prominence. Instead of supporting a club some people now opt to follow their favourite players, in some cases with an almost religious zeal. A quick browse through Twitter and you will find Messi Maniacs, Ronaldo Royalists and even the occasional Neymarite all steadfastly defending their chosen cult. They can be found advocating their favourite star in heated online arguments, often referring to individual honours such as the Ballon d’Or. In amongst all this, it should not be forgotten that football is and always will be a team game. Having said that however, this Premier League season has long been devoid of any title race so perhaps we should take a leaf out of the player-centric football fan’s book by focusing on the question of who will be the recipient of the PFA Player of the Year? Last season, six players were nominated with the tireless N’Golo Kante coming away with the big prize. One would expect for there to be six nominees once again and it is likely a substantial proportion of the six will come from the champions elect, Manchester City. Pep Guardiola side has steamrollered all before them, and you could make a half-decent case for at least six of their players to be nominated. Club stalwart David Silva has been at his silkily skilful best all year, Leroy Sane’s lightning speed and sharp awareness has terrorised defences up and down the country, Raheem Sterling has scored crucial goals, whilst the metronomic tempo-setting Fernandinho might be the hipster’s choice. Also despite not having his best season, Sergio Agüero is a name worth mentioning. One City player however stands out as the obvious candidate, the mesmerising Kevin De Bruyne. If we were to judge by appearance, De Bruyne would appear an unlikely figure to be the leader of one of the all–time great teams in Premier League history. The ginger Belgian carries a slightly portly frame by the standards of professional football but don’t this let this deceive you or detract from his obvious brilliance. Probably De Bruyne’s two strongest traits are his hawk-like vison and pin-point passing. There is no finer example this season where he exhibited both of these qualities than in City’s 7 – 2 demolition of Stoke back in October. For the Citizens second goal, scored by Raheem Sterling, De Bruyne played an astonishing reverse pass to Leroy Sane which had more disguise on it than a child at Halloween. The pass was so remarkable that it prompted Jonathan Liew of The Telegraph in England to write an entire article on it that tried to decipher how De Brunye could have possibly thought to play it. In that article Liew writes; “it’s a pass not even De Bruyne could see, but one that as a result of his innate footballing intelligence, his perception of space and time and probability, he played anyway”. This line sums up why KDB, as he is referred to, is such a unique player. Few other players on the planet have the spatial awareness to see the passes the Belgian sees, and even fewer then have the ability to execute the way he does.

In that aforementioned Stoke game, De Bruyne also played a raking through ball for City’s sixth goal. It was a pass that severed Stoke’s defence and took five or six players out of the game in a flash, and the type of pass that shows why he leads the Premier League in assists with 14 at time of writing. A more underrated aspect of De Bruyne’s game is his industry. Likely as a result of having the demanding Guardiola as his manager, De Bruyne is very much a modern number 10 in terms of work rate with him tracking back as hard as any of his teammates. In fact, in Champions League football De Bruyne has run more than any of his City teammates at time of writing, clocking up nearly 65 kilometres in just six games. In all honesty, there would be no question that Kevin De Bruyne would win player of the year if it wasn’t for a certain Egyptian who has been causing havoc at Anfield. Liverpool’s Mo Salah has been nothing short of a revelation this season. He is the league’s top goalscorer at time of writing with 28 goals, and with seven league games left there’s every chance he could match or even eclipse Andy Cole’s and Alan Shearer’s record of 34. Salah also chips in with assists and has ten in the league already this season. After stumbling at Chelsea, Salah has been a changed player since his return to England after a spell with Roma. What is fascinating about Salah and the way Jurgen Klopp uses him is that he plays wide and attacks cutting in. Despite being a wide player Salah is still Liverpool’s main source of shots and goals, and only Harry Kane has more shots than the 25-year-old this season. This is facilitated through the way Liverpool play with Roberto Firmino playing centrally in the ‘false nine’ position and dropping deep to create the space for Salah to exploit. Salah’s pace and ball control makes him one of the league’s best dribblers, and it is because of these traits he has been described as reminiscent of Messi. His first goal in a recent 5 – 0 win over Watford was in particular strikingly similar to Messi’s famous goal against Bayern Munich in the 2015 Champions League semi-final, which left Jerome Boateng on his backside. While obviously nowhere near Messi’s level, his style of play is similar with his direct running a problem for any defence. In terms of other candidates, I personally expect the other four nominees to be David Silva, David De Gea, Harry Kane and perhaps Raheem Sterling. However, De Bruyne outshines everyone else on that City team so that rules out Silva and Sterling, whilst Kane’s recent season ending injury makes extremely unlikely the Tottenham striker will win. De Gea has bailed United out of trouble time and time again this season, but in a season where we have had some transcendent outfield performances a goalkeeper would be lucky to win. This leaves us with Salah and De Bruyne. One crucial factor that should be noted is that the voting has already taken place. Indeed, the voting happened during a period when Salah was on fire while De Bruyne had taken his foot off the pedal slightly, saving himself for the Champions League. For this reason, Salah might just edge it.

Life in Division One is going well so far for Galway United. At time of writing, they sit in third place on eight points after four games behind UCD and high-scoring Drogheda United. Galway United have drawn with both teams and will be disappointed with mistakes that allowed Drogheda to come back from a two-goal deficit. United will be more than happy with their new signing Danny Furlong who has found the net six times already in the league. The prolific attacker spent the last two seasons with Southern United who play in the top – tier of New Zealand. Furlong holds the scoring record for the League of Ireland Division One after he netted 30 goals for Wexford Youths in 2015, leading them to the title in the process. Fan support has been at a high this season after the club announced they were one hundred percent fan – owned. The fans will definitely be pleased to see their team’s progress going well in the early stages of

the season and definitely believe they can return to the Premier Division by the end of the season. Galway United defender Gary Kinneen is optimistic about the season ahead. “We were unfortunate to go down last season after a string of disappointing results but it’s for the taking this year and we have to seize it. We’ve signed some new lads and things are looking really good at the moment. We were unlucky to draw with Drogheda and UCD but they’re teams who are beating everyone so we know we’re as good, if not better than them,” he said. United have drawn rivals Sligo Rovers in the second round of the EA Sports Cup in Eamonn Deacy Park, which was played on April 2. When asked before the game about playing their closest rivals, Kinneen responded; “We can’t wait for the game against Sligo, it’s going to be a cracker. There’s added tenseness because of us being in a lower division but anything can happen. I think we’ll be spurred on by the fans, they’re going to go nuts”. The Corribsiders unfortunately lost to Sligo on the night, suffering a 1 – 0 defeat.


26  SPORT

SIN Vol. 19 Issue 12

It’s time to get excited about the World Cup By Luke Gannon The 2018 World Cup looks set to be a cracker. Much negativity has surrounded the event due to Russia being the host nation. Politics seems to be the dominating the World Cup headlines following the recent struggles between England and Russia not to mention Vladimir Putin’s constant political machoness. The Sun recently published an article about Borris Johnson who insinuated that Putin’s motives are similar of that to Adolf Hitler’s back in 1936 where Berlin hosted the tenth Olympic Games. However, as a football fanatic I think it’s time we start looking at the most important ingredient to the summer’s biggest sporting event, the football. There are so many questions to be answered in the World’s biggest country throughout the summer. Can Lionel Messi finally get the coveted Jules Rimet trophy? Who will win the Golden Boot? How will VAR go down? Can England finally reach the Holy Grail again? Who will be the overachievers of the tournament? The list is endless. In terms of favourites to win the title, Joachim Low seems to have the healthiest selection headache a coach could ask for. What an achievement it would be if he was to lead his German side to back to back World Cup wins especially after a disappointing display at Euro 2016.

Brazil now face the dilemma of Neymar’s injury scare. Having had surgery in his native land, the Olympic Gold medallist always seems to show up on the big days for the South Americans. Perhaps the injury is a good omen? Brazil won their first title 60 years ago. Their superstar player Edson Arantes do Nascimento, more commonly known as Pele, missed the start of the tournament due to a knee injury sustained while wearing the black and white of Santos. I’m sure the Brazilians may hold on to that superstition as the games progress. Spain also look a side to be reckoned with as do France and Belgium. The latter have probably got the best side on paper with Premier League stars like Courtois, Alderweirld, Vertonghen, Hazard, Lukakau, Dembele, and De Bruyne. Should the team gel together, they would have to be considered the favourites. France will be determined to right the wrongs of their Euro 2016 defeat. Players like Mbappe, Greizman and Pogba could all be potential players of the tournament. Personally, I know who I want to see lifting the Jules Rimets cup. No man deserves it more than Lionel Messi. He has been of great service to the Argentinian national side and is always a joy to watch. This will surely be Cristiano Ronaldo’s last chance to get his hands on a World Cup medal also.

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CM

What will the next chapter of this sensational rivalry bring? Could it be the deciding moment in history where one finally takes the title of GOAT? (Unlikely when you compare Ronaldo’s form to that of the God like Messi). Every tournament seems to see one side appear from nowhere and upset a few odds. The last World Cup saw Costa Rica reach the quarterfinals where they lost out only on penalties to a talented Dutch side. Who will be this year’s Costa Rica? Panama, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Senegal or Japan only have to look back at the 2014 event as well as Iceland’s great run in Euro 2016 to find some proof that if a team sticks together it can achieve beyond its wildest dreams. The idea of VAR at a World Cup is a hot topic at the moment. Many have criticised FIFA’s brave decision to try and guarantee that all refereeing calls are correct. Ironically, English pundits have come down particularly hard on the initiative despite them being huge World Cup victims. Who can forget Maradonna’s “Hand of God” or Lampard’s disallowed goal against Germany?

Perhaps the only possible difficulty with the VAR at a World Cup will be communication issues. Each fourth official could be speaking a different language for all we know meaning that the delays could be very long when VAR is called upon. At least we know there won’t be a poor refereeing call deciding who wins the 2018 World Cup. The Golden Boot race has to be one of the most exciting prospects of the tournament. Messi looks to be in the form of his life as is Mohamed Salah. Kane and Neymar however may struggle in front of the posts due to their recent injures. Ronaldo will also look to outdo everyone as that always appears to be his main target anyway. Mbappe, Greizman or Lukaku could all be the dark horses of the Golden Boot race. All in all, the 2018 World Cup is jam packed with attacking flare, managerial astuteness and defensive resilience. Here’s hoping that these are the main topics of conversation come the summer. As we know, hooliganism will take place but let’s hope the Russians have done their utmost to keep fans as safe as possible as this of course is always the most important part of any sporting event. At least, I know I’ll be watching this summer.

Mourinho says he won’t quit – but maybe he won’t get the chance to By Mark Lynch With Manchester United’s underwhelming exit from the Champions League after their 2-1 aggregate loss to Sevilla in the last 16, the club and the fans have been re-evaluating the kind of expectations they hold for the team. In the intervening period manager Jose Mourinho has been seen making some bizarre outbursts in his press conferences, while many supporters are wondering if the enigmatic Portuguese coach is doing his selfimploding act a little earlier than usual. Having spent hundreds of millions of pounds on re-building a team from defence to strikers, United find themselves in quite a stagnant position. Since the departure of Sir Alex Ferguson, this season (barring some sort of collapse) will positionally be their best league finish. They’re in the last four of the FA Cup and made it out of the group stages of the Champions League. A shock defeat to Bristol City in the Carabao Cup knocked them out a tad earlier than they would have hoped but all things considered it does still follow a slight upward curve from last season. However, one only need point to the expenditure of the club and argue they should be showing more than a slight upward curve. Mourinho’s side boast a staggering strength in depth after their huge investment in the squad. Given the balance the team has and the sheer star quality all over the field, one wonders how they can still record wins over Chelsea and Liverpool in the league yet struggle so badly against Sevilla over two legs. The Special One’s tactics are often the first port of call especially his defensive style. Against Sevilla especially in the first half, Romelu Lukaku was simply too isolated to act as a target man so when United won the ball they looked up the pitch and saw one option, their Belgian striker who was

surrounded by Sevilla defenders. His first-touch and general control has never been his strong point, so it’s surprising this was the way they set up as it seemed destined to fail from the get-go. The game called out for someone like Juan Mata who can play centrally, get on the ball and help build attacks or kickstart counter attacks. What was clear was that this would have been seen as some kind of defensive sacrifice for Mourinho who preferred the midfield trio of Matic, Fellaini and Lingard. All did their job defensively but going forward none had the presence or finesse to work in tight spaces and make things happen. Mourinho’s hesitance to trust Juan Mata’s defensive ability is nothing new and it’s likely the reason he got rid of Henrikh Mkitaryan in the end. Undoubtedly Sanchez is a better player but using him to chase 70 yards back to his own box is like wearing socks on your hands to warm them up. It’ll work but there’s definitely a better way to use them. What may be even more worrying than his strange on-field decisions are Mourinho’s even stranger off-field comments, particularly after that game against Sevilla where he brought up the previous two times that he had sat in that particular chair after knocking Manchester United out of the Champions League, in 2004 while in charge of Porto and in 2013 while in charge of Real Madrid. He claimed these previous exits at the hands of Mourinho means this latest one “isn’t something new for the club”. This seems to detach himself from the team which he tends to do when he receives criticism and gets defensive. At previous clubs it’s signalled the beginning of the end. At the moment, it’s hard to know if United could attract a manager who would be any more successful but if Jose starts to claim to be bigger than the club and separate entirely from his own team, he’s only going to open his own trap door.


SPÓIRT 

April 10 2018

27

NBA PLAYOFFS: The crystal ball of Irish who to watch Rugby reflects a bright and exciting future By Mark O’Connor

By Mark Lynch In the wake of just our third Grand Slam ever, it may be slightly easier than usual to get dragged aboard the hype train and suddenly declare ourselves World Champions of 2019 already. The fact that the World Cup in Japan is still a year and a half away doesn’t concern the bandwagoners who have apparently just witnessed the greatest rugby team of all time. Of course, we have just witnessed a team swat aside their competition in Europe with a new and exciting squad and

Ireland are one of the most confident teams on the planet at the moment. So just what can we expect from this young squad in the next big challenge for Irish rugby? As mentioned above, the 2019 World Cup in Japan is the main focus of the rugby world at the moment so this year’s Six Nations as impressive as it was, will still be just another step to the top in the minds of the players and coaches. The last time we won a Grand Slam back in 2009, many felt that it was the peak of the team’s powers. The golden generation of O’

Gara, O’ Driscoll, Stringer, O’ Connell, Hayes, etc was coming closer to the end by the time the 2011 World Cup in New Zealand came around. Hayes and Stringer in fact weren’t even in the squad for the competition. It was a wonderful Grand Slam to win, but the gruelling and global nature of a World Cup means it is still the benchmark of the greatest teams. Timing is everything when it comes to building teams to peak at the right moment, we just didn’t have it last time out. There’s definitely an argument to be made that the timing is much better this time

the match in the Slam game at Twickenham Tadhg Furlong is only 25, while fellow prop Andrew Porter is only 22. Other key members of the pack James Ryan and Dan Leavy are 21 and 23 respectively. The backs are also full of youthful exuberance, Joey Carberry is just 22, the midfield trio of Henshaw, Farrell and Scannell are all 24 while the dangerous duo in the back three of Jacob Stockdale and Jordan Larmour are aged just 21 and 20 respectively. Give all of those players another year and a half of development and they could be globally-

Jacob Stockdale style of play. English combustion and French inconsistency aside, it was still a majorly impressive tournament for Ireland. They showed across the different games that they could deal with what the opposition threw at them. Not only that but they also maintained their own way of playing throughout. You don’t see New Zealand adapt their game significantly depending on the opposition because they’re confident in their own style getting them through in the end. It takes a lot of confidence to do that and clearly

This year’s Six Nations as impressive as it was, will still be just another step to the top in the minds of the players and coaches

around. Out of the extended training squad for this year’s Six Nations (35 in total), there are just nine players aged 30 or over. Out of the starting lineup and replacements for the Slam decider against England that number drops to five, while Rory Best is the only one who may struggle to remain a key figure in a year and a half although he’s been proving doubters wrong for over a decade already. At the other end of the scale, the younger ages are dominating the squad. Man of

a c c l a i m e d i nt e r n at i o n a l players, a few of them arguably already have that status. Despite everything appearing rosy for Ireland, no performances out of the five were perfect and there is room for improvement all over the field. Tactics, personal performances, closing games out, being sensible with ball-inhand, there are plenty of ways to refine our game and become as ruthless as possible. Thankfully, there’s about a year and a half to go until we’re judged by the rest of the world so let’s keep this one game at a time.

Anything can happen in sport. That’s why we love it. Yet whilst anything can happen in sport, the Golden State Warriors are still favourites to win the Larry O’Brien While the question of “what teams are contending for the NBA championship this year?” may have a relatively routine answer with the Golden State Warriors are seemingly unbeatable over a seven game series, the NBA playoffs still features both teams and players who can excite the masses by going farther then what was previously expected of them. To begin with if one looks a look at the Western Conference standings, not too far down in that list is the Portland Trail Blazers. Last year, the Oregon men occupied the eighth seed and were bounced in the first round by the eventually champions Golden State. The Trail Blazers boast one of the best guard rotations in the entire NBA with Damien Lillard, CJ McCollum and Shabazz Napier all having great years. The exploits of Lillard and CJ are well documented, and their abilities to stretch the floor and attack the rim despite being undersized stems from the stereotypical ‘chip on the shoulder’ that’s associated with NBA players whom have attended mid-major colleges, see Kenneth Faried (and then run away promptly before he dunks on you). The play of U-Conn graduate and back-up point guard Shabazz Napier has been nothing short of meteoric in comparison to the rest of career. He seems to finally be blossoming into the player we thought he would become back in 2014 when he helped his Huskie alums bring home the NCAA championship. Napier is putting up close to ten points in around 20 minutes but is also averaging a team high 1.2 steals per game which benefits the second unit’s up-tempo style. Add to this rookie Zach Collins’ ability to be a menace on the offensive glass and the ‘Blazers’ have one of the best benches in the NBA this season If the season was to end when this article was written it would mean that the Trail Blazers would have to beat the San Antonio Spurs and should they beat Popovich’s men, they would have to face either the Golden State Warriors or the Minnesota Timberwolves. On paper all of these look like potential five to seven game series, with the latter largely depending

on how quickly Jimmy Butler can come back from his current torn meniscus. This is a further example of how close the Western Conference is this year. In the Eastern Conference, there have been quite a few surprises, namely the Cleveland Cavaliers who have been disappointing in comparison to previous seasons following the trade of Kyrie Irving in the off season. Although LeBron James will always be one of the highlights of any playoff season as long as he remains at his current level, it’s the Indiana Pacers who are the team to watch this coming playoff season. The side were predicted to be in the lottery of the NBA draft, but the meteoric rise in performance by off-guard Victor Oladipo has made the presumed one-sided trade that saw Paul George leave Indiana for Oklahoma City become one of the Cinderella stories of this season. Oladipo has transitioned from a third option on the Thunder to an All-Star leader for the men in White and Yellow. Numerous factors have led to this fulfilment of potential by the Nigerian born star, Oladipo had played college ball in Indiana and has often stated it as his “home away from home”. Arguably the most important factor of Oladipo’s rise though, is the style of play in Indiana in comparison to Billy Donovan’s men. Indiana live up to the ‘Pacer’ name aptly, they love to get out and run in transition, a far cry to the ‘hero-ball’ that was played by Russell Westbrook in OKC. Thaddeus Young, Glenn Robinson and ‘Vic’ are all freakish athletes who are able to provide magical moments on the fastbreak. Opportunities in transition are hard to find in the Playoffs but if anyone can capitalize on them its Nate McMillan’s men. The Eastern Conference is a lot closer typically then the West and should the Pacers end up facing the Cavs or Wizards, they will feel confident that their hard-nose defence and athleticism can see them make a potential run to the conference finals. All in all, the playoffs can be difficult for the underdogs due to the series’ being played over a seven game period with the better side getting home court advantage, but yet so often this year we have already seen the underdog come through (Yes Loyola-Chicago, we are looking at you). No matter what expect drama, heartbreak and elite level basketball as always this playoffs.


28  SPORT

SIN Vol. 19 Issue 12

Would the introduction of an Intermediate football championship be a step forward for the GAA? By Luke Gannon GAA president John Horan recently spoke about his desire to create a second division in the All Ireland Football Championship by 2021. The traditional quarter-finals method has been replaced by the new Super Eights format. The round robin type tournament will be given a three year trial before the Football and Hurling Championships will be up for review at the end of the 2020 campaign. The idea of an intermediate intercounty football championship was tried and tested from 2003 to 2008. The Tommy Murphy Cup was dissolved at the end of its trial period. The Hurling Championship is currently divided into the Liam McCarthy, Christy Ring, Nicky Rackard and the Lory Meagher Cups. All teams get to compete against teams who are at their level. The FA in England follow the same type of format. At the top is the Premier League followed by the Championship, League 1, and League 2 etc. Each division comprises of approximately 20 teams and we rarely see any major hammerings in any division. Every team has an opportunity to genuinely compete in every match.

This also done by the LGFA who have four divisions where all four All Ireland Finals take place on the same day in Croke Park. It’s a great family day out for all and something that Horan definitely should be thinking about implementing. The All Ireland Football Championship sees numerous boring games a year. No one wants to watch the reigning All Ireland Champions Dublin take on Wicklow. We all know what the result will be. On the contrary, such a game may be covered by RTÉ which attracts attention to Wicklow Football and helps fulfil the dreams of all these Wicklow boys of playing in front of the TV cameras regardless of the result. In this vein, speaking on RTÉ’s GAA podcast, Carlow manager Turlough O’Brien is convinced that the second tier would “be a detrimental step” for Ireland’s most popular sport. O’Brien believes the alternative Liam McCarthy Cups have not been the success people like to think they are. The Clare man alluded to the lack of coverage given to these lower levels of Hurling and can’t see how someone can view it as a step in the right direction.

London manager Ciaran Deely expressed to RTÉ nothing but positivity when discussing the idea. He believes it’s ridiculous that his London side who are currently ranked 32 in Ireland should have to travel over to Connacht only to be blown off the park by the second seeds Mayo. They don’t do it in Hurling or Soccer so why should Gaelic Football be any different. One would also imagine that teams like London, Leitrim and Wicklow would enjoy the challenge of trying to earn promotion to the top tier. Surely they would feel they have something achievable to work towards whilst putting in the hours on the training ground during the winter? On the contrary, despite the logic of all this, the public would be deprived of the iconic upsets. Who can forget Longford’s win over Mayo back in 2010. What about Sligo’s narrow defeat to Kerry where they missed a penalty to win the game in the dying stages before Kerry went on to win the All Ireland? Although these type of games don’t come around too often, they tend to be the highlights of the season when they do, and they mean the world to the underdog who has managed to pull it out of the bag.

Pat Spillane recently spoke about the possibility of players from the likes of Kerry and Dublin transferring to other counties in order to strengthen the weaker sides and make for a more balanced Sam Maguire campaign. This of course seems a bit vague. Would the player move to the county which he is transferring to? Surely they may need to be provided with employment. What about their clubs? Do they transfer to a club in their new county or do they stick to the parochial rule of playing for your parish? Perhaps the idea would work better for players who can’t seem to break into their county teams. For example, Following Kerry’s All Ireland triumph back in 2014, Eamonn Fitzmaurice alluded to the numerous players who trained with Kerry who failed to make the squad but contributed hugely on the training ground. Surely these players could benefit from playing inter-county football for teams like Carlow or Waterford. Perhaps if a two or three year deal was agreed between the two parties the player could then return to his native county then make the breakthrough he has dreamed of.

That said, would this method actually strengthen the likes of Tyrone, Dublin, Mayo and Kerry in the long run? These counties would get to loan their young talent out and then get them back after two or three year’s valuable experience. A potential con of this system is that unlike Rugby and Soccer, a player represents their home county with pride. The GAA is an amateur’s game but is played to an intensity that matches almost any other sport in the world. Every game is like going to war for your county. Despite being paid €32million back in 2016, Cristiano Ronaldo’s embaressing dive against Holland in a recent international friendly illustrates the gap in pride and passion between the Irish and English version of football. In the former, such behaviour doesn’t even enter the consciousness of the player. They are at war for their parish and county trying to do them proud. A drafting system would see that beautiful element taken away. There is no denying that something needs to be done. Personally, I feel that Horan’s idea of a second division is the best. It gives meaning to the season for sides like London and doesn’t take the core parochial element out of the game.

STAND YOUR GROUND AND FIGHT:

Thoughts on Haye Bellew, Canelo’s tainted legacy, Chisora, college boxing and Khabib Ferguson By Gary Elbert It is with some ironic amusement to see Dillian Whyte receive excess praise for knocking out a sub-standard Lucas Browne on the same card that Derek Chisora was fed an opponent who looked like he had wandered into the ring by mistake. There wasn’t much of a difference between the British rivals’ opponents in terms of skill and Browne brought name recognition to the table. In terms of enhancing the financial attraction of Whyte and Chisora it was a successful reinvention. Whyte now sits perched in view of a title shot versus Wilder or even a lucrative rematch versus Joshua. Chisora was up to his usual nonsense afterwards, exchanging verbals with David Haye who was ringside with his contender Joe Joyce. Chisora still brings something to the table, even if it’s just

his well-practiced out of the ring unpredictability and danger that attracts the attention of fight fans. There is always room in the boxing landscape for a lunatic who sells tickets. In terms of performance its clear his best days are in the rear-view mirror, although it cannot be denied he has carved out a lucrative and successful career despite a clear absence of world class ability. Chisora got a comedic dig in at Haye too as the former undisputed cruiserweight champion readies himself for the rematch with Tony Bellew. That fight is sink or swim for Haye. His athletic composition built around speed, power and explosiveness is not normally designed for longevity and whether Hayes body holds up in this fight is the defining factor. A fit motivated Haye beats Bellew all day every day. Haye is aware his blatant

disdain for Bellew’s ability cost him the first fight as he swings wild lazy haymakers expecting Bellew’s chin to be static. It must be remembered too that Bellew never really hurt Haye either in the first fight so ultimately the rematch is Hayes to lose. Bellew will come in loose and nimble, using the ring and waiting for the Haymakers body to cave in again. I expect a much cagier affair on this occasion with Haye winning by knockout if he keeps his composure and patience and if his body holds up. A positive test for clenbuterol for Canelo Alvarez certainly didn’t surprise this writer. Alvarez’s training videos and physique pre-the first fight raised eyebrows in certain quarters. The real hero of all this is, as always Gennady Golovkin. The man is simply a force of nature and surely one of the greatest all-time middleweights. He beat a drugged up

Alvarez ate his best shots including some truly monstrous overhands and they still tried to rob him on the scorecards. And even after the clenbuterol revelations GGG was still prepared to fight. At the time of writing Alvarez has been suspended by the Nevada State Athletic Commission with the rematch looking in danger. That would explain Billy Joe Saunder’s withdrawal from his planned bout with perennial challenger Martin Murray. Saunders cited a hand injury but the timing to me feels like a back up plan is being constructed involving himself and GGG in June or July. Galway City boxers enjoyed success again this month. Thomas O’Toole collected a college boxing title to add to his national success recently while Oughterard blue chip prospect Kieran Molloy grabbed the national senior elite title before travelling over to the States with

an Irish select team where he defeated a former bronze World medallist. The Tokyo Olympics are now a realistic dream for the talented Molloy who is coached by NUI Galway boxing club head coach Stephen Molloy. Over in the mixed martial arts world the Khabib Ferguson fight and outcome will if nothing else pre-empt the next move for a certain Crumlin southpaw. The Irish team for the IMMA World Amateur Championships have also been announced where Galway native Cathal Manning will travel to Romania in search of glory. Local kickboxing standouts James Kelly and Cian McCormack also travel over to England for prestigious international tussles with experienced home fighters this month. The fight calendar in Galway and beyond is heating up as the summer draws closer.


Notice of Referendum Thursday 12 April 2018 Fógra maidir le Reifrinn Déardaoin, an 12 Aibreán 2018 Referendum on the creation of the position of Ethnic Minorities Officer

Reifreann ar chruthú Oifigeach na Mionlach Eitneach

On Thursday 12th April you will be asked to vote in a referendum on whether or not you support the creation of the positon of Ethnic Minorities Officer.

Déardaoin, an 12 Aibreán, iarrfar ort vótáil i reifreann ar cibé acu a thacaíonn nó nach dtacaíonn tú le cruthú Oifigeach na Mionlach Eitneach.

The wording which will appear on the ballot paper, requiring a Yes / No answer, will be:

Is mar seo a leanas a chuirfear an cheist ort ar an bpáipéar ballóide, agus beidh ortsa freagra Tá / Níl a thabhairt uirthi:

Do you agree with referendum motion proposed by the SU Council on 5th March 2018 to create the position of Ethnic Minorities Officer?

An bhfuil tú ag toiliú leis an rún reifrinn a mhol Comhairle Chomhaltas na Mac Léinn an 5 Márta 2018 le hOifigeach na Mionlach Eitneach a chruthú?

If passed, a new part-time officer positon of Ethnic Minorities Officer will be created.

Má éiríonn leis an reifreann, cruthófar post d’oifigeach páirtaimseartha nua dar teideal Oifigeach na Mionlach Eitneach.

The full text of the constitutional amendment is as follows:

Seo a leanas téacs iomlán an leasaithe bhunreachtúil:

Article 7 The Executive Committee

Airteagal 7 An Coiste Feidhmiúcháin

Insert:

Cuir isteach:

The Ethnic Minorities Officer

And renumber accordingly Insert:

Oifigeach na Mionlach Eitneach

Agus athuimhrigh iad dá réir sin

The Ethnic Minorities Officer

Cuir isteach:

Oifigeach na Mionlach Eitneach

1. Shall represent students of ethnic minority on campus. 2. Shall will be responsible for representing union members on various committees. 3. Shall provide support to students of ethnic minority as may be necessary. 4. Shall liaise with relevant societies. 5. Shall organise relevant events and campaigns to highlight and address cultural diversity. 6. Shall promote the cultural integration of students across campus, and shall highlight and address issues relating to students of ethnic minority. 7. Shall be responsible for developing union policy on the student of ethnic minority.

1. Déanfaidh sé nó sí ionadaíocht ar an gcampas do mhic léinn de chuid mionlaigh eitneacha. 2. Beidh sé nó sí freagrach as ionadaíocht a dhéanamh do bhaill an Chomhaltais ar choistí éagsúla. 3. Cuirfidh sé nó sí tacaíocht ar fáil do mhic léinn de chuid mionlaigh eitneacha de réir mar is gá. 4. Rachaidh sé nó sí i gcomhairle le cumainn a bhaineann le hábhar. 5. Eagróidh sé nó sí imeachtaí agus feachtais d’fhonn béim a leagan agus aghaidh a thabhairt ar an ilchineálacht chultúrtha. 6. Déanfaidh sé nó sí imeascadh cultúrtha mac léinn a chur chun cinn ar fud an champais, agus leagfaidh béim ar shaincheisteanna a bhaineann le mic léinn de chuid mionlaigh eitneacha. 7. Beidh sé nó sí freagrach as forbairt a dhéanamh ar bheartas an Chomhaltais maidir le mic léinn de chuid mionlaigh eitneacha.

And renumber accordingly This referendum has been requested by 500 members of the Students’ Union in accordance with the Students’ Union Constitution, Article 16.

Agus athuimhrigh iad dá réir sin Tá an reifreann seo iarrtha ag 500 ball de Chomhaltas na Mac Léinn, de bhun Alt 16 de Bhunreacht Chomhaltas na Mac Léinn.

How to Vote

Cén Chaoi Vótáil

In Person at a Polling Station

Polling Stations will be open on campus from 10:00am to 8:00pm. To vote at a polling station you must present your NUI Galway ID. No other form of ID will suffice.

TOGHCHAIN

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Locations and opening hours of each Polling Station are available on the Students’ Union website.

Remote Vote

Students must register before midnight on Wednesday 11th April. AN RACHAIDH TÚ SAN IOMAÍOCHT? Once registered students can then cast their vote online during polling hours. To register for Remote Vote, logon to the SU website www.su.nuigalway.ie

SU ELECTIONS W ILL YO U RUN?

Ag Ionad Vótála

Beidh na hIonaid Vótála ar an gcampas ar oscailt ó 10:00 r.n. go dtí 8:00 i.n. Le vótáil ag ionad vótála, beidh ort do chárta aitheantais OÉ Gaillimh a thaispeáint. Ní ghlacfar le haon chineál comhartha aitheantais eile. Fógrófar suíomh agus uaireanta oscailte gach Ionad Vótála ar shuíomh Idirlín Chomhaltas na Mac Léinn.

Tríd an gCóras Cianvótála

Ní mór duit clárú lena aghaidh roimh mheán oíche, Dé Céadaoin, an 11 Aibreán. Tar éis duit clárú, beidh tú in ann vótáil ar líne le linn na n-uaireanta vótála. Le clárú le haghaidh an Chórais Cianvótála, téigh go dtí suíomh Idirlín Chomhaltas na Mac Léinn www.su.nuigalway

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AN RACHAIDH TÚ SAN IOMAÍOCHT?

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REMOTE

VOTE

If you will not be on campus on Thursday 12th April and wish to vote in the students’ union elections and referendum, you can use Remote Vote to cast your vote online.

It’s a simple two step process

1 2

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Register Log on to the students’ union website before midnight on Wednesday 11th April and register for Remote Vote.

A N RA C H A I D H T Ú S A N I O MA Í O C H T ?

Vote Log on to the students’ union website between 10:00am and 8:00pm on Thursday 12th April

Remote Vote is easy to use and is www.su.nuigalway.ie facebook.com/NUIGalwayStudentsUnion completely confidential. www.su.nuigalway.ie

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SU ELECTIONS WI L L YOU RUN?

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