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Loyolan Copy Chief Megan Leberknight recounts her experience as Elizabeth Warren's stand-in.

January 15, 2020

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| ISSUE 15

LMU campus hosts sixth Democratic debate

via LMU Marketing and Communications

The Loyolan’s Election 2020 team reported on the Democratic Debate hosted at LMU in December. The team was able to interview presidential candidates including Andrew Yang, Amy Klobuchar and Tom Steyer. They will continue to produce content following all presidential candidates leading up to the election this fall. For more of the Loyolan's debate coverage, see pages 2, 4, 5, 8 and 9.

Loyolan's Election 2020 team Monica Lewinsky announced as First covered December debate Amendment speaker Student journalists got up close to the Democratic candidates.

Kennedi Hewitt and Haley LaHa News Interns @LALoyolan

The sixth Democratic debate of the 2020 election season took place in LMU’s Gersten Pavilion on Dec. 19, 2019. The campus was filled with presidential candidates, security, government officials and journalists. Among the many journalists and reporters on campus were Loyolan writers Jacob Cornblatt, Veronica Backer-Peral, Cristobal Spielmann and Alyssa Story. They spent the entire day at LMU reporting inside the debate hall as well as covering the free speech zone happening on Lincoln Boulevard. Story, a film, TV and media studies and journalism double major, mostly focused on interviewing people in the free speech zone, writing opinion pieces and

providing assistance to her peers if needed. Cornblatt, Backer-Peral and Spielmann produced digital content, including articles for the Loyolan’s website and videos of the journalists and candidates they interviewed. The trio is a part of the Loyolan’s Election 2020 team which covers any and all content related to the upcoming presidential election. Backer-Peral, a film production, history and computer science triple major said, “We planned a lot, but part of it was seeing in the moment what was happening and being open to taking any opportunities that popped up during the debate." Prior to the debate, all of the candidates who were expected to show said they would not participate if there was a picket line because Sodexo employees were protesting their contracts with the company. This caused much confusion about whether or not the debate was still

happening, leading all the way up to the day before the actual debate when Sodexo and Unite Here Locall 11 representatives resolved the concerns of protestors. The four students produced content about the protests and the ongoing negotiations leading up to the debate. On the day of the debate,the students were able to put their reporting skills into action. They interviewed presidential candidates Sen. Amy Klobuchar, Tom Steyer and Andrew Yang. Additionally, they interviewed Fox News commentator Tomi Lahren, CNN’s Chris Cuomo, California Gov. Gavin Newsom and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. “If we’re going to have small journalism, we need to make it local,” said Spielmann, a sophomore environmental science major, as he referred to topics such as DACA students and student loans brought up by Andrew Yang and Tom Steyer. See Debate | Page 3

The activist will speak on this year's theme "Reclaiming Our Stories." Isabella Murillo News Editor @LALoyolan

Monica Lewinsky will be the featured speaker at this year's First Amendment Week at LMU. Lewinsky, an activist and television personality, was a former White House intern placed at the center of Former President Clinton's impeachment after he lied and then admitted to having a relationship with her. Lewinsky has written several essays on her relationship with the former president and its aftermath as well as the media's mostly negative portrayal of her. She has also participated in campaigns against cyberbullying and joined in the coversation surrounding sexual assault as part as of the #MeToo movement.

Lewinsky will be speaking on this year's First Amendment Week theme, "Reclaiming Our Stories." The event will take place on Feb. 19 at 6 p.m. in Burns Back Court. The Loyolan and ASLMU will be hosting the yearly event to "raise LMU students’ awareness and appreciation of the First Amendment and the protections it provides for freedom of speech, religion, press, assembly and petition," according to Jacob Cornblatt, editor-in-chief of the Loyolan. Last year's speaker, Jesse Williams, activist and actor from the show "Grey's Anatomy," spoke about Colin Kaepernick's use of free speech and his feelings about the Trump presidency during his interview for First Amendment Week. Last year's theme was "Promoting Healthy Debate." Other past speakers include actress America Ferrera and singer John Legend.


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In Memoriam: Recap of the Democratic Enrique Ramirez The beloved custodian will be remembered by the community Sofia Hathorn Asst. News Editor @LALoyolan

Enrique Ramirez, a longtime custodian of University Hall, passed away on Dec. 4, 2019, at 64 years old. The cause was a long-term battle with metastatic cancer, according to the GoFundMe page made by his family. Ramirez has worked for LMU for 19 years. In 2018, he

was awarded the CSJ Center for Reconciliation and Justice Hidden Heroes award. This award is given to those within the LMU community who “unassumingly exemplify justice and reconciliation in their lives and their work,” according to LMU. Ramirez was also a beloved husband and father. A private funeral reserved for friends and family was held on Dec. 12, 2019. Ramirez will be remembered fondly as a kind and welcoming member of the LMU community.

via LMU’s CSJ Center for Reconciliation and Justice

Enrique Ramirez was honored by the LMU CSJ Center for Reconciliation and Justice for the Hidden Heroes award in 2018.

debate hosted by LMU A rundown of the most memorable questions and topics from the sixth Democratic debate hosted by LMU. Grace McCauley Asst. News Editor @LALoyolan

The debate was held in Gersten Pavilion on Dec. 19. The candidates in attendance were Pete Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar, Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Tom Steyer, Elizabeth Warren and Andrew Yang. Just six days before the debate was scheduled on campus, all seven candidates pulled out over a labor dispute concerning employee contracts between Sodexo and Local 11 Labor Union. On Dec. 17, Sodexo and the Unite Here Local 11 labor union announced an agreement. In pre-debate coverage, a PBS NewsHour host referenced the University’s high tuition. The cost of higher education, in general, was also discussed among the candidates. Buttigieg promoted his plan for education, which would allow free or discounted college tuition to families making less than $150,000 a year. “I do think that if you’re in that lucky top 10%, I still wish you well — don’t get me wrong. I just want you to go ahead and pay your own tuition,” said Buttigieg. Another memorable topic of the debate was impeachment. The House of Representatives voted on Dec. 18 to impeach President Donald

J. Trump just one day before the debate. “We need to restore the integrity of the presidency,” said Biden. Yang blamed the division in opinions concerning impeachment on the media, specifically cable and network news. “What we have to do … [is] start digging in and solving the problems that got Donald Trump elected in the first place,” said Yang. The candidates also discussed immigration. A question submitted by an LMU professor asked if Yang would enact a “permanent legislative fix for Dreamers in your first 100 days.” Yang responded that he would do this. “I’m the son of immigrants, myself, and I know that Dreamers are essentially Americans in everything but this legal classification,” said Yang. Sanders was asked whether all 12 million immigrants would be included if he had the chance to pass a bipartisan reform plan. He said that on “day one” he would restore the status of all DACA recipients and “introduce bipartisan legislation, which will, in fact, be comprehensive, which will result in a path toward citizenship for all of the 11 million who are undocumented. That is what the people of our country want.”

See Recap | Page 3

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Candidates talk Trump Recap from Page 2 The other candidates were also given the chance to weigh in on this divisive issue. “He’s been vilifying non-white people,” said Steyer when asked about Trump’s immigration policies. “He’s been trying to inflame his base and scare them that if, in fact, white people lose control of this country, that they’re going to lose control of their lives.” The last question the candidates were asked was if they would rather receive forgiveness from any of their fellow candidates or give a gift. “We know what a gift it would be to the future and to the country for literally

anybody up here to become president of the United States compared to what we’ve got,” said Buttigieg. Biden closed out the debate claiming he was the most likely to defeat President Trump in the 2020 election. He urged that the American people need to be told the truth. The seventh Democratic debate took place on Jan. 14 in Des Moines, Iowa. Only six out of the seven candidates who attended the sixth democratic debate qualified: Tom Steyer, Elizabeth Warren, Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Pete Buttigieg and Amy Klobuchar. via LMU Marketing and Communications

Above is the sign outside of Gersten Pavilion where the debate was held. The Loyolan Election 2020 team was able to get behind the scenes during the debate.

Election 2020 team will continue to follow race Debate from Page 1

via LMU Marketing and Communications

Students pose on the debate stage. These students served as stand-ins for the candidates and moderators for the camera rehearsals prior to the debate. Read more on Page 9

“That is something that a student newspaper could talk about, because chances are half the newsroom is going to be in debt 20 years after they graduate from college. Having the opportunity to focus on that and having newspapers report on those specific issues, I think is going to be more important than who won the debate,” said Spielmann. The Election 2020 team will continue to produce content on the presidential candidates leading up to the election this fall, especially on issues important

to LMU’s student body. Cornblatt, editor-in-chief of the Loyolan, said, “We proved that student journalism is important. We interviewed candidates on something I, at least, have not seen them interviewed on, which is how to tackle problems with mental health in this country because it is so important to students … it’s evidence that other perspectives are needed in journalism and [a] student perspective [is] one of them.”


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Campus values on full display at DNC debate Editor-in-Chief Managing Editor Managing Editor News Editor Asst. News Editor Asst. News Editor Asst. News Editor News Intern News Intern Asst. Opinion Editor Asst. Opinion Editor Opinion Intern Opinion Intern Life+Arts Editor Life+Arts Intern Life+Arts Intern Life+Arts Intern Sports Editor Asst. Sports Editor Asst. Sports Editor Asst. Sports Editor Sports Intern Bluff Editor Bluff Intern Bluff Intern Copy Chief Copy Editor Copy Editor Copy Editor Copy Editor Copy Editor Copy Editor Copy Editor Digital Editor Asst. Digital Editor Asst. Digital Editor Asst. Digital Editor Digital Intern Design Editor Asst. Design Editor Asst. Design Editor Asst. Design Editor Design Intern Cartoon Editor Cartoonist Cartoonist Cartoonist Photo Editor Asst. Photo Editor Asst. Photo Editor Photo Intern Photo Intern Video Coordinator Video Producer Video Producer Video Producer Video Intern Video Intern Video Intern Video Freelancer

Jacob Cornblatt Shannon Tormey Kayan Tara Isabella Murillo Molly Jean Box Sofia Hathorn Grace McCauley Kennedi Hewitt Haley LaHa Cristobal Spielmann Alyssa Story Riley Hetherington Veronica Backer-Peral Sammi Su Francesca Bermudez Alicia Wensley Michael Carandang Miles Thomas Jameson O’Neil Alexander Hutton Nicholas Rossi Ellie Kinney Andrew Dazé Gabriella Jeakle Connor Rose Megan Leberknight Lucie Bolzan Carly Holm Caleb Sng Sara Romano Erin Ambrose Carrick Mahoney Antonia Abramowitz Jack Noble Adrian Leung Gigi Toma Anastasia Glushneva Allie King Jessie Glassberg Alena Copeland Aurora Schnurr Michaela Galeski Kate Leahy Christian Boggs Ellen Na Jacob Johanson Harrison Klein Alyssa Reece Maeve Sullivan Owen Markham Annie Kapila JP Shannon Maddie Cindrich Kayla Austefjord Austin Good Brooks Lalley Declan Tomlinson Joe Harrison Jason Keany Ellis Senger


“LMU stuck to its values and ensured that the vital event went on smoothly.”

V for Vendetta Opinion Intern @LALoyolan

Business Manager Asst. Business Manager Business Intern Advertising Manager Ad Intern Ad Intern

Gia Lee Lauren Rechner Anika Hanson Hayden Regalado Jason Keany Jenna Nicotra

Distribution Manager Petros Hadjikyracou Distribution Intern Matthew Hendrickson Distribution Intern Mirabella Efstratis Student Media Coordinator Veronica Manz Director of Student Media Tom Nelson

LOYOLAN EDITORIAL POLICY The Los Angeles Loyolan, a student-run campus organization, publishes a weekly newspaper for the greater LMU community. The first copy is free of charge. Additional copies are $1 each. Paid, mailed subscriptions can be purchased through the Business department. The Loyolan accepts unsolicited letters from students, faculty, staff and alumni, and press releases from on-campus and offcampus organizations, but cannot guarantee publication. The Loyolan reserves the right to edit or reject all submissions, including advertisements, articles or other contributions it deems objectionable. The Loyolan does not print consecutive articles by the same author that repeat/refute the initial arguments. Opinions and ideas expressed in the Loyolan are those of individual authors, artists and student editors and are not those of Loyola Marymount University, its Board of Trustees, its student body or of newspaper advertisers. Board Editorials are unsigned and reflect the opinions of the Executive Editorial Board. Guest editorials are by invitation of the Executive Editorial Board and reflect the views of the author. All advertisements are subject to the current rates and policies in the most recent Advertising Rates and Information materials.

The Los Angeles Loyolan is a member of the Associated Collegiate Press and the California College Media Association.

Jacob Cornblatt Editor-in-Chief

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Managing Editor

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Board Editorials represent the voice of the Loyolan. They are written in collaboration by the Executive Editorial Board.

Trump, stop playing games in Iran Veronica Backer-Peral


While it is important to note that LMU was not directly involved in the labor dispute, union leaders along with other local leaders thanked LMU for helping resolve the dispute and reinstate the debate. State Senator for Central and East Los Angeles Maria Elena Durazo said, “My appreciation to Loyola Marymount University for making their values—their core values—the most important priority in this process of negotiations.” DNC Chairman Tom Perez added onto this, saying, “[LMU’s] commitment was to living those Ignatian values … they were an indispensable part of the solution.” LMU is often condemned by students for using Sodexo— and that is absolutely a fair argument—but no issue is black-and-white; the University showed the nation what it means to stick to our Jesuit values in the face of extreme difficulty. President Timothy Law Snyder, Ph.D., published an op-ed in The Hill where he discussed the controversy leading up to the debate. “[Sodexo and union leaders] exhibited the virtues LMU prizes but our society too often lacks — listening patiently, honoring differences, and working together to find common ground,” he wrote. As the world watched the drama around the debate unfold, LMU stuck to its values and ensured that the vital event went on smoothly. “Together, we hold the responsibility for our human future,” Snyder wrote, “even if that includes being a part of the controversy every now and then.”


lthough President Trump’s campaign was built on the promise of de-escalating conflict in the Middle East and resolving “endless war,” his presidency has shown little effort to prevent tension with one of the biggest players in the Middle East — Iran. Rising tensions with one of America’s adversaries in the Middle East culminated when the U.S. killed Iranian military general Qassem Soleimani with an airstrike. Despite Trump’s claim that the attack was ordered to “stop a war,” the decision not only put all Americans at risk by potentially inciting reprisal against U.S. civilians, but also represents the president’s willingness to overstep his power and disregard the system of checks and balances. As a result, all Americans, especially students who have not lived through a full-fledged war in the Middle East and do not wish to do so, ought to hold the president accountable for his actions. Just three days into the new decade, news broke that a U.S. drone killed Qassem Soleimani, the second most important political figure in Iran. Before long, the details began to surface. The responsibility for the attack belonged almost entirely to President Donald Trump, who made the executive decision to target the Iranian general from his resort in West Palm

Beach, Florida, and without congressional authorization. This was in response to a feud that began with the death of an American contractor in a rocket attack. The situation was met with national distress, including LMU students. “It just upset me because it’s scary how the person in power doesn’t take care of delicate things,” said sophomore studio arts and psychology double major Lorenzo Lizardi. “That’s terrifying.” In fact, the panic was so intense that the website that would be in charge of the

U.S. draft crashed shortly after news broke due to the exorbitant traffic volume. Fear of being drafted for war made its way to the unaffiliated student-run social media comedy account, @barstoollmu, which posted an image of a text conversation, supposedly from the “Marine Corps Selection Officer for LMU.” In this case, Iran’s ultimate retaliation did not prove to be as devastating as some Americans had expected. See Iran relations | Page 5

TIMELINE OF IRANIAN - AMERICAN TENSIONS Information compiled by Veronica Backer-Peral, opinion intern Dec. 27, 2019: One American contractor was killed in a rocket attack near Kirkuk, Iraq while several members of the U.S. and Iraqi militaries were wounded. Dec. 29, 2019: In response, the U.S. launched a series of airstrikes against Kataib Hezbollah bases in Iraq and Syria. Dec. 31, 2019: A violent protest broke out at the U.S. embassy in Baghdad, where protesters were shouting "Death to America." Trump tweeted, "Iran will be held fully responsible for lives lost, or damage incurred, at any of our facilities." Jan. 1, 2020: Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei responded stating that Trump "can't do a damn thing." Jan. 3, 2020: A U.S. airstrike ordered by Trump killed the second-most powerful political figure in Iran, Gen. Qassem Soleimani. Iran vowed revenge. Jan. 7, 2020: Iran retaliated by launching missiles at two American bases in Iraq, causing no casualties.

Graphic: Michaela Galeski | Loyolan


hile to us it seems like the center of the universe, LMU is not a highly recognizable or well-known school — particularly outside of California. Yet, just weeks ago, it was the center of one of the most contentious Democratic primary debates in history. When it was announced that LMU would host the sixth Democratic National Committee (DNC) presidential debate, students were beyond excited. However, those elsewhere in the country may have been left thinking, “What is LMU?” After the resolution of the Sodexo labor dispute, LMU showed the world its values and became a representative of democracy around the country. Based on name recognition alone, our little Jesuit school exploded in popularity. Google Trends shows that on the days surrounding the debate, LMU’s popularity as a search term reached its highest point in 2019 and was showing above average internet traffic. Major outlets like The Washington Post and The New York Times were reporting on us, and our new logos were on the debate stage itself. The logo was even on the cold open of Saturday Night Live that week. Despite all this, some students were embarrassed by our school when the news broke that none of the candidates would appear on the debate stage if Sodexo’s labor dispute with Unite Here Local 11 was not resolved. Instagram was full of students condemning LMU and stating that they were ashamed to be associated with the school.

Board Editorial

Information compiled by Veronia Backer-Peral, opinion intern via CNN, The New York Times, The Washington Post, BBC, NBC


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Reflections on LMU’s Democratic debate Speck and Spielmann

Cristobal Spielmann


Asst. Opinion Editor @LALoyolan

t’s not often that your university hosts a debate for the potential next president of the U.S., but I’m glad it was the case last December when LMU hosted the sixth DNC presidential debate. All in all, the debate served as an excellent opportunity for the students who attended, both before and during the debate, to learn important skills and lessons to carry into the 2020 election. Some students served as stand-ins for tech rehearsals. There was also a plethora of content drafted in the lead-up to the debate, including a video of LMU students reciting important quotes about democracy and political commentary from LMU professors. Looking toward the University’s student media, the Election 2020 team for the Loyolan received press passes and access to the media centers and spin room set up in Burns Recreation Center. This allowed Loyolan journalists, including myself, to create a hotspot for recent news updates about the debate. The high-stakes atmosphere of the media center was a huge motivating factor in keeping up with all the other reports and what the internet was buzzing about, particularly during several infamous moments of the debate (most notably the arguments about Mayor Buttigieg’s wine cave donations). We live-reported many of those moments, from Sen. Sanders’s (I-VT) fights with the moderators over race to Yang’s highlight that he was the only non-white candidate on stage. Being able to work in a professional environment alongside other journalists from so many different outlets, from print media to digital video to radio and television, was certainly a once-in-alifetime experience. So much of Election 2020’s chats

Photo: Maddie Cindrich | Loyolan

LMU invested heavily in advertisements for the Democratic Debate, including branded banners. While the publicity about the debate was successful in creating student political engagement, the DNC missed an opportunity to directly address some student concerns.

and interviews with the journalists we met involved a mutual appreciation for the work put into making sure that information was communicated fairly, objectively and with a strong understanding of readership. “For the journalism students out there, I was a journalism student ... It’s fun to be in the midst of this and in an election year, so make the best of it ... It can help springboard your career,” Tomi Lahren, a conservative pundit for Fox News and Fox Nation, said. For us at the Loyolan, this debate was ultimately about giving students the opportunity to look at the issues affecting our political discourse head on. For many students, this will be the first general election we can vote in, so what we heard needed to be relevant. Unfortunately, there was still a lot missing from said discourse

that needed to be said, especially considering the stage was at a university. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) was the only one to repeatedly mention the topic of student loan debt, and debate topics like safety and security for DACAmented students at LMU, as proposed by debate moderator Amna Nawaz, were dropped almost immediately. However, what’s great about our generation is that we’re constantly tuned into the news of the day. Whatever we don’t hear from the candidates’ mouths we can still find online, in print or elsewhere. “Take everything into account. Look at it hard [and] make your own decisions based on what you see,” Jim Wilson, a New York Times photographer at the debate, told the Loyolan. “You can do your

own research — there’s plenty of opportunities for that. So I would just say go out there and watch what the candidates say and make up your own mind.” Now that the California primary and the rest of the 2020 primary election is closer than ever, LMU students – even those who couldn’t attend the December debate, need to take advantage of every opportunity available to get involved. Above all else, get educated about what’s going on in your country and community. To read more stories by Spielmann, go to This is the opinion of Cristobal Spielmann, a sophmore environmental science major from Brentwood, Tennessee. Tweet comments @LALoyolan, or email

Concern over Iran Iran relations from Page 5

The Iranian government sent a series of high-precision missiles to a U.S. base in Iraq, but there were no reported casualties, and as a result, tension was tentatively de-escalated by both sides. However, this does not undermine the magnitude of the president’s action. The assassination of a political figure, despite his past military history, is never justified during peacetime as it creates a precedent for the violation of the mutual sovereignty of nations. The United States would in no situation tolerate any form of violence against one of its own political figures during peacetime. It should expect no different from other sovereign nations. Without proof that the airstrike was necessary for the prevention of an immediate attack from Iran, there is no reason why Trump should have made this decision without

consulting Congress and pursuing a diplomatic approach. Furthermore, congressmen and women from both the left and right of the political spectrum have spoken about how limited their participation in and even knowledge of this decision was. Following a briefing that took place after the attack had occurred, Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) crossed party lines by expressing frustration with President Trump’s lack of communication with Congress. The president does not have the authority to start a war without congressional approval, and doing so could have lasting effects on the country and even upcoming election, so all Americans should be concerned about what this situation can tell us about the abuse of presidential power.

This is the opinion of Veronica BackerPeral, sophomore film production, history, computer science triple major from Pasadena, California. Tweet comments @ LALoyolan or email editor@theloyolan.

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By Harrison Klein, cartoonist

Isn’t it Ironic

By Sarah Cheung, cartoonist

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We have problems. Warren has a plan to fix them She’s smart, she’s determined and she can set a rim joist like nobody’s business. Gabi Jeakle Loves getting things done “Warren fixes things. It’s what she does. She really does have a plan for everything,” said a Sodexo employee. With the debate back on, Elizabeth Warren, along with the six other candidates participating, arrived at LMU ready to tackle the grand issues of the American people. Warren arrived four hours early. She was reported to have had five cups of coffee and a vitamin C shot prior to her arrival and was ready and eager to help in any way possible. “She showed up early to help set up the stage,” said facilities manager, Manny Gerr. “She asked us why it was so hard to assemble, and then told us that she would fight for better stage assembly conditions. It was oddly specific, but I’ll take it!” One thing is certain — if there’s a problem, Warren has a plan for it. After leaving Gersten Pavilion following the

debate, Warren noticed the unfinished construction. Her aides waited patiently as she climbed over the fence and scaled the scaffolding to assess what had been built so far. She requested that one of her aides get the hard hat she always keeps in her glove compartment, and she got to work. Upon their return, construction workers found the drywall laid and a written plan detailing ways to expedite the process. “It was a Christmas miracle. When we got back, we wondered who it was. Santa Claus? Elves?” No, it was Elizabeth Warren. “I’m not sure who I’ll be voting for, but if I ever need someone to level a subfloor, I know who to call,” said Bill Durr, one of the workers. “She does this every time we see an unfinished project,” said a representative for the Senator. “Broken water fountains, unpaved roads and flat tires. She loves to fix things. It gets exhausting.” On her way out, Warren gave three buildings a fresh coat of paint and left several hundred notes around campus suggesting ways LMU could make itself more equitable. Cartoon: Jacob Johanson | Loyolan A representative has told us that Warren will return to Warren puts a spin on the pant suit by sporting a flattering outfit that is fix the escalators in University Hall in late January. usually worn by construction workers. It shows her versatility.

Back-to-school stress is causing premature balding After the holidays, students came back to campus with a new gift: baldness. Connor Rose

Went blonde, then buzzed, now normal

A recent study shows an increasing number of students experience high levels of stress when returning home for the holidays. The constant questioning, resurgence of house rules and the turmoil of siblings can all lead to many feeling unhappy during the most wonderful time of the year. In a twisted turn of events, a growing number of students have begun to seemingly leave their hair at home. The physical toll of so much stress has caused a premature balding epidemic within the student community. In an event some are calling “The Baldening,” many have begun to notice hair loss brought on by the monthlong break, spent in an environment that some deem stress-inducing. “Yeah, it wasn’t fun going back,” said Buzz Kut, a sophomore who was too used to his LMU lifestyle. “When I went home, my parents didn’t skip a beat. They just kept asking about my

grades and classes. I mean, I went home to stop thinking about school and now it’s being shoved down my throat.” Kut became a victim of The Baldening after Christmas Eve dinner, which involved an interrogation from his extended family about why he doesn’t have a girlfriend yet. Another victim who spoke out is Reese Eading, a freshman whose hair began deteriorating at lightning speed days before returning back to school. “It was horrible. Literally all my parents said to me all break was ‘did you check your email?’” Eading continued by showing us a total of 42 text messages requesting she check her email while not in the house. The Baldening struck students at their most vulnerable: being lectured by family members. Participants in the survey suggest a way to prevent serious stress and The Baldening, such as leaving school out of the dinner-time conversations or during the holiday festivities. Our thoughts and prayers go out to those who fell victim to The Baldening, and all of us at the Bluff hope they know that bald is beautiful.

Cartoon: Ellen Na | Loyolan

Always check the mirror for signs of The Baldening. If you begin to spot any signs of balding, please tell your parents to stop texting you for the following 24 hours.

The Bluff is a humorous and satirical section published in the Loyolan. All quotes attributed to real figures are completely fabricated; persons otherwise mentioned are completely fictional.

editor’s pick Politics come to Burns Rec Center EDQ

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Photos: Cristobal Spielmann | Loyolan

After December’s DNC presidential debate at LMU, journalists met politicians in Burns Recreation Center for interviews. Every candidate except Sen. Sanders and former Vice President Biden were in attendance.

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Standing in for presidential candidate Warren Meticulous Megan

Megan Leberknight Copy Chief @LALoyolan


ost years when people ask what I did over winter break, my answer is pretty boring — but not this year. I was lucky enough to volunteer as one of 20 standins at the rehearsals for the sixth Democratic presidential debate, held at LMU. I played Sen. Warren and debated with the other stand-ins for the camera rehearsals. And after standing in for the Massachusetts senator, I got to meet her and watch the debate in person. Eric Siegel, who directed the broadcast, explained to the standins how the camera blocking worked. Every time a new candidate started speaking, each camera operator had to change which candidate they were covering based on who was on what side of the stage and what other angles were needed in case the person speaking referenced another candidate. If this sounds a little complicated, that’s because it is, and that’s why they needed us. The stand-in moderators came up with actual questions for the candidates, and then we had to improvise a response to them in real time. Most questions were semiserious, but with an LMU twist. One question was about how our health care plans would address mental health and increase the number of therapists at Student Psychological Services on campus. There were

also some less serious but equally controversial ones: there’s a new LMU logo, and not everyone likes it. How would you unite everyone behind the logo and lead the school through this time of division? While we debated, we stood behind our candidate’s lectern, wearing a picture of them around our necks. The back of each lectern had a shelf with a legal pad that the real candidates could use to write notes during the debate. Some of us also used them to write notes to the candidates. In my note to Sen. Warren, I referenced one of her most famous run-ins with Sen. Mitch McConnell and thanked her for supporting Unite Here Local 11’s protests that started in November: “Senator Warren, thank you for persisting.” After the camera rehearsals were over on Thursday morning, Siegel told us that we could stay while the candidates did their walk-throughs of the stage. The stage manager put the pictures of the candidates on their respective lecterns, and he took any legal pads with notes and put them on top so that candidates would see them. When Sen. Warren came in, she read the note I left her and said, “Thank you! Who wrote this?” I raised my hand and she said, “Let’s take a picture!” Then she noticed the headshot of her on the lectern, and Siegel told her she was free to keep it. Warren responded, “Oh no, I’ll give it to my stand-in!” and later offered to sign it: “Megan — Thanks for being me. We persist! Elizabeth.” Something that struck me about this experience was how many people were needed to make the debate happen, starting with Unite Here Local 11 workers and all the other workers who make our

via Sofia Miera

Student stand-in Megan Leberknight meets Elizabeth Warren. Leberknight stood in for Warren at rehearsals for the sixth Democratic debate, held at LMU in December 2019.

campus run every single day. During rehearsals, Siegel, the stage manager and the camera operators were just a few of the people we met. That’s not to mention all the other technical staff, producers, volunteers and security staff working to set up and run the TV truck, the debate hall in Gersten Pavilion and the media/ spin room in Burns Recreation Center. When I vote in the California primaries in March, I’ll be thinking

about what policies might best serve everyone who made this debate happen, from college students to workers. Also, I’ll still be nerding out about the fact that I might have met the next president of the United States. This is the opinion of Megan Leberknight, a junior psychology major from San Jose, California. Tweet comments @LALoyolan or email


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SFTV students talk about the Golden Globes Francesca Bee

Francesca Bermudez


Asst. Life+Arts Editor @LALoyolan

he 77th Annual Golden Globe Awards, hosted by Ricky Gervais, took place at The Beverly Hilton on Jan. 5. The usual glitz and glamour of the award show was perhaps overshadowed by the political undertones of the night. The majority of acceptance speeches shed light on various issues, from women’s rights to climate change. Michelle Williams, who won a Golden Globe for her role as Gwen Verdon in "Fosse/Verdon," gave a speech about abortion and urged women to vote in the 2020 presidential election. Joaquin Phoenix, who won a Golden Globe for his leading role in "Joker," applauded the Hollywood Foreign Press Association for making the switch to plant-based meals at

the Golden Globes Ceromony. Despite allusions to the political climate, the night honored the best television series and films released in 2019. I reached out to Will Streissguth, a sophomore film and television production major, and Ruby Walker, a freshman film, TV and media studies major, to get their perspectives on the award show this year. Francesca Bermudez (F.B.): Were there any particular TV series or films you were rooting for? Will Streissguth (W.S.): "Once Upon a Time in Hollywood" paid homage to a time period that the Hollywood we know [today] owes so much to. Ruby Walker (R.W.): I wanted "The Farewell" to win [Best Motion Picture — Foreign Language] because I thought it portrayed the struggle of saying goodbye to




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a family member so well, and it was one of the only Asian films nominated. F.B.: What do you think was the most surprising moment of the night? W.S.: Joaquin Phoenix’s speech was pretty shocking as a whole, but then again, Phoenix seems to be a loose cannon more [often] than not. I thought his speech sent the powerful message. R.W.: I think the most surprising moment of the night was Elton John [and Bernie Taupin] winning [Best Original Song — Motion Picture]. F.B.: Many of the winners gave politically charged speeches. Do you think award shows are the right platforms to speak on important issues, or should they focus on the art of filmmaking? W.S.: I believe that when someone has a certain level

of influence, they can choose to use that influence to help themselves or they can use it to help others. I think it’s honorable for these [winners] to use their positions to bring attention to political and environmental issues occurring around the world. R.W.: It is important to bring light to events and inspire the people that look up to [the winners] to take action. However, when [the speakers'] tones turn preachy and makes the audience feel as though it's all up to them to solve these issues, when the celebrities could be doing more too, that's when I think the winners shouldn't speak on political topics. F.B.: Who gave the most inspiring speech? W.S.: I thought Ellen DeGeneres’ speech for the Carol Burnett Award was pretty inspiring. She brought home the fact that TV has

been such a gift for her, [allowing her to] be herself and… make people happy. R.W.: I think Ellen gave the best speech because she was both funny and serious, and it really seemed human. You could tell that she was genuinely so grateful for her award. F.B.: People have criticized Ricky Gervais’ performance for being too harsh. Do you think he crossed the line as a fifthtime host? W.S.: I think Hollywood, as an environment, can often cultivate inflated egos and a loss of touch with reality. Ricky Gervais was there to bring everyone right back down to earth. R.W.: I don't think Ricky Gervais crossed a line at all. I think that we've all lost the ability to laugh at ourselves a little bit, and sometimes that's just what you have to do.


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Eli Scott drops 20 in tough Gonzaga loss Rossi Possi Nick Rossi


Asst. Sports Editor @LALoyolan

his past Saturday, LMU welcomed the No. 1 basketball program in the nation, Gonzaga, to Gersten Pavilion for the Lions’ third game of West Coast Conference (WCC) play this season. Heading into the game, LMU had split its two previous WCC matchups — a win at home against the University of San Diego and a road loss to Brigham Young University. In front of a lively crowd at Gersten, the Lions fell to the heavily favored visiting Zags by a score of 87-62. The annual game in Gersten against Gonzaga is arguably the biggest date on the LMU athletic calendar each year. It represents an opportunity to make national headlines with an upset against one of the nation’s perennial college basketball juggernauts. The energy in Gersten matched the occasion. The arena was nearly filled to the brim with Lion and Zag fans alike. Nearly 10 years have elapsed since LMU bested their Spokane-based rivals. The last Lion victory came at home in February 2010, in a game that finished 74-66 in LMU’s favor. With a chance to break an almost 10-year losing streak, the Eli Scott-led Lions took the court against the Zags. Early on, the LMU offense had trouble piercing the interior Gonzaga defense

and getting to the rim. As the Lions were having trouble scoring, Gonzaga jumped out of the gate with an early lead. Halfway through the first half, the Zags held a commanding 17-6 lead. LMU then went on its best run of the game, clawing back to within five points of the Zags. However, the hope of vanquishing their deficit did not last long for the Lions. Gonzaga quickly took back command of the game, heading into the half up 38-22. Although LMU posted a respectable defensive firsthalf performance, their offense was left short of ideas, and the scoreboard reflected that. Heading into the second half, the Lions had a significant deficit to overcome. Their scoring improved after the break, putting away 40 total secondhalf points compared to their total of 22 from the first period. However, it was never enough to get within reach of the Zags. The Lions nearly got within single digits of Gonzaga about a little less than halfway through the second half after Erik Johansson’s two free throws trimmed the visitor’s lead down to 11. However, the Zags quickly snuffed out any hope of a Lion comeback and dominated affairs from then on. The game continued to end in a 25-point Gonzaga victory with a score of 87-62. If there is one positive LMU can take away from this game, it’s that Eli Scott put up another impressive performance. For a young program in transition,

Lions need role players to step up Basketball from Page 12

Even in LMU’s losses, Scott was a bright spot for the Lions over winter break. Scoring in double digits in all but one game, including three 20+ point games, Scott exploded offensively against some very talented teams. Scott’s most dominant game over the break was on Dec. 19 versus Portland State — where he scored 27 points, shooting 10-20 from the floor. Although the Lions lost the

game 76-66, Scott remained unstoppable offensively. This season may be the Eli Scott show, but other players need to step up through the rest of the season if the Lions want to finish with a winning record. Sophomore forward Ivan Alipiev and transfer junior forward Parker Dortch have also been key contributors thus far, but the rest of the team will have to find a way to make an impact down the stretch.

Photo: via LMU Athletics

LMU junior guard/forward Eli Scott (0) drives to the basket against San Diego on Thursday, Jan. 2. He scored a game-high 20 points in a loss to No. 1 Gonzaga on Saturday, Jan. 11.

Scott has served as this team’s leader. The junior forward-turned-guard has been the Lions’ standout player so far this season. Against the best opponent he has faced so far, Scott put up respectable numbers. He was the top scorer of anyone on the court, dropping 20 total points. He was also incredibly efficient with his scoring. Scott made nine of the 13 field goals he attempted. On top of the scoring he contributed, the guard also added five rebounds and three assists. Scott rose to the occasion against Gonzaga. If the Lions hope to be

competitive against the rest of the WCC, he will have to do the same every week. LMU continues conference play this week with games against Pepperdine and the University of San Francisco. The Lions will travel up to Malibu on Thursday, Jan. 16, to renew their rivalry with the Waves. Two days later, LMU will travel up north for a road game against San Francisco. This is the opinion of Nick Rossi, a junior AIMS major from Orange, California. Tweet comments to @LALoyolan or email comments to


W. Basketball

vs. Santa Clara

87-62 L

M. Basketball W. Basketball M. Basketball

W W W. L A L O Y O L A N . C O M

vs. Gonzaga

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vs. San Francisco 63-38 L vs. BYU

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January 15, 2020

Page 12

Bindon excited for head coach role New women's soccer coach she had a chance encounter with brings her international someone from the Football Ferns, New Zealand’s women’s national experience to Sullivan Field. Alex Hutton

Asst. Sports Editor @LALoyolan

Jenny Bindon was announced as the head coach of the LMU women’s soccer team on Dec. 16, 2019, following three seasons as an assistant for the UCLA women’s team. She is the sixth person to serve as head coach of the LMU program. Bindon is originally from Belleville, Illinois and grew up playing a wide variety of sports. In college, in addition to soccer, she played basketball and tennis, but found that soccer was the sport she excelled at the most. “I've been fortunate enough, through life experiences, [that I've been] always drawn to play soccer,” she said. Bindon, a goalkeeper, played college soccer at two different schools—Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and Lewis University in Romeoville, Illinois—with time in the United States Coast Guard sandwiched in between. While attending Lewis, she met her husband, New Zealand volleyball player Grant Bindon. The two moved to New Zealand after college and she continued to play soccer. While playing in a seven-a-side league,

team. “Three weeks later, I went to a Ferns camp,” she said. “And then three weeks later after that, I played my first internationals.” Bindon played for the Ferns for a decade and holds the record for the most international appearances by any New Zealand goalie, not just women’s, totaling 77. She represented New Zealand at many tournaments, including the World Cup in 2007 and 2011 and the Olympics in 2008 and 2012, which sticks out to her as a particular highlight of her career. “To be able to play at a pinnacle event like the Olympics, you're representing something larger than yourself: your country,” she said. “So the Olympics was absolutely the most amazing thing I've ever done in sport. And I shared it with my family.” After her retirement in 2014, Bindon wanted to remain involved in soccer. She had explored coaching during her playing career and decided to pursue it full time. She has served as an assistant coach for multiple New Zealand women’s youth national teams and also spent a season as cohead coach of Takapuna AFC, a semipro men’s team in New Zealand. She was only the second female coach in team history.

Photo via Wikimedia Commons

Bindon fields the ball with the New Zealand national team. The goalie played in the World Cup in 2007 and 2011.

Her most recent position prior to accepting the LMU job was as an assistant coach and goalie coach for the UCLA women’s team from 2017 to 2019. Between her time at the collegiate, professional and national levels in two different countries, Bindon has gained insight into soccer’s role as a truly universal game not defined by nationality or gender. “I often get asked, 'Was it harder to coach men or women? Is there a

difference?'” she said. “Yes, there is a difference between men and women. But at the end of the day … the game's the same. And [that's] the beauty of soccer, it's one of the few sports that nothing changes. The goals don't change, the size of the ball [doesn't] change, the field doesn't change.” Bindon has been employed at LMU for about a month, but the Lions have been on her radar for many years. She fell in love with the school's athletics thanks to the success of the men’s basketball team in the late 1980s and appreciates LMU as a whole. “I actually think this is a beautiful campus. I love the Jesuit community,” she said. “And I've always thought if this job ever came open, I would probably like to [take it] … it's an ideal location to coach and to live.” Slowly but surely, Bindon has begun to settle in and feel like a part of the LMU athletics department. She inherits a Lions team that went 4-123 this past season and 3-13-4 in 2018, but is optimistic that she is putting a system in place that can return the team to winning ways. “We're in the process of building a culture and environment that will lead to a high-performing, elite [level of] success for us,” she said. “We're trying to create a high-performance environment to give our players the best opportunity to win in the WCC and NCAA.”

What you missed in basketball over break Men's and women's teams see success and struggle this past month. Ellie Kinney Sports Intern @LALoyolan

Women’s basketball Adams, Jones and Ellington give standout performances With such a young group of players, women’s basketball (6-13) has struggled to find a rhythm early in the season. Over the break the team began conference play, facing off against BYU, USD, Pacific and St. Mary’s, but fell short each time. The Lions did not let the losing streak deter them, however; this past week, LMU earned two key wins at home against conference rivals USF and Santa Clara. On Thursday night, LMU beat a struggling USF team 76-69. While the Dons (7-10) held their own for much of the season, they have gone 0-5 in the conference and LMU took advantage of their opponent’s West Coast woes. Four players for the Lions scored in double digits, but the star of the game

was freshman guard Aspyn Adams. Her 24-point game was impressive in itself, but she made LMU history with seven three-point field goals, draining 7 of 8 from behind the arc; this puts Adams in a tie for first place all-time in threepointers made in a game. LMU went on to face Santa Clara (8-8) at Gersten Pavilion on Saturday, hoping to keep their momentum from the win against San Francisco. The Broncos, coming off an overtime loss at Pepperdine a few days before, looked to avoid a sweep by their two Los Angeles conference rivals. Both teams battled the entire game, but the Lions ran away with the lead in the fourth quarter and defeated Santa Clara 7559. Junior forward Jasmine Jones and freshman guard/ forward Ciera Ellington were outstanding both offensively and defensively, each posting double-doubles. LMU will spend the next two weeks on the road, looking to stay on track as they play at Pepperdine, Portland and Gonzaga. They return home to play St. Mary’s on Jan. 30.

Photo via LMU Athletics

Freshman guard/forward Ciera Ellington faces off against a defender in a Dec. 7 match against CSU San Bernardino. Ellington led the team with 14 points in the 94-46 home victory.

Men’s basketball - Scott stays hot over winter break Men’s basketball (7-10) remained inconsistent over the break, winning only two games since Dec. 13. Their struggles, while disappointing, were expected; star players sophomore guard/forward Dameane Douglas and junior

guard Joe Quintana have been out for the whole season with injuries, and senior center Mattias Markusson was not with the team this semester. Not having these players on the court has been a huge blow to the team’s production, but junior guard/forward Eli Scott

has significantly stepped up this year as a player and a leader. Scott is averaging over 16 points per game, a huge improvement over last season’s eight points, and has higher rebound and assist averages this year as well. See Basketball| Page 11

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