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Baseball overcomes midseason slump SPORTS, pg. 8


Volume LXXVII, Number 115

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Students raising funds for Oklahoma tornado victims MUSTANG DAILY STAFF REPORT

Cal Poly’s on-campus housing communities are raising money for the victims of the Oklahoma tornado tragedy through a change drive, which will last through the end of the school year. “By students participating in

service their first and second years of college, University Housing hopes residents can continue a pattern of giving back to the community during their college years and beyond,” Associate Director of Residential Life and Education Suzanne Fritz said. And students want to get involved when they see a tragedy such as the recent tornadoes in

Oklahoma unfold, Fritz said. On campus, students put change in large jugs at the front desks of each living area, and staff also takes jugs around to student rooms to collect change during building walks. In addition, individual communities may decide to do different incentives or competitions to raise more money, Fritz said.

“By participating in community service events, students develop a greater understanding of community issues and insights into the diverse needs in the San Luis Obispo area,” Fritz said. “Service is a great way for Cal Poly students to Learn by Doing while giving back to the area they live in.” Though there is not a specific goal in place, past

change drives have raised between $300 and $1,500 and the various communities are using different strategies to raise money. “Monetary donations allow organizations like Red Cross and other disaster relief agencies to get supplies and services to people in need in the quickest and most efficient manner,” Fritz said.


Special to Mustang Daily

The Counseling Center on campus is conducting a survey to see the state of mental health of students on campus, Health and Counseling Services Director Martin Bragg said. The survey is used to help the Counseling Center identify mental health issues that need to be focused on. The survey, called the Healthy Minds Survey, is part of a national survey put on by Penn State University, Bragg said. The survey serves as a way for the Counseling Center to create programs to help students struggling with mental health. “It’s a very thorough study and it gives us a pretty good snapshot, I think, of students’ mental health on campus,” Bragg said. “We find it really useful in talking to students, faculty and staff about the issues of stress on college students, so it really has multiple uses.” The Counseling Center uses the results of the survey in a variety of ways. It will use the information to identify specific areas that are problematic and increase programming to help decrease issues in these areas, Bragg said. The study was first conducted on the Cal Poly campus in 2010, Bragg said. The results showed that the two most common mental health issues Cal Poly students suffer from were mood disorders and anxiety disorders. Some 9 percent of Cal Poly students reported suffering from mood disorders, such as depression, and 7 percent of students reported suffering from anxiety disorders, such as

FIRED UP Students in Fire and Society (NR 308) are putting their newfound skills to the test with real-life firefighting lessons.


Some lucky students are leaving their textbooks behind and showing off their new “Learn by Firefighting” skills by practicing putting out fake fires in realistic situations. The course is all-encompassing and teaches beginning fire fighting skills, said natural resources lecturer Doug Aversano, who teaches this specific class. In addition to introducing the basics of wildland fire behavior, fire physics and explaining emergency medical responses, students complete four training certificates that are used by all agencies after they finish the course. “Having the certifications already completed is a real benefit to employees when they show up with the training under the belt, making the students highly marketable,” Aversano said. Aversano dedicated 32 years to firefighting and said he enjoys being able to pass on his

experiences and knowledge to potential firefighters. “I’ve always thought about giving basic training to fire fledglings, and placing folks in professional jobs has always been a goal,” Aversano said. The course is offered to all students, no matter what major they are in. This allows for the class to have a diversity of students in different fields and for the students to experience a diversity of classes. For some, the class opened the door to a profession they never would have imagined going into. Kinesiology senior Neil Sundberg said he changed his entire career path after taking this course. Before beginning his education at Cal Poly, Sundberg served in the military and spent some of his deployment in Afghanistan. He entered Cal Poly with the intention of pursuing a career in kinesiology, but after taking a few forestry and natural resources classes, however, he discovered a career in firefighting was the perfect fit for

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“If these classes were not offered at Cal Poly, I never would have had gotten the opportunity or the idea to get hired and pursue this as a full-time career,” kinesiology senior Neil Sundberg said. his military background. “There are certain skills you learn in the military,” Sundberg said. “We are trained to move around with heavy equipment, deal with harsh working conditions and survive in high-stress situations. This type of physical training and mentality helps carry on to putting out a fire.” In addition to helping the students fulfill the certificate

ARTS, pg. 4 Enter the Secret Garden.

see TORNADO, pg. 2

Counseling survey examining students’ mental health


University Housing staff decided to do the change drive after watching the news, Fritz said. “Since this is such a stressful academic time for students, it was decided that the change drive would allow residents to make a positive contribution without having to put in

requirements and understand the basics of wildland fire control, Aversano brought in guest speakers of all different government levels who helped students understand the different types of backgrounds and career fields. Departments from the local, state and federal level bring engines, equipment and personnel see FIREFIGHTER, pg. 2

Tomorrow’s Weather: high Sunny sunny


9% of Cal Poly students reported suffering from mood disorders such as depression.

7% of students reported suffering from anxiety disorders.

having panic attacks, the 2010 Healthy Minds Survey statistics showed. “The survey went out to 4,000 students and we expect to get 1,400 to 1,500 responses back,” Bragg said. “It asks a series of questions about how they like Poly and how college is going, but then it also asks questions like, in the past year, how much they’ve experienced depression, anxiety or thoughts of suicide.” An example question on the survey would be something such as, “In the last 30 days, have you taken a prescription medication without a prescription?” Bragg said. Prescription medication can play a part in depression, Bragg said. For example, Adderall or Ritalin, which are medications used for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), are stimulants and work differently in people with ADHD than they do with people who don’t have it. “If somebody without ADHD takes this, it basically might energize them to the point that they are having a see SURVEY, pg. 2


Opinions/Editorial..............6 News.............................1-3 Classifieds/Comics............7 Arts...............................4-5 Sports..................................8

low 54˚F partially cloudy




light rain



MDnews 2

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

TORNADO continued from page 1

a large time commitment,” Fritz said. In addition to this fundraising motion, University Housing staff works with students throughout the year to plan fundraisers and other community service activities including food and blood drives. This past academic year, oncampus residents donated 936 pints of blood to people in medical need in the county, $5,700 to local food banks through a skipped campus meal from student meal plans, and more than $10,000 worth of food and thousands of pounds of clothing donated to those in need. “As a group, our freshman class is well connected and has comes together to make some stuff happen, not only for Oklahoma victims, but also for anyone else in need,” English freshman Sam Shrader said. “You feel like you are involved and are also giving back to people who need it.” SHANE KEYSER/MCCLATCHY-TRIBUNE

The tornado in Moore, Okla. killed 24 people and injured 377 others. According to estimates, somewhere between 12,000 and 13,000 homes were destroyed.

FIREFIGHTER continued from page 1

to help train students. In addition to providing outside training, the participation from these agencies creates an ideal atmosphere for networking. “Everyone who Aversano brought in as a guest speaker was phenomenal,” Sundberg said. “They are very friendly toward veterans and I’ve had the opportunity to meet firefighters in different crews and have been invited on ride-alongs.” After Sundberg graduates this spring, he will be working full time for Fulson Lake Hand Crew, an all-veteran federal wildland firefighting crew. “If these classes were not offered at Cal Poly, I never would have had gotten the opportunity or the idea to get hired and pursue this as a fulltime career,” Sundberg said. Art and design senior Nicole Vose was introduced to forestry and natural resources when she took Fire

It’s been really helpful to be actually doing what we are learning instead of just sitting in the classroom reading a book. NICOLE VOSE ART AND DESIGN SENIOR

and Society (NR 308) to fulfill her D5 general education requirement. Aversano also taught this class and convinced her to take Wildland Fire Control to explore her interest in this profession. The labs were very helpful because of the agencies that came out to help show them the ropes, she said. One of her favorite labs was the demonstration of a “mobile attack,” in which students learn how to use engines lined with hoses in the front bumper for a mock fire suppression drill. “It’s been really helpful to be actually doing what we are learning instead of just sitting in the classroom reading a book,” Vose said. Aversano’s lectures have

also helped explain the material in a more relatable fashion, Vose said. He teaches a lot through stories and videos, which help the students understand how to deal with different situations as opposed to simply explaining the vocabulary. Her favorite aspect, however, was being able to work with actual firefighters who are currently in the profession. This experience, along with the amount of certification received will be really helpful when applying for jobs, she said. She is currently considering getting her EMT license next summer and is confident her certifications and networking will help in pursuing this career.

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SURVEY continued from page 1

panic attack. It could disrupt their sleep or give them irregular heartbeat,” Bragg said. “So that’s one of the reasons we use a survey like this to get a notion of how big a problem that is.” The Counseling Center takes the information from the survey and uses it to designate specific areas to focus in on programs that help students with mental health issues, Bragg said. “If we were to see an increase in use of Adderall without a prescription, then we would increase the amount of programming we would do about the dangers of that,” Bragg said. The programming that the Counseling Center would do to help these problematic areas would include making posters and taking out ads, Bragg said. Peer health would do programming in terms of doing events to help increase awareness of these issues. Coming to college, new stressors that weren’t apparent in high school can make students more susceptible to these mental illnesses, psy-

chology sophomore Cheyenne Sommo said. “For me, I find that when I’m feeling most vulnerable to things like anxiety is when I’m stressed,” Sommo said. “During finals week or midterms, school just really stresses me out and I didn’t feel that pressure in high school, or at least not as strongly as I do now.” Mental illness can have a negative stereotype attached to it on the Cal Poly campus, graduate student Katelyn O’Brien, who works at the Counseling and Guidance program, said. “I think people with mental illness are still perceived as very threatening and very dangerous,” O’Brien said. “I think there is a large stereotype and it’s largely due to the way media portrays mental illness.” In the media, stories of mental health are highlighted and intensified, and it is never in a positive light, O’Brien said. “The age in which people are most susceptible to the majority of mental illness is 18-24, which is a traditional college-aged student,” O’Brien said. “With the workload of college and the expectation put on college students, I think it triggers a lot of mental health disorders.” By making our commu-

Hillary Kaiser contributed to this staff report. nity more aware of the issues of mental health rather than making judgments we can make the stereotype of mental health more positive, O’Brien said. Students can go to many places on campus to find confidential help, O’Brien said. The Health and Counseling Services on campus has a section run by students, including PULSE and other peerrun groups whose focus is to bring awareness and bring attention to matters that influence students. “Fortunately, I think they brought in one or two more psychologists here at Cal Poly and I know that we also have a psychiatrist as well,” O’Brien said. “So you are going to get those needs met here where a lot of colleges don’t have psychologists.” The results of the Healthy Minds Survey are going to show students who are struggling with mental health or even just getting out of bed in the morning, that they are not the only students having trouble, Bragg said. “There is a feeling that somehow they are the only ones that are like this,” Bragg said. “But these kinds of problems are serious for a lot of students.”

MDnews 3

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Trayvon Martin shooting trial to begin

Sybrina Fulton (Ieft), mother of the teenage victim Trayvon Martin, attended a pre-trial hearing on Tuesday with her attorney (right). MCCLATCHY-TRIBUNE


At the start of George Zimmerman’s murder trial, which begins in two weeks, expect Trayvon Martin to be portrayed as an innocent teenager, an unarmed 17-year-old who was killed while walking home in the rain. By the time it concludes, however, jurors may have a more menacing view of him. In rat-a-tat fashion, Circuit Judge Debra S. Nelson buzzed through a series of pretrial motions on Tuesday, laying the groundwork for what jurors will hear during the second-degree murder trial, expected to be one of the most watched this year. One of the judge’s clearest rulings: Defense attorneys will not get more time to prepare. Jury selection will begin June 10, when 500 potential jurors are scheduled walk through the courthouse doors. And, in general, she banned defense attorneys from introducing reputation-damaging evidence about Martin — but she left lots of wiggle room. If defense attorneys can convince her during the course of the trial that it’s relevant, she may allow them to put on evidence showing that at the time of his death, Martin had marijuana in his system; that he had discipline problems at school; and that he had a history of fighting. After Tuesday’s two-hour hearing, defense attorney Mark O’Mara predicted he would be able to show their relevance.

“I’m hopeful I’ll be able to lay a foundation to get it in,” he said. Specifically, he was referring to text messages found on Martin’s cell phone, which indicate, among other things, that the Miami Gardens, Fla., teenager was involved in competitive fighting. “I’m happy with the judge’s rulings,” O’Mara said. The issue of Martin-as-fighter is key because Zimmerman, a 29-year-old former Neighborhood Watch volunteer, says he shot Martin in selfdefense after the teenager attacked him on Feb. 26, 2012, in Sanford. Also happy with the judge’s rulings was Benjamin Crump, an attorney for Martin’s family, who interpreted them as outright bans. The judge did issue some of those: Jurors will not hear about Martin’s prior marijuana use nor will they see a photo of him wearing a set of gold teeth. Those rulings came because last week, defense attorneys released a glut of evidence, including photos from Martin’s cell phone that showed potted marijuana plants, a semiautomatic handgun and text messages revealing discipline problems at school and that his mother had asked him to move out. Crump on Tuesday described that as defense attorneys “polluting the jury pool.” “Trayvon Martin did not have a gun,” Crump said. “Trayvon Martin did not get out of his car and chase anyone. Trayvon Martin did not shoot and kill anyone.” In court Tuesday, O’Mara

mentioned for the first time new pieces of evidence damaging to Martin’s reputation: that the teenager had shot video of his buddies beating up a homeless man; that Martin had served as referee in another fight; and that he had won one fight after punching his opponent in the nose. Martin’s mother, Sybrina Fulton, was at Tuesday’s hearing, but her attorneys would not let her answer questions. Asked about Martin shooting video of his friends beating a homeless man, family attorney Darryl Parks said that was irrelevant. George Zimmerman did not attend Tuesday’s hearing, but his brother, Robert Zimmerman Jr., did and afterward called on prosecutors to drop the charge. Prosecutors Bernie de la Rionda and John Guy did not answer questions after the hearing. One of the most important issues before the judge Tuesday was what to do with a state audio expert, Alan Reich, who’s expected to testify that he heard Martin say, “I’m begging you,” in the background of a 911 call made by a neighbor just before Zimmerman shot Martin. She will deal with that next week, she said, by holding a hearing June 6 to determine whether Reich used scientifically accepted techniques. She’ll also take up another issue then: Did de la Rionda lie when he told her he had turned over every scrap of evidence related to Martin’s cell phone to

Zimmerman’s attorneys. Wesley White, a lawyer and former co-worker of de la Rionda, testified Tuesday that the office’s information technology director had found three photos plus some deleted text messages from Martin’s cell phone and given them to de la Rionda. One photo was of a hand holding a gun and one was of drugs, White said. O’Mara said those had not been handed over. White said Tuesday afternoon that the IT director, Ben Kruidbos, was placed on administrative leave “about five minutes after I got off the stand.” A spokeswoman for de la Rionda’s office did not respond to a phone call or email seeking more information.

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MDarts 4

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

What’s growing in San Luis Obispo’s

Secret Garden



The Secret Garden Organic Herb Shop owner Kirstin Sherritt went “farm-hopping” in Central America before opening her own tea shop in San Luis Obispo. Now, she provides unique tea to residents of the Central Coast. Watch the video on

MDarts 5

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Shwayze to w(rap) up spring quarter with UU concert KELLY TROM

Rapper Shwayze will get the University Union (UU) Plaza “Buzzin’” when he performs a free concert on Friday from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Shwayze’s performance will be the last in the UU sunset series put on by Associated Students, Inc. (ASI) this school year. The series was created in an attempt to get bigger artist names to Cal Poly on Fridays instead of the usual weekly UU hour concerts on Thursdays, ASI events musical entertainment assistant and business administration senior Gage McGinnis said. “We kind of wanted to make it a surprise this year, thought it would be kind of cool,” McGinnis said. “We weren’t able to do one in winter so we were able to get a little bit bigger of a name in spring.” The Shwayze concert was announced May 17 at the beginning of Erik Griffin’s comedy show in Chumash Auditorium. The event appeared in the ASI Spring Activity Guide as simply “TBD.” “Shwayze is one of the biggest artists we have had all year, maybe even in the past couple of years,” McGinnis said. ASI event coordinators brainstormed about who to


bring to Cal Poly, factoring in what many students listen to, he said. The California rapper, with laid back fun songs such as “Buzzin’” and “Corona and Lime,” was chosen. “Shwayze is a good artist with a lot of energy,” he said. “He captures the college culture. He’s from California and really popular in the West Coast.” While McGinnis has never seen Shwayze perform live, he has heard from others that he is charismatic onstage. “I have heard that it is really high energy,” McGinnis said. “He gets the crowd involved and people sing along, rather than just sitting down in chairs. I think it is more interactive and fun.” Business administration senior Russell Hampton said he plans on attending the show and has seen Shwayze perform before locally. “I saw Shwayze at Avila once, and he absolutely killed it,” Hampton said. “He really knows how to get the crowd pumped.” Ever since the free concert was announced, McGinnis has been hearing positive things from Cal Poly students around campus. “All of the feedback I have heard has been great,” he said. “There’s been people that I haven’t even been in conversation with, but just overheard,

that are really excited about it.” Sociology freshman Lauren Rocha is one of those students. Not only is she excited for Shwayze, but also about the venue and time of the concert. She heard about the concert on Facebook but double-checked it on ASI’s website. “I like Shwayze mostly because he has a laid back, yet fun feel to his music,” Rocha said. “It also seems to be good timing close to summer for a fun event to occur for students.” Although Rocha has never been to a concert during UU hour, she is planning on attending this one for the biggername artist, she said. This school year alone, Cal Poly venues have hosted highprofile acts such as Blue Man Group and Awolnation. But who will visit campus in the quarters to come? “I think this concert is going to be awesome, and I am really excited to see what else campus has in store for us next year,” Hampton said. McGinnis said he is hopeful ASI will continue to make an effort to book more popular artists for free or discounted Cal Poly student events. “Between the sunset series and the Recreation Center venue, I think that we will definitely be getting bigger names in the future,” McGinnis said.

Should you eat before you work out? Sam Gilbert is a journalism sophomore and Mustang Daily health columnist. It’s a rare event, but don’t you love those mornings when you wake up and actually feel motivated to work out? Let’s get real, the trek to the Recreation Center before the hour of 10 a.m. can be described more as a struggle, but it does occur once in a blue moon. After the decision is made to actually make moves, that’s normally when disaster strikes for me. To eat or not to eat — that is the question. It’s not like I’m down to pass out on the treadmill because of lack of nutrition or anything, but there’s nothing worse than feeling in the zone and then suddenly have to stop because of a killer cramp. It turns out, though, that eating right before you work out isn’t necessary. According to Spark People, the fuel utilized during a workout doesn’t come from the calories in food, but from the glycogen, or carbohydrates, stored in your muscles, liver and fat cells. The calories in glycogen actually offer enough fuel for about 1-2 hours of intense ex-

ercise or 3-4 hours of moderate exercise, the article states. “This means that if your overall diet is adequate to keep your fuel tanks topped off, you may not need to eat anything before you work out,” the article reads. Eating first doesn’t have to necessarily be a priority if it upsets your stomach, you’re working out first thing in the morning or if you’re working out at a time that eating isn’t convenient, according to the article. On the contrary, this lack of eating does not necessarily apply to everyone. The trick is to knowing your own body and to do what works best for you. This is what I normally have to put into consideration. As great as it sounds to not have to worry about eating before working out, I know that I’ll feel tired and unmotivated once I get to the gym if I’m still surviving off of dinner from the night before. As the article says, I am one of those individuals who are “more sensitive to changes in their sugar blood levels, which fall during the first 15-20 minutes of workout.” Sweet. According to the Mayo Clinic, it’s important to pay attention to the size of a meal with

consideration to the time it will be eaten before a workout. “Large meals should be eaten at least 3-4 hours before exercising, small meals about 2-3 hours and small snacks about an hour before exercising,” the article reads. Eating too much can result in you feeling sluggish or diarrhea and stomach cramps, the article reads. Ew. That grossed me out to write. Let’s avoid that situation, Cal Poly. I thought the most beneficial piece of advice was the idea of snacking before or during a workout because it won’t give you any added energy, but it will avoid any distracting hunger pains. Some good ideas for small snacks include energy bars or drinks, bananas or other fresh fruit, yogurt, fruit smoothies, whole grain bagels or crackers with peanut butter and granola. Even if you’re not down for the whole snacking situation, it is crucial to stay hydrated. “Try to drink 16-20 ounces of water during the 1-2 hours before starting your workout,” according to SparkNotes. Being well-hydrated will make your exercise easier and more effective, the article says.

wellness101 According to The Huffington Post, small workouts don’t necessarily require a concerted effort to eat, but hydration is incredibly important. “Water is fine for a half-hour run, but any workout over an hour may require some electrolyte replacement — such as a sports drink or a piece of fruit,” the article reads. So, now that we have it all cleared up that eating right before a workout isn’t required, what if you’re working on some endurance training and know that you need food? The Huffington Post has

some unique suggestions that I’d like to share with you: • Low-fat chocolate milk. I know, it made my day, too. Apparently it “works better than the neon stuff.” Good enough reason for me. • Coconut water. Who knew this drink is used for something more than just curing a hangover? This low-calorie, all natural drink is perfect for replacing water when working out. • Rice. Add some honey, and it’s perfect for those hitting up those 6 a.m. breakaway classes. Eat smart, Mustangs.

Three workoutfriendly foods: • Chocolate milk • Coconut water • Rice

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Wednesday, May 29, 2013 Volume LXXVII, Number 115 ©2013 Mustang Daily “Potato”

Opinions on opinions

WORD ON THE STREET How did you form your political opinions?

Zachary Antoyan is a political science junior and Mustang Daily liberal columnist. Honestly, I don’t know why people lose their shit over Nutella. I just don’t think the chocolate-flavored nut butter tastes all that great. And despite the overwhelming support at other schools, such as Columbia, that spend more than $5,000 a week and consume more than 100 pounds of the stuff per day, I can’t bring myself to favor it over regular peanut butter. Now, this isn’t exactly the most popular opinion, however, it is one that I feel entitled to having. When it comes to preferences, our opinions can be very binary, in that we group objects into these “like” or “dislike” categories (I’m sure the reasoning process is much more complicated, but bear with me). The reasons for placing anything into these categories vary from person to person, and most of the time, the rea-

ing such an opinion. This, however, is not the case when it comes to moral and political issues. My reasoning for preferring regular donuts over cake donuts should be relatively simpler than my reasoning for supporting broader marriage equality. And the process for determining our opinions on moral subjects such as marriage rights can

My reasoning for preferring regular donuts over cake donuts should be relatively simpler than my reasoning for supporting broader marriage equality. sons are non-arbitrary. Now, we make hundreds of these value judgements every day; determining based on our preferences what it is we like and don’t like to eat, to watch or listen to. Whether or not I choose to enjoy the sound of Nickelback is of very little consequence, as are my convictions for hav-

be difficult, confusing and fraught with uncertainty. In order to make these decisions easier, we have developed moral codes and maxims that help guide us through the uncertainty. Oftentimes, these codes provide for us a clear direction on tough issues and we act or think accordingly. In other instances, however,

they can lead us into contradictory and even hypocritical moral conclusions that come about as a result of our own conflicting values. But there is pressure to come to a moral conclusion nonetheless. Our moral codes, in addition to making things clear, force us to similarly group these big issues into “like” and “dislike” categories. The pressure to come to a decision on these tough topics is perfectly exemplified both in policy and in the policy making process. We have developed an institutional process to evaluate moral issues on the grounds of our values, and the decisions made at the governmental level obviously have far reaching implications for the rest of the nation. Our extremely slow, systemic and methodological process for creating law in no way mirrors the way opinions are formed on an individual level. Our reliance on moral codes has made us lazy and complacent when we form an opinion on an issue. Additionally, recent research suggests that our reasoning is often so heavily influenced by outside factors that contradiction and

hypocrisy is the norm when it comes to moral values and judgements. In favor of coming to a conclusion, in favor of adhering to some made up moral code, we forgo the necessary process of considering some, if not all, of the angles on a topic. Take for instance: abortion. Abortion is an issue on which I have no opinion. I am neither in favor of it, nor am I opposed to the action. Of course, there are hundreds of arguments both for and against it, but there is yet one that could convince me that either is “right.” Both sides violate moral values that I support, and as such, I cannot find myself agreeing with either side. Our government provides the forum upon which these ideas, concerns and values can clash and be decided. We shouldn’t, however, allow dogmatic beliefs in simplistic, binary and otherwise dug-in moral codes to dictate our opinions. It’s OK to not have an opinion, and it’s OK to question and consider multiple angles on difficult issues. This is Zachary Antoyan, sitting down. Have a fantastic week.

“I think just by friends and family around me voicing their opinion, I was able to form my own opinion from theirs and compare and contrast.” • Sam Joda mechanical engineering senior

“Partially based off parents and partially based off classes.” • Kaitlyn Melo business administration freshman

In defense of food stamps CHRISTOPHER D. COOK

Los Angeles Times

To hear Republicans — and some Democrats — in Congress talk, you’d think food-stamp dollars just disappear into a black hole. The prevailing debate in the Senate and House versions of the farm bill, which contains funding for food stamps (the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP), is over how much to cut. But when more than 15 percent of Americans remain impoverished, slashing food assistance for the poor makes no sense in humanitarian, economic or public health terms. The House bill, which is gaining steam after passage by the Agriculture Committee last week, is the more draconian of the two. It would chop $20 billion over 10 years from SNAP, and its changes to foodstamp eligibility rules would cut off vital sustenance for about 2 million low-income people, including seniors and families with children. According to the Congressional Budget Office, 210,000 children in low-income families would lose their free school meals under the House plan. The Senate version would cut far less, though a final figure will be hashed out by a conference committee in June. But the attacks on food assistance for the poor are deeply misguided and are only going to get worse. The proposed House budget from Rep. Paul D. Ryan, R-Wis., seeks to gut food stamps by an additional $135 billion through block grants to states. Yet government and other studies clearly show that food stamps are among the most wisely spent public dollars, providing essential nourishment and public health benefits to low-income people as

well as economic stimulus to rural and urban communities. These are returns on spending that you won’t find in the corporate tax giveaways and military spending boondoggles routinely supported by both political parties, even as they scream for austerity when it comes to slashing “entitlements” and food assistance for the poor. The Trust for America’s Health, a health advocacy organization that focuses on disease prevention, warned recently of the consequences of cutting food stamps: “If the nation continues to underfund vital public health programs, we will never achieve long-term fiscal stability, as it will be impossible to help people get/stay healthy, happy and productive.” Indeed, according to a 2011 study by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, “research shows that lowincome households participating in SNAP have access to more food energy, protein and a broad array of essential vitamins and minerals in their home food supply compared to eligible nonparticipants.” Those in Congress pushing for cuts ignore the evidence that cutting food stamps doesn’t save money — it actually costs money in added public health expenses and lost job creation. Pushing millions of low-income Americans off food stamps means less nutrition and nourishment, leading to greater human suffering and healthcare costs. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “good nutrition can help lower risk for many chronic diseases, including heart disease, stroke, some cancers, diabetes and osteoporosis.” As it is, public healthcare expenses for dietrelated diseases such as diabetes and heart disease cost taxpayers more than $100 billion annually. In another key finding, the Na-

tional Academy of Sciences reported that food stamps helped lift nearly 4 million Americans out of poverty in 2010, while improving basic food and economic security for millions more. Cutting food stamps also means reducing economic stimulus and job creation, precisely what’s needed to help reduce poverty and hunger. The 2011 USDA study found that food-stamp dollars “ripple throughout the economies of the community, state and nation,” creating multiple levels of economic stimulus. The study also found that “every $5 in new SNAP benefits generates a total of $9.20 in community spending.” Each additional food-stamp dollar generates another 17 to 47 cents of additional food purchases. Farm state legislators might consider this USDA finding as well: “On average, $1 billion of retail food demand by SNAP recipients generates 3,300 farm jobs.” Or they could listen to the Congressional Budget Office, which ranks an increase in food stamps as one of the two most cost-effective spending and tax options for boosting growth and jobs in a weak economy. Each food-stamp dollar produces $1.72 in additional economic activity, the CBO found. In the farm bills moving through Congress, the politics of austerity are again being used to undermine food assistance for the poor. As the House and Senate debate how many dollars and people to cut from food stamps, their members should consider the daily realities the poor face. Most are living on a few dollars a day for food and, at best, work in minimum-wage jobs that barely cover rent. Cutting off these basic supports for those at the bottom of our economy is unwise, counterproductive and shameful.



Wednesday, May 29, 2013

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Wednesday, May 29, 2013



It’s appropriate that, for the 2013 Cal Poly baseball team, the most quoted phrase tossed around the locker room is to “never be satisfied.” For it was only a month ago that the fate of the Cal Poly baseball team was more than uncertain. Midway through conference play, the Mustangs — after winning 13 of their first 14 games of the season — realized things needed to change. Series losses to Cal State Fullerton, Long Beach State and UC Irvine proved to be a wakeup call for head coach Larry Lee and his ball club.

“You play 56 games in a 15week season, so you have to be resilient as a baseball team,” Lee said. “You have to learn from those losses and not dwell on it. From a coaching standpoint, it’s our job to see what worked, what didn’t and what needs to be tweaked. You go on and get to the next game. If your mind is stuck on the past, you’re destined for failure.” After beginning conference play with a sweep against UC Davis, the Mustangs dropped two games to UC Santa Barbara in Isla Vista. It was after their second series victory over Pacific that the Mustangs hosted Cal State Fullerton, then ranked No. 4 in the nation.

“When we played (Cal State Fullerton) for the first time, I think that we thought ‘It’s Fullerton ... We have to beat them,’” first baseman John Schuknecht said. “Now, they’re just another team. We have to play against the baseball, not them. We obviously would love to have a ‘revenge’ game, but I think we’ve matured since then.” The Mustangs quieted the Titans’ dugout as Cal Poly seized the first game of the series. However, Cal State Fullerton responded with back-to-back victories to take the series. But despite the Mustangs’ setback, pitching coach Thomas Eager knows how much his players have learned after playing a highly ranked team.

“It was in the Fullerton series where we learned the most,” Eager said. “I look at that series, and I always tell my players to play with no regrets. They kind of learned how they needed to play and what they needed to do. They learn the most after playing against a quality team in a stressful situation and learning how to control themselves. The Fullerton game was the one in which we learned who we are and who we need to be to win.” After the loss to the Titans, Cal Poly traveled south to Long Beach State where the Dirtbags took two of the threegame series. “I feel like there is an unspoken rivalry against Long Beach,” sophomore right fielder Nick Torres said. “We always play pretty scrappy against them, and that was a tough series to handle.” But while the Mustangs hoped to emerge with a series victory over Long Beach State, Torres insists he and his team did what they needed to receive a playoff berth. “To take one out of three was all we really needed to put us in a good position,” Torres said. “Same thing with Irvine. Obviously, it would have been nice to take two or three, but it was good to go down there and take care of business.” And while the most substantial defensive change was Schuknecht relieving sophomore Tommy Pluschkell at first base after Cal Poly’s series against UC Riverside, the pitching staff has made one important alteration in their starting rotation. Freshman right-hander Casey Bloomquist, after starting the nonconference Tuesday games during the regular season, recently made the transition as Cal Poly’s Sunday starter, taking

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the place of Bryan Granger. Bloomquist, after giving up two earned runs on six hits in 7 1/3 innings against Cal State Northridge, will serve as the Mustangs’ third starter in the pitching rotation in the Los Angeles Regional. “(Bloomquist) was doing very well, and you don’t want to mess up a good thing when he was taking care of business on Tuesdays,” Eager said. “He is a freshman, but I tell him all the time that he’s not a freshman. Being a first year doesn’t mean anything. It’s very uncommon because most teams undergo a few changes throughout the year, while we didn’t. I just think that it’s a tribute to our guys and their belief and hard work.” Following the series loss to UC Irvine, the Cal Poly baseball squad proceeded to sweep Cal State Northridge, won six of its final seven games in the regular season and produced a Division I-school record of 39 wins in a season. And now, after finishing in a tie for second place in the Big West Conference behind Cal State Fullerton, the Mustangs will travel to the campus of UCLA to compete in the Los Angeles Regional of the NCAA tournament. The four-team, double-elimination bracket will commence for Cal

Poly when Lee’s team takes on the University of San Diego on Friday at 2 p.m. The Mustangs will either compete against host UCLA or San Diego State in the second game of the fourteam tournament on Saturday. And before entering the tournament, Lee and his team will persist in their “never satisfied” mindset. It’s one out, one pitch at a time. “We’ve been very strong at the end of ball games,” Lee said. “But lately, we haven’t had very strong defense, and our offense has never really clicked in to where it should be. We just need to stay positive and just learn from the regular season. If you watch other sporting events, especially in the major league level, you see these players who have an incredible series because they were able to rise to the occasion. Hopefully, we get a number of those guys.”


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A virutal edition of Mustang Daily on May 29.

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