NYU’s Daily Student Newspaper
WASHINGTON SQUARE NEWS Vol. 42, No. 1
MONDAY, JANUARY 27, 2014
University finalizes merger with Poly
TODAY ON CAMPUS French professor Eugene Nicole discusses French literature with journalist Olivier Barrot at La Maison Francaise at 7 p.m. FOLLOW US ON TWITTER
By GRAHAM RAPIER
INSIDE THIS ISSUE Find out which movies and actors are poised to win big at this year’s Academy Awards. Our film team breaks down what you need to know before March 2. VIA WIKIPEDIA.ORG
WSN OPEN HOUSE WHEN: Saturday, Feb. 1 (1 to 4 p.m.) and Saturday, Feb. 8 (1 to 4 p.m.) WHERE: 838 Broadway, fifth floor Stop by to learn more about writing, blogging, copy editing, designing, taking photos and filming for WSN. Regular pitch meetings will resume on Sunday, Feb. 2, for all desks. All are welcome!
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Five freshmen participate in the nationwide Up to Us campaign. The students have been utilizing social media to increase their presence around the university. The Up to Us campaign features several groups from over 20 universities across the nation.
STORY ON PAGE 6
Fashion app makes thrifting easier, quicker By KATE MARIN
A new app known as Modabound allows students around New York City to sell and exchange clothes with ease. Modabound reinvents the virtual fashion marketplace by localizing its users within the city as well as creating an exclusive environment for college students. “It’s much more than a platform where you buy and sell clothes with strangers, it’s a community where girls come together to refresh their look and develop real friendships with their peers who have a common interest,” said Gallatin sophomore Francesca Conlin, NYU’s Modabound representative.
Modabound’s process of making a sale is very simple. An item can be listed for viewers to browse in less than a minute and all exchanges are made in person, thus eliminating shipping and complicated methods of online payment. The process is personal and simple and puts the seller in charge of the entire transaction. “What’s great about Modabound is that you get notified whenever someone adds an item to their cart, that way you know who is interested in purchasing it and can message them to complete the sale,” Conlin said. Modabound raises the bar in
MODABOUND continued on PG. 6
After five years in the making, the Polytechnic Institute of NYU has officially completed a merger with NYU as of Jan. 1. The school will now be called the Polytechnic School of Engineering. In 2008, the two schools formally agreed on a five-year plan to join the schools. In October 2012, the Board of Trustees of each institution voted to take the final steps in the merger. Iraj Kalkhoran, the associate dean of Undergraduate Academics at NYU-Poly, said students will have the ability to conduct cross-school coursework. “For students who discover a passion for engineering and technology, numerous cross-school minor opportunities are currently available,” Kalkhoran said. One of the ways that students will be able to pursue their interests is through the 3+2 Program, which is a five-year program for students seeking a dual degree. “The 3+2 Program provides CAS students the opportunity to pursue a double major in science and engineer-
ENGINEERING continued on PG. 3
Theater lineup features diverse shows By DYLAN JARRETT
The spring season is often the most thrilling time of year for the Broadway community. A huge number of shows open in the year’s early months, creating serious buzz among theatergoers. But only a few blocks downtown, NYU’s spring theater season is just as exciting, offering performances that range from university theater groups to West End productions. At the Skirball Center for the Performing Arts, NYU will be hosting two National Theatre Live screenings this spring. National Theatre Live, which screened “Othello” and “Frankenstein” at Skirball last semester to great success, is a program that makes top-notch London productions available in
cinemas throughout the world. This semester, Skirball will be showing Shakespeare’s tragedy “Coriolanus,” starring “Avengers” star Tom Hiddleston and “Sherlock’s” Mark Gatiss, on Feb. 5. On March 2, Skirball will screen “War Horse,” Steven Spielberg’s big-screen adaptation from 2011 of the the Tony Award-winning play about a young boy and his horse during World War I. On Feb. 28, Skirball will host “Past/Forward, 2014: Women at Work.” This dance show features the work of female choreographers who have graduated from the Tisch dance program. The choreographers span several generations and range from those just starting out to those who are already established in the dance community.
Within NYU’s theater programs, several groups will have productions running this spring. The Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development will present the Rodgers and Hammerstein classic musical “Carousel.” The story of carnival barker Billy Bigelow, this tragic romance will run Feb. 6 through 9. Additionally, Steinhardt’s Educational Theater Program will be performing the late-18th century play “The School for Scandal” Feb. 28 through March 9. The Tisch School of the Arts’ graduate acting program is presenting two plays, Shakespeare’s best-known history “Richard III” and the Tony Award-nominated “In the Next Room (or The Vibrator Play).” “Richard III” will
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WASHINGTON SQUARE NEWS | MONDAY, JANUARY 27, 2014 | NYUNEWS.COM
ON THE SIDE WASHINGTON SQUARE NEWS
Editor-in-Chief NICOLE BROWN
MICHAEL DOMANICO Deputy Managing Editor
CASEY DALRYMPLE Assistant Managing Editors
TATIANA BAEZ JONATHAN KESHISHOGLOU
Special Issues Director
LYANNE NATIVIDAD SENIOR STAFF
news KAVISH HARJAI, ANN SCHMIDT arts CLIO MCCONNELL features BRYNA SHUMAN sports FRANCISCO NAVAS multimedia FELIPE DE LA HOZ copy THOMAS DEVLIN, PAIGE MANKIN web KIMBERLY HART senior editors TONY CHAU, ARIANA
DIVALENTINO, MICHELLE LIM, STEFAN MELNYK, NEELA QADIR, DANIEL YEOM
news LARSON BINZER, SCOTT MULLEN,
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AFEEFA TARIQ books/theater DYLAN JARRETT film IFE OLUJOBI entertainment BOB TEOH music JAKE FOLSOM the highlighter blog VALERIE NELSON features HANNAH TREASURE beauty & style DANA RESZUTEK violet vision blog GIANNA COLLIER-PITTS dining CHANDLER WEST sports CHRIS MARCOTRIGIANO multimedia HANNAH LUU, LAWRENCE WU video ALEX LINZMEIER
very day at NYU, I am amazed and inspired by all of you. While I only know a fraction of you, I know talent is everywhere on this non-traditional campus. There are future actors, dancers, business leaders, politicians, scientists, writers — the list goes on and on. As the new editor-in-chief of the Washington Square News, I will continue to make WSN a platform for recognizing and celebrating the talents of this diverse student body, while also informing and questioning the community in which we live. Coming to NYU can be overwhelming. Being one among so many students is often intimidating, but each of us has unique passions and goals that can help us find our place in a student body of 40,000. I found mine on the fifth floor of 838 Broadway where the WSN office is located. There I met my second family. I have spent countless hours writing and editing stories, collaborating with other editors, building friendships and having a role in the production of a daily paper. I am extremely proud to now lead that production. I am so fortunate to work with such dedicated and hardworking students, and I know they will continue to impress me. In an ever-changing world of journalism, WSN is expanding and adapting everyday. While traditionally a print paper, we have developed and remodeled our website, expanded our coverage to new blogs and formed a growing presence on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Yet, there is always room for improvement. I hope to engage more members of the NYU community and expand our coverage. One of the attractions of NYU is its global presence, so we plan to provide more coverage of our global campuses. One of our first steps in that direction is collaborating with The Gazelle, the weekly student publication at NYU Abu Dhabi. Starting next week, we will publish one of their stories in our paper each week and vice versa in an effort to connect the two campuses. We hope that you will join our conversation, or even join our team. Our doors are always open, so if you want to have a role in the production of WSN, stop by our office and maybe it will become your place at NYU as well.
Nicole Brown, Editor-in-Chief 42nd Managing Team
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About WSN: Washington Square News (ISSN 15499389) is the student newspaper of New York University. WSN is published Monday through Thursday during NYU’s academic year, except for university holidays, vacations and exam periods. Corrections: WSN is committed to accurate reporting. When we make errors, we do our best to correct them as quickly as possible. If you believe we have erred, contact managing editor Michael Domanico at managing@ nyunews.com or at 212.998.4302.
NYUNEWS.COM | MONDAY, JANUARY 27, 2014 | WASHINGTON SQUARE NEWS
Gov. Cuomo to allow New York hospitals to dispense medicinal marijuana
ENGINEERING continued from PG. 1
Poly joins NYU, becomes engineering school after five years
By SCOTT MULLEN
During his fourth State of the State Address, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced a plan to relax constraints on the use of medical marijuana in the state. Citing research on the benefits of the drug and the policies of the 20 other states that have legalized medical marijuana, Cuomo announced that his administration and the New York State Department of Health would enact a program called the Controlled Substance Therapeutic Research Program. The program will 20 hospitals throughout the state to prescribe marijuana to patients with serious illnesses such as cancer. Details surrounding the plan are still unclear. According to the NYSDOH, a number of hospitals have expressed an interest in learning more about the program. The hospitals that will be allowed to prescribe marijuana and the criteria being used to select those hospitals are unknown. Additionally, the particular standards that will determine which patients are eligible for a prescription have not been announced. The governor and the NYSDOH said the purpose of this initiative is to evaluate the effectiveness of medical marijuana and the feasibility of a fully established medical marijuana
LAUREN KIM/WSN COURTESY OF U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE
Gov. Cuomo rethinks ban on medical marijuana. system, likely in anticipation of a future New York State legislative action. Julie Netherland, deputy state director for the New York office of the Drug Policy Alliance, an organization that promotes drug policies based on science, compassion, health and human rights, expressed her approval of the governor’s decision. “We were really pleased to see that the Governor came out and acknowledged the benefits and need for medical marijuana,” Netherland said. The current plan is not the final step in the process. This plan relies on Cuomo’s executive power to implement parts of a 1980 law that was passed in and allows for research into the medical prospects of controlled substances, rather than on a current law dictating a specific policy for medical marijuana. CAS freshman Maxwell Raderstorf, who is from Colorado where recreational
marijuana has already been legalized, said marijuana should be legalized nationwide and restrictions should not be increased. “All [the restriction] does is give more power to dealers and smugglers and drive people to come into contact with people like this, which can turn it into a gateway drug and lead people into trying more dangerous, harmful and addictive drugs,“ Raderstorf said. Cuomo has previously opposed the use of medical marijuana, so his endorsement of the drug is encouraging to proponents of the drug’s medicinal properties. Some, however, still think more needs to be done. “It’s a great step forward,” Netherland said. “Having said that, there is still a need for comprehensive legislation.” Scott Mullen is a deputy news editor. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
University officially welcomes NYU-Poly as the new engineering school.. ing disciplines,” explained Kathleen Hamilton, director of communications at the school. “These students are active in the School of Engineering’s summer research program, student clubs and even serve as teaching assistants for freshman courses.” Kalkhoran said qualified students will also have the opportunity to study abroad through the engineering school’s exchange programs and partnerships, in addition to NYU’s Office of Global Programs. Students held favorable views on the merger as well. “I’m very excited about the merger,” Poly sophomore Earl Co said. “I’ve always treated Washington Square as a second campus, but the overall feel between the two campuses makes it like going to two different colleges at once.” Engineering students have had access to many facilities and services at the Washington Square campus since the original affiliation, including the Wasserman Center for Career Development. Other services followed later, such as access to NYU’s athletic facilities in 2011. As of August 2013, all engineering students gained access to Google Apps for Education and academic email addresses at the nyu.edu domain. But some students are disappointed with the lack of free transportation
between the two campuses. In August 2013, Poly student Jeffrey Nichtberger created a petition urging the university to establish free transportation between the campuses. On Oct. 3, then-NYU-Poly President Katepalli Sreenivasan, now the dean of the engineering school, sent an email to the school’s student body regarding the issue of transportation. “We have been examining the possibility of operating a shuttle service between Downtown Brooklyn and Washington Square,” Sreenivasan said. “Details are still being worked out, but our intent is to launch a pilot program during the spring semester. More details will be forthcoming as they become available.” Poly sophomore Tonianna Lynch said the merger could offer exciting opportunities. “Now that the merger is fully completed it may encourage more students to actively participate in more of the social aspects NYU has to offer,” Lynch said. “Poly is a great school filled with many interesting people, but a lot of the majors are very similar; it will be nice [to] meet people studying very different things.” Graham Rapier is a contributing writer. Email him at email@example.com.
NYUAD migrant worker conditions under investigation By AFEEFA TARIQ
Migrant workers hired to build NYU’s Abu Dhabi campus on Saadiyat Island are being subjected to squalid working and living conditions, according to an article in The Guardian published late December. The article described the harsh conditions, and quoted workers who claimed their situation was inhumane. Glenn Carrick, one of the journalists who worked on the piece, said that an investigation was carried out between September and November last year on a housing camp in Musaffah, an industrial area in Abu Dhabi, where 43 workers from the NYU site lived. “It failed even the most basic standards and the exploitation of the men was the worst [I] have ever seen — some had to pay for their own work clothes, their
first year salary had to be used entirely to repay recruiters and they had no health care,” Carrick said. “There was no regulation of any kind ... There was no recreation [facility], no windows in the rooms, a dark, depressing, grim place.” NYU hired its own auditor, Mott MacDonald, to monitor working conditions on its Saadiyat Island construction site. One of NYU’s minimum living conditions for workers on the project is the requirement that there are no more than four individuals per room. MacDonald’s most recent report, released last January, found that the camps on Yas Island and Mussafah — where 90 percent of workers lived — met the university’s requirements. But recent allegations have required a new evaluation. NYUAD director of public affairs Greg Bruno said the university is investigating the new reports of
poor living conditions. “The conditions depicted are wholly inconsistent with the labor standards that have been in place to great effect over the past four years,” Bruno said. “Rigorous inspection and enforcement mechanisms are in place to ensure labor standards are met, and in those rare instances in which gaps in these standards have been identified, they have been swiftly resolved.” Nick McGeehan, a Middle East Researcher for Human Rights Watch, is quick to note that there has been no corroboration of the MacDonald report by a truly objective monitor. He explained that access to Saadiyat Island is controlled. “The only information we have comes from the auditing reports of the monitors who were appointed by NYU,” McGheehan said. The last visit HRW made to the
construction site was in January 2011. Following the inspection, Sarah Leah Whitson, executive director of HRW Middle East, wrote a letter to NYU citing unfair labor practices and urging the school to uphold its commitment to workers’ rights. CAS junior Donnie Donilon said NYU should stop involving themselves with the United Arab Emirates or start speaking out. “I would prefer for NYU to be able to stay at Abu Dhabi to be able to keep employment for those who rely on it abroad and be able to actually speak out sternly against the human rights abuses in the UAE and cause material change, but this unfortunately does not seem likely to happen in the current climate,” Donilon said. The campus at Saadiyat Island is scheduled to open later in 2014. For now, students have been using the downtown campus.
Additional reporting by Daniel Huang. Afeefa Tariq is a deputy news editor. Email them at news@ nyunews.com.
COURTESY OF NYUAD
NYUAD slammed for poor migrant worker conditions.
WASHINGTON SQUARE NEWS | MONDAY, JANUARY 27, 2014 | NYUNEWS.COM
De Blasio begins first mayoral term with focus on snowstorms, taxes By: ANN SCHMIDT
In the minutes after midnight on Jan. 1, Bill de Blasio was sworn into office as the 109th mayor of New York City. One of the first challenges de Blasio has faced as the mayor of New York are the snowstorms. De Blasio made a statement advising caution due to the dangerous weather and temperatures on Jan. 3 and public schools were closed down for the day. NYU was also closed on Jan. 2 and 3, and due to the snow on Jan. 21, classes ended early. “Our crews will remain on the streets around the clock until the roadways are clear in every
neighborhood, in every borough, across New York City,” de Blasio said in a statement. Since his inauguration, de Blasio has been working on several policies for New York City, including universal pre-kindergarten. In his inauguration speech, de Blasio spoke about his five-year plan to raise taxes on those earning in the $500,000 to $1 million range in order to support universal pre-K. According to de Blasio, the tax will only increase at an average of $973 a year. “Asking those at the top to help our kids get on the right path and stay there. That’s our mission,” de Blasio said in a speech. “And on that, we will
not wait. We will do it now.” The president of NYU College Republicans, John Catsimatidis Jr., said de Blasio’s financing plan will not work, even if the idea of pre-K is an honorable one. “The wealthy New Yorkers that he would like to tax contribute a very large percentage of the overall tax revenue already,” Catsimatidis said. “If their taxes are increased, many will inevitably leave New York [City], and that tax revenue will be lost— leaving the system worse than it is now.” LS sophomore Jack Zabelny said taxing the wealthy could be a difficult task to carry out. “I think that alternative fund-
Bill de Blasio’s progressive policies are seen as a major shift from Michael Bloomberg’s.
ing solutions should be considered, but the tax seems to be the best solution as of now,” Zabelny said. Politics professor Lawrence Mead said pre-K might not be as beneficial as de Blasio believes because similar programs, such as Head Start, have not had positive outcomes. “I think we should be cautious here and we shouldn’t necessarily rush into a big investment until there’s reason to think that it’s really going to produce results that de Blasio is claiming,” Mead said. Mead said de Blasio inherited the crime, welfare and education initiatives of previous mayors Giuliani and Bloomberg. “The major policy issue that I think de Blasio faces is whether and how he’s going to maintain those achievements going forward,” Mead said. De Blasio, an NYU alumnus himself, has placed other NYU alumni in city politics positions. He appointed Anthony Shorris as the deputy mayor for operations. Before his appointment, Shorris was the NYU Langone Medical Center’s senior vice president, vice dean and chief of staff. De Blasio also appointed NYU Law graduate Zachary Carter as corporation counsel for New York City. Carter graduated from NYU School of Law in 1975 and served on the board of directors at NYU Law’s Brennan Center for Justice.
CHECK OUT WSN’S VIOLET VISION BLOG FOR WEEKLY FASHION COLUMNS AND DIY STYLE TIPS.
The Winter Hair Battle Maintaing your hair during winter can be difficult, but it doesn’t have to be. Check out our tips for keeping your hair healthy during the cold months.
Fashion Internships: Tips & Advice Learn the ins and outs of fashion internships. Everything from landing the job to keeping it, we’ve got you covered.
High Fashion, College Budget: rag & bone Staying stylish on a budget is simple if you know where to look. This week we spotlight rag & bone’s pre-fall collection.
Ann Schmidt is a news editor. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org
VISIT WSNVIOLETVISION.WORDPRESS. COM FOR MORE FASHION ADVICE.
American Studies Association boycotts Israeli academics By: ANN SCHMIDT and KAVISH HARJAI
The American Studies Association’s National Council announced on Dec. 4 that they supported a boycott of Israeli academic institutions. During a 15-day voting period, the members of the ASA also voted in support of the boycott. On Dec. 20, NYU President John Sexton and Provost David McLaughlin sent a letter to the ASA opposing the boycott and asking the ASA to repeal it, saying that the boycott goes against academic freedom. NYU professor of social and cultural analysis and president-elect of the ASA Lisa Duggan said that the ASA’s boycott does not breach anyone’s academic freedom and is instead against Israeli restriction of Palestinian professors and students. “We are inviting Israeli
as well as Palestinian scholars to our fall 2014 conference,” Duggan said. “We value our continuing collaboration with all our colleagues, in Israel and around the world. We are boycotting academic institutions in Israel with the goal of protesting discrimination against Palestinians, and with the hope of expanding academic freedom for all.”
An NYU alumnus and contributing editor to Forbes Magazine Richard Behar spoke out against the boycott and Sexton’s response in a 14-page open letter to Sexton published in Forbes magazine on Jan. 14. His letter was titled “Why The American Studies Assn.’s Israel Boycott Makes Me Ashamed To Be An Alumnus.” In this letter, he urged Sexton to
send a stronger message against the ASA. “If they are disseminating provably-false information, through speeches or papers or petitions and resolutions — while parading around the country as representatives of NYU — then that should give everyone pause,” Behar wrote in an email. “Their actions may also be in violation of the UN’s 1948
COURTESY OF AMERICAN STUDIES ASSOCIATION
Professor Lisa Duggan has drawn criticism for her involvement in the ASA.
Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Their aim is the delegitimization of a nation-member of the UN, and they are huddling under NYU’s banner while they’re doing it.” Behar believes that the relationship between NYU and the ASA should be made clear. “[Sexton] also needs to get the ASA to clarify publicly if it’s NYU as an institution that is the member — as ASA lists it on its website — or if it’s just a studies department at NYU,” Behar said. “This may sound like hair-splitting, but it’s not.” NYU spokesman John Beckman said the university disagrees with Behar’s assertions. “We do not accept that the opposition NYU’s president and provost have expressed on this matter is different in kind or degree than statements issued by other like-
minded university presidents,” Beckman said. “Indeed, I do not see how their views on the matter could be clearer or more firm — they have said it contravenes the tenets of academic freedom, and called on the ASA to overturn the vote.” The NYU Students for Justice in Palestine applauded Duggan and the ASA for their work. “The ASA resolution responds to the routine denial of scholarly freedom to Palestinian students and academics,” they said in a statement. “Taking action against abuses by the U.S. and its allies is never easy or convenient, and the ASA deserves tremendous credit for its courage in standing up for justice.” Kavish Harjai and Ann Schmidt are news editors. Email them at email@example.com.
NYUNEWS.COM | MONDAY, JANUARY 27, 2014 | WASHINGTON SQUARE NEWS
BEAUTY AND STYLE
EDITED BY DANA RESZUTEK BSTYLE@NYUNEWS.COM
Create standout wardrobe with bright, bold colors
By DANA RESZUTEK
A few months of cold are left before spring begins, and the bitter temperatures can leave your wardrobe dreary. Try these simple tips to add some brightness to your winter looks.
Bold Makeup Perhaps the easiest way to add some
color and brightness to a look is through makeup. Whether it’s a bold red lip or bright cheeks, the addition of one color can make a true difference to the look of an outfit. Alternatively, try using bright eyeliner, applying close to the lash line, or a bright nail polish for a subtle yet statement-making addition of color.
Accessorize with Color
Often the colder it gets, the darker a wardrobe becomes. Though black apparel is always a classic and sleek option, adding pops of color through accessories is an instant way to make a look stand out. Accent an all-black outfit with a colorful loafer, sneaker or heel. Since
black goes well with any color, any shade you choose, from a bold jewel tone to a neon pink, can work for this style.
Pastels for Winter Soft pastels are no longer reserved for springtime. Make a statement with a simple coat or handbag by choosing items in one of the many
shades of trending pastels for winter, including pinks, blues and lavenders. For a true stand-out look, a full monochromatic pastel outfit will bring brightness, as well as runway trends, to your wardrobe. Dana Reszutek is beauty/style editor. Email her at dreszutek@nyunews.
Eye-popping colors help spruce up style.
Tips, tricks to maintain healthy, beautiful lifestyle By ILONA TUOMINEN
The new year is here, and it is once again time to make—and attempt to maintain—some lifestyle changes. This year, try these simple beauty resolutions that can truly make a difference in your health and appearance.
Resolution 1: Drink More Water Try to drink eight glasses of water every day, or about one glass every two hours. The cold winter air is dehydrating and possibly damaging to your complexion. Drinking water can help keep your skin and lips from drying, your hair shiny and your nails strong. Water can also aid with digestion and weight loss, as well as relieve headaches and tiredness. Instead of grabbing a cup of coffee to go, fill up a water bottle to stay healthy and hydrated throughout the day.
Resolution 2: Protect Your Skin with Sunscreen Many believe that in the winter we don’t need to worry about protecting ourselves from the sun’s UV rays. However, snow can act as a reflector and damage your skin without the indication of a burn. Although most of your body is bundled up in the cold weather, your face is still sensitive and vulnerable to sun damage, so opt for a regular or tinted moisturizer with an SPF of at least 15.
Resolution 3: Always Remove Makeup before Bed One of the best ways to improve your skin is to remove your makeup before going to sleep. Leaving makeup on over-
night causes dead skin cells to build up and leads to more breakouts and other skin problems. Let your skin breathe and rejuvenate at night by removing all beauty products, washing your face and moisturizing your skin. If you’re short on time, makeup wipes are a popular and easy option. Try Neutrogena Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes, found at local drugstores, as a quick makeupremoving method.
Resolution 4: Keep Makeup Brushes Clean We often forget the importance of keeping makeup brushes and other tools clean. Buildup of old makeup can cause your skin to break out. To clean a makeup brush, mix water and shampoo into a shallow bowl and swirl the brush in the bowl until clean. Repeat this process weekly. It is important to sharpen lip and eye pencils monthly and replace mascara every six months. This will help prevent bacteria from building up on your products.
Resolution 5: Get More Sleep No matter how much work or studying you have to do, an allnighter is never a good idea. Sleep is the time for your body to restore its energy, and not sleeping enough can do major damage to both your health and your ability to focus and do well in classes. About eight hours of sleep a night should be your goal. If you can’t manage that much, at least try to make a commitment to go to bed at the same time each night — a regular sleep schedule will help you feel more refreshed in the morning. Ilona Tuominen is a staff writer. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
WASHINGTON SQUARE NEWS | MONDAY, JANUARY 27, 2014 | NYUNEWS.COM
EDITED BY BRYNA SHUMAN FEATURES@NYUNEWS.COM
Stern students bring Up to Us campaign to campus By KIMBERLY SCHU
The Up to Us national campaign was first introduced to NYU students in September, when the Stern School of Business’ marketing team sent an email to all students in the Business and Political Economy program and encouraged a team of five students to get involved. The campaign, sponsored by the Clinton Global Initiative, Peter Peterson Foundation and Net Impact, aims to educate college students about the implications of long-term federal debt. The goal is to engage young adults and teach them about the current financial crisis through interactive techniques, including social media. The NYU team that responded to the email’s challenge comprises five Stern freshmen — Jai Malik, the team’s leader, Fahad Jamal, the deputy team leader, Shivangi Khanna, Michael Kokkinos and Aziz Adib. “Essentially, this is a nationwide competition to raise awareness about the national debt,” Jamal said. “We are the youngest team participating, and actually the only freshman team selected from around the country. Some teams even have graduate students on them.” The team is aiming to reach their fellow classmates through a wide range of social media techniques. “We have created a Facebook page with public support from NYU Secrets for our campaign,” Malik said. In addition, the team is planning to bring its campaign to residence halls once a week in
the evenings beginning on Feb. 3. They will distribute posters, give away free t-shirts and ask students to take their debt survey. The debt survey, a critical part of the campaign, measures each student’s personal intelligence regarding national debt and allows the team to determine which areas need to be focused on while educating the student body of the current economic issues. The team recently released two self-directed videos, titled “Thrift Shop Troubles” and “Death of an Economy,” that provide a basic overview of the causes of the national debt. The number one focus of the team’s campaign is to ensure that students will become aware of the financial problems currently affecting their lives, especially with regards to student loan debt. “It is our ultimate hope that we can inspire NYU to take action and be one cohesive movement and community, demanding rectification in a mature manner,” Malik said. The team’s current goals for their campaign include having 2,000 people take the debt survey, acquiring social media engagement and garnering a high turnout for all campaign events. The team’s keynote event is tentatively scheduled for Feb. 19 in the Kimmel Center for Student Life. The event will include a high-profile speaker — who is still to be decided — in discussion with NYU professors and alumni. Kimberly Schu is a staff writer. Email her at email@example.com.
MODABOUND continued from PG. 1
Fashion meets smartphones with thrifting app for students the world of online shopping. Not only has making an online sale become a more realistic occurrence, but users are able to find inspiration for their personal style simply by browsing other products on the app. A large part of the Modabound app is highlighting the interpersonal aspect of the selling process. However, Tisch freshman Emory Parker said she would not want to use the app, and likened the experience to online shopping. “It’s kind of like buying something on Amazon,” Parker said. “It’s hard to judge by a small photo the condition of the
product being sold. Personally, I would prefer to go to a thrift store myself to see the item and to try it on.” Conlin said Modabound is currently planning a meetup event on campus during the spring semester where students and local users can swap clothing, make sales and learn more about the app. Modabound can be downloaded on iPhones, iPads or iPod touches from the App Store. Kate Marin is a staff writer. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
P O T
By SAM DEL ROWE We can expect a lot more cold weather ahead of us for the beginning part of the new semester. While your instinct may be to avoid the subway as much as possible and curl up in bed to binge on junk food and Netflix, the city offers many places to visit while also staying warm during these winter months. Instead of hibernating in your apartment or dorm, check out to one of these exciting but warm locations in New York City. Antiques Garage/West 25th Street Market/Hell’s Kitchen Flea Market: Spend an afternoon antiquing at one of these famous flea markets, which are open every Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. year-round. The 25th Street flea markets are within a
Stay warm, explore NYC’s best winter activities short distance of each other, making for a day of browsing without too much outside travel. The markets contain a wide array of unique items, including clothing, jewelry and furniture. (West 25th Street between Sixth and Seventh avenues, between Broadway and Sixth Avenue, West 39th Street between Ninth and 10th avenues, respectively.) Chelsea Market: While Chelsea Market certainly attracts its fair share of tourists, it’s well worth it for the wide selection of interesting dining options offered under one roof. Chelsea Market is a great place to take either visiting family members or a group of friends for dinner, dessert or a snack when you’re passing through the area. Dining ranges from moderatelypriced options to expensive meals. (75 Ninth Ave.) Brooklyn Junk: With two
Patrons at Chelsea Market can choose from a wide array of food.
locations in Brooklyn, these vintage stores offer piles of eccentric items, from artwork to vinyl records. The stores are within a few blocks of each other, and the area also features popular thrift stores such as Monk Vintage and Buffalo Exchange, making for a full day of thrift shopping. (197 North Ninth St. and 567 Driggs Ave.) McNally Jackson Books: This bookstore may be small, but it still features a charming cafe. Visitors can enjoy a sandwich and get some work done, in addition to looking through McNally Jackson’s selection of books. The cafe contains seating, making the store an ideal location to meet up with friends. If you are looking for an alternative study space to the library or your dorm room, or just a place to spend the afternoon browsing through shelves of books, consider a trip to Prince Street. (52 Prince St., between Lafayette and Mulberry) IFC Center: This movie theater screens both independent and classic films. IFC’s choice in films shown are good alternatives to the regular blockbusters shown at most other theaters. Often, the theater will screen special, classic movies for one night only, so make sure to check listings regularly. Worth a visit, both during the winter and during the warmer months of the year. (323 Sixth Ave. at West Third Street) Sam Del Rowe is a staff writer. Email him at email@example.com.
NYUNEWS.COM | MONDAY, JANUARY 27, 2014 | WASHINGTON SQUARE NEWS
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Music preview: Keep an ear out for 2014 album releases By JAKE FOLSOM
Last weekend, a major scoop about preparation for one of the year’s first buzz-worthy releases — a new track called “Blue Moon,” streaming from Beck’s forthcoming album, “Morning Phase” — appeared on various music blogs. The LP will be released Feb. 25, and it marks Beck’s first release since 2008’s critically hailed “Modern Guilt.” Iconic ’90s indie band Guided by Voices has also sparked chatter with their plans to release “Motivational Jumpsuit” on Feb. 18. This album is the latest in a string of new releases from Guided by Voices, all of which have been recorded by the band’s original lineup. Following her jazz album “The Cherry Thing,” Neneh Cherry is on a return path similar to that of Guided by Voices. In February, the Swedish hip-hop innovator is releasing her first album as a solo artist
COURTESY OF CAPITOL RECORDS
since 1996’s “Man.” For music fans of a more mainstream stripe than Cherry, Beck or Guided by Voices, there are many exciting prospects lined up for the first quarter of the new year. On the pop diva front, newbies Candice Glover of “American Idol” and Lea Michele of “Glee” plan to release their first solo albums. Meanwhile, in the veteran corner, Mariah Carey faces pressure after album
delays for “The Art of Letting Go,” which has been exacerbated by her controversial “American Idol” stint. It’s difficult to say whether this new album will bring her a new hit. Popular act Rick Ross is expected to release new material in March. The new album, “Mastermind,” has been in progress for over a year. Meanwhile, indie songstress St. Vincent plans to release her album “St. Vincent” in late February. She has kept
critics’ attention and has built a steady following, but it remains to be seen whether her newest album will continue to increase her momentum. Audiophiles seeking a combination of pop and indie sensibilities (Robyn fans, for example) may be more excited by the forthcoming releases that can live in both worlds. Pop artist Katy B will follow up her lauded 2011 album “On a Mission” with new release “Little Red.” Swedish solo artist ceo will put out a new album after his viral 2011 cover of Beyoncé’s “Halo.” The question of what will become this year’s “Beyoncé” is one that will take time and perspective to answer. Until then, music fans can delight in watching for promising releases on the horizon. Jake Folsom is music editor. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
SPRING continued from PG. 1
Anticipated productions head to campus this semester
The Skirball Center will host several spring performances. run Jan. 30 to Feb. 4, and “In the Next Room” will run Jan. 29 through Feb. 3. The graduate acting program will also host “Freeplay ‘14,” a weeklong festival of plays from the Graduate Acting Class of 2011, which will run Feb. 25 through March 2. The College of Arts and Science Theater will have two spring plays — “The Laramie Project,” a play based on the murder of a gay college student in 1998, and Neil LaBute’s “Some Girls.” “The Laramie Project” will run April 4
through 6 and “Some Girls” will run March 28 through 30. From Shakespeare to Rodgers and Hammerstein, the theater available on campus this semester is sure to be wonderfully entertaining. Every student should make an effort to attend at least one of these upcoming productions. After all, not every college has this much theater to offer so close to home. Dylan Jarrett is books/theater editor. Email her at email@example.com.
Fox plans to forgo pilot season in hope of better television By NIVEA SERRAO
With many networks still premiering new shows, pilot debuts—usually slated for the fall—will continue for a while. However, as Fox president Kevin Reilly recently announced during the Television Critics Association press tour, Fox will skip the traditional pilot season broadcast. Instead, the network will work on developing whole series. Reilly’s reasoning is simple. The current broadcast model is outdated and must be changed
both to keep up with the times, and to allow for better quality of programming. Television pilots are used as a test to see which series will be successful. Networks order scripts for nearly a dozen pilots with the hope that a good number will be green-lit as fall and midseason shows. This process often results in a strong pilot episode but an inconsistent series. Reilly’s new plan looks to fix that, and he’s already had some success. “Sleepy Hollow” and “The Following,” both projects that broke the traditional pi-
“The Following,” starring Kevin Bacon, airs on Fox.
lot system, were breakout hits for the network and have been well-received by critics. The defined and consistent tone of both shows from first episode to season finale is only possible when viewing a television series as a whole. This way, series can set the tone from the getgo, rather than spending half of the first season trying to find their groove. However, the only way this is possible for shows — particularly dramas — is if they have shorter seasons. This is quite attractive to many showrunners and television writers who find the current broadcast method exhausting. Reilly’s new model gives them a chance to plan out an entire story arc from beginning to end without having too much time to fill in 22 to 24 episodes. Cable has long employed this method to great success, as seen in the kind of acclaim and viewership shows such as AMC’s “Breaking Bad” and HBO’s “Game of Thrones” have drawn. Moreover, it gives cable networks the freedom to introduce shows throughout the year. In a way, this reduces the risk involved as they don’t have to compete with all the new shows
Harrelson and McConaughey star in HBO’s “True Detective.” at once the way that network pilots often do. This means that Fox can debut its series when they are good and ready, allowing them more time to produce better television. Broadcast shows already face stiff competition from online streaming and original programming from Netflix and Hulu. Skipping pilot season to focus on developing higher quality programming only ben-
efits Fox in the long run, making it a real contender in the fight for viewership. If Reilly’s plan proves successful, it might lead to other networks following suit. While this may result in short seasons across the board, one thing is for certain: no one complains about good television. Nivea Serrao is a staff writer. Email her at entertainment@nyunews.
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Unprecedented talent compete for glory at 2014 Oscars By IFE OLUJOBI and DANIEL RUBIN LIEBERSON The nominations for the 86th Academy Awards were released Jan. 16, putting a much-needed lid on the wild prognostications that have been going on since July of last year. The announcement did not come with any huge surprises in major categories, but rather with exclusions — the problem this time around is that there are too many deserving artists and too few nomination spots. This year’s scope of films make for an enjoyably perplexing puzzle to predict winners for the upcom-
ing Oscars. However, the results from the Golden Globe, Critics’ Choice and Screen Actors Guild awards all show a trend of winners that make predictions a bit easier. Here we’re giving you a breakdown of the nominees in the major categories to give you a better grasp of how the Oscar race is shaping up as we get closer to March 2. In recent years, especially with the best picture race expanding to include more nominees, some projects feel like filler, earning nominations such as “Oscar bait” (see “The Reader” in 2008, “Extremely Loud and In-
credibly Close” in 2011, etc). This year’s race is so stacked with amazing contender’s that a Martin Scorsese directed film starring Leonardo DiCaprio could easily walk away with no awards. Whoever takes home gold on March 2 will have endured one of the most impressive arrays of nominees in Oscar history. Nothing is certain yet, but look for things to solidify, and for WSN’s coverage and predictions leading up to the awards.
Ife Olujobi is film editor. Daniel Rubin Lieberson is a contributing writer. Email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Frontrunner 12 Years a Slave As a well-made film with high social and political relevance, and after wins at the Golden Globes and the Critics’ Choice Awards, “12 Years a Slave” is due for the win.
Dark Horse American Hustle “American Hustle” is still a strong contender after winning best acting ensemble at the SAG awards and Best Comedy at the Golden Globes, but “Gravity” could very well come out on top.
Should Win Gravity All the nominated films are fantastic and any one of them is worthy of the win, but “Gravity” was our pick for the best film of 2013 over on our Arts blog, The Highlighter, so it should take home the Oscar.
Frontrunner Cate Blanchett
Frontrunner Matthew McConaughey
Screen Actors Guild awards, Oscar winner Cate Blanchett
won at every major awards ceremony this month and
looks poised to win Best Actress for her outstanding work
has the most momentum going into Oscar night.
in Woody Allen’s “Blue Jasmine.”
Dark Horse Christian Bale
Fresh off her wins at the Golden Globe, Critics’ Choice and
Dark Horse Sandra Bullock
Matthew McConaughey of “Dallas Buyers Club” has
Christian Bale, whose performance in “American
Oscar winner Sandra Bullock, who gives the best per-
Hustle” had been quietly building buzz until his sur-
formance of her career in Alfonso Cuarón’s “Gravity.”
prise nomination last week.
Should Win Amy Adams
Should Win Chiwetel Ejiofor
Chiwetel Ejiofor, in a performance that seems to
Best Supporting Actress Frontrunner Jennifer Lawrence
It’s really a tie between Jennifer Lawrence for “American Hustle” and Lupita Nyong’o for “12 Years a Slave.” Lawrence won the Golden Globe but Nyong’o won both the Critics’ Choice and the SAG awards, so either one could take it.
Dark Horse Sally Hawkins
Sally Hawkins for her strong turn opposite Cate Blanchett in “Blue Jasmine.”
Should Win Lupita Nyong’o
We pick Amy Adams, the only actress in this category
be getting overlooked in favor of actors in showier,
to never have won an Academy Award, though she’s
more accessible roles. His work is the anchor of the
mance that, in a film full of suffering, stood out as
been nominated four times before.
fantastic and harrowing “12 Years a Slave.”
Best Supporting Actor
Frontrunner Jared Leto
Frontrunner Alfonso Cuaron
performance as transgender AIDS patient Rayon in
three major awards of the season for his revelatory
“Dallas Buyers Club.” Like co-star McConnaughey,
Far and away Jared Leto, who gives a transformative
Leto has won every major award up to this point.
Dark Horse Bradley Cooper
“Gravity” helmer Alfonso Cuarón has won the first
Dark Horse Steve McQueen
Lupita Nyong’o for a brave and affecting perfor-
Best Animated Picture Frontrunner Frozen “Frozen,” without a doubt.
Dark Horse The Wind Rises “The Wind Rises” has potential, though contro-
NYU alumnus Steve McQueen might win for his
versy surrounding the film’s seemingly positive
Second-time nominee Bradley Cooper for “American
unflinching look at slavery in “12 Years a Slave.”
message about Japan’s role in WWII has dragged
Hustle” or first-time nominee Michael Fassbender for
But we also cannot forget everyone’s favorite little
it down. “Despicable Me 2” is also vying hard for
“12 Years a Slave” could surprise us.
director, Martin Scorsese.
Should Win Jared Leto
Should Win Alfonso Cuaron
Should Win Frozen
Jared Leto and his beautiful hair.
Our money is on Alfonso Cuarón.
“Frozen,” no contest.
ALFONSO CUARON - VIA FLICKR.COM | BRADLEY COOPER - VIA FLICKR.COM | SANDRA BULLOCK - VIA FACEBOOK.COM | CHIWETEL EJIOFOR - VIA FLICKR.COM | CHRISTIAN BALE - VIA FLICKR.COM | AMY ADAMS - VIA WIKIPEDIA.ORG | FROZEN - VIA WIKIPEDIA.ORG | GRAVITY - VIA WIKIPEDIA.ORG | JARED LETO - VIA WIKIPEDIA.ORG | LUPITA NYONG’O - VIA WIKIPEDIA.ORG | SALLY HAWKINS - VIA WIKIPEDIA.ORG | THE WIND RISES - VIA WIKIPEDIA.ORG | CATE BLANCHETT - VIA WIKIPEDIA.ORG | MATTHEW MCCONAUGHEY - VIA WIKIPEDIA.ORG | JENNIFER LAWRENCE - VIA WIKIPEDIA.ORG | 12 YEARS A SLAVE - VIA WIKIPEDIA.ORG AND FOX SEARCHLIGHT | AMERICAN HUSTLE - VIA WIKIPEDIA.ORG AND COURTESY OF SONY PICTURES | STEVE MCQUEEN - VIA FACEBOOK.COM | WOLF OF WALL STREET - COURTESY OF PARAMOUNT PICTURES
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Men’s, women’s golf serve Madrid community By NISHAAD RUPAREL
This January, the NYU men’s and women’s golf teams took a trip to Spain to prepare for the upcoming season. The trip, which lasted from Jan. 4 to 14, included both athletic training and community service. As part of the teams’ service commitment, the golfers worked with “También,” an international nonprofit that focuses on using sports as a social integration tool
for adults with mental and physical disabilities. “What a great experience for [the teams] to be able to travel and be so helpful to a wonderful organization,” golf coach Todd Kolean said of the teams’ efforts. The next portion of the trip centered on competitive training and was equally fruitful. After being limited to indoor training since October, the men’s and women’s teams were afforded the opportunity
to play outdoors under ideal weather conditions on some of the premier courses that Spain has to offer. Gallatin sophomore Julius Oppenheimer commented on the importance of these outdoor practices. “It will be a while before the weather is good enough [in New York] to get out and practice, so getting to play those 72 holes should only help our preparation,” Oppenheimer said. Following a few days of these
The team members participated in community service and squared off against a Spanish team.
sessions, the teams entered a two-day exhibition match to test their skills against a talented team of golfers from the La Cañeda club in southern Spain. On the leadership of Steinhardt senior Kristine Shalhoup and Stern senior Kyle Demshki, the NYU golf squad was able to remain neck and neck with Spain throughout the competition. On the final day, the match was decided on the 18th hole and, when the dust settled, it was the Spanish team that had bested NYU by a single stroke. “It was a tough loss,” Kolean said. “I feel that we played a very good match… and I look forward to a great season.” Christopher Bledsoe, NYU’s Director of Athletics, shared Kolean’s enthusiasm. “[The trip] was a great way to prepare for the intercollegiate season and the spring semester,” he said. Looking ahead, NYU golf hopes to convert the momentum from a memorable trip to Spain into regular season success and solid match play. The team will kick off its season in March at the UAA Championships in Orlando, Fla. Nishaad Ruparel is a contributing writer. Email him at email@example.com.
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WINTER WRAP-UP By FERENC PUSKAS While many of you were enjoying your winter breaks, NYU sports kept going strong and achieved their share of successes. This is what you may have missed. Men’s basketball started their winter season off with a bang by hosting the NYU Holiday Classic. After beating Clarkson University 87-77 in the first round behind LS sophomore forward Evan Kupferberg’s 31 points, they faced Kenyon College and won 60-44. After barely squeezing past Hunter College with a score of 66-63, NYU began its conference play against opponents in the University Athletic Association. The team began the UAA portion of their schedule with a 64-58 victory against Brandeis University at home. Since then, the results haven’t been in NYU’s favor. NYU lost to the University of Chicago 58-50 despite Kupferberg’s double-double (10 points, 10 rebounds). NYU then traveled to Washington University, where they were defeated
by a score of 81-65, their largest loss of the season. Women’s basketball was also active during the winter period. Just like their male counterparts, they started this period with the NYU Holiday Classic where they beat both Oswego State and Cabrini College. They then squared off against Hunter College, where they were able to get their most convincing win of the season with a score of 95-58. Five separate players earned double digit figures. They opened up conference play by defeating both Brandeis University and the University of Chicago before squaring off with their toughest challenge yet, No. 2 Washington University. The ladies put forth a strong fight but eventually received their first loss of the season, falling by a score of 70-60. Men’s volleyball looks to pick up where they left off last year. After finishing 2013 ranked No. 13 in the nation by the American Volleyball Coaches Association, NYU was recently
upgraded to number 10 to start the season. The team looks to win a title this year behind the arms of Stern senior Connor Mortland, who was chosen as a preseason All-American. NYU hosts their first home match on Tuesday, Jan. 28, at Coles Sports Center. In the pool, NYU’s men’s swimming and diving team defeated Springfield College on Jan. 18 at Palladium Athletic Facility. They won the dual meet by a score of 187.5-76.5 behind strong swims from LS freshman Jason Bo, who won the 200-yard butterfly, and Tisch freshman Max Phillips, who won the 200yard freestyle. Finally, NYU was represented well by three of its fencers. NYU’s team featuring LS sophomores Andrew Kelly and Alec Martini, and LS freshman Quinten Burgunder were able to advance to the final bout at the Division 1 North American Circuit where they eventually lost 45-39. The fencing team hosted the NYU Invitational, where they lost in five of the six matches they competed in against some fierce competi-
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NYU athletes remain busy following a pakced winter schedule. tion, including fourth-ranked Notre Dame and sixth-ranked Ohio State.
Ferenc Puskas is a staff writer. Email him at sports@nyunews com.
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ANSWER A P S E S
G R E E N L O M A R A N O R D B E D I M
N E H R U
B L A N C
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73 Like show horses’ feet
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Edited by Will Shortz 1
PUZZLE BY MICHAEL BLAKE AND ANDREA CARLA MICHAELS
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For answers, call 1-900-285-5656, $1.49 a minute; or, with a credit card, 1-800-814-5554. Annual subscriptions are available for the best of Sunday crosswords from the last 50 years: 1-888-7-ACROSS. AT&T users: Text NYTX to 386 to download puzzles, or visit nytimes.com/mobilexword for more information. Online subscriptions: Today’s puzzle and more than 2,000 past puzzles, nytimes.com/crosswords ($39.95 a year). Share tips: nytimes.com/wordplay. Crosswords for young solvers: nytimes.com/learning/xwords.
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POLITICS STAFF EDITORIAL
West must support Ukrainian democracy By HARRY BROWN
The deaths of three protesters in Ukraine last week sparked a surge in violence not seen before in the Euromaidan protests. The clashes between government forces and the opposition spread for the first time beyond the capital, Kiev, with barricades erected and the protests taking on a far more violent tone. On Thursday, Jan. 22, to abate the rapidly deteriorating situation, a hastily drawn truce was announced. However, that evening it was clear the truce was not going to hold. A series of concessions offered Ukraine’s President Viktor Yanukovych were not enough to appease the opposition. The United States and the European Union must apply far more pressure on Yanukovych to call immediate snap elections and to resign from office in order to ensure that last week’s events are the worst of the violence seen on the streets of Ukraine. The once peaceful protest movement has drawn huge crowds of protesters onto the streets of Kiev through the bitterly cold winter months. These events were triggered by the decision made by Yanu-
kovych to shun an offer of integration with the European Union and instead to embrace offers made by the Russian government. The United States and European Union have been far too slow in their response to the events in Ukraine. For the most part, State Department officials have offered timid expressions of sympathy with the opposition cause. The United States and EU must vocally condemn Yanukovych’s damaging actions. At this critical stage, a forceful statement from the United States and collectively from E.U. members may have the power to tilt the balance in the opposition’s favor. The truce marked a dramatic change in the rhetoric of the opposition. Vitali Klitschko, an opposition politician and former heavyweight boxer, announced the truce on Thursday. This marked a
dramatic reversal in the language where Klitschko, only 24 hours earlier to a crowd of protesters, stated, “If we have to fight, I will fight together with you. If we have to face bullets, I will face bullets.” With burning barricades momentarily being extinguished and Molotov cocktails being put down, there was a window of opportunity. But on Friday, the news came that the truce had broke down. Widespread violence soon returned to cities across the Ukraine. The headline of the opposition-leaning daily newspaper Ukrayina Moloda described the scene in the city center as an “uprising amid hell.” With the truce having faltered, it is time for Western powers to seriously condemn Yanukovych. Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia, has already ominously offered assistance to “stabilize” the protests in the region. The West must further demonstrate its commitment to Ukraine before the Kremlin secures its grasp on their once democratic neighbor. The future of Ukrainian democracy hangs in the balance. Harry Brown is a staff columnist. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Excessive gunman coverage fuels murder By CHRISTINA COLEBURN
Recent developments involving the communications of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooter have surfaced, reviving the debate on how much press should be afforded to the perpetrators of heinous crimes. On Dec. 14, 2012, a deranged gunman rampaged through the Newtown, Conn., school, senselessly murdering 20 children and six educators. While most of the media coverage surrounding Newtown has been appropriately aimed, some stories have adopted a dangerous focus — the inner workings of the killer. The Daily News obtained an audiotape of a call the shooter made to a radio station one year before the massacre, which several media outlets have made available for public listening. This is not the first instance where the media’s focus has been excessively directed toward the gunman. Sightings of his former psychiatrist, extended analyses of his medical treatment and profiles on his mother — whom he killed before entering Sandy Hook Elementary School — were all published within the past month. Although indepth examinations of mass murderers are necessary for law enforcement to help prevent future tragedies, broad-
casting such intricate details might feed a vicious cycle. The public should certainly be entitled to information that promotes safety and awareness. Still, there remains a stark difference between releasing sufficient facts for communal protection and releasing superfluous elements that could inspire another madman. Both state-sanctioned and independent sources have revealed that the Sandy Hook killer made use of media to fuel his homicidal urges. An investigative report on the Sandy Hook shootings noted that the gunman collected murder memorabilia, including a February 2008 article about the Northern Illinois University shooting and photocopied newspaper articles from 1891 about the shooting of schoolchildren. The report also found that the gunman possessed a large amount of material pertaining to the April 1999 Colum-
bine shootings, as well as documents on other mass murders. Furthermore, he exchanged e-mails and posted about these shootings, particularly Columbine, on Internet blogs. Although interest in such stories could largely be derived from morbid curiosity, the press may also be fanning the flames of troubled minds. Constantly publishing shooters’ pictures, psychoanalyzing their motives and turning their communications into news only magnifies their presence. It can convey the message that acting on these destructive, blaze-of-glory thoughts will be incentivized with infamy, as may have been the case of the Sandy Hook killer. Rather than giving mass murderers excessive attention, the media should shift the focus of its reporting. There are only three reasons why the media should consider these perpetrators — to remember the victims, to evaluate the mental health care system and to devise preventative solutions. Any other consideration risks rewarding cowardice, violent behavior and the inability to confront personal demons with instant fame. Christina Coleburn is a deputy opinion editor. Email her at email@example.com.
Geneva II talks fall short, prove ineffective
Yesterday afternoon, the Syria peace talks in Geneva produced their first breakthrough. The UN mediator Lakhdar Brahimi reported that both parties have agreed upon conditions under which women and children are allowed to leave the besieged city of Homs, Syria. Although this deal marks an important first step in these talks, it falls critically short of both what was expected and what is needed. Indeed, Brahimi conceded that it would take time “to bring Syria out of the ditch in which it has fallen.” If the peace process takes too long, President Bashar al-Assad will be left appearing as a partner in the process while continuing to decimate his people. The Geneva II Conference’s aim is to make steps toward a transitional government in Syria. The meeting comes more than a year after the initial discussion on peace in Syria began. In June 2012, an action group, with the support of all five permanent members of the UN Security Council, devised an outline for international intervention in Syria and the goals any potential political settlements would need to meet. With those guidelines in place, Geneva II has resulted in several peace talks between Syrian opposition and the incumbent government, but the efforts seem worryingly perfunctory. The talks are unlikely to precipitate a regime change with the current ineffectual Syrian delegation. Assad seems to have played his political cards just right. By sending a powerless delegation to Geneva II, he may hang on to the presidency. The only deals without Assad’s involvement will be minor guarantees of further humanitarian relief and brief ceasefires in return for western aid. While political talks have continued, the death toll has risen dramatically. Recently, evidence was uncovered that revealed the systematic killing of roughly 11,000 detainees. Many of the corpses showed signs of torture. The evidence is more detailed than most other documentation of the war crimes in Syria and could be used to indict Syrian officials. While the developments of Geneva II may appear conducive to Syrian peace, spectators must remain cognizant of the looming risks with feeble rewards. Although the talks may have produced a minor victory for women and children, true progress cannot be achieved until the negotiators stop ignoring the actual problem. Warfare is waged by the Assad regime on its own citizens, from relentless blockades to air strikes to inhumane imprisonment. Discussions that fail to produce meaningful action against these jarring realities are not only woefully neglectful of civilian suffering but also perpetuate Assad’s crimes against humanity.
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