VOL. 82 NO. 2
Disciplinary Cases Go Public
by Lydia Rosenfield ‘12, Executive Editor and Michael Wolak ‘12, Managing Editor feel strongly about announcing DC cases, stating that, “when people are confused or uncertain and don’t have the opportunity to talk… it leads to bad outcomes.” Before, students often had knowledge of a case, but may not have had all the relevant information. In Mr. Richards view, this leads to “factual inaccuracies.” Mr. Gillin agrees that “it does take away a lot of the rumor.” While some people may feel that announcing DC cases, in Mr. Richard’s words, “compromises privacy,” he believes that, “when a student appears before DC it’s implicitly public,” although, “there may be times where all the information isn’t appropriate to disclose.” The new system is fairer because all students who appear before DC will have their cases announced, rather than just a select few. Although Mr. Gillin thinks that students who appear before DC “would tell you it is harder” to have their cases announced, quickly, “the community moves on to the next thing.” However, students who have Art credit: Erin Brady ‘13 been sent to the disciplinary committee report This school year, Pomfret students that on the day their cases are announced, they have listened with great interest as disciplinary are told to stay in their rooms during the time committee decisions are announced at school of the community meeting, whether it be Senior assemblies. These public announcements are a Chapel, Community Chapel, or Community change from previous years, when DC decisions Meeting. were inconsistently reported to the student body. One senior boy who arrived before the Head of School Mr. Richards says the new disciplinary committee remarked, “If they’re policy was enacted mainly because it, “removes going to announce my DC case, I’d rather be the the shadow of secrecy, rumor, speculation” that one to take ownership of my mistakes in front previously surrounded DC cases, “and offers of the community. Instead, I felt shamed sitting information to the community.” in my room, knowing exactly when my friends, Previously, DC cases were announced teachers, and coaches heard of my fault.” The spottily. Some were publicly explained, while reasoning behind this is to discourage fellow others were neglected. Mr. Gillin, Dean of students from instantly seeking out the student Students, explains that policy, saying that, involved in the DC and the inevitable questions “with Mr. Hastings being away so much it was and looks. Another student who has attended more a question of opportunity. It would seem DC and who wishes to remain completely more urgent and then it would be a week and it anonymous had conflicting thoughts on the new would kind of lose its urgency.” He attributes policy, saying, “ The transparency of my personal it to “different styles.” Mr. Richards seems to life has been blended in with my academic life, which makes me uncomfortable in class knowing that my teacher knows the details about my Features: personal life.” DC Announcements, p. 1 In Mr. Richards mind, “there’s value in WBVC, p. 1&8 Pomfret Dogs, p. 2 sharing as a reminder and as a clarifier that there Marketing, p. 2 are consequences for this type of behavior,” or, Faculty Profile: Josh Lake, p. 3 as one senior bluntly said, “I think it teaches Eagle Scout Project, p. 3 people a lesson.” Cecile Lu ’12, believes that Petty Annoyances, p. 8 “the embarrassment of getting named for DC Columns: can, most probably, reduce wrongdoings and DC From the Editor’s Desk, p. 2 cases,” and that the new policy, “takes pressure The Great Debate: Occupy Wall Street, p. 6 Beyond the Bubble, p. 7 off of DC members to stay quiet.” Philosophy: The Electronic Man, p. 7 Since the first disciplinary committee Filibuster in Print, p. 7 announcement, controversy around the issue Music Review: Heritage, p. 4 has been significantly dampened with each Arts (Page 4): announcement. “People are beginning to accept Artist Profile: Helen Day ‘12 it as just another part of the disciplinary process,” Fall Play Review: Rumors says David Im ‘12. Athletics (Page 5): Explaining the outcomes of disciplinary Athlete Profile: RJ Labeef ‘12 cases is intended to make the rules clearer to the Fall Sports Review For Love or the Game students. As Mr. Gillin says, “we have always said we would make our discipline clear,” and this is an effort to accomplish that.
Nonprofit Org. U.S. Postage PAID Permit No. 1 Pomfret, CT
Tune In and Turn It Up: WBVC Radio
by Michael Wolak ‘12, Managing Editor As most students and faculty have probably noticed, Pomfret’s on-campus radio station has been experiencing a surge of activity after being relatively dormant for the past couple years. Since the stations founding in 2000, (donated by Bill and Virginia Cargill, whose initials form the stations call letters: BVC), the station’s popularity has fluctuated. At its creation, there were a variety of student-run shows, from a daily morning show to a live blues jam broadcasted from inside the station. However, over the course of the decade, the WBVC has not always been so popular. Originally, running the radio station could be classified as an extracurricular activity in place of athletics, but in 2009, it was stripped of this classification, reducing student participation. This is the unfortunate effect of having an entirely student-run radio, and occasionally, the student body does not step up to run such an operation, as was the case in the past few years. Though Mr. Peck, the faculty adviser, oversees the financial and technical aspects of keeping the station running, “it is up to the students to make it happen.” (continued on page 8)
The Pontefract Staff
INSIDE THIS EDITION
Editor-in-Chief Cayman Kai ‘12 Executive Editors Shay Gingras ‘12 Lydia Rosenfield ‘12 Jake Wikman ‘12 Managing Editor: Michael Wolak ‘12 Sports Editor: Jasper Kozak-Miller ‘12 Art Editor: Cecile Lu ‘12 Faculty Advisor: Mr. S. Mitchell Pinkowski Technical Advisor: Mr. Chris Atwood
VOL. 82 NO. 2
Campus News POMFRET SCHOOL
Hot Dogs: Pomfret Canines by Erica Ott ‘13, Staff Writer
Looking around campus, especially during the warmer days of the year, it is likely you will find many faculty members out walking their dogs. But who are these dogs? We’re featuring some of the hottest dogs around campus.
Photo credit: Olivia Hamilton ‘12
Morgan The Richards’ family dog is a yellow lab but Mr. Richards describes him as the “ultimate anti-lab”, stating that he “doesn’t like to swim or chase sticks or balls or frisbees - he would rather just lie around.” The only food Morgan doesn’t seem to like is celery and one of his favorite foods is steak, although Mr. Richards says “he eats so fast, he likely doesn’t taste much.” Morgan loves getting his belly scratched and going for short walks. Dingo Mr. Pinkowski states that Dingo is the “love of my life (after Junko).” She is an 11.5 year old rescue dog who still acts like a puppy. Mr. Pinkows-
while now, but the newest addition to the family is Tikki who is only 8 months old. They both eat dry food but love bacon and pretzels for treats. Tikki, still a puppy, enjoys anything he can chew, “including my sofa,” reports Dr. Gillin. Augie, a bit more mature, likes any toy he can play fetch with. Both these dogs love swimming, running with other dogs, frisbee and soccer. They also both love to cuddle and Dr. Gillin says they both “think they’re lap dogs.” ki says, “She’s 100% mutt, and every vet we ask disagrees about the combination, so she’s a bit of a mystery. Dingo enjoys hiking and chasing baseballs that Mr. Pinkowski hits for her in front of their house. Dingo also has a special talent: being a time keeper in Mr. Pinkowski’s classes. “She comes to class and howls when time is up—it’s like she knows just how long a 45 minute class is!” (Photo credit: Junko Pinkowski) Photo credit: Olivia Hamilton ‘12
Photo credit: Olivia Hamilton ‘12
Augie and Tikki The Gillin’s have had Augie, 2.5 years old, for a
Marketing: No Mixed Messages
by Cayman Kai ‘12, Editor-in-Chief Since Pomfret started its new market- and, as Pomfret School technically is a non-profit ing initiative three years ago, the way the school business, it must step up to the competition. perceives itself has changed drastically. New The Development Office used to handle pamphlets, online publishing, and even a newly communications, but it was primarily concerned designed mascot have emerged as a result of the with alumni. The school never really had a disnew marketing strategy. New regulations have tinct marketing strategy before. Since the crealso emerged as to how the logos and labels asso- ation of the new Marketing and Communicaciated with Pomfret School may be used. For ex- tions Department, the marketing for admissions, ample, the new Griffy mascot drawn by art teach alumni, and the school in general has become the J.P. Jacquet and digitized by science teacher Josh responsibility of one department. Lake can only be used in relation to athletics. The main goal of Marketing and ComSome community members have felt confused or munications is to “message the school consistently,” as Mrs. Gaudreau, the Director of Marketing and Communications, says. Mrs. Gaudreau, Ms. Cook, and Mrs. Mott are responsible for marketing multimedia. Pomfret now has a Twitter, facebook, and many other online avenues of publishing. The main goal of marketing encompasses the idea that Pomfret needs to develop its own “brand” to differentiate itself from other independent schools. A “brand,” as Mrs. Gaudreau says, is the school’s “reputation” that “influences the behaviors of the target market” – in short, to encourage people to apply to Pomfret. Pomfret is no longer competing with just independent even restricted by these rules, so I talked to Mrs. schools; there are other ways to learn now, such Gaudreau to get the scoop on the goal of the new as online schooling. regulations. Pomfret is trying to promote itself as a The recent economic decline has in- “balance between being academically rigorous creased competition in the world of independent and having a supportive community.” With over schools. The traditional markets are shrinking, 450 electives and a clearly(continued on page 3)
“We do not want to limit creativity.” - Sharon Gaudreau, Director of Marketing and Communications
Tango Tango is a very friendly golden retriever belonging to Dr. Brush. Like most of us, Tango likes to eat Cheerios in the morning (although his are unsweetened). Dr. Brush describes her as, “gentle, quiet, loving, patient, and extraordinarily sensitive to my every mood,”. She enjoys playing fetch with tennis balls especially out in the ocean or a lake. Tango also has many other toys, according to Dr. Brush, “She also loves her squeaky toys, a duck, a pig, and a hippo.” Although Tango is a very quiet dog, Dr. Brush says that, “her look or gesture tells me everything.”
From the Editor’s Desk by Cayman Kai ‘12, Editor-in-Chief
The snow is not falling, but the chill that creeps in through the cracks and crags of Pomfret buildings sends a clear message: winter has arrived. Seniors have (for the most part) finished applying to college or have even received admissions decisions, students and coaches are facing the fluctuating winter sports practice schedules, and we are all slowly wading through the seemingly never ending thirteen-week term of winter. We are all left reflecting on the novelties and traditions we cherished throughout the fall season. In this edition of The Pontefract, students reflect on the impact of publicly announced DC cases, fall sports seasons, and even explore recent current events such as Occupy Wall Street and presidential campaigns. As we look forward, students and faculty are speculating about the future of the current schedule, the school is nervously anticipating the unpredictable winter weather, and The Pontefract is working to reveal an entirely new path in the editions to come that will revolutionize the paper. But before we get to all that, kick back, relax, stay warm, and enjoy the latest edition of The Pontefract.
VOL. 82 NO. 2
Inside Pomfret POMFRET SCHOOL
Faculty Profile: Mr. Lake by Elizabeth Rathjen ‘14, Staff Writer
Photo credit: Lindsay Lehmann You may recognize Mr. Lake as the guy who stands up in Chapel to announce the Tuesday night speaker, but he does much more than that. Mr. Lake teaches astronomy and freshman and sophomore physics, organizes the Schwartz Visiting Fellow, and coaches JV volleyball, which went (13-1) this year. Mr. Lake has been teaching at Pomfret since 2002. When asked about what his favorite memory at Pomfret was, he replied, “Some of my favorite memories at Pomfret are playing soaker. The weather is warm and everyone is in a paranoid mood.” One year, Mr. Lake soaked his target while riding his bike and, feeling very proud, rode back to Kniffin, where he was living at the time. When he arrived, one of the freshmen living there shot him off the bike with his own hose. Another year, he soaked one of his own advisees, resulting in the advisee changing groups. Some of the things that Mr. Lake likes about working at Pomfret are living with his friends and colleagues, working with new, engaging people every year, and running his own observatory.
Marketing (continued from page 2)
community-driven school, it is clear that we are pretty balanced between these two ideals. But in order to ensure Pomfret is consistently marketed, regulations are required. Before the creation of the new department, there were no rules about the use of logos and the school’s name. There are specific rules about how to use the crest, the school name, and the new Griffin. On the school’s graphics standards manual, Base Camp, it has all the approved school images available. The reason the new Griffin is supposed to be used only with athletics and school spirit is to maintain a consistent brand. Many colleges do this as well. The University of Connecticut uses the UConn Husky only in association with athletics, teams, and school spirit. The Pomfret crest is mainly used with academic items. Mrs. Gaudreau emphasized that they “do not want to limit creativity.” She encourages people to come and talk to her, and together she can help people figure out the “right solution to maintain consistent branding” when people want to use Pomfret logos and labels.
Pomfret Junior Throws a ‘Seniors Prom’ by Dan Kellaway ‘13, Staff Writer
As I asked around the town of Pomfret about potential Eagle Scout project ideas, everyone mentioned Pomfret seniors and the Senior Center. I heard about lots of problems that local seniors can face, such as difficulty getting to doctors’ appointments. Moreover, I heard a lot about our own Senior Center here in Pomfret. It seemed to be relatively new and in a period of transition. Immediately, my mind started turning about how to bring local attention to the Senior Center.
What I love most about this project is how it even goes beyond the Senior Center.
A large, exhilarating event such as a ‘Seniors’ Prom’ seemed like the perfect way to
do that. I’ve loved planning every detail of it. My initial brainstorming for this event stretches back to August. What’s most wonderful about Eagle Scout projects is the role I have to take. I can’t simply perform every aspect of this myself. I Photo credit: Ginny Eaton have to delegate, obtain donations, and involve others. Other Scouts and kids my age volunteered to help me with set up and logistics during the prom. Adults offered to bake and help with driving seniors, if needed. Organizations donated 40’s and 50’s music and extra parking beyond the Senior Center, again if needed. What I love most about this project is how it even goes beyond the Senior Center. It’s about local seniors above all and bringing attention to their role in the community, their ideas and concerns, and their activities. Completing the Eagle Scout project is a major piece of earning the Eagle rank, and I’ve been delighted to share this step in my journey with the Pomfret Senior Center, its seniors, the local officials in Pomfret, and everyone who volunteered to help.
Fall Play Review: Rumors
by An Hoang ‘14, Staff Writer, Photo credits to Chip Lamb As always, each fall the Pomfret’s “Varsity theater” team introduces a new production to the Pomfret Community. Under the guidance of Mr. Lamb, the theater team has worked diligently to perform the comedy: “Rumors” by Neil Simon. In the end, their hard work and effort did not prove to be fruitless. The play “Rumors” created a buzz in the school a few days before the show date, and the performance was a phenomenon just after the first performance. With an amazingly large audience that did not seem
“Rumors was fun, frantic, and fast-paced.” -Don Gibbs, faculty to ever decrease in size, the play proved to be satisfactory even to the pickiest spectator. The setting of the play “Rumors” is an anniversary party of a couple in a suburb of New York City around the 1980s. The plays start with the first guests, Chris and Ken (played by Bill Wong ‘14 and Emma Perlwitz ‘12) arriving at the host’s house only to find the husband shot through his earlobe and the hostess missing. They started to panic and had to try their best to keep each other stay calm. In the midst of anxiety, other guests arrived, couple by couple. First is Claire (Anna Shoemaker ‘13) and Lenny (Jake Lans ‘12), who just had a car accident. Although
being very terrified, Chris and Ken had to pull themselves together, trying to hide the terrible incident from the newly arrived guest. However, their awkward actions and nervousness had forced Chris and Ken to reveal the truth. Together, the four-people group tried their best to keep the truth from other guest: the old couple Ernie and Cookie (played by Nick Fulchino ‘15 and Maddy Hutchins ‘14) and the young Glenn (Declan Brennan ‘12) and Cassie (Zeynep Davudoglu ‘14). The comedy heightens as everyone has a problem: Chris consistently fought her want for cigarettes, Ken accidentally had hearing problems because of the gun’s sound, Cookie has a severe back problem and Ernie burned his hand while cooking. Finally, Cassie has an irresistible affection for crystal and Glenn had a bleeding nose in the end. Everything seemed to go wrong and the house became hilariously chaotic. At the end of the play, the audience had a great laugh when the story that Lenny seemed to make up at the instant moment to cover the truth from the police (continued on page 4)
VOL. 82 NO. 2
Artist Profile: Helen Day
by Dana Diaz ‘14 and Elise Zender ‘14, Staff Writers from piano to voice occurred because “it was a heck of a lot easier to practice [singing]. It’s hard to put emotion into a song until you are finished with it. Piano pieces just took so long to finish.” Helen went on the trip to Bolivia with the Chorus and Grifftones this past March, where she performed, and felt the music served as an easy and powerful bridge for the language barrier. She most finds inspiration in singer Allison Krauss. Helen shared that she loves photography “not only because it accurately portrays life, but because the trick is to turn the life into art somehow, and that’s an awesome challenge.” Her main inspiration for photography is Sally Mann because “her pictures are fantastic, and she takes chances with them, which I really respect.” Helen says that if she didn’t do photography, she would do filmmaking because it is like photography, “but it is a Photo credit: Helen Day ‘12 Helen Day, a sixth former, is one of Pomfret’s most more logical and complicated creative artists. She is a member of Grifftones, form.” She also admires a two-year student in the AP Photography course painters and drawers for and an Art Editor of Manuscripts. their discipline and natural Helen grew up in a house full of artists. talent. Her sister was a dedicated ballerina, her brother Helen shared that she was a devoted cellist, and her father has always would not likely become a had an interest in photography (in fact, the forty- professional artist because she year-old Leica camera that Helen currently fears she would stop loving it if she uses was previously her dad’s). Helen has been took it too seriously. She “will passionate about the arts since she was a child, always be singing and taking but it was not until sophomore year at Pomfret pictures, though, whether it’s that her photography and singing became a for class or not.” serious pursuit. Before she sang at Pomfret, she studied Photo credit: Olivia Hamilton ‘12 classical piano at the Hartt School. The transition
Music Review: Heritage
by Austin Galusza ‘15, Staff Writer People have always been interested in my taste in music. It ranges from progressive jazz to heavy metal and includes nearly everything in between. As always, I am constantly purchasing and listening to new music. Looking at the past couple albums I’ve bought, I’ve noticed that the album Heritage by the modern progressive band Opeth has caught my attention. Opeth is a band which consists of five Swedish musicians that play a wide range of music. They specialize in hardcore rock and metal, but every so often put out a light album consisting of only soft rock and jazz. Their latest album of this sort, Heritage, is a very curious album. Its artwork displays a portrait of the faces of the members of the bands woven into the leaves of a fruit tree with roots that tangle deep into a devilish underground, and the trunk standing tranquil in a garden of Eden symbolizes the balance of emotions portrayed in this album. Being positive, and in other times quite dark, whatever the emotion, good or bad, has caught my attention. The ten tracks that deal with the topics of love, loss, faith, life, death, and religion stand artistic and creative amongst many other modern artists. Whatever emotion this album springs in you is a different story.
(Ben Rathjen and Matt Ouellet) turned out to be exactly what happened. As much as the “insiders” love the play, the audience seems to be very satisfied too. Mr Gibbs told me: “Rumors was fun, frantic, and fast-paced. I particularly enjoyed the warped characters and the tension that mounted as they tried to keep the happenings at the house a secret. Great comedic timing, (continued on page 3) terrific energy, and a cast of characters made it a great evening at the theater.” From the student’s point of view, I also received a lot of positive feedback. “I think the set was fantastic, and was
“I thought each person fit their character really well and made it believable.” - Nora Lee ‘14 a huge factor to the success of the play. It was very impressive that, in addition to putting together the play itself, the theater group was able to construct and paint such a thorough set. Overall, Rumors was a very good performance and I would have recommended it to anyone that asked my opinion,” said Isaac Amick ’13. Nora Lee’14 also praised the performance, “I thought the play was very funny and interesting. Even though it was kind of long, it was entertaining enough that I wasn’t bored. I thought each person fit their
(continued from page 3)
character really well and made it believable.” The play absolutely brought a fresh air of humor that lightened up Pomfret School after weeks of rigorous academic and athletic activities. Almost every conversation at Pomfret over proceeding days was about the comic and dramatic talent of the casts. The theater team had managed to accomplish a marvelous feat especially with their relatively small group of only eleven actors. Their timing and collaboration was impeccable. To top it off, all actors did a
fantastic job expressing emotions, making the audience feel indulged in the play, like they are watching a real life situation. Emma, who after amazing spectators at the fall Broadway until they stood up to congratulate her on her excellent performance, continued to amaze everyone by her wonderful acting skill, expressing emotions to the point that is so lively that words cannot
Jake Lans will always be remembered for his great performance throughout the show, especially his astounding monologue at the end. convey. Jake Lans will always be remembered for his great performance throughout the show, especially his astounding monologue at the end. Anna proved that she is not only great in singing performances, but also as an actor. In addition, the play would not have been as successful as it was without Ben, Nick, Maddy, Zeynep, and Matt who also showed off their acting talent. However, we should not forget the stage managers, Lankoo Zhang and India Finley, who worked vigorously to set up the play and help the actors in practice sessions The fall play was a great success! We are all looking forward to this year’s musical!
VOL. 82 NO. 2
Fall Sports Review
by Jasper Kozak-Miller ‘12, Sports Editor Highlights of Boys’ Varsity Cross Country season included finishing Varsity Field Hockey finished 4-8-4 this fall, but improved as the season went on, posting a 3-3-1 record in their final stretch of contests. 6th at the Canterbury invitational, 5th at the Marianapolis Invitational, and Highlights include a season-ending 1-0 shutout over Berkshire, and a 4-1 3rd at the Gordon G. Glover Invitational. Bobby Turner finished 2nd in Div III in a time of 17:02 after tracking down his opponents and striking win over Suffield Academy at home. within the final mile. (Courtesy of Norman Kim-Senior) Varsity Football was winless this season playing their first year in Although it was not a competitive year for Girls’ Cross Country, a higher division. The new schedule showed its toughness clearly, but the at the season’s end, it was a year for personal bests. Nearly every runner team saw their games get much closer as the season carried on. improved her time at the New England Championship thanks to captains Boys’ Varsity Soccer who lead by example and a team that sought to take advantage of every ended the season 13-2, carrying practice. (Courtesy of Ellee Hayes) a ten-game winning streak Varsity Volleyball ended high into the playoffs. They beat Roxbury Latin 2-0 in a their season with a 17-2 record, home playoff tilt, but their posting only one loss in the championship bid ended in the regular season and winning ten New England semifinals against of their games without losing South Kent, to whom they lost a set. They defeated Berkshire 3-1 at home in the New England 5-0. quarterfinals but lost to Cushing in the semifinals in the fifth set by Girl’s Varsity Soccer only three points. ended their season ranked second in Class B with an 8-4-3 record. An opening 2-0 loss at home against Left (top): Boys Varsity Soccer in quarterfinal game Governor’s Academy in the New Right (bottom): Girls Varsity Soccer in quarterfinals game England quarterfinals ended their Above: Girls Varsity Volleyball wins quarterfinals Photo credit: Pomfret Marketing playoff run.
Athlete Profile: RJ Labeef by Liana Therrien ‘14, Staff Writer
Having competed in tournaments since the age of four, varsity athlete RJ LaBeef is one of Pomfret’s most talented wrestlers. He was introduced to the sport when he was born, with both of his brothers and his father, New York state champion and current Pomfret wrestling coach, and won 12 state championships in a row when he was young. He has played for both Woodstock Academy, with his record at 48-2, as well as Pomfret, winning many tournaments along the way. Some of the tournaments he
Photo credit: Olinda Labeef
has participated in are multiple state championships, New England’s, WNEISWA’s, Prep New England’s, Prep Nationals, Danbury Invitational, and the Doug Parker tournament. His record so far this year is 18-0, with 16 of them being forfeits. After playing in so many tournaments, and wrestling his entire life, RJ’s overall record for his career currently stands at 179-15.
RJ Labeef’s Overall Wresting Record 179 W - 15 L
Love or the Game
by Palmer McGraw ‘13 and Brooke Blake ‘13, Staff Writers Marlee Lawless ‘13 is a new member of the Girls’ Varsity Basketball team this year. Naja Lewis ‘13 is her fellow teammate, friend, and roommate. Marlee has been dating Ryan Korth ‘12 for almost three months now. But who knows her better - the Love or the Game? Pontefract: What is the most embarrassing thing that has happened to Marlee at Pomfret? Marlee: My DC. Ryan: Probably DC. Naja: Her DC. P: What is Marlee’s lucky number? M: 5. R: I doubt she has one, I’m gonna say none. N: I don’t know. P: What is Marlee’s favorite movie? M: The Notebook. R: I’m gonna go with Bambi. N: I don’t know. P: What is Marlee’s favorite thing from the tuck? M: Chocolate milkshake. R: Maybe chocolate milkshakes. N: French fries. P: What does Marlee want to be when she is older? M: A doctor. R: Neurologist. N: She’s really good at art and I think that she should be an artist, and she’s really good at bio, so
Photo credit: Olivia Hamilton ‘12
maybe a biologist.
P: If Marlee could live anywhere in the world, where would she live? M: California. R: I’ll say Cali for that one. N: England. P: What is her favorite color? M: Red. R: I’ll go with red, but I don’t know. N: Blue. P: What is her favorite stuffed animal? M: Purple hippo. R: Rodrigo the purple hippo. N: This weird looking thing, I think it’s called an ugly doll.
Love Game 6
Without a doubt, love wins this one!
VOL. 82 NO. 2
Inside Opinions Pomfret POMFRET SCHOOL
The Great Debate
Is Occupy Wall Street truly making a difference?
by Kokou Alasse ‘13, Staff Writer
by Blaise Desnoes ‘13, Staff Writer
In 2007, Warren Buffet, one of the richest public figures in the United States, commented that he has paid a lower federal tax percentage than an employee of his. In an interview with Forbes Magazine, Buffet noted that he pays 17.7% on his $46 million income while his secretary paid 30% on his $60,000 revenue, a statistic which highlights the immense gap between the rich and the poor. In 2011, beginning on September 17th, hundreds of thousand gathered in Zuccoti Park of New York’s Wall Street district to proclaim “We Are The 99%.” The protestors, however, are unpopular with New York City’s Police Department, as they have been arrested on counts of public disturbances, sometimes by the hundred. To deny people a fundamental right, especially one that is so fought for, like “freedom of speech,” seems degrading to American society, a direct slap in the face to our founding fathers whom also had to protest to gain their freedom and have their public be heard. Attempting to write out all the causes of the Occupy movement invokes the use of a lot of commas, as the desires of the movement are as diverse as its list of supporters. To generalize, the movement has become a public forum for the disenfranchised majority to make their voices be heard. Now, more than ever, people are finding it hard to make ends meet; it has
On Monday, November 28th, I turned on the television at 5:00 a.m. as I prepared for my early flight back to school. On the local news was a live stream of the Occupy Wall Street: Los Angeles movement being kicked off of a section of their occupation. The police necessity for the removal was reasonable: a portion of the encampment was located in the middle of a road that needed to be used that morning for people to get to work. However, despite this sound motive, many of the protesters resisted, and after viewing a few clashes between the police and many violent protesters, the disorganized, angry masses on the television made it easy to question: what do these protests mean and what are they really challenging? The Occupy Wall Street movement was first suggested in July 2011 by the Canadian-based activist group Adbusters, and was subsequently supported by the hackers’ group, Anonymous. The ideals motivating the initial protests were a resistance to corporate influence on democracy, the absence of legal repercussions for bankers after the financial crisis, and the growing class gap. However, as the movement grows nationally, it is becoming increasingly difficult to pin down exactly what Occupy Wall Street protesters stand for. Although it is unrealistic for an informed onlooker to state that he has “no idea” what the protests are about, it seems to be the protesters themselves that are having the most trouble deciding what exactly they are protesting. In a poll taken of hundreds of protesters by The Huffington Post in Boston, New York, and Washington D.C. Occupy locations, protesters each listed their one main concern. Their responses included “policies related to the environment,” and “anti-war policies;” However, the most shocking thing about the responses were that almost one-fifth of the respondents replied with “I don’t know.” This disorganization and lack of true cohesive thought is what weakens the Occupy Wall Street movement. Although Occupy Wall Street’s ideological confusion is undoubtedly the core issue, the overwhelming number of arrests at the protests is also detrimental to the movement’s reputation. Occupy Wall Street protesters have racked up hundreds of arrests, and their violence does nothing to support their cause. Gradually, as more and more camps are getting evicted, Occupy Wall Street protesters are refusing to peacefully retreat, an approach that would broaden their appeal. At the Occupy Wall Street protests in Philadelphia, many protesters held up signs that read: “you can’t evict an idea.” These signs are correct, and also prove that it is the idea that should and will prevail. However, if the idea was what these protesters truly cared about, there would be no violence, there would be cohesive thought, and there would be no need for continued controversy. The few ideas that are clearly articulated by the movement are also quite easily arguable. Steve Chapman, writing for the Chicago Tribune, attacked the Occupy Wall Street point of economic inequality. He references in his article a map posted on Think Progress, a left-leaning website, labeled, “If U.S. land were divided like U.S. wealth.” In this map, a small section of the country is left to 90%, referencing the small amount of wealth left to those not included in the top 10%. However, this map has some very serious flaws. Unlike land, wealth is not limited and it is not necessary for one to lose money in order for another to gain it, and all are given opportunities (in varying degrees) to achieve substantial wealth. It is important, when considering the Occupy Wall Street movement, to take into account the ideas of economic mobility on which America was founded, to remember the image of the American self-made man. It is important to consider the wealth that is made simply by creating products for the consumer, a role that many of these protesters take without second thought. It is important to stop criminalizing and caricaturing the upper class and to begin to put higher value on the important things they add to society. Overall, it is paramount to remember the economic recession that America is in and that all classes are struggling. It is simply logical that in a time of economic downturn those less educated and with less resources will significantly struggle with few jobs available. This is undoubtedly (for all) a time of great turmoil, with no clear light at the end of the tunnel. One thing however, is for certain: the recession will not end as a result of spray-painted signs, muddled ideas, and tent-ridden public park campgrounds.
Support it or not, members of such a movement are being discriminated against and treated as aliens in their own nation. become unbearable to live in America with a system that allows graduates to bury themselves in debt coming out of college but not finding any jobs to make ends meet. Likewise, the older generation worries about financial woes; retirement extends way beyond the intended age and obtaining proper health care is a huge problem for a developed country such as the United States. As the list of desires continues, critics say the disorganization in desires renders the movement weak; however, the diversity of thoughts is a common thread that unites them all. The movement resembles that of the Arab Spring, a continuous social revolt in the Arab world against years of reign by leaders and, like such a movement, protesters gather against the current condition in the United States without a specific political movement to unite under. Support it or not, members of such a movement are being discriminated against and treated as aliens in their own nation. Fundamental rights of U.S citizens are being broken for the sake of a police attempt to keep protestors in line. There was tremendous media uproar after a video surfaced from University of California, Davis, where students protestors were pepper sprayed after setting up their own form of the Occupy protest (Burke, and Judy Lin). There is no argument to refute such a horrendous act could occur in the United States by decision of a chancellor. Civil rights of several individuals were broken as Lt. John Pike “sprayed an orange cloud at the head of the protestors” and this act is replicated across the country as the list of those arrested continues to grow across the nation, even stretching to New York City councilman Ydanis Rodriguez.
Do YOU have an opinion about this or another article? Do you have an idea for your own featured column for every issue? Do you want to be a part of The Pontefract? Come to the next meeting or e-mail us at email@example.com!
VOL. 82 NO. 2
Beyond the Bubble: How Much Does Pomfret Know? by Charlie Kimball ‘13, Staff Writer
According to a schoolwide survey concerning current event awareness, Hillary Clinton is running for president, Iraq borders Afghanistan, the national debt is anywhere from 1 trillion to 25 trillion dollars, and Al-Queada does not have a leader. The multiple choice question with the highest percentage of correct answers was at 55%, and the lowest, at 27% (7% higher than if students had randomly guessed). The latter question was about the national debt, possibly the most discussed national issue of our generation. This is not taking into account that students could have used the internet, been informed by someone who had already taken it, and chiefly that the students most likely
to take an online quiz would be the ones who are most interested in the subject matter, seeing as roughly one fourth of the school responded. This survey shows that Pomfret may create an isolated atmosphere that does not encourage students to become informed about the outside world and seemingly they do not. These results shouldn’t come as a shock to anyone. Pomfret School does not offer a single class on this subject of current events, and frankly, this community has fostered an environment where we value clothes, music, lingo, celebrities, et cetera more than political leaders, legislation, and national conflicts. This mindset is part of a greater ‘American mindset’ in
Computers are thrown away when they are outdated, or they must be updated with new parts and software. Are humans the same?
all together. The danger is, in fact, the destruction and combination of the human into complete objectification. By doing this, we manipulate humanity into something subject to alteration and improvement and reduce people into something technological. Computers are thrown away when they are outdated, or they must be updated with new parts and software. Are humans the same? The moral debate over biogenetics is particularly enlightening with regard to the classical debate over technological boundaries. The density of life, which is often referred to as an “ontologically mystifying subject” by Martin Heidegger, is the connection between nature and humanity. Biogenetic engineering destroys this “density” of life and manipulates humanity, effectively desubstantialisizing it and removing it from its natural state. Humanity is inherently flawed, and what makes us human is our struggle to control natural tendencies and impulses. If one were to find out, for example, that violent, peaceful, and loving tendencies were all the result of genetic manipulation or a program set in motion by genetic engineers, would that not be a complete degradation of the human condition? The very problem of free will is touched upon by the immorality of genetic engineering. A person with free will, (continued on page 8)
which impacts you as much as it impacts me.” This article isn’t a criticism of the peculiarities in our community; it is simply stating that the world outside of this hilltop is very real, from regions in Somalia where food has become a weapon, to European councils that are deliberating on the next course of action in relation to the Euro-zone. In a very short amount of time, we will be members of that world. Though our voice may seem meek and child-like, it is the voice of a generation, and we are the ones who decide if it will be heard. In closing, Martin Luther King Jr. was right when he said, “Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”
Filibuster in Print: Destroying Candidacies by Nick Fulchino ‘15, Columnist
by Jake Wikman ‘12, Executive Editor When the human condition and psyche are subject to technological manipulation, technology has gone too far. Biogenetical engineering is particularly suspect to moral criticism because of claiming to (eventually) control pain reflexes, eliminate unsubstantiated emotion, and eliminate psychosis
which corporate structures have defined what it is we want, and by doing so they have turned our attention away from what is going on in the world as they attempt to make us crave the items they sell. We are quite literally a product of our environment. When our environment is trying to delude us with the ideals of a materialistic world, is that environment one that we want to see continued? The world around us should be inescapable, and as we march off to college, world events will shift from being distant ideas to concrete events which shape the world we live in. Our current Head of School, Tim Richards, put it best in saying, “There’s a lot going on in the world
What is it that makes destroying a candidate’s chance for office so attractive to the media? There’s more to this question than meets the eye. If you ask yourself, or just about anyone, to name an influential politician, they’re likely to say Mitt Romney, Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, Sarah Palin, Herman Cain, or Barack Obama. All of these politicians have been the target of some effort to destroy the legitimacy of their campaign. How can you destroy Mitt Romney? Surely there’s no way to ruin his campaign! Unfortunately the biased, liberal media has, for years, planted a seed that the Republican Party could never elect a Mormon as our nominee. Of course, many Republicans reject this idea, but the media continues to insist that because he’s a Mormon, Mitt Romney is unelectable. Don’t think that this is a new problem, though. John F. Kennedy was attacked for being a Roman Catholic just as much as Romney is for being Mormon. Perry’s debate performances, Bachmann’s headaches, and Palin’s…ability to be Palin…have left the country with an overwhelming sense of distrust in elected officials. The question remains: is this the goal of the media? Or is it just a coincidence that minority (mainly women and AfricanAmerican) conservatives are left with strong opposition to them? A great deal of fuss has arisen from Herman Cain’s “black walnut” comment. The point Cain was making was that he wasn’t the “flavor of the month” so many people had accused him of being. If Barack Obama said his campaign against Hillary Clinton wasn’t a “flavor of the month”, I doubt any fuss would’ve been made. The double standard spews from the leftist media in so many examples. When Nancy Pelosi said, “But we have to pass the bill so you can find out what is in it, away from the fog of the controversy.” No one said anything. No one discussed how unprofessional it was of a sitting Speaker of the House to tell the public the only way to know what is in the bill is to pass it and watch what happens. However, when Sarah Palin was unable to name
a newspaper or magazine she read it was a huge story. Ask yourself: what matters more, a Speaker of the House who wants to pass a bill without knowing what’s in it, or a candidate for Vice President who doesn’t remember what’s on her coffee table at home? Personally, I don’t think the People magazine, probably not too much larger than 120 pages, on Sarah Palin’s coffee table is as important as the (roughly) 2,000 page Health Care bill planned at revamping how we take care of ourselves in this country, but maybe it’s just because I’m a conservative. The point I’m trying to make is that when you view the stories on TV about any candidate, don’t assume it’s automatically true. In fact, there is most likely bias in it in every example. Conservative women, conservatives, and conservative African-Americans have a huge hill to climb to be successful. While the story of
When you view the stories on TV about any candidate, don’t assume it’s automatically true. Cain’s 13-year affair is definitely newsworthy, ask yourself if that is the sole thing you should consider when you cast your vote. I know that media coverage of candidates is critical. I understand that there will always be bias in media, but rather than get your news solely through one source, check out other sources. When you want to form an opinion on a candidate for elected office, consider more than what you hear on Al Sharpton’s talk show on MSNBC. It is important to understand the candidates without the biased view of media because it gives you a leg up when you go to vote. In conclusion, next time you see that story about a candidate, Barack Obama or Michele Bachmann (it doesn’t matter), ask yourself: is this just another story aimed at ruining a campaign?
VOL. 82 NO. 2
Biogenetics (continued from page 7) the right to control his own body, has an equal right to battle with his own naturalistic impulsiveness. To be stripped before birth of everything that is “human” about a person is certainly a crime. To the extent that it would eliminate emotion or program a person, genetic engineering would set in motion the destruction of free will, and, as aforementioned, the control of people as machines to be upgraded, downloaded, or thrown out. It creates a dichotomy between those who have been treated as machines, and those who are “natural.” The dehumanization and potential for genocidal tendencies is enormous as well. Biogenetic manipulation represents the constant plight of man to achieve actualization of the inhuman immorality. As man has struggled for centuries trying to create the ultimate technology, man has struggled endlessly with the plight for immorality. Genetic engineering attempts to make that inhumanity a reality. The elimination of biological flaws and the creation of ideas like consciousness that can be internally preserved like computer data are excellent examples. The actualization of such things destroys the essence of humanity.
Petty Annoyances by Hallie Leo ‘14 and Peta Clayton ‘14, Staff Writers Despite the wonder that is Pomfret School, students still develop a few pet peeves when it comes to life on the Hilltop. A popular pet peeve is Clive Trashington, a pet who is known to leave remnants of his meal on any surface of the dining hall. We suggest that Mr. Trashington clean up his act and make use of the napkins, so that others may enjoy their meals.
Next to Clive Trashington, another common pet peeve is Deca Cibel (known to friends as Meg Aphone), who decides to scream and guffaw during odd hours of the day (occasionally ruining sleep-ins and stomping during study hours). It would be pleasant if Deca would lay off the morning sugar and be aware of its neighbors.
Sherlock Lips and Mac Out can easily be spotted passionately snogging all over campus. Their favorite hot spots include right in front of you while you’re in line at the Tuck, the benches of the library courtyard, and the sporting events they’re attending that they’re barely watching because
they’re too busy canoodling.
(continued from page 1) Since the start of the current school year, Seth Farganoli ’13 and Ben Tules ’12 have become co-managers of the the WBVC station and also broadcast a show, “Guerilla Radio” every Tuesday evening. The pair have jumpstarted the community into a renewed campus wide appreciation of the school radio station. Stemming from their eager determination to publicize the availability of the show to students, numerous weekly shows have become established into the station’s schedule. Each show is run solely by the students involved, and likewise, each have varying levels of popularity and reach into campus life.
“It is up to the students to make it happen.” - Tim Peck, faculty advisor to WBVC “Fulchino’s Filibuster”, a political talk show hosted by Nick Fulchino ’15, has even invited the First Selectman of Pomfret to talk on the show. These developments have allowed WBVC to once again become a relevant part of Pomfret campus life, allowing to students once again voice their opinions as well as showcasing their musical tastes, forming a truly eclectic student radio station.
Penny Toocense loves telling everyone who has the unfortunate privilege of having ears her opinion. Whenever you’re speaking, we warn you that Penny will interject. Art credit: Cecile Lu ‘12 and Erin Brady ‘13
Please heed our advice and be on the lookout for these pesky pets.