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Vol. XXXVI, Issue 2, August 28, 2012


CHRONICLE New semester brings changes

Page 2 ‘Halo 4’ preview

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Freedom of speech

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Changes coming to make Richland better JOHN KOSANKE Staff Writer

What is your biggest problem or complaint with Richland’s physical campus? Do you think you’re alone and the administration is not aware or does not have a plan to fix your complaint? Well, Eddie Hueston, director of facilities, suggests that you think again. His staff

has been doing studies on a wide variety of physical plant problems and are either taking steps or making plans to solve problems that students may not even be aware of. The construction crane on the north side of the campus is part of the construction of a new facilities bridge. It’s not to carry students, but to carry needed things like water, electric power, computer connections and other utilities that are currently buried in an aging structure that runs under the lake

Image courtesy John Kosanke

Campus bridge between Pecos Hall and Fannin Hall.

where it cannot be serviced if there is a water leak or other problems. If you have been eastbound and far back in line behind a bus on Walnut trying to make a right turn into East Drive so you can get to class on time, the Facilities Department has recognized your problem, and steps are in the works with Dart to move the bus stop station and then work with Dallas Public Works Department to widen eastbound Walnut with a turning lane to facilitate turning into campus. Other studies are under way to determine how Richland can also facilitate a better leftturn lane for those students westbound on Walnut who may now have to wait through several light-change cycles before being able to make a left-turn into the campus. Students tend not to like speed bumps, but some tend to be a little lead-footed, so there is a need to control traffic movement. Hueston said studies have been done to see if there are effective speed control systems that will allow smoother traffic flow, remove the destructive yellow/black bolt-down speed bumps now on the east side. He said the desire is for a safer and smoother process for drivers and pedestrians that gets you in and out with less congestion. This is part of an overall study as to traffic flow from parking lots on both east and west sides to the major streets of Abrams and Walnut. Since these changes also involve the Dallas street system, work is being done with the city to reach better solutions for our ever increasing student traffic. When some of Richland’s earlier buildings were built, ease of construction and building costs were emphasized more than a facility

that met the needs of all possible students. The results were some classrooms with very high ceilings with vertical beams, poor circulation for heating and cooling and very bad acoustics that made it difficult to hear even for people with good hearing and almost impossible for those with hearing impairments. Now with new dropped ceilings, better duct work and new state of the art equipment, old classrooms are taking on a new life that creates a better learning environment for all students. Recent additions are solar battery-powered street lights on street areas where there was no electric power available in the past. All who took night classes in the past will now appreciate the new solar battery-powered street lights that are now in places where it was not possible for them to be in the past because of lack of electric power. The name of the street that goes from Richland West Drive to Abrams Road is Flickering Shadow Drive. That was a very apt name for there was no light along Richland West where it met Flickering Shadow and the lack of light at night made it difficult to know where to turn. Now, thanks to the new solar battery lights, it’s well lit making it safer and easier to navigate at night. Hueston said the goal of the Facilities Department is to continue to keep Richland as new and modern as possible and to maintain the spirit and drive that made Richland the only Community College to be awarded the Malcolm Baldridge National Quality Award in 2005.

Campus safety through student awareness REBECCA BANKS • August 28, 2012

Editor in Chief


You’re walking on campus either texting or talking on the phone to your friend about the latest gossip. It seems just a simple natural action. Yet you are completely distracted by your phone and unaware of your surroundings walking through the various corridors on campus as well as the winding paths outside. This little distraction can create a vulnerable situation for any student or faculty member, especially at night and even during the day. The Crime Prevention Unit on campus provides tips and procedures for faculty and students. “It is important for students to be aware of their location whether they are in the parking lots or buildings on campus,” said Rebecca Sprouse, certified crime prevention officer. Each campus parking lot is provided with blue emergency call boxes. The call boxes are used for individuals to contact the campus police by dialing 4290 or 911. They can be used in threatening situations, to report suspicious activity, or even to get help jump

starting your car. “The emergency call boxes are not to be abused because it will tie up the dispatch lines and an individual can be charged with abusing emergency lines,” said Sprouse. Sprouse also mentioned that anyone caught tampering or abusing the call boxes will receive a stern lecture and, if the abuse continues, a citation. The Crime Prevention Unit provides an escort service to students and faculty members who would like an escort walking to their car anytime during the day or evening. Students can use the service by dialing 4290 on a campus phone or 972-860-4290 on a cell phone. Sprouse advised individuals who are on campus in the evening to walk with a group, have car keys ready in hand, watch out for any vans or large vehicles that block the view of your vehicle or any suspicious activity. Suspicious activity should be reported to the campus police immediately. Individuals who witness any unusual activity should not get involved but get a detailed description of the individual such as clothing attire, height, ethnicity and the campus location of the incident.

If the individual The biggest peris leaving, take note sonal item is a stuof the direction dent’s car. Sprouse and the descripsaid that they have tion of the vehicle received numer(license plate numous calls regarding ber, model and car trunks, doors color). “A detailed and windows open. description and This makes it easy immediate timing for any person is important for passing by to steal the campus poitems in a vehicle lice to pursue the or, even worse, in situation,” Sprouse your car. said. If a student or It is also faculty member has important for stuany questions or dents to monirequires additional tor their personal information, they items and valucan contact Sprouse ables on campus at rsprouse@ to ensure nothing or call is stolen. It is the 972-860-4290. Image credit Kisten S. Chetty individual’s Faculty members responsibility to Call boxes are available in parking lots. may also schedwatch their items ule an appointand not a friend or another student next to ment for Sprouse to present tips and crime them. awareness.


Increase in violence in the NFL Staff Writer

During six years and 19 days as commissioner of the National Football League, Roger Goodell has had to deal with many difficult issues. His tenure has been plagued by a variety of problems such as bounty gate, spy gate and the high numbers of active NFL players arrested for incidents such as domestic violence, DWI, marijuana, codeine, and even dog-fighting rings. The recent headline story of Miami Dolphins’ wide receiver Chad Johnson’s head-butt to his wife of just six weeks really spotlights Goodell’s current dilemmas. With a lot on his plate and in his defense unlike previous Commissioner Paul Tagliabue, Roger Goodell enacted a NFL player’s Code of Conduct in April 2007. The league had been taking on such negative publication with scandals from the 2006 season players Adam Jones, Tank Johnson and the late Chris Henry, that Goodell sought for the first time to enforce that these players would be suspended under the league’s new conduct code actually during the 2007 NFL season. Incidents from these players were arrests for actions ranging from strip club shootings to DUI to even multiple guns and assault rifles being found in one of their homes without proper licenses. The worst scandal came when federal prosecutors arraigned Michael Vick, one of the major faces of the NFL at the time, for running an dog-fighting ring in July of that year. Vick and three other co-defendants who were the owners of the dog-fighting ring

known as Bad Newz Kennels agreed to lesser plea deals that ranged from one to five years in prison. Vick spent a year and six months in prison and was suspended for the next football season by Commissioner Goodell before

Image courtesy

Derrick Ward, left, had a career-high 75 receiving yards against the Redskins.

being reinstated into the league on July 28, 2009. The next year, after two alleged sexual assault incidents in Lake Tahoe, Nev., and Milledgeville, Ga., Goodell also suspended star quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. Roethlisberger’s suspension was for six games which was eventually reduced to four after going through personal behavioral checks by professional physicians. With the 2012 NFL season just starting on Sept. 5, it is the right time to examine foot-

T-Duck schedules for fall semester 2012 Richland Women’s Volleyball DATE Aug. 31

Sept. 4

Sept. 11 Sept. 15 Sept. 17 Sept. 20 Sept. 21 Sept. 22 Sept. 24 Sept. 27

ball players code of conduct. According to NFL blog site, police blotter, states that since this year’s Super Bowl, the league has had 30 arrests of active players. The most recent assault incident

OPPONENTS LOCATION Vernon College Tournament Vernon vs. Independence College vs. Ft. Scott Double Header vs. Ranger Ranger vs. Cisco Cisco Southwestern Adventist Univ. Richland Coastal Bend College Mesquite Cedar Valley College Richland Mt. View College Dallas Cisco College Richland Tri-Match Richland RLC/ Vernon/ Hill/ SWCC Brookhaven College Farmers Branch Eastfield College Richland

TIME 5 p.m. 7 p.m. 2 p.m. 6 p.m. 7 p.m. 11 a.m. 7 p.m. 7 p.m. 4 p.m. TBA 7 p.m. 7 p.m.

features Chad Johnson and Dallas Cowboys troubled wide receiver Dez Bryant. At this time, the commissioner has handed down no suspensions this season. Thankfully the NFL Network has been showing the anti-domestic violence public service announcements titled “1 is 2 many” that features many pro athletes like Jeremy Lin, Eli Manning and David Beckham and other prominent people like President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe

Biden. The DWI issue has also raised its ugly head. In two weeks before the opening of training camp for all of the 32 NFL teams, four active starting players, Kenny Britt, Donald Washington, Marshawn Lynch and Robert Quinn, were all arrested for DWI. This led to a major criticism by former NFL player Derrick Ward, who angrily posted on his own Twitter account “Stop being so dumb!” Ward continued his rant by tweeting, “Yes that’s right dumb! I’m sitting here retired enjoyed a great career now all I want to do is become a fan and I see.. numerous arrests for DWI in the past several weeks.” Ward noted that it was four incidents and that it was “ absolutely ridiculous. You, not only putting yourself... in danger but your [sic] putting other innocent people in danger that don’t deserve your stupidity. Open your eyes and do the right thing.” The last astute comment on this issue by Ward was, “I know what it’s like to get go out get drunk and debate on weather [sic] to drive home or not. Call a taxi! So what if u spend some money to take one or u get a ticket on your car in the am when u go back 2 get it. At least u won’t have to pay bail and then lawyer fees and then miss game checks.” “There’s no excuse to drive drunk! NONE! If all else fails WALK! NFL players are world class athletes Walking should be nothing!” While Ward may have been a bit much with the caps lock, he is right? These players need to be more responsible and Goodell can’t be a baby sitter to every player in 32 cities. Hopefully these current players get more guidance from family and coaches. Then perhaps all this madness and these stupid arrests will decrease.

2012 Richland Men’s Soccer DATE Aug. 28 Aug. 31 Sept. 2 Sept. 8 Sept. 14 Sept. 18 Sept. 22 Sept. 29

OPPONENTS Northwood Univ (Scrimmage) Mt. San Antonio College TBA Western Texas College Tyler Junior College Hill College Mt. View College San Accent College

LOCATION Richland Walnut. Walnut Richland Tyler Hillsboro Richland Richland

TIME 7:30 p.m. TBA TBA 7 p.m. 7 p.m. 2 p.m. 4 p.m. 7 p.m.

2012 Richland Women’s Soccer DATE Sept. 4 Sept. 11 Sept. 13 Sept. 14 Sept. 21 Sept. 21 Sept. 22 Sept. 25 Sept. 27 Sept. 28

OPPONENTS Cisco North Lake Navarro Eastfield Tyler JC v Johnson Mt. View Johnson Brookhaven Tyler JC North Lake

LOCATION Cisco Richland Richland Eastfield Richland Richland Richland Brookhaven Tyler North Lake

TIME 6:00 p.m. 4:00 p.m. 5:30 p.m. 4:00 p.m. 7:00 p.m. 6:00 p.m. 12:00 p.m. 4:00 p.m. 7:00 p.m. 4:00 p.m. • August 28, 2012




The action-packed ‘Expendables 2’ out now

Van Damme’s turn as Vilain, an Eastern European terrorist who wants to get rich and make money on plutonium. This flick is cool because Dolph Lundgren’s Staff Writer character also blends in some real life anecdotes. Same stuff, different movie. For example, Lundrgren is a real life graduate of the As with the last “Expendables” entry, very little prestigious M.I.T. He also boasts he was a Fulbright of the story scholar as well. takes place What was stateside. Most really cool was of the cast do seeing Sylvester return, save for Stallone, Bruce Mickey Rourke Willis and Arnold who must Schwarzenegger have felt his all shooting guns Oscar-nomiat the same time nated stint in on the screen. “The Wrestler” Also having fun allowed him with their roles to move on to are Terry Crews greener pasand Randy Coutures. ture, who has Jet Li has coffee, but made about five for one, just sinminutes of gle sized. Image courtesy screen time in The star-studded cast of “Expendables 2” Returning the opening as Lee Christscenes. Past that, his persona exits stage left for mas is Jason Statham, who shares a nice rapport the rest of the movie. with Stallone. Of course, the dialouge is riddled with The storyline for No. 2 concerns Jean Claude one-liners everywhere, such as when Schwarzeneg-


ger’s says,


“I’m back.” He says it a couple of times here. Upon entering a small car, he states,“My shoe is bigger than this car.” New to the mix is Liam Hemsworth’s character of Bill the kid , a sniper who recently joined the ranks of the team. Another edition comes in the form of Chuck Norris as Booker, who Image courtesy fancies himself a lone wolf. Terry Crews as Hale Caesar in “The Expendables 2” Nan Yu’s turn as Maggie adds a feminine touch to the mix. Air”(1997), “The Mechanic”(2011), also with StaHer character offers a nice relief to the testoster- tham and “ Lara Croft:Tomb Raider”(2001) one. The results are worthwhile, since the action Originally, Stallone was going to direct, but never slows or lags. he opted for the stylings of Simon West of “Con Grade: C+

Why I love the classics on the IMAX screen JOE STUMPO • August 28, 2012



There is a scene in one of the episodes of “Seinfeld” (1990-1998) where Kramer (Michael Richards) runs a movie theater that is showing “Spartacus” (1960). In response to hearing that, George Costanza (Jason Alexander) asks Kramer, “Why would I spend $7 to see a movie that I could watch on TV?” “Well, why go to a fine restaurant when you can just stick something in the microwave?” Kramer fires back. “Why go to the park and fly a kite when you can just pop a pill?” True, “Raiders of the Lost Ark” (1981) has been on cable television so many times over the past three decades that it might make one ask the same question grumpy George asked Kramer. By the way, it is not called “Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark,” regardless of what the front cover of the DVD copies say. So why go see three-time Oscar-winning director Steven Spielberg’s adventure-classic starring Harrison Ford in theaters for a one-week only engagement on IMAX screens beginning Sept. 7? It’s a celebration of the film’s first-time release on Blu-ray Sept. 18, along with “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom” (1984) and “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade” (1989). I get into a nasty mood when such Negative Nancys ask that so here I go. It’s because the film’s being shown on the big screen again after 30 years, dummy! As Mr. Spock( Leonord Nimoy) said in “Star Trek IV,” I can also think of a few more “colorful metaphors” to use. It’s the same reason why I saw the re-releases of “Citizen Kane” (1941), “Giant” (1956), “Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory” (1971), “The Godfather”

(1972), “The Exorcist” (1973), “Grease” (1978) and “The Shining” (1980) on the big screen over the years. I don’t know if I’ll be able to tell the difference between the ‘81 print I saw 31 years ago and on cable over the years and the cleaned up digital print

ing I go to Sept. 10 is the feeling of nostalgia. I got that same feeling when I saw the 1997 special edition of “Star Wars” (1977) at the Northpark I & II theater, which closed in 1998 and was torn down soon after. Seeing that tiny Rebel Blockade Runner being chased in outer space by an immense

Image courtesy

Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones in an iconic scene from “Raiders of the Lost Ark”

of “Raiders of the Lost Ark” where, as Spielberg said in an article on Movie Talk, when the giant boulder rolls down after archeologist Indiana Jones (Ford), if I’ll “see it in full size” and will feel it in my stomach. Those aren’t the things I’ll be looking for when I see it. What will most definitely happen during either that early Monday morning or afternoon show-

Star Destroyer in the opening moments brought back memories of the first time I saw the film in August 1977 with my parents. My mouth was wide open. This was what movies are supposed to do – take us into a whole new world for a couple of hours – something at which a majority of today’s motion pictures fail miserably. Movie theaters were different in 1981. They

were not the 30-screen multiplexes we see today where kids play arcade games in the lobby. When a major blockbuster, such as “Raiders” was released back in 1981, it was not on 4,000-plus screens across the country like “The Dark Knight Rises” this July. “Raiders” was shown on 1,078 screens back then. Its opening weekend gross was just over $8 million while the budget was estimated at $18 million, according to Compare that to the over-inflated $200 million budgets of this year’s box-office bombs (“John Carter,” “Battleship”). There is something else about seeing “Raiders” again that shows just how much movies have changed. The films I saw of yesteryear such as “Airplane” (1980), “Animal House” (1978) and “The Poseidon Adventure” (1972), for example, were all movies I couldn’t wait to see again and often do whenever they are on cable today. The one and only movie I saw more than once in the last 10 years at theaters was “Star Trek” (2009). That’s a feeling I just don’t have viewing today’s films. Just the idea that Spielberg is now considering perhaps putting “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” (1977) on IMAX, according to Movie Talk, only makes me drool at other possibilities of what it would be like to see such oldies I don’t get tired of, like “The Towering Inferno” (1974), the “Star Wars” trilogy (1977-1983) and not the special editions and even Spielberg’s own “Saving Private Ryan” (1998) shown in the same format. I have hope that maybe as popular as IMAX is getting, releasing old classics like “Raiders” could be the start of a trend. Now, can someone just convince producer George Lucas to please drop the “Indiana Jones” from the film’s title and call Spielberg’s movie what it was called 31 years ago when it first came out: “Raiders of the Lost Ark?”


Master Chief is back in ‘Halo 4’ on Nov. 6

KISTEN S. CHETTY Managing Editor

It is hard to forget the awe-inspiring ending of “Halo 3.” The spaceship Forward Unto Dawn spilt in half and only the Arbiter was able to escape to safety. Master Chief was trapped in the cargo bay with only Cortana to console him. We then saw a memorial service and a monument to John. If you stuck around through the game credits you were treated to a special clip. Cortana dropped a distress beacon into space but admitted it may be years before they are rescued. Master Chief then got into a cyro-pod and said “Wake me when they need me.” If the game is completed on legendary mode, additional footage is shown. It is the bottom half of the Forward Unto Dawn floating toward a planet. “Halo 4” takes place five years after the climactic events of “Halo 3.” It seems humanity is in need of the Spartan once again. This is where “Halo 4” picks up. The first mission is spoiled. It shows Master Chief being awakened by Cortana and sent to find a human ship that has crash-landed on the planet. The mission, which shows actual gameplay, has raised more questions than answers. We are shown the new enemy, which the game developers have only called an “ancient threat.” The new

enemy has quick reflexes and comes equipped with a new arsenal of weaponry. One particularly terrifying clip shows the new enemy’s ability to catch and return thrown grenades. The “Halo” rumor mill has gone wild trying to narrow down or predict who this new “old” enemy is and what they want. A popular theory is that they are actually Forerunner technology or the Forerunners themselves. The Forerunners are a powerful ancient race that built the halo rings. They are a huge part of the “Halo” universe but have never been seen. The game will also feature the classic multiplayer that made “Halo” so famous. The player will use the ship Forward Unto Dawn as a base of operation to play and create multiplayer games. A new twist has been announced with regard to the missions. Apparently, there will be weekly episodic missions that will be released as additional content. There’s no word yet if this will be free or have to be bought separately. As part of the marketing strategy, Microsoft Games will release five to six episodes on the Internet leading up to release day. These “webisodes” will each be 15 to 20 minutes long. When the game launches on Nov. 6, all the episodes will be combined into a feature-length film, according to game developers. It’s quite an exciting time for the “Halo” fanverse.

Image courtesy • August 28, 2012

The Spartan, also known as Master Chief, and his squad mates are ready to deal out some punishment.

Image courtesy

One of the new enemies to face in ‘Halo 4.’



Free speech is being challenged everywhere

STUDENT MEDIA LEADERS Richland Chronicle Editor in Chief KDUX Web Radio Station Manager Chronicle-TV Station Manager Chronicle-Online Editor Managing Editor News Editor Radio News Director Sports Editor Photo Editor Viewpoints Editor Copy Editor Radio Sport Director Layout Editor Gaming Editor

Rebecca Banks TBA TBA Adrien Merliss Kisten S. Chetty TBA Carla Davis TBA Julio Nieto TBA Joyce Jackson TBA Tannia Garcia Mary Channell

ON THE COVER Construction continues on utilities bridge on campus between Pecos and Fannin Halls.

Image credit Kisten S. Chetty

Joyce Jackson is the Copy Editor at the Chronicle.

JOYCE JACKSON Copy Editor • August 28, 2012

When someone is getting the shaft, sometimes you really have to speak up. That’s exactly what I did when I read a very personal column by a writer in our local paper, the Mesquite News, on Aug. 2. The headline was, “Columnist could go renegade,” meaning that she was considering deserting the newspaper as a writer because of what her editor demanded. Here’s a little of what the editor said, in a group email, that provoked the controversy: “It’s my belief that columns run on the Voices pages of our newspapers should pertain to ‘laser-focused local issues’ . . . I’ve never attempted to tell any columnist what to write and won’t do so here. Write as you wish, but there’s a very good chance that if the column is about Gov. Romney or President


Obama it will not run. That’s the chance you take and I wanted to share it with you today.” This really bothered me. I reread her column a few more times and then decided that I must speak up. I felt strongly that this writer’s right to free speech was being challenged. I thought the renegade column was done very well; that is, she wasn’t whining about it but just explained that for many years she’s written without limitations and after 10 years with this publication, she was disappointed in the editor’s new policy. She even decided to plead her case in person to the editor, driving nearly 30 miles out of her way to do so. She got nowhere – the editor held firm. Her final thoughts were that, “I don’t get a vote. This isn’t a democracy. Majority doesn’t rule. The rules are created by a few.” (She was not an employee of the News). The next morning I was still up in arms about this issue, so I made a beeline straight to my com-

puter and didn’t stop until I’d finished writing a rather long, opinionated Letter to the Editor of the News. The headline read, “Reader supports columnist’s free speech.” I mailed it that afternoon. In my “Letter to the Editor,” I told him that I was a subscriber to the Mesquite News and was appalled to read this writer’s appeal to him (the editor) regarding his new policy about the presidential election. I didn’t know what “laser-focused” issues were, either. I told him that the people of Mesquite are just as interested, or should be, in the presidential race as everyone else, because it’s the most important one ever – the people vs. the federal government. We want to know what local columnists think about the election. My feisty letter to the editor was published two weeks later and above it that writer had another column titled “Column Topics Cause Email Flood,” which made my day. I wasn’t the only one who spoke up. She said she’s been flooded with email responses over a previous column she wrote about the Chick-fil-A controversey and the editor’s new topic-limiting policy. She said, “I feel compelled to share my reply to a reader who strongly disagreed with our editor’s decision” – which was my column. On a larger scale, this issue translates to having the right to speak freely about your beliefs as well, and not be criticized and embarrassed in the public eye. The incident with Dan Cathy, president of the Chick-fil-A chain, this summer over gay marriage was an insult to every American. Just because Cathy gave money to an organization promoting traditional marriage, his entire business chain was in jeopardy. So what? It’s his money and his belief. Normally, nobody would have even known or cared about what Cathy did, but being that we have a vicious presidential race going on, it’s effecting the entire mood of the country. The press crucified him. Americans rallied to his defense, as they should have, and his business received overwhelming support from customers, thanks to Gov. Mike Huckabee, who inspired people to do the right thing and respond. With this highly controversial election, I think we should all be aware of and concerned with upholding our Constitutional rights. When politicians, the federal government or anyone else challenges our freedom of speech, religion, or the right to keep and bear Arms, as in the 1st and 2nd amendment to the Constitution, we must respond. Our Constitution and our Congress are all that protect our rights as citizens and guarantee our freedom as a nation. We should be thankful.

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Forgiving heinous crimes


JOE STUMPO Columnist

Images courtesy

Republican National Convention REBECCA BANKS Mouners gather at the Aurora, Colorado shooting memorial.

following his guilty verdict. Do they want Holmes to be brought before a firing squad and leave comments at the end of news stories offering up even more graphic details of what they’d like to see done to the killer. Maybe it’s we who are wrong and it’s the ones who actually forgive the shooter who are right regardless of the many questions from upset readers chiming in, “What if it

In some sick twisted way, tortured souls like Holmes are hurting inside. We just don’t know why and how much. had been your 6-year-old daughter who was killed that night? Would you be so forgiving?” It’s so much easier to spout off hateful vengeful comments than it is to forgive. Just ask 28-year-old Pierce O’Farrill, who was shot three times in the July 20 shooting. “I forgive him with all my heart,” O’Farrill said in an interview with The Denver Post. “When I saw him (Holmes) in his hearing, I felt nothing but sorrow for him—he’s just a lost soul right now. I want to see him some time. The first thing I want to say to him is ‘I forgive you’ and the next is, ‘Can I pray for you?’” “This is going to be hard for people to understand, but I feel sorry for him,” O’Farrill told The Christian Post. “When I think what that soul must be like to have that much hatred and that much anger in his heart- what every day must be like. I can’t imagine getting out of bed every morning and having that much anger and hatred for people that he undoubtedly has. I’m not angry at him. I’ll pray for him.” Justin Davis, who was also inside Theater 9 when the shootings happened but was unharmed, said in an interview with ABC News that it’s his faith that suggests Holmes deserves forgiveness. “We should just forgive and you don’t know what he’s going through,” David said. “You don’t know why he did it.”

Image courtesy

Inside the Peñasquitos Lutheran Church in San Diego where Holmes’ parents attend, signs are posted inside saying, “Prayers for those affected by the Colorado tragedy” and “Prayers for the Holmes family,” according to an article on The Huffington Post. Then there is Byron Thomas’ post on YouTube which was posted on CNN’s website asking the country to not call for Holmes to receive the death penalty. “We are going to have to show James Holmes mercy, forgiveness, and love. These are the same things Jesus commanded us to do and what he showed us when he died on the cross for all of our sins,” Thomas said. “My heart goes out toward those families and because this was never the less tragic. I just believe we should let the court system handle it and not protest for James Holmes to get the death penalty. As a Christian, I just don’t believe in the death penalty.” I don’t know if I could find it in my heart to forgive Holmes. I have to come to terms that mass shootings could and have happened too often in the workplace, in restaurants, in our nation’s schools, on college campuses and at places of worship. I know shooting incidents often happen inside movie theaters, but I never expected it to be the equivalent of the carnage that happened July 20. As someone whose favorite pastime is often spending it inside a dark theater every few weeks, seeing movies was that last place of refuge where I believed for at least a few hours I could get away from the horrors of the outside world and where I would never have to worry about someone walking in ready to go postal. Now, thanks to Holmes, those days are over much the way we must forever be on our guard when flying, thanks to the 9/11 hijackers. I suppose though, the fact that I am even writing about this, realizing that maybe I should not only pray for the victims but also for the ones who have committed the most heinous of crimes, is a good start, even if I don’t have the strength to forgive. In some sick twisted way, tortured souls like Holmes are hurting inside. We just don’t know why and how much. I don’t really think we’ll ever know.

Editor in Chief

As the Chronicle went to press, Tropical storm Issac was threatening to delay the Republican National Convention in Tampa Bay, Fl. that was scheduled to begin yesterday and run through Thursday. On Friday the Weather Channel reported that the storm was gaining strength hitting Haiti, Cuba and Puerto Rico heading its way toward Florida. According to www.gopconvention2012. com, the convention will have 2,286 delegates and 2,125 alternate delegates from the District of Columbia, the 50 states and five U.S. territories. The website also states that the convention is expected to have 50,000 visitors with at least 150 event stwwaffers. Each delegate will participate in the Platform, Credentials, Rules and Permanent Organization committees. In addition to attending the committee sessions, the delegates will attend organized activities and meetings with other party members. Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney and Vice Presidential candidate Paul Ryan are scheduled to be among the attendees. During the convention the party will nominate the candidate to run for the specified office. William Harris is the CEO of the convention in Tampa Bay. Supporters of the Republican Party are able to view the events through Internet and other social media outlets. One such outlet that is a Facebook app that can be downloaded for individuals to stay updated with convention content. Individuals can get the app by going to and click on the link titled “Sign Up”.

Help wanted:

Sport writers, Game writers, Graphic artist and Photographers for Fall 2012. Stop by E020 • August 28, 2012

“I guess the question, Joe, is when Jesus said to ‘pray for your enemies,’ which enemy did he say to not pray for?” So said a friend of mine, who is a lot more religious than I am, when I shared a recent news story with him following the mass shooting in Aurora, Colo., July 20. During a memorial service July 22 for Gordon Cowden, one of 12 victims killed that night, Rev. Robert Gelinas asked the congregation to pray for shooter James Holmes. “Only God is the righteous judge,” Gelinas said. “Only God knows how to blend justice and mercy and grace in perfect balance. We lift this man up before God, and say, ‘God, do what you need to do in this situation.’” “What this pastor did should not be the exception but the rule,” my friend said. “Remember, while we live in this world, we are not of this world. Not easy being a Catholic.” I admit I am not a very religious person and haven’t been for a while, although I do in times of trouble recite the Hail Mary and often the prayer to St. Jude, the patron saint of lost souls, mine being one of them. When it comes to the many acts of evil I have read and seen perpetrated by people as reported in the news and the Internet on a daily basis, one of the first things I say to myself is my favorite line from “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan” (1982). “Revenge is a dish best served cold.” Like everyone else who celebrated in front of the White House and at Ground Zero last May, I, too, took to the social networking world of Facebook and blogged my glee writing of Osama bin Laden’s bloody demise at the hands of our armed forces. If I were going to do any praying for Jerry Sandusky, the former Penn State assistant football coach who was found guilty in June on 45 of 48 counts of child sexual abuse, it would be to hope he’d finally one day realize while spending life in prison that what he did to those 10 young boys was wrong. I know that’s never going to happen, whether I pray or not. I won’t lie to you. The first question I asked upon hearing about James Holmes’ shooting spree was, where is Paul Kersey when you need him, in reference to the New York vigilante character Charles Bronson played in “Death Wish” (1974) and four forgettable follow-ups throughout the 1980s and mid-’90s? If only someone with a license to carry a firearm had been inside Theater 9 that night. I was so upset by what Holmes did to those people that I refused to name him in my previous column. Now, having read a few opinions from those injured in the shooting to those who say we should not only pray for the victims but for Holmes as well and not give him the death penalty, has given me pause. Now I am wondering if those of us who celebrated bin Laden’s death told Sandusky to “burn in hell” as he was led off to jail


MeeT Ashley


Class of 2013

or Ashley, a senior biology student from Kempner, Texas and Honors College student, attending A&M-Commerce has inspired her to dream bigger and pursue greater career aspirations than she once thought possible.

“When I came to A&M-Commerce, I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life other than get a degree in biology,� Ashley said. “Working in a research lab here made me realize that I really want to do something that has meaning and gives back. Being here has helped shape my decision to go to grad school and become a cancer biologist.� When Ashley’s not studying for her GRE, finishing her honors thesis and preparing for graduate school, she’s enjoying the myriad of activities available on campus like concerts by the Eli Young Band concert and her favorite event, Relay for Life.

SCAN thiS QR CODE To learn more about Ashley, see her video profile and learn how Texas A&M University-Commerce can change your future.

8885".6$&%6tPS A Member of The Texas A&M University System


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