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nation&world Obama stalls plans for pipeline In a politically explosive decision, President Barack Obama on Wednesday rejected plans for a massive oil pipeline through the heart of the United States, ruling there was not enough time for a fair review before a looming deadline forced on him by Republicans. His move did not kill the project but could again delay a tough choice for him until after the November elections. The plan by Calgarybased TransCanada Corp. would carry tar sands oil from western Canada across a 1,700-mile pipeline across six U.S. states to Texas refineries.

● thursday,

january 19, 2011

● serving

texas a&m since 1893

● first paper free – additional copies $1 ● © 2011 student media

The Associated Press

inside news | 4 Embracing diversity


Astronaut Mike Fossum, Class of 1980, speaks in front of the NASA space shuttle simulator and A&M and NASA officials in December.

One small step

A luncheon celebrating the life and accomplishments of MLK brings an accomplished actor to campus.

Shuttle simulator begins move to home in Aggieland

voices | 5 Mailcall

Emily Davis

See inside for student opinion about the Wikipedia blackout on Wednesday. To voice your opinion, send your submission to

lifestyles | 6 Serving up justice Season three of “Justified” shows promise that oldfashioned law enforcement is alive and well in pop culture.

Paul Hill, director of Mission Control, and Texas A&M University President R. Bowen Loftin sign the agreement to bring the simulator to College Station.

The Battalion Texas A&M is the new home of NASA’s Shuttle Mission Simulator. The first of two shipments of the simulator arrived on the campus on Wednesday and the second will be transported in June. It is expected to be open to the public by early 2013. “It’s the only large part of the space program that is going to stay in Texas,” said John Valasek, professor of aerospace engineering. “We’re honored and excited to have this artifact.” Texas A&M gained ownership of the simulator by means of a bidding processes that compared plans for use, maintenance and accessibility. It will be housed at the University Services Building and will be on display for the public, who will be able to “fly” a simulated reentry and landing. The simulator will be in exactly the same condition as it was for the 355 astronauts who used it to train for real missions. None of the controls will be reproduc-

Halfway there The first parts of the simulator were delivered Wednesday morning. The second and final shipment will be delivered this summer.

Shuttle resting places While the shuttle simulator will remain in Texas, the actual shuttles are in California, Florida, Virginia and New York.

See Simulator on page 7



Aggies knock out Tigers at Reed, 78-52

Faculty seek healthcare solutions in architecture Justin Mathers

Mark Dore The Battalion When Missouri head coach Robin Pingeton was reminded that the Aggies will transition to the Southeastern Conference from the Big 12 Conference along with her Tigers, she had only one thing to say: “Lucky us.” A&M head coach Gary Blair won his 200th game for the program, and the No.14 Aggies (12-4, 3-2) overcame a sluggish start to best the Tigers (10-6, 0-5) for the eighth time in a row Wednesday night, 78-52. Blair downplayed the milestone, but senior guard Sydney Carter said she was proud of her coach. “I’ve been with him four years now and it’s just nice to see him reaching those milestones,” Carter said. The balanced A&M attack, featuring four


Senior Sydney Carter takes a lay up off a fast break through Mizzou defenders.

See Basketball on page 4

The Battalion As of late 2011, 52 million Americans were without health insurance. A lecture series this spring at Texas A&M seeks to ignite a new wave of ideas about how to combat that daunting figure. The lectures, which are open to the public, will cover a variety of topics including charity care clinics, Native American healthcare and building design for long-term care patients. George Mann, professor of architecture, began Wednesday’s lecture bemoaning the current plight of healthcare in the U.S. “For too long, congressmen and college professors like myself have fed themselves from the public trough while the garage owner with two employees suffers,” Mann said. “I sometimes feel guilt with the situation at present.”

James Thompson — THE BATTALION

Marjorie Petty speaks Wednesday at the first lecture of “Delivering Health Care to the Under and Uninsured.” Ward Wells, interim head of the architecture department, further explained that the future of healthcare lies at the crossSee Healthcare on page 4


Free speech is beautiful, even when it’s ugly


niversity police recently received an uncommon request. A person — or persons — plans to protest Thursday in Academic Plaza and asked for police protection. On a day when Texas A&M welcomes Emmy-winning actor and artist Harry Belafonte — whose films in the early stages of the civil rights movement challenged the status quo of racial inequality — and the Southwestern Black Student Leadership Conference, the demonstrator purportedly intends to spend the late morning and early afternoon “exposing who MLK really was and how civil rights destroyed the black family.” There is no question that such a demon-

Pg. 1-01.19.12.indd 1

stration is lawful — that backward, hateful speech at a state-funded university campus is protected by the Constitution in the same manner as speech with which we agree and hold dear. The question is, rather, how should the hundreds of students passing through Academic Plaza Thursday react to such speech? We say embrace it. Not as a philosophy or worldview deserving of serious consideration, but as a public reminder that our First Amendment freedoms remain strong today. In ordinary circumstances, one would hardly equate inhaling dense smog to a refreshing breath of fresh air, but we invite the student body and its visitors to do just that. Hateful and ignorant speech proclaimed in

public is not pleasing. It can be hurtful, insulting and disturbing. But it is nonetheless a reminder that we live in a country that values and, as communicated by the police presence, actively protects freedom of expression. That this demonstration will take place on our university’s campus should not communicate an implicit endorsement of a misguided philosophy, but a commitment to ensuring a free and open marketplace of ideas. The latter should be valued far more than offensive speech should be opposed, because the freedom to speak is more important than what anyone has to say.

EDITORIALBOARD The Battalion’s editorial opinion is determined by its Board of Opinion, with the editor in chief having final responsibility. Robert Carpenter Editor in Chief senior applied math major Jordan Williford Managing Editor senior ag journalism major Alec Goetz Planning Editor junior English major Naila Dhanani Opinion Desk Editor junior biomedical sciences major

1/18/12 11:59 PM


Robert Carpenter, Editor in Chief Jordan Williford, Managing Editor Trevor Stevens, City Editor Nalia Dhanani, Opinion Editor Chandler Smith, Sports Editor O’Dell Harmon Jr., Lifestyles Editor Kalee Bumguardner, Research Editor Joanna Raines, Religion Editor Joe Terrell, Enterprise Editor Jorge Montalvo, Graphics Chief Jay Kapadia, Photo Chief

The Mosbacher Institute FOR TRADE, ECONOMICS AND PUBLIC POLICY Proudly presents the



pagetwo Today breezy High: 73 Low: 57

Connect online

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THE BATTALION (ISSN #1055-4726) is published daily, Monday through Friday during the fall and spring semesters and Monday through Thursday during the summer session (except University holidays and exam periods) at Texas A&M University. Periodicals Postage Paid at College Station, TX 77840. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to The Battalion, Texas A&M University, 1111 TAMU, College Station, TX 77843-1111. News: The Battalion news department is managed by students at Texas A&M University in Student Media, a unit of the Division of Student Affairs. News ofďŹ ces are in The Grove, Bldg. 8901. Newsroom phone: 979-845-3313; Fax: 979-845-2647; E-mail:; website: Advertising: Publication of advertising does not imply sponsorship or endorsement by The Battalion. For campus, local, and national display advertising, call 979-845-2696. For classiďŹ ed advertising, call 979-845-0569. Advertising ofďŹ ces are in The Grove, Bldg. 8901, and ofďŹ ce hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Fax: 979845-2678.

thursday 1.19.2012


Joshua Bolten will also receive the MOSBACHER INSTITUTE GOOD GOVERNANCE AWARD and join a discussion on

Political Polarization: Its Causes and Its Cure

Making tracks

Thursday, January 26, 2012 5:30 pm Annenberg Presidential Conference Center 1000 GEORGE BUSH DRIVE WEST, COLLEGE STATION


Seating is limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Subscriptions: A part of the Student Services Fee entitles each Texas A&M student to pick up a single copy of The Battalion. First copy free, additional copies $1. Mail subscriptions are $125 per school year. To charge by Visa, MasterCard, Discover, or American Express, call 979-845-2613. Tyler Hosea — THE BATTALION

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Sophomore sprinter Ibukun Mayungbe gets set in the blocks for the 400m dash during the first home meet in 2012 on Saturday. She placed fourth overall with a time of 55.55 seconds.

Kristen Womac Management Andrew Wood Psychology Benjamin Wood Meteorology Dorothy Wood English Amber Woodin Biomedical Sciences Lauren Woodring Kinesiology Jared Wright Computer Science Jeremy Wright Agricultural Economics Laura Wright Communication Lauren Wyly Interdisciplinary Studies Britney Wynn Sport Management Christopher Wynne Petroleum Engineering Harika Yalamanchili Biology Jessica Yancey Animal Science Dustin Yates Electrical Engineering Ryan Yeatman Geology Krysten Yezak Development Educational Admin and HR Sarah Yezak Interdisciplinary Studies Tiffany Ynosencio Microbiology Chase Young Sport Management Katherine Young Spanish Lauralee Young Marketing Lauren Young onmental Geosciences Environmental ng ung ou You Y n Young en Lauren m nomics no on E Ec Economics Youn Young ey You e hale haley hale ha Shaley u tudi S Studies y St ve ty versity niversity n nive U University

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ngbl oun Yo e Youngblood auren aur L Lauren and Developmen d Lea Leadership ral L ra cultural icultural ricultural ricultura ricultur gricultur gri gricultural Agricultural nde and an ande Casey Zander sh lish gli g ngl n E English Zap Zapal Zapalac d Zapa adie Sadie i S Sci Scien Scie Scienc all Science diical dical edical omed om iom iio Bio Bi Biomedical y Tegan Zealy Tegan c ence S Science Sci al Sc al ma mal A Ani Animal k ek anek mane Zemane Zemanek Zem k Zem M rk Mark c Economics Econom ral E ur ural ultur cu c icu ic ric Agricultural A Ag

Jazmyn Wilson Bioenvironmental Sciences Jordan Wilson Interdisciplinary Studies Markay Wilson Biomedical Science Tory Wingate Bioenvironmental Sciences nkle Heather Winkle ess udies Studies rdisciplinary Studi Interdisciplinary

da Zerda Z n Zer aren Karen K n ommunication o Communication C Co Zieta Zi da Zietak nd n an a mand Amanda A Am ogy log Kinesiol Kinesiology Z a Zuehlke ra ar ara mar Tamara n on tiio ation mmunica mm Com Communication c Zuro Zu Zurovec chaell Zurovec c ichael ic Michael neerin Engineering c Engin niical c chani ec e M Me Mechanical w Zw Zwi ili Zwiercan aili ai Haili & Journal munica mmu Communications al Com ra ur ic ltur ricul Agr Agricultural

ki aul Witkowski Paul P i ering inee Engineering Eng i Civil W Joshua Witter ricultural Economics Agricultural Ryan Wolff ent Management Manageme O ation & Operations f Information Inform tersdorf Woltersdo Jordyn Woltersdorf Health Wolthoff Aly Alyson source Development eso Re Human Resource

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students | 5 gradu gra gradua g graduate grad s & grad rs ors iors seniors

ggieland aggi 576 | aggieland

Rebecca R ebecca ebe becca ecca a Abbate Abb t Hea Heal Health eal alth Ken en Abdullah Abdull dullah Phys Physics y ics M Maegan aeg aegan egan gan an n Ab Abl Able Ables A Finance W Wildli Wi Wil Wildlife iilldli l d if and Michelle dl dlife Fisheries Abney Sciences Andrea Abrams Communic ation Manageme Kelli Adam nt Informatio n Systems Emily Manageme anagement nt Informatio Adamcik n Systems Seth th h Ad Adams A dams am Spacial pacial ac c all Science cial Sc Sciences S cie Josh Joshua Joshu Jo Jos oshu hu Adudd Aduddel Aduddell A dudd duddell d uddell ud d elllll Healtth Health H Teresa T Te eresa Aguilar Human ma Agu Ag an Resource guilar g u ar sou source r ourc ource urce Develo Develop Developme De Dev lopme op n nt Krystle Kry K ry r ystle l Aguirre Inter Interdiscip nterdi nte terdi erd e rdi rd d linary Studies Omobola Ajao Chemical Engineerin g Food ScienceTeresa Aldredge and Technology Denise Communic Alex ation Monica Alexander Kinesiology Kimberlee Allen Sara MorganEnglish Allen Agribusine ss Kiley Biomedical Allred Science Brant Altenhofen Economics Matthew Biomedical Altman Science Seetha Ram Amujula Ocean Engineerin

Justin Anchorsg Petroleum Engineerin

Kellen Ancinecg Business Manageme nt Clayton Anderson Leadership and Developmen David Andersont Political Science Whitney Anderson Leadership and Developmen t Victoria Andrews




English Maritza and FisheriesAnguiano Sciences Julio Araiza Jr. Mathemati cs Carolina Aramayo Finance

Lauren Arditti Psychology Ashley Arisco Finance Cody Arnold Agricultura l Economics Crystal Arnote Accounting Kaitlyn Arrington English


campus Aggie Recruitment Committee accepting applications

Tracy Ashton Agricultura l Leadership Kaela Astley and Dev Accounting Michael Atkinson Computer Science Jonathon Ausburn Biomedical Science Jaime Austin Psychology Jamesia Austin Agricultura l Leadership Laura Avila and Develo Mathemati Michael cs Babcock Accounting Eliezer Badillo Internation Brennan al Commerce Bailey Biomedical Science James Baker Agriculture Leadership Andrea and Developme Bakke Biomedical Science Mary Baldwin Psychology Zachary Baldwin Wildlife and Fisheries Nathan Sciences Ball Civil Engineerin g Chrystel Ballard Sociology Mary Ballenger Communic ation John Bandas Ocean Engineerin g Kyle Banner Electrical Engineerin Sarah Banschbac g h English

Aggie Recruitment Committee, currently accepting applications for new members, is a student organization that holds two conferences each year on campus to recruit high school juniors and seniors to Aggieland. Michelle Gardner, advisor to Aggie Recruitment Committee through the Student Government Association, said that Aggies who live on campus can also host high school students during the conferences each semester. Any students interested in hosting can apply at, and applications are due by 5 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 7.

Mary Anne Internation Baring al Studies Megan Baringer Environme ntal Design Blanton Barkemey Industrial er Distributio Ashlie Barker n Psychology Lindsey Barlow English Alexander Computer Barnes Engineerin Mackenzie g Barnhart Human Resource Developme Monica Barone nt Psychology Jonathan Baros Agricultura l Economics Kristina Barsten Biomedical Engineerin g Sarah Bass Communic ation Mark Batis Nutritiona l Catherine Sciences Baxter Chemistry Brock Beard Manageme Staci Beatynt Human Resource Developme nt

seniors &



| 537

CLASS OF ’12: Miss your graduation portrait last fall?

texas Two still hospitalized after school bus crash

FEB. 13-16

TEMPLE — One child and an adult remain hospitalized in critical condition after a Central Texas collision between a school bus and a delivery truck. A spokeswoman with Scott & White Memorial Hospital in Temple says two other children have been discharged after treatment for their injuries, a day after the wreck near Temple. Academy school district Superintendent Kevin Sprinkles says one student and the driver were in critical condition. Investigators say the accident happened when the hardware truck clipped the Academy school bus, knocking the bus on its side. More than 30 people were hurt.

will be your last chance to have it made for Texas A&M’s 2012 Aggieland yearbook.

To schedule your portrait appointment, go to www. thorntonstudio. com. Then go to School Portraits, Scheduling, click New User, complete form with Registration Password: tamu, click submit and login; or call 1-800883-9449, or see the photographer Monday, Feb. 13, in Room 308 of Rudder Tower. There is no charge to get your senior or graduate student section photo in Texas A&M University’s 110th yearbook.

The Associated Press

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howtoapply If you are interested in writing or contributing content in The Battalion, apply at, or call 845-3313. The Battalion welcomes any Texas A&M student interested in writing for the arts, campus, metro or sports staffs to try out. We particularly encourage freshmen and sophomores to apply, but students may try out regardless of semester standing or major. No previous journalism experience is necessary.

corrections The Battalion welcomes readers’ comments about published information that may require correction. We will pursue your concern to determine whether a correction needs to be published. Please contact us at editor@

Engineering Career Fair Presented by Student Engineers’ Council Date: Tuesday, January 24, 2012 Time: 9:00 am - 4:00 pm Location: Reed Arena Shuttle service provided from Zachry to Reed Ž


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For more information go to

1/18/12 9:19 PM

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1/17/12 4:09:04 PM


page 4 thursday 1.19.2012



Emmy-winner to speak at MLK event Jonathon Webb The Battalion

ed nt e a W lp tim He artp

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Tickets For ticket information, call 845-1234 or email tickets@msc.tamu. edu. For more information, visit MLK.html


By the numbers

Continued from page 1

â—— The Aggies

University Dr.


Find us on facebook at:

A&M Campus

In its fifth year running, the Woodson Black Awareness Committee, WBAC, will celebrate the accomplishments of the civil rights movement with the Martin Luther King Jr. Breakfast on Thursday. The MLK Breakfast will allow students, faculty and administration to reflect on King’s life, legacy and accomplishments. Keynote speakers include Cornel West, Angela Davis and Michael Eric Dyson. Headlining the event, singer and songwriter Harry Belafonte will speak about his experiences as an activist in the 1950s and ’60s. Gabrielle Royal, Memorial Student Center’s WBAC Chair, said Belafonte’s contributions to civil rights, activism and humanitarian efforts played a large role in the decision to invite him to A&M for the event this year. “Harry Belafonte has contributed to the fight for civil rights and has become a well known figure in the history of African-descendent people,� Royal said. In addition to being known for his career in singing and acting, Harry Belafonte was a confidant of Martin Luther King Jr. “We are confident that Belafonte’s strong relationship with Martin Luther King Jr. will yield a strong message to the students, faculty and community members present,� Royal said. The WBAC initially began as the Black Awareness Committee in 1969 as an ad-hoc operating

committee in the Memorial Student Center. The organization’s objectives were to address issues directly affecting black students at Texas A&M and to provide cultural programming for the entire University community. It is their mission to provide community-building and enriching experiences that enhance the understanding of the African culture, its contributions and impact on society. The event will be held in Rudder Theater and begins at 5 p.m. Student tickets are available now at the Memorial Student Center Box Office for $9. Faculty, staff and guest tickets are $14. Following the breakfast, there will be a reception in which Belafonte will sign copies of his newly released book, “My Song.� Organizers said the forum is an important event to remind individuals how far the African community has come. It is a time to celebrate the vision and legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. “It gets the campus and community acquainted with members of the movement that they may never be able to see again,� said Valecia Battle, WBAC’s director of Black History Month. “It gets people fired up to act.� Freshmen general studies major Darrell Donaldson plans to attend the breakfast and looks forward to the book signing. “I have been looking forward to this event ever since I heard Harry Belafonte was attending,� Donaldson said. “This event will share a portion of Black American culture with the entire campus.�

players who average 10 points per game or more, displayed itself once more. Carter and forward Adaora Elonu tied for the team lead in scoring with 16, and senior guard Tyra White finished close behind with 15. Carter said that when Elonu is playing well, the team adds another needed threat to go with White and herself. “This trio right here has to get it done for our team,� Carter said. “With us having balanced scoring and each of us being a threat each game, it makes us hard to guard. We complement each other so well out there because we have such great chemistry.� Elonu’s scoring spark came despite foul trouble that plagued her throughout a game. She stayed on the court only 21 of the 40 minutes. Blair said that Elonu’s midrange game helps set her apart. “Adaora does the little things well. She is steady,� Blair said. “She knows where her game is; she has the midrange shot that most post players don’t have.� Grouping White, Carter and Elonu with senior guard Skylar Collins and senior forward Kelsey Assarian, Blair praised the leadership of the senior class. “That might be one of the best five that we’ve ever had graduate here at one time,� Blair said. Missouri rushed out to a 14-7 early advantage before the Aggies used a 12-0 run midway through the first half to take the lead for good. Of the slow start, Elonu said that the team’s mental preparation might not have been adequate. “We weren’t ready to play, and I think that it showed with the way that it started,� Elonu said. “We came out a little too relaxed.� Missouri’s leading scorer Christine Flores, second in the Big 12 Conference in scoring coming into Wednesday’s contest, again led her team with 13 points, but fell well short of her 19.1 per


registered 17 steals, a season high

â—— A&M forced 25 Missouri turnovers, also a season high

◗ A&M’s 19 assists was the team’s second-highest tally this season

â—— The Aggies limited the Tigers to a 27.3 ďŹ eld goal percentage in the second half


Senior Tyra White takes a jump shot against Mizzou defense. game average. Pingeton called A&M’s defensive pressure “relentless.� “That kind of defensive pressure wears on you, and that showed in the second half,� Pingeton said. “They really got aggressive.� Ranked first in the Big 12 in turnover differential prior to the game, A&M forced 25 turnovers — 10 by Missouri freshman guard Kyley Simmons — while surrendering only 12. Carter harassed Simmons all game but said that her freshman classification meant nothing. “I respect each of my opponents and I take so much passion and pride into playing defense that it doesn’t matter if you’re a freshman or a fifth year senior,� Carter said. “I’m going to give every-

body the same miserable treatment. We held them to 19 points in the second half and I think that says a lot about the effort we’re putting forth on the defensive end.� Carter said this win will give the team confidence heading into a road game Saturday against the Kansas Jayhawks, as they hope to maintain recent momentum. “We have to respect Kansas because they’ve been playing well in conference,� Carter said. “We need to be the aggressor and come in with that punchfirst attitude and make sure that we are the ones doing the punching and we’re not getting hit.�

patient’s bill of rights, allowing young adults to stay on their parents’ health plan until age 26, protection for healthcare consumers against annual limits and discrimination based on pre-existing conditions and increased state power to prevent drastic rate increases. Craig Blakely, dean of the School of Rural Public Health, said U.S. health standards rank relatively low when compared to other industrialized nations. He used the city of Detroit to show what the combined disciplines of architecture and health could accomplish. Blakely noted that Detroit, in 1952, was the 4th largest city in America, a spot now held by Houston, Texas. The median home price in Detroit has now plummeted to $7,100. The 2011 median home price in College Station was $150,200. “When mayor Bing began his Detroit works project in 2010, the city was in decay and the infrastructure was nearly destroyed,� Blakely said. “But the collaboration of urban planners, coordinating city services around vacant housing, and health officials coordinating population wellness and sanitation has already

started to reverse these effects.� Zhouzhou Su, a graduate student of architecture, explained that currently no projects are in place, but the series hopes to inspire architecture and health students to create programs based on the ideas and information the lectures have to offer. The Wright Gallery of the Langford Building will host the weekly event that features A&M professors alongside distinguished guest-speakers from across the healthcare industry. The lectures are the result of a long-term collaboration between the Texas A&M Health Science Center School of Rural Public Health and the College of Architecture. “There was a lot of collaboration with big firms in both industries that will be here,� Su said. “It’s really an idea forum, but it’s also a chance for students to network with companies and other students.� The series will continue Wednesdays throughout the semester on the second floor of Langford A building. Next week’s lecture will cover “culture, design and long-term care in the 21st century.�

Text “PPD� to 48121 to receive study information

Healthcare Continued from page 1

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roads of intelligently planning physical facilities and public policy. Wednesday’s lecture featured guest (corner of 29th St. & Briarcrest) speaker Marjorie Petty, director of the 979-776-0999 Department of Health and Human Services’ region 6, which includes Texas, OPEN Oklahoma, New Mexico, Arkansas and 7 DAYS A WEEK! Louisiana. Petty said that even the U.S. still has sizeable health problems that need attention. • Monday thru Saturday “Region 6 still has a sizeable infant Ev st nd en t Packages 1 Session 6:30, 2 Session 8:00 mortality problem, and Texas ranks first & Pl st an ni ng Available • Sunday - 1 Session 6:00pm, in the nation in the number of uninsured nd 2 Session 8:00pm 774-7266 – 26 percent of our population,â€? Petty • 1/2 price paper on Thursday said. “Fortunately the recent healthcare • $10.00 1/2 price FortuNet Electronics reform has made changes to the system • Thurs. - Free Beer (limit 2) which will benefit you as students right • $2500 session play now.â€? The 2010 Affordable Care Act, which • 1/2 price full pay Monday, Wednesday and Friday has taken effect in stages during the past two years, introduced a number of alLARGE NON-SMOKING ROOM terations to how healthcare providers Great Food • Security • Unlimited Pull & Event Tabs and Much More! interact with their patients. Discussed 7X.SWITL &VE^SW:EPPI] &YFFE1SSVI 7X.SWITL during the lecture, the act includes a 1IQSVMEP %9&$6$ 'EXLSPMG 'EXLSPMG )POW +VSYT-RG 'LYVGL 7GLSSP

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EDITOR’SNOTE The opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by the various authors and forum participants in this paper do not necessarily reflect those of Texas A&M University, The Battalion or its staff.

MAILCALL GUESTCOLUMNS Make your opinion known by submitting Mail Call or guest columns to The Battalion. Mail

call must be fewer than 200 words and include the author’s name, classification, major and phone number. Staff and faculty must include title. Guest columns must be fewer than 700 words. All submissions should focus on issues not personalities, become property of The Battalion and are subject to editing for style, clarity and space concerns. Anonymous letters

will be read, but not printed. The Battalion will print only one letter per author per month. No mail call will appear in The Battalion’s print or online editions before it is verified. Direct all correspondence to: Editor in chief of The Battalion (979) 845-3315 |


An Aggie welcome

thebattalion 01.19.2012 page5

From Chris Dachniwsky, senior history major.

President R. Bowen Loftin: Conference offers opportunity Howdy! As we get into the rhythm of a new year and a new semester, I would like to welcome back all of our students, faculty and staff. I would also like to extend a special Aggie welcome to a group of student leaders from across the country – representing institutions from nearly 20 states, and nearly 50 colleges and universities in Texas – who are with us this week as participants in the Southwestern Black Student Leadership Conference. Since our founding in 1876, Texas A&M has been known for developing leaders of character dedicated to serving the greater good. Since 1989, we have been proud to host the SBSLC, one of the nation’s largest and most prestigious gatherings of student leaders. I hope that each of us – as ambassadors for Texas A&M – will take full advantage of the many ways these student leaders enrich our campus community while they are here. And I hope that those of you who are visiting from other universities will make the most of your time here. By setting aside institutional rivalries to share your ideas and best practices with your peers from across the country, you will create a framework that will strengthen your commitment to excellence and help chart your path – and our nation’s path – into the future. Thank you for being with us this week to enrich our campus community through the different experiences, perspectives and backgrounds that you bring. We hope you enjoy your time in Aggieland. Gig ’em! R. Bowen Loftin ’71 President


Black Student Alliance Council: Follow Aggie values, respect others In response to notification of an expressive activity demonstrating how civil rights ruined the black family to be held on our campus, Black Student Alliance Council has composed an official statement: Taking a proactive approach, we would like to say that the demonstrator is not affiliated with Texas A&M University. He is not a student but a matured individual with freedom of speech. Being that Texas A&M is a state institution, he has the right to express himself on what is deemed to be public space on campus. We do

not support his actions. Keep in mind the core values we as Aggies adhere to: Excellence, Integrity, Leadership, Loyalty, Respect, and Selfless Service. We encourage everyone to use this opportunity to do his or her own research and gain knowledge on the subject matter at hand. Thank You, Black Student Alliance Council Southwestern Black Student Leadership Conference National Pan-Hellenic Council


Excellence uniting Culture, Education, and Leadership National Association for the Advancement of Colored People Cultural Awareness and Diversity Expansion Team Maximizing Educational Development through Academic and Leadership Skills The MSC, Carter G. Woodson Black Awareness Committee Student Government Association, Vice President of Diversity, Dan Gutierrez

The Stop Online Piracy Act, and its Senate cousin, the Protect Intellectual Property Act, are grave threats to our most fundamental freedoms disguised as honest attempts to protect starving artists, or so Hollywood lobbyists would have you believe. The Battalion’s front-page article on Wednesday (“Piracy bill causes Wiki blackout”) regarding these bills demonstrated the exact misunderstandings of basic Internet principles that these lobbyists have spent $91 million to perpetuate. Opponents to these bills are not supporters of Internet piracy. Many are the very copyright holders, small-business owners and webmasters that these bills purport to protect. The Internet has functioned since its foundation as a vehicle for small businesses to grow beyond the means otherwise available to them. The Battalion’s article represented today’s blackout protests as “powerful enemies” making a futile effort to resist the restriction of freedoms on the Internet. This is untrue. The powerful enemies are the Hollywood lobbyists spending freely to suffocate Internet businesses, and the protests are already finding success. Senators Marco Rubio of Florida and Roy Blunt of Missouri, both co-sponsors of PIPA, have already withdrawn their support for the bill and it appears as if the Internet will survive for a while longer.


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1/18/12 9:22 PM


page 6 thursday 1.19.2012



Jared Baxter: Modern law meets Old West style enforcement


uesday night I strolled into my living room, commandeered the TV remote and switched the channel straight to FX.

“So, this is what we’re watching tonight, huh?” my roommate asked, as though there was suddenly no other choice. He knew what was about to happen. It was time for the season three premiere of “Justified”, the return of not only one of the most acclaimed dramas on air, but the modern day cowboy, Raylan Givens, as well. The U.S. deputy marshal, novelist Elmore Leonard’s creation, played superbly by actor Timothy Olyphant, exudes a balance of coolness and anger akin to that of John Wayne or Clint Eastwood. His appearance is unmistakable thanks to a trademark white Stetson cowboy hat. And his demeanor —

that slick sense of justice — completes the lawman archetype. “Not much call for a cowboy these days,” says a hired-hand convict in the season premiere. “You would be surprised,” Givens replies, with all his Eastern Kentucky charm. When “Justified” debuted two years ago, its initial run consisted of Givens gunning down one villain-of-the-week after the next, occasionally tangling with his once coal mining friend turned crime lord, Boyd Crowder , played by Walton Goggins. It was quality entertainment enhanced by a southern vibe and Leonard’s nuanced

dialogue. But come season two, the crime drama really flexed its creative juices and featured a more overarching, engrossing storyline. Givens faced the likes of Kentucky’s Dixie Mafia. He went head-to-head against the corrupt Bennett family, headed by matriarch Mags Bennett. The stakes were higher, as Givens found himself involved with shaping the very economic future in his home county of Harlan. The crime drama proposed serious cultural questions: How does one deal with a northerner coming in to take hold of a southern region’s coal business? When there are thousands of acres of Kentucky fields filled with marijuana, how does a lawman stop those seeking control of the illegal trade? When family ties and feuds date back

decades, how does actual change occur? “That stuff is what makes our show work at its best — when it feels very specific to 2011, but then feels rich with the history of who these people are, and where they came from, and the things they believe in,” Olyphant said to Entertainment Weekly. “So, it’s not just about good guys and bad guys.” “Justified” is more than just a man in a hat who happens to resemble the cowboy of old. And if you’re entering this semester looking for a show that might peak your interest — maybe even to the point of watching religiously — then lock and load with the deputy marshal. As for my roommate who got stuck watching, I may have taken control of the living room for an hour, but no one forced him to stay the whole way through.



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1/18/12 8:53 PM

news thebattalion

page 7 thursday 1.19.2011

Hilton College Station South Asian Wedding Open House Sunday, January 22, 2012 2:30pm—4:30pm

The first shipment of the shuttle simulator arrived Wednesday; the second will arrive in June. Once installed, the simulator will be used in classrooms, and it will give students an experience of what it’s like to pilot a real spacecraft.

The honor of your presence is requested at the Hilton College Station South Asian Wedding Open House. Brides & Grooms along with their family and friends are welcome to attend this complimentary event. Please visit us on FACEBOOK or e-mail ALACKEY@HILTONCS.COM to make reservations for this exclusive event. COURTESY PHOTO

Simulator Continued from page 1

tions. For this reason, the simulator must be delivered in two shipments. “[The simulator] has to be shipped in two shipments mostly because of its complexity,” said Grant Atkinson, aerospace engineering graduate student and the student primarily coordinating the transport. “It’s a big machine. It takes up about two floors when it’s running.” The first shipment will transport all the smaller components of the simulator, such as computers and avionics. During the second shipment, the much larger body of the simulator will be transported. Along with being open to the public, the simulator will be used as a teaching tool. “It’s going to be used in classes, and it will be up to the students and the professors how it’s used,” Atkinson said. “It will give students an experience of what it’s like to pilot a spacecraft.” Even with the doors closing on the space shuttle program, the simulator is still an ex-

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tremely valuable piece of equipment. “It is a historic artifact from the space program. I wouldn’t even begin to know how much it’s worth,” Valasek said. “It’s priceless.“ Atkinson said that, considering the immense value of the simulator, he’s proud that A&M will be its new home. “I’m excited we were recognized as worthy enough to have this, and I think we’ll get a lot of use out of it for years to come,” Atkinson said. Kristin Ehrhardt, junior aerospace engineering major, said she was disappointed that A&M didn’t receive an actual shuttle, but getting the simulator did soften the blow. “We were disappointed when we weren’t getting the shuttle,” she said. “So a lot of us were so excited when were found out about the simulator. We didn’t forget, but we were happy.” Ehrhardt also said the simulator will be a good educational tool. “I think it’s awesome because it’s at least the actual simulator,” Ehrhardt said. “We already have the airplane simulator and it’s great for classes to have an additional instrument.”

(if you haven’t)

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1/18/12 10:42 PM

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1/17/12 4:09:32 PM

The Battalion: January 19, 2012  
The Battalion: January 19, 2012