VOL. CLXXVI NO. 78
MOSTLY CLOUDY HIGH 58 LOW 42
HOLZER: RUSH AND ROSH HASHANAH PAGE 6
LANG: THE POLITICIZED COURT PAGE 6
KIM: AMERICA, SOME THINGS AREN’T DEBATABLE PAGE 7
ZEHNER: THE HIDDEN OCCUPATION PAGE 7
REVIEW: ‘CHERRY’ BY NICO WALKER AN HONEST STORY OF ADDICTION PAGE 8
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THURSDAY, OCTOBER 10, 2019
HANOVER, NEW HAMPSHIRE
Preparations underway Yearly crime data show increase in for bonfire, other reports of sexual assault in 2018 Homecoming events B y AMBER BHUTTA The Dartmouth
As Homecoming weekend approaches, preparations and precautions alike are underway. Departments across campus have coordinated with each other and the town of Hanover to bring back previous traditions, introduce new ones and conform to safety standards. “It’s not just a student event, it’s not just an alumni event and it’s not just a community event,” said
vice president for alumni relations Cheryl Bascomb ’82. “It’s all of those things together, which means a lot of communication and planning is involved early on.” According to conferences and events executive director Ernest Kiefer, such planning was especially important this year as Homecoming will take place earlier than in previous years. “It’s much more rushed, SEE HOMECOMING PAGE 5
Sorority rush this fall sees 237 bids extended B y MARCO ALLEN The Dartmouth
The number of bids extended this fall during sorority recruitment remained fairly consistent with the number of bids extended last year. This fall, 237 total bids were extended to the rushing class, compared to 239 bids from 2018, which in turn represented a significant drop from the 277 bids extended in 2017 and 2016. Of the 372 women who registered for this year’s fall rush
process, 63.7 percent received a bid, a slight increase from last year’s rate of 62.2 percent. Both numbers represented a decline from 71 percent in 2017. According to Inter-Sorority Council president Kenya Jacob ’20, 124 women withdrew from the recruitment process this year, a decrease from 139 withdrawals last year. According to Office of Greek Life director Brian Joyce, 33 bids were extended SEE RUSH PAGE 3
MICHAEL LIN/THE DARTMOUTH SENIOR STAFF
The College’s annual Clery Report shows an increase in reported rapes from 2017 to 2018.
B y SOLEIL GAYLORD The Dartmouth
On Oct. 1, Dartmouth released its annual Security and Fire Safety, or “Clery,” Report for 2018. This year’s report, which encompasses incidences from on-campus property, residential facilities, non-campus properties and public properties, saw an increase in reported rapes, statutory rape and dating violence while reports of liquor law violations, hate crimes and aggravated assaults decreased. Despite a number downward trends, reports of rape increased; 34 rapes were reported in 2018 compared to 24 in 2017. Reports of fondling, statutory rape and
dating violence also increased, though by not as high of a margin. Dartmouth’s Title IX office coordinator Kristi Clemens said believes that the rise in rape reports can be explained by more people actually reporting incidents. Under the federal Clery Act, the report must include crimes from the year they were reported, not the year in which they occurred. In light of a recent lawsuit against Dartmouth involving the sexual misconduct of three former professors in the psychological and brain sciences department, alumni may have felt empowered to come forward and report their cases from previous years, according to Clemens.
Additionally, reporting typically increases when there is a change of staffing within the Title IX office, she said. Clemens, who became the College’s Title IX Coordinator in April of 2018, said she believes that the changing leadership could have impacted the rate of reporting. “People tend to decide that it is time for them to report for a variety of reasons,” Clemens said. College spokesperson Diana Lawrence echoed a similar sentiment about reporting. “We have not seen any indication that incidents are increasing,” Lawrence wrote SEE CLERY PAGE 3
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 10, 2019
THE DARTMOUTH NEWS
Presidential candidate Michael Bennet talks health care, education B y ELIZA GALLANT The Dartmouth
Democratic presidential candidate Michael Bennet visited Dartmouth on Tuesday night for a campaign event at the Hopkins Center. Speaking on issues including health care, education policy and economic mobility, Bennet addressed a crowd of around 70 students and community members. Bennet, a U.S. senator from Colorado, is one of 19 major Democratic candidates vying to run against President Donald Trump in 2020. National and state polling show Bennet polling between zero and one percent nationally and in New Hampshire. Bennet raised $2.1 million in the third quarter and he has pledged to continue running until at least the New Hampshire primary. One of the most pressing issues at the event was whether Bennet supports “Medicare for All.” According to Bennet, one of the main issues of our healthcare system is its cost, which he said is “twice as expensive as any other industrialized country.” Bennet said that his “Medicare X” plan, which offers a public insurance option for those without private insurance, will give 100 percent of Americans health care much faster than independent Vermont senator and presidential candidate Bernie Sanders’ “Medicare for All” plan. He added that Americans will never give up the choice to have private or public healthcare when making decisions about the health of their family members. “My bill, Medicare X, would give everyone in America the choice of whether they want to stay on their private insurance if they have it or buy a public option,” Bennet said. “People are not going to give up the choice to be able to decide for their families whether they want to
have nonprofit or private or a public benefit, and they are not going to do it if they know that they’re going to have to pay between $31 and $33 trillion in taxes.” Bennet emphasized the desire to get Trump out of office, noting that Democrats need to find a way to win over those who voted for Trump. Bennet believes that the people who voted for Trump did so because they were in desperate need of a change. “This isn’t just about unifying Democrats, but we also have to win back some of the nine million people who voted twice for Barack Obama and once for Donald Trump,” Bennet said. “People did this because they were so desperate for change because they are so worried about what this economy is doing. We have had 40 to 50 years of no economic mobility for nine out of 10 Americans.” When asked about the education inequality gap in America, Bennet advocated for an education plan where the federal government would help fund local communities to help address the inequities in public school funding. A former superintendent of the Denver public school system, Bennet stressed the importance of education reform and the power that higher education can have on individuals. He also stated that he improved the achievement gap in Denver and raised the high school graduation rate there. “It’s time to stop treating our education system as if it’s a creature of the 19th or 18th century and think about what it should look like in the 21st century,” Bennet stated. “Our education system is reinforcing inequality instead of liberating it.” Bennet emphasized the need to increase teachers’ wages, saying that teachers need to be paid “like the professionals that they are.” During the event, Bennet argued
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LORRAINE LIU /THE DARTMOUTH STAFF
Bennet spoke to an audience of around 70 students and community members at the Hop.
that American democracy is no longer functional. Bennet told the young people in the room that “they deserve to know that there were times in our democracy when it actually worked.” B e n n e t d i re c t l y c r i t i c i ze d P re s i d e n t Tr u m p, s ay i n g h e “re presents a ter rible, living
breathing manifestation of our worst impulses.” He emphasized that the only way to beat Trump is for every single eligible voter on Dartmouth’s campus and in New Hampshire to go to the polls. James Hood ’23, who attend the event, said that Bennet appears similar to former Vice President and
presidential candidate Joe Biden. “I see him as a moderate, comparative to Biden, and I think they have similar principles. Bennet is a good alternative,” Hood stated. Joshua Freitag ’23 praised Bennet, saying he “answered questions well and really got to the meat of important topics.”
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 10, 2019
THE DARTMOUTH NEWS
Higher reporting not necessarily indicative of more assaults, officials say FROM CLERY PAGE 1
in a email statement. “More reports do not mean that the prevalence of sexual assault is higher; it seems counterintuitive, but if people are reporting it means they trust the system to handle it appropriately, they know the resources are there, and they want to be part of a culture that effects change.” Lawrence cited additional factors such as more trust in reporting mechanisms, Clemens’ role as Title IX coordinator and reports inspired by the #MeToo movement — including against the three former PBS professors — as causes for the increase in reports. “We recognize that effectively addressing sexual misconduct requires courageous survivors coming forward to make a report,” Lawrence wrote. “We are committed to honoring their bravery and doing everything we can to eradicate sexual misconduct from our campus.” Diana Whitney ’95, a leader the advocacy group Dartmouth
C o m mu n i t y a g a i n s t G e n d e r Harassment and Sexual Violence, expressed hope that the increased reports can be attributed to better reporting mechanisms but said she is still concerned about the statistics. “We can hope and assume it is because of an increase in reporting,” Whitney said, noting that is hard to pinpoint specific reasons for the increase in reports. Whitney said the statistic on rape is especially worrying, stating that reports often only reflect about 20 percent of the rapes that occur. “If we take the statistic in Clery, and multiply it by five, we get rape numbers in the 200s, and that is really disturbing,” Whitney said. She also took issue with the word “fondling” used in the report. “It is a very offensive term, making assault seem more friendly and harmless than it actually is,” Whitney said, calling upon Dartmouth to change this descriptor. There are numerous groups and initiatives working to decrease sexual
violence on campus, including the Title IX office, the Dartmouth Bystander Initiative, the Student and Presidential Committee on Sexual Assault, Movement Against Violence (which has recently been absorbed by the Dartmouth Sexual Violence Prevention Project), the Sexual Assault Peer Alliance and DCGHSV. The College faced significant controversy on the issue starting in 2017 after three professors in the PBS department were investigated and found responsible for sexual misconduct. Several survivors of the misconduct sued the College in Nov. 2018 and subsequently reached a monetary settlement with the College this summer. In light of those events, Dartmouth launched the Campus Climate Culture Initiative, also known as C3I, in Jan. 2019 and created a unified Sexual Misconduct Policy, which went into effect this term. “We are equally committed to working with all members of our community as we expand our efforts through our Campus Climate and Culture Initiative to strengthen the
safety and inclusivity of our learning environment,” Lawrence wrote. The 1990 Clery Act mandated annual publication of crime statistics for all colleges and universities that participate in federal financial aid programs. Statistics from other Ivy League institutions, such as Brown University, Columbia University, Harvard University and Princeton University, showed downward or stable trends in the incidence of rape on campus. Princeton’s reporting has remained relatively stable — 13 rapes in 2016, 12 in 2017 and 13 in 2018; Harvard saw five fewer rapes in 2018, while Brown saw three fewer rapes in 2018. Columbia reported four more rapes in 2018. However, like Dartmouth, some schools saw larger increases in the number of reported rapes. Michigan State University’s Clery Report contained a record 933 rapes. This statistic has been attributed to a highly publicized case involving USA Gymnastics coach and doctor at MSU, Larry Nassar, who was found guilty
and sentenced to 60 years in prison on child pornography charges. At Dartmouth, individuals can report crimes through outlets such as Dartmouth Safety and Security, the Hanover Police Department, the Title IX Office or the LiveSafe app. The 2018 report shows no incidences of motor vehicle theft, negligent or non-negligent manslaughter, incest, robbery, arson or illegal weapons possession. Liquor law violations leading to disciplinary referral had the most incidences of all of the College’s crime statistics but remained nearly unchanged from the previous year: 272 cases were reported in 2018 compared 273 in 2017. Notably, liquor law violations that led to arrests were down: 37 in 2018 compared to 46 in 2017. Hate crimes also substantially declined; eight were reported in 2018 compared to 14 reported the previous year. Aggravated assault, burglary, domestic violence, stalking and drug law violations experienced slight declines.
Less than two-thirds of women’s rush participants received bids FROM RUSH PAGE 1
at Alpha Phi sorority, 36 at Alpha Xi Delta sorority, 36 at Chi Delta sorority, three at Epsilon Kappa Theta sorority, 20 at Kappa Delta sorority, 39 at Kappa Delta Epsilon sorority, 39 at Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority and 31 at Sigma Delta sorority. EKT is also currently still adding additional members through its continuous open bidding process, which immediately follows the formal recruitment process. EKT was required — for the second year in a row — to participate in the formal recruitment process by the ISC instead of solely conducting an independent “shakeout” process that the sorority used from 2012 to 2017. Last year, the ISC cited inclusivity as the reason for this change. AXiD, Chi Delt, KDE and Kappa all saw a small increase in the size of their incoming classes, while APhi, EKT, KD and Sigma Delt all saw a slight decrease in the size of their incoming classes.
The rush process starts informally in the spring with pre-rush events, some of which are open to campus and others that are invitation-only, according to Francesca Wood ’22. She added that this creates a “weird dynamic once rush actually starts.” This year, the ISC slightly altered changes that were implemented last year that centered on the requirement that potential new members visit all eight houses, Wood said. Whereas previously potential new members had to stay at each house for any stretch of time between 30 minutes to an hour and a half, they now stay at each house for a standard 55 minutes during the first round of the recruitment process. Wood, who received a bid from Sigma Delt, praised the change in time requirements. “It used to be messy since different time slots would [lead to] different attendance rates, but that wasn’t the case this year,” Wood said. Wood, however, also said that the
process of rushing is “definitely rough” at times. She added that the process can feel “toxic,” especially when one is not called back to a house that they really liked. She also criticized the requirement that students go to all eight houses, adding that eight hours in one week is “a big time commitment.” She also noted that it was “annoying” that women rushing sororities had to pay a small fee to rush, whereas men rushing fraternities did not. Nonetheless, Sylvia Hipp ’22, who withdrew from the recruitment process this fall, said that she enjoyed the process of going all eight houses. “Being forced to go to all eight of the houses showed that each house offered a little bit of everything, and it challenged our preconceived notions of the houses,” Hipp said. After the first round, each PNM ranks the three houses they least prefer. During the second round, PNMs can be called back to a maximum of five houses, including those that they did
not rank highly. Wood said that this process felt awkward because PNMs have to rank houses that they didn’t necessarily want to join. Preference night follows rounds one and two, during which PNMs can be called back to a maximum of two houses. The next day, PNMs receive their bids from their recruitment counselors. Hipp, who withdrew her involvement in the recruiting process after being called back to a house she did not want during pref night, said that in the middle of the rush process, a policy implemented last year after sorority rush was changed. The new change allows women to drop rush after being called back to their pref-night houses and still be able to rush in the winter rather than in the following fall. Hipp said she plans to rush again in the winter term. Both Wood and Hipp expressed some concerns about the way that an
algorithm that is used to match PNMs to houses is discussed on campus. Hipp said that it is not very clear how the algorithm works and that some fellow members of her class think the system is unfair. Before this year’s sorority rush numbers were released, Jacob said that efforts were made to increase the percentage of bids given and change the culture of the rush process after last year’s rush process, which saw a decrease of nine percent in the number of bids extended. “I’m not really sure how [rush] morphed into such a high-stress situation,” Jacob said. “It shouldn’t be like that.” Jacob added that if this year’s rush process resulted in another year in which under two-thirds of PNMs ended up with bids, something needed to change. “Those numbers are way too low to indicate a healthy recruitment process,” Jacob said.
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 10, 2019
THE DARTMOUTH EVENTS
CASEY SMERCZYNSKI ’20
TODAY 10:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Symposium: “Symposium on the Paris Commune,” sponsored by the Leslie Center for the Humanities and the French and Italian Department, Hopkins Faculty Lounge and Carpenter 013.
4:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Forum: “Antisemitism Resurges: Why? What to Do?” sponsored by the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Dartmouth, Oopik Auditorium, Class of 1978 Life Sciences Center.
4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.
Lecture: “Petsas House, Mycenae: Pottery Production and the Palatial Economy of the 14thc. BCE,” with University of California at Berkeley professor Kim Shelton, sponsored by the Department of Classics, Rockefeller Center, Room 002.
TOMORROW 5:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Lecture: “Towards an Anti-caste and Abolitionist Epistemology for Environmental Justice,” with American University assistant professor Malini Ranganathan, Silsby 028.
8:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m.
Viewing: “Public Astronomical Observing” sponsored by the Department of Physics and Astronomy, Shattuck Observatory.
FROM HOLZER PAGE 6
components to the Jewish High Holy Days, to paint a purely somber portrait would be a misrepresentation. During Rosh Hashanah, Jews turn the page to a new year, welcoming its challenges and successes by eating apples and honey a symbol of the fruitful times ahead,and sounding the shofar, a ram’s horn blown at the end of Yom Kippur. With a new year comes exciting changes and opportunities. For many students on campus, rush ended with a shofar blast. Many will reap positive changes in their social life, a newfound community and meaningful connections with
upperclassmen through affiliation with a Greek house. One chapter closes, and a newer, sweeter one begins. This new chapter, however, still lies in the same book. Rush, like Rosh Hashanah, is not a restart. Affiliation with a Greek community does not and should not involve a change in person. While it may give Dartmouth students the tools to forge a new chapter of their life, full of newfound friends, social spaces and connections, the individual must not forget the broader picture: the chapters that have already been sealed and those yet to come.
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THURSDAY, OCTOBER 10, 2019
THE DARTMOUTH NEWS
Bonfire will be extinguished by firefighters if attempts to touch occur FROM HOMECOMING PAGE 1
but the nice thing about this year is that there’s no major changes the way there were last year, so we’re able to follow a sort of template even with the shorter time frame,” Kiefer said. As Kiefer and director of student involvement Anna Hall explained, a few additions have been made to the traditional bonfire ceremony even with the earlier time frame, including lighting elements on the buildings near the bonfire, a large cake to commemorate Dartmouth’s 250th anniversary and a photo station on the northeast corner of the Green. Numerous other events will take place over Homecoming weekend, including the annual Late Night Breakfast at Collis and football and women’s rugby games. “Homecoming is important for the entire community,” Hall said. “Especially for first-years, the bonfire is the primary event — but in addition, there are also other things going on, athletic and otherwise.” For the bonfire itself, much of the structure will mirror last year’s parameters, according to bonfire build committee co-chair Antonina Zakorchemna ’23. She added that she and her co-chair, Katie Glance ’23, had to familiarize themselves with an 80-page booklet detailing how to build the bonfire before construction began. These guidelines changed drastically last year when the College had to alter the bonfire’s height and structure in response to the town of Hanover’s
safety concerns. “This is the second year of the new bonfire, which means there will be some challenges and things people didn’t figure last year,” Zakorchemna said. She noted that faculty members involved with the bonfire spent the summer redesigning it again to overcome these challenges, one of which included a faculty member’s dog eating some of the design drafts. “The big concern is that the bonfire, no matter how well it’s designed, burns differently every year,” said Hanover town manager Julia Griffin. “Our goal is to keep the collapse zone clear. We don’t want to see anyone injured or killed.” Student-assisted bonfire construction started on Tuesday. In addition to the actual bonfire, fences circling the structure have been installed to keep the crowd at a safe distance from the blaze. Continuing a practice that began last year, freshmen will walk one lap around the outer ring constructed around the bonfire rather than running a number of laps corresponding to their graduation year, as was done in years prior. “Last year’s plan with the laps around the bonfire was a success,” Griffin said. “In working with the College this year, we’ve advised to build off of the same plan.” As last year’s Homecoming saw no attempts to touch the bonfire, one arrest and fewer Good Sam calls than previous years, both Safety and Security and the Hanover Police Department have taken measures
DIVYA KOPALLE/THE DARTMOUTH SENIOR STAFF
A construction crew worked on the Homecoming bonfire Wednesday afternoon.
to continue last year’s successes. “We work in a collaborative effort with the College to try to keep the community safe,” said Hanover Police captain Mark Bodanza. As Bodanza explained, the police department will “harden the exterior of the Green,” meaning that no vehicular traffic can enter or exit the area immediately around the Green to ensure the safety of both the drivers and bonfire participants. Hanover Police will also have officers stationed along the path of the
parade and the “Freshman Sweep”: the process of collecting freshmen from their dorms and bringing them to the Green. The Hanover Fire Department and Dartmouth Emergency Medical Services will be stationed around the event as a precautionary measure. According to an email sent to the student body from dean of the College Kathryn Lively, the fire department will extinguish the bonfire if any student enters the inner ring, explaining that “the
continuation of the bonfire in future years depends on the entire community’s adherence to the safety plan.” Griffin noted that this is the first year the College declared this rule in an official capacity. “Last year was a really good bonfire,” Griffin said. “Nobody tried to get over the fence to the fire. A new tradition is hopefully emerging from the ashes here, and we hope to see this positive trend continue this year.”
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 10, 2019
THE DARTMOUTH OPINION
STAFF COLUMNIST EMORY HOLZER ’22
CONTRIBUTING COLUMNIST ZACHARY LANG ’23
Rush and Rosh Hashanah
The Politicized Court
Greek recruitment finds itself entangled in High Holy Days. The cold morning of Sept. 30 saw a trickle of people headed towards Rollins Chapel: elderly folks from cars, tallis and yarmulke in tow; professors corralling tykes in itchy clothes; some students in slacks and sport coats and some in khakis and sweaters; security guards in dark uniforms, hired to keep the peace. While everyone looked different, everyone tried to look their best. This was, after all, Rosh Hashanah, one of the two holiest days in the Jewish calendar. The other, Yom Kippur, came just over a week later on Oct. 9, and between the two, Jews would have the opportunity to repent from the time their judgement is pronounced until it is finalized. A year of decisions and actions comes under the microscope, and Jewish people have 10 days to edit their chapter before the copy is sealed and a new page begins. While these two holy days touched just a fraction of Dartmouth’s campus, themes of judgement and renewal hung heavily over Hanover in the days before and after. Exchange silent contemplation with loud conversation. Exchange God with presidents and prayer books for name tags. It all starts to look a lot like rush. Beginning two days before Rosh Hashanah, Inter-Sorority Council recruitment stretched until the afternoon of Oct. 5. Interfraternity Council recruitment, a much less ceremonial process, formally commenced and concluded on Oct. 4 and 5, respectively. Four days later, the Jewish days of judgement ended with breaking the day-long fast on the evening of Yom Kippur. Religious judgement found itself entangled in a secular judgement, both illuminating themes in the other. For sophomores who decided to rush, the last year of social connections and conversations came
DEBORA HYEMIN HAN, Editor-in-Chief
under the microscope. Many reckoned with the identities they built throughout their first year at Dartmouth. Rush opens a student’s book for edits, allowing each to reevaluate their identities, advocate for themselves and make a case to the house in which they think they belong. Students attempt to forge new connections and tend to old ones in a process based on snap judgements from short conversations. Unlike religious judgement from God, the determinations made through the process of rush are not always accurate. Snap judgements can become misjudgements. Whereas religious judgement comes gradually, carefully forming itself over the course of a calendar year, rush compresses the process into a couple days at the start of fall term. Because the accuracies are not on par with each other, neither should be the conclusions. To those for whom rush ended in disappointment, it is important to remember that the verdict is not a binding, accurate judgement of you as a person. If you did not end up where you thought you would, or anywhere at all, do not let the sour beginning spoil all of the sweetness to come later this year. If you decided not to join a Greek community, you still have all of the qualities and quirks that inform your personality. You are still a member of Dartmouth, an affiliation that will outlast your time in a Greek community and your time in Hanover. Most importantly, while the good and bad of today are certainly significant, each chapter does not have to be great for the book to be great. In fact, the issues and conflicts are what make the book that much better. While judgement and repentance are essential SEE HOLZER PAGE 4
AIDAN SHEINBERG, Publisher
ALEX FREDMAN, Executive Editor PETER CHARALAMBOUS, Managing Editor
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PRODUCTION EDITORS CAROLINE COOK & EOWYN PAK, Opinion Editors
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ELIZA JANE SCHAEFFER, Engagement Editor WILLIAM CHEN & AARON LEE, Data Visualization Editors
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Judicial restraint is the solution to the Supreme Court’s fading legitimacy. The Supreme Court currently finds itself in a rather precarious legal and political quandary. Poised to hear big-issue cases in the coming term, its future decisions will likely paint the image by which we remember the Roberts Court. The Court is in a position where it must carefully balance politics and law due to its recent decisions where it has trended dangerously towards voting along party lines. In doing so, the Court has severely jeopardized its legitimacy. For the Court to regain its legitimacy, it must restore stability to federal law and the legal system. It can most effectively do so by practicing judicial restraint, particularly with regard to judicial precedent. President Donald Trump’s nomination of two Supreme Court justices in his first presidential term has created the predicament in which the Court finds itself. The appointments of Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh have solidified a conservative majority within the Court. It is thus surprising that the liberal justices — Justices Stephen Breyer, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor — have found themselves in the majority in a few of this past term’s cases. This is due to Chief Justice John Roberts’ deep concern for the public’s perception of the Court and his gradual ideological shift towards the center. Roberts has, in the past months, taken certain steps to preserve the revered perception of the Court. The Court is an institution that is supposed to be shielded from politics so as to make its interpretation of the law impartial. This ideal has, however, been severely challenged in the past few years. In a recent tweet, Trump called Judge Jon Tigar of the U.S. Court of Apppeals for the Ninth Circuit “an Obama judge” after he ruled against Trump’s asylum policy. The notion that politics had permeated the Supreme Court caused a rebuke from Roberts, who claimed that the Court did not have “Obama judges or Trump judges, Bush judges or Clinton judges.”As a result of Roberts’ desire to maintain both the legitimacy of the Court and its reputation as impartial, the once-faithful conservative has trended toward increasingly more moderate views. In scrutinizing the most recent Supreme Court term, this trend becomes particularly apparent. Cases regarding partisan gerrymandering, the detention of non-citizens and employee union rights were met by a five-man conservative block ruling in accordance with their ideological beliefs. On the other hand, the four liberals sometimes found themselves in the majority, joined by Roberts in cases regarding the census citizenship question, federal agency powers and anti-trust
disputes. Accordingly, visualizations that track the ideology of justices portray Roberts’ tendencies as gradually adjusting toward the ideological center. Upon the departure of Anthony Kennedy, a revered swing vote, it became clear that the Court would need to adjust. Fittingly, it seems that Roberts may have decided to do so. It must be said, however, that the Court deliberately shielded itself from controversial cases in the previous term, such as those concerning abortion and gay rights, by deciding not to grant certiorari to such cases. This decision can be attributed to the dissension surrounding Justice Kavanaugh’s appointment. As a result, it was likely easier for Roberts to make the aforementioned ideological concessions. With immense pressure from the states and the government, however, the Court is poised to take up such cases in upcoming terms. The Court recently announced that it has decided to hear cases involving abortion, gun regulation and gay rights. These political issues deeply affect us as students and as members of a broad American society. For a Court determined on preserving its apolitical nature, practicing judicial restraint will be more important than ever. In order for the Court to maintain its legitimacy and its essential functions, it must practice judicial restraint specifically when addressing controversial cases with existing legal precedent. A judicially restrained judge is one who gives deference to precedent and the decisions of prior justices. The Court’s legitimacy rests on the fact that people believe justices are impartial guardians of the rule of law. As the Court does not have a means to enforce its judicial opinions, it relies on its legitimacy to command the law and to dictate instructions to lower courts. The judicial system of the United States depends on stability and uniformity in federal law. To provide such stability, justices must abide by principles of judicial restraint to ensure the continuation of a particular interpretation of the law that can be applied to each level of federal courts. Topics of extensive controversy such as abortion rights, gay rights and affirmative action still stand upon firm legal precedent. By acknowledging and protecting precedent and the opinions of past justices, the Court would indeed demonstrate its impartial nature and be able to regain its legitimacy. John Roberts, as a self-proclaimed impartial arbiter of the law, bears the onus of ruling in a nonpartisan fashion — only thus can the Supreme Court maintain its legitimacy and revered reputation.
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 10, 2019
THE DARTMOUTH OPINION
CONTRIBUTING COLUMNIST SHEEN KIM ’23
STAFF COLUMNIST CALLUM ZEHNER ’21
America, Some Things Aren’t Debatable
The Hidden Occupation
The end to hate speech requires a cultural shift in the population.
Hate speech and outright discrimination have previously existed in various spheres of discussion, but have only been exacerbated in recent years. Ideas of dehumanization and destruction are at odds with those of healthy governance. Salil Shetty, the secretary general of Amnesty International, said that “too many politicians are answering legitimate economic and security fears with a poisonous and divisive manipulation of identity politics in an attempt to win votes.” This “poison” seeps down and legitimizes hatred within everyday life. Politicians and those from whom they derive their power — all of us — must condemn this sort of speech for the sake of equality and justice. We fail as a people if we stand idly by. We must confront the elephant in the room: our current president. Donald Trump is eager to degrade entire groups and countries (as exemplified by his claim in 2018 that “those s—holes [African nations] send us the people that they don’t want” and his July 2019 claim that four U.S. congresswomen should “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime-infested places from which they came”). Trump is not the sole flagbearer of hate; far-right radical leaders around the world such as Brazil’s Jair Bolsonaro or the Philippines’ Rodrigo Duterte do the same. The normalization of this speech has frightening implications for the fates of minorities: Governments have excuses to pass policies that justify mass encroachments on civil rights, creating dangerous environments that foster xenophobia. And in America, the atmosphere that Trump and others in the government have created gives power to hateful individuals. Famous gaming YouTuber PewDiePie goes unpunished for suggesting anti-Semitic channels to his 101 million subscribers; a sad example of the increase in anti-Semitism since Trump’s election. The AntiDefamation League released a report concluding that “right-wing extremists” were responsible for 73.3 percent of extremist-related murders between 2009 and 2018. The mass shooter in Christchurch, New Zealand, referred to Trump as a “symbol of renewed white identity” in his manifesto. Hate speech on 4chan, an anonymous Internet imageboard, has spiked more than 40 percent since 2015. I have failed to mention countless moments of victim-blaming, threats of violence toward children and so on. None of these events exist in a vacuum; they continously and actively perpetuate a cycle where discrimination is normalized and further trivialized. And those that are complicit are happy to reelect leaders who spout hatred. We have seen countless policy changes by this administration that will harm the lives of minorities. The government
should be elevating those in need, not than lowering them down. Outrage over this type of speech cannot be brushed aside as being a result of “liberal sensitivity.” This speech dehumanizes groups and leads to the great abuses so vilified in history books but overlooked in practice. The time to stop this is now, and the power to do so lies in our collective hands. Boundaries must be drawn to prevent such incidents in the future. And some might scream: What about free speech? Well, what about life, liberty and property? There are limited exceptions to the First Amendment, including speech that incites imminent lawless action, such as yelling “fire” in a crowded theater. Does Trump’s fearmongering not fall under this category? The law, as often as it is used as a tool of oppression, is meant to be a growing organism that derives its power from the people. This is a chance to punish these acts of hatred and turn the law into what it is meant to be: a tool of justice. Law aside, the true end to this hatred requires a cultural shift among the population. It’s any observer’s duty to take a stand even when instances of hate are not directed against them; we must break out of their spheres of biases and false beliefs about other groups; we must refuse to stop being angry at endless occurrences. Dartmouth students are in a unique position: most will graduate into the world poised to take on major positions of power. Alumni may already be in said positions of power. But no matter what any of us end up doing in four, eight, 20 years or even tomorrow, our community is only as strong as we make it. We must take on institutions of hatred and fight against those that threaten our rights and our humanity. We all come from extremely varied walks of life. That being said, many of us — Dartmouth students especially — are products of privilege, who may not have had to endure certain struggles nor be directly impacted by policy changes. Rather, there is a worrying trend where individuals may agree with this argument in theory but are hard-pressed to take action. Social equality means an encouragement of diversity, an end to bias, an increased presence of “others” in traditionally white spaces, the threat of being punished when you say something that so clearly targets an entire group — and this scares some people. That doesn’t matter. All of us have an obligation to stand up for one another — whether it be by speaking up, listening and learning, protesting, engaging in acts of civil disobedience, voting. It’s our human duty.
Indonesia’s goal is unity at all costs.
‘Unity in Diversity’ has been Indonesia’s tagline ever since its independence from the Dutch over 70 years ago. In many respects, this has not just been a soft rhetorical move, but a highly tactical one. With the multitudes of ethnicities, languages and religions that reside within Indonesia’s borders, the government in Jakarta has, since its inception, utilized this phrase to placate its population, to assert the singularity of the Indonesian people. Recently, however, the flimsiness of this notion of togetherness has been revealed by the vehement protests of the people of West Papua, one of Indonesia’s provinces. Jakarta’s reaction to the protests has shown that the idea of ‘Unity in Diversity,’ if it was ever alive, is now firmly dead. It is clear from the actions of the Indonesian government in West Papua that diversity was never on the table. Indonesia uses diversity as a ploy to exploit Papua, while unity, no matter the cost, has become the actual goal. The most recent string of protests began in August, when a number of Papuan students in Java were attacked with tear gas and mocked with racial slurs by security forces. Accused of burning the Indonesian flag, the students were referred to as “monkeys” and “dogs.” This event was captured on video and led to widespread protests across urban centers in West Papua and the rest of the country. The outrage has been used by Papuans to propel demands for independence, even in the face of government crackdown. The slurs simply illustrate the day-to-day derision and racism faced by the indigenous Papuans from the Javanese, the largest ethnic group in the country. But there are many other grievances that have been recently revealed to the wider world, showing that Jakarta’s track record on the treatment of Papuans has been far from illustrious. West Papua, with its vast natural resources, has been a prime target for plunder by Jakarta. As of 2013, the Papuan GDP per capita is $3,510, significantly higher than the Indonesian average of $2,452, yet the region’s poverty rate is three times that of the national average. The vast majority of profits from the area’s mineral reserves are eagerly collected by multinational mining firms, such as Freeport and Rio Tinto, and, crucially, the Indonesian government. Although the current president, Joko Widodo, has made a point of investing substantially in the region’s infrastructure over the last few years the poverty rate remains at a disappointing 20 percent.When placed alongside the highest child mortality rates and lowest literacy rates in the country, it is clear that the Papuan people have simply not been a part of the process
of wealth generation in the region. Indonesian leaders also see the country’s easternmost provinces as a big open space, and, therefore, as a way to relieve the mounting population pressures faced in the rest of the country. Government-sponsored transmigration programs have seen the indigenous Papuan population be inundated by large numbers of immigrants — mostly from the island of Java. In 1971, non-Papuans made up only four percent of the total population of the region, while, in 2010, this figure had grown to 52 percent, making the native population a minority in their own land. These new arrivals have served to dilute the voices of the native population, with the immigrants in control of many of the provinces’ high-ranking political positions. Consequently, there are precious few channels for Papuans to express their political wills. The government response to the ongoing protests gives the most pertinent view to the treatment of Papuans. Phone and Internet lines in Papua were cut so as to prevent the organization of protests and to restore order. Journalists’ access to the two provinces was also restricted, and 6,000 extra security personnel were deployed. And at least seven Papuans have been made casualties at the hands of government forces. All of these reactions make it plain to see that Jakarta views West Papua as a restive colony with a population to be controlled, not as an equal member of a singular Indonesia. The publicity that has followed the Papuan protests has been invaluable, pointing the spotlight on a long neglected conflict. Despite Jakarta still paying lip service to the idea that its diversity belies its unity, the West Papua situation suggests the exact opposite. Papua is seen as an area to exploit, with the mineral and land resources to further propel the growing economic and popular might of Indonesia — or, at least, the might of the Indonesian metropole. The Papuans, in Jakarta’s view, are merely a subordinate people who serve to make trouble and disrupt the unity of the state. So then, unity is the end goal, and diversity is the biggest obstacle to it. As West Papuan leaders attempt to leverage public support around the world in support of their cause, it is critical to listen to them. While the international community decries the current abuses in Hong Kong, West Papua sees no attention as Indonesia presents itself as a nation amenable to all peoples. Yet, it is now obvious that ‘Unity in Diversity’ is just a mirage that masks the colonial status suffered by the Papuans. It is time to stop taking Indonesia for its word.
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 10, 2019
THE DARTMOUTH ARTS
Review: ‘Cherry’ by Nico Walker an honest story of addiction
B y LUCY TURNIPSEED The Dartmouth Staff
It’s strange to say, but I did not notice the narrator had no name the entire time I was reading Nico Walker’s novel “Cherry.” It was only when I sat down to write this review that I realized the person whose deepest thoughts I had been reading was unnamed to me, however fictional or autobiographical he may be. “Cherry” quickly became a nationwide sensation, debuting on the New York Times best seller list immediately after its release in 2018. Currently serving a prison sentence for bank robbery, Walker wrote his novel behind bars and is on track to be released in 2020. The narrator of “Cherry” tells a deadpan story of a man’s journey from college student to army medic to opioid addict and bank robber. Although not explicitly autobiographical, the novel mirrors much of Walker’s own life. Each step is underwritten with melancholy. Immediately upon beginning the novel, the prologue tells the reader exactly what is to come: an odd sense of normalcy atop a great crisis. The picture Walker depicts is one of heroin addiction fueling the lives of a nice-seeming couple in school who live with their pet dog. Despite the apparent normalcy of the narrator and his girlfriend Emily, Walker writes a heartbreaking story of how addiction engenders the downfall of these two individuals. Walker’s voice, never angry but always vivid with description, helps the reader understand the answer to a question the narrator poses: “How do you get to be a scumbag?” This first section, “Part One: When Life Was Just Beginning, I Saw You,” introduces readers to Walker’s voice
right from the get-go. Walker’s voice is not self-conscious and he does not sensor his thoughts, which felt like a rare occurrence in a novel dealing with heavy subject matter such as drugs and crime. The first chapter begins in earnest: “Emily used to wear a white ribbon around her throat and talk in breaths and murmurs, being nice, as she was, in a way so as you didn’t know if she were a slut or just real down-toearth.” To me, this didn’t seem like the beginning of a story about addiction. For a novel written by a man behind bars about what can be assumed are his own crimes, the opening is sweet and innocent — far from the intense, grimy story I expected to witness. The narrator relays the bleak picture of his stint in college, feeling largely without a purpose. Working a few minimum-wage jobs — for distraction but not out of necessity — and finding little meaning in his college classes, the narrator feels disconnected and uninspired. When Emily decides to transfer colleges and a friend enrolls in the marines, the narrator decides to give the Army a shot in an attempt to gain perspective in his life. “Part Two: Adventure” and “Part Three: Cherry” give the reader an account of the Army that reflects the scenery in Iraq, where the narrator’s unit is deployed. Life in the Army is dry, repetitive and, in the midst of the monotony, violent. While enlisting, the narrator recounts that he and his fellow recruits “looked like s—. We’d grown up on high-fructose corn syrup, with plenty of television; our bodies were full of pus; our brains skittered.” Walker paints a bleak picture of modern day life that hints to the cause of the narrator’s eventual downward spiral toward drugs and robbery. Often in Iraq, “the heat and the
light made your brain skip when you tried to hold a thought. Thoughts wouldn’t come in a straight line, and you saw translucent red stars.” Walker’s vivid imagery transports readers to the gruesome reality of another step in the narrator’s meaningless existence. Despite having a supposedly meaningful job as an Army medic, in reality the narrator did not have much more to offer the locals than ibuprofen although he was hailed as a healer to Iraqis. With little else to do or look forward to, we see the narrator acquiring small doses of illegal drugs and alcohol to numb the pain of his existence and paving the way for his descent into addiction. Often, the narrator’s behavior is described with crass language, but Walker is nothing if not truthful in this novel. When the narrator returns from Iraq, he knows his now-wife, Emily, has been cheating on him. It was a sham marriage — one of convenience for the health insurance — but the love the narrator has is real. In a depressed state after the Army and his crumbling marriage, now with much easier access to alcohol and drugs than in Iraq, the narrator seems more lost than usual. “Part Four: Hummingbird” shows the narrator as helplessly restless living on an army base with nowhere or no one to call home. After his divorce, a move back to Cleveland, OH and a series of lovers, “Part Five: The Great Dope Fiend Romance” gets at the highly anticipated heart of the matter, which is what I thought I would be reading about the whole time. When I began the novel, all I wanted to do was get to the part that explained the bank robbery and the heroin who had become a part of the seemingly respectable couple’s daily routine. I
looked at the section list in the table of contents and reasoned I would have to wait over 200 pages to understand. If you’re looking for a novel about high-stakes bank heists and gritty scenes of drug abuse, perhaps turn elsewhere. “Cherry” is not a fast-paced novel but rather a narrative of a man’s struggle to find meaning in the world around him. Although not what I anticipated, “Cherry” was more than I bargained for. It was a beautifully written explanation of a life that was derailed, not due to drugs, but a sense of emptiness and longing for more. The narrator’s sojourn in Iraq and on Army bases in the United States, however, made me understand the trap of opioids and crime unlike dramatized versions of Ted Bundy’s serial murders or trashy true crime movies might have audiences believe. “Cherry” is a much more truthful account of what led the narrator to commit a series of robberies than any other crime novel or documentary I’ve encountered. Walker showed and did not tell the reader how the narrator ended up the way he did. “There was nothing better than to be young and on heroin,” Walker writes when he is back in Cleveland with Emily despite their divorce. “The days were bright.” Walker doesn’t cast a shameful light on the narrator’s drug use, but rather, highlights the reprieve it brought him amidst his turmoil. In the midst of his dope runs and web of relationships with dealers, the narrator realizes his and Emily’s addictions cannot be fueled by the fraudulent GI Bill and scholarship scam they have been running thus far. Very much unlike any crime movie ever made, the narrator, with no training, no weapons and an improvised plan, steps into a bank for his first holdup. The moral reasoning behind this
act has nothing to do with a person being good or bad, according to the narrator. As Walker writes, “With robbery it’s a matter of abasement. Are you abased? Careful then. You might rob something.” While the success of the first robbery appeases the narrator and Emily’s need for funds to sustain their addiction, they continue to turn to bank heists for money. Several robberies later, the narrator finds himself still desperate for funds, sick from withdrawal in the novel’s final section, “Part Six: A Comedown.” He commits another robbery, continuously vomiting. The narrator feels numb in his desperation for money and calm despite his distressful situation. Walker creates a fascinating juxtaposition between the narrator’s circumstances and his state of mind; when the narrator is away from crime and drugs he is lost and depressed, but in the midst of committing a bank robbery in pursuit of heroin, he ponders the value of life and feels like there’s finally potential for happiness in his life. “I was feeling melancholy, but it was a calming melancholy. Life was f—ed but I was good … My heart was full and life was precious,” the narrator says of his eerie tranquility during the robbery. The best part of the ending, and I would argue the book, is how serene it is. Chillingly, the narrator relays that “there was hope for me yet. Life was good when you were cooking up a shot of dope; in those moments every dope boy in the world was your friend and you didn’t think about the things you’d done wrong and f—ed up, the years you’d wasted.” A little confusingly, this account finds beauty in a wasteland. These final lines plainly state the facts but are also complicated with the dual senses of potential and resignation.