Week of January 29, 2019
THE VECTOR As the official student newspaper of the New Jersey Institute of Technology, our mission is to infom and entertain our readers, cultivate awareness of issues concerning the NJIT community, and provide a forum for purposeful, constructive discussion among its members. Deadlines for Articles or Letters to the Editor are due on Thursdays prior to publication at 10 P.M. Submissions should not exceed 750 words. For more information on submissions, e-mail: email@example.com. Advertisement Reservations are due two weeks prior to publication and should be sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org ADVISORS Operational Advisor Kristie Damell Faculty Advisor Miriam Ascarelli EXECUTIVE BOARD email@example.com
This Week’s Weather Wednesday, Jan. 30th
36-°F | 9-°F 22 mph
Thursday, Jan. 31st
Friday, Feb. 1st
34-°F | 23-°F 6 mph
26-°F | 18-°F 10 mph
Saturday, Feb. 2nd
38-°F | 26-°F 6 mph
Monday, Feb. 5th
Sunday, Feb. 3rd
53-°F | 40-°F 7 mph
55-°F | 39-°F 8 mph
Editor-in-Chief Cassidy Lavine firstname.lastname@example.org Executive Editor Akinlolu Pelumi Aguda email@example.com Managing Editor Carmel Rafalowsky firstname.lastname@example.org Business Manager Daniel Cruz email@example.com Web and Multimedia Editor Victoria Nguyen firstname.lastname@example.org Photography Editor Spencer Asral email@example.com SENIOR STAFF Copy Editors Colin Bayne Adrian Wong Siri Uppuluri Marzia Rahman Daniil Ivanov
Upcomming Events WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 30
8:00am - 9:00am SAC Coffee Giveaway Free Donuts 11:00am - 4:00pm T-Shirt Shop 1:00pm - 4:00pm
Campus Center Lobby Campus Center Lobby CC Highlander Club
THURSDAY, JANUARY 31
5:00pm - 9:00pm SAC Roller Rink Intro to Bowling 6:00pm - 8:00pm
CC Ballroom A Bowling Alley, CC
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 4
4:00pm - 5:30pm BYO Mug - Hot Chocolate
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 5
Layout Assistant Shehab Ibrahim Katherine Ji
1:00pm - 2:20pm BIOLOGY COLLOQUIUM
Campus Center Lobby CKB 116
Business Assistant Paras Sakharkar Senior Staff Owen Busler Beshoy Shokralla Isaac Scafe David Korty Nicole Cheney Jonpierre Grajales Shanee Halevi Yasmine Ibrahim Daniil Ivanov Prem Naik Siri Uppuluri Adrian Wong Colin Bayne Katherine Ji Sreya Sanyal Rick-kendy Noziere
10:20AM Owner of the lunch truck on Warren Street reported his personal truck was taken while he was loading supplies. The truck was left unlocked with the keys in the ignition. 10:31AM A Gourmet Dining employee reported coffee was being taken form a secured area overnight on multiple nights.
STAFF Sreya Das Parth Agrawal Aaron Kellett James Nanchanatt Jagathi Kalluru Joseph Mauro Anuj Patel
4:21PM A non-affiliate was arrested at MLK Blvd. and New Street for an open warrant out of Bloomfield. NJIT Vector Summary 11/25/2019
Times Shown are Times Reported
Contributing Writers Zackary Kellett John Hawks Rahul Kapoor Divjyot Singh
For 1/22/19 through 1/24/19
Memory of Dr. Herman A. Estrin and Roger Hernande z
11:25PM A non-affiliate was arrested at University Ave. and Raymond Blvd. for an open war-rant.
11:14PM Officer issued a summons for an open container to a non-affiliate at 265 MLK Blvd. 11:15PM Officer issued a summons for an open container to a non-affiliate at 265 MLK Blvd. 11:21PM Officer issued a summons to a Bergen Community College student for an open container at 265 MLK Blvd.
Week of January 29, 2019
Andrés Manuel López Obrador was sworn in as the 58th President of Mexico. The Yellow Vests movement gained traction in France and other countries as protestors clashed with police in Paris, and made front-page news.
cial officer of telecom conglomerate Huawei, was arrested in Vancouver for allegedly defrauding multiple financial institutions in breach of US-imposed bans on dealing with Iran. On Jan. 28, the US Department of Justice announced financial fraud charges against Wanzhou.
Qatar announced its withdrawal from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries to focus on natural gas production.
SpaceX successfully launched the CRS-16 to the International Space Station. The first
George H. W. Bush died, aged 94, at his home in Houston. The United States Postal Service suspended its regular service on Dec. 5, as part of President Trump’s declared national day of mourning.
The Soyuz MS-11 successfully launched and transported cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko and astronauts Anne McClain and David Saint-Jacques for Expedition 58 to the International Space Station.
A gunman attacked civilians at a Christmas market in Strasbourg, France, killing five and wounding 11, before fleeing the scene. The attacker, 29-year-old Chérif Chekatt, who had pledged allegiance to the terrorist organization ISIL, was killed in a
While You Were Away...
A brief overview of global occurrences from the last six weeks stage of the craft was later recovered near Cape Canaveral. A car bomb exploded near a police post in Chabahar, Iran; Islamic militant group Ansar Al-Furqan claimed responsibility for the incident. “God of War” was named Game of the Year at the Game Awards.
Meng Wanzhou, the chief finan-
voices from around campus
THIS WEEK: What are your thoughts on the government
“I don’t see the point of it.” “I miss my FBI agent” “Thousands of government workers are being held hostage to pay for a wall that is empirically useless in preventing a manufactured crisis used to mobilize a radically racist base of supporters to maintain the position of the hittiest cheeto America has ever seen.” "National Parks are being vandalized and unrepearably destroyed. This is absolutely ridiculous."
Following a referendum to repeal the Eighth Amendment, Irish President Michael D. Higgins signed a bill making abortion legal in the Republic of Ireland for the first time. US Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis announced his resignation at the end of February 2019. A motion of no confidence was passed by the National Assembly of Guyana, triggering elections scheduled for early 2019.
shootout with French police following a manhunt involving 700 officers. Chekatt had multiple criminal convictions and was on a security services watchlist. British Prime Minister Theresa May faced and survived a no confidence motion within the conservative party.
Mount Etna erupted. The coalition government of Benjamin Netanyahu dissolved the Israeli parliament and sets elections for early April. Over 400 people were killed and 14,000 injured when a tsunami struck several coastal regions of Banten in Java and Lampung in Sumatra, Indonesia. The tsunami was caused by an undersea landslide, following the eruption of Anak Krakatau.
Salome Zurabishvili took office
COLLECTIONS ; shutdown?
as President of Georgia, the first woman to hold the position.
Simcha Rotem, the last surviving fighter of the 1943 Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, and a participant in the 1944 Warsaw Uprising, dies at the age of 94.
By Carmel Rafalowski Managing-Editor
NASA’s space probe OSIRIS-Rex arrived at the Bennu asteroid. The United Kingdom government was found to be in contempt of parliament for the first time in history, due to the failure of Theresa May’s government to publish its legal advice on its Brexit withdrawal plan.
The China National Space Administration successfully launched and landed a spacecraft on the far side of the moon.
By Carmel Rafalowski | Managing-Editor
Each week, students send anonymous texts, emails, and mobile responses to our collections prompt. Note: all responses are posted ex-
"my ass is getting fatter so politics dont matter" "The political pressure against the power structure was not placed by politicians but the people protesting and performing strikes, the real power is within the humble laborers. Rise and loose your chains." "Trump doesn't know what he's doing and has no political capital so he's acting desperately and failing anyway" "The shutdown shows america doesn't need a government!
actly as they were received. Understand there is an unwritten [sic] after every possibly erroneous (or not) response.
"Kill everyone now! Condone first degree murder! Advocate cannibalism! Eat shit!" "This has gone on for way too long" "Of course the government is still shutdown, congress still gets paid." "I dont understand how this is okay" "that wall is going to be the death of this nation."
Week of January 29, 2019 Campus News
Judge to Rule on Former NJIT Lecturer’s Libel Suit Against NJIT Jason Jorjani, a former university lecturer at NJIT, is demanding $25 million in damages from NJIT By Victoria Nguyen | Web & Multimedia Editor
federal district court judge is expected to rule soon on a libel suit filed by a former NJIT lecturer whose controversial views on race and eugenics were criticized by NJIT administrators and professors last year. The lawsuit was filed in federal district court last summer by Jason Jorjani, a lecturer in the Science, Technology and Society program. Jorjani began teaching
in the Science Technology and Society program in the fall of 2016. He lost his job last spring, when his contract was not renewed after he became the subject of controversy because of his political views stemming from his association with the AltRight Corporation, an organization he had co-founded with white supremacist Richard Spencer.
Spring 2015: Jorjani was hired to be a University Lecturer
Fall of 2016:
September 19, 2017:
Jorjani became affiliated with members of the Alt Right Movement to “widen the message of his philosophy”
Defendants Bloom and Belfield read the NYT Op-Ed with Jorjani
Jorjani began teaching at NJIT August 15, 2017: Jorjani resigns from the AltRight Corp. following the Charlottesville rally
What comes next The suit was filed last summer and is before U.S. Federal District Court Judge William J. Martini. He is expected to issue an opinion in the coming week or so, according to Martini’s Courtroom Deputy Gail Hansen. What is libel? What is academic freedom? The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which guarantees free speech, is at the heart of this case. This constitutional right protects the interests of Americans to
Defendants mandated Jorjani’s suspension and paid administrative leave
September 20, 2017:
Fall of 2015:
In his suit, Jorjani claims that NJIT’s actions were the “antithesis of academic freedom,’’ which, “stifled [his] free search for truth; retaliated against [him] for the exercise of free speech’’ and subjected him to “institutional censorship and discipline for speaking and writing as a citizen,’’ according to the lawsuit. Specifically, Jorjani accuses NJIT President Joel Bloom, Dean Kevin Belfield, Biology Chairman Gareth Russell, NJIT Faculty Senate President Andrew Klobucar and History Chairman Neil Maher of defaming him when they published statements via email and in The Vector of expressing their rejection of Jorjani’s beliefs. He is seeking $25 million in damages. The suit has sparked a spirited First Amendment defense by the university, which is arguing that just as Jorjani had the right to his opinions, so did Bloom, Belfield, Russell, Klobucar and Maher. “In the end, Dr. Jorjani seems to enjoy being a small-time, alt-right agent provocateur who spouts racial drivel; that avocation, however, does not render him immune from either the truth (that his statements are racist based on the dictionary definition of the term) or from the opinions of others,’’ university court papers state.
September 25, 2017:
exercise their ideas and opinions, and overall exemplifies the process of democracy. According to thelawdictionary.org, “Without free speech protections, citizens would have a hard time challenging their government or speaking freely about the issues that matter to them. A democratic system can only exist when citizens are free to argue, debate, and voice their opinions without fear of punishment or retribution.” However, the First Amendment does not mean anything goes. Free speech has its limits, one of them being defamation, and in his suit, Jorjani is claiming that the responses that came from the university officials were defamatory, and therefore, not protected by the First Amendment. Defamation is defined as “a false communication that harms individuals’ reputations, causes the general public to hate or disrespect them, or damages their business or employment,” according to the Guide to Free Speech on Campus by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), an organization that specializes in First Amendment law. To win a libel suit, one must show the statement “must be an assertion of fact (rather than mere opinion) and capable of being proven false,’’ according to the FIRE guide. In the Jorjani case, the university is arguing that all of the statements at issue are statements of opinion, and furthermore, relevant, given that Jorjani’s views were matters of public concern. Jorjani, meanwhile is also arguing that his actions were protected by the First Amendment -- as well as academic freedom, a concept that, according to the FIRE guide, has proven to be legally fuzzy. According to the Fire Guide: “Academic freedom—which one may broadly conceive of as a general
Defendants Bloom and Belfield emailed faculty and staff denouncing Jorjani’s views that were published by NYT
recognition that the academy must be free to research, teach, and debate ideas without censorship or outside interference—has proven to be an amorphous concept in practice, but serves nonetheless as a guiding and necessary principle for higher education.’’ Specifically, there is no legal consensus about what academic freedom means: “. . . because of the lack of guidance from the Supreme Court, there remains an ongoing debate over who actually possesses the right to academic freedom—students, professors and/or the university itself,’’ the FIRE guide states. How did Jorjani’s case unfold? The lawsuit is the latest chapter in a controversy that began last fall when Jorjani’s views were highlighted in a video that accompanied a New York Times opinion piece by Jesse Singal that highlighted the work of Patrik Hermansson, a Swedish graduate student who had done undercover research on the Alt Right. Jorjani was sought out by Hermansson because of his role as “the architect’’ of the AltRight Corp, which Jorjani co-founded with white supremacist Richard Spencer in January 2017, just over two months after the November 2016 presidential election. (Jorjani ended up resigning from the Alt Right Corp. after the Charlottesville “Unite the Right’’ rally in August 2017.) Hermansson’s video, which ran as a supplement to Singal’s op-ed, profiled Jorjani and his efforts to build an Alt Right media empire. In the video, which was filmed in a New York pub, Jorjani tells Hermannson about his desires to transform the AltRight movement into a “revolutionary force’’: “This movement has mass appeal, because it is the counterculture now. It is the underdog. We should go
February 13, 2018: Defendants notified Jorjani that his contract would not be renewed for the 2018-2019 academic year
October 4, 2017: Defendants Russell, Klobuchar, and Maher released a statement via The Vector
from being underdogs to becoming a revolutionary state, Jorjani is seen saying.” Jorjani immediately took issue with the video, arguing that it had been heavily edited to misrepresent his views, especially in the portion of the tape where he was commenting on Hitler. What he meant, he said, was that if the immigration issue was not dealt with, there will be war and concentration camps, and Hitler will be seen as a great leader—but not that he himself endorsed Hitler’s views. Jorjani claims that all of his actions were protected political activities under the First Amendment and that he became involved with the Alt Right Corporation in order to broaden its message to reflect his views that “European culture[s] are intimately related to those of Greater Iran and the Persianate World, Hindu India and the Buddhist East and are the sources of the world’s greatest scientific, artist and spiritual developments,’’ according to the suit. The New York Times piece sparked an email from Bloom, who denounced Jorjani’s views in an email as being “repugnant to our institution’s core values.’’ It also led to a closer examination of Jorjani’s published writings, specifically his views on race and eugenics, which he outlined in a blog post called “Against Perennial Philosophy’’ where he argued: “Racial difference is real, and it matters. That Africans have an average IQ of around 75 whereas whites have an average IQ of around 100, and Africans who have mixed with whites (for example in North America or South Africa) have an average IQ of 85 has to do not with education or social conditioning but with different genetic inheritances from extinct Hominid species.’’ This prompted Maher to issue a statement on behalf of the Federat-
July 17, 2018: Jorjani filed lawsuit
ed Department of History, that argued that Jorjani “expresses a view of race and intelligence harking back to eugenic beliefs and “scientific racism long since debunked by scientists.’’ Other critical statements were issued by the Faculty Senate and the NJIT biology department. Why was Jorjani suspended? A key point of contention in Jorjani’s suit is the decision by the university to put Jorjani on administrative leave seven days after the New York Times article came out in September and then, a few months later, in February 2018, not to renew his contract. Lecturers do not have tenure, and their contracts are for one year at a time. The contents of the Sept. 25 letter notifying Jorjani that he was being put on administrative leave was included in the suit. The letter states that the New York Times article had caused “significant disruption at the university, and based on our information, we believe that the disruption will continue to expand. Further, the article and subsequent information provided by you reveals your association with organizations that were not disclosed on your outside activity forms, despite being directed by your chair to fully update your disclosure form last spring.’’ Jorjani argues the non-renewal of his contract “was not related to any alleged ethical lapses, which were mere pretexts for his severance from NJIT,’’ his suit reads. “Rather, Defendant’s non-renewal and severance of Plaintiff were due to his engagement in speech which content was disapproved by Defendants and his association with a political movement of which Defendants disapproved.’’
Week of January 29, 2019
FAST FASHION By Shanee Halevi | Senior Staff Writer
ashion has arguably taken the same downturn as the fast food industry; cheap, low quality clothes are found in abundance, taking a toll on the environment and low wage workers. This shift in shopping towards ‘disposable’ trendy clothes has thus been dubbed “fast fashion”. Since the industrial revolution, household services like making clothes have been entirely outsourced to businesses. The advent of the commercial sewing
machine made clothes cheaper and more abundant. While this allowed for greater accessibility, it also promoted overconsumption. By the late 1990’s, as speed and efficiency increased, low-cost fashion became the norm. A few decades ago shopping was a chore of necessity, but it has now become an affordable hobby. There is a cost to fast fashion, however, and it is not reflected in the price tag. The emphasis on production speed means cutting
corners in other areas, such as ethical and environmental responsibilities. Fast fashion depends on quick and cheap labor, which often means garment workers operate in dangerous environments, for low pay, and without basic human rights. The collapse of the Rana Plaza building in Bangladesh (2013) is an iconic example of mistreatment of garment workers. In this infamous disaster, 1,138 people died, and another 2,500 people were injured in what is considered the fourth largest industrial disaster in history. The building served as a massive garment factory for top fashion brands such as Joe Fresh, The Children’s Place, Mango, and Walmart, and it failed due to negligent management. Some obvious environmental effects of the fast fashion industry have to do with the textiles and materials. Cheap dyes are often toxic and pollute water supplies, and inexpensive fabrics such
as polyester are usually derived from fossil fuels, which has its own set of issues. The environmental effects are not limited to the manufacturing level; plastic-based materials such as polyester are known to shed microplastics—plastic fragments that are less than five millimeters in length—with each wash. This contributes to the increasing concentrations of plastics found in water, and eventually in marine ecosystems and food chains. Read: there are probably microplastics in your sushi. The lesser-recognized environmental effects have to do with life after use. Landfills are being filled by clothes at an alarming rate. In the 2011 EPA report of municipal solid waste (MSW), about 13 million tons—out of the 250 million tons of annual waste—were textiles. While this translates to only about 5% of all waste, textiles are among the top waste items that are rarely recycled. Only about 15% of disposed textiles get re-
cycled. The turnover rate is also grotesquely swift. Trendy clothes that were once seen on store racks have been found in bulk in landfills within months of having a sale value. So, are you a perpetrator of fast fashion? Do you buy cheap clothes that you don’t necessarily need? Do you shop at stores that regularly turn over their stock for more trendy selections? Do you buy an item for its style, knowing the material couldn’t possibly last more than a few wears? If you answered yes to any of the above, you are most likely supporting fast fashion, and therefore encouraging companies to neglect environmental and ethical responsibilities with your own money. The good news is that, if you are reading this, you have the power to make a change. The following guide shows the best things you can do in order of importance:
A Quick Guide to Avoiding Fast Fashion 1. Buy less. If you don’t need it, don’t buy it. Your wallet and closet will thank you! If you need an outfit for a single event, consider renting it from sites like RentTheRunway.com, or borrowing from a friend. 2. Buy second-hand. If you need to buy something, there is nothing greener than buying something that was already used or on its way to a landfill. 3. Buy sustainably. If the funds are available, consider buying from highly-rated store like People Tree or Pact. You can use the Made For You app to browse more stores and view their ethical ratings.
4. Buy smart. Sustainable clothes are often outside of the standard college student’s price range. In that case, prioritize finding items that will last. Think about how, when, and where you would wear the item if you bought it. How many wears would the item last? Prioritize functionality and durability over trendiness. 5. Dispose responsibly. When you need to get rid of clothes, think about its alternate purposes. If you are donating, make sure to include only clothes that are actually wearable, including dirty underwear or socks with holes can make a donation pile look unworthy of sorting. If you deem an item unwearable, consider using them as rags.
LOCAL DONATION SUGGESTIONS: The Salvation Army: 699 Springfield Ave, Newark, NJ 07103 Goodwill Industries Store & Donation Center: 400 Supor Blvd, Harrison, NJ 07029
China Becomes First Country to Land Spacecraft on Far Side of Moon By Marzia Choudhury | Copy Editor
A Chineses Spacecraft preparing fto launch. PHOTO via Creative Commons
For the first time in human history, a spacecraft by the name of Chang’e 4 successfully made a ￼ soft landing on the far side of the moon on January 3, a mission accomplished by China’s National Space Administration (CNSA). Chang’e 4 lifted off from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in the province of Sichuan on Dec. 7, 2018 (EST) and reached lunar orbit on Dec 12, 2018. A controlled descent towards the lunar surface shortly began thereafter. Chang’e 4 landed specifically on the South Pole-Aitken Basin area of the moon and houses a rover named Yutu-2 which will physically explore the lunar surface. Yutu-2 is about five feet long and 3.3 feet wide, according to a CNN article written by Rivers, Regan, and Jiang. It has “two foldable solar panels and six wheels.” News regarding this mission prior to the successful landing was kept secret by CNSA. Details regarding the mission were only released upon successful landing on the lunar surface. The way in which Chang’e landed on the surface of the moon is termed a “soft landing”. As the name connotes, a soft landing re-
fers to a “controlled landing of a spacecraft during which no serious damage is incurred”. The names of the mission and the rover are significant because of their roots in Chinese culture. According to Rivers, Regan, and Jiang, Chang’e stems from name of the goddess of the moon, while Yutu is the name of Chang’e’s pet rabbit. This landing is unique because a spacecraft has landed on the so called “far side” or “dark side” of the moon for the first time. Though people can observe the moon from earth, they can only see one side of it. This phenomenon is termed “tidal locking”. It takes the moon 27 days to rotate; it also takes the same amount of time for the moon to orbit around the Earth once. Thus, only one side of the moon can be observed from Earth. According to an article on history. com, “only 59% of the moon’s surface is available” and “41% is known as the ‘dark side.’” It is important to note that both sides of the moon receive equal amounts of sunlight. The far side of the moon has crust that is thicker, older, is more cratered and overall has a more rug-
ged terrain. One of the challenges with landing on the side of the moon that does not face Earth is that direct communication with Earth is not possible, thus requiring an intermediary satellite. CNSA anticipated this challenge by launching a satellite named Queqiao in May of 2018. The spacecraft transmits data to Queqiao which then bounces the data to Earth. Chang’e 4’s landing on the far side of the moon is clearly a source of pride for China, as the nation has accomplished something no other country has done. China is now the third country, after the former Soviet Union and United States, to successfully land on the moon. A number of experiments are planned for the spacecraft to conduct. These include the first “low frequency radio astronomy experiment,” an investigation into whether plants can grow in a low gravity environment and if interaction between solar winters and the lunar surface exists. Chang’e 4’s landing is but one step on the path of China’s ultimate goal to send astronauts to the moon’s surface and build its own space station.
Features Link Found Between Negative Mood and Inflammatory Biomarkers
Week of January 29, 2019
By Siri Uppuluri | Copy Editor
However, beyond changes in skin temperature and face coloration, changes in mood have also been linked to inflammation. Specifically, a recent study published in the journal Brain, Behavior, and Immunity reports findings that negative mood recorded several times per day over an extended period of time is associated with an increase in production of inflammatory biomarkers. Inflammatory biomarkers, such as cytokines, are substances created as part of the body’s immune response. Simply put, the huU.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Teresa J. Cleveland man body’s immune response The start of a new semester cifically, changes in mood can is activated when it feels like it is associated with a variety of also manifest in physiological is under attack. Inflammation emotions: excitement at get- changes in the body’s response is just one of several defense ting to be back on campus and to external stimuli. This, in it- mechanisms employed by the immune system. Just like any catching up with friends, frus- self, is not novel news. tration at having to manage For example, the mood rings other response in the body, inlast-minute schedule chang- displayed on dollar store count- flammation occurs as a result of es, and tempered resignation ers claim to be able to detect coordinated signaling between at paying exorbitant prices for changes in mood, albeit with different cells in the body. This homework access codes. inaccuracy and flawed func- is where cytokines fit in, as they While changes in mood are tionality. The crystals on mood are a type of molecule released natural responses to the shifting rings change color based on by certain immune cells to circumstances of one’s environ- body temperature, which sup- promote the inflammatory rement, emotions have effects be- posedly changes depending on sponse. Normally, cytokine release yond the cognitive realm. Spe- one’s emotions.
and subsequent inflammation can help localize an infection and keep it from spreading. However, when cytokine release is elevated in response to a cognitive change, such as a change in affect, an unnecessary inflammatory response is mounted. Furthermore, prior studies have found a link between inflammation and heart disease, suggesting there could also be a strong association between negative mood and heart disease. When asked about her thoughts on the study’s findings, Mitushi Khare, a second-year NJIT biology major, responded, “I don’t find that news surprising because I’ve heard several times that negative emotions like stress and anger are linked to heart disease and early death, so it makes sense that it has to do with chronic inflammation.” Although the findings from this study may be intuitively expected, they are important especially considering the unique methodology of the study, in which mood was recorded by participants both in the mo-
ment and over longer periods of time. The study also did not yield conclusive evidence to suggest that positive mood is associated with a decrease in inflammation in both sexes, as this trend was only observed among the male participants. Future studies can explore the actual physiological mechanism by which mood is linked to increased inflammation. In particular, researchers are interested in further investigating the association between time of blood draw taken relative to the negative mood experience and presence of inflammatory biomarkers. Practical application of these results could include developing preventative care programs involving lifestyle changes to mitigate the effects persistent negative mood can have on one’s health. Khare suggests that public acknowledgement of this association could provide the impetus “for people to [address and manage negative] emotions and remain healthy through yoga, meditation, and other stress-relief techniques.”
Calling all PhD and Master’s Students Completing your degree this Spring 2019? The Office of Graduate Studies and the Graduate Student Association are pleased to present the mandatory
Thesis and Dissertation Workshop Guidelines for formatting documents
Presented by Clarisa Gonzalez-Lenahan, Associate Director of Graduate Studies
February 7, 2019 4 - 6 p.m. Campus Center Ballroom To Register, complete Registration Form online. Visit njit.edu/graduatestudies for more information
Week of January 29, 2019 OPINIONS
Watching Human Rights By Parth Agrawal | Staff Writer “My life is in real danger if I return to Saudi Arabia.” Rahaf al-Qunun, a young Saudi woman seeking asylum in Thailand, has made it clear to the world that under no circumstances can she return to her country. The 18-year-old spent the first weekend of the new year barricaded in a Bangkok hotel, fleeing abuse by her male relatives for not strictly abiding by Muslim customs. After making her escape during a family visit to Kuwait and attempting to fly to Australia, she was held up in Thailand while connecting to her flight. Her pleas for support on social media and the hashtag #SaveRahaf went viral, and the case was thrown into the international spotlight. Pressure from the public, the Internet, and the United Nations Human Rights Watch grew, and the Thai authorities pledged to review her case thoroughly, saying that they “will not send anyone to die.” Recent news of Canadian influence raises new questions about whether Thailand’s refugee policies should be beholden to Western countries with more powerful political muscles. But
the fact remains that while states may have distinct ideologies and beliefs, they are also bound by responsibilities to the international community. This responsibility compelled the government of Thailand to abide by international standards of human rights and do everything in its power to ensure the safety of Rahaf al-Qunun. As soon as a country decides to become part of a larger collective, it must accept the laws of the collective if it is to enjoy the benefits of association. The country enters into a contract with its fellow members, agreeing to give up some modicum of its liberty in exchange for trade opportunities, military support, or political capital. It is up to the state to determine whether the benefits of joining outweigh the sacrifices. This concept of compromise holds true for any treaty or agreement between nations. For instance, in considering a peace treaty, the losing side must weigh between total annihilation or post-war concessions. In becoming a member of the United Nations in 1946, Thailand agreed to uphold its values and laws in order to have a seat at
US Government Shutdown The Story So far By Daniil Ivanov | Copy Editor
Photo by James Palinsad CC2.0
the international table. One of these requirements is the protection of human rights under the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. As a signatory to this critical UN document, Thailand must ensure the freedoms of “life, liberty, and security of person” and “thought and religion” described in Articles 3 and 18. These are of particular interest because Rahaf faces threats to her life and her freedom due to her religious choices. Article 14 also grants Rahaf the “right to seek and to enjoy in other countries asylum from persecution.” Part of upholding these human rights is to prevent them from being violated further. As a result, Thailand authorities cannot simply deport her to get the “problem” off their hands—they are compelled to ensure that Rahaf is not sent to a country where these infringements can occur, such as Saudi Arabia or Kuwait. Additionally, because Canada is also a signatory to the UDHR, the pressure it exerted on Thailand was morally and legally justifiable. The case was simply one UN member acting proactively to ensure
he 2018-2019 partial government shutdown has been ongoing since December 22, 2018. This became the longest government shutdown in the history of the United States on January 12, surpassing the Clinton-era shutdown of 21 days. Government shutdowns occur when the federal budget is not approved by Congress and the President. As of the time of publication, a budget has yet to be approved due to the issue over funding for the construction of a wall between the United States and Mexico—a project which President Trump promoted throughout his presidential campaign. The current shutdown has resulted in the total or partial closing of the Departments of Agriculture, Commerce, Homeland Security, Housing and Urban Development, the Interior, Justice, State, Transportation, and the Treasury. It also closed the Environmental Protection Agency, the Food and Drug Administration, the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the Securities and Exchange Commission, the National Park Service, the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, and NASA , among others. About 800,000 government employees have been either furloughed—sent home until the end of the shutdown—or
another UN member complies with international law, with the Bangkok Canadian ambassador “pressuring the Thai government officials… to persuade the Thai government not to send her back and also to persuade other members of the diplomatic community to do more.” To be sure, it is important to critically analyze international relations and to be wary of invasive interventions. For example, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan demonstrate that even “morally-intentioned” actions may be unjustified or even suspect. But in the case of Rahaf al-Qunun, the only thing that is at stake is the life and liberty of a single woman. And that is worth protecting.
forced to work without pay with their paychecks deferred until after the shutdown. These federal workers have missed two paychecks as of January 25. A number of essential workers who were asked to work without pay have chosen to use sick days in order to stay home or have outright resigned from their positions. This has led to an issue of understaffing in federal agencies, most notably the closing of terminals and longer lines at airports. The National Science Foundation has ceased to issue grants, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) ordered all contractors to halt operations until funding is secured, thus suspending disaster relief, funding for Section 8 housing assistance vouchers has lapsed at the Department of Housing and Urban Development, and Federal district courts have postponed civil cases. The unpaid labor of federal employees has somewhat cushioned the impact of the shutdown for citizens. Workers at the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) were called back in to issue tax returns for Americans. Some national parks remain open to the public, though other national landmarks such as the Smithsonian have been closed. Employees at the Fed-
eral Aviation Administration as well as food safety inspectors were called back in to continue safety inspections. In a December 25 interview, President Trump stated “I think they [federal employees] understand what’s happening. They want border security…. These federal workers want the wall. The only one that doesn’t want the wall are the Democrats.” However, a Government Business Council poll of 1,435 government employees varying in demographics found that 71% of workers surveyed opposed the wall while only 22% supported it. The same poll found that 48% of employees felt “very confident” or “extremely confident” that they would receive compensation after the shutdown ends while 13% were “not confident.” Sophomore Biomedical Engineering major, Zane Nogueras, said that, “the shutdown is hurting all these federal workers for a stupid wall. No matter what side you are on, a wall is not worth nearly a million people not getting paid for over a month now.” On January 25, the 35th day of the shutdown, Trump announced a deal without funding for his wall that would keep the federal government open until February 15.
Week of January 29, 2019
Left, Right & Middle
Is there a point to this gov. shutdown? Do you anticipate a compromise? Which side is being unreasonable here?** By Nicole Cheney | Senior Staff Writer
By Beshoy Shokralla | Senior Staff Writer
he point of the government shutdown is to hold the country hostage to pass an ineffective and inflammatory budget resolution. As a writer, it’s critical to look at both sides, but when Trump said he would “own” the shutdown, House Democrats tried to introduce bills to reopen the government, and McConnell was nowhere to be found, there is not much room to debate who is being unreasonable. National parks, left unsupervised, are defaced. Food inspections are left dormant. Airports are experiencing security closures. Hundreds of thousands of federal employees are left without a paycheck, while all these “non-essential” government services, and more, fall by the wayside. The shutdown isn’t truly about the wall. The shutdown is a show of power. It is clear that the immigration “crisis” at the border is not truly about the wellbeing of Americans, if the President, when faced with all the devastating effects of a long-term shutdown, continues to avoid compromise. It is the sign of an ineffective, egotistical leadership, and needs to come to a resolution quickly for the sake of the nation.
overnment shutdowns are a result of the government not passing an appropriation bill to cover agency spending for a certain period of time. Basically, the government doesn’t allocate money for agencies to pay bills, forcing them to shut down until the appropriate money is sent over. This doesn’t mean spending is cut by an agency—it merely delays the availability of funds for an agency to pay for things it's already agreed to do. So, is there a point to these shutdowns? Absolutely! Much like a business, there are consequences to not paying bills. While devastating to the economy and hundreds of thousands of federal employees, shut downs are a natural consequence of Congress and the President playing politics with the people’s money. Shutdowns force our federal government to compromise, and force political parties to set their petty ideological differences aside to do the most fundamental job of Congress: pay for things we already agreed on. Shutdowns are also a nonpartisan issue, as lengthy shutdowns have plagued every administration since the introduction of the Antideficiency act of 1870. No one party is at fault for shutdowns in general, but the most recent shutdown specifically was the fault of the President and Republicans for demanding $5.7 billion for a border wall two days before the deadline for the appropriation bill.
By Daniil Ivanov | Senior Staff Writer
he 2018-19 government shutdown is the longest in U.S. history. Though the issue blatantly at hand is a wall, the more nuanced issue is the 2020 election. President Trump promised a wall, the Democrats promised they will stop a wall. When the campaign trail is resparked, both sides desperately need the fuel of winning in this shutdown battle—neither side can afford to lose. Thus, there is no real point to the government shutdown and federal employees have been used as pawns for an end game that nobody has their heart fully set on. Most analysts say that the wall will cost more than the five billion dollars that Trump projects and more analysts still find the efficacy of the wall questionable at best. Both sides here are being unreasonable. They must understand that this is a tense game of politics, and they have to give the other side a way to compromise with dignity in order to break the stalemate. Under a Republican-controlled White House and Senate, a reasonable budget would increase funding for border security and make illegal immigration harder, while compromising on some points to account for the Democratic majority in the House of Representatives. A black and white argument of wall or no wall is unreasonable and undemocratic.
**Please note all opinions were written during the shutdown and reflect the reality of the shutdown prior to January 25, 2019.
American Born Chinese By Siri Uppuluri | Copy Editor
“ It’s easy to become anything you wish...so long as you’re willing to forfeit your soul.” In Gene Luen Yang’s 2006 graphic novel, American Born Chinese, Jin Wang receives this sagely advice from his mother’s herbalist’s wife. On the surface, her words come as a reply to Jin’s declaration that he wants to become a Transformer when he grows up. Beyond their ostensible meaning, however, her words serve as an ominous foreshadowing of the struggles faced by Jin and the two other main protagonists in the novel: Danny, a self-christened All-American Boy, and the Monkey King, a mythical creature determined to become equal to humans. The novel follows the stories of Jin, Danny, and the Monkey King, alternating between the three plot lines over the course of 233 vibrantly illustrated pages. Aesthetically, Yang’s panels utilize an appealing color palette of neutrals, punctuated with occasional bold colors to interrupt visual monotony. Yang also maintains the integrity of the medium, as the narration boxes, dialogue bubbles, and onomatopoeias characteristic of graphic novels are maintained.
While dialogue is minimal, it functionally carries the plot along. Although switches between the three plot lines are initially abrupt, Yang more than makes up for these staccato transitions toward the end of the novel, when readers finally understand the connection between Jin, Danny, and the Monkey King, and how each is dependent on the other two for the furthering of his own story. Thematically, American Born Chinese presents the experience of ‘otherness’ in different forms. Jin is a Chinese-American boy struggling to find a sense of belonging in his predominantly white, suburban elementary school. Conversely, Danny is the quintessential All-American Boy, until this title is unceremoniously stripped from his grasp by a visit from his “FOB-y” cousin, ChinKee. Meanwhile, the Monkey King is a deity struggling to accept his status as a monkey, and longing for the respect given to humans. Each character attempts to transform, visually, into some-
thing or someone else. Circling back to the herbalist’s wife’s advice, the process of their transformations, which is followed over the course of the novel, reveals unanticipated costs. Yang adeptly addresses issues such as discrimination, racial self-loathing, and assimilation with humor, crafting a work that is equal parts visually engaging, entertaining, and thought-provoking. Although the novel focuses on the first generation Chinese-American experience, the novel’s messages of yearning to belong and struggling to maintain appearances possess a universality that anyone can connect to. Though published over a decade ago, the novel also addresses issues of identity and appearance that remain relevant in contemporary discussions of race, such as the discussion about code-switching sparked by films like BlacKkKlansman. For its humor, relevance, and ease of readability (it is a very quick read), American Born Chinese should definitely be added to your 2019 reading list.
by Gene Luen Yang
Week of January 29, 2019
Do You Even Sudoku?
Horoscopes credited to Poetastrologers
PISCES You can be ready for it or not, and it will still happen. A series of photographs, taken meticulously in the back of a feeling, will soon be yours. You can make something out of them if you want to. The best thing to do might be to just keep them.
SAGITTARIUS You will draw a mountain in front of the door, only if it means there will be something for you to long for. Quietly, quietly, you will set up the table to appear red and endless. It’s all yours and you know it. You’ve always known everything.
VIRGO The orb is a light lemon color and softly waltzing. Some people know the difference between the way and the walk. You do know what the final inevitable question will be. Don’t stop for anything— it’s not worth it.
You get sort of excited at the thought of just you and your dreams alone in a yellow room. That is, until you start crying. Speaking a song isn’t the same as writing the song. You’ll probably forget that.
AQUARIUS You will stretch your arms as far as you can but it might not be enough. You will be happy then, or grateful. Things will progress, but maybe not in a good way. That’s the worrisome part of it.
SCORPIO You will be so busy dancing you won’t notice who just came in the room. Oh, maybe beware. The dogs you thought were yours might just walk out the door. Yes, yes, walk, no not run.
If you could wrap the light neatly in ribbons, you wouldn’t. Forget about everything you know and then make a decision. What is purple is also the number 9. It’s ok to be waiting and waiting.
TAURUS Irreplaceable thoughts will swirl in excess over a horizon. So go go, enter the capsule in a union. Irreversible messages will come to you at night. Write them down or don’t—it won’t matter.
CAPRICORN If you could be sure of it you’d take the offering thankfully. But you really can’t be sure of anything, especially from who gives it. Take good care when you are on the stage. Everyone’s watching so you’d better focus.
LIBRA Despite it all, things just got better. Horses and horses and horses and horses. The pink sunset not just in the books. Keep in mind there’s no reason not to: Begin.
You know best about the things collected from the edge of the path and the other path. If you could draw a circle you would but you lost your pencil. Instead of thinking make room for listening. Find a way to change the topic.
You have your power but you won’t see it that way. What could hold you back also will not move you forward. You would go willingly but no one is asking. Maybe soon they will.
Crossword Crossword credited to onlinecrosswords.net
Tweet @TheNJITVector a photo of your completed crossword puzzle (only if you can solve it, though)! Down
1. Thrown for a loop 2. Tiller front 3. Indisputable 4. Star-shaped 5. Gauguin's isle 6. Request to a teller, perhaps 7. Far from pushy 8. Meet expectations 9. Flip a switch up 10. "My Life as ___" (1985 film) 11. Coffee grinder 12. Gondolier's propeller 14. Descriptor for chapped hands 21. 19th-century Shakespearean actor Edmund 22. Crucifixes 25. Letter after iota 26. Ms. DeGeneres 27. Antelope with twisted horns 28. Deadly sin 29. Cure hide 30. "The Compleat Angler" author, Walton 31. Be a beggar 32. Olympic weaponry 37. Sao ___, Brazil 38. They precede HI 39. Synthetic rubber ingredient 41. Aggressive poker players 42. List-curtailing abbr. 44. Creaks and squeaks 45. Use experimentally 46. Brigham, Cy and Burt 49. Tea type 50. Within walking distance 51. Find distasteful to the max 52. Narrow-waisted stinger 53. Clownfish of film 54. Vesuvius product 55. Thunderclouds, for sure 56. Well-bred chap
1. "Wherefore ___ thou ..." 4. Small matter? 8. Album entry, perhaps 13. One of six in this clue 15. Level-headed 16. Sound source 17. Toiletries case 18. Archaic pronoun 19. "The Three Billy Goats Gruff" meanie 20. Christmas quip, Part 1 23. Basic cooking instruction 24. Bear, to Spaniards 25. Quip, Part 2 33. The A of E.A.P. 34. Baron's bride 35. Cook in the microwave 36. Get ready for the wedding 37. Lowly workers 39. "The Sweetest Taboo" singer 40. Its tip may be felt 41. Large amount 42. French story? 43. Quip, Part 3 47. Bathwater additive 48. Surf sound 49. End of the quip 57. Desist's partner 58. Long, long time 59. Finger, so to speak 60. Lotus-___ ("Odyssey" figure) 61. Cocksure 62. Fully avenged 63. Boutique buy, perhaps 64. Kitchen collection 65. Small soldier
Week of January 29, 2019 Movie Review
Bandersnatch By Katherine Ji | Senior Staff Writer
The Netflix anthology “Black Mirror” has earned its spot as my favorite television show for its ability to predict how the more technologically advanced society we are striving towards will meld with human nature, and often, the consequences of this interaction. With themes involving social media validation or “cancel culture” and the innate sense of entertainment in another person’s humiliation, there were countless times where I was left in awe, wondering how I would fare in the characters’ situations. That said, on December 28, 2018, when “Black Mirror” released “Bandersnatch”, an interactive choose-your-own-adventure film, I might have been one of its first viewers. I was excited to act as one of its characters, faced with the morally grey choices characteristic of “Black Mirror”. Besides, the idea of a more immersive film may serve to challenge what we expect from media in the future. The film follows a young, inexperienced videogame designer, Stefan, who works on a game called “Bandersnatch”, which was picked up by Tuckersoft, an established gaming company. A typical run through the episode lasts 90 minutes, but after achieving one possible ending, you are invited to go back and change your choices.
I was at it for approximately three hours when I finally decided to close my laptop, admittedly disappointed. In fact, I really hated it. And then I really loved it. Spoilers ahead: unlike the choose-you-own-adventure books we read as children, there is no happy ending in “Bandersnatch”. The first important choice I imagine most viewers made, was to work with Tuckersoft on creating Stefan’s video game. This ends the film abruptly, with an incredibly disappointing game review of “Bandersnatch” that deems it too messy and directionless. Of course, I started over, instead selecting for Stefan to work on the game independently, endeavoring to see my character succeed. What I saw in various, alternate endings was Stefan’s terrifying descent into madness, a confusing katana sword fight on a movie set, a scene that made me want to try acid, a scene involving suicide and Pac Man that made me not want to try acid, and a gruesome death. I reached my last ending, opting to chop up Stefan’s father’s body. This actually allowed Stefan to finish his game before the deadline and garner a massively positive game review. But there wasn’t much cause to celebrate after the camera panned to Stefan’s father’s severed head. The experience was
almost entirely unpleasant. At first, I hated the film. The plot was boring, grating, and lacked the typical technological and sociological ‘advancements’ we usually see in a “Black Mirror” episode, since it is set in 1984. And though “Black Mirror” episodes are not known for their happy endings, I felt there was no direction in this story. How could there be any moral to the story if there was no particularly happy ending that set the others apart? Later, I understood. I now believe there is no specific moral to “Bandersnatch”, but rather, what you take away from your personal experience makes it valuable. “Black Mirror” has always challenged viewers to confront their own thoughts about what exactly is right and wrong, such as in episodes “Shut Up and Dance” and “White Bear”. I reflected on my own experience and asked myself why I wanted Stefan’s video game to succeed so badly, especially at the expense of Stefan’s sanity and the safety of those around him. Did it mean I’m prioritizing the wrong things in
life? Why wasn’t I satisfied with the 2.5-star review, or the ending where Stefan’s father hugs Stefan to calm him down in his delirium? And even though minutes transformed into hours of clicking, I can’t believe I ever had the heart to chop up Stefan’s father’s body. These thoughts, unlike other episodes, only came about through the choose-your-own experience. I think the idea of interactive video media is genius, but I only formed this opinion after being forced to make dark choices, rather than watching a made-up character make them. As producer Annabel Jones explained, the team wanted viewers “to have that emotional engagement with the character” along with a “richness of emotion and experience” that would have been missing from a linear, passive episode. Personally, I felt so sick afterwards that I never want to watch this film again. But I also felt immersed like never before, so by all means try it out… As long as you can handle the ensuing self-loathing and disgust.
"...there is no specific moral to 'Bandersnatch', but rather, what you take away from your personal experience makes it valuable."
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Week of January 29, 2019
Highlanders Rally in Thrilling Overtime Victory Over North Alabama By NJIT Athletics
NEWARK, N.J. – The NJIT Highlanders (17-5, 5-2 ASUN) completed a comeback win in overtime to defeat North Alabama (8-15, 5-3 ASUN) at the Wellness and Events Center on Sunday, 76-70. Donovan Greer's game-tying three pointer with five seconds left sent the game into overtime where NJIT sealed the win after trailing for more than 17 minutes in the second half. "Even when we were down seven points with three minutes to go, no one panicked," head coach Brian Kennedy said. "Everyone knew it was a three possession game and the guys really showed great composure." Sophomore Zach Cooks finished with 21 points and senior Abdul Lewis collected a double-double on 17 points and 13 rebounds.
NJIT overtakes North Alabama for third place in the ASUN Conference standings behind Liberty and Lipscomb. The Highlanders opened their scoring solely via Abdul Lewis and San Antonio Brinson, who collectively scored the opening 13 points of the game. Alternatively, North Alabama spread the ball and featured five different scorers as they took an early 17-13 lead midway through the first half. Greer made a pair of free throws and Cooks rallied with five points to spark an 11-0 run and take their first lead of the game by the eight minute mark. Diandre Wilson, Cooks and Greer each added a three pointer each, but North Alabama answered each basket with one of their own.
Is the Patriots’s Super Bowl Reign Good or Bad For the NFL? PRO On February 3, Bill Belichick will coach in his 12th Super Bowl, while Tom Brady will play in his ninth. Belichick’s dominance over the NFL has lasted nearly 30 years and has been magnified by Brady’s outstanding quarterback play. Their reign is good for football. Belichick has shown to be capable of identifying the opposition’s weakness and exploiting it. In the AFC Championship game, he saw a Chiefs defense that was only talented in their pass rushers. Belichick’s game plan relied heavily on running the ball. Up until the final two drives, the Patriots had severely limited the amount of times that Brady was forced to drop back and throw. They finished the game with
4 rushing touchdowns, and a road victory over the firstplace Chiefs. This skill is one that Belichick has shown for nearly 30 years now. He’s also shown this outstanding game-planning ability on defense. Belichick and Brady are both outstanding at their respective jobs. They deserve the dominance that they show. It is good for football to be a meritocracy where the best players and coaches get to win the most often. It is rare for such a great quarterback to be paired with such a great coach, and this union has built the Patriots’ dynasty. - Adrian Wong Senior Staff Writer
Cooks, Lewis and Wilson each finished with eight points as the teams entered the locker room tied, 34-34. Lewis secured his third double-double in four games within the first couple minutes of the second half. However, North Alabama came out firing, shooting 50% from the field in the opening 10 minutes of the half to provide the Lions a cushion, which last most of the half. NJIT pushed in the final five minutes, applying full court pressure. Late offensive rebounds for the Lions burned time off the clock, but Cooks turned one of his three steals into a layup with 2:30 left in the game to cut the lead to four points. NJIT's defense forced a shot clock violation with just over one minute remaining and Lewis trimmed the lead to three with a free throw with
50 seconds remaining. The full-court pressure forced a travel by North Alabama, which turned into a thunderous dunk by Lewis to make it just a one-point game, 63-62, with 30 seconds left. North Alabama sank two free throws to extend the lead to three points with 12 seconds to go. Following a timeout, NJIT put the game in the hands of Greer with five seconds left and the senior answered with the game-tying three pointer to send the game into overtime. "Donovan Greer did a great job with [the shot]," Kennedy said. "Donovan's a senior and he's really been putting the time in in practice, he had a great game at Stetson and it carried over to tonight's game." Cooks opened the scoring with a layup one minute in and was an-
swered back by a UNA three pointer, but the Highlanders would run away with it shortly afterwards. A pair of free throws from Lewis and a three pointer from Cooks provided NJIT the lead with one minute remaining and some strong defensive rebounding kept the Lions adrift. Cooks extended NJIT's lead to six with less than 30 seconds left as the Highlanders closed out the win on a 7-0 run in the final 2:30 to earn its eighth home win of the season. NJIT remains at home at the Wellness and Events Center in Newark, N.J., and hosts the reigning ASUN regular season champions, Florida Gulf Coast, on Wednesday, January 30 at 7 p.m. (TV: ESPN+)
AGAINST There is no doubt that the New England Patriots are the most dominant team in recent NFL history. The Bill Belichick and Tom Brady dynasty began in 2001 and has accumulated incredible accolades including 16 division championships, 13 AFC championship appearances, nine AFC championship wins, nine Super Bowl appearances, and five Super Bowl wins. As Tom Brady and crew prepare to play in their third straight Super Bowl, there have been concerns over whether this domination is good for the league as a whole. Since Brady first started playing for the Pats in 2001, he has gone 207-60. With just under an 80% chance he wins any given game, its borderline boring to watch if you already know who is going to win. In their “NFL
Viewership Has Taken a Hit” article, statista.com stated that “underperforming teams” were one of the top three reasons viewership has declined almost 20% in the past three years. There are many NFL fans taking to social media and sharing thoughts on the topic. Football fan and Twitter user @ralobban said, “Safe to say I will not be watching the Superbowl if thieving #Patriots are in it.” This feeling of domination with an expected outcome makes football less interesting to watch and is detrimental to the league’s viewership and image. When one team has outscored its opponents by over 2500 points in the last 17 years, that is no longer a sport most people are interested in watching. - Owen Busler Senior Staff Writer
PRO Since Tom Brady was drafted in 2000, the New England Patriots have won five Super Bowls. The other backbone of this success is Bill Belichick, who is considered the greatest NFL coach of all time. Is the New England Patriots’ reign a good thing? The answer is yes. Their reign gives the other football teams an opportunity to work particularly hard to dethrone the Patriots. Every team would like to win. For those who watched the game last Sunday, I believe the Patriots won in a landslide by luck (coin toss), so you know that the Kansas City Chiefs, headed by the talented quarterback Patrick Mahones, will be better prepared next time to make sure they do not go into overtime with the Patriots. This hunger to win will make the NFL very competitive, which is
what the fans want, and the NFL association will increase its annual revenue. - Rick-kendy Noziere Senior Staff Writer