S The Silhouette
Thursday, November 10, 2016
MARAUDER BASKETBALL TEAMS HAVE HIGH EXPECTATIONS FOR THE 2016-2017 SEASON PAGES 24-25
“There is still something that is keeping women from stepping forward.” The McMaster Students Union launched a campaign to engage more women in student politics. Two years later, what are the results? FEATURE, PAGES 6-7
“BEING ON STAGE ITSELF WAS A BLUR”: WHAT IT’S LIKE TO PARTICIPATE IN THE QSCC’S DRAG SHOW PAGE 20
Volume 87, Issue 12
Thursday, November 10, 2016 McMaster University’s Student Newspaper
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www.thesil.ca | Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016
News MacPride 2016 Emily O’Rourke News Reporter
Halloween may be over, but campus remained full of colour and wonder for another week with this year’s MacPride. MacPride is an annual event organized by McMaster’s Queer Students Community Cen-tre that took place this year from Oct. 31-Nov. 5. The week brings LGBTQ+-identifying students, faculty and staff together to celebrate diversity in gender and sexuality and to create a space where identifying individuals can be unapologetically themselves. “I think MacPride is a really cool opportunity to create spaces for students who identify as LGBTQ because we often don’t see representation or visibility among faculty or in the uni-versity’s institutions,” said Aly Khalifa, QSCC coordinator. “A lot of these institutions are built to kind of exclude LGBTQ students, so it’s really important to create a campaign that tells students that they are welcome and there are spaces for them if they ever need them.” The week was filled with a variety of events ranging from educational to entertaining. Each event aimed to build community and representation across campus for LGBTQ+ identifying individuals everywhere. From drop-in style board game fun and banner painting to informative workshops on LGBTQ+ relationships, sex and bodies, there were events for every taste. “A lot of the events are focused on bringing people together,” said Khalifa. “I think a large part of the struggle for queer students is finding other queer students, so just providing events that are very simple allows students to sit down together and kind of just
talk and they can connect over that shared experience is really important.” The annual MacPride march and rally brought hundreds of LGBTQ+ identifying students, faculty, staff and their allies together to march through campus in a prominent demonstration of both LGBTQ+ pride and McMaster’s efforts in working towards an environment in which identifying students feel both safe and welcome. This week also saw the launch of McMaster’s new Trans Community Group. This initiative serves as a branch of peer support, exclusive to trans students and meant to provide a safer space for trans and non-binary folk. “A lot of students come from very diverse backgrounds and a lot of those backgrounds aren’t necessarily positive,” explained Khalifa. “It’s really important that when they come to university they see that these spaces exist for them and that they know they’re safe because it can be very challenging when you’re struggling with your identity to not feel like you have a community.” As the week came to an end, the main focus of the campaign was clear; more visibility on campus and building a community where students feel like they belong. “The effect I’d want to see from this campaign is having students who never really felt like they had a community or didn’t feel connected, or didn’t feel safe in their identity found that space, or even saw the supportive environment if they weren’t able to come out to any of the events.” noted Khalifa. “I hope that they now feel more comfortable at McMaster knowing that people do accept them for who they are.” @theSilhouette
McMaster’s Queer Student Community Centre teamed up with other groups on campus to hold its annual Pride Week, and included various events such as a march,a drag show and more
MADELINE NEUMANN / PHOTO EDITOR
Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016 | www.thesil.ca
The 2016 MSU audit, in all its glory The Silhouette took a look at last year’s financial audit. Here’s what we found.
www.thesil.ca | Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016
Steven Chen News Reporter
Every year, students pay a sizable sum of money to the McMaster Student Union (MSU) in the form of supplementary fees. This year for instance, the MSU collected $515.38 from each full-time undergraduate student (18 units or more). The fees contribute to the MSU membership, which consists of access to the MSU Health and Dental plan, along with the other 35 businesses and services offered. With such a large amount of capital passing through the hands of the Student Union, measures are taken to ensure that student money is being used wisely, and to assess MSU’s financial performance and position. As with virtually all organizations of this size, an external audit is performed for this purpose. KPMG is contracted to perform an annual financial audit of the McMaster Students Union, thereby providing an independent evaluation of financial statements pertaining to the non-profit student organization.
And how did the MSU do on its audit? The audit, which was completed earlier this September, was purposed to review the consolidated financial statements of McMaster Students Union Incorporated as at and for the year ended at April 30, 2016. In short, the audit serves essentially as last year’s report card. Overall, it met the standard of the audit and passed the evaluations for fraud risks, there are certainly aspects of the audit which should be considered in more detail. We will look into grading the MSU financially in the past year using significant findings from the audit, alongside an interview with current MSU Vice-President Finance, Ryan MacDonald.
Highs “I think what we did well was recognizing that year after year we were generating surpluses of significant value. This past year, we tried to consider student costs as well as really trying an emphasis to be able to invest back the money that we accumulated over a period of time, and that’s why you saw the introduction of new services like Spark and WGEN and Maccess being set up, as well as considerable investment into larger programs in our Campus Events department,” he said. “So I would say the high was taking the money that was available to us, in terms of continual year-over-year surpluses, and to be able to invest it in what we do best, which is serving students,” MacDonald added.
“In terms of the issues with the Health plan, we are trying to invest in additional benefits, such as with the addition of Lows the Student Assistance In the interests of having longinvestment returns, the Program. Also, term MSU has been allocating funds for its stock portfolio. As stated we will look by the KPMG audit report, to potentially the portfolio incurred a loss of $114,000 this year compared to lowering earning over $495,000 of investfees in the ment income in the prior year. this investment has upcoming year, Although been profitable in the long-term, the short-term loss is linked to since we have the poor performance of the generated a Toronto Stock Exchange and New York Stock Exchange over significant the past year. surplus. “ “I would say that obviously Ryan MacDonald MSU Vice-President Finance
it was intentional with respect to the ability of putting that in-
vestment and the deficit was not necessarily a surprise. However, obviously we want to be responsible with student money and we want to continue doing that,” said MacDonald. The large cumulative surplus from the Health and Dental plans in the financial statements begs the question of whether students are being excessively charged for these student fees. The Health Plan ended this year with a cumulative surplus of approximately $377,000 while the Dental Plan acquired a surplus of $311,000. This creates a difficult situation in two ways. First, the surplus conflicts with Section 2.5 (Health Plan Fund) and Section 3.5 (Dental Plan Fund) of Corporate Bylaw 3, which states that balances to a maximum of $75,000 shall be maintained for both the Health and Dental Plan Funds. Second, it was interesting to see a drastic increase in the Health Plan fees in the 2015/16 school year. While it is certainly true that the MSU Health Plan increased the level of benefits provided, students were consequently charged $109.95 compared to $58.00 in the prior year, a difference of $51.95 which may not be reflected in the value of services added. “In terms of the issues with the Health plan, we are trying to invest in additional benefits, such as with the addition of the Student Assistance Program. Also, we will look to potentially lowering fees in the upcoming year, since we have generated a significant surplus.” Another peculiar point from the audit are the year-overyear losses from TwelvEighty Bar & Grill. For a restaurant to incur the largest loss for the MSU seems difficult to imagine. “For TwelvEighty, the largest issue was food inflation. The costs were considerable, and there was an intentional deci-
“For TwelvEighty, the largest issue was food inflation. The costs were considerable, and there was an intentional decision where we felt that we could increase the volume significantly if we kept our prices low.” Ryan MacDonald MSU Vice-President Finance sion where we felt that we could increase the volume significantly if we kept our prices low. The volumes increased, but not to the extent we needed them to be able to consider the financially viable model which we were moving forward with. This year, we did raise up our prices to accurately more reflect how our actual costs were,” noted MacDonald when explaining the underlying reasons for the yearover-year loss. For a further look into the documents containing the Audit Findings Report and Consolidated Financial Statements, they may be accessed through the MSU website. @theSilhouette
Alex Florescu Features Reporter
In 2014, the Silhouette gathered the facts for female representation in student politics. The statistics were grim. McMaster ranked eighth out of nine major research universities in Ontario for equal gender representation on student government, a gap which was most apparent in the highest-ranking positions for president and vice-president. This trend is particularly concerning given that more women than men are enrolled in undergraduate studies at McMaster. The issue lead to the creation of groups such as MSU Wants You, a working group aimed at tackling the issue of equal representation. Two years later, it is unclear whether anything has changed.
SUPPLY AND DEMAND Research on female representation in politics has taken the form of what Karen Bird, professor of political science at McMaster, calls an issue of supply and demand. Voters are not biased against women. Rather, it is an issue of supply, where women are not putting their names forward as candidates. When the electoral system involved parties, the responsibility falls on the shoulder of the parties to tap women on the shoulder and recruit them to run. Blake Oliver, vice-president (Education) of the MSU, recalled her hesitation to run when she first got involved in the McMaster Students Union as a member of the Student Representative Assembly for Health Sciences. “I remember looking through the past Health Sci representatives, [and despite the fact that our] faculty is two thirds female, I couldn’t find a single example of a time where both representatives had been women. It has almost exclusively been both men or half.” “I had those women who were in their own leadership positions who were reaching out and saying to me ‘you would be good for this position.’ I think that has really contributed to me coming into this position now,” said Oliver.
Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016 | www.thesil.ca
MSU WANTS YOU MSU Wants You was born out of the desire to have equal opportunity for minorities within the MSU. The group was a working group last year but as of the start of this year has developed into a full committee. The sense is that the group diverted a bit away from their original plan and has been stagnant for a little while, according to Oliver, but changes are in the process of being made. Feedback has contributed to some of these changes. People asked for an event that was more accessible, leading to the creation of Elections 101, an info session leading up to elec-
Women are the majority in most disciplines now, at least across the university ... They have all the skills and all the ability but there is still something that is keeping women from stepping forward. Karen Bird Professor of Political Science
tions. A formal session appeals to people who may not be comfortable to go to TwelvEighty and speak to SRA members. While Oliver and Bird both implied that shoulder tapping has anecdotally helped encourage women run for positions they would have otherwise shied away from, it is seen as a double-edged sword by the MSU Wants You. “From what I have heard from the past, the shoulder tapping is something we have discouraged, actually, because the people who have closer relationships and know people in these jobs will shoulder tap people they know and it becomes a perpetuation of the canonical MSU bubble,” said Helen Zeng, chair of MSU Wants You. Posts
on Facebook advertising MSU positions are often littered with comments from MSU members tagging others in the comments, urging them to apply. “That is something that I remember the group last year was specifically against because we don’t want to make it seem like these are the only people that would be good for the job,” said Zeng. This leaves us with a conundrum that is all the more emphasized by a non-partisan system. Bird acknowledges that at the level of student government, you don’t have parties and it is up to you whether you are going to go forward as a candidate. The trend is even more surprising for local politics and student government. At the highest levels of power, where
the fighting and the power politics or the power plays and just don’t find that kind of working environment healthy or personally rewarding, so there might be ways of shifting the environment or culture of politics to make it more inviting for women.” Listing student government positions are valuable experiences that can help students get employed after leaving university, so it is not likely that women do not find value in the experience. Instead, Bird thinks that women may be seeing negatives that men are less likely to consider. “[This] perhaps has to do with the culture of politics, [such as] the need to take no compromise positions,” said Bird. Here Bird sees the opportunity for intervention in the form
ELECTING FOR NON-ELECTIONS When looking at the distribution of women in appointed part-time manager positions in comparison to elected positions on the SRA and as MSU President, women are more likely to be in the appointed positions; women outnumber men in Part Time Manager positions but on average, not in SRA positions and certainly not for MSU president positions. In the conversation leading up to the referendum on whether MSU VP positions should become elected at large, the no side expressed concern over the fact that we may see less women running for these positions once they become at-large elections.
WOME THE travel expectations might deter women who do not want to leave their community, the reluctance to run is less surprising. “It is so puzzling that it is the case for local politics and for young women. Women are the majority in most disciplines now, at least across the university. Women tend to do better in their GPA. They have all the skills and all the ability but there is still something that is keeping women from stepping forward,” said Bird.
CLEAR CUT NOT CUT THROAT Bird hypothesizes that the nature of the political system might be a culprit for this reluctance. “Maybe women don’t like
of increased transparency about what it takes to hold a position in student government. “If we tell candidates that compromise is actually essential and it is not about the need to take hard and fast positions... I think women would see that. Are elements of culture itself toxic, or is [there a] perception of toxicity? If we knew a bit more about the position we would see it [as less] hostile.” Misperceptions around what it takes to do the job may also discourage women from applying if they feel they are not fit. Being clear in disseminating information about the skills that student government positions require to the student body may increase female turnout, because women will likely realize they have those skills.
Bird has seen a similair phenomenon around the world, where women running in elections tend to dislike feeling responsible for mobilizing the vote singlehandedly, preferring instead to run as a part of a group. “It causes this pause. We tend to think election that is democracy, but we know across countries with different kinds of electoral systems that women are significantly far more likely to have higher seat share when they are proportional representation systems than single member districts,” she said. “Women are happy to be candidates when they are part of a list and when it is a collective effort to go out and mobilize the vote. That, along with data that women are more likely to be in appointed positions, suggests that you will see fewer women if you have exclusively elected
www.thesil.ca | Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016
positions.” The University of Western Ontario had a near equal split between female and male representation in student politics when the Silhouette covered the topic two years ago. At Western, presidential and vice-presidential candidates run as a part of a team. Perhaps a similar system would increase female representation in the highest-ranking positions at McMaster. “Critics will say that women have to learn to singlehandedly mobilize the vote, that is a skill you need to be in this position. [However] that is the skill you need to run for election but may have very little to do with the skills you need to work in that office,” Bird challenges critics to reconsider. “Some of them certainly, like the ability to communicate well, but the ability to
to join the MSU. One more surprising barrier is the disparity between the kinds of questions and concerns that are raised against females running in elections processes that you just don’t see with males. Shaarujaa Nadarajah, vice-president (Administration) of the MSU, comments on this disparity. “Even within the SRA, certain questions that were asked to women running [for VP positions] were ‘you tend to have a mannerism that is loud and outspoken, is that something that you think is fitting for a vice presidential role?’ If you compare that to a male counterpart, none of the males that ran for a VP position were asked any questions that was related to their personality or that was catered to a certain mannerism.”
those roles themselves. While females tend to do well when they actually run, the lack of visible representation sends the message that the kind of person that gets those positions is not usually female. This problem is likely accentuated by the fact that the majority of people come to any single university for only four to five years. This means that if there are no female MSU presidents or vice presidents within those years, women are go through university with the impression that women just don’t occupy those positions, and are consequently less likely to run themselves.
EN IN MSU work as a team might be better reflected and better assessed through a non-elected position.” Oliver is a strong supporter of keeping VP elections within the SRA. “I think it could create more barriers for women to run. It is relatively equal for women who have held up positions but there have only been four women MSU presidents ever. I think part of that has to do with running at large. I certainly wouldn’t have run in an at-large election after running in the Health Sciences election, it was not something I wanted to do again.”
ON THE OUTSIDE One of the goals of MSU Wants You is to have workshops about the barriers that minority groups may face when aspiring
These comments are present beyond the election process. Once women are elected and take up their positions, they still face barriers due to their gender. Oliver is always surprised by comments that have nothing to do with her demeanour rather than her competency at the job. “I have definitely gotten ‘you need to smile more at work’, and that is the stuff that takes me by surprise that I don’t see happening with other men at work.”
MENTORSHIP In a sense, the lack of women in high-ranking positions within the MSU creates a downstream effect that propagates the gender imbalance. Having female role models in these positions allows women to know that they have equal opportunity for occupying
SATISFACTION NOT (YET) GUARANTEED These barriers further highlight the importance of groups such as MSU Wants You. Zeng says that the majority of the events this year have been focused on popping the bubble. “We try to create sessions where people can come, ask questions, because the process can be intimidating. Having us and SRA members be accessible is very important... [while also] creating more formalized session for learning about the elections process for people who may feel more intimidated by the MSU circles,” said Zeng. The group has also taken a look at data collection in the past. “They did focus groups
to collect information on how they got involved, what barriers did you see. They also went to PTMs and took descriptions and outlines of jobs from PTMs and turned it into a document so that it is more accessible.” While they have yet to meet since becoming a committee, Zeng says the group is able to take on whatever form the committee wants. Oliver thinks that the group is instrumental in helping address some of the barriers that women face in running for governance. She would love to see some critical discourse surrounding the elections process and certain aspects that may create barriers for women. “For example, we don’t see any more people putting up posters on the side of the building that are several feet large. That was something that elections decided it is not something we have to do any more. I would love to talk about why do we have to have a photograph of the person on the poster, why can’t we have a poster that has branding on it, instead of selling someone’s face to the entire student body.” It is difficult to tell if there has been improvement over the last two years. “In terms of presidential candidates, we haven’t seen much improvement. Last year only one woman ran, the
... None of the males that ran for a VP position were asked any questions that was related to their personality or that was catered to a certain mannerism. Shaarujaa Nadarajah vice president (Administration)
year before none. However, we have seen a more gender-balanced SRA, the year I was elected it was 50/50... It is hard to say without years of tracking it, for example it is back to being more male dominated. It is definitely hard to say. I will say that two of the four women presidents have
been in the last six years, so I think that is a positive sign that at least some of these barriers have been broken down,” said Oliver. Oliver hopes to see some more changes coming from groups like MSU Wants You. “I would like to see groups like MSU Wants You to take on not only a role in education but also in policy, looking at what are the rules and how do they create barriers for women to run.” Ultimately, and perhaps unfortunately, a large part of the responsibility falls down on groups rallying for equal representation to take a look at some of the systemic problems that lead to barriers for women, and to address them. For women who are already in leadership positions, speaking about their experience may mobilize other women consider running. While a weight of responsibility does fall on groups such as these, it is important for individuals to think critically about changes they want to see on the McMaster campus. While the last two years have seen hints of improvement, it is not time to sit back and be satisfied. We are far from that moment. @alexxflorescu
JUSTIN MONACO BARNES & RYAN MACDONALD President & Vice President (Finance) email@example.com 905.525.9140 x23885 firstname.lastname@example.org 905.525.9140 x24109
Since taking office, the two of us have worked diligently to bring forward a project in hopes of addressing a variety of key concerns students have brought forward over the last several years. At the last SRA meeting, we presented
This project is entirely for students, by students. the possibility of a Pulse expansion of over 60,000 square feet, as well as a Student Activity Building which would provide students with an additional 40,000 square feet of un-programmed student space. A few highlights from these new spaces would include: student lounge and study space, multi-faith space, student
November 10, 2016 | thesil.ca
event space, recreational space, $1.5 million in gym equipment upgrades, and more. Working alongside Dean of Students Sean Van Koughnett and the Director of Athletics Glen Grunwald, as well as a variety of other stakeholders across campus, we are confident that this project has considered all aspects of campus life. After many extensive surveys about space and the overall student experience, we wholeheartedly believe that we have created a plan that will enhance student life in a meaningful and tangible way. As a major platform of Justin’s 2016 Presidential campaign, we have made sure that this project is entirely for students, by students. A major investment of this kind will only be possible with financial contribution from students. Pending the SRA’s approval to send this project to referendum, students will have the opportunity to vote on this potential project during the January presidential cycle. Specifically, students would be asked if they support an immediate $95 fee, which would result in all students receiving a twelve month Pulse membership with expanded Pulse hours. Upon completion and opening of the new facilities, an additional fee of $128.50 would follow. As this conversation moves forward, debate and feedback is encouraged. Should this project come to fruition, ensuring student-centric spaces would be our priority. For the full presentation of this project with a breakdown of all details, please visit msumcmaster.ca/expansion.
TEXT ‘MSU’ TO 71441
The President’s Page is a space sponsored and used by the McMaster Students Union (MSU) Board of Directors (BoD) to communicate with the student body. It functions to highlight the Board’s projects, goals, and agenda for the year, as well as the general happenings of the MSU.
www.thesil.ca | Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016
Editorial And away we go Donald Trump is going to be the president, and holy shit, what the hell? Scott Hastie Editor-in-Chief
Donald Trump and I have one thing in common: we are both optimists. Trump, for all his honking about the terrible fate of the United States of America, was optimistic that he could win a presidential election despite no political experience. I was optimistic that our neighbours to the south (and our most important trade partner) would not engage with a clown like Trump and Hillary Clinton would win easily. Nearly all the polls had Hillary winning in a landslide, and even the cautious projections still gave her a 73 per cent chance of winning. That is why I wrote and printed a Speculator piece about Trump losing. To pull the curtain back, the Silhouette’s glossy covers are required to go to print a day earlier than regular newsprint.That means we have to submit the Speculator on Tuesday nights. Instead, I am wrong. That is not what kept me up on Tuesday night, it was the fallout that will come. The United States elected a man who has more failed businesses than McMaster has overpaid professors, who called Mexicans criminals and rapists, who was endorsed by
the Ku Klux Klan, who blatantly lied multiple times a day, who said he was “smart” for not paying taxes, who said he would commit war crimes, who lost access to his own Twitter account over the weekend for fear of what he might tweet, who wants to deport all Muslims, who wants to build a wall to keep Mexicans out, who believes climate change is a hoax created by the Chinese and said he will cancel the Paris Accord, who believes that the same-sex marriage legislation from 2015 is wrong and should be left to the individual states, who has joked around about committing sexual assault on camera, who has been accused of committing sexual assault by at least 15 women and who did not even know the election date. The list goes on. And now, we look ahead and know we will not be moving forward. A man with this history, with these beliefs, with these policies, cannot push a country forward. Trump will only move them backwards and the entire world will feel the movement. This needs to serve as a wake-up call for everyone. Intolerance is encouraged in the most powerful country in the world. We should not be naïve and smug – a default for Canadians when the United States fucks up – we should acknowledge this as a tragedy
and take steps to address it in our own country because it absolutely exists. In Hamilton, there are issues. The city had the second-most hate crimes per capita in 2015. While isolated incidents should not be used to represent the entire population, intolerance has a way of manifesting itself in the dark corners of our society. We may not see the clues of hatred until a moment like this, where we wonder how we missed it all along. The hints are not just the graffiti, arsons or slurs that happen in our city. Kellie Leitch, a Conservative party leadership candidate, sent a press release describing the Trump win: “It’s an exciting message and one that we need delivered in Canada as well.” Let’s remember that Stephen Harper vilified Muslims during the 2015 campaign too, and Harper would not march in the gay pride parade. As hard as it may be, Canadians need to move forward in this bleak Trump-aspresident reality. It was not our decision, but it is a burden we will carry. We have to use this as an opportunity to evaluate ourselves and really turn our country into the place we believe it is.
to the November weather. to the structure at Sassafras Point. to personal goals. to the return of Mac basketball season. to the old Adobe. CC 2017 is a farce. to a new brand on the gram. to being haunted by screams. to West49. to the office scooter. to oily kale chips. to Bruce. to Barry Allen’s office. to a three-day dog park streak. to two-for-one paintball. to bears. they’re evolving! to sad quinoa.
to the 45th President of the United States of America.
Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016 | www.thesil.ca
Cindy Lam Social Work Level IV
YUNG LEE/ PHOTO REPORTER
What’s your hidden talent?
What does your life say about you?
I’m pretty good at riding a horse while shooting a crossbow, when I was younger I thought it’s be super cool to do so I kept practicing.
I’d like to think that it’s some rich tapestry of human experience that continues to grow, but it’s probably me going out of my way to enact puns.
What is a one piece of advice you were reluctant to follow, but found it working wonders for you on implementation?
Who’s been the most influential person in your life thus far? How have they influenced you?
D: Time heals all. You know when you’re really worked up about literally anything and your friends rally around you and tell you that things get better with time? It’s the worst thing to hear when you’re upset, but later on, you realize that you really just had to wait it out. With time, you’ll find a solution perhaps? Or something even better.
R: I think I’ve been very lucky to have a ton of people in my life who’ve been exceptionally influential, everyone from friends to my parents, but someone that really stands out in my head is my high school English teacher. It seems like your high school English teacher is always the coolest teacher you’ve ever had, or the
Dev Shields (Left) & Ruchika Gothoskar (Right) English Level II; Political Sciences Level III
If you could go back to first-year and would be able to give yourself any advice, what would it be and why?
literal worst, and I absolutely lucked out with this dude being the coolest. I totally get how teach-
You’re scared and you feel weak, but don’t be. We are powerfully weak because of our age; we’re figuring out how to conquer the world and how it chews us up in the same moment. It’s hard to adult and yet you’ll never get enough of it. We’re so happy to
be 20-something-year-olds that sometimes we’ll cry a little. And isn’t it miraculous to that sadness and smiling can come from the same mouth? Remember to enjoy this brilliance, because we are one of many creators of such tiny wonders.
ing can sometimes be strange because it’s easy to wonder if you’re actually being impactful or just talking to a classroom of sweaty 17-year-olds for no reason, but this teacher’s constant encouragement and genuine belief in me changed the trajectory of my life. I vividly remember him being there for me from the ninth grade, all the way until senior year, talking to me about my post-secondary options, reading my assignments out loud when they were great, and being brutally honest with
me when they weren’t. I tell literally everyone about “that English teacher I had in high school that changed everything about me”, and it’s because he really did. I still keep in touch with him, and on days when I don’t believe in my academic capabilities, it’s nice to remember that there’s someone, somewhere, who does, and it means a lot.
Yung Lee Photo Reporter
www.thesil.ca | Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016
The Silhouette | 11
Opinion Lack of accessibility for first generation students at McMaster University The obstacles that first generation students face are not validated or compensated by the university Sophie Geffros Contributor
In August, I received the following Facebook message from a high school classmate: “My little sister is starting at Mac in September. She’s terrified, and none of us have any advice to give her.” The new McMaster student was disabled, so I helped her
... the SRA hit a mental wall when they are asked about first generation students: all of the first generation student programming offered at McMaster comes through the Student Success Centre and the university itself, rather than the MSU.
figure out how to access academic accommodations. She was LGBTQ+ identified, so I showed her where the QSCC was. She was a first generation student, and I had no idea how to help her. Numerous studies have shown that first generation students have distinct needs from their peers. They are more likely to be part-time or non-traditional students, more likely to live off campus, more likely to work, more likely to receive OSAP, more likely to be student parents and more likely to access food support such as the Mac Bread Bin during their time at McMaster. In colleges and universities across North America, there have been concerted efforts to provide the support these students need to meet their unique challenges. McMaster, on the other hand, can’t even tell you how many first-generation students are currently attending the school. Although the Student Success Centre has recently revived their First Gen programming, including peer mentors and access to career counseling, there are many areas of university life where the needs of first-gen students are simply not taken
into account. Accessibility is a buzzword that is thrown around a lot in student government circles, and last year’s presidential and VP elections included references to every possible kind of accessibility and every possible kind of barrier — except for financial accessibility. While the subject occasionally comes up when there is yet another debate about adding an extra dollar to the MSU student fee, it almost never comes up when discussing the length of SRA meetings, the remuneration for PTMs and other MSU employees, or the ratio of volunteer-to-paid positions available in the MSU. In my time at McMaster, I have seen otherwise eloquent and progressive members of the SRA hit a mental wall when they are asked about first generation students: all of the first generation student programming offered at McMaster comes through the Student Success Centre and the university itself, rather than the MSU. This programming is not a substitute for student-run initiatives, just as the existence of the Equity and Inclusion Office is not a substitute for MSU Diversity Services. On seemingly every other axis of oppression, we
understand that peer support and community programming is most effective when it comes from students who share an identity. We are able to understand that academia is a system built on the systemic exclusion of women, disabled people and racialized people, but somehow forget that it is also built on the exclusion of the working class. The MSU not only fails to alleviate this exclusion, it actively contributes to it. Student government is by and large financially inaccessible to first generation students: 10 hour SRA meetings do not neatly fit alongside multiple part time jobs and family commitments. There are few paid positions within the MSU, and very few are paid a living wage. For every paid position that is posted on the MSU website, there are half a dozen volunteer positions. And if you are unable to commit many hours of free
labour to the MSU via volunteer positions, you are unlikely to even be considered for one of the paid roles. Failing to address equity on campus has real world consequences. Studies have shown that first-generation students with degrees fare worse on every socioeconomic measure than their middle class peers — even if those peers did not attend or complete university. It’s time for the MSU to recognize first-generation students as an equity-seeking group with unique needs, and it is long past time for our needs to be considered on the same level as any other marginalized group. There is nothing progressive about politics that leaves people behind.
Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016 | www.thesil.ca
McMaster voting apathy There’s no point in complaining if you never use your vote Connor Blakeborough Contributor
Political apathy has been a huge problem in the McMaster student body since I started at Mac in 2013. With the recent referendum results and the added statistics regarding voter participation being high in relation to general student involvement, but low in terms of percentage of eligible voters actually participating, it has become clear that student apathy towards campus politics is holding back progress at McMaster. Only 18 per cent of eligible voters voted in the last set of referenda put out by MSU Elections. These are decisions that matter. These are the referenda that decide how the money you spend on tuition and student fees are allocated and spent. If you want your money being spent in a manner that best represents your interests, you need to vote in these referenda. The democratic principles embodied by the MSU are aimed at increasing transparency, voter representation and an accurate depiction of student opinion. If you don’t vote or participate in student politics in the easiest, most convenient form of online voting, you have no right to complain when your opinions aren’t represented by the student
The lack of voter participation and increased sense of political apathy amongst the student body holds back the MSU in making change that accurately represents the very students that fund it.
union. It blows my mind how quick people are to complain about student services and McMaster without taking the necessary steps to make their voices heard. You have the power to change things you don’t like — this is why the student union exists. The MSU is here to represent your interests as a student, and strive for goals that have you in mind. But you need to do your part and participate. Apathy in regards to student politics is ultimately holding back possible progress and change at McMaster. Being politically active does not have to be as involved as standing on a picket line outside of an institution you can’t stomach, nor does it have to be writing a strongly worded letter to the head of an MSU department. It can be as simple as being informed about what goes on around campus, and taking 30 seconds to open your email and vote in the referendums that very directly affect your life. It’s important to not attribute the relatively disconnected feel of national and provincial politics to campus politics. The way that MSU policy and votes affect you comes in stark contrast to the way federal and provincial politics does. The results of campus politics are much more immediate and impactful than wide scale Canadian politics. This makes it even more important for you to be involved, because your vote really does matter in a real way. Results change with increased voter participation, regardless of where you stand on the issues. Ultimately, the lack of voter participation and increased sense of political apathy amongst the student body holds back the MSU in making change that accurately represents the very students that fund it. Set aside the few minutes you need to stay informed and have your opinion heard. Your vote does matter.
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www.thesil.ca | Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016
Tipping the scales of justice Invalidation of a referendum sets the precedent for the upcoming MSU presidential election
Shane Madill Opinion Editor
I love watching House of Cards on Netflix, but I hate being reminded about it in real life. If you have been keeping up with the election in the United States, manipulation, power, betrayal and corruption are just a few of the elements that make up the overall discussion. Vying for such high positions of power seems to come with some controversy, sure, but not nearly to the degree we’ve seen recently. House of Cards and the American election should not be any sort of influence to your
political aspirations. McMaster’s own candidates, groups and issues have certainly not kept their hands clean when it has come to elections. Looking at the last year alone, it was clear that a change in culture was needed to ensure that the next MSU presidential race will be substantially less newsworthy. Actions that make a farce out of the system should not be tolerated when it comes to the university’s own political systems. This calendar year started with possibly the worst campaign season in the university’s
history. It’s not that the candidates were any worse than previous years, but the tallies on every candidate’s rule infraction list were marked with far too much red for anyone to take pride in. Even though there were only two presidential candidates disqualified in the history of the MSU before this year, the one in 2008 being overturned after a month of discussion, it was extremely odd that we only had one candidate in a similar situation. Looking back on that election, it’s not difficult to see parallels to the recent Exclusive Club Card referendum. While
there weren’t a large amount of candidates all continuously messing up, this referendum was a great reminder of how idiotic McMaster students can be when it comes to following solid rules. A total of eight broken rules, as minor as they may seem, are important to the integrity of our democracy. Varying from pre-campaigning to failing to disclose expenses, most of these offences are, at this point, completely typical and unsurprising. While a few fines may happen with the extensive amount of rules in elections, it is completely
Attempting to gain an advantage through illegitimate means is a disgusting representation of the school you’re trying to represent.
unacceptable to be ignorant of them while campaigning. The alternative of knowing them and simply not caring is worse. Poorly run campaigns, whether they be for a presidential candidate or for a referendum, are embarrassing for the student body. If student leaders can’t be bothered to read a rulebook or follow these established rules, why should anyone else in the student body bother with rules that apply to them? Attempting to gain an advantage through illegitimate means is a disgusting representation of the school you’re trying to represent. Looking forward to the MSU presidential race that will happen in January, the reminder that campaigns can be struck down was a much needed one. The student body should demand more from their candidates, help enforce fair campaigns and those on campaign teams should at least try to not be completely mindless. This doesn’t seem like a lot to ask, but I fear that our news section will be busy regardless in the likely case that campaigns ignore the lessons that could be learned from this year.
Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016 | www.thesil.ca
It’s time to cut textbook costs Post-secondary education should be more affordable Paige Prangley Contributor
Over the past 20 years, the costs of post-secondary textbooks have drastically increased, making it harder for students to afford schooling. With this increase, many are questioning if they should consider going to school and splurging thousands of dollars on books and courseware over the period of their study. Tuition costs alone are a huge expense, and having to pay for other necessities such as residence, parking passes and meal plans are substantial burdens for most budgets. This large amount of money puts students in debt for years, even decades, after they have finished their education. One way to help out students with their expenses would be to lower the costs of the books they need to buy for their courses. Since 2003, the price of textbooks have increased by over 82 per cent, leaving students in a position where they would need to choose between spending the money on the book or not buying it and risking their chances of doing well in the course. On the first day of classes, many hope that their professor will let them buy used copies of the textbook, or that it isn’t required at all. To the disappointment of many, the majority of courses require you to buy the latest edition, often unavailable as a used copy. Not being able to buy older editions is often frustrating because courses often don’t change much in less than a year. Students are told that the older editions do not have the necessary context that we need to be successful in the course. However, when compared side to side, there are only a few modifications to the text. One way that has been increasingly gaining attention is Open Educational Resources, where you can find textbooks or materials online for no cost. Instead of spending $1,300 yearly, like the average student does, OER allows you to download or print a copy for yourself and share it with others. With the start up of this
program, students won’t have to worry as much about the amount they are spending on schooling and focus more on their studies. Getting post-secondary education is a path that everyone should have the option to do. Many students decide not to go for reasons such as a lack of funding or wanting to start work right after high school. Lowering textbook costs will help those who can’t spend that extra $1,300 a year.
Some schools have started to lower textbook costs, but the majority of schools are still at the same high prices. While Justin Monaco-Barnes’ MSU presidential campaign emphasized on reducing courseware costs by up to 30 to 50 per cent, it is difficult to note how much progress has been done so far. The emphasis on physical courseware instead of advocating for more online options also limited the focus for cutting costs.
The Simon Fraser University Bookstore, in comparison, has found ways to reduce the costs for their students such as re-adopting textbooks and giving advice to the students about reducing costs as purchasers. By re-adopting these books, over a million dollars is given back to students each year — drastically helping reduce the costs of schooling. Having to pay high tuition as well as other expenses throughout the year causes
enough stress and concern for students. Focusing on studying and enjoying the experience of post-secondary should be the main priority, not having to worry about being in debt for many years to come after graduation. Textbooks are one of the major investments that students have to worry about, and the prices need to be lowered to allow more students the opportunity to attend school and be successful.
EVENTS CALENDAR December Good Food Box Registration Opens When: November 10, 2016 from 09:00AM until 09:00PM
Shave for a Cure When: November 14, 2016 from 10:00AM until 02:00PM Where: Burridge Gym
Where: MUSC 201 Register online at www.msumcmaster.ca/ good-food-box or in person in the MSU office (MUSC 201). Registration is open from the 10th-25th every month, or subscribe for the whole year.
#ThirstyThursday @ TwelvEighty
An event where McMaster students shave their heads to raise awareness and fundraise for Camp Trillium, an organization that provides recreational programs for children with pediatric cancer and their families. This event also features various dancing and singing performances, as well as wonderful raffle prizes. All proceeds will go towards charity.
Beat it Music Fest
When: November 10, 2016 from 09:30PM
When: November 14, 2016 from 08:00PM until 11:00PM
Where: TwelvEighty Bar and Grill
Where: Bridges Café
Featuring DJ Cut and Run. $4.25 domestic beer and $4.25 rails. $2.00 cover before 11PM,
Beat It Music Fest, hosted by the McMaster Cancer Society, is a night of celebrating suri-
vivors and the courage of those who continue to fight cancer. The event will feature performances from students in McMaster and a reflection space for those who want to share their story. Proceeds from donation entry will go towards supporting cancer research and care through Canadian Cancer Society.
Bridges - SWHAT Volunteer Coffeehouse When: November 15, 2016 from 08:00PM until 11:00PM Where: Bridges Café Hi SWHATers! Come on out for our volunteer coffeehouse to get to enjoy some awesome talent, spend time with other fantastic volunteers, and maybe perform yourself too! There will be board games too so be sure to come out!!
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 16 6 & 8 PM IN THE BURRIDGE GYM
TICKETS AVAILABLE ONLINE AT MARAUDERS.CA OR AT THE DOOR McMASTER STUDENTS WEARING MAROON ADMITTED FREE WITH VALID STUDENT ID
Want free pizza? Read this! Find the answers in this week’s issue and tweet us a photo or bring the issue to MUSC B110 or tweet @TheSilhouette with the correct answers. If you’re one of the first ten people, you’ll get a $15 Pizza Pizza gift card! What percent of the MSU health plan went into surplus?
What is the name of Boston Manor’s most recent EP?
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www.thesil.ca | Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016
Arts & Culture Skinny jeans, teenage dreams UK punk band Boston Manor hits Hamilton with teen angst and mid-2000s nostalgia MADELINE NEUMANN / PHOTO EDITOR
Singer Henry Cox
Guitarist Ash Wilson
Vanessa Polojac Contributor
Take a trip back in time to the world of overly tight skinny jeans, fringe hairstyles and teenage angst with Boston Manor. Influenced by pop-punk and emo and hailing from Blackpool, England, the band is currently in the midst of touring their debut album Be Nothing. Despite only forming in 2013, Boston Manor has managed to release three EPs, a debut album and catch the attention of Pure Noise Records while cultivating a large following online. Band members Henry Cox (vocals), Dan Cunniff (bass), Mike Cunniff (guitars), Jordan Pugh (drums) and Ash Wilson (guitars) all bounded through their love for bands from the late 90s and early 2000s. “I have always sung and I used to do theatre when I was a little kid… I have sung for as
long as I can remember [but] I was only in one band really before this,” explained Cox. “I have been playing guitar since I was 12… I grew up learning Green Day songs and Blink-182 songs,” said Wilson. The band was formed as a fun project for the members to write songs and track the response they got online. Since their debut EP Here/Now, Boston Manor has vocal and instrumental progression in their first full-length album. “I think with the first EP it was very much one person’s idea or two people’s idea of how they wanted the band to sound and when more of us got involved with the writing processes the sound shifted entirely and kind of pushed and pulled it other ways. In three years your music taste changes so much,” explained Wilson. “The album is three years of growing as musicians and three years of hard work. We spent months writing the album
and I am very proud of it,” said Cox. Be Nothing was released in late September and consists of 10 songs. The visual component is a crucial element to the boys of Boston Manor and features artwork by Mir Land from Austin, Texas. The ambiguous front cover of a boy falling or diving into the sky is open to interpretation just like the songs featured in the album. Be Nothing opens with “Burn You Up”. The most fast paced song on the record, it introduces the band’s pop-punk influences and their own unique style. The lyrical themes of abandonment and guilt are the main topics throughout the album. “The album is not autobiographic but most of it is my own experiences and most of the songs are about other people… You have to write about stuff you feel strongly about otherwise it’s not genuine and
in my opinion it’s redundant. I want other people to connect to the songs on their own level,” said Cox. The American punk rock record label Pure Noise Records to which State Champs, The Story So Far and Knocked Loose are all signed onto caught onto the rising success of Boston Manor in September of 2015. “We wrote the Saudade EP in Christmas of 2014 and we finished it in March or April. We wanted to push this EP out to record labels and to see who was interested in putting it out for us,” explained Wilson. “We got approached by a few labels and [got] a couple of offers here and there. Pure Noise came along and we chatted with them on Skype and we left thinking we need to sign with this label.” “They’re really genuine music lovers and they really get us. They give us creative control and they are supportive. They
are honestly the best label for us,” added Cox. The band wrapped up their North American tour on Nov. 6 at their packed show at Club Absinthe. Boston Manor has been touring for a majority of 2016 and tour life can take a toll on a band mentally and physically. “I have anxiety issues with losing my voice and it’s taken a year of touring to come to terms with it and kind of get over it… I just get really paranoid about it. It’s been a personal victory to overcome that,” said Cox. “When you’re away you miss things at home whether it’s like loved ones or relatives or even like cats and things,” added Wilson. Despite the success of Be Nothing Boston Manor is not stopping anytime soon. They still have a European tour for the end of 2016 with plans of coming back to Canada in the spring. @theSilhouette
Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016 | www.thesil.ca
Janet Rogers Mohawk/Tuscarora multimedia poet offers advice to aspiring poets
people would see in the news, on the Internet, or on social media,” explained Rogers. Like many poets, songwriters and dancers, Rogers recognizes the extent that art can impose on defining history. To maintain the vitality of her work, Rogers has begun to incorporate multimedia into her art form. By introducing musical and visual aspects into her poems, Rogers hopes to generate a different experience not only for herself but also for the audience. While Rogers attended residencies and fellowships to gain her knowledge of poetry, she stated that universities are an excellent resource in creating a community of support for
writers. Rogers believes that the influx of validation from universities on a broad range of poetic practices can interest a variety of students to become involved. When asked about advice for students with a desire to pursue poetry, Rogers strongly emphasised the importance of building successful publication credits and a “calling card”. Publishing credits may include any past writing experience, and its establishment will assist in the generation of a strong curriculum vitae. It is relevant to note that self-publishing is commonly validated and therefore can be included within the publishing credits. A “calling card”, as Rogers named
it, is a booklet that showcases an individual’s artistic pieces and should be readily available. One of the most important pieces of advice that Rogers mentioned was the importance of initiative and comprehension of self-worth. “When I started [writing], I did not wait for anyone to give me permission to call myself a writer.” Rogers’ newest poem collection Totem Poles and Rail Roads captures the relationship between Indigenous nations and the corporation of Canada with a powerful but intimate voice. Rogers is looking forward to completing more residencies and taking on a new radio project in the near future.
facebook and twitter! Grace Zhou Contributor
It was never Janet Rogers’ plan to become a poet; in fact, she always envisioned herself as a visual artist. Rogers, a Canadian Mohawk/Tuscarora writer, works in spoken word performance poetry, video poetry, and recorded poetry. Once a student in Stoney Creek, Rogers was the featured guest poet during the recent Hamilton Youth Poet’s Welcome Back poetry slam that following the team’s Winnipeg trip to the Canadian Festival of Spoken Word. There, she debuted her latest collection of poems, Totem Poles and Railroads. She has published four collections, performed on three CD recordings and currently hosts a radio show on CFUV Victoria. Rogers was named Victoria’s Poet Laureate from 2012 to 2014 and Writer in Residence for the University of Northern British Columbia in 2015. Hamilton Youth Poetry team member and fifth-year political science student Chukky Ibe reflected on the team’s decision to have Rogers be the guest speaker during their
homecoming slam. “In Winnipeg, we learned much about the history of Indigenous people in Canada. We learned about the importance of honouring first nation traditions, and claims to the lands we live in,” explained Ibe. “Janet’s presence and brilliant poetry, helped us share this new found knowledge with our Hamilton poetry community. Her poetry was electric, clever, educational and inspiring. We would not have asked for any other way to return to the Hammer.” To Rogers, the inspiration for her writing process is instinctive. “I feel a physical inspiration in my body,” said Rogers. “When I talk about it, I want to point to my gut. Everything starts there. The inspiration usually works its way out when I’m travelling.” Many of Roger’s poetic pieces demonstrate her enthusiastic passion for native heritage, feminism, and love, among many others. She believes that as a writer, it is her responsibility to discuss meaningful topics. “Artists record historical archives so people can look back to understand and gain a different perspective than what
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www.thesil.ca | Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016
Super 1UP Games says goodbye Retro game store and fighting game community moves to downtown location Daniel Arauz A&C Editor
After four years of late evening button mashing, tournaments and gaming community events, Super 1UP Games closed their doors on Nov. 8. The retro game sister store to the original 1UP Games was founded as a hub for the local competitive gaming community. It was the host of a weekly series of fighting game tournaments “Super Steel City Fight Nights” for the entirety of the store’s lifetime, cultivating a close knit community of Street Fighter, Guilty Gear, King of Fighters, and Smash Bros players. The community hub will be officially moving this community of fighters to the downtown core, to 1UP Game’s King St. E. location. The new location offers 5,000 square feet for games, comic books, a recently opened arcade and a new escape room. 1UP Games owner Marc Nascimento explained that the time to close their secondary location came from diminishing foot traffic in that neighborhood and a greater amount of traffic and retail space in their downtown location. The local tournament series originally founded by Canadian fighting game community veteran Vince Hui was in fact the primary reason that Super 1UP Games was maintained until this point. “The whole reason that [Super 1UP Games] came about was because it was so big we could actually start doing tournaments. [Hui] came to me while [1UP Games] was in Westdale, and we were talking about doing a tournament, so we did one at Staircase Theatre. That lead up to everything at Super,” explained Nascimento. While the fighting game community’s move to the downtown location is a more accessible and convenient venue, Nascimento, and many other weekly patrons of Super 1Up Games have fond memories in that location. “I’m excited for it, it’s just that there are a lot of memories in Super since it’s been four years of a great community… There’s definitely been a need for it in Hamilton ever since Pownz closed down,” said Nascimento, referring to the
C/O DANIEL ARAUZ
The downtown location houses an arcade, escape room, and tournament room.
downtown gaming centre that closed in 2010. “I always wanted to have a videogame community. Fighters, shooters or whatever, as long as people can get together and play.” The community is primarily focused on Street Fighter, what can historically be considered to be one of the most important competitive gaming franchises in arcade history. Without arcades, local casual and tournament playing spaces are what carry on the legacy of the original social gaming experience. In Hamilton’s community, there is a diverse cast of old arcade veterans, growing up and leading a now thriving competitive fighting game community, and younger faces that have more recently latched onto the tail end of the Street Fighter IV franchise, and this year’s latest entry, Street Fighter V. While still a relatively new face to e-sports, the largest Street Fighter V tournament “EVO” was held in the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, and broadcasted live on ESPN2. The broadcast reached 1,946,000 unique viewers. What often goes unmentioned in lieu of this mainstream growth is the small, local communities that foster the hobbyists that participate in
Super 1UP Games held the location's last Super Steel City Fight on Nov. 3.
these games in the first place. The Super 1UP community actually helped produce a sponsored, travelling Street Fighter V player. Local champion Van Nguyen scored a sponsorship with Toronto e-sports team Set to Destroy. Nguyen was previously sponsored by 1UP Games, and has since gone on to win first place at Red Bull Proving Grounds: Fight for the 6ix qualifying him for the main Red Bull Proving Grounds Finals in Santa Monica, California, where he finished in fifth place. “Going to 1UP has been a highlight of my week for the
past few years. If I could, I would always try to make time for it every week, so it's a bit sad that the store itself is closing down… but I'm hopeful the new location will draw a larger crowd,” said Nguyen. The fighting game community is one of the few grassroots competitive communities. International spectators and sponsors increase, but it is in these local centres that the love for the game begins to flourish. More importantly, the love of the game quickly becomes of love for social experience that is often left out of the e-sports story.
“Super 1UP will always be the place where I came from and represent. It's in my roots as a player and there's no removing that. Some veteran players tell stories of arcades where they first got their start and in time I'll look back with nostalgia and say I got my start as a player here,” explained Nguyen. As the group of gamers and hobbyists bid farewell to their to their communities old home, they, along with the rest of the community, can look forward to a new finding new life for their passions in their new downtown home. @danielarauzz
Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016 | www.thesil.ca
Confessions of a Pride Queen Mac Pride ended on a celebratory note, with high kicks, death drops, and clothing strips
Phil Kim Video Editor
MADELINE NEUMANN / PHOTO EDITOR
Phil Kim Video Editor
During the summer, I told my friend I might perform a lip sync at my school’s annual drag show – how the QSCC typically ends Pride Week. She looked at me, impressed, saying, “Wow, U of T doesn’t even do that!” Being a school located in a city like Toronto, I was surprised by this too. This year, there were two student performers, myself included, followed by a set carried out by Sapphyre Poisone, a professional queen. Death drops, wig reveals, clothing strips, incessant suggestive gestures towards one’s groin. I was deceased and resurrected, having witnessed a goddess (i.e. man-in-wig) of camp. Following this final performance, my gay, cis-femme friend ran up to me – jaw dropped, pupils almost out of focus, saying, “What the fuck, I was so turned on by that entire thing!” This, to me, exemplifies one of the many reasons drag is such a fascinating medium. Though cross-dressing is a centuries-old, cross-cultural
tradition, drag, as we know it today, took shape throughout Harlem’s Ballroom Scene in the 1980s. A disenfranchised community of black, queer, and specifically trans individuals spearheaded its development. These individuals were seeking
Drag is destabilizing. It confronts us with our personal intuitions about gender. As audience members, we are forced to reflect on the ways we respond to these hyperbolized, aesthetic means through which gender is actualized on stage by the drag performer.
a safe avenue to explore and express their gender identities with candor. This is important to keep in mind when assessing the performance of blackness and casual trans-misogyny of contemporary mainstream drag culture. Drag is destabilizing. It confronts us with our personal intuitions about gender. As audience members, we are forced to reflect on the ways we respond to these hyperbolized, aesthetic means through which gender is actualized on stage by the drag performer — much like my friend’s aforementioned “surprise arousal”. We, as audience members, bring as much to the performance as the performers bring to the stage. On the flip side, performing proved to be a surprisingly personal experience. Being onstage itself was a blur. The adrenaline and overpriced drink I downed right before going on stage made most of the performance flash by, though there are some mental snippets that will stay with me for a long time. I didn’t choose the most “fishy” songs, but going through
the motions of my performance felt peculiar while simultaneously rejuvenating. It was foreign to me to maneuver through these conventionally “feminine” shapes and movements while thinking, “Yes, this feels natural and this is also how I should be presenting myself in this very moment. This is allowed.” It was liberating. I was able to explore myself and how I present my body in front of a bunch of accepting strangers. This is a huge difference to when I was growing up, where these were the exact mannerisms I was previously beaten up and ostracized for at home and at church. I don't think a younger version of myself would have
envisioned current me doing anything like this. To be given a safe space and platform to explore the aspects of your gender expression. From body motions/shapes to wardrobe and make-up, you naturally suppress when in public is overwhelming enough; to do so and be received with acceptance and appraisal is nothing short of a blessing. I definitely exist in a privileged space to be able to engage with this practice, and return to my shell as a cis-male-passing individual. Still, I am thankful that the QSCC hosts such a niche tradition and encourage anyone who may be interested to perform next year.
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The Silhouette | 23
Sports Women’s rugby settles for sixth at nationals After an eventful season, the women’s rugby team failed to repeat gold medal win Eamon Hillis Contributor
For the McMaster women’s rugby squad, the 2016 season came to a disappointing conclusion on Nov. 6 at the University Sports Championships, held in Victoria, BC. The U Sports tournament ran from Nov. 3-6 and hosted an impressive field of teams. The Marauders were looking to repeat their 2015 gold medal performance, but were unsuccessful. “The teams were very good this year, and the road to the championship was incredibly difficult,” head coach Shaun Allen said. “The top four teams were all undefeated and conference champions. The field was perhaps a little
stronger than last year.” Mac came in to the tournament seeded seventh of eight, with the first four seeds allocated to the winner of each conference: St. Francis Xavier, Calgary, Ottawa, and Guelph (who defeated Mac in the Ontario University Athletics Championship). The remaining four seeds were assigned according to regulations, which state that teams from the same conference must be on the opposite sides of the tournament bracket. Thus, Mac was left with the difficult task of facing the second-seeded Ottawa GeeGees in the opening round. This game against Ottawa was undoubtedly their most important, for failing to be victorious would
The Marauders were looking to repeat their 2015 gold medal performance, but were unsuccessful. C/O ALISTAIR BOULBY
eliminate any chance for McMaster to medal. Ottawa had dominated the Réseau du Sport Étudiant du Québec conference throughout the season, finishing 7-0 and entering the tournament with confidence. Unfortunately, McMaster lost the competitive match 2519, with both teams performing exceptionally well under the pressure. The Gee-Gees took the lead late with three consecutive tries in the second half, putting Mac in a desperate situation. The Marauders responded however with a try from Maddy Seatle, which was converted by Steph Black. Despite their efforts, it would turn out to be in vain as Ottawa would hold onto their lead. “For the first five minutes of the match we played the best rugby we’ve played the entire season,” Allen said. “Our players showed an ability to play a style of rugby no other team at nationals were playing this year, which was to choose to move the ball and exploit the base. Unfortunately, we dealt with teams that kept it very tight and maintained good possession. The number of tackles we had to make across the three games was very high.” With the loss to Ottawa, Mac was guaranteed two more consolation games set to take
It marked the end of a season that at times showed moments of great promise, and a warranted ambition to repeat as national champions. place Saturday and Sunday. They won 24-5 against Acadia. In the consolation finals on Sunday however, Mac faced Concordia where they lost 29-22. It marked the end of a season that showed moments of great promise, and a warranted ambition to repeat as national champions. Their last two weeks of competition included a close loss to Guelph and, in the same game, the loss of Captain Katie Svoboda to a knee injury. Svoboda’s injury had a notable impact on team moral going into the U Sports tournament. “She was a leader for us all season long, as our captain, but also in regard to her role in our system,” Allen said. “She is an extremely talented rugby player, and with her getting injured in the OUA final, it had an immediate effect both in that game and afterwards. It was some-
thing that we had to manage this week. We had to deal with the emotional stresses of that, as well as determining who will step up to take Katie’s place.” Svoboda will return next season in what will be her fourth year of eligibility. She will be leading a younger group of women, with potentially many changes from this year. “The true fifth-years that will definitely be leaving are: Steph Black, Rachel Van Fraassen, and Lauren Walkden,” Allen said. “There is also a group of fourth-year players that are graduating with their degrees. We will see how many will choose to return.” With the prospect of losing key players, Coach Allen is very confident in his program and its ability to develop younger players. “I firmly believe that we have the best strength and conditioning program in the country,” Allen said. “The access they have to world class strength and conditioning is incredible, and we have a group of very talented first-year players right now.” Mac finishes this season slightly disappointed in their sixth placed result, but will be looking to future years with hopefulness and vehemence. @theSilhouette
Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016 | www.thesil.ca
Rejoice! Basketball returns Third-year starters Connor Gilmore is coming off a strong season in which he averaged 10.6 points per game in an average of 25 minutes. Gilmore is in his third year of eligibility and has averaged 34 minutes per game in his last six games, while grabbing 7.5 rebounds in the process. At 6’ 7” and 220 lbs., Gilmore is a physical force sure to bring an edge on both sides of the court for the Marauders. David McCulloch is another third-year starter to watch.
Averaging 24.3 minutes per game off the bench last season, McCulloch saw his minutes nearly double from the year before, and shot an efficient 51.5 per cent from the field. In an average of 37.3 minutes in his last six games, McCulloch has averaged 14.5 points and 5.5 assists. McCulloch also recorded
five steals in McMaster’s game against McGill on Sept. 29.
Fifth-year starters The two fifth-year players in the starting rotation, Rohan Boney and Lazar Kojovic, look to help the team in scoring and experience. Both sported high field goal percentages from last season and have been with the team for four seasons prior to this year. Boney averaged 10.8 points per game on 54.5 per cent shooting last season as a consistent bench player who started seven of the 17 games he played. The guard has regularly seen around an average of 22.1 minutes per game each season. With a career 54.1 field goal percentage, Boney continues to keep his average shooting
percentage and points per game high as his first year as a starter, in addition to a career average of 5.5 rebounds per game. Kojovic shot 34 per cent from beyond the arc in 15.5 minutes per game off of the bench last season, which was more minutes on average than each year prior. Now seeing 30.8 minutes per game over his last six, Kojovic is averaging 12.2 points and 4.6 rebounds in those games. At 6’ 4” and 6’ 5” respectively, Boney and Kojovic can continue to use their height to affect the possession of the ball off the glass in addition to the score.
OUA COMPETITION Carleton The Ravens had a strong pre-conference run, including a convincing 100-75 win over National Collegiate Athletics Association Division I Wichita State Shockers on Aug. 7. Carleton also claimed the House-Laughton tournament championship for their sixteenth straight season, lead by senior Connor Wood who sported an impressive 85.7 per cent three-point shooting percentage. A yearly juggernaut, Carleton will once again be a threat to every team in OUA and U Sports.
A top 10 U Sports team that is in the OUA Central division like McMaster. Currently ranked sixth in the nation, the Badgers dropped their last game in the RBC Classic tournament in a close bout against Dalhousie, ending an eight game winning streak they carried throughout their exhibition play. Forward Dani Elgadi lead the team in that game, and looks to do the same throughout the season. Elgadi heads into his fourth season sporting career averages of 19.3 points per game on 48.7 per cent fieldgoal percentage, along with 10.7 rebounds per game.
The Gee-Gees round out the top five in the nation, right behind the Marauders, and will have to fight with Carleton for the OUA North division title. Ottawa boasts a 6-1 record against U Sports teams and a successful run in the Jack Donohue Memorial Tournament. Ottawa spent several weeks last season ranked No. 1 in the nation, but finished in sixth place after losing to the UBC Thunderbirds in the CIS Final 8 Consolation Final. Ottawa goes into the season without their all-time assists and wins-leader and the 2015-16 CIS Player of the Year: point guard Mike L’Africain.
Justin Parker Contributor
Consistency and stability are valuable commodities on the path to success. This is especially the case in sports, and, in particular, a team’s starting lineup. This year, the men’s basketball team is sporting a brand new starting lineup after the departure of three of their key players: Aaron Redpath, Leon Alexander and Troy Joseph. After a heartbreaking loss to Windsor in the Ontario University Athletics quarter-finals last year, the Marauders are looking to use their new look to spark future success. Redpath, Alexander and Joseph made up for a significant amount of offence and minutes played last season and will be hard to replace. It is not easy fielding a nearly new starting lineup at the beginning of a year with high expectations to follow up the previous year’s successes. However, players will always be hard to replace unless the team is able to change and adapt to the new talent that is always available to a competitive team. In this way, the team is looking to move in a new direction that relies on spreading the offence around to different players. Forward Connor Gilmore and guard Rohan Boney are both returning starters from last year, with only Gilmore starting the majority of the games he played in. Guards Lazar Kojovic, David McCulloch round out the consistent starters, while Elliot Ormond and Matt Quiring will split the final starting spot, depending on matchups. Kojovic and McCulloch played consistent minutes off the bench last season, while Ormond is
back on the regular roster after sitting out last year to do a coop placement. The Marauders head into this season ranked fourth in the University Sports pre-season poll after an undefeated 10-0 run during non-conference play, including 8-0 against U Sports teams. The Marauders also spent a portion of their off-season playing in a tournament in Taiwan, giving the team an extra opportunity to build the cohesiveness that will be needed for them to find success throughout this season. “We are satisfied with our season so far, “ head coach Amos Connolly said. “We are also aware of the fact we are going to play tougher teams in our own conference than we played the entire season so far. There is a balance.” The team found success in the Buddha Light International Association Cup tournament in Taiwan, convincingly beating teams from all over the world on their way to the tournament championship. Individual accolades were awarded as well, as David McCulloch was named tournament MVP and Connor Gilmore was selected to the All-Tournament Team. “Generally to this point, I’m pretty happy with how the guys are caring for each other, pushing each other, and holding each other accountable,” Connolly said. Despite the lack of starting experience, the overall talent is there and it is just a matter of the team coming together an executing as one unit. The true test will begin on Nov. 11, as the Marauders have back-to-back games against Lakehead to kick off their OUA regular season.
SPORTS | 25
www.thesil.ca | Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016
Basketball once again blessed has us with its presence. As the Marauders prepare for their OUA season openers against Lakehead, we preview each team’s keys to success for the year Lauren Beals Sports Reporter
It is easy to be an underdog. With no expectations teams can play with nothing to lose, taking risks and leaving it all on the court. But staying on top? That’s a lot harder. Just ask this year’s McMaster woman’s basketball team. Kicking off the 2016/2017 season after last year’s OUA final four appearances and missing only two graduated players from last year’s lineup, expectations are high that this year’s women’s team will make another deep run at national glory. So far the Mac women have exceeded the hype, repeating as champions of the highly competitive Darcel Wright Memorial Tournament with consecutive wins over Cape Breton, Windsor and Ryerson. “That tournament was a good test for us to see how we stack up against some of the top teams in the country,” said head coach Theresa Burns. “That is why we go to the tournament every year… it was a good confidence boost.” Key to their success was veteran guard and McMaster go-to Danielle Boiago, who scored 49 points with 15 assists through three games to be named tournament MVP, despite heavy coverage from opposing teams. “They face guard her, they double team her, they triple team her, and we try to prepare for it,” said Burns. “She has learned how to play out of that a little bit more, and the rest of team has
learned how to play out of that a little more too… she doesn’t necessarily have to be our scorer every night, we have a lot more depth now.” Stellar performances from third-year tournament all-star Hilary Hanaka, and the rebounding prowess of Clare Kenney, propelled the team’s rank within the national University Sports top ten to third overall behind Regina and Carleton, while jumping fellow OUA programs in Windsor (sixth) and Ryerson (seventh). A dominant 89-52 win over the University of Toronto at home later in the week solidified the team’s reputation as a force to be reckoned with. While it is certainly early, every indicator suggests the Marauders have the talent, depth, and experience to challenge any competitor in the coming months, a testament their head coach supports. “We have the ability to score in so many ways, and we have the ability to defend so hard. We have a good mix of experience and smarts… it just feels like we have all the boxes ticked,” said Burns. “If we can stay healthy through the year, we can play with anybody and beat anybody in the country this year.”
Players to watch: Danielle Boiago McMaster’s leading scorer was named a CIS first-team All-Canadian last year, the first Marauder to do so since Lindsay DeGroot in 2008. With 1,357 total OUA points in her career, she also tops all Marauders in scoring, while racking up and average of 7.0 rebounds, 3.9 assists and 2.5 steals per game. This year, expect her to continue driving the Marauder offense while controlling the ball at both ends of the floor. “She doesn’t have anything to prove to anyone,” said Burns. “She has established herself as one of the greatest player ever to play at McMaster for sure… it’s just [a matter of] going out and doing what you are capable of doing every day.”
Hilary Hanaka Hanaka has had a strong start to the season, putting up 21 points against league rivals Windsor at the Memorial Classic. Expect Hanaka to step into a greater leadership role, directing traffic and not hesitating to knockdown available shot opportunities. “She has really found her groove,” said Burns. “She has such a high basketball IQ… we need her veteran leadership and we need her to be confident enough to let her IQ shine and make everyone else around her better.”
percentage (52.5 percent). The Marauders second-leading scorer was also named to the OUA All-star game and came down with 11 boards against Toronto. This year, look for Kenney to step outside the key and open scoring with more shots on the perimeter. On the defensive end, watch for Kenney to spend more time away from her check, keeping protecting the basket with better help side defense. “I am so proud of Clare,” said Burns. “She came in as a relatively unknown player, didn’t play [Junior Girls Elite League] just played [Ontario Basketball Association] ball and has made herself into a dominant [U Sports] player.”
X-Factor: Vanessa Pickard
Kenney finished fifth in the OUA in rebounds per game (9.3) and total blocks (18) last year and was second in field goal
Sharpshooter Vanessa Pickard went down to injury last season but could be back to help the Marauders later this year. A natural offensive threat and key veteran leader, her presence could help elevate Mac over dense OUA competition, al-
The Gaels will look to make the OUA playoff for their 20th consecutive season, the balance of rookie talent and veteran leadership will look the challenge McMaster’s depth.
Currently ranked second in the national U Sports top ten, Carleton boasts a deep back court with first-team OUA all star Heather Lindsay and Second-team OUA all star Elizabeth Leblanc leading the charge. Ottawa Gee-gees transfer
though returning to game form is always a difficult task. “We don’t want to rush her,” said Burns. “When and if her body is ready to get back out there she’ll get back out there, in the meantime she has been a great teammate and provided leadership off the court, so it’s just a day by day thing.”
OUA COMPETITION STACKED TEXT - PRIMARY
Ryerson PANTONE 294 PANTONE COOL GRAY 3 WHITE
Despite an early loss to Mac, Windsor has won six of the last eight OUA championships and boast a 95 per cent player return rate from last year. Expect their disciplined presence to pose a major threat when they meet again in the new year.
The defending OUA champions and U Sports silver medalists have lost U Sports player of the year Keneca-Pinque-Giles, but the return of 6’4 OUA All-star Sofia Paska will challenge the Marauders down low.
Catherine Traer and local Mohawk transfer Jenjen Abella will add scoring and speed to an already veteran lineup.
Thursday, Nov. 10, 2016 | www.thesil.ca
Too little, too late for Marauders McMaster football bounced from postseason play as comeback attempt falls flat against Laurier Griffin Marsh Contributor
Saturday marked a difficult end to the McMaster football team’s 2016 season. The Marauders suffered a disappointing loss to the University Sports No. 5 ranked Laurier Golden Hawks on Nov. 5, falling 21-19 after coming up just short on a late comeback attempt. It is no surprise that this team, often ranked in the Top 10 in Canada, had Vanier Cup goals in mind. To bow out in the Ontario University Athletics semi-finals was not the end they had envisioned. Following a solid victory against Guelph on Oct. 29, things were looking strong for the Marauders. Head coach Greg Knox was happy to get that first win out of the way. “We are at a stage where we are playing every game like it is our last,” Knox said after the win over Guelph. “Getting that win under our belt was important because it is part of those steps towards reaching our goal.” But coming into Laurier’s home, a team with an extra week’s rest and one they had not faced yet this season was never going to be easy. Still, for coach Knox and the rest of the squad, the game plan and preparation was business as usual. “[We] have a season’s worth of film to watch and are preparing accordingly.” Even with the game film and week of preparation, McMaster came up just short against Laurier. This game that was every bit as close as the score line suggests. McMaster got off to a slow
C/O ALISTAIR BOULBY
start, trailing Laurier 20-6 at the half, with all of McMaster’s points coming from rookie kicker Adam Preocanin on two field goals.
The second half favoured the Marauders, who dominated the score sheet in as third-year quarterback Asher Hastings connected with receivers Dan Petermann and Max Cameron. They were unable to tie things up at near the end of the game, as they failed the two-point conversion attempt on the second touchdown. A few more pushes from McMaster’s offense produced nothing, as Laurier’s No. 4 ranked defense for points allowed per game, held strong at the end. A real positive from this game was the performance of Hastings. Coming off the heels of an impressive quarterfinal performance
against Guelph, Hastings threw for 336 yards and two touchdowns, while completing 32 of 47 passes for an efficient 68 per cent. For Knox, this came as no surprise. “Ash is a leader on and off the field for us,” he said. “We count on him to manage our offence and perform on the field. He is a big part of our success on the field and in the locker room.” Other notable performers were wideouts Danny Vandervoort and Dan Petermann, who racked up 116 and 131 receiving yards respectively. While this season ends earlier than McMaster would have liked, the future continues to be exciting for the program. Hastings still has two years of
eligibility and his performances improved as the season went on. Similarly, both Petermann and Vandervoort are eligible to come back next season, with Vandervoort finishing this season ranked 10th nationally for yards per game, averaging 78.9. The longer Hastings is throwing to a consistent core of receivers, the better the chances are for the Marauders to improve on their journey from this year. It may not be a Vanier Cup appearance this year at our local Tim Hortons Field, but this team will be contenders for years to come. A disappointing end, but that was still a great season of tough, Marauder-style football. @theSilhouette
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WAIT, WHAT? Canadians have to address the reality that their countr y has problems too A5
HAMILTON SPECULATOR Tur tle likers since 1934
November 10, 2016
Trump mulls Hamilton mayoral run
SHIT HASTINGS Doesn’t accept the results of any election
Following a loss in the United States presidential election, Donald Trump looks to the north for his next political move. The 70-year-old believes that Hamilton is the logical step for his career. “When you look at Hamilton, I have many, many friends in Hamilton, lots of friends, and when you look, you can see they have a lot of problems there, it’s just terrible. So I think I can solve those problems, I have a history of solving problems and you know that the current mayor can’t do it,” said Trump. These comments don’t align with reality, which makes
it a very Trumpian quote. Hamilton’s population has been growing consistently over the years and has been the subject of a handful of glowing media pieces. Trump believes Hamilton needs to be less accepting of people moving to the area. “We are going to build a wall. We’ll build a wall where the 403 bends around Cootes Paradise, we’ll make the Mexicans pay for it, and we will monitor that border to make sure we keep out the people we don’t want,” Trump said. To run for mayor, the socalled businessman will have to move to the city. Naturally, Trump is moving to Ancaster. The move makes some sense - a rarity for Trump - as
POLL: what is Westdale missing? Fetanyl
A go-kart track
An EDM club
A senior’s home
DISCLAIMER: This is the Speculator, a joke page. The stories and continuing plot lines are fake. If you fell for this, please go to jail, do not pass GO, do not collect $200 and stop texting your mom. Fucking nerd.
he wants to rebrand Hamilton as Ancaster in order to keep his slogan acronym the same. The Trump 2018 campaign will encourage residents to Make Ancaster Great Again. It is unclear if Trump can actually change the name on his own, but facts have not stopped him before. One man, Stanley Francis, is fully supportive of the Trump campaign. “We need a man like Trump. Losing the steel factories has killed this town, and if there is a guy who knows about bringing business to an area, it’s the Don. Also, I kinda respect that he doesn’t pay taxes. Fuck the system,” said Francis. Trump will make his first appearance in early December
“When you look at Hamilton, I have many, many friends in Hamilton, lots of friend, and when you look, you can see they have a lot of problems there, it’s just terrible. So I think I can solve those problems, I have a history of solving problems...” Donald Trump Foreign asshat
- Ludwig, 21
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FEATURE at the old steel mills to make a point that he would have saved the manufacturing industry if they elected him earlier.
Tweets to the Editor There’s an underground fighting ring in the TSH bathrooms.
I think coolers are good... why do I always get made fun of for drinking them? - D.J. 1s and 2s, 25
Has anyone else noticed that garbage and recycling are both in black bags? A10-11 PER ISSUE: You have to stream an entire convocation ceremony.
Our feature this week focuses on the role of women in student politics and what has changed since the MSU made an effort to involve more wom...
Published on Nov 10, 2016
Our feature this week focuses on the role of women in student politics and what has changed since the MSU made an effort to involve more wom...