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Volume 19, Issue 5– January 2020

The Sputnik, We Orbit Around You.


News, pg. 3


What is to be done to the golf course?

Features, pg. 6


The history of some downtown buildings

Arts pg. 8


Some crazy adventures from fellow Hawks

Opinion, pg. 10

Sports, pg. 12


Is it too late to do anything about climate change?

What 2020 has in store for LB’s M & W’s soccer teams















HR MANAGER Maneesha Suresh




VICECHAIR Alyssa Di Sabatino


TREASURER Kashyap Patel




CONTRIBUTORS Mathew Sackrider Rashida Powankumar Sara Sheikh Hirze E Zehra Talpur Craig van Manen Bailey Zimmer Serena Austin Brendan McWilliam Christian Mejia


Dhruvi Modi Varsha Sriganesh Nicole Sguigna

ADVERTISING INQUIRIES All advertising inquiries can be directed to Kurtis Rideout at or 519-884-0710 ext. 3560.

THE SPUTNIK IS PUBLISHED BY WILFRID LAURIER UNIVERSITY STUDENT PUBLICATIONS Mailing address: 75 University Avenue West, Waterloo ON N2L 3C5 WLUSP Brantford office location: 50 Market St., Brantford, ON N3T 2Z5 OD 102 COLOPHON


The Sputnik is a monthly campus newspaper intended to engage and inform the community. Started in 1999, the Sputnik is an editorially independent newspaper published by Wilfrid Laurier University Student Publications, Waterloo, a corporation without share capital. WLUSP is governed by its board of directors. Opinions expressed within the Sputnik are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the editorial board, The Sputnik, WLUSP, WLU or Centra Web Printing. All content appearing in the Sputnik bears the copyrightexpressly to their creator(s) and may not be used without written consent. The Sputnik’s primary font is Fira. We also use Utopia, Crimson and Aileron. The paper circulates monthly. Normal circulation is 1,000. The Sputnik is a member of the National NewsMedia Council, which is an independent ethical organization established to deal with editorial concerns. For additional information or to file a complaint, contact or call 416-340-1981. The Sputnik has an obligation to foster freedom of the press and freedom of speech. This obligation is best fulfilled when debate and dissent are encouraged, both in the internal workings of the paper, and through the Sputnik’s contact with the community. The Sputnik will always attempt to do what is right, with fear of neither reprecussion, nor retalliation. The purpose of community press is to act as an agent of social awareness, and so shall conduct the affairs of our newspaper.







City votes to sell Arrowdale golf course to developers CHRISTIAN MEJIA SPUTNIK NEWS

In a strong vote, Arrowdale golf course is to be sold to developers and the profits will go towards affordable housing. The vote on December 10, 2019, city council; voted 8 to 3 in favour of City Councillor Jan Vanderstelt’s motion which was ratified on Dec. 17. Councillor Joshua Wall, who voted in favour of Councillor Vanderstelt’s motion, states on his Facebook that, “nearly no one from the public spoke up or spoke out… and my exact thoughts were this; why are we paying for a golf course… two of them… when we need places for people to live?” Arrowdale is located in the neighborhoods along Elgin St., Stanley St., and Rawdon St. Many in these areas have built a strong connection to the local golf course. For generations, the course gave many people happiness as local and out-of-town golfers enjoyed the oldest 9-hole course in North America. Arrowdale is almost 100 years old, however its history dates back to 1883 with the Brantford Golf and Country Club. After being moved and redesigned as Arrowdale in 1908 it has not changed or moved like others in the nation. The golf course is open year round unlike most courses. In the wintertime the hills provide many a place to go tobogganing with their families. The golf course has deep historical roots in Brantford and many of the city’s elderly still go there for activities. These decisions by the City Council and Mayor Kevin Davis would spark a series of protests by neighborhood members, golf enthusiasts, environmentalists, and historians alike around the downtown area in Harmony Square and in front of City Hall. The fight continues to this day, as potential contract buyers for the property are not found yet and the movement against the sale and redevelopment continues to grow stronger. This is not the first time the golf course has been on the chopping block. According to Peter Sheere, organizer and one of the admins of the Friends of Arrowdale group, since 1996 they have kept fighting every four to five years when the issue is brought up by council. In 2016, a proposition to sell the golf course was met with strong opposition by locals and was defeated. The city council of Brantford at the time promised that the course would then be invested into and maintained by the city. However, three years later another motion led by Venderstelt called for the sale and redevelopment of the course into affordable housing and a portion of it for parkland. This motion was met with fury by many who have thought that the issue was tabled at 2016, however With the housing crisis and alarming amounts of homelessness all throughout the country, members of the city council saw it fit to get rid of the historic golf course and use the proceeds to attempt a solution to the crisis. “If you think that subsidizing golf and the city operating a golf course(s) is more important than building affordable housing I’m willing to listen to whatever you have to say… I stand by my vote

who voted in favour of selling Arrowdale maintain their positions and keep pushing the argument that selling the golf course will be beneficial for those of lower income. Either through living in the proposed housing or the reduction of tax money needed to maintain

The neighborhood here didn’t even know about it or that it was even up for discussion ... -Richard Carpenter, councillor for the City of Brantford


City Council has held mutiple meetings during the past few months to ratify this act to sell the Arrowdale golf course.

and I stand by the statements I made at council,” said Wall on Facebook. A week prior to the vote, the property was pointed out as land that could be sold for close to $20 million to developers and possibly create approximately $3 million in

If you think that subsidizing golf and the city operating a golf course(s) is more important than building affordable housing ... -Joshua Wall, councillor for the City of Brantford

tax revenue. Three fellow councillors however strongly opposed the motion; Cheryl Antoski, Brian Van Tillborg, and Richard Carpenter. Who were also in the previous city council when the motion to help preserve Arrowdale was passed. “Arrowdale has been on the block for a long time… it seems that affordable housing was a sacrificial lamb and it worked,” said Councillor Cheryl Antoski at the council meeting on Friday. “We know that everyone [here] cares about affordable housing, but this is not about it… there’s a lot of different ways of addressing that,” she said. The affordable housing argument was pushed hard by Councillor Wall and Vanderstelt as a means of pushing for the sale and eventual redevelopment of the property. However, there are those who claim that this argument is a ruse not based on empirical data but rather manipulates the emotional heartstrings of the people. “It was the wrong way to go about it… it’s not big enough… we don’t need it all at once and we can’t build it all at once… why not find maybe ten other properties… I’m perplexed that we don’t have a vision and tell staff to go back and find some money,” argues Antoski. In regards to the arguments

made by Councillor Wall and others about them speaking to the public and nobody speaking out in support of Arrowdale, many in the Friends of Arrowdale meetings would beg to differ. “They must be talking to a mirror or their personal friends… they surely weren’t speaking to community members most affected by all of it and those that live in the neighborhood,” said Carpenter. “None of the housing that they are going to build on this land would be affordable,” he continued. The vote on 2016 by city council was unanimous in support of Arrowdale and the maintenance of it, Antoski and Carpenter remembers, and money was promised to be used for the upkeep of the course. However, it is argued that the funds did not come to the aid of Arrowdale as promised and led to the “continued decline” that some of the councillors saw. It was a shock to many how the process slid through city council in 2019 without the proper informing of the neighborhoods that would be

They must be talking to a mirror or their personal friends… they surely weren’t speaking to community members most affected by all of it. -Richard Carpenter, councillor for the City of Brantford

affected and the city as a whole. “The neighborhood here didn’t even know about it or that it was even up for discussion,” said Councillor Richard Carpenter, “they [city council] followed the minimum requirements under the Municipal Act and they could have done much better than that.” “[The proposal] was rushed through in November and run through council during the busiest time of people’s lives, in the middle of the Christmas shopping season. People were only given

two and a half hours to even give their opinion about it to councillors … you need to discuss it in a neighborhood or Ward meeting and that didn’t happen either,” said

[Arrowdale] encapsulates the sport, one of the original sports that included both men and women together in community, and instilled comradery lifting people up ... - Lauren O’Neill, admin of Friends of Arrowdale

Carpenter. The councillors in favour of selling and redeveloping Arrowdale are questioned by many as possibly not having real interest in their affordable housing argument by some in the meetings. There are claims of affordable land outside the city that were sold off and none of it were used for affordable housing. Some believe that those council members took advantage of the public’s attention on “tent cities” and the old police station becoming a homeless shelter to rush the motion without doing thorough research. There are many open properties in West Brantford or in the downtown area, many point out, that could be redeveloped for far less cost without the destruction of green space. “The only one who moved resolutions for money from property that was sold to go into affordable housing account was me… nobody else moved that motion… that really tells you where their heads are at… and they expect everyone to give up and forget it by February,” states Councillor Richard Carpenter. There were 19 properties sold from 2017 to 2019 by the city adding up to 40 million dollars, and much of that money remains unused for any potential affordable housing according to Peter Sheere. However, the eight members

the course. Councillor Jan Vanderstelt and those on his side argue that the golf course is not making enough money, garnering only 146 official members in 2018. Peter Sheere however argues that many of the the times recorded at Arrowdale in the past year far exceeds what only 146 members could do, stating that many golfers are non-members and come from many places. Many on the side of preserving Arrowdale dismiss the idea that many in the community do not care, arguing that those whose opinions are apathetic to the motion are unaware and need to be educated to the effects this can take on the neighborhoods around and the city as a whole. “[Arrowdale] encapsulates the sport, one of the original sports that included both men and women together in community, and instilled comradery lifting people up… clouding it as the only solution to the housing crisis is not acceptable,” said Lauren O’Neill admin of Friends of Arrowdale page on Facebook. The social impact on the community is questioned by both sides of the argument. pro-development side argues that this will be beneficial in providing construction and other skilled trades jobs into the area and giving many a chance to afford housing in a market that continues to struggle. While pro-preservationists argue that many retirees and youth will lose the opportunities they have at the golf course as well as turn off the many who do want to move to Brantford away from metropolitan areas like the greater Toronto area. The motion for the sale and redevelopment of Arrowdale has gotten local environmentalists to speak up as well. Some find hypocrisy in the council as they voted to declare a climate emergency in the same month. They claim that Arrowdale provides the green space needed to keep the city beautiful and attractive to newcomers who want to get away from the hustle and bustle of the bigger city areas like Toronto and Hamilton. Local history enthusiasts also declare that the reason many are attracted to the city is the historical side of Brantford. By selling Arrowdale, they believe the city is becoming less attractive to newcomers, thus arguing that there would be a struggle in finding those willing to live in the housing proposed in the area. As of right now, the property has not been sold and everyone is kept waiting until a developer takes on






Brant Crime Stoppers: thirty-six years of community service BAILEY ZIMMER SPUTNIK WRITER

If there’s something strange in your neighbourhood, who you gonna call? Crime stoppers! The Brant County Crime Stoppers is a local non-for-profit organization with one main goal; to help solve crime. Crime Stoppers has been running in Brantford since 1984. This year will be its thirty-sixth year in session and is running 986-1000 individual programs worldwide. 38 are in Ontario alone. The local chapter in Brant County, is available to contact 24/7, and are ready to receive any tips about crimes. Crime Stoppers is an initiative to assist in solving crimes and is made accessible to anyone in the public. The tips can be shared in three main ways; calling the Crime Stoppers number, filling in information on their website or texting the mobile number. The most effective way to leave a tip is through calling the branch local to you. The branch’s Coordinator, who takes the calls, is trained to ask questions that search for detail so they can make the most of the report. The more detailed a tip is, the more helpful it will be. “Crime Stoppers is a partnership of the public, police and media which provides the community with a proactive program for people to anonymously assist the police in solving crime, contributing to an improved quality of life,” said chair of the Brant County Crime Stoppers, John Hart. Crime Stoppers both serves and is for the benefit of the public. Any-


The Brant County chapter of Crime Stoppers, a local not-for-profit, is located inside the Brantford police department

one, including students at Laurier Brantford and any other part of the community are encouraged to use the service. Crime Stoppers is for the greater good of the community. The organization, relying on anonymity, asks for clues, or, “tips”, from the public to help solve crimes. Anonymity is a priority for Crime Stoppers. Safety and security is necessary for the program. No names, phone numbers or anything that would conflict with anonymity of personal identity will be requested when leaving a tip. “If you are concerned about passing information on, you’re worried that it might come back to you and cause you a problem,

you can go through our program anonymously and you’re fine,” said Hart. A fair amount of people are concerned about their identities being hidden when leaving a tip. The program is exceptionally safe and anonymity is guaranteed. Everything from start to finish is all done with anonymity and safety of the tipster in mind. Electronic meetings for the board members of Crime Stoppers began last year. If some members are unavailable to make the meeting to decide on important information, a simple Skype call will solve the problem. Technology is making an outbreak in the organization and is only making it

better. Since technology has such a big impact on our world today, there is social media that can be found for Crime Stoppers, including Facebook and Twitter. These platforms are used to promote events and community activities hosted by the group. “We are in the process of using these platforms to run a crime of the week segment in hopes to raise awareness of what Crime Stoppers is and how we use anonymity to help our local police keep the community safe,” said board member and head of social media, Emily Brockway, in an email. Crime Stoppers still isn’t widely known. A useful service like this

has setbacks. The organization needs more publicity, more volunteers and money to go towards the running of the program. Awareness is essential in organizations as such. With all the recent developments in social media and awareness for the organization, the service hopes to grow further. “It’s a needed service that constantly needs to be expanded,” said Hart. Crime Stoppers is very thankful for the ‘tipsters’ who provide tips to the program. As a reward for successful tips, the tipster may receive a monetary reward as a result of their service to Crime Stoppers spanning between $50 and $2000. Fundraising is a big part of Crime Stoppers. Since the organization is non-for-profit, the money comes from generous members of the community, as well as from fundraising. There are local partners money comes from to support the organization including fundraisers, businesses, industries, service clubs and private donations. The money goes towards telephone services, accounting, program, as well as money for the tips given to ‘tipsters’. The members of Crime Stoppers are eager to promote their organization and spread the word of the service. Making the community better is the goal, and Crime Stoppers is part of the solution. Bettering the community never looked so good. To contact crime stoppers to report a crime, contact +1-(800)222-8477 or visit









The Historical Properties of Downtown Brantford

Federal Building - 60 Dalhousie Street


The Federal Building, located two blocks from Market Square, is an example of the Beaux Arts architectural style. Beaux Arts originates from the École des Beaux Arts in Paris. The style was popularized in Europe, but became the standard style for many buildings across North America, especially banks and train stations. The Federal Building was completed in 1915 and was designed by architect David Ewart. The City of Brantford purchased the building for $5.9 million dollars in 2016 to renovate and

house many of the city’s services. The Federal Building is associated with the government of Canada’s growing presence in smaller city centres such as Brantford. It was built in a time where the city was expected to go through a rapid period of growth as a manufacturing hub. The building is characterized by its classical, intricate detailing and six-storey clock and bell tower. In the Federal Heritage Buildings Review Office Building Evaluation Report, the Brantford Heritage Committee considers Federal Building to be, “One of the most important public buildings in the city.”

Carnegie Building - 73 George Street Designed by architects Stewart, Stewart and Taylor, and completed in 1904, Carnegie Building once functioned as the Brantford Public Library. The building is named after Andrew Carnegie, an American industrialist and philanthropist dedicated to establishing free, public libraries because he saw them as a means of self-education. Carnegie had funded 2,509 libraries, 125 of which are in Canada. Carnegie donated $30,000 to the construction of the building; three times his usual contributions, and even more in later years to go towards renovations.

Carnegie Building was the first designated Laurier Brantford building when the school opened in 1999. Now, Carnegie acts as Laurier Brantford’s Welcome Centre and is home to multiple classrooms and a Commuter Lounge in the basement. Carnegie Building has features characteristic of the Beaux-Arts style such as the large dome on the roof and grand staircase leading to the main entrance of the building. Inscribed above the main entrance is a Latin phrase which translates to: “I have erected a monument more lasting than bronze.”





Sanderson Centre - 88 Dalhousie Street The Sanderson Centre has been used as a theatre for a century, as it was completed in 1919. The architect of the theatre, Thomas Lamb, designed nearly 300 theatres worldwide, including the original Madison Square Garden. Originally The Sanderson Centre was used as a vaudeville theatre called the Temple Theatre, which hosted symphonies, plays and silent movies. In 1929 it was sold to the theatre chain, Famous Players, and renamed The Capitol. It was purchased by The City of Brantford in 1986 for $425,000 and renamed The Sanderson Centre as

a tribute to the Sanderson family who supported the restoration and renovation of the building. At the time of its construction the Sanderson Centre displayed advanced building techniques including combined heating and ventilation and fireproof construction. The auditorium features beautifully painted, vaulted ceilings and wheel shaped chandeliers. Today, the Sanderson Centre is host to concerts, stand-up shows, films and Laurier Brantford O-Week festivities.

Victoria Park Square - 65 Market Street Victoria Park Square was part of the original Town Plan for Brantford from 1861. The park is landscaped so that it replicates the flag of the United Kingdom, the Union Jack, with four paths beginning at each corner of the park that intersect in the middle of the park. Where the paths intersect there is a monument of Chief Joseph Thayendanegea Brant who was a Mohawk military leader that relocated to what is now the Six

Nations Reserve and whom the city is named after. Also included in the monument are life sized figures representing the Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, Cayuga, Seneca and Tuscarora peoples, and four panels depicting totems of the Six Nations. Victoria Square Park was landscaped by John Turner and the park is overlooked by three buildings that he designed, most significantly the Brant County CourtHouse.






Interesting travelling stories from Laurier Brantford students DHRUVI MODI SPUTNIK WRITER

The Laurier Brantford campus is filled with many avid travellers; many of whom had some interesting experiences on their travels. Sasha Jaglal a Human Rights student shares her crazy Bamboo Cathedral story, when she was hiking in Trinidad. “We were at the Bamboo Cathedral; it was pouring rain like buckets and buckets and there were lots of people on this trail. So, after my cousin poured us all coffee, we started our hike.” Many interesting people were out and about on the trail that day, as Jaglal recalls some events. “As soon as we got to the starting point, there were a bunch of kids – on bikes coming our way. We continued walking and we see two couples, they were proposing and they even had a fake ceremony as a part of the surprise. “We continue walking and then on the path there was a kid who was celebrating his birthday. There was cake and games and everything set up, on the path.” “After some time, we came down and there was a woman taking a naked photoshoot in the middle of the forest, with a professional team. She had a team of people. Having a full-on photoshoot with her hair and makeup done and everything. And that was the end of the trail.” Third year Digital Media and Journalism student Liz Shiro remembers a trip that was very spontaneous. “I decided to drop everything and I just bought a plane ticket to England where my aunt lives. My main priority to visit her and to de-stressed but also I wanted to go and explore smaller places in England and around the UK “I ended up visiting about six little towns and we also spontaneously went to Scotland and Greece and it was quite intense.”

“The first day I arrived to London I found out that we are going to Scotland on the same day. We went to Kings Cross and we took a train just like in Harry Potter … and we were off on the train.” “We arrive to Edinburgh ... the birthplace of Harry Potter and I had no idea about this. So literally my entire trip was Harry Potter related. “We were there for three days. We went to the cafe where Harry Potter was first written by J.K Rowling, we went around saw the lock ness lake . We went back to England and took of to my own adventure by myself. “ Amanda Lockhart a Bachelor of Arts student shares her experience while visiting the Amazon rainforest. “We went on a five-week trip across the world and we got to the Amazon jungle and we did this thing called the tree of lodge. We were in the middle of the Amazon jungle and we had to tie our own treehouse.”

“On the way there, we were flying Air Canada and they ended up losing my luggage. Where we were grabbing our luggage, they had my mums and my brothers but they didn’t have mine. Obviously, it was a problem because I was going to be in the middle of nowhere for an entire week.” She went on the flight to the rainforest without her luggage. “When we got there, we drove to this village and then from there we were going to take another boat ride for about an hour-and-a-half boat ride to where this treehouse was.” “When we got to the village, we had about an hour to kill so our tour guide said ‘oh this is perfect for you; we can just go shopping for you.’” She thought this was an interesting opportunity since they could go right into the village and meet a lot of different people. The unexpected and spontaneous trips are the ones these students have memories of and look


Liz Shiro (top-right), Sasha Jaglal (middle) and Amanda Lockhart (top-left).

back on them fondly. “Just realising that things were going to turn out like the way we planned, ultimately it turned out better,” said Lockhart. Jaglal hopes “to take a Europe trip one day.”

While Lockhart expresses her desire to go to Iceland. “My next trip is France and I’ve been to Paris when I was younger but I’ve never been outside of Paris so I’m excited to go out and try new experiences,” said Shiro.


Trying to find some more effective New Year’s Resolutions Will these Golden Hawks stick with the goals they have set? What are some good resolutions for students to have? RASHIDA POWANKUMAR SPUTNIK WRITER


Another new year is upon us and many people associate it with resolutions, commitments, goals, projects, and yearly pursuits. The time for creating and executing yearly 2020 resolutions are here. Many students start with a long list of goals at the beginning of the year—but often quit because personal stumbling blocks. A few potential barriers that hinder one from hitting their achievements can include; circumstances, insecurities, anxiety, fear, complacent, disinterested, lack of resources and financial stability. However a few Laurier Brantford students and faculty are not letting these barriers hinder them. Our Sputnik reporter set out to find three people from the Laurier community and asked them about their

New Year’s resolutions.

... students must take time for their overall well-being. For example, I joined a choir. I love that it allows me to feel relaxed and exercises my brain differently from the usual studying and reading. -Monica Van Ittersum, an English student at Laurier Brantford

Associate Professor, Ian MacRae, says that this year his goal is to remove the sugar from his diet.

“It is important to keep focused, determined, and persistent when executing goals,” he said. Student in the English program, Monica Van Ittersum, “encourages students to make goals, despite the obstacles they face; instead of viewing hurdles as something impeding success as a student, it is important to view them as an opportunity for learning development.” In addition, she suggests, “that students must take time for their overall well-being. For example, I joined a choir. I love that it allows me to feel relaxed and exercises my brain differently from the usual studying and reading.” “I think advice should be specific to each situation,” said Shana Brown, a graduate of the human resources program, “but a generic response would be to set smart goals and follow through.”





Why there is no point to having a New Year’s resolution BAILEY ZIMMER SPUTNIK WRITER

A New Years Resolution is mindless and dumb, and the tradition of it has been circling our world for years. Although I do love the sentiment of tradition, the pledges to become a better version of oneself, and going out with the old and in with the new, the resolutions made on New Year’s Eve are rarely kept into the New Year. Old habits die hard, and it is very difficult to keep up with change. Committing to difference is challenging, especially when temptation is all around, and the New Year’s resolution has no lead up and no practice to the commitment. An old habit is difficult to cut out, and a new one is challenging to add in, especially with no practice or preparation. Common resolutions include working out, eating healthier, getting more sleep, being a better person and the list goes on. While these goals are all very practical, healthy, and typically satisfying, commitment to them is a struggle. Old habits die hard, and it is easier to say a change will take place compared to actually putting the plan in action. Although New Year’s resolutions have good thoughts behind them, and they are typically all standing for the bettering of a person, actually keeping and committing to the change is very difficult. Kicking the bucket on old habits is hard, adding new flourishes to a daily routine is difficult and sometimes stressful, and for a great portion of the time, it seems as though the resolutions are rarely kept, mostly due to the fact that old habits are hard to get rid of. Habits typically take a longer amount of time to overcome. They are embedded in us and are a part of our day-to-day lives. Of course the resolution for change will be challenging and of course the resolutions will be hard to keep into the new year, so, instead of working on making changes instantly


and spontaneously, those who make resolutions should overview what they want to change, and do it for themselves when they want, rather than waiting for the clock of December 31st to strike 12:00 a.m. Habits should be lost and picked up to make ourselves better. Instead of going cold turkey, and possibly giving up a month into our goals, we should be easing into it, setting realistic, yet still desirable goals, and motivating each other to try again when we give up. A slip-up is not a reason to give up. People get down on themselves if they fail their resolution. Sometimes, people are just too busy for new resolutions and changes, or maybe the new action will take some getting used to, and quitting something will not be as easy as thought. New ways of life take time to get in the habit of, and the resolutions that come along with the new year can ultimately make some people feel as if they have failed. If someone has struggled to succeed with their resolutions, some

may feel as though they cannot fully accomplish these resolutions if there has already been a setback. What needs to happen, after a potential slip, is trying again to succeed, and have dedication and determination to fulfill a resolution. The reason resolutions are impractical in this aspect is merely for the fact that discourage is flaunted, failure is anticipated, and ultimately, this may result in the feeling of failure in yourself. Resolutions are supposed to be positive changes, something to make people feel good and to better their lives. If a mistake is made from the challenge of keeping a resolution, there is no reason to feel like a failure, give up, and revert to old habits. Resolutions have positive impacts on people, but negative impacts are also in play. A slip up in a resolution shouldn’t be looked at as a mistake, but rather as a learning curve for the individual to process, reflect upon, and work harder to change the outcome for

next time. New Year’s resolutions have such a stigma around them. To think that if the resolution is unsuccessful on the first attempt, you may as well wait for next year and try again is ridiculous. This mindset is the poison to the desire for change. If giving up, feeling like a failure, and not trying again for a better outcome sounds festive and positive, well then Bob’s your uncle. Personally though, I feel that resolutions should be celebrated, and continually be celebrated and encouraged through slip-ups. New Year’s resolutions are also silly for one more reason. If someone wants to do things that are better for themselves, they can start at any time in the year! A specific day does not have to be waited on for changes to occur. The best time to change is the present. Get rid of procrastination tendencies (maybe kick that habit too) and putting off change until later and change at any time. The New Year seems to be a desirable mark to start a goal for most people. As

of January 1st, they will become a new person. Unfortunately, this is typically not how we go about our lives. Everyone’s schedule is different. Some people are exceptionally busy, and the holiday season may not be the best time to make changes and become a different version of who you are, which is totally okay! The pressure to transform to a better person doesn’t have to be stressful and dependant on the day in which this commitment is conceived. Any day of the year can be considered someone’s “New Year” for their goals. A fresh start doesn’t necessarily have to be based on the calendar year. If change is what needs to happen, there should not be a specific day to wait until to make those changes happen. Change happens when best fitted for the person, when commitment and desire is in place. There should not be a socially constructed period in which making changes is celebrated. Changes should be made to better yourself and be celebrated all year long! Change doesn’t have to wait for a specific date, and neither do you. Determination begins as soon as you want it. As soon as there is a desirable goal, a plan set in action, and a thriving love for motivation, change is possible. New Year’s resolutions can be made at any time of year. There doesn’t have to be a specific date to make changes for a better life. Of course, it is admirable when people do set goals for themselves on New Year’s Eve, and follow through with them, but New Year’s resolutions, generally can be resolutions made throughout the year, rather than waiting for the next coming year. A better tomorrow starts today. Traditions are great. I really do love the sentiment and festivities that come along with them, but resolutions are overrated. Change is usually for the better, but one evening dedicated to it is unnecessary.




Donald Trump impeachment process: don’t celebrate an early victory, yet JADE HOSICK OPINION EDITOR, THE CORD

On Dec. 18, 2019, the United States House of Representatives voted to impeach President Donald Trump based on two articles alleging grave misconduct. This

was a decision that was made after months of debate and hearings that were conducted by the House Intelligence and Judiciary committees. The first article, which was passed by a 230-197 vote, addresses Trump’s abuse of power

in seeking help from Ukraine for his own political benefit on domestic territory - specifically asking the Ukraine to get information on presidential candidate Joe Biden. The second article, which was passed 229-197, addressed Trump’s obstruction of Congress

JANUARY 2020 by refusing to cooperate with subpoenas issued for access to administration witnesses and documents. Some say the process began as early as April when the Mueller Report and Mueller’s House testimony occured, but it officially began on Sept. 4 when House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced that the House would be launching a formal impeachment inquiry regarding the Ukraine scandal. On Dec. 5, Pelosi announced that she would be asking Judiciary to draft formal impeachment articles which quickly lead to a final debate and vote. The process of impeachment is something that is confusing to many people as there is no clear set of guidelines in the constitution saying exactly how an official can be impeached. There have also only been two official impeachments in U.S. history (Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton – Richard Nixon avoided an impeachment by his resignation). The biggest thing to remember is that impeachment is not the removal of corrupt presidents or other officials, but rather just the adoption of charges given by the House, which leads to a Senate trial. So while Clinton and Johnson were impeached as the House passed articles of impeachment, they were both acquitted by the Senate. The term impeachment still applies for the two, but they were never officially removed from office. The impeachment process has only just begun, so a celebration might not be worthwhile yet. During the Senate trial process, senators will be acting as jurors who make no public statements on the trial until after the trial process, although there is no official “gag order.” The length of the trial is also something that is up in the air, as the two other impeachment trials varied in length. But there’s currently a stalemate between Pelosi and Senate leader

Mitch McConnell on how the trial will continue, and this statement could ultimately go on until the next election happens. If this was the case then Trump would be the president who was impeached but did not go to trial. If that were the case, Democrats would claim that Trump and the Republicans conspired to protect the current presidency, and Republicans would claim that the Democrats had such a weak case that this should not have proceeded to a trial. If Trump has a trial and is subsequently acquitted, the 2020 election would lead to either Trump getting re-elected or not. Regardless of whether or not Trump is removed from office, his impeachment has proven that the 2020 election is of very high stakes – the removal of the 45th president, who has been involved in corruption, norm breaking and has also had various racist and sexists attitudes goes against what the United States claims to stand for as a nation. I would agree that Trump does need to get removed by the United States and, honestly, when I first heard about the news I was more than excited. But the more research I did, the more I realized that this is really just the first step in a process that could be very long. Trump is impeached, yes, but he is not removed. Kind of like when someone is charged with a crime but have yet to be convicted. The House is also held by a Democrat majority – therefore a vote in favour of impeachment was probably easier to get. The Senate, though, is held by a Republican majority meaning that an acquittal is more than likely. So before we celebrate the fact that the President was impeached, we need to remember that this is only step one. It is still very important for Americans to cast their vote in the 2020 election. *This article was originally published in The Cord on January 8, 2020.*

A climate movement or a cultural moment? CRAIG VAN MANEN SPUTNIK WRITER

The ongoing issue of climate change is not hard to forget. In the last year, brazen activist Greta Thunberg was named Time’s person of the year and climate action emerged as a top ballotbox issue in the Canadian federal election. Daily news stories and Weather Network clips remind us of the serious impact that human activity has on the global climate. As we step into a new decade, the subject can’t possibly be ignored. This is why I am struggling to understand the climate situation. I undoubtedly believe that we have to live responsibly on this earth but with so many raised voices and loud warnings for action the noise levels are rising much faster than the oceans. Advertisements are more ethically informed than ever, and famous people are calling themselves climate ambassadors without restraint. All this is to say, I’m a die-hard skeptic, and I’ll show you why with a quick review of some climate predictions of the past. In 1970, at the very first Earth Day, Stanford University Biology Professor Paul Ehrlich claimed that in ten years all important animal life in the sea would be extinct and that large areas of coastline would have to be evacuated because of the stench of dead fish. Since Ehrlich’s less than solid predictions the sensationalism hasn’t stopped. Popular news


outlets jump on each and every natural disaster as proof of the impending doom. Just last September a Los Angeles Times editorial warned that 2020 could be our last chance to stop an apocalypse. I can’t help but be reminded of another turn of a decade when many were convinced of a global

digital disaster. United States Deputy Secretary of Defense John Hamre said that the Y2K problem was the electronic equivalent of the El Nino and there would be nasty surprises around the globe. Al Gore predicted in 2009 that the North Pole would be completely ice free in five years. A U.S. Navy

scientist in 2013 concluded that the Arctic’s summer sea ice cover would all be melted by 2016. The great irony is that, the Maritime Bulletin reported that on September 3, 2016 ‘climate change warriors’ making a documentary film on the melting polar ice cap had to be rescued by helicopter

from their ship because it was stuck in the ice halfway between Norway and the North Pole. I’m not saying that these questionable claims completely invalidate the climate change movement, but they definitely make it harder to take it seriously.






“New Year, New You”: low-cost, easily-accessible fitness through apps and the Laurier Brantford YMCA

The LB YMCA is open seven days a week, and offers a wide variety of classes and programs for all ages to enjoy. NICOLE SGUIGNA SPUTNIK SPORTS

With the new year beginning, people are starting new fitness programs to help them reach their New Year’s goals. Starting a new fitness program can be scary, and there are so many to choose from, it may seem impossible to choose the correct one for you. I’ve found a variety of free or low-cost easy to access fitness apps and classes that can help you on your fitness journey. Over the Christmas break, I tried two apps and attended classes at the Stork Family YMCA in Waterloo to find the best fitness programs for your goals. The first app I tried was Tone and Sculpt created by Krissy Cela, a social media fitness influencer. The app has a monthly fee of $19.49 but offers a free seven-day trial. It includes a three or five-day at-home or gym-based workout program. Subscribers can decide between a beginner, intermediate or advanced level four-week schedule. The exercises include full-body or targeted muscle-building exercises for legs/glutes, biceps/triceps and back/shoulder. There are reference videos that demonstrate how the exercises should be completed. The app offers extra fitness challenges, a meal and water tracker, nutrition guides and a community group where subscribers can share their experiences over the app. Overall, I enjoyed using this app. I always felt like I had a challenging and successful workout after using it. I did find some of the exercises were difficult to complete and required previous fitness knowledge. However, the app also focuses on strength training exercises that need equipment like resistance bands or dumbells in order to complete them which can be expensive and hard to access. This app does provide enough information for a beginner but it may be better for those with fitness experience and access to fitness equipment. If you aren’t looking for a monthly subscription, the Nike Training Club app is a good choice. This app is free but does offer an upgrade to the Nike Training Club premium which includes trainer guided workouts and nutrition guides for a monthly fee of $19.99 or a yearly fee of $159.99.

I chose to use the free version of the app which offers a variety of beginner, intermediate or advanced yoga, strength training, mobility and endurance-type fitness routines. There are videos that demonstrate how each exercise should be completed. The user is free to choose a fitness routine based on their own interests and fitness needs instead

of following a schedule like the Krissy Cela app. You receive an

achievement badge based on how many workouts you complete and


how often you complete them which helps track progress and keep you motivated. The Nike app provides a broad range of articles and guides on

nutrition, goal-setting and fitness challenges which are helpful for beginners to learn about fitness in general. Though the app provides enough workout routines to stay challenged, they are short in length. For this reason, I needed to complete two or three to feel like I had a good workout. After using the app, I believe it is a good starting point for beginners as the variety of workouts can help them learn what they like and want for their fitness needs. For those with more fitness experience, this app is good for challenging them outside their regular fitness routine. I would recommend this app especially if you are just starting your fitness journey. If the apps leave you feeling overwhelmed, the group classes available with your Laurier Brantford membership might be for you. I tried a variety of classes through the Stork Family YMCA in Waterloo similar to those offered at the Laurier Brantford YMCA. I took cycling and group classes focused on strength and cardio. All classes are taught by YMCA certified fitness instructors. The instructors’ guide and time each movements and until the end of class. For example, the cycling instructor tells you when to switch gears and positions on the cycling bike. I found the instructors to be high-energy, engaging and informative which helped keep me motivated. I really enjoyed these classes as they teach you the core elements of exercise like cycling circuits, squats and bicep curls. High levels of endurance are needed to complete these classes which makes them a good choice for those with more fitness experience as well. The classes play music throughout the workout which was enjoyable but it did make it difficult to understand the instructor and made me miss some instructions. Overall, the YMCA is a good choice for people looking to gain basic fitness knowledge. The apps I tried are open for download at any time and the Laurier Brantford YMCA winter class schedule is on their website. I recommend trying them and any others that may interest you to make your New Year’s goals easier to achieve.





New year, new goals for the LB men’s and women’s soccer teams



Laurier Brantford men’s and women’s soccer teams will start their 2020 season with a tournament at Centennial College. Held January 18, the teams will be travelling to Toronto to compete. “It’s always our goal to improve on the previous year, we use our three tournaments to prepare for regionals, and our main goal is to make it out of group play,” said Coach Murphy Wiredu, who coaches both men’s and women’s team for Laurier Brantford. “We nearly had success within our women’s team [last year],” he said. Players on both teams are looking forward to the start of another soccer season, especially the women, who were just shy of making it to provincials last year, where they would have faced the top schools in the Ontario College Athletic Association (OCAA). Each team will play three tournaments and then will compete in a final tournament that will determine if they move on to provincials. The first is at Centennial College on January 18, the second at Redeemer College on January 24 for the men, and January 25 for the women, and the third at Sheridan College

on February 15, before regionals at Redeemer College on March second. The women’s team is looking to repeat their success last year and get that extra push that will land them at provincials.

We are happy that we have some core players who have been with us since the program began three years ago

takes to get there are now and it’s a matter of going to get it.” The men’s team is looking at a short bench this year, but there is little worry from the coach and players. They are confident that they will be able to manage themselves. “It will not matter if the bench has 10 or 16 players, the most disciplined and fit will play and that could mean seven people seeing the pitch the entire day,’’ said Mejia, “fitness is a huge part and will always be on this team, regardless of the numbers we have.”

-Murphy Wiredu, Head Coach

“We are looking to make a name for ourselves and gain a reputation among the college and university teams as the team to beat,” said Rachel Jones, a member of the women’s team,“I believe we are well on our way to making that happen.’’ While the men’s team is looking to rebound from a season riddled with injuries that played a significant factor in their overall level of play last year. “We hope to accomplish nothing short of competing in OCAA championships” said Martin Mejia, captain of the men’s team, “I think our guys know what it

It’s always our goal to improve on the previous year, we use our three tournaments to prepare for regionals -Murphy Wiredu, Head Coach

“Being short on players can be a weakness, but we have had fewer players a couple of years ago, and we enjoyed a great season,” said Wiredu. “We are happy that we have some core players who have

been with us since the program began three years ago, and they’ve all bought into our system and style of play which is huge,’’ he said. Both teams are looking to show off their skills this season and potentially make it to the OCAA championships and are confident that they are ready for what this season has to offer. Mejia noted that both teams are still very new to Laurier

Brantford and their varsity program. “Maturity and hard work will be our strengths this year, a lot of players had their first experience with the competition last year and it was eye-opening for them,” he continued. “They got better tournament by tournament and this year I feel that the team is mature enough to understand what they are dealing with.”

Profile for WLUSP - The Sputnk

Volume 19, Issue 5 - January, 2020  

News and stories from Laurier Brantford's independent student voice.

Volume 19, Issue 5 - January, 2020  

News and stories from Laurier Brantford's independent student voice.