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April 23, 2019
Students push back hate speech
Anti-LGBTQ+ and anti-Muslim protesters were met with resistance from TU students Thursday, pg. 6
Photo by Brendan Felch, Illustration by Bailey Hendricks/ The Towerlight
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April 23, 2019
April 23, 2019
Editor-in-Chief Bailey Hendricks Senior Editor Tim Klapac News Editor Mary-Ellen Davis Asst. News Editors Keri Luise Sophia Bates Arts & Life Editor Meg Hudson Asst. Arts & Life Editors Alex Helms
NOTatTU # TRENDING.
@dnaleee Proud of all us here at Towson today that decided to take a stand against ignorance. Hatred is not welcome here in any way, shape, or form. Period. #NotAtTU
@regretqueen #NOTATTU My heart is so full for all those who I stood next to as those bigots got what they deserved. I am proud to be surrounded by so many people willing to stand against hate
Asst. Sports Editors Muhammad Waheed Jordan Kendall Senior Staff Writers Karuga Koinange Kerrry Ingram Staff Writers Jessica Ricks Anthony Petro Albert Ivory Glenn Kaplan John Hack Suzanne Stuller Cyan Thomas Aaron Thomas Marcus Whitman Brooks Warren Jalon Dixon
Photo Editor Brendan Felch Asst.Photo Editor Brittany Whitham
Staff Photographers Liam Beard Lacey Wall Simon Enagonio Nikki Hewins Lexi Thompson Tiffany Deboer Owen DiDonna Ryan Moriarty
General Manager Mike Raymond Art Director Victoria Nicholson Webmaster Circulation Staff Scott Halerz Dom Capparuccini Elssa Kenfack Kirsten Tildon
8000 York Road University Union Room 309 Towson, MD 21252 (410) 704-5153 email@example.com thetowerlight.com The Towerlight print edition is published by students of Towson University on Tuesdays. The Towerlight is owned by nonprofit Baltimore Student Media Inc., BaltimoreStudentMedia.com. The Towerlight’s advertising deadlines are firm: Wednesday noon for space; Friday noon for art. Classifieds appear online and in print and are self-service at TheTowerlight.com/classifieds. We encourage letters to the editor and online feedback. Commentaries, letters to the editor, editorial cartoons and other editorials express the opinions of their authors and not necessarily the views of the newspaper. The Towerlight does not discriminate based on age, color, condition of handicap, marital status, national origin, race, religion, gender or sexual orientation. ©2019 by The Towerlight, 8000 York Rd, Towson, MD 21252. All rights reserved.
@cydney #NotAtTU needs to stop being a thing. #YesAtTU. Hatred, bigotry, and white supremacy are there. It’s real, it’s happening, it’s been happening, and will continue to exist until the @TowsonU administrators stop being so COWARDLY in the face of hatred. @majokasai TOWSON STUDENTS there is a non Towson affiliated religious group in front of the library yelling at people and protesting feminism and the lgbtq+ community. Be safe and know you are loved and supported regardless of this group being here today!
UPCOMING YOU TUBE VIDEO: T owerlight staff recaps how the protest unfolded Thursday.
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DIVERSITY SPEAKER SERIES
Melissa Harris-Perry is the Maya Angelou Presidential Chair at Wake Forest University. There, she is founding director of the Anna Julia Cooper Center and co-director of Wake the Vote. Harris-Perry is editor-at-large of Elle.com
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ARBOR DAY CELEBRATIONS
Last year, more than 300 faculty, staff, administrators, and community partners attended. This year, dozens of community partners will feature their organizations and ways to connect with them.
Every spring the Center for Student Diversity hosts Lavender Celebration to honor graduating LGBTQ+ student’s accomplishments. The ceremony is open to LGBTQ+ students who will be graduating in spring or fall of 2019.
Celebrate TU being designated a Tree Campus USA Campus by the Arbor Day Foundation. Light refreshments will be served.
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April 23, 2019
Turning the page BAILEY HENDRICKS Editor-in-Chief @imsimplybailey
Happy Tuesday, Towson. My name is Bailey Hendricks. I’m The Towerlight’s new editor-in-chief. When I walked into The Towerlight office August of 2016, I came in with the hope of one day having a story published. Throughout my three years of working at The Towerlight so far, I wrote many stories for the news section, a few for the arts section and ended up starting my own column in the opinion section. I started off as a news staff writer, writing at least one story each week, sometimes two. Before I was on the editorial board staff, I spent my Mondays in this office copy editing pages and getting to know the staff. I have always loved the energy of being able to witness the paper coming together. I eventually worked my way up to assistant news editor, associate news editor, news editor, senior editor, and was elected editor-in-chief Wednesday. I began my love for working for newspapers back in elementary school. I was lucky enough that my elementary school had a newspaper club. I remember going to students and teachers with a voice recorder back in third grade (before iPhones even existed!) and interviewing teachers and classmates on the happenings of the school. I took this love and passion to my high school paper, too, where I became editor-in-chief and helped to rebrand the newspaper with a new logo I designed and by injecting my passion and drive into the newspaper and encouraging my classmates to do the same. Although it has been less than a week since being elected editor, The Towerlight’s hard working staff has already proven their talent and dedication to the newspaper. The day after The Towerlight’s election, a small group of protesters visited campus which caused Towson students to counter-protest, drawing hundreds in front of the College of Fine Arts. I’m very proud with how our staff reported on the situation. Giving you live updates, photos and videos on our Twitter account @ TheTowerlight, and having the story on the protest out that evening
at thetowerlight.com. The cover story this week is an updated version of that story that I worked on alongside our talented News Editor Mary-Ellen Davis. I’m also excited to work alongside our newly-elected Senior Editor Tim Klapac who was also tweeting from the protest, our talented Photo Editor Brendan Felch whose story is featured on the cover this week, our wonderful Art Director Tori Nicholson, and our brand new Arts & Life Editor Meg Hudson who I can’t wait to see grow here at The Towerlight. I have come a very long way since being that little elementary schooler writing news stories on my classmates and teachers. Heck -- I’ve come a long way since becoming senior editor just last year. Thank you to my mom and step-dad for pushing me to go into this office, despite being so shy that day freshman year of college. Thank you to the staff I’ve gotten the honor to work with through my time at The Towerlight including former editor-in-chief Cody Boetler and Sarah Rowan for inviting me to Bill Bateman’s after that production day my freshman year. Thank you to former senior editor Jordan Cope for inspiring me and helping me realize I belong here. Thank you to former editor-in-chief Karuga Koinange, too, for supporting me through this process and believing in me. Last, but most definitely not least, thank you so much and a BIG HAPPY 21st BIRTHDAY to my wonderful boyfriend Matt for loving and supporting me through this process of being editor (and through everything else too). The Towerlight is an independent-student run newspaper who gets no funding from the university. Thank you, reading this, for being a supporter of The Towerlight. Just simply picking up the paper, doing the puzzles in the paper and reading the stories helps us out a lot. College newspapers are very important. We report on stories that would otherwise go unreported. We break news. We are here to keep you better informed citizens. I’m very much looking forward to serving as editor-in-chief of The Towerlight as we strive to report news and serve as a voice for students, staff, and alumni of Towson University and the Towson community.
More should be done for diversity SAMUEL SMITH Columnist
Last Thursday, on April 18th, a group of protesters, known as the “Bible Believers” clashed with students at Cross Campus Drive, in front of the Center for the Arts. The “Bible Believers” were not students of Towson University. The “Bible Believers” held signs that, quite frankly, said things I can not repeat here, but were homophobic, transphobic, sexist, racist, anti-Semitic, and islamophobic, to name a few. However, students came out in the hundreds to counter-protest. They waved pride flags, members of the band played fight songs, and students made sure their voices were heard. But why was there such a largescale reaction to something that would have otherwise been so small, meaningless, and quite frankly, just annoying otherwise? I can’t speak for other students, but quite frankly, I was fed up. Why? Because more needs to be done at this school to foster a community of respect, inclusion, and diversity. I, anecdotally, have seen an uptick of hate/bias incidents at Towson. This is only my second semester here! And, speaking with older col-
leagues and friends, they’ve definitely felt an uptick too. But, Towson has an unfortunate history with xenophobia, and I can’t help but hold that in the back of my mind when I think about diversity on campus. I can’t help but wonder: what is being done about the hate or bias incidents on campus? Not enough is being done. There’s not enough transparency. What happens to students who commit hateful or biased actions on campus? What about professors? Staff? I understand there are rules regarding privacy, but there has to be some way something can be said without violating privacy laws. There’s got to be some way they can make the process more well-known and visible. The administration needs to be transparent with students. Where’s the accountability? First of all, if the administration isn’t doing anything about hate or bias incidents on campus, why not? Why is more not being done? Why were we, the student body, not informed of the “Bible Believers,” when they pre-warned the administration that they were coming to campus? Why did most students find out through social media, through group chats, through friends about these hateful protesters, and not through administrative communications first? Why did we only get a statement from them after the fact? Why
was the first statement sent out so broad and vague? Lastly, where was Kim Schatzel in all of this? We got a statement from her, but only after the fact. Her presence at the protest would have been a powerful statement as to where she, her administration, and her university stands on hate speech. Finally, we need more to be done to show students (current, potential, and alumni) where we as a community stand on issues of hate and bias incidents. We need more professors being vocally anti-xenophobia. We need more rallys, more things going on around campus to show our diversity and our inclusion. We need more letters stating that we are an inclusive campus. We need flags flown, music played, songs sung, dances danced. We need more outward statements of inclusion and equity. As a student, I’m tired. I’m tired of the homophobia, transphobia, racism, the everything. I’m tired of not being sure if I’m protected, on or off campus. I’m tired of hearing the stories of people who weren’t protected on and off campus. I’m tired of Freedom Square being chalked with vile messages. We, as a campus community need to come together. We need the administration to do more. But most importantly, we need to acknowledge our past, and work toward a better future.
Analyzing the Mueller report CONNOR MCNAIRN Columnist
On Thursday, Special Counsel Robert Mueller finally released his long-awaited inquiry into President Trump’s potential collusion with Russia. For two years, politicians, pundits and media outlets have spent countless hours mulling the report’s potential contents. And on Thursday, they rushed through the substantial and relatively damning report. Last month, newly-appointed
Attorney General (AG) William Barr sent a four-page letter to Congress, detailing what he deemed the principal conclusions of the Mueller report. In this letter, Barr generally concluded that Mueller found no evidence of collusion or obstruction; he also noted that Mueller would not be pursuing future criminal charges. To all in Trumpworld, such a conclusion translated to complete and total exoneration for the president. Now that we’ve had time to read
the Mueller report, however, Mr. Barr’s conclusions were remarkably misleading. From the beginning of the report, Mr. Mueller offered a critically important explanation of his investigation’s structure. First, Mr. Mueller clarified that his team avoided subpoenaing the president, mainly because doing so would significantly delay the investigation. - To read the rest of this column online, visit thetowerlight.com.
April 23, 2019
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April 23, 2019
protesters face backlash from students MARY-ELLEN DAVIS News Editor @Mel_Davis_1998 BAILEY HENDRICKS Editor-in-Chief @imsimplybailey
Editor’s note: This story was updated on Monday, April 21 as a follow up from initial online publication on Thursday, April 17, 2019. Anti-LGBTQ+ and anti-Muslim protesters gathered at Towson University Thursday afternoon and were faced with backlash from University students. The group of four protestors, who call themselves the “Bible Believers,” began “preaching” to students around 12:30 outside of Cook Library. The group drew a crowd of students and were shouting anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric. The protesters held signs, which read “Attention: Sinners Repent,” “Stop Sinning, Obey Jesus or Hellfire,” “Warning: Homos, Whores, Porno Freaks, M----bators, Money Lover$, Witches, Liars, Muslims, Drunks, Sissies, The Pope, Ankle Biters, Gangsters, Whoremongers: Obey Jesus or Hellfire,” “Stop the War on Anuses” and “Let the Woman Learn in Silence With All Subjection.” The protesters were moved by Towson University Police and continued their demonstration in front of the College of Fine Arts Building on Cross Campus Drive shortly after. “We got an email that morning that they were going to be coming here,” said Sean Welsh, Towson’s associate vice president of communications & media. “We had staff there at Cook Library when they arrived, or shortly after they arrived, that told them they were not welcome on campus and they needed to move to a public space.” Cross Campus Drive is not a campus street, and as such is open for those who wish to use it. The protestors stood on the sidewalk, where they pulled out an electric megaphone and began to
make comments about how women dress and abortions. “I want to thank you for not killing your baby ma’am,” one protestor said as a woman walked up to the CFA, pushing a stroller with a baby inside. “I do give compliments. This is not just about condemnation. A lot of you girls have killed your offspring. Some of you boys even paid for an abortion, you dirty dog loser. What kind of father kills his own baby and pays for an abortion?” Towson student Shawn Drinan Jr. said that the protesters’ rhetoric makes people angry with the church. He came to converse with the protestors. “We try to spread the message of the gospel but I feel like what they’re doing is very aggressive and an almost hateful way of doing it,” said Drinan, a member of Restoration Church. “So we wanted to have a conversation with them and ask them why they think that’s the method that’s going to win hearts over, you know?” Hundreds of Towson University students gathered outside of the CFA and along Cross Campus Drive counter protesting. Students held signs that said “#NotatTU,” “Black Lives Matter,” “This is not Christianity,” and some students waved LGBTQ+ pride flags. Students played Katy Perry’s “I Kissed a Girl,” and members of the Towson University marching band played Towson’s fight song. Students also chanted “Not at TU” and “Love is Love.” Protester James Jenkins, 29, was arrested by Baltimore County Police. The Towerlight has been unable to confirm charges, but The Baltimore Sun Writer Libby Solomon reported via Twitter that Jenkins has been charged with second-degree assault, disorderly conduct, destruction of property and disturbing activities at a school. #NotatTU is a campaign that was relaunched by the University’s Student Government Association in November of 2017 to inform students about maintaining and pro-
moting an inclusive environment on campus. The campaigns hashtag was a Twitter Trend Thursday evening into Friday. One Towson University student tweeted “Hey Towson University.. this is how we respond to hate.” TUPD sent out a text at 3:39 p.m. which read “Avoid Cross Campus Drive: For the safety and flow of traffic, we ask the campus community to avoid the area of Cross Campus Drive Thursday afternoon.” A campus-wide email was sent from University Communications at 3:27 p.m. “Earlier today TUPD was notified that an external group of protesters had plans to “exercise free speech” on our campus,” the email said. “TUPD relocated and isolated the group the public right of way, communicated to Baltimore County Police Department, and continues to monitor and ensure the safety of our campus community members.” Sophomore Kearstein Johnson said she found the protesters demonstration to be appalling. “The fact that someone can say such vulgar and offensive things, and use religion as a defense and justification, is repulsive,” Johnson said. Towson University’s email statement said that the University upholds their values toward a “diverse and inclusive campus.” “Although many members of our community have found the messages and beliefs of these individuals to be offensive and disturbing, the strength of our community and our resolve to support each other remains resolute,” the statement said. “We ask all members of our campus community to be safe and continue to support each other.” Towson University President Kim Schatzel, who was not on campus during the protest, also sent out a statement later that evening acknowledging that while the group had a right to use public space to demonstrate free speech, their message conflicts with efforts being made to make the University a more diverse and
Brendan Felch/ The Towerlight
Students held up inclusive flags during a counter protest to push back against anti-LGBTQ+ and anti-Muslim rhetoric. inclusive campus. Schatzel also announced that TU will hold a University-wide teach-in in response to the protest. It will be a time for the community to gather and discussed what happened at the protest, and what the best practices and legal rights are of students during situations like this. Details about the event are still being worked on, according to Welsh. “I am proud of our students’ and our community’s positive
response,” Schatzel’s statement said. “The demonstrators’ unsuccessful attempt to challenge our institutional values as a welcoming, diverse and inclusive campus was met with a community that proudly displayed our support for each other and our priority for safety. Our entire community was inspired by the sounds of the TU Marching Band as well as those who raised inclusive flags, and waved #NotatTU posters to drown out hate with love.”
April 23, 2019
Towson restaurant scene expands AMANDA MURAYAMA Contributing Writer @amunders
New restaurants have opened this year in Towson, including The Bun Shop, New Generation Hot Pot, and Maimura Sushi Noodle and Korean BBQ, bringing new cuisine to the area for local residents. The Bun Shop opened its doors on 40 W. Chesapeake Ave. late last month. The Bun Shop has another location in Mount Vernon, Baltimore that opened six years ago and the shop was looking to expand. Both shops are co-owned by brothers Lam and Andrew Bui and their cousin Mink Vo. “We were looking to expand but we didn’t want to be too close to our other shop,” Lam Bui said. “And since we’re pretty geared towards college students, because we’ve got the long tables, places for them to hang out, the late hours, coffee for the late hours, so I think Towson was like the next place to go because it’s right there and we’ve got Goucher not too far.” The coffee shops menu features a variety of buns inspired by different cultures from around the world. The shop’s specialty is their Rotiboy, which is a Malaysian sweet roll with salted butter on the inside and an
espresso topping. The shop uses the word “bun” loosely. “I guess the Rotiboy is probably the most bun of the buns so it’s like a roll, salted butter on the inside,” Lam Bui said. “Everything else we kinda will say it’s a bun cause we wrap it some sort of carb.” Lam Bui makes all the food and uses inspiration from around the world to come up with new bun recipes. Besides their Rotiboy, their menu is always changing depending on new items Lam Bui creates. “It’s more like if I see something I wonder if I could make a bun out of that and/or if someone already makes a bun, like if any country makes a bun or anything wrapped up in a pastry,” Lam Bui said. “And I’ll just try a small batch and then see if it appeals.” Lam Bui plans to create some new recipes as soon as he has some spare time on his hands. “I’ve been sticking with a few of our staples that have been good but I’m getting the itch to mix it up,” Lam Bui said. The shops have long tables and couches, catered towards an environment for work, studying, and meeting with people. The shop hopes to have open mic nights and live music in the future, according to Lam Bui. New Generation Hot Pot opened
Amanda Murayama/ The Towerlight
In their quest to expand, The Bun Shop owners Lam Bui, Andrew Bui and Mink Vo opened the doors to a Towson location last month.
its doors on 413 York Rd. early last month. Hot pot is a Chinese cooking method where foods like meat, noodles, seafood, and more are cooked at the table in simmering soup stock. At New Generation Hot Pot, ingredients circle the tables on a conveyor belt where customers can pick up what they want to cook. “Hot pot originated from Mongolia and it was brought to China like so many years ago and then it was almost like a tradition in China,” said Ming Zhang, the owner and manager. “It’s something like burgers in the United States, and hot pot is like that in China.” New Generation Hot Pot chose Towson for their location because of the proximity of Towson University. “It was chosen because there’s a lot of college students,” Zhang said. “I think... there’s not a lot of cuisines that you guys have, traditional cuisine that is from China, that you guys have around here.” Zhang added that the restaurant
holds potential for the area. “So I think mainly is more like Hot Pot is more like a new thing coming up and I believe a lot of students are going to love it,” Zhang said. Sophomore Alyson Hatfield is excited about the expanding palette of Uptown Towson. “I’m actually very excited that these three new places have opened and it shows the diverse, new cuisines,” Hatfield said. “We have pizza and stuff like that here, but for me, I love trying new foods.” New Generation Hot Pot hopes to create an atmosphere where families and friends can enjoy themselves. “I want to bring like a family and friend friendly place,” Zhang said. “It’s more like a social gathering place for family and friends.” Maimura Sushi Noodle and Korean BBQ opened its doors on 105 E. Joppa Rd. to the public three months ago. Towson is their only location and chose the area because of its appeal. “Towson is good, many students,
exciting area,” said Hyesoo Han, server and manager. Korean BBQ is a cooking method where meat like beef, pork, or chicken is cooked on grills that are built into the table. The restaurant has been busy since their grand opening and wants to share Korean BBQ with Towson, according to Han. Their goal for the future of their restaurant is to provide the best food and service to their customers. “We want to be the best restaurant in Towson,” Han said. Hatfield has tried Maimura, and was pleased with the experience. “I’ve tried the sushi noodle and korean BBQ, Maimura, it was very good and I really enjoyed it,” Hatfield said. “I also went at like 4 p.m. on a Thursday, so it was not busy at all which made the experience way better because the server was really attentive and she was very fun and teaching us about her food and her culture. It was very nice to eat the food with somebody that made the food and knows the food.”
10 April 23, 2019
Arts & Life
Lux Daze Media 2019 showcase
TU alum’s production company prospers SUZANNE STULLER Staff Writer
Writer and director, Tyler Peterson, a recent graduate of Towson University, is the founder of Lux Daze Media, an independent media production company. Lux Daze Media was founded in 2015 in Baltimore. Here, Peterson specializes in the production of film and music videos. Among his latest works is the short film, “Summer Hill.” “I started making films back in elementary school with my friends in the neighborhood,” Peterson said. “Over the years I continued doing it, each project got a little more extravagant and a little more in depth.” Peterson planned on going to school for environmental science, until his senior year of high school. That’s when he decided he wanted to pursue filmmaking professionally. Peterson was known at Towson for having impressive film work and a great personality, making him a great peer and mentor to other film students. “As someone who’s had very few conversations with him, and mostly knew of him, he was always really approachable in my opinion, and hilarious to talk to,” said Liz McLaren, a senior film student. “As far as his work goes, his cine-
matography is beautifully crafted. He always strives to make his work inclusive, which I personally admire from someone in the film industry.” As time progressed, Lux Daze Media grew larger, involving more filmmakers with the company. “As more people had interest in the company, I realized, ‘Oh, maybe I can start producing other films that I’m not necessarily the writer or director of,’” Peterson said. “That’s when other people came into the folds. I had a couple of key collaborators who I was working with on a lot of my projects, so it was a natural progression for me to ask them to have a more formal role in the company.” “Summer Hill” was Peterson’s first large project for which he was able to both film and direct, post-graduation from Towson. The film was inspired by Peterson’s childhood in Rising Sun, Maryland, in Cecil County. The film follows a group of teenagers in the rural conservative town of Summer Hill, and offers insights into the drawbacks of living in a small town, an image often glamorized by the media. “Summer Hill” was also featured at the Lux Daze Media 2019 Showcase, which was held at Baltimore’s art district at Motor House on April 7. The showcase also introduced “Portraits,” a short film, by Laura Gede, which will be released later this year.
“Portraits is a series of vignettes that show one pivotal movement in a young woman taking the first steps in accepting her body,” said Gede. “As someone who has lived with an eating disorder for years, I was very tired of seeing the majority of films about body dysmorphia and eating disorders only showing the extremes.” The documentary “Mom & M” by Jena Richardson, was also announced at the showcase, and will be released in 2020. This is the company’s first feature length project. “This is a documentary that Jena had already begun shooting,” said Peterson. She came to us to help her continue the journey and see the film all the way through.” Peterson hopes Lux Daze Media builds a sense of community for like-minded, independent filmmakers in the Baltimore area. “Our goal is to create work that challenges industries and really highlight artists who we feel are sometimes underrepresented in the entertainment industry, and that is both in front of the camera, but also behind the camera with the type of crew that we work with.” You can check out Lux Daze Media at https://www.luxdazemedia.com/about to learn more about the team, currents films, and future works that will be released this year.
Courtesy of luxdazemedia.com
Tyler C. Peterson and other directors of Lux Daze Media answered questions on a panel at his 2019 showcase. He hopes Lux Daze Media will continue build a sense of community for all local directors.
Courtesy of time.com
Tegan and Sara have become LGBTQIA music icons; the openly gay twin duo will be releasing a memior album in the fall.
LGBTQIA in Music TIMOTHY COFFMAN Columnist
In honor of Pride Week, the time has come to talk about those in the music industry who have identified themselves as members of the LGBTQIA community. Many of these artists broke boundaries during their time in the spotlight by creating incredible music and garnering the respect of their peers regardless of the social norms of the time. Tegan and Sara - This twin-sister duo started out as an acoustic alternative rock outfit before branching out into pop songwriting. As they have evolved over their decade-long career, they have become two of the most revered writers because of their incredible knack for creating stellar vocal melodies. You can hear some of their best work in the song “Everything is Awesome” from The Lego Movie soundtrack. Freddie Mercury- In a time when identifying as homosexual was cause for exile, Mercury wore his heart on his sleeve and became one of the most captivating frontmen ever to grace a stage. With his band Queen, Mercury was able to bring people together through his sheer talent and bravado, which is perfectly showcased in their performance at Live Aid in 1985. Billie Joe Armstrong - Punk rock is known to have a somewhat stubborn fanbase who can be very set in their ways. Amid the explo-
sion of pop punk music in the 90s, Green Day came out with the album Dookie, featuring the song “Coming Clean.” The song details Armstrong’s confusion and anxiety as he came to grips with his bisexuality. As a result, Armstrong became relatable to teenagers around the world, which has led to his band Green Day being one of the most successful acts going to this day. Laura Jane Grace - When the punk band Against Me! first started, no one expected the potential of this group. When frontwoman Laura Jane Grace came out as a transgender woman in 2012, she put all her energy into her music with the spellbinding record Transgender Dysphoria Blues, which is a heart-wrenching ride through what it’s like to be a transgender woman in the modern day. This album is a benchmark in punk history and one that will resonate for years to come. Janelle Monáe - While she has reinvented herself as an Oscar nominated actress, Monae’s career started as one of the best R&B singers of the 2010s. Monae identifies with both bisexuality and pansexuality and shows strong support for the LGBTQIA community. Her latest record Dirty Computer was a daring look into how we approach the idea of intimacy in the modern day while also being a rally against the political discourse surrounding gay rights. All of this is done while still making some of the greatest dance tracks that the music world has heard in quite some time.
Arts & Life
April 23, 2019
TU alum is electric MEGHAN HUDSON Arts & Life Editor
This year is proving to be quite the year for Towson Alumni pursuing the film industry. With some stars such as Rachel Armiger in “Butterfly Kisses,” and Mike Flanagan of “The Haunting of Hill House,” welcome Victoria Fratz. Fratz is the co-writer and producer of the feature film “Electric Love.” She graduated from Towson University in 2010, and truly, has been electrifying the field ever since. Unlike most film pursuants, Fratz started off as a mass communication major at Towson, and not film. “That was the track I was interested in going down, marketing and advertising,” Fratz said. “Once I got started with those courses, I was immediately set up with a great internship with MGH, and for our final exam, it was a project that we presented to this startup [company]. That startup offered me my first job.” After graduation, Fratz worked in brand development for three years. “I used that experience to leverage my own brand as an independent consulting agency, and that’s what allowed me to move out here to Los Angeles,” Fratz said. According to Fratz, her predetermined ardor to writing, along with her marketing experience, gave her many of the necessary skills producing requires. “You’re organized, you need to have scheduling down and really be meticulous and productive” said Fratz. “When I met Aaron Friedkin who is my business partner and boyfriend, we were talking about a short film that I had written, a thriller script. I brought a proposal to him, hired him, and then during the meeting we just really hit it off. He taught me how to use the skills I already had and push them towards, specifically, producing.” After a successful run in creating together, Friedkin later hired Fratz to produce on his own short film, and eventually, the pair began co-writing “Electric Love.” Electric Love follows the lives of Emma and Adam, and their respective experiences trying to find a connection in real life from online dating. This quirky and relatable story line attributes to the success “Electric Love” has
had since releasing. “We spent a lot of time writing it, five months, and then basically it took a year after that to have the finished product be out in the world” said Fratz. “So after you put all this time and care into this product, and it’s out there for the world to see, when we hear people saying ‘I love this movie,’ ‘this really hit home for me,’ ‘it made me remember when I was on dating apps,’ or ‘it made me remember when I wasn’t having success with dating,’ things like that really make us feel good because it means our writing is relatable, it’s grounded, and we’re on the right track.” Fratz shared that this film has helped her find the right tone and the right audience, and that she hopes to continue to grow her audience as she continues on with her upcoming works. To all students looking to enter the film industry and are looking for someone in the industry to reach out to, Fratz would like everyone to know she is always available to help. Just direct message her on Instagram (@imvictoriafratz) or email her. Her email is posted on her instagram page. - To read the rest of this article online, visit thetowerlight.com.
Demonstrate hatred, hear us roar MEGHAN HUDSON Arts & Life Editor
I think we can agree last week’s Trendy Farewell left us all a bit teary eyed. Kerry began this column two years ago, expressed her genius, and left the door open to even more opportunity on her way out. Hi there, Meghan speaking, the new Arts & Life Editor. The goal of Trendy Tiger has left me feeling inspired for its future. Trends incorporate every string of conversation that one may pursue. Latest makeup trends, political trends, fashion trends, the list goes on. Let’s dive right in. Let’s address two things right off the bat: one, it’s Towson’s pride week! Two, Towson students, by the dozens, gathered together outside of Center for the Arts last week in protest of some discriminatory and offensive demonstrators. We all know that Towson University contains designated pub-
lic use spaces. We have heard demonstrators with loud speakers, we have seen them with large signs, and we have kept walking. Here’s what in: Speaking up. The anti-LGBTQ, anti-women, racist and ridiculous claims these demonstrators projected do not represent the beliefs of the Towson community- clearly. All it takes is just one person to step forward to inspire someone else to do the same. The support that the community showed towards those whom were discriminated against, means more than words can describe. Mental Health is important, it is real, and these words are damaging. Let’s not underplay the significant impact that messages of hatred have on mental health. To speak up doesn’t mean to change one’s point of view, or to become aggressive. What it is, is a successful method in creating a more inclusive and accepting environment, by addressing hatred head first, and telling it to move on. Here’s what’s not in: Messages of hate. University is
a place where people go to learn, not to have their lives invalidated. While everyone is entitled to their own opinions, it is not cool to go out of your way to make someone feel discriminated against, “public use space” and all. Think about the consequences of your actions before you speak. Freedom Square is a place for students to promote dialogue, discussion, and deliberation on issues of civic concern. Current events both on the national level or even only pertaining to Towson University are excellent examples of events that may incite civic concern. That being said, an individual’s personal identification is not your concern. This is a place for promotion, not degradation. In honor of pride week, I close with this message: You are valid, you are supported, you are respected, and you deserve to be here. Let’s continue to be the example for universities whom lack the same supportive community that TU has. Wow, we really dived in this week, didn’t we? Until next time, Meg.
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14 April 23, 2019
tigers reach new heights
The Cleveland Browns are still the Cleveland Browns and only wins are going to change that
TU prepares for Penn Relays MUHAMMED WAHEED Assistant Sports Editor @MuhammedKWaheed
Towson competed in the Larry Ellis Invitational in Princeton, New Jersey on Saturday as well as the Morgan State Legacy Meet on Friday and Saturday in Baltimore, Maryland. Freshman Kylie Anicic finished fifth in her heat and clocked a personal-best time of 4:36.42 in the 1,500-meter run at the Larry Ellis Invitational. This is the second consecutive week where Anicic finished with a personal-best performance. Freshman Olivia Janke finished 10th in the 5,000-meter run timing 17:11.04. Head Coach Mike Jackson said Janke’s mark was a personal-best. On Saturday in Baltimore, freshman Crystal Johnson timed 11.65 in the 100-meter dash, setting a new school record for the second straight meet. Johnson’s new mark dropped by 1.2 seconds from the Towson Invitational. “The better the competition, the better she is so she’s run faster every
single race,” Jackson said. “Really excited about her continued progress and blessed to have her on our team.” Johnson qualified for the USATF U20 Outdoor Championships for the 100-meter dash which will take place from June 21-23 in Miramar, Florida. Senior Arianna Waller took third, capturing a season-best time of 11.96 while Burton finished fifth, timing 12.03 and resulting in the Tigers having three finishes in the top five of the 100-meter dash. Burton also took fourth in the long jump with a mark of 5.47 meters. Johnson, Waller, freshman Shamika Burton and senior Liz Reid won the 4x100-meter relay and set a school record timing 45.56 seconds. Towson took the top four spots in the pole vault, led by freshman Hayley Horvath’s clearance of 4.00 meters. Freshmen Gabrielle Gaygan, Emily Corso and Samantha Ronald followed behind Horvath. “We have one of the best pole vault groups around and they sure didn’t disappoint yesterday, Jackson said. - To read the rest of this article online, visit thetowerlight.com
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After trading for wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. in March, the Cleveland Browns have become the odds on favorites to win the AFC North Division. Cleveland’s last division championship happened in 1989.
JORDAN KENDALL Assistant Sports Editor @jordankendall54
As I was watching a First Take segment discussing the Cleveland Browns, I realized that ESPN analyst Stephen A. Smith is right for once -the Browns are way too overhyped. Even with the addition of wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. from the Giants, and with a young core including running backs Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt, wide receiver Jarvis Landry and quarterback Baker Mayfield, it’s way too early to predict this team as a Super Bowl contender. It’s been one season, and it’s still the Browns. Here is why the expectations for Cleveland need to be dialed back a bit going into this season. Mayfield has not thrown a pass to Beckham as of the time of this article, not even in practice. Chemistry is arguably the most important factor in determining the success of a quarterback and wide receiver duo, and as of now, we have nothing to go off. On paper, it seems as if this is the ideal situation for Mayfield
since he has two of the top receivers in the league, along with two running backs who have consistently performed at a high level. On paper is one thing, how they perform on the field is completely different. There is a possibility that Beckham and Mayfield can’t mesh together, and the entire situation becomes a disaster. It seems as if no one is expecting a worst-case scenario, even though we have seen teams with high expectations completely underperform. Last season, everyone saw the Jacksonville Jaguars as a contender. Coming off an appearance in the AFC Championship, they had a seven-game losing streak at one point and finished 5-11. In 2014, the San Francisco 49ers were coming off two straight appearances in the NFC Championship, but they went 8-8 and missed the playoffs. Every year, a team who has high expectations always underperforms, and there is a high likelihood the 2019 Browns will become the next example. We are still talking about the Browns, the team who before last season was considered the laughing
stock of football and was by far the worst team for a decade. The Browns have not made the playoffs since 2002 and have had one winning season since 2007. The chances of this Browns team completely changing the course of the franchise this year seems highly improbable considering how bad they’ve been in recent years. If this was any other organization, I would have more confidence in the team. However, the Browns have given me little reason to believe in them since I’ve followed football. Cleveland has the potential and talent to turn it around this season and make a playoff run. Besides the offensive talent, their young defense, led by defensive end Myles Garrett and cornerback Denzel Ward, looks promising. However, this team has not played a down together, so we have no idea how this will turn out. Until I see them play some games and win, I don’t think it’s fair to believe this team is a contender in 2019. Let’s take a step back for a second and see how they perform on the field before we make any insane predictions off of it.
April 23, 2019
bye bye blue birdies Towson rebounds with road win over Delaware Nicole Stockinger Softball
Liam Beard/ The Towerlight
Senior midfielder Jimmie Wilkerson (right) looks to force a turnover in an earlier game this season. The Tigers currently sit in a three-way tie for first place in the CAA Standings with one game remaining.
JOHN HACK Staff Writer @johnhack10
Entering Saturday afternoon’s key matchup at Delaware Stadium in Newark, Delaware, the No. 14 Tigers faced the No. 20 Delaware Blue Hens, a team that had not only been rolling on a four-game winning streak, but was also undefeated in conference play. After a disappointing performance in its loss to UMass last week, Towson (8-4, 3-1 CAA) faced the hottest team in the conference. The Tigers stepped up to that challenge in a 14-12 win. “We were very balanced on the offensive end, which we need to continue to be between the attack and midfield,” said Head Coach Shawn Nadelen. “I couldn’t have been prouder of those guys to do that and really earn us a tough win up here in Delaware.” The first quarter was encouraging as redshirt sophomore attack man Luke Fromert and senior attacker Brendan Sunday each
responded to Blue Hen tallies to level the score at two within the game’s first 10 minutes. The last three minutes of the first quarter, however, was concerning for the Tigers as Delaware (10-3, 3-1 CAA) scored three straight goals to take a 5-2 lead. “We just needed to settle in,” Nadelen said. “I thought we were playing a little out of sorts with out focus, not really clean lacrosse.” Senior midfielder Grant Maloof’s strike helped kickstart a 4-0 run in just over a minute, including three goals on the man advantage. Maloof had a season-best five goals on the afternoon in a performance that couldn’t have come at a better time for the Tigers. Right by Maloof on the wing was senior midfielder Timmy Monahan who chipped in two goals and two assists. “Grant [Maloof] and Timmy Monahan were kinda non-existent in the previous two games,” Nadelen said. “They’re competitive guys and they understand that when they’re on the field, they gotta do their part.” The Tigers went into the half with an 8-7 lead, limiting the Blue Hens
to two goals in the second quarter. Towson was able to ride its second quarter momentum into the third quarter as well. Maloof’s three third quarter goals, along with two other goals from Sunday and junior attack Brody McLean capped off a 7-0 scoring run which stretched from the second quarter and held Delaware scoreless for more than 17 minutes. The Blue Hens were able to rattle together a scoring streak of their own, scoring four goals in a little more than ten minutes. Monahan’s goal from Sunday at the 5:57 mark of the fourth quarter helped to stop the Delaware run. The Blue Hens added another goal but it was too little, too late. “We need to continue to keep playing better,” Nadelen said. “At this point in the season, that’s gotta be evident every day on the field and the games become that much more important.” Next, the Tigers travel to Philadelphia on Saturday, April 27 to take on the Drexel Dragons at noon at Vidas Field in their final game of the regular season.
Senior outfielder Nicole Stockinger excelled at the plate over the weekend. Stockinger hit a .444 batting average with one home run and four RBIs as the Tigers won two out of three over Hofstra. The team leader in home runs and RBIs, Stockinger is two home runs shy of the school record for home runs in a season of 15, which she tied last season.
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