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THE TUFTS DAILY
VOLUME LXVII, NUMBER 33
Where You Read It First Est. 1980 TUFTSDAILY.COM
Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Tufts tuition estimated to rise nearly four percent next year
Tufts announced preliminary figures that show that the annual cost of studying and living at the university will rise by nearly four percent to approximately $61,000 next semester. The Board of Trustees proposed the increase during their February meeting and will meet again in May to discuss approval of the costs, according to Executive Vice President Patricia Campbell. If approved, the budget will be in place for the upcoming fiscal year, which runs from July 1, 2014 to June 30, 2015. The planned increases will make Tufts the first Boston area institution of higher education to charge students more than $60,000 for tuition, room, board and other mandatory fees, according to a Feb. 25 Boston Globe article. This will mean that Tufts’ tuition costs will be second only to Amherst College — which costs $61,443 per year — in Massachusetts, by Sarah
Daily Editorial Board
May Woo / The Tufts Daily
J. Craig Venter delivers a lecture on his research in genetics during yesterday’s President’s Lecture.
J. Craig Venter speaks about experimental genetics research by
Daily Editorial Board
J. Craig Venter, a leading scientist in modern genomic research, delivered a President’s Lecture yesterday on the processes that define and alter existing life. Among the first biologists to sequence the human genome, Venter founded Celera Genomics and the J. Craig Venter Institute ( JCVI), a non-profit genomics research lab, according to University President Anthony Monaco. “He is regarded as one of the leading scientists of the 21st century,” Monaco said. “He continues to blaze new trails in his research.” Monaco, who worked on neurobiology and genetics research before coming to Tufts, said that Venter graduated from the University of California, San Diego and has published over 250 research articles, in addition to developing expressed sequence tags (ESTs). Monaco also mentioned the numerous awards and honors Venter has received, including the King Faisal International Award for Science, the Gairdner Foundation International Award and the
United States National Medal of Science. Venter recently helped found Human Longevity Inc., a genomics-based company that aims to find new approaches to slow agerelated disease, Monaco said. Venter opened with a slideshow of photos of JCVI on the University of California, San Diego campus, the facilities of which are entirely carbon neutral. He said that a major goal of his institution involves digitizing biology. “This is a new and wonderful environment to pursue this research,” he said of the JCVI. “We are concerned with converting A, C, T, and Gs [the basic building blocks of DNA] into the ones and zeroes in a computer.” Venter’s research team is credited with sequencing the first genome of a living organism. He used what he described as the “shotgun method,” a process which can take anywhere from a few months to a year to sequence a genome — a relatively short amount of time. “This is a key part of the future of biology,” see VENTER, page 2
although most other schools have yet to announce their tuition estimates for next year. “This is not a place that Tufts wants to be a leader ... but we can see trends that have been in the costs at other institutions and know that we’re not likely to be an outlier,” Campbell said. Campbell said that, because Tufts is a complicated organization, there are a myriad of reasons for the increases in expenses. “Higher education here and everywhere is very labor-intensive,” Campbell said. “Most of our expenses ... have to do with the cost of our employees, faculties or staff. If we want to stay competitive in an employment market — to attract and retain the best faculty — we have to compensate them in a way that makes them competitive.” Campbell also cited many unavoidable administrative costs and compliance mandates for the increase in tuition costs. see TUITION, page 2
Senate, sports teams working to add beach volleyball court by Justin
Daily Editorial Board
The Tufts Community Union (TCU) Senate at its Feb. 16 meeting passed a resolution calling for the establishment of an outdoor volleyball court. Freshman Senator Isabella Kahhalé explained that the resolution stemmed from a desire to allow a larger part of the Tufts community to participate in the sport. Current space restrictions only permit students on intramural, club and varsity teams to play, according to Kahhale, who played on an intramural team. “The specific team I was on had 20
International Club hosts annual Parade of Nations
people on it ... [and] it wasn’t really an environment where people could learn,” Kahhale said. “I think [this problem is] due to space [constraints] and just that if someone wanted to learn how to play volleyball, there is nowhere for them to do that. You can only book space in the gym if you’re part of a team, and you don’t have access to the balls.” Women’s club volleyball team cocaptain Vanessa Zhang agreed that more practice space would be welcome. She explained that the club teams can only practice in the Chase see VOLLEYBALL, page 2
Tufts International Club hosted a wellattended Parade of Nations this weekend in Cohen Auditorium, according to club president Jaime Sanchez. “The International Club has had a steady growth the past year and is very strong compared to past years,” Sanchez, a junior, told the Daily in an email. “We had [a] good turnout and amazing performers. This, however, does not take [away] from our resolve to top ourselves next year.” Sanchez explained that each year the International Club collaborates with different campus groups, including the International Center. “This year, we helped the Singaporean Students Association by raising money for the Vivien Lim fundraiser,” he said. According to Sanchez, about 150 tickets were sold and $2 from every ticket sale went to the fundraiser. That money will go to a cancer research fund at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. —by Justin Rheingold
Caroline Geiling / The Tufts Daily
Inside this issue
Pharrel Williams’ ‘G I R L’ revolutionizes mainsteam pop music with catchy, danceable beats
Metronomy’s ‘Love Letters’ measures up to hype with vintage synth sound
see ARTS, page 5
see ARTS, page 5
News Features Arts & Living Editorial | Op-Ed
1 3 5 8
Op-Ed Comics Classifieds Sports
9 10 11 Back
The Tufts Daily
Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Juandc via Wikimedia Commons
The TCU Senate and Tufts volleyball players are working to create an outdoor beach volleyball court.
Organizers: Outdoor court would allow more students to play volleyball VOLLEYBALL
continued from page 1
Gym, which only has room for a singular volleyball court. “We actually share practice times with the men’s club team,” Zhang, a sophomore, said. “Their season ends right after spring break, so the only real time we have to practice in the gym is from after spring break until the beginning of May ... Having a beach volleyball court would be beneficial for us [because] we’ll be able to practice in the fall when it’s nice out.” Zhang and men’s club volleyball cocaptain Robert Carter, a senior, added that an outdoor volleyball court could bring increased visibility to the sport. “We have really tried to increase our campus outreach to make sure we are reaching everyone who has the talent to contribute to our team the past few years, and these courts should help us do that,” Carter told the Daily in an email. “We have the best men’s club team in New England for our division, and yet every year we have great players not coming out for the team simply because they don’t know we exist. Just having an established place on campus for us to hang out in the offseason and build a more public volleyball community at Tufts is a very big deal.”
Kahhale explained that while the planning is ongoing, she hopes to see significant progress in the next month. “We presented [the resolution] to Senate, they approved it, everyone thought it was a great idea and now we’re basically going to be sending emails to the director of athletics, the Office of Alumni [Relations] and the director of facilities to try to pull everything together and make this happen,” Kahhale said. Kahhale explained that cost, location and management of a new facility are key questions she and freshman co-organizer Eli Lloyd are working to answer. Kahhale explained that Director of the Office for Campus Life (OCL) Joe Golia supports the proposal, and that they hope to meet with the Athletics Department soon. “We’re going to go to Athletics just to get their support — we’re not asking for money,” Kahhale said. “I want to talk to athletics to see if they would be willing to take the responsibility of the court, to own it ... so they would come in late fall to take down the net and maybe put a tarp on it.” Lloyd and Kahhale said that they have been researching construction costs, and while they thought a court would initially cost $6,000, it will likely be slightly more expensive. They hope
Venter discusses controversial research VENTER
continued from page 1
Venter said. “It enables us to handle up to 100,000 genomes per year. The hard part is defining what each and every organism is, what everyone is made up of.” He explained that his research team, including various physiologists and psychiatrists, is currently working on defining the human phenotype, as well as ordering sequencing machines to speed up the process. “Now, the practice is getting faster and cheaper with the help of technology,” he said. “It will put pressure on many other elements ... We want to ask these questions in a comprehensive fashion. Our goal is to change the nature and scale of sequencing.” Venter also explained how his research is used currently and how it could be used in the future. According to Venter, some of these applications include using genome sequencing in cancer care, particularly lung cancer. He noted that, as long as there is government funding and there are third party donors, this line of study could yield incredible clinical results. “We are trying to layer method after method of [research], but each one also exists in isolation,” Venter said. “We want to pull these together to understand their full potential.” Venter explained that some of his research involves induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS) and is primarily focused on new medicinal efforts, particularly vaccines, such as those for Type B meningitis. “We are attempting to integrate all of this data into a new super database ... and rewrite the genetic code for stem cells so [they can] be used effectively for therapy,” he said.
Venter explained that he sees great potential in starting with the most basic “ones and zeroes” and using them as a springboard to alter and recreate life. He compared this to software having the capability to build its own hardware. “Life is a DNA software system and if you change the software, you change the species,” he said. According to Venter, scientists will eventually be able to “stitch [the particles] together to make an entire chromosome.” He described his current work as controversial and experimental, but highly promising, especially that of “biological teleportation” of foreign biological samples. He said that the development process has taken a long period of time due to the complex and relatively unknown nature of the genome across all species. “The worst any scientist can do is talk themselves out of an experiment,” he said. “We are working to design a species in the computer for the first time ... and we are very close to a completely designed organism.” Following Venter’s lecture, audience members asked questions about how to improve the accessibility of genomic research, how to understand the impacts government funding has on his lab and how to answer religious questions concerning the creation of new living organisms. He concluded with an explanation of the overall importance of these genomic advances. “Changes in software will change who you are and they will change what your life outcomes are,” he said.
to raise money through a variety of avenues, including alumni donations, fundraisers and possibly funding from TCU. Kahhale said that they have unofficial support from both the women’s and men’s club volleyball teams, as well as the women’s varsity teams and they hope the teams will contribute to the fundraising effort. “We’re going to contact the alumni office to let them know [to tell us] if there is any alum who would be interested in donating,” Kahhale said. “Once we can get the approval, then we can start to do the fundraising. We can really push for alumni donations, [and] maybe go to the Senate and get discretionary funding.” The space between Tilton and Haskell Halls, or the open space behind Lewis Hall, are two areas Kahhale mentioned as possible locations for a new beach volleyball court. She said organizers are looking into working with the OCL to manage the use of the space. “We would probably try to have no reservation system in the beginning,” she said. “There’s also the question of where the volleyballs would be kept. We could try to figure out something with the campus center [in the way] that you rent out pool balls.” Kahhale added that while she does not believe students will damage the courts,
organizers would try to work with the Office of Residential Life and Learning to see if residential assistants of nearby dorms can report rowdiness or inappropriate use of the facility. While many meetings are needed to push the project forward, Kahhale hopes organizers will not run into many difficulties. “I think it’s going to take a lot of work,” she said. “Everything has to run as smoothly as it can. We have to get approval from the right people ... We’re not anticipating too many obstacles, but that’s very bold of us to say, so if we follow that plan and it works out, we should be able to have it by the end of the year. The support is there. We just need to get the approval and the money, and then it can happen.” Kahhale added that volleyball is a “social sport” and an outdoor court will allow the entire student body to participate. “People from the graduate school can come down and play, and it would just hopefully be a social place [where] you can lie down and watch people play,” she said. “It’s nice to have a little sand [to] remind people of home if they’re not from New England.” Alexander Spring contributed to this article.
Tuition costs expected to increase
continued from page 2
“Having a large residential community means we do also spend a lot of money on building maintenance, energy and security,” she said. Campbell added that there are many fees associated with compliance with federal and state laws or regulations. One example is background checks that need to be run on minors who work at places like the Tufts Educational Day Care Center, or who are involved with child development activities and organizations. To address the greater financial burden on students, financial aid will become an increased focus for the university, according to Campbell. “We will see a percentage increase in financial aid that will be larger than in recent years,” Campbell said. “The university has been engaged in a targeted fundraising campaign to attract additional donations that are specifically given to support financial aid.” The campaign had hoped to raise $25 million and contributions exceeded that goal, according to Campbell. “We are taking a comprehensive look at administrative costs to see if there are opportunities to streamline administration in the university,” she said. According to Campbell, the university is working on projects, including a new energy master plan, to better support its services in the least expensive way. “We wanted to be honest in terms of sharing information, which is why
we are one of the first schools to have [tuition] estimates ... these are only estimates at this point, which is one thing to keep in mind,” Director of Public Relations Kim Thurler said. “But that’s one reason why we’re out there right now. We’re aware of concerns, trying to meet them and we have a great financial aid package, and that’s important for prospective students.” Early decision and regular decision applicants to Tufts all receive the tuition estimates, Thurler said. Dean of Undergraduate Admissions Lee Coffin said he does not expect the proposed tuition increase to affect application numbers. “I suspect our official costs for 201415 will align with our peer schools’ announced costs, so I do not foresee any impact on that score,” Coffin told the Daily in an email. “The financial resources for [fiscal year 2014-15] are also undetermined at this point, but I know the trustees are committed to preserving access to Tufts for students with need and, as always, that is one of my foremost priorities.” Campbell agreed and said that she suspected that tuition costs would not have an impact on admissions. “That doesn’t mean that we are not concerned about the cost,” Campbell said. “Our goal is to maintain our quality, maintain the activities and environment that make Tufts truly excellent and attractive to students, and also minimize the cost to the extent we can.”
ExCollege celebrates 50 years of student inclusion, curriculum expansion by
This year, the Experimental College (ExCollege) at Tufts University marks its 50th anniversary since it established its first course on comparative literature in 1964. After marking a new wave of interdisciplinary learning in liberal arts education, the program has continued to expand and adapt to the needs of student and faculty alike. “As far as we know, we are the oldest experimental college in the country,” said Robyn Gittleman, director of the ExCollege. “We are very much the program that people come to ... [when one] wants to start something up.” Associate Director of the Experimental College Howard Woolf discussed the origin of the program. “[Experimental College] was a term that had been known in higher education as [a] way ... to try things outside your bylaws, basically,” Woolf said. “And the first suggestion on [the] part of the faculty was ... [for] a way to teach courses that our departments won’t let us teach right now. And that’s how it began.” What started as a program aiming to expand course topics soon became a way to incorporate community members and students into the teaching process. Today, these voices are key elements of the ExCollege, according to Woolf. “It remained a faculty playground ... for a few years,” he said. “And then something interesting happened ... Within the first year in change, the faculty who were involved decided students should [also] be intimately involved in the planning and running of the place, and they invited students to be on the ExCollege board.” Additionally, within its first few years, professionals from the Boston area began to teach courses through the ExCollege. “These [ExCollege Instructors] were largely people who were activists in the greater Boston community,” Woolf said. “[They were] working on issues such as women’s sexuality, bussing issues in Boston at the time [and] neighborhood inequities.” In 2014, the ExCollege continues to examine modern-day issues from an academic perspective. This semester’s courses cover topics such as transgender studies, Obamacare, the democratic transition in Libya and the participatory culture within social media. Rebekah Stiles, a program assistant for the ExCollege, said she believes it is important to have a curriculum that is up-to-date in terms of current events. “We can be very immediate about what’s happening, regarding contemporary world, culture, social [and] economic issues,” Stiles said. “We can be there at the front line.” In addition to bringing in instructors from outside the Tufts community, within its first five years, the ExCollege began allowing students to teach classes, according to Woolf. “That was ... an idea that, for Tufts, was quite ... radically [and] culturally [different] in education — let students teach courses,” he said. “And that proliferated like mushrooms. There were 20 to 30 student-taught courses for a number of years and that program kind of split into two parts.” Now, students are able to create and teach elective courses offered to all Tufts students, and are also able to teach in either the Explorations or Perspectives programs, which offer peer advisory courses to firstyear students. In the Explorations and Perspectives programs, upperclassmen can create their own courses, where they are able to act as both instructors and advisors for freshmen. Explorations courses cover a variety of subjects, while Perspectives courses focus more specifically on topics in film and media. Both programs provide important guidance to new students from peer and faculty advisors, according to Woolf. “Over the years we’ve had a few longitudinal studies done, and students who have gone through Explorations or Perspectives have done better,” Woolf said. “They’ve had an easier time of it.
Caroline Geiling / The Tufts Daily
Tufts ExCollege celebrates 50 years of strong programming. They’ve got[ten] their sea legs under them more quickly.” TheleadersofExplorationsandPerspectives classes also benefit from the programs. Senior Kaveh Veyssi taught a Perspectives course titled “The Business of Hollywood,” and says the experience was a positive one. “Learning about [the material] and having to do all this research for the class was, personally, a great thing,” Veyssi said. “It was essentially an outlet for me to share what I [had] learned.” A subcommittee of two students and one faculty member interviews prospective instructors for ExCollege courses, according to Stiles. The ExCollege board, which consists of five faculty members and five students, makes the final decision. “Everybody’s vote is exactly the same,” student board member junior Marcy Regalado said. “And there will be times [when] I’m sitting in a board meeting and a student will sway, easily, an adult in the room.” This kind of student-faculty dynamic makes for a department where the student opinion is appreciated, and where new programs can be nurtured and old programs can continue to thrive, according to fellow student board member junior Kumar Ramanathan. “I think all of those perspectives are really necessary in that these faculty members ... have a unique perspective on how teaching happens at Tufts and what’s being offered,” Ramanathan said. “The students do the same thing from the learning side. And then there’s [the] staff at the ExCollege, who really have the experience and the history ... they know what works [and] what doesn’t work.” Experimental courses that originate in the ExCollege often become incorporated into mainstream curricula or even spark new programs and departments, according to Woolf and other members of the ExCollege board. Currently, an ExCollege course called Medical Spanish has been offered for several semesters due to high student demand. According to the ExCollege Board, this course may eventually be incorporated into the standard curriculum of another department.
One program that was originally developed through the ExCollege is the Institute for Global Leadership (IGL), an organization that works to educate learners on global issues. For its first 10 years, IGL was run through the ExCollege. “We’ve maintained very close ties ever since,” Woolf said, citing the fact that the Education for Public Inquiry and International Citizen (EPIIC) course is still offered through the ExCollege. The Mass Communications and Media Studies (CMS) program is also closely tied to the ExCollege. Woolf, who also serves as the director of media technology at the ExCollege, explained that the CMS program began as a collaboration between the ExCollege and the graduate program of Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning. The university, however, plans to expand the program. “We’re at a point now where there will be something called a Film/Media major,” Woolf said. “I can’t tell you when it will start, because I’m not sure yet.” The ExCollege hopes to continue incorporating current issues into its curriculum in the future, according to Stiles. “I think that one of the greatest aspects about the ExCollege is our ability to react instantly to what’s going on in the world, especially regarding our classes,” Stiles said. “We have the structure ... to do things that no other department can.” Veyssi, also very involved in the CMS program, underscored the ExCollege’s emphasis on student ideas and goals. “If there’s something that you really, really are passionate about, they let [you] do what they want to do,” Veyssi said. “They do everything in their power to give you the right tools.” Plans to formally celebrate the ExCollege’s anniversary include a gala to be held at the Museum of Science, Boston in April. Additionally, the college will host an academic conference with speakers from Tufts faculty and other academic institutions focusing on the future of higher education.
Rebecca Hutchinson | What’s Poppin’
Being trendy while you eat
hen it comes to snacking, you can’t get much trendier than frozen yogurt. In my small hometown alone, which has too few people to support any restaurant for over a year, there are two frozen yogurt shops. These shops follow the typical fro-yo model: they are brightly decorated, always playing upbeat music, and feature unique chairs because apparently hip people cannot cope with ordinary seating options. I’m a big fro-yo fan, mainly because I’m a big fan of pretty much all dessert. It’s fairly obvious why frozen yogurt is such a big deal. Its low-calorie, low-fat, and you can easily trick yourself into thinking you’re eating real ice cream. Getting fro-yo gives us all the fun of going out for ice cream with none of the guilt. Plus, no fro-yo shop can call itself a fro-yo shop unless it features an overwhelming topping bar that gives ample opportunity for expressing your creativity and getting a drool-worthy Instagram picture. Topping bars are great because they let you put blackberries and gummy bears on the same dessert (and the healthiness of the fruit totally cancels out the candy, by the way) and nobody will judge you for it. Fro-yo stores are all about options and they always let you do you. Fro-yo is a food trend that I wholeheartedly support. But there are other trends in eating that really make me question the sanity of hipsters. Kale is one of these trends. Allegedly one of the healthiest foods out there, kale is also repulsive. It does not taste good at all. People have to realize this. There are plenty of vegetables out there that are probably just as healthy and significantly less sickening. So, why kale? Why doesn’t the whole world swear by broccoli or cabbage or cucumbers or literally any other vegetable? The only possible explanation I can come up with is that somebody with a significant following on Twitter lost a ton of weight while eating a ton of kale, told some people about it, and word got out that kale is the miracle food. Whoever did this owes the world an apology. Kale is not the only food trend I don’t understand. While I love chopped salad, why is it exponentially more popular than regular salad? How does anybody find the chutzpah to maintain a juice cleanse? Chipotle burritos are good, but do they really deserve the cult-like appreciation they get? Why exactly do so many people blame gluten for all their problems? Who gave Starbucks permission to make people use fake words to order coffee? I like to indulge in trendy foods as much as the next person, but I have never sworn by one the way foodies with pimped-out food blogs do. This is partly because a lot of food trends are too unappealing to be worthy of commitment (looking at you, kale). But, I also get bored too easily to swear by any one eating habit. For instance, in September, I decided to be a vegetarian. I was having fun with it for a while, but about a month after I said sayonara to meat I went out for Thai food. The woman at the table next to me was eating the most beautiful chicken Pad Thai I had ever seen, and that was the end of my vegetarianism. I think this is the fate of every food trend there is: they will be fun for a while, but something seemingly better will always come along. So, let’s all continue to overeat fro-yo while we still can. Rebecca Hutchinson is a freshman majoring in international relations. She can be reached at email@example.com.
The Tufts Daily
Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Arts & Living
Ryan Buell | The Beat
Pharrell brings unique touch to fun, upbeat album by James
Kanye’s other controversial album
Although Pharrell Williams only just blew up on the pop scene in 2013, he is a music industry veteran. He has been Contributing Writer
GIRL Pharrell Williams Columbia leaving his musical mark for many years now, as both a singer and a producer. Blending elements of soul, funk and hip-hop into his vocal and instrumental productions, Pharrell has consistently kept pop sounding fresh and innovative. With producer credits on Justin Timberlake’s “Justified” (2002) and more recently Kendrick Lamar’s “good kid, m.A.A.d city”(2012), Pharrell has molded some of the past decade’s most influential music. Last year, though, Williams undoubtedly had his moment the spotlight, with his name on Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky” (2013) and Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” (2013) as well as his own “Happy” (2013) from the soundtrack of “Despicable Me 2” (2013). This is not to mention the multiple Grammy awards he received and his Oscar nomination for “Happy.” Because of this recent string of highprofile successes, there is a certain amount of expectation that comes along with “G I R L,” his second solo album. Pharrell right away lives up to
Karl Hab via Flickr Creative Commons
A smashing success in 2013, Pharrell Williams continues to live up to the hype. the hype. With its 40-second orchestral symphony, the first track “Marilyn Monroe” is the perfect introduction to the album’s high-octane beginning. In an homage to women throughout history, Williams quickly establishes the female-centric theme of the appropriately titled album. In “Brand New,” Pharrell and Timberlake sing about the way they feel around women. There are occasions in the song where the listener can’t really distinguish the voices of the two singers, but this is not really an issue as it gives the song a smooth, even sound.
The next two songs, “Hunter” and “Gush” are yin and yang in terms of style, but similar in their themes. In the former, Williams woos the listener with a twanging, southern feel, while in the latter he switches to a smooth, romantic tone. “Happy” speaks for itself: it is the ultimate pick-me-up song. The album then returns to the raunchiness of the third and fourth tracks with “Come Get It Bae,” featuring uncredited vocals from Miley Cyrus, which are a bit hard to stomach after the uplifting predecessor. see PHARRELL, page 6
‘Love Letters’ is forward motion for Metronomy by Veronica
Daily Editorial Board
Known for their lo-fi electronic jams and avant-garde fashion sensibilities, Metronomy, an English band hailing
Love Letters Metronomy Elektra
over the many years it has been on the air. Straddling a dangerous zone between all of these categories, “Workaholics” keeps delivering surprisingly consistent entertainment value and true heart. Now in its fourth season, “Workaholics” has opted to stick to the same trademark brand of humor it has been using since its 2011 debut. The combination of slapstick comedy, absurd antics and natural dialogue tied together by a group of actors with tangible chemistry has allowed this outwardly ridiculous comedy to survive for almost 50 episodes.
from Devon, recently released their fourth studio album, “Love Letters.” Coming off of the intense critical and commercial success of their third album, 2011’s “The English Riviera,” “Love Letters” is highly anticipated production. Luckily for the band, this latest album — with its highly stylized aesthetic and the unique color scheme featured in promotional materials — is a challenging experiment in electronic music that shatters any expectations. Metronomy’s sonic fingerprint seems perfectly suited for our modern times. With electronic beats peppered with synth melodies and a healthy dose of vintage flare, Metronomy seems to be firing on all cylinders for contemporary audiences. In this most recent effort, the theme is unflinchingly romantic and serious; the tracks deal with the idea of love and relationships. Although this topic often has the potential to be exceedingly trite, Metronomy’s album manages to draw listeners in with darker melodies and complicated progressions. This juxtaposition of sound and subject matter sets “Love Letters” apart from the other hackneyed
see WORKAHOLICS, page 6
see LETTERS, page 6
Beth Dubber / Courtesy FOX
Anders Holm, who also appears on ‘The Mindy Project’ (2012-present), is one of stars and creators of the juvenile and charming ‘Workaholics.’
‘Workaholics’ holds onto humor in fourth season by
Daily Editorial Board
It is rare that a program juvenile enough to elicit headshaking and embarrassing enough to make
Workaholics Starring Blake Anderson, Adam DeVine, Anders Holm, Maribeth Monroe
AirsWednesdays at 10 p.m. on Comedy Central viewers cringe — a program that is lazy to a blatantly noticeable degree — can continue to entertain
anye West is no stranger to controversy. But the in last couple years his stay in the public conscious, and tabloid headlines, has revolved around increasingly outlandish actions. Rants at concerts and on radio shows, fights with paparazzi, his marriage to Kim Kardashian and his highly polarizing album “Yeezus” (2013) have proved that no one really does it quite like West. Among the recent headlines, it’s easy to forget the height of his past controversies (“Imma let you finish,” anyone?). Overshadowed by the controversial sounds and reaction to “Yeezus” is the public debate that once swirled around West’s fourth studio album, “808’s & Heartbreak” (2008). At once acclaimed and derided, the auto-tuned electro experiment is platinum album that sold almost a half million units in the week after its release. Yet among many music circles, the album was attacked as “soft,” derided for not truly being hip hop — and drew comparisons to Common’s failed experimental album “Electric Circus” (2002). However time has proved that “808’s” was one of West’s most important and influential albums. To examine the impact that “808’s & Heartbreak” had, it first needs to be evaluated in the context of hip-hop music in 2008. In the mid-2000s, many considered hip-hop to be dying, if not already dead; it was seen as a genre run amok by commercialism, braggadocio and an increasingly generic sound. Charts, and the genre as a whole, were dominated by the likes of Lil’ Wayne, Flo Rida and TI, who were all cultivating a similar club-oriented sound. The T-Pain phenomenon had recently crested, and backlash against auto-tune was mounting. Thus enter West, devastated by the recent death of his mother and the breakup with his long-time fiancée to make an album divergent from all expectations. Fueled by the depth of his pain and emotion, he eschewed much of his rapping background in favor of synthesized vocals and melancholic singing. His production work was a stylistic departure from his earlier music. Still relying on heavy layering of instrumental sounds, West abandoned his soul music trappings in favor of somber string instruments, stretched out synthesizers and tightly laced piano notes. The result was an introspective and unsettlingly emotional album. Cohesive in its depressing soundscape, fluctuating between angry and distraught, and distinctly rooted in genres beyond hip-hop, “808’s” was a vast departure from West’s previous work. What “808’s” really accomplished was pushing the boundary of what hip-hop could be. West proved he could make a commercially successful album without relying on standard hip-hop tropes and narratives. Moreover, he introduced pop and electronic elements to his hip-hop formula well before it became a common phenomenon to draw on ulterior modern genres. “808’s” paved the way for a plethora of artists to explore introspective and emotional sides of hip-hop. Kid Cudi’s “Man on the Moon” (2009) is a perfect example: moody and similarly electropop, he clearly drew on the influence of “808’s” (on which Cudi himself was featured) in making his debut album. The success and development of other artists such as Drake, Childish Gambino and Frank Ocean have been linked to the influence of “808’s” in allowing such artists to explore more personal scopes of hip-hop. To bring this back to a modern context, there is a pretty natural comparison to be drawn between “808’s” and “Yeezus.” Both presented production and sounds that were completely foreign to contemporary musical landscapes. Both drew heavily on cross-genre influences, “808’s” being something of a pop album, while “Yeezus” pulls elements from electronic dance music. Both simultaneously attracted lavish praise and popular criticism. But only time will tell if “Yeezus” changes the direction of hip-hop as much as “808’s” did. Ryan Buell is a sophomore who is majoring in psychology. He can be reached at Ryan. Buell@tufts.edu.
The Tufts Daily
Arts & Living
Tuesday, March 11, 2014
English band Metronomy grows, challenges audiences with new album LETTERS
continued from page 5
pop expressions of love. Indeed, it seems Metronomy has decided to look to the past for inspiration in crafting “Love Letters.” Many songs — in particular, the opening number “The Upsetter” and “The Most Immaculate Haircut” — channel the melancholic melodies of older bands like The Cure and artists like David Bowie. However, the English group is certainly not trapped in the past on “Love Letters.” Since their inception in the late ’90s, Metronomy has concerned themselves with making music that is primarily synth-based and electronic. While it seems counterintuitive to call electronic music vintage, more recent bands to which Metronomy draws strong comparison, like LCD Soundsystem and Arcade Fire, seem to illustrate this paradox well. Many tracks on the album walk the line between old and new, and force listeners to think differently about what defines electronic funk. Tracks like “Boy Racers,” marked by sharp percussion and funky bass, simultaneously recall the instrumentation of ABBA and the production style of James Murphy, the genius
behind Arcade Fire’s latest album “Reflektor” (2013). This vintage feel lends itself shockingly well to the band’s namesake (the metronome), although, there are more than a few songs that also sound like the background music to classic arcade games. The third song on the album, “Monstrous,” would be best suited accompanying the side-scrolling beat ‘em up video game “Golden Axe” (1989). However, this observation is far from an insult. Staying true to their roots and re-exploring those origins is something that Metronomy does with success throughout “Love Letters.” Among many other notable songs, “Love Letters,” the title track off of the album, is an addictive jam full of pep and party vibes. Here, lead singer and songwriter Joseph Mount unapologetically sings over the band’s textured instrumentation. Interestingly, one of the more endearing aspects of the band is that its music is far from flawless. Preserving its lo-fi reputation on “Love Letters,” the four-part band keeps small mistakes and idiosyncrasies on their tracks. This tendency is not merely a ploy to seem more
Adrien Chabal via Flickr Creative Commons
Lead singer and songwriter Joseph Mount brings tremendous heart and poignancy to Metronomy’s newest album ‘Love Letters.’ accessible; the band genuinely seems to relish the process of recording an album. This kind of sincerity, particularly in the world of indie-electro-synth music, is hard to find, and it
Pharrell Williams delivers peppy hits danceable tracks on ‘G I R L’ PHARRELL
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However, any uncertainty about the album is swept away in the seventh track, “Gust of Wind.” With its funky and orchestral backing, “Gust of Wind” is undeniably produced by everyone’s favorite French robots. Much like in “Get Lucky,” Daft Punk’s and Williams’ styles meld perfectly together. In line with its title, this track will sweep the listeners off of their feet. Following this is the eightminute “Lost Queen,” which is divided into two halves. Both experimental and earnest, the track doesn’t energize listeners. Rather it attempts to sooth their souls. The penultimate song, “Who You Are,” features Alicia Keys. Though it doesn’t quite have the impact of some of the other songs, it still adds a nice touch with Keys’ beautiful vocals. The final track, “It Girl,” manages to meld smoothness with funky energy, in many ways summarizing the different parts of the album. With its all-star lineup of featured artists — Timberlake, Cyrus, Daft Punk and Keys — the album retains its pop appeal while deviating significantly from the sounds of mainstream music. As Williams is responsible for production and the majority of the vocals, the album possesses a sound that is uniquely his own. After “Blurred Lines,” Williams’ controversial collaboration with Thicke, some may fear that “G I R L” will also explore similar — and potentially contentious — themes and messages. However, though the album is often very open about its sexual subject matter, it tends to come off as open and earnest rather than misogynistic. Instead of lamenting the “blurred lines” in physical relationships, Williams invites the listener to celebrate the happiness of intimacy. “G I R L” is a great album, which is thoroughly deserving of all the success and attention it has received. The
Wia via Wikimedia CoMMONS
On ‘G I R L,’ Pharrell blends elements of pop, R&B and techno into one smooth, catchy product. majority of the songs are fresh top notch album in vocals and fun, and any missteps — and instrumentals. Lyrically, like overuse of an idea, exces- it is a breath of fresh air — sively graphic lyrics or unex- though occasionally the overt pectedly low energy — are sexual themes can be a bit infrequent. “G I R L” brings a jarring — and from a produclot to the table while appeal- tion point of view, it skilling to a wide variety of lis- fully blends musical elements teners. Smooth, celebratory from the past five decades and uplifting, it’s emotionally and a myriad of musical pleasing. Rather than delve styles. Rather than trying to into the complications that adopt an artifical sound two often plague romantic rela- decades younger than he is, tionships, Williams exalts the Pharrell gracefully incorpowonders and joys of love and rates musical elements befitting someone born in the physical attraction. Ultimately, “G I R L” is early ‘70s. The effect is both exactly what it should be: a genuine and effective.
has made Metronomy a band to watch in the genre. Above everything, Metronomy is a group composed of talented musicians striving to create groundbreaking sounds. This desire for unique-
ness is not contrived or forced. In fact, Metronomy is full of heart and style. The band appeals to listeners who aren’t afraid to test the limits of genres and dive into creative and inspired sound explorations.
‘Workaholics’ sustains laughs with familiar oddball antics
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It’s also no surprise that “Workaholics” has found its core fan base in men ages 18 to 24, as this demographic likely relates to the postcollegiate trio on the show. The main characters — Adam Demamp (Adam DeVine), Blake Henderson (Blake Anderson) and Anders Holmvik (Anders Holm), who are also the creators and writers of the show — display onscreen personalities that are exaggerated versions of their true selves. In fact, they hardly even bothered to make the names of their characters much different from their own. The history of their friendship — they did sketch comedy before Comedy Central offered them a television show — also plays into their dynamic on “Workaholics.” Their rapport is definitely one of the main reasons why this comedy has succeeded: It brings a certain realism to the characters that counteracts the often overly absurd plotlines. Operating as a standard sitcom, the series’ narrative leaves little room for character or plot development. Instead, every story arc is reset at zero by the end of each episode; any harm done is gone, any rewards gained are lost and newfound friends are never heard of again. But this is perfectly acceptable because the common theme of young adults struggling into maturity is strong enough to keep the show engaging. Indeed, this season has already seen the boys ruin a baby shower with a cooler of ecstasy, attempt to hire a gigolo for their boss, film a documentary about drug dealer Karl’s (Kyle Newacheck) genital removal surgery and get tricked into pledging a fraternity. It is not these misadventures, however, that make “Workaholics” so enjoyable, but rather the characters’ reactions to whatever situation they find themselves in. They are similar to the crew from “Its Always Sunny In Philadelphia” (2005-present) in their selfishness, immaturity and ignorant disregard for the feelings of
those around them. Yet they are also much more likeable: their empathy and good-hearted nature often shines through, making their sophomoric exteriors consistently endearing.
Sue Lukenbaugh via Flickr Creative Commons
Adam Demamp (Adam Devine) and his two friends are less-than-functional adults, but entertaining comedians. Like a raunchier and bolder version of “The Office” (2005-2013), “Workaholics” is often most impressive when it removes the boys from their shared cubicle at a telemarketing company and forces them to have interactions with the world outside the workplace. Whether they are failing to attract college students to a party at their rundown home or ruining children’s birthday parties by arriving as intoxicated clowns, their absurdity is accentuated when compared to the more normal actions of others. When it premiered, “Workaholics” seemed unlikely to last even a season. Its fortunes have changed since then: the comedy was recently renewed for a fifth. The show will continue to be successful as long as the writers remain enthusiastic and keep digging up fresh ideas for episodes. This being said, with DeVine, Anderson and Holm all now in their thirties, they are moving further away from the youthful characters they portray — something that may effect the viewership down the road. For now, it seems the program will continue to shock viewers with hilarious antics, but it is doubtful that this will work forever.
Tuesday, March 11, 2014
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EDITORIAL | OP-ED
Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Increased tuition demands transparency In May, the Board of Trustees will meet to discuss the approval of a four percent increase in the annual price of tuition and living at Tufts, which will increase to a staggering $61,000. The proposed tuition increase would make Tufts the second most expensive university in all of Massachusetts. The proposal is expected to be approved and, as with many public and private universities throughout the country, there are legitimate reasons for the increase — staying competitive comes at a hefty price. Retaining top-notch faculty and staff, and supporting residential maintenance are just some of the factors that cause costs for students to rise. But Tufts, a national leader in many disciplines, has fallen behind on transparency. The Tufts community knows where some of its money is spent. Tufts is quick to emphasize its sizeable and significant financial aid spending, which totaled more than $113 million over all degree programs in the 2013 fiscal year, according to auditing documents posted on
Tufts’ finance division website. But, in the same period, operating expenses increased to $767 million and outpaced revenue growth. Of those expenses, 59 percent went to compensation, but the fastest increasing portion was non-compensation expenses, including, “depreciation for the new Tisch Sports and Fitness Center, the biology collaborative cluster and the Tufts Administration Building (TAB) facade and new Tufts Effectiveness in Administrative Management (TEAM) implementation expenses.” That the university provides these figures tucked away on the finance division’s website is good, but it isn’t enough. In the 2012-13 Tufts University Fact Book posted on the Provost’s site, many of the operating budgets of the university’s schools are provided, without comment. The university could stand to improve the clarity of its financial records by providing historical trends for each school beyond just the previous year, and should try to relate its
spending to other comparable institutions within the region and the nation. Revenue and expense figures, tucked away into documents that are hundreds of pages long and only completely accessible to professional accountants, are essentially useless to students. Tufts’ administration, through current programs like the Tisch Active Citizenship Summer and new ones like Tufts 1+4, stresses how important active, well-informed citizens are to the university and the world. One way for the university to better inform its students, and to hold itself accountable, would be to offer a simple accounting of where student’s tuition dollars are spent directly on students’ tuition bills. With a full and understandable representation of the university’s budget, students will be able to make a fully informed choice between another year of classes and, possibly, a new luxury car. If the university is spending its money well, as it seems to be, that choice should be no choice at all.
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Off the Hill | Wake Forest University
Powerful countries should unite to isolate Russia by
Old Gold & Black
It didn’t take long to find out what Vladimir Putin thought of President Obama’s warning that there would be “consequences” for Russia’s military occupation of parts of Ukraine. In response to Russian-Ukrainian civilian tension in Crimea several days ago, the President of Russia received unanimous Parliamentary approval to send Russian military forces into the former Soviet territory. The Russian government claims these “peacekeeping troops” were inserted to protect the ethnically Russian population in Crimea, the geographically critical peninsula bordering the Black Sea. Of course, it is never prudent to accept any rhetoric coming from the Kremlin. It is clear that Russia has not recognized the independence of Ukraine since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. Putin even admitted this during a phone call with President George W. Bush in 2008. The Ukraine occupation is a strategy straight from the Russian foreign policy playbook: intimidate the government, provoke a domestic conflict and send in “peacekeepers.” It is clear that Putin sees keeping Ukraine under Russia’s sphere of influence as a top priority. He is apparently willing to sacrifice Russia’s image — one that he spent around $60 billion to construct in Sochi. More importantly, Putin has placed the Western world in a difficult position, and he knows it. As demonstrated on multi-
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ple occasions, Putin is a talented and calculated leader, specifically in assessing the strength and weakness of an opponent. Within hours of a White House press conference warning Russia not to invade Ukraine, Putin received authorization from Parliament and immediately issued military mobilization. Based on the swiftness of this response, it is safe to say Putin has assessed the United States’ position as weak. This leads us to an important question: what can the international community do to deter Russian aggression and encourage a peaceful withdrawal from Ukraine? The answer is, frankly, not much. Stern speeches and intimidating military demonstrations will not be enough to make Putin reconsider Russia’s contentious policies. Putin recognizes the American foreign policy dilemma. Moreover, he is counting on U.S. reluctance to use military force (and rightly so). Obama faces a similar problem as Bush did in the Georgia crisis of 2008. Sending in troops to support the Ukrainian government is essentially not an option at this point, much to the chagrin of conservative war hawks and liberal interventionists. And Putin knows that any threats made by Obama are almost always meaningless. If the Syrian government could employ chemical weapons against its own people, blatantly crossing Obama’s “red line,” Putin must figure that Russian occupation of Crimea will go militarily unopposed. Putin also knows that the U.S. must tread carefully in its discussions
with Russia. “Hardball diplomacy” may jeopardize Russian cooperation in negotiations with Iran and Syria. Many typical international responses to conflicts like this will not be useful in this case. Russia is too resourceful for economic sanctions to be effective in the short-term, and Ukraine is not in a position for an extended crisis. Any measures attempted in the U.N. Security Council would also be futile, as Russia would surely veto any resolutions labeling their occupation a violation of state sovereignty. However, there are some potential strategies being considered that would combat Putin’s belligerency. Some experts believe banking sanctions similar to those placed on Iran would be the most effective economic response, though many European countries are unwilling to risk billions of dollars in such a move. The other seven members of the G8 could refuse to attend the upcoming summit in Sochi, sending a strong message to Russian diplomats. Ultimately, the first step to protecting a free Ukraine is a cooperative effort on behalf of the international community. Despite the lack of promising options, the Western world must collectively voice its support for Ukraine’s new democratic government in Kiev. Putin knows the possible costs of such a gamble in the Ukraine, but he is taking the risk because he perceives the U.S. and the rest of the world to be inept and indecisive. It is only when Russia has been isolated through a collaborative effort will Putin reconsider his Ukrainian project.
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Tuesday, March 11, 2014
The Tufts Daily
Adam Kaminski | The Cool Column
Excluding non-Christians from leadership is unnecessary, sets dangerous precedent by
Last month, the Committee on Student Life revised its policy on student religious and philosophical groups, no longer allowing religious groups to apply for a “justified departure” from the University’s non-discrimination policy. This has sparked discussion and debate on campus, including a Feb. 24 Daily op-ed written by Edward Lowe and David Foresy entitled “Compatibility between non-discrimination and religious inclusion.” The authors of the op-ed agree with the premise that no group, religious or otherwise, should be allowed to discriminate on the basis of sexuality, or any other facet of identity. They argue, however, that student religious groups should be able to exclude non-believers from their leadership. In their particular case, they argue that their ability to prevent non-Christians from running for leadership positions is vital to their integrity as a Christian group. It is completely reasonable for a Christian group to want Christian leaders; however, the authors’ insistence that they need to restrict the right to run for election to Christians raises some questions. First, why do they deem this necessary? Since ICF is now a studentled group, why can they not trust their fellow students and group members to elect a leader, most likely a Christian, who is in line with the group’s beliefs? As Alva Couch, the faculty co-chair of the CSL, asked in a March 3 Daily article entitled, “New CSL policy allows election of student leaders to rely on democratic process,” “Do they really feel so insecure about the democratic process that they feel they have to impose controls on it?” It seems self-evident that a Christian group would elect Christian leaders. Thus, a policy of excluding non-Christians from leadership seems unnecessary. This raises another question: Do certain members of the group wish to restrict the definition of what a “Christian” is? The authors themselves acknowledge that there are “several thousand different denominations of ‘Christians’ out there” and that “the church as a whole has a wide variety of opinions on how to run Christian organizations.” They explain that Christian organizations have a variety of opinions for LGBTQ people’s involvement in leadership, and that, therefore, it would be unethical and dishonest for a “non-denomina-
tionally Christian” group to exclude queer people from leadership positions. Nonetheless, to me, the preoccupation with requiring all those running for election to be Christian demonstrates a desire for certain members of the group to narrowly define “Christianity.” This is a slippery slope. While the authors of the op-ed disavow discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, I worry that ICF — and any other Religious and Philosophical Student Organization (RPSO) — could potentially use this policy of only allowing “Christians” to run for office to exclude LGBTQ students and any other students not in line with their beliefs, claiming that these students are not truly “Christian.” I also wonder what effect this will have on converts — those who are in the process of converting to Christianity or those otherwise exploring their faith. While these students could join other Christian groups on campus, it would be a shame if they were excluded from the religious community in which they fit best, which could be ICF. I understand that the authors are advocating for nonChristians to be excluded from leadership, not membership. Nonetheless, this strict distinction between “Christians” and “non-Christians” might be alienating for students whose spiritual journey has not yet — and maybe never will — led them to identify as “Christians.” I worry that this policy could create a hierarchal system in which certain people are deemed more “Christian” than others. The authors write, “our university (a notoriously irreligious university at that) is now determining what it deems legitimate and illegitimate ways to practice faith.” I would argue that this determination of “legitimate” and “illegitimate” is precisely what the authors are advocating for, the only difference being that ICF would do the determining, not the university. How would ICF define “Christianity” and who would be in charge of these decisions? The arbitrator would have to label some practices as “legitimate” and others as “illegitimate.” There are many different ways to practice religion and one person’s spiritual practice might not translate as religious — or specifically “Christian” — to another person. Thus, students who identify as Christian could be denied leadership positions — and even the opportunity to run for such positions — because someone else deems their practice of Christianity “illegitimate.”
As a side note, I strongly disagree with the assertion that Tufts is a “notoriously irreligious university” and think that this line of thinking stems from the authors’ arbitrary and limited view of what constitutes religion and spiritual practice. Secondly, as long as the Tufts administration is not suppressing religious expression and practice — which I argue it is not — the religiosity of our student body is irrelevant. Many people on campus live very rich, irreligious lives and I would never label their very existence “notorious.” I would like to close on a more personal and hopefully more positive note. The authors of the op-ed voice dismay that no one took note of ICF’s decision to dissociate from InterVarsity. I would like to do that now. I am actually a former member of the heavily InterVarsity-influenced Tufts Christian Fellowship (TCF), the group from which the independent, student-led ICF emerged. I had many positive, spiritually formative experiences in TCF. Throughout my freshman year, TCF’s friendly atmosphere made my transition to Tufts much easier, as it provided me with a religious community — something that I had never found outside of my hometown and my family. However, during my sophomore year, I decided I had to leave TCF. The restrictions which InterVarsity placed upon TCF, most notably the stipulation that all its leaders had to practice “chastity” and that same-sex relationships were inherently unchaste, ran counter to my values, many of them motivated by my own religious beliefs. InterVarsity stifled student voices and created an environment in which I did not feel comfortable. I am so pleased that ICF has dissociated from InterVarsity and become more student-centered. I am heartened by the contributions that ICF has already made toward strengthening Tufts’ interfaith community, including co-sponsoring the recent Interfaith Open Mic Night. I applaud ICF for taking this first step toward creating a more open, welcoming space for all Christians, and all those interested in Christianity, to explore their faith. I urge its current leaders to complete this process by instituting open elections, free of restrictions. Megan Clark is a senior majoring in history. She can be reached at Megan.Clark@ tufts.edu.
Off the Hill | University of Mississippi
A look at the War on Drugs by
The Daily Mississippian
As anyone who has taken even a high school level economics class can attest, the laws of supply and demand are the most recognizable terms related to the field. Yet few people really understand the applications of these terms. Most free markets are primarily demanddriven. That means that where there is demand, there will be supply. However, supply does not necessarily create demand. A prime example of this is the United States’ War on Drugs. Many of the policies that collectively make up this war are aimed at curbing the supply of drugs coupled with failing policies aimed at the demand. As a result, demand has stayed about the same — even increasing in some areas — while the supply has kept pace, though the suppliers have changed. As one supplier gets removed from the market, through whatever means, another supplier fills the gap. This leads to the suppliers adapting and getting better and better at what they do.
For example, when the Drug Enforcement Administration discovers a 500-foot-long tunnel across the border used for smuggling drugs into the country from Mexico, that tunnel exists because the demand exists. Policies aimed at the supply side of the drug problem are needed, but they should not be the priority. After all, if there were no demand for illicit drugs, there would not be a supply. So, what about the policies in place that are intended to decrease the demand? As it turns out, the effect is negligible, and in fact, many are having the opposite effect. For example, drug education campaigns, such as “Just Say No,” are failing to decrease the demand for drugs and may increase it in some demographics. This was pointed out before, in 1988. Even worse, policies such as mandatory sentencing and three-strike rules are leading to increased incarceration rates, and the increased expenditures that go along with that. According to a 2010 study by the Cato Institute, almost 20 percent of state and local judicial budgets are spent on drug cases. This report estimates that the current
War on Drug’s policies cost the government $41.3 billion each year to implement. If you include potential tax revenues that are forgone, that number increases to $88 billion. All of this shows that the current system is broken and in desperate need of reform. Disagreement over what said reform looks like is an issue, though. For some, an out-of-sight-out-of-mind approach seems to be taken. As long as the drug problem isn’t affecting their worlds, then they see no reason to change the policies. This approach is common, unfortunately, in most policy issues. To others, the best approach is a stepback approach, which would essentially legalize certain drugs, while treating other drugs in a similar manner as they are now, with lesser sentencing laws. Obviously, ignoring the problem is not the way to go, but the latter approach does not address the issues of demand. While there may not be a perfect solution out there now, at the very least, our elected officials need to take a long, hard look at the War on Drugs. The status quo is hurting America and its citizens.
Motivating motivation Whether I’m crafting a birthday card, maintaining an acceptable GPA or dueling a shark with legs, lungs and an attitude, I’d like to consider myself a mostly motivated person. I want to appreciate friends, impress parents and slay mutant cartilaginous beasts almost as much as I don’t want to fail — especially when failure implies death ... even academic death. There came a time a few days ago when my notion of self-described “motivation” faltered underneath a new perspective. Motivated, if I can use the word, by a new person two questions emerged: Am I as motivated as I think I am? How admirable is it to be motivated anyway? I still marvel at my ability to make introductions with interesting people self-centered. Meet Waffle. That’s right. Waffle. He has a human name, too, but why on earth (with a nickname like “waffle”) would that be relevant? Waffle was born in Cambridge, England, grew up in San Rafael, Calif., and now lives in Southern Germany where he studies at the University of Konstanz. This past weekend he visited my friend at Tufts, a high school buddy, marking the first time he’s been home to the United States in nine months. He’s living 5,811 miles from his hometown. I’m living 3.4. What’s inspiring about Waffle isn’t that he can eat eleven bananas in five minutes, wears fluorescent shorts in 18 degree weather and can curl (and can love it). But he’s probably the most unmotivated motivated guy I’ve met. Well, he’s at least the most unmotivated motivated guy I’ve met who sweeps for fun. He does motivation right. That is, he isn’t “motivated” at all. He’s motivating. If high school over-achievers are motivated by parents, grades and failure, and if shark wrestlers find motivation from their endorphins, probable deaths and stupidities, Waffle finds his from Waffle. I sat down with him recently to try to make sense of his ambiguous I-cannot-care-about-what-you-think-I-shouldcare-about philosophy. Waffle wasn’t motivated by his parents, classmates, friends or adherence to norms to all. In fact, he abandoned his friends and family upon moving to Germany. Where and how did this conclusion arise? “I wanted to stand out from classmates,” he told me. “When I go to parties I’m, like, the most interesting person there.” Deadlines and schools don’t bother my feisty, germane German friend. Of course, one could argue other exterior influences do — such as others’ perspectives and the placement within the group of which one’s a part — but that describes, in some minute sense, everyone Waffle renounces, like the legs of pants. I hardly live up to such a liberated potential, not in a macro sense, anyway — I may have chosen what to dedicate myself to over spring break (rereading the Harry Potter series, of course), but never have I considered forgoing the break, by means of forgoing its system. The man. The establishment. The anything else Jack Black would have raged against in School of Rock. Waffle is AC/DC. I’m The Pussy Cat Dolls. Where I find macro-motivation parallels, Waffle finds quantities of freedom that I wouldn’t know how to handle, life’s exterior — there’s nothing self-motivated about it. Motivation isn’t important, motivating is. How one reads for class isn’t as important as what one reads for fun. Do I still consider myself a motivated person? I decided to ask Waffle. I then decided that wouldn’t be very self-motivated at all. I’m not as internally motivated as I thought I was, but Waffle has shown me, intentionally or not, something I don’t want to ignore. Maybe I’ll start wearing shorts in January. Adam Kaminski is a freshman in the who has yet to declare a major. He can be reached at Adam.Kaminski@tufts.edu.
Op-ed Policy The Op-Ed section of The Tufts Daily, an open forum for campus editorial commentary, is printed Monday through Thursday. The Daily welcomes submissions from all members of the Tufts community; the opinions expressed in the Op-Ed section do not necessarily represent the opinions of the Daily itself. Opinion articles on campus, national and international issues should be 600 to 1,200 words in length. Op-Ed cartoons are also welcomed for the Campus Canvas feature. All material is subject to editorial discretion and is not guaranteed to appear in the Daily. All material should be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than noon on the day prior to the desired day of publication; authors must submit their telephone numbers and day-of availability for editing questions. Submissions may not be published elsewhere prior to their appearance in the Daily, including but not limited to other on- and off-campus newspapers, magazines, blogs and online news websites, as well as Facebook. Republishing of the same piece in a different source is permissible as long as the Daily is credited with originally running the article.
The Tufts Daily
Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Married to the Sea
SUDOKU Level: Going back to your parents’ house for spring break.
Late Night at the Daily
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The Tufts Daily
Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Jumbos put up slew of impressive times
Sam Gold | The Gold Standard
Running from PED regulation
WOMEN’S TRACK continued from back
bowed out of the semifinals with a solid time of 7.87, good for a ninth place finish. Kaufmann was also out of the semifinals with her 11th place on a time of 7.91, but ran a time of 7.80 in the preliminaries, the second fastest Jumbo time this season. In the 60-meter hurdles, sophomore Marilyn Allen ran her personal best, as she ran a time of 8.96 in the event to take third. “Personally, I wanted to improve my time to help me get closer to qualifying for Nationals; I ran four times this weekend,” Kaufmann said. “This weekend I worked with my coaches on explosive starts, and as a team, we wanted to show up ready to race and qualify the 4x400 team for Nationals.” In the 800, sophomore Sydney Smith used the banked turns of the Reggie Lewis Center to her advantage, as she clocked a sub 2:20 time (2:19.95) to take 15th overall. The Jumbos also had a trio of solid performances in the 1000-meter run, as senior Grace House took seventh in the second section with a new personal best of 3:05.05. In the first section, sophomore Katie Kurtz and freshman Sophie Passacantando went three-four, finishing at virtually the same time. Kurtz took 15th overall in 3:10.16, and Passacantando placed right behind her in 16th in 3:10.50. A trio of Jumbos also set personal bests in the 3000-meter run. Leading the charge was senior Molly Mirhashem, who ran a time of 10:34.09 to take 23rd overall. Her younger teammates finished a few seconds after her, as freshman Kelly Fahey ran a time of 10:38.17 for 29th overall, and freshman Alice Wasserman ran 10:45.48 for 37th overall. Senior Lauren Creath was the sole Jumbo competing in the 5000-meter run, but nonetheless, she performed well and took 10th overall with a time of 18:12.05, just three seconds off of her personal best.
Virginia Bledsoe / Tufts Daily archives
The women’s track team was unable to qualify any new runners for Nationals this weekend, but will be sending three athletes to Lincoln, Neb. to represent the team. “I was really pleased with my race.” Mirhashem told the Daily in an email. “The section I was in had almost 20 girls in it, and we were all seeded in a small time window. I just tried to put myself towards the front in the beginning and not let any gaps form, and things worked my way. Getting a big [personal best] was a nice way to end my indoor track career.” Despite great performances from the entire squad, the most impressive performance on the day came in one of the final events: the 4x400-meter relay. Junior Lauren Gormer, Allen, freshman Rita Donohue and senior Jana Hieber took second overall to NESCAC rival Colby in 3:54.02, a new season best time
that puts them at 18th in the country. Although most of the Jumbos have wrapped up their indoor seasons and are in midst of preparing for the outdoor season, a few of them will be traveling west this weekend for the NCAA Div. III Championships, held at the Devaney Center in Lincoln, Neb. Hieber will compete in the pentathlon and will have a good chance to finish first in the event, while Gould and Harrison will be competing in the 5000-meter run and 60-meter dash. As for those who did not qualify for Nationals, things will not get any easier,” Mirhashem said. “We’ll have a few easy days this week and then its right back to training for outdoors.”
Pool closing does not keep Tufts from success MEN’S SWIMMING continued from back
pool given the adversity the team faced. All year long the guys had goals they wanted to reach and they were able to achieve many of them.” Many Jumbos dealt with the difficulty with surprising amounts of positivity. “We looked at it as just another aspect of our training,” Winget said. “To us, swimming is swimming and it doesn’t matter if it’s at Hamilton or another pool.” Tufts made its dedication abundantly clear throughout the NESCAC Championships at Bowdoin. Many Jumbos saved their best performances for last, as the team smashed six school records and finished fourth overall. Nine Jumbos made the NCAA B cuts, six more than the year before. “It was by far the best NESCACs yet,” senior tri-captain Johann Schmidt said.
Schmidt scored a NESCAC-record 578.15 points in the one-meter dive to win his sixth conference championship. He also finished second in the three-meter to freshman teammate Matt Rohrer. “Having just started diving threemeter this year, I never would have guessed that I would end the season as the NESCAC champion,” Rohrer said. The two divers both qualified for the NCAA Championships in Indianapolis thanks to their strong performances at last weekend’s Zone Diving Qualifier. For the second year in a row, Schmidt won the NCAA regional one-meter event and three-meter competition to automatically qualify for Nationals. Rohrer, who finished fifth in the onemeter, qualified by placing third in the three-meter. Each will compete in both events at the NCAA meet taking place from March 19 to March 22.
Bhalla final athlete to qualify MEN’S TRACK
continued from back
sophomore recorded the fifth fastest time in the 800 in the nation this season, shaving off approximately one and one-half seconds off his time of 1:52.86, and guaranteeing him a trip to the NCAA Championships. The flat track in the Gantcher Center helped Bhalla, he said. “I was lucky enough to have [sophomore] Mitch [Black] rabbit me through [the first] 600 meters [of the race] in 1:23-ish, setting me up to run a legit time,” Bhalla said. “I’m usually reluctant to go out hard, or in the lead, but I knew I’d have to get right on Mitch from the gun to avoid trouble with the rest of the pack, and to qualify for nationals.” Despite the impressive time, Keene State senior Ryan Widzgowski, who also recently recorded the second fastest mile time in Keene State history at the Open New England Championships, bested Bhalla by just under a half-second. Alongside Bhalla, senior tri-captain
Jamie Norton, who has already qualified for the NCAA Championships in the mile and is now the school recordholder in the event, rounded out the top-five in the 800 with a time of 1:55.53. Senior Graham Beutler failed to qualify for the NCAA Championships in the 200-meter dash with his time of 22.37. Beutler will still run next weekend in the open 400 and also with the 4x400 relay team, where he will be joined by the sophomore trio of Francis Goins, Alex Kasemir, and Mitchell Black. Bhalla’s was not the only personal best time recorded at the Last Chance meet, as classmate Bryson Hoover-Hankerson set a personal best in the 60-meter dash with a time of 7.22. After finishing in fifth place in the preliminary round with a time of 7.28, Hoover-Hankerson improved upon his initial result by six hundredths of a second to finish fourth overall, right behind Brandeis senior Vincent Asante. In the pit, junior Brian Williamson and sophomore Atticus Swett finished second and fourth — Williamson with a throw of
Head diving coach Brad Snodgrass was happy to see their hard work pay off and expects them to do well at Nationals. “Both Matt and Johann did an outstanding job and finished as I’d hoped among the top divers,” Snodgrass said. “Johann of course won both events, but Matt was equally consistent and competitive and looked like a veteran. They’re amazing and I expect both to be in the hunt for the championship.” Winget and freshman William Metcalfe, who set five school records between them at NESCACs, will join them in Indianapolis. After a season full of remarkable individual performances, Hoyt is optimistic the quartet can end the year on a high note. “We’re hopeful that the NCAA Championships will be another highlight for us,” Hoyt said.
51’ 9”, Swett with a throw of 50’ 3 1/2”. “It went pretty well, but unfortunately we weren’t able to hit the marks we need to qualify for Nationals,” Swett said. Although Swett and Williamson had another chance the following day at ECACs, neither thrower was able to improve upon their scores from Thursday. Held simultaneously with ECACs, the IC4As was the third meet Tufts attended, but just one athlete, sophomore Francis Goins, made the trip. Running the 400, Goins crossed the line in 23rd place in a time of 49.01, a personal best. While he did not qualify for nationals, which was not the objective from the outset, he will travel to Lincoln, Neb. as a member of the 4x400 relay team. The season concludes next weekend at the NCAA Championships, where a select six Jumbos (Black, Bhalla, Norton, Goins, Kasemir and Beutler) will try to surpass the best performance from a year ago — a second place finish in the distance medley relay — to bring home the hardware.
ports scandals in the United States fly well under the radar, dwarfed by baseball’s perplexing and interminable performance-enhancing drug (PED) fiasco. For a sport whose participation nationwide surpasses one million, its pantheon — both those who still reside and their counterpart fallen angels — garners little scrutiny. Maybe it’s the money, or lack thereof, that begets the apathy. Or perhaps its that casual supporters and enthusiasts alike consider PED use integral to the growth and popularization of the sport, and therefore look upon it more favorably than do fans of other sports. No matter the reason, PEDs have also plagued the sport of track and field for decades, with no resolution in sight. People reserve scant cranial real estate for towering figures like Marion Jones, a five-medal winner at the 2000 Sydney Olympics whose medals were revoked upon her admission that she took steroids; never mind an athlete like Tyson Gay, American record-holder in the 100-meter dash and the second fastest man in history, who tested positive for a banned substance in May 2013. Each violation ignites public ire for a fleeting moment — the dust settles all too quickly. Then there are the international culprits, a sizable cadre in their own right. It is difficult for an outsider to gauge how well- or ill-received such news tends to be worldwide, but these cases do not simply arise and then vanish — certainly not in a track and field-crazy country like Jamaica, whose pride and joy on the women’s side, Veronica Campbell-Brown, tested positive for a banned substance in May 2013. Campbell-Brown owns a packed resume: Jamaican sportswoman of the year, 100meter dash Jamaica national champion, 200-meter dash Jamaica national champion, 60-meter dash world indoor champion, 200meter dash Olympic champion and 4x100meter relay Olympic champion. Last year, she added to that list the suspension handed down by the Switzerland-based Court of Arbitration for Sport. The substance for which she tested positive was a masking agent, employed by athletes to conceal PED use, but itself incapable of physical enhancement. That was the loophole. On appeal, which the International Association of Athletics Federations fast-tracked in light of the World Indoor Championships in Sopot, Poland this past weekend, Campbell-Brown won; after eight months on the sidelines, she could compete again. And what a bunch of nonsense that is. Although not in prime form, CampbellBrown nonetheless reached the semifinals of the 60-meter dash. She won’t win, not if the Ivorian Murielle Ahoure remains ahead of the pack, but her mere presence detracts from the integrity of the event and of the sport in general. In the past five years, six Jamaican sprinters, including powerhouses Asafa Powell and Yohan Blake, have been suspended after testing positive for PEDs. Guilt by association amounts to tenuous legalese; however, outside of an exigent medical condition, dabbling in banned substances points almost infallibly to guilt. Whether due to regulatory myopia or gross negligence, the dismissal of the ban levied against Veronica Campbell-Brown has either set a dangerous precedent or confirmed the naiveté of the sport’s major governing bodies — or both. Denial will keep professional track and field mired in an untenable fantasyland nourished by willful ignorance. Unless it seeks to emulate Major League Baseball, the entities that oversee both national and international track and field must pick a side. Performance-enhancing drugs are either good or bad, not a dynamic set of substances that vacillates between the two. If these bodies decide that PEDs do, in fact, do good, an argument proffered more in the wake of baseball’s utter mismanagement of its own issues, then they’ll stay the course. If not, you can bet a flashpoint is imminent.
Sam is a junior who is majoring in religion. He can be reached at samuel_l. email@example.com.
Men’s swimming and diving
caroline geiling / tHE Tufts Daily
The men’s swimming and diving team will close out a successful year this weekend when they send two swimmers and two divers to compete at Nationals.
Jumbos wrap up impressive season by
Daily Editorial Board
Despite not having a home pool for the second half of its season, the men’s swimming and diving team had a successful year, highlighted by a 4-3 record in dual meets and a fourth place finish at the NESCAC Championships. “We had a great season, and many great swims as a team,” head coach Adam Hoyt said.
Tufts got off to a strong start this year, winning 10 events and beating Middlebury College and Connecticut College in their season-opening tri-meet on Nov. 16. Sophomore Michael Winget won NESCAC Performer of the Week after winning the 100-yard and 200-yard backstroke, finishing fourth in the 100-yard butterfly and swimming the opening leg of the 200-yard medley relay, which Tufts won at the meet.
The team suffered its first loss of the year in its only home meet of the season, falling to Keene State 178-122 on Nov. 23. Two weeks later, the Jumbos wrapped up first semester’s competitions with a third place finish at the MIT Invitational. Second semester did not start as well for Tufts, which suffered its worst defeat of the season with an 80-point loss
Men’s Track and Field
to MIT on Jan. 18. But Tufts regrouped, bouncing back to beat Wesleyan 188-106 the next day. After falling to Boston College in its penultimate meet of the season, Tufts finished strong with a resounding 205119 win over Wheaton College on Senior Day. Losing Hamilton Pool posed a challenge for the second half of the season, causing practice times to be moved ear-
Women split weekend at ECACs, Last Chance Chris Warren
Daily Editorial Board
Annie Levine / The Tufts Daily
The men’s track team, above at Tufts Cupid Challenge, has several runners and throwers heading to Nationals.
Tufts to send six athletes to Nationals by Sam
The final tune-up for the men’s track and field team, before the NCAA Championships, consisted of three meets over the weekend, during which athletes from around the country hoped to post qualifying marks. Runners and throwers participated in the Tufts Last Chance Meet on Thursday, the Eastern College
see MEN’S SWIMMING, page 15
Women’s Track and Field
Daily Editorial Board
lier in the morning and forcing Tufts to train off-campus. While inconvenient, it didn’t deter the Jumbos from achieving great results at both the personal and team levels. “It’s impossible to quantify the effect of not having a home pool to train in,” Hoyt said. “It’s a great accomplishment to achieve lifetime best performances in the
Athletic Conference Div. III Championships (ECACs) at the Reggie Lewis Center and the Intercollegiate Association of Amateur Athletics of America Championships (IC4As) at Boston University. There was an undeniable sense of urgency among those who had yet to qualify, but for some, an even greater air of optimism permeated the ranks. “I was pretty disappointed with my race at Boston University [in the 800 on Feb.
28],” sophomore Veer Bhalla said. “It was very tactical and physical, so I wasn’t able to run smoothly [even though] I still [set a personal best]. After that I knew I could run faster, and I just wanted to go out and do it — no hesitations.” In fact, Bhalla’s performance proved to be the highlight of the Tufts Last Chance Meet, the first of the three meets on the docket. The see MEN’S TRACK, page 11
Over the weekend, members of the women’s track team competed at the Eastern College Athletic Conference Championships (ECACs), held at the Reggie Lewis Center on Saturday, and the Tufts Last Chance Meet, held at the Gantcher Center on Thursday. There were tangible goals for the meets, as the Jumbos looked to either end the season on a strong note or improve their seed times to qualify for the NCAA Championships, held next weekend in Lincoln, Neb. A few Jumbos were in action on Thursday at the Gantcher Center, as they hosted the annual Last Chance Meet, which served as an opportunity for teams to nab fast flat track times to improve on their times to qualify for Nationals. Senior tri-captain Anya Kaufmann won the 60-meter dash in a time of 7.84, just a few ticks off of sophomore Alexis Harrison’s team best time of 7.78. Sophomore Marilyn Allen broke the school record in the 60-meter hurdles, as she ran a time of 8.99 for her first sub-
nine time ever, which was good for a second place showing. Despite the impressive weekend performances from Kauffman and Allen, neither runner will travel to Nationals. It was a tough day for the distance girls, as they went zero for three in qualifying runners for Nationals. In the 3000-meter run, sophomore Audrey Gould finished first with a time of 10:04.38 while sophomore Olivia Beltrani came in third with a time of 10:24.96. Trying to shake off last weekend’s failure to qualify for Nationals, the distance medley relay (DMR) took a second shot at qualifying but came up short, as the team of sophomore Hanako Shigenobu, senior Jana Hieber, junior Lauren Gormer, and senior tricaptain Laura Peterson took fourth overall with a time of 12:05.33, placing them seventeenth in the country. Since only the top 10 relay teams earn bids to Nationals, the DMR will be watching all of the action unfold trackside this season. On Saturday, the Jumbos got off to a great start as Harrison and Kaufmann qualified for the semifinals of the 60-meter dash. Harrison see WOMEN’S TRACK, page 11