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Debated Lindsey Hill development awaits decision from city By Brigeda Hernandez Senior News Reporter @brigeda_h

"Be smart,” Ramshaw said of journalists’ actions on social media. “Be thoughtful, don't be snarky.” Michael Royal, electronic media sophomore, said he heard of the event from a Mass Communication professor. “I really wanted to know how to hone my skills as a blogger and what can I do to really gain an audience,” Royal said. “I thought she was really awesome. I really love the speaker series.” Royal said Ramshaw’s speech was informative and he received good pointers, especially on how to use social media. “I’m going to reflect on my social media and make sure I’m not partisan,” Royal said. “Make sure I stick to the story and not necessarily my opinion.” Ramshaw said Texas Tribune staff produce investigative journalism which holds government officials accountable and partner

The San Marcos City Council will make a final decision May 3 on a controversial potential development at Lindsey Hill, located at the corner of W. Hutchison Street and Moore Street. The Planning and Zoning Commission denied the developer’s request to change the land’s use from Public District to Planned Development District on April 12. When the issue comes before City Council, the members will have an opportunity to overturn the commission’s decision, but only with a supermajority. The project would include a 120-room hotel, up to 17,000 feet of retail space and 164 multi-family housing units. “Our goal at this particular location is to help San Marcos complete the experience of showcasing its most precious and distinctive assets,” said David Lerman, developer of the proposed project. Lerman said San Marcos is an especially unique location along the IH-35 corridor because communities along the highway contain a lot of necessities, but there is not much variety from one town to the next. He said creating the concept for Lindsey Hill was an organic process, and inspiration came from the site itself. “The challenge to anybody who’s considering acquiring this site is to figure out how you create the proper transition and linking experience between downtown and the historic neighborhoods,” Lerman said. The Lindsey Hill property lies adjacent to the historic district, and many residents have expressed concern as to whether or not the location is suitable for a larger development such as this one. At Planning and Zoning’s public hearing, concerns over approval of the project were

See TRIBUNE, Page 2



A student studies with a latte at Mochas and Javas on April 20.



Editor-in-Chief of Texas Tribune shares advice with students to create a story package. Stories don’t have to be told in multiple formats, such as story package including a video, a podcast and an interactive graphic. It’s better to tell the story in the best-fitting format, she said. "Tell me the story in one way, in the best possible format for that story, and I'll be happy," Ramshaw said. Reporters must consider which format would communicate the story they’re ANTONIO REYES STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER working on in the best way Becky Larson interviews Editor-in-chief of The Texas Tribune, Emily Rampossible, she said. shaw, on April 20 at Old Main. Social media is a news tool useful to gather and By Lesly De Leon tal media graduate student ASSISTANT NEWS EDITOR and teaching assistant, and share news, Ramshaw said. Twitter is where journalists @LeslyD28 audience members. Journalists should be pro- and policymakers comThe Editor-in-Chief of the fessional, dedicated and will- municate with each other, Texas Tribune, Emily Ram- ing to work hard at any task but Facebook is where the general population commushaw, answered questions editors assign them. and shared advice with mass “No job should be too big nicates. "We have the responsibilcommunication students. or too small,” Ramshaw said. Ramshaw visited as part Reporters in the digital ity to make sure our stories of the SJMC Digital Entre- age must be able to collabo- are where the people are," preneurship Speaker Series rate with coders, graphic de- Ramshaw said. Ramshaw shared her and answered questions signers, multimedia producfrom Rebecca Larson, digi- ers and all people on staff opinion on how journalists

can use social media as a tool and the balance between sharing and oversharing. Journalists have to be smart with their social media personality, she said. She thinks how much of their personal lives or political opinions they share depends on their comfort level. People active on social media want to relate to the journalists they follow as someone human, not just a news provider or an expert on policies. Displaying personality on social media is good, Ramshaw said. As an example, Ramshaw said she shared her experience as a new mother on social media and received positive responses. However, Ramshaw said journalists should not be partisan on social media. Sharing political affiliations via social media can limit job opportunities. Texas Tribune editors have turned down reporter fellowship candidates because of the partisanship shown in their social media.


BR3T addresses unmet flood recovery needs By Bri Watkins NEWS REPORTER @briwatkins17

San Marcos residents who fell victim to major flooding last year had the chance to speak with the Blanco River Regional Recovery Team, otherwise known as BR3T, about any unmet needs in the middle of their recovery. BR3T is a designated longterm recovery nonprofit organization that reaches out to meet the needs of flood survivors in Hays, Blanco, Caldwell and Guadalupe counties. Miguel Cardiel has been a Hays County resident for 30 years. He said his roof was destroyed by the winds during the Memorial Day weekend flood and came to the meeting to get more information. “Every time it rains now, it comes into my home and everything is wet,” Cardiel

said. Although there is still much work needed to be done, the counties are on a road to recovery, he said. BR3T board member Ruben Garza said frustration can be common because of the slow process to rebuild. He used an analogy to compare patience with the restoration and building a car. “We’re having to add all the systems to it,” Garza said. “It takes a little bit to build a car, to get it up and running, so for those of you that have been frustrated, its going to take patience and a little bit of more patience, but we are making progress and we are moving forward, and with God’s love in action, we’re going to fix a lot of houses in this community and others across the counties.” Rich Hildreth, BR3T volunteer, said he is thankful for each member in the organization as well as the community

in general. “Disaster brings out the best in the community,” Hildreth said. “If you look at what has been accomplished over this last year, we have brought out the best. I’m not saying ‘we’ as in BR3T, it’s the people of San Marcos, Wimberly, Martindale and all other counties that we have covered.” Vickie McCuistion, Treasurer of the Board for BR3T, was part of the transition team appointed to help develop the organization following the floods. Their mission is to extend their help to families and individuals to aid recovery from the 2015 Memorial Day weekend and Halloween weekend floods. “It was the Memorial Day flood that spurred the organization of this committee, but the idea is that it will be in place for any future disaster,” McCuistion said. “So that when something like

that happens, we already got sary resources to help clients. after the Memorial Day weekthe infrastructure in place to St. Bernard Project is one end flood, said Construction manage it.” of the partners that partici- Coordinator Chris Laugelli. At the public meeting, Hil- pates with BR3T to help re“So far we have built 13 dreth spoke upon what needs construct the damage within homes, and we’re always are still to be met. the community’s infrastruc- looking for clients,” LaugelTo restore affected areas ture. The organization is a li said. “Anyone who needs of the county, Hildreth said part of the Construction and help or wants to volunteer money, materials and man- Unmet Needs Committee, or donate, we definitely urge power is needed. BR3T is which was started four days them to reach out to us.” looking for organized groups to volunteer their help to achieve these goals. “The most important group that we need to work with is general community,” Hildreth said. “It’s the networking and partnership that is going to get things done.” He said the secret to BR3T’s success is its partnerships. The group’s structure is made up of committees working together through the rebuilding process. Committees include case management, construction, DARYL ONTIVEROS MULTIMEDIA EDITOR emotional support and an Communications and Outreach VISTA Rich Hildreth spoke at the Blanco unmet needs table to help River Regional Recovery Team's monthly public meeting Wednesday, April fund the process to get neces- 20 at the Dunbar Recreation Center.

2 | Thursday, April 21,, 2016


The University Star Anna Herod, News Editor @annaleemurphy @universitystar

UNIVERSITY from front

with other news organizations for projects. Ramshaw said media is concentrated in the East Coast, especially New York, which is dangerous. A gap in the journalism industry means decreased local and regional coverage. As a nonprofit news organization, the Texas Tribune website includes a list of all revenue sources of funding online. Editors also include a disclaimer in all stories relating to any organization that provides funding to the organization. "Funders play no role in the journalism we produce," Ramshaw said. The Texas Tribune has been successful in part because its revenue streams are varied, she said.

Texas Tribune also receives revenue from hosting events, such as the Texas Tribune Festival. Most of the events are free to public and feature Tribune staff interviewing local and state government officials. Audience members have the opportunity to speak to elected government representatives at events. There are not many circumstances where an average citizen can ask elected officials questions directly, Ramshaw said. Ramshaw said Texas Tribune editors don’t draw a large distinction between the business side and journalism of the organization. "We're breaking down those barriers and not in a way that present any ethical challenges," Ramshaw


said. Larson said it was honor to have Ramshaw visit and have the opportunity to interview the Editor-in-Chief. “I interviewed Evan Smith, former Editor-inChief, at Mass Comm week, so it felt like a natural progression to interview Emily,” she said. Larson believes the advice Ramshaw shared concerning social media resonated with students. “I felt like the students were really interested in her and what she has to say,” Larson said. “I think that’s partly just because of her fantastic reputation, partly because she’s really well spoken and she’s a badass woman in digital journalism, so that’s awesome.”

Geography department brings expert insight to NASA

from front

ANTONIO REYES STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER The geography department at Texas State collaborates on some projects with NASA.

By Bri Watkins NEWS REPORTER @briwatkins17


DARYL ONTIVEROS MULTIMEDIA EDITOR The Lindsay Hill Project has caused concern among residents who feel the development would destroy the historic neighborhoods of San Marcos.

expressed. Detractors cited potential increases in traffic congestion and flooding risks as well as possible damage to the character of historic neighborhoods. “When the sinkhole hits San Marcos, it will hit international news,” said Lisa Marie Coppoletta, environmental activist. Ty Stonecipher, water resources management senior, said studies have shown a link between other new developments in the area and increased flooding. He heard about the Lindsey Hill development through Coppoletta, and began working to raise awareness throughout the community. Stonecipher said although the development would affect San Marcos as a whole, it would especially affect those who live in the historic district. Since college students have little interaction with those residents, he was not surprised at the lack of knowledge on campus. “That’s one reason I knew a lot of the students hadn’t heard about it,” Stonecipher said. “Because students don’t really check the city meeting minutes, they don’t read too much

about the town, and that’s something I would actually like to change.” Stonecipher said both students and residents of the historic district were very enthusiastic and eager to get involved,. “You may only live here for three to five years,” Stonecipher said. “But what you do here affects those of us that want to live here for the rest of our lives. There’s a really powerful force just sitting right here, all of these students, and it can be harnessed into something good that’s positive change for the community.” Another concern raised by those who oppose the development is the structure may be used for student housing. While developers have listed rules to ensure this does not happen, residents agree there will not be a way to monitor the situation. Although the community sees negative effects the project could have, Stonecipher said there could be some positives as well, such as the developer’s plan to preserve green space and providing the opportunity to bring new businesses to San Marcos.

Those who spoke in support for the Lindsey Hill development said it will help increase walkability, which is also a goal of the developer. “We’re trying to achieve a walkable community here,” Lerman said. “Of all the places in Central Texas, San Marcos can actually do it because you’ve got some vital components already in place.” Lerman said it is important for the community to fully understand the project. He said the development team spent 14 months meeting with residents and city officials, and overall the response was positive. Until the application was officially submitted to the city, Lerman said he didn’t see a large opposition. If the Lindsey Hill project is denied, the land can still be developed in a different way. Lerman said he is unable to comment about any future plans the company may have. “This community is your community for now,” Stonecipher said. “And you do have a lasting effect on this community, and you are very important to this community. Your voice matters.”

aculty and students in Texas State’s geography department actively contribute work to NASA through a partnership with Jacobs Engineering. Among different projects, students work to geolocate areas in images captured by astronauts from the International Space Station. The geography department has been able to provide important insight to the center, said Nathan Currit, associate professor and director at the Texas Center for Geographic Information Science. Over the years, astronauts from the ISS have collected and archived photographs of Earth. However, no one was keeping track of what areas they were photographing, he said. “There are things that can be learned from these images, but only after we can find out where these images are from,” Currit said. Science and remote sensing groups try to geolocate the areas in images collected by astronauts. They catalog the pictures and identify geographic features to find the longitude and latitude. Jacobs Engineering hired Joseph Aebersold, geographic information science senior, and Andi Hollier, geographic resource and environmental studies senior, to geolocate uncataloged imagery from their site. Aebersold and Hollier catalog images from certain space station missions

and report it to Jacobs employees, who then report to NASA. The intent is to use them for scientific purposes, Currit said. Data from astronaut photographs are a source for analyzing environmental changes and potentially monitoring natural disasters as they unfold or the following recovery efforts. Aebersold said the internship has been eyeopening and beneficial. “It can be like a little puzzle, trying to figure out where you are on Earth, and then see cool photos like the space shuttle, the aura of the Earth and photos of the moon,” Aebersold said. “We are eager to show them what we can do as long as it falls in line of what they are looking for.” Hollier said she and Aebersold locate center points on uncatalogued images and make it easier to identify features. “We will put them into a database where you can inquiry them later,” Hollier said. “We do geo-referencing as well, which is putting a latitude and longitude on the pixels of the image so it’s a little more accurate on assigning coordinates to an image. Hollier said the internship has been a fun experience and she just accepted a summer internship with NASA. “You don’t really get to see (the astronaut’s) perspective every day,” Hollier said. “Usually there’s a humanistic perspective whenever you’re learning to research. With the astronaut photography and catalogue you get to go through and see the whole picture.”

Jacobs Engineering Group secured its $1.9 billion contract with the NASA Johnson Space Center in 2013. Through this contract, Jacobs Engineering executives wanted to collaborate with minority-serving institutions. Texas State officials entered into a $5 million agreement in 2014 to collaborate with Jacobs Engineering executives for the next five years. Faculty members are also contributing to research and projects. Currit is working on a project with Justin Wilkinson, a geomorphologist who focuses on landforms. Wilkinson, a former Jacobs Engineering Group employee who became a faculty of practice at Texas State. He studies megafans which are major continental land features that help build the continents. “Wilkinson identifies landforms, and I help identify upstream drainage areas that contribute sediment to the megafan,” Currit said. Currit said the collaboration provides students and faculty with great opportunities and he believes the partnership with Jacobs will continue to grow. “The real opportunity we have here is for faculty and students to find a friend in NASA, get an inside peek at how they work, an inside peek at the things they are doing and an inside peak at perhaps some of the externally funded opportunities to do research that you can find with a NASA friend to collaborate,” Currit said. “This is available for anyone on campus.”

The University Star

Thursday, April 21, 2016 | 3


Carlie Porterfield, Lifestyle Editor @reporterfield @universitystar


from front

By Denise Cervantes ASSISTANT LIFESTYLE EDITOR @cervantesdenise According to a poll conducted by Harvard University, 54 percent of Americans over the age of 18 indulge in a steamy hot cup of coffee every day. Caffeine is defined as a drug which stimulates the nervous system. This fact raises the question: could we all possibly be addicted to that savory caffeinated beverage? Julie Eckert, Student Health Center assistant director, said although caffeine is a stimulant, it is safe to drink in moderation. “People usually recognize it as safe by the FDA,” Eckert said. “You can have about 300 to 400 milligrams a day, which is roughly about three cups of coffee a day. It is seen as moderate and average consumption.” Trevor Bowersox, engineering freshman, said caffeine is a part of his daily routine. “It’s the first thing I do in the mornings,” Bowersox said. “I go grab my cup of coffee. It just wakes me up

and I feel good to go.” Bowersox said he does not feel as if he has a dependency on caffeine, but would much rather have it than not. “I don’t feel like I couldn’t live without it,” Bowersox said. “It’s just there to help me get through the day. I could skip my coffee on a Saturday, when I get to sleep in, and be fine.” Eckert said it is possible to be dependent on caffeine, but it is not damaging to a person’s everyday life. “People can have a dependency on it,” Eckert said. “They may be jittery and those kind of things, but it isn’t life threatening. Most people don’t have any kind of dysfunction from having an addiction to caffeine.” Valerie Santamaria, interdisciplinary studies junior, said it is difficult to cope without caffeine in her system. “I would call myself a coffee addict,” Santamaria said. “It’s so hard to go without it. Depending on the day I will drink, at the minimum, three cups. It helps me get work done. ” High-calorie caffeine

beverages may affect a person’s sleeping pattern and stress management, Eckert said. “It can kind of sabotage your stress management technique,” Eckert said. “Because people grab caffeine in order to concentrate, and some of those drinks have a lot of calories and sugar, it can create insomnia depending how much they’re using and how high it is in calories.” Eckert said coffee is not addicting in the same sense as tobacco, heroin or alcohol because it does not affect a person’s mentality. “Caffeine is just a mild form of a drug addiction—it isn’t serious like the other drugs,” Eckert said. “It’s generally recognized as safe. But if people are having issues with it, like (their sleeping habits), then they may think about cutting back.” Santamaria said she does not see herself cutting back on her caffeine intake anytime soon. “I love coffee,” Santamaria said. “Death before decaf, for sure. I’m probably always going to crave it.”


Mermaid art gallery makes a splash at Chamber of Commerce By Stacee Collins LIFESTYLE REPORTER @stvcee

the years,” Lindsey said. “The way I would describe it is whimsical.” Lindsey said the works add a nice touch to the Chamber of Commerce. “I love having something on the walls here. It’s interesting,” Lindsey said. “I think it’s kind of neat that we have something like this.” Some of McPike Smith’s river-related works include dragonflies and flowers. However, mermaids are her main focus. “I love San Marcos and I have that nostalgic kind of love for it,” McPike Smith said. “The mermaid thing is a good branding for our city, and I think it’s kind of good at the ecological standpoint. It’s the thing that makes this town so great.” Mermaid Society SMTX promotes taking care of the river, McPike Smith said. Similarly, her mermaid art encourages awareness of the river’s importance. “We’ve got to conserve our water and take care of it,” McPike Smith said. “It hits home for me. So, I’m just trying to spread a little bit of awareness about conserving our natural spaces and resources.”

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City officials are working to rebrand San Marcos with mermaids. It only makes sense for the town’s unique culture to be showcased in a mermaid art gallery at the Chamber of Commerce. The San Marcos Art League is in charge of assigning artists to the rotating gallery about every month. Mark Lambdin, the league’s president, said he chose mermaid-themed art because of San Marcos’ recent rebranding efforts. “It’s kind of a way of using the mermaids to bring awareness to the river and helping keep it clean,” he said. “It’s such a beautiful river.” Lisa McPike Smith, Hep Cat Artworks owner, is the artist behind April’s gallery. “She is not primarily a mermaid artist, but she does have a lot of pieces that have mermaids in them,” Lambdin said. “Her pieces are just the coolest little pieces in the whole wide world, I think.” McPike Smith said the mermaid inspiration came from her experience seeing the aquamaids perform at Aquarena Springs as a child. “I had a piece I made that kind of symbolized the breaking of that tradition,” she said. “I glued all these pieces back together. It seemed like it was a good tribute to what no longer is Aquarena Springs.” McPike Smith coins her artwork as mixed-media assemblages. For example, she has assorted German bisque dolls and handmade ceramic pieces into different environments. “A lot of the dolls are bro-

ken and chipped,” she said. “I still find them beautiful, and they have such quality to them.” McPike Smith said the broken ones are valuable to her specific style because if a doll’s body is missing, she is always able to throw a mermaid tail on it. Other objects included in the mermaid assemblages are shells, pearls and other unique trinkets. The mermaid pieces at the Chamber of Commerce are whimsical with a hint of menace, she said. “Mermaids originally weren’t supposed to be sweet and beautiful. They were supposed to be scary,” McPike Smith said. “But, there are mermaids that are good and watch over shipwrecks and sailors out at sea.” Although McPike Smith does not actually believe in mermaids, she appreciates the imagination and magic behind the idea. The mermaid theme is mysterious and dark, yet light. She focuses a lot of her artwork around symbols that evoke this type of feeling. Margaret Lindsey, Chamber of Commerce membership director, agrees the artwork is quirky. “Lisa (has worked) in a lot of different mediums over

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Top five books to read before you graduate By Erin O’Donnell LIFESTYLE REPORTER @1erino With finals around the corner, many underclassmen are working hard to make it to summer vacation and graduating seniors are about to take the world by storm. However, 42 percent of college students will never read another book after they graduate. While this may seem like a sad statistic, it’s not hard to understand why. After college, there is no incentive to read anymore. These numbers should not discourage students from reading. In fact, with so many great books out there, it’s hard to figure out which are worth reading and valuable to understanding the world. To help students, I have compiled a list of the top five books every student should read before they graduate.


F. Scott Fitzgerald The first book that pops into your head when you hear F. Scott Fitzgerald’s name is The Great Gatsby. While that book has excellent merits, This Side of Paradise proves Fitzgerald’s success is not a fluke. The story can still resonate with students today, as it is about a Princeton graduate who discovers how different life is after college—something many of us will face shortly.


George Orwell Since 1949, Orwell’s tales of a dystopian future have been captivating audiences with its bleak depictions of a future of erased individuality. Hannah Rodriguez, English junior, said 1984 is one of her favorite books of all time. “I still get shocked when people say they have not read this excellent book,” Rodriguez said. “It’s not often a book can outlive the date it predicted the world to be terrible and still be frighteningly accurate.” She said shades of 1984 can

MADISON MORRISS STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER Five English professors and students chose five books for students to read before they graduate.

even be seen in the world today. “With the way politics are run in the world, I am afraid a future like this may not be too far ahead,” Rodriguez said. “It’s not something to get worked up on, but if more people read this book, they may understand exactly how the world and the media shape our political structure, and in turn, shapes humanity.”


William Shakespeare We have all read a Shakespeare play or two, but Hamlet is one everybody should read at least once in their lives. The theme of the play relates to how we accept our personal responsibilities for our thoughts and actions. Every character is a force to be reckoned with, and is not always who they appear to be in the story. While the ending has been well-known for a few hundred years, there is a deeper meaning when you know the thoughts of the characters in the scene, as well as the actions leading to the finale. This is an incredible tale of revenge at its finest, yet it makes you wonder if Hamlet’s actions paid off


Albert Camus Camus’ absurd tale of human nature and actions will stick with audiences. The Stranger helps shape the importance of personal choices and how strange the universe can be.

Ashley Parker, English freshman, said her outlook on life changed after reading the book. “I just knew I would never be able to see the world in the same light again,” she said. “Camus’ writing just ingrains itself in you and makes you realize how strange and mysterious the world is sometimes, and that you can be just like his narrator and just feel indifferent to it all. It can be a lot to take in.”


Sylvia Plath The Bell Jar is Plath’s only novel. It is about a young woman’s descent into insanity. A heartbreaking tale that will leave readers speechless and haunted long after the last page is turned. Elena Lara, English sophomore, said she had to put the book down while reading it for the first time. “I was crying too hard,” Lara said. “I could not believe all that Esther went through, and to know that Plath based it on her experiences with mental illness just crushed me.” It’s a hard book to digest, but Lara said she was able to continue reading it and even recommends it to potential readers. “These are feelings and thoughts people deal with every day, and it just breaks me,” she said. “ I recommend it to all my friends so that they can have a different view, and enlighten them on feelings and emotions they may not completely understand.”



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Dare to Dream. Prepare to Lead.™

4 | Thursday, April 21, 2016

The University Star


Brandon Sams, Opinions Editor @TheBrandonSams @universitystar


Un-silencing and spotlighting the T in LGBTQIA



exas State University has been a pillar of progressive social values and inclusivity, unfortunately its namesake is everything it’s not: a regressive wasteland of outdate ideas and it’s time to clean it up. Universities are often both heralded and lambasted as progressive institutions, even in the red state of Texas many notable universities operate against the stream of socially conservative values. Yet, when it comes to transgender issues there is more work that needs to be done. “Currently the Student Health Center does not provide any hormone therapy for the transgender community,” Health

Promotion Specialist Arlene Cornejo said. “We have been considering expanding our resources to accommodate the growing needs of the community.” Accommodation is one thing, acceptance and authenticity is another. Currently, the only university in Texas that covers transition related medical expenses such as hormones is the University of Houston. Texas States inclusion of gender identity in its non-discrimination policy is an important step in the right direction, but more things need to be done to make them feel like they have a place that cares. Unfortunately, when transgender students

leave the relative safe space of the university, things are as bleak as one would imagine. The Transgender Law Center is one of the leading legal resources regarding the trans community. The organization rates states gender identity policy based on four criteria: marriage and relationship recognition adoption and parenting laws, safe school laws and policies and non-discrimination legislation. Out of a possible score of 16 Texas rates as negative threefourths when it comes to protections; indicating that the laws and policies the state does have are meant to work against the transgender community. This is the next battle

for equity and personhood in America. In this raging culture war, after the dust settles and the social progressives signal another victory, hopefully the future for the trans kids of today will look a lot less bleak than those who came before them. Last year while supporters of the gay community were screaming “love wins” transgender people were being murdered with impunity. According to a Human Rights Campaign report, there were more transgender homicide victims in 2015 than in any recorded year. The people murdered were almost exclusively transgender women of color, the most vulnerable among the community members.

In fact, the date from 2013-2015 shows that 87 percent of the people murdered were transgender women of color. Even worse, not a single purported hate crime was prosecuted and none were even reported as hate crimes. While lawmakers are worried about who’s pissing in which bathroom, people are being assaulted; yet, because they are different than the relative “normal” they are deemed unworthy of respect, and by proxy undeserving of life. The mass violence is what epidemics are made of. It is the vision of culturally-sanctioned violence. It is transmisogyny, the confluence of transphobia and misogyny: the hatred, indifference and discrimination toward trans women, gender non-conforming people and others on the feminine-of-center end of the spectrum. Love didn’t win last year when the bells rang for marriage equality. Frankly, love has never won. Society continues to hate and loathe those who are different than what it defines as the norm, and until that definition is all inclusive love will only be a fleeting fantasy. It is time to let love in and let love win. Respect and compassion go a long way. To navigate this hellish world with poise and tempered anger the way the transgender community has, given the all too unkind way society treats them takes a certain assuredness, strength and resilient self-love. Celebrate that, Bobcats, and aboard the transgender acceptance train to make Texas State a true, inclusive community.

The Main Point is the opinion of the newspaper’s editorial board. Columns are the opinions of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the full staff, Texas State University Student Media, the School of Journalism and Mass Communication or Texas State University.


Humans suck, lets get rid of them By Jeffrey Bradshaw OPINION COLUMNIST @jeffbrad12


or around 4.5 billion years, the earth has been doing its earthy thing, but it only took us around 300,000 years to ruin it. The human species is inept. There is no possible way for our species to utilize our unique brains to figure out the massive environmental problems facing the planet. The only way to cut the unhealthy tie between fossil fuels and us would be to use another source of energy. If only free energy could fall out of the sky or something. This planet is unique, as far as we know. Therefore, we must sterilize every single person to save planet Earth from ourselves. We were given a beautiful gift and we have continuously spat in its face. In 1989, Exxon Valdez ran around in Alaska spilling oil all over the untouched wilderness. We let this happen and we are lucky Mother Nature can’t slap us in the face. We started the practice of agriculture around twelve thousand years ago, and even with all of our supposed intelligence,

the Dust Bowl struck in the 1930s. The Dust Bowl was a result of poor soil practices which caused massive storms ruining many lives. If only we could have prevented this tragedy by having some practice with farming… The number one problem facing this planet is the overuse and misuse of resources, and people are the only ones doing this. Therefore, we must sterilize everybody. This would be very hard, but I think chemistry would be the answer. We could develop a chemical and spray it

of them, speeding up the retribution Earth craves. This may sound cruel to kill off our own species, but it is necessary to save the Earth. People like Ted Cruz who deny climate change further prove the necessity to sterilize everyone. This practice would be artificial selection and we could select the stupid genes to breed out. However, we are all stupid so the only way to artificially select the right genes out is to sterilize everyone. With all the nonsense our species has created,

it is time to say enough is enough. For example, the movie Wanted could not have been made by a species designed to survive. The good thing is the chemical needed to rid the world of the human parasite would take some time to develop. Therefore, everyone reading this will not have to be the last generation. If you love this planet, you can agree sterilization of the species is the only answer. —Jeffrey Bradshaw is a political science junior

Buckle up, bucket heads By Mikala Everett ASSISTANT OPINIONS COLUMNIST @mikala_maquella


t is safe to assume most college students are not looking to die anytime soon. However, a startling number of scholars do not wear seatbelts. The faction of “educated” young adults who don’t wear seatbelts are a danger not only to themselves, but to others around them. To enroll in college, one must have suffered through four years of high school to receive a diploma or obtain a General Educational Development certificate amongst other things. In high school, most Americans had to take basic science classes where students learned Newton’s Laws of Motion. When thinking about seatbelts, Newton’s first law of inertia comes to mind.


An object in motion stays in motion unless acted upon by an equal and opposite force. Therefore, if people do not wear seatbelts in the car, their delicate, jelly-roll bodies will be flip-flopping everywhere in the correct circumstances. Seatbelts were put in place not for display or fashion features, but to protect individuals riding in a car. Far too often I have witnessed folks getting into my car without putting on the seatbelt. That’s fine if you want to play with your life like. However, I do not wish to be that dumb. Not only does the lack of a seatbelt affect the body bag not wearing a seatbelt, but also others in the car. In the case of an accident, the person who is not wearing a seatbelt will be flung around the car. Their body can possibly harm or kill others before being ejected out of the window. Doesn’t that sound like a fun time? No one likes being in a bad car accident, but the use of a seatbelt increases a person’s chance of survival by 45 percent. It has been seen time and time again that wearing a seat belt can save your life, yet many people are still not wearing them. I have a friend who does not like to put on seat belts. Every time he gets in my car, I stare him down until he does. When he gets in the car and does not immediately put his seat belt on, I cannot help but imagine his broken, bruised and very dead body lying a few feet in front of my car. With his teeth lodged in the back of the front passenger’s skull and his foot jammed into my upper spinal cord, not only would he be a goner—we would be too. It is unfair to yourself and others to not wear a seat belt. No matter what angsty or sincerely depressed emotions arise, the car is not the place to release frustrations and put people at risk. The seat belts were put in place to counteract the laws of motion and to protect the individual in the seat. It would be extremely chaotic if no one ever wore a seatbelt, and our streets would be littered with tossed bodies. Put on your damn seatbelt. —Mikala Everett is a mass communications sophomore


The University Star Editor-in-Chief...........................................Kelsey Bradshaw, News Editor........................................................Anna Herod, Sports Editor..............................................Paul Livengood, Lifestyle Editor......................................Carlie Porterfield, Opinions Editor..........................................Brandon Sams, Multimedia Editor..............................Daryl Ontiveros, Copy Desk Chief.................................Abigail Marshall, Design Editor..............................................Lauren Huston,

from airplanes. Of course, there may be some side effects to this planetsaving chemical, but if the aim is to rid the worlds of humans, then this should not be a big problem. The human intelligence can only go so far. We have gone to the moon, but can’t even recognize the dire situation Earth is in. Humans do not deserve the one-of-a-kind planet we have inherited. We must sterilize everyone now. As this last generation gets into its golden years, they will have no one to take care


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The University Star is the student newspaper of Texas State University and is published every Monday and Thursday of the spring and fall and every other Wednesday in the summer semesters. It is distributed on campus and throughout San Marcos at 8 a.m. on publication days with a distribution of 6,000. Printing and distribution is by the New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung. Copyright Thursday, April 21, 2016. All copy, photographs and graphics appearing in The University Star are the exclusive property of The University Star and may not be reproduced without the expressed written consent of the editor in chief. The first five issues of each edition of the paper are free. Additional copies of the paper can be purchased at 50¢ per copy. Contact The University Star office at (512) 245-3487 to purchase additional copies.

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The University Star

Thursday, April 21, 2016 | 5


Brandon Sams, Opinions Editor @TheBrandonSams @universitystar


Women and the fear of fleeting beauty with age Jessica King OPINIONS COLUMNIST @JessCheyKing


ost young women steadily begin to worry over their looks and future prospects. In 2010, the Bupa Health Pulse conducted a 12 country survey on aging concerns between men and women. The studies show women care a lot more about their looks than men. Men and women as a whole have different fears when it comes to getting older. According to research, men tend to fear impotence versus women whose concern leans more towards being physically pleasing. The typical cliché regarding women and aging is a middle-aged woman sitting in front of a mirror conceitedly poking and prodding at a few harmless wrinkles with a tear in her eye. According to senior living Care, lack of attractiveness is the number one aging fear. Many women tie their self-esteem with their physical appearance. Once their breasts start reacting to gravity and nature takes it’s course with wrinkles and achy joints, depression can quickly ensue. Due to this, women spend countless dollars on facial creams and night masks guaranteeing drastic results much like gym memberships. According to Laurie Jacobs, director of the Jack and Pearl Resnick Gerontology center at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City, “Women are always,


unfortunately, more concerned about whether they appear old. Your sense of appearance is associated with your functional status” However, despite the trite belief older women are vain, many fear much more in regards to aging than their attributes. These fears are, for example, being alone, not being financially secure, health issues and becom-

ing a burden on family. Though all of which are valid fears, sometimes women can grant their uncertainties too much power. Some could say women worrying about appearances could go hand-in-hand with their fear of being alone—especially if they feel they have to compete with a younger generation. When finances come into question, men tend to

be much more secure due to income like social security and pension, which disproportionately benefit men over women. Even if a woman is married, once her husband passes, she could be in trouble. This connects with the fear of being a burden on family. Few cultures, such as American, view care for the elderly as an affliction, so imagine how a single woman in her 50’s must

feel. Considering the fears of financial destitution, becoming invisible and a burden on family, it is no wonder why so many women are desperate to prevent and reverse the aging process. To a degree, fear of growing old is a threat to a woman’s survival. A case can easily be made by going above and beyond for looks this is effort to thrive

in a superficial world. It’s better to have a laugh line indicating a life lived to the fullest, than to be like a strange lady on the internet who never laughed or smiled to avoid wrinkles. Love yourselves, ladies, and life will be dandy. —Jessica King is a psychology major


Texas State should boom into bloom during springtime By Jeffrey Bradshaw OPINIONS COLUMNIST @jeffbrad12


pringtime should change the landscape of Texas State with wildflowers. Here in the Hill Country, it is the one time of

the year that feels tolerable outside—wildflower season. In most parts of the state, people can only see wildflowers on the side of highways. This sight is always breathtaking, but it is not as magnificent as seeing a field covered in wildflowers. The Texas Hill

Country is truly gifted with this spectacular natural display. Unfortunately, the only flowers we tend to see in the landscaped areas of campus are well-manicured flowers from a store. There should be more Texas wildflowers on campus so

students and faculty can enjoy their beauty. There are many landscaped areas around campus that make it beautiful, but it could be more so with the addition of Texas wildflowers. We all know about the Texas bluebonnet, but there are


an astonishing number of other beautiful wildflowers. By implementing flowers on campus, people can also see some flora they might not be familiar with. We should support anything encouraging state pride. Many students, including myself, are from cities where there are not many opportunities to experience wildflowers. I was amazed when I came to Texas State and went hiking and saw the wildflowers. School officials should add more wildflowers on campus so students can experience the beauty of Texas. We should all have pride in our wildflowers, especially since we go to Texas State University. The university has its own official flower, the Gaillardia, but you do not see them on campus. The Gaillardia is a beautiful flower and would make a great decoration for our campus. Two dorms are actually named after flowers: the previously mentioned Gaillardia and Lantana. It would be great to see each dorm decorated with a different wildflower. One great aspect about wildflowers is they are native to this state. They do not require as much water

making them better for the environment. People do not have to replant these flowers each year. I have already seen plenty of native plants around campus and it is time to go one step farther and plant more wildflowers. Workers are currently finishing the project in front of Commons Dining Hall. This project has a lot of concrete area, which could have been perfect for a wonderful collection of wildflowers. There are many places on campus which would be perfect for hosting wildflowers. We are going to continue to grow as a university and should start incorporating wildflowers into the landscape design of dorms and buildings. Wildflowers have made Texas famous , and they could make the university famous. Ranging from blue to red to pink to orange, wildflowers are truly a magnificent sight and we should bring their beautiful colors on to Texas State. Lastly, I want to remind landscape designers or future construction project workers to paint with all the colors of the wind. —Jeffrey Bradshaw is a political science junior


Don’t get scammed, Bobcats By Cris Rivera OPINIONS COLUMNIST @cris_rivera13


s tax season draws to a close, anxiety runs rampant in people’s bodies as they shuffle to get forms in on time, and done correctly. Consequently, this leaves people more susceptible to scams run by con artists and thieves, who obviously lack any sense of morality. These scams seem some-

what plausible under normal conditions. However when they are added with the stress of filing taxes, the same scams become very real. Once you know what to look for, it becomes a simple matter of identifying when you are being met with a scam. It is important to first take a second to calm any anxiety induced by an unknown party contacting you about finances and taxes. Take

a breath, sit down and attempt to remain calm before looking for the common signs of a scam. The IRS has an entire page dedicated to identifying common scamming practices, and to specifically tell the public what it will never do if investigating tax issues. The biggest item on the list is the IRS will never call people before first sending a notice and bill in the mail. A random caller claiming to

be the IRS and asking payment through PayPal is not something the real agency would do—that’s just shady. Another big tell is the IRS will not employ scare tactics to add anxiety to the situation. Scammers use scare tactics such as threatening to bring in the FBI to raid your home in an attempt to induce panic and irrationality. This is remedied by simply calming down and realizing no one would call to inform of

a raid in 30 minutes. Lastly, the IRS will never ask for a payment over the phone with no way to appeal the amount, or by a specific form of payment. Payments due to a taxing issue is a professional process done in person. No one denies how scary the IRS is, but as a government institution, it does operate professionally. If it falls anywhere short, red flags should go up and ending the call is the best

move to make. Texas State has been marred over recent years with IRS scammers trying to take advantage of vulnerable students. Remember, just like a break up, only children do important business over the phone.

—Cris Rivera is a computer science freshman

6 | Thursday, April 21, 2016


The University Star Paul Livengood, Sports Editor @IAmLivengood @universitystar



The Bobcats took a 3-0 loss to the No. 24 ranked Baylor Bears, their last non-conference opponent of the season. Losing to the Bears marks Texas State's 17th loss overall. The Bobcats record is now 27-17 on the year, and 6-9 in the conference. The Bobcats have lost the last six meetings against Baylor and are 16-38 all-time against the Bears. Both teams went scoreless in the first four innings of the game. Baylor got their first three runs in the bottom of the fifth. Kyla Walker, freshman outfielder for the Bears, scored the first run of the game unearned off of a wild pitch. Linsey Hays, redshirt senior outfielder, hit a double bringing in Sarah Smith, senior infielder, and Jessica Scoggins, sophomore outfielder. The Bobcats made their first two hits of the game in the sixth inning. Both teams

went scoreless the rest of the game. Kelli Baker, senior second baseman, and Kimberlin Naivar, junior first baseman/ outfielder, each got one hit for Texas State. Randi Rupp, sophomore pitcher, threw for 4.2 innings. Rupp struck out two batters and only allowed four hits. This loss is Rupp's ninth loss of the season. Quincy Charleston, junior pitcher, threw for 1.1 innings and struck one batter out. The Bobcats committed two errors in the game, one by Ariel Ortiz, sophomore shortstop, and one by Corina Liscano, junior third basemen. The two errors by Texas State were the first committed since March 26 against UL-Monroe. Coming up for the Bobcats is a three-game series this weekend against the South Alabama Jaguars at home. The two teams have a doubleheader on Saturday, one game at 1 p.m. and the second at 3 p.m. The final game of the series will be played on Sunday at 11 a.m.



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By Matt Perry SPORTS REPORTER @Matt_Sperry17 Matt Perry: What got you into softball? Kelli Baker: When I was about four or five, I was up in Ohio, and I watched two of my cousins play a baseball game. I just thought it was the coolest thing ever, and I told my mom and dad that I wanted to sign up for that. So they signed me up to a league when I was five years old and I fell in love with it back then. MP: Who is your biggest inspiration? KB: I’d have to say my dad because him and my mom got married early and started from nothing. He’s worked really hard to provide for the family, and I’ve been fortunate to be able to play this game and travel. He and my mom traveled to all of my games which is a really awesome feeling for me. MP: What brought you to Texas State? KB: The softball coaches contacted me and I

came up here and loved the university. I loved the coaches and the girls, and they had a great physical therapy program, which is what I ended up majoring in. I just love everything about Texas State. MP: Since coming to Texas State, what is the most exciting thing you’ve experienced? KB: Honestly, I guess just all the ups and downs of softball. It’s not always good and it’s not always bad. Just having your teammates and your coaches there as a second family, getting to go through the highs and lows, putting in all the work and striving for one common goal— it’s been a real blessing. MP: What has been your biggest achievement? KB: Being able to represent this university for four years. I know not a lot of people get to play for all four years. A lot of people transfer, but I’ve been blessed to be here for four years and continue on. MP: What’s been your big-

gest challenge? KB: Being a student athlete and the time and demand. The amount of energy and effort it takes to be an athlete and on top of that, the same amount of energy if not more to be a student and keep up with your classes. Especially during season, when you’re traveling and missing a lot and maintaining those relationships with your teachers and friends. MP: What’s your favorite place to travel? KB: I don’t know if this is considered traveling, but my favorite place to play is in Austin. MP: What is your favorite food? KB: I love Chinese food. MP: What are some hobbies you enjoy in your free time? KB: There’s not a lot of time where I’m not playing softball, but I like to relax and be chill. MP: Do you have a favorite sports team? KB: The Houston Texans. MP: Did you play any other sports besides softball

when you were younger? KB: I played volleyball and basketball. I ran track and did pole-vaulting. MP: What is your biggest fear? KB: I think my biggest fear would have to be disappointment. MP: Do you have any siblings? KB: Yes. I have an older sister who is married and has a beautiful baby girl who is almost one-anda-half, and then I have a little sister who is a freshman at Texas State. MP: What would you like to do after you graduate? KB: I’m going to HardinSimmons University to get my doctorate in physical therapy. MP: What would you say your favorite season is? KB: Summer, without a doubt. Being out in the sun and getting to try to hide my softball farmer’s tan as much as possible.

The University Star

Thursday, April 21, 2016 | 7


Paul Livengood, Sports Editor @IAmLivengood @universitystar


You’ve got a friend in me Brooke Phillips Sports Reporter @brookephillips_ Many athletes dream of being able to pursue the sport they love in college. The athletes lucky enough to do so are on a team filled with players from all different places and backgrounds. However, on the Texas State baseball team, there are two athletes who come from the same city and neighborhood. Braden Pearson, sophomore left handed pitcher, comes from Georgetown, were he moved to in seventh grade. Moving to another town as a teenager was not easy, but Pearson’s fears quickly eased as soon as he stepped foot in his new neighborhood, where he ultimately would meet his best friend. Pearson says Alec Sanchez, junior right handed pitcher, was his first friend when he made the big move. Sanchez started off as a neighbor, then turned into a best friend, before finally being a teammate. Pearson and Sanchez played on the same baseball team throughout high school. However, Sanchez, is a year older and was the first to go off to college. While Texas State is only an hour away from George-

town, Sanchez committed here for his freshman year of college. When Pearson was still a senior in high school looking to going to college, he looked to Sanchez for advice. “Alec came to Texas State his freshman year of college, and honestly, he was a big part of why I came here,” Pearson said. “He said he loved it here. He transferred his sophomore year, but then he came back this year and is playing now.” Pearson looked to not only Sanchez but his peers on the high school baseball team as he sought advice to make his decision. “It was instrumental early on because a couple of his high school buddies that were older than him committed to Texas State,” Brian Pearson, Braden’s father, said. “The idea that he could be somewhat close to home so his parents and friends could see him play and also knowing some of the guys on the team was helpful.” Watching Braden play is Brandon Pearson hangs out with his teammates in the bullpen during a game against Nevada April 8. exactly what the Pearsons minutes away from the nearhave done, supporting him at Pearson and Sanchez fami- time together. lies have grown close over the “Hunting is what we always est lake, where he likes to go every game they were able to. “You want your kids to do years. Not only does Braden do,” Braden Pearson said. fishing, wakeboarding and well and excel and do better Pearson’s family support him “Sometimes once or twice a jet skiing. “He loves to be outside to than you did,” Brian Pearson at games, but they cheer on week we usually also go out Sanchez from the stands as and play golf.” hunt and fish,” Brian Pearson said. “It’s always exciting to Braden Pearson has always said. “He loves to keep busy see Braden come in and get to well. The baseball field is not been an outdoorsman. Back and his friends think he has pitch against quality players.” Being neighbors, both the the only place where Braden in Georgetown, Braden Pear- the personality and is a funny Pearson and Sanchez spend son lives only a few short kid to hang around.”


As Bobcats, Braden Pearson and Sanchez have become teammates on the baseball field, roommates and most importantly, have created a lifelong brotherhood.


Bobcats are Sun Belt Conference Champions By Matt Perry SPORTS REPORTER @Matt_Sperry17 After six top 10 finishes this year, the Texas State women’s golf team came into the Sun Belt tournament looking to erase the past two years and win it all. Texas State did just that, and won first place in the tournament with a team score of 895. Maty Monzingo, junior, individually won first place for the Bobcats with a threeround score of 221. The first round for the Bobcats landed them in second place with a team score of 301. Lora Assad, senior, Raksha Phadke, junior, and Monzingo shot three-over par 74. Assad had three birdies, 11 pars, two bogeys and two double-bogeys. Phadke had 15 pars and three bogeys for her first round. Monzingo had two birdies, 11 pars and five bogeys in her first round. Millie Saroha, junior, shot an eight-over par 79 for her first round. She had two birdies, seven pars, eight bogeys and a double-bogey. Anne-Charlotte Mora, freshman, shot a 10-over par 81 in her first round. She had one birdie, nine pars, six bogeys, one double-bogey and a triple-bogey. The Bobcats needed to strike on the second day, and

that’s exactly what they did. They shot a second-round team score of 297, which was the lowest team score of the day. Assad shot a six-over par 77 in her second round. She had 13 pars, four bogeys and a double-bogey. Phadke shot a one-under par 70 for her second round. She had three birdies, 14 pars and a double-bogey. Monzingo shot a two-over par 73 in her second round. She had three birdies, 11 pars, three bogeys and a doublebogey. Saroha shot another eightover par 79 in her second second round. She had two birdies, nine pars, five bogeys, a double-bogey and a triple-bogey. Mora shot a six-over par 77 in her second round. She had two birdies, 11 pars, three bogeys, a double-bogey and a triple-bogey. The Bobcats as a team sat atop the leaderboard after the second day. Troy sat in second place, 12 strokes behind.

The third and final round brought great things for Texas State. If the team could play well, the past two years of being runner-up would end. The Bobcats finished the final day by shooting another team score of 297 to clinch their first place title. Assad finished with a oneover par 72 in her final round. She had three birdies, 11 pars and four bogeys. She finished with a three-day total of 223. Phadke finished with an eight-over par 79 in her final round. She had 11 pars, six bogeys and a double-bogey. She had a three-day total of 223. Monzingo finished with a three-over par 74 in her final round. She had two birdies, 12 pars, three bogeys and a double-bogey. She had a three-day total of 221, and fought her way through a playoff-hole to beat Shania Berger, sophomore for Arkansas-Little Rock. Monzingo won the tournament outright for Texas State. Saroha finished with a 14-

over par 85 in her final round. She had two birdies, six pars, seven bogeys, two doublebogeys and a five-over par on one hole for a three-day total of 243. Mora finished with a oneover par 72 in her final round. She had four birdies, nine pars and five bogeys for a three-day total of 230. The Bobcats finished with two of their five players in the top three, so it was no surprise they would win this tournament. After being second after the first round, they came back with a goal to win the tournament. The overall score of 895 beat everyone else in the Sun Belt for the right to be confer-

ence champions. Next up for Texas State is the NCAA Regionals in early

May, with the location to be determined.



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