VOLUME 103, ISSUE 77
Defending the First Amendment since 1911
APRIL 9, 2014
TRENDS | Page 3
SPORTS | Page 5
Riverfest: Ricardo Soliz, SACA pride and traditions coordinator, discusses what students can expect from this year’s event.
Softball: The team will look for its first road victory of the season Wednesday night against the UTSA Roadrunners.
Parking officials implement solutions to alleviate debt By Taylor Tompkins News Editor
Every parking space on campus will be monetized beginning next fall in an effort to alleviate Transportation Services’ debt and avoid raising permit prices, officials say. Nancy Nusbaum, interim director of Transportation Services, said the changes have been devised because the department “cannot continue operating in the red.” The changes will affect commuters, residents, faculty and staff. No permit fees will be raised for the upcoming academic year. “It’s getting pretty tough trying to stretch our dollar,” Nusbaum said. “You can’t keep everybody happy, but we’re trying our best to accommodate people the best
we can.” A special event fee will be applied to parking garages in order to bring in revenue through avenues other than permits, Nusbaum said. The special event parking fee will be $5 per car in both the LBJ Student Center Parking Garage and Edward Gary Street Parking Garage. Departments will have the option to either pay for the fees itself or have its guests pay in cash to park the day of the event. Commuters will see changes to their permit availability. Residents will not be allowed to purchase purple commuter permits because of over crowding in the commuter lots. “A lot of our residential students bring their car and
See PARKING, Page 2
Andrew Smith | Staff Photographer Duy Le, sustainability studies graduate student, assembles a bin April 7 for the “Bobcats Go Green” project.
Stadium recycling program looks to expand By Scott Allen
student-run recycling program hopes to expand efforts for green initiatives after its pilot season in Bobcat Stadium ended. “Bobcats Go Green” is an initiative that aims to get students more involved with recycling by
implementing programs at Texas State football games, said Duy Le, sustainability studies graduate student. Le coordinated the initiative designed to cut down on the amount of trash in and around the stadium by promoting recycling. “‘Bobcats Go Green’ was originally a recycling program but has evolved into a call to action,”
Le said. “Think of ‘Bobcats Go Green’ as a challenge to students to become more environmentally aware about the impact they each have on the planet.” Bobcat Stadium workers sold more than 8,000 plastic bottled beverages and 6,000 drinks in dis-
See GREEN, Page 2
Star File Photo
Chartwells to replace Pizza Hut with Papa John’s in The Den By Raquel Kimm News Reporter
Chartwells Dining Services at Texas State has announced the Pizza Hut Express in The Den Food Court will be replaced with a Papa John’s in fall 2014. The addition is another initiative by Chartwells to provide healthier options in dining halls, said Abel Valencia, Chartwells senior marketing manager. Chartwells has officially decided construction for the new Papa John’s will be done over the summer. It will be built in the Pizza Hut Express’ current location and will accept meal trades, dining dollars and Bobcat Bucks. “It will be the big summer project,” Valencia said. “We need to
keep up with our students growing needs, and the trend right now is to be healthy so we will provide those options with this Papa John’s.” The catering service has added numerous options to all of their dining halls such as the gluten free food available in the Jones Food Court, Valencia said. Papa John’s is the first of possible brands to be added to dining halls throughout campus, he said. “Chartwells has partnerships with many popular brands,” Valencia said. “Papa John’s being all about fresh and never frozen ingredients really helped with our push to provide not just more choices, but more healthy options.” Papa John’s is the third largest national pizza brand in the world,
said Brannigan Goguen, a Papa John’s manager in San Marcos. The chain has more than 4,000 restaurants internationally and is known for its ongoing commitment to quality, according the Papa John’s website. “Our dough and our ingredients all come to us fresh,” Goguen said. “That’s what gives it the right flavor and the chewy, crisp crust.” Kelsey Eidson, psychology freshman, said she is excited about the options being added to dining halls on campus. “The dining halls are always pretty good about providing us different stuff to eat,” Eidson said. “I’m moving off campus next se-
See PAPA JOHN’S, Page 2
Madelynne Scales | Assistant Photo Editor Papa John’s will replace Pizza Hut in The Den in fall 2014.
Administrators developing background check system for summer camp workers to comply with state law By Juliette Moak News Reporter
Texas State officials are creating a new certification program to perform background checks on summer camp workers. The new certification was created in an effort to protect the youth participating in on-campus programs and to remain in compliance with state law. In 2012, the Texas legislature mandated that institutions of higher education conduct training, testing and background checks for employees of certain programs for minors held on their campuses, said Ronald Brown, assistant vice president of Academic Services. Texas State met these requirements for the past two years by contracting with a third party background screening company. However, university officials decided to develop their own
program when the company stopped providing the service, Brown said. “We have to be approved by the state,” said Joanne Smith, vice president of Student Affairs. “We’ve been working with the university system to develop a plan similar to theirs and we’re getting ready to submit the application for approval.” The program is modeled after the youth safety policies, which were adopted by Texas A&M University and Southwestern University, and focuses mainly on child sexual assault and misconduct prevention, Smith said. The background checks will be conducted through the Texas Department of Public Safety, said John McBride, director of Human Resources. Running the checks through the DPS is much faster and more cost effective than the national vendor the university used, which could take several weeks to return and cost $39 per
background check, McBride said. “(The national vendor) is much more thorough, goes back many years, covers in some cases nationally and at a minimum regionally,” McBride said. “The DPS check is almost instant and it only costs a dollar, which is why the decision was made to use the DPS for the camp employees.” The third-party company used by the school for the past two years included criminal records both in Texas and outside the state and charged $5 for each of their background checks, Smith said. “Potentially, things like drug use or theft might not be picked up if it happened in another state,” Brown said. “But all sex offenders who live here are registered through the state
See BACKGROUND, Page 2
Some commuter parking spaces to be eliminated to make way for construction projects
By Taylor Tompkins News Editor
About 700 commuter parking spaces will be eliminated over the next year due to construction. Stephen Prentice, assistant director of Parking Services, said the Speck Street surface lot, which contains 442 commuter spaces, will be lost to construction on a new residence hall in May. Some of the lost parking spaces will be replaced near the new residence hall, Prentice said. A 172-space lot will be constructed in January near Canyon Hall and will
contain residential, faculty and staff spaces. “It’ll be hard to access,” Prentice said. “You’re going to have to come in from the back of Blanco (Hall) to get there, but that’ll be returned to green for the residence hall.” An additional 267 commuter space from the Strahan Coliseum and Bobcat Stadium East parking lots will be eliminated in January due to construction of the Loop 82 Overpass Project, Prentice said. Construction on the project is estimated to begin anywhere from August 2014 to January 2015.
2 | The University Star | News | Wednesday April 9, 2014
GREEN, continued from front posable cups during Texas State’s matchup against Texas Tech in September 2012, according to information provided by Le. At the time, there was not a recycling program in Bobcat Stadium for attendees to utilize and many of the plastic bottles from the game were thrown away instead of recycled. In February 2013, Le submitted a proposal to the Environmental Services Committee to implement a recycling and composting “zero-waste” program in Bobcat Stadium, said Gwendolyn Hustvedt, associate professor in the School of Family and Consumer
Sciences. The President’s Cabinet accepted his proposal in May 2013 on the condition that only recycling would be implemented, Le said. With the approval, the program received funding from the university’s Environmental Service fee, which costs each student $1 per semester and amounts to $73,000 annually for the university, said Nancy Nusbaum, assistant vice president of Finance and Support Services. Texas State was the first university in the state to have such a fee, according to an April 9, 2013 University Star article. Le said the program helps
make the entire community aware of the recycling effort since football brings the public together. The community can connect by combining football with a green initiative, which will benefit San Marcos, the student body and the environment, Le said. The new program, which is currently only in the football stadium, aims to put more recyclable containers in the other sports stadiums. Hustvedt said she acted as supervisor on the “Bobcats Go Green” project. She said she strongly believes other stadiums need more recycling, and mainly
the 12th day of class. About 125 commuters purchased residential permits this fall, Nusbaum said. “We got kind of a late start, we’re going to be more timely,” Nusbaum said. “I think it might interest people to buy more because we’ve had the entire upper floor of Woods open and we’ve had Matthews with vacancies. We’ve had a lot of green (permit) vacancies.” Hangtags will no longer be sold because they have been abused by some commuters, Nusbaum said. Students were sharing permits between multiple cars, which is prohibited. Nusbaum said these changes were discussed with the Transportation Services Advisory Council, Associated Student Government, Residence Hall Association and Faculty Senate, among other groups, and were approved by the President’s Cabinet.
Le said he believes although recycling may be mundane to some students, it will hopefully be more widely accepted throughout campus one day. “(The) ‘Bobcats Go Green’ program will hopefully become the voice of the environmentally active students on campus,” Le said. “It will communicate the growing demands of an increasingly environmentally conscience student population for many years to come.”
PAPA JOHN’S, continued from front
PARKING, continued from front leave it there for weeks, 24/7 and they don’t work off campus, or go home, and their car just sits,” Nusbaum said. “Last year when they were able to buy the perimeter, students took advantage of it, rightly so, I certainly understand. But they were parking where our commuters could not find spaces.” Residents can purchase the $485 green resident permits or a new $115 Mill Street Residence lot. This will allow residents to store their vehicles in the Mill Street lot during weekdays. Bobcat Shuttle will continue to run its Mill Street bus to the lot for transportation to and from campus. Bobcat Village residents will not be allowed to purchase perimeter or the new Mill Street permit. They must buy the $265 permit specific to the complex. Commuters will be allowed to purchase any left over green resident permits after
Strahan Coliseum. “I personally see Strahan as a separate case from our other athletic facilities because it also serves the campus in so many other ways,” Hustvedt said. “The types of containers needed in Strahan would likely be different from those out on the windy ball fields. The coliseum is in use almost year round by students and the public, which means the containers would need a lot more attention.” In the future, the program looks to expand to all athletic events and hopes to make recycling more fun.
mester, so this definitely increases my chances of buying a commuter meal plan so I can eat on campus more.” The Pizza Hut located in LBJ Student Center will stay the same. There will now be two different pizza options on campus, Valencia said.
“Papa John’s hasn’t decided their official meal trade option yet, but it should be sold in individual slices, which will be good to eat when you’re quick and on the go,” Valencia said. “This is different than Pizza Hut.” Jones Food Court will be renovated this summer and will fea-
ture “brand name” food options there as well, Valencia said. “There is a couple different places we’re thinking about putting in Jones when it’s under construction,” Valencia said. “The Panda Express will stay there for sure, but there’s definitely going to be other changes.”
BACKGROUND, continued from front of Texas, so that will definitely show up.” Any kind of sex offense would result in a denial of the applicant, Smith said. The director of hiring for each particular program would evaluate any adverse report on an individual basis. Independent associations whose camps are hosted by Texas State have the option of using the background check program of their choice to approve their workers, Smith said. To complete their certification, applicants would be required to
undergo training on the definition and effects of sexual assault, patterns of behavior that put children at risk, and rules and procedures for reporting abuse and neglect, Smith said. Applicants have to pass a test covering the training materials. They would be asked to identify potentially dangerous situations to minors, among other things, Brown said. “The certification is mandatory for anyone who would be staying on campus overnight, or working with minors in small
groups,” Brown said. “And that includes all on-site counselors and residence life employees.” Returning workers must undergo a background check on an annual basis, although the certificate of completion they receive for passing the training is valid for two years before it requires renewal, Brown said. The university expects the program to receive approval from the Department of State Health Services in time to begin hiring workers for the camps that begin in May, Brown said.
The University Star | Wednesday April 9, 2014 | 3
City officials, employees shave heads in support of local child with cancer By Kara Dornes Trends Reporter
Ricardo Soliz SACA pride and traditions coordinator
Courtesy of Stacy Malone
By Caitlin Rodriguez Trends Reporter
fter former city employee Stacy Malone explained to Fire Chief Les Stephens that her 5-year-old son was having a particularly hard time adjusting to his chemotherapy-induced hair loss, Stephens felt compelled to act. “I thought it would be funny to shave my head and take a picture of it to send to Waylon,” Stephens said. “I sent a text to four or five other people asking if they wanted to participate as well and from that small group it blossomed into this large event.” Sixty-five San Marcos community members gathered at Fire Station 5 March 21 to shave their heads to show support and solidarity for Waylon. Waylon was diagnosed with Neuroblastoma—a form of extracranial cancer most commonly found in children—a few years ago and is currently receiving treatment at St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tenn. The 65 “Waylon Warriors,” which included Mayor Daniel Guerrero, helped raise $11,000 toward Waylon’s treatment or travel expenses his father and older sister face traveling between their New Braunfels home and Tennessee. Waylon and his mother were able to watch the community mem-
bers shave their heads together via Skype. Stacy Malone described it as a very emotional experience. Although Waylon wasn’t feeling particularly well the day it happened, Stacy Malone said she tried her best to explain how incredibly special it was that everyone was doing this for him.
“All of us just wanted to make Waylon happy for even just a moment, and show him that being bald isn’t a bad or scary thing.” —Mayor Daniel Guerrero “Watching everyone have their heads shaved and to see so many people supporting Waylon was amazing,” Stacy Malone said. “It was very inspiring to know that there are so many truly selfless people in the world who really aspire to helping others.” Guerrero said he felt a sense of connection with Waylon as he himself battled cancer as a 5-year-old. “My cancer experience was a defining moment in my life and has motivated my passion for service,” Guerrero said. “All of us just
wanted to make Waylon happy for even just a moment, and show him that being bald isn’t a bad or scary thing, that we were all there to support him.” Stephens said his show of support for Waylon transferred to his own children. His 7-year-old daughter expressed a strong desire to shave her head just like Stephens did. They eventually came to the decision to show solidarity by cutting her long hair shorter and sharing a picture of her new haircut with Waylon. “It’s interesting to see how my kids have responded and that they understand that this is the right thing to do,” Stephens said. “Seeing them learn how to treat people with compassion, that’s the most rewarding part for me.” With more than 500 “warriors” on Facebook, Waylon is never short on support. Yellow T-shirts with the phrase “Keep Calm and Fight On” were made so friends and family could show their support. To keep his spirits lifted, Stacy Malone said she always reminds Waylon the treatment he is receiving is “slaying the dragon” inside of him. During especially difficult treatments that require him to be isolated for seven days at a time she tells him that he’s receiving special superhero powers. “What 5-year-old boy doesn’t want super powers?” she said.
Peace Paper Project aids Texas Wild Rice survival By Aubrie Iverson Trends Reporter
tFor artists Margaret Mahan and Drew Matott, papermaking is a means of therapy. Mahan and Matott’s Peace Paper Project has been touring and teaching across the United States and international borders since the duo decided to expand their focus in 2011. The two broadened the Combat Paper Project, which focused on American veterans and combat victims, to any group that may benefit from the ancient technique of paper preparation. “It’s amazing how universal papermaking is,” Mahan said. “The people we teach take a risk in making their first sheet, but after that, they’re hooked.” The process can be quick and fun or long and laborious, depend-
ing on the amount of fiber to be transformed and the memories and emotions associated with the cloth. The pair has seen all sorts of fabric fed into their Hollander beater, from Indian saris and veterans’ uniforms to colorful cotton underwear. The latest venture for the Vermont-based team is the pulping, pouring and pulling of hydrilla, a water weed that threatens the survival of the San Marcos River’s beloved wild rice. The resulting paper, muted green and a rough sort of elegant, will be on display Friday night as part of the annual Wild Rice Festival’s Community Bike Ride Art Crawl from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Zosima Gallery. Matott and Mahan will host a spot at Sewell Park Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. that will allow festival goers a chance to make their own sheets of paper in an effort to
raise awareness about the threat hydrilla poses to the river environment. For Matott, who has been making street art with paper for more than 10 years, any experience can be translated into fiber. “Paper is pretty cross-disciplinary,” Matott said. “We look at the world through the lens of papermaking.” Following Peace Paper Project’s involvement in the Texas Wild Rice Festival, Mahan and Matott will remain in San Marcos and participate on campus as part of this year’s Common Experience program, “Minds Matter: Exploring Mental Health and Illness.” The artists will be speaking with students and faculty about papermaking and their work with art therapists around the world beginning at 2 p.m. April 14 and wrapping up at 1 p.m. April 18 at various locations across campus.
Meadows Center brings San Marcos live shipwreck exploration The Meadows Center for Water and the Environment at Texas State will operate a 24hour Exploration Command Center April 15, 16 and 24, where a team will help guide exploratory dives on four shipwrecks via remotely operated vehicle (ROV) underwater robot. The command center will be hosted in the Meadows Center’s Discovery Hall on campus at 211 San Marcos Springs Drive. Visitation is welcome, free and open to the public. The public is invited to visit the command center 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and speak with Meadows Center mission archaeologist Fritz Hanselmann and researcher Sam Meacham while watching the Gulf of Mexico expedition unfold via live stream. The three-day event is part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) ship Okeanos Explorer’s 2014 Gulf of Mexico Expedition mission, the latest round of exploration for a team that includes The Meadows Center, NOAA’s Office of Ocean Exploration and Research and Office of National Marine Sanctuaries, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement and the Texas Historical Commission. The Okeanos Explorer made reconnaissance dives on the first of these shipwreck sites in 2012 and 2013. The Ocean Explora-
tion Trust’s exploration vessel Nautilus then explored that shipwreck and discovered two others nearby. In 2013, the team again studied these three wrecks, which became known collectively as “the Monterrey shipwrecks.” The Monterrey shipwrecks are approximately 150 miles southeast of Galveston. “After studying the ships and artifacts inside, we believe these wooden ships date to the early 1800s,” Hanselmann said. Expedition archaeologists and scientists plan to further explore the sites April 15, 16 and 24, then they will move to a fourth site, which is a potential shipwreck elsewhere in the Gulf. “The unexplored site has only been documented with sonar and based on those images, we suspect it might be a shipwreck,” Hanselmann said. “This is an exciting opportunity to return to the Monterrey shipwreck sites and to potentially discover something completely new.” The Meadows Center for Water and the Environment was so named following a $5 million gift from The Meadows Foundation in August 2012. The Meadows Center for Water and the Environment is dedicated to environmental research, stewardship, education and service. —Courtesy of the University News Service
One of the spring semester’s most anticipated events, Riverfest returns this year with an entirely different style of performer. Ricardo Soliz, SACA pride and traditions coordinator, discusses Riverfest’s musical departure and what students can expect from this year’s event. KD: Who is playing at Riverfest? RS: We don’t necessarily have a specific artist; it is more like a genre. We are doing EDM this year and the group we are bringing is iExperia. KD: Besides the concert, what other events are going to be featured at Riverfest? RS: We always give opportunities to other student organizations to kind of get a boost. We are going to be having a bunch of different booths around the cement walkways at the park. All the organizations will be selling items, promoting events or recruiting people. We also have some businesses coming to promote their products as well. Right now we are bringing Spotify and they will be giving away access codes and stuff like that. KD: Why did SACA choose an EDM artist this year? RS: Well we usually poll students through the SACA Facebook page and we always kind of get the same response for the techno and EDM genre and it is always a front-runner. But usually those artists are expensive because the genre is so popular. Though this year I found an organization that caters toward the college market and I wanted to make sure that we could raise enough funds to bring this group to San Marcos for Riverfest. KD: What exactly is Riverfest? RS: So Riverfest is one of our most anticipated events when it comes to SACA, and for Texas State in general. Right before finals kick off we have an all day festival at Sewell and it is kind of a way of letting loose before we dive into finals. We usually bring in a big new artist and have other free giveaways and big announcements. It is really just a big stress relief before finals come and to get everything out of your system so you can really focus on the tests. It is also SACA’s last event of the year and we lead up all the anticipation up to this event. KD: How long has Riverfest been going on? RS: This is going to be the 11th year of Riverfest. KD: How did Riverfest get started? RS: When it was first started it was mainly just a student organization festival and they had battle of the bands competitions and they highlighted local artists, but it has now evolved into something much bigger as the years have gone by. KD: Why should students come to Riverfest? RS: When it comes to the entire student programing on campus, part of the tuition goes to the main student organizations like Cat Camp, Paws Preview, SACA, and ASG. So we put on events for students to take advantage of, so I would suggest people to go because you are technically helping us out anyways so we are putting on to give back to Texas State students. We do work hard throughout the semester so why not take advantage of the free things we put on for the students.
4 | The University Star | Wednesday April 9, 2014
Students must be aware of mental health issues, services
n light of the recent Fort Hood shooting, it is important for students to bolster their knowledge of mental health issues, make sure they are aware of the signs and symptoms in others and know what resources are available to them if needed. Spc. Ivan Lopez opened fire April 2 at Fort Hood, killing three fellow soldiers and injuring 16 more before committing suicide. At an April 3 press conference at Fort Hood, Lt. Gen. Mark Milley, said there is “very strong evidence” that Lopez had medical history that suggested an unstable mental condition. The gunman was being assessed for possible post-traumatic stress disorder and was receiving treatment for depression and anxiety. Mass shootings such as the one at Fort Hood have a strong connection to mental health issues. According to a April 2 Mother Jones article, a majority of the 68 mass shootings in the last decade were perpetrated
by individuals with signs of mental health issues, many of whom showed obvious signs of distress before committing the crime. The best way to prevent such tragedies is to be educated on mental health issues in order to recognize signs and symptoms in oneself and others. Once an issue is detected, students can direct themselves or others to the appropriate resources before mental health issues escalate. Without proper treatment, mental health problems can result in self-harm, suicide or, rarely, violence. According to a University of Washington Mental Health Reporting factsheet, while there is a link between violence and mental health issues, the connection is greatly exaggerated in the mind of the public. Unfortunately, many mental health issues have stigmas attached to them in American society. Most commonly, apparently depressed or suicidal individuals are seen as attention
seeking, weak or violent. Such stereotypes are not only blatantly untrue, they can also prevent people who have mental health issues from seeking the help they need. Because those with mental health problems may fear others viewing them negatively, they might try to deal with issues on their own. Seeing as many mental health issues are the result of chemical imbalances in the brain rather than easily altered thought processes, this often does not work and may cause mental health issues to worsen, eventually spiraling out of control. According to statistics from the National Institute of Mental Health, 90 percent of all suicide victims in the United States have a mental disorder such as depression and/or substance abuse issues. Suicide was the third leading cause of death for young adults aged 15 to 24 in 2007. According to suicide.org, suicide is even more prevalent in
college students. It is critical that students understand the risk factors, signs and symptoms of mental health and how to get help. There are numerous resources on campus, in San Marcos and even online that students can utilize to educate themselves as well as to alleviate or treat mental health issues. Students with severe mental illness in danger of committing suicide can schedule an emergency appointment with the university Counseling Center. The student health center on campus offers psychiatry services and can prescribe drugs such as anti-depressants should they be needed. There are several support groups for issues such as substance abuse and sexual assault both on campus and in the greater San Marcos area. The Counseling Center offers group sessions for those experiencing mental health issues not imminently threatening their lives. Students who think they may have a mental illness
but are not sure can also take a mental health screening on the Counseling Center website to determine whether to seek help or not. Students
Ryan Jeanes | Star Illustrator who do not wish to speak with someone face to face or who are contemplating suicide but do not have access to any of the above
resources can call the national suicide hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or the Travis county hotline at 472-HELP.
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.
Women should not face judgment, ridicule for opting out of motherhood
LGBTQIA allies should be wary of representing, speaking for community
as bachelors, independent, driven and focused on their careers. Women who do not want children are not characterized as nicely. After surpassing their childbearing years without having a kid, childless women are stereotyped as zany, spinster aunts who are always a bridesmaid but never a bride—worn out, past their prime and even worthless. The choice to not have children should be respected, regardless of gender. Women should not have their choices trivialized simply because they are female. Opting out of procreating is a personal decision. Whether a woman chooses a career over a family or simply does not view herself as mother material, the choice should not be met with condescending remarks on how she will eventually change her mind. Women are adults. They can make their own decisions. People often say women who do not want children will eventually change their minds. However, the point of the matter is, at this moment, they do not desire to have kids. Patronizing remarks, regardless of whether they eventually turn out to be true, are disrespectful. When I tell others I want to remain independent and have a career instead of mini-me’s, people too often roll their eyes and scoff. I made this decision early in high school and looking toward the
gender identity. Ally voices should offer nothing more than support—anything else would be inappropriate. I understand how straight allies think they are “fighting” for our rights, but to me that is not the case. Allies offer their support and advocacy for our rights and struggles—that is all. It is the LGBTQIA community that “fights” each and every day against vandalism, slander, bad jokes, violence and even murder. That is what fighting is. If I get my ass kicked (as if someone could) and someone aids me afterward they did not all of a sudden “fight” for me, they simply offered their support in my time of need. Helping is not the same as fighting. Allies should not be co-opting the struggles of sexual minorities for their own self-satisfaction. My intentions are not to slander or distance allies, simply to educate. Straight allies have pure intentions, but sometimes the way they go about things can come off as ignorant and entitled. Many straight allies are guilty of treating LGBTQIA individuals as their sexuality and/or gender identity instead of as a person. I am not defined by my sexuality any more than straight allies are defined by theirs. Introducing someone as “my gay friend” or “my trans girlfriend” demonstrates a lack of both tact and understanding. Everyone,
Alexis Aguirre Opinions Columnist Journalism sophomore
omen should not be met with opposition when choosing to have a career in lieu of children— the choice is a personal one and should not be defined as good or bad by society. Too often am I met by agape stares and gasps whenever I reveal my choice to not have children in order to pursue a career. Some people react as if I have just said the most offensive thing in the world. Such negative reactions to a personal choice are uncalled for and a bit dramatic. I am tired of hearing rants on why I should, nay, need to have children. My favorite reason others think I should have kids? My gender. There is a double standard when it comes to young adults who do not wish to have children. While men who do not want kids are met with understanding nods and ‘of course, you are a guy’ remarks, women are seen as betraying their gender if they do not want children. If a man chooses to live life childless, they are seen
future, my choice to not have children seems more like the right decision. My stance is not budging. The choice to have a successful career over kids is becoming a more popular one amongst college-educated women. According to a Pew Research Center, the number of childless women past their childbearing years rose by a whopping 80 percent in 2008 since 1976, from 10 percent to 18 percent of all women between the ages of 40-44 years old. In the same year, 24 percent of women between 40-44 with bachelor’s degrees were childless. More women are choosing to be trailblazers and CEOs instead of being barefoot and pregnant. One is not better than another, and women should have the right to choose whichever future works for them without facing negative backlash. Whether wearing a Banana Republic pantsuit in a corner office or comfortable mom jeans and reading bedtime stories to kids, women should not be criticized for choosing differently than what society expects of them. While men are dismissed as just being men for making the decision to remain child-free, women must face constant opposition for the same choice. A woman’s choice to not have kids is a personal decision and should not be subject to judgment in society.
Brandon Sams Opinions Columnist Public relations freshman
traight allies mean well and are an important part of the greater LGBTQIA community but should make sure not to speak for a group of people they are not a member of and whose struggles they can therefore never fully understand. Every marginalized community has allies who offer their support. In general, allies are welcomed and are often an important and integral part to communities and their acceptance in society. That being said, allies are not directly affected by the discrimination marginalized communities face, and as such they should make sure not to co-opt movements nor speak on behalf of the communities they support. Straight allies who attempt to talk on behalf of the LGBTQIA community cannot speak from a place of experience. They are not a part of the community and do not know what it is like to be systematically discriminated against because of their sexuality or
regardless of sexual preference or gender identity, is a person first. Who someone sleeps with or how they identify themselves is more often than not of little importance. When confronted by LGBTQIA individuals about their problematic behavior, straight allies sometimes get defensive. Instead of listening to the critiques of someone actually in the community, they think they have everything already figured out and refuse to alter their behavior. However, as an outsider advocating for a community they are not a member of, their understanding can only go so far—a truth that straight allies must recognize. When straight allies do not listen to actual members of the LGBTQIA community, it makes me question whether they are allies because they truly want to help or rather simply because they want to make themselves look good. I really would like to believe it is more the former than the latter. The work of straight allies is not taken for granted and the vast majority of the LGBTQIA community is grateful for their support, kindness and care. The work they do and the support they give is invaluable and vital to the success of the LGBTQIA movement. However, sometimes allies just need to listen before they think, think before they speak and speak before they act— that is all.
Drinking age accurately reflects young adults’ maturity level
Rivers Wright Opinions Columnist Journalism junior
he drinking age should stay at 21—18-year-olds are still too young and naïve to add alcohol into
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their lives. Most 18-year-olds have just graduated high school and are entering unsupervised circumstances for the first time. Being able to do whatever they want whenever they want can lead to dangerous situations, one of which is drinking too much alcohol. Alcohol consumption in college is a lot more intense than it is at some high school party. Even though 18-year-olds can smoke, drive and vote, adding alcohol into the
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equation for someone who is about to take on a lot more responsibility is not a smart idea. Eighteen-year-olds face more pressure when they enter a college setting. They have to learn how to handle being alone, higher levels of stress and increased social, academic and financial pressure. Some students feel pressured to drink during this time in order to be accepted by those around them. Others may use alcohol to escape from their problems, responsibilities
and schoolwork. This is obviously dangerous for many reasons. One common issue in college culture is binge drinking. Binging on alcohol is already a problem for underage drinkers. Giving young adults easier access to alcohol along with all the other pressures students face is dangerous. Students can end up in the hospital with alcohol poisoning, or even in fatal car accidents. I understand being 18 and wanting the right to drink. I was there. Now
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being 21 and legally able to drink, I understand that the right to drink comes with responsibility. The temptation to go out and drink every night is strong and is something I have to learn to control. At 21, there are still a lot of students who cannot hold their alcohol. Even those older than 21 can have trouble knowing their limits and controlling their behavior. Lowering the drinking age would only increase the amount of alcohol-related accidents, as many young adults have
not yet matured enough to handle regular alcohol consumption. Allowing more people to make bad decisions is a bad decision in itself. Even though 18-year-old students are considered adults by society and are given the responsibilities of adults in many aspects, some if not most still have the mentality of a teenager. Teen is still in the name. Letting 18-year-olds mature a little bit before being able to legally drink is the best decision.
The University Star is the student newspaper of Texas State University and is published every Tuesday, Wednesday 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 Wednesday, April 9, 2014. 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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Texas State loses to Houston 7-1 Tuesday night on the road By Kirk Jones Sports Reporter @kirk_jones11 The Texas State baseball team dropped to 18-14 overall this season after losing Tuesday night to Houston 7-1. The team did not record its first hit until the fourth inning when Garrett Mattlage, junior infielder, pulled a single down the right side of the field. The Bobcats connected on three hits in the contest and had five total base runners for the game. Colby Targun, junior outfielder, walked twice in the game and scored the only run for the Bobcats in the fourth inning. Granger Studdard, freshman outfielder, recorded the RBI on a single up the middle and scored Targun from
third to put Texas State on the board. The team did not record an extra base hit in the game and did not have a runner in scoring position past the fourth inning. Dylan Bien, freshman pitcher, threw five innings and allowed four earned runs on three hits. Bein struck out two batters in the second inning then allowed a walk to start a 4-run rally for the Cougars. Texas State’s pitching staff walked six batters compared to the Cougar’s two. Andrew Boes, sophomore pitcher, relieved Bein in the sixth and was unable to record an out after walking two batters. Ross Goebel, senior pitcher, stepped in for Boes faced six batters and allowed 1 run on two hits.
Alexandra White | Star File Photo Tyler Davenport, freshman pitcher, pitched the next inning followed by Jack Finnegan, freshman pitcher, to finish the game. The freshmen combined for two innings of work and allowed one hit to finish the game. The Cougars scored 3 runs in the bottom of the sixth after Justin Montemayer, Houston infielder, singled through the right side to score the runner from third and
give Houston the 5-1 advantage. David Longville, Cougars pitcher, threw four innings in the game. Longville gave up two hits, struck out three batters and allowed 1 earned run. Andrew Lantrip, Houston pitcher, replaced Longville in the fifth and allowed one hit against 13 batters faced. Lantrip earned the win for the Cougars and recorded the second
win of his career. Bein tallied the loss and moved his record to 0-3 on the season. The Cougars used four pitchers in the matchup compared to Texas State’s five. The Bobcats continue their five-game road trip against Louisiana-Monroe in a three-game weekend series. Players and coaches were not available for comment.
Bobcats seek a victory against Roadrunners in first of four road games By Cameron Cutshall Sports Reporter @CameronCutshall The Texas State softball team will look for its first road victory of the season Wednesday night against the UTSA Roadrunners. This is the second matchup between the teams this season. The Bobcats scored seven runs during the fifth inning in the previous contest and ended the game in a runrule win with a bases-loaded walk to defeat the Roadrunners 8-0. Kortney Koroll, junior designated player, went 2-3 and had two RBI in the last matchup. Koroll had the game-winning RBI walk that gave Texas State the victory. Koroll hit a two-run homer against South Alabama over the weekend. Koroll leads the team with six home runs this season. Koroll is two shy of making the top-10 list for home runs in a season for a Bobcat player. “I look to hit the ball hard,” Koroll said. “(I practice) on Madelynne Scales | Star File Photo seeing the ball and looking for good pitches to drive.”
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The Bobcats are coming into the matchup after the team defeated No. 11 South Alabama twice in San Marcos. Texas State is currently one game above .500 with a 21-20 overall record. “I think we’re feeling really confident,” said Ashley Wright, sophomore pitcher. “We’re keeping the mindset of just competing, going in there and doing what we do. We are not trying to do anything special or change anything.” UTSA has an 18-21 overall record and is 13-9 when playing at home this season. Megan Low, UTSA designated player, leads the team offensively with a .391 batting average, 45 hits and is the nation’s top home run producer with 16 for the season. Low earned a hit and a walk in the last game against Texas State. The Roadrunners have hit 49 homers total this season, ranking them eighth nationally in home runs per game. “If you look on paper, they’re a little better offensively now than they were when we played them a couple of weeks ago,” said Coach Ricci Woodard. “Any time you put
the Roadrunners in front of us they’re looking to beat us.” Courtney Harris, junior third baseman, is currently on a six-game hitting streak and is leading the team offensively with a .342 batting average. Harris, along with Timishia North, senior outfielder, and Kelli Baker, sophomore second baseman, make up 49 percent of the team’s 273 hits this season. Rayn House, senior pitcher, earned her 18th win this season, leading the Sun Belt Conference. House pitched a complete-game shutout in Texas State’s last matchup against the Roadrunners.
House leads the team on the mound with 181.1 innings pitched and 171 strikeouts. Texas State begins its four-game road trip against UTSA. The Bobcats will travel to Atlanta to play conference opponent Georgia State in a three-game series this weekend. “We’re going to have to, again, make sure we do the little things right.” Woodard said. “We need to make the plays defensively. We need to pitch well, and we’re going to have to swing the bats well and make some timely hits if we want to win.”
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