TUESDAY MARCH 24, 2015
VOLUME 104 ISSUE 69
Defending the First Amendment since 1911
check out all our south by southwest coverage on twitter at #starxsw SXSW
“This is our last show, and we’re going to give you f*#@ing
MADELYNNE SCALES PHOTO EDITOR
Jack Antonoff, lead singer of Bleachers, performs March 20 at Stubb’s Bar-B-Q during the South by Southwest Music festival.
Bleachers delivers high-energy show at SXSW By Kelsey Bradshaw NEWS EDITOR @kbrad5
undreds trekked through the mud and waited in the rain at Stubb’s Bar-B-Q to see Bleachers, a popular band. Bleachers is headed by Jack Antonoff, the lead singer who started the band in 2014 after keeping the project a secret. The band played
three shows at South by Southwest and ended with a performance at Stubb’s. The Ting Tings and Clean Bandit played before Bleachers. The Ting Tings performed their popular song “That’s Not My Name,” and Clean Bandit played “Rather Be.” The band performed in the rain to a crowd of dedicated concertgoers. “Austin, Texas!” Antonoff began. Antonoff bounced around the stage throughout the band’s 40-minute set.
“This is our last show, and we’re going to give you f***king everything,” he said. “You guys are the greatest.” Stephanie Kay, Austin resident, said she came to see Bleachers because the group was one of her topfive favorite bands from the 2014 SXSW Music festival. “I just want to hear their new stuff,” Kay said. “I really do. Every time, I’m surprised coming to South By.” Kay made her way to the front row of the venue to see Bleachers perform.
“At 5, I leave my office and book it over here,” Kay said. “I’ve only Pedicabbed once this week, so my legs hurt.” The band is known for its popular single, “I Wanna Get Better.” The group sang “Reckless Love,” “You’re Still a Mystery” and “Wild Heart.” The band surprised the rainedon crowd with a saxophone solo. Antonoff introduced each member of the band halfway through the performance. Each member had a solo
proving the band’s rock-star quality. Antonoff wore a white buttondown shirt with the sleeves ripped off. This appeared to be a strategic move to accommodate his arm-swinging and jumping around on stage. Antonoff got close to the audience multiple times. At the end, he climbed into the screaming crowd, singing, “I Wanna Get Better.” “You guys are the f***king best for watching this in the rain,” Antonoff said.
Snoop Dogg gives SXSW Plain White T’s anything but plain Music keynote to ‘his peoples’ By Kelsey Bradshaw NEWS EDITOR @kbrad5 There was only one thing to do at the Plain White T’s set March 19 at the South by Southwest Music festival—rock out. The band, made famous in 2007 by its hit “Hey There Delilah,” performed its sixth show at SXSW in Red Eyed Fly, a bar adjacent to Sixth Street. The venue was an intimate setting, complete with twinkle lights and an outdoor patio. The band was within arm’s length of the crowd of over 50 people. Some people in the crowd wore plain white T-shirts to listen to the five-piece band. The band played “1234” and “Rhythm of Love” during the 40 minute set. The band showcased some songs from its new album, “American Nights.” “One of my favorites off the
new album is called ‘Stay,’ and we played that one, and that’s actually the second time we’ve ever played that live,” said Tom Higgenson, lead singer. “Even though my voice is shot, the mic f***ked up a couple cords, but it was really fun to play and kind of get that feel with the crowd vibin’ on it. It was awesome.” Higgenson wore a red leather jacket with mustard converse shoes. He tried to channel his “inner Michael (Jackson),” he said. Eight years have passed since “Hey There Delilah” came out, and it is still what the band is most known for. “Everybody relates to it,” Higgenson said. “I feel so grateful, ya know, that I got inspired and wrote that one—it’s awesome.” Higgenson said the fact people still know the Plain White T’s for that song is “insane.” “The only annoying part is
See PLAIN WHITE T’S, Page 2
MADELYNNE SCALES PHOTO EDITOR
Tom Higgenson and Dave Tirio of the Plain White T’s perform March 18 at Red Eyed Fly for the South By Southwest Music festival.
By Kelsey Bradshaw NEWS EDITOR @kbrad5 The South by Southwest Music keynote speaker position is a coveted role once held by Johnny Cash, Dave Grohl and Lady Gaga. Rapper Snoop Dogg made his mark on the festival March 19 at the Austin Convention Center as the 2015 music keynote speaker. Ted Chung, Snoop Dogg’s manager, moderated the 45-minute session. The conversation was set to start at 11 a.m. The line to get into the auditorium wrapped around a hallway of the convention center at 9:30 a.m. Lindsay Lambert, Houston native and Snoop Dogg fanatic, arrived at the convention center at 8:40 a.m. She was first in line. “The plan was to make sure we got in and got a good seat,” Lambert said. “We were one of the first ones in the whole building. There were maybe four other people in the building.” Lambert is a longtime fan of Snoop Dogg and said coming to his keynote session was a no-brainer. “You have to love Snoop Dogg,” Lambert said. “I think he’s kind of a fun voice of our generation.” The session was more popular than planned. By 11 a.m., only standing room was available. Those who could not get a seat were sent to another room to watch the live stream of Snoop Dogg and Chung. Snoop Dogg said he writes for the people. “(My mother) told me to love people no matter what color they was,” Snoop Dogg said. “I feel like everybody is my people.” The rapper said he calls fans “his peoples” and social media has
been a great way to connect with those who care about the music. He called social media a bridge connecting the gap between “people and people.” “I depend on (my fans) like they depend on me,” Snoop Dogg said. “It’s a love relationship.” Snoop Dogg uses platforms such as YouTube because they provide a way to see into the music industry. Chung said every person has a voice in the age of social media, but being a superstar known around the world takes something special. Snoop Dogg has been nominated for 16 Grammys and has sold over 30 million albums worldwide. He began his career in 1992 and is known as a rapper, songwriter and actor. “I want that greatness,” the rapper said. “You have to strive to be great.” Snoop Dogg was confident in his work when he began his career instead of being scared of the moment.
“I have no regrets,” Snoop Dogg said. “I love everything I did and the way I did it. It was meant to be.” Snoop Dogg said he has enjoyed every part of his career—the good, bad and ugly. The rapper talked about the diverse group of activities he participates in when not making music—painting, smoking and his youth football league. “Snoop does paint quite often,” Chung said. The rapper said he started painting when one of his fans suggested it on social media. “When I’m painting, I’m in a whole other universe,” Snoop Dogg said. “I’m an abstract artist.” Snoop Dogg is often associated with marijuana. The rapper’s Instagram account is full of videos of him smoking. “What’s the first thing you think about when you wake up?” Chung said.
See SNOOP DOGG, Page 2
KELSEY BRADSHAW NEWS EDITOR
Snoop Dogg speaks March 20 at the Austin Convention Center during the South By Southwest Music festival.
2 | The University Star | Tuesday, March 24, 2015
PLAIN WHITE T’S, from front that’s the song we’re always going to be known for, even though we have more hits and everything,” he said. “But the good thing is we’re always going to be f***king known because of that song and that song is going to be, hopefully, knock on wood, played forever.” Higgenson said the group has played in Austin before but never experienced such enthusiasm from an audience. He said the crowds at SXSW have been the most energetic
SNOOP DOGG, from front and fun groups the band has ever played for. “We all looked at each other (at one concert) like, ‘Holy shit, these guys are f***king awesome,’” Higgenson said. “Tonight was the same.” He said SXSW has totally exhausted him and the band. Higgenson’s voice was noticeably gone. “I’m exhausted, but we f***king killed it,” Higgenson said. “We had fun, and that’s all that matters.”
“Smoking,” Snoop Dogg said. The rapper is the head of Snoop Dogg’s Youth Football League. Twenty players have gone on to play for Division I teams, which Snoop Dogg said is one of his greatest accomplishments. The rapper has
never won a Grammy, but working with the football league is better than anything, he said. Snoop Dogg’s son is the first person in his family to attend a university, much less on a four-year football scholarship to the Univer-
sity of California-Los Angeles. Snoop Dogg announced his new album, “Bush,” will come out this May. “The music connects us,” he said. “Music is a universal language of all people.”
Dan Rather discusses the future of news at Interactive session
MADELYNNE SCALES PHOTO EDITOR
Dan Rather speaks March 17 during the panel “Breaking the News in the Age of Snapchat” at the Austin Convention Center for SXSW Interactive. By Nicole Barrios EDITOR-IN-CHIEF @NBBarrios The last day of the South by Southwest Interactive Festival
featured a keynote session with a journalism legend and one of the longest-serving senior White House advisors. Dan Rather, veteran anchor and CEO of News and Guts,
and Dan Pfeiffer, former White House senior adviser, spoke at ‘Breaking the News in the Age of Snapchat’ March 17 at the Austin Convention Center. Andrew Bleeker, president of Bully Pulpit Interactive, moderated the ‘Dans.’ The keynote speakers discussed the future of journalism, media platforms, the news business model and how people consume information. “A press release is not news,” Rather said. “News comes after what the White House puts (out) is out there.” Journalism practices that are commonplace today will soon be outdated, the speakers said. Pfeiffer said the practice of holding a White House press conference or brief might go away in the future. Reporters may not need to be in the room to ask their questions, he said. Ten years from now, White House briefings or press conferences might move to a live online format because there won’t be enough seats in the room for media representatives who wish
to attend. “There will always continue to be a need for reporters,” Pfeiffer said. He predicted the news industry will always have “Dan Rathers” and “Edward Murrows,” but they will not be on television. “Somebody has to be an honest broker of information,” Rather said. The role of mainstream media gatekeepers has diminished because of sites like BuzzFeed that do not operate on the traditional business model used by journalism outlets, Preiffer said. ‘Legacy’ news organizations no longer cover stories alone. The traditional advertising business model in journalism is gone but a new one has yet to take hold, Rather said. Viewers no longer rely on “allpowerful” news anchors or networks to present information, Pfeiffer said. They engage in news through platforms like Snapchat and other social media. Rather called Twitter “a national treasure.”
Millennials get most of their information from nontraditional sources, while outlets such as Fox News draw an older crowd. The days of stand-up broadcasting are gone, Pfeiffer said. News used to be a public service, but now it is a product, Rather said. “Content is not news,” Rather said. “News is content.” However, consumers easily forget that. Media officials must focus not solely on getting clicks or viewers but on producing substantial content, they said. Pfeiffer and Rather advised against “legitimizing” a New York Times article over a Buzzfeed article because both should be considered journalism. Rather encouraged journalists to not be afraid to ask questions and challenge those in power. He said journalists tend to think, “Who am I to question the President?” Both speakers said now is a good time to join the journalism field.
Saudi princess, women’s rights pioneer, gives keynote By Carlie Porterfield ASSISTANT NEWS EDITOR @reporterfield Princess Reema Bint Bandar Al-Saud of Saudi Arabia is from a kingdom that is often viewed negatively in regards to women’s rights, but she had a message for those who chose to focus on veils rather than people. “If you could get over their appearance and finally try to judge a woman based on her capabilities rather than her appearance, I think we really all, as a community, would go much farther,” Princess Reema said when asked about her headscarf. Princess Reema spoke at the South by Southwest keynote session March 14 and was interivewed by Robert Safian, editor-in-chief of Fast Company. The princess’ family owns Al Hama LLC, which operates the Riyadh Harvey Nichols, a luxury department store that was the first in Saudi Arabia to hire female employees. Women in Saudi Arabia were not allowed to work in sales when Princess Reema took over the store six years ago.
She asked her team to look at the law that didn’t allow women to work in retail. Women could not work in sales or at the cash register. However, the law did not specify women couldn’t work in makeup. The solution was a private makeup room where women could work with makeup artists to sample products. The policy addressed a need in Saudi culture. Female Saudi customers were uncomfortable with engaging with a man or with men touching their face, Princess Reema said. “What I wanted to do was deliver a high customer experience but also allow an oppurtunity for a woman to come to work,” Princess Reema said. Sales “shot through the roof” after private rooms were created and women were hired, Princess Reema said. However, Princess Reema faced hardships in hiring women. One issue was making sure her female employees were able to get to work on time. “Women in Saudi Arabia don’t drive,” Princess Reema said. “It’s a fact.” It’s not a formally written law but a societal expectation, she said. “I am in the situation where I can
afford a driver,” Reema said. “But when I look at my employees, it’s extremely difficult for them.” To help her staff, the princess offered a transportation stipend. Al Hama was the first department store in Saudi to offer a daycare for staff. Training female employees to work was a challenge, Princess Reema said. “They have never been put in a situation where they have been asked to function in a professional organization,” Princess Reema said of many Saudi women. “Training these women was actually preparing these women for life.” Princess Reema quickly observed many Saudi women lacked basic skills necessary to succeed in the workforce. This inspired Princess Reema to form an academy outside of her business to teach women “readinessto-work skills,” she said. She wanted to place emphasis on skills “nobody else is focusing on.” Courses prepare women for entrylevel jobs in professional fields. Princess Reema stressed learning these skills is beneficial for any woman whether she works or not. “There’s a lot of talk in the west about the value of the woman that
stays at home versus the woman who goes to work,” Reema said. “For me, the mother at home is your COO (chief operating officer). She is head of operations.” Princess Reema’s philanthropic contributions are not limited to women’s rights. She is a key member of the Zahra Breast Cancer Awareness Association. The organization is dedicated to spreading awareness of early breast cancer detection in Saudi Arabia. Breast cancer is often detected at a later date in Saudi Arabia compared to other countries, Princess Reema said. “(Saudi Arabia) is a very closed and private community,” Princess Reema said. “Talking about specific body parts are taboo.” The taboo is not limited to breast cancer. Ovarian and prostate cancer are often unmentioned as well, she said. Cultural issues play a role in preventing women from detecting breast cancer early, she said. “In the larger cities, women are very much aware,” Reema said. “Take one step out into the rural cities, and you get into the issue of multiple wives, and a woman does not want
to admit her unhealthy status so that she’s not replaced.” Because of this stigma, many women don’t catch their cancer until it is in Stage 4 or 5, when treatment options become more difficult, Princess Reema said. “It really should be as insignifigant as a cavity in your mouth,” Reema said. “We need to absolutely get ourselves to that point.” Princess Reema announced a new project during her keynote. She hopes to gather 10,000 Saudi women next fall to form the world’s biggest awareness ribbon. “Our message is actually not exclusively breast cancer,” Princess Reema said. “Our message is actually a circle of hope.” The event will also offer fitness activities like Zumba, a color run and spinning. Princess Reema acknowledged conservatives in Saudi Arabia are unsupportive of her initiatives. She remains steadfast in her goal to empower Saudi women. “If you stand still, you give them the power to push you down,” Princess Reema said. “If you keep walking, they have to follow you. I’d rather keep walking.”
LAST NIGHT OF ‘JIMMY KIMMEL LIVE’ AT SXSW FEATURES TRIBUTE TO AUSTIN By Nicole Barrios EDITOR-IN-CHIEF @NBBarrios “To Austin, I can’t love you more.” This was the theme of the March 21 taping of the “Jimmy Kimmel Live” show during South by Southwest (SXSW). Host Jimmy Kimmel and guest Willie Nelson sang a love song of sorts to the city the show called home during the week of the festival. The late-night TV show was recorded in the Long Center for the Performing Arts March 16-20 with guests who took part in SXSW. The last show of the week began with a rough start as potential audience members waited for hours in the rain outside the Long Center. The festival saw pleasant and sometimes sunny weather during the week, but the last day brought rain showers and cloudy skies. People in the line were let inside the performing arts center after an hour or two to dry off and wait some more for the show to begin. The show’s opening comic warmed up the crowd. Kimmel entered the stage to loud applause as the crowd rose to its feet. Kimmel joked about not being able to fit into any of his clothes after spending the week in Austin eating brisket. Kimmel shared some anecdotes about his week and hanging out with Bill Murray, then brought out his sidekick and cousin Guillermo. Kimmel explained Guillermo was weighed at the airport when the team arrived to Austin. The show would donate $2,000 to Urban Roots, an Austin charity, for every pound Guillermo gained during the week.
Guillermo was lowered down to the stage from the rafters of the Long Center wearing a shiny Texascolored cape, a cowboy hat and a suit with a Texas pattern. Guillermo’s starting weight was 192.4 lbs. He weighed 199.2 lbs. at the end of the week. Kimmel said the show will donate $15,000 to Urban Roots. Kimmel then began his love song to Austin. He started by himself but said he felt “lonely” onstage. Willie Nelson, legendary Texas country singer, entered to accompany him. “My blood type is queso,” Nelson sang. The crowd cheered as Nelson and Kimmel made references specific to the Austin community, mentioning
“My blood type is queso.” —WILLIE NELSON the Congress Bridge bats and Hippie Hollow Park. “I dedicate this song to Willie Nelson’s bong,” Kimmel sang to the crowd. “To Austin, I can’t love you more.” A giant Texas flag was lowered against the stage’s backdrop at the end of the performance. The audience gave a standing ovation. Kimmel apologized to the audience for the rain and the wait outside during the first commercial break. He thanked Austin for its hospitality during the week as the stage crew arranged his desk and chairs for the interview portion of the show.
The first guest was Nelson, who sported his classic long, silver braids. Nelson promoted his new autobiography, “It’s a Long Story: My Life.” The country singer poke about his new song, “It’s All Going to Pot,” which will be released on April 20 (or 4/20). The second guest was Colin Hanks, director of the documentary All Things Must Pass that premiered at the SXSW Film Festival. Hanks said he had seen the show’s musical guest, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, perform at the Central Presbyterian Church the night before. Hanks talked about his film and the history of its subject, Tower Records, the music retail store that once ruled the industry but later fell to bankruptcy. The crew changed the set during the next commercial break and arranged Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros’ instr uments: drum kits, a pi-
ano, keyboards, a bass, a tuba and a trumpet, as well as an electric mandolin and guitars. Sharpe entered the stage wearing brightly colored printed pants and unkempt hair. The band performed the songs, “If I Were Free” and “All Wash Out” from their new album “Live In No
Particular Order: 2009–2014.” “And they all wash out in the rain,” a lyric from the second song, was fitting for the performance. Kimmel thanked the band and his guests, apologizing to Matt Damon for running out of time once again. “We hope to come back again,” Kimmel said to the cheering crowd.
The University Star | Tuesday, March 24, 2015 | 3
TEXAS STATE ALUMNA ADVOCATES ANTIBULLYING IN SXSW DOCUMENTARY By Cameron Cutshall MANAGING EDITOR @Cameroncutshall
She was born under the oddest of circumstances. Most of her childhood was spent in seclusion from other kids of the same age. All she wanted was to be understood, but her journey didn’t begin until she had to understand herself. Elizabeth “Lizzie” Velasquez, Texas State alumna, is the subject of A Brave Heart: The Lizzie Velasquez Story. Velasquez was born with a rare unclassified syndrome preventing her from gaining weight. Only two other people in the world have been diagnosed with the same syndrome. Her parents, Rita and Guadalupe Velasquez, were told to never expect their daughter to talk, walk, crawl, think or do anything by herself. Lizzie, who is now 26 years old, has never weighed more than 64 pounds. The documentary debuted March 14 at the South by Southwest Film
Festival to a standing ovation. “This is unbelievable,” Lizzie said in a question-and-answer session after the premiere. “I’ve been waiting for this moment, to just stand here and take it in.” The film follows Lizzie’s life and chronicles the bullying she endured. She was tormented since kindergarten for looking different and became a victim of cyber-bullying as a teenager. Lizzie accidentally came across an eight-second silent YouTube clip one afternoon. The clip called her “The World’s Ugliest Woman.” The video had millions of views and thousands of hateful comments. “Lizzie, please, please just do the world a favor. Put a gun to your head and kill yourself,” was one of the comments left on the video. The video, and comments that came along with it, became a crucial part of Lizzie’s life. She did not let her syndrome define who she was. “I kind of started realizing that my life was in my hands,” Lizzie said. “I could either choose to make this really good or I can choose to make this really bad. I could be grateful
and open my eyes to the things I do have and make those the things that define me.” Sara Hirsh Bordo, director and producer of the documentary, met Lizzie after she spoke at the TEDxAustinWomen event. Bordo later approached Lizzie about the idea of making a documentary. Bordo founded Women Rising, the production company behind the documentary. It was started because of an act of verbal abuse Bordo experienced. “I was told by a female colleague that I belonged more in an apron than in an office,” Bordo said. “I just knew right then that I was here to have, and help, women champion each other, so Women Rising was born, and I know that what I want to do is to tell more stories of women and girls like the spectacular Lizzie.” The Velasquez family had previously been approached about making a documentary on Lizzie’s life. The family refused out of fear that Lizzie’s story would be exploited. Bordo approached the family over dinner one evening. Lizzie’s
“HE NEVER DIED” EMOTIONALLY GRIPPING THRILL RIDE By Quixem Ramirez SPORTS EDITOR @quixem Writing this review took five days because He Never Died irreparably messed up my psyche. The film He Never Died stretched the limits of my imagination to their brink. It was terrible. I mean that in a positive manner, by the way. The film follows Jack (Henry Rollins), who is mired in a deep, extended depression. Jack’s existence is limited to playing Bingo, eating in a diner, walking, watching television and napping. His isolation from humanity stems from his penchant for eating human flesh. Rollins played the role brilliantly. He said nothing. He did nothing. He was given a lot of rope to explore a character that had nothing to explore. The first 30 minutes of the film establishes Jack’s life—or lack thereof—while incorporating deadpan humor that fleshes out the base for his character. Rollins could have easily botched the role, but his steady performance allows the film to transition into something entirely different. He was compelling in a way most actors rarely are. To wit, I was invested in a guy whose idea of a good time is playing bingo for several hours with the elderly because it “takes the edge off.” The story is set in motion when Jack’s estranged daughter, Andrea (Jordan Todosey), enters the picture. Andrea, who spent the entire duration of her life with no father figure, is everything Jack is not: energetic, inquisitive, social and positive. She prods Jack incessantly, trying to find something to make him tick, but
to no avail. Eventually, Jack warms up to his daughter. He cultivates affection for his daughter that is a gigantic leap for the foundation of his humanity. Jack is forced to confront his inner demons when Andrea is taken by criminals resurfacing from his past. His superhuman ability and— spoiler—inability to die creates several opportunities for gruesome violence scenes. “Gruesome” is putting it lightly, though. These scenes were physically and emotionally jarring. It is going to take a while to erase them from my brain. While Jack is dispatching these criminals, he finds the time to develop a relationship with Cara (Kate Greenhouse), a waitress at his favorite diner. However, per usual, he does not make an effort to engage in any meaningful conversation. Their stilted, one-sided relationship worked in part because of Greenhouse and Rollins’ chemistry as they moved through dialogue with purpose. With Jack dominating the majority of the film, Cara acts as the liaison between the audience and the film. She sees things she did not want to see. We saw some things we did not want to see. There is something to be said for an entirely normal person having their world turned upside down in a span of a few days. Cara provided the film with some much-needed emotional depth and clarity. He Never Died is not just another aimless, meandering slasher movie. There is something more to it. I exited the theatre a different person—hardened and unsure of what I saw—and I questioned reality for several hours. That is the testament of a powerful movie.
parents were sure they would turn down her offer. “Halfway through dinner we could sense trust, love and care,” Rita said. “After that, (Bordo) would constantly ask us in the beginning, ‘What do you think? What do you think?’ I said, ‘You don’t have to ask us anything. You have our trust. You have our love, and we believe in you, and the story that you’re going to share is going to be the most amazing story.’” The final product premiered at SXSW received the Documentary Spotlight audience award. “I’ve cried every single time we’ve seen it, even though we lived it,” Guadalupe said. “All the memories come back. They’re all wonderful memories, but I’m just glad it’s up on the screen for everyone to see.” Lizzie has a new sense of purpose since production finished. Lizzie credited Bordo for allowing her to be herself. The film has given Lizzie a platform to stand up and speak out against bullying. “I was able to be myself on that screen because of (Bordo),” Lizzie said. “She made me feel safe. She
made it okay to be vulnerable, and she made it okay for me to say, ‘Yes, I can do this.’ She has been the reason I have changed from being just a motivational speaker to an activist.” Lizzie met with Congress and Senate members to tell her story and help push an anti-bullying bill. The bill is far from reaching the House of Representatives despite her efforts. “I hope you leave (the film) knowing my story and feeling inspired, but I really hope that you leave a little bit angry and ready to join our fight and to make a change,” Lizzie said. Lizzie embodies the film’s tag line, “Bullying stories are famous for having victims, not heroes.” She continues to be a hero for those who’ve been bullied. Lizzie continues to fight and plans to show the film in Washington D.C so others can hear her story and join the cause. “Lizzie represents hope, and hope has no demographic,” Bordo said.
Independent filmmaker has breakout debut By Britton Richter LIFESTYLE EDITOR @brittonrichter An independent film powerhouse has made her way to the festival circuit. Life in Color is a film written, produced, starring and edited by Katharine Emmer. The work is Emmer’s directorial debut, which premiered at her first South by Southwest Film festival. The dramedy follows Mary and Homer, two depressed 20-somethings floating their way through nanny gigs and various comedic jobs. Comedy and drama are common tools used together in film, Emmer said during a question and answer session after the screening. She used these elements to keep the film honest. “I wanted to play to Josh’s (McDermitt) strengths,” Emmer said. “I wanted it to be as true to life as possible. It is really hard to do an entertaining piece and not use both elements.” The theme of struggling young adults is seemingly overplayed but consistently resonates with viewers. Angela Hsu, audience
member, said she connected with the age demographic and emotional honesty of the characters. “It’s good to see films that are honest about depression,” Hsu said. “Comedy helps balance it out. Depression and comedy work well together.” Emmer said the process of making the film was unlike anything she expected. “I am the most impatient person I know,” Emmer said. “Writing is an ongoing process. I wrote the script in 10 days. We finished shooting in 24.” Emmer said her inspiration for the characters came from real-life experiences as a nanny and post-graduation misconceptions. “There’s this idea that when you graduate you get a job offer and go from there,” Emmer said. “There’s a lot of ambiguity.” Emmer said finding work was difficult. She said the film was a direct result of her desire to gain experience. “I started this process to acting work for myself,” Emmer said. “Along the way I fell in love with being able to tell a story.” John Honoré, director of
photography, said he reached out to Emmer to help create the project and find a crew. “It is just a matter of finding people who like your script,” Honoré said. “It was a fantastic script. I knew I had to work on it. It would shoot itself.” Emmer said she put a tremendous amount of trust in Honoré. The pair developed a close working relationship in order to create the film. Emmer couldn’t have logistically created Life in Color without Honoré, she said. Creating independent films can be difficult. “You just have to find a way to make it work,” Honoré said. Emmer said she would love to keep creating films and that South by Southwest felt like a perfect match despite her newness to Texas. “Every person I’ve met has been the kindest, nicest people,” Emmer said. “This is such an amazing community.” Emmer said the project helped her fall in love with filmmaking. “The most exciting thing I’ve learned is to go out and make something you are passionate about,” Emmer said. “It’s about making art you believe in. There’s a way to do it.”
PHOTOS AT SOUTH BY SOUTHWEST
MADELYNNE SCALES PHOTO EDITOR
Andy Frasco and the U.N. performs March 18 at Esther’s Follies during the South by Southwest Music festival.
MADELYNNE SCALES PHOTO EDITOR
Zell Squire, better known as the “Sixth Street Snake,” meditates upside down March 17 on Sixth Street during South by Southwest.
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4 | The University Star | Tuesday, March 24, 2015
THE MAIN POINT
Trees vital to campus population
rees and plants are an important part of what makes Texas State the most beautiful campus this side of the highway. The university was recently recognized as a Tree Campus USA by the Arbor Day Foundation. According to a March 12 University Star article, criteria for the award include the presence of a committee dedicated to campus tree projects and finances specifically devoted to arboreal care. The award is a reminder of the good that comes from taking care of the campus. New Bobcats are attracted to the Quad and surrounding green areas on tours. Therefore, university officials should not destroy too many of the trees on campus in their construction efforts. Aesthetic purposes aside, trees help prevent issues like soil erosion from occurring. This is an especially important detail in the hill country. When it comes to construction, officials
need to be mindful when deciding how much is good and how much is detrimental. During past construction projects, trees on campus were removed to make way for new buildings. What happens to trees when they are removed is unclear. Other factors that lead to removal include trees that are dead, diseased, have root conflicts or cause safety hazards. Except in the cases of construction, university officials do a good job of maintaining the health of campus trees. According to the same Star article, students in the Woody Plants Materials class work with university landscaping staff to examine the health of every tree on campus. Participating in the annual Arbor Day festivities is one way for students, faculty and staff to become more knowledgeable about campus trees. This year the national Arbor Day is April 14. However, Texas
State holds Arbor Day events in November due to cooler weather and an increased survival rate for trees planted. According to the university’s care plan, for every mature tree removed from campus another will be planted the following November. If fewer than 20 trees are uprooted, the Ground Operations Department will plant at least 20 at the annual Arbor Day event. Additionally, trees and plants are important for college campuses because of the correlation between nature and happiness. Sitting under a tree to eat lunch is much nicer than sitting in the dark depths of George’s watching dudes try and beat each other at pool. Being surrounded with sunshine on a campus bursting with life is part of what makes the university so unique. Students, staff and faculty must ensure the campus continues to shine in all the right ways.
RYAN JEANES STAR ILLUSTRATOR
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.
Aggressive breeds should be judged on individual basis
Kirsten Peek OPINIONS COLUMNIST @kirsten_peek
n Central Texas, particularly the Austin area, it is easier than ever to save a life by adopting a homeless animal. The next question is, where will people live with their new pets? Animal behavior specialists
recognize breed does not always determine the personality of a pet. Despite this, many apartments enforce bans on certain “aggressive breeds,” including Dalmatians, pit bulls, chows and German shepherds. Apartments should not hinder responsible pet owners by banning entire breeds. Humans have a moral responsibility to take care of the animals that have been bred and domesticated. Years of hard work by animal welfare organizations have brought awareness to the true nature of animals that have been unfairly deemed “aggressive.” People now realize with proper training and socialization, any breed can make a great companion. Responsible pet owners and
well-behaved dogs are punished by needless breed bans. Apartments that ban aggressive breeds fail to recognize this form of blind discrimination only hurts the animal welfare community. It reinforces an untrue stereotype that all pit bulls are aggressive and all rottweilers randomly attack strangers. This keeps these animals in shelters and does little to keep the pet-friendly renter community happy. People with experience know renting from a pet-friendly apartment can come with certain inconveniences. Residents at pet-friendly apartments may listen to their neighbor’s dog barking at night or find unpleasant surprises thanks to neighbors who choose not to clean up after their pets outside. They may see
the occasional cat sunbathing in the windowsill and, of course, have a few run-ins with their neighbors’ dogs when they are outside. Most people realize this comes with the territory of living at a pet-friendly property. With the prevalence of leash laws, there is no reason a dog that is outside of its home should be a threat to the community, as it is the owner’s job to keep the pet under control. People living in a pet-friendly community should remember the basic rules of courtesy when greeting an unfamiliar animal: ask before touching, do not mess with a dog while it is eating and never interact with an unfamiliar animal if the owner is not present. Bans on specific breeds provide a false sense of
security because they shift the focus away from responsible pet ownership and appropriate behavior around an animal. Alternatives to breed bans include “meet-and-greet” personality testing as well as requiring resident pets to be spayed or neutered. According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), more than 70 percent of all dog bite cases involve unneutered male dogs. Aggressive breed bans are outdated and ineffective. Apartments that enforce these restrictions ultimately harm responsible pet owners. –Kirsten Peek is a journalism senior
Internet memes useful in PSAs Faces of US currency need change way of bringing light to a serious issue and failed miserably. Attempts to be on-trend have left a subpar ad running nationally or globally doing little to support or end the issue it is enforcing. However, as if right on cue, naysayers decided to chime in with their unsolicited advice. This time, the relentlessly unsatisfied masses commented on the fact that domestic violence is a genderless issue and that focusing on domestic violence against women left abused men in the dark. Rivers Wright Domestic violence is certainly not OPINIONS COLUMNIST experienced by one gender alone, but the @MonsieurRivers main focus of the ad was to take a popular viral sensation and turn the tables. It left he world was seeing black and blue, or the Internet with something substantial to maybe white and gold, a few weeks ago when a picture of a dress, known as #The- talk about rather than simply the color of Dress, sparked international conversation. the dress. By all means, go ahead and put a During the very heated debate that took man in the dress and see what the perpetually angry have to say about that. the world by storm, the South African Instead of arguing about how someone division of The Salvation Army was quietly was left out and going over the ad with a creating an ad that is downright ingenious fine-toothed comb, people should be rallyand packs a powerful message. ing behind the ad. They should use social The Salvation Army created a public media to spread the word that domestic service announcement using #TheDress violence needs to be stopped. with the tagline, “Why is it so hard to see Unfortunately, not everyone was black and blue?” A second one responded, pleased, but the ad managed to get the job “Because they cover it with white and done. It surpassed its creative inspiration gold.” The first PSA featured a model layas the Internet switched gears and spread ing in the dress covered in bruises, and the the message with words of praise and other portrayed a woman applying makeup admiration for The Salvation Army’s quick to facial injuries. response to a fleeting viral Internet star. I give kudos to the marketing departAdmittedly, I wanted the dress to fall to ment for thinking so quickly and producing the wayside and be forgotten about, just a simple yet effective ad to bring awareness like Kim Kardashian’s butt. However, it is to an issue usually swept under the rug. impressive that this fickle fashion choice The Salvation Army managed to present was reinvented into something serious. an issue to the public without the need to This intelligent way of advertising managed incite anger or shove their opinions and to highlight an important issue without beliefs down the throats of the masses. being too somber and should be adopted This is the type of activism that needs to by more agencies. become more dominant over protests and unnecessarily angry agendas. Many other -Rivers Wright is a companies have tried this tongue-in-cheek journalism junior
The University Star Editor-in-Chief................................................Nicole Barrios, firstname.lastname@example.org Managing Editor....................Cameron Cutshall, email@example.com Letters................................................................................firstname.lastname@example.org News Editor..............................................Kelsey Bradshaw, email@example.com Lifestyle Editor..........................................Britton Richter, firstname.lastname@example.org Opinions Editor.......................................Imani McGarrell, email@example.com Photo Editor...........................................Madelynne Scales, firstname.lastname@example.org Sports Editor........................................... Quixem Ramirez, email@example.com Copy Desk Chief.....................................Sam Hankins, firstname.lastname@example.org
Jeffrey Bradshaw OPINIONS COLUMNIST @jeffbrad12
merican money might be green, but all I see is white. As it stands, there are only white men on the paper currency of the United States. It is about time this changes. From day one the United States, or rather the 13 colonies, was never an “all-white nation.” Even though the forefathers tried to kill as many Native Americans as possible, they were never completely destroyed. In 1619 North America saw the forced arrival of a third race, African slaves. So even though it was white people who designed this country, slaves who worked the land stolen from Native Americans built it. This country is entirely made up of immigrants, so it makes no sense to only have white men on the face of some of the
most recognizable items on the planet. The people on U.S. money are old and have long since died. They should never be forgotten, but it is time for an update. President Andrew Jackson lends his face to the $20 bill. He did many good things for this country but also some of its worst. He won the battle of New Orleans, which boosted the nation’s morale even though the War of 1812 was over by that time. Jackson is also responsible for the Trail of Tears. Because of that atrocity, he should not be on American money but merely a lesson in history classes. The money of the United States should reflect the diversity that makes this country amazing. According to an Aug. 4, 2014 USA Today article, efforts to redesign paper currency include focusing on making the bill more accessible to the visually impaired and less vulnerable to counterfeiting. These types of changes are necessary, and I’m glad they are happening, but the people need to change too. Not one person who was born in the 20th century appears on American paper money. If President Barack Obama used his constitutional authority and instructed the Secretary
of the Treasury to change the historical figures on money, there would be some backlash. I would like to point out no laws would be broken if he did this, so let’s get that out of the way. “There is still a huge stigma against minorities,” said May Olvera, communication design freshman. “The combination of the aversion to change and the possibility of having people other than white men on American currency money would result in some pretty big opposition.” Plenty of people are worthy of gracing our money. Examples include Martin Luther King Jr., Harriet Tubman, Susan B. Anthony and Eleanor Roosevelt. The difficulty in changing the money would mostly be narrowing down who gets the privilege of being on it. This country had a pretty rough history to say the least. We should celebrate the diversity we have and not simply cling to the parts of the past that look good. Representation matters and it is about time our money reflects the motto it bears: E Pluribus Unum, out of many one.
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-Jeffrey Bradshaw is a political science sophomore
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 Tuesday, March 24, 2015. 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 | Tuesday, March 24, 2015 | 5
Storylines to watch: Texas State vs. No. 10 Texas By Quixem Ramirez SPORTS EDITOR @quixem To say Texas has the Texas State baseball team’s number would be an understatement. The Bobcats have lost 19 consecutive games against Texas.
TEAM HISTORY Texas is 40-9 all-time against Texas State, including the aforementioned 19-game winning streak. The Bobcats have never beaten Texas in San Marcos. Texas has handled Texas State historically, but fluky things can happen in baseball. The Bobcats had a 1-1 tie in the fifth inning
in last year’s meeting before the game was cancelled because of the weather. The roster has enough talent—the team’s 7-6 win over then third-ranked Houston is a prime example—to give the Longhorns a significant test.
A REDO FOR THE FRESHMAN? Texas State’s midweek games can serve a dual purpose—a valuable barometer for the team and a chance for younger players to assume the spotlight. Assistant Coach Jeremy Fikac is taking the latter option by starting Montana Parsons, fresh-
man pitcher, against a nationally ranked opponent. The strategy did not work in last week’s matchup against UTSA. Parsons allowed seven baserunners in 1.2 innings, putting the Bobcats in an early fiverun hole. Texas State’s offense erased the damage, but Parsons did not fare well in his first midweek test. Parsons has been more effective as a reliever than a starter. Parson’s earned run average is 6.67 in two starts this season and 1.11 in three relief appearances. The sample size remains too small to accurately judge his performance, but it is something to monitor as the season progresses. Fikac is granting Parsons a second chance. Those do not grow
trees. Texas is not UTSA, though. Texas is 22nd in the country in earned run average. Texas State’s margin for error is razor-thin. Parsons needs to give his team a chance to secure the upset.
TEXAS ON A ROLL To make matters worse, Texas is playing quality baseball entering Tuesday’s matchup. The Longhorns swept Kansas State in a three-game series, completing a stretch with eight wins in 10 games. Texas is vulnerable on the road, though. The team is 12-3 at home and 4-4 on the road this season.
Josh Sawyer, Longhorns sophomore pitcher, is not unbeatable. Sawyer has a 4.87 earned run average in five appearances. He has not pitched into the sixth inning in any start this season. Sawyer will provide the Bobcats with scoring opportunities. The trick is capitalizing on them before the Longhorns utilize its bullpen.
WHAT’S NEXT Texas State is locked in a tie with Georgia Southern for first place in the Sun Belt Conference. The teams will play a three-game series this weekend to determine which will be first in the conference.
BOBCATS EDGE OUT JAGUARS IN 8-7 VICTORY By Matt Gurevitz SPORTS REPORTER @Matt_Gurevitz
The score was 5-3 in the top of the eighth inning, and the Texas State baseball team had an opportunity to expand its lead over South Alabama. The team had runners on second and third base with two outs, and Ben McElroy, senior first baseman, was asked to come off the bench for a pinch hit situation. McElroy hit the second pitch down the right field line for a three-run home run to give the
Bobcats an 8-3 lead over South Alabama. McElroy joins four other Bobcats to record a home run this season. Texas State gave up four runs in the bottom of the ninth inning, but McElroy’s feat allowed them to escape with an 8-7 victory. The Bobcats had a comfortable lead after the home run, but the bullpen let the Jaguars back into the game in the ninth inning. Texas State entered the final inning with a five-run lead and Joe Powell, sophomore pitcher, on the mound. Powell walked his first two batters, and Assistant Coach Jeremy
Fikac replaced him with Cory Geisler, junior pitcher, who gave up a game-tying double in the Bobcats’ 2-1 loss Saturday. The first two batters reached base, and the score was 8-5 with two Jaguars on base and no outs. Geisler got the next two hitters out but walked the following batter to load the bases. Blake Whitter, senior pitcher, came in for relief of Geisler after the walk to help the team escape Mobile, Alabama with a win. Cole Gleason, Jaguars senior right fielder, responded with a single through the left side of the infield, scoring two runs. The hit
brought the score to 8-7 with runners on first and second base. Whitter buckled down and forced the next batter to ground out to David Paiz, senior third baseman, to end the scare for Texas State. The Bobcats avoided the series sweep against South Alabama. Jeremy Hallonquist, junior pitcher, helped the Bobcats with 4.1 innings in relief of Pasquale Mazzoccoli, junior pitcher, who earned his fifth start of the season. The offense scored eight runs after acheiving two combined in the first two games of the series.
A big part of the offense was Cedric Vallieres, senior second baseman, who went 3-5 with two doubles and two runs batted in. Vallieres has a seven-game hitting streak with a .297 batting average, 10 runs batted in and two home runs in this span. He is now batting a team-high .319 for the season. Texas State has now moved into a tie for first place in the Sun Belt Conference standings with Georgia Southern. The teams are 6-3 in conference play heading into a threegame series next weekend in San Marcos.
Texas State falls to LouisianaMonroe during double-header By Christian Rodriguez SPORTS REPORTER @crod9521 The Texas State softball team seemed able to keep up the offensive pace set in the first game of the double-header after Kelli Baker, junior second baseman, scored in the first inning. However, the Bobcats could not duplicate their success in the second matchup with LouisianaMonroe Monday afternoon, falling to the Warhawks, 7-4. With the loss, Texas State falls to a 5-3 record in conference play this season. Louisiana-Monroe responded with three runs in the second inning after Baker scored in the first. Kaylee Garner, sophomore pitcher, gave up nine hits and seven runs in her fifth start of the season. Louisiana-Monroe used three pitchers to defeat the Bobcats. Jessica Colliver, Warhawks senior pitcher, threw for two innings and gave up four hits and one run. Melanie Coyne, Warhawks sopho-
more pitcher, gave up two hits and one run in two innings. Paige Porter, Warhawks freshman pitcher, earned the win with four hits and two runs in 2.1 innings. Alexis Cacioppo, Warhawks senior first baseman, led the way for Louisiana-Monroe in the second matchup with two hits and three runs batted in. She was followed by Cheyanne Lyon, freshman Warhawks infielder, who had one hit and two runs batted in. Texas State had one more hit than Louisiana-Monroe, but the Bobcats could not score. An example of Louisiana-Monroe’s timeliness came in the bottom of the fourth inning. Cacioppo hit a three-run home run that increased the lead to five and made mounting a comeback difficult for the Bobcats. The loss drops the Bobcats to 1913 on the season. “I don’t feel like we kept attacking the zone from that standpoint,” said Coach Ricci Woodard. “We lost a couple of hitters. We hit a couple of batters. We gave them
some momentum, and I don’t feel like we just did a real good job of having quality at bats in key situations when we needed to.” Texas State captured a 9-0 shutout victory in the first game of the doubleheader. Randi Rupp, freshman pitcher, threw the first no-hitter for the Texas State program since May 13, 2012. “She just attacked the zone,” Woodard said. “As long as she’s attacking the zone, she’s dangerous. I mean everything was working well for her today, and she just kept throwing strikes at them, and again, as long as she’s attacking the zone, she’s going to be hard to beat.” The Bobcats are scheduled for a series with Louisiana-Lafayette, which won the Sun Belt Conference regular season title with a 19-1 record last year, after Wednesday’s matchup against McNeese State. “We can’t look at Lafayette yet,” Woodard said. “We have to get through McNeese, and then we’ll worry about Lafayette when we get closer to them.”
TRACK & FIELD
The TCU Invitational signaled the start of the outdoor season for the Texas State track and field team. It was Texas State’s first meet since the Sun Belt Conference Indoor Track & Field Championships. “We do it every year,” Coach Dana Boone said. “Typically we have really good performances at this meet.” Boone said the team allowed weather issues to affect them more than usual. The team will need to build up its mental toughness to overcome future issues. Boone pointed out positives to take away from the meet—Chelsie Decoud, freshman jumper; Sydni Willis, freshman hurdler and Macahla Wesley, sophomore sprinter. Decoud took the top spot at the TCU Invitational in the women’s
Rupp throws no-hitter in Bobcat win By Christian Rodriguez SPORTS REPORTER @crod9521 The Texas State softball team defeated Louisiana-Monroe 9-0 in the first game of Monday’s double-header with Randi Rupp, freshman pitcher, recording the program’s first no-hitter since 2012. Rupp recorded an out in 20 of 21 plate appearances, with the Warhawks’ only base runner occurring on a hit by pitch in the fourth inning. Rupp recorded 11 strikeouts in her 13th win of the season. The pitcher has tallied a conference-high 145.1 innings this season. Ariel Ortiz, freshman shortstop, and Kortney Koroll, senior designated hitter, led the Bobcat offense with a combined three hits and five runs batted in. Sara Rupp, freshman catcher, added a run in the second inning with a solo home run. Rupp’s four home runs are tied for fourth on the team this season. Lexi Fryar, sophomore utility player, doubled in the seventh inning to score a run, followed by a two-run home run from Taylor Webb, freshman pitcher, who came in to pinch-hit.
In the Mercantile Building
Texas State starts outdoor season at TCU Invitational By Jose Campos SPORTS REPORTER @josewithaj
high jump. She recorded a 1.75-meter jump good for first in the Sun Belt Conference. Willis narrowly missed out on winning the women’s 400-meter hurdle by one-100th of a second as she ran a time of 1:01.58 Willis’ time, however, was still good enough to place first in the conference. The sophomore duo of Wesley and Marika Brown, sophomore sprinter, finished first and second in the women’s 200-meter. Wesley put up a time of 24.14. Brown recorded a time of 24.43. These runs put Wesley into second and Brown into fifth in the conference. Other notable performances include Texas State placing second in the women’s 4x100 relay and first place in the 4x400 relay. The 4x100 relay consisted of Alexus Hebert (senior sprinter), Marika Brown (sophomore sprinter), Macahla Wesley (sophomore sprinter) and Allie Saunders (se-
nior jumper), who finished in 45.69 seconds. TCU finished in 45.67 seconds, good for first place in the event. The 4x400 relay team consisted of Adams (sophomore sprinter), Kim Krtinich (senior sprinter), Abby Hani (sophomore sprinter) and Erika Martin (sophomore sprinter). The group finished with a winning 3:50.50 time, ahead of UT-Arlington, Kansas State and North Texas. Jordan Huckaby, junior thrower, won the men’s hammer throw and shot put at the meet. Huckaby recorded 57.29 meters in the hammer throw, putting him sixth in the conference. Huckaby’s 17.09-meter mark in the shot put is the best in the Sun Belt. “Once you get a taste of winning, you want to win again,” Boone said. “Outdoor can be a little tougher because there’s more events, and we’re are going to have to work hard if we want to win.”
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