irk* anxiously found himself staring at the slip of paper with an e-mail that a friend of a friend had written out. The deal was that if you sent a phone number to that e-mail, someone would call back asking a “yes” or “no” question. He wasn’t waiting long before his cell started to ring. His caller display flashed a random Google Voice phone number — the number was hiding where the call was coming from. The first thing the voice on the other end asked was if Kirk was sure about his decision. Caught off guard, Kirk said yes but spoke hesitantly. For all he knew, this was a set-up, but he quickly realized that the voice on the other end just wanted to cut to the chase. A course syllabus, the essay criteria, a mark range, any required sources and, most importantly, how much time the job would take. A negotiated amount of payment was then wired to a bank account connected to the e-mail and the call was over. Kirk, a fourth-year Western Computer Science student at the time, had ventured into uncharted territory and had just hired a ghostwriter to write a paper for him. A week later, an untitled essay arrived in his inbox with a small note. It dared Kirk to verify for himself that the work wasn’t stolen from someone else. The e-mail ended with the phrase, “Find me again.” It was like a calling card equivalent to a variety store saying, “Thank you, come again.” Without exchanging a single name, a paper with sources, footnotes and a thesis was now Kirk’s — and he hadn’t written a thing. With a fistful of red Mackenzie Kings, Kirk had slipped into the world of the faceless scribes who could write about almost anything. Today, professors have anti-plagiarism software like Turnitin in their arsenal, making it relatively easy to ferret out cheaters. But that system fails to pick off students who hire a “ghost” — a custom essay-writer, for the uninitiated. Sam*, a retired ghost, claims that after three and a half years and 200 essays, he’s never been caught. Speaking to The Gazette under the condition of anonymity, the former Western student said he rarely dealt directly with anyone and probably walked right past his Western
clients in between classes. “I did the legwork, I did the research for it. So, no system ever gets tipped off,” he said. The scope of what a ghost could be hired to do ranged from something as simple as a creative writing piece or as dense as a research paper outlining the Syrian geopolitical crisis. Sam also takes pride in claiming that the majority of his clients were not slackers, and could easily do the work for themselves. “For [my clients], it’s a lack of time, more than anything. Most of [them] weren’t stupid. Some were, but a lot of them were just looking for breathing room,” he said. “They were looking for more time to focus on things they saw as more important.” Sam’s rates were primarily based on estimated research, essay length and how soon the client needed it to be done. An average term paper could cost from $100 to $250, but if the due date was soon or if the research was difficult, that price would climb. Sam also explained that not every negotiation was as quick as Kirk’s, and often required multiple consultations and negotiations. “It’s my reputation on the line, so there were no half-measures,” Sam said, adding that he could not “half-ass” it. “I had to use my whole ass because my clientele would grow through word of mouth. So if people were happy with their marks, they’d find me again and hopefully recommend me.” During his time at Western, Sam claimed that finding clients was hardly a challenge, despite his unorthodox marketing. Evidently it worked, since some syllabi that clients sent him came from other campuses too. Last week, the CBC released a survey of 54 universities that found more than 7,000 students were disciplined for some form of cheating in the 2011–12 academic year. But considering the relative ease with which a student could enlist a ghost, those numbers could be greatly understated. John Doerksen, vice-provost academic programs and students at Western, said that recruiting a ghost is academically fraudulent because the name on the title page isn’t who wrote it. As far as Doerksen knows, the issue is not rampant at Western. But, in his opinion,
students resorting to these services do so at a disservice to themselves — it doesn’t matter if they get caught. “What universities offer is learning and an increase in knowledge and ability. I think that any action that decreases that learning opportunity is categorically wrong, and essay mills that provide that service decrease the learning outcomes for students […] it’s shortsighted,” he said. Amanda*, a fourth-year Medical Science student, explained getting her essay written by a ghost was just one small aspect of her academic career. In her opinion, the increasing weight of pressures facing students today are painting more and more of them into smaller corners. “If it’s a prerequisite for something but it’s not important to you, you want to use less energy for it to focus on courses that are way more important and that you need,” Amanda said. “It’s nothing I’m proud of, but I just had to get it done. I had no time — I just want to graduate,” she said. “I just took care of one small aspect of my life — I still had lab reports, studying, exams and presentations to do,” Amanda said. Kirk, now graduated, said sometimes classes are added to a curriculum arbitrarily. In his view, for the courses where he hired a ghost, they were courses he would never need in his career and that he, in fact, felt cheated by the school. “I worked hard in everything else. I got all the credits that supposedly make me a computer scientist but then I have to take these random credits because I didn’t meet some arbitrary number? That to me is fraud — [the school] just wants more money […] I had to save my time,” he explained. However, Doerksen said that those reasons do not cut it. “Time management is one of those critical life skills. I imagine that many reasons could be brought forward […] but in many cases, students can go talk to their professors or their academic counsellors if there’s a basis for academic accommodation,” he explained. “We have on campus the writing support >> see GHOST pg.2
thegazette • Friday, March 7, 2014
Caught on Camera
Bill Wang GAZETTE
NETHER LANDED SO CLOSE TO WESTERN. Fans of fine art visit a current exhibit entitled Storms and Bright Skies: Three Centuries of Dutch Landscapes at Western’s McIntosh Gallery. Prints and drawings by famous Dutch artists such as Rembrandt and Jacob van Ruisdael are on display from the National Gallery of Canada.
Located in the Lower level of the Community Center, for all your travel needs.
Hired essay-writer defends practice >> GHOST continued from pg.1
Travel CUTS University of Western Ontario UCC Building, Basement Level Univ_Western@travelcuts.com
centre and it’s free,” Doerksen added. “It’s for students being sincere and who are looking for help articulating their points as well as grammar and all that. [Volunteers]
Solution to puzzle on page 8
Your Weekly Horoscope
The week of Sept 28 – Oct 4 This horoscope is intended for entertainment purposes only.
ARIES – Mar 21/Apr 20 LIBRA – Sept 23/Oct 23 This week you need to be the follower instead of the You don’t have all of the answers so don’t even leader. It may be difficult to go against your normal think about saying you do. Relationship concerns are grain, but it is for the best. Keep an open mind. at the forefront of your mind lately. TAURUS – Apr 21/May 21 SCORPIO – Oct 24/Nov 22 Your confidence may wane sometime this week but It might be hard to bite your tongue, but that’s just some friends will boost your morale to help you get what you have to do this week. Wait until you are back on your feet. Saturday will be a big day. called on for help before you get involved. GEMINI – May 22/Jun 21 SAGITTARIUS – Nov 23/Dec 21 Certain things that have to get done this week are out Take a few days to get all of your affairs in order. of your realm of expertise. Do your best to tackle Use this time to adjust to some changes that have these projects but have a helper on hand just in case. happened over the last several weeks. CANCER – Jun 22/Jul 22 CAPRICORN – Dec 22/Jan 20 You have a lot on your plate, but you don’t know Burning the candle at both ends again? This is not where to start. Make a list of your tasks, and it will the best way to get things done. Take a more steady help you better tackle one thing at a time until you approach, and give yourself time to recover. are all done. LEO – Jul 23/Aug 23 AQUARIUS – Jan 21/Feb 18 Learn to laugh at yourself as a means to relieving You can’t put your finger on it, but something posistress. Things can’t always be serious, so ligthen up tive seems to be on the horizon. The truth will reveal and take some time to relax. Work with Virgo this week. itself in the next few days. VIRGO – Aug 24/Sept 22 PISCES – Feb 19/Mar 20 Give yourself a much-deserved break. You’ve been Fight against the current for something you truly working nonstop for the last several months, and believe in. Unexpected events arise on Thursday. now is a great time to take a vacation or enjoy a weekend getaway. FAMOUS BIRTHDAYS MARCH 9 – Matthew Gray Gubler, Actor (34) MARCH 11 – Alex Kingston, Actress (51) MARCH 13– Danny Masterson, Actor (38)
CROSSWORD By Eugene Sheffer
MARCH 10 – Carrie Underwood, Singer (31) MARCH 12 – Liza Minnelli, Actress (68)
can’t write the paper for them but they can provide advice and guidance.” Karen Ashford, a marketing manager for Scribendi, a consulting firm which offers paid editing and proofreading, agreed with Doerksen’s opinion. Ashford said she has had to deal with students who came looking for a ghost but were curtly rebuffed. “We earned our degrees, so you should too,” she said. However, for the ghost and his clients, they thought firms that only corrected grammar or suggested tips don’t help students in a tight bind. When asked how he felt about helping students to get away with fraud, Sam said it all balances out eventually. “I could immediately tell if the person was doing this because they had no time or if they were just lazy and used their money to screw around,” Sam said. “The way I see it, if they will need to be able to communicate well in the real world, you can’t fake that once you’re out there. No grade I gave will help him then.” While Sam, Kirk and Amanda all admitted to academic fraud, each said the stigma wasn’t necessarily warranted. They pointed out the hypocrisy they saw in the fact that ghosts often write for blogs or Twitter accounts, but are forbidden in academic settings. “In the real world, politicians, corporations or even authors can get consulted or hire a ghostwriter on what to say or how to say it and it’s perfectly legal,” Sam said. “My clients and I both benefited, but if I or people like me do the same thing and get found out, years of academic work can be sliced to ribbons.” To Sam, it didn’t make sense. The line between business and school was arbitrary. As March rolls around, he admits that despite his retirement last summer, he still feels that tingling to take up the mantle of a ghost. “This is the season we live for,” he said. “That [feeling] doesn’t go away.” *Name changed to protect identity.
The Cryptoquip is a substitution cipher in which one letter stands for another. If you think that X equals O, it will equal O throughout the puzzle. Single letters, short words and words using an apostrophe give you clues to locating vowels. Solution is by trial and error. © 2002 by Kings Features Syndicate, Inc.
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thegazette • Friday, March 7, 2014
Mental health conference held on campus Kevin Hurren OPINIONS EDITOR “We are not a commission of inquiry; we are a commission of action.” This was the pledge Patrick Dion, Mental Health Commission of Canada vicechair, gave to a crowded Great Hall Wednesday afternoon at Western’s Understanding Mental Health Conference. After a brief introduction by Pat Whelan, president of the University Students’ Council, and Janice Deakin, Western’s provost and vicepresident academic, Dion spoke to the students, staff and community members in attendance about his experience with mental health — a history that began when he and his brother attended Western as undergraduate students. Witnessing the debilitating effects mental health stressors had on his brother while in school, Dion spoke to how this personal connection drove him to get involved with the Mental Health Commission of Canada as Ontario’s representative in 2007. “We are at a historic crossroads to provide voice and dignity to the
Conrad Floryan GAZETTE
20 per cent of Canadians who feel alone,” said Dion during the talk, outlining programs the commission has been developing since he became vice-chair in 2011. These initiatives include partnerships with universities to equip teaching assistants with mental health training, working with journalists to move away from ignorant phrasing and creating an app for students to evaluate their own levels of stress and help them recognize when they
need to seek out professional help. As the speech concluded, Dion returned to the importance of peer mobilization and his own personal connection to mental health. “I appreciated the personal story,” said Kathryn Bell, a thirdyear law student at Western who attended the talk. “A lot of people don’t have that story to tell, or if they do they’re not comfortable with telling it.” Bell took advantage of the
conference’s questioning period, asking Dion about the barriers in place when establishing mental health programs and how to overcome those barriers. She did so hoping to learn more about developing her own initiatives at Western. “Every campus has a health centre that provides mental health services, but those services are overburdened,” said Bell, who represents Western on a committee
dedicated to ensuring the mental well-being of law students across Ontario. The committee, chaired by a full-time wellness councillor at York’s Osgoode Hall, recently came into more funding from the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities. Bell hopes to use such grants to help students at both Western and other law schools connect with resources. “A lot of students have said even when they can get appointments, they spend their entire hour explaining what’s stressing them out,” Bell said. “It just created another barrier when going to those services.” Some of these law-specific stressors include financial hardships, substance abuse within the program, and rigorous interview carousels — with sometimes more than 20 interviews on a given day. Hearing Dion speak, however, has motivated Bell to continue combating the mental health consequences these problems cause. “It’s comforting to know there’s a seminal body of some sort that’s moving towards addressing stigma.”
USC chooses elections investigators The University Students’ Council voted Wednesday to name seven members to serve on the newly instated elections ad-hoc committee. The committee is tasked with investigating the concerns from this year’s USC elections, including incidences of misspelled names and faculties forgotten on ballots. Maria Litsas was one of the named members. “Elections problems have always existed but I don’t think people really understood the extent of it until this past election, and it’s just like ‘another year, another problem,’” Litsas said. “So [Jack Litchfield] took the initiative for it and made a motion himself that he brought up in ‘new business’ which was highly debated but I think that something needs to be done,” she added. Joining Litsas on the committee are councillors Kyle DeCaluwé, Hilarie Ng, Lindsee Perkins, Nikki Pilo, Jacob Sobel and Maggie Zhu. The committee will release their findings on March 26. — Katie Lear
Grace period for parking tickets? London city council is looking receptive on a proposal to give people a 10-minute grace period on parking tickets. “A lot of people don’t come downtown and they cite parking as a reason, certainly a perception problem,” said Lincoln McCardle, a resident of downtown London who brought the idea forward. According to him, part of the confusion is that city parking is often confused with private parking lots. McCardle first heard about the 10-minute grace period from Toronto, where the city council is considering it. He then got into contact with the city officials and on Monday presented his idea to the city council’s community and protective services committee, which unanimously approved it. Parking staff will review the motion and report on it to the entire council in the next month or so. — Hamza Tariq
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thegazette • Friday, March 7, 2014
badwriting My insides practically contort with potent, needy, liquid, desire.
— E.L. James, 50 Shades of Grey
Fashion show spurs on local businesses WHERE
to get it
Denim Jacket — Gap While Gray got his denim jacket at the Top Shop, the Gap makes excellent quality denim for even cheaper. It’s definitely worth checking out. Floral Shirt — Top Shop Perhaps a tad expensive, but if you like Gray’s shirt as much as we did, you may as well go to the source and get it where he got it. Watch — Seiko Unless you’ve been working for the Canadian Pacific Railway for over a decade, it’s unlikely you’ll have access to a watch like Gray’s. That said, Seiko makes several similar varieties. Jeans — A.P.C. High quality denim makes for high quality fashion, and if you don’t mind the price, Gray’s A.P.C. New Standard jeans will provide the quality you seek.
ome fashion is so well-composed, its subtlety almost makes it invisible. However, for Aaron Gray, a fifth-year History and Psychology student, his fashion has both composure and pop. It’s a bit of a balancing act, but Gray pulls it off with élan. Every part of his outfit seems to have been meticulously chosen. From the oxblood Mark McNair trooper boots, to his floral shirt, fitted jeans and denim jacket, Gray is obviously a man who takes his appearance seriously. “I know this is really cliché but it’s mostly about how you’re
Kelly Samuel GAZETTE
feeling in the morning,” he says. “It’s a reflection of how you want to project yourself for the rest of the day.” Even his accessories are far from arbitrary. The vintage gold watch he wears is a family heirloom, and his silver ring bears a personal motto. “This is my grandfather’s watch. He got it from working on the CPR for 15 years as an engineer,” Gray explains. “And my ring says ‘fuck off.’” Gray’s advice for those looking to emulate his style is quite simple: Don’t. “I don’t think you should emulate anyone. I think fashion is about
Boots — Mark McNairy Ok, these are definitely pricey. But according to Gray, he’s had his boots for three winters and they’re still kicking. His burgundy trooper boots from Mark McNair are damn gorgeous, so buy ‘em if you can.
knowing who you are and dressing in that particular manner,” he says. “I think fashion should reflect yourself.” Inspiration for fashion can come from many outside sources. For Gray, movies play a large part in what inspires him, and even sentiments made by the music he listens to. “You know it’s like, my favourite album is Dark Side of the Moon, and the opening line is, ‘You are everything you touch and everything you feel.’ So take everything around you and make it into what makes you,” he says. — Cam “Smoth” Smith
Courtesy of Logan Ly
EARNING THEIR SPURS. The Purple Spur fashion show returns this weekend to London Music Hall. The show will feature Western student designers and performers as well as including local businesses.
Megan Devlin NEWS EDITOR High heels, high fashion and high cheekbones converge on Western this time of year — fashion show season is upon us. The Purple Spur fashion show will be returning this Saturday at the London Music Hall (185 Queens Ave.) This year’s show is called Civita, which is the Latin word for city, and each scene will take the audience to a different city around the world. The Spur fashion show used to take place in bars on Richmond row, but lately it’s been getting an upgrade. “We want to make it bigger and better and involve more people,” Imke Bertens, co-director of the show, says. While she didn’t want the show to come off as too serious or professional — she wants the emphasis to still be on fun — it’s definitely grown from its humble roots. Bertens’ goal is to break last year’s $10,000 mark for proceeds earned from the charity fashion show. All proceeds from ticket sales will go to the Cystic Fibrosis Canada London chapter. “Not only are we helping a great charity, but we’re helping our own community,” Emily Craven, the other co-director, says. “We are also supporting a lot of local business and designers. We’re helping to get London’s own designers out within the community.” The show will also be showcasing two student designers — S.K.I.D. clothing by Ivey’s Hilary Eng, and Evelynn by Nicole Snobelen. Another point the directors wanted to highlight was the diversity of their models. “We have 37 absolutely beautiful
models that have volunteered to be a part of it, all from Western,” Craven says. “They’re not cookie cutter models. We’re stepping outside the box of a traditional fashion show.” Bertens’ favourite part of the show was seeing the relationships develop between her executive and model teams. Some models found the show a great way to improve their confidence. “Being in the show has not only given me the opportunity to develop true confidence in myself, but has exposed me to a fantastic group of fun, hard-working and outgoing people who never fail to entertain,” Kat Melnikov, a lingerie and streetwear model, says. Ayman Aldin, another model, also enjoyed the modeling coaching he received through the show. “I really enjoyed the runway workshop with Anita Norris. She’s the head of a modeling agency in London — probably the only reputable one in the city. Just having some professional guidance on how to walk and present yourself on the runway was really helpful,” says Aldin, who is a modern-wear model in third year. Besides the models and fashions, the Spur fashion show will showcase local Western talent — dancers, singers and even a hip-hop artist. Bertens says Spur really exemplifies Western spirit, and says that spirit was really what her executive team looked for when auditioning models. Tickets for the show are available for $25 at Western Connections, and ticket purchase includes admission to the show’s after party also at London Music Hall. DJs Giddy, Monark and Dblcrownatmos will all be playing att he after party.
Fancy fashion photography? Photograph Fashion for Friday! UCC Room 263 Kelly Samuel GAZETTE
thegazette • Friday, March 7, 2014
A masterful final flight
>> Recipe > Tofu-salad sandwiches High in protein and iron without the cholesterol of real eggs, these sandwiches are healthy and delicious. For a lower calorie, gluten-free option, use collard greens as wraps instead of buns.
Tofu-salad Sandwiches Ingredients • 1 block (400g) Tofu • ⅓ cup vegan mayo (may alternately use soy yogurt or avocado mayo) • ⅓ cup dijon mustard • ¾ cup garlic powder • ¾ tsp chilli powder • ½ tsp pepper powder • ½ tsp maple syrup or agave • 1 tsp chopped scallions (can substitute ⅓ cup red onion and/or chives )
• 1 tbsp lemon juice • Ciabatta buns (or collard greens)
1. Dice tofu and scallions, combine in a bowl with other ingredients, and mix well. 2. Scoop desired amount onto buns/collard greens. Garnish with spinach and other desired toppings. 3. Refrigerate until served. — Mary Ann Ciosk
Courtesy of Studio Ghibli
Chris Miszczak ILLUSTRATIONS EDITOR GGGGG The Wind Rises Director: Hayao Miyazaki Starring: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Emily Blunt, Stanley Tucci Critically acclaimed animation director Hayao Miyazaki’s latest film is The Wind Rises — a sort of autobiographical look at the life of aerospace designer and engineer Jiro Horikoshi. The controversy surrounding this film centers on the fact that Horikoshi is actually a figure from history and the designer behind the Japanese fighter jets which were used primarily during the Second World War. The true soul and essence of this film, however, centres on a specific quote from Horikoshi himself: “I only wanted to create something beautiful.” For anyone who has ever dreamed of something greater than themselves, this film captures that creative essence and feeling tremendously well. With a lot of aweinspiring and quiet moments that Miyazaki is so well-known for, he
gave Horikoshi an almost tabula rasa feeling, allowing for the viewer to really see and feel what Horikoshi might have felt during the course of his life. The story follows Hirokoshi (voiced by Joseph Gordon-Levitt) as a young boy living in a provincial town having dreams about flying on an airplane shaped like a bird. After dreaming about meeting his lifelong hero — an Italian plane designer named Caproni (Stanley Tucci) — he decides that instead of flying planes, he wants to build them. Years later Horikoshi is at university studying engineering. On a trip back to Tokyo he meets a young girl named Nahoko (Emily Blunt) providing the central romance of the film. Miyazaki structures this story around this romance contrasting the known terror that Horikoshi’s work on the Mitsubishi A5M — the major Japanse fighter plane in the Second World War — with the power of Horikoshi and Nahoko’s romance. For an animated film, The Wind Rises takes itself too seriously, almost making you wonder
whether it should have been animated at all. Several scenes in the film could have been with actors and no one would have probably noticed. However at the same time, the choice to keep it animated and quiet really shines throughout the film as well, especially with creating landscapes and visual wonders that would have been impossible to create using real life settings. Miyazaki makes the choice to keep the preliminary moments very quiet making the audience hold its breath and the scene actually elicits a sigh just as well adding to the immenseness of the scene. The spirit of the film remains where it was intended and in all honesty it was a masterpiece. Anyone who is familiar with Miyazaki’s previous films will recognize his genius. This movie takes the story and its essence to an entire new level creating his greatest film yet — a most fitting work of cinematic art for his supposed retirement picture. At the end of the day, it was truly a delight to see something so amazing and awe-inspiring on the big screen. The Wind Rises is a tremendous joy to watch.
GGGFF The Nautical Miles Ode to Joy SOCAN What better to get you through the tail end of those bitter Canadian winters than a warm cup of frothy folk delight? Vancouver alt-roots ensemble, The Nautical Miles, brings us just that this month with their third full-length studio album Ode to Joy. The album finds the five-piece traveling in a familiar but also much more streamlined direction. Touching on such heavy themes as political/person freedoms and the possibility of a future among so many who would deny its realization. The band incorporates an addition six musicians into its lineup for the work on this album. Including two additional vocalists to balance the range between tenor/ bass male voices (Corbin Murdoch, Simon Rotheisler) and the group’s
female soprano (Rachel Tetrault.) A select brass section and keyboards give this collection a genre bending addictive quality. In particular the use of tenor saxophone on the track “Summerlegs” brings to mind a bluegrass crossroads encounter with a devilish figure promising new dimensions of folk prowess. The album opens with “Be Embraced, Ye Millions!” and the harmonious coos of the manyvoiced group warming the souls any who listen. Followed closely by the tightly syncopated “All This Talk About Endings,” in which the band’s genre defying abilities are showcased. The standout track on this record is certainly the groovy Caribbean inspired “A Nation In Silhouette.” The calypso steel drums in complement to the steady bass line add a much-welcomed edge to this track, which is not neglected elsewhere in the albums diverse framework. The vocal content of this track also calls to mind the breezy inflections of fellow folk rockers’ Fleet Foxes and their lead vocalist Robin Pecknold, a highly welcomed comparison for fans of the Seattle band. Overall Ode to Joy is a massive landmark in not only the career of The Nautical Miles but for Canadian Folk music a whole. The band will be celebrating the release of their album on March 8 at The Biltmore Cabaret in Vancouver. — Tyner Murphy
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thegazette • Friday, March 7, 2014
All good is hard. All evil is easy. Dying, losing, cheating, and mediocrity is easy. Stay away from easy.
— Scott Alexander
It’s simple: Practicing PDAs can Cheating is have positive effects cheating In Game of Thrones, there is a scene where a chivalrous knight fights a mercenary. The mercenary wins by trickery, killing the knight, but is told that he didn’t “fight with honour.” Gesturing towards his slain foe, the mercenary responds, “No, but he did.” The point here, other than everyone should watch Game of Thrones, is that we seem to have a wealth of justifications for cheating, whether it be a fight to the death or a university essay. The latter is something that many university students seem to be willing to do, often paying professionals to write their paper for them. Quite obviously, this is plagiarism — there’s no denying that. But for many students it seems easy to rationalize. If a prospective medical student, for example, has to write an English paper, they may believe it won’t help them in their future career, and will feel justified in outsourcing it in order to focus on more relevant work. It’s easy to see where this justification comes from. In the real world we have varying standards for when we’re okay with cheating — we’ll throw a hissy fit when a music artist lip-syncs at a performance, but have no problem with the fact that they may have somebody else writing their greatest hits. All of these rationalizations stem from a focus on results — if you close the deal, sell out the concert or get into medical school, it’s okay to phone in some of the less important efforts. We feel that we can leave the irrelevant stuff by the wayside. But if your measuring stick for what’s important in school is how relevant it is to your career, you’re in the wrong institution. The point of university isn’t to get a degree — it’s about learning how to do essays, tests, presentations and truly everything you’re asked to do that you may be comfortable or uncomfortable with. Even if university is just a ticket to a post-grad program, you’re not here to get good grades, you’re here to learn how to do difficult tasks on a tight deadline. It’s not that cheating is wrong (which it is), but that, cliché as it sounds, you are only hurting yourself by cheating. You may be able to rationalize buying an essay because you won’t need it as a surgeon, but if your value system allows you to skirt challenges on that rationale, your future prospects in whatever career you seek are questionable. — The Gazette Editorial Board
Pistols at Newnham
Caitlin Martin Newnham SPORTS EDITOR The term “public display of affection” is usually used to scowl at couples who crassly make out in public places. I, however, contend that it promotes mental and physical well-being. I am by no means advocating for doing the dirty in the middle of the Spoke, but I do believe that there is an important place for PDA on campus. In fact, I support human touch in general — not just between romantic partners. Scientists have shown that a caring touch can reduce stress (something all students need), lower blood pressure and cause the release of oxytocin. The production of oxytocin allows individuals to feel the euphoric feeling of intimacy that is not restricted to romantic partners. Oxytocin is released most commonly during childbirth, orgasm and physical bonding. Therefore, even friends can cause this blissful feeling by giving you a hug and showing you that they care. As a university student, I know that it is difficult to find time for your significant other — or friends, if you aren’t romantically involved — and campus is a good place to grab a coffee or food and
catch up during study breaks. Imagine two friends or romantic partners spending time together without touching one another. I expect to see a hug, kiss and maybe touching of arms, knees and hair — depending on the nature of the relationship. I mentioned before that I don’t support public make-outs, but these couples with poor judgment should not define PDAs overall. I believe in the healing power of human touch, but within respectable limits. We should always be conscious of who is watching and whom your actions could harm. Imagine playing tonsil hockey in the University Community Centre as your thesis advisor watches on. Not cool! There are certainly respectable ways and places to publicly display your affection for your loved ones. Think of it this way: How would you greet your significant other if kids were watching? A hug, a peck on the cheek or lips, handholding, and touching an arm or leg would not be shocking to an on-looking kindergartener. In fact, most display these bonding actions with their friends. Remember the days of preschool romances? Engage in PDA. Experience stress relief and show your loved ones that you care through respectful touch. Give hugs. Why do you think the “FREE HUGS” campaigns are so successful? We crave and benefit from human touch. Public spaces are just that: For use by the public. Be considerate of others when engaging in PDA, and don’t forget to give someone a hug today!
Have you ever looked at Western’s course/professor evaluations before enrolling in a course? Yes — it is a great tool to use 58%, 14 votes No — I didn’t know Western made course evaluations public 25%, 6 votes No — I don’t base my selections on others’ evaluations 17%, 4 votes Vote on next weeks’s poll at westerngazette.ca
Total votes: 24
Letter to the Editor
Tips top priority RE: “Here’s a tip: tips should be scarce,” Wednesday, March 5, 2014 To the Editor: It is obvious that Bradley Metlin has never worked as a server. Yes, I agree tips should be reflective of the quality of service received; however, he is clearly unaware that the tip often goes to more than just the server. Many restaurants require servers to tip out a percentage of their sales (not their
Volume 107, Issue 80 www.westerngazette.ca
Julian Uzielli Editor-In-Chief Cameron M. Smith Deputy Editor Jason Sinukoff Managing Editor
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total of tips earned) to the kitchen, hosts and bartenders. So if a customer decides he does not want to tip, his server will be paying out of their own pocket to tip out the rest of the restaurant staff. Let’s not forget that servers are making less than minimum wage to begin with, and it is quite likely they are on a student budget as well. A server should not have to pay for you to eat out. If you cannot afford to tip, stay in for dinner. — Amy Gorth Science IV
Gazette Composing & Gazette Advertising Ian Greaves, Manager Robert Armstrong
Gazette Staff 2013-2014
Christine Bonk, Sarah Botelho, Tabitha Chan, Jonathan Dunn, Spencer Fairweather, Conrad Floryan, Sam Frankel, Jennafer Freeman, Janice Fung, Stephanie Grella, Dorothy Kessler, Kevin Heslop, Jenny Jay, Nathan Kanter, Katie Lear, Emory Liu, Cheryl Madliger, Sara Mai Chitty, Soheil Milani, Mackenzie Morrison, Robert Nanni Jr., Vidhant Pal, Lily Robinson, Alex Seger, Tiffany Shepherd, Hamza Tariq, Tristan Wu, Olivia Zollino
News Richard Raycraft Megan Devlin Iain Boekhoff Jeremiah Rodriguez Arts & Life Brent Holmes Mary Ann Ciosk Bradley Metlin Sports Daniel Weryha Nusaiba Al-Azem Caitlin Martin Newnham Opinions Kevin Hurren
Your anonymous letters to life Dear Life, Why did Seinfeld ever end? Dear Life, I wonder how many professional athletes realize they’re top of the line puppets? Dear Life, Can I have a job working for you guys? Pretty please? [Editor’s Note: Just come to UCC 263 and start volunteering!] Dear Life, There’s been a lot of penis posts lately on USecrets. Dear Life, Do you want to build a snowman? Dear Life, The HSB field has been taken over by aliens. Dear Life, Conceal, don’t feel. Don’t let it show. Dear Life, Twitter is simultaneously the best and worst thing in my life. Dear Life, If my body were an iPhone battery I’d be at, like, 8% right now. Dear Life, I don’t care what anyone says, I love my Blackberry and I promise to be the last customer they have. Dear Life, Will Super Smash Bros ever not be fun? Dear Life, Just because I put a period at the end of my texts does not mean I’m mad. wgaz.ca/dearlife
Associate Kaitlyn McGrath Aaron Zaltzman Photography Bill Wang Kelly Samuel Taylor Lasota Graphics Naira Ahmed Illustrations Christopher Miszczak John Prata Online Jesica Hurst Graphics/Video Mike Laine
• Please recycle this newspaper •
thegazette • Friday, March 7, 2014
gameday The Western Mustangs track and field team will travel to Edmonton this weekend for the Canadian Interuniversity Spots championships.
Rundown >> The Mustangs badminton team will head to Waterloo this weekend for the Ontario University Athletics championships > this is following an impressive finish at the Ryerson Invitational where the Mustangs placed first and second in the mixed doubles event.
Sports transcend training and dedication Athletics able to mitigate what politicians cannot Abracadabra Al-Azem
Nusaiba Al-Azem SPORTS EDITOR People need to stop trivializing sports. I’ve written about the importance behind athletic dedication and determination before, but sport goes even further than the extraordinary level of personal endurance exemplified by training. Sport has a profound ability to make political statements and shape important discourse in society, both internationally as well as domestically, and that is often completely overlooked. In light of the recent escapades of the alleged sexual assault that resulted in the University of Ottawa men’s hockey team being indefinitely suspended, I think a
greater emphasis should be placed on the protocol of athletic regulation. Governing bodies, such as the Ontario University Athletics (for regional territory) or Canadian Interuniversity Sport (for national sport regulation), leave disciplinary methods primarily up to members (i.e. the respective universities). While providing that autonomy is beneficial in some respects, I find it troubling that misconduct is not taken into greater consideration at these levels. The issue of the varsity hockey team is much more contested, since the investigation has yet to be concluded, but this is not the first time, even this year, that varsity sports have suffered scandal. Earlier this season St. Mary’s University in Halifax suspended up to nine football team members due to inappropriate uses of social media — mainly racist and sexist tweets. Again, these sanctions were only enforced by the university and
the regulatory bodies remained largely uninvolved. What kinds of messages do regulating bodies intend to spread by disregarding the integrity of their athletic members? Athletes do not get free passes for inappropriate behaviour because they are athletes — in fact, if anything, they should be held to a higher degree of scrutiny because they represent their respective institutions. Nor should the assurance of their acceptable behaviour be solely the responsibility of universities. As long as the OUA and CIS claim a stake to these athletes — referring to them as CIS or OUA athletes, which they do — then does that not mean they accept some form of responsibility for the conduct of their members? The ramifications of political statements in sports are much more saturated at the international level. From boycotting the Olympics in order to resist South African apartheid to the undercurrent of LGBTQ
advocacy in Sochi this year, world athletes are aware that they do not compete in a political vacuum. One month ago in Zurich, FIFA president Sepp Blatter proudly met with Israel Football Association (IFA) president Avi Luzon and Palestinian Football Association (PFA) president Jibril Al Rajoub to discuss specific parameter implementations that facilitate the movement of Palestinian soccer players, coaches and equipment between checkpoints and borders so the team can play. This is an example of the world of sport directly intersecting with large scale (and very sensitive) political issues. Sports, and their effects on these matters, cannot be undermined. In fact, an entire FIFA task force was established in 2013 entitled “Israel-Palestine.” The force seeks to maintain the development of soccer in both respective territories. Creative conflict resolution methods, such as those found in sports,
can be both a refreshing break from typical political peace negotiations while empowering and entertaining citizens. Furthermore, initiatives such as the one FIFA is undertaking normalizes both parties to each other in a way that traditional politics simply cannot. Lectures in front of the United Nations do not give players the opportunity to see each other sweat, laugh, score a goal or be devastated by losses. Sports are mitigating situations that politicians have apparently been unable to touch for many years. Simply put, sports have the powerful advantage of humanizing players to each other. Internationally or domestically, sports politics is gaining traction. Regardless of whether it is FIFA, the CIS or the OUA, I think the proof is in the pudding: More than being impacted by politics, sports does its fair share of impacting, and people are only just beginning to realize that.
Vancouver should trade away Mike Gillis Canucks’ GM ruined the powerhouse he inherited
Last year I wrote a column begging the Calgary Flames to fire their now-former general manager Jay Feaster. He was a huge liability to the team and set them back many years by not rebuilding when he should have, which led to him getting next to nothing for his top players. Now it is once again time to rant about a general manager in the NHL who must be stopped
because he is abysmal at his job. Mike Gillis of the Vancouver Canucks is terrible and deserves to be fired. After the Canucks fired current Toronto Maple Leafs’ general manager Dave Nonis in 2008, Gillis took over and inherited quite a wealth of talent. He took over a team headed by superstar Swedish twins Henrik and Daniel Sedin, twoway dynamo Ryan Kesler and star goalie Roberto Luongo. Believe me, I want to talk about everything he has done wrong, but for the sake of brevity, my rant will focus on the Luongo saga. All Gillis really had to do was stay the course. His team was incredible and his coach, Alain Vigneault, knew his team and employed an incredibly effective
offensive system. As time went on, his young guys got a little older, his older guys retired, but for the most part, the team was a force for the next five years — even winning the President’s Trophy in the 2010–11 and 2011–12 seasons. Fast forward to last year where Gillis had to face his first true test as a general manager: The brewing goalie controversy between Luongo and emerging star Cory Schneider. Luongo was the proven veteran, but Schneider showed so much promise. The trade talks were heating up, and just when everybody thought Luongo would be traded and the issue would be resolved, Gillis threw a curveball. In my opinion, this “curveball” was one of the worst possible ways to
This week’s purple pipe goes to Western Mustangs’ fifth-year wrestler Brianne Barry. The fifth-year Social Science student has been honoured as the Ontario University Athletics female wrestler of the week for the second time in her five-year career, and the Canadian Interuniversity Sport female athlete of the week for the first time in her career earlier this year for her amazing performance against the top-ranked Brock Badgers at
the conference championships in Toronto. At the OUAs Barry went undefeated in the round robin, and finished by dominating her opponent, Karleah Bonk of the Lakehead Thunderwolves, in the finals to capture the gold medal. Barry, who added her fifth individual gold medal earlier in the year, has added to her tally once again. At the CIS national championship, Barry competed in 55kg
weight class where she was the only female Mustangs wrestler to secure a gold medal at the competition. The London, Ontario, native played a large part in the women’s wrestling team’s third-place finish at CIS national championships. The wrestling team wil need to recruit very well to replace the skill she brought to the team. — Daniel Weryha
The Sin Bin
Jason Sinukoff MANAGING EDITOR
handle the situation. Gillis decided to ship off Schneider — the better goalie with more potential — to the New Jersey Devils during last year’s entry draft for the Devils’ ninth overall pick. Forgetting the fact that a star goalie is incredibly hard to come by nowadays in the NHL, this ninth pick ended up becoming Bo Horvat of the London Knights. Although he is quite a talented youngster, he was picked to be a centreman on a Canucks team that is already quite deep down the middle. Meanwhile, with Schneider gone, things still weren’t right in Vancouver. Luongo, despite winning the starting job, did not want to be part of the organization anymore because of the constant trade rumours surrounding
his name as well as the fact that coach Vigneault elected to choose Schneider as the team’s starting goaltender that season. Now we finally get to this past Tuesday, where out of nowhere Gillis decided to trade Luongo to the Florida Panthers for prospect Jacob Markstrom and perennial third-liner Shawn Matthias. Oh, and the icing on the cake is that they still have to pay around 15 per cent of Luongo’s contract. Congratulations Gillis! You faced a goalie controversy involving two talented net-minders and your strategy was to ship them both out of town for two decent prospects and a third-line player. Luongo is happy, Florida is happy, but Vancouver fans everywhere should be calling for Gillis’ head.
Courtesy of Ray Takahashi
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thegazette • Friday, March 7, 2014
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UPCOMING EVENTS ADD A SPLASH of colour to your running calendar and join us at Colours of Hope 5k. Western Cancer Research and Technology Transfer (CaRTT), Partners in Experiential Learning (PEL) and the Canadian Cancer Society, are hosting a fundraising colours 5K run/walk at Western on Saturday, March 15, 2014. For more info go to www.cancer.ca/coloursofhope KARAOKE CONTEST 2014, ANAF (Army, Navy and Airforce) Unit 229, 38 Adelaide St N. Sunday 2-6 PM. Register day of event, 12 noon till 1:30. Entry fee $20.00, NON PROS ONLY. Prize money: 1st: $400.00, 2nd: $200.00, 3rd: $100.00. Must have own disks, or notify us in advance. Twenty-five to perform each of first four Sundays, top six proceed to semifinals, six to finals Sunday April 13th. For more info call Norm Ackland (Midnight Elvis) at 519-457-3397. All profits go to benefit our veterans. SOCKS! SOCKS! SOCKS! Brescia students are looking for 1500 pairs of NEW socks to help the Unity Project of London assist London’s homeless. You can help by donating NEW socks or your pocket change at our table in UCC on March 6, 7 and 10. A project of the Brescia student branch of CAFP (Canadian Association of Foodservice Professionals)
M OVING OVING
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MUSTANG STORAGE Your space is where everyone wants to hang. But where will you keep the comfy couch while you’re gone for the summer? StorageMart offers monthly self storage and has 3 locations near campus. So whether you’re visiting friends for the summer, traveling home or going abroad, you can keep your favorite things in storage until the semester begins. STORE IT SMART AT STORAGEMART Climate controlled self storage space provides an even temperature during the summer months so all your items feel right at home. You can store electronics, your flat screen and stereo (does anyone use those anymore) in a climate controlled space. Don’t forget, StorageMart has car storage too that you can use yearround or during the summer. RENT STORAGE ONLINE You can rent a storage unit online at www.storage-mart.com. This makes it easy for you or your parents to rent your space online in less than 5 minutes. Auto-debit and online bill pay options make it easy to manage your self storage account from wherever you may be.
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