The primary elections for California will be June 7, 2016, so the time is coming for citizens associated with the Democratic Party to choose between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders. Many Democratic voters in California are still undecided, so it is becoming increasingly important to question our values and the values we wish to be…
The Fossil Free Divestment movement at Stanford has gained traction in national media this week. Student protesters pledge to occupy the main administration building until Stanford divests not only from coal, but also all fossil fuels such as oil and natural gas as well. However, the real power of divestment lies not in its ability to curb emissions, but rather in encouraging broad engagement to create a more inclusive climate change dialogue.
The idea that an individual is responsible for his or her actions is something that we accept everyday without questioning. Indeed, the notion of individual responsibility is what underpins our legal and law enforcement systems, what drives our notions of fairness, and what justifies our criticisms of individuals who we believe have failed. However, if we instead believe that, as humans, we actually have little to no individual control over the actions we “choose” to make, then the basis of our belief in individual responsibility becomes null.
Ask almost any student group on campus and they will tell you the same thing: “SAL [Student Activities & Leadership] is suffocating us.” SAL has been enforcing recent changes to the guidelines for student organizations that have been diluting the value of the Stanford student life experience and contributing to a decline in program quality.
Activism and activist groups have an important role to play at universities: they push the envelope on important and contentious issues, from sexual assault to racial equality, when institutions and cultures are slow to change. By the very nature of challenging the status quo, activism is bound to create critics, skeptics, and reactionaries.
As students plan their careers to make a social impact, they should consider whether or not getting rich and making charitable donations is the most effective way to make social change.
Ebonics is an instance of how cultural norms and beliefs have been shaped in America to devalue black bodies and black lives. Shedding light on this topic is crucial because, as the nation continues to mobilize around racial politics, it should also acknowledge and support black and minority cultural pride efforts to resist this colonial mindset.
My intention is not condemn those who donate to disaster relief. Rather, in addition to donating to disaster relief, I hope to convince individuals to donate to address systemic causes of death as well, such as poverty.