It is a new world for DNA editing


The Broad Institute in Cambridge, Mass., a research center that is associated with Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, now has the rights to a powerful gene-editing technique, a technology worth billions of dollars, that has the potential to change the medical and agricultural world.

The birthplace of this gene-editing technique developed at the University of California at Berkeley, but this past Wednesday, the federal Patent and Trademark Office made the decision to issue over a dozen patents regarding this technique  to the Broad Institute. They did so because to the extent of their knowledge, they believed the inventions brought by these two institutions were irrelevant to each other.

Although the rights were accredited to the Broad Institute, the ruling now allows the University of California at Berkeley to own the rights to the use of Crispr on all types of cells. These new patents mean that all companies that want to use Crispr in the medical, agricultural, or any other field will potentially need to apply for a usage license from both the University of California at Berkeley and the Broad Institute.

The technique is called the Crispr technique, and it can be used to modify the DNA in the cells of humans, animals and plants. Biologists are most intrigued by the possibilities

Crispr has the potential for development of new disease treatments. This technique makes the altering of DNA in human embryos possible. These means it is now possible to edit out genes that could cause serious diseases in an infant.

National Public Radio and the New York Times were the only major publications to make an effort to cover this topic. Both were written from a scientific standpoint, explaining what gene-editing means for the future of medicine.

ESPN’s Megacast sets new standard


ESPN’s MegaCast for the College Football National Championship remains the new standard for coverage for live-event programming. 

With the use of multiple looks the same event, the audience gets its choice of preferred way to watch the game. 

The traditional broadcast was on ESPN with Kirk Herbstreit, Chris Fowler, Samantha Ponder, and Tom Rindali constituting a formidable group. 

Coach’s Room, arguably their best broadcast of the night, featured a host from ESPN and head coaches from around college football. 

This year’s roster included Dino Barbers (Syracuse), Mike MacIntyre (Colorado), Kalani Sitake (Brigham Young), Steve Addazio (Boston College) and Dave Doeren (North Carolina State). The slight jabs from conference rivals were overshadowed by behind-the-scenes glimpses and eloquent analysis. Although difficult at times for the host to go to break because of the discussion, it still remained ESPN’s best broadcast of the night.

Coach’s Film Room brought a unique element for viewers that do not get to see a game closer than the nosebleeds. They also provide more in-depth analysis that a play-by-play or color commentator simply cannot provide. 

But can it grow into a primary broadcast? No. 

However, most of the games that get the Coach’s Film Room treatment are ones that you usually view socially. The feeling of watching a game with rival fans, with your favorite bar buddies or fantasy sports buddies will not fade. Ultimately the inefficiency of the Coach’s Room is one that is enjoyed by the sports nerd relaxing and watching the game, not while you’re trying to order your next drink. 

Former Clemson Quarterback Tahj Boyd and former Alabama Offensive Lineman Barret Jones joined ESPN’s Joe Jessitore and Adam Amin for the Homers Broadcast on ESPN 2. Viewers get a unique look at the two football programs by listening to recent alumni of the two programs. 

A cast featuring an eccentric Bill Walton, Michelle Beadle, Marcellus Wiley, Jay Bilas and Rachel Nichols were on ESPN U for the ESPN Voices Broadcast. Aiming towards seeing what it is like to sit down with the personalities and just watch a game with them, got out of hand several times. 

ESPN Classics ran Sounds of the Game where the game was being shown, but with no play-by-play or commentary. 

Giving a preview of what it’s like being a producer, ESPN’s Goal Line channel ran the Command Center broadcast, featuring split screen shots of different angles that ESPN in the stadium, along with advanced statistics and charts displaying information of the current drive.

Fox News’ Smith criticizes Trump


Fox News anchor Shepard Smith surprised many with a biting criticism of President Donald Trump on his show Thursday. Smith’s comments were in response to the president’s continued criticism of the news media, most recently during his Thursday press conference, which Smith described as “absolutely crazy.”

During the press conference, President Trump berated CNN’s Jim Acosta, averting his question and going on an extensive, dizzying rant about the news media.

Smith was critical of the president’s response to the question, defending Acosta and the news media as a whole.

“We’re not fools for asking the questions and we demand to know the answer to this question. You owe this to the American people,” Smith said on his show, pressing the president to take reporters’ questions seriously.

“We have a right to know. You call us fake news and put us down like children for asking these questions on behalf of the American people,” Smith said, referring to the president’s habit of referring to widely regarded organizations as “fake news.”

Smith’s response is only the latest in the saga of conflict between the president and the news media. Throughout his campaign, President Trump has repeatedly alleged that a plethora of news outlets are dishonest, ineffective or failing. The only program spared from the criticism seems to be the morning show “Fox & Friends,” for which the president has previously expressed his praise, and which he specifically mentioned during the press conference for being “very honorable people.”

Despite the president’s many attempts to discredit CNN, the news organization has not suffered, according to CNN President Jeff Zucker. In a state-of-the-company luncheon on Thursday, Zucker and other top executives from CNN and Turner announced that ratings are high, no advertisers have pulled out, and there has been no harm to the CNN brand.

Immigrants’ day sends message


America’s new political situation seems to focus on segregating immigrants from their families and their homes but, within this alarming situation, something positive is being created. The unification of immigrants and non-immigrants to stand and fight together for their rights, bringing to the surface the humanity and acceptance that there is and that should be encouraged.

“A Day Without Immigrants” is a boycott that occurred on Thursday, encouraged by activists to all Immigrants around the nation to protest and highlight the importance and contribution of their presence in the United States.

This boycott encouraged the protesters to not attend work, not send children to school, not shop online or in stores, not to eat at restaurants, not to buy gas and not to attend class.

President Donald Trump has created bad relations with numerous countries, such as Mexico and Syria, by making them outsiders and wanting to kick their citizens out of America. Trump has vowed to deprive sanctuary cities of federal funding, increase the deportation of legal and illegal immigrants, and he has blamed the high unemployment rate on them.

In response to these recent events involving Donald Trump’s immigration policies, immigrants all around the nation went on strike to send a message to the president.

On the poster advertising the boycott, it said: “To the president: without us and our contribution this country is paralyzed.”

Awareness of this protest mainly happened through social media and posters, in addition to immigrant rights groups reaching out personally. This protest was meant to involve all undocumented, residents, citizens, immigrants from all over the world, but ended up getting more support.

All around the United States, business and restaurants were closed and thousands of students did not attend school. Some of the most visibly affected areas were in San Francisco and Washington, D.C, where popular chefs closed their restaurants in support for the protest.

Restaurants were the most impacted by the strike. Some restaurants canceled their long-standing reservations and served limited menus, donating earnings to the American Civil Liberties Union. The collaboration of not just immigrants alone, but even citizens, emphasizes the acceptance and unity that the United States is known to have by embracing its diversity.

There were restaurants that posted banners outside their establishments to spread the message. Such as Nickel’s Diner in Los Angeles, that put up a sign saying “We are all immigrants.”

Some immigrant communities discouraged the participation in this protest because it was risky and did not want to put immigrants in a more difficult situation. Many immigrants stated that they really wish they could participate in this boycott but could not risk losing their jobs. Nevertheless, they fully supported the protest.

Organizers of this protest warned the participators that there was a possibility of risk when getting involved in this boycott, but that they needed to be ready to take that risk. If you have a life somewhere, a life that includes your friends, your family, your education, your job and your home; the idea that one day you may have nothing is terrifying.

Understandably, you have to fight to not lose everything you have. To me, it makes sense that many immigrants are willing to take this risk.

The protest “A Day Without Immigrants” is a way of sending a direct message indirectly, by highlighting the role of immigrants in the life of Americans by not having them there.

Having many immigrants stay home for a day, impacts everyone’s everyday life in different ways. It is unfair that entire communities are criminalized, there are bad and good people everywhere.  It is good to see people come together and fight for their dignity and their lives.

Covergirl’s model tweets racist remarks


You may have heard about Covergirl’s first male model back in October 2016. Today, the same spokesperson that social media crazed over, James Charles, received backlash after he tweeted about all of Africa having Ebola.

The tweet read “’I can’t believe we’re going to Africa today omg what if we get Ebola’ ‘James we’re fine we could’ve gotten it at chipotle last year’….”.

The Covergirl model explained that he and his friends were traveling to South Africa on a school trip and that it wasn’t his intention to offend anyone.

Although, in his apology letter that’s posted below, he makes one large mistake. James called Africa a country and Twitter took notice.

Tweets started flying regarding the continuation of the negative stereotype of Africa being ridden with disease, starving children and poverty.

People also started looking deeper into James Charles’s tweets, and found more (not so shocking) racist remarks.

His actions were then compared to makeup mogul Jeffree Star, who was called out for his racist remarks and use of the n word in summer 2016.

Affinity Magazine quickly latched onto the Twitter drama surrounding these comments and made an article, which they said Charles’s management had asked them to take down, an order that they proudly declined.

Twitter makeup goddess and black beauty activist @imthebombdotcom lead the pack against the racist and stereotypical remarks, demanding that Covergirl’s PR team issue a response. Charles tweeted the controversial tweet at 3:37 p.m. Covergirl did not issue a response until 5:55 p.m., and that was not good enough for Twitter.

Tweets flew to Covergirl from women and men of all races, saying that Covergirl needs to rid their company of the young James Charles and, until they do so, they will not get the support/business of many.

I, for one, agree with the need to dismiss James Charles from the Covergirl brand. In a society that already contains racism and European-centric beauty standards, there’s no need for discrimination. Hopefully the 17-year-old Charles can educate himself on the culture and beauty of the continent of Africa.

New York Fashion Week is first stop


Calvin Klein

New York Fashion Week is only the first leg in a month-long extravaganza of fashion shows around the world.

Since it is the first stop, for the last couple of years it was regarded as the least impressive in comparison to the collections shown in London and Paris.

However, this year, audiences were surprised by the moving collections full of inspiring clothes that pushed boundaries and sent a message.

Established labels reinvented classic looks and emerging designers gave us reason to believe they are here to stay.

In a collection dubbed as “Americana” Raf Simmons, the new chief creative officer of the brand took the saying “what goes around comes around” to new heights.

Alexander Wang

He took inspiration from America’s diverse and chaotic fashion past filled with leather jackets, trouser suits and ribbed sweaters to create a new forward-thinking way of dress.

He restructured sweaters and added mesh detailing, put plastic covering on top of feather dresses, a gold faux fur coat and plaid coats which was surprisingly beautiful.

While some might have thought a runway show with no seats would be dreadful, Wang’s mosh-pit audience perfectly reflected his gothic, all-black collection.

Adam Selman

His studded bags, leather pants and graphic shirts added a new tier to New York street-style.

The models stomped on the runway in patent leather boots while carrying chain-link bags that will definitely become the next it-girl accessories.

Leave it to Selman to turn a Western cowboy look into something romantic and girly.

His denim jumpsuits and rose embroidered jeans contrasted with converse and metallic sunglasses.

However, the odd pairing created a surprising and causal that can be worn for a night on the town or a day with your friends.

BROCK Collection

For those who long for the days women were ultra-feminine, this year’s Vogue contest winner is a gift to you.

The collection features knee-length dresses cinched at the waist in gingham and red fabrics.

The feminine clothes were accessorized with classic off-the shoulder fur coats and stools. At first glance the collection looks almost Italian, with their ruffled details and deep color palate.

However, there is an air of casualness to it, making it the perfect date-night attire.

Adele pulls a Kenye, makes Beyoncé cry


Adele pulled a Kanye, but on herself this time, at the Grammy’s on Sunday in Los Angeles.

After winning the Grammy for “Album of the Year,” she dedicated her award to Beyoncé. Her hit “25” not only beat Beyoncé’s “Lemonade,” but she also beat fellow nominees Drake, Justin Bieber, and Sturgill Simpson.

“I can’t possibly accept this award and I’m very humbled and very gracious and grateful, but my artist of my life is Beyoncé and this album to me — the ‘Lemonade’ album is just so monumental, Beyoncé,” an overwhelmed Adele said to the audience.

Beyoncé was nominated for nine categories and won for “Best Music Video” and “Best Urban Contemporary Album.” However, Adele made a clean sweep. She was nominated for five awards including, “Record” and “Song of the Year” for “Hello” and she left with all five. Now her Grammy award total is 15.

In her acceptance speech, she took the time to thank the Recording Academy, the team that worked on the album and her husband and son, but she was driven to shift the focus of her speech on Beyoncé’s powerful visual album.

“[It is] so monumental, and so well thought out. And so beautiful and soul-baring and we all got to see another side to you that you don’t always let us see, and we all appreciate that, and all us artists here… adore you,” she continues while Beyoncé starts to tear up.

“You are our light and the way that you make me and my friends feel — the way that you make my black friends feel — is empowering. And you make them stand up for themselves and I love you and I always have, and I always will.”

Other events that happened that night were Chance the Rapper’s three wins, making history for becoming the first artist to win a Grammy without selling physical copies of his music—or selling much of his music at all, for that matter.

There was a tribute to George Michael, which was performed by Adele. Despite these and many other special moments that happened at the Grammys, nearly every entertainment news organization headlined Adele’s heartfelt speech to Beyoncé. Chance the Rapper made history, yet he was overshadowed in the news media by Adele and Beyoncé crying.

Top running back commits to Miami


It has been over a little more than one week since National Signing Day wrapped up with Miami gaining the No. 12-ranked recruiting class in the nation for 2017 according to Rivals 247.

Coach Mark Richt is already off to a hot start recruiting for 2018. Highly talented running back Lorenzo Lingard took an official visit this past Tuesday with another one scheduled for two weeks from now. It did not take long for the No. 4-ranked running back in the nation to commit to Miami. He posted on Twitter on Thursday night how excited he was for this opportunity.

Lingard is a highly coveted recruit with offers from all over the country. Clemson and Texas are still hot on his trail. It is typically early for a recruit to commit this early, but this is a huge haul for Miami.

Looking at the numbers that Lingard has put up in high school explains why he is such a highly regarded recruit. He averages about 11 yards per carry. Yes, he averages a first down every time he touches the ball. The 6-foot, 180-pound running back is hot on every school’s radar, whether running back is a position of need for a team or not.

American woman visits 196 nations


An American woman, Cassie De Pecol, traveled to 196 countries in the duration of 18 months and 26 days. As she traveled to every country in the world, she explained how she was so overwhelmed with the variety of culture she was able to experience. Her goal was also to promote peace in her “own small way” within the people considering everything that is going on in the world right now.

Covered by CNN, they explained that Cassie broke an all-time record for the amount of time it took the previous record breaking traveler to travel around the entire world. Most news coverage now is about Trump and executive matters as well as sports and celebrity concerns.

However, this is highly commendable and should have received a lot more coverage than it did considering it was such a remarkable deed. Other news has been overshadowing minor news that deserves recognition as well. Although I am not sure how much coverage the previous record-breaking traveler received, I’m almost sure it was exceptionally more than Cassie.

Also considering that she is the first female to do so, it should ignite much more reason to want to cover such a story in depth on a much broader spectrum across conventional news media.

Trump doesn’t comment on Quebec


Donald Trump’s ethics are continuously questioned as he seems to easily get distracted from his duties as president and focus more on his family name and business, then on the real issues that keep arising worldwide.

Last Sunday, six people were killed and eight others were wounded in a shooting in a mosque in the city of Quebec. Trump has not said anything about this tragedy, but seems to be willing to share his opinions of his daughter’s clothing line.

The Quebec shooting, which occurred in a mosque, a Muslim place of worship, was an unexpected event as mass shootings, unlike in the United States, are fairly uncommon in Canada. The attack occurred at the Islamic Cultural Center of Quebec, in a country which became known as a safe place for refugees running from warfare and terrorism in countries of Muslim majority. The shooter, although native Canadian seemed to be a Trump supporter. This makes it a very delicate topic, especially after Donald’s Trump travel ban ruling.

As people waited on the opinion of the president, he said nothing about this misfortune and didn’t even share his compassion. Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s senior advisor justified the silence of Donald Trump by saying that he doesn’t tweet about everything. But by now we all seem to be too familiar with Donald Trump’s tweets, and so is Seth Meyers, the host on Late night, who called Trump out for his silence.

“Oh, he doesn’t tweet about everything?” Meyers said on “Late Night,” “It sure feels like he does!” Seth Meyers scrolled through Donald Trump’s tweets and pointed his tweet attacking Nordstrom, right after his intelligence briefing.

Nordstrom is an American chain of luxury department stores which announced they were no longer going to carry Ivanka Trump’s clothing line. Donald Trump tweeted “Ivanka has been treated so unfairly.” Many journalists strongly acknowledge Donald Trump’s lack of priorities and ethical behavior. The New York times brought up how Trump breaks Tradition by “singling out companies for criticism like Boeing, Lockheed Martin, automakers and news organizations.”

Donald Trump keeps constant attention on his family business, he gets overprotective when it comes to the family name, but when it comes to real issues he seems to lack the ability to make statements to show acceptance and give the nation a state of tranquility.

Donald Trump and his administration keep showing how business oriented they are instead of focusing on political issues. This only builds up continuous criticism instead and lack of trust in everything they say.  For example, Kellyanne Conway, counselor to President Trump and White house official promoted Ivanka Trump’s clothing line in a television interview and is continuing to receive criticism on ethical violations.

“Go buy Ivanka’s stuff,” Conway said “Ivanka Trump has a wonderful line, I own some of it. I fully, I’m gonna just going to give a free commercial here. Go buy it today everybody. You can find it online.” This unacceptable comment proves the lack of orientation of Trumps administration on topics that actually matter through the use of unfair business practices. This is a Potential violation of Federal ethics law that bars the use of public office for public gain.

As we still wait on his opinion on the shooting in Quebec, silence can be stronger than words, suggesting that Donald Trump does not have an interest in commenting about the shooting because he doesn’t care.

The focus in the White House needs to be prioritized and stabilized on important issues, as the distraction on personal matters gets more attention than it should. Clear opinions and solutions need to be shared more, as this will give everyone more intellectual topics to read and talk about, instead of the constant dramatic and ridiculous affairs.

Penn State bans alcohol for greeks


A 19-year-old student, Timothy Piazza, who attended Penn State University, died on Feb. 3 after falling down a set of basement stairs at a fraternity party.

It was reported that he fell down the stairs around 11 p.m. on Feb. 2, but the police weren’t notified until 11 a.m. the next day. Piazza was eventually taken to a medical facility and died later that morning.

The former student had recently accepted an invitation to join Beta Theta Pi where the tragic incident took place. It was announced that in response to the death of Piazza this week at a fraternity, university officials have placed a moratorium on all social gatherings at on- and off-campus fraternities and sororities.

This being said, all of greek life is being revealed in a very negative light now that this happened. Several news articles focus on the actual incident that happened and the current investigations that are currently taking place due to the fact that the police were called nearly 12 hours after the accident.

The next big problem with this situation is that all of greek life is banned from having any social events. I have a friend who knows a lot of people at Penn State and she was describing to me how greatly impacted they were due to the death.

The news, I believe, does a great job of covering what the news organizations can do with this story. But even with these news stories and incidences occurring, it doesn’t seem to actually effect the greek life at other schools whatsoever.

So, I come to this conclusion that although there are very tragic deaths due to alcohol and hazing, fraternities still partake in these sort of events because, well, they always have.

Unfortunately, even with all the coverage of this accident, the news media and journalists have not been able to change this aspect of greek life or perceptions and mindsets about hazing.

There was only one article that I saw that covered the other side of the story, not what happened directly to Piazza but how it affected other students in other fraternities. I found this to be interesting.

All in all, I think journalists covered this breaking story well. Negative perceptions of outside greek life members will prevail and inside greek life students will have the same mindset as always; the more booze, the better it is.

Is Tom Brady the greatest of all-time?


Most sixth round draft choices fail to make a team in the NFL. But in 2000, a gangly looking kid from the University of Michigan secured a spot on the depth chart as the No. 3 quarterback on the New England Patriots.

Fast forward 17 years, that man is now the most-decorated quarterback in NFL history and possibly the greatest player of all-time. After leading the most historic comeback ever, Tom Brady became the first quarterback to win five Super Bowls, he is a four-time Super Bowl MVP (more career Super Bowl MVP awards than any other player in NFL history), holds the record for most career wins by a quarterback (208), and the list of accolades goes on and on.

Yet, people still argue that Tom Brady isn’t the greatest quarterback let alone greatest player of all-time. Numbers speaking, Tom Brady is far and away the greatest postseason player in NFL history, but what about the regular season?

Yes, Peyton Manning holds the regular season record for most career passing yards and most career touchdown passes, but how many rings has Manning won? The first overall selection in the 1998 draft won two Super Bowl championships.

“Hey, but Tom Brady has better talent around him than Peyton Manning,” some people may claim. False.

Peyton Manning played with Hall of Famer Marvin Harrison and soon-to-be Canton shrined Reggie Wayne.

Tom Brady just won a Super Bowl with a wide receiving core of Julian Edelman (college quarterback), Danny Amendola (undrafted free agent), Chris Hogan (four-year lacrosse player at Penn State) and rookie Malcolm Mitchell.

When you talk about doing it with a near-anonymous cast, look at Brady. Outside of Randy Moss, you won’t find a Hall of Famer in the bunch. And when he did play with Moss, he threw 50 touchdown passes and went 16-0.

Nobody has done it better. For 15-plus years, Brady has played with no-namers making them heads and shoulders better. Extremely better. And now he stands as the most decorated QB in NFL history and has done so in an era that strives to wipe out dynasties. Defying the odds and all the challenges laid in front of him, including Roger Goodell, Tom Brady has secured himself as the greatest player in NFL history. Period.

Sportscasters make career changes


Verne Lundquist, Brent Musburger, Chris Berman, and Bob Costas will no longer be the voices behind countless sporting events. Musburger has decided to retire from television, while Lundquist, Berman and Costas are taking major steps back in their responsibilities with their networks.

Brad Nessler will replace Lundquist, Chris Fowler will replace Musburger, Mike Tirico will replace Bob Costas, and ESPN is still searching who will step into Berman’s role.

While many of the moves were expected for a while now, Musburger’s retirement comes at an interesting time.

Of late, Musburger has found himself in controversial moments while on the air. From his infatuation to former Alabama quarterback’s girlfriend Katherine Webb in 2013 to his latest in defending Oklahoma running back Joe Mixon during this year’s Sugar Bowl for getting a second chance after punching a woman in the face in 2014.

ESPN and Musburger both say that the comments were not a part of his decision in retirement.

The moves show a generational shift of coverage that sports has been seeing, as a whole.

A step in the right direction, nonetheless.

Berman will forever be a legend in sports broadcasting. While some tuned in just to hear a “back, back, back, back, back, back, gone” or the “whoop” of a juke from Berman, sports fans were getting tired of the same call for 15 years. Becoming a running joke on Twitter for these calls, it was time for Berman to take a break.

With the aforementioned controversies surrounding Musburger, it was better for both parties to clear their baggage and head towards different directions.

Tirico’s move is fascinating. Tirico’s move from ESPN to NBC was to replace Al Michaels in play-by-play responsibilities for Sunday Night Football. His role should expand more next year than what he experienced this season.

NBC also owns the rights to next year’s Super Bowl, which occurs only a couple of days before Tirico is supposed to cover the Winter Olympics. NBC has not announced specific details on how their coverage for these events, but it is worthy of a watchful eye.

Journalists confront Trump’s claims


In response to the White House’s list of 78 terror attacks that President Trump said were unreported by the news media, journalists have taken a direct approach in shutting down Trump’s claims.

The list included events that were reported nearly ad nauseam, including even the 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting and the November 2015 Paris attacks. These events and many of the others listed dominated news coverage for weeks, filling hours of air time and countless articles in print and online.

The list seems to have been primarily released in an attempt to support Trump’s repeated assertion that the media is dishonest and ineffective; the focus on terrorist attacks that were apparently influenced by radical Islam seems to be an effort to validate Trump’s recent policies regarding Muslim-majority countries.

In response to the list, journalists from news organizations across the nation and abroad have chimed in. CNN’s Anderson Cooper clarified on air that many of the attacks mentioned in the list he personally reported on, playing clips of him reporting from San Bernadino, Orlando and Paris, among many more.

On screen, the lower third read “WH releases list of undercovered attacks,” and in parenthesis, “(We covered many).” The New York Times published the list from the White House along with links to its own articles on nearly each attack.

Business Insider Australia reported on the five Australian incidents mentioned on the list, one of which was the fatal stabbing of two Australian backpackers. The incident was never determined by Australian police to be related to terrorism.

The family of one of the deceased reacted to the list with an open letter to Trump on Facebook, in which she shared that she began blogging to dispel what she called the myth that Islamic fundamentalism was the driving factor behind her daughter’s death.

The victim’s mother ended the post by denouncing Trump’s actions and framing of the attacks, writing “This vilification of whole nation states and their people based on religion is a terrifying reminder of the horror that can ensue when we allow ourselves to be led by ignorant people into darkness and hatred.”

Simple works best for Valentine’s Day


Valentine’s Day is on the way. Feb. 14 holds an annual VIP spot on the calendar. Many people exchange cards, candy, gifts and flowers with their “valentine.”

This day of romance dates all the way back to the 5th century and was named after the Christian martyr St. Valentine. That’s a fun-fact that a lot of people, especially college students, don’t know. In fact, for most college students, especially freshmen, Valentine’s Day is a huge gray area. Everyone has only known each other for a short amount of time and probably have not been dating their valentine for long either.

This can lead to students wondering what exactly is appropriate to do and buy for their valentine. Do they do the standard dinner and a movie? Well the day of love falls on a Tuesday this year so that isn’t ideal. What about gifts? What is too much and what is not enough?

No need to worry. Here are a few ideas for a perfect Valentine’s Day, college edition.  First off is to keep things simple, but special. Food is the key to everyone’s heart.

Candy and chocolate are easy and thoughtful. Because Valentine’s Day falls on a Tuesday it is a good idea to plan the actual celebration for the weekend. “Fifty Shades Darker” has opened in theaters. There are always the classic movies you can watch in your dorm room such as “Sleepless in Seattle,” “The Notebook,” “Titanic” or even “50 First Dates.” You can find these all online and have a romantic movie night without spending money.

If you really want to make someone feel special you can have your school send them a Valentine’s Day gram. Some fraternities are even willing to serenade your special someone.

These are simple ways to make your college Valentine’s Day thoughtful and romantic on a college student’s budget.

Super Bowl Ads send a message


If you watched the 2017 Super Bowl LI, then you probably saw how some of the Super Bowl commercials took a political stance. It’s clear that President Trump’s policies and his overall views on politics, sparked ideas for many big-name companies to show which side they stand on.

Audi used its 60-second commercial spot to speak about gender equality. Starting the commercial off with the words “What will I tell my daughter?” with an image of the narrator’s daughter in a soap-box car race.

The commercial continues on with the young girl racing against boys and her “dad” doing the voiceover asking questions like “Do I tell her despite her education, her drive, her skills, her intelligence, she will automatically be valued as less than every man she ever meets?”, to bring up key issues with gender equal in America.

The commercial then ends with him saying “or maybe I’ll be able to tell her something different” and Audi stating their stance on equal pay by letting viewers know that “Audi of America is committed to equal pay for equal work.”

Airbnb decided to highlight Trump’s anti-immigration ban and show that they are against it. The commercial shows the faces of real human beings of different gender, race, sexuality, and religion with the words “We believe no matter who you are, where you’re from, who you love or who you worship, we all belong. The world is more beautiful when you accept.” When Airbnb originally purchased its ad-spot, it had a different concept in mind. But because of Donald Trump’s travel ban, they were inspired to take a stance and send the message “We Accept” to everyone watching the Super Bowl LI.

Despite everything that is going wrong in America, it is comforting to know that companies we know, love and trust, do not share the same views with a president who causes so much hate and mistrust in a country that is suppose to be free and full of love.

Cheers for a future fair wage


Four former NFL cheerleaders are tackling the league this week over unfair wages. The four women filed a lawsuit against the NFL and named 26 teams that they say planned to underpay and make salaries non-negotiable. They’re seeking between $100 million to $300 million worth of damages.

Cheerleaders appear in much more than just the games. Some teams plan multiple mandatory events throughout season, that the cheerleaders are required to be at. The routines for the games, as well as halftime performances, are all rehearsed at other points during the week. It is claimed in the lawsuit that there have been instances where NFL cheerleaders were not paid for their mandatory appearances nor their rehearsal time.

This lawsuit is not the first time the cheerleaders have targeted the NFL. In 2014, a class action lawsuit filed by members of the Raiderettes against the NFL’s Oakland Raiders resulted in $1.25 million worth of damages. This 2014 lawsuit also forced a new California law into effect, recognizing professional cheerleaders as employees and providing them with certain ethical benefits such as overtime and sick pay.

Let’s break down these numbers. The NFL has 32 teams that have a combined value of $74.8 billion in 2016 according to Forbes. NFL players made $6.4 billion of that value in 2016. NFL mascots are on salary with benefits and can earn between $25,000 and $60,000 per year. NFL cheerleaders are on an hourly pay, with the highest of that pay going to the team captains at $15 per hour.

It doesn’t stop there. Just as the players can get fined, the cheerleaders can get fined too. NFL cheerleaders receive a lump sum for their efforts at the end of the season with fines taken out. With such a small wage to begin with, none of the cheerleaders are pulling a Odell Beckham, Jr., and writing the NFL a check for $50,000.

Most of these beautiful girls are using this extremely demanding job as a supplement to another job, or even school.The 2017 Pro-Bowl cheerleaders contained graduates in industrial engineering (Ravens, Dana), business marketing (Buccaneers, Chelsea), psychology (Patriots, Hannah), music business (Titans, Anne), health science (Eagles, Amanda), and Toni of the Denver Broncos even has her masters in counseling psychology … and this is just the pro team! You go girls!

Now that the Super Bowl is over, hopefully the league can turn its attention to the channel of fair wage and equal pay for women.

Tommy Hilfiger takes on Los Angeles


Only a day before New York Fashion Week began, fashion designer Tommy Hilfiger decided to hold a fashion event of his own in Los Angeles. It showcased a modernized late 90’s and early 2000’s style of oversized sports jerseys, cropped sweatshirts, patched up jeans, and leather shorts.

The show was centered around their reveal of Hilfiger’s new collaboration line with supermodel, Gigi Hadid for the next fashion season. More designers have recently decided to bring shows to the Los Angeles area for the extra space and laid-back vibe the city can bring to a show.

Many news media outlets such as The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, USA Today, and Vogue reported about this event. Vogue focused on the fashion, while the New York Times focused on all sorts of fashion events happening in Los Angeles this week.

Not only well known celebrities, such as Gigi Hadid, Lady Gaga, and Fergie were at this event, but also social media personalities like Cameron Dallas and Nash Grier were able to attend the show.

Along with his runway surprise, Hilfiger hosted a carnival-styled festival called Tommyland to celebrate the new collection. Industry professionals and consumers partied together with food trucks, pop-up shops and carnival rides. Fergie performed for the crown of about 3,000 guests at this carnival.

Gaga reacts to hate comments


Some negative comments were made about Lady Gaga’s Super Bowl performance. Most of these comments were made about her physique during the show

But Lady Gaga is not sweating it. After all her entire song “Born This Way” captures the message of loving yourself.

” I heard my body is a topic of discussion so I wanted to say, I’m proud of my body and you should be proud of yours, too,” the pop sensation wrote on Instagram.

Being in the spotlight is hard and most of the time someone will always have something to say about it even if their comments are not true.

Gaga was called fat along with a lot of other negative comments about her outfits during the half time show.

Although she may have had some outfits that showed off her midriff, Gaga did not give into all the hate comments.

She took action on social media to let her fans know that she wasn’t bothered and also to offer some advice.

“Be you, and be relentlessly you. That’s the stuff of champions.” Gaga said.

Her words spread all over social media by many other women celebrities who have been ridiculed before for their bodies.

Lady Gaga knows that being in the spotlight all the time and performing at an even as big as the Super Bowl will always come with negative comments even if the performance was truly amazing.

Gaga continues to reassure fans that these hateful comments did not and will nit effect her.

She encourages fans and everyone to love themselves love who you are because “baby you were born this way.”

Fashion Week experiences big changes


Twice a year since 1993, people that work in the fashion industry flock to New York City with suitcases full of flamboyant clothes, energy bars and portable phone chargers, all in the hopes of making New York Fashion Week seem just a little less chaotic.

However this year, chaos seems inevitable because big labels like Rebecca Minkoff, Tommy Hilfiger and Rachel Zoe are all going to Los Angeles to showcase their fall/winter 2017 collections, while other designers are staying in New York.

This big shift in location is a way for the designers to stay local to their customer base. Rachel Zoe’s brand is predominantly a California-based label, which is why she decided to show her new collection in the city she has more of an influence in.

Tommy Hilfiger is not only shaking up the fashion world by showcasing his new collection in California, but his newest collection is a collaboration between him and supermodel, Gigi Hadid.

This will be his second collection that has been created by him and Hadid, an idea that has uprooted his once waning brand due to her constant exposure of the brand’s clothes to her 29 million Instagram followers.

Minkoff who already showed her latest collection in L.A., just days before the official start to NYFW, took a page out of Hilfiger’s book and took advantage of the exposure Instagram can give a fashion label.

Minkoff filled her runway with fashion influencers and bloggers that have a massive social media following, instead of the usual runway models that are not as popular online.

Fashion blogger, Aimee Song of Song of Style, who has an Instagram following of over four million followers opened and closed Minkoff’s show, posting photos and videos all over her Instagram, Snapchat and blog.

These big changes to the way fashion shows are conducted comes at a time when the fashion industry is evolving into a more informal and casual environment.

Just last year, high fashion labels like Burberry, Topshop and Proenza Schouler created “See Now Buy Now” collections. Meaning, instead of showcasing collections months before the clothes will appear in stores, the designers are showcasing their collections and immediately putting it in stores and online for people to purchase.

This immediacy and casualness is a way for the fashion industry to keep up with millennial’s fast-changing behaviors and immediate needs.

However, some say it is deterring the importance of the fashion industry’s long standing rules and regulations.

For example, the Council of Fashion Designers of America, the organization that puts NYFW together, was ignored by rapper-turned-designer, Kanye West, when he failed to confirm his fashion show block with the CFDA.

This disregard for one of fashion’s biggest organizations is a step in a new direction for the industry.

2017 is the beginning of a whole new age for the fashion industry, only time will tell what else will change for the industry and if they are up for the challenge.