February 17, 2020
Volume 93, Issue 16
RIC alumni and “Law & Order” actor Ron McLarty dies at 72
Brynn Terry, Asst. News Editor
On February 8, Rhode Island College alumni and East Providence native Ron McLarty passed away after a long battle with Dementia. McLarty received his Bachelor of Arts in English degree in 1969 and was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Humanities from RIC in 2007.
McClarty received the Charles B. Willard Achievement Award from the RIC Alumni Association in 2005. This award is given to an alumni that has brought honor to RIC by great success in his/her field.
He donated original manuscripts of his own original plays, poems and novels along with audiobook recordings and other items to Adams Library here at RIC in 2017. “Ron is a Rhode Island boy to his core, so this is the perfect place for his archive to be housed” stated his wife, actress Kate Skinner in 2017.
During his life, McLarty was both an on-screen and broadway actor, an author, a playwright and a narrator. McLarty began acting in the early 1970s, and acted in and appeared in shows such as “Sex & the City,” “Law & Order,” and “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.” McLarty also did voice acting on cartoons such as “Courage the Cowardly Dog” and several specials for “The Berenstain Bears.”
McLarty was an author as well as an actor, writing and publishing ten novels. He also narrated over 100 audio books, recording for author Stephen King and President George W. Bush's memoir, Decision Points. King met McLarty after listening to the audiobook of his novel, The Memory of Running, which King deemed “The best book you can't read.”
The Ron McLarty Archive Fund has been created to ensure the preservation of his works at Adams Library. The fund will work to ensure the upkeep of the collection, along with supporting adaptation of the works as technology progresses.
New Hampshire feels the Bern
Sean Richer, News Editor
Thousands of supporters swelled with joy in Nashua, New Hampshire after Bernie Sanders' narrow victory in the most recent presidential primary. Sanders won the popular vote by a margin of approximately 4,000 votes, and tied with Pete Buttigieg in receiving nine delegates. "This victory here, is the beginning of the end for Donald Trump." The Vermont Senator announced at his victory rally. "We have achieved and will continue to achieve great things for this country!"
Buttigieg and Minnesota congresswoman Amy Klobuchar also had strong showings, however they have split a large chunk of the moderate voter base. This along with Andrew Yang and Senator Michael Bennett both dropping from the race, has narrowed the competition considerably. This has left many centrist Democrats nervous over a prospective Bernie presidency. Former Secretary of State John Kerry, was reported by the New York Times to have said that he was considering a 2020 bid saying, "We gotta stop Bernie, or its all over." However this has not yet come to pass.
This sentiment is not shared by Sander's progressive voters, who have long been asking for new reforms such as a single payer healthcare system and tuition free State college. A recent poll by Politico also shows that healthcare is the number one issue for democratic voters, a good sign since that has been Sanders' flagship issue. "Even if people are not 100 percent on board with Medicare for All, what they know is that the for-profit system isn't working." Said Sara Nelson, a Sanders supporter in Nashua.
Moderates are not the only people who suffered a loss in New Hampshire. Elizabeth Warren, a progressive not unlike Sanders, finished fourth with no delegates to her name. Many attribute this to Sanders' appeal to young voters, who have largely flocked to him rather than Warren. "We are able to communicate with voters more directly," said one Sanders adviser.
With the New Hampshire Primary and Iowa caucus completed, 48 elections remain to determine the Democratic Candidate to challenge President Trump. Although it is still early in the race, Sanders has so far established himself as a narrow frontrunner.
Locusts swarm east Africa
Brynn Terry, Asst. News Editor
Like a cloud of smoke from a distance, hundreds of billions of locusts have taken over the skies of east Africa, seeming to be straight out of the book of Exodus.
As climate change continues to affect the planet, the people of East Africa are suffering from a locust plague that is threatening the food supply of tens of millions of people. Desert locusts tend to strive after heavy rainfall that leads to prosperous vegetation, normally in Africa and the Middle East. The swarms are threatening the people of Ethiopia, Somalia, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.
The destruction brought by the locusts has particularly affected vegetation, increasing food insecurity by creating an inability to feed livestock, crippling farms throughout East Africa. It is already estimated that around 19 million suffer from food insecurity in the continent. The last time a plague this large tore through East Africa was in northern Ethiopia in 1954. The plague led to nearly 100 percent extinction of green-leaf plants, partnering with a drought to bring upon a year`s long famine.
Dominique Burgeon, director of emergencies for the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), stated that massive food assistance may be required to affected countries. "There is always a risk when you have people in acute food insecurity that famine is not very far," stated Burgeon.
The FAO predicts that due to the insect’s fast breeding, the population could grow to more than 500 times by June. “Our only option is to try to kill them all,” stated Bayeh Mulato, an FAO pest control expert in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
Currently, no attempts to decrease the ever-growing populations have been successful due to lack of resources. The affected countries do not have the financial means to acquire greater aerial spraying of pesticides, which is the most effective response known to date. Currently, Ethiopia has three planes equipped to engage in the spraying while Kenya has five.
The UN has asked for financial assistance from the international community, expecting around $76 million to properly treat the swarms. It is unknown at this time if further action will be taken by the UN to help aid the region as the swarms spread and breed, threatening more people and civilizations each day.
Attorney General Barr sues sanctuary cities
Sean Richer, News Editor
As immigration remains a key issue for the Trump Administration, Attorney General Barr has made a move against several "Sanctuary Cities" across the nation.
A Sanctuary City refers to a municipality that does not prosecute or deport undocumented immigrants who settle in that city. The Federal Government and ICE still have the power in theory, to prosecute such people, although state authorities refuse to help, making the process much more difficult.
According to the DOJ, lawsuits have been filed against the states of California and New Jersey and Washington State. The reasoning behind these lawsuits are that these cities go against the Supremacy Clause in the Constitution, which states that federal laws are the "Supreme law of the land." However, this interpretation of the clause is disputed by constitutional scholars.
Barr announced his intentions in a speech last Tuesday. "When we are talking about sanctuary cities, we are talking about policies that are designed to allow criminal aliens to escape." The DOJ went on to state that the federal government has the sole authority to make and enforce laws regarding immigration. This has been challenged by several state governments, who have ordered their police departments to not cooperate or share information with federal agents.
Mayor Jenny Durkan of Seattle, one of the cities under fire by these lawsuits, issued her own response to this move my Barr, "When the DOJ previously wasted resources and tried to take on the City of Seattle, they lost, and I'm confident they'll lose again."
This has the potential to set a new precedent for immigration enforcement in America. If the Supreme Court rules in favor of the DOJ it could affect sanctuary cities, and by proxy, undocumented immigrants. One such sanctuary is Providence, which has been a sanctuary for migrants since 2017. Mayor Jorge Elorza has since kept quiet on the situation, but that may not last much longer.
Andrew Yang subtracts himself from the 2020 election
Brynn Terry, Asst. News Editor
Photo by Abigail Nilsson
Andrew Yang, a businessman who became known for wearing a pin with “MATH” displayed across his left lapel, dropped out of the presidential race Tuesday night. “MATH” stood for Yang`s campaign slogan, “Make American Think Harder.” The lawyer turned presidential hopeful announced the end of his candidacy after failing to place in the top four candidates for both the Iowa caucus and the New Hampshire primary.
Yang filed his candidacy with the Federal Election Commission in early 2017 to be eligible for the 2020 Democratic primaries. Yang has never held a public office position. Yang prided himself for his role as a first generation American in his family to run for an office, and reaching for an “American dream.” He often refers to himself as being the opposite of Donald Trump, “an Asian man who likes math.”
Just days before his announcement of the end of his campaign, Yang was in New Hampshire, rallying with voters. “I am the math guy, and it’s clear from the numbers we’re not going to win this campaign.” Yang told supporters in New Hampshire. Yang failed to reach three percent of the votes in New Hampshire.
Under his second slogan, “Humanity First,” Yang’s policies included a proposal he called “the Freedom Dividend.” The Freedom Dividend promised $1,000 a month for any American citizen over the age of 18. According to Yang’s campaign website, the dividend would have grown the economy by 0.54 percent by 2025. This policy in particular came under fire during Yang’s run due to the lack of clarity regarding where the implements would come from.
Yang is among nineteen other candidates that have dropped out of the race.. At this time, he has not endorsed another candidate. The Rhode Island primary election will take place on April 28.
West Warwick priest claims abortion is worse than pedophilia
Alexis Rapoza, Opinions Editor
Just days after the 47th anniversary of Roe vs. Wade a local priest spoke out against recent legislation introduced by Rhode Island lawmakers that would move to codify a woman’s right to choose into state law should it be overturned at the national level.
Rev. Richard Bucci of Sacred Heart Church in West Warwick published an editorial in the church’s weekend bulletin which identified every Rhode Island lawmaker who voted for the Reproductive Privacy Act in 2019 and supports the passing of the recently proposed Equity in Abortion Act by name. Rev. Bucci stated in the editorial that these lawmakers would be refused communion, prohibited from witnessing marriages and not allowed to serve as godparents.
Rev. Bucci told NBC 10: “We are not talking about any other moral issue, where some may make it a comparison between pedophilia and abortion. Pedophilia does not kill anyone, and this does.” He then went on to state that more children have been killed by abortions than have been abused.
The West Warwick priest’s comments have drawn both local and national attention. State Rep. Julie Casimiro, who voted for the passage of RPA, stated on her Facebook page that Rhode Island General Assembly should follow Bucci’s lead and publish flier naming all the priests accused of sexual assault and not allow them in the statehouse.
Another State Rep. who voted in favor of RPA, Rep. Carol McEntee, has a history with the Sacred Heart Church. Rep. McEntee’s older sister had previously testified that she was abused by a former priest at the West Warwick church. Rep. McEntee also claims that she was forced to leave a relatives funeral and forbidden from giving a eulogy.
She told NBC 10, “If he wants to weigh the heinous crime that his predecessor committed on my sister, compared to what he believes I did wrong by voting for what I believe is right for the people of the state of Rhode Island, I don't think they even compare.”
In a statement to “The Washington Post”, spokeswoman for the Diocese of Providence, Carolyn Cronin, refused to say whether the Diocese supported Rev. Bucci’s decision. Instead, she stated, “Because the Church entrusts to each pastor the duty of teaching, sanctifying, and governing his parish, the daily pastoral and administrative decisions are made at the local parish level.” Cronin further goes on to say that priests are allowed to decide whether or not to adhere to norms set by the Diocese.
Arts & Entertainment
Lucille DiNaro, Maging Editor
Photos by Grace Kimmell
Analise Madriaga came to Rhode Island College to study Art Education, but was stopped in her tracks once she took her first jewelry class. One semester working with jewelry and metals and her passion was ignited: Analise intends to earn her Bachelors in Fine Arts next Fall.
For Analise, chasing what she calls her creative zen began early in life. “When I was a kid, my dad gave me a notebook and told me to draw everything in the house. I always loved making things.” She carries the same curious and creative spirit with her today, working on pieces which draw upon identity, nostalgia and personal and mutual experience.
Through the process of roll printing, Analise is able to embed delicate, organic textures into a variety of metals. “Growing up, I was always climbing trees and was never afraid to be outside. I like to relate nature to my artwork. With these larger pieces, I relate my grandparents' individual stories with nature and with herbs from their culture.” Amongst these natural impressions are Italian and Filipino spices, a blessed Easter psalm and dried materials she collects through her own experiences.
Once complete, the collective textures, shapes, patterns and materials are meant to reference a moment in time which links human experience both past and present. Pieces like “Ashes,” pictured create a home for their objects, whereas pieces such as “Oscar” and “Joan” are adornments which honor a particular narrative.
This semester, Analise’s creative process has inspired her to make pieces that force user interaction. When we met Analise, she was working carefully on a model of a frog, which when worn, will rest carefully in the wearer’s palm. The action of wearing the ring is the catalyst for the wearer’s immersion into nature and environment.
When asked about her creative thought process, Analise easily attributed her inspiration to “regular people.” She feels that “other people have those common experiences from their childhood and their life experiences, so with something like this, you are forcing someone to be nostalgic and interact with their [memories] through wearing it.”
If you are interested in seeing more of Analise’s work, follow her on Instagram at @anamadmetals
If you are a student who is part of the Art Department at Rhode Island College and would like to be featured in The Anchor, email Thomas at ArtDirector@anchorweb.org to schedule an interview.
Robert Petrarca, Anchor Contributor
Before the events of World War II made the headlines of history, World War I swept Europe by storm and took the lives of over a million brave soldiers who fought to bring peace to the world. Now the battles of The Great War can be enjoyed in director Sam Mendes WWI adventure, “1917.”
The film was released this past December and was met with widespread acclaim from critics and audiences alike; grabbing a total of 10 oscar nominations including Best Picture and Best Director. The film’s story centers on the lives of two British soldiers who must race against time in order to deliver an important message. The crucial message is to call off an upcoming attack that is doomed to fail and take the lives of 1,600 soldiers following the German army’s retreat to the Hindenburg Line during Operation Alberich in 1917. While most of the movie’s story is fiction, it is told in part from the account of Mendes grandfather, adding to the historical element of the film.
The movie boast’s some excellent performances from its two lead actors, George Mckay as William Scofield, and Dean-Charles Chapman as Thomas Blake. What was profound about the characters was how they formed a strong and mutual bond with one another and how they watched each other's backs while facing the many unsuspecting dangers and horrifying fatalities that war has to offer.
While the movie does boast some of the best special effects and a dazzling music score, the element that stood out as being the most amazing was its cinematography. The cinematography was beautifully executed, and it helped to make the movie’s many locations and heart pounding moments feel very realistic. What made it stand out is that most of the movie was film edited to make it appear as a one shot movie which consequently felt like one long take. Aside from the many Germans they cross paths with, the real enemy they face is time; as every second they have counts towards making it to their objective.
Despite the immense praise for “1917,” the movie does encounter some minor problems. One of the biggest problems was the movie’s pacing. It felt very inconsistent at times as it started off rather slow, but eventually builds up its energy for some amazing moments, only for it to revert to a much slower pace affecting the flow of the story. Another issue in the movie was its lack of action scenes. It does present a couple of moments that contain some jaw dropping action, but there is not enough action to satisfy those expecting an action packed war drama. But thankfully it does make up for it by offering a story that focuses on the human characters and their experiences in the war, instead of actual frontline combat. The film’s most notable actors are Colin Firth and Benedict Cumberbatch whose appearances were brief and disappointing because of their lack of screen time. It was also disappointing for Benedict Cumberbatch, his character plays a vital role in the movie's plot, to not appear until the end of the movie. Even though “1917” suffers from these minor issues it still came out as impressive and manages to become one of the best war movies of all time.
Gregory Williams, Asst. A&E Editor
After taking a three-week sabbatical from the strangeness, I find it only right to spare my dear readers from the preamble and get straight to it.
John’s Book of Revelations, written around 96 A.D., is the last book of the New Testament and appropriately happens to be the birthplace of the infamous triple digits ‘666.’ As stated in the New King James Version of the Bible (13:18): “Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His number is 666.” To appreciate who the “beast'' exactly is, one must consider the historical context and look back at the events that were unfolding at the time Revelations was written.
John has a number of visions and within one of these visions he tells us: “Then I saw a beast rising out of the sea, having seven head and ten horns, and on his horns ten crowns, and on his heads a blasphemous name” (13:1). Christians have associated the number 666 to be the designated number of the Antichrist, or the ‘devil’s number.’ This is understandable. John paints a rather terrifying and vivid picture of the coming beast of the apocalypse and the number that marks it.
Yet, the Bible has been read, interpreted and digested in a literal sense for hundreds of years and still by many. One does not have to do much digging to find a more mundane explanation as to who the beast the writer is referring to actually is.
For clarity, Revelations mentions two distinct beasts - not including the dragon that precedes them (a common symbol for Satan). The second beast represents false prophets who do the bidding of the first beast, who is symbolically a combination of the Roman Empire and its brutal Emperors.
“Early Christians associated Antichrist with false teachers and disciples and with apostasies and impious denials of God. Some students have identified Antichrist with the Roman Empire or with such rulers as Nero, Titus and Caligula” (The New Harper’s Bible Dictionary).
Given that Nero ruled with an iron fist and had an unrelenting aversion for Judaism and early Christianity, the true identity of the beast mentioned in Revelations becomes all the more clear. The Roman Emperor Domitian was reigning at the time of the book’s composition, but those who suffered and were persecuted under Nero’s rule (54-68 A.D.) feared he would return again.
To further support the notion that Nero is who the author was referring too, let’s take a look at the language used. The original text was written in ancient Greek and if you take the Greek form of the name ‘Nero Caesar’ and write it in Hebrew, where every letter of the Hebrew alphabet has a numerical value and then “calculate” it, you get 666. This ancient system of coding is called gematria. This system was used by early Christians who dared not speak out directly against their oppressors and instead opted for using numerical coding to secretly identify and voice their dissatisfaction with their tyrannical ruler.
To add further controversy, some academics argue that the numbers 616 (which appear in early Biblical texts) is in fact the original number of the beast and by using the same Jewish coding system you get the Roman Emperor Caligula (37-41 A.D.).
It has been well established that the number ‘7’ is considered to be lucky and so to be called or associated with a ‘6’ is never a good thing. Alternatively, the number 6 is considered a “perfect number” which in mathematics is one that equals the sum of its divisors (being 1, 2 and 3).
Furthermore, in the Genesis creation story, it took God six days to create the world and all of life and on the seventh day he rested.
In China, the number 6 or a succession of 6’s is favored and can be used to show respect for skilled gamers. In Chinese, 666 can also be tantamount to meaning “things go smoothly.”
To all those practicing Satanists and heavy metal bands out there – you may want to rethink getting 666 tattooed on you if you haven’t already.
Brynn Terry, Asst. News Editor
You’re an awful person. You are self-centered, reward-motivated and overall completely selfish. How do I know this? I am, too.
Recently my social psychology class went over the Theory of Overconfidence: A phenomenon when you think you’re better at something than you really are. Unsurprisingly, overconfidence affects everyone during some point in their lives. Let’s face it, no one wants to admit they’re not the best person. No one really wants to say no to rounding a dollar at the market for cancer research, but we do.
Take the wildfires in Australia, for example. They’ve been burning since September, but media outlets picked up around late November to early December, the holiday season when people were in a giving mood. Months later, the fires are still burning, but can you remember the last time you heard about them?
If that's a no, maybe you’ll blame the media for chasing the top story and forgetting to remind you. However, the reality is the fact that the public as a whole stopped caring altogether. We got distracted by the next big story, Kobe Bryant dying, but the fact of the matter is, Australia still hasn't stopped burning. Animals haven't stopped dying, families haven't stopped losing their homes. The truth is that the same thing goes for most tragic things, people stop caring once something else comes to our attention.
Even when it comes to donating, humans seem to only care when they’re getting something out of it. If we received something everytime we made a donation, it would cost more money to raise money, since the store has to buy schwag that feeds into the egos of the everyday person.
Maybe I’m just pessimistic, but I certainly think we have ourselves a bit of an issue when it comes to empathy about the things we aren't directly affected by.
Taking a step back and putting yourself in someone else's shoes will make things very different. Imagine being the hungry person on the street that was supported greatly during hunger awareness month last October, but then after that, no one seemed to pay attention. Wouldn't you want someone to care?
As the busyness of everyday life floods, it's easy to forget that there are other things going on outside of your own doors. Appreciate what you have. Give what you can, when you can. Give without expecting things in return. Be aware of your own selfish tendencies. You’re not an awful person, you’re just a person who needs a little reminder every now and again to lend a hand.
Alexis Rapoza, Opinions Editor
Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders and South Bend, Indiana’s Mayor Pete Buttigieg do not have much in common. At 38 years old, Mayor Pete is the youngest candidate in the race and one of the most inexperienced. In comparison, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders is the oldest candidate at 78-years old and has decades of experience. What they do have in common, however, is a mutual belief that they each won the Iowa Caucus and have an actual chance at winning the Democratic nomination.
These candidates each represent two different Democratic visions, Mayor Pete is campaigning on the idea of pragmatism or Medicare for all who want it and free higher education for those whose families make less than six figures. While Bernie Sanders, a self-proclaimed Democratic-Socialist, is promising free Universal Healthcare, free college for all and the abolishment of over $1.6 trillion in student loan debt.
If I’m going to be honest, both candidates, as well as the six others still in the race, are significantly better than the reality television star currently residing in the White House. However, I am not entirely certain either of them can unite the Democratic base completely on their own. Bernie Sanders won the popular vote in New Hampshire, but he did so with the lowest percentage of all-time receiving only about 25.8% of the vote, followed by Mayor Pete at 24.5% and Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar with 19.8%.
So, while the argument can be made that more people voted for Sanders than Buttigieg essentially making him the clear front-runner, Sanders’s only comparable competition in terms of ideology is Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren who trailed behind Klobucar with less than 10% of the vote. Combined, progressive candidates Warren and Sanders received only about 45% of the majority vote compared to his six moderate competitors who combined received about 55% of the vote.
Although this might not necessarily mean that the majority of Americans, or at least New Hampshire residents, would prefer a more moderate candidate over a progressive, there is something to be said about the split moderate vote. The Democratic party has spent the last year promising that whoever the Democratic nominee is will beat Trump and unite the nation. But, how can they unite the nation if they can’t even unite the party? In 2016, a large portion of Americans who voted for Sanders in the primary either did not vote in November or voted for Trump and there is an underlying fear of a repeat event. I believe the solution is in the choice of the Vice Presidential nominee.
In the case of a likely Bernie Sanders victory, his best shot is choosing one of the six moderates campaigning against him as his running mate. Enlisting a moderate voice may help ease the minds of voters who are uncertain of Sanders and help portray a united front for the Democrats. Out of the current moderate line-up, Sanders’s best choice is Amy Klobuchar. Not only can she retain the Midwestern vote, but she’s also becoming increasingly popular with people above 40, a demographic that Sanders does not usually poll well with. Their combined experience and support could be the final nail in Donald Trump’s coffin.
If we can learn anything from New Hampshire it is that a united party is a winning party. A ballot split eight ways means that this race can create more division amongst an already fractured democracy and we need a ticket that covers all lanes, the progressives and the pragmatics, the visionaries and the traditionalists. Voters want a ticket that represents them and will fight for them and I believe Sanders and Klobucher are the candidates to do that.
Lucille DiNaro, Managing Editor
Everyone loves unsolicited advice. As a soon-to-be graduate, one piece of advice I hear often is “Make sure you clean up your online presence.” Always foreboding, I hear this from professors, professional colleagues and close friends. I didn’t think too much of it at first, as I’m not too keen on social media. The more I thought about it, however, it became clear to me that this gentle piece of advice is a thinly veiled warning built on respectability politics. And I am not here for it.
Having grown up on social media, I naturally accepted that my profiles were subject to review by future employers. Recently, as a student ready and excited to enter the workforce, I’ve come to challenge this emerging professional norm. Corporate culture suggests that a professional online presence is necessary to establish credibility and reputation. Unfortunately, employers and private individuals stained with biases hold people of color, women, and queer individuals to an impossible level of scrutiny. Applications have been rejected for nothing more than a Black sounding name, and interviews quashed over accents and femininity. What happens when your Instagram lands in the hands of a hiring manager with a fraudulent understanding of professionalism?
White Americans have policed the behavior of POC under the same guise for decades. Behave, assimilate and you will be rewarded. Only now, this sentiment appears through social media cleanup tools and grim reminders that the internet is forever. The idea that individuals are responsible to maintain civility and professionalism online is identical to the coded language that permitted the degradation of African-American Vernacular English for decades. It removes men and women who wear natural hairstyles from the workplace. Need I continue?
Websites like brandyourself.com, which have been featured on several major news networks, earn profit clearing social media profiles and developing reputation scores: “a credit score for your online presence.” These websites postulate that nearly all future employers will check your socials and that many will mandate it. And they’re right. Employers and HR managers have developed rhetoric that considers transparency and trustworthiness synonymous—when they are not—and use it to coerce applicants into relinquishing their online profiles.
There is some merit to the argument for internet etiquette. Ideally, anyone who interacts with the digital public should act with prudence. Many people suggest using the grandma rule, in which they publish only the post which represents their best self. However, this logic fails POC, women, and queer individuals who have historically been vilified for the mere manifestation of their authentic, best selves.
Our generation is the face and future of tech. We are doing a disservice to ourselves by perpetuating the idea that we need to be exceptional individuals everywhere. Respectability politics accomplish nothing but shift the blame of ignorance and exclusion on to its victims. If employers are looking for inaccurate perceptions of job candidates through profiles devoid of personality and authenticity, then maybe this is the way to go. Thankfully, social media does not need to be a vehicle for enforcing the status quo. It is a brilliant tool that fosters diversity, creativity and elevates a global mindset. Let’s keep it that way, and let our resumes speak for themselves.
Alexis Rapoza, Opinons Editor
Crammed into the lobby of the Hopkinton Town Hall in New Hampshire, hundreds of voters in and out-of-staters alike waited with hopes of grabbing a glimpse of presidential candidate Andrew Yang.
As a lawyer turned philanthropist and businessman, Yang was never supposed to run for president. In 2011, he founded a non-profit organization called “Venture For America (VFA)” which created jobs in cities that were struggling to recover from the Great Recession. Following the success of VFA, Yang was selected by the Obama Administration as 2011’s Champion of Change and Presidential Ambassador of For Global Entrepreneurship in 2015.
His time with the VFA inspired him to run for the presidential nomination, as he did not see any other politician standing for what he believed in, such as universal basic income. Yang created a policy called the Freedom Dividend, which promised that every American adult should receive a monthly income of at least $1,000. This policy was just one of many that launched Yang’s candidacy.
He managed to surpass career politicians like Sen. Kamala Harris and Sen. Cory Booker and wrack up a cult-like following of voters who lovingly named themselves “the Yang Gang.” Appearances on late-night talk shows and an active social media presence definitely helped catapult him into his spotlight but what really made him stand out was his energy and appeal to frequently ignored groups.
While Yang’s signature policy is his Freedom Dividend he also often pledges his dedication to reforming education and making it more accessible for children with disabilities. Even though education reform might be a common topic during debates its almost always in the context of higher education.Yang, who was inspired by his Autistic son, had pledged to help provide resources to children who have learning disabilities. He also acknowledges that although resources might be in place, they’re not universally accessible and they might not even work. If elected president Yang vowed to implement early detection solutions and fund research with the National Institute of Mental Health to implement innovative intervention techniques.
As someone who struggled through high school because of undiagnosed ADHD these policies resonate with me. Early detection and resources in schools could help millions of children across the country have an equal opportunity to succeed. Yang was also a champion for different learning strategies which is something that could help all students not just those with disabilities.
With slogans like “Humanity First,” “Make America Think Harder (MATH),” and “Not Left, Not Right, Forward.” Yang positions himself as neither a moderate or a progressive but simply as an American for other Americans -- something that is extremely refreshing in an already split race. But the truth is, American politics were not ready for him.
Andrew Yang’s policies might have been a little ahead of their time. On his website he calls for human-centered capitalism and at his town halls, he refers to data as this generation’s oil but his impact on American politics cannot be denied. For someone who is not a politician, or a billionaire to make as far as he did, he must have been doing something right. Although he’s no longer in the race I do not think this will be the last we see of Andrew Yang because like he says: “What's the opposite of Donald Trump? An Asian man who likes math.”
Grace Kimmell, Photo Editor
Barreling down Killingly street while belting out T-Swift, I see blue, red and white lights urgently flickering in my rearview. “Oh crap,” I grumble to myself before pulling my car over to the side of the road. The officer, with a scowl etched across his face, walks up to my window and asks for my license and registration before he even sees my face. As he turns to meet my expertly rehearsed doe-eyed, aw-shucks look of total innocence, his scowl melts away, his posture loosens, and the gravel in his voice softens. Though we both know I was going 20 miles over the speed limit, he cautions me, “You should have gotten a ticket, but it’s your lucky day. Drive safe.” My wallet cheers from my purse. I’m relieved. I’m lucky. I’m...white.
Would this narrative have been different if my skin color was different? We all know that law enforcement has publicly grappled with the issue of racism (implicit or otherwise). It’s not surprising, then, that many champion the dawn of AI in law enforcement as an obvious, inevitable solution. Minimizing the human element seems to make a degree of sense. After all, if our own human biases prevent us from equitably applying the law, we should do everything we can to remove those biases.
Except, AI isn’t the answer; it’s even more of the same problem. You don’t need to look further than Amazon’s new facial recognition tool which has been known to make mistakes in identifying potential crime suspects to see the issues. The software disproportionately misidentified women and people of color as being criminals. In fact, the darker the skin, the more inaccurate the identification was. States like California have passed bills to ban facial recognition on body cameras, which could potentially inaccurately depict someone as a criminal on the loose, when in fact they aren’t. With all of our reliance on technology, it’s easy to forget that these machines are still man-made. Consequently, our flaws can become their flaws. Facial recognition algorithms are opinions written in code, but they’re opinions all the same. Our tech can only be as just and as unbiased as the people who program them.
As if racial prejudices haven’t been ingrained enough into the fabric of law enforcement, facial recognition that carries a racial bias simply will make matters worse because it camouflages racism with cold, seemingly objective code. If we’re not careful, we’ll unknowingly usher in a new, digital age of Jim Crow.
This is by no means my attempt to take a valuable tool away from our hard-working law enforcement communities. The truth is that it’s never been more difficult to be an officer of the law. And as a strong supporter for law enforcement and the positive impact it can have on our communities, I feel it’s wise to avoid this flawed technology until we know it works, and it’ll only work when we have more women and more people of color coding with their own experiences in mind to write more egalitarian algorithms.
We have cameras in our phones, in our homes, on our streets, and in our sheets. But whose electronic eyes are these? Whose values do they use to view the world?
Anchorwomen reach land in season finale
Taylor Green, Anchor Staff
Photos by Thomas Crudale
The Rhode Island College Women’s Swim Team faced off in the New England Intercollegiate Swimming and Diving Association (NEISDA) championships this weekend in a four-day event, that began Feb. 13 and ended Feb. 16.
Qualifying swimmers, freshman Abby Dion and freshman Hillevi Esquilin held the team in 20th place throughout the meet, with 21 schools competing.
Thursday night, all four team members competed in the 800 yard freestyle relay, placing 18th out of 19, with a time of 9 minutes and 36.40 seconds, and scoring the teams first 14 points.
On Friday, Dion competed in the 100 yard butterfly, coming in 23rd out of 28 with a time of one minute and 9.22 seconds, and scoring two points for the team. Esquilin competed in the 200 yard Individual Medley, placing 15th with a time of two minutes and 27.33 seconds and qualifying for finals, where she earned 16th place and scored 11 points for the team. The team also competed in the 400 yard Medley relay, where they dropped nearly 15 seconds off of their seed time of five minutes and 5.65 seconds, placing 19th out of 20 with a time of four minutes and 51.31 seconds, scoring them 12 more points. At the end of day two, the Anchorwomen sat in 20th place with a total of 39 points.
The team kicked off Saturday with Dion competing in the 50 yard butterfly, placing 31st out of 37 with a time of 30.31 seconds. Esquilin placed 10th out of 22 in the 200 yard Freestyle with a time of two minutes and 7.44 seconds, qualifying her for finals, where she came in at two minutes and 7.58 seconds, scoring the team 17 points. After the 200 freestyle relay, where the girls scored 14 points for a time of one minute and 54.90 seconds, the Anchorwomen ended day three in 20th place with a score of 70 points.
Finishing off championships, Dion swam her last individual event, the 200 yard butterfly with a time of 2 minutes and 39.99 seconds, placing her in 18th place. The team finished off with the 400 yard freestyle relay, placing 20th with a time of four minutes and 15.35 seconds, a drop of nearly 16 seconds from their seed time. At the end of prelims on day four, the team finished in 20th place, still holding onto their 70 points.
The Anchorwomen finish their season 0-7, and in seventh place in the Little East Conference.
Jake Elmslie, Sports Editor
Welcome back yet again to our in depth look at the trials and tribulations that the New England Patriots will face as they attempt to build their roster for the 2020 NFL season. In the last two weeks, we have looked at both the quarterback and the skill positions and for the final time we will again evaluate an offensive position group. Now while we have elected to look at this group last, they are far from the least important or the smallest. Today we look at the big guys, the hog mollies, the offensive line.
The potential turnover at QB and the pass catching positions has dominated the discourse surrounding the Patriots since at least the midway point of the 2019 season. Lost in that discussion at times has been the fact that the five men who will start up front for the Patriots once the 2020 season kicks off are far from etched in stone. Rather, New England could potentially start 2020 with up to three new starters in the trenches. Now change itself is not necessarily a bad thing, as the Patriots offensive line did regress by a decent amount in 2019, due to a mix of the departure of left tackle Trent Brown, starting center and team captain David Andrews being sidelined for the entire season due to complications stemming from a blood clot in his lungs and a drop off in play from some key players. Now it is difficult to gage exactly where issues with the o-line began and problems caused by shortcomings in other areas of the offense ended. However, what is clear is that what was a top five unit league wide in 2018 failed to make close to the same type of impact in 2019.
For New England, the largest looming departure outside of possibly longtime o-line coach Dante Scarnecchia, who decided to retire after 27 years with the Patriots is left guard Joe Thuney. Thuney, who was named to NFL All-Pro second team this season has played nearly every offensive snap for the Patriots since they selected him in the third round of the 2016 draft. He was by far the best player on the o-line for the team in 2019 however, will now be an unrestricted free agent with the potential to command a salary in the realm of $14-15 million per year in line with that of other elite guards. Thuney stands as the top free agent at a premium position in the NFL and will almost certainly pursue his full market value after making an average of less than $1 million per year in his first four seasons in the league. This would be a very difficult cap number for the Patriots to manage especially when paired with the $8.6 million cap hit of his running mate right guard Shaq Mason lest Bill Belicheck is willing to pay close to $25 million for his starting guard tandem. The Patriots will not have the option to move on from Mason, who’s 2019 performance fell well short of the bar he set in 2018, in favor of a contract for Thuney due to Mason carrying a $13 million dead cap hit if he is cut before the 2020 season. On the bright side the Patriots have demonstrated an ability to develop quality guards out of mid round draft picks with Thuney, as previously mentioned being a third round draft pick and Mason having been picked in the fourth. A Thuney departure could pave the way for 2019 fourth round pick Hjalte Froholdt to enter the starting line up after spending his rookie season on the injured reserve list.
In between Mason and Thuney the center spot remains in flux. David Andrew’s status is still up in the air as he recovers from a blood clot issue in his lungs that forced him to miss the entirety of the 2019 season. While he has stated publicly that he believes he will be ready to play by the start of the 2020 season, recovering from an issue like pulmonary embolism is more complicated than the typical sports injury. The man who filled in passable for Andrews in 2019 Ted Karras is a UFA and could command a relatively healthy contract that the Patriots may be uncomfortable giving to a player who could turn out to be a reserve in 2020.
Finally, at the tackle spots, New England could return both 2019 starters, Marcus Cannon on the right side and 2018 first round pick Isaiah Wynn on the left. The team could save $5.1 million against the salary cap by cutting the soon to be 32 year old Cannon before the start of the 2020 season. Potential replacements could be found in either 2019 third round pick Yodny Cajuste, who spent his rookie season on the non-football injury list or in the form of a prospect from the tackle rich 2020 draft class.
Now that we have wrapped up taking a look at things on the offensive side of the ball, next week we will begin to take a look at what your dad says wins championships, the defense.
Jenfrin Rodriguez, Anchor Staff
The Anchormen were able to show up down the stretch late and pull out yet another win at home. The Rhode Island College Anchormen won in a 77-66 battle against conference opponent Eastern Connecticut State University, in a game that was closer than the score dictates.
From the tipoff, Tim Deng was able to have his way with ECSU on the defensive end where he amassed 6 blocks in the first half on route to 7 overall. The Anchormen found equal contributions from the starters with four out of the five having 13 or more points. Benjamin Vezele also dominated in the post where he totaled 20 points to go alongside 18 rebounds with a quiet 4 blocks of his own.
The game of basketball however, goes beyond scoring points and leaders such as Jonatan Batista emphasized that against Eastern Connecticut. His ability to set his teammates up for easy shots and making the energy plays can not be quantified on the stat sheet. Whenever a loose ball was free, Jonatan was immediately on the ground making a play at the ball.
The Anchormen’s dynamic duo of Shion Darby and Keyshaun Jacobs got it done but in a different way. While it is public knowledge they are gifted scorers, they are also great rebounders. Darby, the 7th leading scorer in all of Division III was able to pull down 7 rebounds and Jacobs 6 boards.
The Anchormen were also on the road Saturday for another conference match against the Keene State Owls. RIC suffered a close 84-80 defeat at the hands of the Owls, dropping the Anchormen to 9-6 in the Little East. With the loss, the Anchormen currently sit at fourth in the conference standings heading into their final regular season game, a Wednesday evening home affair versus the number one ranked team in the Little East, the Western Connecticut State University Colonials, tip off for that game is at 7:30.
David Blais, Anchor Staff
Photos by Thomas Crudale
The Rhode Island College Anchorwomen hosted the Eastern Connecticut State Warriors this past Wednesday in a packed Murray center. ESCU going into this game was first in the Little East Conference standings. In the start of the game the Anchorwomen had the upper hand scoring fast and methodically. The Anchorwomen utilized the pick and roll throughout the first and it proved to be a smart decision and as a result they were able to score from both down low and the wing. ESCU, at first, were struggling on the offensive end due to the aggressive and physical defense play of the anchorwomen. However, as the quarter progressed, ESCU was able to gain some points down low and from mid-range which the anchor women were clearly not expecting. A reason for this was star center Willica McBorrough, who picked up two personal fouls by the end of the first quarter of play. The Warriors were able to capitalize on her absence and take the lead heading into the second quarter. The score after the first was 18-17.
The second quarter of play showed The Anchorwomen’s ability to adapt to a new gameplan on the spot, since coach limited McBorrough’s minutes to keep her out of foul trouble. With so much going on, RIC was able to outscore ESCU and were able to take the lead going into the third while simultaneously out rebounding them. Senior forward Fataya Larry was able to step up and was able to fill the void of the team's star center. Larry was able to snag 5 rebounds, out of the total 10 of the quarter for the Anchorwomen, while ESCU only had 7 boards in total. Their defense actually proved to be more consistent and were able to hold the warriors from gaining any momentum. On the offensive end about every player who played during this quarter contributed. There was not one player who stood out but instead there was an emphasis on team play. The Anchorwomen actually scored most of their points this quarter from the paint and midrange making 6 of their 18 shot attempts from those areas. At the end of the half RIC had the advantage 33-26.
The story of the third quarter of play was guard Brooke Young taking over the offense and scoring 6 points of the team’s total 13 in this quarter. Even though Larry was able to get it done on the offensive end, ESCU outscored the anchor woman 17-13 in the third. RIC struggled on the defensive end with ESCU figuring out how to take advantage of McBourrough’s absence this quarter. McBourough did play eight minutes, but she was not unable to be her usual dominant physical self due to cautious play to not gain more fouls. Unfortunately, even with this cautious play, she still picked up her fourth foul of the game. RIC was still able to maintain the lead heading into the fourth with the score being 46-43.
The fourth quarter of play was all about guard Jordyn Gauvin, who went off scoring 8 points giving a much needed momentum boost to the Anchorwomen. The offense for the anchor women was firing on all cylinders. The defensive play by RIC in the fourth was just as good. They held ESCU to 6 points which sealed the game. McMurrough went back to her usual physical and aggressive play she is known for racking up 5 boards, out rebounding the entire ESCU team who only had 3 boards.
The final score was 61-49. The Anchorwomen were led by Gauvin who racked up 16 points to go alongside 6 rebounds and 4 assists.
When asked for a message to the fans postgame, Junior guard Sophia Guerrier remarked, “We’re the number one team (in the conference) not East-Conn.”
The Anchorwomen were also on the road Saturday for another Little East match, this one against the Keene State Owls. The Anchorwomen were able to cruise to a 57-42 victory over their opponents, only surrendering six total points in the fourth quarter. RIC was led in this game by Guerrier, who tallied 17 points to go alongside five rebounds and four steals. The Anchorwomen will return home for their final regular season game of the season Wednesday evening against the Western Connecticut State University Colonials. Tip off for that game is scheduled for 5:30 p.m.