Dartmouth Bans Hard Liquor on Campus

Dartmouth announced yesterday a campus-wide ban on hard liquor–any drinks with more than 15% alcohol.

In a speech delivered on Thursday to students and faculty outlining the ban and other new policies, Dartmouth president Phillip J. Hanlon cited the sullied reputation of the college due to students’ “extreme behaviors.” In the past several months, Dartmouth found itself in the news often due to numerous incidents and allegations of student misconduct, including sexual assault and extreme levels of hazing.

Hanlon also announced plans for a new freshmen residential communities ready for newly-admitted students incoming this fall. These six housing units will connect freshmen with faculty and graduate students early on, and foster an on-campus community among freshmen. In other words, it seems this “most transformative item” is really a measure to combat the appeal of Dartmouth’s powerful Greek culture, especially its notoriously raucous fraternities. Continue reading

Cornell to Administer Controversial Sexual Assault Survey

Even though more than two dozen universities have opted out, Cornell is one of 27 universities that will participate in a broad-based sexual assault survey conducted by the Association of American Universities (AAU).

The anonymous survey, to be administered this spring, will collect information from over 800,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students at the participating schools, which would make it the largest ever of its kind. The AAU will release the aggregate data to the public, but individual university data will only be available to the respective university administration.

The survey is not without controversy. Though universities including Harvard, Columbia, and the University of Michigan are participating, 26 member institutions of the AAU, including Princeton and the University of Kansas, have declined to administer it for a variety of reasons mostly related to concerns about its effectiveness. Some of these institutions, like Duke University and Boston University, are designing their own campus-specific surveys. Continue reading

Cornell Trustee Arrested on Corruption Charges, Took $4 Million in Bribes

Update 1/28/2015: Sheldon Silver has resigned a Speaker of the New York State Assembly due to federal corruption charges and calls from lawmakers on both sides of the aisle for his resignation.

Yesterday morning Sheldon Silver, the Democrat Speaker of the New York State Assembly since 1994 and ex officio member of the Cornell Board of Trustees, was arrested on federal corruption charges as originally reported by the New York Times.

According to the New York Post:

“Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver lined his pockets with nearly $4 million in bribes and kickbacks in a stunning abuse of power dating to at least 2000, federal authorities charged Thursday.

The Manhattan Democrat, acknowledged as the second-most powerful Democrat in the state, was hit with five felony charges involving fraud, extortion and conspiracy that each carry up to 20 years behind bars.”

Continue reading

Ithaca College Students Protest Native American Studies Minor, Want it to Be More Inclusive

From the department’s website.

Students at Ithaca College are pushing for the university to fold over its Native American Studies minor into an Indigenous Studies minor in order to boost “racial inclusivity,” according to a report from The Ithacan, the campus’s newspaper.

The push is being led by two students, sophomore Victor Lopez-Carmen and senior Kayla Young, who want the revised minor to include study on a broad range of indigenous groups and related topics. Continue reading

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is Busy, Real Busy

Since his re-election in November, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat, has been quite busy. In just the past two months he’s made national headlines several times for a variety of reasons. To contrast, I do not recall a single instance of reading or hearing anything about the governor during my freshman year.

Here’s a brief review what Cuomo has been up to lately. Continue reading

Cornell Updates

In the week since the first semester ended, there have been a few stories regarding Cornell that are of interest. Also, happy holidays.

Hotelie Meltdown

She is entitled and spoiled, and she went to Cornell? Who would have thought? (Image from Bloomberg)

Heather Cho, a Korean Airlines executive and daughter of the CEO, threw a temper tantrum and demanded the plane return to the gate the flight attendant remove all because he served her peanuts in a bag instead of on a plate. The plane was flying back to Seoul from New York City. Cho is a Hotel School graduate, Class of ’99. Read more. Continue reading

Two NYPD Cops Slain, Protesters Remain Silent

Two NYPD officers were brutally shot dead yesterday in what is thought to be an attempt at retribution for the deaths of Eric Garner and Michael Brown. The officers were reportedly in their patrol car eating lunch when 28-year-old Ismaaiyl Brinsley shot them both point blank in the head.

This happened a few days after protesters hit the streets of New York City chanting, “What do we want? Dead cops! When do we want it? Now!” and after countless protesters nation wide expressed outrage for the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner. This also happened days after political figures like Al Sharpton, Mayor Bill de Blasio as well as our president and Attorney General Eric Holder applauded the protests in Ferguson and encouraged further racial division, tension, and animosity nationwide.

Will we see the same uproar in response to the assassinations of police officers Wenijan Liu and Rafael Ramos? It’s unlikely, for a few reasons. First, the victims here were not African Americans. Second, they were police officers. These demographics do not align with the exclusive #BlackLivesMatter rhetoric, and clearly as we’ve seen here at Cornell, the idea that all lives matter is unacceptable. Continue reading