Category Archives: Opinion

Harvey Weinstein Is A Disgrace To Humanity

by Angela Fortuna

The alleged unforgivable and inhumane acts of American film producer Harvey Weinstein have sparked media attention across the country.

The co-founder of The Weinstein Company allegedly committed sexual harassment crimes dating back nearly 30 years; these allegations came from actresses as well as former employees of the Weinstein Company and Miramax, the previous company that Harvey Weinstein and his brother founded, according to The New York Times.

Weinstein, a powerful film producer, stands accused of sexual misconduct by about two dozen women, including actress Rose McGowan, over the past few decades, according to NBC News.

McGowan tweeted Thursday afternoon regarding her own accusations against Weinstein.

“@jeffbezos I told the head of your studio that HW [Harvey Weinstein] raped me. Over and over I said it. He said it hadn’t been proven. I said I was the proof,” McGowan said in a tweet.

In response to McGowan’s tweet, Twitter temporarily deactivated her account.

McGowan used social media as a platform to inform others across the country of her own sexual harassment experience with Weinstein.

With the rise in popularity of social media, it is a good medium of communicating information with the public.

Other women allegedly affected by sexual harassment acts by Weinstein include Angelina Jolie, Gwyneth Paltrow, Ashley Judd and others, according to Fox News.

“Any allegations of non-consensual sex are unequivocally denied by Mr. Weinstein. Mr. Weinstein has further confirmed that there were never any acts of retaliation against any women for refusing his advances,” Weinstein’s spokeswoman has said in a statement, according to The Guardian.

The accusations against Weinstein conclude that women who were allegedly sexually harassed were too nervous to speak up about the incident at the time it happened.

Women who are victims of sexual harassment are often embarrassed and afraid to share their experiences because of how it will affect their personal lives.

Up to 94 percent of victims of sexual harassment do not file a complaint, while one in four women experience it, according to a report by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Speaking out about personal sexual harassment experiences can be a long and difficult process; however, it can be rewarding.

If a person affected by sexual harassment does not speak up about it, there is no way in knowing if that person will ever harass others. Keeping quiet about traumatizing events can cause mental instability for some people, like post traumatic stress disorder.

The allegations against Weinstein indicate that he may have abused his power on a variety of fronts over a few decades, and identify a behavioral pattern in which Weinstein often invites women to hotels for “business meetings,” only to make sexual advances against their will, according to VOX.

The newly discovered evidence of sexual harassment can be seen as similar to that of Bill Cosby: after one victim shares their experience, more victims seem to come out and share theirs with the public.

Bill Cosby has been accused of drugging and sexually harassing dozens of women, many of which testified against him during his trial. The Cosby trial was declared a mistrial back in June, according to U.S. News. No new information has been provided since then.

People like Weinstein and Cosby have allegedly committed acts that are unforgivable. If people do not come out and share personal experiences of sexual harassment, then these offenders will never realize what they are doing is wrong and no justice will be served to victims.

Trump Administration Deserves The Multiple Lawsuits Filed Against Them

by Angela Fortuna

The Trump administration’s plan to halt key payments that lower health insurance deductibles and co-pays for families with modest incomes could affect millions of people across the country, according to CBS News.

Nearly 20 states have filed a lawsuit against President Donald Trump so far in accusation of Trump violating former President Barack Obama’s signature health care law as well as violations against a law that governs the way presidential administrations can establish new regulations, according to the Hartford Courant.

More than 40,000 people in Connecticut that already qualify for cost-sharing reduction payments will continue to receive them, but the move of the Trump administration is anticipated to further destabilize insurance markets with the brunt of any premium increases borne by higher-income Obamacare customers, which could lead people to choose to stop buying health insurance, according to the Hartford Courant.

“Insurers who sell Affordable Care Act plans — including Anthem and ConnectiCare in Connecticut — faced months of uncertainty over whether the Trump administration would continue the cost-sharing reduction payments, which offset the expense to insurers to sell silver-level plans with reduced deductibles and copays to low-income customers,” according to the Hartford Courant.

In response to the Trump administration’s decision, Trump tweeted “Very proud of my Executive Order which will allow greatly expanded access and far lower costs for HealthCare. Millions of people benefit!” on Oct. 14.

The tweet received a majority of negative comments regarding the executive order.

Twitter user Bishop Talbert Swan responded to Trump’s tweet saying “You’re proud of an order that will throw the insurance markets into chaos, take healthcare away from millions, and literally kill people?”

Another Twitter user, @DC_Resister_Bee, informed that Trump’s actions “will destabilize insurance markets and jeopardize access for people with cancer.”

Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy tweeted about the executive order, saying “this latest move to cut off cost-reduction subsidy payments is vindictive and deliberately designed to sabotage healthcare insurance markets.”

Trump has not tweeted about the nearly 20 states’ decision to file a lawsuit against him as of Monday night.

The Associated Press reported that nearly 70 percent of people hurt by proposed cuts to healthcare subsidies by the Trump administration live in states he won in the 2016 election.

Because of Trump’s disloyalty to his original supporters, the chance of getting reelected could be slim to none. By Trump disrespecting those who have respected him from the beginning, he could be losing a large support group if he decides to run for reelection in 2020.

With the Trump administration’s executive order to dismantle the Affordable Care Act, many individual states believe the decision is chaotic and illegal.

It should be common knowledge that a proposed executive order as such would violate a law that governs the way presidential administrations can establish new governance.

“Trump’s decision to stop ACA payments is nuclear grade bananas – a temper tantrum that sets the entire health system on fire. My god,” tweeted United States Senator Chris Murphy of Connecticut.

Individual states have made the decision to act on the unreliability of the proposed executive order by filing a lawsuit against the Trump administration.

Trump’s unprofessional behavior and lack of knowledge on the topic makes for an interesting sequence of events on the aftermath of the plan, and how each state in particular will react to the executive order.

Gun Control Now

by Sarah Willson

I have had my heart broken by the news over a thousand times. This time, by far, was the worst.

As a journalism major, I am always buried up to my eyeballs in information. Most of the time I love it, but there was something particularly difficult to watch about the Las Vegas massacre that undoubtedly shook me to my core.

In the deadliest mass shooting in modern United States history, 58 innocent souls were taken and over 500 more were wounded. Like most of the world, I watched in sheer horror as the mass carnage that took place unfolded right in front of my eyes on the television screen before me.

This was a scene, one I had witnessed so many times, that looked all too familiar to me.

Even before this catastrophe, I had always known the U.S. had a problem with weapons, particularly guns. But the moment I realized that America was one of the most developed countries in the world with one of the biggest problems in the world, was when my 13-year-old cousin shook this incident off, an event that seemed all too common to her, and called it “normal.”

At that exact moment, I knew America was facing one of the most underrated, under-talked about problems out there: gun control.

Without question, the new normal of a mass shooting taking place on a day-to-day basis should be both alarming and terrifying to every American citizen, as it ultimately poses a danger to themselves and the ones they love.

In order to understand the large threat gun violence poses to American society, it should be noted that the catastrophe in Las Vegas marked the 273rd mass shooting in America since Jan. 1, 2017.

And like so many, I find it amazing that Americans are forced to live in constant fear of gun violence.

Like most things, the solution to solving this problem is not an easy one. Of course, banning weapons all together is entirely unrealistic, as it does not mean people will no longer find a way to get a hold of them.

What is more realistic is passing a law that prohibits any and all Americans from purchasing semi-automatic and automatic weapons, which are ultimately used to kill large groups of people. Although it is understandable to keep a gun in the house to protect yourself or your family, no one needs an AK-47.

When our Founding Fathers wrote the Second Amendment, which states that an individual “has the right to keep and bear arms,” guns at the time could only shoot one bullet per minute. Today, they can fire over 600 or more rounds per minute. Our guns have changed; why should our laws stay the same?

Like President Donald Trump said, it is a “miracle” how fast the Las Vegas Police were able to find the shooter, but Americans should not have to depend on miracles to save them from being slaughtered by gunfire as they go about their daily lives.

In order to combat the large scale of gun violence that takes place every day in America, Congress needs to stop sleeping with the National Rifle Association, do the right thing and pass meaningful gun control laws immediately.  

But if this gruesome act that claimed the lives of so many does not scream action for gun control, nothing ever will.

Should Columbus Day Really Be Celebrated?

by Cindy Pena

I grew up thinking Columbus Day was just a day off school to celebrate Christopher Columbus and how he “discovered” America. However, as I soon realized, Christopher Columbus is not just an explorer that sparked European colonialism. Instead, his actions resulted in mass genocide.

Christopher Columbus is best known for his four voyages through the Atlantic Ocean and his attempts to establish settlements on Hispaniola that began the European colonization of the New World. He is celebrated today because these voyages and exploration led to the development of the western world that we live in today.

So why across the United States are people protesting to end Columbus Day? Well, because it is not such a good idea to celebrate a man who committed atrocities to the native people on the land he “discovered.” We honor this explorer as the man who “discovered” America. In reality, North America was occupied and discovered by the Native Americans. So is it fair to give the credit to Christopher Columbus?

But what did he do when he “discovered” the islands of the people of Lucayans, Tainos and Arakwas that he wrote so fondly about in his diary? He seized their land and enslaved them to work in gold mines.

The working conditions and demand to deliver was excruciating that many died from exhaustion. If you did not deliver, your arms would be cut off and tied around your neck. This was just a warning to the other workers.

These Native Americans who once lived in harmony and worked together as a unit were now being forced to be slaves. He built his legacy and profit through enslaving and selling native people. Although he may not have done it intentionally, genocide resulted under his rein of terror.

In just two years, half the population of the original natives of the island were dead.

Yet today, Columbus Day is still marked on school calendars as a day off to honor Christopher Columbus. In history classes, students will still read in their textbooks the same heroic nonsense we have been fed all our lives.

His legacy is slowly being tainted as more and more people discover who Christopher Columbus really was; he certainly was no honorable explorer.

Although we cannot erase history, we can recognize that what he did was evil. Ending Columbus Day is just one step we can take to recognize Columbus Day as a celebration of genocide.

State Budget: Now In Crisis Mode

The Connecticut state budget proposed by Republican lawmakers, which plans to cut a total of $93 million over the course of the next two years, has been a topic of debate recently.

The proposed budget was recently vetoed by Governor Dannel Malloy, in which he called the budget “unbalanced, unsustainable and unwise,” according to WFSB.

According to Central Connecticut State University history professor Louise Williams, CCSU had already felt the impact of a $66 million reduction to the CSCU system budget in the past three years.

A budget cut in the amount of $93 million has the potential to do a lot of damage to Central: class sizes will grow, the amount of courses offered will decrease, travel funds will be reduced, some part-time faculty will be fired and clerical support will be reduced, according to Williams.

The backlash in regards to the proposed budget being vetoed is that an official budget is yet to be announced.

The debate over the current proposed budget continues to push back the official release of a Connecticut state budget.

Back in the beginning of June of 2016, the state budget was finalized, facing $77 million in cuts, according to the Connecticut Mirror.

The state budget was officially finalized in June of last year, while this year, Connecticut is still trying to finalize a budget, reaching the middle of October.

Even with the original budget proposed by Republican lawmakers being vetoed, that does not mean similar proposals cannot be put into effect, which could mean budget cuts will continue to worsen.

Students will face large repercussions financially if the proposed budget cuts of Republican lawmakers get approved, ultimately putting their education in jeopardy.

Coming so far into the 2017-18 fiscal school year without a set-in-stone budget really portrays the struggles of compromising on a budget that would best suit Connecticut.

Although lawmakers are expected to move forward with a budget proposal by the end of this week, it was not discussed what the new budget will entail for the residents of Connecticut.

Despite the planned meeting, Malloy still remains pessimistic, as he says both Republicans and Democrats are “hundreds of millions of dollars apart,” and the “lack of a state budget for more than three months is causing the state to lose jobs.”

As a result, thousands of workers could lose their jobs within the near future, ultimately putting Connecticut’s economy at a greater risk for collapse than it already is.

Making matters worse, Malloy has made it clear that if a budget deal is not reached by Friday, the chances of anything getting done before the start of November are unlikely due to legislator scheduling conflicts.

With that being said, it will not only be students who will feel the effects of the budget crisis but also state workers and their families, as some can be expected to be without a job by as soon as the end of this month.

Ultimately, it is because of the state budget crisis that Malloy said taxes could increase for Connecticut residents, making an already difficult situation even worse.