The Amathyst Initiative Wants Lowered Drinking Age

Alcohol - Bernado Schrimer

Written by Bryce Hagan

If you ask the average college student what they think the legal drinking age should be, chances are they wont tell you 21. Since it was raised from 18 by the National Minimum Drinking Age Act in 1984, it has been a common source of complaint for young people across the country. This summer, some perhaps unlikely voices joined the 18-21 year-old crowd in the call for re-considering the minimum drinking age: their own college and university administrators.

The Amethyst Initiative (amethystinitiative.org) is a statement signed by college and university presidents that asks elected officials to engage in an “informed and dispassionate debate” over the effects of the 1984 legislation. It was started by John McCardell, President Emeritus of Middlebury College and a founder of Choose Responsibility (chooseresponsibility.org), a group which seeks to educate young adults about responsible alcohol use. According to McCardell, the current drinking age has lead to an atmosphere of dangerous, secretive binge drinking among many college students, and actually contributes to more problems than it helps prevent. The Initiative suggests that the standing policy has done little to curtail drunk driving, sexual assault, and other social problems associated with alcohol use. The signatories of the Amethyst Initiative equate this current attitude to that of abstinence-only sexual education, in that simply forbidding underage students not to drink is unrealistic and doesn’t contribute to solving the problem of alcohol abuse. Continue reading

The French Film Festival – A Preview

The Tournees Festival

Written by Meg Susong

The Tournées Festival: Five French Films Not To Miss

For the second year in a row, Southwestern will be holding The Tournées Film Festival, which will be showing five French films over the course of September and October.

The festival, directed by Assistant Professor of French Aaron Prevots, Assistant Professor of French in the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures, features five recent films from or about France. Each film ranges from two-to-three hours in length, and will be shown in Olin 105 every Wednesday, starting at 7 p.m. All films are free, and will be open to the SU community as well as the publicpublic as well as the SU community.
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Vice Presidential Nominees Have Their Vices

Written by Catie Ertel

The 2008 Presidential elections promise to be among the most historic and exciting elections in US history. If they were to be elected, John McCain would be the oldest first- term president, and Barack Obama would be the first African- American president.

However, the Vice Presidential nominees for each party have been getting almost as much attention as the Presidential nominees.

For the Republican Party, Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin has attracted a great deal of media attention. At age 44, Palin is the second woman to be nominated for Vice President. She holds very conservative views and many believe her selection was made in hopes to strengthen support from the Republican base.
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A Student's Perspective Abroad

Written by Leslie Lube

I’ve been doing some traveling on my own to try to get acquainted with my surroundings and satisfy some of my curiosity about the United Kingdom before my study abroad program at Bangor University in Wales begins next week During the last couple of weeks I’ve explored only a small part of England and Wales, but I’ve been very fortunate to have spent time in three very unique locations.

I began my trip in Bangor, Wales, which is one of the smallest cities in the U.K. It’s a beautiful little town on the coast of the Irish Sea that has achieved an interesting blend of history and modernity. I also spent time in Oxford, England, a medium-sized city heavily influenced by its famous university. Right now I’m in London, not only the largest city in the U.K. but also one of the largest in the world.

Visiting cities of different sizes and populations has given me a glimpse of how varied the country is – even though it seems so small when compared with the U.S. More importantly, however, I have noticed a lot of similarities that seem to represent trends spreading throughout the nation.
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Boze Visits London

Boze Only Lives in Newspapers

By Boze Harrington

One of Ray Bradbury’s better stories involves a little boy who lives in a mansion on the hills. The only two people he’s ever seen are his mother and a teacher who has the odd habit of hiding her face within a cowl. Both mother and teacher have warned him never to transgress the boundaries of the estate and journey beyond the sun-stained hills, for if he ever attempted to do so he would surely die.

Then one day he comes to class and finds his teacher gone. Not knowing where she is, and very scared, he runs home to his mother. She’s lying motionless upon the floor. For hours he waits, but she neither stirs nor awakens. Finally, as the day goes down in the west, he slips beyond the trees and out into the world.

In the last scene of the story, two police officers are talking. One of them says to the other, “Kids do such silly things. A little boy ran by, not two minutes ago. And his eyes were wide, and he was touching everything he saw – the men, the women, the dogs, the lampposts, the fire hydrants. And he was screaming, ‘I’m dead, I’m dead, I’m dead, I’m glad I’m dead, it’s good to be dead!’” He shrugs. “One of them kid games, I guess.” Continue reading

SU Radio Comes Back to Life

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By Nicole Licea

An ironic fact about any medium is that the relationship between producer and listener is an entirely co-dependent one. A radio station, TV show, or magazine cannot successfully survive unless there is an audience to consume it, but a station can have no audience if they are not yet up and running or if no one knows about it.

Perhaps this is why many students currently know little about SU Radio, considering that the newly-formed club’s members had little more than a month to broadcast and promote themselves by the time they finally got rolling last Spring. The club’s officers have since made it their goal to get the word out to as many people as possible so that the station can come to be appreciated and influenced by the SU community and beyond.

This Tuesday marked SU Radio’s return after a summer-long hiatus, and the beginning of their first full semester of live broadcasting.
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Lady Pirates Win Tournament

Lady Pirates Volleyball

By Jim Surface

Our 25th-ranked Lady Pirates entered this weekend’s volleyball tournament boasting a 6-2 record and an honored position in the top 25 poll. They did nothing to prove that honorific undeserved this weekend sweeping through all three matches they played Thursday and Friday.

First up to face the vaunted Southwestern attack was Heidelberg, which came into the tournament with an 8-2 overall record. They would leave three sets later 8-3 thanks to strong front- court play by juniors Lauren Brown and Audra Gentry and a stout backcourt lead by Samantha Ligamfelter and Lisa Marie Cisneros. Southwestern dismantled Heidelberg 25-21 in the first set before surviving closer contests in sets two and three decided 30-28 and 29-27, respectively.

Friday, after 14th-ranked Austin College fell to McMurry University, the Lady Bucs took the court against Schreiner, who had earlier in the day defeated Huston-Tillotson in a five- set marathon match. Schreiner looked tired from its previous game. In its bout with Southwestern, as the Bucs won the first two sets with relative ease. Schreiner rallied back in the third set and handily defeated Southwestern 25-14, but in the fourth set, the Lady Bucs proved too strong for Schreiner. Audra Gentry, Danielle Bochat and Ali Zein-Eldin led the Pirates in kills with 11, 9 and 8, respectively.
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"Burn After Reading" Worth Your Time

By Brady Granger

After Joel and Ethan Coen’s critically acclaimed and Academy Award-winning film No Country for Old Men, it was difficult not to feel optimistic about their next movie. Once the movie trailer for their next film debuted, the anticipation grew stronger. as Burn After Reading” seemed to resemble the direction in which the Coen brothers took their career after their first Oscar-winning film Fargo. That direction, known by title to most college students, was the cult-favorite comedy The Big Lebowski.

Signaling a return to comedic form for the Coen brothers, Burn After Reading is a darkly humorous tale involving the CIA, a fitness gym and the interactions between people in our not-so-small capital city. The film begins with the firing of longtime CIA analyst Osborne Cox (John Malkovich), who then begins to write his memoirs during his new found free time. By way of his disgruntled wife, Katie (Tilda Swinton), the disk containing the information falls into the hands of two Hardbodies Gym employees, Linda Litzke (Frances McDormand) and Chad Feldheimer (Brad Pitt). Both have ambitions of exploiting the opportunity as a moneymaking opportunity as they feel they have found genuine intelligence. What follows is a hilarious romp through the varying, but still interconnected worlds of espionage, online dating, extramarital affairs and the Russian embassy.

As one of the best comedies I have seen in a long while, the film employs the use of the varying subplots as decoys. The real story lies in the characters’ interactions in that, unbeknown to them, they are all somehow connected. Because of these connections, when one of them does something hilariously idiotic, it affects the whole group. So essentially, the plot is just a giant farce of human behavior that gathers speed and entangles more people as the movie goes on. Not only does the plot intrigue, but it also remains mysterious until the end.
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Where Have All the Forks Gone

By Matthew Maschino

While I was being served a scrumptious helping of turkey-flavored goo, smashed potatoes and assorted green things last week, I couldn’t help but notice something was grossly awry in the Commons.

As I plunged my hand into the forest of silverware atop the serving station, I found plenty of knives and a wealth of spoons. As my hand meandered from one canister of utensils to another, the gravity of the situation finally sank in: Where have all the forks gone?

I gripped my tray tightly with both hands. How am I supposed to consume the amazing mess of Commons goodness that inhabits my plate at every meal if the three-pronged master of food consumption is missing?
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SU Makes Efforts to Cut Back on Paper Use

By Catie Ertel

At the beginning of the semester, new restrictions were put into place on student printing via the printing system “Pirate Prints.”

“The primary reason is awareness,” Director of Technology Support & Academic Computing Sharon Fass, who headed and carried out the change said. “The second reason is maintenance.”

Though the idea was being pushed for years, Pirate Prints was implemented at the beginning of the semester, giving each student $35 in “green bucks,” or theoretical printing money, to use on about 500 sheets of paper at seven cents each, the equivalent of a ream of paper.

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Kappa Sigma Explains Closure

By Kendra Lancaster

As many returning students here at Southwestern students may have realized, campus seems to be a little quieter lately.

Two days before official move- in day for returning students, the Kappa Sigma fraternity was closed off to non-members of the fraternity. Quickly “Mouthwestern” ran it’s usual course, but still there has not been an official statement given from the school given in regards of to the closing, .nor will there be by the fraternity nor the school. This article is not to report why the house closed, for Kappa Sigma is not allowed to discuss this; but instead show support to our fellow peers, who are going through a tough time, and allow them to give a formal statement.
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