We may know the latest gossip about One Direction or how Beyonce’s sister Solange attacked Jay-Z in an elevator, but is our interest in celebrities a bad thing? Within the past few weeks, students analyzed how our fascination with celebrities impacts society in our #DoNowCelebrity post. We asked students, Given the context of income inequality and changing demographics across the country, is the American obsession with celebrities good or bad for our culture? Why?
We may take it for granted now that a woman can be the secretary of state, the head of General Motors, or even president of the United States, but it wasn’t so long ago when it was almost inconceivable for a woman to achieve any of these accomplishments. How can women continue to make progress in the fight for gender equality?
At an International Olympic Committee ceremony held in early February before the start of the Sochi Olympics, IOC President Thomas Bach appealed to nations to leave their political differences at the door. Is it cool to bring political issues to the Olympics? When there are strong tensions between nations or concerns over human rights violations, should those issues be left at the door in the spirit of international unity and competition, or should the Olympics be used as a worldwide stage to express political dissent and call attention to perceived injustices?
Given evidence that many girls and boys are physically maturing faster than previous decades, do you think schools should start sex-ed at a younger age? When is the right time to start talking to kids about their changing bodies, and what are the best ways to have that conversation? Who should educate kids about puberty — parents or schools or both?
Crime rates in the United States have dropped significantly in the last two decades, especially in many urban areas where they are often the highest. Violent crime rates, in particular, have gone way down in many large cities around the country. Is it a result of certain policing strategies, local economic conditions, the availability of community and social services, or other less obvious factors?
While football fans prepare for Super Bowl XLVIII between the Seattle Seahawks and the Denver Broncos, the National Football League (NFL) has come under intense scrutiny for what critics are calling a “concussion crisis” or “concussion epidemic”. Should young people be allowed to play heavy contact sports now that we know they can cause permanent brain damage? Should there be new education, equipment or rule changes to help prevent concussions in football?
The comedian Chris Rock once famously advised, ‘If a friend calls you on the telephone and says they’re lost on Martin Luther King Boulevard and they want to know what they should do, the best response is ‘Run!’” He added: “You know what’s so sad? Martin Luther King stood for non violence. And I don’t care where you are in America, if you’re on Martin Luther King Boulevard, there’s some violence going down.” If Martin Luther King walked through your community today, do you think he’d be satisfied with the way things are?
The Obama administration is urging schools to review their school discipline policies to ensure they are not overly zealous and comply with civil rights law. The policies in question are often called zero tolerance rules, which hand out swift and strong punishment to those who break rules in school, and sometimes result in court action. After Texas passed its zero tolerance policy for school disciplinary issues in 1995, many students began receiving criminal citations for missing class, fighting, cursing and even throwing paper airplanes.
Four score and seven years ago … well actually, 150 years ago — on November 19, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln delivered his now legendary Gettysburg Address in. A mere 273 words in length, in honor of the soldiers who fought in one of the most important battles of the Civil War, the speech became one of the most influential speeches in American history.
To look back at the triumphs, tragedies and trends, Google creates an annual Zeitgeist, a summary of the biggest events of the year as seen through the site’s search engine results. The result is a joyous, inspiring and sometimes tragic diary of what we’ve accomplished and endured over the last twelve months.
In 2013, nearly 20 million students in the United States were enrolled in colleges and universities, more than any other time in the country’s history. Compare that to sixty years ago, when higher education enrollment rates were still under 3 million.