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2011 March

Gun Control Debate: Dems vs. GOP

On March 19, 2011, in Uncategorized, by Jake Goldwasser

In the gun control debate, the Republicans fell back on–and have fallen back on in various formal and informal debates–the “I don’t accept a utilitarian argument” mantra.  They have to say this, because the statistics are clearly in favor of gun control (since there are only 200 self-defense homicides per year compared with 32,000 other gun-related deaths).  But if you don’t want to concern yourselves with utilitarian arguments, perhaps politics isn’t the best field for you.  I can only imagine that if Obama announced his budget and said “I’ve neglected practicality for the sake of idealism in this year’s budget–all the money’s going towards AIDS research,” there would be hell to pay.

Furthermore, the Republicans frequently went to the “I care about rights” justification.  Isn’t the purpose of gun control to protect the rights of American Citizens?  Isn’t is possible that the security of our children is in jeopardy when it is proven that there are more injuries in houses that have guns? Isn’t security a right?  Remember: we only want gun control not their elimination.  But I guess some rights are holier in the Republican mind than others, because Women’s Rights, Gay Rights–those can be denied.  Republicans: protecting the rights of crotchety, armed white men since 1776.

 

Student Activism: We Have Sex!

On March 11, 2011, in Uncategorized, by Janine Balekdjian

In case you’ve been hiding under a rock/your schoolwork since January (and really, who can blame you; we sometimes wish that we could ignore what the 112th Congress has been doing), it’s been a pretty bad few months for abortion rights.  On the state level, we’ve seen the typical barrage of laws restricting the time when women can legally get abortions, like Kansas‘, but Republican state legislators have also progressed to whole new levels of insanity.  The Ohio legislature actually called a fetus to testify, South Dakota tried to pass a bill which would legalize the murder of abortion doctors (before it was tabled due to negative press – wonder why?) and Georgia introduced a bill which would treat every miscarriage as a possible crime scene.

Unfortunately, laws on the federal level have been just as bad.  Among other horrifying ideas, the Republican-controlled House has tried to completely defund Planned Parenthood in their budget proposal, despite the fact that no federal money is used for abortion services.  This would mean taking away reproductive healthcare, birth control, and cancer screenings from thousands of women, many low-income, who rely on Planned Parenthood’s “pay what you can” policy for their sexual health.  This is not just about abortion, it’s about a wholesale attack on women’s health.

The Columbia Democrats are mad as hell about this (and so is Anthony Weiner).  A few weeks ago, we went to a rally downtown to support Planned Parenthood.  This week, students at Wesleyan University, who were also pissed off, took action by making a video to show who, exactly, our elected officials hurt when they attack Planned Parenthood.  And the answer is: all of us.  Enjoy.

 

COLUMBIA-BARNARD SWIPE ACCESS

On March 7, 2011, in Uncategorized, by Maddy Joseph

Ok, it may not be the most political thing on earth, and maybe it’s not the most tragic, but the inability of Columbia students to swipe into Barnard dorms and the inability of Barnard students to swipe into Columbia dorms is an issue that annoys and hassles and bothers every student.

The Dems is taking on the administration this month on the current swipe access policy. Here are our plans:
1.) Gathering petition signatures: https://spreadsheets.google.com/viewform?formkey=dHhfSTdKWjZqdjREM21JTmNRdlZnN1E6MQ
2.) Staging a sit-in swipe-in on March 24 where we’ll be attempting to sign masses of Columbia students into one Barnard dorm (more info to come)
3.) Working with the administration to push for a new policy

Here’s what you can do:
SIGN THE PETITION: https://spreadsheets.google.com/viewform?formkey=dHhfSTdKWjZqdjREM21JTmNRdlZnN1E6MQ
CHECK OUT OUR TUMBLR: swipeaccess.tumblr.com
COME TO OUR MEETING THIS WEDNESDAY in Satow at 9pm
VOLUNTEER AT THE SWIPE-IN SIT-IN

Email dems@columbia.edu with your questions

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