B1 Block Party features Guster, Mayer Hawthorne

first_img Guster’s set lasted over an hour and concluded with a standard encore and what Guster lead singer Ryan Miller called “a real encore” where the clapping and cheering of students actually brought the band out for a few more songs. The B1 Block Party, Legends Night Club’s annual open-air event, kicked off the first weekend of the school year. Legends also brought in a Velcro wall, Euro Bungy, a photo booth, Cash Cube and rock-climbing wall for students to enjoy during the event. A Notre Dame tailgating staple, Corn Hole was set up for a little friendly competition. “There was a fun concert feel during Guster,” sophomore Emily Golden said. Live music played throughout the night, with local acts Nick Gunty and Identity Crisis opening the stage for Mayer Hawthorne and the headlining act, Guster.   With a lineup of star acts and the volume cranked all the way up, it was difficult to be on campus Saturday night and not know the B1 Block Party was happening.center_img “I don’t remember there being as many other activities besides just the concert last year, so this year’s Block Party was definitely more fun,” sophomore Stefan Hogle said. “The Euro Bungy was really fun and really tiring.”  “I’ve never heard their music before, but Guster sounded really good, and they were high-energy and fun to watch” sophomore Ben Galloway said. ND Concessions, Chick-Fil-A, Papa Murphy’s Pizza and Jimmy Johns Gourmet Sandwiches were available all night. Chick-Fil-A brought along their cow mascot who was spotted dancing around to the night’s musical acts. After Guster concluded, Notre Dame’s DJ 3J and DJ Whoo Kid of G-Unit Records lit up the turntables and gave a nightclub that lasted until 4 a.m.last_img read more

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Coaches make difference in South Bend

first_imgBrian Kelly and Charlie Weis have more in common than simply having held the position of Notre Dame head football coach: Both were inspired by personal family experiences to found organizations in South Bend. In 2003, Weis and his wife Maura founded Hannah and Friends, a nonprofit organization to improve the lives of children and adults with special needs. They began the organization in recognition of their daughter, Hannah, who has developmental disorders. The Weis family currently lives in Kansas City, Mo., but continues its involvement with Hannah and Friends, which is still located in South Bend. Brian Kelly and his wife Paqui founded the Kelly Cares Foundation to support initiatives in education, women’s health and community. Paqui, a two-time breast cancer survivor, said the foundation’s focus includes breast cancer awareness and research. The Kellys started their foundation in 2008, while Brian was Cincinnati’s head football coach, but Paqui said it has grown and developed since moving to South Bend. “We did do a lot this past year,” Paqui said. “I feel like this is our first kickoff year.” Hannah and Friends has also expanded in the past year, since the September 2009 opening of its 30-acre farm in South Bend. The farm offers programming and residential opportunities for people with special needs. Sharon Bui-Green, Hannah and Friends’ executive director, said the Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s communities remain highly involved with the organization. “Football is what probably had most alums and most people in the community find out about Hannah and Friends,” Bui-Green said. “But once they found out about us … it became greater than football.” Earlier this month, Bui-Green said Dillon Hall residents spent a day at the Hannah and Friends farm for community service and students from Pasquerilla East Hall participated in a “ladies’ night” with adult residents. “People just have an innate desire to help others, and us being so close to campus I think students continue to do that,” Bui-Green said. Bui-Green said Maura Weis still checks in with Hannah and Friends’ staff on a weekly basis and visits frequently. “We’re still a very mom-and-pop organization that they’re actively participating in,” she said. In 2011, Maura and Hannah Weis plan to move back to South Bend. The Weis family decided the move would provide Hannah with consistency and allow her to participate in Hannah and Friends’ programming, Bui-Green said. The Kelly Cares Foundation, like Hannah and Friends, involves a large commitment from its founders. Paqui Kelly said since moving to South Bend, she has spent an increased amount of time working with Kelly Cares. “I think previously it seemed more that I would be at the events, but now it’s more of a grassroots, where I’m pretty much the base that goes with the Kelly Cares Foundation,” she said. “At this point it is full time … but it’s a great and rewarding new venue for me.” Kelly Cares hosted fundraisers this year through golf outings, Football 101 events with Coach Kelly and other speaking events. Paqui said part of the inspiration to begin the foundation came from feeling blessed during her own battles with breast cancer. She benefited from early detection and proactive healthcare and had the support of family and friends throughout her treatments. “I learned some things [during my own treatments] and I think at the end of the day you see those lights come and you say, ‘what should I be doing?’” she said. Breast cancer awareness is a major aspect of the Kelly Cares mission. As part of this initiative, the foundation sold pink wristbands during the month of October. “We just hope that in spreading that word, that in itself will help save people’s lives,” she said. Kelly Cares also works in other areas, such as education. The foundation has already donated to Notre Dame’s Hesburgh Library and the Robinson Community Learning Center in South Bend. The foundation will issue a press release early in 2011 announcing more initiatives, which Kelly said are not yet finalized. Beyond football and coaching records, Bui-Green said it is important that football coaches make an impact in the larger community. “[Weis’] legacy had made a tremendous impact on so many people,” she said. “It makes me really proud to be a part of his organization.”last_img read more

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Inspiration for ‘Freedom Writers’ speaks at College

first_imgErin Gruwell, author of “The Freedom Writers Diary” and founder of the Freedom Writers Foundation, spoke on encouraging diversity and understanding in a lecture titled “Teaching Tolerance” in Moreau Hall’s Little Theater on Friday. Penn High School sophomore Katie Laiman approached Saint Mary’s with the idea to invite Gruwell to speak as a part of Girls Scout Gold Award project. “I think this talk was really impactful, and I hope everyone that was here takes a lot from it,” Laiman said. Gruwell said she became a teacher because she wanted to stand up for kids who did not have a voice. “Before there was a book, before there was a movie, there was a group of students who were tired of being invisible, tired of being on the fringe and just wanted to matter, just wanted to be heard,” she said. Gruwell said when she was in graduate education classes she noticed a disconnection between theory and practice. “I realized this when I walked into my first classroom and my students could care not less about stories, and books, and Shakespeare and tales about Homer,” she said. “My students cared about would I make it home alive, am I gonna get home and see my hardworking mom with those cockroaches and those rats in that tiny one bedroom housing project, and will there be dinner, would their be food on the table, are those cupboards going to be bare again.” Gruwell said all of her students buried friends due to senseless gang violence by the age of 14, and it made her desperate to show them stories written about teenagers such as Anne Frank. “At that moment I wanted to find books written by, for and about kids,” she said. “Kids who lived in real wars, kids who didn’t pick up Molotov cocktails or spray cans or use 38 special handguns, kids who picked up a pen and tried to write along, kids who picked up a pen and tried to write their own ending.” Gruwell said she went to her English department chair to ask if she could use these books but was turned down. “She said my kids were too stupid to read a book, and they would never read a book from cover to cover,” Gruwell said. “She went on to say they were dumb; she went on to say they were nothing. I realized my kids have been called dumb, stupid and nothing so often by so many people they believed it, and they were acting accordingly.” Gruwell said in order to convince her students to pick up a book instead of using cliff notes or downloading someone else’s essay off the Internet, she had them wipe the slate clean and start over. “Without really thinking it through, I decided we were going to have a toast for change,” she said. “Maybe for the first time it doesn’t matter, maybe we can wipe the slate clean, maybe we can start over. I wanted to start over because I wanted my students to know they had a voice. I wanted them to know they were brilliant and they could go anywhere and do anything.” Gruwell said over the years she has watched these 150 kids, who were not supposed to make it, become teachers, parents and leaders. “I watched each and every one of those kids become the first in their families to graduate,” she said. “I watched each and every one of those kids become the first in their family to go to college. … I watched those kids realize their dreams.” Gruwell said she has watched kids build mountains and has seen their book inspire others. “I am an ordinary teacher who had an extraordinary experience with a group of kids who were tired of reading books written by dead white guys in tights,” she said. “They wanted kids like you to see their story, they wanted kids like you to identify with their story, but most importantly, they wanted kids like you to write your own.” The lecture was cosponsored by the Saint Mary’s Education Club, CWIL, OCSE, SIMS, Student Government Association and Girls Scouts of Northern Indiana Michiania. Contact Kiera Johnsen at [email protected]last_img read more

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Islamic culture fostered by student group

first_imgAs part of the ongoing effort to promote and understand diversity at Notre Dame, the Muslim Student Association has successfully incorporated an interfaith dialogue between Muslim students and the University to spread awareness of Islamic culture and religion. The MSA boasts approximately 30 members of both graduate and undergraduate. Club vice president Itrat Bin Shams, an electrical engineering graduate student at Notre Dame, said the MSA uses annual events to promote Islamic culture around campus. Bin Shams said the EID festival (Eid al-Fitr), which means the Feast of Breaking Fast, takes place every year to commemorate the end of Ramadan. “We invite people from all around campus and give a presentation of what EID is, as well as information on the MSA.” Bin Shams said. “We also take part in the ‘Prayer from around the world,’ a series organized by campus ministry, where people from all religions show their practices and how they pray.” The MSA is also hosting an upcoming seminar titled “Syria: Why it matters” and a Fast-a-thon, an event organized over the summer where attendees were requested to skip a meal and donate proceeds to Fighting Hunger in Africa.    Bin Shams said the club works hard to create community between Muslim students by hosting smaller events. “We have several students who came from Turkey or Pakistan. The Muslim Student Association provides a very nice umbrella for them. We try to bring them together, for example, we pray together, we share our thoughts together, etc.” Bin Sham said. “Our mission is not only to provide facilities and bring Muslim students together but also to breach a network together between all students at the University.” Next semester, the club is hosting Islam awareness week. Bin Shams said the weeklong program will include a number of seminars, dinners and speakers from outside camps. Bin Shams said despite the majority of Notre Dame students belonging to a Christian background, the MSA’s impact on campus has been noticeable. “I truly believe the impact we have had on campus is huge,” Bin Shams said. Sara Abdel Rahim, a freshman biology major and an active member in the Muslim Student Association, said she believes the club has built a strong foundation that will allow its influence to continue to grow in coming years. “I’m very proud that we have a club like this on campus because I do appreciate the fact that we can practice our faith in a University that is predominantly catholic,” Abdel Rahim said.   Contact Gabriela Malespin at [email protected]last_img read more

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Observer appoints top editor

first_imgThe Observer General Board elected News Editor Ann Marie Jakubowski as the 2014-15 Editor-in-Chief on Wednesday.Jakubowski, a native of Grand Rapids, Mich., is a double major in English and Spanish with a minor in Journalism, Ethics and Democracy.A resident of McGlinn Hall, Jakubowski has coordinated all of The Observer’s news coverage for the past year.“I am so honored and humbled to be chosen as The Observer’s next leader,” Jakubowski said. “I have learned so much from the past few years here and I cannot wait to see what we can accomplish going forward.”Jakubowski became News Editor in the spring of 2013, and the first major project of her term was leading the coverage of Pope Francis’ election in March 2013. She will spend the upcoming summer as a reporting intern with the Concord Monitor in Concord, NH.Jakubowski said she looks forward to building off the momentum of past Editorial Boards and learning from the challenges ahead.“I’m going into this with a lot of energy and excitement because I am so proud of the work everyone does in this office,” she said. “I have a lot to learn, and I am so lucky to be a part of this incredible organization.”Jakubowski will take over as Editor-in-Chief on March 3.Tags: Editor-in-Chieflast_img read more

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Right to Life sponsors D.C. trip

first_imgWashington, D.C. — Three hundred and twenty Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s students joined thousands of anti-abortion demonstrators on Wednesday in Washington, D.C. for the 41st annual March for Life.Due to low temperatures and winter storm warnings, senior Jennifer Gallic, Notre Dame March for Life Trip Coordinator, said some Washington-bound buses were cancelled and numbers at the event were smaller than usual.“Unfortunately, only about half of our [590 registered students] were able to make it to D.C.,” Gallic said. “Despite the cold, the group that made it was excited to stand with hundreds of thousands of pro-lifers to defend life.”Photo courtesy of Anna Carmack The March began at 12 p.m. on the National Mall where anti-abortion advocates gathered for an hour-long rally, Notre Dame senior Amanda Bambury said. The group then marched to the Supreme Court to mark the anniversary of “Roe v. Wade,” the 1973 Supreme Court ruling that struck down anti-abortion laws, she said.“For a gathering of so many people it is a very pleasant atmosphere,” Bambury said. “It is not violent or hateful at all, but is filled with people who are so full of life and who really want to try and make a difference.“It is such an honor, a privilege and a blessing to be able to walk side by side with my fellow Notre Dame, Saint Mary’s and Holy Cross students and faculty who are so passionate about the cause and to walk by people who have traveled so, so far to march.”The trip, organized by both Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s Right to Life groups, receives sponsorship from the Notre Dame Center for Ethics and Culture, the Notre Dame Institute for Church Life and alumnae, Gallic said. The commitment to funding expresses the University’s larger commitment to expressing the importance of life issues to its students, she said. “We have had people from Notre Dame go [to the March] since it started,” Gallic said. “The numbers were only a couple in the beginning, but Notre Dame has always been represented.Notre Dame is committed to life issues, Gallic said. Right to life is part of the Catholic Church’s mission and Catholic Social Teaching. She said the close relationship between the organization and the president’s office is evident in the university’s decision to give excused absences to students who participate in the March.Gallic said involvement with the Right to Life Club at Notre Dame helped shaped her perception of others and taught her the importance of the inherent dignity of all human persons.“This group really shapes how you view other people in terms of the dignity that they have,” Gallic said. “At its core, the pro-life movement is about human dignity, so that definitely provides a different outlook on life — you see people through their worth as created in God’s image.”Gallic, who has attended seven marches in her lifetime, said she found it encouraging to stand with so many others with the same passion for pro-life issues. She said it gives her the strength to continue to fight for a cause she “holds dear to her heart.”“Just being involved with pro-life issues can sometimes be discouraging when you see the culture shifting so far away from it,” Gallic said. “Being at the March last year … by people who are so passionate about it, reminds you that you are not the only person fighting for this and [shows] how important of an issue it is.”The Right to Life Club at Notre Dame works to educate students on life issues and provides students with a way to get involved, Gallic said. Since the group is at a Catholic institution, she said she believes the group is supported more than pro-life groups at other American college campuses.“Compared to other pro-life groups at other universities, our group is very well received,” Gallic said. “We receive a ton of support from the administration.“There is always going to be, especially on college campuses, people affected by abortion, and for those people seeing reminders of the pro-life movement can be hard, but we have never experienced a lot of resentment or a lot of negativity.”Saint Mary’s senior Allie Richthammer said she feels she is in the minority at Saint Mary’s since she is pro-choice.“I personally feel like it is a woman’s responsibility to choose what she does as far as reproductive issues and I don’t think that the government, or anyone else, should be involved in that decision making process,” Richtammer said. “I think it is a citizen’s private right to choose what they would like to do.Richtammer said she thinks abortion will occur whether or not it is legal, and she said she feels abortion should be made safe as a result. Although she said she does not feel nervous about expressing her pro-choice views, at times she does feel reluctant.“On the whole, I really haven’t experienced anything negative being a pro-choice supporter on Saint Mary’s campus, but it can feel a little awkward sometimes when people are talking about ‘killing babies’ or things like that,” Richthammer said. “When they bring it into that context, as far as abortions go, I don’t really view it like that. I view it as a women’s reproductive health issue rather than an abortion issue.”Gallic said the Right to Life Club is always willing to engage in discussion with students about their beliefs and said anyone is welcome to come to the group’s events, including those who are not pro-life supporters. She said events like the March allow members of the club to engage with people from all different backgrounds and support groups, especially those of younger generations.“At the March you are able to network with other college campuses, people of older generations and experts for the cause,” Gallic said. “It is great to see so many people come together for the pro-life cause.”Tags: March for Life, Right to Lifelast_img read more

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Sexual battery reported on campus

first_imgNotre Dame Security Police (NDSP) emailed students Wednesday evening alerting them to a report of sexual battery that occurred early Sunday morning.The alleged battery took place “at a campus-wide social event,” and the report was made to a University administrator, the email stated.The email quoted “du Lac: A Guide to Student Life,” Notre Dame’s official policy book, and warned students of the risks of sexual assault as well as the standards for consent.“Sexual assault or battery can happen to anyone,” the email stated. “Anyone initiating any kind of sexual contact with another person must seek consent and not engage in sexual contact unless consent is given.”“… Intoxication is not an excuse for failure to obtain consent, and a person who is incapacitated — whether by alcohol, drugs or otherwise — is incapable of giving consent.”Students should maintain caution and awareness of their surroundings to avoid risks, the email stated.“On college campuses, perpetrators are more likely to assault an acquaintance than a stranger. Being aware of your own safety and watching out for your friends are important steps you can take to reduce the risk of sexual assault.“The perpetrator, not the survivor, is responsible for any instance of sexual assault. Nothing a survivor does or does not do is an excuse for sexual assault.”Tags: crime alert, NDSP, Sexual batterylast_img read more

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Professor lectures on Dante’s literary and theological influences

first_imgDr. Robin Kirkpatrick, poet, professor emeritus of Italian and English Literature at the University of Cambridge and scholar of Dante and the Renaissance, delivered the University’s annual Religion and Literature lecture, titled “The Pace of Praise: Might Theology Walk Together with Literature?”Dr. Kirkpatrick, whose 2006 translation of Dante’s epic poem “The Divine Comedy” has been described as “one of the most important contributions to Dante scholarship of recent times,” spoke about the relationship between religion and literature with a particular focus on “The Divine Comedy” and how literary works like it are connected to the art of praise.“One impulse, common to literary study and theology, is a desire to cultivate and promote the language of intelligent praise” Kirkpatrick said, “But it may also be said that the point of theology in one of its aspects is to prepare our language for its use in performance, prayer and literature, and focusing our thoughts on … praise.”Kirkpatrick said Chaucer’s “Troilus and Criseyde” and “Purgatorio” the second part of “The Divine Comedy” are works of literature that can be a approached as a form of theological discovery.“The late Middle Ages saw the invention, or re-invention, of literature as an independent field of human endeavor,” he said. “The texts in question call into play …  the stress between pain and praise that a Psalm might display, but equally, for scrupulous attention to language.”Kirkpatrick said the combination of Dante’s use of detailed theological augmentation and distinctly poetic language characterized the way praise is approached in literature, particularly the slow tempo at which it is delivered.“As capable as Dante is of the highest flights of imagination, grotesquery as well as ecstasy, the foundation of his art is an unremitting clarity of articulation,” he said. “As incarnate beings we speak at our best not in high-flown rhetoric, but along the pulse of silence.”Following the logic of Dante’s references to faith revealing itself in infidelity, authors who may be seen as “searching, violent or even blasphemous” can make a serious contribution to theological studies, and similarly, the use of surprising language in the Psalms can make a contribution to praise as a form of literature, Kirkpatrick said. He said the end of Psalm 137 is one such example.“Scripture is full of scandals, which may shock the poet out of cliche, or predictable sentiment,” Kirkpatrick said.Dr. Kirkpatrick is a Distinguished Visiting Professor in the departments of Religion and Literature at Notre Dame this semester.Tags: Dante, Pace of Praise, Psalmlast_img read more

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Panels explore pornography

first_imgOn Saturday, a day-long conference convened in the McKenna Conference Center to address the role of pornography in modern society, titled “Pervasive Porn: Exploring the Personal and Social Costs of Pornography.”The conference is sponsored by Students for Child-Oriented Policy, the Tocqueville Program for Inquiry Into Religion and American Public Life, The “Irish Rover,” “Ethika Politika,” Sycamore Trust, Love and Fidelity Network, St. Edward’s Hall, Zahm House, Morrissey Manor, Stanford Hall, Fisher Hall and the Center for Ethics and Culture.According to the Tocqueville Program’s website, this conference “seeks to provide sound scholarship along with personal testimony and therapeutic experience” in order for members of the community to better understand the effects pornography has in society. The conference also aims to analyze the “means of addressing the porn problem with a specific regard for the well-being of the youngest and most vulnerable among us.”The conference included four panels on various issues with pornography, including addiction and psychology, the negative effects on pornography’s participants, the theological perspective on pornography and philosophical approaches to the human dignity: “Pornography Addiction, Industry, and Relationship,” “Pornography, Women, and Children,” “In Principle: Philosophy and the Law” and “Theological Perspectives on Pornography.”Panelists address pornography addictionOn Saturday morning as the first panel of the day-long conference, three professors addressed pornography addiction, the industry and relationships. The panelists included professor of psychology William Struthers from Wheaton College, associate professor of economics Kirk Doran from Notre Dame and associate professor of sociology Mark Regnerus from University of Texas at Austin.Struthers began the discussion by acknowledging the psychological aspect of porn addiction.“When you look at an MRI, porn makes the brain light up in the same places that a drug addict’s brain will light up when the stimulus is presented to them,” Struthers said.Although pornography is rejected by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) as an addiction, Struthers said he believes this is likely to change in the future. According to Struthers, things are addictive by acting on the brains neurons, and pornography “hijacks” those circuits in the brain to produce a supernormal response.Doran continued the panel’s discussion by explaining the market structure of the pornography industry and possibilities of regulation. According to Doran, there are 40,000 internet pornography sites which comprises a multi-million dollar industry in which consumers have a plethora of options.“We could stop the production of pornography right now, but it wouldn’t do anything because there is so much out there already,” Doran said.Doran also discussed the validity of a study showing that rape rates went down in areas where internet was more accessible or where Penthouse Magazine was available. These were both high-profile studies claiming there is less rape when pornography is available.“There are serious flaws in these studies, and they definitely do not prove that pornography decreases rape,” Doran said. “The Penthouse Magazine is available to people with P.O. boxes — but so is Discover Magazine.”According to Doran, the best option for regulation is to deal with the internet services providers hosting this material.Regnerus then explored how the use of pornography changes people’s perception of marriage from a sociological standpoint, elaborating on the findings of a survey titled, “The Relationships in America.”“The survey showed us that women use significantly less pornography and that people use less as they age, which we refer to as the Aging Effect,” Regnerus said. “But what is disconcerting is the change of attitudes towards marriage that we see correlated with pornography use.”According to Regnerus, there is an inverse relationship between porn used last week and frequency of church attendance. Men who use porn are more likely to support cohabitation before marriage, casual sex, “open” marriages and gay marriage. Furthermore, men who use porn think more about leaving their spouse and are overall less happy with life, he said.Regnerus describes these findings as a “marital train wreck” in which people’s attitudes about relationships and marriage are changing.“It’s hard to say whether porn use directly causes these attitudes, but it is clear that even if you don’t watch porn, it still affects you,” Regnerus said.Pornography’s effects on its actors, viewersIn the conference’s second panel, titled “Pornography, Women and Children,” three speakers discussed the effects of pornography in three different contexts. Mary Anne Layden, director of the sexual trauma and psychopathology program at the University of Pennsylvania; Donna Hughes, a professor of gender and women’s studies at the University of Rhode Island; and Mary Leary, a law professor at the Catholic University of America all participated in the discussion.After a brief introduction by Christine Caron Gebhardt, director of Notre Dame’s Gender Relations Center (GRC), Layden began the panel discussion by speaking first on the psychological effects of pornography use.“Sex is now seen as a product and the body is a commodity, … If it is a product, you can sell it, and if you can sell it, you can steal it,” Layden said.As a psychotherapist, Layden said she has seen the psychological effects of pornography on its viewers. According to some of her own studies, the more pornography a man watched, the less jail time he thought was appropriate for rapists; this correlation was true for women as well. People who watched more porn were also found to think that behavior such as bestiality and sadomasochism were practiced more regularly than they actually are.Next, Hughes spoke about abuse and violence of women during the making of pornography.“There was something that the feminists said in the ‘70s, and that is that pornography actually happens to women,” Hughes said. “When you see a film of someone who’s shot, they didn’t actually shoot that person. And when there’s fistfights, they’re not actually beating each other up. They’re able to do these things to make it look like something’s happening. But in pornography, what you are seeing is actually being done to that woman.”She went on to read statements from women who had acted in porn films and described how they were tricked or coerced into doing acts that differed from what they had first agreed to. She also discussed how the violence prevalent in pornography is becoming more desirable in real life.“They want girls with no taboos, meaning that they can do whatever they want. They’ve been conditioned to do everything,” Hughes said.Leary then continued the panel discussion by addressing pornography and child sexual abuse images as they pertain to the law and our language.“Language communicates values and morals. You call something ‘child pornography,’ a seemingly innocuous term that creates the suggestion that it’s pornography with young-looking adults. It’s not. It’s a child sex abuse image,” Leary said.She also said such pornography has long-term effects on the victims, and the victimization doesn’t end. Leary said the young actors have to live knowing the images are still being viewed.She ended by sharing the words of a victim who one of her colleagues represents: “Being sexually assaulted, it was kind of like looking up and seeing people in a window, and they’re looking, and you think ‘Oh thank God, they’re going to come and help me.’ But instead, they’re just being entertained.”‘This is a form, I think, of self-mutilation’Professor of philosophy Christopher Tollefsen, from the University of South Carolina, and professor of law Gerard Bradley, from Notre Dame, reflected on the moral and legal implications of pornography in modern culture as part of the conference’s third panel, “In Principle; Philosophy and the Law.” Tollefsen said pornography affects multiple dimensions of the human person, such as family well-being, health and the ability to explore and discern truth and freedom. Tollefsen said the presence of pornography on university campuses was ultimately destructive to the nature of academic institutions.“The university is a home for free inquiry into the truth. But pornography diminishes our freedom and erodes our grasp of truths of sex, marriage, family, self, society, reality and time, numb,” Tollefsen said. “The widespread use of pornography on a university campus, especially at a Catholic university, should be a source of very great concern.”Tollefsen said the emotions and sexual desires towards those who are not spouses that are produced by pornography are not only corruptive to human nature, but rather run contrary to the virtue of chastity. He said pornography principally aims to erode chastity, a virtue that implies unwillingness to commit infedility or seek gratification from someone other than one’s spouse.“The aim of producers [of pornography] is obviously to eliminate … that unwillingness. Chaste persons are of no use to producers to pornography,” Tollefsen said. “Those who use pornography, as intended, erode in themselves this disposition that’s essential for human life. This is a form, I think, of self-mutilation.”According to Tollefsen, pornography distorts both our relationship to God and our understanding of the present and time in relation to gratification.“One is passive in relationship to porn’s content,” he said. “The exploratory forms of engagement that characterize our relationship to the real world are absent when we render ourselves merely eyes for taking up images.”Bradley then elaborated on the social and legal consequences of pornography and said while pornography has indeed been a destructive force in public and private life, the widespread disproval of pornography from the general public has the potential to curb the effects of pornography and create a comprehensive legal and social response to it.“I’m talking about a socially responsible ethic so that even someone who believes himself/herself to be immune to the allures and dangers of porn should support a campaign to stigmatize it because that will help other people,” Bradley said.Bradley said in order to effectively combat pornography, there needs to be a collective response to porn that involves both strong social attitudes against pornographic consumption and a secondary legal response. Bradley said this secondary legal response should include legal measures against access to pornography on campuses and other public places and legal action against producers of pornography.“We should use the law in some essential but secondary ways to create and maintain a social, cultural stigma on pornography,” Bradley said.Though Bradley acknowledged the effects of pornography may vary by person and may not pose a threat to all, he said the dangers pornography poses to the population collectively still require a widespread condemnation of its usage and distribution.“The burden of my remarks really is to instill in the American people a sense of social responsibility for porn. For too long it’s been a matter of pure consumerism,” Bradley said.Tags: christopher tollefsen, Gender Relations Committee, gerard bradley, GRC, pervasive porn, pervasive porn conference, porn conference, tollefsenlast_img read more

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SMC junior donates stem cells

first_imgThis year, junior and co-president of Saint Mary’s College Dance Marathon went a step beyond her group’s mission to raise awareness and money for the Riley Hospital for Children in Indianapolis — she donated her own stem cells in the form of blood over the summer.Dance Marathon advocates for Be the Match, an organization that offers the largest and most diverse marrow registry through 600 centers worldwide. According to the Riley Children’s Foundation website, Lukomski received an email from Be the Match asking her to donate her stem cells to help save the life of a 60-year-old female with Myelodysplastic Syndromes (MDS) in July.  MDS is a bone marrow disorder in which the bone marrow does not produce enough healthy blood cells, and stems cells are not produced at all.According to Riley Children’s Foundation website, Lukomski gave a sample during a drive on campus sponsored by Stand Up To Cancer Club. Lukomski said once a person registers her swabbed cheek sample through Be The Match, she remains on the registry for life. Some prospective donors many never be called, and every donor is always given a choice to opt out.“Everything is up to you,” Lumoski said. “If I wanted to stop [the process] the morning of my donation, they would have to respect that, which I think makes the organization better.”Lukomski said she was given two options when contacted to donate.“The first option is to donate your stem cells, which is the most common,” she said. “The second option is more invasive, in which they actually go into your hipbone and extract bone marrow.”Lukomski said she was asked to donate stem cells in the form of blood. The extraction process took a total of six hours, she said.“After [winter] break I was notified that my recipient is out of the hospital and is doing well,” Lukomski said. “That is all I know for now unless she decides to reach out to me.”Lukomski did not actually lose any blood because the medical technicians extracted the stem cells out of her blood and then pumped the blood back through her body. Lukomski said the only side affect of her donation experience was mild tiredness from the shots the doctors gave her — a small price to pay for a worthwhile cause.“If I’m going to have to be a little tired in order to save a life, why not?” Lukomski said.In a Riley blog post, Lumoski attributes her inspiration to donate to her family and friends.“… Without them I would not have had the mindset to donate,” she said. “They were the people who taught me so much about the world and giving.”“The other support system I had was my Dance Marathon Executive Board,” Lukomski said. “I left the hospital and realized that I will forever be a part of someone else. A stranger had turned into my biggest inspiration.”Joining the Be The Match registry is very simple and can be done online at bethematch.org. The organization also comes to campus to collect samples for students interested in becoming potential donors.Tags: bone marrow, Riley Children’s Hospital, Riley Week, Stem Cellslast_img read more

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