Bill Nye the Idiot Guy

Author: Nicole Commisso

If you are a 90s baby like myself, I guarantee that during elementary school/middle school you were probably introduced to (and loved) “Bill Nye the Science Guy”. I remember being excited in science class when the teacher put on one of the five-minute clips of Bill Nye demonstrating whichever topic we were learning with a cool science experiment. Even though Bill Nye graduated with a mechanical engineering degree and is not technically a scientist, he made science fun, entertaining, and engaging for young students. Even for the individuals who were not interested in science at all, he made it fascinating with his funny and clever antics. Although, all good things must come to an end.

For Bill Nye, a good thing has turned into a 61-year-old, washed up minor celebrity from the 90s, trying desperately to stay relevant with his latest leftist performances. He is abusing the influence he had on young people years ago by spreading nonsense with his new show “Bill Nye Saves the World”. The first season is on Netflix, which I would strongly discourage you to watch unless you want a cringe-worthy laugh, to feel extremely uncomfortable, and/or possibly lose brain cells. Each episode of the show targets a so-called controversial issue in today’s society such as, climate change, GMOs, vaccines, sexuality/genders, etc. Before watching, here are 9 Reasons You Shouldn’t Listen To Bill Nye About Science, but if you’re like me you might have to see this insanity for yourself. Unlike the old Bill Nye, I didn’t recognize any significant scientific evidence, or any evidence quite frankly, of his claims while watching his new show.

While trying to make it through multiple episodes of his show, the one that was most disturbing to me was Episode 9: “The Sexuality Spectrum”. An entire 30 minutes of Bill Nye and his cast rationalizing the leftist view of sexuality being on a spectrum rather than being biology. The episode begins with the apparent pieces of sexuality: Sex, Gender, Attraction, and Expression. Basically, Bill Nye states that exploring this concept of sex, biologically not everyone fits into the categories of male or female and that there are a variety of sex organs. Last time I checked, you are either born with a penis or vagina… no variety there. Bill Nye also claims, without evidence might I add, that one’s gender isn’t defined by their chromosomes. Even though, Bill Nye did properly explain gender in his 1990s children’s show which they conveniently just edited out recently. Hypocrite! In society today, the fact that XX means you’re a woman and XY means you’re a man is absurd to Bill Nye and the left. Where’s the science in that, Bill Nye the “Not So Science Guy”?  

As he explains the rest of his take on sexuality, he pauses and creepily says to the audience,

“You wanna hear Bill Nye talk about… sexual intercourse, right? Doing it!”

Actually, I really don’t want to hear you talk about that, Bill. That is bizarre, gross, and completely inappropriate for your TV-14 audience. He then goes on a huge rant while stomping back and forth,

“Like we have you know some people here in the United States that will never accept [sexuality being on a spectrum] … What’s the big deal? Just get over it will you! What do you care?! Those people are not going to try to have sex with you. Let’s just get over it and move on!”

What an excellent way for people to come together, Bill. Forcing your leftist agenda with your feelings by yelling “just get over it!” and throwing a fit. Where are your facts? Reality check: you can’t make people agree with you by screaming “agree with me!”. Pretty sure this was covered way back in kindergarten days – agree to disagree. Imagine that, being able to have a different opinion. Oh wait, we can… we live in America! This is something that the left tends to frequently forget.

Then, he has a panel of “experts” of sexuality sit around and discuss the “facts”. Bill Nye asks Katrina Karkazis, Cultural Anthropologist at Stanford University, “Is there such a thing as a gay gene?” She responds, “No. We group gay people together into this flat label of homosexuality for [individuals who believe there is a gay gene] to try to make sense of it.” This group of “experts”, including a gay comedian (which I am unsure how he is an expert on sexuality just because he is gay), all agree that we don’t need labels. They proclaim that it is offensive to cluster gays, lesbians, transgender, etc. into labels and groups. However, if we dare to use to wrong pronoun or not correctly address them to whichever label/group they “self-identify” as, we are labeled as homophobic. This is just one example that we’ll never please the left unless we agree with every single thing they say, no matter how hypocritical and irrational it is.

Next on Bill’s agenda is Ice Cream Conversion Therapy, where Bill shows an animation with talking ice cream cones that has Vanilla, the heterosexual ice cream flavor. Vanilla thinks that everyone should be/pretend to be “vanilla” (straight) like him in order to please “the big ice cream in the sky” (God). With this, they make a blanket generalization about straight people being conservative Christians that are heterosexual to please God and believe that everyone, regardless of what they are or how they feel, should convert to their beliefs. Newsflash: not every heterosexual fits this stereotypical criteria. A terrified Strawberry ice cream cone, who is screaming and running around, is clearly in need of a safe space as he jumps into Salted Caramel’s arms when Vanilla says everyone should be “vanilla” (straight). All the other different flavors of ice cream are upset with Vanilla for trying to change who they are. Then, they all gang up on Vanilla saying that it is only natural to want more than one “flavor” (more than one gender/sex). Mint Chocolate Chip, who boasts about being two things at once, says in a sexual way, “C’mon, Vanilla. Haven’t you ever wanted to be in a… Neapolitan?” Forcing their beliefs on Vanilla and telling him it isn’t natural to be “vanilla” (straight) is immensely hypocritical.

These hypocritical, animated ice cream cones are doing exactly what they were mad at the Vanilla ice cream cone for doing in the first place. Mint Chocolate Chip telling Vanilla (who is heterosexual) they should want to be in a Neapolitan, which I will leave to your own imagination what they are insinuating there, is complete hypocrisy. Again, what’s good for the left is a crime to the right. Vanilla can’t force his opinions on them but the other flavors can and it is completely fine. Strawberry is totally fine by the way, once Vanilla crosses to the other side of the argument that is. At the end of the clip, Vanilla joins them all in a big bowl where all the ice creams are licking each other and partying… Let me repeat, this show is rated TV-14. Doesn’t this bother anyone that this is what we are teaching our children?

The performance at the end, My Sex Junk” by Rachel Bloom, is one of the most vile things I’ve ever seen/heard. It is a song explaining how she is on board with having sex with basically anyone and doing anything labeled taboo. Her lyrics are repulsive, some are, “Power bottom or a top off, versatile love may have some butt stuff”, “I’m down for anything, don’t box in my box, give someone new a handy”, “Even you might like it if you sit up on it”, and the list goes on and on. I mean are you kidding me? This is undeniably sickening and almost unbelievable. At the end of her performance, Bill Nye shouts,

“That’s exactly the right message Rachel!”.

I will repeat yet again; this show is rated TV-14. Not cool, Bill Nye, Netflix and Rachel Bloom, not cool. The message they are trying to send out is what exactly? Confusing young, impressionable minds who are trying to discover who they are? Making straight people feel guilty for not wanting to have sexual experiences they don’t desire or feel uncomfortable about? I am straight, why should I feel guilty about it just because I don’t necessarily want what others do. They don’t want to be judged for how they live their lives yet, they’re doing exactly that to others who act differently. The hypocrisy is incredible!

As someone who had never seen the show before and enjoyed Bill Nye as a kid, I was expecting it to be science-related or at least somewhat informative. For someone to claim that they are “saving the world” with a show presents huge expectations to live up to (spoiler: these expectations are never met). His new show is like an alleged science version of Jerry Springer. By NO MEANS will Bill Nye and his new, atrocious antics save the world. In fact, this show is making fun of the issues he is bringing up rather than giving any real information on them. Would anyone be able to take any issue seriously when the “expert” is making a joke and mocking that very important issue? Watching “Bill Nye Saves the World” made me cringe at its poorly produced foolishness and at the thought that there are people who recognize Bill Nye from his old show, that they loved as kids, and listening to his leftist nonsense. At the end of his show he says to his audience, “Now go out there and save the world!” yet, he gives them zero tools on how to do so.

What I would like to say to Bill Nye “The Used to be Science Guy” is that I am tremendously disappointed in what you’ve become. I wish that staying relevant and forcing your leftist views wasn’t more important to you than truly “saving the world” (whatever that even means to you). Although I have right-wing views, I do believe that I am an open-minded individual and am always trying to see and understand the other side’s case. Before watching the show, I knew it leaned more to the left but, I thought that maybe I’d walk away with something I didn’t know before. That there must be some kind of substance, some sort of proof that will help me understand other people’s opinions. This was absolutely not the case. Bill Nye, you’re making a joke of what you’re attempting to prove and it is honestly pathetic and embarrassing to even try to watch. Do us all a favor and try saving the world by canceling your show.

 

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UC Berkeley and the Reality of Free Speech on College Campuses

 

Author: Alex Pearce

Last week the publicly funded University of California, Berkeley displayed yet another staunch display of their opposition against free speech. After cancelling another speaking engagement, this time by Ann Coulter, an experienced political commentator, concern continued to grow over the status of free speech on the campus. The event, hosted by Berkeley’s College Republicans Club and their Young America’s Foundation Chapter, was put on hold due to security concerns.

According to a statement by the University, the security concerns came from a group of masked, aggressive demonstrators called the “Antifa” which is short for Anti-Fascist. As a perpetually violent and oppressive group, the Antifa has caused multiple cancellations of demonstrations around the country, including a family parade in Portland, after promising to incite violence at the events.

What explains the actions of the Antifa? For one, they have shown growing disapproval of anything labeled ‘conservative’ after the election of President Trump. While it is okay to not approve of the President, promising violence in return for free speech is completely unacceptable. The two clubs at Berkeley who were putting on the Coulter event have sued the University for their lack of protection against free speech. From a legal standpoint, failure of UC Berkeley to maintain free speech could result in major issues for them.

As a taxpayer funded institution, it is imperative that UC Berkeley uphold the constitution. Failure to do so is simply unconstitutional and goes against the ideals of this great country. Free speech has continually come under attack at campuses across the United States. From the Berkeley incidents to students being arrested for handing out copies of the Constitution, things have definitely gone downhill. Why is it that free speech has become limited when it is not deemed to be “correct” by the left? If the Antifa is anti-fascist, then why are they attacking a right to individual freedom and expression? As Americans, we are all entitled to our own values and beliefs. Just because you do not agree with someone does not mean you incite violence. That is exactly what a fascist would do!

UC Berkeley, please uphold the rights of those that attend and fund your university. And while you are at it, please remember that you were once the home of free speech protection. It is a sad day when our educational institutions, which are supposed to be home to thought and expression, become a place where violence is allowed to intimidate constitutional rights. It is vital that we remember the values that our country was founded upon and uphold the dignity of all who call America home. To the Berkeley College Republicans and the members of the Young America’s Foundation, we salute your commitment to liberty!

 

Sources:

http://thehill.com/blogs/pundits-blog/civil-rights/330530-see-you-in-court-uc-berkeley-birthplace-of-the-anti-free

https://heatst.com/culture-wars/free-speech-under-attack-in-colleges-as-publications-call-for-censorship/

It’s Time to Audit the Fed

Author: Alex Pearce

Though he originally touted his opposition for Fed Chairwoman, Janet Yellen, in the past weeks, President Trump has voiced his support of extending her role within the Federal Reserve. This comes as quite the surprise because during his campaign, Trump stated more than once that he saw the Chairwoman as being too involved in politics, contributing to the bubble economy, and ruining the financial security for those who have paid into Social Security and other similar retirement programs. The worry here is that the bubble economy, which President Trump called “big, fat, and ugly” during his campaign, is only going to become further inflated if his long promised “Drain the Swamp” policies do not soon come to fruition.

So, what exactly are the problems with the Federal Reserve? To start, they are largely responsible for the bubble economy that is facing the United States. The stock market has become increasingly dependent on Fed data, therefore giving the Fed the power to manipulate the market through the data that they provide. This wouldn’t be a problem if the Fed provided consistent, accurate data, but they seem incapable of doing so. For example, in February the Fed released its first quarter GDP growth estimates of 3.4%, encouraging consumers and investors that the economy is strong. Since then, they have revised those estimates to a mere 0.6%, while adding that the growth might be negative. Despite these revisions, they have not abandoned their “strong-economy” position calling for the possibility of a continued increase in interests rates. This is something that is only done when the economy is perceived as being on the right path. Even though rates have risen once this year, they still remain at artificially low levels, suggesting the economy isn’t so strong. During a recent appearance on CNBC’s Futures Now show, Peter Schiff, the CEO of Euro Pacific Capital and long-time opponent of the Fed, reminded viewers that, “Even Alan Greenspan is forecasting stagflation. And he ought to know because he wrote the playbook that Ben Bernanke and Janet Yellen are following”. Greenspan, a former Fed Chairman, is now abolishing the policies he once called for. This should be a huge red-flag for the Fed, yet their policies remain unchanged. This type of negligence will not help everyday Americans.

In addition to their flawed data and useless policies, the Fed has also been known to play a role in politics, despite the notion that they are supposed to be insulated from such things. Ron Paul, writing on the Fed in a recent article titled, The Federal Reserve Is, and Always Has Been Politicized, wrote the following: “The most notorious example of Fed chairmen tailoring monetary policy to fit the demands of a president is Nixon-era Federal Reserve Chair Arthur Burns.” Burns and Nixon may be an extreme example — after all, no other president was caught on tape joking with the Fed chair about Fed independence, but every president has tried to influence the Fed with varying degrees of success. For instance, Lyndon Johnson summoned the Fed chair to the White House to berate him for not tailoring monetary policy to support Johnson’s guns and butter policies. This should make it no surprise that Trump is not looking to change the leadership of the Fed. He has inherited the bubble economy and is now going to use it for his own advantage, as calling for change would only leave him immune to the repercussions of Auditing the Fed, repercussions that are already bound to happen if things remain unchanged.

In my opinion, one of the most frustrating aspects of this issue is the ignorance presented by the American public. Many Americans are extremely undereducated in the fields of economics and finance. Moreover, only 24% of the American public can correctly identify who Janet Yellen is and more than 25% are unaware that the Fed is in control of monetary policy in the United States. While this means 3/4 of the public knows the Fed’s basic role, this knowledge is extremely limited and allows for the Fed to operate in a manner that is beyond the scope of knowledge for many. If Americans were educated on the issue, maybe they would wake up to the problems that are occurring. Most people spend at least 40 hours per week in the pursuit of money, and a large portion of the average person’s life is centered around things such as bills, savings, retirement, etc. We work so hard for our money and yet this group of individuals (the Federal Reserve) have complete control over where our money goes, what it is worth, and the amount of it in circulation. These are powerful possessions. No sensible individual would agree to their money being devalued, over-printed, or used in the wrong way. So why is the Fed allowed to operate the way it does? The Federal Government works hard to keep a veil of secrecy around the Fed and those who are in charge of it love to give vague, unsure answers when questioned about what they do.

The first step to solving this issue is to educate the general public. In my experience, during my public school days, economics classes were few and far between and I struggle to recall any lesson plans centered around the Fed. If the government is in charge of public school curriculum, why are they more concerned with us reading Shakespeare than learning about the monetary institutions that are at the heart of this country? In addition to improving our education, transparency needs to be part of the operating procedures of the Federal Reserve. Their books need to be opened, their meeting minutes publicized, and their leaders subject to more scrutinized evaluations. Politics need to stay out of the Fed. Sensible principles need to be followed. This country thrived for many years without the Fed and, if it must continue, we must be aware of what is happening behind closed doors. Just as your financial advisor must report to you where your money is going and how it is being spent, the Fed must do the same with OUR money. Let us not forget that without the taxpayers, without our consumption, without the products we produce, the Fed has no reason to exist. They work for US, the American people, not the other way around.

The light at the end of the tunnel lies in the fact that The House Committee on Oversight and Government reform is entertaining a bill to Audit the Fed. This brings reform one step closer to becoming law. Though in the short-run, an audit could reflect poorly on the American economy — as foreign investors would see the move as America not having confidence in its own central bank. The move will shed transparency on the largely secretive institution, hopefully curbing the years of negligence the economy has fallen victim to at the hands of the Fed. If Trump truly wants to “Drain the Swamp,” an audit will hopefully occur during his term as President.

Sources:

https://mises.org/library/federal-reserve-and-always-has-been-politicized

https://schiffgold.com/videos/peter-schiff-drops-golden-truth-bombs-cnbcs-scott-nations/

http://thehill.com/blogs/pundits-blog/economy-budget/329082-unsurprisingly-trump-has-done-180-on-fed-chair-yellen

http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2014/10/06/whos-in-charge-of-the-fed-dont-bank-on-public-knowing-the-answer/

Dropping the MOAB: A Great Decision or a Terrible Mistake?

Author: Michael Bove

On April 13th, 2017, the United States unleashed the GBU-43/B. Nicknamed the Mother of All Bombs (MOAB), the MOAB exploded with a force equivalent to 11 tons of TNT. The weapon was used against a tunnel system operated by ISIS militants.

Naturally, those on the left decried this action. Their primary complaints ranged from concerns that the new bomb would inspire more people to join the terrorist organization to the idea that the bomb was way too expensive. Another far less logical complaint was that “human beings were killed” in the attack. It almost makes me wonder whose side they are on when they are concerned about the well-being of foreign terrorists who want to kill us. Despite all this criticism, let me discuss a few reasons as to why I believe this strike was an incredibly effective attack and why criticism of this strike is unsubstantiated.

The first reason that those on the left criticize the MOAB bombing is that they believe it would only encourage an increase in recruitment for ISIS. I understand that line of reasoning but, it does not apply to this strike. In previous attacks, launched by the U.S. or our allies, there has been collateral damage that has killed civilians. It is in those instances that there was a rise in anti-American sentiments and an increase in recruitment for terrorist organizations. However, it’s been six days since this bombing and there still hasn’t been a single report of any civilian being killed in the blast. What we do know for sure is how many militants were killed. According to the Daily Mail, “[the MOAB] killed as many as 94 ISIS militants in Afghanistan.” Furthermore, Afghan officials confirmed that the operation killed 4 ISIS commanders. We also know that the U.S. military closely coordinated with the Afghan government. This coordination was a good move by our generals because it lends legitimacy to the operation and lessens the notion that the U.S. is simply interfering in another country’s affairs without consulting the native people. ISIS feeds off of the narrative that the U.S. is an imperialist force, but clearly, we were able to effectively work with the Afghan government in fighting this evil force.

Another criticism is that the bomb costs too much. It seems to me that their belief that the bomb was too expensive comes from misguided information. An incorrectly cited figure, used by opponents of dropping the MOAB, states that bomb costs a whopping $314 million. According to Business Insider, that figure has never been confirmed by the U.S. military and the actual cost of one MOAB is $170,000. The $170,000 figure was confirmed by a representative from the United States Air Force. Even if there is still criticism regarding the cost being too high, I’m curious as to how critics would evaluate the effectiveness of a military operation. Let’s do a little simple math: If we divide the total cost of one MOAB bomb by the number of militants killed, we get a cost of around $1,780 to kill one ISIS fighter. However, that simple calculation would not account for eliminating 4 top commanders of ISIS or the structural damage that their tunnel network sustained. Based on those factors, I would say that dropping the MOAB was well worth the cost. Let’s also remember that those bombs were manufactured in 2003 and not during Trump’s first one hundred days in office. They were paid for over a decade ago and to not use the bombs would be a waste.

A third idea, that is very important to mention, is that a bomb doesn’t need to solely damage military installations to be effective. Since the beginning of war, human psychology has been an important aspect to consider when planning military strategy. When the U.S. was in the closing days of World War II, we dropped two atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Days later, the Japanese Empire surrendered. Even after dropping those two bombs, Japan still had a number of industrial areas that were capable of continuing the war effort. So, why did they surrender?  It turns out that physical capability, on its own, does not win a war. Japan surrendered because dropping the atomic bombs broke the will of the people and the government to continue waging the war. I am not saying that dropping one MOAB will completely destroy ISIS, but we know that ISIS fighters are absolute cowards who tend to prey on innocent individuals who cannot defend themselves. This extraordinary display of American weaponry will make some militants think twice about remaining in the terrorist organization.

As a final point, we need to understand that ignoring ISIS in the Middle East is simply not an option. I regularly hear my friends on the left (and even some Libertarians on the right) continuously state that “it’s not our problem”. That sentiment is simply not true. ISIS is a real and substantial threat. Their operatives have killed American citizens on American soil in the past (San Bernardino Shooting, Orlando nightclub shooting, etc.) and they continue to have that goal. An analogy that can be compared to this situation is something important my dad used to tell me when he was a firefighter: when a house catches on fire in a residential neighborhood, even if that house is unsalvageable, the firefighters will arrive and work to extinguish the fire. They do that because they know the heat from the fire can cause the neighboring houses to also catch on fire and burn down. We do not live in a vacuum. We no longer live in a time where oceans and mountains are effective barriers at keeping our enemies out. The technology that exists today enables people to travel across the globe in mere hours and exchange information in nanoseconds. ISIS is a severe threat in the Middle East and if we don’t work tirelessly to defeat them and contain them while they are abroad, they may end up on our shores.

Sources:

http://www.businessinsider.com/how-much-does-moab-bomb-cost-mother-of-all-bombs-2017-4

http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/afghan-official-massive-us-bomb-dead-toll-rise-46813354

MOAB Photo: U.S. Department Of Defense

Trump vs. Taxes: What Americans Should Really Be Frustrated About

Author: Matthew Bird

Donald Trump probably does not pay the federal income tax. So what? Of course this has not been revealed yet, but what other reason does he have to hide his tax returns? He is just one of the many billionaires who choose not to pay the personal income tax that is nothing to blame him for. The tax code sucks. A large percentage of Americans are not paying federal income tax. What can we do about it?

The Tax March Day that is now being organized in over 200 communities that have brought to light something that has been otherwise forgotten since the election. Trump is the first GOP Presidential nominee in 40 years to not release his tax returns. It is not a requirement, but a tradition set by politicians to prove their financial wellness and that they have nothing to hide financially. President Trump claims he can’t release his tax returns because he is being audited. However, there is no law or code that prohibits publishing tax returns under an audit. Trump and his campaign team decided that he would be better off to not release these taxes although, the president has admittedly paid second to nothing. He cheated a system that most politicians admit needs fixing.

The Federal Tax Code is over 4 million words and around 97 thousand pages. It is the most complicated tax system in any modern country. One study had a middle class family’s financial statements brought to 40 different reputable accounting firms, each individual firm had the family paying a different amount in taxes. The fact of the matter is, not even individual experts in the field of taxes understand it in its entirety and there is no possible way to. This tax code grows in size and complexity every single year and no politician’s first concern is total reform of this system. The current federal tax code is way beyond fixing as it is a failed document.

Although I feel like no politician is overly concerned with this matter, I have my own ideas. One is the total elimination of the Federal Income Tax. This tax has outlived its primary purpose to begin with which was to raise funds for the war. World War II to the best of my knowledge is over. Why is this system still in place? It is probably the same reason why the NSA is still in place after the Cold War and why provisions of the US PATRIOT Act are still in place after 9/11. Once you create a monster in government it is ten times more difficult to destroy that monster which is why the Federal Income Tax has long outlived its purpose. It would make much more sense to use a consumption tax. It would make the rich pay more, as they naturally consume more than a lower class citizen. No one would have to take time out of their productive lives to do taxes. I believe the economy would be much more efficient this way.

I think that it is important to look now at Donald Trump. Why should I care if he chooses to pay less taxes? I would much rather pay $10,000 in taxes than $10 billion. I would hope that most Americans would make that decision as well. Society works best when people are greedy. Greedy people create competitive open-market transactions which lowers prices and ultimately benefits consumers like you and I. Why then are liberals getting mad at Trump for not paying/releasing taxes? They do have the right to be angry, but not at a man who is trying to maximize profits. Get mad at the Federal Government!

The Federal Government is the one who allows people, like President Trump, to cheat their taxes. The top income earners are not paying their fair share and the Federal Government is doing absolutely nothing about it. It is finally time that America gets a tax system that works for everyday citizens, makes more than 55% of Americans pay taxes, and makes the rich pay up. When it comes down to it the poor, middle class, and rich should all be contributing their fair share into tax system. This is one of the “elephants in the room” of politics and hopefully Tax Day and the Tax March will finally make Americans reflect on this issue.

Supply, Demand, and Andrew Cuomo

Author: Alex Pearce

As another semester draws to a close and “adulthood” becomes that much closer, I can’t help but wonder what the future holds. Since the earliest days of elementary school, the value of higher education has been engrained in my head as being the “right-move” after high school. During my last weeks of high school, the halls were filled with joyous members of the Class of 2015, touting their newest collegiate apparel to let everyone know where they were headed in the fall. Even those who weren’t the biggest fans of school could not hide their excitement for this new chapter of their lives.

There is no denying that education is not only a personal benefit, but a benefit for society as well. Economically speaking, it can be seen as a positive externality that presents a collective good for those associated with the college graduate. However, we are currently facing a situation in which more and more individuals are encouraged to continue their education. Government aid continues to pour in, loans become easier to get, and subsequently, tuition costs continue to rise. Since the early 1980s, the average family income has risen more than 140%. Compare that to the 500% increase in tuition rates since the same time period and we are now looking at a huge problem.

Why this dramatic rise? First, one could assume that simple rises in inflation and costs of living have attributed to this. However, using CPI Inflation calculator from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average 1980 tuitions cost of $2,500 [in today’s money] should be approximately $6,200. That’s a lot less than the $33,415 I pay annually for my private school education. While private schools tend to be pricier, even the SUNY school down the road from my college still averages anywhere from $9,000-$24,000, depending on where the student is coming from. Therefore, this clearly isn’t a result of inflation.

Since the 1980s, the Federal Government has removed subsidies given to private lending institutions for college loans, shifting the source of money to the always trustworthy United States Government. Moreover, their loan cap has increased from $2,500 annually to a staggering $20,500 per study per year. There is more than $1-trillion dollars in student loan debt. The government promises an education to all, declaring the benefits endless, while more than 7% of the graduating Class of 2015 are out of work. Loans aren’t being paid, graduates aren’t finding work, and tuitions are becoming more costly every semester. New York State’s solution? Free SUNY Tuition! While certain criteria must be met, this program is nothing more than an extension of federal aid, further inflating the student loan bubble. What’s better is that this “free” money comes with stipulations such as staying in New York after graduation or facing the risk of paying all of the money back.

According to supply and demand, the larger the supply of something, the less it is demanded. How can we continue to promise our children that “college is worth it” when a SUNY degree is going to become no different then having a high school degree. Additionally, entrance into schools is going to be based more on your family’s income than the work the student put in during high school. Class seats will be filled by those who the state is paying for rather than those who earned the seat. Tuitions will rise as colleges and universities will begin to rely on state-funded tuitions, causing these costs to grow the same way they did when federal aid became the way to finance college. Don’t forget about the taxpayer – somebody must pay for it! Given New York’s already record high tax rates, this is a recipe for disaster. Degrees will lose value, costs will rise, and those already facing student loan debt will have a larger burden as they will now be funding the education of their fellow New Yorker’s. The word “free” does not exist in basic economics. Maybe Governor Cuomo should take advantage of this free tuition and refresh his Econ 101 skills.
Sources:

Freedom of Speech Includes the Freedom to “Offend” People

Author: Nicole Commisso

This post refers to my most recent piece, “White Privilege: Injustice Does Not Fix Injustice“. This op-ed piece created such unexpected controversy on my college campus, in the towns surrounding my college, and on social media. With this controversy, one might say I have turned into “Public Enemy #1”. I have consistently said that I do not mind being disliked by my peers, and ones who have a differing opinion, as long as I spark a conversation and I get to stand up for what I believe is right, or not right. However, I want to make something very clear about my argument – I never claimed that racism does not exist. Furthermore, if you disagree with my views, I have every right to freedom of speech and freedom of the press (as you have every right to disagree with me) according to the First Amendment of the Constitution:

U.S. Constitution – First Amendment: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

First, I never said in my article that racism does not exist. I believe and I know that there are racist people in our society and that we should combat this racism together not by allowing ourselves to be divided by color. I do not however, believe that the way to fix racism is to try to make up for slavery, a terrible period that the left loves to use as a reason to push their white privilege propaganda. This is a false notion to punish white people of our generation for just that – being white. I would also like to add that, and by no means am I lessening the hardships they went through as a people, blacks were not the only ones that were slaves. All races and civilizations have practiced this wrongful act of slavery including the Chinese, Indians, Arabs, Africans, Irish, Americans, etc. The history of slavery spans nearly every culture, nationality, and religion, it is not just limited to African-Americans, and slavery is still prominent today across the globe. Why don’t we ever speak about this? Why aren’t we outraged about human beings currently being bought and sold as slaves. Instead of trying to battle the real issues going on now, we sit here worrying about blaming young students that are categorized as white to try to make up for horrific instances we have no control over now.

Secondly, how can these individuals sit there and say that the term “white privilege” does not diminish a white person’s accomplishments if it states that what they have achieved was prominently easier for them because of their skin color? I need to know how that does not deplete their hard work? What I did say was that white privilege is reverse-racism, which yes, it is an actual term for those who think I made it up. By expressing that someone is privileged or judging that their life is simpler just due to their skin color is racist by definition. Those who say that reverse-racism “isn’t a thing” argue that it is impossible for individuals to be racist towards white people. News flash – they can be. I have been told I cannot and will never understand white privilege because of my “whiteness”. Isn’t it racist that I can’t understand something solely based on my skin color (even though it is a term targeted towards my race)? Oh wait, no it isn’t racist according to the left – since I am categorized as white and “superior”, I can’t possibly be stereotyped or prejudiced against. This is complete hypocrisy that I refuse to accept or even entertain. What I have been told is that the way to tackle white privilege is to accept that I have it. I don’t quite understand what this does for this so-called issue. I believe by accepting white privilege, I would be apologizing for the color of my skin which is something I have no control over and would never apologize for. I quote Martin Luther King Jr. who once said:

“I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.” – Martin Luther King Jr.

I strongly believe that implementing the term white privilege delays this day that Martin Luther King Jr. hoped and persevered for.

My op-ed piece on white privilege created not only controversy, but a freedom of speech issue. Many people said I shouldn’t have been able to publish my article in the student newspaper due to my opinion. Last time I checked this is America, where every American has the right to freedom of speech, the right that I demonstrated through my most recent piece on white privilege. I refuse to let society, and most importantly the administration, staff, and students at Siena College, force-feed me something that I don’t think is right. By writing my op-ed piece, which no one anticipated would receive the attention it did around campus, I expressed my view on a controversial topic. Even though I did get backlash from my piece, I also received an immense amount of support and appreciation for speaking on behalf of the silent majority whose views coincide with mine.  I do not feel as though I did anything wrong by sharing my opinion and if you disagree with my views, that sparks an important discussion. Having a different opinion than someone else is also another incredible right we have as Americans. If you break and crumble due to someone else’s opinion, how are you ever going to handle the real world? Take a moment and think of how boring this world would be if everyone agreed on everything. I am an American. I am a full believer and exerciser of the Constitution. I support freedom of speech. I support freedom of the press. I have a strong voice and I intend to use it.