Category: Opinions

Safety conversations should not require mass casualties

Time to reexamine gun ownership   Las Vegas’ Mandalay Bay shooting on Oct. 1, 2017 was the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history, defeating Orlando’s nightclub shooting as the death toll rises over 50. Breaking the national record twice in two years is a grim achievement for the country to say the least, and it has yet again instigated dialogue on the topic of gun control. The increase of mass shootings in the country has made the political battle regarding gun control almost an irritating default, but incidents such as the Mandalay Bay shooting emphasize why there should be continued conversation until safety through gun control is reached. It should not take fatalities for that conversation of gun safety to really begin. When such tragedies happen in other countries, or even far enough across the same country, those against gun control stick to their values because it seems impersonal and unreal. But when a shooting happens close to home, people alter their views, especially when they were at the scene or know any of the victims. One performer at the concert whose views were changed due to the shooting, Caleb Keeter, guitarist of the Josh Abbott Band, posted a note on his Twitter account declaring his change of view. He wrote, “We need gun control RIGHT. NOW. My biggest regret is that I stubbornly didn’t realize it until...

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Becoming climate conscious: reducing your carbon footprint

Category 5 hurricanes, including Irma and Maria, made landfall six times in 2017, more than ever since recording began in 1851, according to Brenden Moses, a researcher at the National Hurricane Center. Millions of US citizens in Puerto Rico are without power and clean water as they face overwhelmed hospitals, extensive flooding, and widespread food shortages. The occurrence of storms like Hurricanes Maria, Irma and Harvey cannot be specifically attributed to climate change, the damage was worsened by factors that are attributable to human-influenced climate change, namely rising sea-levels,  according to Michael E Mann professor and director of the Penn State Earth System Science Center. Meanwhile, research published by the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change states that “an increase in the numbers of the most intense tropical cyclones” and greater volume of rainfall are connected to warmer ocean temperatures. Noelia Rosario Marrero, who is studying English at UVU as part of an exchange program from her university in Puerto Rico, said she has still not had any contact with her parents in Puerto Rico. Marrero said she is collecting money to donate to organizations on the ground. “The whole country does not have electricity,” said Marrero. “Only 25 percent have access to fresh water. The situation is very terrible; it’s really sad. I just want to do something to help.” While donations are very much needed, and...

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