Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Dead at 87

photo: Lindsey Dedario/Reuters

By Nic Gelyon

Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the most senior liberal justice on the United States Supreme Court, died Friday night of complications from metastatic cancer of the pancreas, according to a statement from the Supreme Court.  

Ginsburg was a cancer survivor. She was treated in 1999 for colorectal cancer, and in 2009 for stage I pancreatic cancer. In 2018, she underwent surgery to remove part of her left lung. 

She continued to work, however, through her numerous bouts with the disease. Democrats had been calling for her retirement during the Barack Obama administration, so that the president could appoint a younger liberal justice. 

But Ginsburg stood firm.

She did not miss a day of argument in more than 27 years serving on the nation’s highest court, having been confirmed by the Senate on August 3, 1993.  

Ginsburg graduated from Cornell University in 1954. She went on to study at both Harvard and Columbia, the latter of which she finished tied for first in her class. 

Throughout this time, the former Ms. Bader had gotten married to Martin Ginsburg, and had a daughter, Jane, born in July 1955.

She was caring for Martin, who was diagnosed with testicular cancer around the same time. But she never shrank in the face of adversity; she graduated from Harvard Law School and finished tied for first in her class at Columbia Law School.

She served on both schools’ law reviews. 

Ginsburg not only had the wherewithal to work in law, but the work ethic, as well. But she still found it difficult to attain work in the field. 

After her son, James, was born in 1965, Ginsburg was identified not only as a woman, but as a mother of two. She did, however, eventually settle at Rutgers Law School in 1963 as an assistant professor. 

Ginsburg used her growing stature to fight for what she cared about. She, undeniably, was no political football. 

She fought for women’s equality with the American Civil Liberties Union, attacking issues such as special benefits for men, voluntary jury duty for women, and women needing more Social Security money than men. 

She won her cases with an astonishing rate of success: Ginsburg won five of her six cases in front of the Supreme Court. 

In 1980, she was appointed to one of the most prestigious circuit courts in the country, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in Washington, D.C., where she served for 13 years.  

The rest is history.  

Today, Ginsburg has become the public face of the U.S. Supreme Court. She’s made headlines for her comments on President Donald Trump and former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick. She’s used strong language in calling out her colleagues during dissents.

Further publicizing her feisty reputation has been comedian Kate McKinnon’s portrayal of the justice on the sketch comedy show “Saturday Night Live.” A video of McKinnon’s impression, neckpiece and all, has upwards of 1.8 million views on YouTube.

The video was an ‘editorial’ from McKinnon’s Ginsburg on those calls for her retirement. 

Ginsburg braved her way through twenty-one years of cancer to voice her position on issues such as voting rights, women’s pay, and – in a strongly worded dissenting opinion – the Florida presidential election controversy. 

Her fight is one every human should try and emulate. If every person put into their lives what the late Justice Ginsburg put into hers, society would be able to achieve things we’ve never even dreamed of.

We should appreciate what Justice Ginsburg gave to the United States and in return take from her the strength with which she put the country on her back.

Appropriateness is subjective under First Amendment 

[Photo courtesy of Chicago-Sun Times]

By Marshall Myers

Divisive, polarizing and controversial are all words used to describe the current state of social issues in our country. I know what you’re thinking, “Oh no, not another Donald Trump article! We can’t keep up as it is.”

However, this piece is not about our president’s voracious tweeting habits, or the always present dramas that seem to follow him everywhere.  Rather, where does our First Amendment right to free speech end, and can someone take this expression too far?

But first, a look into some recent events.  About three weeks ago, a well-known and liked ESPN host, Jemele Hill, took to twitter to voice her opinions on our current president. Using terms like “white supremacist,” “ignorant,” and “bigot,” her tweets gained notoriety very quickly.

Continue reading “Appropriateness is subjective under First Amendment “

Bonaventure community takes stand against DACA decision

By Kelly Haberstroh

“The future of hundreds of thousands of individuals now rests on Congress. Now more important than before to make our voices heard in unison and our constant commitment to protect our community,” Haylei John, Student Government Association executive board president said.

On Sept. 12, a group of students stood outside Plassmann Hall to protest President Trump’s decision to rescind DACA, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.

John started off the protest to acknowledge the community coming together to show our unity and response to the decision to rescind DACA.

She assured students who themselves or their families may be affected by the DACA decision that we as a university stand with them to make a call for immigration reform that reflects a recognition and respect of human dignity. Change must be made to ensure to view individuals as people, not as numbers, outsiders, or burdens. Continue reading “Bonaventure community takes stand against DACA decision”

St. Bonaventure students weigh in on Trump

By Caitlyn Morral @caiterthot

The 2016 presidential election cycle is in full swing and Americans are weighing in about who they want to become our nation’s next leader.  So far, the biggest surprise is celebrity and billionaire Donald Trump who seems to be capturing most of the attention.

Among students at St. Bonaventure University, reactions to Trump’s candidacy are mixed.

“I feel like Donald Trump would make on of the worst presidents that we’ve ever had, and that he would destroy this country,” said Mark Ventrice, a sophomore journalism and mass communication major.

Other students are not quite sure what to make of Trump’s run for the White House.

“I have mixed feelings about Donald Trump,” said freshman biology major Shiki Dixit. “I would definitely vote for Kanye West if he were to run, or any other hip-hop artist or rapper who is able to fix the deficit.”

Trump isn’t the first celebrity to have political aspirations. In the past, celebrities like Wyclef Jean, Stephen Colbert and Roseanna Barr have made serious – and not so serious – and not so serious – runs at political office. It is also important to remember that our 40th president, Ronald Reagan, made a name for himself as an actor before he entered the political arena.

kanye for prez
Kanye West announces that he will run for president in 2020 at the Video Music Awards. (image courtesy of nydailynews.com)

On Aug. 30, West announced at this year’s Video Music Awards that he intends to run for president in 2020. Recently, a handful of St. Bonaventure students considered people in the media today, and assessed their chances in future elections.

“If I had to pick a celebrity, I would pick Jon Stewart,” said freshman biology major Joseph Giglio. “He’s someone who’s already heavily involved in politics as it is.”

“Honestly, I would have voted for Waka Flocka when he was trying to run, because I thought that he was the best option as a candidate,” said sophomore and strategic communications major Sydni Kreitzburg. “In the future, I wonder if Nicki Minaj would run because she’s such a powerful woman figure. At the same time, I feel like she would only run as a joke.”

Only time will tell which celebrities will actually launch presidential campaigns. But for now, we’ll have to wait and see if Trump can ride his fame into the Oval Office.

Trump thrives in debut appearance on Colbert’s late show

By Sean Lynch @the_other_lynch

Donald Trump was sharp in  his first appearance Tuesday night on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.” The GOP leader came into the interview fresh from his first interview on “The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon.” Colbert joked around with Trump but also had some serious questions to ask the candidates as well. Colbert has a strong political background because of his years hosting the “Colbert Report,” so he is able to challenge the candidates with questions about their policies.

Trump started out calm, which is quite contrary to how he has performed in the Republican debates. He received a standing ovation from a majority of the crowd and looked quite happy to be there. He also seemed to have won over Colbert, who became more subtle with his insults.

Colbert poked fun at Trump’s presidential run when he said  “Who knows, one day I may be able to tell my grandkids I interviewed the last president of the United States.”

There was a wide variety of topics that Trump talked about including: paying for his own campaign out of pocket, management of large debts to countries like China and the Iran Deal. He managed each topic quickly and concisely and was sharp on explaining his policies.

A focal point of the interview turned to immigration and the wall that Trump talked about build if elected. At one point, Colbert was imitating the President of Mexico. Trump played around with that sketch for some time but put his focus into his policies rather than on the humor.

Trump said to Colbert’s character “We are going to build a wall, you are going to pay for the wall; we have been abused for a long time at the border.”

Even after all the jeers about  him, Trump stayed composed throughout the interview. Colbert held back during the interview, having made most of his jokes without Trump present.

One big problem that came with Trump’s interview was that he would not answer the question about his previous remarks about Barack Obama not being born in the United States. This was a question that Trump had been trying to dodge for a long time because of his past vocal support of claims that Obama was not born in the United States.

Trump is not the first presidential candidate to find himself on Colbert’s “Late Show”. Candidates have come from both the Democratic and Republican parties.  Florida Governor Jeb Bush had a rough time on the show, getting mocked by Colbert and looked more uncomfortable than some of the other candidates that have been on.

Other candidates seemed to have more fun on the show like Texas Senator Ted Cruz and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders. All were ready for most questions brought up to them, and they had fun with Colbert’s different comedic jabs.

Trump has shown through his two late-night TV appearances that he can take most of the criticism that he has received. It is concerning to see that Trump would dodge a question from his past, but at the same time it was interesting to see how Colbert held back on Trump. Colbert seemed to step away from insulting Trump while he was in the room. While some viewers were looking for a battle between Trump in Colbert, they ended up with a friendly chat.