20 Alt-Rock Songs For Your 2016 Election Playlist

20 Alt-Rock Songs For Your 2016 Election Playlist

These catchy tunes perfectly sum up the election so far.
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As election day creeps closer and closer, we all need a break from the constant drama of domestic politics. At least, I know I do. However, in keeping with the seasonal theme of politics, I've put together an election time playlist that goes perfectly with your whole "I wish I lived in Canada right now" vibe. So sit back, relax, and let the sweet sounds of alt-rock drown out the deepening sense of panic in your soul. Enjoy!

1. "It's the End of the World as We Know It" by R.E.M.

Ah, yes, it's the quintessential addition to any doomsday playlist. This catchy '80s tune will surely distract you from the eminent disaster we're speeding toward, at least for a little while.

2. "Ain't No Rest for the Wicked" by Cage the Elephant

Sure enough, these candidates just won't stop, no matter how much we may want them to. Neither age, nor medical diagnoses can keep these two down. This could be due to the rigorous campaign schedule, or it could be that any hint of rest will surely be interpreted as weakness. Either way, Hillary and Donald are in it for the long haul. Sadly.

3. "Bigmouth Strikes Again" by The Smiths

If you've been following along with the wonderful world of American politics, then you'll have no doubts as to whom this is referring to. Donald Trump is seemingly incapable of censoring his speech, which has lead to numerous public scandals. The most notable one being the recent "Hot Mic" bus incident, where Mr. Trump described how he would sexually assault women. Believe me, this old rock tune is much easier to listen to than a misogynistic, hate-filled rant.

4. "Good Ol' Fashion Nightmare" by Matt and Kim

Do you ever think that maybe this entire election season has been part of some extremely elaborate lucid dream? Unfortunately, this is one nightmare that you can't wake up from, no matter how hard you try.

5. "Hell" by Tegan and Sara

Yeah... I think this one speaks for itself.

6. "I Will Buy You a New Life" by Everclear

It's no secret that neither presidential candidate is wanting for money. The difference is that one has spent years building her career as a politician, while the other has centered his entire reputation around the fact that he lives in a lavish state of immense wealth. His legal dealings make it obvious that he handles many problems by simply throwing money at them and hoping for the best. However, allegations of bankruptcy may throw a wrench in his plan to buy the American people a "new life."

7. "I'm Not Over" by Carolina Liar

This one's an shout-out to the current POTUS, President Barack Obama. I'm so sorry I didn't appreciate you fully for the last eight years. I realize now just how much this country needs a leader like you. Please don't go, Sir. "I'm not over you just yet."

8. "Ignorance" by Paramore

Ignorance will always have a place among people who are unqualified for a job to which they are applying. Mr. Trump has spent his entire life in business, and has even garnered support by proudly declaring that he is not a politician. However, sometimes there are jobs that politicians are just best suited for, like President of the United States, for instance. In the interest of saving space, I won't even go into his ignorance of women, race, and sexuality. That could merit an entire book.

9. "Liar (It Takes One to Know One)" by Taking Back Sunday

What? These songs aren't all about Trump? Nope, sorry. While Mr. Trump does tend to lie whenever his mouth is open, I chose this one with Hills in mind. Perhaps the most memorable instance of lying throughout this campaign came when Hillary was caught using a private internet server. While she has owned up to her mistakes, it took a while to get there.

10. "Madness" by Muse

This one mainly refers to the election season as a whole, rather than any one person (no matter how apt that association may be). These past couple of years have sure been one weird and wild ride. However, Muse is here to ease your troubles with some smooth synth tunes.

11. "Megalomaniac" by Incubus

Attempting to obtain the highest office in the US is bound to be accompanied by at least some lust for power. However, Trump seems to be the true embodiment of this. His despotic rhetoric has even gained him support from Vladimir Putin himself. That's some high praise for anyone who dreams of tyranny.

12. "Regret" by New Order

How did we get here? Was this really the best America had to offer? We had so many chances to vote for different candidates, and now it appears that we have squandered them. With decreasing GOP support for Trump, it certainly seems like at least a few high-ranking Republicans regret their decision.

13. "Rich Kid Blues" by The Raconteurs

Don't you just hate it when all you have to get your business started is a small loan of $1 million? So sad. How is anyone able to survive on such scraps as this? Whether or not you sympathize with the plight of a humble millionaire just trying to make a new start in politics, this folksy alt song is perfect for drowning your sorrows.

14. "Rules Don't Stop" by We Are Scientists

Neither candidate in this election is averse to breaking a few laws. From Hillary's email fiasco to Trump's multiple lawsuits, these two obviously have some experience with circumventing the rules, whether through outright lying or by shelling out a few thousand dollars.

15. "The Sound of Settling" by Death Cab for Cutie

While this one may not be written specifically for the election, like the new Death Cab jam, "Million Dollar Loan," it sums up a sentiment that really hits home, especially for millennials like myself. If you're like me, you were probably feeling the Bern pretty strongly. However, after realizing that Hillary is our only hope for avoiding a Trump presidency, we've had no choice but to head for the Hills. Hey, she's better than nothing.

16. "Typical" by Mutemath

As much as I hate to say it, this really is what politics has come to. A lifelong politician legitimately struggling to outpace a pop culture icon. This is the new normal. Besides, although people may think that liking neither candidate is some new phenomenon, this happens every four years. Every time the election rolls around, people become disenchanted by the caliber of politicians we've produced. It's not a new sensation, sadly. It's "typical."

17. "Would You Fight for My Love?" by Jack White

Some people will say or do anything they can to get approval, especially politicians looking for your vote. Although it's certainly true that personal values can be very polarizing when candidates are concerned, that doesn't mean that either is going down without a fight. The past few months have truly shown that these two are willing to do what ever it takes to get the vote.

18. "Promises, Promises" by Incubus

Speaking of doing whatever it takes to get the vote, how about empty promises? Both candidates seem to be full of them. Is Mexico really going to pay for a racist symbol of oppression (aka, the wall)? Is anyone really going to solve the problems with our healthcare system? We can probably guess the answers to both of these questions right now, but that won't stop the candidates from saying otherwise.

19. "You've Got to Hide Your Love Away" by The Beatles

Come on, you didn't really think I'd get through 20 alt-rock songs without a shout-out to the most famous rock band of all time, did you? Here, The Beatles sum up what quite a few voters might be feeling right about now. Namely, the fact that they are afraid to say whom they're voting for. Really, there's no right answer to the question "Who are you voting for?" anyway. You're guaranteed to upset someone either way. The Beatles were definitely on to something here.

20. "You Just Can't Win" by Them

This '60s rock tune perfectly describes how many Americans feel this election season. It seems like many people don't want to vote for Trump or Hillary; yet, they may also feel like voting for a third party candidate is akin to not voting at all. No matter what the outcome, there's only going to be one real winner this year, and it's not the American people.

Cover Image Credit: Patrick Semanski

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'Baby, It's Cold Outside' Is NOT About Date Rape, It's A Fight Against Social Norms Of The 1940s

The popular Christmas song shouldn't be considered inappropriate.

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The classic Christmas song "Baby, It's Cold Outside" has recently come under attack. There has been controversy over the song being deemed as inappropriate since it has been suggested that it promotes date rape. Others believe that the song is another common example of our culture's promotion of rape. You may be wondering, where did they get that idea from?

The controversy has led to one radio station, WDOK, taking the song off the air and banning it from their station. Some people believe that this song goes against the #MeToo movement since it promotes rape. However, people are not considering the fact that this traditional Christmas song was made in the 1940s.

People are viewing the song from a modern-day cultural perspective rather than from the perspective of the 1940s. "Baby, It's Cold Outside" was written in 1944. Many people have viewed the song from the perspective of our cultural and social norms. People believe that the song promotes date rape because of lyrics that suggest that the male singing is trying to stop the female singer from leaving, and the female singer is constantly singing about trying to escape with verses like "I really can't stay" or "I've got to go home."

When you first view the song from the perspective of today's culture, you may jump to the conclusion that the song is part of the date rape culture. And it's very easy to jump to this conclusion, especially when you are viewing only one line from the song. We're used to women being given more freedom. In our society, women can have jobs, marry and be independent. However, what everyone seems to forget is that women did not always have this freedom.

In 1944, one of the social norms was that women had curfews and were not allowed to be in the same house as a man at a later time. It was considered a scandal if a single woman so much as stayed at another man's house, let alone be in the same room together. It's mind-blowing, right? You can imagine that this song was probably considered very provocative for the time period.

"Baby, It's Cold Outside" is not a song that encourages date rape, but is actually challenging the social norms of society during the time period. When you listen to the song, you notice that at one part of the song, the female states, "At least I can say that I tried," which suggests that she really doesn't want to leave. In fact, most of the song, she is going back and forth the whole time about leaving stating, "I ought to say no…well maybe just a half a drink more," and other phrases.

She doesn't want to leave but doesn't really have a choice due to fear of causing a scandal, which would have consequences with how others will treat her. It was not like today's society where nobody cares how late someone stays at another man's house. Nowadays, we could care less if we heard that our single neighbor stayed over a single man's house after 7. We especially don't try to look through our curtain to check on our neighbor. Well, maybe some of us do. But back then, people did care about where women were and what they were doing.

The female singer also says in the lyrics, "The neighbors might think," and, "There's bound to be talk tomorrow," meaning she's scared of how others might perceive her for staying with him. She even says, "My sister will be suspicious," and, "My brother will be there at the door," again stating that she's worried that her family will find out and she will face repercussions for her actions. Yes, she is a grown woman, but that doesn't mean that she won't be treated negatively by others for going against the social norms of the time period.

Then why did the male singer keep pressuring her in the song? This is again because the song is more about challenging the social norms of the time period. Both the female and male singers in the song are trying to find excuses to stay and not leave.

On top of that, when you watch the video of the scene in which the song was originally viewed, you notice that the genders suddenly switch for another two characters, and now it's a female singer singing the male singer's part and vice versa. You also notice that the whole time, both characters are attracted to one another and trying to find a way to stay over longer.

Yes, I know you're thinking it doesn't matter about the genders. But, the song is again consensual for both couples. The woman, in the beginning, wants to stay but knows what will await if she doesn't leave. The male singer meanwhile is trying to convince her to forget about the rules for the time period and break them.

In addition, the complaint regarding the lyric "What's in this drink?" is misguided. What a lot of people don't understand is that back in 1944, this was a common saying. If you look at the lyrics of the song, you notice that the woman who is singing is trying to blame the alcoholic drink for causing her to want to stay longer instead of leaving early. It has nothing to do with her supposed fear that he may have tried to give her too much to drink in order to date rape her. Rather, she is trying to find something to blame for her wanting to commit a scandal.

As you can see, when you view the song from the cultural perspective of the 1940s, you realize that the song could be said to fight against the social norms of that decade. It is a song that challenges the social constrictions against women during the time period. You could even say that it's an example of women's rights, if you wanted to really start an argument.

Yes, I will admit that there were movies and songs made back in the time period that were part of the culture of date rape. However, this song is not the case. It has a historical context that cannot be viewed from today's perspective.

The #MeToo movement is an important movement that has led to so many changes in our society today. However, this is not the right song to use as an example of the date rape culture.

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Board Games Are More Important Than You Think They Are

They've become a defining part of my family.

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Remember when you were a kid and you'd have a family game night? Or your friends would come over and you'd open the game cabinet and play at least three different games together?

Maybe it's just me, but those are some of my best memories from my childhood. My family loves games, board games, and electronic games.

Of course, as I got older, gaming consoles like PlayStation and Wii became more and more popular. That meant that the game cabinet was opened less and less, collecting dust.

Thankfully, I live in New Jersey near the shore and Hurricane Sandy left my family with no power for five days. Sure, it was scary not having power and walking around my neighborhood seeing fallen trees or roof shingles, but we were inland enough to not have had any flood water damage.

No power also meant no PlayStation or Wii games. The gaming cabinet was opened again, this time with vigor. Now, four years later, and I still think about sitting in the dark with a flashlight playing Scrabble with my family.

That was also the week I learned how to play Yahtzee and dominated my dad in every game. My sister constantly was looking for someone to play her to Battleship. We exhausted Rummikub.

The game was already a family favorite, and that's including extended family. Family barbeques had been ending with late night games of Rummikub for at least a year by the time Sandy hit.

We were ready to strategize and crunch numbers, but after day three, we never wanted to a number ever again.

This semester, there's been a surge of board game love again in my family. My sister bought Jenga, which we are currently trying to exhaust ourselves with. My favorite board game also had a comeback: Life.

I loved this game so much that I had the SpongeBob version as a kid. I would play it with my best friend, just the two of us, playing game after game of Bikini Bottom themed Life. Now, I have a car full of "kids" that I've started to make pets in my head. I can handle having five pretend dogs, but not five pretend kids.

I don't know what it is about board games, but my family has always had an affinity for them. We've gone through our cycles of playing video games and card games, but we always come back to the classics. Maybe it's more a defining part of my family than I originally thought.

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