More Serious Thoughts On Brock Turner

More Serious Thoughts On Brock Turner

Consuming too much alcohol doesn’t give anyone the right to sexually assault another person.
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Late this afternoon I was scrolling on my facebook feed and came across a video from CNN. The video featured Ashleigh Banfield reading the letter that the Stanford rape case victim wrote addressing her attacker.

I clicked on the video because rape and sexual assault is an important issue that I feel our society glazes over and I wanted to know what the rape victim had to say to her attacker. I want to start by applauding this young woman for standing up for rape victims everywhere and creating more awareness on an issue that shouldn't be taken lightly.

Being a college student myself, I understand the consequences of drinking; however, it is a part of the college partying culture no matter what anybody says. No, drinking doesn’t have to be a part of your own personal college experience, but it is going to be present throughout your four years of college. Saying that the rapist and the victim were both too drunk to really realize what was happening is not a valid excuse to rape someone and get away with it. Consuming too much alcohol doesn’t give anyone the right to sexually assault another person. As a small young woman of 5 feet, weighing about 100 pounds, I know that if I consume too much alcohol I become an easy target for sexual assault. However, that doesn’t mean that I shouldn’t be able to go out and have fun without worrying about being raped. No matter how revealing my outfit is that doesn’t mean I was “asking for it.” I’m a liberated young woman who should be able to wear whatever I want without getting slut-shamed. I should be able to drink at a party without someone raping me and then saying that because I was so intoxicated that speaks to a level of promiscuity and that I was again “asking for it.”

When Banfield started to read the letter my whole body seemed to cringe as she read the victims words. My ears didn’t want to listen to the gruesome details of the attack that she described. My eyes wanted to close as if to shut off my mind from imagining the scene that occurred behind that dumpster. I cannot begin to fathom why this man is being given such a lenient sentence after hearing the details about the case described by the victim. I was even more shocked to hear the pathetic reasons that this man and his lawyer had come up with to excuse his horrible and unforgivable actions. It doesn’t matter how stressed out you are, how drunk you are, or how clean your criminal record is … there is absolutely no excuse to sexually assault and rape another person (male or female). This issue should not be taken lightly. This man should’ve been given the sentence that he deserved. Rape is never okay and is never a justifiable action. The fact this man said that the victim liked it and was asking for it just shows that he does not understand the seriousness of the crime that he committed. He invaded a woman’s personal space, abused her body for his own personal gain and now he is getting a slap on the wrist for it.

I want to believe that there are always going to be heroes, like the two cyclists from the victims story, but there won’t always be someone there to save you. Sometimes the only thing that saves a rape victim is knowing that justice is being served for what happened to them. However in this case justice hasn’t been served and that is not only frustrating, but it is extremely depressing to know that this serious issue is being taken so lightly.

Cover Image Credit: NBC News

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It's Time To Thank Your First Roommate

Not the horror story kind of roommate, but the one that was truly awesome.
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Nostalgic feelings have recently caused me to reflect back on my freshman year of college. No other year of my life has been filled with more ups and downs, and highs and lows, than freshman year. Throughout all of the madness, one factor remained constant: my roommate. It is time to thank her for everything. These are only a few of the many reasons to do so, and this goes for roommates everywhere.

You have been through all the college "firsts" together.

If you think about it, your roommate was there through all of your first college experiences. The first day of orientation, wishing you luck on the first days of classes, the first night out, etc. That is something that can never be changed. You will always look back and think, "I remember my first day of college with ____."

You were even each other's first real college friend.

You were even each other's first real college friend.

Months before move-in day, you were already planning out what freshman year would be like. Whether you previously knew each other, met on Facebook, or arranged to meet in person before making any decisions, you made your first real college friend during that process.

SEE ALSO: 18 Signs You're A Little Too Comfortable With Your Best Friends

The transition from high school to college is not easy, but somehow you made it out on the other side.

It is no secret that transitioning from high school to college is difficult. No matter how excited you were to get away from home, reality hit at some point. Although some people are better at adjusting than others, at the times when you were not, your roommate was there to listen. You helped each other out, and made it through together.

Late night talks were never more real.

Remember the first week when we stayed up talking until 2:00 a.m. every night? Late night talks will never be more real than they were freshman year. There was so much to plan for, figure out, and hope for. Your roommate talked, listened, laughed, and cried right there with you until one of you stopped responding because sleep took over.

You saw each other at your absolute lowest.

It was difficult being away from home. It hurt watching relationships end and losing touch with your hometown friends. It was stressful trying to get in the swing of college level classes. Despite all of the above, your roommate saw, listened, and strengthened you.

...but you also saw each other during your highest highs.

After seeing each other during the lows, seeing each other during the highs was such a great feeling. Getting involved on campus, making new friends, and succeeding in classes are only a few of the many ways you have watched each other grow.

There was so much time to bond before the stresses of college would later take over.

Freshman year was not "easy," but looking back on it, it was more manageable than you thought at the time. College only gets busier the more the years go on, which means less free time. Freshman year you went to lunch, dinner, the gym, class, events, and everything else possible together. You had the chance to be each other's go-to before it got tough.

No matter what, you always bounced back to being inseparable.

Phases of not talking or seeing each other because of business and stress would come and go. Even though you physically grew apart, you did not grow apart as friends. When one of you was in a funk, as soon as it was over, you bounced right back. You and your freshman roommate were inseparable.

The "remember that one time, freshman year..." stories never end.

Looking back on freshman year together is one of my favorite times. There are so many stories you have made, which at the time seemed so small, that bring the biggest laughs today. You will always have those stories to share together.

SEE ALSO: 15 Things You Say To Your Roommates Before Going Out

The unspoken rule that no matter how far apart you grow, you are always there for each other.

It is sad to look back and realize everything that has changed since your freshman year days. You started college with a clean slate, and all you really had was each other. Even though you went separate ways, there is an unspoken rule that you are still always there for each other.

Your old dorm room is now filled with two freshmen trying to make it through their first year. They will never know all the memories that you made in that room, and how it used to be your home. You can only hope that they will have the relationship you had together to reflect on in the years to come.


Cover Image Credit: Katie Ward

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What I Learned From The CMA Journalism Convention

After attending the College Media Association's annual convention, I have a clear dream and the motivation to chase it.

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I've been lucky enough to visit New York City three times in my life, and each trip has left me more in love with the city than the last. The first trip was for less than 24 hours on black friday. I took the train with my grandparents and cousins from New Jersey to Penn Station and spent one glorious day hitting the pavement, topping it all off with attending the Rockettes Christmas show at Radio City Music hall.

The second time was as a graduation present during my senior year of high school. I went with my mom for a few days, and it was magical. Since then, I had yearned to go back to the Big Apple and once again feel the rush of energy that the city gives you every time you immerse yourself in it.

After my second trip, I didn't know when I would get to return, but this past month, I got a golden opportunity to go back to my favorite city in the world. I was invited to attend the College Media Association's annual spring convention for student journalists, from March 6-10. I went along with five other students from my college newspaper, and I was absolutely thrilled.

It was truly surreal to be back. Even though it had been two years since my last trip, it felt like I had never even left. Ironically, the convention was held at the same hotel I stayed at the last time, so I genuinely felt right at home. A lot of my time was spent working, where I got to learn about journalism from experts in the business. All of the sessions I attended were interesting and incredibly relevant to my career, and the speakers were passionate and helpful with their advice.

The highlight of the convention for me was getting to go to the Good Morning America studios to see a taping of Strahan and Sara. Michael Strahan and Sara Haines were so nice and the overall energy of the show was upbeat, positive and fun. I enjoyed every second of my experience there, and I will always cherish the photos I got with the two hosts.

Outside of work, I managed to score tickets to the Late Show with Stephen Colbert, and so my roommate and I spent one glorious evening at the Ed Sullivan theatre. It was so exhilarating and fun, and I even got to go onstage while the musical guest, Mumford and Sons, was performing.

After the convention, I walked away with a clearer sense of what my career goals were as a journalist. Throughout my experience both in the sessions and in the television studios, I realized that broadcast journalism was my passion and what I wanted to pursue. Journalism is a field that is ever-changing as technology grows and evolves, so it can feel overwhelming to find your place as a reporter. There's the traditional print route, broadcast, or all of the new opportunities that the digital world is offering, not to mention the in-depth investigative reporting that transcends all mediums. But for me, the feeling of adrenaline when I was in the audience of the tv shows was indescribable, and it was something that made me feel more inspired than ever.

I know it is a lofty goal to be a news anchor on TV, and I know it is a goal that is shared by many others. But thanks to the convention and the bright lights of New York City, I know that it is a goal I want to chase with all my might. I can't wait to see what the future holds, and I am counting down the days until I can return to the Big Apple again.

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