It’s been weeks since the election, so hopefully by now we’ve all scrubbed the blue and red eyeshadow from drooping eyelids and peeled the ‘I Voted’ stickers off our jacket lapels. Our neighbors finally have muted Baracka Flacka Flame. Some of us are elated, others disappointed; but one thing is clear for all of us it was a wild ride, and everyone’s first instinct is to simply exhale.

But a long-awaited conclusion to this race should be no cue to abandon political momentum, wherever it carries our respective lives. You’ve probably heard if not repeated that now-famous quote by activist Mohandas Gandhi: “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” Considering the leader’s lifelong commitment to pacifist social reform, Gandhi’s rhetoric was perhaps more literal than popular Western reiteration might suggest. No, we’re not suggesting our readers drop out tomorrow morning to join the Peace Corps. However, we do note that armchair academia and box-checking will only get us so far. We are often divided in opinion over the President’s fulfillment of his first-term campaign platform of “Change” and “Hope,” but regardless of our feelings on any issue, we as citizens must also remember to look to ourselves as sources for progress, no matter what our leaders are up to. Real people create real ideas, and the often-seemingly small but deliberate efforts we make is what alters the course of society.

Remember John F. Kennedy’s famous inaugural address? “Ask not what you can do for your country,” he implored us, “but what your country can do for you.” And the man was right. Those ballot measures don’t write themselves, you know.

R.S.


As the beginning to each holiday season starts to set in, Cal students tend to zoom intoWhat Cal Students Should Be Thankful For overdrive. We fantasize about winter break, especially after Thanksgiving has come and gone. In case you didn’t take a couple of seconds to say your thank-yous this past week, there’s still time! Marvel at all the reasons that being at Berkeley should make you thankful:

1)      You’re still a Cal student… hopefully! That’s something to be proud of, right? After all, you can’t really get higher than #1 for a public school.

2)      Finals are still two whole weeks away. That gives us all extra time to procrastinate on studying, because that’s no way to spend dead week! Sure, you may have had some homework to do over the holidays, but that has to be better than those college applications you were frantically filling out a year or two ago.

3)      Jeff Tedford is finally getting yanked after yet another dismal 3-9 season for the men’s football team. That means you only have to wait 10 more months for a well-coached football team!

4)      There have been less than 10 days that have had more than 0.10 inches of rain so far this school year. Considering that November is the fifth wettest month, it’s not saying much, but enjoy the good weather before February rolls around!

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Among the tabs for CNN, NBC, the deplorably slow Google election results, and the FOX News you had open just for kicks, you may not have had time for social networking on election night. Who are you kidding – you probably popped open Tumblr for the continuing influx of memes or Twitter for Donald Trump’s call for a march on Washington. But the most interesting soiial network every time there’s a major news event is Facebook, because it’s people that you – hopefully – personally know talking about things about which they know little to nothing about. If your friends are anything like ours, they provided for plenty of unintentional comedy with their cute status updates that spammed the newsfeed.

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Do you dig democracy and can’t wait to make your voice heard in the November election? Or maybe you are simply entertained by politics?  Whatever your views may be, this election year is one of the most important yet, and what better way to fuel the electoral excitement that to watch the two presidential candidates duke it out in the presence of your peers?!

The ASUC Vote Coalition and the Robert C. Matsui Center for Politics and Public Service are hosting a viewing party for the first presidential debate of this election season, which is  being held at The University of Colorado, Denver and hosted by Jim Lehrer of NewsHour.

DEETS:

When: October 3, 2012

Time: 6 p.m.

Where: 111 Moses Hall on campus

The event is the first of many designed to bring politically active and interested youth together to view and discuss the presidential debates that are taking place within the next few weeks. Come join a multitude of student groups partisan and non-partisan to the event of the election!

Can’t make it to the event? You can still watch (or Tivo) the debates! Catch the livestream here or on such channels as C-SPAN, ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC, as well as all cable news channels including CNN, Fox News and MSNBC among others.

DEMOCRACY 2012

Image source: DonkeyHotey under Creative Commons