Opinions Columns

10 tips for a successful semester

Coming back to school after a long winter break is often the hardest time to get reenergized.

Getting revitalized for school after crawling out of the dredges of a long break can be difficult for students. The comfort of daytime napping and Netflix binging is hard to shake off when it comes time to buckle down for school again. Thankfully, the editorial board has complied a list of 10 tips students can use to have a successful semester.

1. Finish what you start.

Internet users should beware of dangerous “doxxing”

How safe are people online? The answer is, not very safe at all.

“Doxxing” is a phenomenon in which computer hackers use their skills with malicious intent on other Internet users, but people should respect others’ freedom of speech without resorting to doxxing.

Some people may believe they are completely safe behind the anonymity of a computer screen, but that is a farce. There exist scores of people who can maneuver around the barriers set up to protect one’s identity and seize nearly any information about a user that they desire.

U.S. will benefit from improved relations with Cuba

In December, President Barack Obama announced the decision to overhaul the U.S. relations policy with Cuba.

The countries have not had diplomatic relations in five decades, and many wonder what the potential benefits and repercussions that could occur with renewed relations will be.

Interestingly enough, it was Pope Francis who pushed for meetings and improved communication between the countries. Many feel having the Pope play a role in encouraging healthy relations between the countries has been vital in making Obama and Raul Castro finally able to hold meetings.

Regulations on blood donating remain biased against homosexual men

Nov. 13 signaled a small but significant change for blood donors across America.

The Health & Human Services (HHS) ruled with a 16-2 vote that homosexual men are now allowed to donate blood granted they have abstained from having sex with another man for at least a year.

Recent state textbook revisions based on biases, not fact

Everything is bigger in Texas, including the drama over education.

Last September emotions all over the state went wild when members of the Texas State Board of Education (SBOE) reviewed textbooks by publishers that contained an unprecedented amount of revisionism and flat-out inaccuracies. Publishing companies included within this barrage of misinformation were McGraw Hill, Cengage Learning, Discovery Education, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Pearson and Learning Worldview Software.

San Marcos must step up, implement bag ban

In 2014, California became the first state in the nation to propose and pass a statewide ban on the distribution of plastic bags.

Today, countless cities around the nation have enacted their own ordinances, and San Marcos should do the same. The cost-benefit analysis for the environment and the economy is too great to ignore.

Garner’s murder by police reveals unjust system

“I can’t breathe!”

These were the last words yelled by Eric Garner on July 17, 2014 as he was gasping for air while being held in an illegal chokehold by an uncharged police officer.

Mr. Garner was unjustifiably murdered by police officers when they brought him down. This cry for breath resonated in the hearts and minds of people everywhere who quickly caught wind of this tragic incident and demanded justice for this man.

University free speech zones limit students’ expression

Most Texas State students are familiar with the Fighting Stallions statue, either to hang out at between classes or even perform the pre-test ritual of touching their “manhood” for good luck.

There is more significance in the area surrounding the Stallions than simply good luck and relaxation.

The small area is known as Texas State’s free speech zone. However, upon a closer examination, the idea of a free speech zone is an oxymoron.

Specially engineered health products ‘necessary evil’

It has become increasingly prevalent, particularly among millennials, to choose what is considered by some to be a more natural lifestyle.

This is causing both positive and negative effects.

Free expression important following Charlie Hebdo attack

The Jan. 7 attack on French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo has sparked an international discussion on a component just as pivotal to journalism as human lives—free speech.

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