If there was a disease that caused 30,000 new cases of cancer every year and had no cure, wouldn’t you want to be vaccinated against it? What about if you knew that a quarter of all men and a fifth of all women already have it? Or that many people have it but don’t know it?
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Last month, for the first time in nearly 21 years, South Carolina reported a case of measles. SCDHEC has not yet stated whether the individual was vaccinated or whether this case is connected to the wider outbreak in the U.S., but, regardless, this is troubling news.
The power is finally back on in Puerto Rico – well, sort of. 11 months after Hurricanes Irma and Maria struck the island and knocked out power to the majority of its residents and killed roughly 1,400 American citizens, power has been restored to the last customers of PREPA, Puerto Rico’s government run power company.
On Sunday and Monday, Apple, Facebook, Google, Spotify and even Pinterest made moves against conspiracy theorist Alex Jones’ content hosted on their platforms. Apple removed five of Jones’ six podcasts, Facebook banned four of Jones’ pages, YouTube (owned by Google) deleted Jones’ channel, Spotify removed one of his podcasts and Pinterest banned his account. Jones and his supporters, somewhat predictably, were outraged.
Nobody knew trade could be so complicated!
Mark Sanford was no stranger to elections, but, for the first time in his career, he suffered a defeat because of something it once would have been hard to accuse him of — not being conservative enough.
Just this week, the chaos that has been enveloping the Department of Veterans Affairs reached an all new level as Trump’s nominee for Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Dr. Ronny Jackson, faced “accusations that as the White House doctor he oversaw a hostile work environment, improperly dispensed prescription drugs and possibly drank on the job.” Other allegations include giving away Percocet and a drunken car crash. Aside from the constant feeling that this White House really does try its hardest to bring the worst people out of the weeds and into office, Dr. Jackson’s nomination itself is far more concerning, in many ways, than the charges leveled against him.
In his recent column on the U.S. airstrikes in Syria, Joseph Will suggested that the best course of action would be to limit involvement to avoid another Iraq. While his sentiment is understandable – Iraq was, after all, a quagmire – it simplifies a situation far more complex than we were faced with in 2003, assumes that the U.S. strategic goal for Syria, at this point, is regime change and incorrectly assesses the likelihood that airstrikes will spiral into a ground war. Finally, his argument also ignores the well-established but underutilized responsibility of the international community to combat atrocities and human rights violations whenever possible.
Social Media Editor Gillian Muñoz and Opinion Editor Dan Nelson argue that social media, despite its immense popularity, has unforeseen consequences for both the individual and the world.
Russia, as most politicians, analysts and even some at the White House will tell you, is a “bad actor” on the international stage. From continued involvement in the Ukraine, to the murder of political dissidents in the U.K. and meddling in the U.S. election, Russia has made it abundantly clear that it stands in opposition to the international community and has no interest in peace and stability.
South Carolina has one of the lowest cigarette taxes in the U.S. At 57 cents a pack, cigarettes are extraordinarily cheap and there is little economic reason to quit. While this may be good for convenience store owners and the tobacco industry, it does little to encourage healthy behavior among the nearly 20 percent of South Carolinians still smoking. South Carolina would stand to gain significantly in health outcomes at little economic cost by embracing higher cigarette taxes.
When it comes to guns per capita, gun homicides, gun suicides and mass shootings, America outdoes every high-income country in the world multiple times over. We own the most guns and shoot the most people. And, as anyone who reads the news can attest, we fight about gun control often and at length. We’re familiar with Republicans and Democrats duking it out on the issue, despite having adopted their relative positions without any real mooring in their party ideology. With that in mind, the opinion section has decided to host a productive discussion on gun control that attempts to come to a reasonable, achievable conclusion rather than merely partisan bickering. Linden Atelsek, who feels negatively about the presence of guns in our society, and Dan Nelson, who feels positively about it, critically examined their own views and then discussed them together to create a resolution they could both agree to.
Congress is facing down a deadline this week: they must pass a budget resolution to prevent a government shutdown. The can has been kicked down the road several times now with stopgap measures, and they are preparing to perhaps do the same again. However, Congress will eventually have to pass a budget that they agree on.
The Trump administration, together with Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke, have been steadily moving forward on plans to expand coal and oil extraction in areas relatively untouched by the energy sector. Trump and Zinke, operating under the pretense of creating “wealth and jobs,” are attempting to roll back restrictions and regulations that were put in place to protect the environment and the people that depend on it.
One of the most frequently heard complaints of the 2016 election cycle was that the news media was biased in one direction or the other. It’s not that that complaint is never true. There are certainly instances where a news organization publishes biased information under the guise of “reporting.” But often the gripe stems from one of two things: an inadequate understanding by the reader of what the difference is between news coverage and opinion writing, or an inadequate separation by the media outlet between those things.
Sean Hannity is a man who thrives on controversy. It fuels viewership, and Hannity’s particularly combative and divisive take on current events has made his show one of the most consistently popular on cable television. However, the controversy can get away from him sometimes. Last Thursday, on his radio show, Hannity appeared to defend Republican senate candidate Roy Moore against allegations of sexual misconduct towards minors during his time as assistant district attorney in Alabama. The backlash was swift. Despite later clarifying his statement, calls went up for advertisers to ditch Hannity’s show over the comments. As it currently stands, Hannity has lost 11 advertisers, including Volvo and Keurig.
As the Trump administration moves forward on its plan of deploying yet more troops into Afghanistan, we need to ask ourselves an important question, will this strategy finally win us the war? As I’ve written previously, simply building up and training the Afghan military into a more effective fighting force will not prove to be an effective strategy. Sure, they will kill more insurgents, but, as past conflicts have made evident, simply killing more insurgents will not win you the war.
In the wake of the deaths of U.S. Green Berets in Niger, many have been asking why we were ever there in the first place. Or, better yet, why the U.S. has so many troops in so many countries. Some have even gone so far to suggest that these deployments are nothing more than thinly veiled imperialism. Yet, I believe this use of troops is not just critical to the security of the U.S., but to the stability and security of Africa itself.
This is a companion article to "Drug decriminalization would save time, money, human misery" by Linden Atelsek, which ran alongside it in the Oct. 23, 2017 issue of The Daily Gamecock.
Diplomacy has always been an integral aspect of modern states. In everything from minor trade deals to world-shaping international defense agreements, diplomacy has led the way. Diplomacy has crafted America’s place and status in the modern world and now may very well take it away.