Hollywood’s activism falls short in the face of sexual assault

By Sam Anteau

Staff Writer

As most are starkly aware, Hollywood has been undergoing a purge recently; beginning with numerous women accusing Harvey Weinstein of sexual abuse, dozens of others have come forward to talk about their own experiences with sexual assault in Hollywood. This opened up a dialogue surrounding this subject in the entertainment city.  

In many ways, this is a good thing. Conversation about sexual assault does indeed spread awareness and helps to create a more understanding environment. Only by pointing out the things that need to be changed can we actually begin to change them.  

That said, in recent months, this conversation has become a performance, especially on behalf of male celebrities. A perfect example of this could be found at this year’s Golden Globes. The vast majority of those on the red carpet wore black or a Time’s Up pin (an organization aimed to end sexual misconduct in Hollywood) in a show of support to women who are survivors of sexual abuse. 

However, it did come off as just that: a show. James Franco, someone who has been accused of sexual misconduct, was wearing a Time’s Up pin. Numerous male celebrities, including Justin Timberlake, Jude Law and Steve Carrell, were wearing the pins, despite having worked with Woody Allen, a notorious example of an accused sexual abuser in Hollywood. Despite this show of support toward women speaking out against their sexual abusers, these men have never denounced Allen, or even said they regretted working with him.  

Perhaps most egregious, the male winners of the night all but completely ignored what was, frankly, a huge focus of the night. While Oprah Winfrey, Nicole Kidman, Laura Dern and Elisabeth Moss all discussed the unfair treatment of women, James Franco, Aziz Ansari, Ewan McGregor, Sam Rockwell and every other male winner stayed completely silent on the matter.  

Here’s the thing, folks: women shouldn’t have to do this on their own, especially when they are so often the victims of sexual abuse in Hollywood. If you’re going to wear a Time’s Up button, if you’re going to wear all black as a show of support, you need to actually support women. Otherwise, it becomes a transparent attempt to appease largely-liberal Hollywood, a routine rather than a desire to make lasting change.  

We, as fans of actors, also need to take responsibility for the content we consume and support. We need to be willing to push celebrities harder to be accountable, to criticize them when they don’t and to refuse to support those who do not align with our morals.  

Every dollar, every view is a vote. If we don’t cast them with those morals in mind, we may very well end up funding a system that perpetuates sexual abuse.  


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A look at 2018’s top pop releases

By Paige Daniel

Thoughts Editor

Pop music is at a bit of a crossroads right now – it seems like anything has the potential to be a hit, while the pre-eminent pop stars of our youth crash and burn (sorry, Katy Perry).  

The charts are unpredictable as well, with hits coming out of left-field like Cardi B’s “Bodak Yellow” and the ex-Fifth Harmony underdog Camila Cabello somehow managing to snag a number one spot with “Havana,” despite how overwhelmingly the charts have been dominated by men (looking at you, Ed Sheeran).  

People even surmised that women in pop were facing a period of stagnation, as a slew of new singles by women failed to crack the top 10. The pop charts are hugely rap and R&B focused these days, with pure pop being pushed out in favor of hybrid styles that mesh trap, rock, R&B and rap.  

It’s not always the best to pledge allegiance to the charts as someone who is interested in the history and trajectory of pop music. I nailed down a few artists who are expected to release new music this year, but you may notice that few of them are “chart-toppers”; in the economy of pop, as some call it, there is a new precedent wherein fringe artists are still able to achieve a level of success. Even if you haven’t heard of them, they are making waves in their respective internet pools. 



Kimbra is a pop artist who hails from New Zealand, though you might remember her from Gotye’s hit “Somebody That I Used to Know.”  

That song sorely underutilized her abilities and is kind of disappointing when you compare it to everything Kimbra has done on her own. Her vocal flair is hard to describe without falling back on tired clichés – it’s that good.  

Her debut album “Vows” found her with one foot heavily in a traditional pop sound and the other aiming for the funk stratosphere, and then her second album, “The Golden Echo,” made it clear that she had decided to experiment even more.  

The three songs released so far from her new album, “Primal Heart,” are very high quality; “Everybody Knows” is a driving damnation of a characteristically bad person, while “Top of the World” has an unusual tribal beat and a surprising bass passage that will singe your eyebrows off. She just released a third song, “Human,” which continues to foretell the greatness of “Primal Heart.”  



No other current R&B artist has been wronged more by their record label than Tinashe. Originally introduced as Beyoncé’s eventual successor (which is just unfair), Tinashe only has one amazing debut album to her name, 2014’s “Aquarius.”  

She was put in production limbo by her label, and her attempt at a second album release ultimately sputtered and failed thanks to their halting efforts.  

Then she released a mixtape, “Nightride” (2016). “Nightride” allowed her to explore her taste for dark, nocturnal R&B while her label consistently screwed her out of major success.  

Poor label decision after poor label decision piled up; without giving her a choice in the matter, they paired her up with noted abuser Chris Brown for her song “Player” in the hopes of it charting (hint: it failed).  

She seems to be officially trying her hand at a second album release this year with the single “No Drama.” Maybe this is the year she breaks into a wider audience, but if she doesn’t, I’ll just keep her talent to myself and that’s fine too.  


Troye Sivan 

Troye Sivan is a pretty big deal for the online LGBTQ+ community, as his 2015 album “Blue Neighbourhood” found him dealing with explicitly queer themes in front of a bigger audience than is usually afforded for most LGBTQ+ artists. “Blue Neighbourhood” was just a glimpse of what he has to offer, so his yet-unreleased album looks promising.  

He made a slick entry in the worthy Jeopardy category of “music videos in empty warehouses” for his new song “My My My!” and also released “The Good Side” shortly before his performance on Saturday Night Live last weekend.  


Carly Rae Jepsen 

Carly Rae Jepsen’s 2015 album “Emotion” is a sleeper hit, lauded by critics and fans yet finding no major chart success. The lack of chart success doesn’t really matter when there is an online community so devoted to singing the album’s praises that they’ve been making memes about it since its release.  

Jepsen reportedly has a new album in the process of being completed; where “Emotion” played with a retro 80s sound, she claims this next album will be focused on disco.  

Her revivalist tendencies are never pastiche or hollow, and fans are already revving up the hype machine for her fourth release that is unnamed.  


Ariana Grande 

Ariana Grande by now is a superstar, and she has been teasing a new album in the works for a few weeks. “Dangerous Woman” (2016) is seriously one of the best pop albums in years (zero hyperbole there), which could partially be chalked up to its intense Max Martin contributions.  

This time around, she is working with legendary pop producer Pharrell Williams for her fourth album; this follows the tragic terrorist attack at one of her concerts that had people questioning when, or even if, she would return to the pop scene.  



Grimes barely hinted at a possible 2018 release in a reply to a fan on Twitter and I kind of freaked out, because my love for Grimes knows no bounds. The album is just an idea in my head and is probably stewing somewhere on Grimes’ laptop, but whatever, I’m definitely on this hype train. 

Grimes produces all her music herself (this is sort of a big deal, especially with there being a glaring absence of women producers in the music industry), and is unapologetically experimenting with each new release.  


Charlie Puth 

Okay. Let me explain this one. When I learned that Charlie Puth’s whole bland enterprise was initially put-on for the sake of drawing a wide audience, I couldn’t help but be simultaneously peeved and relieved. 

He claimed in an interview that his debut album, “Nine Track Mind,” was purposefully saccharine and lukewarm so as to appeal to the lowest common denominator and chart. Of course, he also said that attaining his level of success now allows him to do what he actually wants to with his music.  

He was one of the newer pop stars I abhorred the most, and it’s safe to say the tide has turned on that one given the quality of his recent singles, “Attention” and “How Long.” His expected release, “Voicenotes,” has been delayed after advertised to be out in the first months of the year.  

He is another producer like Grimes who insists on producing all of their music themselves, which again, is no small feat. And Puth is talented, as he is formally trained in music composition (he would know how to write a catchy pop song). I thought it would be a cold day in hell until I admitted I was looking forward to a new release from him, but he proved me wrong.  


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Spring sports start season training

By John Durga

Staff Writer

Spring is just around the corner and athletes that compete in spring athletics are ramping up and getting ready.  

Alma College has baseball, lacrosse, tennis, track and softball teams competing in the spring. With over 100 athletes preparing strategies, what is important to each individual varies.  

The college recently added a brand new weight room its staff strength and conditioning coaches that are available to it’s athletes every day during the work week. These resources give preparing athletes a lot of opportunity and guidance to be as ready as possible for their upcoming season.  

“Fall sports are all kind of jealous,” said Tyler Mrock (’19).  “We spend the summer at home on our own lifting at hometown gyms while spring sports get to take advantage of all the things Alma has to offer.” 

Preparing does not just begin with the new year for spring sport athletes. All are on these athletes are on training programs in the fall that are administered by their coaches. Many of those same athletes are also in the weight room and watching film to learn their game.  

“Our guys have been following a pretty specific plan since our fall practice ended, and should be prepared for these final  five weeks or so before we open up our 2018 season. We are eager for practice to start and get our guys competing for opportunities,” said Jake Sabol, head baseball coach.  

Some especially enthused athletes also take it upon themselves to take on extra practice outside the team attempting to gain an edge.  

“I began training for this season in June,” said Connor Alley (’20). “To be in peak shape you have to not only work hard but also not take time off and fall backward.”  

One of a coach’s main tasks is to decide what practice and training techniques will help the team be best prepared. This varies between sports and coaches.  

“The most important thing that I do to prepare myself for a new season is to make sure that I have the right mindset. Meaning I am ready to lead by example, I am ready to put the players and our goals first, and put everything else on a shelf,” said Adam Nycz, assistant men’s lacrosse coach.  

As spring continues to get closer, the athletes and coaches will continue to prepare for warmer weather and the schedule to begin. 

“We were able to train at four different facilities while we were down there (in Flordia for training) and we even had the chance to do an ocean swim by the pier in Deerfield Beach,” explained Jason Lintjer, head swim and dive coach.

Women’s soccer hires assistant as head coach

By Hank Wickley

Staff Writer

The new women’s soccer coach is a familiar face. 

Meghan Gorsuch was named to the top job Jan. 17. She previously was an assistant for the program for the past five seasons. She is the eighth head coach in the history of the college. 

“Meghan has been a part of this program for as long as I’ve been here,” explained ​Emily Esser (‘19). 

Esser went on to add, “She has dedicated so much time, energy, and heart to our team as an assistant coach over the years and will step into this new role with grace and ease.” 

Gorsuch played her high school soccer at ​Forest Hills Central High School, where she earned all-state honors three times and led her team to three MHSAA state titles. 

Gorsuch attended Michigan State University, where she was team captain and president for the Spartan’s club team. Her team won the National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association (NIRSA) championship and Gorsuch was named as a first-round pick to the All-Tournament team in 2012. 

After graduating, Gorsuch continued her soccer playing career on Michigan’s first women’s semi-professional team, the Motor City Football Club (MCFC). 

“​Meghan understands Alma and the type of student athlete that needs to be recruited to be successful in all areas,” explained Assistant Athletic Director Sarah Dehring. “She also has a tremendous knowledge of soccer an is a very good coach/teacher,” added Head Athletic Director Steven Rackley. 

Since 2014, the women’s soccer program has had a positive record, winning 35 games in the past four years, losing 32, and ending 9 games in ties.  

The team looks forward to improving on that mark,” said Esser. ​“​We plan to not only win more games with her as a coach, but to become more united ​as a program, working to improve with every practice and game,” Esser confidently stated.  

Other than winning more, what else is to come for the women’s soccer program? The team hopes to unify and become closer as a family both on and off the field, said one team member. 

​“Meghan has developed personal and professional relationships with each of the players that will make her an emotionally available and supportive coach,” explained ​Melissa Gal (‘18)​. 

The team also has high hopes for more rigorous training, which will help them as athletes overall.  

“I know that we will be pushed to perform to the best of our abilities and to improve every day under Meghan’s leadership,” claimed Esser. “Meghan is the perfect example of what the program is all about and has incredible plans to implement for the future of our team,” added Gal. This spring the team will begin preparing for next fall, and the members have some high expectations.  

“In my last season here at Alma, I hope to regain the feelings of our team as a tight-knit family, have a winning season, and win an MIAA title,” stated Gal. 

“With Meghan as our head coach, I am confident we will thrive and accomplish great things next season,” Esser added. 


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Scots athletics hosts campus-wide formal dance

By Joelle Fisher

Staff Writer

The Student Athletic Advisory Council (SAAC) will host an all-student formal dance on Feb 3. Not only is this an event for all students on campus to enjoy, but it is also a charity event in which all proceeds will be donated to the Amazing Grace Foundation.   

SAACs across the country have continued hosting formals such as this one and donating money to the same organization for many years in hopes to bring together a variety of students for a purposeful cause.   

“SAAC wanted to give all students the chance to attend a formal,” explained Sarah Dehring, assistant athletic director.   

“As many students here at Alma College are members of Greek life and have the opportunity to experience a formal, many of the students do not,” added Dehring.  

The theme of the dance is “Starry Night” and tickets will be available for $10 during lunch at SAGA until Jan. 31. Tickets will also be available at the door the day of the event for $15. Guests are encouraged to arrive at 8 p.m. for pictures and appetizers, followed by a guest DJ’s music entertainment for dancing at 9 p.m.  

“Events like this help build relationships between athletic teams, but also across campus,” stated Dehring.  

“The tighter community we can build, the more support we will see at our athletic events and with those relationships I also would hope to see the student athletes branching out and attending other campus events outside of athletics,” added Dehring.  

This event was inspired by a former event at Alma College, Amo-te, which was a girls ask guy dance from years past that also donated their profit to the Amazing Grace Foundation. Ballroom dance classes were offered prior to the event that students were encouraged to sign up for. The dance was largely successful, but over time the school ceased running.   

“We hope to make this an annual event. SAAC would love to continue to give opportunities for campus collaboration and unity,” explained Jennifer Kowalczyk (‘19).  

“In future years, we plan to work with ACUB and other school clubs/organizations to make this event better every year,” added Kowalczyk.   

“I think hosting a formal is a great way to help out a charity while also bringing together all of Alma’s student body,” said Katie Bush (‘19).   

“We’re all really excited to be hosting this event through SAAC and I can’t wait to see how much everyone loves it,” added Bush.  

Social activist comes to campus

By Sasha Dudock

Staff Writer Screen Shot 2018-01-23 at 4.17.36 PM

On Jan. 17, Campus welcomed the daughter of Archbishop Desmond Tutu, guest speaker Nontombi Naomi Tutu, in celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. week.  

Tutu’s father was a world-famous social rights activist in South Africa during the time of apartheid—a time in South Africa when policies of segregation were heavily enforced.  

Having lived through the injustice and tumult of apartheid, Tutu spoke about the importance of being a social activist in the midst of not only political turmoil but also in every day life. According to Tutu, being a social activist is not so much a career but a state of mind.  

Her speech began with convincing the audience to discover their own individual talents and passions, and then going a step further to use them for the good of the people.  

Tutu’s advice for determining a passion was to look out into the world and discover what about it evokes extreme emotion. 

“What is it in our world that when you look at it it makes you very, very angry or very, very hopeful?” asked Tutu. 

From there, Tutu broke down social activism into small things that everyone could do to become a social activist. Tutu’s main suggestion was “Having the courage to speak [out against injustice] even when you think it’ll make you unpopular.”  

Even on a small college campus there are dozens of opportunities to get involved with students, such as joining Amnesty International, the Multi-Cultural Student Union or Active Minds.  

“Social activism is possible on campus and is also always happening on campus . . . I think it’s because [there is] a good environment for it,” said Laney Alvarado (‘20).  

Getting involved in helping the community can be as simple as going on one of Alma College’s many alternative break options as opposed to going home for breaks. Many students on campus believe that Alma “at least on some basic level . . . [is socially active because] we are at a liberal arts college,” said Eryn Corinth (‘21). 

As Tutu’s speech continued, it centered around the causes that were not only two core themes in her life, but became the themes of her activism: race and gender.  

Tutu explained how her life as an African woman was effected by apartheid and how that moved her to want to fight racism and sexism abroad, as well as how her motivation was not just her faith but also her family. 

Being a student, it can seem daunting to tackle big issues such as racism or sexism, but being on a college campus does not limit one’s ability to make a change, according to Tutu when asked about how to make be a social activist on campus. In fact, she believes that bigger changes can be made in smaller communities because more individual voices are heard.  

She also spoke about other significant aspects in a social activist’s life, such as finding a supportive community and being hopeful for the future.  

One important trait Tutu spoke of is self-care and mental health. Tutu reminded the audience the importance of taking time to rejuvenate and relax because progress will be slowed or even halted if one is always fatigued. 

Overall, Tutu’s message was to stress to students that, especially in the current international climate, it is necessary to be a social activist and that becoming one does not have to be difficult.  

“Anyone can be a social activist,” said Alvarado, “It doesn’t matter who you are or where you come from, everyone has something that they’re passionate about and will fight for.” 

Tau Kappa Epsilon volunteers at blood drive

By Rose Cyburt

Staff Writer

Every year, Tau Kappa Epsilon contacts the Red Cross and hosts a blood drive for campus. The incentive for donating was the chance to win a gift card. “We would just like to say thank you to everyone on campus and in the community that came to donate,” said Evyn Bryant (’19).  

Unfortunately, donation isn’t an option for some people. Reasons for not being able to give blood or having to wait a certain amount of time include traveling outside of the country, having tattoos, being a homosexual male who has had sex or having anemia according to the Red Cross.  

It was also the beginning of a new athletic season, so some athletes could not donate. 

Jadon House (’20): 


Q: What makes you passionate about helping this organization?  

A: “I think it is great to see people commit unselfish acts to help others. Donating blood is especially important for everyone. “ 

Q: How did you personally help?  

A: “I was there to help check people in. I couldn’t donate though because of tennis. Quinton Moeggenborg (’20) is our philanthropy chair and planned the event.”  

Q: How do you think the event went?  

A: “I am super proud of my fraternity brothers. Yes, the event went well, but we have done so much to change our organization for the better. We are required to do service hours, but we take pride in volunteering and have almost doubled our numbers including for our philanthropy.”  

Taylor McPhail (’18):  

Q: How did you help with the event?  

A: “I couldn’t stay long because of practice, but I was able to help set up and register a few people. I also couldn’t donate because of wrestling, but I have before.  “ 

Q: How do you think the event went?  

A: “The event went well; it usually does. We have done some positive work for the community and we just want to make a point that Greek life is more than just parties. While the Red Cross is not our direct philanthropy, we just want to help and volunteer.” 

Sodexo brings new changes to campus dining

By Brittany Pierce

Copy Editor

The start of the new year has brought many new changes to campus dining options at Alma College. Some are modifications while others are completely new additions.  

“For Joe’s, we’re looking at changing some of the options for the meal advantage. So, that will probably start taking place and we’ll probably start seeing some changes just in those options in the next week or two,” said Gary Brown, the general manager of Alma College dining services.   

Along with options for food, the way that munch money works changed as well.   

“One thing I want to make sure the students realize as well is that munch money this year rolled over for the first time ever,” said Brown. “So from fall to winter, all their unused munch money rolled over. I just want to make sure students realized that was happening as well.”   

However, Joe’s is not the only place with new changes.   

“As for Hamilton, we introduced the Green Box program, which I’ve heard a lot of good things from students and staff and faculty just about how much better it is than just relying on the premade sandwiches and salads and stuff like that. That’s been a huge hit,” said Brown.    

The Green Box program allows students to purchase a reusable take-out box for a one-time fee of $5.00. Then, these students can fill the box with their desired menu choices, rinse the container, and then bring in back to Hamilton Commons to exchange it for a sanitized one.   

There is a brand-new breakfast option this semester in the Hamilton Commons as well.   

“As you noticed, we put a smoothie bar up and it’s incorporated with the yogurt parfait bar, so that’s something we did new this year,” said Head Chef Spiro.   

“You’ll see coming up, if we have any kind of patty like the chicken patty, chicken breast, or burger, the condiments will be on the side now. You guys will be able to put your own stuff. For example, if you like lettuce, tomato or buffalo sauce, you guys can do that yourselves now. Again, that just gives you guys some more options because not everybody likes the combination of flavors and such,” said Spiro.  

“We have some neat things coming out for you guys. During the week, I know sometimes things can get a little stale on different things. But we’re doing something called a bodacious burger which will be on Tuesday, Jan. 23 at lunch time.”   

For one meal swipe and $4.99 of munch money, students can get their choice of one of three special, half-pound burgers.   

“Any time we do something like this it’s always something a little bit more, and it takes a little bit more to do it as far as cost. But these are the things we like to do and we’re going to do some nice buffalo waffle fries for you guys, too,” said Spiro.   

Spiro also stressed the importance of communication between the students and the dining service staff.   

“Every year we’re going to be bringing some different stuff in and the thing that we like now is that we get a chance to talk to you guys. You guys have some ideas and it’s good for you guys to share it with us Gary and myself,” said Spiro.   

“If there’s something that you want more of or if you see if there’s something that we can do, we’re always going to be there to try something for you guys because again we’re here all the time (to listen).”   

However, some students are still dissatisfied with the lack of labeling possible allergens in the food.  

“As for the labeling (of allergens), everything should be labeled on the TV screens and we double check those, especially over at the My Zone station,” said Brown.   

“But the biggest thing is that if students aren’t one hundred percent sure then they just need to ask. Ask anybody in a blue shirt, white shirt, or chef coat; if they don’t know the answer they’re all trained to not answer unless they are one hundred percent sure. If they don’t know then they go get chef or somebody like that who is one hundred percent sure.”

For students who do not have time to spend in the dining hall reading the TV screens, the bite app is also an option.  

There are posters located in the Hamilton commons providing information on how to download the app as well as the access code.   

“I know I talk about it a lot with the students who come and talk to us about allergies. It gives you a brief description, all the calories, all the other nutritional facts, it also gives you a recipe number if you want to look that up (and) it tells you what the serving size is and then if there’s any allergies,” said Brown.   

You can also log into fitbit and this (app) interacts with fitbit and everything like that.”  

As the semester progresses, Spiro and Brown hope to keep making more changes and improvements based on student input.   

“I think we can do a suggestion box. Maybe there’s something we can do that we haven’t done before and if it’s popular, then we’ll bring it back and work it through our cycle menu. But input and suggestions from you guys is great,” said Spir Screen Shot 2018-01-23 at 4.11.39 PM


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