Summer Reading 2017

The top opinion columns of 2017 — so far

Daily Orange File Photo

A three-year housing requirement and the demolition of student-favorite bar Hungry Chuck's have been controversial topics on campus so far this year.

From Donald Trump winning the United States presidency to the months of protests following his inauguration, the first half of 2017 left the Syracuse University community with a lot to think — and argue — about. Through it all, The Daily Orange Opinion columnists chose their sides and broke down their arguments.

Here’s a recap of everything that went down with the most popular Opinion columns of 2017 — so far.

Business

Donald Trump waves out to a crowd of supporters at a campaign rally.

Moriah Ratner | Staff Photographer

The 4 things you need to know about Trump’s plan for student loans — or lack thereof

Who gives out loans, who qualifies for them and who profits from it all? Alex Straus answered the big questions stemming from the student loans plan President Donald Trump promoted during his campaign. Recent graduates, take note.

Here’s why central New York-based Chobani is deserving of its rank as 9th most innovative company in the world

Chobani grew from a local company to a national powerhouse responsible for Greek yogurt craze in the United States. Daniel Strauss explained this is because Chobani’s founder, Hamdi Ulukaya, stayed committed to the values Chobani was founded on no matter how big it grew.

Conservative

Sen. Chuck Schumer speaks in front of the Hall of Languages

Daily Orange File Photo

Chuck Schumer calls on Trump to apologize for outlandish tweets about Obama wiretapping, but there’s more to Trump’s story on Obama wiretapping claims

While some called Trump’s claim that former President Barack Obama illegally wiretapped him a wild conspiracy theory, others backed the accusations 100 percent. Dispelling all the myths, Joseph Pucciarelli said there’s some truth to it all:

This story has become very complex, but the bottom line is Trump’s campaign was monitored, and the intelligence was spread to the White House where Obama potentially had access.”

Why New York state’s free college tuition bill doesn’t make the grade

Free college tuition may sound promising. But Pucciarelli explained why New York state Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s refusal to address the tuition bill’s unintended consequences could harm qualified students and greater New York state: Tuition doesn’t cover all the costs of college, and this law keeps tuition recipients stuck in the state long after graduation.

Environment

Destiny USA mall

Daily Orange File Photo

Under Destiny USA is the Oil City, and it’s posing environmental problems for the construction of a hotel near the mall

Morgan Bulman dug into the situation facing the area surrounding Syracuse’s favorite shopping destination, Destiny USA. These issues resurfaced during the construction of a hotel on the mall’s grounds.

Bulman wrote: “…This latest construction endeavor is unearthing an ugly memory of Syracuse’s past: Beneath the mall’s layers of concrete rests the remnants of Oil City.”

Everything is awesome … except environmental degradation at the hands of an upcoming Legoland in upstate New York

Goshen, New York may soon be home to a Legoland amusement park, complete with a hotel, restaurants and much more. But Lydia Niles, who is now an assistant feature editor at The D.O., argued it’ll come at the cost of Goshen’s small town atmosphere — and its wildlife refuge.

Luckily, Niles said, one-fifth of Goshen’s 5,300 residents are fighting to stop it.

Gender and Sexuality

A massive crowd of protesters in Washington D.C.

Daily Orange File Photo

Syracuse University’s new preferred name policy is a step in the right direction for trans* individuals, but the fight isn’t over

The recent preferred name policy at SU allows “students the autonomy to choose how they are referred,” Gene Wang said. Wang explained why the name policy isn’t just preferred. He said it’s mandatory, and is a demonstration of the administration’s commitment to meeting the needs of transgender students.

The Women’s March on Washington was a ‘symbolic middle finger’ to the Trump administration

Kelsey Thompson headed down to Washington, D.C. to march alongside thousands of protesters in the Women’s March on Washington and recounted the electric atmosphere in this column. It was a cathartic day, Thompson said, during which protesters reminded the government that it’s accountable for its actions.

But despite the march taking place the day after Trump’s inauguration, Thompson argued the protest wasn’t just about him:

“The march was about reclaiming genders and sexualities that have been reduced and disparaged as nothing more than mere talking points for those in power.”

Liberal

A sign welcoming visitors to holy Islamberg

Courtesy of Muhammed Matthew Gardner

A mysterious sheikh, an isolated compound and a bomb threat: Islamophobia in upstate New York

Ryan Dunn took a comprehensive look at why Islam should definitely be known as the religion of Allah, not the target of a political firestorm.

Dunn wrote: “The idea that Americans are threatened by Islam and by its followers is rooted in misconceptions and a basic misunderstanding of what it means to be Muslim.”

Cuomo’s signature to ‘raise the age’ of youths tried as adults is essential to reforming the criminal justice system

When Cuomo signed a bill raising the age of criminal responsibility, Cole Jermyn praised the move. But he argued the bill also highlighted “the current failings of the United States’ criminal justice system.”

Student Life

Thousands of protesters march in front of the Washington monument

Leigh Ann Rodgers | Staff Photographer

An extension to Syracuse University’s housing requirement restricts students from choosing their own path

SU officials cited research to demonstrate their idea to require students to live on campus for three years would increase their on-campus involvement and dedication to schoolwork. But Aishwarya Sukesh, who is now The D.O.’s assistant editorial editor, said that’s not always the case.

There are students with flourishing social lives who live off campus, as well as students who excel in academics,” Sukesh explained. “There are also students who struggle in both those areas who live on campus, right in the middle of it all.”

Syracuse University students will present messages to Trump on giant vagina sculpture. Here’s why that matters.

After a semester of student activism, Brendan Germain discussed why the feminist #readmylips campaign was particularly eye-catching.

Through the lens of student activism, the campaign has charged college-aged women to use their own stories to bolster larger systemic online advocacy,” Germain said, outlining where the movement stood after months of anti-Trump protests.

The Daily Orange Editorial Board

The Hungry Chuck's sign

Daily Orange File Photo

Syracuse University’s idea of a 3-year on-campus housing requirement is not in the best interest of students

SU is still considering requiring students to live on campus for three years. When the idea first surfaced, the editorial board suggested SU stick to its two-year requirement to allow students an extra year of freedom to explore self-sufficiency.

Hungry Chuck’s demolition isn’t the end of Chuck’s, and is actually a smart move for the future of Marshall Street

The demolition of student-favorite bar Hungry Chuck’s was one of the main storylines during the spring semester. But the editorial board cautioned students not to worry, as the shift could revitalize the off-campus area.

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