Government shutdown shorter than 2013's but just as troubling

It may not feel like it’s been that long, but before the beginning of the three-day government shutdown on Saturday, Jan. 20, it had been over four years since the last time the U.S. had to restrict most of its routine operations because Congress couldn’t agree on how to pay for them. Thankfully, this year’s fiasco ended much more quickly than the 2013 shutdown, which lasted sixteen days and temporarily laid off 850,000 federal employees. 

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Our love/hate relationship with 'fake news'

From President Donald Trump to Pope Francis, the phrase “fake news” has been used quite a bit recently. Our society is constantly exposed to and engulfed in tabloids and the latest celebrity news. From Facebook to Instagram, there is no shortage of entertainment.  This overwhelming production of entertainment news has been coined as the “fake news” era. However, while all of this is just catching up on us, fake news is nothing new.

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What we can learn from dystopian literature

In the past several years, there has been an uptick in dystopian literature. Books and movies like "The Hunger Games" and "Divergent" seem to be all the rage. Still, these series aren’t the first to describe a world of "what ifs." Great authors like Octavia Butler have also made it a point to use literature as a way to warn the masses of possible future scenarios that will happen if we don’t change our ways. Of course, these books are fiction, but they aren’t always too far off from reality. So, why aren’t we learning from them? 

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The power of exchange: Deepening the ties between the US and Japan

This month marks the start of Grand Valley State University’s annual Asian-American and Pacific Islander Heritage Celebration. It’s a wonderful opportunity to learn about the rich and diverse array of Asian cultures and societies that have helped shape the lives of so many in our community. This year’s celebration has special meaning for me. I recently had the privilege of joining a delegation of Asian-American leaders from across the U.S. in a visit to Japan as part of the Kakehashi Project, a people-to-people exchange program led by the government of Japan.  

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Why you need to stay active this winter

Winter has hit full blast here in Michigan: Freezing temperatures, cold winds, snow falls and short, dark days are certainly upon us. With the drop in temperature, it seems inevitable that the Grand Valley State University community will start to lag in both social and physical activities. Of course, it’s easy to be lazy when it's freezing cold outside, but staying active can help you not only survive the winter but conquer it.  

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Breaking down the pay gap

As with many issues, sometimes statistics, facts and common sense aren’t enough to convince people that inequality exists in our world. Still, injustice persists. We’re faced with it again and again in the disparity of wages between men and women. Sure, there are plenty of possible reasons for this division, but when it comes down to it, the gender pay gap is real. This discussion has recently been brought into the limelight because Hollywood has made a point of talking about it.  

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President Trump needs to learn to bite his tongue

President Donald Trump has recently been under fire due to crude comments he allegedly made about Haiti and countries in Africa, reportedly calling them “shithole countries.” While these alleged comments were both incredibly offensive and ignorant, inappropriate comments are nothing new from Trump. As the president of our country, he makes me feel embarrassed and ashamed with his comments. Trump, it’s time you learned how to bite your tongue.  

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Review: It isn't called 'The Most Honest Showman' for a reason

Technically speaking, "The Greatest Showman" is a biographical film about the life of P.T. Barnum, a man who was many things—a politician, con man, author, philanthropist—but primarily, at least according to himself, an entertainer. Since Barnum was historically infamous for his opinion that entertainment is most enjoyable at its least truthful, it makes a lot of sense that a movie allegedly depicting his life story would be almost entirely fictional.

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