Powers ’15: Effective altruism by Brown Daily HeraldMar 21, 2015 “When one lists the defining characteristics of an archetypal Brown student, “socially conscious” is a phrase that inevitably comes to mind. Brown students have a long history of protesting anything and everything as well as a seemingly insatiable thirst for increasing the University’s social responsibility, whether it be through divesting from coal, shutting down speakers with whom they disagree or enforcing Title IX standards. The Main Green wouldn’t be the same without the occasional rally.
Though not a member of Brown’s community, Jason Trigg — a young MIT graduate — commits to making the world a better place by donating half his salary. Trigg works for a high-frequency trading firm and — defying society’s image of the amoral finance worker — practices what is termed “effective altruism.” Like any other form of altruism, effective altruism is the use of one’s time or resources to help others. In particular, it entails optimizing this process through empirical investigation.
Of course, many will say that we should help everyone we can, not just those who are most effectively helped. Naive idealism is alive and fashionable as ever at Brown. And while such idealism might make us sound more socially conscious, it prevents us from actually solving problems.
Like many effective altruists, Trigg was inspired by Australian Moral Philosopher Peter Singer, who, in his paper “Famine, Affluence, and Morality,” asserted that “if it is in our power to prevent something bad from happening, without thereby sacrificing anything of comparable moral importance, we ought, morally, to do it.”
In the same paper, Singer introduced one of the most famous thought experiments in moral philosophy. Imagine you see a child drowning and could save him at the cost of ruining your clothes. It seems indisputable that you are morally obliged to save the child.
But not donating money to save a starving child in the developing world is no different than not saving the drowning child. We cannot discriminate against the former simply because he has no means to provide an emotionally compelling demonstration of his suffering.
And of course it’s not about saving one child — or all of them. It’s an unfortunate reality that there are more individuals to save than resources to save them. Choosing to give effectively is more important than choosing to give in the first place.
GiveWell is a nonprofit organization that helps quantify these differences — using empirical data to measure the relative efficacy of various charities. Its top-rated charity, the Against Malaria Foundation, estimates that it costs an average of $3,340 to save one life, primarily through purchasing mosquito nets.
Last summer we all heard about the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, which raised over $100 million. In all likelihood, this will save no lives. There are few charitable organizations less monetarily — and thus less morally — efficient than those that treat and research chronic, incurable diseases. But as it turns out, like the drowning child, small numbers of Americans suffering from rare diseases run better ad campaigns than entire malaria-ravaged countries in Africa.
When it comes to effective altruism, there are four exclusive and exhaustive categories of moral behavior into which all Brown students fall.
There are, of course, those who actually do engage in effective altruism. Acceptance of Singer’s argument morally entails striving to be in this category.
Of those who do not engage in effective altruism, there are those who openly admit that they consider helping others unimportant. They either reject Singer’s case for morality or simply admit moral bankruptcy. It probably seems unconscionable that any individual might say he would not feel morally obliged to save the drowning child.
Thirdly, there are those who do not engage in effective altruism, who claim that helping others is an important factor in their conception of morality but are unaware that their methods are inefficient. If you’ve read to this point, it’s impossible for you to be a member of this category.
Finally, there are those who do not engage in effective altruism, claim that helping others is an important factor in their conception of morality and are hypocritically aware that their methods are inefficient.
The vast majority of individuals fall into these last two categories. This is due to social incentives. Ignorant individuals don’t become effective altruists because society rewards generosity itself rather than impact. While it’s easy enough to educate the ignorant, combating the resulting socially rewarded hypocrisy is a more difficult task.
The Christian imagery of self-sacrifice is pervasive in our culture. We romanticize emotionally reactive acts of charity and denigrate mathematically optimized morality as “heartless.” The prevalent notion that ruining our clothes — rather than saving drowning children — is what gets us “moral points” demonstrates a narcissistic preoccupation with self-image more than anything else. Making videos of dumping cold water on ourselves might make us feel good, but morality isn’t about how good we feel. It’s about how much good we do. Andrew Powers ’15 can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and rejects Singer’s case for morality.”
Owner puts Mama Kim’s on the market by Brown Daily HeraldMar 20, 2015 “Mama Kim’s Korean BBQ — a longtime staple of the College Hill food scene — is now for sale, owner Don Fecher announced on the business’ Twitter and Facebook last Wednesday. The business, which now includes both a restaurant in Cranston and the well-known food truck, was founded by Sook Kim P’01 and Hyun Kim ’01 in 2011 and has only been sold once, to Fecher in 2014.
Food trucks on College Hill have been stymied recently by Providence Police officers for allegedly parking illegally in metered spaces, but Fecher said these conflicts have nothing to do with his decision to sell.
“I’ve been cooking for half of my life, and it’s time to move on,” Fecher said, adding that he is selling the business solely for “personal reasons.” Fecher intends to remain in the food business and will stay in Providence or neighboring areas after leaving Mama Kim’s, he said.
Fecher said he has been contacted by more interested buyers than he anticipated. “Obviously we have something good, and someone is going to come along who is the right fit for it,” he said. As to how he will decide who will continue running the business, Fecher said, “Whoever I see has the eye, the passion and the care for it … it’s not just going to anybody with a bunch of money.”
Though tensions with Providence Police officers have not had a significant impact on Mama Kim’s business, Fecher expressed disappointment with the way city officials have dealt with the situation. “I wish they would have handled it in some capacity, and I don’t feel like they have done anything,” he said.
“I’ve been doing business in this city for nearly five years, and I feel that they should have our back a little bit more. I’ve called and tried to reach out and see what I can do, and I haven’t really gotten much back — not from the board of licenses or the mayor’s office … or anything.”
“While all this happened, I decided to make another plan to move to another city, like Pawtucket,” Fecher said, adding that the truck has been warmly received there. “I called the mayor’s office directly and one of his staff called me back the next day, saying ‘Yes, we’d love to have you in our city.’ That’s the kind of city I want to … do business in.”
In the meantime, as Mama Kim’s seeks a new owner, the restaurant — but not the food truck — will re-open Monday after closing while Fecher was on vacation. The truck will be back “sooner than everybody thinks,” Fecher said. “We’re going to be back, whether we’re in Pawtucket, or on Thayer Street or in the area.”
Students remain disappointed with the reduced presence of food trucks on College Hill this semester but said they are optimistic that the trucks will make a return soon. “I think the bad weather makes it hard for the trucks to park in the right places,” said Marjorie Pang ’18. “Hopefully once it gets warmer, we will see the trucks returning to Thayer Street.”
“I do think Mama Kim’s and other food trucks will come back to Thayer Street soon,” said Christy Leung ’18. “Lots of students buy food from the trucks regularly, and I think the city will recognize that demand sooner or later.”
Progress is being made to help food trucks find a place in the city, said Eric Weiner, president of Food Trucks In, a company that provides people in over 765 cities with information about food trucks. The mayor’s office and the City Council are “working at the current rules with the understanding that changes need to be made.” “Different people’s interests need to be figured out,” Weiner said, citing restaurants’ concern regarding the proximity of food trucks to their establishments and the University’s concern over limited parking space on College Hill for students, faculty members and staff members. “It may mean that they might end up on Waterman (Street), further from the restaurants, or on Angell Street,” Weiner said, adding that “everyone is in agreement that food trucks have a home in Providence.””
Mirchandani ’15: The myth of the Brown bubble by Brown Daily HeraldMar 20, 2015 “By the time I came to Brown, I was not a child who took everything her parents said at face value; to their dismay, I never really was.
“See Ria, this would never happen in America,” my father would tell me when I was younger, fuming at a taxi driver who had just run a red light and almost knocked over the helmetless family of five crammed onto a single motorcycle. This is a regular scene in India, where people almost outnumber trees and where many men value women less than cows.
India is a country of paradoxes, and the contradictions of this developing nation are ingrained in its identity. Even my father — in my opinion, the most upright, law-abiding man in South Mumbai — can be called out for his hypocrisy. He’s the type of person who would happily write a fat check for a piece of art, even if his driver, a commoner, could have used the same money to purchase essentials for his family, such as a stove. And that family of five — they might have skimped on buying helmets in order to joyfully blow a month’s earnings on celebrating one of the many birthdays of the many gods they believe in. Growing up in this environment, the question I asked was not “is it right to bribe?” but rather “how much?”
This is India, my country, where the existence of a law is relative to the size of your bank account. It is a homeland I did not choose, but it is mine nonetheless.
But alma maters are not like home countries; we at Brown had some agency over where we went to college — as we darn well should have. We did, after all, spend hours perfecting standardized test scores, taking the hardest classes our schools had to offer and, for many, spending a large sum of our parents’ hard-earned dough to be here.
I knew that America, despite its noble founding values, had its share of red light runners and non-conformists — even on our very own Thayer Street. I did, however, have higher expectations for Brown.
Money talked at Brown long before we started placing the hashtag in front of it. With the recent date-rape drug and sexual assault cases resulting in sanctions for Phi Kappa Psi, many were once again reminded of money’s vocality. Despite growing up surrounded by shocking wealth disparity, I did not truly realize the full breadth of wealth’s purchasing capacity. At Brown, I realized that it could buy you the privilege of living off campus even during your sophomore year. It could get you invited to select professors’ homes to schmooze over potential ways in which your father could fund their research, as I’ve observed. And, as some have accused, it may get you the privilege of escaping hearings that others would be subjected to.
I bought my metaphorical one-way ticket to the United States in December 2012, after a 23-year-old girl was raped on a bus while returning home from an 8 p.m. movie one Sunday evening in New Delhi. She was with her male friend. Not to imply that any kind of rape is anything but savage, but the brutality of this incident goes beyond human imagination. The victim has since had 95 percent of her intestines removed as a result. It took hours for passers-by to finally assist the victim, who had been abandoned, naked, by the roadside. There were protests and nationwide uproar. It took days for politicians to finally pass a statement and months for the trial to get underway.
It was my fault for thinking that, in light of the inhumanity of the situation, perhaps the hypocrisy that characterizes Indian politicians would not surface. Ironically enough, in a culture that worships over 23 Hindu goddesses, some politicians were quick to blame the woman for not submitting herself to the rapists as is expected of a woman, for not abiding by Indian culture and staying indoors after dark. BBC recently released a documentary containing interviews with the rapists and their lawyers, and within a few hours, the same politicians who had condemned rape as a “heinous crime” banned it under the pretext that it gave the wrong image of our country.
If this is what the real world had in store, I was in no rush to join it. Besides, my time at Brown had been a colorful one thus far. Here, I could run through the streets of the un-gated campus pretending to be the adult I was yet to become without fear because a blue light was always in sight. I could, and have, walked home from frat parties inebriated and alone because this is Brown, where students have enough respect for each other not to cut ahead the Blue Room sandwich line, no matter how long it may be. In this community of evolved thinkers, a basic respect for humans should be taken for granted.
And as the prospect of entering the real world approached, I began exploring ways to stay on at Brown for an extra semester. Many would ask, “Why do you want to stay in the Brown bubble?” I had come to the conclusion that this cocooned environment provided the most conducive environment for learning, which I wasn’t ready to stop doing.
My childhood discovery that Santa Claus did not exist was not half as painful as witnessing the slow unraveling of the Brown bubble myth, which my classmates and I experienced as the events of the recent date-rape drug and sexual assault cases have unfolded. It was shocking to learn that two students on our campus reported having symptoms that closely resembled the effects of date-rape drugs, though the lab results later came back inconclusive. And it was equally shocking to see the same institution that had only a year ago condemned the alleged sexual assault in the Lena Sclove case now find the student accused of sexual assault not responsible and not proceed to a hearing for the student accused of spiking a drink with GHB. While my sociology professor was preaching the demerits of economic inequality, somewhere on this campus, someone was perhaps walking away free of charge.
It all sounded too familiar, reminding me of India and its hypocrisy, which I had hoped to leave behind when coming to Brown. Yet for some strange reason, despite the morbidity and frequency of rape cases in India in any year versus on our campus, I had excused India — it is still an evolving country. When a documentary exposing the mindset of the rapists and lawyers involved in the 2012 Delhi case is released — India’s Daughter, 2015 — the Indian government throws a tantrum like an immature child and bans it. But Brown is an institution of higher learning with hand-selected scholars. While it was by chance that I was born into the Indian community, I chose to come to Brown.
In the past few weeks, the world outside the Van Wickle gates has blended with the world within, which is in the most ironic, depressing way exactly what I needed with two months left to graduation.
My fellow seniors who are feeling disappointed with the state in which they will be leaving Brown — cheer up! Brown has just done us the biggest favor. It has prepared us for the real world without us even realizing. It has proved that the “bubble” we so often complained about but secretly took comfort in never really existed. I won’t deny that I was looking forward to that bittersweet moment when I walked out of the Van Wickle gates, pulled out my metaphorical needle and burst the metaphorical bubble for good. The realization that the bubble may have never really existed has left me with a feeling that’s more bitter than sweet, yet so much more confident that I am prepared for the injustices that abound in the “real world.” In light of recent events on campus, how much worse could they get? Money isn’t talking anymore, it’s screaming. Screaming loud enough to silence all victims, loud enough to justify any criminal offense. Screaming like it does in this hyper-mystified world beyond the Van Wickle gates. All we can do is listen, no matter which side of the gates we’re on. Ria Mirchandani ’15 is clearly disillusioned by the world, both on and beyond College Hill. Tell her why she’s wrong (or not) at email@example.com.”
BASE letter campaign aims to support victim of domestic violence by Brown Daily HeraldMar 20, 2015 ““I stand with Nan-Hui because our women and children should be protected and supported at all costs.” These are just some of the words of empowerment that Brown Asian Sisters Empowered collected from Brown community members during its four-day #DearNanHui letter-writing campaign.
Other tributes included “I stand with Nan-Hui because domestic violence is never okay” and “I stand with Nan-Hui because I’m tired of victim blaming.”
Spending the first day in J. Walter Wilson and migrating to the Blue Room for the remainder of the campaign, the group advocated the rights of Nan-Hui Jo, a victim of domestic violence, and called attention to the social injustice surrounding her case.
BASE called upon Brown community members to write letters of support to Nan-Hui to display campus solidarity with her plight. The group will compile pictures of community members holding up these messages in both English and Korean on whiteboards and send them to Nan-Hui.
Nan-Hui, a single mother, fled from the United States to Korea with her 6-year-old daughter Vitz Da in 2009 to escape physical and emotional abuse by her previous partner. But when she returned to the United States in July 2014, she was immediately arrested and has since been imprisoned and separated from her daughter.
Nan-Hui now faces charges of child abduction and the possibility of deportation.
According to the American Bar Association, approximately 1.3 million women and approximately 835,000 men are physically assaulted by an intimate partner in the United States each year. Under international legal agreements, when parents take their children across international borders, the parents become vulnerable to charges of abduction.
“The best form to present our support is through letter-writing, so that she can feel that there are actually a lot of supporters rooting for her,” said Juhee Kwon ’14, an alum who helped organize the campaign.
The campaign is especially relevant to Brown’s campus, where many students are first- or second-generation immigrants, said Jea Sim ’17, BASE president and one of the event’s organizers.
“A lot of people at Brown that I know are survivors of emotional and physical abuse — it happens within the campus,” Kwon added.
After spending seven months in jail, Nan-Hui will await her sentence for another 30 days, Kwon said. Though many people show their support for the single mother, the words of encouragement often do not reach her in jail, she added.
Besides the letter-writing campaign, other avenues exist for students to get involved, such as petitions, open letters, tweets and phone calls that support Nan-Hui’s cause, Sim said.
Soyoon Kim ’18, who wrote a message as part of the campaign, said she “wanted to stand in solidarity with someone who I sort of relate to ethnically and culturally as a Korean person.”
Kim said she wrote her message entirely in Korean, Nan-Hui’s native tongue, adding that she “felt like (Nan-Hui) would appreciate support from the community.” Kwon said she hopes the campaign will evoke self-reflection on interactions within the Brown community. “Each one of us has an inherent way of how we are violent towards other people,” she said. “It’ll be a really great opportunity for folks to think about the ways they enact violence on other people.””
Athlete of the week: Larken Kemp ’17 anchors men’s lacrosse’s stubborn defense by Brown Daily HeraldMar 20, 2015 “The men’s lacrosse team started the season red-hot, rattling off a five-game winning streak which was capped off by a stellar 14-9 victory over then-No. 10 Harvard. The Ivy League’s second-ranked defense has been anchored by Larken Kemp ’17, who turned in a stellar performance against the Crimson.
Kemp leads the nation in caused turnovers per game at a solid 3.60. He tallied a school-record eight caused turnovers in addition to four ground balls and a goal in the fourth to help wrap up the win over Harvard. As a result of his fantastic play, he was recognized as Ivy League Co-Player of the Week and as the United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association National Defensive Player of the Week.
For his record-breaking performance that has already earned him several accolades, Kemp has also been named The Herald’s Athlete of the Week.
Herald: What made you start playing lacrosse and how long have you played?
Kemp: Growing up in Greenwich, Connecticut, it’s a lacrosse hotbed. It’s the normal — everyone’s doing it. My dad got me into it. I was probably four or five. I was playing in the town leagues and evolving from there. I was a big hockey player growing up, so I actually didn’t play too much lacrosse until later in high school and college.
How did the team feel after getting that first Ivy win against Harvard?
It was huge. Any time you beat Harvard, it’s an emotional high, regardless of if you’re undefeated or 0-4 heading into the game. We always say that we play six games that really matter: the league games. It’s why you come to Brown, for a chance to knock off a team like a top-10 Harvard team. It was a culmination of a lot of hard work and earning it.
What was the team’s reaction to the huge crowd at the game?
The crowd was unbelievable. You know, it might not have been the biggest crowd in terms of actual attendance, but it was so great to see our friends and family and people who care about Brown and Brown lacrosse come out in pretty horrible weather. It was great that they were loud and got us going. We really fed off that energy. It’s little things like that that can turn an 8-7 ballgame to a 10-7 one.
What does it mean to you to be named Ivy League Co-Player of the Week?
I’d be lying if I said it didn’t mean something. At the same time, especially for a defensive player, it’s a testament to what the six of us — seven including goaltender Jack Kelly ’16 — were able to do on a possession-by-possession basis. Causing turnovers and picking up ground balls has a lot less to do with one player. The five players behind you trust you and put you in a position to be able to take risks and try to make a play.
Moving forward, what are the team’s goals for the rest of the year?
Expectations are high, and they should be. You don’t come to Brown to be mediocre — you want to try to win Ivy League championships and win every game you play. Our goals haven’t changed. We compete every day, get better, find out more about ourselves. And hopefully, at the end of the day, the wins will take care of themselves and we’ll find ourselves competing for an Ivy League — and NCAA — playoff berth.
Do you have any superstitions or pregame rituals?
Yeah, I listen to the same music, tie my left cleat before my right, tape my stick butt end up first and throw off the same wall before games.
If you could play any other sport, what would it be? Definitely hockey. I love the sport, and I love the pace. It’s very comparable to lacrosse: It’s the fastest game on two feet versus the fastest game on ice. On top of that, I just love the guys. I’m friends with a bunch of the Brown hockey guys. — This interview has been edited for clarity and length”
Softball prepares for Ivy League schedule with trip to Golden State by Brown Daily HeraldMar 20, 2015 “The softball team hit rock bottom last season, compiling an abysmal 4-34 record that included a 28-game losing streak. But in the third season of Head Coach Katie Flynn’s tenure, the Bears (2-3) boast a youthful roster — only three of the team’s 15 players are upperclassmen — and have their eye on winning.
“Having a young team allows us to play with energy,” said captain Trista Chavez ’15. “We just need to continue to play with the same energy, confidence and focus, and I strongly believe that we are going to have a great season.”
Bruno’s season is off to a solid start, with wins over Army and Bucknell in Myrtle Beach, S.C. as part of a five-game series at the end of February. But with the weather-related cancellation of a trip to Towson, the Bears have yet to show they are any different than last year’s team, which also started 2-3.
Nevertheless, the team already looks different in one crucial area: offense. Through five games, Bruno is hitting a healthy .284/.348/.454 and is averaging 5.4 runs per game. In contrast, it hit .214/.258/.290 over all of last season and averaged a shade over two runs per game. The Bears also hit six home runs in their last weekend of play, as compared to just 10 all of last season and just two over its first five games in 2014.
“We have power throughout the lineup and do not have to rely only on one player to be able to produce runs,” Chavez said. “We have a solid mix of power and speed on this team.”
As one might suspect from the makeup of the roster, the team’s first-years have made the biggest impact. Three of those home runs came from first-years, and Yeram Park ’18 leads the team with three walks despite ranking ninth on the team with 12 plate appearances.
On the pitching side, Katie Orona ’18 has emerged as the team’s ace. In three outings, she has struck out 24 batters over 16 innings and has compiled a sterling 2.63 ERA. Leah Nakashima ’17 and Jessica Cherness ’15 were Bruno’s two main pitchers last season, though they had ERAs of 4.40 and 5.17, respectively. They combined to strike out just 95 batters in 174.2 innings.
Orona was quick to credit her coaches and teammates for her success.
“We have some really good coaches,” she said. “My catcher has been a big help,” she added, referring to Julia Schoenewald ’17.
With a pair of wins in their pocket and a much more talented roster than last year’s, the Bears are ready to prove themselves. They begin the break with a seven-game set in California before opening Ivy play on the road against Cornell and Princeton. “Our team motto for this season is to win the day,” Chavez said. “We strive to win games, but we strive even harder to get better each day. … If we as a team are constantly striving to improve our skills and better ourselves, the wins will come.” “If we win every day, we should set ourselves up for success in the future,” Orona said.”
Rockefeller donates $2.5 million to RISD Museum by Brown Daily HeraldMar 13, 2015 “The Rhode Island School of Design Museum received a $2.5 million gift March 5 from David Rockefeller, as well as a promise for pieces of artwork from his private collection as bequests, according to a March 9 RISD Museum press release.
Of the total donation, $2 million endows the David and Peggy Rockefeller Curator of Decorative Arts and Design, a position currently held by Elizabeth Williams. The remaining $500,000 will support the transformation of a 400-square-foot space in the museum’s Radeke Building into the David and Peggy Rockefeller Gallery.
John Smith, director of the RISD Museum, said the $500,000 supporting the gallery will specifically go toward renovating the space, updating the lighting and funding the installation of the pieces. The remaining sum will be kept in reserve for ongoing maintenance of the gallery, he added.
The David and Peggy Rockefeller Gallery will be situated on the floor dedicated to European art. The pieces that Rockefeller promised to the museum will be featured in this gallery and “will elevate the quality of our collection and fill voids in our collection,” Smith said. His gift includes furniture and decorative pieces from England, as well as European silver and porcelain objects, according to the press release.
“The furniture piece of the donation is exciting,” said Kevin Remy, a senior at RISD. Many professors have expressed interest in the museum’s current collection of furniture, so “it’s nice that the donation includes something that includes an overlap of their interests,” he said.
Before the museum receives Rockefeller’s bequests, pieces from its current collection will be featured in the gallery, Smith said. “We will be conscientious in capturing Mr. Rockefeller’s personality as much as we can in these works,” he said, adding, “What’s been so wonderful about working with (Rockefeller) is that he trusts and values the expertise of the curators here.”
The donation tells diverse stories, offering visitors various points of access to the new gallery, Smith said. “The objects will help us tell a global story about art and design,” he said.
Rockefeller’s recent donation is part of a narrative of support from his family beginning nearly a century ago. This “long history of generosity and philanthropy to the RISD Museum is a wonderful story in and of itself,” Smith said. David Rockfeller is the oldest living child of John D. Rockefeller, after whom Brown’s John D. Rockefeller Library was named in 1964. He has also been the oldest living member of the Rockefeller family since July 2004. A banker and philanthropist, he previously served as chairman and chief executive of Chase Manhattan Bank, which is now J.P. Morgan Chase. Smith said he expects renovations to begin in fall 2016 and the gallery to open in early summer 2017.”
Men’s lacrosse eviscerates Michigan 22-12 by Brown Daily HeraldMar 13, 2015 “The No. 19 men’s lacrosse team showed no signs of slowing down last weekend, cruising past Michigan by a final score of 22-12. Bruno is now off to its best start since 2004 and has certainly looked impressive in the process.
“The victories in our first four games do not define us, but they do build confidence in each man that their hard work and commitment to the team are of value,” said Head Coach Lars Tiffany ’90. “What does define us is the energy and passion we bring to each and every competition.”
As has been the story of the season so far, the Bears (4-0) were paced by Dylan Molloy ’17, who connected on eight goals while also dishing out five assists. With 13 points on the day, the star sophomore tied the Brown record for most points tallied in a match. Due to his stellar play, he was named both the Ivy League and the United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association player of the week.
“Clearly, Dylan has been fantastic,” said Henry Blynn ’16. “I haven’t seen players of his size use their body so well to score goals, and more importantly, he is a great teammate and strong leader who stays positive in adverse situations.”
Blynn was no slouch himself, scoring four goals to extend his season total to 10, while Kylor Bellistri ’16 also connected four times to bring his total to nine.
On Sunday, it did not take long for the Bears’ nation-leading offense to get going. Just 10 minutes into the contest, Bruno had already raced out to a 5-0 lead on the back of two goals each by Blynn and Molloy, as well as a tally from Brendan Caputo ’16. The Wolverines struck back at the end of the quarter, resulting in a 5-2 margin at the end of the first period.
After conceding a goal at the start of the second quarter, Bruno’s offense got rolling again, putting up another five goals in a row to extend the lead to 10-3. The Bears and the Wolverines (3-3) would each score twice before the half, leaving Bruno with a commanding seven-goal lead at intermission.
The third quarter started off on a slightly different note, with Michigan coming out as the stronger side and cutting the lead to 15-11 with 38 seconds left in the period. But Captain Tim Jacob ’15 made sure to put a stop to the Wolverines’ run, scoring with just eight seconds left to shift the momentum back to the Bears.
From there, Bruno dialed up its third five-goal streak of the contest to start off the fourth quarter, effectively putting the match out of reach.
After the 22-goal onslaught, the Bears maintained their spot as the nation’s most prolific offense, now averaging a remarkable 18.5 goals per game.
“Inhibition has been abandoned,” Tiffany said. “The style we play with is not the norm in college lacrosse — there is almost a reckless edginess to it. We are pushing the pace of play in order to gain an advantage before our opponent has a chance to set their defense.”
But it seems players have had little trouble embracing the new game plan.
“The new up-tempo offense is an offense that any offensive player dreams of playing within,” Blynn said. “Our new offensive coordinator, Sean Kirwan, wants us to constantly attack the opposition and keep them on their toes.”
Blynn was also quick to point out that it is not just the new system that has helped make the offense so successful.
“Our offense is conducive to having fun,” Blynn said. “Our motto before every game is that we have to beat the other team in the category of chest bumps and fist pumps. We’re a group of guys that love to have fun, and it shows with how many goals we score every game.”
While it is easy to get carried away with the team’s offensive prowess, as always, the defense certainly played its part as well. Goalie Jack Kelly ’16 recorded 14 saves on the match and now posts the sixth-best save percentage in the nation. Also impressive was the play of Will Gural ’16, who won 20 of 33 face-offs and collected a game-high nine ground balls. Gural now ranks ninth nationally in face-off winning percentage.
The Bears will open Ivy play Saturday against No. 10 Harvard, which will surely be a litmus test for the season to come. Last year, Bruno fell to the Crimson (4-1) 16-10 in Cambridge at a similar point in the season, but Bruno hopes the script will be reversed this time around.
With five teams in the Ivy League ranked in the top 20, the Bears will have to get used to playing tough competition week in and week out, but the team has the right mindset going forward. “It means a lot to our team to have gotten off to such a good start,” Blynn said. “However, we aren’t overly confident by any means and expect more of ourselves this season than winning a couple games. The Ivy League starts Saturdayand we are 0-0, so we understand that we have to go to work these next couple of weeks.” The team is “4-0 with one to go,” Tiffany said. “We will keep focused on improving ourselves individually and continue to work on our team’s new style of play. We will stay focused on what we control.””
Khleif ’15: In shape, out of touch by Brown Daily HeraldMar 13, 2015 “As I sit here writing this piece, all I am thinking about is the lemon cake on the bakery counter, waiting to be purchased.
Feb. 22-28 was National Eating Disorders Awareness Week. And while our Facebook pages and campus emails are usually riddled with information for various causes, this specific cause went relatively unnoticed. And I find that it usually does.
In the fall of my freshman year, I gained 15 pounds. As a small girl with a fortunately fast metabolism, I had never gained weight in high school no matter what I ate. Additional weight was a novel concept for me, and this myth of college weight gain became my internal obsession and reality.
Growing up, I always ate healthily. I was lucky to have a home-cooked meal every night and to attend a school that provided breakfasts and lunches focused on nutrition. But even I had my guilty pleasures — come on, I’m from D.C. We are born to love two things: Five Guys and Georgetown Cupcakes.
Frank, the man who worked in my high school cafeteria, knew me by name. I would frequently go up for seconds or thirds, and he knew to serve me as much as he served the boys twice my size on the football team or else risk incurring the wrath of a hungry teenage girl. I remember, one day, asking him for more food. He responded, “Sure, fatty!” It did not bother me then. In fact, I was proud. I was 5-foot-3 and twiggy at the time, and this was the type of joke shared between a worker and an active student with a zealous appetite.
Fast forward to freshman fall of college, and I was still eating enormous portions. I took the “all you can eat” slogan of the dining halls very seriously, carrying several plates to my seat at one time. But I didn’t have a clue what made food bad or good for the body. Though I would try to limit myself in terms of sweets and eat many fruits and veggies, I would also overload on pastas, grilled cheeses and other Ratty delights — how I miss meal plan! But by winter break, it was evident that my fast metabolism was quickly slowing.
Beginning around November, already unhappy at college — I hold no doubt that my unhappiness fueled the eating, and the eating fueled the unhappiness — I had started to hate my body in a way I never had before. I called myself fat; I called myself ugly. I convinced myself nobody would want to be friends with someone like me, and I stayed away from the hook-up scene. Outside of my a cappella group, I was a lonely recluse.
By December, I could no longer fit into my jeans, and I solely resorted to leggings and large sweaters to hide my figure; I was still within a healthy weight range but in a body that I was not used to. I remember taking my breakfast tray to the milk machine one morning at the Ratty and standing next to an athlete filling up his cup. Looking down at his tray, I noticed we had the exact same meals, except I had a larger amount on my plate than he had on his. He looked down at my tray and, obviously noting the same thing, smirked and said “nice,” before walking away.
It was a joke, said in the same tone as Frank’s — a male-to-female approval of consumption. But this time I did not feel proud. I was ashamed. I was so unhappy with myself and with my body.
It was not until spring semester that I decided to take action. Enough was enough, I told myself. It was time to change. I enrolled in an online program that guided me through losing weight in a physically safe way — something that was very important to me. I wanted to lose weight and sustain my healthy body.
I started exercising regularly and both looked and felt great. The program required inserting every item of food I ate into a nutrition calculator and all of the exercise I was doing into the program. And though, after months of effort, I was strong, fit and thrilled with my accomplishments, my physical health did not reflect my mental health. This program fed my always existent obsessive-compulsive anxiety disorder.
I became obsessed with counting calories and monitoring my weight. Even though I had lost the pounds I had gained in the fall, I still kept track of every calorie I was eating and every calorie I was burning — both online and mentally. Going out to restaurants was a stress-inducing nightmare. I would not want to eat anything on the menu after automatically estimating the calorie content, and I was so concerned about re-gaining weight that my days were spent scheduling myself around meal times and places. Food overwhelmed my mental capacity, and it was exhausting.
Early that summer my habits worsened, and the all-consuming stress pushed me to go to lengths I never had before to avoid future potential weight gain. Not officially labeled as an eating disorder, life-disrupting stresses revolving around food are labeled under the category of “disordered eating.”
As defined by the National Eating Disorders Collaboration , “Disordered eating is a disturbed and unhealthy eating pattern that can include restrictive dieting, compulsive eating or skipping meals.” Disordered eating shares characteristics with and has the potential to transform into categorized eating disorders such as anorexia, bulimia, binge-eating disorders and other equally severe illnesses. It may also result in stomach ulcers, headaches, fatigue, weight gain and muscle cramps, to name a few.
Many students at Brown know both the general stigmas and ramifications of eating disorders and disordered eating, but few know the vast extent of its existence.
According to the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated disorders , “Over one-half of teenage girls and nearly one-third of teenage boys use unhealthy weight control behaviors such as skipping meals, fasting, smoking cigarettes, vomiting and taking laxatives” to avoid gaining weight. Eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness, and anorexia is reported as the third most common chronic illness among adolescents. Approximately 24 million Americans of “all ages and genders suffer from an eating disorder.” And this statistic does not even take the “disordered eating” category into account.
I refuse to say I made the choice of developing a disordered eating habit, but it is hard to reflect back and excuse myself for all actions. The words I said to my body while in front of the mirror, the words I said to myself while in the dining hall and the words I said about myself in front of my drastically younger and currently maturing sisters haunt me. The social experiences I cut myself off from as a result of my habit leave me with many regrets.
While I mostly no longer engage in my disordered eating habits, I would be lying if I did not say there are still aspects of them that remain ingrained — obsessing over the desire for certain foods, like the lemon cake on the counter: its taste, its caloric value and both the satisfaction and regret it holds.
Though I still won’t let myself buy the cake, that is something I am working towards — allowing myself to indulge more frequently, if only out of love for myself. Zein Khleif ’15 is an independent concentrator in political psychology and can be reached at zein_khleif@brown. ”
Weinstein ’17: Sexual assault and conflict of interest by Brown Daily HeraldMar 13, 2015 “If the two recent cases regarding the alleged spiking of two women’s drink with GHB at a Phi Kappa Psi party and the alleged sexual assault of one of the women have conclusively proven anything, it’s that many people do not trust Brown’s disciplinary system. Two of the biggest issues in the recent cases — the University’s possible preferential treatment of the male student accused of spiking the drink and a Student Conduct Board’s finding that a different student was not responsible for allegedly sexually assaulting one of the women because her incapacitation did not allow her to provide a complete testimony — are similar to incidents that have played out at Brown before.
For example, the 1996 Adam Lack case also rested on an incapacitated student’s testimony and whether the respondent should have known she was too intoxicated to give proper consent.
In the fall of 1996, Sara Klein ’99 accused Adam Lack ’97 of sexual assault . According to Lack’s version of the story, Klein initiated their sexual encounter, stayed up late talking with him and gave him her phone number. Klein, who said she was too drunk to remember the night, claimed that she must also have been too intoxicated to give consent. Lack was first suspended and then sentenced to two semesters of probation . He sued the University, and they reached a confidential settlement .
At the time, Vice President for Campus Life and Student Services Margaret Klawunn was head of the Sarah Doyle Women’s Center . In the spring 1997 issue of the campus publication “Issues,” Klawunn said men advocating for Lack “are afraid that they have already been or will be the next Adam Lack. Many men see themselves as potentially in that situation or have already been in that situation. This case has become a magnet for men who have skeletons in the closet.” On the issue of preferential treatment, The Herald reported in 2010 that in fall 1996 “the University Disciplinary Committee declined to hear a female student’s complaint of sexual assault against a male student, citing the complexity of the evidence. The male student, her ex-boyfriend, was a relative of Jordan’s royal family whose father had donated money to the University. The committee’s decision led to an investigation by the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights. According to a 1997 University press release, the investigation was later dropped at the request of the parties.”
In September 2006, Beth Dresdale ’10, daughter of wealthy Corporation trustee Richard Dresdale ’78, accused William McCormick III ’10 first of stalking her and then of having raped her. McCormick was handed a plane ticket home by now-Executive Vice President for Planning and Policy Russell Carey ’91 MA’06 before he was told that he had been accused of rape. Richard Dresdale emailed former President Ruth Simmons, saying he was trying to get McCormick to withdraw from the University — which he did, citing a seizure condition — rather than undergo a disciplinary hearing. A private investigator hired by Dresdale interfered with McCormick’s advocate, assistant wrestling coach Michael Burch. McCormick sued the University and both Dresdales, and the suit was settled .
Whether or not a conflict of interest changed the outcome of any of these cases, a potential conflict of interest obviously exists. Administrators are tasked with protecting Brown’s institutional interests, including preserving the school’s reputation, encouraging donors and maintaining academic excellence. I don’t mean to insinuate that all administrators calculate their decisions in terms of institutional interest. But administrator discretion in sexual assault cases can clearly create the appearance of a conflict of interest.
Given the history of mishandled sexual assault cases, both at Brown and at schools across the country, it’s time to consider taking these cases out of the hands of administrators. Students, both accused and accuser, could have more faith in the system if Brown retained independent professionals to handle these cases. Already, the University — following the interim recommendations of the Task Force on Sexual Assault — is implementing the single investigator model, in which one professional investigator gathers evidence and presents it as a book to the hearing panel, Katie Byron ’15, a member of the task force, told me.
This is a good step, but I’d rather see one investigator for each side of the hearing, and an accommodation to allow the accused to face the accuser while mitigating trauma for the complainant. Under the current system, attorneys cannot speak for their clients in the hearings — only students and their advocates can, Byron said. It may be worth reconsidering this ban. Additionally, many of the steps proposed by the activist group Act4RJ in their list of demands of the University presented at Wednesday’s protest would also make the system work better for both parties.
Going forward, administrators should refer all complaints to investigators, who should have the sole authority to decide whether the case goes to a hearing, provided the parties do not reach some other settlement. Hearings should be run not by a panel comprising a student, a faculty member and an administrator, but by a retired judge retained by the University. Students, faculty members and administrators could potentially be influenced by their institutional relationship to the University, creating the appearance of a conflict of interest.
More importantly, the judge will deliver a finding of fact and recommended sanction. If the University chooses not to implement that sanction, it should be obligated to provide a reason, and both sides should be given a chance to appeal. While independent professionals won’t get every case right — no system ever will — they would remove one potential conflict of interest from the disciplinary process. That’s a system we can all have more faith in. Students, both accuser and accused, deserve that. Duncan Weinstein ’17 has a conflict of interest: He knows people who have been complainants and respondents in sexual assault cases. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. ”