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The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly: Zimmerman, Stand Your Ground, and the Racial Circus

July 25th, 2013 by Neil Killion

A Neighborhood Watch leader follows a suspicious character in the neighborhood and after being assaulted, and having his skull repeatedly bashed into the concrete, shoots and kills the assailant.  Most people reading that would probably respond differently than the way some have responded to the media circus and lynching of George Zimmerman.  What about this situation is worthy of the hype and uproar that has been thrust upon us for the last year?  Nothing!  The same situation happened elsewhere only it was a black Neighborhood Watch person and white assailants and surprise surprise, no uproar.

The Stand Your Ground law has been paraded about as another villain in this event, yet it had nothing to do with the event.  Unfortunately, not even our supposed constitutional scholar president is able to understand a very simple law.  Stand Your Ground says that if you are legally allowed to be somewhere and someone threatens your life you are able to defend yourself without first retreating.  In other words if I pull a knife or gun on you while you are walking down the street you can use deadly force (read gun) to defend yourself.  You do not have to turn and run.  You can stand your ground, hence the name of the law.  Now in the Zimmerman case, his head was being bashed into concrete.  Retreating is not an option at that point.  This was purely self defense.  He was not able to retreat once his life became endangered.  Mr. Martin was not unarmed, he was using the concrete as a weapon.

The ugly part of this was the race baiting that went on by those in the media and the White House.  “If I had a son he would look like Trayvon.”  I seriously doubt that a child of a president would be thugged out, smoking weed, and getting suspended from school for criminal activity.  Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson just showed their ability to profit off a tragedy as usual.  Why is it that this was considered a white on black crime when Zimmerman is half Peruvian?  Oh but Barack Obama is black even though he is half white.  In the eyes of some race is the only issue and no matter what it must have played a role.  It was the fact that Martin was black, not that he looked like a thug in an area that had seen a spike in break ins, that got him followed.

Now onto the head shake aspect.  It is sad to see how many people suck at the teat of celebrities that they blindly accept and follow what ever their favorite celebrities spout.  Zimmerman is an evil bastard and Trayvon Martin was a poor innocent thug.  No one stopped to question why this case was being pushed over numerous other cases where a black youth was killed.  They just continued on with the talking points of the hypocrites who think it is wrong for you and I to defend ourselves while they have armed security guards to protect them.


Prop 8 Problems

June 26th, 2013 by Neil Killion

I would caution the cheering crowds that view the Supreme Court’s refusal to rule on Prop 8 to step back for a moment.  This ruling raises some red flags, and I hope that those opposing Prop 8 can understand that.

Prop 8 made same-sex marriage illegal in California.  It was voted on by the people and passed.  The Governor then refused to enforce it.  Whether or not you agree with same-sex marriage is irrelevant.  The process of direct democracy that so many on the left supposedly believe in was dealt a blow today.

If the governor does not agree with the people’s decision then he does not need to listen.  In the future, when the same people that are championing this decision are in the majority and the governor is on the opposing side, the governor will not have to listen to their votes.  That should raise major concerns for them because in getting a victory, they are also getting a defeat.

The court did not rule that same-sex marriage should be legal, only that the plaintiff did not have the standing to bring the case before the court.  If it had been brought up as a voters’ right issue it is possible it may have resulted in a different decision.

 

Neil Killion


DOMA Unconstitutional

June 26th, 2013 by Neil Killion

While many of you may have been caught up in the joyous revelations that the Ducks will not be banned from the bowls this year, the court handed down a major decisions regarding gay marriage today.

The Defense Of Marriage Act (DOMA) was ruled unconstitutional in a 5-4 opinion.  The Supreme Court ruled that if you live in a state that recognizes gay marriage the federal government cannot deny federal benefits.  It does not rule whether or not gay marriage itself is legal, just that the federal government cannot discriminate against gay couples in those states that do recognize gay marriage.

Although this is a victory for same-sex couples, it is also a victory for states’ rights.  The state’s law held supremacy over the federal law in this case.  If the state recognizes same-sex marriage then the federal government cannot deny those couples benefits.  This may pave the way for other states’ rights issues in the future.

Neil Killion


Pay No Attention to the Lawyer Behind the Curtain

June 13th, 2013 by Nick Ekblad

I know I said the Tater Awards release was my last post, but I just need to call attention to some things.

Over two months ago, the Oregon Commentator went through the legitimate avenue to transfer funds into a new line item labeled “Public Records Requests”. Apparently the ASUO Senate was unaware (as was I and the rest of the Commentator staff– go figure) that “state money” cannot be used to investigate the “state”. I learned this only very recently as the UO Administration and the ASUO professional staff alike are determined to stonewall and ultimately stifle the Oregon Commentator. It’s as if their entirely subjective moral compasses are only functioning when they see one of our staff members walk in the door.

Conveniently for General Counsel Randy Geller, President Gottfredson, and the Athletic Department, the mandatory I-fee (student money), is considered property of the state and the $999 we secured to investigate these snakes in the grass is now unusable and will go to waste.

On a related note, FERPA is being used to redact student names from President Gottfredson’s calendar. WTF? is exactly right.

As happy as I am to declare this string of debacles “Not My Problem Anymore”, I feel sorry for the returning and incoming students. Good luck and good beer to all! You are going to need it.


Progressive probs’ bitches

June 12th, 2013 by Martin Hallstrom

 

Some news  about the ASUO reached our ears. Sure we were pretty drunk so it was barely audible.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             But apparently our dear friends in the ASUO are involved in some in/fighting. Frankly that’s awesome news to us at the OC.
We love watching those greedy, self-centered vultures fight amongst themselves. The reason for this infighting is a Tumblr page that contains memes and jokes made by the self-proclaimed “progressives” of the ASOU senate, mostly on the account of the conservatives in the senate and Taylor Allison.
Finally the ASUO is emulating congress! Fuck bi-partisanship and efficiency, let’s all just observe our differences instead of finding common ground. Because the ASUO senate isn’t already a rotten, bloated, ineffective, cesspool of waste, opportunism and stupidity right?

Link to the blog: Site


New Issue Online: The Tater Awards!

June 12th, 2013 by Nick Ekblad

I present to you, the Tater Awards.

This is the last issue for the Oregon Commentator I will have worked on and my last post on this blog. I appreciate all the lovers, the haters, and everyone who made any aspect of my experience at the OC possible. I am very proud of the last five months and wish the students at the University of Oregon a happy summer. Cheers!


OC and Daily Emerald Expelled from IAC Meeting

May 27th, 2013 by Nick Ekblad

Last Wednesday, the UO Senate’s Intercollegiate Athletics Committee (IAC) held a meeting at which AAD for Finance Eric Roedl was scheduled to give the IAC information about the athletic department’s budget and some projections about the next 6 years.

The UO Senate voted last week to require the Athletic Department to start paying back some of its subsidies, like that of the Matthew Knight Arena property, so this meeting had attracted myself from the Oregon Commentator, and two Daily Emerald reporters.

Right away there was tension in the air. This was the last IAC meeting of the school year and the AD still hadn’t released minutes from the previous meeting. Glen Waddell was met with an awkward silence when he asked about the delay in preparing the minutes.

“I’ve been really busy and haven’t gotten around to it,” the stenographer said.

Bill Harbaugh then asked IAC co-chair Andy Karduna if he had followed up on the request to the AD for the syllabus for the College of Education FHS 110 class that the athletics department requires all new players to take.

Karduna replied that he hadn’t, and had no plans to ever do so.

I had been under the impression that the IAC meeting was open to the public, as it was – until AAD Roedl realized that the media was present. And so began the discussion of whether or not to allow the media to stay during the presentation of revenue projections.

Some members of the IAC referred to the projections as “confidential… sensitive information”. When asked why projections would be “sensitive information”, those believing it to be sensitive did not want to discuss specifics because the reporters were still in the room.

Read the rest of this entry »


What will Gottfredson hide this time?

May 22nd, 2013 by Nick Ekblad

The making of public records available is more of a guideline than a “law” to adhere to here at the University of Oregon. In January, Economics Professor Bill Harbaugh requested President Michael Gottfredson’s calendar via the Public Records Office. It took them two months to produce this PDF with redactions and cost Harbaugh $108.

In very related news, the state of Pennsylvania decided last month that the public is entitled to the calendars of public officials in their entirety. This is shocking to reporters here at the University of Oregon, as the Public Records Office and UO chief executives like to interpret Public Records Law according to their personal discretion, rather than according to a transparent and concise procedure. This is acknowledged as lawful by UO Administrators because, as stated by Dave Hubin, “Oregon’s public records law is internally contradictory and ambiguous,” justifying the personal discretion used by those involved in preparing said “public” documents.

As Frank LoMonte of the Student Press Law Center states in his post on April 30, 2013 (see Pennsylvania link above), what applies to a state governor can be applied to chief executives of public universities. The post continues, stating,

“Pennsylvania law, like all state open-records laws, presumes that the public should have the maximum possible access and that any exceptions to access should be narrowly interpreted. That is, appropriately, what the Commonwealth Court did April 23 in Office of the Governor v. Scolforo.”

I have requested Gottfredson’s calendar since January 8, 2013, the cutoff date of the last request. Since this University of Oregon no longer claims to be “Oregon’s flagship university” and is en route to losing its research status granted by the Association of American Universities, I suppose the Administrators won’t really see any pressing need to save the UO brand by improving transparency. Research? Who needs that? That’s what OSU is for.

Go Ducks!


THE 2013 HATE ISSUE

May 7th, 2013 by Nick Ekblad

We are very very proud to release our highly revered HATE issue! Nobody is safe!We take no prisoners!

Click here to read about the illegality of OSPIRG and why it sucks! We also hate on the UO, Sobriety, California and many other abominable topics!

SHARE THE HATE!


Con Court Leak Compromises ASUO Government

May 6th, 2013 by Nick Ekblad

An email was just sent to our editorial staff anonymously. The author of the email alleges that there have been a number of instances where information regarding Constitution Court decisions had spread around the ASUO office prior to any sort of opinion being released. When the Court chose to remove Laura Hinman from office, she was apparently aware before it was official. Again before her reinstatement, she alluded to her former staff that the ruling would be overturned. Most recently, the decision by the Court to overturn the spring ASUO election was known to members of the United Oregon campaign over a day prior to the knowledge being made public. The anonymous author concluded, signing as A Very Concerned ASUO Representative:

I urge you to confront Chief Justice Nick Schultz over these allegations, as if the court is compromised, it threatens the stability of the ASUO government for as long as the leak remains.

Honestly, for something with so little stability already, it’s hard to want to care. However, confronting Schultz can’t hurt. Got anything to say, hombre?


UO Keeps Out the Riff Raff

May 4th, 2013 by Nick Ekblad

20130504-133350.jpg

Just kidding, that’s at UC Davis.

Here at the UO, getting the records you want can be sort of a hassle. UO Matters has attained public records from both the UO and OSU and the difference in what each institution deems “public” or a “conflict of interest” is disturbing. The difference in pay is understandable. Because Go Ducks? We’re better than beavers right? We gotta keep out the riff raff.


UO Cheer tryouts: $5 …Ogling cheerleaders: Priceless

May 4th, 2013 by Nick Ekblad

I know this is old news but, in case you haven’t heard, the UO Cheer squad hosted tryouts and invited the public to come watch for a 5 dollar entrance fee. Busted Coverage has the story (and pictures!).

UO Matters has the story, too. On that post you will find a screenshot of a bid war for a pair of Official Women’s Soccer shorts:
20130504-132158.jpg
Disgusting. And Hilarious. The Busted Coverage gallery is the best though. Locker room pics!

But honestly am just saddened that the ASUO mailing lists didn’t forward any notice of the cheerleading tryouts. I would have forked over 5 dollars any day to get a close up view of the cheerleaders in action. Wait, I take that back. Most of them are too orange for me.

UO Cheer did have an advertisement on their official Twitter feed, though. I wonder what kind of fellows and how many of ‘em were lucky enough to get in there…


The Latest from New Hampshire: Police Do What They Want

May 3rd, 2013 by Nick Ekblad

I sure am glad to live on the West coast.

During a block party, a fight breaks out and riot police respond, non-lethals ablazing, spraying pepperballs into the crowd all willy-nilly. They then proceed to force everyone to “move along” in order to “secure the area”. After watching the all the different videos a few times, I decided that the video linked above puts it all together pretty well. However, this one has some extra goodies.

It seems like the cops were bored or behind on quota. Perhaps they even just wanted to push around some college kids at gunpoint. Let’s just hope that giving our officers guns doesn’t give them this kind of confidence.

Shoot the police.

camera


HATE: JOIN THE CONVERSATION

April 18th, 2013 by Nick Ekblad

WE WANT TO KNOW WHAT YOU HATE!

So much that we made this hate document!

Now is your chance to unleash your hatred at/for/via the Oregon Commentator! FREE SUDSY T-SHIRT FOR THE BEST HATE ESSAY

Well-grounded hate is quintessential because its ugly alternatives are blind acceptance or forced compromise. This current trend in society to discourage or even denounce hate in its essence spells danger for the United States. We must not only keep in mind but assert the importance of upholding the right to hate, just as we have the right to free speech. As irrational or discomforting as it may sound, everyone has the right to feel how they feel. As a former Commentator once said:

Sticking your head in the clouds and pretending the world is always a beautiful place may be appealing, but it is not reality.

https://docs.google.com/a/oregoncommentator.com/document/d/1SpOnDnFrhGBcLIdOa6iJfwa_lqSDpcW0j0AvhCHcNoQ/edit?usp=sharing


Temple, Texas Cops Illegally Arrest Active Duty Soldier

April 18th, 2013 by Nick Ekblad

Truly a blow to democracy. Check this video.

Grisham

 

Active duty soldier (veteran of the Iraq and Afganistan wars) and Concealed Handgun Licence holder Christopher J. Grisham was unlawfully disarmed and arrested on March 16 while hiking with his son, who was earning his Eagle Scout rank. Now Temple  police have a lawsuit on their hands. Grisham has begun to raise money for his court case and his fellow gun rights-advocating Americans are not letting him down!

After two days of fundraising for his court case, he reached double his fundraising goal. Read about his fundraising campaign here. This is a prime example of illegal search and seizure by over-zealous police. This is CHL holding active duty soldier walking with his son. He wasn’t menacing. The police needlessly handcuffed and disarmed this man. I’m all for police protecting themselves, but I hope every cop in America is watching this and notes that Americans are INNOCENT UNTIL PROVEN GUILTY and will not have their guns taken away. As Grisham says on his blog,

No one should have to fear being illegally disarmed without warrant, especially someone who has never committed a crime in his life.