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SC4 professor offers solutions to national quandary Democrats, Republicans: None of the Above gives political perspective

Therese MajeskiFront Cover (2)
Copy Editor

Kraig Archer, a professor of sociology here at SC4, has written a book that he believes has timely application to our current political state and that he hopes will motivate readers to pursue alternatives to the current two-party system.
“I would like my book to lead to a new political movement,” Archer said.
Insightful and refreshingly free of party bias, Archer’s book, Democrats, Republicans: None of the Above, offers perspective to our polarized political climate, asserting that as presidential elections draw near it is critical for voters to reassess national issues beyond the labels and conflicts of the Republican and Democratic parties.
Archer’s book examines an extensive range of much-debated governmental issues, covering topics such as the nation’s educational system, immigration, environmental concerns and international relations. In discussing these issues, Archer gives a judicious assessment of the national challenges that he feels the contentious government system is not properly addressing and suggests several practical solutions to national issues, both political and social.
“We all have a future in this country…these type of issues affect the type of future our kids are going to have,” Archer said.
Weighing in at 51 pages, None of the Above is, however, short for its densely packed subject matter, failing to fully clarify several key concepts.
Kraig Archer instructor high resThis lack of explanation could lessen the book’s impact for some readers; at times readers would need specialized political and sociological knowledge to fully understand the subject matter.
When, for example, Archer presents his views on flaws in the structure of the Supreme Court, he cites several cases in order to demonstrate a trend of decisions that he thinks lack foundation in proper constitutional interpretation. The problem here is a lack of elaboration; while Archer’s reasoning is very sound, he does not mention the issues under discussion in each case, slightly undercutting his argument for readers without a knowledge of judicial history.
Nevertheless, these structural imperfections are not entirely negative in their effects, making None of the Above a brief, accessible read, particularly for students and others whose busy schedules make finding time for political study difficult. This brevity makes the book a good entry point into a political education exploring a more balanced, better-informed political worldview.
Archer hopes that after readers finish None of the Above they will be inspired to take action by establishing a third political party to combat the problem of divisions in our present system.
The third political party that Archer proposes would be called the Faith Reform Party and would be founded both on Christian moral principles and on a desire to uphold America as an ever-improving nation.
Ultimately, None of the Above, while lacking in length and definition of terms, is a well-reasoned, skillfully argued and easily read a book that can serve as a stepping stone into a style of independent, intelligent political thought that is unencumbered by excess party polarization.
Archer’s book is available through Amazon.com in both print and e-book format.

T-birds tidbits: Michigan lawmakers approve Right to Work

T-birds tidbits:

Michigan lawmakers approve Right to Work

Twana Pinskey

Managing Editor

 

In a move that would rival the “War of the Roses,” Michigan legislators have voted to make Michigan the 24th state to become a “Right to Work” state.

This move allows Michiganders the right to work at jobs without being forced to pay union dues.

I believe it to be a smart move. Others may disagree and might ask “why Michigan?”

According to Detroit Free Press writer John Gallagher’s Nov. 17 article it’s “An upbeat outlook for Michigan’s economy.”

University of Michigan economists predict moderate economy growth and job gains during the next two years.

I agree with that.

From what I have seen, housing is slowly turning around as well. As encouraged as I am about these positive signs, I don’t think we can rest on our laurels.

I would like to see a more intensified growth in our state. We are headed in the right direction, but need to pick up speed, not slow down.

This is why I am not opposed to taking another look at Right to Work.

Ok, so I understand those who oppose Right to Work believe the move will weaken unions and feel it can lead to lower wages. But what I have always had a problem with is employees being forced to pay union dues as grounds for employment, even if they do not join their company’s union.

I can see right in both perspectives.

As a realist, I believe if you opt out of a right to work union, then you should not be able to reap the benefits of those who do choose union membership.

Right to Work can lead to more businesses, and opponents of Right to Work are right in their concern over lower wages.

On the other hand is the success in other Right to Work states.

According to the Bureau of Census, between 2000-2011, Right to Work states have seen an over 11 percent increase in residents ages 25-34. Growing pay checks lead to increased populous in these states.

Accordingly, non-Right to Work states has seen a 0.6 percent increase in the same time frame.

I believe Right to Work is not the cure all, but is one of the necessary ingredients for growth, yet ensures a state’s politics are not dominated and controlled by unions.

Winter’s chocolate fix

Winter’s chocolate fix

Christina Stoutenburg

Editor-in-Chief

 

Winter’s coming and the cold weather’s not letting up, so why not try something new?

Hot chocolate from scratch, or maybe even some no-bake cookies?

Sure, it’s easy to head to the nearest store and purchase premixed powder, whether it be in tub form or packet, but it’s just as easy to concoct hot chocolate from scratch.

Most of the necessary ingredients can be found around the house, some might need to be purchased.

Hot Chocolate by Josh Moody under a Creative Commons license

For two servings the ingredients are:

  • 4-5 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder, the kind often used for baking.
  • 4 Tablespoons sugar, a sugar substitute maybe used, refer to the package substitutions
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon  ground cinnamon
  • 2 cups milk, or for a lactose free version try plain soymilk
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Mix sugar, cocoa, and salt in a small bowl then set aside.

Next heat the milk, or soy milk on the stove or microwave, until hot. Separate the milk into two mugs, and then evenly divide the powder mixture into the two mugs.

Stir and maybe add some marshmallow or whipped cream, if desired.

No-bake cookies are another chocolate fix that most ingredients if not already stocked, are cheap to purchase.

No bake cookies by Rick Measham under a Creative Commons license

To make two to three dozen cookies, it takes about 20 minutes and the following  ingredients:

  • ½ cup (1 stick) butter
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • ½ cup milk
  • 4 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • ½ cup peanut butter
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 cups quick-cooking oats

First prepare a wax paper lined cookie sheet for dropping, and then set aside.

Add the butter, sugar, milk and cocoa powder to a 4-quart saucepan and bring to a rolling boil. Let the mixture boil for one minute, and then remove from heat.

Add the peanut butter and vanilla, stirring until smooth. Next stir in the oats.

Now grab the wax paper lined cookie sheet and drop heaping teaspoons of the mixture onto it, leaving a little space for the cookies to settle.

Let cool until set, then they are ready to eat.

These recipes were found online, the hot chocolate one is courtesy of Meijer Healthy Living Advisor Tina Miller, and the no-bake cookies to the Brown Eyed Baker website.

Pets of the issue

Pets of the issue

Christina Stoutenburg

Editor-in-Chief

 

To help cover adoption fees, an anonymous supporter has offered to help cover the cost of any pet featured in the Erie Square Gazette. For more information on adopting these pets, contact the Sanilac County Humane Society at (810) 657-8962 or e-mail them at societypets @att.net. You can also visit their webpage and check out the other adorable adoptees at www. petfinder .com  /shelters/ MI278.html. For more information call 989-5584.

Maverick is an adult male Collie/Hound mix who is house trained. He has short brown, black, and white fur, and is neutered and up-to-date with routine shots. His adoption fee is $175.00.

Roberta Jane is a young female gray and white with short hair. She is spayed, house trained, and up-to-date on routine shots. Her adoption fee is $75.

For more inquiries contact the shelter.

Tis’ the season

Tis’ the season

Joyce Smith

Staff Writer

 

Final exams, the holiday season, financial and family commitments, can all combine this time of year to create a stressful mess!

But, it doesn’t have to be that way, according to the experts from Mental Health American. Connecting with others, staying positive, being physically active, helping others, getting enough sleep, taking care of your spirit, and asking for help if you need it, are all strategies that can help to cut down on stress this time of year.

SC4 offers a variety of activities which you may want to consider to provide that much needed break.

SC4 Spiral Gallery in Review, located at 1219 Military Street, offers an escape for a few minutes, or a few hours, as you review art work to feed the mind and spirit. More information on the Spiral Gallery exhibit can be obtained by calling (810)989-5747.

Holiday Winds & Voices – SC4 Symphonic Band Concert may be just what the doctor ordered to help nurture your spirit this holiday season. The concert will be held in the McMorran’s theater Dec. 16, beginning at 4 p.m. For more information, or to check ticket availability, call (810)985-6166.

If something active is more your style you may want to consider watching some basketball. Both the men and women’s team will compete on Dec. 15 in the SC4 gymnasium.

SC4’s women’s team play beginning at 1 p.m. and the men’s game begins at 3 p.m.  Or, you may want to consider getting moving yourself with Wellness Wednesday exercise classes each Wednesday in Room 150 of the M-Tech Building, beginning at 5 p.m.

Regardless of what events and activities appeal to you it is important to remember that while dedication to final exams and personal commitment is admirable, it is also important to take a few moments for yourself.

After all it “tis the season” to need a break from the stressful mess of the holiday season.

Dominance

Dominance

DJ Palm

Sport Editor

The Lady Skippers have been nothing but dominant since the start of the season.

Their first five games have been won by an average of 30 points, the narrowest margin of victory for the Lady Skippers, and oh yeah, they’re 5-0.

That came last Tuesday Night with Lansing CC.

Lady Skips opened up like they always have, with Head Coach Mike Groulx’s game plan of a full court press had them up early opening the game with a 9-2 run. Starting center Hiedi Highstreet was a little bit limited in the first half as she had three fouls in the first nine minutes.

LCC has been the toughest challenge for the Lady Skips so far this season, holding the Lady Skips to 58 points after scoring 89,83,87, and 66 through their first four games.

Tiesha Knott in the second half wasn’t letting the team drop one in the loss column as they  were only up 9 at halftime.

“We weren’t executing like we wanted to,” said Knott, who had 10 of her 18 points in the second half, six of those 10 consecutively to open after halftime. “We stayed in control, kept communicating and that’s what got us the win.”

Groulx called the win against LCC an “ugly win.”

“They(LCC) did a real good job of slowing the tempo of the game, we like to play faster but we adjusted and pulled it out,” said Groulx.

Lady Skips’ next game is on the road Thursday in Grand Rapids, where they look to go 6-0.

Artist stomping ground comes to downtown Port Huron

Artist stomping ground comes to downtown Port Huron

Erick Fredendall

Business/Advertising Editor

Equip. Empower. Engage. Inspire.

Those four words are the inspiration and mission of the new downtown business, Art for Good, a creative café and arts workshop that will be celebrating its grand opening Dec. 1 from 1-6 p.m., and will be hosting raffles and other events throughout the day.

Owners Jenny Rogers and Lee-Perry Bellleau display a few of the products sold at Art for Good. Photo Credit: Erick Fredendall

The owners, husband and wife Lee-Perry Belleau and Jenny Rogers, created Art for Good as an attempt to bring together the creative minds in the Blue Water area and create an active workshop where artists could come to create, or mull the day over a cup of coffee.

The business is actually divided into three entities: Art for Good, Creative Café, and the KidSAKE Foundation.

Art for Good, the name the store is identified with, is the retail end of the business, which features fair trade coffees, teas, and chocolates, as well as Michigan-made projects.

Art for Good volunteer Eric Gottler makes a poster for the grand opening. Photo Credit: Erick Fredendall

The owners, Belleau and Rogers, feel very strongly about their fair trade products.

“Many people don’t realize that majority of coffee and chocolates that we consume are produced by slave labor—it is a huge trade, international slave trafficking,” Belleau explained. “The fair trade products we feature are grown on farms by farmers and their employees, who are receiving working wages for their products.”

The KidSAKE Foundation, of which Rogers stands as the executive director, is an organization founded to promote art based programs and reach out to communities world-wide.

As for the Creative Café, the purpose is simple; create an environment where artists can work and grow.

With worktables, a stage, a reference library, and a wifi connection, the café is an ideal location for those looking for a quiet place to work or collaborate with friends.

It happened in the 11th hour

It happened in the 11th hour

Joyce Smith

Staff Writer

The 11th hour of the 11th day, of the 11th month, of 1918 was when the First World War ended.

This day became known as Armistice Day. Later, after the end of World War II a veteran by the name of Raymond Weeks organized a day to honor all veterans with parades and festivities.

In 1954, Dwight D. Eisenhower proclaimed Nov. 11 as the national holiday of Veteran’s Day.

Thoughts of Veteran’s Day observances bring to mind images of the aging faces of those who served in WWII Korea, and Vietnam, and very few others.

These images bring to mind a question, where are the younger veterans?

Those who have served in the recent past in places like Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, and elsewhere; why aren’t they in attendance at the celebrations for Veterans’ Day?

There are veterans in attendance at local colleges, universities, and trade schools. There are veterans at work in various jobs throughout the country.

Many have returned to comfortable lives of health and prosperity, and they are happy to blend humbly and quietly, into the fabric of their respective communities.

Others however, have not fared so well.

For these veterans the homeless, the disabled, those facing high unemployment, and underemployment, it may once again be the 11th hour.

“Over the years since its’ inception, Veterans Day has become more about having a three day weekend,   and less about honoring those who have served,”  lamented a young veteran attending a biology class here at SC4. “You want to know where the younger veterans are during those Veteran’s Day ceremonies? They’re working part-time at Wal-Mart and can’t take time off, or they’re at physical therapy trying to recover from injuries that they received while serving!”

Every day is the time for us to recognize veteran’s for their service. Every day, is when veterans should be honored.

They may not wish to come forward at ceremonies and services. They may not want to remember the things that they have seen and lived through in service to our country.

But it is our duty to ensure that medical care, training, and support services are there for our veterans, no matter the war in which they have served.

Winter registration reminder

Winter registration reminder

Danielle Kennedy

Copy Editor

A reminder to students who have yet to register for winter semester, the ability to register with no payment down is Nov. 30.

Once December begins, full payment will be due upon registering.

Registration for the winter semester will be open until Jan. 22.

Final payments, for those who register before Nov. 30, are due Dec. 14. The option to pay in increments is available to students.

Students may register online via the WAVE, or in person at the registration office in the Acheson Technology Center.

The winter semester begins Jan. 14

SC4 premiere’s “Biloxi Blues” Nov. 29

SC4 premiere’s “Biloxi Blues” Nov. 29

Amber Oile

Staff Writer

The premiere of the play “Biloxi Blues” hits St. Clair County Community College theatre on Nov. 29 until Dec. 2.

This play, written by Neil Simon, captures the life and experience of character Eugene Jerome, an army recruit during the time of World War II. After he leaves his hometown Brighton Beach and heads to Biloxi, Mississippi, Jerome is given a crash course in basic military training.

The Biloxi Blues Cast Photo Credit: Liz Whittemore

During that time Jerome and fellow recruits deal with their sergeant and Jerome builds a sort of acute perception on his writing. Jerome and his fellow recruits learn the true meaning of army life and make the transition from boys to men.

This play is directed by Tom Kephart and makes its debut Thursday, Nov. 29 at 5:30 p.m., an audience talkback will follow the performance. Other times include Friday, Nov. 30 at 7:30 p.m, Saturday Dec. 1 at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday Dec. 2 at 2 p.m.