Back in the fall of 2013, the University of Alabama was embroiled in a national scandal after a student newspaper report uncovered the systemic racism fostered by the Greek System on campus.
University officials scrambled to get a hold on the situation as students rallied and marched on campus in an attempt to desegregate the dozens of nearly all white sororities.
Then University President Judy Bonner was roundly criticized for her inaction to address the issue before UA’s student paper, the Crimson White published the expose, which then went viral.
In an attempt to calm the anger on campus, Bonner used a meeting with Bill Cosby, who at the time was largely beloved in the country to show that Alabama cared about social progress.
It was cringeworthy then and is even more cringeworthy now.
WATCH: 2013 video of Alabama President using Bill Cosby to smooth over racism
The Alabama student protest led to change on the campus. 214 women accepted bids to UA sororities this past August and the student body elected its first African-American SGA president in nearly forty years last spring.
The Alabama movement also preceded similar action at the University of Missouri and other colleges this past fall.
Bonner retired from her role as President earlier this year.
Cosby was charged with aggravated indecent assault earlier today in Pennsylvania.
Cover Photo Credit: University of Alabama/ Vimeo (Screengrab)
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About the AuthorRich Robinson is the CEO and publisher of Rise News. He is also a journalist and a native of Miami. Robinson graduated from the University of Alabama and can be followed on Twitter @RichRobMiami.
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By Daniel Mirolli (originally published on Medium)
Before people begin lobbing thermal detonators my way I’ve actually thought long and hard about this and tonight’s trailer release simply confirms my suspicions. Yes, much of this is speculation. Duh! None of us have seen the film and I’m not privy to any information that isn’t available to everyone.
So if you’re reading this before the release and I turn out to be right then, SERIOUS MIDICHLORIAN-SHATTERING SPOILERS AHEAD!!!
If not then the odds you’ve wasted a few minutes listening to a member of your fandom unsuccessfully navigate a trailer release are approximately 3,720 to 1.
So, here’s 10 reasons why Luke is to Kylo as Finkle is to Einhorn.
1. The Poster
You know, this poster. The poster everyone flipped their Force about because Luke isn’t in it.
But he IS in it. I know that’s a “he said, she said” game but let’s do a head count.
Rey, Finn, and Poe? Check.
Han & Leia? Check.
C-3PO & Chewie? Check.
R2 & BB8? *beep* *boop* *whir*
Luke? …Luke? ….Beuler?
Be honest, does it make any sense to not have Mark Hamill in your poster for a movie that will cause box office records to pull an Alderaan (too soon)? Abrams and the rest of the Disney / Lucas Film studio aren’t thinking, well…
I would love it if there is someone at Lucasfilm right now going: “Oh Shi**. We forgot Luke Skywalker.”
— Christopher Dring (@Chris_Dring) October 19, 2015
There’s more to this but for now let’s move on to —
2. The Cowl
We’re dealing with two ancient and opposing, albeit evidenced, religions in the Star Wars universe; Jedi vs Sith. Mysticism, symbolism, and color are very important. There’s a “reason” Jedi fight in bathrobes instead of a more combat ready, blaster repelling, MJOLNIR Mark VI armour (sweet Cortana, someone please create that side fiction) and it’s, “our Jedi Order says so”. Everything is to align itself with the ideas and mythos of their side of the force.
Taken from the second trailer released for the upcoming film there’s little doubt that this is Luke and his trusty companion R2-D2 — the mechanical right hand is a dead giveaway for that. But look at the cowl the character is wearing.
Remember in Episode VI when Luke faced off against Vader in the final fight? He wore an all black outfit (actually throughout the entire film). Why this shouldn’t give us pause, let’s go back to Episode III.
As Anakin progress in his use of the Force and his eventual awakening to the dark side his outfit begins to incorporate more black. I’m sure another fan will correct me on this but none of the Jedi Counsel, with the exception of Shaak Ti (and sometimes Kit Fisto) who is a certifiable badass, wear black.
The Jedi gravitate towards browns, tans, and whites; unassuming colors to help combat the pride that leads to comparison, anger, hate, suffering, and Yoda-speak. In The Return of The Jedi we see Luke wearing all black, facing off against his father, and being told to give into his hatred. Despite Luke’s dismissal of the Emperor’s offer there is a part of him intrigued by the dark side of the force — at the very least the desire to get shit done on his own (see: leaving the Ewok enclave to confront Vader mano y mano). Which leads us to
3. The Timeline
We know from the trailer that many years have passed between VI and VII. Luke changing sides is not something that would happen over night. Like his father, he needs time to strike out on his own and attempt to establish real change in the galaxy by defeating the Empire and establishing the Alliance (like Anakin initially did in the Clone Wars). But the Alliance is just that, an alliance! It requires the independent choice of a multitude of people, a change that takes much longer to realize than the bending of galactic will to a particular vision.
But that is a more effective route and it provides Luke more control. Remember when Luke was training on Degoba what Yoda says to him?
Luke is Anakin’s son. He has the same rebellious, assertive, Type-A tendencies. Now imagine, you’ve just defeated the Empire. The Rebel Alliance is in shambles but victorious. The Empire still has the more fire power. Coruscant is a distant legend. There is sudden peace and no clear leader. Chaos ensues with the Outer Rim warlords seizing the power vacuum left by the Empire. You have to try to remake the galaxy into the prosperous and functioning system it was before there was war, all without using the Force for attack, or a clone army and armada that you quite literally just inherited.
How long before you’d convince yourself you’d get more good done by using this once evil force to unite every world under a single banner? How long before you then had to rely on the Force for attack? How long before Yoda’s admonition for control became validation for your desire to control whole worlds?
4. Mark’s Age
Back to practicality, Mark Hamill is old. Yes, Harrison Ford is older but that’s like comparing Achilles and Hector. We know from Abrams’ behind the scenes videos that he’s a fan of analog and puppetry over CGI. We also know that the force affords its practitioners sustained mobility in old age. To me, that means that while we know Mark did suffer an injury on set, it would behove Abrams to have a stunt double option for Mark readily available for all action scenes and that’s much easier if your old actor chooses to wear a mask.
5. Kylo Ren
So what do we actually know about this guy? According to the Star Wars Wiki, Kylo Ren was born sometime after the Battle of Endor. And while initial assumptions are that he was physically born after the Battle of Endor we also know one very important thing:
Kylo Ren is a title.
We also know that, while serving under Snoke in the Knights of Ren he was obsessed with Vader and is believed to have modeled his look and behavior after him. It is not a stretch to imagine Luke recognizing the frustration his father saw in establishing a new order and following in his footsteps.
6. Yin and Yang Film Cycle
If you haven’t caught on to this yet, the Star Wars franchise oscillates between a Sith and Jedi dominated story line, influenced by the Yin and Yang culture which the originally story was likely plagiarized from (The Hidden Fortress).
Odd Episodes = Sith Wins
Even Episodes = Jedi Wins
Episode VII will be a win for the Sith. And while there’s no guarantee that the new Disney/Lucas Films mashup will stop printing money at Episode IX the franchise does operate on a trilogy cycle. Which means that either Episode IX has to end with the Sith winning or something really interesting has to happen. But how does this all come together?
Queue Star Wars Magic:
7. The Pledge
Every great magic trick consists of three parts or acts. The first part is called “The Pledge”. The magician shows you something ordinary but of course… it probably isn’t.
Despite how new the 3rd trailer looked, we’ve been here before. New characters are introduced (Rey, Poe, BB8), someone discovers they can use the force (Finn), a baddie is revealed (Kylo), and we “rediscover” a wise mentor (He-Who-Shoots-First Han). This is identical to Episode I and IV.
From what I can gather, Force Awakens begins with the First Order beginning to fill the power vacuum left by the fighting through a unified assault (using Empire weapons and armada). The Jedi are viewed as a myth as evidenced by Han needing to affirm that all the stories actually took place. It’s true. The Dark Side. The Jedi.
In Force Awakens, Han plays the role of Yoda in Episode V — he knows about the past and a crucial detail to the present (one that he doesn’t reveal). And that’s fine, because we’re still meeting the new characters and learning how the world works. We’re establishing assumptions based on what we can glean from the plot until —
8. The Turn
The second act is called “The Turn”. The magician takes the ordinary something and makes it do something extraordinary. Now you’re looking for the secret… but you won’t find it, because of course you’re not really looking. You don’t really want to know. You want to be fooled.
Episode II, V, VIII. Anakin turns, Vader is Luke’s father, Kylo is Luke. This is a far more compelling story line that simply a new bad guy is bad and Luke is absently being a hermit because Obi Wan.
Imagine walking out of the theatre on December 18th. You’ve just witnessed the First Order run train on the free world(s). Poe is a funny pilot. Finn is the most relatable and powerful character you’ve seen in a while. And Rey is a badass testament to Feminism (and ultimately Humanism) everywhere.
And while Han has been able to provide great intel on Kylo Ren and the First Order no one seems to be asking where this guy came from or what really happened to Luke.
But Han remembers. He remembers how he and Luke had initially set off to rebuild the galaxy together. How they had become frustrated after years of seeing little progress, already exhausted from their fight against the Empire. He remembers how Luke would disappear on missions, dressed in all black, saying that because he could use the Force he was better suited for single stealth missions. He remembers the unease Leia felt whenever she was around Luke. He remembers the first time he found the mask, in the floorboards of Luke’s X-Wing, and wondered who it belonged to.
Han knows who Kylo Ren is. He’s the sacrifice of principles for ambition. He’s the abandonment of freedom for control. He’s a friend turned an enemy — born out of the Battle of Endor. He’s Luke Skywalker.
9. The Prestige
But you wouldn’t clap yet. Because making something disappear isn’t enough; you have to bring it back. That’s why every magic trick has a third act, the hardest part, the part we call “The Prestige”
Episode I, III, VI, IX. The birth of a chosen one, the hope of new life, the redemption of a father, the redemption of a son. Luke being Kylo affords the franchise an incredible opportunity; conversion. Remember the pattern of film victors? We’re set up to have the Sith win in XI. While that might make sense to usher in another three films, it’s entirely possible it ends with IX.
Episode IX allows for Luke to look himself in the mirror. Who knows what traumatic event this will be? Perhaps Leia will die? Or another pivotal character? The point here is that we get to see why Luke is like his father and, hopefully, better than Vader. Anakin died as Vader but Luke could still die as Luke. Remember, the battle of Jedi vs Sith is at base a religious conflict over the use of the Force. This is a battle won with ideas more than brute strength. If Luke destroys the idea of Kylo and the Sith, the Jedi (and by extension the Alliance it established and protected) win.
Because let’s be honest, this battle looks like it’s only going to go one way…
10. Abrams — The Easter Egg King
Let’s face it, the guy loves leaving gotcha clues throughout his movies. As a fan I enjoy this. But, remember that poster from the beginning? The masked Kylo Ren ominously looming over everyone makes me wonder if Abrams didn’t purposefully request that poster to be able to point fans back to at the end of Episode VIII. Just a thought.
Alternative Theory — Clones!!!
I have to give my roommate credit for this one as he’s actually read the Timothy Zahn series of VII-IX. He pointed out that the final installment of that series, The Last Command, sees Luke encounter a clone of himself.
“Yes, Jedi Skywalker,” C’baoth said quietly from behind him. “He is you. Luuke Skywalker, created from the hand you left behind in the Cloud City on Bespin. Wielding the lightsaber you lost there.”
And what did we see in the released trailer tonight? Luke’s original lightsaber — lost on Cloud City during his battle with its former master.This story was originally published on Medium.
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By Melissa Davidson
Unless Bob Costas gets pink eye again, is there anything that can save NBC’s ratings and coverage of the Olympic games in Rio thus far?
Opening ceremony TV views were less than steller – down 35% among all viewers from London’s opener four years ago.
The following night fared only slightly better, down about 28% from London but still at a 20-year low, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Ratings are starting to see an upswing as American men and women sweep swimming medals and magical gymnast Simone Biles continues to shine. Total viewing data, including digital formats, will be available later this week, NBC promises.
Time will tell, but the way millennials are viewing sports, including the Olympics, is changing with the times.
Let’s look at the trends to see why.
1) Social media and livestream
What catches the eye throughout the day on Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat, may determine if you tune into watch the Olympics on TV. Seeing something on social media influences one’s decision to tune in.
Now, after reading about #PhelpsFace on Facebook, I really want to see him win the 200-meter butterfly because it would prove his shade is justified.
NBC’s livestream multicast has taken some of the audience away, but TV is still king with 60% of consumers saying they will watch the games on TV.
However, several millennial friends of mine say watching coverage on TV is plain “annoying” with all the commercials and weird commentary from old men who just don’t get it.
It’s great that NBC is optimizing with mobile devices, even if the set-up isn’t flawless.
You can watch video with the NBC app without having to listen to Olympic commentators, whose words really rub some people the wrong way.
2) Traditional cable and video
To back up the claim that millennials are seeking out videos instead of traditional television and cable, a study found that young people are into YouTube celebrities just as much as traditional TV celebrities.
As for sports, the study found that millennials are more accustomed to seeking influencers on YouTube and Facebook than from ESPN.
ESPN – either the cable channel or the app – is still the place to go for 25- to-34-year-olds: 58% list ESPN as their resource for sports-related video content, followed by Facebook at 52%.
Among younger people, 13- to 24-year olds, YouTube gets 64%, Facebook with 53% and ESPN just 42%.
Interestingly, 4% of this younger group discover sports videos by looking to experts like sports pundits and analysts.
3) NBC strategy
Creating strong, positive, emotional reactions to a product fosters the desire to remain loyal to a brand over a long period of time.
But if the brand isn’t delivering, my word-of-mouth promotion isn’t going to be great, and I’m not likely to return in the future.
That’s marketing 101 and the reason why location and relationship are marketing buzzwords in 2016.
Some people are loyal to the “packaged” programming that NBC says the majority of the viewing public prefers over the actual, live competition.
I read a story recently in the Humanist, written by a millennial, who says she loves the inspirational stories that are rolled into a couple of weeks of programming.
I’ve also spoken with friends who say they don’t care for the “soft-focused story aspect of competitions” and simply want to see the games.
These opinions align with a piece written by columnist Sally Jenkins in the Washington Post that says NBC’s packaging of the Olympics is an insult to viewers and the athletes themselves.
“Even if you buy NBC’s argument that the majority of the public prefers edited, packaged programming over the vagaries of live sports competition, then ask yourself this question: Why aren’t NFL football telecasts tape delayed and packaged? Why don’t the networks delay and collapse the games in favor of sugary features showing childhood films of the Manning brothers on a swing set instead of wasting viewer’s time with a penalty-filled second quarter?”
“The fact is, no network would do that. Why? Because the networks assign a dignity and an import to a live NFL game that they don’t to women’s gymnastics.”
4) Women ‘do’ sports
Most of the money and attention spent on sports and athletes is directed at men, both at the professional and amateur levels.
Of the 150 million NFL fans, 45% are women and over one-third of viewers are women. Women on Team USA make up 53%.
A lot of American women are going to bring home medals. In fact, the women’s gymnastics squad just won the team All-Around Gold Medal for the second consecutive Olympics.
And because so many women watch sports on TV, NBC broadcasters need to stop with comments like “the man responsible” for Hungarian swimmer Katinka Hosszu’s world record in the 400-meter individual medley is her husband/coach.
The current strategy of NBC Olympic coverage isn’t winning over the public.
What if the execs listened to what the customer wants to see and how they want to see it?
RISE NEWS is a grassroots journalism news organization that is working to change the way young people become informed and engaged in public affairs. You can write for us.
Cover Photo Credit: Jorge Andrade/ Flickr (CC By 2.0)Post Views: 236
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This year marks the 10th anniversary of Trojan’s Sexual Health Report Card. The study examines over 140 universities and colleges across America and reports on student accessibility to sexual health resources.
Oh course why would you care about this list? You are too busy “studying” right?
The study is sponsored by Trojan and conducted by Sperling’s BestPlaces.
Here’s the list of the top 10 universities:
- Oregon State University
- Stanford University
- University of Georgia
- University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
- Brown University
- University of Oregon
- University of Iowa
- Columbia University in the City of New York
- The University of Texas At Austin
- University of Arizona
Here’s the list of the bottom 10 universities:
- Baylor University
- Louisiana Tech. University
- University of New Orleans
- Texas Tech. University
- St. John’s University
- University of Notre Dame
- University of Louisiana at Monroe
- Providence College
- Troy State University
- Brigham Young University
Where did your school make it in this list? Tell us in the comments below.
Stay Classy Millennials.
Like this piece? Rise News just launched a few weeks ago and is only getting started. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to stay up to date with global news. Have a news tip? (No matter how big or small!) Send it to us- firstname.lastname@example.org.
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