What’s The Ethical Stance On Abortion?

BY RACHEL DIMAURO, Staff Writer

Since Roe vs. Wade, abortion has been one of the most debated, deliberated, and discussed topics in today’s society.

The morality, women’s rights, right vs. wrong, pro-life vs. pro-choice and every other concern has been canvassed.

Most arguments surrounding abortion usually focus on the law aspect of the topic, and whether or not it should be illegal or legal.

Instead of playing volleyball with the two sides, I would like to look at abortion from a strictly ethical viewpoint.

Many debates surrounding abortion focus on one thing: whether or not it is morally right to terminate a pregnancy before the full duration has passed.

Now, to better understand what each side thinks, and to come to a decision and/or conclusion based solely on ethics, let’s examine exactly what it means to be pro-life or pro-choice.

Pro-choice supporters argue that is it a women’s right to decide what is done with her body, as opposed to pro-life enthusiasts, who are of the opinion that it is immoral to end a life simply because it is “your choice” to do so.

There is, however, somewhat of a dispute in regards to what is actually considered to be a living fetus. Pro-life supporters would argue that life beings at conception—point blank.

In comparison, most pro-choice advocates believe that a fetus only becomes human, or alive, at 26 weeks. But, if life doesn’t begin at conception, then there must be a point when these bundles of cells that we call fetus’ become humans.

Pro- choice advocates will even admit that there is a point when fetus’ cease to be (not alive, shall we say?), the question is: when is this point?  This point, many would argue, doesn’t exist.

Humans are constantly changing and rearranging to becoming different (even if it’s a minute change) versions of themselves—during these changes, do they cease to be human?

An article by Quora.com, used an interesting analogy by using the colors red and yellow, it stated that, “This is red. This is yellow. These are, obviously, very different colors. If red is not yellow (it isn’t), then there must be a point where a color actually makes the transition from red to yellow. Where is that point? I’m being ridiculous, of course. We all know the correct answer here: There is no “point” where red becomes yellow. It gradually does.”

This could be used for a developing fetus as well.

There is no “point” in which a fetus is officially a human. It has always been one, it just gradually grows into a complete life form at the end of nine months. But, that does not mean that at one stage along the way that it ceased to be alive.

If a woman has consented to have relations, and has not taken the proper steps to ensure that there is not pregnancy as a result, then that woman knows that being pregnant and having a child might be a result of that action. If a woman then chooses to get an abortion, does that woman not hold some form of ethical obligation to not terminate a living organism?

Now what about the child itself—there is some conflict pertaining to the rights and choice of that child.

If there is an argument that a woman should have the choice over her body, then it follows that there is an argument that she is making that choice not just for her, but also for the growing fetus inside of her.

Whether you believe that a fetus is a human or not, you’re still, making a conscious decision that that life (or potential life) inside of you doesn’t need to exist.

To put it in context, think of it this way: if you are 15, and your mother decides that she doesn’t want to have children anymore, is she ethically right to end your life merely because she decided she doesn’t want you?

If the action is wrong when the child is older, then what makes it acceptable when the child is in utero?

In our society, regardless of your religious, political or social views, we all have an underlying code or principal of what is right and wrong. If we step over the boundaries of that code, and break the morality and ethicality that is interwoven into our society, then we are tearing at the equilibrium and balance that helps keep our society stable.

Everyday Inventions Hidden In Plain Sight

BY AHMAD GRAVES-EL, Staff Writer

To paraphrase Hip Hop Lyricist Emeritus Krs-One, “African-American History is the world’s history.”

Before I go any further, I must inform the readers, this is not a Black History Month article. This is a mini-history lesson. However, before I move on to the subject at hand, I will acknowledge that a certain segment of citizens in our country chafe at the mere mention of the phrase “Black History Month.” Here is an example of why African-American achievements are hallmarked in the month February:

On February 1, President Donald Trump held a press conference dubbed the “African-American History Month ‘listening session.’” In speaking about several American icons including Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Harriet Tubman, (future face of the $20 bill), Trump made an overtly obtuse comment regarding Frederick Douglass. “Frederick Douglass is an example of someone who’s done an amazing job and is being recognized more and more, I notice,” President Trump said.

Yes, Douglass, who courageously escaped from the hellish bowels of slavery, was a pre-eminent scholar, orator, abolitionist, and occasional counselor to Abraham Lincoln, while becoming one of the leading citizens in American history. However, Douglass has been dead for 122 years.

If one didn’t know better, one could reasonably infer, through President Trump’s statement that Douglass was still walking the Earth, “abolitioning.” Uninformed remarks such as these are one reason why there is a Black History Month.

However, this article is not about black history—it is about world history. This article will shed some light on this topic for our readers who have been inconceivably kept in the dark regarding the accomplishments of several “Hidden Figures”; African-American inventors whose brilliant inventions continue to leave a positive and lasting impact on human beings throughout the world.

Millions of people have heard of the term, “The Real McCoy,”—which means the genuine article. Many don’t know that, that phrase came into existence because of an object created by African-American inventor Elijah McCoy.

According to biography.com, McCoy (1843-1929) was the son of runaway slaves from Kentucky, who escaped to Canada, and later became a master mechanic by studying mechanical engineering in Scotland.

In the 1800s, railroads were the major means of transport—whether it was humans or products—across the U.S. The ride was rarely smooth because the engines in the locomotives would heat up rapidly, causing them to make frequent pit stops. While at rest, an engineer would squirt oil on the engine to help it cool off, so the train could continue its journey.

As you can imagine, the intermittent stops kept people and products from getting to their desired destination in a timely fashion, and to many—-time is money.

Understanding this, McCoy invented an automatic lubrication device that was patented in 1872 as an “Improvement in Lubricators for Steam Engines.”

“McCoy’s invention was a small thing,” wrote Aaron E. Klein in his book, The Hidden Contributors: Black Scientists and Inventors in America, “but it speeded up the railroads and faster railroad deliveries spurred the economic growth of a nation.”

After McCoy’s invention, numerous imitators arose with their own version of the lubricator; but none were comparable to the ingenious efficiency of the original. Thus, when people wanted to purchase an automated lubricator, they wanted nothing less than “The Real McCoy.” This term that is still prevalent in the American lexicon today.

McCoy also invented the folding ironing board and the lawn sprinkler.

In 1923, Garret A. Morgan invented something that most of us would agree we couldn’t live without. The three-way traffic light is the brainchild of this African-American inventor.

According to Patricia Carter Sluby, author of “The Inventive Spirit of African-Americans: Patented Ingenuity,” after witnessing a fatal accident between a horse drawn carriage and a car, Morgan visualized that it was a good idea to use illuminated colored lights visible during the day and at night, to control vehicular traffic at intersection…” Hence, the three-way traffic signal was born.

Although there is no way it can completely stop car accidents, there is also no way to count the innumerable lives that have been saved by Morgan’s bright invention.

African-American inventors have left a profound and indelible mark on the lives of billions of people across planet Earth. Unfortunately, there has been a long-standing systematic scheme to keep pertinent facts out of certain history books to purposely keep the masses in the dark.

It is now time to enter the light and become aware that “African-American History is your history.”

Ajit Pai: Friend Or Foe To Net Neutrality?

BY RACHEL DIMAURO, Staff Writer

Net neutrality has been a highly debated topic since the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) first introduced the neutrality rules back in 2015. The goal of the rules is to prevent Internet service providers from blocking, regulating, discriminating, or monitoring internet traffic—in short, it is to prevent any one person, or company from having complete control over the Internet, or to prevent a company from acting in a way that would place other companies at a disadvantage.

With the new Trump administration recently taking office, one of the concerns of Congress—and Democrats as a whole—is Trump’s pick of Ajit Pai for Chairman of the FCC. Pai, is said to have been a straight-A student in telecom law, and is a former Verizon lawyer.

Pai served as a minority Republican member for the past three years, before being elevated to the position of chairman by President Trump. He is said to be strong-minded on conservative interpretations of telecommunications law, and the limits of the FCC’s power. He stated that he is trying to clean the slate for a fresh new start, but many fear that that means he will advocate eliminating the rules entirely. Previous statements show that their speculations might be in vain. Pai was quoted saying, “Americans love the free and open Internet. We relish our freedom to speak, to post, to rally, to learn, to listen, to watch, and to connect online.”

So what does this mean? What is the future of net neutrality under the Trump administration? Since being in office for just a few weeks, he has already made efforts to alter what the former Obama administration had set in place. He started by withdrawing an effort to keep prison phone rates down—which isn’t a terrible idea, however, many argued that charging over a $1 per minute for phone time in prisons was a bit extreme. He nixed a proposal to break open the cable box market, as well as stopping nine companies from providing discounted high-speed Internet service to low income families. Pai released around a dozen actions of the previous administration.

The media has been a roller-coaster ride of opinions as to whether Pai will end up being a decant choice or an undesirable one. One day the sentiment is positive, and the next it’s negative. In a recent article written by Forbes, they stated, “. . . Other reporters suggest that, while he is not friendly to big government, he is a very pragmatic “lawyer of lawyers” who advocates free markets and competition.”

What can explain these bipolar views? Part of the problem is the complexity of the actual net neutrality rules. The 400-page Open Internet Order that was implemented in 2015 has two components. One is regarding net neutrality in its capacity of forbidding Internet and wireless providers from censoring content over competing networks. The other is to regulate the Internet as a public utility.

In the same article by Forbes, they said that, “Pai has shown a clear inclination against regulating broadband internet service as a utility, arguing potential government over-reach and over- regulation of internet and wireless providers like Comcast or AT&T. But that doesn’t mean that he is an enemy of a neutral internet.”

His statements have been used against him to conclude that he will abolish the net neutrality rules—even though the two are very different things.

To obtain a clear answer as to whether or not Pai will succeed in abolishing net neutrality, or bettering it, I fear at this moment is nigh on impossible. This early on, it is entirely true, that only time will tell.

When I was your age…

By Makinzi Hinkle

Staff Writer

We’ve all heard our grandparents or parents say that when they were our age everything was different. Their lives were different and so was technology. They didn’t have the newest iPhone or even an iPad because, obviously, they weren’t around. Even the 90s babies didn’t have technology at a young age. When we were younger, we played outside instead of staying inside to play on our phones. When we rode our bikes, we knew where our “squad” was by how many bikes were in the front yard. If we had the technology we have today back then, we would miss out on family time and so much more. Also, technology has come in between relationships. Whether its sliding into a girls DM’s or snapchatting each other to the point where you become best friends, technology has come in the middle of almost every relationship. Have you ever thought about how technology has really changed the way we live? According to babble.com, here are seven examples:

  1. Technology has killed the greeting card
    1. We are no longer paying postage to send out birthday cards. It has turned into posting a “happy birthday” on Facebook or its sent over text.
  2. How we date
    1. Even though online dating has been around for ages, many people are using Google to see if their date has a record.
  3. How we share
    1. We aren’t sharing information like we used to. Instead of saying it face-to- face, we are using our social media accounts to post the news.
  4. How we watch TV
    1. We can now download apps to put on our smartphones to watch MTV, Lifetime, Netflix, etc. anywhere and anytime.
  5. How we communicate
    1. Instead of picking up the phone and seeing if your friend(s) and family are available, we are using our smartphones to text them.
  6. How we read
    1. Paperbacks are now available our tablets and smartphones. They have made it easier to carry the books we enjoy reading and we can bring them anywhere we would like.
  7. How we parent
    1. Parents have to teach their children “digital etiquette” and they warn them about what is online.

Technology has affected relationships in a big way. For example, Snapchat had a feature where you could tell who was best friends with your boyfriend/girlfriend. That caused drama to happen and it usually ended up with a breakup. Other than Snapchat, Twitter comes in affect. People subtweet, slide into each others DM’s, favoriting each others tweets, etc. With Instagram, guys would like other girl’s pictures. Then, they would try to slide into their DM. If they are already in a relationship, the girl would think that he is cheating on her and usually that causes problems. Along with Snapchat, Twitter and Instagram, at a point of time, Apple had an update where you were able to see who your boyfriend/girlfriend recently texted. Even if they delete the messages, if you double-clicked the home button and all of the recent people they talked to were right on the top of the apps you had open.

Technology has changed over the years. Our grandparents and parents always would say that when they were our age, they didn’t have the technology we have today. 90s babies didn’t have a hold of technology until the middle 2000’s and technology has now come to the point of ruining couple’s relationships.

A lot can change in a year

By Makinzi Hinkle

Staff Writer

365 days, 8,760 hours, 525,600 minutes, and 31,536,000 seconds. In other words, one year. One year can change someone’s perspective. It can be about themselves, their career, etc. Also, it can make or break them. For me, I thought a year was going to shatter me like glass but it shaped me into a beautiful butterfly. A year ago, I thought everything was falling into place. I thought I had my life together, but little did I know, I didn’t. I was in a relationship with someone who took advantage of me so many times before I said it was enough. I was playing ball with a team who I’d thought were my friends. A year later, I’m going into a my third and final year at CCC. In a year, my life will be changing. I’ll be applying to West Virginia University and transferring if I get in.

I wasn’t always a journalism major. 14 months ago, I switched my major from business to journalism and I’ve had the best luck for my future. I have so many different internship options and places where I can work. Last year, I thought I wasn’t able to go to another college/university after CCC, nor get accepted. My self-confidence barely existed. Now, a year later, my self-confidence is getting higher. I’m 98 percent more confident that I will get in and be able to transfer to West Virginia University. My perspective of this thing called life has totally changed.

In years past, I hated the way I looked. I didn’t like the way people talked about and treated me. Due to my self-confidence getting higher, I’ve finally decided to change the way my body looks. In other words, I’ve decided to loose weight. I’m using the angry words as motivation and getting my body where it needs to be. My best friend is in the same boat as I am and we’re using each other as motivation.

Last year, one of my close friends was in an abusive relationship. He cheated on her, abused her, and when she tried to leave, he threatened to take his own life. So, there was no way for her to get out because she didn’t want someone that she “loved” to go. After two months of trying to get herself out, she was able to succeed. Now a year later, she’s in a better, healthier, and safer relationship. Also, her family has gone through a lot. She almost lost her grandfather and their house all in one month. That all happened last year. 12 months later, her grandfather is healthier and they’re thinking of moving in the middle of the summer.

In a year, someone’s life can change. Whether its their appearance, their career, or a relationship. For me, I’ve had my appearance and career change. While for a close friend of mine, her relationships have changed. She might have almost lost her grandfather and they almost lost their house, but now with a year passing, everything has changed.

Get protected for free

By Kylee Bagley

Staff Writer

As “cuffing season” comes to a close, young adults across the county prepare for “the best summer of their lives,” filled with adventures, parties, and sex. The last thing people want to think about is STD’s and STI’s. Cumberland County has one of the highest HIV/AIDS rates in the state of New Jersey. A report from state.nj.us sharing information on HIV/AIDS as of December 31, 2014 states that Cumberland County has a rate of 371.8 cases per 100,000 people. HIV/AIDS kills, people, and yet only seven out of 20 CCC students surveyed have been tested for STD’s.
Chlamydia is the most prevalent STI (sexually transmitted infection) in Cumberland County as of 2014 according to nj.gov. Residents between the ages of 15-34 tested during 2014 produced 871 positive cases of Chlamydia. However, the majority of people who test positive show little to no symptoms in the first six months. Not being tested after unprotected sex leads to long-term symptoms such as abdominal pain, infertility, and burning during sex and urination, listed cdc.gov.
One reason CCC students are not getting tested is because they simply don’t know where to go. Only five out of 20 students surveyed know of any free STD clinics in Bridgeton, Vineland, and Millville areas. Some listed Complete Care as a free clinic, but Complete Care works with the Affordable Care Act. Unfortunately, there aren’t many free clinics in our county, but here are two free, quality clinics in the area:
Vineland Health Department: Located in center city on Montrose Street, the Vineland Health Department offers a free clinic from 4-5 p.m. every Tuesday. Friendly nurses that make you feel completely comfortable administer the STD tests and a doctor is available at 5 p.m. until close for anyone who wishes to receive additional care.
Bridgeton FamCare:
Located on Magnolia Ave. near the Bridgeton Hospital, FamCare offers appointment free testing for Chlamydia, Syphilis, Gonorrhea, and HIV. They also offer HIV, STD, and Hepatitis prevention education classes. The STD clinic is open Wednesdays from 4 – 8 p.m. One student surveyed said it’s almost disturbing how nonjudgmental and familial they are.
Being STD free is the first step to having a carefree summer. Both of these clinics, along with all Complete Cares, hand out free bags of condoms, so stop by if only for the free latex incentive. Don’t let yourself become the next statistic broadcasted on campus. It’s up to you to ensure you get checked and stay protected!

Lather up with UV protection

By Makinzi Hinkle

Staff Writer

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It’s about to be that time of year where everyone will be going down to the beach. One of the ways you can protect yourself is by bringing and wearing sunscreen. Whether it’s spending the day with friends or staying down for a couple days with family, you should remember to bring enough so you don’t get too red.
Between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., the sun is the hottest. If you aren’t a fan of sunscreen, you can also wear tanning oil. Just like sunscreen, it is advised to be careful when you apply tanning oil.  Most times, tanning oils have a lower SPF than sunscreen.
Before driving down to the beach, you should apply a thick coat of sunscreen. By the time you get down to the shore, you will be good to go. After two hours of soaking up some sun, it is a good idea to reapply so you don’t get burnt. If you are a parent and your kids decide to go in the water, you can lather them up with waterproof sunscreen. Remember to reapply sunscreen on your kids every two hours.
Besides sunscreen and tanning oil, there are other ways to protect yourself at the beach. The first option is to bring an umbrella. Going between the sun and shade, you can protect yourself from the sun’s UV rays. If you are just strolling the beach, another option is by wearing the right kind of clothing. Did you know that by wearing wet clothes, you are more exposed to the sun than wearing dry clothes? According to outerbanks-vacation.com, by wearing a hat, you are giving your scalp, face and eyes extra protection. There’s also a natural sun repellent that you can make. You can find the recipe at: http://www.livestrong.com.
Every year, millions of cases of nonmelanoma skin cancer are treated on people. According to skincancer.org, in the past three decades, there has been more cases of skin cancer than any other cancer combined. Before the age of 35, people who have used an indoor tanning bed are at a higher risk of getting melanoma by 75 percent. If you have had more than five sunburns, the risk for melanoma doubles.
Alyssa Harwas, a sophomore here on campus, said she brings sunblock, but that’s if she remembers it. Elisabeth Atkinson, a freshman, said that she uses sunscreen and tanning oil. Harwas and Atkinson like going to the beach with friends and family and when they were asked what the first word was that comes to their mind when they think of the beach, they said: “sand” and “sunburn”. Both of them are looing forward to going to the beach, hanging out with friends and having fun. “In all seriousness, keep yourself protected. It may sound stupid, but seriously. Would you rather be comfortable in your own skin or be burnt like toast?” – Alyssa Harwas.
Since everyone has different skin tones, there are different sunscreens you can wear. For children, you can try using spray or tubes with different colored packaging. When appling to the face, don’t use spray. For dry skin, you can use sunscreen that has moisturizer. Popular ones have oils and silicones. For darker skin tones, you should wear sunscreen with an SPF with at least 15. Older people can benefit from using sunscreen. While using spray ons, make sure you put on a “sheen” coat.