October 1, 2018 by Jesse Drake, Opinions Editor In 1991, President George H.W. Bush nominated Clarence Thomas to the Supreme Court. It seemed to be a historical moment, as he would be the first black conservative to get to serve on the highest court in the country, and the Republican-led Congress was eager to approve him. However, Anita Hill, a former subordinate of his while he was a circuit judge, came out with sexual harassment charges. She claimed he asked her out several times and that she respectfully said no, which only led him to make inappropriate, provocative comments in several instances and locations. Of course, Thomas denied all this, and his supporters claimed Hill was nothing more than a device for liberals to block the confirmation of a conservative judge. It’s intriguing how little has changed since then. Brett Kavanaugh’s case isn’t hardly an exact copy of Clarence Thomas’s allegations. Christine Blasey Ford claims that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her over 30 years ago while they were at a house and pool party in a Maryland suburb. Kavanaugh was 17 years old and drunk, while Ford was only 15. As of now there are three allegations of sexual misconduct against Kavanaugh, but Ford’s story is the most serious. When analyzing how Senate Republicans are reacting to the allegations, things are frustratingly unchanged. Even in the aftermath of the #MeToo movement, many people deny that any woman would refuse to report a sexual assault, and so that when they come forward several years later, it must be politically or monetarily charged. This ignores the suppression of trauma and fear of being subjugated to scrutiny that is the main reason why victims decide not to report the incident. Also, in Ford’s case, it may be eventually reported or discussed and ultimately ignored; she shared the details of this story with her therapist in 2012 and 2013. Although the point of this story should definitely be that we should be more accepting when a victim steps forward and take active measures to make sure this happens less, there’s a lot to say about some Republicans opinions toward the whole controversy. Senator Lindsey Graham, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, while admitting that the allegations are serious, also refuted that this cannot be used in a civil case nor granted a warrant because of how long ago it happened. Senator Dean Heller of Nevada claims these allegations are a “hiccup” in a confirmation that should be over and done with. Not to be outdone, our president even tweeted about the allegations, claiming that if this indeed did happen, there would be filings with local police authorities, and that she should bring these to her senate hearing. Why is it that we have progressively had more and more trouble with sensitivity and virtue? Why has the word “truth” become so misconstrued that we no longer have any clear definition for it? The time has come to point to our elected officials and tell them to align themselves away from party politics and toward a more coherent, inherently good society. Understand that this is not an attack on Kavanaugh’s character. He was indeed an immature adolescent, possibly so intoxicated he wasn’t going to remember that night regardless of how long ago it was. This does not discredit his accomplishments or his commitments to being an upright family man. But, as a judge himself, he must hold himself accountable and take fault where fault is due. This is an urgent message to everyone reading that if your senator or any other public servant that represents you refuses to acknowledge the need for virtue in our highest court, then there is no need for them in the highest legislative body. Drake's Take: We need a commitment to virtue for our judges and elected officials
Photo courtesy of Kavanaugh’s case is a potential time for senators to demonstrate their commitment to the truth.
October 1, 2018 by Jesse Drake, Opinions Editor  It’s no secret that this country is divided. This is a time where political, racial, ethnic, gender and even geographical identity will put people at odds with one another. Since this leads to frustration and fear for many, importance has increased for Lewis University and its Lasallian partners to become a shining light of inclusion and peace. But how can LaSalle’s teachings be relevant today, even though he existed over 300 years ago? Perhaps looking into that storied history would reveal an answer. For Lasallians, solidarity and the opportunity to teach the poor has always been key to their mission. In fact, Saint John Baptist de la Salle himself gave up his inheritance for the chance to help underprivileged youths. The current Christian Brothers even recognized this in a document published in 2008, which discussed the need to help those in poverty “either directly or indirectly.” Direct help is obvious, as its those who have been marginalized by society and are victims of poverty’s vicious cycle. Indirect help is something else entirely. In fact, it’s the kind of help that Lasallians have the opportunity to give every day. Lewis particularly prides itself on being a first-generation college. Many students are the first in their family to get the opportunity, and many will continue to work during their studies to afford this opportunity. They may not have time to take part in study groups, tutoring or even get a chance to talk with a professor on how to improve their grade. Meanwhile, students who already have the funds to get through school due to their family’s wealth or massive scholarships will have every opportunity to improve their academic standing, just because they don’t have other commitments. This doesn’t mean that those first-generation students are suffering from poverty, but the inequality that defines people into class because of their upbringing or heritage is a more modern problem related to the one LaSalle himself tried to solve. Because of the Lasallian tradition of helping those who most need it, Lewis gets to lead the charge on creating peace in a fractured society. When those who are new to the higher education experience are helped along the way, equality and peace becomes less an imaginative goal and more of a reality. This is a call for Lewis and other Christian Brother’s schools to grant more affordable educations to its students, to offer more resources for those who most need them and to offer them at flexible times for those who are providing for themselves. And, most importantly, to continue to recognize that these kinds of students are not necessarily some vulnerable class, but the ones who will fully realize a better future. Being a Lasallian is more important than ever in turbulent times
Photo courtesy of Lewis University. A group of Lewis students volunteering at Northern Illinois Food Bank demonstrates the school’s commitment to helping others
Staff Editorial: The classic recycling model still applies to Lewis student October 1, 2018 Reduce. Reuse. Recycle. Three ideas that have been ingrained in us since an early age. Yet we question, what the relevance of the order is: reduce, reuse then recycle. This conservation motto is highly rooted in science. The first R, reduce, is the most important. If we shop for items less and only buy what we need, when we need them, we can reduce the amount of energy we waste unnecessarily. Now if the notion of reducing fails, then turn to the second portion of the conservation motto: reuse. Reusing repurposes items without consuming significantly more resources. If you have no ideas about how to reuse some of your items, turn to the popular website Pinterest or ask your friends. In a world so focused on do it yourself projects, we often fail to recognize how items that end up as rubbish can be reused. “There are entire websites dedicated to repurposing or upcycling. You can also purchase repurposed materials from sites such as Etsy,” according to Green Living Blog. Finally, if reducing and reusing are not an option, then your final step is to recycle. Recycling is the most costly of the three options. It is also tricky to even educated people about how to properly recycle. At Lewis and the Romeoville community, recyclables are handled by Waste Management. They have a full list of items that can be recycled, which includes aluminum cans, aluminum foil and bakeware, steel and tin cans (soup, veggies, coffee, etc.) and certain electronics. For the complete list of what can be recycled, visit the Waste Management website at Before purchasing an item, fully consider its impact on the environment and resources. Before you purchase another bottle of LIFEWTR®, consider purchasing a reusable water bottle. There are fountains in every building with water bottle filling stations. Consider using a reusable coffee cup when making a purchase at Sodexo. Furthermore, when completing a transaction at the C Store, say “no thank you” to the plastic bag; either carry your items or simply use your backpack. In addition, please be conscientious as to the amount of waste you place in recycling bins. They may be highly confusing as to what items go where, but at the very least, place recycles in the recycling bin and rubbish in the garbage can. It may feel like such a contribution is small and even irrelevant, but when one person does it, more are bound to follow.