Staying Safe

Since the start of the semester there have been three e-mails alerting students to assaults around campus and in town. These incidents have raised questions around campus about safety and concerns for wanting to avoid compromising situations. Students should be assured that these incidents are all isolated and should be treated as such.

 

A recent victim of one of these assaults is sophomore Jordan Gittens. Gittens was out for a night of fun with friends, when he was called a homophobic slur. Upset by the slur, Gittens confronted the group of men who yelled the slur to him. After a heated exchange of words the men threw punch and eventually stomped on Gittens, before running away from Gittens friends. “I was in utter shock from the event… it was completely unprovoked.” said Gittens.

 

After the fight, Gittens cleaned up before he proceeded to flag down campus officers to report the event on his walk home.

 

Gittens said that he is bothered that in modern society that a member of the warhawk community could be capable of a hate crime.

 

Gittens assault is similar to a 2010 incident where a female warhawk was punched and was also called a homophobic slur by a random passerby.  Like the 2010 incident, Gittens attackers were never caught.

 

Whitewater senior Teresa Jesko said that the incident immediately reminded her freshman year; when there was a spurt of hate crimes in the UW system. Although she is not deterred from having the occasional night out, Jesko said, “ These events [assaults] will make me think twice about how and where I will go places around campus.”

 

University of Wisconsin Whitewater Police Chief Mathew Kiederlen had advice for staying safe around campus. The advice primarily related to following intuition, because your brain will help you detect unsafe situations. Your intuition is the greatest and easiest way to avoid problems when out and about. Chief Kiederlen said that if the fight or flight reaction happens, it’s usually a good time to leave as soon as possible. Although, judgment can be impaired through the use of alcohol and drugs such as marijuana, so be cognizant before choosing to use inhibitors.

Chief Kiederlen went on to give proven tips to stay safe that include:

  • Avoid overconsumption of substances
  • Watch drinks at all times, even around familiar people
  • Travel in numbers and avoid being alone
  • Stay in lighted areas
  • Be aware of surroundings at all times

 

Chief Kiederlen says that following these steps can keep outings fun and safe. An example of implementing Chief Kiederlen’s advice was presented in the form of a walk home from a night of out. If you suspect a person is following you cross the street. If the person also crosses with you, either get out of the situation quickly or contact safety services.

 

Others around campus are unaffected by the recent assaults. Junior David Otto said that the assaults don’t look to affect him. Otto explained that just using his common sense has kept him out of trouble these past years.

 

It is important to remember that campus safety officers and police patrol every night of the week campus. Help is never far away and don’t be afraid to contact these services.

Productive Weekend for College Dems at Summit

Last weekend starting Friday, the University of Marquette opened its doors for the College Democrats of Wisconsin and their semester summit. The event was packed with guest speakers and coordination efforts for the Mary Burke campaign. The weekend brings great excitement for the chapters throughout the state.

College Democrats of Wisconsin Chair Zach Madden was thankful to all who were involved. Madden said how important midterms are, but how little democratic voters showed up to these elections. “Democrats seem to think putting a president in office without any help works, it obviously doesn’t work very well” said Madden

The highlight of the weekend came in the first hour with guest speaker actor Bradley Whitford. Whitford is famous for his various roles such as Billy Madison and the West Wing. Whitford, a Wisconsin native, became involved with Wisconsin politics during the 2010 Scott Walker protests. “Wisconsin has a strong tradition of progressiveness. It’s really been stunning to see teachers be vilified.” said Whitford

Whitford covered subject concerning Wisconsin Democrats such as: education cuts, voter ID laws and the lack of bipartisanship. When finished, Whitford opened the floor for a Q and A session and photos to conclude the night’s meeting.

billy

After a night of socializing the summit reconvened Saturday morning for its final day. To open Saturday morning’s events Whitewater’s John Ferrah and 2nd vice chair presented. During this time Ferrah went over the organizations goals and events for the day. Ferrah touched on the importance of the College Democrats work within the coming weeks.

The College Democrats then divided into two groups for canvasing local areas and phone banking. Those who went canvasing endured strong winds, rain and cold to help register voters and find volunteers. During this even the group knocked on over 700 doors and interacted with over 150 potential voters.

To convene the meeting Madden highlighted the need for students to be politically active. Along with being politically active Madden reiterated how little time was left to potentially elect Wisconsin’s first female governor and end Scott Walker’s tenure as governor.

“We have 31 days to get out there and make a difference in the lives of many. We may be young but that doesn’t mean we don’t have a voice. Let’s finish this.” said Madden to end the summit.

Kittatinny Faces Budget Hardships

In response to the city facing a $100 million budget shortfall of taxable income, Mayor Gustavus G. Petykiewicz has released his proposed budget to the city.  This budget, although not final, would call for drastic cuts to programs and workers.

Most controversial of the mayor’s proposals is eliminating the early morning police shift. From 4 a.m. to noon, all emergency calls would be directed to the Schuykill County sheriff’s office.

Police Chief Roman Hruska said the cuts to his staff would be “dangerous and opens the door to potential disasters”

Hruska also suggest the cuts may be politically motivated more than they are fiscally. Next Hruska challenged the mayor to take a 10% pay cut along with him and the rest of top officials in the city.

President of the Pennsylvania Police Association Local 34 Bjarne Westhoff was also not in agreeance of the proposed budget. Westhoff said he would be willing to ask the union if they would renegotiate their contracts for the next year.

Layoffs are another method footnoted by the mayor for balancing the budget. Two AFSCME employees would face layoffs. To deal with these layoffs along with contract renegotiations, the mayor has raised the funding towards the city’s legal council.

To make up for lost revenue the proposed budget calls for a tax hike from 4 mills to 4.3 mills. This increase would keep revenue within $150,000 of last year.

Finally the city will not be providing garbage pick up anymore. Residents of Kittatinny will have to pay an additional fee added to their water bill.

With a budget that is sure to bring many hours of debate to the table, not many within the city can agree upon how to balance the budget. Across the board though all could agree the city is facing a crisis.

 

Exercise 2: Comfort is not Always Preferred

tim rocky horror
One of Tim’s performances as Brad Majors

Tim Albrechtson seems to most as an experimental college student who pushes his comfort boudries constantly. This was not always the case.

When Albrechtson was in high school at Waukesha North, he was at one point quiet and stayed mostly within the boundaries placed within his small friend group. When junior year came around he became tired of treading water.

“I wanted to see just how far I could push myself. I knew I had ambitions and a personality to take me, but no idea where it would lead.” said Albrechtson.

This new feeling for expression brought him to drama club at his high school.

After staring in many school performances along with productions with the Waukesha Civic Club, it was time to go to college. Once in college at the University of Milwaukee, Albrechtson felt he still needed an outlet to continue on with during his college experience. This outlet came in the form of black lingerie, drag and too much make up.

“I had been to the Rocky Horror Picture Show event in high school, but never thought I would actually be involved in it. It takes a lot of guts to wear what we wear in front of the people who come to see the event… also not to mention the passerbyers.”

The Rocky Horror Picture Show event takes place at the Oriental Theatre in Milwaukee. Once a month a cast volunteers to play the rolls of characters from the film and help enhance the experience. For example, during the film’s most memorable song “Time Warp” the entire cast shows the audience the right moves to fit right in.

Albrechtson stayed on with the cast for about 3 years until he decided to explore another aspect of his life, his German language major. German took him to Berlin last semester where he expanded his mind more than he thought possible. This exchange program helped Albrechtson accelerate his learning progress, and become mostly fluent in the language.

“If there is one thing I could recommend to anyone, it is to breakdown your walls and try new things…look where it got me. I now have friends around the world.”