Magazine Magazine News Volume 71, Issue 1

Newsom to Remain Governor After Recall Election

Written By: Cam Lippincott

Graphic By: Yiying Zhang

Democrat Gavin Newsom survived the September 14th recall election and will remain in the office of Governor of California. The result did not come as a surprise in the deep blue state, which voted for current President Biden over former President Trump last year by a margin of 29.2% of voters.

For a recall election to occur in California, an equivalent to 12% of the total voters in the last gubernatorial (Governor) election must sign a recall petition. The recall supporters had 160 days to obtain the signatures. A total of 1,719,900 signatures were collected, far more than the 1,495,970 required.

There have been multiple attempts to recall Newsom ever since his inauguration in 2019, but these attempts were futile. Nevertheless, a surge in support for a recall came during the pandemic, mainly due to anger over COVID-19 restrictions such as mask mandates. The final nail in the coffin came when Newsom attended a birthday dinner at the French Laundry, an exquisite five-star restaurant in Napa, during November 2020, breaking his state’s then-COVID-19 restrictions. 

The recall ballot featured two questions: should Gavin Newsom be recalled as Governor of California? Furthermore, if he is, who should replace him? The first question only had “Yes” and “No” options. However, the latter had an astonishing 46 candidates on the ballot, nearly all Republicans.

The only other recall election of a Governor in California occurred in 2003 when former Governor Gray Davis was successfully recalled from office and replaced by actor Arnold Schwarzenegger. The only two other attempted recalls of Governors in the United States occurred in 1921 and 2012, in North Dakota and Wisconsin respectively.

The Newsom campaign referred to the election as the “Republican Recall,” backed by “a partisan, Republican coalition of national Republicans, anti-vaxxers, Q-Anon conspiracy theorists and anti-immigrant Trump supporters.” Moreover, the campaign ran advertisements featuring democratic politicians such as Senators Bernie Sanders plus Elizabeth Warren and even former President Barack Obama to encourage the Democratic base to vote. 

Newsom’s most notable opponent was conservative radio host, Republican Larry Elder. Elder ran on ending COVID-19 restrictions, cutting taxes, school choice and other conservative policies. Elder consistently led in every single poll since his campaign announcement as a replacement candidate on July 12th. Due to the Democratic supermajority in the state senate and assembly, it would be effectively impossible for Elder to pass any legislation. However, the Governor’s responsibility to appoint replacements to the United States Senate in the event of a resignation or death became the centerpiece of the race, due to the rumored deteriorating health of California Senator Dianne Feinstein, a Democrat. If Elder appointed a Republican in her place, the senate majority would flip from Democrat to Republican, effectively ending President Biden’s legislative agenda.

“I want to focus on what we said ‘yes’ to as a state. We said ‘yes’ to science. We said ‘yes’ to vaccines. We said ‘yes’ to ending this pandemic. We said ‘yes’ to people’s right to vote without fear of fake fraud or voter suppression. We said ‘yes’ to women’s fundamental, constitutional right to decide for herself what she does with her body and her fate and future. We said ‘yes’ to diversity. We said ‘yes’ to inclusion. We said ‘yes’ to pluralism. We said ‘yes’ to all those things that we hold dear as Californians,” said Newsom during his election night victory speech.

“I’m very pleased to see that the election to recall Governor Newsom failed. Recalls should be used for reasons that include crimes or significant ethical improprieties. The use of the recall because the minority party wants their own candidate, is an abuse of the recall system. This was the sixth recall attempt in Governor Newsom’s two and a half years and the only one to come to the ballot because the recall petitions were allowed to circulate for an additional 4 months. It was a serious waste of time and hundreds of millions of our tax dollars,” said Walnut Creek Mayor Kevin Wilk in a statement to The Page.

Senior Moxie Marsh was not surprised by the results, saying, “…I didn’t really expect Elder to win, but also it’s Newsom so I didn’t weep with joy.” Marsh also expressed her dissatisfaction with Newsom: “He’s awful and compels people to be complacent with the status quo but at least he kind of tried sometimes to put peoples lives above profits…he could focus on supporting people in California with things like better and more affordable housing and actually listening to and supporting the needs of people instead of just doing what will look good for him in a photo or on paper and actually dedicating effort to make California a better place [and] not just look better on paper.”

Magazine Opinions Volume 70, Issue 8

United States continues never ending gun violence

By Cam Lippincott

Graphic By Yiying Zhang

America’s tragic epidemic of mass shootings seems to have no end. This year we have already seen the saddening events that occurred in Boulder, Colorado and Atlanta, Georgia accompanied by many more. The bleak feeling I got when I learned of these came with a sense of deja vu. I cannot remember a year without a mass shooting. I also cannot remember meaningful action to solve this uniquely American problem, and it doesn’t look like I will this year.

President Biden called for Congress to ban the sale of assault weapons, require background checks for all gun sales, end several loopholes to buy guns, and more. While Biden’s policies respond to gun violence, they have zero chance to pass in Congress despite Democrats having control of both the Senate and House of Representatives. The reason for this is the Senate filibuster, which is a Senate rule that requires 60 yes votes to pass any legislation. This excludes an exception known as budget reconciliation, which allows certain legislation to be passed with a simple majority that can be used three times a year. The easy way to get past the filibuster would be to get rid of it with a simple majority of 50 yes votes, but conservative Democrats Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona have made it clear that they will not get rid of the filibuster for any reason. By not supporting the elimination of the filibuster, these senators are not only destroying the parties’ chances to govern, they are also hurting their re-election chances in 2024. It’s time for senators to stop caring about Senate traditions and start trying to better their constituents’ lives.

The last meaningful gun legislation passed was the assault weapons ban in 1994 which was signed by then-President Bill Clinton. Unfortunately, the law expired after 10 years and nothing has passed since and nothing will likely pass any time soon due to the Senate filibuster.

Since Congress cannot act, President Biden has taken some executive action to help prevent gun violence. In a statement made by the white house on April 7th, he ordered the justice department to “issue a proposed rule to help stop the proliferation of ‘ghost guns.’… issue a proposed rule to make clear when a device marketed as a stabilizing brace effectively turns a pistol into a short-barreled rifle subject to the requirements of the National Firearms Act… publish model ‘red flag’ legislation for states.” This is all good, but without Congressional support the US will not see sweeping changes to gun laws.

Most polling suggests that a majority of Americans support gun control. A recent poll by Ipsos shows that 65% of Americans support stricter gun laws, and 61% support increased background checks. But due to the undemocratic nature of the Senate, we will likely never see this pass.

At the state level, California already has some of the strictest gun laws in the country. California has a ban on assault weapons, background checks for weapon and ammunition purchases, a magazine capacity restriction, and more. California also has the 7th lowest death rate of all 50 states, showing a correlation that gun control works. The state with the lowest rate is Massachusetts which has nearly the same laws as California but a much smaller population.

In response to calls for gun control, Republicans in Congress usually give the same braindead response as they do for everything else and try to make the problem worse. Often they will say Democrats are using tragedies as ways to pass legislation, acting as if the government should do nothing in response to horrible events and let gun violence continue with no roadblocks. Some of the more evil and insane Republicans suggest that we have too many gun laws and that a country with the highest rate of guns per capita has too few guns. Some also claim that gun control hurts American freedoms but I think one’s freedom to not get mowed down in a shopping mall is more important.

Gun control should not just apply to the average citizen. We need a full-scale demilitarization of police forces around the country. Police in America kill people at an absurd rate compared to other countries. According to the prison policy initiative, in 2019 the police in America killed 33.5 people per 10 million, the next closest country was Canada with 9.8 people per 10 million. There is no reason police should have weapons that allow them to kill anyone that makes them feel “threatened.” We cannot truly end gun violence in this country without ending police violence.

Magazine News Volume 70, Issue 7

Walnut Creek School District Elementary Schools Begin Hybrid

By Cam Lippincott

Graphic By Jackie Veliz

After nearly a year of distance learning, the Walnut Creek School District elementary schools began hybrid learning on February 16 for Kindergarten and Transitional Kindergarten and February 23 for grades 1-5. The district has had success and teachers are reporting positively. 

Students who are doing hybrid learning have been going to school every weekday except Wednesday, where they are assigned asynchronous work. School begins at 8:15 and ends at 10:55 for students in hybrid.

The students follow protocols that are similar to their high school counterparts. These protocols include the following: students must wear a face mask for the entire school day, students must follow certain pathways to navigate the school campus, students must maintain social distancing of at least six feet, and students must complete daily symptom checks and will not be allowed at school if they show any.

For student drop off and pick-up, parents may not leave their vehicle at any point and students must go to their classrooms immediately. Students who arrive before 8:05 are not allowed to leave their car until 8:05 in order to keep students organized.

Recess is still a part of the school day, but with modifications. The school staggers recess times between classes and each class has a designated area in the playground. Students must wash their hands before and after recess. Students are also allowed to eat snacks during recess as long as they are six feet apart.

Lunch time has been completely cut from the school day since the school day ends early; however, the school district provides a free bagged lunch for all students when the school day ends. The school also provides free breakfast for the following day after school. Students who are in remote learning can also receive free breakfast and lunch for the week at WCI on mMondays and tThursdays. 

In the classroom, teachers are encouraged to keep windows and doors opened as much as possible to keep the air fresh. Teachers are also allowed to use outdoor learning spaces if their current lesson allows for it. Teachers are responsible for limiting the sharing of classroom supplies such as pencils, crayons, etc,. and for making sure hand sanitizer is available in the classroom. Teachers also have an air purifier to use in their classrooms. Desks are also spread apart to maintain six feet of distance.

Students who did not opt-in for hybrid still have zZoom sessions with their teachers from 12:00 to 2:40.

Janelle Stabb, a 3rd-grade teacher at Indian Valley, said, “Hybrid is going better than I expected, being able to interact in person with students definitely brings back the joy of learning and teaching. I feel the students are more engaged during in-person learning and there are way less distractions as they are at school and not home.” Stabb also commented on the differences between hybrid and normal learning: “The major differences are having 14 students rather than 24. I have been doing flexible seating in my classroom for the past five years and now each student is at their own desk, spaced six feet apart from other desks, with a desk shield on their desks. Students are not allowed to freely roam the classroom, [and] all their supplies have to be at their own desk. I have to maintain six feet from students throughout the day as well. This is a huge difference as I can not go and help or sit with struggling students or students with questions.”

Stabb said that students who are in a hybrid are clearly excited to be back in school: “It is a lot better for the in person students. It is definitely a bit of reality being back in the classroom and I can see that some students haven’t been pushed as hard being at home or held accountable for their work. Their energy and enthusiasm has been awesome.  The students are also doing better than expected with all the social distancing rules and new procedures in place.”

Issue 5 Magazine Opinions

Raphael Warnock Makes History in Georgia

By Cam Lippincott

Graphic By Zeyada N

On January 5, 2021, Raphael Warnock made history by being elected Georgia’s first Black senator. Warnock was elected alongside Democrat Jon Ossoff. Warnock and Ossoff’s victories were what gave the Democrats a majority in the senate; there will be 50 Democrats and 50 Republicans and Vice President Kamala Harris will act as the tie-breaker.

Warnock was not in the national spotlight until August. He remained relatively unknown until his opponent former Senator Kelly Loeffler, a far-right billionaire who illegally sold millions of dollars worth of stock after receiving briefings about the COVID-19 pandemic in January 2020 and called Black Lives Matter a Marxist organization that wants to “destroy the nuclear family.” Loffler is a co-owner of the Atlanta Dream, a WNBA team. The athletes of the Atlanta Dream responded to Loeffler’s racist comments by wearing t-shirts that simply stated “Vote Warnock.” Before this Warnock was polling 3rd in the runoff election of 20 candidates. He then surged to first in a matter of weeks.

Before November it seemed impossible that any Democrats could win the state. The state hasn’t gone to a Democrat in a presidential election since 1992. However, President Biden and Senators Warnock and Ossoff were all able to win. These unexpected results were largely credited to former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams. In 2018 Abrams was the first Black Woman to become the nominee for a major party in a governor race in the United States. Abrams came just 50,000 votes short of a victory in the 2018 Georgia governor election, where current governor Brian Kemp clearly engaged in voter suppression targeted towards Black voters. After her election, Abrams launched the Fair Fight organization, which advocated for easier voter registration and increased voter turnout. Abrams is credited for helping register 800,000 new voters in the state of Georgia.

Warnock has never held political office before. He has been a pastor at Ebenezer Baptist church, where Martin Luther King Jr. was a pastor, for 16 years. It also served as the location for the funerals of Dr. King and Congressman John Lewis.

Warnock’s victory makes him the second Black senator from the former Confederacy since the Reconstruction. He is also the first Black Democrat to win a senate seat in the South ever. His win has sent a tremendous message to African Americans in the South who have faced voter suppression and systemic racism for decades. Warnock was smeared as “radical” by his opponents and had attack ads aired against him that darkened his skin. Despite all of this he was still able to win in a state with a flag based on the first flag of the Confederacy. Warnock’s win serves as a signal to Democrats that they shouldn’t think of the South as super conservative states, but rather as ones where voter suppression is rampant. If they put the time and effort into these states, they can win.

Warnock also owes his victory to the fact he did not let his opponents define him. Too many Senate candidates spent all their time simply stating that they were not Republicans and somehow expected swing voters to choose them. During the end of his campaign, Warnock focused on COVID-19 relief, promising to vote for $2000 stimulus checks. By doing so he was able to give reason for people to vote for him rather than just pointing out the flaws in his opponents, a problem many Democratic candidates face.

Since Warnock’s election was a special election, he will have to run again in 2022. As of today, it seems he will be favored to win in the state that’s becoming more and more blue. I hope the Democratic Party looks to Warnock’s campaign as an influence for swing state campaigns. Democrats should run campaigns focused on the issues and not entirely focused on their opponents. The party needs to do everything in their power to end voter suppression in these Southern states, which is not just good politics, it’s the morally responsible thing to do.

Magazine News Volume 70, Issue 4

Kevin Wilk Appointed Mayor of Walnut Creek

By Cam Lippincott

Graphic by Emma Cypressi

On December 1st, the Walnut Creek City Council unanimously appointed Councilmember Kevin Wilk Mayor of Walnut Creek, in accordance with the traditional rotation of Walnut Creek Councilmembers in the position as Mayor. Wilk’s mayoralty follows Councilmember Loella Haskew when she served as Mayor from 2019-2020.

Wilk’s term as Mayor comes after a highly contested City Council race between 8 candidates. Wilk obtained the most votes with 20.2% of the vote, followed by Cindy Darling and Loella Haskew, who obtained 19.8% and 15.8% of the vote respectively. 

Wilk described the job of Mayor as “above and beyond what their role as a council member normally would be,” and outlined the responsibilities of the mayor, saying, “The mayor has no extra vote, no extra power. What they do is they help set the agenda with the city manager for the meetings. They run the City Council meetings, and then [are] the face of any media.”

Combating the coronavirus pandemic is Wilk’s number one priority, as he wants to “[get] ahead of the pandemic and then [be] able to have an economic rebound recovery effort with these businesses, especially restaurants and retail.” Another priority of Wilk’s is combating climate change, saying, “We’re going to be updating our climate action plan for 2030 and also be involved with different acts for sustainability that will have Walnut Creek continuing to be a leader in combating climate change throughout the region…we’re going to see some additional electric vehicle charging stations at new buildings, new residences and some other areas that will also increase our ability to combat greenhouse gas emissions.”

There has been much discussion lately in the city about a 24/7 Mental Health Crisis Response Team for Walnut Creek replacing the police in situations where someone is having a mental health crisis. Wilk hopes that this will be in effect by summer 2021, adding, “this is not a decision that is solely in Walnut Creek’s purview. The County has to come up with the plan and they have to come up with the estimation of what the costs will be. And then Walnut Creek has to be able to fund it…we have to first get the plan from the county, and then we can move forward with that discussion. But I’m hopeful that it will be within the next six months.”

Wilk also gave an update on the hiring of a new Chief of Police and whom he wants them to be: “I’m looking for somebody to be a community resource officer, somebody that works with the community…to be a bridge between law enforcement and the community itself. That’s what I’m looking for. That’s what I hope to see.” Wilk also noted that it is not the City Council, but City Manager Dan Bukshi who makes the hire.

Walnut Creek has gone through much social unrest since a Black Lives Matter protest on June 1st. Many activists have called for the police department to be defunded during protests and City Council meetings, while many residents of the city have said the police are not responding to some protests strong enough. To these concerns, Wilk said, “We all want justice. We also, I believe, want peace…our police department is now responding differently, based upon the needs of what that protest is. So what happened on June 1st, you haven’t seen that kind of police response with multiple agencies getting involved.” Wilk called for the community to lower tensions: “I would just ask everybody. Let’s just take a breath and allow the process that we’re now working on, through the response units, unarmed police responses, and the different new measures that have come into place. Let’s allow them to do the work that they were intended to do.” 

Magazine News Opinions Volume 70, Issue 2

We Need a Progressive Wave This Election

Graphic by Jennifer Notman

Every 4 years, the United States holds its presidential election, and we get to see our country collapse in real-time. Unfortunately, the 26th amendment says citizens must be 18 years old to vote, so I have to wait 2 years to cast my ballot. Still, I have been following this election cycle and the candidates it has had to offer closely. The following is a list of candidates for some of the races this year that have the courage and strength we need in people who represent us in government.

President of the United States:

President Trump is the worst president we have seen since Ronald Reagan. The damage he has done to this country in 4 years will take years to repair, and he must be removed from office. While I do recognize the Democrats put forth the worst nominee possible from their original field of over 20 candidates other than Michael Bloomberg, Vice President Biden’s campaign makes few enthusiastic, and I am still baffled that he won the Democratic Primary. Biden does have some good policies, including raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour, universal background checks for gun purchases and guaranteed 12 weeks of paid family leave. I would vote for Vice President Biden. 

House of Representatives:

Our current representative in Congress is Democrat Mark DeSaulnier, who is running against Republican Nisha Sharma. DeSaulnier is the easy choice here; he has shown support for progressive policies such as Medicare For All and is a co-sponsor for the Green New Deal. Sharma is a basic conservative in a district where Democrats win by 40% every time.

California State Senate:

This is another case of a race where the Democrats are guaranteed to win by 40%, with our current state senator Democrat Steve Glazer running against Republican Julie Mobley. Glazer may have a (D) next to his name but he is as conservative as they come; his campaign takes tens of thousands from corporate PACs and has advocated that BART employees should not be allowed to strike. He has a horrendous voting record in the state senate; Glazer was the lone Democrat to vote against legislation that would put a donation cap in local elections. And in 2016, nearly 4 million of the 6.2 million dollars that his campaign raised came from the Charter School industry. None of these candidates have the interests of their constituents in mind, and I would leave my ballot empty for this section.

California State Assembly:

This is the closest race of the federal/state elections on the ballot. Our current assembly member is Rebecca Bauer-Kahan, a Democrat who flipped the seat in 2018, defeating Republican Catharine Baker by 4,539 votes. This year Bauer-Kahan is running against Republican Joseph Rubay. Bauer-Kahan is also a fierce advocate for womens’ rights and makes use of her platform to do so. Bauer-Kahan needs to keep her seat.

AUHSD Governing Board:

Out of all of the elections, this one will most directly affect Las Lomas. When I was reading each of the four candidate statements, Christopher Grove caught my eye. Grove is a Las Lomas alumni and special education teacher who seeks to expand mental health resources for students and increase community feedback in board decisions. Grove has the best policy platform out of all the candidates, and I strongly support him.

Walnut Creek City Council:

This is the race I have been the most focused on in the past few months. Walnut Creek has the potential to be a great city, but unfortunately, our City Council members Justin Wedel, Kevin Wilk, Cindy Silva, Loella Haskew and Matt Francois are holding our city back and making it worse. They all need to be voted out as soon as possible. This year Wedel, Wilk, and Haskew are on the ballot and need to be sent home. There are 3 candidates who are clearly the best choices this year, which are Michael Samson, Kurtis Reese and Lauren Talbert. These candidates would make the changes needed for our city. Samson is a community leader and has a strong progressive platform that we desperately need. Samson has also endorsed Reese and Talbert. Reese is a Las Lomas dad and has been endorsed by Friends of Scott Alexis and Taun Hall (FOSATH) and would help bring the change needed to Walnut Creek. One thing remains clear: Walnut Creek needs Samson, Reese and Talbert!

Entertainment Magazine News Volume 70, Issue 1

Walnut Creek Restaurants: Effects of the Outbreak

Graphic by Jennifer Notman

As the Coronavirus pandemic continues to rage on throughout the world, it seems like we will never go back to our normal lives. Many people have not been to movies, seen their families or been to restaurants since March of this year. When the lockdown first began in March, many restaurants had to close their doors until the virus was more under control. As of now, many restaurants are open for outdoor eating, but there are still some restrictions as indoor dining has still not been allowed by the county. However, the recent loosened restrictions have made it easier for the small businesses here in Walnut Creek. 

When Las Lomas alumni Joe Stein, the owner of Sunrise Bistro, a downtown restaurant which has been in Walnut Creek since 1981, first got the news of the lockdown, he knew his business was at risk right away: “Catering is a big part of business and because of the lockdown we ended up having to lay off all of our catering staff.” With a significant portion of his business gone in an instant, Stein knew he had to think of something big. This is when Stein came up with an idea that could help feed doctors, nurses and other first responders as well as save his business: “Within a week of the shutdown we launched a GoFundMe page allowing crowdfunding to buy meals for hospital workers to help feed first responders. We were able to provide 5,000 meals for 15 different hospitals and we got to be able to keep 75% of our staff.” Stein has been able to raise 75,000 dollars and provide 5,000 meals through his GoFundMe page to help feed hospital workers, police officers and firefighters while saving his business at the same time. The loosened restrictions have let Sunrise get a boost in business but it is still not what it used to be. Stein said, “I think it’s a mixed bag. We opened the deck a month ago so we have outside seating now so that’s a bonus but during the fires and smoke COVID has taken a backseat sometimes.” 

It is unlikely that indoor dining will return to restaurants until cases are down greatly but there are still many ways to get food from your favorite restaurants in Walnut Creek. Downtown restaurants are now offering outdoor eating but if you are not comfortable with that, there are still other ways to eat food from restaurants. Many restaurants take orders from DoorDash and Uber Eats so you can have the food delivered to your house with an additional delivery fee. Other options include curbside pickup which is essentially take-out but you do not have to enter the store. Instead, an employee will bring your order to your car. Some restaurants also let you walk in to order and have you wait outside as well.

Magazine News Opinions Volume 69, Issue 8

Are Hair Salons and Other Businesses Essential?

Graphic by Luke Theodossy

According to the Oxford Dictionary, the definition of the word essential is, “absolutely necessary; extremely important.” This is why places, where you can buy food, water, and other human needs, are still open despite the coronavirus lockdown.  Places like grocery stores and hospitals are absolutely necessary for survival. However, it is also important that we keep the non-essential businesses closed to keep the number of infections down to as low as possible. It is dangerous enough having people packed in grocery stores; we don’t need people packed in a hair salon. Many people argue that places like nail and hair salons are essential and should be opened, but after 5 seconds of critical thinking, one can see that these things are purely cosmetic and are not needed for daily life. The fact that many people are willing to risk lives to get their hair nice says a lot about this country.

In fact, many people throughout the country have been protesting for the reopening of the entire economy as a whole. Many of these protestors argue that the economy is needed to be reopened because of the lack of money and the fact their bills are due, but these protestors should be advocating for things like cancellation of rent and mortgage payments and a universal no-questions-asked monthly payment of $2000 to every person in America with $500 for every child. If we had these benefits people would be less stressed about how they are going to pay their bills. The government has passed some has passed relief but it is lackluster, they gave a one-time payment of $1200 for citizens who earned less than $99,000. In order to ensure the well-being of its citizens, the government needs to bring forth more aid during this epidemic.

Entertainment Magazine News Volume 69, Issue 8

Tiger King Review

Graphic by Lexy Martinnuci

Tiger King is one the most bizarre docuseries to ever be released. The more you watch, the more unbelievable it gets.

Tiger King came out on March 20, 2020, and became an instant hit. It seemed that you couldn’t go five minutes on social media without seeing a post about it. Tiger King starts off focusing on one person, Joe Exotic. Joe is the founder and owner of the Greater Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park, which he claims is the largest private zoo in the United States. As you watch more, it reveals that Joe isn’t exactly the wonderful person he shows himself as.

During the show, we learn about Joe’s worst enemy, Carole Baskin. Carole is the leader of Big Cat Rescue which is an Animal Sanctuary for big cats. Joe attacks her in his YouTube videos seemingly every minute, and talks about how he wishes she was dead. Carole criticized private zoos because of how they abuse the animals they take in. Joe then accuses Carole of killing her husband, who disappeared in 1997, and then feeding his body to tigers.

The thing Tiger King does best is keep you intrigued. The show never sticks to a theme for too long and each episode reveals something new, each more shocking than the last. Whether it be Joe’s run for president or him getting dragged around by tigers in an exhibit.

The show’s second to last episode feels a bit bland compared to the rest, besides being the most crazy. I feel like there should’ve been one more episode. There was a bonus episode where various zoo staff members were interviewed, but I feel that show could’ve had a stronger conclusion.

Features Magazine News Volume 69, Issue 8

How the Environment Can Benefit from a Lack of Humans

Graphic by Luke Theodossy

As quarantine goes on, we’re beginning to see pictures of once densely populated urban areas completely empty; the effect this has on the environment is outstanding.

One of the most prominent stories is that the Venice Canals are now clearing up. Venice is a city in Italy famous for the canal that runs through the entire city. The canals used to have problems with litter and other forms of pollution, but since Italy went on lockdown, the once cloudy water looks completely different. Major News stations are reporting that schools of fish are visible and that dolphins were seen swimming in the ports. The lack of tourism is most likely the cause of all of this so we will have to wait and see if tourism is handled more carefully in the future in Venice

Another environmental change occurring is the worldwide lowering of greenhouse gas emissions. Some of the reasons are the declining need for oil and reduced air travel. The BBC reported that New York, one of the states most affected by COVID-19, is seeing a 5-10% drop in carbon dioxide emissions. The Hill is reporting that 2020 could be the biggest annual drop in carbon dioxide emissions at 5%. China has had a 25% decrease in emissions. The drop of emissions, sadly, will only be temporary and amounts are sure to shoot back up as soon as economies re-open throughout the world. The last time the world has seen a drop this big was the 2008 financial crash and the fall of the Soviet Union. 

It’s kind of sad that we only see drops in greenhouse gas emissions during global crises such as the Coronavirus, but we could use quarantine as an example to remember to be environmentally conscious and try to limit your carbon footprint.