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Viewpoint: Looking at the Megan Barry Affair

Nashville’s mayor has admitted and apologized for an extramarital affair with the head of her security detail.

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This week, Nashville Mayor Megan Barry released a statement admitting she has been cheating on her husband. The affair with the head of her security detail, Sergeant Robert Forrest, began shortly after Barry was sworn into office in 2015.

Barry denies the claims of  professional misconduct and alleged misuse of travel funds that appeared in a story published in the Tennessean. who looked into the business trips Barry went on with Forrest. Out of twenty- three business trips, nine were attended by Barry and Forrest alone.

The officer retired the same day Barry’s statement was released, yet the mayor says she will not resign.

“I made a serious mistake, but this is not a tragedy,” Barry said in a Nashville Public radio podcast.

Mayor Barry was in the national news last summer after her 22-year- old son died of a drug overdose in July. Now looking back, records state that Forrest was the officer who broke the news of her son’s death. Barry now goes from a grieving mother speaking on the opioids crisis to an apologetic wife speaking on infidelity.

“I also must apologize to the people of Nashville who elected me to serve as your mayor. I knew my actions could cause damage to my office and the ones I loved, but I did it anyway. I must hold myself to the highest standard of which the voters deserve to expect. Please know that I’m disappointed in myself but also understand that I’m a human and that I made a mistake,” Barry’s statement said.

She apologized to her husband. Forrest apologized to his wife. Barry ended her statement saying that God will forgive her but the people of Nashville do not have to, either way she will continue to work hard and gain back their trust.

Leona Dunn is a journalism major attending Tennessee State University. She loves to fact check rumors for fun. Aspiring to work as a correspondent and eventually anchor at a highly appraised news network, she currently serves as head anchor of TSU-TV 98 her campus news station and as News Editor of the METER, her campus publication. Leona will be graduating in three years with honors this spring.

MeToo

Viewpoint: There is No Problem with the #MeToo Movement

#MeToo is here to change America: Empowering survivors and giving their voice a platform.

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Recently The Atlantic posted a short video of writer Caitlin Flanagan explain what was wrong with the #MeToo Agenda.

Her first point was that it covered too much as it “descends the ladder from rape to bad dates making it a category big enough to be meaningless.” But there is an obvious difference between rape and a bad date and there is a huge gray area in between and the line is drawn with consent. I know too many men and women who are survivors of sexual violence. But I also know people who have had bad dates (myself included). A bad date is someone who’s rude or narcissistic or just not someone you’re interested in, Rape and assault are crimes. The difference is clear and no one tweets #MeToo over a bad date, they just “girl me too” to a friend.

Flanagan also mentions men who are unfairly caught in the crossfire among accusations of powerful men being brought to justice. She cites Matt Damon who said “groping someone’s butt was different than sexually molesting a child.” While Damon was correct from a legal standpoint, and that these two acts are different, both acts are acts of sexual assault or violence.

There is no excuse for assault or violence on any scale. The fact that Damon doesn’t realize this is a perfect example of how microaggressions find their way into our common media. Any act of unwanted sexual advances made by anyone is unacceptable.

To Flanagan, Damon is misinformed and part of the problem. But most of that comes from the fact that he was misinformed.

She criticizes women for thinking male power structure is part of the problem and suddenly smashing the patriarchy being added to the list of goals for the #MeToo Movement. You can only do so much good targeting individual offenders who have taken advantage of the unfair power structure stacked in their favor. Soon enough you need to address the root of the problem, and it often lies in our history of male centered power structures.

While we can’t undo history, we can work towards equal representation and allowing each individual to be able to thrive under a power structure instead of allowing the people at the top take advantage of everyone below.

Flanagan notes, “It seemed as though almost every woman had some sort of goal she wanted to add to the agenda. No problem was too small or too vague to be included–So long was a man was to blame.”

Have you stopped to think that there actually is a problem? If every woman can identify at least one time in their life where someone has made unwanted passes at them this is clearly a problem that needs to be handled.

Perpetrators needs to face justice and survivors need to heal.

This isn’t just a women’s issue: sexual violence affects everyone: More than 1 in 3 women (35.6%) and more than 1 in 4 men (28.5%) in the United States have experienced rape, physical violence and/or stalking by an intimate partner in their lifetime.

The #MeToo movement is about bringing those guilty to justice. Not attacking men.

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National News

Viewpoint: Neo-Nazi’s Congressional Campaign is Emblematic of the Trump Presidency

Former American Nazi Party member Arthur Jones faces no opposition in a March Illinois primary.

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Arthur Jones has tried to run for the Republican nomination in the third Congressional district of Illinois five times with no success.

This time around, however, he faces no opponent in the March 20 primary, likely ensuring he’ll be able to take his campaign all the way to the general election in November as the nominee. But he won’t have support from the Illinois GOP along the way.

The former member of the American Nazi Party is an abhorrent nominee for a historically Democratic Congressional seat, but his existence is emblematic of a more disturbing problem in the current political climate.

People like Jones are too narrow minded and shallow to see that a diverse America is best for the future of democracy

Jones is widely known as a Holocaust denier. There is an entire section on his campaign website dedicated to conspiracy theories about the Holocaust and comments from Jones himself disputing its existence. His website features hateful language against the Hispanic and LGBTQ communities, as well as a depiction of the Confederate flag as a symbol of “white pride and white resistance.”

Jones will likely lose the general election, as a Republican hasn’t held the seat since the 1970s, but his progress in the race is troubling.

He truly would not gotten this far if Donald Trump was not in the White House. Though white supremacy did not begin with the election of Trump, his presence in politics has emboldened racists and Neo-Nazis to have a place in popular discourse.

Trump is widely known as the “America First” president. It’s no coincidence that Jones uses the saying as a tagline for his own hateful campaign.

It’s clear what they both mean by this. They envision the US as a country where everyone looks like them. When they say America First, the underlying meaning of their words is ‘White People First’.

It’s not a stretch to say that Jones, Trump, and many within the GOP see America as a land being invaded by a kind of diversity anyone with a heart and half a brain should fully embrace. People like Jones are too narrow minded and shallow to see that a diverse America is best for the future of democracy.

The Republican Party has disavowed Jones for his beliefs, but they’ve failed to realize their own party caused his rise and emboldened his ideas by supporting Donald Trump and refusing to condemn similar extremists as they’ve come along over the years.

The third district of Illinois, compromising of parts of Chicago and its southwest suburbs, is interesting on the Democratic side as well.

Marie Newman is waging a strong campaign against incumbent Democrat Daniel Lipinski, one of the last remaining conservative Democrats in Congress. Newman has been endorsed by most progressive groups across the district as Lipinski loses support from longtime colleagues and other key political operatives.

Newman or Lipinski will likely beat the controversial Republican nominee. But Jones is where he is because of a divided GOP that’s made it permissible to celebrate white supremacy and neo-Nazism.

And that is a truth that cannot be ignored.

Jones won’t admit that he’s a Nazi, but his past involvement with the American Nazi Party does not leave much room for debate. His disregard for the unimaginable tragedies of the Holocaust prove that he’s not only unfit for office, but also a danger to society regardless of whether or not he’s put in a position of power.

He also publicly expressed support for the neo-Nazi march in Charlottesville last year and praised President Trump for condemning the protestors acting against the Nazi rally.

The influence that Trump has had on his candidacy is incredibly evident, and it’s likely that the other Arthur Joneses and David Dukes of the world will take notice. This could result in a greater influx of far right, white supremacist candidates in contests across the nation.

And that is where the power of resistance must come in.

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Entertainment

Viewpoint: Kylie Jenner’s Baby Is Not Named After An Insect

The baby’s name is Stormi, not Mariposa.

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stormi 👼🏽

A post shared by Kylie (@kyliejenner) on

Despite what social media or fans claim, Kylie Jenner and rapper Travis Scott did not name their little girl after an insect. In fact, they named her after bad weather.

Rumors circulated that the two named their baby “Posie”, short for mariposa which translates to butterfly in Spanish. And many were quick to piece together their own theories. The most popular tweets explained how Travis Scott released his track “The Butterfly Effect” just a month after he started dating Jenner. Other tweets pointed out how the couple got matching butterfly tattoos in June of 2017, assuming their child’s name mirrored their experiences together.

The 20-year-old star never commented on her pregnancy and stayed away from social media during her term in hopes of remaining stress free. A few days after giving birth, Jenner posted a video titled “To Our Daughter” which showed footage that captured her entire journey. She described her pregnancy as “the most beautiful, empowering, and life-changing experience I’ve had in my entire life and I’m actually going to miss it.” Jenner continued by thanking her family and friends for helping to make her special moment private.

On Tuesday, Jenner put all rumors to bed after uploading an Instagram picture with a photo of the baby’s hand holding her thumb with the caption “Stormi”. AP is reporting, that Stormi was born on Feb. 1, and weighed 8 pounds and 8 ounces.

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