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Sunday, November 28, 2021

First off, President Donald Trump has passed a handful of contentious executive actions within his first week in office. These range from cutting federal funds to organizations that provide or “promote” abortions overseas to ordering the construction of two highly controversial oil pipelines, the Dakota Access and Keystone XL pipelines. If there was a way to even further alienate the half of the country that did not vote for him, boy did he do that. All the claims of “Give him a chance!” seem a little too late right now. The extreme things that half of the country feared the most — the ones they were told would not happen — well, it looks like they’re happening. So a dart through all 12 executive orders or memoranda Trump has signed so far.

If you want to unite the country, Mr. President, you shouldn’t immediately pass orders that you know half the country is going to despise.

Amid a government-ordered Twitter blackout, one national park has risen to be the hero we all need. The official Twitter of Badlands National Park started tweeting facts about climate change in response to the president’s silencing of the National Park Service. The tweets were later removed, but a host of “alternative” national agency social media accounts have sprung up, including AltUSNatParkService and Rogue NASA. To these unsuspecting heroes of government resistance, we bestow a laurel. Lead us into the future, National Park Service. “Parks and Recreation” heroine Leslie Knope would be proud.

Now back to the executive orders, because honestly one dart didn’t suffice. One of the most recent, perhaps the most bombastic executive actions Trump has spearheaded deserves a little attention of its own. The wall. Yes, that infamous wall that is supposed to protect our great nation from northbound immigrants. There are so many things logistically wrong with that wall. Since obviously Mexico was never going to pay for it, apparently the solution is to consider a 20-percent tax on Mexican goods, which means that the funding for this wall will come from the American people. We don’t know about you, but that’s a lot of money that could go to better causes. Additionally, just the concept of a wall designed to keep out invaders is so archaic. The existence of border walls only fuels immigration through more dangerous means. We’re throwing a dart to those wall plans, because of all the promises we thought Trump would keep, we hoped it wouldn’t be that one.

Closer to home, there is no doubt you heard about the next performers coming to UF: Big Sean and Lil Yachty. After a list of lackluster artists, UF students will finally be able to brag about going to a concert where the performers aren’t 10 years past their prime. And considering tickets sold out Thursday, it’s no doubt it’s going to be lit. So we give a laurel to Student Government Productions for organizing the Feb. 15 show, because after the week most of us have had, this show is a nice pick-me-up.

And finally, with the Lunar New Year around the corner and more than 1 billion people around the world celebrating it, let’s take a moment to focus on the positive aspects of the year and celebrate the diversity of our campus and the strength we find through it. A laurel to the Year of the Rooster — may it be a good one.

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