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Saturday, November 26, 2022

Jason Zappulla


Avoid the temptation of all-nighters

It’s exam season at UF. Students are crowding the libraries and voraciously consuming books and study guides to prepare for the big day. Some of these students pull all-nighters to study, forgoing sleep and staying up all night to prepare. I’m here to tell you that not only are all-nighters a poor method of studying, but that there are much better options available.


FEC vacancies are worsening the Trump-Ukraine scandal

On Thursday, a partially redacted letter was declassified from the U.S. intelligence community. The complaint letter filed by a whistleblower (later revealed as a CIA officer posted to the White House) described a call where President Donald Trump pressured Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to launch a private investigation into Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden and Biden’s son Hunter, the latter of whom was formerly on the board of a Ukrainian natural gas company. 


While everyone watches the presidential primaries, don’t forget the Senate

As I write this column, 19 Democrats and four Republicans (including incumbent President Donald Trump) are running to be their party’s nominee for president of the United States. Each candidate has outlined their policies and platforms and are giving speeches telling voters what they’d do if elected. This is all well and good, but there’s one group that could make much of those plans meaningless: the United States Senate.


Older Democrats dominate the party, but don’t underestimate young people

Ten Democratic presidential candidates gathered on Thursday for the party’s third primary debate, and once again Joe Biden was in the news afterwards. In June, a confrontation betweenBiden and Kamala Harris concerning Biden’s previous stance on school integration using buses splashed across headlines. This time, it involves Biden’s response to a question about racial inequality and reparations. Biden’s answer was rambling and confusing, but what struck people the most was when he told parents and caretakers to “make sure you have the record player on at night,” so their kids would hear more words. Needless to say, record players are no longer in common use. Combined with Biden’s outdated references, the 76-year-old former vice president seem out of touch and unfamiliar with the modern world. 


Dorian and other storms are a warning sign of climate change

Last week, Hurricane Dorian rolled into the Caribbean as a monster hurricane. Although Florida was mostly spared from the storm’s destruction, the island nation of the Bahamas was not. The country’s prime minister called Dorian’s impact“generational devastation.” Looking at the damage, you can see why: 60 percent of the homes on the Bahamian island of Abaco were destroyed; entire neighborhoods were flattened; 70,000 people were left homeless; and the current death toll of 43 is expected to rise drastically. It’s fair to say the hurricane devastated the Bahamas. The worst part is that Hurricane Dorian is not an anomaly.


Be kind to the weather person

During discussions of hurricane tracks, forecasts and cones of uncertainty, I’ve heard mention of how the meteorologists discussing these forecasts “always” get it wrong or make mistakes. While I can understand why people feel this way, such comments detract from the important work that meteorologists do.


Peter Fonda: The passing of an outspoken celebrity

On August 16, 2019, actor Peter Fonda died. A member of a prominent acting family, Fonda is probably best known as a countercultural icon who starred in films like Easy Rider, which is about two motorcyclists traveling through the Southern U.S. However, as my only experience with Fonda is his role in Thomas and the Magic Railroad (likely not Peter Fonda’s proudest moment), I cannot give a proper obituary of the man, nor will I try to. Instead, I would like to focus on his political statements, which brought him a good deal of notoriety in his later years.

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