Author: Ellie McFarland

The Sex Strike and How it Exemplifies Political​ Division

Ellie McFarland | @El_FarAwayLand

Earlier this month, Alabama and Georgia both passed controversial anti-abortion legislation. The “heartbeat laws”, which outlaw abortion once the fetus has a heartbeat. In the wake of such, pro-choice women have been lighting up social media. Notably, false reports that the Alabama heartbeat law would prosecute women for miscarriages made the rounds on the news cycle. The bill would only pull a woman into an investigation if there was suspicion someone else had performed an abortion on her. This bit of misinformation contributes to media fear mongering, and somewhat humorously, some Twitter users calling for a “Sex Strike.”

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The SAT’s Environmental Context Dashboard System

Ellie McFarland | @El_FarAwayLand

College application season has long passed, as has the time to receive college acceptance letters for most of the country. However, the season that does not stop is SAT and ACT testing. The College Board recently announced that they would be implementing a new “Environmental Context Dashboard” system. This would impact the SAT score by accounting for the crime rate of the student’s residency. It will also factor the socioeconomic status of that geographic area. All sides of the political aisle have either given praise or criticism to this decision. However, this is the sort of decision that one can’t brush off as either solely “good” or “bad”.

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Southern States’ Abortion Bans Call Us to Discuss Policy

Ellie McFarland | @El_FarAwayLand

Even before the historic Roe v. Wade ruling, abortion has been a topic of contention for ages. So, it is not a surprise that on May 8th this year, just a week ago, Alabama pivoted on a controversial abortion bill. Alabama and Georgia are both involved in implementing legislation that would ban or criminalize abortions state-wide. Alabama’s bill would have banned any abortion for any reason other than to protect the life of the mother. Georgia’s bill, which is in the process of appeal, would ban all abortions full stop. The social climates of these two states make clear that abortion must be approached seriously and objectively. Those who care at all about the laws governing them or anyone else must decide their position on this issue, clear of ideology or personal demagoguery.

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CB Radio: The Wild West We Forgot About

Ellie McFarland | @El_FarAwayLand

Every year, I go to my parents’ old alma mater in central West Virginia. Outside McCuskey Hall, there’s a grove of enormous oak trees, casting shade on the grassy field. In the fall it is absolutely picturesque. Every year my dad tells me and my sister the same story. When he was in college in the late 80s, he would climb one of the oaks and string up a hammock in the branches. He spent most of his time in these trees with his friends, chatting and practicing dove-calls. But sometimes, he would haul his ham radio (amateur radio) into the branches and talk to kids across the campus or call my mother in the other dorm hall. All the while, he feared to break a major law by ordering a pizza.

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The Police Force is Turning America into a Military​ State

Ellie McFarland | @El_FarAwayLand

On Tuesday, April 30th, the courts finally convicted the Minneapolis police officer who killed Justine Ruszczyk. After a month-long trial, the shooter, a jury convicted “Mr. Noor” on charges of third-degree murder and manslaughter. These together carry a maximum sentence of around 35 years, but he will likely not receive it.

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