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Hurricane victims need more than just money

in Editorial/Opinion by

In times of great national and international disaster, no single country gives anymore in aid than the United States. We’re very charitable and compassionate people. Money isn’t everything though, and I think it’s important to rediscover that. We all have busy lives, but there are truckers dropping everything to take supplies down to the victims of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. The Red Cross is sending lots of its available manpower there. Law enforcement and other first responders are organizing item drives. Churches and other religious institutions are adopting families until homes get rebuilt. For those of you who may not know, I am an Eagle Scout. Volunteering and being a good citizen are central tenants to Scouting. In a perfect world, there would be enough volunteers to at least begin the rebuilding process in short order. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case and I don’t believe it’s the case now.…

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“Logan Lucky”: Witty comedy meets heist thriller

in Lifestyle/Movies/Reviews by

Sometimes in the life of a blue-collar, the world seems out to get you. Sometimes you lose your job, and sometimes you struggle with family relationships and finding more work. Sometimes you attempt to rob a motor speedway with your wounded veteran brother, an incarcerated robber with a penchant for explosives, and the inmate’s two ignorant brothers. Okay, maybe not that last one. In “Logan Lucky,” however, this premise produces a fast-paced and exciting film, directed by Steven Soderbergh and starring Channing Tatum and Adam Driver as brothers Jimmy and Clyde Logan, who find themselves attempting to pull off a massive heist of Charlotte Motor Speedway with the help of some clumsy and empty-headed partners in crime. Soderbergh came out of retirement to direct this picture, which quickly asserts itself as a masterful comedy that achieves laughter through lighthearted and over-the-top performances by its actors while also being able to…

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Hurricane Harvey: How JJ Watt recruited the sports world to help disaster victims

in News by

J.J. Watt announced his fundraiser for Hurricane Harvey relief efforts on Aug. 27, since then he has raised more than $29 million. Hurricane Harvey’s effects have been catastrophic to the city of Houston, and have triggered flash flooding in parts of Arkansas, Kentucky, and Tennessee. Parts of southwest Louisiana and southeast Texas have received 40-50 inches of rainfall. After witnessing the damage caused by Hurricane Harvey, Watt, an NFL player for the Houston Texans, went to Twitter to announce his fundraising page for Hurricane Harvey, declaring an initial goal of $200K. Within two hours, Watt announced that the goal had been met and then raised the goal to $500K, which was raised in under 24 hours. The goal has since been raised again and again, as million-dollar donations have started to become a regular thing. Watt is considered one of the most popular athletes, not in just football, but in…

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Alabama State Primary: What to expect in a Trump-friendly stronghold

in Editorial/Opinion/Politics by

You might be asking why you should care about Alabama, or if I have completely lost my mind talking about the potential replacement for now-Attorney General Jeff Sessions in a Trump-friendly state. Have I? Let me break this down for you. The President’s approval rating in Alabama is roughly 80 percent. The primary pits incumbent senator Luther Strange against former Alabama Supreme Court Justice Roy Moore. Strange has been endorsed by the President and Vice President while also being a reliable ally of Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. Backed by both the White House and Senate leadership, shouldn’t it be a slam dunk for Strange? Why waste precious time with this discussion? Moore has had a solid lead since the beginning of the primary over Strange. He was kicked off the Alabama Supreme Court for failing to remove the Ten Commandments off of government property after being ordered to do so by…

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Cars 3: Lap of Honor

in Lifestyle/Movies/Reviews by
Image courtesy of Disney / Pixar

Cars 2 was completely awful – I think we can all agree on this. As most of the people who spent their time and money on this film left the theater confused and disappointed. Thankfully, Pixar listened to our disappointment and took the time to give Cars a quality third act that could lead to multiple sequels or end the franchise with a great story. Cars 3 conveniently forgets that Cars 2 ever existed (thankfully) and takes us back to what we originally loved about the first film – racing. We get to see Lightning McQueen doing what he loves to do best which is leaving his opponents in the dust. Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) now a seven-time Piston Cup winning legend is suddenly overshadowed by a newcomer named Jackson Storm (Armie Hammer), who’s cutting-edge technology and statistical analysis allows him to be faster and stronger than any other car.…

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Microtransactions Become Increasingly Commonplace

in Lifestyle/Video Games by

In the last 10 years, the success of smartphones surged users interest in free and inexpensive gaming options for their new devices. During this time it became widely known that some of the most popular games were free to download. This created a widespread appeal for games like Jetpack Joyride that while simple, proved addicting. Through a process of selling in-app purchases, or “microtransactions” players had the opportunity to purchase items for their character that they could otherwise not unlock without significant play time. Since its release in 2011, Jetpack Joyride still generates an estimated $2500 daily from microtransactions according to thinkgaming.com. Revenue like this proved significant, causing the business model to be adopted by many free to play games on mobile devices and computers. Games like League of Legends and DOTA 2 are among the most popular in the world and have been successful utilizing a microtransactions model in…

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“Disjointed”: More Like Disappointed

in Lifestyle/Reviews by

The new workplace comedy, Disjointed directed by Chuck Lorre and David Javerbaum, was just recently added to Netflix’s collection of original series and is getting quite the amount of attention. This may be because of how shockingly humiliating this show is, being under Netflix’s name, who has been known for making hit series such as House of Cards and Stranger Things. For those looking for cheap plot lines, improper acting, and multiple tacky jokes regarding cannabis, this show is for you. Disjointed, follows Ruth Whitefeather Feldman (played by Kathy Bates) an advocate for cannabis all of her life, finally making her dream a reality by opening her own marijuana dispensary in Los Angeles called Ruth’s Alternative Caring. There she is accompanied by her college graduate son Travis (played by Aaron Moten) and her three “budtenders” to help her run the shop and help those in need in order to spread…

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Protest at Granite City Baptist Church brings out tensions on both sides

in News by

A meeting at Granite City Baptist Church regarding the Muslim faith sparked passion and outrage on both sides present during Thursday evening’s combined presentation and protest, taking part in a national debate about religious identity. Shahram Hadian, a well-renowned pastor from Washington state known for his teachings in which Christianity and Isalm are not similar faiths, preaching Muslims should adopt the Christian Doctrine, hosted the event, giving a speech to the congregation. He firmly believes Muslims need to turn to Jesus to “be saved” and “repent,” even mentioning he believes some churches within his congregation have been “led astray” by normalizing this type of relationship. Hadian claims he left Iran in 1978 just before the Islamic Revolution that brought Ayatollah Khomeini to power, bringing Sharia Law. During part of his presentation, he took out a legal book about Sharia Law, which he said the law wasn’t good anymore and that…

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