Issue 12 of The Campbell Times
When people hear the name Clay Aiken, they are reminded of the American Idol contestant who was the 2003 runner-up to Ruben Studdard, but not many associate him with politics.
Clay Aiken, who visited Campbell’s campus Thursday, explained that throughout his entire life he has been a North Carolinian and had a strong interest in politics.
“I’ve been involved and attentive to politics and what has been going on around the world for my entire life,” Aiken said. “This is just a different way for me to advocate since I have been on American Idol.”
In February, Aiken announced his candidacy for North Carolina congressional office in the SecondDistrict. This position is currently held by Republican Representative Renee Ellmers.
“This is not as big of a transition as many people believe it is,” said Aiken.
After Aiken’s journey as a singer fresh off of Idol, he started an organization for people with special needs and has been an ambassador for UNICEF.
Aiken said his ability to listen would be beneficial in his role as representative for North Carolina.
“Representatives have the description of their job in the title which is to represent,” Aiken said. “Right now in the office there’s a lot of tone deficit between people who are supposed to be represented and the person who is representing them.”
Hunter Outlaw, a senior business administration major and Student Government Association Vice President, said, “Someone who gathers data on consistent needs, and isn’t pursuing their own interests, but what they are elected to pursue, is a true representative.”
“The ability to listen, to be there for people, and maintain highest priority for citizens’ needs are the primary functions of a representative,” Aiken said.
Clay said the goals he has will have to line up with the constituents in the Second District.
The biggest issue he believes he needs to cover is jobs in the economy.
He said another major issue of citizens is the dysfunction of politics from Raleigh to Washington, D.C.
“Unemployment is an issue I am glad Clay Aiken covered,” said senior Emily Tadlock, a communication studies major. “I’m worried that I will not be able to find a job as easily due to the unemployment rate.”
Aiken said he wants to be the voice of his constituents.
“I’m not doing this because I need a job, I recognize that people aren’t being listened to and I can listen to people and they can listen to me. My desire is to speak up for the people who have placed me in this position,” said Aiken.
By Mary Ashley Badgett
Are you a cartoonist?
The AAEC/John Locher Memorial Award Competition for student cartoonists is now open. The contest is sponsored by the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists.
The contest is open to student cartoonists from the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Age limited to participants 17 to 25 hers old.
Cartoonists are to submit four clean photocopies of each of their best four editorial cartoons for a tool of 16 copies.
Limit comic strips unless the format lends itself to an editorial statement.
The winner of the John Locher Memorial Award will receive a $1000 cash award and all-expense paid trip t the annual convention of the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists.
The entry fee is $10. Send cash, check, or money order to AAEC.
Contest entries are to be sent to:
AAEC/John Locher Award Contest
Association of American Editorial Cartoonists
3899 North Front Street, Harrisburg, PA 17110
The deadline is March 15.
For more information, go to: editorialcartoonists.com
A special update of key events in the Ukraine conflicts with Russia.
It was just three months ago protestors sparked a fire in the Ukraine.
During the early stages, these protests were confined to small patches of annoyance against the nation’s leader, President Viktor Yanukovych, and his choice to abandon a European Union political and economic pact in order to seek functional and profitable relations with Moscow.
According to Global News, by November of 2013, protestors had taken to the streets, being brutally attacked by police officers who were called in to calm their rising and alarming number.
However, by Dec. 1 protestors had seized Kiev’s city hall, forming one of the largest activist movements in Ukraine’s history.
Their voices fell short as President Yanukovych pressed on with a deal that allowed Russian President Vladimir Putin over $15 billion dollars worth in government bonds from the Ukraine.
In exchange natural gas exportation from Russia would see a drop in prices; the two insisted there were no side deals involved. Their deal came just a little over two weeks after the protestors seized the Independence Square in Kiev.
At the end of January, after a month of live protests, the first demonstrators were shot in a confrontation with police officers.
The nation’s Parliament repealed laws that enabled the police officers to fire on civilians in order to ease the tension.
Even when a truce was called a few days after the repeal it did little to stop the violent protests from emerging again the next day.
By the middle of February nearly 300 people had been arrested, and at least 29 people had died. As hours passed, and casualties ensued, protest leaders and Yanukovych planned to form a new government, and the nation’s Parliament released his key rival, former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko from prison.
As protestors moved in closer, Yanukovych fled the country.
Now, with the vote to remove Yanukovych from his office, the Ukrainian Parliament is moving to hold new presidential elections, with Tymoshenko promising to run for position. As of late, pro-Russian activists were striking up with outbreaks of violence in Crimea, which resides in the southern region of the Ukraine.
According to CNN, today, Yanukovych said he remained his country’s legitimate elected leader and was not giving up.
Nations hold their breath, with hopes and prayers that these protests will end peacefully, and soon.
By Anjanette Alexander
The following are the winners of the SGA Executive Elections today:
Executive President: Sue Ann Forrest (96.9%)
Executive Vice-President: Nick Hudson (97.0%)
Executive Treasurer: Danielle Barnes (53.9%)
Executive Secretary: Phillip Hedrick (57.2%)
Women’s Community Coordinator: Marlee Sloan (97.9%)
Men’s Community Coordinator: Harley Powell (100%)
Commuting Students Coordinator: Megan Avery (98.9%)
Since 2007, Harnett County children have experienced improvement in key health indicators, including insurance coverage, dental care, teen pregnancy, child deaths and even high school graduation rates. These gains are at odds with what’s expected during economic downturns when health outcomes typically worsen.
“Poverty causes increased financial and emotional strains on families that often result in poorer health outcomes for children,” said Laila A. Bell, director of research and data at NC Child. “These data show that public policy actions which promote evidence-based programs and support local communities can be powerful tools to safeguard our children’s health during tough economic times.”
NC Child’s 2013 Child Health County Data Card for Harnett County finds between 2007 and 2012:
· Medicaid enrollment increased by 27.8 percent and Health Choice enrollment increased by 20.5 percent, which is consistent with statewide data showing a 30 percent decline in uninsured children;
· Medicaid-eligible children who received dental care increased by 25.3 percent for children 1-5 and 15.9 percent for children 6-14;
· North Carolina’s teen pregnancy rate continued to improve, dropping 43 percent to 19.7 per 1,000 girls ages 15-17. The teen pregnancy rate was 21.5 per 1,000 girls in Harnett County;
· Statewide, child fatalities continued to decline, falling 22 percent to 58.6 per 100,000 children under age 18. Harnett County had 22 child deaths in 2012;
· The graduation rate improved by 4.9 percent.
“It’s no coincidence that Harnett County experienced a significant decline in its teen pregnancy rate and increase in its graduation rate over the past several years,” said Bell. “Both of these indicators have been targeted by well-funded state efforts. This improvement should give us hope that we can make progress on big problems when we’re willing to put resources behind data-driven solutions.”
While typically associated with academic achievement, the graduation rate is also a key health indicator. Education is associated with better earning potential and higher income which enables purchase of better housing in safer neighborhoods, healthier food, health insurance coverage and more timely medical care. Studies have linked high school dropout to higher rates of substance use, psychological, emotional, and behavioral problems.
NC Child’s findings for Harnett County were not all positive, however. Key economic indicators in Harnett County have worsened as a result of the recession and subsequent budget cuts. Specifically, the unemployment rate in Harnett County increased from 4.9 percent to 10.8 percent from 2007 to 2012, and the median household income declined 2.5 percent to $44,998. In 2011, the most recent year for which data are available, 26.1 percent of children in Harnett County were living in households that struggled to meet their basic nutritional needs.
“Statewide, one in four children are growing up in poverty. Food insecurity is a very serious byproduct of poverty that’s making its presence felt in Harnett County,” stated Bell. “No child should ever go to bed hungry, but unfortunately, that’s what’s happening to children across the county.”
With the elimination of the state Earned Income Tax Credit and significant cuts to unemployment benefits, there is concern that many families could find their economic situation worsening during a slow economic recovery. What’s clear is that the impacts of public policy decisions are playing out in communities across the state.
“We know that parents and communities are working hard to grow healthy children, but they cannot do it alone.” said Bell. “Advocates, providers, community and business leaders, state and federal governments must collaborate to strengthen investments in prevention programs and promote focused public policies that promote child well-being.”
To download a copy of your county data card, visit: http://www.ncchild.org/sites/default/files/Harnett.pdf
By Rob Thompson
Director of Communications at NC Child
Issue 12 of The Campbell Times
Issue 11 of The Campbell Times issuu.com/thecampbelltimes/docs/claudia_mundy?e=6065642/7310762
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