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Reconsidering Commencement

An examination of the process to select the commencement speaker

Last semester, comedian Bill Maher ignited controversy upon being invited to deliver the fall commencement address. The campus quickly found itself embroiled in a heated debate about the limitations of free speech. While national coverage surrounded Maher’s public opinions about Islam, a pressing question for Berkeley was how commencement day
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Photo Essay: Touring with SWIMMERS

Last week, I ditched nine lectures and five discussions to go to Australia. My band SWIMMERS was given the opportunity to play at a music festival that toured through Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane. While about half of my journal entries read, “slept on the floor last night. I am
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Interview: Dee Dussault, Ganja Yoga Founder

Dee Dussault is alive. From the first breath of her unconventional practices of ganja, clothes-free and sexual awakening yoga, one cannot help but be intrigued. Exploring her website, which explains her self-anointed title of sex educator, relationship coach, certified hatha yoga instructor and tantra practitioner, is more like a psychedelic
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Humor: An Open Letter to the Pedestrians on Campus

All I ask is that you trust me. Because the thing is, I am very good at this. I am an artist, a genius. I can calculate the trajectories of bent-necked chemistry students with their noses touching their phone screens, of rubber-necked French tour groups, of stiff-necked moped drivers buzzing
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The Friendship behind the First Amendment

Over the past few years, various Christian organizations have sued the United States government over measures that combine sacred and secular practices — such as the provision of contraception in employee insurance plans and the redefinition of marriage to include same-sex couples. The boundary between private religious concerns and government
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Poetry: Dancing Myself Clean

Dancing Myself Clean   Wild grief sinks Like those bronze Stalin statues That stood in my backyard   Or museums on mountain peaks With karma temples in their eyes.   Tripping down macaroni aisles My elbows are peeling like a cheese grater That melts into my drifting thumbprints Because my
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For Happiness, Keep a Gratitude Journal

When I was a fifth-grader, I overheard some kid in my French class say that I was one of the most pessimistic people he knew. Not really a compliment for a person of any age. But I guess his assessment was, in many ways, true. My chosen reaction — and
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Picks of the Week

The Hechinger Report provides offbeat and necessary insight into the United States educational system. Pieces run the gamut from data-driven analyses and commentaries to op-eds and other contributory articles — all of which focus on education policy and its effects. Though the articles are inherently interesting, they are made even
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