Perhaps some might remember when Nebraska finally ended its use of the electric chair for the death penalty in 2008, but the movement to abolish the death penalty in the state has been a far quieter force.
A couple of weeks ago someone asked me why I think studying science is so important. I began to answer their question with my usual answer, "It teaches people to think critically and to solve problems." However, as I thought about it, I realized that was not a good reason to learn anything. It is a beneficial outcome of learning science, but not the reason why people should want to begin studying it.
Some interesting events happened recently in the arena of sex politics in America. It's too early to tell yet whether we'll see any positive changes, but what I've observed so far has been tentatively encouraging.
Everyone dreads the prospect of the infamous "freshman 15." As a college student, your budget may allot ramen noodles two meals a day, seven days a week. A good number of students attend school full-time and can't (or won't!) hold a job. For these students, as well as those with minimum-wage part-time jobs, finding a way to eat healthy and stay in shape (or lose some weight once you get to college) is a challenge. Keeping a budget and knowing how to shop are key components in being healthy while saving money.
While few may pay attention to what goes on in Nebraska's legislature, fairly big news was announced just the other week in the Omaha World-Herald. State senator Scott Lautenbaugh of Omaha was picked up for a DUI. His blood-alcohol level was three times the legal limit, and he accepted full responsibility for what he had done.
A year ago, this story wouldn't have bothered me a whole lot. I mean, politicians behaving badly is a nightly reality show we call the news. However, this incident reminded me of that little saying: "What goes around, comes around."
Let me tell you the story.
With recent North Korean nuclear advances, the U.S. has joined the United Nations in enforcing stricter sanctions on the totalitarian state. However, greater economic action must be taken by the U.S. to address the serious humanitarian crises that affect North Korea and the rest of the world.
When Pope Benedict XVI announced he would abdicate, it created month-long skepticism about the reasons why. Immediately the media created a storyline focused on scandal.
What was broadcast and written hypothesized about further allegations of child molestation and cover ups, or some sort of financial wrongdoings. Those angles were once again presented when the pope finally left office on Feb. 28.
Regardless of the angle the media took on the story, it was almost always negative and focused on the probability something had gone wrong and imagined Benedict was being forced out of office.
However, the real reason Benedict left his post is much simpler, and not nearly as dramatic.
Batman is arguably the greatest superhero ever conceived. He doesn't have to fly around or use laser vision to get the job done. With his genius brain and his deadly martial arts skills, Batman is a force to be reckoned with. It might sound like I have a man-crush on him (okay, you got me), but he's my favorite superhero for a good reason.
Essentially, Batman is someone who can do anything he puts his mind to, and if we took a page out of his book, we could do the same. Granted, he's only a work of fiction. He's designed to triumph over evil no matter the situation, but there are still morals to be found, just like in any story. If we look beyond the pure entertainment value, it's possible to find many life lessons within the Batman lore.