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Scavenge Across Morningside

Today I had the task of scavenging around campus for a thick, red rubber band. My initial thought was go somewhere I am most familiarized with on campus, but after further reading, I realized I couldn’t interact with someone I see on a regular basis.

I made my way over to Lewis Hall’s admissions office where I found Cassie Burnside. Burnside is an admissions counselor for the Eastern Nebraska area. When I asked her for a few minutes of her time, she was polite and asked what she could do. I then asked for a red rubber band, which she gave me from her desk drawer. Her reaction was a puzzled look and I explained to her the task I was completing for class.

“Oh, I know what class you are talking about! I took the same journalism class from Professor Fuglsang when I attended Morningside.” Burnside is a 2014 mass communications graduate from Morningside College.


Volkswagen C.E.O. Resigns Amid Scandal

Frankfurt–Martin Winterkorn resigned as chief executive of Volkswagen on Wednesday, taking responsibility for an emissions cheating scandal that has gravely damaged the carmaker’s reputation.

C.E.O Martin Winterkorn stated he accepts responsibility for the irregularities that have been found in diesel engines. Winterkorn had ran the Volkswagen company since 2007 and doesn’t see any wrongdoing in his actions.

Less than a week ago, Volkswagen admitted that some diesel cars in the United States were equipped with software built to fool emissions tests. On Tuesday, the company said 11 million cars worldwide contained the software, this doesn’t clarify whether the software was used in other countries.

Overall,  I thought it was a very effective lead that gave the main points in the first short paragraph. This is a noteworthy newstory because it has affected millions of people worldwide. Impact, conflict, and prominence are prevalent in this story.  Prominence because this is the CEO of the company–a worldwide renown company.  The audience for a story like this would be targeted toward Volkswagen owners, car owners, and society in general.

College Fraternity Students Face Murder Charges (Story 1)

College Fraternity Students Face Murder Charges

Five fraternity members from Manhattan will face murder charges for hazing

Hazing death in Monroe County, Pennsylvania lead to five fraternity brothers facing third-degree murder charges and a total of thirty-seven will face various other charges.

A grand jury recommended the five fraternity brothers from Baruch College face third-degree murder charges and a total of thirty-seven will face a range of criminal charges in the death of student Michael Deng, NBC News reports.

Those facing third-degree murder charges are Charles Lai, Kenny Kwan, Raymond Lam, Daniel Li and Sheldon Wong. Third-degree murder, which does not involve premeditation or a specific intent to kill, carries a penalty of up to 20 years in prison.

Authorities said 19-year-old Michael Deng died on December 9, 2013 after he was blindfolded and weighted down while trying to make his way across a frozen yard and being tackled; this is hazing.

Hazing is the imposition of strenuous, humiliating tasks as part of initiation into the fraternity. During this process, Deng was dropped on the ground and suffered severe head injuries upon which he lost conscious and ultimately lead to his death, according to The Huffington Post.

Prosecutors have begun filing charges and the investigation has been noted to be a lengthy one. Authorities are in the process of figuring out who was present for the retreat and who were involved in the hazing. E. David Christine, district attorney of Monroe County noted in The New York Times, “investigators had to make sure people were put in the right category of involvement.”

“Too many families have been devastated as a result of fraternity hazing, with at least one student dying every year from hazing since 1970,” the Dengs said. “Fraternities and their members must be held accountable, and this step by authorities is an important one.”

Lead Exercise 2

1. Cat Rescue Leads to Injury

The rescue of a cat has resulted in a broken leg for one fire fighter. Fire fighter Bob Harwood and the fire department responded to a call at 102 11th Avenue where a calico cat was stuck in a tree.

Harwood climbed fifty feet up into the oak tree and fell approximately fifteen feet to the ground upon descent after a dead limb broke. Harwood is noted to be in stable condition at St. Lukes Hospital. The cat belonged to the Decker family.


2. Various Incidents Prompt Suspensions at Northeast High School

Northeast High School has had no time to spare this week after the total suspension of fifteen students.

Five students were suspended Monday after they were caught with marijuana on school grounds. Tuesday, a food fight led to the closing of the cafeteria. Lastly, Wednesday the fire alarms were falsely sounded three times.

These incidents resulted in the suspension of an additional ten students who were protesting the suspension of the students from the Monday ordeal. Principal Laura Vibelius commented on the suspension outbreak and sees no continuation of these incidents in the near future.


3. Texaco Gasoline Truck Floods Streets

A gasoline truck owned by Texaco overturned on 48th Street and Correctionville Road, leading to gas flooding the sewer lines.

The overturning of the gasoline truck lead to the re-routing of cars through side streets and the evacuation of nearby families due to the sewer-line gas. Fire Chief Charles Hochandel said, “The firemen followed catastrophe and hazmat procedures set up beforehand for an occurrence.”

Gasoline was apparent on the streets and ditches and the incident remained critical for two hours until the gasoline was flushed away.

Collision on Hwy 20 Leads to One Fatality and Three Injured

One man was killed and three people were severely injured in a two-car collision on highway 20 yesterday morning.

Moyer Quick, 65 of South Sioux City was traveling two miles east of Sioux City when the vehicle he was driving collided with a truck driving by 17-year-old Randy Radin of Sioux City.

Iowa Highway Patrolman Patrick Stewart reported both vehicles were proceeding in westbound direction on the highway when Quick attempted to pass the Radin vehicle. Quick’s rear-end struck Radin’s vehicle as he completed the pass and both vehicles entered the ditch; Quick’s vehicle rolled once. Autopsy results show Moyer Quick suffered from a heart attack which is probable cause of the accident; he was pronounced dead.

The survivors were transported by ambulance to Marian Health Center. Passengers in Quick’s vehicle were his wife Dorothy Quick, 61 also of South Sioux City and Dorthy’s sister, Maxine Steuerwald, 43 of Lawton.

Dorothy Quick is reported in good condition; Maxine fair condition; and Radin is in critical condition, suffering a fractured skull and internal injuries. Dorothy Quick has been released and Steuerwald is scheduled to be released. The road conditions are clear and dry with cloudy skies. The accident remains under investigation.


Handcuffed for Making Clock, 14 Year Old Wins Time With Obama

A homemade alarm clock got a 14-year-old, Houston, TX boy detained by police officers Monday after school officials accused him of making a fake bomb.

This article had very interesting content. The headline caught my attention and I think the lead was relevant to the headline. The lead set the tone for the rest of the story, similar to the inverted pyramid we discussed in class. The lead summarized the story’s most important facts and the following paragraphs added more details and background.

Part of the headline entitled “wins time with Obama,” was compelling and I believe this will catch a wider variety of people as an audience.  After the incident, Obama tweeted “Cool clock, Ahmed. Want to bring it to the White House?” Ahmed Mohamed was invited to the White House for Astronomy Night in October.

Police chief Larry Boyd justified detaining 14 year old Mohamed based on the information they had at the time. The clock isn’t your typical clock; it is equipped with wires and a circuit board. Overall, this is an easy story to interpret and you get the gist of the article from the headline and lead alone.


The New York Times:

Iowa Highway Patrol Radar-Guns under Investigation

The Iowa Highway Patrol put a ban on hand-held radar guns yesterday in Des Moines, Iowa.

The ban of hand-held radar guns was ordered as a precaution while studies are conducted into the possible links between cancer and the usage of these guns. “The feeling here is to err on the side of caution until more is known about the issue, ” said spokesman Adam Berluti.

The move to ban hand-held radar guns is considered to be the first of its kind. It comes two months after three municipal officers in Cedar Rapids filed workman’s compensation claims, saying they developed cancer from using the hand-held guns.

The ban affects 70 radar guns that will be withdrawn from service. Troopers in the state of Iowa will continue to use radar units with transmitter mounted on the outside of their cruisers.

Most Recent Encounter

I was waiting outside the classroom before our 9:50 AM journalism class when a conversation started. A female, student-athlete was waiting for Mr. Brett Lyon in the learning center by his office.

I work for Morningside Campus Safety and Security and the student explained to me that she had received a parking citation for parking in the science center lot. As the conversation grew, I learned I had been the one to write her that parking citation. When she explained her situation, my stomach dropped. I know this student-athlete fairly well and writing citations is one of the hardest parts about my job; people don’t take it too lightly to receive anywhere from $30-$90+ in citations, in this instance it was a ninety-dollar ticket.

Defying the Law for One’s Beliefs

One name has recently struck the headlines and made an impact in the media; that name is Kim Davis. Davis is a Kentucky county clerk who was jailed for defying a federal court order to issue marriage licenses, but against her Christian faith refused to do so for a same-sex couple.

According to Kim Davis, her Christian faith prohibited her from authorizing the marriage license to the same-sex couple, which in return landed her in jail for contempt of court. However, her lawyers are going to appeal the charges on the grounds that she has a right to due process–which may or may not have been violated. The 5th and 14th Amendments contain a “due process clause,” which states no one shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law. Due process is only one of many promises of protection the Bill of Rights gives citizens against the federal government, which is the court of law she is being charged against (Legal Dictionary, 2005).

Davis’s refusal to issue the marriage license has made her a hero among conservatives, who say laws protecting gays and legalizing same-sex marriage infringe on the rights of religious people who believe homosexuality is a sin. Same-sex marriage was legalized on June 26, 2015.

This is a noteworthy story in my opinion because it is something I saw coming. Religion is a huge part of our nation’s culture, as is marriage. I believe people will go to extreme ends to defy the law in order to protect their religious views. This article did a great job portraying the situation without being biased.

Link to article:

F.D.A. Warns Public of Potent Powdered Caffeine

In its pure, original form, caffeine is powerful. A tablespoon of caffeine powder can be lethal. For example, 3.5 ounces of caffeine can be compared to 400 tall cups of Starbucks coffee, 1250 cans of Red Bull or 3000 cans of Coke. Wow.

This headline struck me. As a student-athlete involved in various activities on and off campus, I have time management skills. Even if I plan my day out to a T, I still may have a late night of homework or studying because the phrase, “there’s not enough time in the day,” comes into play. As a student, I turn to coffee to help me out with those late night homework sessions. Last year, two healthy young men died after using too much of the powdered caffeine product. Too much caffeine can lead to rapid or erratic heartbeat, seizures, and evidently..death. The Food and Drug Administration has received petitions to ban the selling of pure caffeine. The F.D.A. has sent warning letters to various companies in regard to the production of caffeine. One company’s founder responded via email stating the company “immediately stopped selling the material.” However, when does it become a problem to ban this product completely and not leave it up to the companies to stop production?

Caffeine is a drug. After a summer of interning at the Iowa Department of Corrections, I can tell you: making something illegal will not stop someone. This is a mere situation of doing what is best for your body. If someone wants to do something, they will do it, whether it is legal or not. Overall, I think this article did well in explaining the significance of the situation the FDA is facing. If I had to write an article like this, it would be difficult to write without being bias and formulating my own opinion (like I shared above).


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