Free Press Fairhaven Wireless Penetration

Free Press
Wireless Penetration
Mara Mitchell
It’s a tree, it’s an obelisk, it’s a flag pole!
No, it’s a cell tower! These are just a few of the
disguises being used in Bellingham and around
the nation to “minimize the visual impact” of the
wireless revolution. Since the first commercial cell
phone call was made on October 13, 1983, cellular
communications have spread across the globe with
superhuman speed.
From 203,600 subscriptions and 599
cell sites in 1985, the industry has grown to a
$143,710,400 enterprise serving 262,720,165
Americans from 220,472 cellular transmitters
nationwide. The International Association for the
Wireless Telecommunications Industry (CTIA)
published a June 2008 survey that estimates
“wireless penetration” to be at 84 percent; 15.8
percent of customers carry wireless service only.
This growth is evident locally in the 17
towers and 32 smaller “cell sites” located within
Bellingham’s city limits; two additional sites
are in the planning process. Clearwire’s multifunction site atop Whatcom Community College’s
Kulshan Hall includes three cellular antennas, two
microwave dishes and a 6 base transceiver station,
to be camouflaged as a vent stack. This tower
construction begins in the next three months.
In the Columbia neighborhood, located
between Eldridge Ave. and Meridian St., residents
are hotly contesting Verizon’s second attempt in
two years to locate a 100-ft. tower in their midst.
The commercially zoned property located at 2615
Meridian St. belongs to Magas Insurance but adjoins
homes in one of the city’s oldest neighborhoods.
Residents forcefully opposed the tower at
the company’s required community meeting held
on October 16th. Their concerns ranged from
neighborhood character and property values to
their children’s health and the “unknown effects” of
electromagnetic radiation.
The meeting was Verizon’s first step in
the application process required by the city. Jackie
Lynch, from the Bellingham Planning Department,
explained that if the company chooses to move
forward, they must next submit an application to
the city. Lynch said applications are reviewed by
Planning Department staff, with final decisions
made by the city’s hearing examiner.
The proposed cell tower is also on the City
Council’s agenda, thanks to a phone call from a
Columbia neighborhood resident. In the October
6th Council Committee Meeting, members
addressed the city’s ability to regulate cellular tower
placement. Assistant City Attorney, Jeff Capel,l
raised concerns that there may be federal statutes
see Wireless page 2
Inside this Issue
Student Co-ops
Photo by Laura Jones
Chicken Sandwiches
Fall 2008 Tuesday Dec 2nd
Page 2
Americorps: F**k yeah
Kyler Barton
I spent well over a decade
of my life in public and private
education,and yet,after graduating
in 2006, I found myself back in
an elementary school. While my
fellow high school seniors were
applying to colleges, I was busy
applying to AmeriCorps where I
found a position on a team with
the Washington Reading Corps
AmeriCorps is the
equivalent of the Peace Corps,
except that it runs thousands
of programs domestically. Gary
Locke implemented the WRC
program over ten years ago to boost
reading scores in public schools.
As if these two organizations
were not enough to keep track
of, my job also involved working
for Solid Ground (formerly the
No pain, no gain:
The economic Bubble Bursts
Alyson Simeone
Fremont Public Association) and
the Seattle Public Schools.
working under four entities, the
situation hardly left me confused
overwhelmed. Although
AmeriCorps oversees numerous
been reinvented in my mind. The American economy is
based on capitalism. Capitalism
is a volatile system by nature, but
this volatility is at times much
more apparent than others. A
prime example of such volatility
on a downward streak is the
economic recession currently
being experienced throughout the
world. November 5 marked
the first of a three-part economic
learning series that took place on
Western’s campus in the Frasier
Auditorium. The series focused on
how this current recession would
affect student’s individual lives.
During the second event, guest
lecturers and WWU economic
professors Hart Hodges and Dan
see Americorps page 3
Who cares about “economics’? Some obvious candidates include
students who pursue the subject
as a major, political leaders,
stockbrokers, and presently just
about every news anchor on
television. But must the everyday individual really concern him
or herself with such a seemingly
subject? I discovered long ago
that my interests were directed
towards liberal arts, and that
my passion was in dealing with
social justice and human rights
issues. To me, economics and
business seemed like completely
foreign and unappealing areas of
study. Their potential to severely
influence or provoke me seemed
like little to none. However, the
world of economics has recently
radiation. Their appeal was based
on professional experience of
a dramatic increase in chronic
diseases such as attention-deficit
disorder, heart rhythm disorders,
strokes, Alzheimer’s, leukemia,
digital cordless telephone use or
nearby installation of a cellular
transmitting station. They also saw
decreasing effectiveness in their
treatments, which they attributed
to the persistent penetration of
The city’s cell towers
hold up to three antennas each,
capable of handling 200 calls per
antenna. When the use exceeds
capacity, calls get dropped and
telecommunications companies
receive requests for increased
coverage and begin looking for
additional sites to place towers.
According to city code,
the first choice for new antenna
placement is with existing
antennas, the second choice
is industrial zones, the third
is commercial, institutional or
public, then mixed residential and
as a last resort, solely in residential
In their
applications, companies must
prove there is a demonstrated
need in the area they are desiring
to locate a new tower or cell site.
Increasing dependence
upon wireless technology results
in greater need for transmitting
stations. As the residents of the
Columbia neighborhood know,
this trend may soon bring the
wireless industry to your back
fantastic experience.
Due to my long hair,
a few kids were confused which
gender I belonged to. I remember
asking a second grader, if he let his
hair grow, would that make him a
girl. His answer was an emphatic
Non-profits are a strong part of our economy.
They are critical to our economy. There are
over 400 non-profits in Bellingham
projects, my program focused on
tutoring elementary students in
reading. This was how I spent most
of my service years (I enjoyed the
first one so much, I signed on for
a second term) and working with
the elementary students was a
Wireless: Non-thermal effects of EMFs
not considered in regulations
restricting their ability to impose
regulations on the towers based
on human health concerns; the
legal department was sent to
The restrictions Capell
referred to reside in Congress’s
1996 Telecommunications Act,
which prohibits state and local
governments from regulating
“the placement, construction, and
modification of personal wireless
service facilities on the basis of
the environmental effects of radio
frequency emissions” (Section
704). In other words, no local
entity can have higher standards
than those set by Congress.
The Telecommunications
Act set national Maximum
Permissible Exposure (MPE)
limits for cellular telephone, radio,
TV broadcasting, microwave, and
satellite communication systems
frequencies (EMFs).
fields operate in wide-ranging
frequencies below the spectrum
of visible light. These frequencies
are referred to as non-ionizing
Above visible light,
electromagnetic energy and
frequency are strong enough to
ionize. At these levels, electrons
strip away from atoms, capable
of penetrating living tissue and
damaging organs and DNA.
Some example of this include Xrays and nuclear reactions, known
collectively as ionizing radiation.
The frequencies and
power densities utilized in
telecommunications have also
been shown to cause biological
effects. They penetrate living
tissue on a full-body or localized
scale, depending on wave size,
interacting with electro-magnetic
systems in the body (nervous
system and heart beat) and
altering cell structure.
electromagnetic waves to heat
molecules, known as their
Tuesday, Dec 2
thermal effects, is most commonly
encountered in the daily use of
microwave ovens. These cooking
appliances operate at 2450
Megahertz (2.45 Gigahertz),
which is on the high end of the
microwave spectrum. This range,
from hundreds of Megahertz to
a few Gigahertz, is also used for
the majority of today’s wireless
communication services.
Communications Commission
(FCC) is the federal agency
responsible for regulating radio
emissions. It does not recognize
adverse health effects associated
with below-thermal levels of
EMF exposure. According to
publications by the FCC’s Office
of Engineering and Technology
(OET), a biological effect “does
not necessarily suggest the
existence of a biological hazard”
(emphasis original, OET Bulletin
56). If microwaves are not emitted
at power densities strong enough
to heat living tissue (i.e. to cook
you), they are considered safe.
In 1999, the Cellular
Phone Taskforce sued the FCC,
Cellular Phone Taskforce vs.
FCC 2000, and the United States
government on multiple counts,
one being that the set limits are
“arbitrary and capricious because
they fail to account for nonthermal affects of RF radiation.”
They also claimed that the
Telecommunications Act violated
the Americans with Disabilities
Act. People diagnosed with a new
disorder known as electromagnetic
sensitivity are unable to function
in environments dominated by
EMFs. The suit was denied on
all counts by the Second Circuit
Court of Appeals.
In October 2002, a group
of 64 German doctors signed
their names to the Freiburger
Appeal, a document expressing
extreme concern regarding the
health effects of low-intensity
and high-frequency microwave
yes. Priceless.
I knew that I was
making a difference in the lives
of the kids I tutored but I think
I learned a lot about myself in
the process. Instead of continuing
see Economy page 11
Federal Communications
Photo by Eric Schmitz
A disguised cell tower looms over the Ridgeway Complex
at WWU. Cell towers like these are becoming more and
more common as cell phone use continues to rise.
and brain tumors, corresponding
to the proliferation of wireless
technology. They also witnessed
growing complaints of so-called
“psychosomatic” disorders such
as migraines, chronic exhaustion,
tinnitus (ringing ears), and
unexplainable nerve, tendon and
ligament pains.
After “carefully-directed
inquiry,” these physicians were
able to connect the onset of
symptoms with increased cell or
microwave radiation into homes,
schools and work places.
The expanding reach of
wireless technology is, to some
extent, driven by demand. Lynch
said that in the early days of
cellular communication people
were content to stand outside
and receive static-laden service
from distant towers. Today’s
high-speed data transfers require
closer and more high-powered
OET Bulletin 56 can be
found at:
Based in Vancouver,
Canada, Milt Bowling
works with communities,
governments, and industries
to implement safe wireless
telecommunications policies.
Learn about his work at:
EMRX: The Prescription for
Safe Wireless
Tuesday, Dec 2
On The
American Identity
Mara Mitchell
American identity is
based on choice: the choice to
have a family (or not), the choice
to go to college or live in a straw
bale house. You can even decide
to dress in purple and green
polka dots and stand on the
street corner, waving your arms
about the lack of carbon dioxide
emissions standards.
The power of choice
My parents moved to
northern Idaho in 1980 to grow
organic vegetables and practice
natural healing. Their choices
created opposition to the dominant
society’s push to consume. Today,
fit neatly into the corporate
economy’s “green lifestyle” sector,
a $30 billion dollar industry that
promises “consumers” the choice
Oh well, says the advertising industry. This
is America. I can be whoever I want to be...
is deeply rooted in American
identity. The Bill of Rights and
private property laws restrict the
governments’ ability to interfere
with citizens’ life choices. Yet what
happens when government allows
industry to define which choices
are valid–or even possible?
After World War II,
chemical and manufacturing
industries claimed that the
American Dream was coming
true. Citizens (soon re-named
“consumers”) were faced with
washing machines, Lysol and
starched shirts became a social
measuring stick.
This year,
industries spent $295 billion in
media and mail advertising. These
ads attempt to convince us that
our purchases define who we are.
to “Be Green”.
“green identities” based on
organic produce, non-toxic paint,
and a Prius, chemicals released
on an industrial scale steadily
breast milk, brain tissue and
body fat. Humans, along with
orca whales, elephants and black
bears, experience the effects. It’s
becoming more and more difficult
to chose to live without a heavy
metal or chemical impacts that
burden the body. It’s nearly
impossible to find a wilderness
that’s immune to global climate
change. There are fewer and fewer
places to go that exist outside the
web of cellular technology.
Human industry is
altering the planet’s ecosystems.
Americorps: Making a difference
through service learning projects
with formal education, I moved
into a house in West Seattle and
began helping those who needed
it. At the time, I didn’t consider
the service aspect of what I was
doing so much; I thought I was
just working in AmeriCorps to
get money for school.
However, I had time
to myself to read books I’d
never had time to sit down with
before. I could think about my
future with hardly any deadlines
hanging over me. I could explore
Seattle with reckless abandon and
simultaneously, whether I realized
it or not, explore myself and figure
out how I want to spend my life.
Serving in the school,
however, was not the only part
of the program. Every Friday, the
team would meet for trainings on
everything from public speaking,
to grant writing, to antiracism
work. The meetings also provided
time to grow as a team and ask
for help with projects at our
respective school sites.
Typically, WRC schools
had two to four AmeriCorps
through Thursdays. If a Friday
meeting was not scheduled, my
school site would let me go on
field trips with the kids. I was
able, by chaperoning excursions, to
see plays, visit the Pacific Science
Center, tour the aquarium and go
to the zoo.
Until my father suggested
I look into AmeriCorps as a way
to spend my gap year, I had never
heard of the organization. After
I was involved, I quickly (and
hypocritically) found myself
astonished with how many others
were unfamiliar with this form of
national service because it provides
so many learning opportunities.
Director of Campus Service
Learning at Western explained
how AmeriCorps helps prepare
students for the next phase of
their lives. “They gain skills for
the workforce,” he said, “and it
[AmeriCorps] strengthens the
non-profit sector.” The majority
of AmeriCorps programs work
in conjunction with nonprofit
strong part of our economy.
They are critical to our economy.
There are over 400 non-profits
in Bellingham,” Costello said.
Any not-for-profit organization
can apply to receive support
from AmeriCorps. The program
provides mutual benefits for the
organization and its volunteers.
There were plenty of
Page 3
Since a species’ environment
defines its structure and function,
these changes have evolutionary
repercussions for human beings
(as well as every other organism on
the planet). Of particular interest
here is how these environmental
changes affect homo sapien
Many people today don’t
cook for themselves, let alone
remember how to farm, hunt,
build or weave fiber. Lacking
the skills to directly provide
basic necessities, I must rely
on the economic sectors that
produce these goods. I become
dependent upon the industrial
system. In order to survive in that
system, I need money. To make
money, I need skills valued by
the industrial, or these days, the
technological job market. If my
identity is strongly based on what
I do for a living, I soon identify
primarily with mechanical, rather
than organic, processes.
If I can’t get a job to
earn the money to buy food and
pay rent, I cease to have value as
a human being. I’m no longer
a functional component of the
economy. In this world view,
any living or non-living being
that can’t be utilized for profit is
disposable. In this way, society
marginalizes entire communities.
People who can’t work are reduced
to poverty.
Ecosystems are
systematically destroyed in order
to extract resources. Anyone
who chooses to identify with
these communities, on the basis
of blood, shared experience or
empathy, exists on the margins.
Meanwhile, those within
the technological realm revel in a
high-speed utopia: laptops, cell
phones, ipods and“blackberries”
(not to be confused with the
wild, fruit-bearing bramble).
These innovations offer the
apparently enticing possibility
that humans can exist solely
within an environment of their
own creation.
Technological gadgets
inhabit many urban-dwellers’
most intimate spaces (my little
brother sleeps with his cell phone)
and receive more attention than
best friends. Contact with rivers,
farm land, bats, raccoons and deer
is minimal to non-existent within
the “technosphere.” If identity
is based on associations, then
migration to a human-created
realm has limited our choices of
with whom we can identify.
Can you talk to a salmon
on your cell phone? Do you
know how to ask a tree for its
perspective on deforestation? An
ability to communicate worldwide is flaunted as one of the
greatest achievements of the
technological revolution. In this
light, leaving communication
with other-than-human life
forms out of the equation seems
like an evolutionary blind spot.
It assumes that human identity
exists apart from its larger
ecological context.
You can’t eat microchips.
The industrial and technological
revolutions failed to recognize
human dependence upon the
biosphere. Homo sapiens were
and continue to be born from the
planets’ biological systems. And
if human industry is affecting the
planet’s ability to reproduce. . .
Oh well, says the
advertising industry.
This is
America. I can be whoever I
want to be: I can borrow my
identity from any culture, dress
it up in designer suits or wear
my hair in dread locks. I can be
me. Technology has given me
unrestricted choice. The only
limit is the reach of the cell phone
But what good is a cell
phone if I want to speak to trees?
stories I heard where, after
finishing their service year,
AmeriCorps members were
hired by the very agencies they
just served. “It makes sense. The
organization knows the person
is already invested in the cause,”
Costello said.
A high number of
Western undergraduates actually
enter AmeriCorps or some other
form of service but many of
them are Fairhaven alums. This
could be that AmeriCorps and
Fairhaven share similar interests
of equality and social justice. I am
delighted that I spent two years
with AmeriCorps and helped so
many kids at the same time.
If you want to get
involved check out www.
through the programs. My
advice to contact the person on
the detail listing because the
website’s database does not have
the information you can get from
someone who actually works at
the agency.
For me, the experience
not only opened my eyes to the
world I live in, but also allowed
me to see the effects of both
oppression and empowerment
in our society. I saw families
from the school disappear when
they had to move south where
housing was cheaper. I helped a
child, who used to scream racial
slurs at other students on the
playground, gain a year’s worth of
progress with reading. He found
books he liked to read and I will
never forget how excited he was
when we sat down and read about
One of my best
memories is when my co-worker
and I decorated the school
for a Dr. Seuss Spirit Week.
Kindergarteners and fifth graders
alike were delighted to find the
school overrun with Truffula trees
and characters from books they
had read. I will be forever proud
of the impact I made through
AmeriCorps on the school, the
city, and the students.
Photo by Kyler Barton
A display put together by the Washington Reading Corps (WRC). Americorps works with
the WRC and other non-profits in schools and communities.
Page 4
Tuesday, Dec 2
Inkspeak 2009
Calling all artists and writers!
InkSpeak, Fairhaven’s arts and literary magazine, is
accepting submissions for the 2009 issue. The deadline
is February 23. InkSpeak is also looking for an artist or
artists to work with on this year’s issue. If you would like
to help in the production of InkSpeak, it can be taken as
an Independent Study winter and/or spring quarter. For
more information, email [email protected]
Photo by Jordan Bright
Kyler Barton
Carl the Jellyfish: Of Sex and Drunken Whales
It seemed like a perfectly normal
marine evening. The ocean heaved a sigh,
sending waves splattering over the rocks of
the shore. The water frothed and bubbled,
sending a spray into the crisp air. Beneath
the water, however, the scene was not so
peaceful. An argument had erupted between
a jellyfish and a starfish. The starfish was,
for the most part, a well-balanced fellow.
He had five arms, a water vascular system,
and innumerable tube feet. The jellyfish,
however, was as different in body from
the echinoderm as in temperament,
but this was, after all, no ordinary
Carl the Jellyfish happened
to be bipolar as well as a
transvestite cnidarian. His
life partner, a ball of yarn,
was currently snoozing in
a nearby kelp bed. Up until
a few minutes ago, Carl
had been doing the same,
until the starfish decided to
“rumble past, like a bloated
whale drunk on krill cocktails
and screaming shrilly for no
other reason than to disturb the
quiet repose of two lovers,” as Carl
“You disgust me you great buffoon!
When you pry open your next clam,
I hope it vomits in your face and rips
apart your soul, you son-of-a-bitch!
Be gone from my sight, foul creature!
I can’t stand to feel your presence!”
The starfish’s surprise at the jellyfish’s
verbal abuse had moved to quiet, almost
patient, bewilderment. He had simply
fallen from a rock above and landed here.
It was an innocent mistake, but any time
the echinoderm attempted to explain, Carl
would cut him off with a new barrage of
insults. He finally walked away, shaking his
tube feet in silent incomprehension.
“That’s right, run, bitch!” Carl called,
making obscene gestures with his tentacles,
however jellyfish do that. He returned,
fuming, to the kelp. Upon lying down, the
yarn rolled toward him and Carl squeezed
it closer.
“Sorry dear,” he cooed, pushing his tentacles
around the yarn, tickling it softly. “Would
you like to snuggle?” Without waiting for
a reply (Carl never did) he leapt atop his
lover and attempted to have sex, despite
the late hour, but he realized that he could
not manage to complete the act for some
“What’s wrong with me?” he whimpered.
It was easy to see he was still furious with
the starfish and his anger was interfering
with his attempts to make love with his life
partner. “I can’t do it! I’m too upset! This is
unfair! I hate myself! I hate the world!”
Then Carl’s bipolar nature took
over and if he was mad
before, he was
livid now.
“This is
bullshit! I want you and you don’t want
me! You’ve been nothing but trouble, you
lazy oaf! I’m always on top doing all the
work! You are no fun in bed! You are dead
to me!” Carl was clearly blinded by his
rage and the yarn took the abuse without
complaint or defense. The bipolar jellyfish
spat derogatory terms and adult references,
however it is jellyfish spit, and the very
ocean seemed to tremble.
During the assault of baseless accusations,
a current spun by and picked the end of the
ball of yarn and laid it across Carl’s mouth.
He shuddered suddenly and his screams
subsided. The jellyfish suddenly swooned as
his mind switched over and he screeched
with a new tone.
“I love when you touch me that way!”
He leapt upon the yarn and, within
five minutes, both Carl and the
yarn were satisfied in every erotic
way possible and they nodded
off dreaming of sex and drunken
Illustration by Kyler Barton
Tuesday, Dec 2
Kyler Barton
Page 5
Confessions of a Corporate Assassin
What word are you? I remember an exercise
from college, the one the professor gave because he was
suffering with a hangover and forgot his notes, where I had
to describe myself with a word and explain the relevance.
I won’t say it became my middle name, because that’s
impossible. Investing that much in a word seems a little
melodramatic to me. I never forgot that exercise and it
stuck with me, literally; I carry the paper with me wherever
I go. Sometimes the most superfluous parts of life come
together to form the very core of it.
This crumpled paper reads: I pick the word
resourceful because I know how to take care of myself and
achieve my objectives in any given situation. Growing up,
I had guns stuck in my face, I was beaten by police officers
and before I could legally drink, both of my parents were
dead. I believe words have an indeterminable power and
should never be underestimated. I’m resourceful because I
choose my words carefully and from there I express myself
with eloquence and clarity. I understand that clarity comes
out of confusion and the unknown and, so far, there is little
I have revealed about myself in this piece. I could write a
What word are you?
detailed account of my life, but why spoil the mystery? The
truth is this assignment is bullshit and I have explained my
word as much as I care to.
That’s the story of my word. I like the honest
approach and don’t care to waste time. I learned everything
in school besides what the classes were designed to teach
me. I discovered that accountability is an important and
noble concept. Like words, I find power in accountability,
and like words, I see people take it for granted.
While I bring up people, I would like to point out
how systems we create trap and label us. The technological
revolution has been taken and used against us. I saw that
disaster coming, but that’s still not what interests me and I
think that perhaps I should tell you what I do.
Before I reveal my job description, you must
understand the systems we live under are broken. One such
example is the legal system. I would say justice is dealt like
a deck of cards. I mean a full deck of cards. There’s a king of
clubs, the jack of spades, all those regular cards representing
routine cases. But suddenly, there’s a case that can only be
compared with the joker. I don’t approve of joker cases
and those who don’t take accountability simply piss me
off. My line of work is holding those accountable who try
to, and often do, avoid responsibility. I have identified my
target group and work, for the most part, against them.
Those who commit corporate fraud unwittingly also make
themselves my prey.
There is no excuse for a CEO that rips off his or
her company and the taxpayers. I like to look out for the
little guy and I have made a rather successful career out of
it. I work alone. I hunt at night. I use only blades. I have
never been a fan of guns; they remove the killer from the
I consciously execute my victims and do so calmly
and with poise: Fifteen CEOs have died by my weapons
and I have threatened countless others. I enjoy being
something they cannot attack with money.
One of the more despicable acts, besides the actual fraud, is
sending someone else to do their dirty work. When I meet
opposition that is not my target, I will attack to maim only.
I think it helps for CEOs to know that there are assassins
like me. It is gratifying to see them stare cautiously from
the elevator into the parking garage. I am their fear.
It may seem like a strange line of work, especially
for me. I assure you that it was not something I planned
on. However, most of what happened in my life did not
match my childhood dreams. My parents died in a plane
crash while returning from celebrating their thirty-fifth
anniversary. They were rich and, because of their money, I
don’t need to work for the rest of my life and can spend my
time as I please. I do what I do, because I see the broken
system that is supposed to take care of criminals. It failed
and I am here to uphold justice.
I could fill books with the tales of my exploits
but I realize I have not filled you in with the current
proceedings. I am sitting in a coffee shop near the financial
district. I spend a lot of time here doing my homework,
which is to say I put faces to names from the paper after
discovering the latest shenanigans. I carry my little memo
book with me. I have hundreds of the damn things, all
filled up, all perused; the intelligence of my operation. I
don’t trust computers. Someone like me cannot risk the
loss of files to some seventeen-year-old hacker with heavy
emotional turmoil and no social life.
The memo with me now is black and the covers
are heavily beaten from being repeatedly stuffed into a
pocket. I jot down a few words with my black pen and
sip my hot chocolate. I never liked coffee much, but
there’s something about hot chocolate that I can’t ignore.
The tantalizing aroma, the creamy froth at the top of the
glass, plus the intoxicating flavor all combines to create
my favorite beverage. My next victim’s picture, torn from
today’s paper, is taped on top of the current page of my
Albert Simmons came under heavy scrutiny when
a bank account was discovered in Europe under one of
his aliases. Authorities believe that he has been funneling
money directly from his company while cutting the salaries
of everyone beneath him. He has served as the CEO of the
Kremco Corporation for six years and the headquarters is
located twelve blocks west of here.
My prey won’t come to me, but I’ll seek him out
myself. I finish my hot chocolate, put my memo in my
pocket and set off to identify my victim. The sidewalks are
clogged with employees bound in their business suits as
they scurry about on their lunch breaks. A few passersby
spare a moment to direct a haughty glance toward me. I
am dressed in a pair of black boots, jeans, a long-sleeved
black shirt and a billowing cape.
The cape serves the practical purpose of shielding
my weapons. The Twins, as I like to call them, are a pair
of identical katanas. They hang on my belt, one on each
side, just behind my hips. They are, without a
doubt, my most expensive possessions. Carrying
around such weapons may seem like a bad idea,
but I feel it just encourages me to be more
cautious. When it comes to my line of work, the
degree of caution can be the difference between
life and death or freedom from imprisonment.
My intimidating appearance works to my
advantage when walking in this crowded
environment because everyone gives me
ample berth to pass. Some flatten themselves
against buildings while others step off the curb
momentarily. It is sometimes hard to determine
what people are trying to communicate with
their eyes as they stare at me.
Do they know who I am? There’s too
much interpretation involved there and I prefer
to keep my mind to the task at hand.
I am standing across the street from
the Kremco building. A collection of chain
restaurants makes up a meager food court just
inside the main doors. The presence of security
cameras is not to be underestimated. I have no
idea if I am being hunted and I hate killing
when I don’t have to. I pull the memo from
my jeans as I enter the building. The smell of
grease and fried burgers greets my nostrils with
predictable immediacy.
I study the grainy picture again and
cast a quick eye over my surroundings: Exit
signs, doors, shiny linoleum, window at the end
of this entrance hall, all details are important
should the situation warrant a hasty escape.
I walk to a bulletin board and run my
eyes past it into the Subway restaurant. Fortune
favors me, for I have looked in no other eateries
and a few tables here and I seem to have a
match. The man appears tired and disheveled.
He is smiling and chuckling with the two men
at the table. I glance at the picture again and I
am sure Mr. Simmons is but a few paces from
where I stand. The corrupt CEO crumples the
remains of his lunch and exits, stuffing the trash into the
bin right next to me. Now that I have seen him, I head for
the elevator.
Moments later, I step into the parking garage.
Sure enough, to my right, sits a Lamborghini, complete
with the letters C, E, and O stenciled on the wall just in
front of the bumper. My job is really not as complex as it
Other assassins might put a bomb in the
overpriced status symbol, but I still object to such a
practice. It is cowardly and removes the harsh impact
of killing someone from whoever planted the explosive.
Furthermore, bombs can malfunction or be deactivated.
My way leaves no confusion of the outcome.
I quickly scan the area and find no cameras aimed
at the car. Pillars cut off a direct view from the street,
which is down a ramp and to the right. If I strike when
Mr. Simmons is entering his vehicle, he will fall, between a
wall and his car, completely out of sight.
I sweep away from the inevitable crime scene and
step back into the shade of the financial towers. As I begin
walking back toward the coffee shop, however, I realize that
something doesn’t feel right. The sidewalk is still stuffed
with people, but though I usually play the hunter, I have
my own sense of when I am being hunted. I know the last
thing to do is turn and look.
I keep walking, parting the crowd effortlessly.
The coffee shop will have to wait. I need to find cover. A
siren wails in the distance, but I know it is not for me. If
someone is after me, announcing their position will not
help their cause. I can feel the crowd behind me.
There is pushing and jostling; someone is
desperately closing in from behind. I lean forward and cut
sharply into an alley. No one surrounding me notices. I run
over the grimy pavement, dotted with dark puddles and
trash. I dive toward several dumpsters and crouch behind
one as a shot is fired.
The hunt is on.
Illustration by Kyler Barton
Page 6
Tuesday, Dec 2
New Chick-fil-A franchise on campus brings controversy, and sandwiches
Katie Chugg
It is a large animal with a white
body, black spots, utters, and four
legs. It has many uses: leather,
dairy products, meat, and pulling
carts. Its catchphrase: moo. It is
the logo for a company, Chick-FilA, whose classic seasoned handbreaded boneless breast of chicken
served on a toasted bun has come to
campus with an outcry of protest.
Why would want to protest this
image and a chicken sandwich?
Protesting Ideology: The
A wide campus email was sent
out the beginning of Fall Quarter to
address some of the concerns about
Chick-Fil-A, which led to a panel
forum, “Serving Up Controversy:
The Politics of Chick-fil-A &
Western,” put on by the Social
Issues Resource Center(SIRC)
and the Lesbian, Gay, Transgender,
Queer Alliance(LGBTA), on
October 16, 2008.
According to the Western
Front, the panel consisted of
Willy Hart, University Residences
director and Executive Dining
Committee chair, Erik Lowe,
Associated Students president,
Amber Aldrich, a concerned
student of the LGBT community,
Ronna Biggs, LGBT Concerns
Committee Chair and Residential
Life, Seth Vidana from the office
of sustainability and Brendan Lind,
student coordinator of Students
for Sustainable Food.
Also, in the Western Front,
AS President, Eric Lowe, spoke
out about the recent attacks at
WSU campus.”[The board] wants
an environment at Western where
students don’t carry with them
the fear of violence or slanderous
comments,” Lowe said. “No
matter what lifestyle students
choose, everyone should feel safe
and as free of hate as possible.
Students have the right to believe
what they want, be who they are
and any individual, organization or
institution that seeks to deny any
individual of those rights will not
be tolerated.”
Lowe is not aware of the
potential message of his words
when he said “no matter what
lifestyle students choose”, because
sexual orientation is not viewed
as a choice by the American
Although Chick-Fil-A does
not purport anti-gay rhetoric,
it is through the owners private
beliefs that this message is being
distributed on our campus.
The Chick-Fil-A Story
According to the ChickFil-A website, “It all started in
1946, when Truett Cathy opened
his first restraint, Dwarf Grill,
in Hapeville, Georgia. Credited
with inventing the boneless breast
of chicken sandwich, Mr. Cathy
founded Chick-fil-A, Inc. in the
early 1960’s and pioneered the
establishment of restaurants in
shopping malls.”
Cathy’s company is still
privately held and owned by him
and his family, and created the
Winshape foundation in 1984 to
“ shape winners.”
According to the Winshape
Foundation supports a variety of
programs, including a long-term
foster care program, a summer
camp for nearly 1,800 kids each
year, a scholarship program in
conjunction with Rome, Ga.based Berry College, and marriage
enrichment retreats.”
that treatment for unwanted
homosexual behavior is harmful,
2Of note, this resolution also
supports the client’s right to selfdetermination and autonomy –
calling for psychologists to ‘respect
the rights of others to hold values,
attitudes and opinions that differ
from their own.”
Focus on the Family believe
people choose to enter into samesex relationships and purport they
are “multiple ways out”.
They cite 1 Cor. 6:9-11:
Know ye not that the unrighteous
shall not inherit the kingdom of
God? Be not deceived: neither
fornicators, nor idolaters, nor
adulterers, nor effeminate, nor
abusers of themselves with
mankind, Nor thieves, nor
covetous, nor drunkards, nor
revilers, nor extortioners, shall
inherit the kingdom of God(King
James Bible).
Focus on the Family has
a stance against any other sexual
identity except for heterosexual
and this has concerned students,
faculty and staff.
sent out.
Majkut said students
questioned what they could do
to get Chick-Fil-A off campus:
the response they received at this
panel was that Western had signed
a contract so there was not much
they could do about it at this time.
I am a really active student and
there is a process of committees
and bureaucracy to go through
to get things in motion,” Majkut
these factors are driven by the grab
and go lifestyle of students.
The next part of the proces
was the Executive Dinning
Hall Committee: AS president.,
Faculty Pres office, Catering
Dean, Members, other admin, as
well as the Assistant President for
The Executive Dinning Service
Committee was looking for willful
employment discrimination, which
It is difficult to sometimes respond in
a manner that is more articulate than
“You’re wrong!” “No, You’re wrong!”
because it is such an emotional issue
said, “it is a reality that the average
student is disconnected from this
University Process and
The University has entered into
a 10 year contract with Sodexo, as
their main operator, but have had
many companies who bid on the
space in the VU—such as Pizza
The Platforms
Hut, Freshens and others
For Discussion
Willy Hart, director of
University Residences, said what
Devin Majkut, SIRC the Executive Dining Committee
Coordinator, said the LGBTA was basing their decision on was
co-sponsored panel was to discuss the calculation of the Viking
issues about sustainability which
The Cathy’s family foundation included the decisions to not Union as a retail area. It is only
helps thousands of people ever include local options and Chic- open 32 weeks a year, Monday
year internationally and nationally, Fil-A farming practices, as well as through Friday, and has 11 a.m.
and it does it through Christian the anti-gay politics, imagery and to 2 p.m. peak times, he said. The
committee considered how they
ministries, which align with a rhetoric.
could maximize this period of
Focus on the Family Doctrine,
Although students are not time, while minimizing cost for
which is openly anti-gay.
eating at Chic-Fil-A, when the students.. The goal according to
buy something from the VU Hart, was to find a company that
The Focus On The Family market they are still supporting can, “service 5-11 customers per
Sodexo and the Dinning Hall minute.”
Services, which have contracted
The university started out
The Focus on the Family with Chick-Fil-A..
with two or three companies
website credits James C. Dobson,
. “How many students bidding on this dinning platform,
Ph.D.,as the founder and chairman. need to be impacted before it Hart said. The first part of the
It is a non-profit organization is removed?” Majkut said. The process was that the Dinning
that produces his internationally campus community knows Chick- Hall Customer Service had food
syndicated radio programs.
Fil-A is now associated with the prepared for them so they could
Their stance on sexual anti-gay movement; they have taste the actual food that would be
orientation can be found on their the image of supporting anti-gay served on campus.
website under social issues and groups. She said it was only after
Hart said the time line
according to it,“ Here,the American students complained about Chick- for implementing a new dining
Psychological Association claimed Fil-A an campus wide email was platform takes year and a half to
process; the dinning platform
bidding started in September
2007 to design, build, and open
it by September 2008.
This had to go through
the Faculty Senate, which we
had two folks running on this
bid competitively and then two
and of these two Chick-Fil-A
fit the parameters of precisely
what the university was looking
The University Dinning
Services in conjunction with
the franchise. Western has
agreed to do for Chick-Fil-A:
food prep, carry specialty items,
use their recipes, for a flat fee.
Or use their, “methods and
Hart said most of these
franchises have a shelf life of
Photo by Laura Jones about 5 years, which provides
Chick-fil-A has just opened up a new branch in the Viking Union at Western Washington
us with some flexibility in
University. Its arival has triggered contreversy amongst the student body.
dining platforms. He said all of
it didn’t find. “It had 17 lawsuits
since it opened, “ Hart said, “I am
sure our university has had at least
17 lawsuits filed against it.”
A similar protest happened
when Starbucks was first
introduced to campus, and Tony’s
Coffee shops were introduced to
give students a different option.
Hart said if Western were
to start looking into the personal
ideologies that every company
practices, besides illegal operations
such as sweatshops, this could
lead each company doing business
with the university would have to
undergo a similar rigorous process.
Thus, this would potentially leave
the university with less businesses
to do business with based on certain
individuals personal politics.
LGBTA Concerns
Shanti Zunes-Wolfe,
LGBTA Assistant Coordinator,
said some people do not mind
Chick-Fil-A at all, but she has
talked to several people who view
it as a hate symbol.
“ I do feel like it is a huge
problem that students (and staff,
for that matter) are feeling this
way. I think the university has
responsibility to address this added
stress factor,” Zunes-Wolf said.
She said, in general, it is
difficult for people, who identify
with the queer community,
to feel prepared to handle the
type rhetoric that conservative
Christian groups like Focus on the
Family use when talking about gay
and feminist issues.
“It is difficult to sometimes
respond in a manner that is more
articulate than “You’re wrong!”
“No, you’re wrong!” because it is
such an emotional issue,” She said.
The LGBT Concerns
Committee went to the Executive
Dining Committee with their
concerns about Chick-Fil-A after
it appeared they were not going
to take initiative on their own,
Zunes-Wolf said. Although they
invited the LGBTCC to speak to
them, they ignored their proposal
of asking Chick-Fil-A to not come
Zunes-Wolf said, “It appears
that by having one, it is just doing
lip service to the queer community
rather than actually having a
support system in place.” So, what
then are we really eating?
Tuesday, Dec 2
Page 7
with Ronna Biggs
A Question and Answer with Ronna Biggs, Coordinator for Programming & Leadership Development (CPLD), and Chair, WWU
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Concerns Committee ( LGBTCC ) for four years, took concerns to the Executive Dinning Hall
Committee about Chick-Fil-A.
Katie Chugg (KC): What were
your initial concerns about
Chick-Fil-A as the Coordinator,
Programing and Leadership
Development of Residence
Life? Chair for the LGBT?
Ronna Biggs (RB): As the CPLD,
I had specific issues that I felt
were significant and important
to review and discuss. I am
on the University Residences
Multicultural Committee, I have
been asked as a part of my job to
pay special attention to LGBT
issues within our department and
campus, I am the chair of the
LGBTCC and I’m one of the
few openly gay staff members in
my department. I have multiple
perspectives through which to
consider this information, and
nothing felt right about having
CFA on campus.
submitted to the two supervisors
engaged in corporate partnership
with organizations that promote
rhetoric: unavailability of a
nondiscrimination clause on the
Chick-fil-A corporate website
that reflected consideration and
protections for, and inclusion of,
LGBT individuals; CFA had
past lawsuits regarding religious
discrimination filed against it.
Additionally, publicly
available values statements made
by the owner regarding the
characteristics of ideal candidates
for franchise operators appeared
narrow in scope.
The student demand
for services might be affected by
Chick-fil-A’s policy requiring
all franchises to be closed on
From a statement the committee
issued to campus constituents, the
concerns are summarized here:
Key issues that the
LGBTCC presented where
agreement and resolution have
been reached to a satisfactory
level, include: A request to the
produce a nondiscrimination
clause that would be inclusive
of LGBT-identified individuals
was met. The corporation clause
reads, “Chick-fil-A, Inc. makes
all employment decisions on a
non-discriminatory basis without
regard to race, sex, pregnancy, age,
religion, national origin, color,
disability, citizenship, military
service status or any other factor
by applicable federal, state or
local law.” [Cited from written
correspondence from Chick-fil-A
to University Dining Services.]
clause does include sexual
orientation, and gender identity/
expression, so Chick-fil-A would
be obliged to follow State law
should there be a question.
The Assistant Attorney
General’s office reviewed lawsuits
against Chick-fil-A as well as
legal aspects of the contract that
Western has with Sodexo, and
subsequently that Sodexo has with
Chick-fil-A. Those contracts are
in good standing and there does
not appear to be a legal basis to
prevent execution of the contract.
It was confirmed that
WWU employees – students
in particular – would be hired,
supervised and trained by Sodexo,
which has nondiscrimination
I have multiple perspectives through
which to consider this information, and
nothing felt right about having Chick-fil-a
on campus
Sunday. The university might
have little ability to accommodate
such demand. Western holds
dear values around diversity and
inclusion. These values appear to
be compromised by contracting
with a vendor and bringing a
storefront to our campus that has
a pattern of corporate partnership
with individuals / events /
organizations that promote antigay and homophobic rhetoric.
As Chair of the
LGBTCC , my concerns remained
the same and actually were
expanded based on additional
LGBTCC conversation and
corporate partnerships. There
were a number of issues the
LGBTCC presented to the EDC.
Some of those issues were able to
have adequate resolution; however
a number of concerns remained.
Photo by Jordan Bright
Ronna Biggs, seen here in her office, is the Coordinator for Programming and Leadership
Additionally, the State of Development, and the Chair of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Concerns
Washington ’s nondiscrimination Committee. She sat down with Free Press reporter Katie Chugg for an interview.
policies and practices in place.
It should also be noted that the
LGBTCC on several occasions
asserted there is not a question
with Sodexo or its corporate
practices; there is great confidence
in Sodexo’s treatment of and care
for Western’s student employees.
Sodexo representatives also noted
that should any student who
is hired by Sodexo request to
NOT work at Chick-fil-A due to
personal reasons or conflicts, those
students would be supported and
reassigned to work in another
dining outlet.
Key issues that the
where concern still
remains include:
Members of the LGBTCC
financial connection and visual
representation of a Chick-fil-
A franchise serves as a daily
reminder to LGBT and Allyidentified students, staff, faculty
and campus visitors that we
are financially supporting a
connections to individuals / events
/ organizations that promote antigay and homophobic rhetoric. The
LGBTCC believes this presence
and investment undermines the
values of inclusion and support of
diversity on our campus, especially
for LGBT-identified individuals.
Western may be viewed
negatively and/or construed as not
supporting socially just or socially
responsible corporate / vending
practices because of our affiliation
with Chick-fil-A. The apparent
disconnect between Western’s
stated values and strategic actions
and its practices may lead to lack
of confidence about contracting
processes and decisions.
Chick-fil-A will remain
closed on Sunday. While there are
not particular legal regulations that
require the business to be closed
(e.g. federal regulations or issues
of labor), Sodexo will comply
with the spirit of Chick-fil-A
philosophy and accommodate
the corporate vendor’s request to
stay closed on Sundays. Students
will not have a choice to have this
platform open on Sunday should
there be interest in that option or
a request be made.
remain about the hiring practices
of Chick-fil-A regarding the
characteristics of ideal candidates
for franchise operators that
appear narrow in scope. While
provided assurances they follow
appropriate and legal hiring
practices, comments by other
(e.g. the owner) in news articles
indicate ideal characteristics
for operators that may reflect
incongruence between policy and
articulates its values of recruiting
and retaining a diverse student
body and recruiting and hiring a
diverse staff and faculty. Western’s
community has worked to put in
place measures that translate this
philosophy into action. Chickfil-A’s representatives have clearly
articulated values and it is difficult
to imagine that the corporation
would not similarly have measures
in place in their processes to
translate their philosophies in
The following article
from Forbes magazine online
notes that the owner (Cathy)
“wants married workers, believing
they are more industrious and
productive.” Such a statement
of values as to who is an ideal
employee leaves a significant
number of individuals (including
single people of any gender or
sexual orientation, unmarried
heterosexual couples, and samesex couples) on the periphery, and
brings in question the Chickfil-A recruitment, interview, and
hiring processes that are in place
to lead to such an outcome.
As an example, see
a recent 2007 Forbes article:
“Loyalty to the company isn’t
the only thing that matters
to Cathy, who wants married
workers, believing they are more
industrious and productive.”
The issue of “ideal
employees” is not new; as an
example of historical pattern,
see a 1986 BNet article: “’We’re
looking at the character of a
person. ... We want to see what
motivates him and whether he
has the ability and stamina to
achieve,’ said Cathy, adding that
being a Christian or a believer is
not a prerequisite for becoming
an operator. “’We have a few Jews
working for us, but I don’t think
an atheist would fit in well here.’”
Chick-fil-A’s presence
on campus and contract with
Western appear to present a
conflict of institutional values
and practice. Western articulates
messages supporting diversity of
people and thought in its values
statements and its strategic
actions and objectives. Financially
supporting and hosting a business
on our campus that, for many, may
serve as a reflection of oppression
does not operationalize WWU’s
stated intent to foster a feeling of
safety and inclusion for campus
members and undermines the
spirit of a welcoming community
that honors diversity.
KC:Have any of the concerns
raised by students or the LGBT
community on campus been
heard or “dealt” with?
RB: There have been a variety
of concerns raised by different
individuals and community groups
– issues with anti-gay connections,
issues of sustainability, not buying
local, etc. I think initially, the
selection process probably went
well in that students were serving
on committees giving input. I
can’t speak for the students who
served on those committees if they
have any reaction to their levels
of participation or how much
influence they had or believed
they had. I don’t know that. I
know students were involved, but
they would need to respond to
their level of knowledge or input.
I don’t know if students ever
heard about the concerns I raised
see Interview page 2
Water: the gift that keeps on giving
Page 8
Unless its filled with lead
Kyle Fleck
Tuesday, Dec 2
Five things you should know about water:
Roughly 61.8% of you is made out of water. Deal with it!
“Water” is also the name of a computing language “for rapid prototyping of XML Web services”, apparently.
It is the name of a crappy Conor Oberst album. (Oh face it: all Conor Oberst albums are crappy Conor Oberst albums.)
Water is something you should drink every day, to stay healthy… and alive.
Hmmm… I don’t have a fifth thing, so I’ll just hook you up with some jive movie trivia: Sylvester Stallone’s high school classmates voted him the one “most likely to end up in the electric chair.” Straight out the mouth of IMDB, yo.
But, to return to point number 4, the people who built Western Washington University
back in 1678 knew the importance of us academic folk keeping hydrated. That’s the
reason for the fabulous water fountain selection available to any man, woman, child or
in-between who just happens to be wandering around Western. WWU also knows the
importance of lead to the human diet, which is why some water fountains around campus
were recently found to contain two times the recommended daily dosage of lead. Beat
that, you Evergreen hippies! Anyway, I’m an avid water fountain patron, and I’ve noticed
that not all water fountains are created equal. (Take that, Water Fountain Constitution!)
So, to spare you from drinking mediocre, warm, overripe, or wimpy-pressured agua from
any of these lesser fountains, I have compiled a list of the TOP FIVE BEST WATER
FOUNTAINS AT WESTERN. Drink from the fountain of my knowledge, young
Fairhaven College, 3rd Floor, Across from the Video Editing Lab
have some funky, funky diets. Besides this small flaw however, you simply can’t beat the
instantaneous refreshment accorded you by this delightful faucet.
Library, just to the left of Circulation Services across in the Haggard wing
Alright, look. If you’ve made it this far, I’m guessing you trust my judgment on the issue
of water fountain quality. Therefore, having already given you the location of the final
most EXCELLENT water fountain on Western’s campus and believing that I no longer
have to convince you that it is worth your time, I will simply list a comprehensive list
of adjectives you could use to describe how it tastes to someone who had never tried it:
stimulating, uplifting, inspirational, invigorating, energizing, revitalizing, cool, restorative,
fortifying, enlivening, replenishing, recuperative, crystalline, life-affirming… I guess I’m
just sort of beefing up my word count at this point. Go forth, my thirsty scholars, and
drink plentifully from these givers of life.
Honestly, this glistening silver spout of life-giving elixir was my primary inspiration
for writing this article. Now, since I’m a student at Fairhaven, access to this delicious
spring was pretty much constant and uninterrupted, and I understand that to you nonFairhaven students (*coughcoughsuckerscough*) it’s a bit of a trek from main campus to
get over here. But that is simply NO EXCUSE to miss out on the ever-flowing delights
of this one-of-a-kind water fountain. The only problem is that, as it is clearly heads-andshoulders above all others, this fountain attracts a fair amount of traffic during mid-day,
I once waited in line for at LEAST a minute just to get a sip. Besides that small qualm
though… it is perfection.
Arntzen Hall, 1st Floor, Just down the stairs at the front door
Recommended to me by our esteemed editor Jordan Bright, who claimed it had “perfect
water pressure”, this easy-to-find and centrally-located fountain does indeed deliver the
goods. Normally, I avoid Arntzen Hall, finding it aesthetically rather repulsive, but now I
have a reason to hit it up at least once a day on my way to main-campus classes. It seems
that people with classes in Arntzen didn’t get the memo about water being an important
of staying alive, and thus far I haven’t had to deal with any lines or camel-drinkers.
Fairhaven Stack 3, 1st Floor, Outside the RA’s room
It’s time for some straight talk. I lived in this stack my freshman year (whoop whoop!
Stack 3 for life! Etc.) This water fountain, it holds a special place in my heart. Every
morning I would wake up, gloomily choke down some cinnamon Pop-tarts and trudge
down the hall and down the stairs for my wake-up glug. So I’m going to admit a little bias
when I tell you that the water in this fountain tastes like the emerald sweat of the gods.
Plus, since it’s in the dorms, there’s never ANYBODY around to tell you to move your
grits and scamper. Of course, the obvious downside of this is… it’s in the dorms. If you
don’t have a key you’re going to have to do some waiting around like a creepo outside the
door until somebody can let you in. Any other dorm-fountain, I’d say there’s no way it’s
worth it. But there’s something about Stack 3 that just tells me you’d be an idiot to let it
pass you by, so here’s my advice: Wait around the door between the hours of 1 and 3pm
(rush hour for college students) and somebody will probably hook you up with access to
the stack so you can taste for yourself, whenever you want, the luscious, refreshing, and
(probably) lead-free water of this hidden Holy Grail of fountains.
Number one on the list, Fairhaven College’s
third floor drinking fountain.
Wade King Recreation Center, just to the right of the check-in desk
This water fountain eluded my attention for some time, as I’m not what you might call
a “regular” at the gym. A good friend reminded me that athletes (shockingly) drink a
lot of the almighty liquid however, so it would behoove me to check out their selection.
And let me tell you: I was not disappointed. I found this useful little number on one of
my wanders around campus one day and instantly fell in love. Plus, I don’t even have
to actually enter the gym itself, as it lies right next to the check-in desk. Unfortunately
it’s right next to the bathrooms, and it seems like Western’s resident fitness nuts also
Arntzen Hall, 1st floor. This drinking fountain made it to the
number two spot.
Photos by Jordan Bright
Tuesday, Dec 2
Page 9
Students work together to bring community food and campus co-op
Eric Schmitz
The house is unheated,
but the bustle of people cooking
food and playing music warms
the temperature to t-shirt comfort
level. The assortment of foods
makes its way to the living room
where plates of pasta salad, banana
bread, and steaming orange squash
are encircled by Fairhaven and
Western students alike.
Lind, the
organizer of the potluck and
Students for Sustainable Foods
committee member, serves himself
up and begins a discussion of what
the Student Run Co-op will be. He
asks for words that describe the coop to be called out, and on a scroll
of paper Lind jots them down:
inclusive, sustainable, economy, art,
The vision of the Coop group is a communal place
where everyone can share their
ideas, music, art, and education.
Ideally it will serve as a hub for
activities, group/club meetings,
study time and socializing, while
providing a place to buy local,
organic, fair trade and affordable
food. The Student Run Co-op is
the creation of Western students
who are concerned about the lack
of sustainable foods on campus.
“We can’t bring in giant,
unsustainable food chains and
at the same time say Western is
sustainable,” said Lind. Along
with aligning Western’s claim of
sustainability with actuality, Lind
wants a place where students’
creativity, energy and passions run
every part of the business.
Ten minutes have gone
by and people are still yelling out
words - community, activism, social
justice. The scroll is now filled with
ideas that parallel the goals of
Western’s own mission statement.
“Western Washington University
is committed to engaged excellence
in fulfilling its tripartite mission
of teaching, scholarship, and
community service in a student-
Students from the Western Washington University co-op pose
for a photo in WWUs Red Square. They wish to bring a student run co-op to WWU.
“Western provides a high quality
environment that complements
the learning community on a
sustainable and attractive campus
intentionally designed to support
student learning and environmental
stewardship,”These are encouraging
values to co-op supporters, but
there are bureaucratic obstacles to
Currently, the French
Sodexo manages all of Western’s
dining services, excluding those
on Vendors Row. Sodexo is one
of the largest food services and
management facilities in the world,
servicing schools, hospitals, military
mess halls and prisons around the
Over the past year,
Western’s Dining Services has
brought more local food to Western’s
apples, Wasabee’s ready-made
sushi, Fair Trade Coffee and the
Underground Coffee House’s local
sandwich ingredients are all a step
in the right direction towards
environmental stewardship, said
Lind. However, the bulk of Western
students’ diets are not composed of
coffee, sushi and apples.
professor and local farmer, Nicole
Brown, is familiar with large scale
“food brokerages”similar to Sodexo.
“They do sell for the farmer, but it
is usually for a cut of the money,”
said Brown.
Kurt Willis, Associate
Director of University Residences,
is most worried about the liability
a farmer direct co-op would have.
“The biggest concerns of the
University is risk management,
liability exposures, insurance claims
and health issues that could cause
a world of grief to the University,
farmers aren’t the best to market
their food; farmers can focus on
growing, Sysco (Sodexo food
supplier) has policies that insure
the health of the food,” said Willis.
Brown said her farm grows
multiple produce items, such as
turnips, potatoes, peppers, onions
and carrots through November and
storable items such as garlic, winter
squash and potatoes through
winter. These storable items can
Photo by Eric Schmitz
From left, Grace Yoakum, Charlotte Nickle, Cate Cook and Julia Maguire at
a WWU Co-op potluck. The WWU Co-op wants to create a venue for local
food and goods on Western’s campus.
easily be combined with baked
goods to provide meals through
winter season, said brown. In
terms of farmer to consumer oil
consumption Brown said, “local
foods don’t have to travel large
distances, compared to most food
that travels around 1,500 to 2,000
miles to the consumer.”
Regardless of farming
practice, the University requires
all food suppliers to have a $5
million insurance policy, said Lind,
an amount that most small farms
cannot afford.
With the addition of
Chic-fil-A to Western’s dining
options, students are questioning
the Western administration as to
what the healthier choice really is.
A report by London’s City
University looked at how
companies responded to health
targets set in 2004 by the World
Health Organization to reduce
obesity, heart disease and diabetes.
The group studied annual reports,
accounts and web sites of the
top 10 food manufacturers, food
retailers and top five food service
companies. Sodexo is listed as
not acting adequately to cut
excessive salt, fat and sugar which
are contributing to a global dietrelated health crisis.
Beside negative health
implications for the human body,
industrial farming also has negative
effects on the environment.
Concentrated use of harmful
fertilizers in midwestern USA, a
center for factory farms, is causing
a dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico.
The dead zone, in which there is
no life, besides bacteria, covers 20
thousand square miles in the Gulf
of Mexico, according to John Tuxill,
a Fairhaven professor.
In reaction to such
environmental degradation, Tuxill
said he sees an increase in the
market for local and organic farms.
He believes they are more able
to be conscious of how the farm
influences the environment. Some
classes that Tuxill teaches are held
Photo by Eric Schmitz
in The Outback Farm that lies
behind Fairhaven and Buchanan
Towers. In its five acre plot, students
who envision a more sustainable
campus grow fruits, vegetables and
herbs that could ultimately be sold
at the Student Run Co-op.
Although the Student
Run Co-op at Western is not yet
a reality, the case is different for
Evergreen State College’s Flaming
Eggplant Café. In Evergreen’s Red
Square a mobile trailer dishes out
falafel pitas, salmon burgers, hot
tea and an array of soups, grains,
meats and salads with a menu that
changes with the seasons. The coop plans on moving inside as soon
as there is room within Evergreen
State College’s walls.
Before the Flaming
Eggplant co-op existed, Students
for Food Autonomy gathered in
Evergreen’s Red Square for potlucks. Eventually, the Student
Activity Board added an initiative
to the student ballot that called for
two dollars for each credit taken by
students to go to the creation of
The Flaming Eggplant Café.
The initiative was passed
by 87% of the student body in
favor of the proposal. This brought
in $122,000 for the Flaming
Eggplant Café. It took one year
after the influx of money to create
the co-op that now brings in an
average of $1,100 revenue each day
it is open. “Bureaucracy and policies
were frustrating to get through…
now that it is up and running it’s
pretty incredible,” said Julianne
Panagacos, manager and cashier.
Other student run coops on the West Coast include
University of British Columbia,
Whitman College, University of
Oregon, Portland State, University
of Santa Barbara and University of
California Davis.
As grants are being
written, benefit concerts planned,
petitions begun and club support
sought, excitement grows on
WWU’s campus to better fulfill
Western’s vision of sustainability.
Page 10
Tuesday, Dec 2
Bellingham’s underage haunts and hangouts
Still Want to Have Fun Even Though You’re Under 21?
Kyle Fleck
Well too bad, sucker… psyche! Having lived in the “city of subdued
excitement” as a minor for about two and a half years now, I would
like to think of myself as somewhat of a local authority on under-age
entertainment. From local haunts such as the Alternative Library to the
ever-mysterious “Great Northern Books”, to all-ages music venues like
Friendship City and WhAAM, to the delirious swirl of late-night diners
such as the Horseshoe and Sherri’s, Bellingham has got your twerpy
little ass covered for stuff to do. So fret not, gentle cretin! Read on to
discover the hidden delights of B-ham nights.
(Please note that though this article is aimed at people under 21, if you
are 21 or over all of these places are still totally legitimate hang-out
spots… you’ll just seem a little weird, kicking back with all of the
younglings when you could be yelling at your date over terrible whiteboy-blues at the Wild Buffalo.)
• The Alternative Library
A friend of mine who goes by the name Future Man has been running Bellingham’s only “alternative” library
out of his home for about a year now, and it just keeps getting better and better. Starting out as a library
devoted strictly to graphic novels, Future Man has now deemed fit to include movies, CD’s and a plethora
of straight-up books, from Nietzsche to Freud and even some textbooks (which may or may not be horribly
out-of-date). The price is right ($1 a book for negotiable amounts of time, or $5 a month to be a member of
the library). Not only that, but Future Man hopes to eventually turn the bottom floor of the library (which is
in fact a house) into a performance space for music and theater. First up: a community-performed rendition
of The Princess Bride. Positive vibes and an impeccable atmosphere of eccentricity and mellow chaos make
the library a wonderful spot to visit the next time you’re on Forest Street.
717 N Forest St
Bellingham, WA 98225
Online at
Photo by Jordan Bright
Cullen Beckhorn, or “Future Man” as he is know
displays his large collection of graphic novels. The
Alternative Library is just one of many all ages
hangouts in Bellingham
• The Horseshoe Café
• Pickford Cinema
The Horseshoe is one of Bellingham’s most-beloved diners. It is the
late-night-drinking-too-much-coffee-smoking-too-manycigarettes-eating-greasy-food-and-avoiding-the-really-scuzzy-lookingdude joint. The staff is friendly if you are, and the food is cheap and pretty
delicious (except for the scrambled eggs: avoid the scrambled eggs like
). Entering its 123rd year, the Shoe attracts all types: the geezer regulars
who’ve been hitting it up since the mid-70’s, punks, juggalos, artsy kids,
speed freaks, well-to-do college kids, over-joyous winos and just regular
folk. It’s lovely for people-watching. They’ve got a delightful claw game
and a number of other money-wasting gambling machines. The men’s
bathroom is pretty much the only downside of the Shoe: it’s so dark
sometimes I have no idea if I’m peeing in the toilet or on my pants. Well,
maybe that’s more my problem than the café’s.
Pickford Cinema is, as it advertises itself, “Bellingham’s only independent movie theater.” What
does this mean to you, the theater-goer? It means first of all that you don’t have to sit through
twenty minutes of horrifyingly unfunny Fandango commercials. Secondly, instead of Beverly Hills
Chihuahua 2: Pet Shop Reunion, you might actually be able to see movies actually worth spending
money on, such as Mike Leigh’s Happy-Go-Lucky, brilliant documentary Blindsight, or Guillaume
Canet’s Tell No One. What’s that? You haven’t heard of any of these movies? That’s exactly my point.
The Pickford’s got all that weird, artsy, possibly-subtitled goodness your average multiplex lacks. Not
to mention the gourmet popcorn, low prices, and a frickin’ RAFFLE every showing, giving away
prizes like free Mallard’s Ice Cream or movie merchandise. Amazingly, given our current financial
situation, the Pickford is actually in the process of moving to a larger location right next to the
Museum of Radio and Electricity, which will include two theaters, a lounge area with live music
and film discussions featuring local movie industry folks. So go support their renovation project by
seeing some movies up in there, ya hear?!
113 E Holly St
(360) 734-0380
Online at
1416 Cornwall Ave
(360) 738-0735
Online at
From local haunts such as the Alternative
Library to the ever-mysterious “Great
Northern Books”, to all-ages music
venues like Friendship City and WhAAM,
to the delirious swirl of late-night diners
such as the Horseshoe and Sherri’s,
Bellingham has got your twerpy little ass
covered for stuff to do.
(Note: I do not actually condone or endorse anything said by the entirely hypothetical narrator
of the Canada section. But the Maple Leafs are a pretty good hockey team.)
Online at… obviously.
Photo by Alex Indigo courtesy of Wikimeda Commons
The complete list of underage spots can be viewed online in the publications section of Fairhaven College’s website at
Tuesday, Dec 2
Page 11
products and other daily needs. support and revitalize a system innovative alternatives to our
A CBS News report found that whose goal is to promote the greatest current capitalistic system
Indonesian Nike workers make amount of consumption possible, “The biggest tragedy is that
a mere 20-cents an hour, while no matter the unaccounted costs? the American people (and our
Corby advised those students state of the global economy, ‘Forbes 400 Richest List’ found The first event of the three part leaders) are painfully slow to learn
attending the event not to worry, Fairhaven College professor Gary the Nike CEO’s net worth is an economic series mentioned earlier from tragedies and catastrophes. as “financial crises similar to the Bornzin says, “I’m not sure if ‘crisis’ estimated 5.3-billion dollars.
was designed to prompt discussion Throwing lots of government
one we’re experiencing right now is the best word. It feels to me like Exploitation in the name of between and educate students money (our money) at problems
occur every ten to twenty years” a sad foreseeable tragedy, arising capital gain is not unique to one on how they feared this current can lessen the pain for some
and are “defining characteristics of from flaws in the people and person, corporation or country. economic recession would affect people in the short term, but fails
the systems they have designed In 2005, the Organic Consumer
In each of the USA’s and worshipped. Our system is Association
twenty-one fundamentally not sustainable governments of Mexico and the
Exploitation in the name of capital gain is
economic recessions that have because it relies for its functioning Czech Republic have already filed
not unique to one person, corporation or
occurred throughout the past one and dysfunction upon numerous briefs on the employees’ behalf,
hundred years, the government false beliefs and principles.” alleging that Wal-Mart employees
and businesses have insisted that Consumers’
producers’ in their countries were similarly
the best way to revitalize the obsession with or ‘principle’ of mistreated.”
economy was through increased getting the most for spending the In Central America, the them personally. I, representing to address the underlying, tragic
consumption. But does living in least has led to incredible amounts United Fruit Company took one of about six students who flaws of our system,” says Bornzin. a capitalistic culture require that of exploitation around the world. advantage of labor costs and the initiated and organized this Because every individual’s life
its citizens be centrally focused on How much are low prices worth lack of human rights regulation economic series, fully expected is either directly or indirectly
consumption in order to experience to you? to import cheap fruit to the the prominent concern at the affected by the economy, it is each
or achieve stability? And to what Multinational
corporations United States. According to the first dialogue to be about how we person’s duty to decide if he or she
length will those who depend on such as Nike, Wal-Mart, and Intelligence Oversight Board, “The could best revamp the economy in wishes to support a system which
profit from this style of economic various agriculture distributors government worked very closely order to continue along the same is presently nearly synonymous
system go in order to ensure that create factories and sweat shops in with United Fruit to maintain the path of prosperity this country had with the exploitation of people
and resources.
consumers DO consume more? underdeveloped countries in order highly stratified social structure previously been traveling.
At The World Issues Forum
The answers to these questions to pay the least amount possible of Guatemala so as to provide a
inside Fairhaven’s auditorium on
demonstrate how inconspicuously for labor and therefore receive plentiful supply of cheap labor.”
November 17, author and scholar
the economic system is woven into the most profit possible from These various parasitic
Richard Robbins presented a
a person’s every-day life. consumers while charging them corporations that gain off of others’
lecture titled, “The Immorality
Economic professors Hodges a relatively low price. Countless losses are simply microcosms of
of Economic Growth.” Robbins
and Corby made reference to reports show that overseas workers the larger problem at hand: the
considered. On
stressed to his audience the need
classical economists such as Mathis, are underpaid, malnourished, and unjustifiable hunger of consumers
for the United States economy
Mill and Ricardo who predicted, often physically and emotionally being fed by capitalism.
to alter its direction, and for the
“scarcity of natural resources would abused.
Do we as individuals wish to
people to alter their perceptions of
lead to retardation and eventual In Indonesia,
‘growth.’ cessation of economic growth.” for
“The larger the economy, the
The sad reality is that consumers Nike only pays
harder it is to maintain growth”
have tended to focus more on the its workers $2.36
adjusted. It
said Robbins. “The problem is not
short-term financial, rather than a day, while the
so much that we grow, but the rate
the long-term financial, human estimated price
and ways that we grow.”
and environmental costs of growth for just three
We must develop a new
and consumption. Because of simple
economic and social paradigm in
this apparent attitude, producers is $2.10. This
which the level of economic growth
(mainly large and outsourced leaves a total
is not so drastically steep, and where
corporations) neglect human and of 26 cents to
the means of attaining growth
environmental causalities in order pay all other
does not infringe upon natural
to ensure that their products ‘cost’ expenses such as
and human resources. Establish
less. Herein lies the catastrophic, providing food
relationships with what you buy
systemic flaw of this mindless for a family,
and eat by approving of where and
approach to prosperity.
rent, clothing,
who it came from.
While describing the current h y g i e n i c
Economy: Student forums help underscore the importants of econmoics
Interview: Ronna Biggs gives perspective on Chick-fil-A
during spring quarter last year.
I also don’t know how
well-publicized the actual decision
to have CFA on campus was
broadcast. I sat weekly in RHA
meetings, but as students reported
or the UDS representatives
spoke, it still seemed like these
“possibilities” were out there, not
a firm decision. I didn’t feel like
people spoke with decision until
probably May. The decision may
have been whittled down earlier,
but the presentation of CFA as
the choice wasn’t strong – students
kept giving more suggestions for
dining platforms.
Personally, as I expressed
at the panel, I did not feel
adequately or accurately heard.
I feel I have a great deal of
credibility on the issue considering
my job roles as well as personal
experience. The LGBTCC has a
diverse representation and is also
a well-educated, highly trained
group of LGBT and Ally faculty,
staff and students. There are
faculty teaching about diversity in
higher education, teaching in the
LGBT minor program, staff and
students who spend their time
doing diversity and social justice
training, Ally training, LGBT
student mentoring, educational
programs, there are sociologists,
psychologists and the list goes on.
I also consulted students, faculty
and staff who are not on the
committee for opinion and time
and again the conclusion has been
the same. If there were to be an
issue on campus, these would be
the individuals to go to for expert
It has been stunning
to me that after the strong
recommendations from a variety
of sources that hosting a CFA
platform will tear at the social
fabric of the campus community
and have particularly negative
emotional and psycho-social
impacts on the LGBT community,
the franchise is still here.
concerns that I outlined above
that were adequately resolved, but
many questions still remain. New
questions have emerged such as:
How are concerns communicated
on our campus and what are
response? What is the weight of
the minority voice on campus?
How are the opinions and
experiences of minority groups
considered on campus? What
happens when most or all of the
decision-makers in a situation
hold more power and privilege
in relation to a social identity or
position power? What happens
when the subordinate group
articulates how a particular
decision negatively impacts them,
but they’re not in a position
of power or privilege either by
identity or hierarchal position to
make or change such a decision?
Our campus is becoming
more diverse every year, in the
faculty, staff and student pools,
and across multiple identities.
These are new questions that I
believe we as a campus need to
have a dialogue around and work
toward avoiding these significant
I think it creates
dissonance for people to hear
one thing about inclusive values
but make a decision that seems
incongruent, particularly when
a minority group has expressed
such serious resistance.
The questions are not
just for the LGBT population,
but for racial/ethnic minorities
and other identities such as ability,
gender identity, religious/spiritual
minorities, etc., etc. I don’t want
to feel like a token, the committee
doesn’t want to play a token role
on campus; how do you bridge
that gap in the process?
I don’t think it solves
the dilemma of the process to try
to build a committee with a whole
bunch of different social identities
on it. I think the better solution is
when there is a concern that may
involve a minority social identity
that those in power and in a place
of identity privilege to seek out
input from that representative
group. And then to deeply hear
what that group’s response is.
If you are in the dominant
identity, you can never truly know
the experience of the subordinate
identity. I believe you have to
trust what a reasonable group of
people representing that identity
are saying is their experience or
will be their experience.
There was plenty of time
to make some other decisions;
however, I imagine that the
financial bottom line will be
the most decisive factor in the
remaining of the franchise on
campus. The EDC representatives
at the panel clearly said the
decision is to have the franchise
I think it’s a difficult
spot because had the franchise
contracting process been stopped
months ago, or even now, that may
have been a half-million dollar
costly decision. That’s difficult to
swallow going through that whole
process and investment to have it
not happen; that’s a huge cost to
eat especially in a time of financial
crisis. No one wants to say a halfmillion dollars was spent in error.
And in the long run, CFA may
end up making money for UDS.
However, I believe
that the effects of the process
and that despite the strong
recommendations the franchise
is still here represents a cost in
another fashion. There is damage
to relationships, confidence in
the process, confidence that the
minority voice counts, damage to
feelings of trust and feelings of
inclusion. The cost to people and
relationships is a more difficult
one to heal and rectify, and no
amount of profit can buy that
The complete text of this interview can be read online in the publications section of
Fairhaven College’s website at
Page 12
Tuesday, Dec 2
Have you developed your own theory on something?
Jordan Goldberg
Fairhaven Alumni
Somatic Psychology
Theory: “Holarchy tells us that we are both a part and a whole of the universe. All mater until viewed is finite, (or)
discrete to the individual. All mater that is not viewed, or observed has infinite possibility. The universe is infolded in
a wave form until unfolded by the observer. The universe itself is its own observer. To become healed, embed our self
within the holarchy so to align ourselves with the past to be in harmony with what was before.”
Jenni Langager
WWU Student
Sociology, Psychology
Theory: The afterlife is like essence recycling into different things, like trees decomposing
in the ground except for us it will be our consciousness. But we must embrace this
present consciousness we find ourselves in now.
Zachary Roberts
Fairhaven Student
Somatics and Permaculture
(beneficial relation with systems
of nature using interception as
the North Star)
Theory: “Love is all there is.”
Zach Snowver
WWU Student
History, East Asian Studies
Jesse Potts
WWU Student
Theory: iPods are overused (in public settings). When people put so much attention
into them their focus is narrowed. Quiet time is good too.
Photos by Eric Schmitz
Theory: The world should move from a monetary to resource system. Money is
enslavement, you have to have money to be in the system. Scarcity is what makes money
in our world. Today there are enough (resources) for everybody. We should look to
benefitting the greater good of everybody not our self.
In Memory
Editorial Staff
Jordan Bright
Katie Chugg, Kyle Fleck
copy editors
Jordan Bright
layout and design
Jordan Bright, Laura Jones,
Eric Schmitz
Katie Chugg, Kyle Barton,
Mara Mitchell, Alyson Simeone, Kyle Fleck, Eric Schmitz
The Fairhaven Free Press
is a forum for student news
and opinions serving the
Fairhaven, Western, and
Commentaries represent the
views of the author. Submissions are encouraged, and
can be sent to [email protected] The
Free Press reserves the right
to edit submissions for brevity, clarity, and content. Letters to the editor should not
exceed 600 words in length.
Daniel Larner
The Fairhaven Free Press is offered as an ISP for one to three
credits. Questions and comments can be addressed to the
email above, or by phone at 650-4908.
Celebration of Sonny Petra’s Life
On Saturday, January 31, there will be celebration of
the life of Sonny Petra at the outback amphitheatre.
Sonny was a WWU and Fairhaven student who
passed away this summer. During the ceremony,
an apple tree will be planted in his memory. If
you would like to write something on a piece of
paper and bring it to the outback, you will have an
opportunity to place the paper in a box that will
be buried near the apple tree. The ceremony will
begin at 10:00 AM at the outback amphitheatre.
The amphitheatre is in the Outback Farm between
the Fairhaven dorms and Buchanan Towers. If you
would like to help dig the hole for the tree, please
come an hour early.