Tag Archives: Donald Trump

Media Literacy Trumps Fake News

Fake news has been on the minds of most adults in America, including President Donald Trump, who recently told Fox News’ Lou Dobbs that he coined the now infamous phrase.

Its existence raises the question, how can people fight it?

Experts say media literacy is the most effective way to combat fake news, and becoming media literate will help everyone, including students, understand the differences between real and fake news. The National Association for Media Literacy Education recently held its third annual Media Literacy Week to raise awareness about the issue.

According to a recent Pew Research Study “nearly two-thirds of U.S. adults (64 percent) say fabricated news stories cause a great deal of confusion about the basic facts of current issues and events. About a third of U.S. adults (32 percent) say they often see made-up political news online, while 39 percent sometimes see such stories, and 26 percent hardly ever or never do.”

Pew Research Center also reports a ten percent increase since 2016 in social media use for people over 50 years old. And the study also saw a ten percent increase in nonwhite social media users. In addition, 45 percent of all Facebook users say they rely solely on the site to deliver their news.

“I think it is less about the mobile devices themselves, and more about how they have changed our culture,” CSUN Communications Studies graduate student Anya Crittention said. “Also, I think [the controversy over fake news] is damaging to journalism itself. While people are now ready to believe fake news, there’s also this increasing cynicism and distrust of the media. And, I think that is also dangerous since the media inherently is meant to be for the people and if we turn our back on them, that’s also dangerous.”

Media historians say social media outlets have allowed for an emergence of more voices, and that makes the news more democratic. And now the news cycle has become 24/7 due to the emergence of digital media technology, and that makes news and information more accessible to more people.

“I think there’s been fake news around for a long time,” CSUN Cinema and Television Arts Professor Anna Marie Piersimoni said. “We just have more of it because we have more of everything, and more voices doing that, but from the early days of yellow journalism, [from] the building of the Hearst Empire to the building of the Murdoch empire, there’s been fake journalism.”

Piersimoni said sensational ‘clickbait’ headlines cause people to jump from one article to the next without taking the time to evaluate the story. And since people are not reading the full story, they are relying only on their own beliefs, and not using the critical and analytical tools of media literacy. These strongly held beliefs and biases create filter bubbles, and limit the amount of information people are exposed to, or willing to read.

“I think that the awareness of your own biases is the only way that you can start to pierce the bubble,”  CSUN Department Chair of Political Science Dr. David Leitch said. “If you don’t know what your preferences are, and if they’re sort of unexamined, unaware, unconsciousness, then you don’t have any strategies for confronting them. And I’ll be an advocate: I will say it’s good to confront your biases, not just because it is healthy and democratic, because it is fun.”

Media literacy experts say it’s important for students to read opinions written by sources they don’t necessarily agree with, and to be exposed to more viewpoints, even if they have to look hard to find them.

“The best thing, I tell my students, is to not only follow the money, but to follow the breadcrumbs,” she said. “Especially if you go to Wikipedia. Down at the bottom of the page, check all the little footnotes, and double check, and then cross-reference. It is the best thing that you can do. And then see if you can find the opposite view of what you’re looking at.”

Moderator: Minerva Medrano

Producers: Diego Girgado and Tyler Jones

Anchor: Morgan Ball

Social Media Editors: Joselynn Castro and Shannon Ozburn

Reporters: Morgan Ball, Joselynn Castro, Diego Girgado, Tyler Jones, Minerva Medrano and Shannon Ozburn

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The Future of Women’s Health

A day after the inauguration of Donald Trump, millions of women marched through the streets of Washington D.C. and all around the world in support of women’s rights, and to protect women’s health.

“I personally believe that with our current Administration, I do think that women’s health issues and rights are just under attack at this very moment,” Planned Parenthood intern and CSUN student Mihaela Vincze said. “I can’t really define what the most pressing issue is besides the issue of abortion.”

In his first 100 days, President Trump has signed a bill allowing states to withhold family planning funds from Planned Parenthood. He reinstated the so-called global gag rule prohibiting U.S. funds from going towards nongovernmental organizations that assist women on family planning, including abortion. And Trump has defunded the United Nations Population Fund, an international humanitarian aid organization that helps prevent maternal deaths, unsafe abortions and reproductive health care.

“[Abortion] is our right. It is our constitutional right, and people don’t understand that you are taking our rights away,” Vincze said. “Abortions are going to happen, whether they’re legal or not, and if you care about the life of the woman, you would take that into consideration.”

Still, almost 40 percent of Americans believe that abortion should be illegal, because they believe that life begins at conception, and that women should take into consideration the life they are taking away and choose other options, such as adoption. Many Americans hold groups like Planned Parenthood responsible for what they consider to be the ease of getting an abortion in this country, and they do not want tax dollars going to support Planned Parenthood.

But Planned Parenthood’s 2013-2014 Annual Report reported that only three percent of its services covered abortions. The other 97 percent went for STI/STD testing and treatment, contraception, cancer screening and prevention, and other women’s health services.

“[Planned Parenthood] provides options like counseling as well,” Registered Nurse Practitioner Shirley Navarro said. “So it’s not like, ‘Oh, you’re here at Planned Parenthood? Awesome, sign up for your abortion right now.’ That’s something that would be nice to clarify.”

“A lot of especially low-income women will use Planned Parenthood as their primary health provider,” Vincze said.

“According to CDC guidelines for women between the ages of 21 and 25, they recommend STI/STD screening at least once a year,” Navarro said. “And if you have higher risk, in terms of having multiple partners or not using really good contraception, [that should be] maybe every six months or so.”

The Klotz Student Health Center provides CSUN students with health services such as pap smears, pelvic exams, STD testing, referrals for mammograms, Family PACT services and reproductive health services.

For many women, Planned Parenthood remains an important health resource.

“Before I knew about the Klotz Center, I went to Planned Parenthood,” Vincze said, “because I didn’t have that relationship with my parents where I could be open with them about my reproductive health. So I used this organization to learn and take care of myself, and it was an invaluable resource for a young person. I don’t know where I would be today if it wasn’t for this organization.”

Moderator: Lexi Wilson

Producers: Arianna Takis and Lexi Wilson

Anchor: Arianna Takis

Social Media Editors: Jose Duran, Adam Hajost, Luzita Pineda and Rosa Rodriguez

Reporters: Jose Duran, Adam Hajost, Luzita Pineda, Rosa Rodriguez, Arianna Takis and Lexi Wilson

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LA Dreamers

Since the Trump Administration entered the White House, the federal government has promised to deport undocumented immigrants from the U.S., sending them back to their birth country. This situation has left many Dreamers afraid of the very real threat of deportation for themselves or their loved ones, despite the reassurance that a sanctuary city, like Los Angeles, has to offer.

“A Dreamer would be somebody who would be eligible for the DACA program, which is Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals,” said Adan Garcia, a representative from Santa Rosa Immigration Services.

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, is essentially an immigration benefit program that provides work permits to qualified immigrants.

“The DACA program gives you a work permit if you meet the requirements for it,” Garcia said, “and the requirements are that you have entered the country before your 15th birthday, [and] that you have also entered the country on or before June 2007….[they also] take criminal record into account.”

The program applies only to young people under these very specific circumstances, and ignores many other undocumented family members who are living and working  and going to school in the U.S.

The Dream Center at CSUN, located inside the University Student Union, is a major resource for undocumented students, including the many people who don’t meet the DACA requirements.

One of the most common issues that the Dream Center deals with are “families that have young kids, especially that are born in the U.S.,” said Jesus, a representative from the CSUN Dream Center, who didn’t want his last name to be used.”The fear of [the parents] being deported, and no one being able to take care of their kids, we’ve had a lot of that.”

Many undocumented immigrants who live in LA, and are not protected by DACA, feel fortunate to live in a sanctuary city. Although there is no legal definition, a sanctuary city is considered “essentially whether a city is willing to cooperate with the federal government when it comes to immigration,” Garcia said. But despite the fact that undocumented immigrants with a clean criminal record are generally protected in sanctuary cities, many of them are still living in fear and paranoia.

“Many people fear their immigration status,” said Lady Pineda, a translator at Hermanda Mexicana Transnacional. “They think that any other day ICE might come to their door, knock, and you know, separate their families.”

“I don’t think anybody should be afraid,” Garcia said, “maybe a little cautious, but it doesn’t seem that the deportation rate has gone up.”

But many Californians say they believe that deportation is something that no active member of a society should have to fear.

“The Dreamers are not criminals,” CSUN student and Dreamer Ivan Salinas said. “We are just trying to fit in. We are trying to be Americans.”

Moderator: Abril Preciado

Producer: Yesenia Burgara

Anchor: Amber Partida

Social Media Editors: Malcolm Finney and Julie Nesbitt

Reporters: Shelby Charlene, Yesenia Burgara, Malcolm Finney, Julie Nesbitt, Amber Partida, Curtis Poindexter and Abril Preciado

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Breaking Barriers: The Undocumented Experience

Undocumented immigrants have long caused controversy in this country, but now not only do they face the struggle to assimilate, they must also face the fear of being deported under the Trump administration. 

“[His policy] is going to affect families in big ways, especially undocumented minors who could potentially have a parent who is deported, or if there are mixed status families, such as the child was born here in the U.S., and the parents were not,” CSUN Chicano/Chicana Studies professor Melissa Galvan said. “This could break up families in very important, intangible ways, and it’s quite sad.” 

The United States-Mexico border remains the most active border checkpoint in the world. According to the Department of Homeland Security, the Obama administration deported 2.5 million people, the most in U.S. history. President Trump has proposed deporting all undocumented immigrants in this country, an estimated 11 million people. There were over 75,000 arrests of family units at the Southwest border last year. Immigrants who have been separated from family members by the border often don’t have much interaction with their loved ones. Friendship Park, on the border between San Diego and Tijuana, allows people to interact, but with limited time and touch. The Tijuana side of the park is open all day, but the San Diego side is open only on Saturday and Sunday from 10 A.M. to 2 P.M.

Among those stopped at the border last year were 60,000 unaccompanied minors. Undocumented unaccompanied minors are children who travel to this country without parents or legal guardians. These minors come not only from Mexico, but also from Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador. They are fleeing from gang recruitment, violence, poverty and prostitution. If they do make it into the U-S, they face problems of assimilation like any immigrant, and most have language barriers that leave them vulnerable. They are fearful due to their disadvantages and their uncertainty about the future. Their fear can keep them from getting legal help. One resource for them in Los Angeles is Casa Libre.

“We provide any source you can imagine,” Casa Libre director Federico Bustamante said. “Not [always] directly, but we have referral sources and partnerships in place to provide any service that you want. It is residential, mental health, legal services, anything you can possibly imagine, but what we really provide, and what really has the most individual impact on these young men, is a surrogate family. These kids have come from some cases of extreme abandonment, abuse, neglect, no consistency in their lives. The root problem is that lack of consistency and unconditional support. Casa Libre becomes that.  Through everything we do, whether providing legal services or educational services, we are providing a surrogate family.”

Casa Libre provides housing and services for children and families who are homeless. This may include storing belongings until a new home is found. Casa Libre also provides life skills that can be used anywhere.  The children are taught how to cook, do laundry, and prepare for careers.  

“Ultimately [we] really allow these kids to become kids again,” Bustamante said. “They are coming from undeclared war zones, wearing little suits of armor. When they get here and become part of the surrogate family, they are able to enjoy that last part of childhood, and benefit from all of the other services that we have at our disposal.” 

Some undocumented immigrants and unaccompanied minors have been able to get permission to stay in this country to study under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. But its future is also uncertain under the Trump administration.

“One of the biggest things that I have noticed that is a concern, is having to graduate and not have certainty in what the future is going to hold for us, and for myself,” CSUN student Maria Aispuro said. “I am a DACA recipient, and I don’t know if that will be taken away, and I’m not sure if I will have a job, and my family is at risk of deportation.”

Bustamante says, across the country, there isn’t enough support to help all the children who need it.

“I hope there will be more allies of undocumented immigrants in the future,” Public Counsel social worker Jose Ortiz said. “People come here for a reason. They don’t come here because they want to be here. They need something that we have.”

Moderator: Jose Duran

Producer: Luzita Pineda

Anchor: Lexi Wilson

Social Media Editors: Adam Hajost and Arianna Takis

Reporters: Jose Duran, Adam Hajost, Luzita Pineda, Rosa Rodriguez, Arianna Takis and Lexi Wilson

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The Sounds of the Rainbow

Music is considered to be the universal language. People listen to music for many different reasons, but it makes an impact on most. Musicians have taken that influence into consideration, and many now use their music as a form of activism.

“It is a really powerful way to get that message across,” said Rudy Vasquez, CSUN alumnus and trumpet player for Mariachi Arcoiris de Los Angeles. “….[We have the ability to] to inform people, because they are not only being informed, they feel what you feel.”

Mariachi Arcoiris de Los Angeles is likely the very first openly LGTBQ mariachi in history. Its members are trying to use their music to break barriers in the music world. The group provides a safe haven for mariachi musicians identifying with the LGTBQ community who want to perform traditional Mexican regional music.

Traditionally mariachis are male dominated and considered to have a machismo identity, with male chauvinistic tendencies. Therefore a mariachi is not a place where someone of the LGTBQ community would feel comfortable or free be themselves.

“We needed a place where we were free from bullying, being made fun of, being talked about behind our backs, and [suffering] discrimination,” said Carlos Samaniego, director of Mariachi Arcoiris, “different type of things that all of us, unfortunately, have suffered.”

“The group also has members who are straight and considered allies,” Vasquez said. “It’s great to see they could play comfortably with us, and know that about us and they are not going to feel that their masculinity is being threatened or anything. It’s like helping out or being a part of any other mariachi. They go in there and play with no reservations.”

Females have been a part of the mariachi world since 1903, when the first documented female mariachi musician, Rosa Quirino, played in a mariachi band, but to some it is still uncommon to think of female mariachis. The first all-female group was the Las Adelitas formed in 1948, which was directed by a male. Today only about thirty all-female mariachi perform in the United States.

Mariachi Arcoiris welcomes women, and is proud to have the first transgender female in mariachi history, Natalia Melendez, as their violinist.

“There were a lot of obstacles I had to go through to be comfortable,” Melendez said. “I never was expecting to be in a leadership role to the world, and I’ve been blessed with that; I’ve been given this kind of responsibility through everything that I’ve done.”

In 2015, gay marriage became legal throughout the United States, demonstrating that times are changing for the LGTBQ community.

“Your generation is more flexible, adaptable and open, and not as concerned about rigid boundaries about sexuality and gender,” CSUN Communication Studies Professor Kathryn Sorrells said. “I think those kind of [musical] performances are shifting [perceptions] for people in ways that I think are really helpful. Not everywhere, not all the time, but certain spaces are more open.”

Despite these advances ,the LGTBQ community is uncertain of its future under the Trump administration, and continues to experience discrimination such as harassment, misgendered pronouns, other forms of hate speech, and exclusion from basic public accommodations and many other areas in society.

But with artists and groups such as Mariachi Arcoiris de Los Angeles, who use music as a tool to advocate for a change, many say there is a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

“Music and protest are going to continue to come together in really powerful and creative ways in the next decade,” Sorrells said.

Moderator: Julie Nesbitt

Producers: Amber Partida and Abril Preciado

Anchor: Shelby Charlene

Social Media Editors: Malcolm Finney and Curtis Poindexter

Reporters: Yesenia Burgara, Shelby Charlene, Malcolm Finney, Julie Nesbitt, Amber Partida, Curtis Poindexter and Abril Preciado

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CSUN Leads the Scene to Keep It Green

While many consider climate change to be the most important issue of our time, not everyone agrees. Although former President Obama took an active role on the international scene to attempt to curb climate change when he signed last year’s Paris Agreement, President Trump’s actions during his first 40 days in office may signal a shift in U.S. policy, both domestically and abroad. And, according to a Gallup poll taken during last year’s elections, climate change failed to rank as a top issue among Democrat and Republican-leaning voters.

Despite this, California has implemented its own plan to combat climate change. The Associated Students at California State University, Northridge have as well. A new campus Sustainability Center is currently under construction and is scheduled to open in May 2017. With the opening of the center, CSUN could be considered a leader in sustainability efforts.

“It’s going to be the most innovative building on our campus, as well as in the CSU at this point,” said CSUN Director of Sustainability and Energy Austin Eriksson. “It’ll be the first building with composting toilets. It has the first grey water system on campus, so water that’s used in sinks will be used outside of the building for irrigation.”

The center will house CSUN’s Institute for Sustainability. Here, students will be able to find studies on sustainability, informational flyers, and even volunteer opportunities. The A.S. Recycling Center will also be located at the new Sustainability Center.

“It was recognized that there’s a lot of different groups on campus, and we all have the same goals to promote sustainability on campus and educate our students,” said Darien Siguenza,  Chair of the Associated Students Committee on Sustainability. “I think it’s going to be really awesome to have everyone under the same roof; and just to be able to have that collaboration and that same space, I think is going to be very beneficial for the future.”

With the new Sustainability Center, Associated Students and CSUN’s Institute for Sustainability hope to expand upon their current educational efforts and resources. However, while they recognize the importance of their recycling programs on campus, and acknowledge they can be improved with better signage, they want others to know this is only a small part of what should be done. They say other things like waste prevention and energy efficiency are more important. The manner in which the Sustainability Center will be powered reflects this belief. Since it will generate all of the energy it will use, it will be a net-zero energy building.

The campus community as a whole has welcomed and supported sustainability efforts at CSUN. Professor Loraine Lundquist, a physics and mathematics lecturer at the CSUN Institute for Sustainability, said this support is in stark contrast to the lack of support among the nation’s current political leaders.

“Over 12,000 papers have been published on the topic, and 97 percent of those papers agree with the consensus that first of all, our globe is getting warmer, and second of all, that we are the ones causing it,” she said. “But that is not the perception in the country right now, and that really does change our politics. There’s a lot of politicians that themselves have that skepticism, and it’s made it very hard to implement solutions, because a lot of the most important solutions are policy solutions.”

Moderator: Rosa Rodriguez

Producer: Arianna Takis

Anchor: Adam Hajost

Social Media Editors: Luzita Pineda and Lexi Wilson

Reporters: Jose Duran, Adam Hajost, Luzita Pineda, Rosa Rodriguez, Arianna Takis and Lexi Wilson

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Trumped Dreams

Following one of the most divisive political campaigns in modern American history, President Elect Donald Trump now faces scrutiny and resilience among segments of the population who opposed him from the start. Throughout the campaign, Trump targeted undocumented Latino immigrants, women, Muslims, and people with disabilities, and he now prepares to be president for the various groups of people he attacked.

“A lot of us are very confused and very scared about what’s going on,” said Dreamer and CSUN student Chris Farias.

“Because of Trump’s dangerous rhetoric, people feel they can say things that normally they would have been more in check about,” said CSUN Asian American Studies professor and EOP Faculty Mentor Coordinator Glenn Omatsu.

“Before I didn’t know about DACA [when I was growing up], I didn’t think I was going to go to school,” Farias said. “In the community that I’m from, you’re kind of taught you’re not going to make it… [DACA]… was my way out. I didn’t want to be different I wanted to be included.”

President Obama’s administration established the American immigration policy known as Deferred  Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, in 2012. It gives certain undocumented immigrants eligibility for a work permit and a renewal for a two-year period of deferred action from deportation.

The DREAM Act is a legislative proposal giving undocumented immigrants the opportunity to achieve legal status in the United States through academics or the military. Both of these programs have been fundamental in establishing the rights of thousands of undocumented immigrants.

“What we have to do is use inspiration from students themselves who are fighting,” Omatsu said. “In 1942, [when] Ralph Lazo was a high school student at Belmont high school, his Japanese-American friends were sent to concentration camps. He, as a Mexican American, felt it was wrong, but as … a high school student, he didn’t have enough power [to change policy], but what he did was on his own: he registered himself to be of Japanese ancestry, so he could go to the camps with his friends, because he felt it was an injustice. I think actions like that need to be encouraged in our society.”

California politicians are already laying the groundwork for combatting policies against immigration reform, environment protection, and workers’ rights being floated about Trump and his administration. California is home to a lot of undocumented immigrants, and many young immigrants are now worried about their status as students in the United States. Students who are protected by DACA and the DREAM Act have raised concerns about what could happen to their student status because of Trump’s proposal to combat all forms of immigration. On top of that, some students who may be protected by DACA and the DREAM Act are fearing the ramifications of Trump’s proposals on family members and friends, who aren’t protected by any of these legislations.

“This is our time to show the media and Trump that we are together, and we’ll fight for what we deserve,” Farias said. “It’s a bummer to be seen as a criminal, who doesn’t want to go to school, who isn’t intelligent, but we are and we really need to stick together.”

With pending questions and concerns surrounding president-elect Trump and his immigration policies and their effect on DACA, the DREAM Act, and non-protected immigrants alike, students are looking for ways they can defend these policies that have protected them from being deported.

Anchor: Alicia Dieguez

Moderator: Nick Torres

Producer: Susana Guzman

Social Media Editor: Jaclyn Wawee

Reporters:  Alicia Dieguez, Thomas Gallegos, Ebony Hardiman, Ke-Alani Sarmiento, Jaclyn Wawee

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Generation Why: Millennials’ Relationship Status with the News

Millennials have a stigma of being uninformed and uninterested in news. The emergence of technology and social media is cited as the main reason behind this.
However a study done by the Media Insight Project at the American Press Institute shows that 85 percent of millennials say keeping up with the news is somewhat important to them. It also notes that 69 percent get their news daily.
“I think people think kids these days are lazy, or we don’t know what’s going on,” Democratic activist and linguistics graduate student Maya Wax Cavallero said. “We’re the future. Millennials are the future.”
News is brought to the public in many different ways. Television has its traditional political news shows, but viewers also get news from comedic shows like ‘The Daily Show’,  which may influence millennials’ opinions, too. Social media have also created a way for people to get their political news, and to spread awareness about a cause that interests them.
“What’s changed around us in society is that the media have fundamentally been re-shaped [in how they deliver news],” CSUN Political Science Professor Tom Hogen-Ecsh said. “I don’t think millennials are any different [than past generations] in the way they engage in politics…In some ways I think they’re more engaged.”
This current election has demonstrated the power social media has had for the different political parties, and perhaps also the view that millennials are keeping up with the news, and are aware of what’s going on in the world around them.

Moderator – Scott Sanders

Anchor – Gabrielle Ortega

Producer – Danielle Pendleton

Social Media Editors – Sophie Ashley and Alexandra Chidbachian

Reporters – Sophie Ashley, Alexandra Chidbachian, Gabrielle Ortega, Danielle Pendleton, Scott Sanders and Joshua Spidel

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Politics of Fear

Millions of Muslims around the world have had their religious faith put on trial because of the recent terrorist attacks in Paris, San Bernardino, and Brussels. Some political analysts and American Muslims fear that the battle for the Republican nomination has prompted controversial rhetoric against their religion, including proposals to register Muslims already living in America, order police to patrol their neighborhoods and mosques, and ban any further immigration.

Islamic leaders and imams in several countries say they are not responsible for terrorist organizations, and that terrorists should be recognized as separate from their religious beliefs.

Muslim Public Affairs Council President Salam al-Marayati, said in a news conference in Los Angeles following the San Bernardino attacks, that the Muslim society will not be divided by ignorant hate.

“In the media landscape, one of the only times there is an opportunity for the Muslim voices to be heard is in the aftermath of a terrorist attack,” said Edina Lekovic, Public Affairs Consultant at the Muslim Public Affairs Council. “It sets up one of the few opportunities for there to be a mainstream Muslim voice, but it’s still in the context of bad news.”

Muslim organizations in America say they have seen unprecedented spikes in hateful episodes after anti-Muslim remarks were said by some presidential hopefuls. There have been many cases of vandalism and threats made towards mosques and those who attend them.

“People are going to have fundamentally, deep and profound disagreements about the highest things, and unless they get a sort of grip over themselves (and) learn to contain themselves, (then) these disagreements will find themselves in violence and political violence,”  CSUN Political Science Professor Nicholas Dungey said.

“Look we’re all concerned about safety,” Lekovic said, “and that’s something that I react to, too. It’s not a Muslim thing, a white thing, a black thing, a Latino thing…At this stage in our country, it’s an American thing.”

Moderator: Ala Errebhi

Anchor: Noemi Barajas

Producer: Ala Errebhi

Social Media Editors: Jamie Perez and Caitlin Pieh

Reporters: Noemi Barajas, Halie Cook, Juaneeq Elliott, Ala Errebhi, Jamie Perez, Caitlin Pieh and Nicholas Seaman
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Every Vote Counts!

Both Democrats and Republicans have had long and well-publicized campaign seasons for this Presidential election, and both of the front-runners have yet to acquire enough delegates to win on the first ballot at the convention.

California will likely be the state that will secure the amount of delegates for the front runners for both of the major political parties. Still, many voters are saying they’re dissatisfied and confused by the long process.

“Political parties are not democratic institutions,” said former mayor of Thousand Oaks and Pierce College Political Science professor Ed Jones. “It gives the impression that they are when you see all these primaries.”

The party rules governing the system have been slowly developed in the course of our country’s history.

“Political parties are not mentioned in the United States Constitution, the only major political element that isn’t,” Jones said.

The nomination process has evolved, from party leaders choosing the candidate they believe has the best chance to win the election, to voters having their voices heard in a primary.

“The process has become more representative,” said Los Angeles Valley College Political Science Professor Anthony O’Regan. “It has become more democratic. It does reflect the will of the people, but it is the will of the people within the political party.”

California’s registration deadline is May 23, giving voters more time, not only to register, but also pick a party affiliation. This should help avoid the problems of voters being disenfranchised because they are not registered or registered improperly, as has happened in other states.

“We won’t have necessarily the issues that they had in New York, because in New York you had to be registered six months prior to the election date in order for you to cast a ballot,” said Los Angeles Democratic Party Vice-Chair Mark Gonzalez.

The California primary election takes place on June 7. California residents can find out how they can register and where to vote on the California Voter Information Guide at http://voterguide.sos.ca.gov.

“Your voice is your vote,” Gonzalez said. “We still have time for folks to register. People are engaged; they’re excited; they’re at rallies and events. And I think it’s important for everybody to just realize: it’s just simply about the vote.”

Moderator: October Primavera

Anchor: Glenna Dixon

Producer: October Primavera

Social Media Editors: Jasmin Dalton and Kiara Draper

Reporters: Harry Abelson, Jasmin Dalton, Kiara Draper, Anna Logan and October Primavera

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