Technology advances prove detrimental: May lead to zombie apocalypse, sort of

In the recent movie “Warm Bodies” a potential inference can be made that we, humans and all of our technological advances, are indirectly responsible for the zombie apocalypse. This may be an inference that is just simply someone reading way too deep into a simple love story.

This is not the first time that lack of communication has been cited as society’s downfall.

We revel in the advances we have made in the world of technology, but can we say it has brought us closer together? Many would say that we are even further apart than we were before, by way of making the world closer together.


Those who grew up with these technological advances face the dilemma of not knowing how to interact with each other. Many may roll their eyes at these, as they hear these same complaints from the older generations. It is considered rude to pay more attention to the beeping device in your hand than the person you are actually with. Or, it was.

What is this teaching those who can type a message faster than they can write a sentence? With technology, we have the luxury of time. We can think about what we write and go back and delete something if we didn’t. In a face-to-face conversation, that luxury isn’t afforded and we must be able to censor ourselves as the thought travels from brain to mouth. If not, it serves to create tension filled situations. The skill of censoring ourselves is being lost. There isn’t a delete button on life’s mistakes. There are only reparations.

Another complaint is the lack of editing oneself on the Internet and in texts. Spelling and grammar have gone out the window, in favor of shorthand and increasingly common slang that can confuse anyone who hasn’t caught on to the latest round of acronyms. The grammar teachers of yesteryear are rolling in their graves at the increase of “ain’t” that is used in postings all over the Internet.

We have developed a dependency on technology that will only increase as more automation is put in place to ease life. It will be a hard habit to break, but it is necessary to remember the skills we will need to know should our world of shiny buttons suddenly go dark.

Social media increases social interaction, this is true, but physical interaction is something that is necessary to society. Or else, we may be responsible for the masses of connection-seeking zombies that reside outside of the edges of society, that we inadvertently put there ourselves as our want of technology consumes us more.

By 15th Street News Posted in Editorial Tagged Connections, Dependency, Downfall, Grammar, , lack of communication, Shorthand, Social Interaction, , , Spelling, Technological Advances, , warm bodies, , Zombie Apocalypse

Society feeds zombie hype

 Bryan Mangieri


During Halloween of last year, several reputable news sources reported the Center for Disease Control trained US Marines and Navy special operations forces how to react in case of zombie apocalypse.

It was no joke, rather a guise to draw attention to the purpose of the CDC.

So said the CDC.

This, however, does not explain the ebb and tide of the popularity of zombies in society.


Zombies: Why should you care?

Weston Standridge, clerk at Vintage Stock, said he carries a copy of “The Zombie Survival Guide” by Max Brooks in the glove box of his car. He said he has done so for four years.

“Everyone who enjoys this horror genre has asked themselves, ‘What would I do?’” Standridge said.

Vintage Stock, a store specializing in entertainment, carries fodder for the zombie enthusiast, such as a collection of the “Walking Dead” television series and the comic book from where the show found its origins.

Zombies as a metaphor


At least two schools of thought exist about zombies in fiction. First, zombies are a menace easily understood because zombies only care about survival (the thrilling reason) or second, zombies reflects what society fears most (the metaphorical reason).

In the late sixties, if a zombie bit somebody, that person joined the undead, according to the vision of director George Romero, whose film “Night of the Living Dead”, who first brought zombies to the silver screen.

In the eighties, the characteristics of zombies changed and arguably represented mindless consumerism of yuppies. The fear stemmed from a national identity crisis, where the public feared becoming the same, or in other words becoming a “sellout,” a term to be popularized in the following decade.

Today, zombies generally develop from an exposure to disease or a mutant strain of vaccine. Perhaps, as those who pave the path of the future worry how the health care system will survive.

So their popularity exceeds entertainment. They serve as a punching bag for society’s woes, metaphorically speaking.

Or maybe not.

“I just like zombies,” Austen Young, another clerk at Vintage Stock said. “I think they’re just cool.”

By 15th Street News Posted in Entertainment Tagged CDC, Center for Disease Control, director george romero, Film, Hype, metaphors, mindless consumerism, Night of the Living Dead, , Vintage Stock, Walking Dead, Zombie Apocalypse, zombie survival guide, zombies

Spring brings b”boo-coo” banquets

Chelsea Ratterman,  Assistant Editor

Banquet season is here it seems. The Mass Communications Banquet and the Student Life banquet were both recently held, with the latter announcing the annual “Club of the Year” award, this year going to the Hispanic Student Association.

The Student Life banquet, held Monday, April 23 in the Main Dining Room, recognizes the clubs and organizations on campus, as well as the leadership scholarship recipients for their work for the college. “The Faculty and Regents are proud of you,” Dr. Terry Britton said,  “ You are able to excel in the classroom, and able to excel past the classroom as well.”

Outgoing Senate Executives announced the newly elected Senate Executives by their respective positions later in the ceremony. Jaeton Cary, the current Student Senate President, led the Senate recognitions, as well as receiving awards for the V.P. of Student Affairs Leadership Award and the Outstanding Student Senator award. The baseball and softball MVPs were revealed toward the end of the banquet. Coach Coty Cooper awarded the sophomore players with the award as a group, and Coach Nickie Williams gave the softball MVP to Randi Yousey. The event concluded with the announcement of the Club of the Year.

The Mass Communications banquet was held Friday, April 20 in the Training Center.  The theme was backpack journalism, the style of journalism where the reporter does it all: pictures, writing, video and the like. Displays were set up to showcase the Bob Wyatt entries, and the 32 recipients of the award were announced, with Rachel House’s “Red Dirt” taking first in the Advanced Category and Stephanie Wheeler’s “And On” taking first in the Beginner Category.

The Mass Communication Scholarship went to Abigail Forrest, a broadcast major. Other awards presented included Shaquile Burden received “Most Potential in Journalism,” and Keegan Meenagh received “Most Promise in Broadcast”. The graduates from the Mass Communication program were recognized, and Tori Beechum was awarded the “Top Journalism Graduate Award.” Also recognized was the staff of the 15th Street News and the awards they have won this year, from the Society of Professional Journalists, Oklahoma Press Services and the Oklahoma Collegiate Media Association.

Marriage: An evolving institution

Marriage has always been a focal point of society. It used to be expected of individuals to marry and continue their line. Over the centuries, particularly the last century, marriage hasn’t been given quite the push. Constant figures are thrown out showing the failure of the institution in its modern form. In 2009, Oklahoma had 37,284 marriages and 20,158 divorces in the same year. Statistically, up to 40 – 50% of marriages end in divorce, but this is a generalization and does not account for distribution (i.e. divorce for first, second, third marriage and the age range of the divorcees). The new political push by the Republican Party, and the Tea Party movement, family values and controversial arguments over same sex marriage, has necessitated  taking a look at marriage itself.  For better or for worse.

Marriage has many benefits. There are joint tax returns that allow couples to get more back on their taxes each year, and when children are brought into the equation there is even a tax write off on kids until they’re 17. When one is simply “with someone” they are not able to make the decisions that may be necessary for their loved one’s future if they are not married. Joy Behar, a co-host of the ABC show The View, cited this as her reason for getting married after being with her significant other for 29 years. US News cited the financial advantages of marriage in an article released shortly after California passed a Supreme Court ruling allowing gay marriage (later overturned by Proposition 8). They brought up the tax deductions available to married couples, as well as other pros. Sharing a health insurance plan generates savings, property is easily transferred from one spouse to another, as is the estate of a deceased spouse and the Social Security benefits as well.

Liberal voting in the last two presidential election years have actually proven to have lower rates of divorce than their conservative counterparts.  June Carbone, the author of Red Families vs. Blue Families believes this is because people in liberal states wait longer to marry. One disadvantage of marriage is the initial financial setback. The marriage ceremony, on average, costs around $27,490 in the United States.

Charles Darwin even compiled lists in the form of two columns, one labeled “Marry” and the other “Not Marry.” His pros for marriage were “constant companion and a friend in old age” and his cons were “less money for books and terrible loss of time.” He eventually married Emma Wedgwood, his first cousin, and they were married until his death in 1882. As marriage itself continues to “evolve,” society will have to wait and see what current social taboos become the accepted norms.

By 15th Street News Posted in Editorial Tagged marriage, marry,