The Conservative Ranger | Governor Scott Walker’s accomplishments

JIMMY GRAHAM | graha028@rangers.uwp.edu

In October of 2017, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker announced that he would be running for a third term. During his first two terms, Governor Walker has achieved much. From historically low unemployment to freezing college tuition, the governor has greatly impacted the state of Wisconsin for the better.

Historically Low Unemployment

Under Scott Walker’s leadership, Wisconsin has achieved 2.9 percent unemployment, the lowest in the state’s history. The last time the state unemployment was nearly that low was in 1999 under Republican Governor Tommy Thompson. Also, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Wisconsin is ranked number six out of all 50 states for lowest unemployment.

Lower Taxes

In 2014, under Governor Walker, the bottom state income tax rate was lowered from 4.4 percent to 4.0 percent. This adjustment has help put more money into the pockets of many Wisconsin residents. The Governor has also tried to help lower taxes for individuals by softening the marriage penalty. Before Walker, the marriage penalty made it so that individuals who filed their taxes jointly ended up paying more in taxes than they would have if they filed independently.

Along with lower income taxes, many corporations and businesses have benefitted from manufacturing and agricultural tax credit benefits under Scott Walker. These benefits have helped businesses expand and have helped in creating jobs.

Record Investments in Education

Currently, Scott Walker’s administration has put more money into K-12 education than ever before. An extra $200 has been put forth for every student, and an additional $204 increase per student is planned for this coming year. As a result, Wisconsin’s ACT scores are some of the highest in the country. On top of that, Wisconsin’s graduation rate is one of the best in the country.

Frozen College Tuition

One the biggest things the Governor has done that has impacted college students is freezing college tuition for all undergraduate students. For the past six years, tuition has been frozen in Wisconsin. This freeze has helped make college more affordable for many students. Along with the tuition freeze, Wisconsin’s government is also working with financial institutions to help college graduates refinance their student loans.

Continuing Wisconsin’s Progress

What I talked about above are only a few of Scott Walker’s accomplishments. I am in support of what the Governor has done in Wisconsin. Personally, I will support the Governor in the 2018 election. Also, I would encourage anyone who likes the direction our state is going in to also vote for the governor in the upcoming election.

Jimmy Graham is a sophomore majoring in business management and is political director of College Republicans.

 

Community Connections | Take pride in LGBTQ resources

KRYSTAL DODGE|thorn008@rangers.uwp.edu

There are many resources available for Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Queer (LGBTQ) students on campus and in the community. UW-Parkside has strived to be a safe place. Attitudes have gotten better towards LGBTQ students, but there is still room for improvement.

UW-Parkside has a LGBTQ Resource Center on campus in Wyllie Hall. The mission statement says, “The mission of the University of Wisconsin-Parkside LGBTQ Resource Center is to provide a safe, inclusive, and comfortable environment on campus for LGBTQ and Allied students, faculty, staff, and community.” It has books, movies, and informational material available. The center also hosts things like Queer Thanksgiving, Safe Zone Training, Lavender Celebration—which honors graduating members of the LGBTQ community—and educational events.

Safe Zone Training was created to reduce homophobia and heterosexism on campus. It is a series of training totaling approximately 4.5 hours. This training is a great way for faculty, staff and students leaders to show their support of the LGBTQ community.They are currently working on training dates for the Fall 2018 semester.

In addition to the LGBTQ Resource Center, Rainbow Alliance is a student-lead organization that advocates for supporting and educating about those whose sexuality, gender, romantic orientation and/ or gender expression does not conform to traditional norms. They provide educational events as well as social events. The meetings are every Wednesday at noon in the LGBTQ Resource Center.

LGBT of Southeastern (SE) Wisconsin is based out of Racine. They offer support groups and crisis services. As resources are available, they help with transportation, medical, senior, financial, pet, hotel, realty and more. Their address is 1456 Junction Ave Racine. Their number is (262) 664-4100. The hours of operation are Monday through Friday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturdays 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

There is a whole list of hotlines available on the LGBT of SE Wisconsin page. Here are a few hotline numbers: LGBT National Hotline is 1-888-843-4564, Runaway Safeline is 1-800-786-2929 and Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-8255.

There are even more resources held at Howard Brown Health in Chicago, Illinois, which is a trans and gender non-conforming health facility. The address is 4025 North Sheridan Road, Chicago, IL. The phone number is 773-388-1600. Their cost is on a sliding scale based on income. They offer hormone administering and monitoring, Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) testing, specialized HIV medical care, breast cancer screens, gynecological care and pharmacy services. According to Howard Brown health, “We offer programs that address the unique barriers faced by trans and gender non-conforming client.”

There is a strong community out there with many resources. In the words of George Takei, “We should indeed keep calm in the face of difference and live our lives in a state of inclusion and wonder at the diversity of humanity.”

 

Experience the outdoors

Nature-ViewBRYAN MALEK JR. | malek003@rangers.uwp.edu

In this day and age, we are constantly bombarded with social media notifications on our phones, tablets and laptops. We seem to always have a screen illuminating our faces and showing the blank expression of disinterest. Sure, we may enjoy seeing pictures of your aunt and her new dog, watching videos of pointless acts, and hours of T.V. shows without commercials or lag-time between episodes, but are we really engaged? Have you ever been so engulfed into your screen that when you look away you feel as misplaced and perplexed as if you were just staring at a wall for hours? Well, you are not alone, because it turns out that you have the same amount of brain activity watching a screen that you do staring at a wall. I have found myself in this predicament, and I have found ways to disconnect from the screen and reconnect with nature.

Going outside gives a person a natural feeling of being content and happy. Even if it is an ordinary day with the sun shining and a sky of blue, you could go for a walk or bike ride and find yourself feeling engaged and connected with the world around you. If all you want to do is just sit and relax, go do it outside in a park or in your backyard and I guarantee you’ll feel more relaxed than if you sat inside on your computer all day. These are some quick and simple solutions to detach from technology, but I will recommend to do something more fascinating.

The United States of America offers some of the most beautiful lands in the world. From mountains to valleys, prairies to forest, there is nothing more astonishing then being engulfed in them. At the moment, every state has places set aside that are dedicated to conserving and preserving the natural beauty for your viewing pleasure. So take a road trip somewhere! Get friends and family together to go camping and hiking; close or far, plan it out and do it. The feeling of hiking up a mountainside or waking up and seeing a quiet pristine lake is sublime. Sometimes just standing and looking into the openness can be enough to feel empowered. The connection between you and the wilderness can only be experienced by being physically present. Disconnect with technology and reconnect with yourself in nature.

Bryan Malek Jr. is a senior majoring in liberal studies and is the Public Relations Officer of PEC.

Community Connections | Stress: Kick it to the curb

KRYSTAL DODGE | thorn008@rangers.uwp.edu

Being a college student can come with a range of stressors, such as academics, homesickness, parental expectations, social relationships, dating, sex, uncertainty about the future, self-image and finances. Stress is a normal response, but it becomes a problem when it is chronic. That is when it can start causing mental and physical harm. There are many ways you can try and alleviate some of your stress.

There are at least three different types of stress. First is routine stress, and it is related to everyday life. Second is stress brought on by sudden, negative change. Third is traumatic stress that is related to a traumatic event, and it can develop into Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

The stress response is natural, and it can even save our lives. However, it becomes an issue when it is chronic, and it can even cause physical symptoms to manifest. Some these symptoms are digestive issues, sleeplessness, headaches, depressed mood, irritability and anger.

There are simple steps you can take to help reduce your stress. Eating a healthy diet, getting enough sleep, and exercise are a good start. Relaxation can be facilitated by meditation, yoga, deep breathing, tai chi, and time in nature. Identifying your triggers and trying to limit exposure is important. Stress will always be there, but by learning how to cope and how to reduce it, you limit its effect on you.

According the Mayo Clinic, “Exercise in almost any form can act as a stress reliever. Being active can boost your feel-good endorphins and distract you from daily worries.” UW-Parkside has many activities sponsored by different organizations on campus to provide a fun way to get that exercise in. There is free membership for full time UW- Parkside students at the Sports and Activity Center (SAC) on campus. The hours are Monday through Thursday 7 a.m. until 10 p.m., Friday 7 a.m. until 7 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. until 2 p.m., and Sundays 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. during the fall and spring semesters.

Now if your stress is becoming chronic, meaning that there are physical symptoms associated with it, and you need help dealing with it there is help for that as well. UW- Parkside has counseling services available to students. Sometimes just talking to someone outside of the situation can be helpful. The Student Health and Counseling Center is located behind Talent hall. The number there is (262) 595-2366. The services are free and confidential to students.

Only you can manage your stress and take the action needed to get it under control. As a student at UW- Parkside there are numerous services, activities, and tools available to you. In the words of Bruce Lee, “It is not daily increase, but a daily decrease. Hack away at the inessentials.”

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The Conservative Ranger | The benefits of the GOP Tax Plan

JIMMY GRAHAM  | graha028@rangers.uwp.edu

In late December of 2017 the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, also known as the GOP Tax Plan, was signed into law. This policy so far has helped put more money in the pockets of hard working Americans. It also has helped businesses in raising wages and expanding.

How individuals are affected

Under this new tax plan, individuals are taxed less on their wages. This plan lowers taxes roughly 2%-3% for most tax brackets. For instance, a married couple bringing in $77,400-$165,000 a year in 2017’s tax rate would be 25%. Under the new tax policy that rate is lowered to 22%. A 2%-3% decrease in income taxes may not seem like a huge change, but that amount that is saved in wages in just one year adds up to a significant amount of money. For Example, a family making $80,000 a year will save $2,400 a year. This amount that is saved can mean a lot to hard working Americans. Many can use this extra money toward things such as rent, utility bills, or even toward their children’s education.

How businesses are affected

Prior to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, the corporate tax rate for most businesses was at roughly 35%. Currently under this new plan it has been lowered to 21%. Due to this large cut to many large companies have used this as an opportunity to give bonuses to their employees. Companies such as AT&T, AAON, and American Airline have awarded many of their employees with $1,000 bonuses. Many companies have also used this tax cut to raise wages for their employees. One instance of this is Associated Bank raising its base wage from $10 to $15 per hour. On top of raising wages and giving bonuses many are also using this tax break to expand their businesses. Boeing and Comcast for example are using $100 millions of its tax break to expand their infrastructure and facilities.

How to make these cuts permanent

Unfortunately, because this bill was passed through congress with only a slim margin, it can only be in effect until 2025. In order for this to be permanent congress would have to get a wider majority of votes. The only way for there to be a wider majority would be for congress to put aside partisan differences and give this bill bipartisan support.

Jimmy Graham is a sophomore majoring in business management and is political director of College Republicans.