New for the Drews

by: Ignacio Cuevas

Missing Brains in the University of Texas

About 100 brains, including one believed to be that of clock tower sniper Charles Whitman, are missing from a collection at the The University of Texas at Austin. It remains unclear who took the brains that were preserved in jars of formaldehyde and whether this was a harmless prank or theft. “We think somebody may have taken the brains, but we don't know at all for sure," psychology Professor Tim Schaller said. The University said in a statement that it will investigate "the circumstances surrounding this collection since it came here nearly 30 years ago" and that it's "committed to treating the brain specimens with respect." It says the remaining brain specimens on campus are used "as a teaching tool and carefully curated by faculty."

"As researchers and teachers, we understand the potential scientific value of all of our holdings and take our roles as stewards of them very seriously," the university said. "We are committed to treating the brain specimens with respect and are disheartened to learn that some of them may be unaccounted for. “The university's agreement with the hospital required the school to remove any data that might identify the person from whom the brain came. “We have no evidence that any brain specimens were shared with other universities or health institutions, though we will continue to investigate those reports,” the university said. The Austin-American-Statesman had originally reported that one of the missing brains was said to have belonged to sniper Charles Whitman, who killed 16 people and wounded dozens of others in a 1966 Austin shooting spree. Whitman’s massacre is among the deadliest college shootings in American history.

OCS Fundraising at T.W Andrews

OCS Fundraising at T.W Andrews

The fundraising is part of the curriculum for students who don’t wish to go to a four year university. While in this class, students learn work skills and information about what they want to do with their futures. OCS stands for Occupational Course of Study, and students must take the class all four years in order to be a part of it. The OCS program currently has fourteen adults and four adults, although they originally started with nineteen students. The program has been going on at T. Wingate Andrews for over twenty years, and students even have the opportunity to leave school early in order to work.

Ms. Bennett and the OCS class have been selling food at T. Wingate Andrews High School for about 20 years to teachers in order to help the students raise money and to teach students about job skills. Teachers are asked about what snacks they would like provided and the OCS provides foods based on what is desired so they can raise more and more money for the OCS program.

The money received from fund raising is used to fund field trips, and to buy supplies that they need. They did not set a goal before beginning the fund raising, but so far they have raised over $600 these past 20 years. Things like Hot Dogs, Chicken and Waffles, and Coffee are all being sold to teachers for OCS in recent months at T. Wingate Andrews. Although teachers are welcome to come and buy things, students are not allowed to purchase anything due to a Guilford County school policy of not allowing food products to be sold if it isn’t healthy.

Police Brutality Affecting Everyone!

On July 17, 2014, Eric Garner died in the Tompkinsville neighborhood of Staten Island, New York, after a police officer put him in an apparent chokehold for about 19 seconds. The New York police officer Daniel Pantaleo choked the unarmed black man Eric Garner to death, in broad daylight, while a bystander caught it on video. Is this what American police do to innocent people? After the incident, city medical examiners concluded that Garner was killed by neck compression, along with "the compression of his chest and prone positioning during physical restraint by police". Contributing factors included bronchial asthma, heart disease, obesity, and hypertensive cardiovascular disease. Garner was heard repeating "I can't breathe" 11 times. Garner was pronounced dead approximately one hour later at the hospital.

Daniel Pantaleo, the Staten Island NYPD officer who killed Eric Garner with a chokehold in July, will not face charges for the killing, a grand jury reportedly decided today. Garner, who was asthmatic, pled with police about his inability to breathe several times during the struggle that led to his death. A Staten Island grand jury declined even to indict Pantaleo. Is this what American grand juries do also?

No matter who it is, the time comes that you realize that being black is hard and beautiful. You come to learn that your cool, your clothes, your rhythm is quested after like a golden fleece, and then you remember that you're hated all the same for it. Hated for the thing you inherently possess and ultimately cannot dispossess—trust me, many are trying to give it up, but you can't.