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Letter from the Editor

by on February 28, 2017 11:38 AM

The realization for me that almost everything now is viewed through a political lens came during Super Bowl week. In the days leading up to Super Bowl LI, many of the stories concerning New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady weren’t about the fact that he was attempting to win a record fifth Super Bowl or how he planned to defeat the Atlanta Falcons. Instead, the national media took to questioning his friendship with the new President of the United States.

Similar stories also were written or discussed about Patriots owner Robert Kraft and head coach Bill Belichick and their relationships with President Trump.

So Americans couldn’t even have this unofficial holiday that we call Super Bowl Sunday without some politics hanging over it.

As you read some of the stories in this month’s issue of Town&Gown, one might think that we, too, are sprinkling politics within our pages. Lori Wilson’s story, “Breaking Barriers,” shows how families who come to the Centre Region from other countries receive help in acclimating to their new home. In “Holding onto Dreams Amid Nightmares,” Christy Delafield, an alum of State High (1998) and Penn State (2002), writes about her work with Mercy Corps, and speci cally helping refugees from Syria in a camp in Jordan.

Refugees and immigration have become boiling hot issues of late, but the magazine decided to do these stories long before inauguration day. With a growing number of families from other countries moving to Happy Valley, mostly because one member is studying or working at Penn State, “Breaking Barriers” gives examples of how members of those families adjust to living here and the local organizations and volunteers who are helping these families feel at home. “Holding onto Dreams Amid Nightmares” is an example of how someone from Happy Valley is doing some amazing and inspiring work with helping people who are in dire need.

Now if you are interested in some political discourse, “Lunch with Mimi” has Penn State Law professor Shoba Sivaprasad Wadhia discussing some of the issues when it comes to the current administration on immigration.

My guess is that since election day and even more so after inauguration day, many, if not most of you, have had emotional and heated discussions (whether face-to-face or on social media) about things that are happening. If you’re like me, you just sometimes need a break from listening and reading about it all — keeping informed while also being able to breathe and enjoy your life.

In my humble opinion, Town&Gown is something you can turn to, relax, and read about issues that affect Centre County but mostly about the people, places, and events that make this place so special. And the people who make this place great cross the political spectrum.

Left. Right. Does it really matter when you come in contact with organizations and individuals who help others, inspire others, and give of themselves?



David Pencek is editor of Town&Gown magazine, Town&Gown's Penn State Football Annual, and Town&Gown's Penn State Winter Sports Annual.
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