W&M faculty in the media this month
Following are selected examples of William & Mary faculty and staff members in the media. - Ed.
Climate scientists, Chesapeake Bay experts look to future with Trump presidency
In a Nov. 20 Daily Press article, Nick Balascio, assistant professor of paleoclimatology in the Geology department at William & Mary, discussed the future of the Chesapeake Bay under Donald Trump’s presidency.
According to the article, Trump tweeted that climate change is a “hoax” perpetrated by the Chinese government and stated that he would pull the United States out of the 2015 Paris Agreement in which nearly 200 countries agreed to cut carbon emissions.
"It is frustrating when scientific work or the credibility of scientists is undermined," Balascio said. "It's frustrating because it's one thing to acknowledge an issue but then decide that we can't deal with it or it's not in our national interest or whatever. But it's a completely different thing to question the fundamental science or attack the scientists as the reason why we shouldn't do anything about it."
Can President Trump undermine abortion rights? Not so fast
In a Nov. 17 USA Today article, Neal Devins, director of the Institute of Bill of Rights Law, Sandra Day O’Connor Professor of Law, Cabell Research Professor and professor of government at William & Mary, discussed the possibilities of how the potential policies of Trump could affect current abortion rights in the United States.
According to the article, if Trump nominates a justice to replace Antonin Scalia, the Supreme Court will remain one or two votes short of a majority to send abortion decisions back to the states.
"You could shut down most abortion clinics without overturning Roe,” said Devins.
The article also states that experts on both sides of the issue agree that changes could happen but predict that it will move slowly to take effect.
Will the Electoral College not vote for Trump?
In a Nov. 16 Fox News television segment with Tucker Carlson, John B. Gilmour, the Paul R. Verkuil Distinguished Professor of Government and Public Policy at William & Mary, discussed whether or not the members of the Electoral College will cast their vote to legitimatize Trump's victory in the 2016 presidential election.
Carlson asked if there was a possibility that the electors would not vote for Trump.
"It's possible in a technical sense that electors are mostly free to vote for anybody [other than Trump] they want once they get to cast their vote as an elector,” said Gilmour. "But they will not do that because the Republican electors who are supporting Trump are Republican donors and activists who spent years working for the Republican cause. So for them to sit there and cast their vote for Hillary Clinton or someone else is just inconceivable."
Law schools unite through nonprofit to help veterans
In a Nov. 14 National Law Journal article, Patricia Roberts, clinical associate professor & director of the Lewis B. Puller, Jr. Veterans Benefits Clinic at William & Mary’s Law School, discussed how law schools around the United States are helping veterans attain their benefits from the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs.
According to the article, veterans clinics on universities and colleges campuses across the country are sharing information to help improve legal representation for former military men and women.
“Because we now have such significant numbers of law school veterans clinics, we thought the time had come for us to have a more formal organization to increase our effectiveness, particularly with outside bodies,” said Roberts. “We're confident we will have more of a voice and more opportunities to have a seat at the table as a formal nonprofit operation that speaks with a united voice."
'Loving' is the movie we need now
In a Nov. 7 The Hill article, W&M Frances L & Edwin L Cummings Professor of English & Humanities Joanne Braxton discussed the social impact of the film “Loving.”
The movie is about Richard and Mildred Loving, an interracial couple living in late 1950s Virginia who was at the center of a U.S. Supreme Court case, Loving v. Virginia. The court ruled that it was illegal for the state of Virginia to prohibit interracial marriage.
“The film celebrates their love and their heroic fight to live as husband and wife,” said Braxton, “during a time when marriage between the races in Virginia was a criminal offense punishable by time in the penitentiary.”
What Cubans think of the U.S. presidential race
In a Nov. 4 article by NBC 4 Washington, D.C., Ann Marie Stock, professor of Hispanic studies & film and Media Studies at William & Mary, discussed how Cubans are very interested in the outcome of the 2016 presidential election.
According to the article, the nation of Cuba has limited options for accessing foreign news. But that hasn’t stopped the citizens from gathering as much information as they can on the two American presidential candidates.
“Cubans are very ingenious,” said Stock. “If they’re not getting the news through local television for example, they’re going to find a way to work around it.”