D.C. weed decriminalization or legalization will not change rules on campus

Marijuana decriminalization went into affect this week in D.C., despite Congress’ best attempts to stop it with their usual budgetary tricks. Laxer cannabis use laws in the District, however, will have no bearing on Georgetown’s own rules and regulations of the drug.

In an email sent to Vox, University Director of Media Relations Rachel Pugh confirmed that the legal status of marijuana in D.C. does not in any way change things on Georgetown’s property.

“Georgetown University complies with local AND [sic] federal laws,” Pugh wrote. “Federal law prohibits possession, manufacturing, [and] use of marijuana. We do not have any plans to change the student code of conduct.”

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New Hampshire store rejects District resident’s license when he tries to buy alcohol

3864305116_e13ee8b9da_oOn July 4, inhabitants of the District of Columbia no doubt celebrated America’s 238th birthday with the same enthusiasm as the rest of the nation. Caught up in the holiday’s patriotism and pyrotechnics, it may have been easy for them to forget that, in ways large and small, their home isn’t fully a part of these United States.

They were reminded a day later when D.C. resident Travis Mitchell, aged 25, was denied alcohol at a New Hampshire grocery store because his District-issued driver’s license could not be considered legal proof of age under the state’s liquor law.

According to the Concord Monitor, the New Hampshire statute requires purchasers of alcoholic beverages to prove that they’re at least 21 by means of a driver’s license issued by any of the 50 states, among other forms of documentation. D.C., of course, is not a state.

While Mitchell was unperturbed by the grocery store’s strict interpretation of the law, he and his license reportedly had better luck at a neighboring purveyor. The rebuff he received generated enough ire to draw comment from New Hampshire Governor Maggie Hassan, who directed the state liquor commission to look into the matter. Yesterday, the commission released a statement confirming that District-issued photo identification is, in fact, acceptable documentation when purchasing liquor in-state.

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Corp raises prices in response to D.C. minimum wage hike

The Corp conducted a 3 percent average across-the-board price hike in response to the increase in D.C.’s minimum wage rise to $9.50 from $8.25 on July 1. Customers will see price increases across the Corp’s services, which include its coffee stores, Vital Vittles, and Hoya Snaxa.

In an interview with Vox, Corp Chief Executive Officer Sam Rodman (MSB ’15) explained that the wage increase has raised wages 40 percent from the Corp’s previous hourly wages of $8.25, which apply to all employees, from the baristas to the CEO himself.

“We would have to generate an additional $70 in gross profit per hour just to make up for the increase in wages,” Rodman wrote in a July 9 post on Behind the Counter, the Corp’s blog. The Corp will also have to account for rises in vendor costs, which the Corp has already seen go up by 7 to 8 percent in its coffee suppliers.

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Marijuana activists gather over 57,000 signatures in favor of legalization

Last January, a Washington Post poll found that 63 percent of D.C. residents were in favor of legalizing marijuana, with only 34 percent opposed. On Monday, the D.C. Cannabis Campaign took one big step towards aligning city law with the will of the people. The group presented a petition with more than 57,000 signatures to the D.C. Board of Elections, hoping to have the issue of marijuana legalization put on the November ballot.

If more than 22,373 of the signatures are ruled as legitimate, then the city’s voters will be deciding on the matter this fall. D.C. Cannabis Campaign Chief Adam Eidinger said in an interview with DCist that “more than 50 percent” of the signatures are valid, which, if true, would safely guarantee legalization a spot on the ballot.

If voters choose to legalize marijuana this November, up to two ounces of bud will be permitted for personal use, as well as up to three mature cannabis plants.

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Prefrosh Preview: LGBTQ on the Hilltop

For those of you who have been living under a rock, LGBTQ, as the Georgetown LGTBQ Resource Center defines it, stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning.

Georgetown has come a long way from its cisgendered, anti-gay rhetoric of decades-past, but it should come as no surprise that Catholicism, Georgetown, and the LGBTQ community have an immensely complex relationship. Despite Pope Francis‘ progressivism (by Catholic Church standards, anyway), the Catholic Church still does hold that homosexual acts are gravely sinful.

For much of its history, Georgetown generally adhered to those discriminatory Catholic doctrines in both rules and rhetoric, but the past five years, especially since the founding of the LGBTQ Resource Center, have been very progressive. Still, however, despite what The New York Times might have you think, more well-connected publications know that there is still much room for progress, especially for trans* rights. What follows in this post is a part history, part current state of LGBTQ at Georgetown.

Some history

For a long time, LGBTQ (but primarily LGB at that point, according to most interviews conducted by the Voice) students barely had a foothold at Georgetown. In the early ’70s, however, LGBTQ students began being a vocal, on-campus presence. This change was headlined when the 1973 American Psychiatric Association’s entry on homosexuality changed dramatically, which opened the doors to widespread LGBTQ acceptance. (For more, check out the “This American Life” episode “81 Words.”)

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Burleith residents gather pitchforks, shake fists at Fed Chairwoman’s security detail

Imagine waking up one morning in your $1.4 million townhouse and going to the front window to soak in the gorgeous view, only to notice something out of the ordinary: a truck that’s been idling on the street for 22 whole minutes. Not only that—but the truck spills some fluid when it drives away. This little hypothetical has become a tragic reality for many Burleith residents, whose otherwise tranquil morning routines have been interrupted rudely by Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen‘s security detail.

Yellen, who assumed her role at the Fed in February, is new to her position and new to the Burleith neighborhood, and Burleith residents can’t stand the security team who protects her.

Neighborhood complaints against the officers range from their bulging, snacker bellies to their breaking the 15 miles-per-hour speed limit. Some reports from neighbors indicate that one of the officers spilled something on the road that has left a permanent stain.

Apparently, Yellen fails to live up to the high standards her ritzy neighbors have come to expect from the men and women who run the government of the most powerful country in the world and yet deign to live in their neighborhood, with all its paint color restrictions.

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Prefrosh Preview: The major news of the 2013-2014 academic year

Every year, a few instances of major news happen in Georgetown. For student journalists, those times are very exciting, but, for everyone else, major news takes a variety of forms and could be good or bad. Sometimes, Georgetown news becomes a centerpiece of national attention thanks to loud-mouthed idiots. Other times, it’s the students themselves who are the morons, like when two freshmen tried to make DMT in their Harbin dorm room.

Last year had its own ups and downs, and Vox is here with a recap of the four biggest stories for anyone who wasn’t around for them.

Record-breaking donation from the Dodgers’ least favorite boss

Alumnus Frank McCourt (COL ’75), known for bankrupting the LA Dodgers and a messy, expensive divorce, was swayed by Georgetown’s excellent alumni relations team and donated  $100 million to Georgetown last September.

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House committee attempts to block D.C. weed decriminalization law

Yesterday, the House Appropriations Committee voted to amend D.C.’s marijuana decriminalization law and effectively limit the District’s ability to decriminalize the drug.

Mayor Vincent Gray signed the bill in March, but, to the chagrin of weed activists throughout the city, the new law came under scrutiny in Congressional hearings, where many Republicans attacked the District’s decision.

Congress has a 60-day period in which they can block any laws passed in D.C., something they’ve done only three times since 1979.

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Rejoice, new alcohol delivery service comes to D.C.

Last week, alcohol delivery service Klink kicked off their business in D.C. Klink promises cheap access to beer, wine, and liquor for anyone over 21 in the District within 20 to 40 minutes.

Klink first launched in August of last year, mainly serving up booze to the college areas of Orlando, FL. Since then, it has launched in Ann Arbor, MI, making D.C. its third location.

“D.C. marks the beginning of our aggressive expansion push, which is going to be throughout the summer,” Klink CEO Jeffrey Nadel said in a phone interview with Vox.

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Washington Redskins trademark revoked for being racist

Last week, the federal U.S. Patent and Trademark Office ended the trademark the Washington Redskins have for their name. The Patent and Trademark Office, among other critics, finds the Redskins’ name to be an offensive racial slur.

The Redskins have been under fire for their name for some time now. City Paper has avoided printing the team’s name as much as possible since October 2012, when the paper decided to refer to them as the “Pigskins.” Vox can’t understand why it’s so hard for the team to see the need to change the name. but Redskins owner Daniel Snyder is adamantly opposed to doing so.

Unfortunately, a cancelled trademark does not mean that the Redskins must change their name, but, at the very least, the Patent Office’s move puts pressure on the team.

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