New beginnings for a new semester

Fall semester has now begun. For some of us at The Corsair, summer was not so much a time of vacation as it was a summer of war, unrest, and social conflict. War broke out once more in the Middle East between Israel and Gaza, while here at home the killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO ignited protests and discussions about race and security in the United States. These were issues that reached here into our own city. Those who followed The Corsair online through our Twitter, Facebook, and official website viewed our reports, opinion pieces, videos, and photographs capturing the protests sparked by the Gaza conflict on the streets of Wilshire in front of the Federal Building.

Our video and print interviews captured the views of passionate Arab students and citizens demanding an end to the war, and the aggressive voices of nationalist Israelis defending the attack on Gaza. So melded to our personal lives as staff did these issues become that I myself was deleted from several Facebook friends lists over my opinions on the conflict.

We also honored the memories of iconic figures who passed away during the summer like actor Robin WIlliams and Dogtown surfer Jay Adams. Summer's key film releases were reviewed and critiqued.

For this fall semester, when many SMC students will be experiencing their first taste of college life, we plan to offer an even more diverse, rich set of content. College is the period when many students begin to truly learn about the world and the various ideas that shape and form it. In this spirit we will offer stories and media content that will range from the global to the local, from the social to the personal spheres of daily life. Our editorial staff features a new team of editors in our News and Health & Lifestyle sections and we are proud to announce a new Fiction & Poetry section. Our new Multimedia department will also offer weekly video and audio reports on our official website and Facebook page.

In this first issue we are presenting stories introducing you to the new Associated Students government and its president, Ali Kahn. We also render tribute to former Executive Vice President Randal Lawson, who suddenly passed away recently and has left a palpable void among the campus staff. We also tackle issues such as the ongoing drought in California and the viral sensation of the "ice bucket challenge." Our writers dig for the facts and ask important questions regarding these topics and more. In our fiction section we feature eloquent poetry dealing with topics such as being a Muslim in contemporary America and a fantastical imagining of the origins of Frederick, our refined campus duck.

We invite you to read us every week and visit us online daily. One of the greatest forms of communication is the written word. News, whether on paper or online, has the power to ignite great changes and reshape societies, simply spark curiosity in a reader and produce better informed, more aware individuals.