Five Things Friday: from elections to strikes

JD Lasica

Photo by JD Lasica Published on September 11, 2012; link to original work: ; Link to license: ; Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook, will testify for Congress this week.

04/08/18: Hungary holds parliamentary election

On Sunday, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban was elected into office for Hungary’s parliamentary election after campaigning on a platform for anti-immigration. With 92% of the votes counted, he was already projected to get 133 out of the 199 seats in Parliament- a supermajority in the National Election Office. Orban’s political party, Fidesz, was transformed from a liberal party from the 1980’s to a right-wing populist group. Prime Minister Orban is a critic of the European Commission, the executive arm of the European Union, and accused it of overreach in Hungarian affairs- especially in its attempt to impose a quota system that will make Hungary obligated to settle refugees. In Hungary, anti-immigration billboards can be found throughout the nation, despite the fact that they have the third-lowest level of immigration of the 28 EU nations. This will be Prime Minister Orban’s fourth term, making him the longest-serving leader of Hungary since the end of communism in 1989.


04/09/18: Alaskan voters reject Proposition 1

On Monday, voters in Anchorage, Alaska narrowly rejected a proposal to restrict bathroom access for transgender people, which was the first time a bill such as this was decided in the ballot box. This bill called Proposition 1, or informally known as the “bathroom bill” has been up for consideration in at least six states during 2018, according to the American Civil Liberties Union, but Anchorage is the first to have it be up to the voters. Proposition 1 would repeal the city’s nondiscrimination ordinance, which allows people to use public restrooms, locker rooms, and dressing rooms consistent with their genders and prohibits employments and public accommodations discrimination for transgender and gender nonconforming individuals. Proposition 1 would require individuals to use facilities based on the sex they were assigned at birth. Supporters of this bill, such as Alaska Family Council, states that this a measure to protect the privacy of women and children. Of the nearly 77,000 votes that were casted, 52.7% opposed the bill, while 47.2% supported the bill.


04/10/18: Mark Zuckerberg testifies in front of Congress

On Tuesday, Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO and founder of Facebook, was questioned by Congress on its role in allowing Cambridge Analytica, a UK-based political data firm that worked for Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, to improperly access 87 million user’s private information. Some of the individuals who were affected by this data breach include those who took a personality test from an app called “This Is Your Digital Life,” which shared birthdays, pages that they have liked, and even private messages. During his testimony, Zuckerberg stated, “One of my greatest regrets is we were slow in identifying the Russian operations in 2016” and confirmed that fixing the data breach is among his “top priorities” to “get this right.” With this, concerns for Facebook allowing fake news and political ads during the 2016 elections emerged. The company promises to label these fake news and political ads as paid promotions, as well as confirming their location and identity to further protect users in future.


04/11/18: Plane crash leaves casualties

On Wednesday, a plane crashed at a central Arizona golf course shortly after takeoff. According to the Scottsdale Police Department, the plane departed from Scottsdale Airport and crashed soon after at Scottsdale Champions Course, which is located just north of the airport. The plane took off around 8:45 P.M. and North Las Vegas Airport in Nevada for what was supposed to be an approximately 75 minute flight. None of the six people boarded on the aircraft survived. National Transport Safety Board is investigating the cause of this accident, but states that it can take an upwards of 18 months to understand


04/12/18: Oklahoma teachers continue to strike

As of Thursday, Oklahoma teachers have been striking at the state capitol for ten days for the lack of funding for education. Many teachers, such as Laura Griesel, a seventh and eighth grade teacher of El Reno Public Schools, are frustrated due to the lack of funds. Some of their frustrations come from the shortage of textbooks for the students to take home and study, as well as inability to get basic lab equipments for the classroom. With the lack of support, many teachers have registered to run for office: “If nothing else I would listen to the people that live in my district, and what they want to do,” teacher Laura Griesel stated, “and be open to what it is that they want to see happen in Oklahoma, and not necessarily what my own personal standpoint is on things.” Through GoFundMe’s, many teachers were able to raise money for the registration fees to run for office. “I feel like we’re showing the students what a free democracy is all about,” stated Cyndi Ralston, a teacher for over 30 years. More than dozens plan to sign up before the deadline on Friday.