Over the course of American history, there have been efforts to ensure all citizens have the right to vote. However, there is still one final group in the United States that has been unfairly disenfranchised: former felons.
We are proud to present our fourth print edition of Happy Medium Magazine! This issue features a selection of our writers’ proposals for areas in need of political innovation. Our team has produced a diverse range of unique and creative articles, varying from disenfranchisement, to climate change, to electoral reform, to conspiracy theories! The editing team is excited to share the content of this edition with the Binghamton community.
We could not have done this without the support of the Binghamton University Student Association and the students, faculty, and staff. We’d especially like to thank Dr. Heather Dorn for her mentorship as Happy Medium tackles new and exciting projects this semester. The successful pilot program of Happy Medium’s High School Magazine Development Program at Chenango Valley High School would not have been possible without Dr. Dorn’s guidance and support. Happy Medium members worked with the high schoolers to establish a politics magazine at their school, and the first print edition of Valley Unveiled will be published in early May.
We are incredibly proud of the work our team has put into this issue, and we hope you enjoy it! For the two of us, this is our last print edition as executive editors at Happy Medium. Since starting the publication in December 2021, we’ve enjoyed the invaluable experience of working with students across the political spectrum to foster respectful and productive political dialogue on the issues that matter to our writers and readers. We encourage any student who enjoys reading our content to get involved as a writer or copy editor and to engage with the politics around them.
Briana Lopez-Patino, Managing Editor
Trevor Fornara, Editor in Chief
An Argument for Abolishing the New York State Senate
A famous dissenting opinion by former US Supreme Court Associate Justice Louis Brandeis once described the condition of states in our system of government as “laboratories of democracy.” If this is true, then why are they all nearly identical to each other in terms of constitutional structure?
Climate Change as a Priority in Future Global Elections
In last year’s 117th Congress, 139 out of 535 elected officials (~25%) refused to acknowledge the existence of climate change. It is important to note that these 139 representatives have collectively received $61 million in lifetime contributions from the coal, oil, and gas industries.
Choosing How to Choose: Alternative Electoral Systems
While there is likely no single reform that could solve all the problems with American politics, it could be good to look at some alternative voting systems that could be implemented in the United States. The majoritarian electoral system used in the US is not the only type that is used across the world, after all.
Culture War: Americans are Redefining What it Means to Disagree
From candy wrappers to how we educate our children, the culture war in the United States has taken over politics on the state and national levels, and the implications of this are larger than many think.
Enlarging the House
The House of Representatives is legally mandated to contain 435 seats pursuant to the Permanent Apportionment Act of 1929. This mandate on the number of congressional districts has remained stagnant despite the fact that the average population in each congressional district has nearly tripled from 280,675 persons in 1930 to more than 760,000 persons today.