This week President Obama announced new actions to alleviate burdens on the formerly incarcerated in their efforts to find jobs. As quoted in the New York Times on Nov. 2, the president aptly frames the issues as stepping “efforts to help Americans who’ve paid their debt to society reintegrate back into their communities.” The president underscores that this effort requires an expansive sense of responsibility: “Everyone has a role to play, from businesses that are hiring ex-offenders to philanthropies that are supporting education and training programs.”

It’s too bad Bernie Sanders isn’t related to Colonel Sanders, because he’d probably be better off selling chicken. I just can’t buy everything Mr. Sanders says and claims to stand for.

I understand that politics is rife with contradiction and paradox.

No one can deny that Hillary Clinton is a woman of innumerable talents, but her performance at the first Democratic presidential debate was impressive even by her standards. Clinton was comfortable, poised and assertive. She spoke like a leader, had a commanding presence and used a tone that inspired the same hope that her former rival Barack Obama had so successfully elicited.

It’s that time of the semester again. Essays, exams and thesis deadlines are coming up fast before the finals push, with internships and job pressures occupying the rest of any remaining free space in most students’ minds. You start wondering whether your hall mates and close friends, who you used to see every day, frankly still attend this school. These last four to five weeks of the semester are composed of repetitions of “We should catch up soon” and “Let’s grab Val together sometime,” but so often those phrases are empty sentiments.