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The Disney Company’s recent controversy

The company that brought you the “happiest place on Earth” is worse than you thought

Camille Lenning | Entertainment Editor


Contact the author at howlentertainment@wou.edu

We’ve all enjoyed a Disney movie or two. How could we not? They own everything from Star Wars to Marvel to Pixar, and cornered the market on fairytale princesses. Disney is everywhere, and that’s the problem.

The company has faced numerous controversies since its founding in 1923 by Walt and his brother Roy O. Disney. Allegations of perpetuating harmful stereotypes, sexism and even plagiarism have plagued the company for decades. Most recently, the actions of the company’s CEO, Bob Chapek, in the case of Florida’s Parental Rights in Education Act has thrown the company into further scandal. 

The bill, dubbed the “Don’t Say Gay” bill by opponents, was signed by Governor Ron DeSantis on March 28. If it remains unchallenged until July 1, it will ban elementary classrooms from having discussions about LGBTQ+ issues and gender expression. 

Disney World dominates Florida’s economy by bringing in billions per year in tourism, so the corporation’s political power is unmatched in the state. With this in mind, supporters of the Disney Company expected to hear a denouncement of the bill when it passed in the Florida Senate on March 8. Disney was vocal about making strides in producing more diverse entertainment, so surely they would disapprove of this seemingly anti-LGBTQ+ legislation. 

Yet the company made no public response, and only passed internal memos to shareholders informing them of the situation. That was, at least, until public outcry forced their hand. On March 11, Chapek released a statement apologizing for their silence, saying he and the company now understood the detrimental effects the bill could have, and that they were “pausing all political donations in the state of Florida pending this review.”

Disney so far has kept up with that promise. However, their existing contributions to the Florida GOP this quarter, totaling $125,000, remain as a glaring reminder that Chapek and the Disney Company seem to only adhere to progressive values when they’re forced to. 

Similarly, in 2020, the same year they released such works as “Out” — a short film about a boy coming out to his parents — individuals within Disney donated $10,500,030 to the America First Action super PAC, which backed the Donald Trump campaign in the election. While the company made donations to Democratic campaigns as well, the amount was far less substantial. 

The fact that Disney higher ups were funding these Republican campaigns and interest groups at all is telling of where the company really stands. While they are slowly introducing diverse characters in their shows and movies, they support politicians who intend to limit how LGBTQ+ people are represented in real life. 

It’s important to remain informed of the decisions the Disney Company makes. They play a bigger role in our lives than many realize. Their political contributions alone can greatly affect who we see on the ballot, and their power in Florida, a prominent battleground state, cannot be ignored. 

That being said, you are not a bad person if you watch Disney movies. What the multi-billion dollar corporation does with their money isn’t your fault. They have a monopoly on entertainment, and we as consumers should not be faulted for existing in the system they created.

New hours available for fitness classes and facilities

The Health and Wellness Center releases fitness schedule for spring

James Fowlkes | Freelancer

Contact the author at jfowlkes18@mail.wou.edu

The fitness schedule for spring term 2022 is now active at Western’s Health and Wellness Center. Available fitness classes vary from yoga, cardio, spin, pilates to full body, lower body, paddle board yoga and more. Most fitness classes range from 45 – 50 minutes, which is just enough time to get a good workout — whether one wants to focus on cardio, core, mind or full body. To sign up for classes, use the IMLeagues app to reserve a place in a class. Make sure to bring a water bottle and a sweat towel — it’ll come in handy.

The fitness schedule for spring 2022 is presented as planned:



Detox Yoga: HWC room 253 from 9:15 – 9:45 a.m.

    Cardio: Indoor Track from 4:30 – 5:20 p.m.

Spin: HWC room 201 from 5:10 – 6 p.m.  

Pilates: HWC room 201 from 6:30 – 7:20 p.m.


    Pilates 101: HWC room 253 from 9:15 – 9:45 a.m.

Yoga: HWC room 201 from 4:30 – 5:20 p.m.

5k Social: Outdoors from 5:10 – 6 p.m.

Full Body: HWC room 201 from 6:30 – 7:20 p.m. 


    Pilates HIIT: HWC room 253 from 9:15 – 9:45 a.m.

    Pilates: HWC room 201 from 5:10 – 6 p.m.

    Spin: HWC room 201 from 6:30 – 7:20 p.m.


    Lower Body Barre: HWC room 253 from 9:15 – 9:45 a.m.

Women Lift Intro: HWC room 201 from 4:30 – 5:20 p.m.

Yoga: HWC room 201 from 5:30 – 6:20 p.m.

Paddle board Yoga: Pool from 6:30 – 7:20 p.m. 


    Spin: HWC room 201 from 12 – 12:45 p.m.


New operating hours for the Health and Wellness Center facility are also available, along with new hours for the Aquatic Center and the wall climbing area.


Health and Wellness Center:

Monday – Thursday from 9 a.m. – 10 p.m.

Friday from 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Saturday from 12 – 5 p.m.

Sunday from 12 – 4 p.m.


Aquatic Center:

Monday – Wednesday from 2:30 – 3:50 p.m. and 6:30 – 9:30 p.m.

Thursday from 2:30 – 3:50 p.m. and 7:40 – 9:30 p.m.

Saturday from 12:30 – 3:30 p.m.


Wall Climbing:

Monday – Thursday from 4 – 9 p.m.

Saturday from 12:30 – 4:30 p.m.


Local options for getting comfortable with outdoor biking

This Independence restaurant experience is worth the price


Jude Bokovoy | Lifestyle Editor

Contact the author at howllifestyle@wou.edu

Mountain biking is one of many outdoor activities that Oregon has to offer. Searching for new trails helps people look forward to being outdoors and gets them excited about participating in a good workout. For some, mountain biking can seem intimidating, but this article provides three trails near Western’s campus to ease one into the sport.

Dallas Creek Trail is surrounded by a river, trees, wildlife and is also paved. These inclusions  give an easy going feeling of mountain biking without obstacles such as roots, rocks and hills. Since the trail can be accessed through a safe neighborhood, it can be used while the sun sets. 

The McDonald-Dunn Forest in Corvallis offers a variety of open trails that are perfect for beginners. The smooth trails allow people to adjust to the feeling of biking on dirt for the first time. This also allows beginners to work on switching gears on their bikes as they go up hills. While riding on these beautiful trails, people can take pit stops or even turn around when needed because of the wide paths. 

Last is the Calloway Trail in the McDonald Research Forest Oak Creek Access, which is for bikers that are ready to take on a more challenging trail. The narrow path is enclosed by greenery, has sharp turns, roots, and hills, which makes for a whole lot of fun. Bikers can speed though the trail while going across bridges and avoiding obstacles. There are many other trails located in the same area when one feels ready to level up. After a ride, stop across the street at Cookie Binge for a post-ride sweet treat. They offer a variety of cookies, milkshakes, ice cream and more–perfect to fuel up a hungry biker.

ASWOU voter guide

Western students answer the question: “What is your favorite season and why?”

Camille Lenning | Entertainment Editor

Contact the author at howlentertainment@wou.edu

Spring term is election season for the Associated Students of Western Oregon University — Western’s student government. Campaign Week began on Monday, April 18 with a “meet the candidate” event in the Werner University Center Summit. On Thursday, April 21, there will be a candidate forum on Zoom at 5 p.m. Students will be able to vote starting April 25 until April 29 on Presence, through their Student Portal. 

In preparation for Campaign Week, candidates were asked why they decided to run and what they plan to do if elected, find their answers below: 


Candidates for ASWOU President:


Gheraldy Bobadilla-Cruz (he/him/his/el)

Major: education 

Current class standing: sophomore


A current ASWOU Senator, Cruz has wanted to run for President since he arrived at Western, and wants to give a voice to all students. 

“I’m running for ASWOU President because I believe (Western) is at a pivotal turning point when considering its future. I want to come in and work alongside our new President to help (Western) flourish in this new era… I will make sure that more support is given to all clubs and organizations here on campus. I will ensure that students are being fully appreciated and acknowledged for all the work they do to make (Western) a campus full of diversity and inclusion. It’s time to hold (Western) responsible as an institution to follow through and act on its statements of being a welcoming campus for all. It’s time to make (Western) more than just a school.”


Kodee Harwood (she/her/hers)

Major: communication studies 

Current class standing: junior 


Harwood has been interested in ASWOU since 2019, and hopes to bring clubs back in full force, while also working to improve accessibility. 

“I want to improve campus and campus culture. … There’s always room for improvement and I’d like to start improving (Western) and make students feel safe on campus and proud that they go to (Western). … If I get elected ASWOU president my office will always be open to any student(s) that have concerns or questions and I will try my best to make change happen and try to support you as best I can.”


Candidates for ASWOU Vice President:


Hunter Hall (he/him/his)

Major: mathematics

Current class standing: senior


As a student government veteran, Hall aims to use his skills to amplify student voices, with an emphasis on safety. 

“I’m running for ASWOU Vice President for a couple of reasons. The first and most important to me is I want to find ways to improve the safety of our campus. I want to do this while also addressing accessibility issues that students face here. … I have (four) years of experience within student government where I’ve worked in various leadership positions. During that time I have been able to learn a lot about what it means to be the student voice. I plan to use my experience to act as that bridge that connects the (Western) staff and students (together).”


Owen Hubers (he/him/his)

Major: business 

Current class standing: junior 


Passionate about club engagement, Hubers (pictured left) hopes to connect students through Discord and improve event planning. 

“I want voters to know that I am listening to literally everything they say and will work my very hardest to make sure college life at (Western) is the best it can possibly be. I will use every last resource we have to help students here thrive. I will always want to and be willing to talk with any student or anybody at all who is willing to provide me with feedback. I will do the best I can to work with the various members of ASWOU and (Western) as a community. I will do my best … to solve current or future problems and implement new resources or improve existing resources.”


Candidate for Senate President:


Connor Goehring (he/him/his)

Major: ASL studies and education

Current class standing: sophomore


As Residence Hall Association President, Goehring aims to use his leadership skills to improve communication and make campus better for students. 

“There is so much inequity here at (Western) and I don’t plan on trying to fix the broken system we have in place right now, but to rewrite the whole system entirely to make a better, working system that supports our students. … I’m qualified to make a difference and be the advocate you need to make (Western) a safe and inclusive environment for the (campus’s) diverse community.”


Candidate for Senate:


Samy Reyes (he/him/his)

Major: business

Current class standing: sophomore 


As a new student at Western, Reyes hopes to use the Senate position to gain experience in student government. 

“I would like to be further involved in our school and the community of our students. I believe it is a civic responsibility as students to be engaged and involved in our school’s topics and issues. I seek to hear student’s thoughts and concerns on our campus, as I am going to be a voice that represents them. I run for the senate not only to gain experience, but to work towards new policies that will benefit the interests of our fellow students.”


Candidate for Judicial Administrator:


Coral Davis (she/they)

Major: education 

Current class standing: first-year


A PLUS Team member and WOU Ambassador, Davis is excited to bring leadership experience to ASWOU and work with the Justices. 

“My goal for when I am elected for Judicial Administrator is to create a more inclusive campus. I feel that accommodations for students are not being followed through. I also want to try and bring more awareness to all of the clubs that we have on campus as well as bring light to all (of) what our university has to offer to its new and current students.” 


Candidate for Incidental Fee Committee Member:


Dennis Long (he/him/his)

Major: information systems 

Current class standing: senior 


As an IFC Chair, Long was able to work on the IFC Funded Areas web page, allowing anyone to see who received funding and why. 

“I hope to help organize a better training schedule so that new IFC members can feel prepared to make these difficult decisions. There are changes to be made in the bylaws to make this process smoother, and I hope to actively engage in supporting the future of IFC and (Western)! After serving as IFC Chair this year, I discovered that there were many different student voices feeling left out or ignored. As the IFC, we did what we could to ensure that those voices were heard through anonymous forms and Open Hearings. I did my best to reach out to students and tried to forward their feedback to IFC.” 

iCarly returns for season two

Paramount+ iCarly’s season two continues to look at life from the lens of adulthood, as well as welcomes back familiar faces

Mirella Barrera-Betancourt | Staff Writer


Contact the author at howlstaffwriter@wou.edu

This article contains minor spoilers for season two of iCarly.

The reboot of the beloved Nickelodeon children’s series, iCarly, has returned for a second season with a release of three new episodes. Available for streaming on Paramount+ on April 8, iCarly’s new season will pick up right where season one left off, with Carly trying to adjust to adulthood while also working to gain traction for her revived web channel. While the first season was a hit amongst many fans of the early show, some were left with the question of whether season two will be just as notable. Here is this Staff Writer’s thoughts on the three recent episodes of the iCarly revival.


Episode 1: “iGuess Everyone Just Hates Me Now,” tackles the topic of “cancel culture” and the struggles female influencers and creators often encounter juggling their love life and careers. Viewers also get to see some of the old “Creddie” action present in the first series of iCarly in this episode, as Carly tries — and fails — to make viewers like her again. Thanks to the topic and message this episode covers, it easily became my favorite episode from the season so far, with seven more to go.


Episode 2: In “iObject Lewbert,” the iCarly gang’s escapades as children come back to bite them in the form of archnemesis and doorman Lewbert. Not going to lie, as someone who grew up watching the original iCarly show, it felt refreshing to see the iCarly cast finally face the consequences of their actions. This episode also features my favorite line of the entire season so far: “What kind of millennial hell is this?” I’m using that from now on.


Episode 3: “i’M Wild and Crazy” has Carly attempting to keep up with the adventures of her eccentric  best friend, Harper, in order to be less “boring.” I’m not saying I relate to Carly, but I relate to Carly. How many of us have tried to step out of our comfort zone in order to prove someone else wrong? While this episode wasn’t my favorite from the current bunch, it was entertaining and relatable.


The new season will also feature Paul, played by Josh Peck, as Carly’s manager for the iCarly web series. It will also allegedly reintroduce the beloved character of T-Bo, the quirky Groovy Smoothie manager in future episodes, according to teasers from Miranda Cosgrove. iCarly season two has a total of 10 episodes, with new episodes premiering weekly on Fridays. Don’t miss out. So far, it’s an 8/10.

Tips for concert etiquette

How to improve the concert experience

Mikayla Coleman | Managing Editor

Contact the author at howlmanagingeditor@wou.edu


Recently I attended two live shows back to back. I enjoyed both artists to the same extent, but each concert experience was distinct based upon the characters I was surrounded by. The crowd can make or break the concert experience. Use these tips to ensure that everyone has a fulfilling time seeing their favorite artists. 


Get to know people that are close. People are going to bump into one another. But since pushing and bumping into each other is inevitable, getting to know the people that are near can help ease the tension. Saying something before the concert starts like “I just want you to know that if I run into you, it is not deliberate and I am sorry” can be a good way to make sure that everyone nearby is on the same page. Asking where people are from, what their names are or how they feel about the performance can break the ice and make those interactions less awkward. At the second concert I attended, my friend and I were able to make friends with those who were around us and it was a major improvement. 


Take care of one another. The venue of the first concert was very poorly ventilated, which made the crowd an even more dangerous place to be. Attendees were passing out before the opener even played. Eventually the band asked for water bottles to be handed out to the crowd, but that does not always happen. Being aware of the state of people nearby is crucial in these types of settings. Concerts are as mentally and physically exhausting as they are incredible. When someone needs water or medical assistance, the crowd needs to alert the right authorities and make room so that person is able to get help as quickly as possible. A simple “Are you doing okay?” to check in usually does the trick. 


Think about the experience of others. Everyone loves to scream their favorite songs when they are being performed live. People also like to get videos of specific songs to be able to watch back later. If one is screaming louder than the performer, perhaps it is time to take a second to adjust the volume of their voice. This doesn’t mean that everyone should be quiet at all times or not enjoy themselves, but it is something to be aware of. The second concert was a better experience for me on almost all levels, except there was a person behind me who was screaming along to every song so loudly that my phone only picked up their voice instead of the actual performer, which was extremely disappointing. At the first concert, a person in front of me decided they were going to record the entirety of every single song on their phone, blocking the view of those behind us. I understand taking strategic videos so that there is something to look back on, but remember, these are live events and the whole point of going is to be able to live the experience, not see the entire thing through a phone. 

Opinion: Cancer is never the patient’s fault

It’s your fault you got cancer”: the blame game that never ends

Mirella Barrera-Betancourt | Staff Writer

Contact the author at howlstaffwriter@wou.edu

I’m sixteen years old, enjoying a fat slice of cake when my dad says, “Stop eating so much junk food. This is why you got cancer in the first place.” 

The topic of cancer brings clear images and ideas about the typical cancer patient; what they look like, how they act and how they feel. This includes the stereotypical image often depicted in the media; of a sad and bald child in a hospital gown. 

While this image may not be far from actual reality, it has widely misrepresented the day-to-day experience behind having cancer. As a result, cancer patients are left in the dust, forced to take the blows caused by this exposure of distorted ideas.

For example, when people hear the word “cancer,” one of the first things they might think of are risk factors, and what they can do to prevent them. They might say, “I can never get cancer. I eat healthy and work out.” Consequently, they begin to act as if they know what’s best for you. After all, if they can dictate their own lifestyles, why shouldn’t they have a say in ours?

When you have cancer, you suddenly become this person who deserves to die because you neglected to apply sunscreen, or because you smoke, or didn’t eat enough vegetables. 

In my case, the constant remarks became so ingrained in my mind that I eventually believed them. I blamed myself for being a picky eater and having a fast metabolism, even when such things were outside of my control. When there wasn’t anything left to blame myself for, I blamed my parents. My dad for working in agriculture and exposing me to all types of harmful chemicals; my mom for not being there for me as a child and making sure I ate. Lastly, I blamed God. 

I guess I just wanted so badly to have a definite answer for my diagnosis that I eventually began to believe everyone and everything they said. We, cancer patients and cancer survivors, want a sense of closure, so we try to find blame within anything and anyone we can think of, whether that be our parents, God or ourselves. In my case, it took years to come to terms with the fact that I may never actually receive an answer because there might not even be one: cancer can happen randomly. You can have every risk factor and never get cancer and you can have zero risk factors and still get cancer. Cancer rarely develops in predictable ways.

Before making a snide remark to a cancer patient or cancer survivor, I suggest you go online and inform yourself through some reliable sources. Know the impact your words have. Cancer patients are also human and your thoughtless comments hurt.