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Katherine Rea | Too much artistic license

(09/25/09 6:27am)

Working over deadline usually prompts hasty compromises and quick decisions, but Gov. Rendell and the Pennsylvania legislature took their sweet time agreeing on a state budget, which was announced last Friday. As the last state to do so, their “deal-making” is hardly something to applaud. And given the tentative budget’s state sales tax on performing arts, there may soon be even less to applaud in Pennsylvania.

Katherine Rea | A preventable debate

(09/19/09 4:42am)

Picture this: people drowning in a rushing river as they get carried downstream. Onlookers try to save as many as possible, but some perish. After some time, one courageous bystander decides to see why people are drowning in the first place. This smart person sees a bridge over the river with a big hole in it, which people are falling through. He repairs the hole, and people stop falling through and drowning.

Katherine Rea | Considering characteristics

(04/17/09 9:00am)

It'd be pretty awesome to have President Barack Obama speak at Penn. Given his popularity and prestige, I think almost all students and alumni would be honored for him to appear on campus. But apparently not everyone feels the same way, because significant objections have been raised about his invitation to address graduates at the University of Notre Dame next month.

Katherine Rea | Concealing the true value

(04/03/09 9:00am)

When shown a photograph of a condom and a gun and the statement "Which would keep [a rapist] from coming back for more?" would you do a double-take? I did when I first visited, the Web site for Students for Concealed Carry on Campus. That photo is one of the first images shown on the site. The organization, developed in response to the Virginia Tech shootings, has more than 35,000 members who support licensed individuals to carry concealed weapons on college campuses.

Katherine Rea | Grading our attitudes

(02/27/09 10:00am)

'It doesn't matter if you win or lose - it's how you play the game." If you played Little League or soccer growing up, you probably heard that all the time. The idea that "everyone was a winner" didn't seem silly. If the losing team of the league didn't get some kind of prize for trying, those poor kids might be sad. In a lot of ways, we were conditioned to expect success if we put in some effort.

Katherine Rea | Holding hands across cultures

(01/16/09 10:00am)

Meeting the parents is always difficult - just ask Ben Stiller. While most guys don't have to conjure up stories about milking cats and most girls don't have ex-CIA agent fathers watching their every move, it's a milestone in any relationship. And it's hard enough to make a good impression on people with similar cultural expectations in the same language. But try doing it over kimchi and stir-fried squid while piecing together broken English. Believe me, it's tough.