Owned and published by UMHB, The Bells is a biweekly publication. This content was previously published in print on the Opinions page. Opinions expressed in this section do not necessarily reflect the views of the staff or the university.

How to turn New Year’s  resolutions into healthy habits
Jan25

How to turn New Year’s resolutions into healthy habits

Published in the January 25, 2017 issue of The Bells The New Year rolls in each year with an abundance of New Year’s resolutions, many of them relating to health and fitness. Whether it is to work out more often or to eat healthier, as a new year comes around, gyms seem more packed than usual and grocers nationwide begin selling out of fruits and veggies. But as the year continues, the ambition to keep those resolutions seems to slowly fade away. Gyms suddenly become less packed, grocers stop advertising healthier options, and people start to fall back into old habits. Once seemingly achievable goals start to seem impossible, and they are inevitably forgotten until another year rolls around and the cycle repeats. What people don’t seem to comprehend is that the resolutions they make can’t be a one-time change. They have to be lifestyle changes. When trying to achieve a better body, it seems as though no one wants to put in the hard work. From quick-fix drinks to medical procedures, many people want to reap the benefits of living a healthy lifestyle without actually living one. To achieve a better body, people have to change their lifestyle and really put sweat and hard work into it. The popular 70-30 ratio of good health–70 percent food and 30 percent working out–is important to remember when attempting to change unhealthy habits. One way to make a lasting change is to make better food choices. It isn’t about completely eliminating the foods you enjoy, it’s about moderation and modification. Love fries? Find a recipe for sweet potato fries. Can’t go without having tacos on Taco Tuesday? Make them at home to ensure the ingredients are wholesome. By spending money on food at the grocery store instead of wasting money at the drive-thru, you are able to control factors like portion and the quality of ingredients. . Along with making good choices, it is also important to be consistent with lifestyle changes. Whether you choose to run a mile everyday or eat healthier, you have to really stick to these choices in order to see results. This will help these changes become habits. From staying healthy to dropping a few pounds, the New Year is a fresh start to achieve your new (and old) resolutions.. Maybe this year we can all form healthy habits instead of looking for a quick fix to all of our problems. And if not, there’s always next January,...

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Why Netflix should make more shows out of books
Jan25

Why Netflix should make more shows out of books

Published in the January 25, 2017 issue of The Bells I can’t speak for everyone, but I grew up as a quiet kid—one who would rather have his nose in a book than do almost literally anything else. Having free time meant more time to read. As technology improved and animation and film advanced, I got to see many of the books I read become movies, and in some cases, shows. One of my childhood favorites, A Series of Unfortunate Events, has recently come to Netflix and well exceeded my expectations. The first four books in Lemony Snicket’s thirteen-book series has been made into a series, with each book making up a 45-minute episode. The creators did such a great job with this first installment that it gives me hope to see other former book series come to the media giant. Series like Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings have already been successful in their transition from print to the big screen, and others like Eragon or either of the Percy Jackson movies have attempted to make it, but just not quite live up to expectations. But taking the time to split a series into episodes available to Netflix subscribers is an amazing idea, especially if they are as well done as Snicket’s books in terms of acting and in how meticulously they stick to the themes of the books. I have a little bias when it comes to books being adapted for other media formats, because I always want them to be perfect, to capture all the actions and emotions of the characters, to make me feel the same way the book did. It’s unrealistic to expect perfection, but in a show spread out among so many episodes, it’s easier to capture more of the essence of the stories we fell in love with. Trying to smash a book that took over 500 pages to convey a story into an hour and a half or even two-hour-long movie is unrealistic. Things must be cut, or it would be too long and much too expensive to produce. But fortunately, for myself and other avid readers, TV shows are much less restricted when it comes to the amount of content they can include. There are just so many different books to pick from that would make a great show. Take for example Pseudonymous Bosch’s series, If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late, or James Patterson’s The Dangerous Days of Daniel X or Maximum Ride. Sure, they’re kids’ books, but they still have the ability to be great shows. It’s not like things intended for kids don’t capture the attention...

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College textbooks: necessary or industry racket
Jan25

College textbooks: necessary or industry racket

Published in the January 25, 2017 issue of The Bells Many a college student has complained about the high prices of textbooks. In fact, a statistic from NBC News in 2016 states that the prices of textbooks have gone up by 73 percent since 2006. In addition, the College Board suggests to students that they should plan to spend $1,200 for textbooks and other materials a year. College itself costs a lot of money. Many aspects of the price I believe are worth the value, such as room and board and meal plans. However, spending hundreds and even thousands of dollars on textbooks that a student is unlikely to ever read again is a waste of precious money. The reason why textbooks are so pricey is because publishers know that students have to buy required books in order for them to succeed in their classes. So, they take advantage of them by raising the costs. As college students, we have to make wise decisions with what to spend our money on. We work hard to pay off tuition, and adding unnecessary expenses is not helpful. Most generic books found in bookstores are less than $20 and more than 100 pages long. Last semester, I bought a textbook that was hardly over 100 pages and it cost me $50. I highly doubt that I will read that textbook again since the course that went alongside it didn’t necessarily apply to my major. Even finding used books, which are cheaper to buy than purchasing new textbooks, are fairly expensive compared to the typical book. And even worse, if you want to buy a fairly inexpensive book, it is most likely ripped to shreds or written in. Also, they can be hard to obtain since many people want to buy the used versions and there are only so many of them available. And besides that, a lot of classes require online access codes which require you to either buy a new textbook with that resource, which is even pricier than a stand-alone textbook, or purchase just the access code itself. According to Amazon.com, a MyMathLab access code with eTextbook is around $100. This isn’t to say that we should get rid of textbooks indefinitely. Spending time outside of class to refresh our minds and learn more about the content discussed in class is very important in order to be successful. A poll on campus found that 70 percent of students think that textbooks are useful while 30 percent disagree. There needs to be a better way for college students to obtain textbooks. Book rentals are one good idea because that means you...

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Stay-at-home Christian

Published in the December 7, 2016 issue of The Bells Going to a Christian university can be hard when you’re not called to every single cause that is presented to you.It sometimes seems like every student spends their summer feeding orphans in Africa or building homes in the Ukraine. When a numerous amout of classmates discuss their plans to enter the mission field, it can be intimidating. I became familiar with the pressure to find “my cause” while attending a private Christian high school. Friends who were passionate about their cause would employ tactics that pulled at my heartstrings and stoked the fire in my soul so that I felt connected to a specific cause. While the intention behind the phenomenon is pure, it can sometimes give those not called to a particular cause anxiety about not feeling that call. I couldn’t be more excited for my friends jetting off to the far reaches of the world this upcoming summer. But I’m not called to international missions, and that’s okay. I’m allowed to empathize with a picture of an orphan without needing to catch the next flight overseas to care for them. I’m allowed to love on missionaries and support them and not desire to follow in their footsteps. I’m allowed to serve and do missions right where I am.This doesn’t mean that I don’t have the faith that missionaries do, or that I’m more materialistic, or that I’m far from God. Quite the contrary. It actually means that despite the pressures from within the community of Christians, I know God will use me. I can take comfort that He is going to use me just as missionaries overseas. So, if you’re not feeling the tug of international missions, it’s not because you’re weak. It’s not because God doesn’t want you or that you’re not listening hard enough. The world that God has created is a mission field, and every soul not bound to the Father is an orphan. Jesus made us to worship Him and to do the good works He has created for us. And that doesn’t just mean overseas. It means...

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Are movie remakes worth watching?

Published in the December 7, 2016 issue of The Bells Recently there has been an addition to the Harry Potter universe with the film, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. This movie is considered a prequel to the Harry Potter films and honestly, when the movie was announced, I let out a great sigh of annoyance. I feel my frustration is valid because this is the age of prequels, reboots, and remakes. Let’s all come to the agreement that not much mainstream entertainment is original. Who asked for another Independence Day? Do you truly believe Jurassic World was a good idea? And a Blair Witch Project sequel was not needed in the least bit. I truly believe that not a single person wanted to see the characters from Monsters Inc. go to college. It’s understood that these companies are just cashing in on our nostalgia. So, yes, as a die hard Harry Potter fan I was very frustrated when this film hit theaters. What is wrong with leaving something in the past, especially when it ended so well? Are these remakes truly the worst things ever or are they just done in bad taste? Even though Harry Potter ended well, there is so much to expand on in that universe. This is why the recent movie focusing on the wolrd of Harry Potter did really well in theaters. When it comes to remakes, it can be done in a different way and become more modern with the times. Honestly, when a modern spin is put onto an old film, it can actually be a really entertaining film. For instance, last year’s Rocky reboot, Creed. It was a wonderful film and possibly one of my favorite movies of the year. The year before, Robocop was remade and it was done really well in my opinion. The entertainment world is something that can continuously be expanded on. These movies become our escape and sometimes we are left wondering, what’s next? As an audience we fall in love with the characters and the story. Whether the story is magic, sci-fi, or simply a film about everyday life, we like knowing what is going to happen next, and entertainment companies realize what we as an audience want to see. So, next time a reboot or remake is announced, attempt to not roll your eyes. Give the film a chance because it is being told from a different perspective and in a different time period. And whether or not these films are Oscar-worthy, in the end they are a chance to escape reality for a short period of time and be entertained by...

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No more faith, trust, and pixie dust for Disney

Published in the December 7, 2016 issue of The Bells Many images come to mind when you hear the word “Disney.” Some images include the classic animated films such as Cinderella and Pinocchio or the live action movies like Pirates of the Caribbean and Star Wars. What mostly comes to mind is the numerous theme parks across the globe that bring the corporation billions in revenue. The Walt Disney company has certainly built an empire in the world of business and media. As much as I love Disney movies and the theme parks in California and Florida, I feel that Disney is taking over too much and is losing its originality. Disney has slowly transformed from the creative company it once was when Walt Disney oversaw it to a mega corporation with one sole intention–to make money. Walt Disney’s vision to “keep moving forward, opening up new doors and doing new things” and the concept of “not making movies to make money” but “making money to make more movies” have seemed to disappear as the company has bought out so many other businesses. It feels like they bought these companies just so they can slap their famous name on another brand and claim ownership of other ideas. One example of this is Lucasfilm, which made six Star Wars movies without the help of Disney. Ever since Disney bought the company in 2012, they have produced several new Star Wars films. With Rogue One coming up this month, and two other movies that are rumored to be about the backstory of Han Solo and Boba Fett soon to follow, Disney can’t stop making movies that have been dealt with before and beaten to death. Another company Disney acquired recently is Marvel. What’s really frustrating about this is all the remakes. There have been three different versions of the Spider-Man films produced over the past fourteen years. The first set starred Tobey Maguire, the second Andrew Garfield, and the third set will feature Tom Holland in the newest installment Spider-Man: Homecoming in 2017. Sadly, the company’s lust for money and power is showing in their amusement parks as well. Next year, guests will be unable to ride the popular attraction Tower of Terror because a Guardians of the Galaxy ride will take its place. In addition, Disneyland and Disney World are both set to include Star Wars Land. Unfortunately, that means that Big Thunder Ranch, which opened in 1986 and was an area of the park that had a BBQ restaurant and a nearby petting zoo, would have to be demolished in order to create this newer attraction. I understand that...

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