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The Tufts Daily
Where you read it first | Saturday, March 2, 2024

Justin Hong

Justin Hong is an Opinion Deputy Executive Editor at the Tufts Daily. Justin is a senior and an American Studies major. He can be reached at


What I learned in a year at the Daily

I’m not a very chatty person, but it’s here at the Daily I’ve found my voice — 500 to 800 words at a time. It’s been just over a year since my first article as a staff writer and as a senior, I can’t help but be sappy.


Democracy is sacred, don't forget it

“Is democracy still America’s sacred cause?” That’s the question President Joe Biden posed to the nation in a speech on Jan. 5 which commemorated the third anniversary of the attack on the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. But how much should the events of that Jan. 6 attack be the focal point of a presidential election? Should ordinary Americans care about an event from three years ago?

graphic for Justin Hong's column "the budget line"

The Budget Line: Thinking of buying the MBTA semester pass? Don’t bother

The last day of class is upon us and only finals remain between us and the sweet escape of winter break. We did it, Joe! Whether it was your first semester or if you’ve only got one more left, it’s an exciting but hectic time of year. It’s also time to plan out next semester. I know, it seems early, but, let’s face it, you’re probably not going to get to all those things you want to do over the break.

graphic for Justin Hong's column "the budget line"

The Budget Line: Boston under 30 bucks

We finally made it.Fall break officially starts on Wednesday, though for some, perhaps, it started as early as last Thursday. For many, it means heading home and catching up with family or friends from high school.

The Peace Corps logo is pictured.

Whatever happened to Pax et Lux?

On the day of Tufts’s career fair last September, I was struck by the vast disparity in interest between the tables of groups like the Charles River Associates or Fidelity versus those of more civically-minded companies and government agencies. Why weren’t more people looking for public sector jobs? Tufts has a long history of civic excellence. One needs to look no further than Tisch College’s different initiatives to see how Tufts postures itself as a national leader in civic life and education. It’s this spirit that drew many students here and animates Tufts’ proud history of sending graduates into national service programs like Teach for America and the Peace Corps.

graphic for Justin Hong's column "the budget line"

The Budget Line: Late nights without Late Nights

It’s that time of year again — the part of the semester defined by whiplash between midterms and your Halloweekend plans. No matter what those may be, on Fridays and Saturdays we can all count on Late Night at Commons to be the cherry on top of a raucous night out or for a midnight snack.

graphic for Justin Hong's column "the budget line"

The Budget Line: That little treat you just bought doesn’t count, right?

With the semester finally setting in, we’re all falling right back into our addictive relationship with coffee. I, for one, love this magical bean juice, and need a cup almost every day. The only problem is that coffee can be expensive. Buying coffee every day can really add up, but fear not: Turning your dorm or apartment into a full-functioning coffee bar isn’t your only alternative. By making informed decisions, even someone who buys coffee every day can save.


So your closest grocery store is closing. What now?

Due to poor revenue, bfresh in Davis Square is slated to close at6 p.m. on Thursday. This marks the closure of the only full-service grocery store in Davis Square and the closest one for many Tufts students. The store’s closure raises the question of grocery accessibility and affordability.

Household utilities are pictured in Arlington, Mass.

Living off campus? Check your energy bills ASAP

Massachusetts is one of only around a dozen states that has a market for electricity. Even though there are three electric utilities that control the power grid — Eversource, National Grid and Unitil — state residents can choose who supplies their energy: the electric utility, a municipality or a private company (so-called “competitive suppliers”). This well-intentioned policy was meant to protect consumers by giving them more choices, instead, it has let companies trample consumers’ rights.


Asian American studies deserves better

The Tufts Asian Student Coalition called on the university to hire more faculty specializing in Asian American studies to fill an urgent gap in the race, colonialism and diaspora department. With Professor Courtney Sato going on leave, there will be no courses or full-time faculty in the Asian American studies concentration next fall, according to the coalition’s March 30 letter to the administration. I find this regrettable. I am not privy to the university’s finances, and expanding the department may not be financially tenable, but Tufts ought to reconsider this decision and try to meet student activists’ demands.

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