Posts in Features
Feature: Sean Astin campaigns for Hillary Clinton

Note: This article was originally published in Technician on April 23, 2008.

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'Samwise the Brave' visits campus

Sean Astin visited campus Tuesday in order to campaign for presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. The actor, perhaps best known as his role as Sam in the Lord of the Rings films, made N.C. State only one of his stops on a three-day trip across the state that also included presentations at Duke and UNC-Chapel Hill.

Astin opened his speech by addressing the negative image many people have of celebrities who are politically active and explaining how politics has played a role in his personal life.

"Celebrities' opinions are no more important than anybody else's opinions, but I also say they're no less important," Astin said. "I've always been very passionate about politics. I really love government. ... I'm a citizen first."

He also acknowledged that, although he supports Clinton, he has the utmost respect for John McCain and Barack Obama. He pointed out how Obama has inspired younger people and brought many new voters to the Democratic Party, and said he has committed to supporting his campaign should he end up getting the nomination.

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Feature: Filmmaker screens controversial doc at NCSU

Note: The following article was originally published in Technician on April 10, 2008.

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Film screening brings award-winning director to campus

The Film Studies program sponsored a screening last Monday night of the award-winning documentary film For The Bible Tells Me So. The screening was held in cooperation with the Full Frame film festival, which concluded in Durham over the weekend.

The film follows five Christian families and how each responds to the realization that one of their children is gay. It also contains interviews with several prominent religious figures about different interpretations of biblical passages commonly used to condemn homosexuality. Director Daniel Karslake was present at the screening and described the film's examination of faith and sexuality as something he personally related to in his own spiritual life.

"It was actually my faith, ironically, that brought me out of the closet and made me really acknowledge who I was," Karslake said. "Most of the time it's the faith background of gay and lesbian kids that drives them toward suicide and suppressing it."

The audience at the screening consisted of about 70 people, some of whom were students. Afterward, the writer-director participated in a brief Q&A with the crowd.

"I think it was very well received," Karslake said. "Very few people left for the Q&A, and that's always a good sign.  Unless someone says, 'OK, last question,' people could stay forever and talk about this."

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