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Opinion

Opposing Views: Pro-Life and Pro-Choice Columns

Pro-Life

Abortion is wrong. Period.

The tough thing about a topic of this nature is the majority of people already have their minds made up.

That’s why I chose to explain to you why, based off of my Christian beliefs, I am pro-life, and fully against something as sickening as abortion.

Throughout the years growing up, I was taught that abortion is murder. To me, it’s taking the life of an innocent human being who is still growing in the mother’s womb.

Through reading the Bible and my strong beliefs in Christianity, I have learned that God knew me, he knew you, he knew everyone, before they were knit together in the mother’s womb (Psalm 139:13). There is a God who knew everything about you before you were born, and I feel this is tough for people to comprehend, especially those in favor of pro-choice.

Many pro-choice supporters would believe that, “If God knew, why didn’t he stop it when he could have?” All I can tell you is this leads back to the sinful, wicked nature of the world we live in.

But I have hope through Jesus Christ, and this led me to Choices Life Resource Center in New Albany, a place that many pro-choice supporters don’t know too much about. As I emailed with Mary Munford, a nurse at Choices, and toured the facility with Rose Condra, the director, I found out more about places like these.

There are locations like this all over the country, and they are places of compassion. The only pro-life supporters a pro-choice supporter sees is those who stand outside abortion clinics with signs. But as I toured Choices, I found a place of hope for the community.

Many woman face a difficult decision when they get pregnant. But I have learned that there are three options: Keep the child, put it up for adoption, or get an abortion. Two of these options keep this human life alive, and give it a chance at a future.

The third option takes that chance – that life – away.

As I continued to tour Choices, I walked into a room where ultrasounds happen, and felt this sense of peace. Ultrasounds are when a woman can hear their baby’s heartbeat. As I stood there, I learned of women who have walked in this room, saw this small heartbeat, and still chose an abortion. It’s sad.

Some pro-choice supporters might choose to say, “The fetus isn’t really a human being.”

In reality, though, the term fetus is a Latin term, meaning “little one,” which is used to describe a stage of development, just like infant or adult. According to the law of biogenesis, a fetus conceived by human parents, and growing by means of the instructions in its own human genetic code, is by definition human.

Tim Tebow, Celine Dion, Jack Nicholson, Steve Jobs, Cher, and Justin Bieber. What do all the famous people on this list have in common? Their parents all contemplated aborting them during pregnancy. Imagine if Steve Jobs was never born, that amazing iPhone wouldn’t be what it is today. All of these celebrities that have impacted our world in some way or another, so try to imagine how different our world would be without them.

Pro-choice supporters use rape cases to back-up their reasoning for being in favor of abortions. A study from January 2017 called A New Perspective on Human Abortions showed that approximately 70-percent of rape victims chose to give birth to their babies.

A family friend of mine wouldn’t be with us today if his mother had chose to abort him after being taken advantage of. Not only did she choose life, but she chose to put him up for adoption.

Many women choose to get an abortion because they feel like they’re not in a stable place to have the kid. This may be because the father is gone, or they don’t feel they have the financial support.

But Choices is a place of hope for families. A place where Condra and Munford help those families with clothing, diapers, bottles, car seats and classes designed to help parents throughout parenthood, not just birth.

And that support leads to another option future mothers and fathers can make: adoption. Adoption is a way for a mother to give her baby to a stable family, which is never a bad option. In today’s world we live in, adoption agencies allow the mother to be a part of the child’s life still.

I know many families that adopt and tell of the miraculous stories of how their child has changed their life. And if the mother had chosen to abort the baby, the lives of these families wouldn’t have been changed, and there would be yet another victim to an abortion.

Based off of my morals and belief in Christianity, I believe that pro-life is the only way to go.

Abortion is murder. Abortion is wrong. Think of how that child could one day change the world.

Pro-Choice

January 22, 1973: Roe Vs. Wade

In a 7-2 decision, the Supreme Court legalized the ability for a woman to have an abortion under the 14th Amendment of the Constitution.

Despite this happening almost 45 years ago, this Supreme Court decision is still being fought today, despite the fact that a woman’s body is her own.

Why? Because many claim that abortion is killing babies.

Which it is not.

Before you put this article down with disgust, hear me out. I wish no one had to get an abortion; I imagine it’s a traumatic experience. And it’s true that this kills a living being, and this greatly saddens me.

But what I am simply trying to do is get both men and women to think not of themselves, their circumstances and beliefs, but rather other people. I have never been pregnant, nor had an abortion, but I am trying to think of women in all situations.

No woman wants to have an abortion. Most feel they don’t have any other option; many seeking abortions aren’t financially stable enough to have a baby or afford a pregnancy. Some women cannot go through a pregnancy for their own health reasons; others are victims of rape and incest.

This is why Roe vs. Wade exists — not because “atheists” or “liberals” want to kill babies, but because women deserve to make their own decisions.

Why does the government get to control women’s bodies, and make this decision for women they’ve never met? Furthermore, why do the men in the government get to control the bodies of women they’ve never met?

It should be the choice of a woman, because it’s her body. Hers. Not Paul Ryan’s, not Mitch McConnell’s, and not Donald Trump’s.

Hers.

President Trump, a man who has been accused by multiple women of sexual assault, has taken away a law the Obama Administration passed that says the workplace must provide birth control for women. If the Republicans are so worried about women getting abortions, why are they increasing the likelihood that women will get pregnant? Furthermore, why are women being punished just for the fact that they can get pregnant?

Illegalizing abortion doesn’t make it go away; it means women go to less-equipped places, which increases the likelihood that the mother is killed.

In a recent article by CNN, Marcie Crim, executive director of the Kentucky Health Justice Network, quoted a 16-year old she’d talked to who was denied an abortion in Kentucky due to being nearly 23 weeks pregnant. The girl reportedly said, “Fine, I’ll just do it myself. I’ve looked it up online. I can do it myself.”

Crim helped the girl get an abortion, but this is just one example of how desperate some of these women are.

There’s a 10-year-old girl in India who was raped, and recently gave birth to a baby. India’s Supreme Court refused to allow her an abortion, and this girl, who is younger than the high schoolers reading this article, is now a mother. Can you imagine being a parent, and the physical trauma of being pregnant … at 10 years old? This is an example of a situation that Roe vs. Wade prevents.

Abortion is not only a national topic, but an issue right across the Ohio River. Go into downtown Louisville and find a place called EMW Women’s Surgical Center. This is the last place in the entire state of Kentucky that performs abortions, and protesters are crowded around it every day, showing pictures of bloodied babies, and posters claiming it’s a sin.

This brings up my final point: abortion is too closely tied to religion.

Most of the Republican party is comprised of white, Christian males, which doesn’t represent every American. America is a country that prides itself on diversity, and the right to separation of church and state. Not everyone in this country is religious, and our ability to choose is a Constitutional right we are lucky to have.

That’s why it is not fair when others make someone feel bad for their choices, much like the people that crowd the front of abortion centers. As I said, no woman wants to have an abortion, and she doesn’t deserve to be shamed for her choice. It’s the right of Americans to protest, but think how you would feel, if someone told you that you were going to Hell for your choice to have an abortion.

Protesters have even assaulted people escorting women to the center. Emory Williamson, a volunteer escort, told CNN that he’s had his feet stomped on by protesters so many times that he’s had to buy steel-toe Timberland boots.

How is that okay? To cite God as your reason for protesting, but to assault an innocent man?

Williamson told CNN, “The Jesus I grew up with would be walking with the client. I grew up knowing that Jesus was about compassion and love and understanding. He was willing to be with those who might be dealing with hardships in life–and being able to always walk beside them.”

Americans have the right to their own opinion, but the next time you think about abortion, I implore you, put yourself in the mind of someone else.

Think about what you would do if you were in this situation. Think of the millions of women around the globe. Think of a woman you know and love.
Just don’t think of only yourself.

Categories
Basketball Feature News Sports

Restoring History: the story of the Schnatter-Nachand Fieldhouse

story by Kyle Sanders

At 601 E. Court Ave in downtown Jeffersonville sits one of the city’s most historic buildings: the Nachand Fieldhouse.

This building, which used to hold Jeff High’s basketball games until 1971, is now seen as a place for friends to have a great time and hangout. However after being around for 80 years, the Fieldhouse has fallen in need of renovation.

The city of Jeff had visions of saving the historic gym, but would require major work, both inside and outside of the building, that would cost upwards of $1.8 million.

While this goal seemed impossible months ago, a recent donation from one of Jeffersonville’s most famous citizens has turned this pipedream into a reality.

“This location (the Fieldhouse) holds a special place in my heart,” said John Schnatter, JHS alumni, and founder and CEO of Papa John’s Pizza. “I grew up watching sports here as a kid, including local legends like Indiana’s Mr. Basketball, Mike Flynn. Jeffersonville has been good to me and I wanted to show my support for the community.”

Schnatter’s donation of $800,000 brings the Fieldhouse closer to meeting its goal of $1.8 million. Once this amount is reached, it will be renovated by the Jeffersonville Parks Department’s workgroup, Save the Fieldhouse.

The workgroup plans to use the money to pay for exterior brick work, restoration of the front facade, replacement and upgrades to both electrical system and bathroom, as well as replacing the heating system while adding air conditioning.  

“I think it’s wonderful,” said Charlie Nachand, son of former Jeff Parks Director Charles Nachand. “Without a donation like this, we would have no chance of reaching the $1.8 million we need to.”

Thanks to Schnatter’s donation, the Jeff Parks Department chose to add the southern Indiana native’s name to the historic fieldhouse, which will now be known as the John H. Schnatter-Nachand Fieldhouse.

We were tasked to determine the fate of the John H. Schnatter-Nachand Fieldhouse,” explained Bill Burns, president of the Jeffersonville Park’s Authority. “At our first meeting, we knew the only option was to restore the building. Out of that, (the) workgroup born the thought of a private-public partnership to raise the money to restore the Fieldhouse.

“This project has been one of the most rewarding project I have had the privilege to work with,” Burns continued. “I never dreamed that the Fieldhouse had touched so many lives.

According to the Parks Department, the Fieldhouse serves more than 15,000 people annually. Through the basketball and volleyball leagues, summer programs and Zumba lessons, the Fieldhouse still is in use to this day.

“I go to the Fieldhouse all the time,” said senior Tyler Wheeler. “These renovations are (going to) help bring in more people to play basketball with, and make the Fieldhouse even better than it already is.”

The John H. Schnatter-Nachand Fieldhouse is a historic building in Jeff that’ll continue to live on, and is expected to remain open throughout the renovations.

 

Categories
News

Correcting Congestion

As drivers merge onto the newly-built I-265 highway and follow it south, a new landmark will peak its face around the bend of the road: the East End Bridge. The bridge connects Utica, Ind. to Louisville, Ky., and completes a shortcut to the eastern side of the city that once took 30-40 minutes to drive.

Now, the drive is merely 10-20 minutes, and lets drivers avoid the headaches of downtown traffic. More importantly, though, is that the bridge opens up a new side of Louisville some Jeff residents aren’t as familiar with, including an area of shops and restaurants waiting for Hoosiers to come and explore.

 

Construction of the Bridge

Construction time– Construction of the bridge began in June 2013, cutting into the $2.3 billion budget of the Louisville and Southern Indiana Bridges Project. After three-and-a-half years, the bridge’s opening ceremony took place on Dec. 18, 2016, officially marking the opening of the bridge to the public.

Labor– According to Union worker Donny Farish, the bridge was completed 100-percent by Union laborers. He credited the Union for the construction, saying wages would have been too low without it.

Tolls– If drivers choose to cross the East End Bridge, they might find themselves paying some money to do so. The tolls on the new East End Bridge cost $2 if drivers have a transponder in their car. If not, drivers can expect to pay $3 if the car has a registered license plate from Indiana or Kentucky. All other drivers will pay $4 to cross.

Finishing touches- As of print, the bridge has been opened for over a month. However one can still find construction crews around the bridge seven days a week. Farish says his crew has been working around the clock since Labor Day to finish minor construction on the bridge, as well as the walkway that accompanies it.

 

Things to do on the Kentucky side of the Bridge

The Paddock Shops- A shopping center right across the bridge is full of shops and restaurants that southern Indiana doesn’t have.

Clothing Shops: J.Crew , Lane Bryant, Ann Taylor and Talbot’s can be found in the Paddock Shopping Center.

Fan Outfitters is a clothing and apparel store for those UK fans and U of L fans looking for the best team gear.

Barnes and Noble can be found in the shopping center, providing customers with a wide variety of books and music to buy.

 

Blaze Pizza is a restaurant located within the Paddock that serves up some of the most delicious pizzas you’ll ever eat. For the picky eater, Blaze Pizza uses an interactive service format that allows guests to create custom-made pizzas at fast speeds – for only about $7 each.

Cabela’s- Similar to Bass Pro, Cabela’s is a superstore for quality hunting, fishing, camping, recreational shooting and outdoor gear at competitive prices. Cabela’s has a wider variety of hunting gear than Bass Pro, and just as competitive prices.

Things coming to Jeffersonville in the near future

While the bridge is beneficial for Hoosiers, some east-enders from Louisville will reap the benefits of the new structure, too.

A new retail center, located next to the round-abouts in Jeffersonville near River Ridge, is expected to be finished by 2020. This new retail center plans to have four hotels, a medical campus, restaurants, senior housing, a cinema,  bank and other retail.

This area is expected to have restaurants that are more family affordable, but no drive-thru services. The site is started with construction already, and hopes to have some shops opening by the end of this year.

Categories
News

Janitors having issues cleaning up the mess

By Phillip Steinmetz & Kyle Sanders

 

A dozen pieces of Tuesday’s homework balled up, a few spots of crushed cheddar Goldfish from two days ago and a milk carton from first period’s breakfast on Monday.

That’s what the floor might look like in an average Jeff High classroom at the end of the week.

However the mess is not the fault of the janitors slacking on their job. Instead, it’s a culmination of being understaffed, and not having enough qualified applicants to fill those positions.

“We are just trying to get the stuff done that needs to get done,” said janitor Chris Schwinn. “It all comes down to time management, working extra hours on the weekend and overtime to get stuff that must be completed done. We can’t pay attention to things like washing every window in the school. We’ve got to take care of other things that are more important: cleaning the bathrooms, taking out the trash, sweeping up the hallways, stuff like that.”

On a normal school year, JHS would expect to have three day-shift and eight night-shift janitors each weekday. This year, it has gotten as low as two in the day, and only two at night.

Also adding to the chaos is the illness of veteran custodian William (Willie) Thornton, who has been out since the beginning of the school year. Thornton, who has worked within Jeff High for over 29 years, has experienced health issues that has prevented him from attending work, where he is the lead custodian.

“We had our two-day custodians, Chris and Bridget, step up and have done everything we asked them to do and more in Willie’s absence,” said assistant principal Timothy LaGrange. “The building is in great shape. At times, we’ve had a sub for that third spot, but not consistently. I don’t know when we will get that third position filled. In Willie’s situation, if he came back, we want what’s best for Willie.”

According to LaGrange, there are a few obstacles that have made it challenging to hire custodians this year. The biggest challenge is that other businesses, like Amazon and the newly-erected River Ridge, are offering more money for employment, which is cutting the application pool.

“The pay is probably more important than anything else and that’s one thing we can’t compete with Amazon,” said math teacher Jim Spears. “The school corporation could spend more money on that or anyone’s position. Everyone deserves to make more than they are making, so how do you do that? Right now, we are in dire need of custodians, so how do you do that? It’s not an easily solvable work problem.”

Despite the hiring difficulties, the school isn’t far away from being back to full staff. At the time of print, LaGrange says JHS is two custodians away from full strength.

To make up for the less hands on board, some weekends or long breaks require JHS to bring in multiple custodians from other schools for a “blitz.” The blitz lasts one or two days, and the entire school is cleaned.

“It’s a challenge to meet our standards,” LaGrange said. “(It’s) not because of the people we have aren’t doing a great job because they are doing a great job. They are great workers, dedicated and do a great job.

“But we are understaffed and some of that is a larger, economic issue,” LaGrange continued. “There are a lot of jobs available, like River Ridge, (which) has created a little bit of competition for us.”

A creative way in which Greater Clark County Schools has tackled this challenge is by offering custodial job opportunities to high school students. The position offers $9 per hour to work up to three hours after school, everyday.

The hope for the hires is to give the custodians an extra hand while they are still filling in the other main positions.

“We’ve had a few people who have applied, we are going to hire a pool of high school students very soon to fill in and help us out as well,” said LaGrange. “I am excited for that and we’ve got some good candidates by the people I’ve talked to, we could use some more good people and high school students that want to work. It’s a very good part-time job for high school kids.”

Categories
News

The Republican Club

Story by Kyle Sanders

The goal of the Republican Club is listed prominently: “To actively work to bring young people into politics.”

Since the club was chartered last December, club president Josh Waddell has worked to teach other students on what it means to be a Republican. Each meeting starts with a small presentations over something political, then the group spends the rest of the time talking over how it relates to the Republican Party.

“Being a Republican means that you are concerned with fiscal and economic responsibility, as well as being open to other views, and respecting others,” Waddell said.

With the upcoming election just days away, Waddell has noticed a slight increase in attendance to the Club. Typically, the club has only five students attend, but has increased up to 10 people in wake of November’s election.

“I think this is a very unique and interesting election,” Waddell said. “This year the millennials become the largest voting block, though most will not vote, so a lot of young people are coming to age in this very interesting year.”

The Republican Club is a way to teach other students about politics, as well as the ways a Republican and Democrat are different. According to Waddell, students get a lot out of the discussions.

“The Republican Club provides me with opportunities to support local Republicans and learn more about what it really means to be a Republican,” said junior Kurtis Kimmel, an attendee of the club.

The Republican Club is proud to be a club to help teach politics among students, and hopes to remain around after the election to help students learn more about being a Republican. The Club meets up every other Wednesday after school in room A204.

Categories
Opinion

Bad Guys on the Rise?

Story by Kyle Sanders

Everyone loves a good superhero movie. From Marvel’s Avengers to DC’s movies of Batman vs. Superman, and the Dark Knight Trilogy, both have been able to create good superhero movies that everyone can watch over and over again.

But what if these movies were made up of bad guys instead? Would you still cheer them on?

The release of Suicide Squad on Aug. 5 showed how the villains can make a great movie too. This movie showed how the villainous squad of Harley Quinn, Killer Croc, Deadshot, Captain Boomerang became who they are, but also how they could do some good, too.

As entertainment seekers, we always seem to get the origin of the good guys. But when we finally get to see the bad guy’s background story, and see why they became who they are, that makes for a great movie or TV show, too.

Almost every movie with a “good and bad guy” ends with the good guy walking away victorious. Eventually, that gets old. Don’t get me wrong: I love superhero movies and love to watch the good guy win; but, it’s about time we see the bad guys get some love, too.

Some movies we watch make it seem as if the good guy wins. However, as the movie progresses, viewers also see that the goal of the bad guy eventually gets achieved.

The Dark Knight is a perfect representation of this. Batman ends the movie capturing the Joker and defeating Two Face, but the Joker also got what he wanted. The Joker’s goal throughout the movie was to get Batman to become the villain, and by the end of the movie, he is.

Not only is it amazing to see the bad guys get some more time on the big screen, but it also makes for some great shows. Shows like Gotham, Mad Men, and The Sopranos have the bad guys as lead characters, yet are shows people love to watch.

Seeing a movie or TV show where the good guys wins is always great to watch. But what if we gave the bad guys a chance to shine in the spotlight, too?