Why Should You Care About Class Size?

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As a student, you might not think about class size very much. However, it is a topic that teachers discuss often and, in some cases, disagree about. This topic is disputed because most teachers like to have smaller classes, while others like to have bigger classes.

Since our school has so many students, classes are typically pretty large, usually ranging from 30 to 35 people in each class. However, some teachers can’t decide if they prefer bigger or smaller classes. This is a common dilemma for foreign language teachers, in particular. Aude Johnson, one of the French teachers, faces this problem.

“On one hand, I like smaller classes because I can have more one-on-one time with the students,” said Johnson. “On the other hand, when it comes to presenting, I find that students in bigger classes perform a lot better than students in smaller classes.” However, teachers who teach the common core classes such as Language Arts generally prefer smaller classes ranging from about 20 to 25 students. For example, Carolyn Simpson, a 10th grade Language Arts teacher, agrees that smaller classes are the way to go.

“I definitely prefer smaller classes because I can have more one-on-one time with my students,” said Simpson. “Also, students in smaller classes typically have better grades because of that extra one-on-one time.”

Although the teacher’s opinions on class size are very important, the students’ opinions are just as important, if not more so. Students’ education is very important and should be prioritized. When students feel as though they aren’t catching on as fast as others, they need that extra help from the teachers.

“Anything over 30 makes it harder for teachers to control the class and for students to learn effectively due to distraction,” said Evelyn Minton, sophomore.

All in all, while class size is a very debated topic among teachers, it should be an important topic for students, as well. Class size not only affects how students learn, but it also affects students’ grades. In the bigger picture, this one topic affects students now and well in to the future.

 

Written by Mattie Blanton and Kayleigh Gernand

Photo by Joselen Lopez

How Does Social Media Affect Your Mental Health?

You live in a pretend world. Viewing fake people in fake places with all of their fake possessions. Sure you have followers, sure you have “friends,” but are you really happy? Most people think Yeah, I’m Happy, but social media can affect your mental health more than you think.

According to a Pew Research Center study, 92 percent of teens claim to go online at least once a day, and 24 percent say they are online almost nonstop. The statistics are from 2015 and I can only assume these numbers have increased in the past three years. So, here’s my question: how much does this affect your pursuit of happiness?

Worrying about the amount of “friends” you have or the amount of likes you get can impact you more than you think. Not only does social media have emotional consequences, but it can influence what you eat, how much you eat and how often you choose to go to the gym. These things can cause physical problems, not just emotional problems. If you’re under eating and over-exercising (yes, that is a real thing) just to impress your followers, it can generate physical health issues.

Cyberbullying is another big problem that comes with social media. Not being the “perfect weight,” not wearing the “right clothes,” and/or not having all the right materialistic things are only a few situations that could result in cyberbullying. People can be mean. I’m just going to put that out there. Some will criticize you for things that may not even be true, but that’s just the way the world works. I’m not saying that cyberbullying is okay; that’s not at all what I’m implying. What I am trying to say is that you can’t expect for things to be perfect. And, if you are getting bullied, in person or not, you should definitely talk to a trusted adult. Whether that be a teacher, counselor or parent, they can most likely help you.

Growing up without social media hasn’t been super easy, which seemingly contradicts the purpose of this entire article; however, that actually helps my case. I don’t connect with people in the same ways as everyone else does. I tend to feel left out when I don’t see “that picture” or “that tweet” or don’t get “that invitation.” Just as having social media can cause negative feelings, not having social media can degrade your self-esteem too. This shows how much these apps have changed people throughout the last decade. If I can feel uncomfortable just because I am forced to have physical conversations, that tells you that some changes really need to be made.

What can you do to alter the way social media influences you? First I would suggest a cleanse. Although I said that not having social can be negative, I still think that you should try to go a couple days or maybe even a week or two without using any of your social media. It may end up becoming something that you make permanent. If you can’t stomach dropping Snapchat, however, you need to remember that whatever you post it will be out there forever. You don’t need to change who you are to fit in. If you are posting things that are even the slightest bit inappropriate just because everyone else is doing it, that can really come back to haunt you. Everything you put on the internet can be saved by anyone who sees it, even if it gets deleted.

 

Written by Kristen Jacobs

Is it Unfair? Students and Staff Sound Off on the Dress Code

Dress code has been a hotly debated topic for as long as I can remember. Teachers, peers, administrators and more all have different expectations of what students should and can wear to school.

There are even differences among dress codes in schools in our area. For example, New Albany-Floyd County Schools have a casual dress code and it isn’t even strongly enforced. They can show skin above the knee, have rips in their jeans, show shoulders and more.

Our dress code at Jeff High is very strict, but there are many people who say that it is somewhat sexist, as well. While it doesn’t explicitly show, everyone knows that our dress code affects girls more than boys. Guys can wear shorts a few inches above the knee, but if a girl wears a skirt or dress the same length, they get punished.

When asked if our dress code is more unfair to girls than guys, these are some responses from students and staff at Jeff High:

“I would agree that the dress code is more unfair to girls than guys. Guys can get away with a little bit more when it comes to dress code, because one would think they don’t have as much to cover up as girls do.”
– Natalie Bronson, science teacher and student council sponsor

“Absolutely. Guys violate dress code all the time and nothing gets said to them because they are guys, when girls barely break dress code by the slightest bit, we get in trouble.”
– Tiara Jones, sophomore

“Yeah, there’s more rules for girls compared to boys. I’ve been dress coded for having a hole in my jeans above my knee and a boy could have a hole in the same place and not have anything happen.”
– Elliot Mays, freshman

“Yes, guys have the ability to wear clothes that kind of let you breathe more than girls do based on our current dress code. Depending on the weather and circumstances, girls have it a lot harder.”
– Harrison Paul, senior

“Girls have it harder because guys don’t have that problem, really, or I haven’t at least. A lot of girls clothes break dress code and that’s just how they’re made. So it’s kind of unfair that they buy clothes and can’t wear them.”
– Hunter Milam, junior

 

Written by Joselen Lopez

Editorial: Benefits of the Ivy Tech Scholarship Reach Far Beyond Jeffersonville High School

The city of Jeffersonville has created the life-changing promise of a free college education for Jeff High graduates. Mayor Mike Moore and Redevelopment Commission members joined with Jeff High representatives on November 28, 2018, to commit $150,000 to the promise of free college tuition.

Despite some concerns from the community, this money is not coming from taxpaying citizens. “The funding is tax money generated by new business,” Principal Julie Straight said, “so it’s not coming out of our pockets; it’s coming out of new businesses that are generating income they’re putting back into the community through this TIF tax. That [income] goes into the Redevelopment Commission to decide how they use that money to help build up our community to further support business development.”

The benefits of this program will reach far beyond the students who qualify for scholarships. Making post-secondary education more affordable will benefit our city and our region, as well. We should expect to see business flourish now that the number of college-educated Jeff High graduates is expected to jump exponentially. The program will open doors for job opportunities and entrepreneurship. It could even attract transfers to the city. Jeffersonville’s Promise is more than a scholarship program. It’s a dramatic way to shed the reputation of “Dirty J” and embrace a bright new future.

Written by Bella Bungcayao

Commentary: This is America

A flag, a song and a nation divided by racial tensions and injustice; this is America.
For some, the freedom and pride that comes along with being American is represented through our flag and our national anthem, but I’m here to break the news to you: it is so
much more than that.

Sitting and kneeling during the national anthem is nothing new in America, yet it has created one of the biggest divides among people in this country to date. But the divide isn’t caused specifically by kneeling before a football game or sitting during the pledge in first period. The divide is due to the reasoning. Quite simply, everyone has a different perspective on life in America.

Both the American flag and the national anthem are symbols, and no great country is founded on symbolism. America was founded on freedoms, liberties and the privileged right to have a choice. In some places around the world (North Korea, Venezuela, Syria,
etc.), simply having an opinion is illegal and can even get you killed.

In the past year, the media and society in America have become a dangerously divided place of hatred, and our once “united nation” gone. The idea that not participating in the worship of a flag or song being is disrespectful to America is outlandish.

To anyone who asks, “why don’t you stand?”, the answer is everywhere around you. We live in a country that takes such pride in all men being equal when, in fact, there are stipulations and inequality. That is wrong. Not until every person is treated the exact same, no matter their physical appearance, will all of America stand.

From Martin Luther King, Jr. to Colin Kaepernick, the road to change has been paved. From urban cities to suburban neighborhoods, injustice will end and equality will
arise.

Whether you sit or stand, always remember: “Believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything.” – Colin Kaepernick

 

By Chloe Treat

Commentary: Religion in Schools – is it Constitutional?

written by Emily Tully

At the constitutional convention in 1787, our founding fathers came to the conclusion that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”

Many interpret this to mean that, literally, Americans have the right to practice any religion that we choose, but the government cannot force any religion onto you.

In recent times, or even since that amendment has been ratified, it has been misquoted and not followed as our founders meant.

Religion remains a topic not to be brought up with people, as most have a passionate opinion about it. Individuals follow the faith that they so choose and practice it in their daily lives to their discretion.

With that being said, there are some that don’t.

If things were as they were laid out in the Constitution, that would be fine. But companies, schools and other organizations have been shaming those who do not follow religion, or don’t practice the religion that they do, and making it institutional.

With the recent mass shootings in schools, there have been more calls for action as a means to stop the senseless violence and death that have been surrounding our society for over a decade. Solutions to the problem have been mentioned — arming teachers, stronger gun control, and even some unconventional ones, like adding more religion in schools.

The problem with teaching religion in public schools is that it is unconstitutional and hinders the process of students being able to form their own opinions.

Posts on social media from local high school students have claimed that the reason for these tragedies is ‘our country’s lack of morals and a relationship with God.’ Organizations have banded together to put ‘God back into public schools’ following mass acts of violence.

But what about those who do not practice any religion, or a religion that doesn’t have to do with God?

As a high school student, who isn’t particularly religious, I am absolutely in awe at the fact that other high schoolers want to blame this problem on something that is not based on fact. The fact of the matter is the average person, as young as 16 years old in Vermont, can purchase a gun. Eighteen-year-olds can purchase semi-automatic weapons that cause mass destruction. As many as 50 people can be killed in minutes, as seen in the Las Vegas shooting.

How long must this go on before our voices are heard? Why do these calls for action have to come from ‘children’? Why is being a ‘child,’ or a young person, a bad thing? Why do we imply that our youth is uneducated about this topic in particular; when, in reality, high school students are the ones who deal with this first hand?

As of print, there have been 82 school shootings since I started my freshman year at Jeff High, all of these resulting in injury and death. But my opinion doesn’t matter?

Students are faced with anxieties and fears that our lives will be potentially cut short, in a place where we are supposed to prepare for a life full of longevity and prosperity.

Betsy DeVos, the United States Secretary of Education, has been known for her Christian belief, although she has kept quiet since her nomination. In a 2001 interview, though, she offered a glimpse into her convictions.

“Our desire,” she claimed, “is to confront the culture in ways that will continue to advance God’s kingdom.”

Isn’t this, by definition, unconstitutional?

DeVos is known for her support of private and Christian/Catholic education, supporting President Donald Trump’s call to fund families moving away from “our failing government schools” into their choice of charter or private school.

Why would the country’s Secretary of Education be focused on moving families out of government schools, instead of improving them? Is it because they cannot teach their religious agenda in public schools?

Public schools are not a place to push ideologies, whether they be religious, political or economic. Schools are supposed to be a place for us students to prosper and find ourselves — find our ways of thinking and ways of doing things in a manner that we so please. If I had listened to all of the principles that were pushed upon me, I would not be the activist and opinionated person that I am today.

It’s not just ‘liberals’ or ‘left-wing’ people who believe in teaching students in a way that they can learn for themselves. Most students that I have polled, from all walks of life, want to learn for themselves.

Junior Chris Sosa believes that, “If the government is funding families going into private schools, that’s wrong. They should be focusing on bettering our public schools, because not everyone is going to choose to go to a private school.

“It’s a bias within our government towards those who don’t follow the religion that they do,” Sosa continued.

In this time of societal divy of how to fix this nationwide dilemma of violence, does the answer really lie within amending the Constitution?

Commentary: Stigmas of Mental Illness

written by Tomi Clark

A school. A trigger of a gun. And the person behind the bullet.

With mass shootings, the assumptions that are frequently associated with those who stand behind the trigger are typical:

  1. Mental illness causes gun violence
  2. The crime can be prevented with psychiatric diagnosis
  3. The shooter is troubled, deranged and lonely

What is at the forefront of your mind when somebody mentions ‘school shooter’? Is it that the shooter is mentally disturbed and that is what drove them to burst?

Links between gun violence and mental illness have been the center of misconceptions, but labeling it as a misconception is only based on what you believe.

Abstractly, not only does mental stability come to mind when speaking of school shooters, but it brings to light other stereotypes and anxieties associated with gun violence.

More importantly, though, it brings up the ultimate question: Where is safe?

The stigmas of mental illness

The stigmas surrounding school shooters are only implications.

Do you picture someone who harbors telltale signs of loneliness, failing grades, a secret

vendetta, a broken family, and a history of mental illness?

From what is broadcast on the news, people tend to develop bias prejudices toward the mentally ill, and profile them as mass murderers. Thus, they make generalizations on the spectrum of the argument at hand.

The presumption that all mentally ill have a burning passion to shoot up schools just because of their mental state is only an implication. What did the mentally ill do to incur the wrath of harsh judgment and cruel discriminations?

Frankly, anyone can be an anomaly who commits the crime.

The assumptions that link gun violence and mental illness stem from some place, but where? Any correlation between the mental illness and gun violence is a fallacy, because not everyone who is mentally ill is going to conduct a shooting.

Anyone, not only those labeled as “sick”, has the capability to gain access to a weapon (whether by legal or illegal means), walk onto a school campus, and begin shooting at random. But the stigmas perpetuate the direction that all mentally ill are belligerent, and are simply waiting in the shadows, ready to strike.

Mass shootings are a conundrum, and all society aspires to do is understand, and know how to prevent them. The first group of people in line to blame are those who have mental health issues, even if they do not act or show signs of erratic behavior.

The notions that proclaim mental illness as being the sole reason for any mass shooting, or that advanced physiatric surveillance could prevent a shooting, is unsensible because denouncing a substantial amount of the population on a topic as grand terror scale as this is unfair. And while the shooter may have personal turmoil or mental instability, throwing blame on an entire group of people is where the line is drawn.

No school is infallible and grand scale shootings are inevitable, but discriminating and associating murder mentality with all mentally ill is unjustifiable.

This is an extensive and imperative topic at hand, and in the end it’s in your hands to decide what you deem the reasons for mass shootings are.

Commentary: Our voices will be heard

written by Lisa Morris

How many?

How many more teenagers will have to die or be injured before there are stricter gun laws and better safety in schools? How many more threats will there have to be for our voice to be heard?

How many?

When my mom and dad went to school, the thought of them possibly dying never even crossed their mind. Even when I was a little girl on my way to third grade, I never imagined that I could very well take my last breath at a school.

For the kids and teenagers all around the country that go to school with the fear of being murdered along with their classmates, it is undeniably heartbreaking for me. There is no doubt that there has to be a change.

I believe that in order for this change to occur, we, as students and as youth, have to make a stand. A stand against bullying. A stand against hate. A stand against murder in schools.

Our voices deserve to be heard, especially since we are the ones most affected by this.

Change will never happen if we do not come together and act upon what we are promising, or what we are saying we want done. All over the news and social media are articles about how there needs to be better safety in schools.

Then why did Jeff High, by all accounts a safe school, have two threats within weeks apart? At what point will we stop talking and actually start doing?

Youth, we are so important. We are the voice of change. We have so much energy and we have so much potential. When we put that energy into good use and use it for what we believe in, nothing can stop us.

Simply put, we cannot sit back any longer. We’ve always heard our teachers and our parents tell us that our actions speak louder than words. Then why aren’t we acting upon our beliefs? Why aren’t we pushing for more safety in our own schools?

In order for this change to happen, we as youth have to make our voices heard to the adults. Yes, we have made many mistakes. Yes, we will make many more.

But we can come together and speak out for more safety in our school to those leading it. Our opinions matter, but we have to speak up to the ones who have the legal power to put this change into action.

The threats towards our school, and many other schools like our, from those who are infiltrated with hate and anger will continue to happen. However, the only way we will be safe is if the community hears our voices.

It is time that our voices be heard.

EDITORIAL: We just want to talk…

Staff Editorial:

The National Rifle Association (NRA) is a non-profit, pro-gun organization that was founded back in 1871, and has been pushing for the upholding of the Second Amendment ever since.

But, after the last 10 years of gun violence, particularly at the high school and college level, they’ve faced criticism — not for upholding the the Second Amendment of the Constitution, but for not listening to the cries of protesters calling out for a change after multiple school shootings.

Still, one month later,nobody is listening.

Here at the Hyphen, we make it a priority to open lines of communication to every party, especially when talking about such heated issues such as our country’s gun laws.

But in attempting to do so, we were shut down.

After multiple attempts to contact the NRA for their thoughts on the recent school attacks, no feedback was received. Even our advisor, Mr. Wes Scott, reached out to them to no avail.

So we tried local.

Gold & Guns, a jewelry and gun shop located a half-mile away from Jeffersonville High School, denied to comment as well. (Might we add the scariest part: they did not even ask our high school journalists for any type of identification as we walked in, despite the Indiana law stating only those 21 and up can purchase handguns.)

The Liberty Belles Women’s Gun Club, an NRA-sponsored club located in Clarksville, did not comment after multiple phone calls and emails sent out to them, as well. The Hyphen failed to get a SINGLE comment back from three different locations about what should be done in the future, and what safety concerns we, as high school students, have.

Why doesn’t anyone want to talk about it? Why are we taught for 12 years to talk through our issues, but get doors slammed on us when questioning a company about something that could be potentially so life and death with students?

Unfortunately, we think it’s simple: they don’t want kids to be the reason their guns are taken away.

The fact of the matter is nobody wants to talk about a subject where kids are the victims, and student safety is the main concern. But it’s also a touchy subject, especially when Constitutional rights are being discussed.

As difficult as it might be for store owners, politicians and other adults to go through, it’s a discussion that needs to happen. And it needs to happen now.

In the end, each student and staff member of every high school nationwide can probably come to an agreement that during their eight-hour day, they all want to feel safe.

As school shootings have now become more frequently reported in the news, it’s inevitable for students to want some type of change, so that themselves and their peers don’t become the next statistic.

But we can’t do that unless the lines of communication are open.

Whether or not this change is the banning of firearms, or perhaps even increasing them among trusted adults in schools, gun control is the phrase on everyone’s lips. Staying silent is not going to decrease the casualties.

It’s clear there is a problem.

When students at Jeffersonville High School feel hesitant to walk out into the halls when a fire alarm goes off, or when parents feel uneasy watching their kids leave to start their day, it’s clear there is a problem.

There are a myriad of changes that could be argued for improved school safety, and we understand that there are alternatives to taking away everyone’s firearms.

But how can these changes be made if we can’t even get the conversation started? Why are others arguing something that affects us?

We get it. We’re young. We make some dumb decisions sometimes. (Tide Pod Challenge, anyone?)

But we’re not naive. And we’re definitely not stupid.  

So in this issue of the Hyphen, we are making it a point to start the conversation. Listen to us; actually hear us. Involve us.

Change is happening, because the policies we have now simply aren’t sustainable.

It’s time to talk.

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.

Commentary: A Man’s Interpretation of Feminisim

Story by Tristan Jackson

On Aug. 18, 1920, the 19th Amendment of the United States Constitution was ratified, which made it illegal to prevent a person from voting because of their gender.

The decision marked one of the high points of the feminist movement, which had been around since the first Women’s Conference, which was held in 1848 in Seneca Falls, NY.

However now, the movement is a shell of its former self, based around blaming men for every obstacle a woman faces, and assuming men have somehow collaborated to oppress women.

Rape culture, pay gap, and blindness to the oppression of women of other cultures and religions all exemplify the ignorance of some who call themselves “feminists”.

In all fairness, there are plenty of people who fight for women’s rights without putting others down. I applaud those people.

Unfortunately for them, they are overshadowed by the ignorant, man-bashing feminists who don’t know what they’re fighting for.

The “rape culture” modern feminism made up does not exist.

Rape is illegal. The majority of people who have never sexually assaulted anyone in their life know it is not okay. Even if it was real — which it isn’t — women would be a part of it, because women can rape men, just as easily as a man can rape a women.

In Somaliland, the country recently passed its first law outlawing rape. Before then, women were forced to marry their rapist.

That’s a rape culture, and it’s disrespectful for feminists in the U.S. to compare their situation to that of the women in Somaliland, or the many other countries where women are treated as second-class citizens.

” The point I’m trying to make is blaming men for every problem women face is not an effective, or reasonable method.”- Tristan Jackson

Social media has magnified the nonsense of modern feminism.

In America, women are glorified for dressing up as the female reproductive system to try and prove a point that has absolutely no context. But somehow, an Iranian woman is making no headlines for taking off her hijab as a method of protest against the tyrannical government that requires her to wear the headdress.

Rather than fighting for these women, feminists disrespect women like her, and the religion as a whole by wearing hijabs to prove a point.  

If the feminist movement was really for the equality of all women, then there would be an uproar over this woman’s incarceration. To me, that’s a protest — not complaining about unsolvable problems that don’t require any work to protest, just a few taps of a finger to compose a tweet.

Twitter has given the ignorant feminists a voice, and they make sure to use it. A point twitter feminists have tired to make is that a woman makes less than a man for equal work. The only thing I can say about that is I’ll believe it when I see sufficient evidence or experience it myself.

If you cite statistics on this matter, you lose a lot of credibility when you use biased “facts” from Liberal media organizations.

As a man in the workforce, I can say for certain that I made the same as every man and woman for doing the same job. I think if there is any discrepancy in pay within a company, it’s based off work ethic, dependability, and qualification — not gender.  

Believe it or not, I have no intention to bash women for what they believe. If your goal is to fight for equality, go for it. The point I’m trying to make is blaming men for every problem women face is not an effective, or reasonable method.

I also don’t buy into the myth that men face absolutely no sexism, and I think custody battles are a good exemplification of a way men are unfairly treated in our society.

Women are given custody of children over five times as much as men during disputes. This is because women are believed to be better caretakers by the courts — which can be debated — and I personally believe it’s true, women in my eyes are typically, but not always, but caretakers.

I am all for doing what’s right for a child when their parents become divorced, I just don’t legitimately believe living with the mother is the right choice over 80-percent of the time.

That, along with the man-bashing that modern feminism does, are the main problems I have with the movement. You can’t be for equality if you turn your back on sexism, or ignore the fact that it goes both ways.

Until modern feminists realize this, I won’t view it as a legitimate movement. I’m all for equality for every person in this country, but I have major problems with the way they are fought for.

Stephen King — the father of modern thrillers

story by Lisa Morris

Mystery, thriller, suspense, horror.

These words may seem simple to the regular reader’s eye, but they are what define the writer who has mastered them all: Stephen King. King has written over 90 books in his career including IT, The Dark Tower series, Carrie, The Shining, The Green Mile, and many more.

From 1973 when King sold his first novel, Carrie, unto today, King’s stories have caught society’s eyes, as well as their screams, through the many movie and TV adaptations of his intensifying stories. As time has passed, though, the stories and movie adaptations have slowly quieted down.

However, movie theaters across the US have come back with new movie adaptations of IT and The Dark Tower, which opened Sept. 8 for IT and July 31 for The Dark Tower in theaters across the US.

With the new visuals for his books, King has awakened a new excitement for horror in society.

“I think Stephen King is very strong at the phanatic stuff, like the deep, ancestral feeling when you see blood or certain types of demons,” English teacher James Kimbell said. “It’s things that we all have in our culture or in our genes.”

In the world of literature, details are extremely primitive. One of the many aspects of King’s writings are his explicit detailing in the smallest situations, in which fans from many ages and backgrounds have grown to love.

As readers peruse his books, one can feel the eeriness of the cold wind blowing while walking through the depths of an old cemetery, or perhaps hear the old children’s music as they hide from from the killer doll that is grasping a knife to attack. The feelings of horror, and thrill, is what drives people to his books, especially the youth of society.

“The thing I find interesting is I love mysteries. Those are some of the biggest mysteries. I wonder if he’s the best horror mystery writer,” said sophomore Raven Andrews.

In addition to details, the thrill readers experience from King’s books are like no other. Hearts beat faster and faster as readers frantically turn through each page is a feeling that youth never forget.

Timeless classics, like Carrie and 11/22/63, are being turned into new hit movies. The hype from the new generation of horror fans have expressed their excitement for the new IT movie and The Dark Tower. With all this fame and success that is growing amongst youth, most people aren’t aware how King got his fame, or even what he was before he obtained it.

“He was an English teacher,” said fellow English teacher Jeff Cox. “He did what most of us English teachers always have in the back of our mind, that someday we’re going to do; that we’re going to write a book and we’re going to get rich and famous, and we’re going to do that thing. Well, he did it.”

Because of his experience in the teaching field, King’s books have grown and developed into much more than just words on a page. They have become a reality on the big screen in which people of all ages can experience.

Through his writings and through his books, he has become one of, if not the, greatest American horror author. Through his determination, crazy and insane stories, King has officially captivated the world’s attention and respect… as well as their terrified screams.