Staff Editorial: It’s Time to Own Up to Addictions


There are many different types and forms of addiction, from cell phones and video games to alcohol and drugs. Addiction has made its way all through society from young children to older adults. Addiction has shown itself through many things that people have attached themselves to. Even addictions that seem harmless can have detrimental effects, whether people realize it or not.

In this issue, The Hyphen will inform you on many different types of addictions that are still relevant and will continue to be for many more years to come. So, how will society contribute to stopping these addictions? It starts with acknowledging that drugs and alcohol aren’t our only addictions. If it’s hard to stop doing something – whether it’s drinking Red Bull or checking your Instagram or keeping up with the latest drama – that thing has power over you. If you want to regain your power, start with admitting to its addictive nature – because whether you believe it or not, even something that seems insignificant could potentially be harmful in the long run.

Editorial: Jeffersonville’s Promise Deserves the Chance to Prove its Value

When Jeffersonville’s Promise was announced in November, many praised the program as a way to give hope to the hopeless. The program promised two free years of tuition at Ivy Tech for qualifying Jeff High graduates, starting with this year’s senior class. When you consider that more than half of the students at Jeff High receive free or reduced price lunches, the impact of Jeffersonville’s Promise is monumental for those who could not afford college otherwise.

However, a bill recently introduced in the state House of Representatives puts the future of Jeffersonville’s Promise in doubt. House Bill 1596, which is primarily sponsored by Ed Clere, R-New Albany, would stop or curtail the program. After a quick decision to move forward with the bill in a committee, this week the bill was moved to a different committee, according to a report in the News and Tribune.

For now, the program still stands while Jeffersonville Mayor Mike Moore continues to advocate for the program.

We, the Hyphen staff, believe the bill sheds light on the need to define more rigorous standards for how the scholarship money is used. However, we believe that Jeffersonville’s Promise should stand, because it is a wise use of tax dollars. Just as we use tax dollars to provide libraries and public schools for citizens, we should use tax dollars to provide college education.

Some would say that Clere is using this measure to continue the ongoing feud between Jeffersonville and New Albany high schools. The issues are deeper than that. But there is one thing we can all agree on: a more educated population in Jeffersonville benefits our entire area — including New Albany.

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.

The Definition of Feminism

Feminism, noun – the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes.

Imagine being a person that has to face a field of injustices daily. You wake up every morning and go to a job that doesn’t pay you the same amount as your co-workers…who perform the exact same tasks.

While at work, you are subjected to unsettling and uncomfortable conversations with your co-workers, or those in charge — conversation topics that aren’t appropriate in the workplace.

Suddenly a hand placed on your lower back. And it stays there longer than you want.

Following all of that, you leave work — only to travel far and wide for adequate healthcare. On the way, you are subjected to whistles and catcalls, and are at a statistically higher risk of being physically assaulted.

You finally get to the doctor, only to be greeted by protesters, shaming you for getting treatment. In fact, you have to be escorted by security to ensure your safety.

You get home, only to have to wake up and face something similar in the morning.

For many women, this imagination is their reality. They are expected to be subjected to this actuality, and stay silent about it.

For as long as women can remember, there is a long road of inequality between the sexes. Women did not always have the right to an adequate education, the right to vote, or even access to equal paying jobs. Among these inequities between genders come societal pressures placed upon women that leave them with fewer opportunities, making it harder for women to rise above them.

Now, in 2018, women have a different variety of setbacks than those who came before them. Some will take these differences and proclaim that being a woman in the 21st century is easy – nothing worthy of discussion.

Unfortunately, this is not the case. Struggles that today’s women face are simply different than earlier endeavors. However, this does not mean that the inequalities between men and women were fixed completely.

Societal pressures upon the female population are more prevalent than ever – pressures to look, and act, in a manner that is pleasant to men around them, yet not to speak out against injustices they face in daily lives.

Women still earn an estimated 83-percent of what their male counterparts earn. Women of color earn statistically less than white women, too. This can still be seen today. Despite the Equal Pay Act, a law that demands equal pay without gender discrimination, E! News anchor Catt Sadler was making less than half of what her male co-host made.

Sadler, an Indiana native, grew up in a city very similar to ours. Our mothers, daughters, sisters, and friends face these blatant gender biases even today. Despite laws being passed to prevent them, these biases still run rampant in a woman’s life.

The definition of feminism has changed between the time of suffragettes. Then, female activists fought for the right to vote. Now, women are able to be a candidate for the United States presidency.

Women no longer have to fight for equal rights, but instead for equal opportunities. Today’s feminism is also more inclusive when it comes to race, sexuality, and gender identity.

But for some, the word “feminism” is the only thing noticed in a society full of wrongdoings and inequality. Those who speak down to women, and claim that “it’s what men do” claim that the movement is about the superiority of women, or putting men down. As there are extremists in most ideals – predominantly religion – there, too, are those who take the idea of feminism, and twist it into something of their own.

In today’s social climate, more and more stories of sexual assault and abuse are coming to light, exposing some of the world’s most trusted household names as perpetrators.

As a society, we have created the environment that holds half of the population back from their full potential, and lets the wrongdoers hide behind the notion that women overreact or were asking for it. Why?

As a society, we must right our wrongs and do better to allow everyone in our country the rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

In this issue of the Hyphen, we explore the topics of feminism, and what it’s like to be a woman in today’s society – struggles, inequalities, empowerment – all tales that are connotated with womanhood.

As a staff, we believe in the theory of the political, economic and social equality of the sexes. We hope that by reading this issue, we can encourage you to empower everyone around you – no matter their gender.