CLASS OF 2018

SPRING SEMESTER

Immigrants will make America great again

By Catherine Villalobos

On June 16, 2015, Donald Trump falsely argued that Mexico mainly sends dangerous people. He said, “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending its best...They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.” Trump’s Administration then denied immigrants asylum at the U.S.-Mexico Border on April 28th, 2018.

 

In the United States, we have an asylum program where immigrants may legally come if they are victims of persecution based on their race, religion, political views, or membership in a targeted social group if returned to their home country. His reasoning behind rejecting immigrants revolves around false ideas that “bad people will lie to come to the U.S only to use our sources” when immigrants contribute to the economy and labor force.

“Immigration is consistently linked to decreases in violent and property crime throughout the period” argues Robert Adelma, a journalist for Tandfoline. Native-born citizens have the highest rate of arrest for homicide, robbery, and aggravated assault, compared to immigrants. Because Trump’s argument is based on delusions, he influences those who blindly follow him. Now, many obtain negative views on immigrants which causes intolerance in a country that “prohibits” it. We argue we’re the land of the free, but we’re depriving it from immigrants who need it most.

Fortunately, many have benefitted from the asylum program. Elvia Malagon, a journalist at the Chicago Tribune reports on Maryori Urbina-Contreras who was 13 when she went to the

U.S.-Mexico Border to seek asylum. She left her father in Honduras in hopes of reuniting with her mother in Chicago, who also sought refuge in the states.

When she went to court, the judge realized she was a young girl, who would be targeted by gangs if returned to Tegucigalpa. She will now be applying to college and receiving her citizenship. If Maryori didn’t sacrifice herself, she wouldn’t have the opportunity to have a better life. Now, the opportunities Maryori was granted won’t apply to future asylum seekers because Trump’s Administration has stolen it from them.

A journalist for Rewire News, Lisa Needham, shines light on the LGBTQ Community who are also affected by Trump’s new orders. The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals decided to deny LGBTQ people asylum in the U.S. A native Cameroon Che Eric Sama, sought asylum under the United Nations Convention Against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman, and Degrading Punishment. His application was based on living in an anti-LGBTQ community which was denied and appealed. All denials of appeals for asylum go to the Federal Appellate Courts where Trump placed 15 of his conservative judges on the benches. This explains why his appeal was rejected, considering he was seen by a conservative judge. Additionally, Eric is not gay but simply an advocate for LGBTQ rights.

In 2015, he was tormented because of a comment he posted in support of the LGBTQ community, in which the police issued a warrant for his arrest. Later, he was attacked by an anti-gay group and no one was arrested. The OHCHR states they cannot send anyone back to their country where they will be tortured, but that is exactly what they’re doing to Eric and many others.

Another prominent group affected by Trump’s decision are those who seek asylum based on religion. 100 Iranian Christians have been stranded in Vienna for more than a year. Now that they were denied, they face possible persecution and imprisonment by the Tehran regime. Our government criticizes Iranian regime, encourages protests against them, but refuses to provide safety for those who are in danger in Iran.

It’s sickening knowing that Trump’s Administration bodly decided to deny safety from those who are in danger. We should not be worried about immigrants coming into our country, other countries should be worried about people from the States going to their home because of the hate and violence circulating here. We claim we’re an inviting melting pot when Trump has implemented bans on Muslims because they’re “terrorists” and other immigrants because they’re “rapists” and “violent”. There is evidence that proves his claims wrong but unfortunately, many believe him. By Trump denying asylum from immigrants who make up the majority of our labor force while doing hard work native-born citizens refuse to do, and who are linked to decreases in crime, America will never be great again.

Cinco de Mayo: an American holiday?

By Lesly Garcia

Does America have a Muslim problem?

By Maryam Shehab

In the United States of America according to the first amendment, you can believe in any religion you want, but still discrimination exist against Muslims, affecting Muslim men, women, and children.

My relative is only 12 years old and he got treated differently because he is Muslim, his name is Mohammed. He came to the United States, Texas two years ago to finish his education , and on April 13, 2018 he was verbally abused by his teacher and his classmates for being a Muslim in the U.S after Trump made the decision of banning all Muslims from entering America. While he was talking in class the teacher got mad. She looked at him and said “why don’t you go back to your country didn’t you guys have enough of what you did on 9/11, and aren’t you ashamed of the President kicking you out, why are you still here?”

 

He didn’t understand. When he went home he told his parents and they understood and taught him what the reacher meant, they didn’t talk to the school because they didn’t want their son to be in trouble that will ruin his future. The next week Mohammed turned to school, his classmate called him a “terrorist”, and some students kept on shouting “Allahu Akbar.”

Islam has been known the religion of violence and killing, that helped increase the discrimination against the religion and its people.

Islamophobia existed before the attack on the twin towers in New York City, but the attacks on 9/11 increased It sharply, and the hate Americans had toward the attackers led them to attack, and abuse Muslims.

According to Medium the hate crimes on Muslims were increasing sharply after the attacks. The attacks revealed to the people that Muslims are dangerous, Anti Americans and outsiders for what they have done on 9/11.

The majority of Muslims in the west don’t feel like they get treated the way they should be and many western countries don’t offer respect to Muslims, especially the USA and Canada.

 

Islamophobia affected the lives of Muslims badly, Muslims are forced now to choose between the two identities of Americans and Muslims, and they aren’t allowed to be themselves.

Muslim women had been fired off their jobs, the American Civil Liberties Union reveals that “Because of their visibility, Muslim women who wear hijab face particular exposure to discrimination and have increasingly been targets for harassment in the aftermath of September 11.” Muslim women are forced to take off their hijab, they aren’t allowed to practice their own religion and faith, and they have been denied of entering some public spaces like shopping malls, public buildings, and parks.

Islamophobia didn’t affect only Muslim women and men, but it also affected Muslim children as well, according to NPR “Muslim children are more likely to be bullied in school than children of other faiths.” Muslim children are affected by this problem, and most of them are facing this issue almost everyday at schools, and parks by only looking like a muslim or knowing that they are Muslims. At schools a big percent of muslims reported of assaulting attacks, threatening attacks, and verbal abuse like calling innocent children “terrorist, and a threat”. Even though Islamophobia does not seem to have an end, but we will try to stop it.

The story didn’t end there after days of hardships Mohammad decided to talk to a teacher about what has been going on with him, and when she heard him out she tried to apologize to him and his parents, but it was already too late, because now he doesn’t like to tell anyone in what he believes, he doesn’t have friends, and he mentioned once that being a Muslim isn’t a good idea because it takes away freedom.

The kid no longer feels safe in places like school, park and other public places. When I talked to him, he seemed desperate, and disappointed. Why does he have to lose his interest in school for some attacks that he wasn’t even involved in, and why does he have to be like others to be treated good?.

Is the Iowa “heartbeat law” actually benefiting women?

By Katherine Guevara

After Iowa announced their “heartbeat law” on May 1, 2018 the controversy that  surrounds abortion began to spark interest of those for and against it. This law allows the government or clinics to prevent women from getting an abortion as soon as the doctor hears a heartbeat. Even with an abundance of opinions on this topic, abortion should still be legal because it allows women to choose a path in which they see a happy, healthy, and stable future.

The decision to have an abortion is usually done before a certain time so its safe for both the mother and baby. This allows for the operation to be safe and have minimal chances of any serious damage. Majority of women remove the fetus before it starts to develop drastically in the womb. “91.5% of abortions are performed before the 13th weeks of gestation”as stated in The Politics of Abortions”. If they remove their baby after 21 weeks it is because the baby and/or mother are dangerously unhealthy.

 

Many abortions are done because it is not wanted. Since the baby can be conceived by accident, the mother will have to decide on whether it is a good idea to keep it.

 

As explained in “ 20 Key Arguments From Both Sides of the Abortion Debate” most women who get abortions are at a very young age, which would result in them dropping out of school and struggle in life if they keep a baby due to not having a stable work or future. The mother would struggle to keep the baby in a safe and healthy environment. Since they are of a young age, they lack experience and might not have a stable income to live alone or take on a big responsibility like motherhood. Most women, are left alone and abandoned by the fathers. Controlling abortion would negatively affect all those young women.

Pro-life advocates claim that the fetus is alive and should be considered as a human life even before it is born. On the other hand, many pro-choice advocates claim that a fetus is not alive and should be considered as human a couple months before birth or after birth.

 

There are no precise evidence to prove when exactly a fetus should be considered a human life as explained in “Abortion: When is the fetus alive?” by BBC ethics. Since there is no evidence, the abundance of controversies seem endless.

Majority of those opposed of abortion are because they have religious beliefs that influence how they think. Their faith allows them to go against abortion because it is considered as murder. Abortion to them, is abhorrent and a sin. Pro-life advocated see abortion as the killing of an innocent child who has no voice.

 

Many people believe this argument, although there is no scientific evidence to back up the claims. When a first conceive, a fetus will not feel pain when removed because it has not developed enough to feel the pain. If human life starts after birth, abortion is not actual murder. Religion based beliefs of abortion have no evidence to prove the statements that are in a book.

There are various examples of women who have had the chance to get an abortion; some decline and others accept. Abortion should be done within the 1 month of pregnancy because it anything after that is immoral argues Katie de la Torre, a mother of one who had rejected the decision to get an abortion even though she was given the opportunity to. Abortion to her meant giving up a chance to have a child, and even though she was not completely ready she knew it was a bad idea removing the baby.

Abortion should be legal and affordable to every women because it allows them to live a healthy, stable life regardless of their choice. With the recent law that was passed in Iowa and the controversies surrounding it women, are being told what they can and can't do with their bodies. Setting regulations only causes chaos in these states. No one really knows what goes on in every mother's head when she is pregnant, so to try control them is wrong.

Net neutrality is being repealed by the FCC—good riddance

By Allan Daniyelyan

As of December 14, 2017, Internet Neutrality was voted to be repealed, which left some people worrying about the future of the internet. Ajit Pai and the FCC made this decision for the good of the internet and to give ISPs more freedom in the market. Even still, people are trying to void the repeal process.

 

Net Neutrality is the principle that internet service providers (ISPs) should enable access to all content and applications regardless of the source and without favoring or blocking certain websites and products. For example, if your internet provider is Time Warner Cable, according to Net Neutrality they would not have the right to buffer or slow down your internet if you went onto websites that featured their competitors.

 

The current form of Net Neutrality we are familiar with was voted to pass on February 26th, 2015 by the FCC, the “Federal Communications Commission” led by chairman Ajit Pai which is an agency of the U.S. government that was created to regulate interstate communications by radio, television, wire, satellite, and cable. This includes communications through the internet. However, as recently as December 14, 2017 the FCC voted to repeal Net Neutrality.

 

Why the sudden change? The answer to that lie with the new chairman of the FCC, Ajit Pai. He was appointed as the chairman in January of 2017 by president Donald J. Trump himself; however, not for the reasons you may think. People such as H3H3 Producions’ Ethan Klein have argued that Pai pushed for the repeal because it would be beneficial to ISPs such as Verizon, a company for whom he used to be the Associate General Counsel.

 

The reason that many people are concerned about the repeal of Net Neutrality is because they believe that ISPs will take advantage of the repeal by increasing prices for quality internet service and prioritizing large corporations’ internet speeds while buffering internet speeds for private consumers as stated by Keith Collins in his article on  The New York Times. This is why many consumers are trying to fight for Net Neutrality and void the repeal. Even the Senate voted against the changes made by the repeal.

 

Even though the Ajit Pai and the FCC voted to repeal Net Neutrality, the repeal has not gone through completely. As stated in Grace Lisa Scott’s article on Inverse.com, Pai has yet to finalize the changes and get them approved by the Office of Budget Management. As of right now, none of the major ISPs have announced any public plans to change their internet policies, and some even claim to not want to change their policies even if they are allowed to if Net Neutrality is repealed.

 

There are many critics who still claim that the only reason ISPs state this is because it would be too obvious to make bold and dramatic changes all at once. Instead it is predicted that there will be gradual changes over a long period of time. Do not allow this to distract from the fact that Net Neutrality has only been holding the ISP market back and discouraging growth and advancement of the industry.

Now that Net Neutrality is in the process of being repealed, internet providers will soon have the freedom to control and regulate their service without as much government influence. I believe that people who fear the monopolization of  internet service do not realize that within the market environment, companies will eventually mold to meet the needs of the large majorities. There will be ISPs for big companies who can afford to pay large sums of money for internet, and there will also be separate providers for the average household that cannot spend as much on internet service.

Because of the nature of the free market, the needs of the large majorities will be met in due time. Instead of jumping to conclusions, we should be glad that the internet market is finally free from the government’s shackles, allowing it to grow to its full potential.

Net neutrality: the fate of the internet is near

By Marlon Santana

The Internet in the recent years has a bit of a war of freedom whenever people should roam the internet freely without any restrictions from the ones who are controlling the Internet. Few years ago, a bill was made which is Net Neutrality to change the Internet as to protect it. Many politicians oppose it and try to take it down by making bills for taking down net neutrality.

This goes on continuously for years until in December 2017 the FCC will repeal the Net Neutrality in the later months for a 3/2 vote. Now millions of people are pro-net neutrality are protecting it and protesting to stop the repeal. From the website ACLU, it’s stated “ Trump FCC voted to make the open internet — and the network neutrality principles meaning to sustain it — a thing of the past”. Net Neutrality means it protects the freedom of the Internet in the US and also outside of the US from big companies. As much how it is important to have Net Neutrality in our internet, there are multiple good reasons why Net Neutrality must be saved by the repeal such s having freedom of the Internet.

One of the reasons is Net Neutrality can prevent companies from having people to pay money to access certain kinds of websites, in which there would be a million websites which are

protected by Net Neutrality. From ACLU, they “ favor the content providers who have the money to pay for better access”

 

Another reason is Net Neutrality can also prevent Internet companies from censoring other websites who are bothering them such as one Internet companies is censoring a smaller rival companies to prevent people from being attached with the smaller company, only to let the people be attached to the big company who is censoring them. In the ACLU website, it is stated they block “ traffic and communicators that they don't like, and speeding up traffic they do like or that pays them extra for the privilege.” The internet companies to have the power to slow down the internet connection on certain websites in an incredibly slow speed, making it practically impossible to completely load it.

 

Last reason about to support the Net Neutrality is it gives us privacy to the internet including us because it grants us some modes such as “Private Browser” or “VPN” will help the people being not seen by the internet companies. As from the statement in ACLU again, it is a “ place where you can always access any lawful content you want...”

There have been bills going on for the past months which are created for countering the repeal by getting many votes as they can.More than half of the states are suing the FCC such as a city in Missouri which is Columbia has already sued the FCC because of the repeal and some states are trying to make the Net Neutrality in state law such as California copying everything from the Net Neutrality into state law, though it is highly vulnerable since it can be sued by the FCC, and other states have been doing the same thing but not exactly word to word. Moreover, millions of people have been going off as an pro-net neutrality including numerous websites protesting the repeal. At May 16th the bill has passed by an 52-47 vote.

 

On May 9th, the internet held a protest that is “Red Alert” where numerous websites such as such as Tumblr, Etsy, Reddit, Tinder, GitHub, Imgur, Pornhub, BoingBoing, Private Internet Access, Bittorrent, OKCupid and many others protests against the repeal of Net Neutrality. From the website Medium, they “ are on Red Alert helping drive emails and calls to lawmakers ahead of the vote." As to this day the bill that was made to counter the repeal has been passed that is the Congressional Review Act. That act was created by Newt Gingrich. But that bill still hasn't been completely passed yet since it has to be in the House and the President since that Trump will most likely veto it.

 

There’s also a bill that's been going around to stop the repeal but half of it because it is made by Republicans. From the website Arstechnica, the Republicans specifically wanted“ ban blocking and throttling but allow ISPs to create paid fast lanes and prohibit state governments from enacting their own net neutrality laws ”. That bill was only to stop the slow internet and the censorship within that repeal, but it only keeps the forced paying in the internet. It is not as big as what the Democrats made their own bill though. with a red banner to make the final push of having the bill to get the last vote from the republicans.

 

Since that Net Neutrality gave freedom to the Internet, I absolutely support Net Neutrality because we don’t get controlled by the internet companies with our freedom of the internet. The Net Neutrality might end at June 11, but there is still more time to stop the repeal by supporting the Congressional Review Act that has been already passed, But it is still need a long way to go by getting it to the House of Representatives and to the President that is Trump

Iowa’s new “heartbeat law” stops murder

By Tania Montalvo

Iowa’s government passed the law in an early morning vote on Wednesday May 2, 2018. The plan was to present an aggressive challenge to Roe v Wade and start an uprise of conservative energy before the midterm elections in November.

Iowa's governor Kim Reynolds has signed into law what could be one of the nation's strictest abortion ban, it forbids doctors from performing an abortion once a fetal heartbeat is detected. Doctors can typically detect a fetus's heartbeat in a ultrasound once a woman is six weeks into her pregnancy. This is also the point at which Iowa’s government plan to ban abortions.

This new law is creating a very controversial argument. While some people support the new law, there are also others that don't. “This bill is too dangerous, it’s unconstitutional and it is just unconscionable” argues Mrs. Davison in The New York Times. She claims that this is a violation of women's right because women are being told what to do with their bodies and that the government shouldn’t interfere with a pregnancy because at the end of the day it’s the women that are carrying the fetus.

18-Year-old Briana Montalvo, when asked about what she thought about the new abortion law she responded with a similar response stating, “I think that it’s the woman’s body so it’s her choice and the government shouldn’t interfere”.

Though, many agree that this law is both dangerous and unconstitutional, the reality of it is that, abortion is murder. The life of a person starts once a fetus’s heart is detected. Life is a gift from God and it is something that human beings should appreciate instead of try to take away.

Many believe that rape is a justification for abortion because it can traumatize a victim. Ana Navas, and 18 year old high school student, was asked what she thought about abortion and rape she answered, “Even though a negative thing like rape can happen, I still think that a person shouldn’t abort because it’s still taking a life away and the child is innocent”.

Many pro-choice supporters tend to ask, “But what if the child suffers because of the mother? Won’t she end up hating the child?” The answer to that is yes. Most rape victims tend to feel anger and remorse towards the child that resulted from the rape. However, that’s why there are other options, and murder should not be one of them.

First off, one can always give their child up for adoption. There our many couples that wish to have children but unfortunately can’t. However, if the mother decides to give their child up for adoption, it can be a perfect opportunity for the couple to have the child they always wished they had and the child can have the chance to grow up in a happy warm place.

But what if the family that adopts the child is a bad person? Well there are many ways to prevent a bad person from adopting a child. The first one is to have a through background check (including a background check of their medical history) on the couple before anything else can proceed. The second thing one can do is meet with the couple and get to know them a bit before handing the child to them. All in all, adoption agencies are not likely to give a child to a couple that is not economically or mentally unstable.

The new Iowa law was made to protect those innocent unborn children that cannot protect themselves. Abortion should become illegal in every state because abortion is murder. It is taking an innocent life away from someone that hasn’t even had the chance to live. How can can people think that they have the right to decide rather or not someone has the right to live or not? This is truly unfair to the unborn child. Everyone has the right to live and should respect the life of every single person. Life is a precious gift from God and he is the only one who has the right to take it away not us.

Are dress codes fair or unfair?

By Stephanie Solano Hernandez

Every school has it’s dress code but some students may find it unfair or sort of fair. In Grant High School, the dress code is either followed or ignored. Some students are seen with sweaters and jeans, which is fine, but there are also students that think the dress code is dumb and they wear some clothing in which would be considered to be against the dress code.

The dress code was established in schools in 1969, when it started with high school students wearing black armbands as a way of protesting against the Vietnam War. Due to this protest, states put in a law for students to limit on their free of expression. This was known as the Tinker vs Des Moines.

In a recent article, “School Dress Codes Are Disproportionately Enforced Against Black Girls, Samantha O’Sullivan Writes”, Samantha and her fellow female classmates find the dress code unfair due to the fact that she is being given more rules just based on her skin. She decided to make a stand for her and her classmates by writing up about what the dress code is like and how it should be.

Grant High School’s dress code is followed during the first few weeks at the beginning of every school year but later forgotten about. Although some students do keep up with the dress code, there some that get caught and don’t feel like they’re wearing anything inappropriate. “Because they always make

you get in trouble for a little thing when there’s many students breaking the dress code by showing too much and they don’t get in trouble”, said P. Barajas.

Based on the numbers of students, that have voted on a Instagram poll, about 64% say dress codes are unfair while 36% say they're fair. There are more students that don't like they're school’s dress code and it makes them feel obligated to follow these rules and they have the need to dress as they feel. What we wear, is how we express ourselves, but with these dress codes, it makes that harder for them.

The 36% of students who do think that dress codes are fair, state that they're to feel equality among the other students. They like this because it means there is equality for everyone and there’s nothing wrong with having the dress code if it means to know there’s nothing wrong with how we feel about the world or about life. “Fair because everyone would feel like they are a big family and equal as well different people but still are people” says A. Pineda. Having a dress code makes him see everyone as a big huge family and that’s because everyone is surrounded by equality and not by diversity. It’s all about who the people are and not about what they wear.

Back then, students didn’t have to worry about the dress code. They would have worn something that was decent and still apart of their lifestyle. But as of the 60’s, there were only specific days in which students were allowed to express themselves only under school circumstances. Under those circumstances, the type of clothing that is allowed are usually clothing that you can wear on a everyday basis with the case of a bandana.

 

For example, at Grant High School, on Denim Day, students wear denim jeans as a way of awareness of stepping up against sexual abuse. There is also Spirit Week, where students dress up depending on the day that is appointed, such as PJ day, Retro day, Tourist day, Color Wars, Camouflage day. These are all for fun and to show off some school spirit, but even with these kinds of clothing students must be in line of the dress code.

To have school dress codes are to keep students decent and well behave. It’s so that students can feel comfortable and not feel any type of uncertainty to what people think of them based on their clothing.

There will be times in which no one likes the dress code and it’s sometimes hard to deal with. Until people learn to see others for who they are and not about their clothes or how they look, we all have to deal with the dress code.

In some cases, the dress code seems to be fair and unfair on separate sides. The dress code doesn’t bother me as much as it bothers a few students. The dress code is there to make sure students understand that no matter what type of clothing they may be, they should be careful of how they may be exposing. But according to students, it’s unfair. It’s unfair because students maybe feeling discriminated for how much they want to express themselves. School isn’t for showing off the newest trends. It’s all about the learning.

© 2015-2020 by Max Cecil.