• Javier,
    This is really well written. I love how you discussed Julia and Winston’s relationship making Big Brother a much weaker force. The idea of love weakening Big Brother’s influence as this feared dictator is really powerful in the novel and you described it well.

  • This post was real honest and emotional. I am so proud of this new age for people beginning to speak up about the racism they experience throughout their lives. A lot of people believe that racism doesn’t exist anyone because we’ve passed laws forbid it. But that doesn’t prevent the racism rooted deep inside us and the prejudices we hold whether…[Read more]

  • This somehow got published way before I was done…..but thank you 🙂

  • One of the strangest, most American things to me is how people can feel safer with a gun around. It has always seemed so backwards to me. I have heard the argument that says, “If someone tries to shoot up a public

    • This somehow got published way before I was done…..but thank you 🙂

    • I have read you article and, while you did include some strong evidence to support your point, I am on the opposite side of your argument. In my opinion, we do not need more gun control.

      First of all why I believe that we do not need gun control is that guns are a great way to defend yourself from an attacker According to, Gun Owners of America, it says, “Law-abiding citizens use guns to defend themselves against criminals as many as 2.5 million times every year– or about 6,850 times a day, [1] This means that each year, firearms are used more than 80 times more often to protect the lives of honest citizens than to take lives. [2]” (1). I agree with what GunOwners.org say because Guns are a best way to use for self defense. With those guns it is able to protect yourself or others from dangerous people. The gun will also scare the attacker if they do not have a weapon or have an unloaded gun. From the same article, they state, “States which passed concealed carry laws reduced their murder rate by 8.5%, rapes by 5%, aggravated assaults by 7% and robbery by 3%;” These statistics show that with more guns people would feel or be more safer from attackers that are going to do something very bad like a murder or a robbery. Like the other reasoning the weapon will scare the attacker making them run away or surrender.

      Another Reason why we do not need more gun control is that we have our rights. From Law Cornell, they state, “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed (Second Amendment)” (1). With this Amendment, The Government is not allowed to take those weapons away from us because it’s against this right that we Americans have. Law Cornell also states that, “No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws (Fourteenth Amendment)” (2). This Amendment allows us to have our own property. The government of the state or country is not allowed to take anything from us. Property, liberty and our lives. The Government cannot infringe that right of taking Guns away because it is property of the people.

      The third and final reason why we do not need gun control is that gun control simply does not work. A study done at Melbourne University and a journal of Criminology, they had concluded, “Australia’s temporary gun ban had no effect on the gun homicide rate. Crime Research Prevention Center president John Lott had similar findings”(1). What this shows is that criminals will never listen to laws. If there is gun control then criminals will still buy guns to cause harm and damage to the people. According to the website, Mic.com, they state, “In 2014, Chicago saw 390 murders and more than 2,500 shootings, adding to its reputation as one of the U.S. cities with the highest absolute numbers of shootings and killings” (2). This means that Chicago is a high crime rate area. Chicago also have some of the strictest gun laws in America. With those laws, Guns are still in Chicago. It hasn’t lessen the amount. It had done nothing to stop the gun violence in Chicago.

      I understand that your perspective of guns is that they need to be better controlled but no matter what, I will always believe that we do not need more gun control.

    • Paul replied 5 months ago

      After reading your post, I agree that there should be more gun control but I want to add on. My opinion about this topic is that there should be gun control in the us. A lot of homicides and crimes are related to guns. In fact I found that gun control leads to less suicides. In “Procon.org”, I found that, “Between 1999 and 2013 there were 270,237 firearm (gun only) suicides in the United States”(1). I also saw that “In 2007 Switzerland ranked number 3 in international gun ownership rates with 45.7 guns per 100 people (about 3,400,000 guns total). In 2009 Switzerland had 24 gun homicides (0.31 deaths per 100,000 people) and 253 gun suicides (3.29 deaths per 100,000 people)”(2). This shows that one country has more gun control than the other which leads to less suicides. I believe this is good because in 2017 suicide was the second most common way of death in the U.S, so America should have gun control. I researched Gun control would limit homicides caused by guns in the U.S. I have learned in “Justfacts.com” that “Roughly 16,459 murders were committed in the United States during 2016. Of these, about 11,961 or 73% were committed with firearms” (3). I also discovered “Five years after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, here is a look back at the 20 children and six educators who lost their lives that day” (4). This tells me that by having more gun control it would decrease the possibility of a child shooting up a school, and killing over a dozen people. Finally I also found out that it is very easy to get a gun in the U.S. I found in “CNN” that ,“Gun: You don’t need a knowledge or proficiency test. You usually don’t need a license or permit to buy a gun, unless you live in one of 13 states (and D.C.) that force you to get one. And there’s no probationary period after you get a gun” (5) I also discovered “ The killer, Dylann Roof, bought his .45-caliber Glock at a gun store in Charleston, where he would have been required to pass a background check. Though he had been arrested earlier this year for trespassing and drug possession, he apparently met the legal criteria.
      Roof also displayed racist symbols on Facebook (FB), but the FBI said that kind of information would not come up in a background check, since the database includes information on prohibited persons as defined in the Gun Control Act. Because there was no gun control Dylann Roof killed 9 people in a church (6). This tells me that there should really be more gun control in the United States.

    • I have read you article and, while you did include some strong evidence to support your point, I am on the opposite side of your argument. In my opinion, we do not need more gun control.

      First of all why I believe that we do not need gun control is that guns are a great way to defend yourself from an attacker According to, Gun Owners of America, it says, “Law-abiding citizens use guns to defend themselves against criminals as many as 2.5 million times every year– or about 6,850 times a day, [1] This means that each year, firearms are used more than 80 times more often to protect the lives of honest citizens than to take lives. [2]” (1). I agree with what GunOwners.org say because Guns are a best way to use for self defense. With those guns it is able to protect yourself or others from dangerous people. The gun will also scare the attacker if they do not have a weapon or have an unloaded gun. From the same article, they state, “States which passed concealed carry laws reduced their murder rate by 8.5%, rapes by 5%, aggravated assaults by 7% and robbery by 3%;” These statistics show that with more guns people would feel or be more safer from attackers that are going to do something very bad like a murder or a robbery. Like the other reasoning the weapon will scare the attacker making them run away or surrender.

      Another Reason why we do not need more gun control is that we have our rights. From Law Cornell, they state, “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed (Second Amendment)” (1). With this Amendment, The Government is not allowed to take those weapons away from us because it’s against this right that we Americans have. Law Cornell also states that, “No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws (Fourteenth Amendment)” (2). This Amendment allows us to have our own property. The government of the state or country is not allowed to take anything from us. Property, liberty and our lives. The Government cannot infringe that right of taking Guns away because it is property of the people.

      The third and final reason why we do not need gun control is that gun control simply does not work. A study done at Melbourne University and a journal of Criminology, they had concluded, “Australia’s temporary gun ban had no effect on the gun homicide rate. Crime Research Prevention Center president John Lott had similar findings”(1). What this shows is that criminals will never listen to laws. If there is gun control then criminals will still buy guns to cause harm and damage to the people. According to the website, Mic.com, they state, “In 2014, Chicago saw 390 murders and more than 2,500 shootings, adding to its reputation as one of the U.S. cities with the highest absolute numbers of shootings and killings” (2). This means that Chicago is a high crime rate area. Chicago also have some of the strictest gun laws in America. With those laws, Guns are still in Chicago. It hasn’t lessen the amount. It had done nothing to stop the gun violence in Chicago.

      I understand that your perspective of guns is that they need to be better controlled but no matter what, I will always believe that we do not need more gun control.

  • Bobby,
    I see a good deal of validity in your opinion but ultimately I find it really harmful. There is a widely accepted fallacy that being “overweight” is synonymous with “unhealthy”, which is very often not the case. When you see an obese (not overweight, there is a difference) person dining at fast food restaurant and eating massive quantities…[Read more]

  • Emma commented on the post, Beauty that Matters 8 months ago

    Annie,
    Accepting your body in the midst of all the harsh expectations thrown at women is a never-ending battle. I consider myself to be much stronger than I once was, but I still frequently experiences insecurities. When it comes to your physical wellbeing, what ultimately matters is health. There are very thin girls who are very healthy and much…[Read more]

  • Emma commented on the post, Where I’m From 8 months ago

    Emily,
    I love honest pieces of writing like this. You shared all the things that make you you, and I’m proud of you mentioning PJ’s death. What happened made us into the people we are today and a lot of us are still struggling with it. It’s brave of you to openly share the affect he had on you. Thank you for sharing such an honest piece.

  • Emma commented on the post, The Power of Language 8 months ago

    Hello Thomas!
    The first thing that came to mind as I read this was a quote by Albus Dumbledore: “Words are, in my not-so-humble opinion, our most inexhaustible source of magic. Capable of both inflicting injury, and remedying it.” I love the concept of language and writing as well. I find it mind-boggling that we can just stare at symbols and they…[Read more]

  • My middle school self was a girl who woke up earlier every morning to flat iron her hair, obsessively pressing down and watching the wispy smoke rise, hoping to God that it would make her prettier. She was

    • Emma,
      Wow I really enjoyed reading that because it is so relatable. I too have several, not very well kept, journals that document events that had happened to me from about 8th grade and on. I cringe reading some of the things I wrote in there. But I think that having all of these journals are a really good way to look back on how much I really have grown as a person. I have been looking back at my high school experience and experiencing a lot of self reflection; looking through my journals is really helpful in this. I wish I could tell younger girls what it is gonna be like to go through these years have got through but everyone has to experience certain things to grow. Do u think at the time when first journaling your thoughts would they have been helpful later on? I know I never thought about it that way. I thought about it as a way to vent and get my feelings out. Again, I really loved reading this.

    • Emma,
      what a powerful and touching post you have created and shared. This is so relatable for many girls who have too undergone the struggles that come along with middle school, myself especially. You have so accurately described what it is like to be a girl growing up in society. Beauty is everything. If you don’t have the right clothes, hairstyle, shoes, make-up, etc, you are not as pretty. That is ridiculous. Young girls should not even be worried about the way that they look. That should not matter at all. Do you think that society will ever change is that regard? Will exterior beauty ever lose value? Thank you for sharing this post, I absolutely loved it.

    • Emma,
      This post is harsh in content but true in nature. I don’t mean to say that your words or the message itself is harsh, but the memories and relationships that arise from reading this are, for lack of other words, harsh. I find it difficult to read this, but I also find it important, to for me specifically, but more importantly for my cousin who is beginning to go through these kinds of transitions in her life right now. This post is striking in a way that it could affect change in her life, and I hope that in some way it does. I want her to read this so she can feel and understand that she is not alone in her journey; I want her to know that I, along with millions of others, are with her along the way. Your post was beautiful, relatable, and painful in a way that catches the reader’s attention. Thank you for this post, and for the positivity it gives for the future.

    • Beth replied 7 months ago

      Hey Emma!
      This piece was so well-written. I think everybody can relate to a time of self-doubt and low confidence. Although I never kept journals, I can easily remember those times and the insecurities. I think all middle schoolers could benefit from reading this and to realize that you will grow into yourself and learn to love yourself, and that middle/high school is a time of growth, that it won’t be like that forever. What a beautiful post. I loved reading this.

  • Emma commented on the post, Kneel Or Not To Kneel 9 months ago

    Sevin,
    I am in total agreement with what you are so and I loved the reasons you used to back up your argument. I think one of your strongest points was made when you discussed how everyone is entitled to their own opinion. These football players felt strongly about the oppression they have been facing, and they took a stand for what they believed…[Read more]

  • Hello Hunter!
    I am envious of how good of a writer you are. Aside from that, I really like your message. I believe it’s human nature to want we don’t have, but in cases such as these, it’s important that we have a healthy perspective. The reality is that the roaring 20s, the milkshake 60s, and the funky 80s are all glorified in the movies we…[Read more]

  • Emma wrote a new post, Alone at Night 9 months ago

    I have no fear of the the dark until a man is present. When I was in middle school, the prospect of a first relationship was poetic and thrilling, something I had fantasized about since a young age. It didn’t t

    • Emma,
      Your piece was very powerful, and very relatable in many regards. I especially loved your final paragraph where you made it clear that men were not inherently a burdened, but having a son would be a “privilege”. I think this is really important for a lot of people to understand because many believe women fear men and avoid them without ever really getting to know them because they believe they are “too much to handle” or simply extra baggage in their lives. This paragraph also suggests the change you hope to create in the world, and the change you hope to see in this world. In all reality, the way to make change isn’t all that difficult. The way a man is raised has everything to do with the way he behaves when he is a man. Raising a boy correctly is vital to his behavior and actions as an adult later on in life. Check this out for more: http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2014/12/19/371679655/some-early-childhood-experiences-shape-adult-life-but-which

    • Emma,
      I feel drained—most days I believe—because of the way I think that I have not fully become my dreamt-of-future self. My dreamt-of-future self is caring, loyal, friendly, and funny. In other words, my parents and my teachers raised me in a way where disrespecting anyone is beyond inappropriate. The way I have acted towards others today holds true to my dreamt-of-self. However, I feel drained because of the way most individuals see me as a guy. Since the beginning of middle school, I have always found it easy to talk to girls and to hang around them was just normal for me. Consequentially, this has not made my ability to make friends with guys any easier. During my time in middle school, I was bullied for every little thing I did, whether it was asking my crush to a dance and then having a guy tell that girl to say no right in my face, or being kicked over on the ground by another guy when gathering my supplies. I believe my view on what it means to be a guy is different from others because of the way I was treated by guys my whole life. My drained feeling goes back to these experiences because of the way I have observed other guys act around me. I could probably say that my disposition wasn’t trained to conform to the “guy group.” Additionally, I guess I could say that it is still a bit hard for me to make friends with other guys but when I find guy friends who genuinely want to be friends and not just wanting to social climb, well, then, those relationships are pretty awesome. Anyway, enough about me, my point is that I do connect to your post. I believe that it would be beneficial that guys look at themselves, slow down, and to pay attention to who they are as a person in society; to stop and realize how themselves and their bros may present an image to the rest of us.

      -Tomasz

  • Hi Kristin,
    I am in total agreement of what you’ve written. When you propose that we need to be encouraging people to vote, I think it’s necessary to also emphasize education. Voter participation is extremely important, but having educated voters is what we should truly strive for, otherwise we will continue having leaders such as our president…[Read more]

  • At my lowest points of my teenage years, I have pleaded to an invisible force that I would do anything to be devoid of the anxiety that plagued my life. 

    Around the age of fifteen, a traumatic event triggered

    • I really enjoy this. It popped up on my “feed” and I immediately clicked on it because anxiety is something that changes you. Your life is strongly influenced by anxiety, and will continue to be whether or not you want it to. I assume you have tried to “fix it” or “get rid of it”, but have learned it doesn’t work that way. It is inspiring that you accept the way you process things differently than others knowing it might make your own life harder. I found an article that gives tips to solve this problem, however I do know most of the time these tips don’t work.
      https://www.realsimple.com/health/mind-mood/emotional-health/ten-ways-to-cope-with-anxiety
      Thank you for sharing your personal story with me, I enjoyed learning about the illness.

    • This is an amazing post, and I think it is a really important message. You perfectly portrayed how restraining the illness is. I agree with Isa that this is a very inspiring post, and I think it will inspire others. https://adaa.org/tips-manage-anxiety-and-stress here is an article that I think applies to your post.

    • Emma, I love this post. Similarly, I have experienced something close to this. While I was in agreement throughout the whole post, I found paragraph three particularly compelling. When you said, “I fear that without my illness, the process of becoming the person I am today would be significantly delayed if not altogether prevented.”. I couldn’t agree more, and I often find myself thinking this exact thought. I thoroughly enjoyed your writing and how honest you were about this topic. People often find it too taboo to talk/write about, but I think you did a marvelous job. If you were to keep writing with this much thought and heart, I would definitely come back to your posts. And finally, however cheesy this article https://themighty.com/2016/11/good-things-that-come-with-an-anxiety-disorder/ might be, I think it does an excellent job and even backs up the points you made in your concluding paragraph.

    • This is such a relatable post. It is really amazing you are able to talk freely about mental illnesses because I feel so many of us try to cover them up and pretend they don’t exist but they are a part of us. I think it is so important that we acknowledge mental illnesses and talk about them. I found this article about a man who also suffers from anxiety, you might find it interesting. https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2014/01/surviving_anxiety/355741/

    • Emma,

      Your writing is beautiful and fluent. I have a quote that relates to the pain you felt in which you gained beauty. One of my favorite philosophers named Aeschylus once said, “Even in our sleep, pain which cannot forget
      falls drop by drop upon the heart until, in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom through the awful grace of God.” I thought this quote is an amazing way to describe pain, knowledge and what you wrote, beauty. When you look at the quote, the “awful grace” are two words that normally do not go together, but that may be the beauty—how God or humanity forms us into unique individuals with which we accept or deny what may come our way…

      -Thomas

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