December 5, 2022


Tokyo Fire

Mitsu Hamada. The name runs through my tongue like a lemon with hot sauce. Mitsu was a trained military-grade archer, most known for his work in Japan. A hitman you could say he was, as he almost took down the entire Japanese mafia singlehandedly with a bow and a load of technologically advanced arrows. A genius if you will. He should be considered a hero, though that’s not what I think one bit. Not one bit. You see,  Mitsu slaughtered my family, and his status as a “hero” has put a giant cloak that blocks the horrible things that he has done from the public eye. Mitsu is a villain, and I’ve vowed my life to stop him. 

I wake up to the loud honks of Mitsubishi’s and Hondas in the streets. The blaring noise of honking was a common thing for someone who lives in the heart of Tokyo. Busy streets also mean a lot of advertising. Having blinds that cover the window facing out into the street was a necessity, as the lights are so bright you could probably get your daily Vitamin D fill at night. I take a whiff of a shirt lying on the floor of my tiny apartment that I wore yesterday, and put it on. I’ve felt a bit of loneliness lately. Ever since the loss of the important people in life, I have no motivation for what seems like anything anymore. I am like a walking air breather. I work, sleep, and repeat the same thing over and over. The one thing that I can focus on is Mitsu. I need to find out as much information about him so I can frame him for good. The obvious question in mind is why was my wife and son slaughtered? The connections between the two make no sense. My wife worked as a cook at a local restaurant, everyone loved her. I loved her. My son was going to primary school in Shibuya. A child prodigy. He could read and write both in Japanese and English fluently while only 7 years old. My wife and I told each other everything too, from what we ate for breakfast to what we were going to spend our afternoon doing. Secrets were something we shared, not kept, no matter what it was. That is why it is unreal that something as awful as what happened, happened. It’s been about 2 months since the incident happened, and I still can’t seem to put the two pieces together. 

Riding up the elevator to the 77th floor of a Japanese high rise, the news was on the tiny TV sitting above the floor numbers. In Japanese it wrote, “5 SAVED IN FIRE, HAMADA DOES IT AGAIN”. I look away in disgust. There must have been a reason why he somehow is always in the right place at the right time.  Ever since he saved 2 children from a simple grocery store robbery last year in October, he has gotten public attention and enormous amounts of wealth. For some weird reason too, none of the people who did these crimes have been caught. It’s like he’s chasing a ghost’s messes and constantly cleaning them up.  He has a status as a local “superhero” in the likes of the fictional superhero “Hawkeye” or “Green Arrow”. Then it clicked. There’s no possible way that Mitsu is in the area every time something drastic happens around Japan. It’s not a common occurrence for terroristic attacks or evil things to happen around here, so he must be behind it somehow. I need to prove this. I exit the elevator and walk over to my desk. I worked as a senior programming manager for the hardware in Mitsubishi cars. I used a computer often, and pretty much knew what was going on around the city all the time. I took this opportunity in my small amount of free time before heaps of meetings to compile a list of things Mitsu has done in the city. He’s had about 7 “saves” since his first heroic act with the 2 kids in a store. They all are fire-related. They also have to do with schoolchildren for some reason. This information is perfect. Finally, I have a step in getting him busted. After my hours of meetings with different workers, it’s finally time to go home. I stop by the cemetery before I return home, kneeling down praying. I had adopted a lot of Japanese cultures ever since I moved here 3 years ago from New York, and this form of praying and respect was something I just caught on to. Finally, after grabbing some street takoyaki to fuel my brain and my stomach, I got home and went straight to my computer. Mitsu was going to be at a local high school, speaking out in his costume about whatever wisdom and inspiration BS that he wants to spin into the minds of the students. Something is going to happen there I can feel it. It was tomorrow, around lunchtime. After I call into my work for my absence, I rest up and prepare for tomorrow. 

I grab my phone, and dress up fit but still casual. Can’t have a rugged man in a high school, that looks suspicious as can be. Plus I’m not going for anything malicious, my objective here is to find Mitsu, and find whatever perpetrators that there may be in the area. These could be anyone, so any person who isn’t in a school uniform could be a threat. I arrive at the school, and the assembly is outside in a large courtyard. There’s a large audience of children of all ages, the whole school must have been there, and a stage, with a big poster with the words “Mitsu Hamada, HERO!” and a microphone. As the assembly begins, I walk around to the left side of the audience, trying to find Mitsu. “Hello sir, who are you?” Whispers a man behind me. A chill goes down my spine, anger fills my face, and my hands fist up into balls of steel. It must be Mitsu behind me. I turn around and to my dismay, it was just a local teacher. “Oh I’m just here to pick up my son he’s leaving early home.” 

“Oh alright, do you know where he is and what class?”
“Yes of course I talked to his teacher to grab him.”

“Alright, thank you. Also, avoid going in that back area, it is private for Mitsu and his crew to use.”

“Of course sir. Thank you.”

Private manners? What private manners would you need for an assembly like this? You’re just speaking to a bunch of kids about being a hero and having good Japanese manners so what’s the deal with that? Skeptical, I walk over and peep into the tent they’re in. There he was. My breathing starts to become uneven, wanting to tackle him and put every ounce of rage into his face at once. I can’t though, it would ruin my entire plan. I have to find out what he could be doing here and protect the kids from a “harm then save” act. Two bodyguards approach me from behind, guns in their belts. What could they need guns for? “Sir you aren’t permitted to be back here” Says one of the men. They’re giant dudes, no way I could oppose them in any way. I comply and walk back out into the sidewalk leading to the courtyard. There must be a bomb of some sort. I have to tell everyone. I need to save them. I sprint over to the right side of the stage, pushing away teachers and others away. My status didn’t matter anymore, after I saved them they would be grateful for me. They would finally see what Mitsu really was, and be grateful for my assistance. As I climb up to the stage, Mitsu is walking from the left side of the stage up the stairs, approaching the microphone. I grab it, and yell to the audience of students, teachers, and parents, “EVERYONE ATTENTION, Mitsu Hamada is evil! He has created bombs to occur at events so he can save people from these fake criminals! He must be sto-” 

I woke up in a hospital. The excruciating pain from my head disabled me from doing anything but think, and be trapped in my own thoughts. I don’t know what happened, all of the adrenaline I had running on to that stage and letting all of this information out sort of blinded me from what could have happened next. Did a bomb blow me up? No, I only had bruises and head trauma. Someone must have tackled me off the stage. It must have been Mitsu. I try to get up and get my anger back at Mitsu but I didn’t know where he was, and on top of that, my legs felt as if I just ran a marathon. As I lie there for another few minutes someone walks into the room. They have black hair, parted to the side like a businessman, and a beard to go with it. They looked Japanese, but not entirely, sort of resembled me in a way. Is my brain really that hurt that I can see myself? No, this person is real. The man approaches me, and leans down to my lying body. “Kevin. Are you awake?” How does he know me? “Kevin I apologize for the extremities that I had to do on that stage, you were really going crazy. Are you okay?” Of course I’m not okay, I’m laying in a hospital bed with 20% of my normal human function. As I lie there looking at him, I finally recognized him. It was him

“You, you did everything. All the things that have happened, it was all you.” 

“What are you saying?”

“The fires, the explosions, my wife, everything. It was you. Just so you could get your fame as a so-called hero. How could you do such a thing? If you didn’t bring your mafia business into my family they would still be alive! ”

I begin to spiral into a fit of rage. There’s no way I can be laying here like this. Not after everything he has done. He gives me a disappointing look, places some flowers on the counter, and walks to the door. Before he leaves, he turns back to me.

“I’m sorry brother, about everything that has happened. There are things in this life that we cannot change. The man you’ve been seeking, to avenge your pain is not me. I have been searching for him ever since your wife died. Please get well, it is not right to see you like this.” Mitsu leaves, and I lie there, defeated. Impossible. It had to have been him. I continue to lie there wondering, after all these years, could he still care about me?

October 30th, 2023

Two people were killed in a Tokyo apartment last night. The victims, mother Hina Hamada and son Tanjiro Hamada passed away in this incident. Reports show that the victim’s husband/father Kevin Hamada and his brother Mitsu Hamada were on the scene as well, fending off the perpetrators. Kevin Hamada sustained a few head injuries, while Mitsu Hamada was left with minor injuries. There are few leads, the only ones being there was a man in a hood that attacked the family whilst having a family gathering. If you find reports of potential information regarding this incident, please contact 432-562-2284.

GPS trackers, and usability to enforce restraining orders.

Through my research on the topic of GPS trackers in enforcing restraining orders, I have found the opinion of journalist Misha Valencia very compelling. Valencia discusses the personal aspects of a restraining order and focuses on stark individual cases. Valencia talks about the rising rates of intimate partner homicide in the United States and the solution that GPS tracking would provide. 

However, I believe that there is a gap that is being overlooked in the current GPS tracking solution. The current solution for GPS tracking applies to repeat offenders of violent or sexual offenses against a certain person. This GPS is an anklet that sets borders, then when tripped, set an alarm. I believe, that to further the potential of this technology in the current day, We must increase the surveillance of offenders gradually. To enforce a first-time restraining order, I believe that both the victim and the offender should have an application on their phones that checks the proximity between each other, and the aforementioned zones, and when dangerous, alerts the police station. If the offender is unaffected by this enforcement, I believe the anklet monitor should be implemented next, along with the victim using her phone to track her location. This solution offers minimal invasion of both parties at the beginning, and when dire, allows the victim to be comfortable with the safety they are provided. 

Below is the source I quoted, both the annotated version and the original.

Someone We Know

Rayleigh is a dynamic character. His archetype changes over the course of the book. At the beginning of the book, he is the archetypal, the common criminal. This can be seen during part 1, where the author writes:

“Because it looks like you’ve been up to a little breaking and entering”

But by part 2, Rayleigh has begun to transform into the archetypal honest man.  Once he finally got exposed for breaking and entering by his parents, he decided that he was going to be honest and tell him he did break in and that he’d never do it again. Evidence of this is on part 2

“I’ll never do it again I swear, I’m sorry”

Rayleigh is no longer the person who breaks into houses and snoops on computers.

A reader will recognize that the turning point for Rayleigh comes when he gets exposed for it by his parents.. Part 2 encourages this belief.

“I don’t know maybe it  would be better if he served a little jail time”

Pablo’s Life

My name is Pablito. I’m a guy from Honduras. My age is 17 years old. If I’m going to introduce myself it is good to know that I’m a cool guy, chilling and everything. Just don’t try to play dirty with me or Ima be the opposite of cool. I have lived in many places: Honduras, some short time in Mexico, and now out here in the USA. I think that my life has changed a lot since I moved from my country.

In school like a normal student I don’t really like all classes. Most of the time I’m not even in school. The facts that make me not come to school is that I find this place  boring. Sometimes I come to school because I feel like getting my high school diploma but I’m not even close to doing it.

During my life I have lived in several neighborhoods in the Bronx. The new neighborhood where I live is a very quiet place but the place where I lived before we can say that it is wilder. Any kind of things can happen during the day or night, such as shootings, stabs, and fights. However, the funny part is that people normally feel scared about it, even though they live there and they have to go through it every day. They act afraid even if you are not a dangerous person.

Punishing the Punisher

There are 31 states where capital punishment is legal. The most common method of execution is lethal injections. Although so many of the states are in favor of capital punishment, only about 33% of people are in favor of it. The majority, 39% of people, believe that instead of the death penalty the criminal should simply spend life in prison without parole and have to pay restitution to the victims or the family. Many professionals agree as well, and one source states that, “According to a survey of the former and present presidents of the country’s top academic criminological societies, 88% of these experts rejected the notion that the death penalty acts as a deterrent to murder.”
This shows that people want to punish the criminal for their actions, however this is uneffective. By putting violent people in a place surrounded by more violent people we perpetuate the cycle that is violence. We are sending in people who are already in a bad state of mind, and after being in the prison system they leave in a worse state. Most of these people are repeat offenders and are in and out of the system. In order to create long lasting change we must leave behind capital punishment and punishing the criminal and instead focus on rehabilitation.
There are many other options that not only take criminals off the street but focus on rehabilitation. There are medical approaches, such as looking at violence as a health issue that can be treated and prevented. There are also methods that involve increasing gun control and focusing on early intervention in the lives of at risk people.

The Price of Being a Woman in Prison

In the United States of America, even the toughest criminals have basic rights protected by our country’s Constitution. The rights of prisoners include the right to humane facilities and conditions, right to be free from sexual crimes, right to be free from racial segregation, right to express condition complaints, and right to medical care and attention as needed, among others. Hearing that these rights exist may be shocking to some because it often seems as though prisoners are not able to express them and that their conditions are very clearly not supported by their rights. Far too many inmates are stripped of these rights or loopholes are found so they receive the absolute minimum. In specific, one of these rights was being violated for women prisoners.

In April 2017, the New York Times produced a story featuring 24-year-old Tara Oldfield Parker, a woman arrested for shoplifting. When arrested, she was on her period and requested a sanitary pad from the officers in her holding cell in Queens, New York. “Sure, they said. But they would need to call an ambulance to get one. After about an hour and a half, they produced a sterile gauze pad, apparently obtained from an ambulance. It was the kind of rectangular gauze used to bandage an arm, with no adhesive” (Greenberg, The New York Times). This is not an uncommon situation for incarcerated females. Although receiving menstrual supplies falls under the right to humane facilities and conditions and the right right to medical care and attention, it is constantly seen as a luxury rather than a basic right.

Prisons can make maintaining a healthy well-being and dignity a monthly struggle. In the New York prisons, women recount that pads were only accessible 70% of the time, and tampons were even harder to come by. Even then, they were only given to certain housing units and certain inmates, depending on their relationship with the officers. This affects not only health and hygiene, but also women’s self-esteem in a situation where their self-esteem cannot take another hit. They are constantly humiliated and start to despise their bodies because they are denied necessary items. Last June, New York passed the first menstrual equity law in America requiring city jails to provide free feminine hygiene products to inmates, but the supplies provided were nowhere near the needed amounts and the law made little difference.

In Arizona, they are in the midst of fighting to protect incarcerated women’s health. Currently, women are automatically given 12 thin pads a month and may possess up to 24 at a time. They also must purchase tampons and additional pads. The average menstruation occurs every 21 to 35 days for five days, and hygiene companies recommend changing pads every four to six hours to avoid infection. In accordance with these statistics and instructions, the average woman would need at least 20 pads or tampons. However, some women must use more than one pad at a time or have a longer or heavier period, which would require more supplies. The American Civil Liberties Union’s (ACLU) clients in Arizona are forced to work 8-hour days with only a thin pad, often bleeding through their clothes and sheets without being allowed to change or bathe for days. The inmates will have to barter and beg for supplies and will only be given thin pads or even just toilet paper by the officers. Sometimes they will be simply denied.

Feminine hygiene products also come at a price for the inmates. In the Arizona prison system, a 16-count of thin pads cost $3.20. A 20-count box of tampons is $3.99. Base pay for prisoners starts at $0.15 an hour, which means a box of pads would require about 21 hours of work, and a box of tampons would require up to 27 hours.

Until women’s menstrual requirements are considered a luxury and not right, they can be taken away and used as a tool of power to humiliate inmates, and this harassment will continue in prisons, jails, and juvenile detention centers nationwide. Despite having the basic rights of prisoners to humane facilities and conditions and right to medical care and attention as needed, incarcerated women are still stripped of these human dignities given to all. Every state needs menstrual equity laws for incarcerated women.

Violence In Oakland


Violence In Oakland


Did you know that  Oakland is the most crime-ridden city in California, according to the FBI? It’s also the second-most dangerous city in the country behind Detroit (NBC Bay Area).  Even citizens of Oakland agree. A parent that lives in Oakland  commented on the violence and she stated “Oakland is really dangerous especially in certain places more than others. You can’t just roam around the streets and be sure no harm will be done. Everytime I would see and hear police cars passing by due to violence”(Flores). But why doesn’t this violence stop? I believe it doesn’t stop for many reasons but I will explain one of the two reasons why violence doesn’t stop.  The first reason is that there is a lot of police violence which also provokes people to fight back and create violence among the community. The second reason is that people continue the violence because of poverty and gentrification.

To begin, violence is not stopping because of the negative interactions community members have had with the police. As I got the opportunity to go out and collect people’s ideas I came across a community member that had a lot to say about this topic. The person’s name who  I interviewed is Denisse Aguilar. We discussed about the police violence in her community. She said,  “Police violence has always been seen too much around the community to the point where it has become normal to see another killing on TV from a police officer”(Aguilar). This interview is credible because this woman has been living in Oakland for years now and she has seen police violence around her community.This matters because its showing how police violence isn’t a good thing because it has come to the point where some people don’t really have an interest on the topic. The less the people care the more it makes police violence continue because people are going to start seeing it as if nothing wrong is happening. This connects to my first claim because due to police violence and the interactions with community members police violence has had a negative impact because nothing gets done when a police does something to a community member. When this happens it just makes people want to fight back.

Secondly, there is a lot of ongoing violence because of poverty due to gentrification. Mark Hedin an author for the East Bay Times states, “In the past two years, the number of Alameda County’s homeless has shot up 39 percent, to 5,629 people, according to a recent count”(Hedin). This source is credible because it’s an Oakland newspaper and it’s from June 5, 2017. This matters because it explaining how gentrification and poverty have had a big impact on homeless people. In this quote it’s explaining that due to gentrification there is more poverty because gentrification is causing a lot of people to move out due to the high rent. Since there’s nothing homeless people can do about gentrification and poverty they tend to cause violence to get what they want.   places get gentrified people of wealth tend to come into those places because they are more expensive. This cause people to move out or get kicked out of their homes which then means that there is nowhere for them to go and this makes the homeless rates go up and increases the violence because it makes homeless people want to fight back for their rights and for what belonged to them but now belong to the wealthy people due to gentrification and poverty.

Some may believe the violence will stop and change everything that happens in the community. Although as a community we can work together to reduce violence, it isn’t certain that it will “stop”. As I was doing research I came across an article that was talking about the crimes in Oakland and how the rates have increased over the years. This article gave us graphs and explanations underneath. In the article we were given a few facts about Oakland crimes.“The overall crime rate in Oakland is 149% higher than the national average… states”(Oakland,CA Crime) This matters because it is showing how the crime rates have been increasing. This proves that violence is not completely going to stop because there is still a lot of police brutality and discrimination against the un-wealthy people.This leads me to believe that if the crime rates keep increasing violence in the community would only become worse.

In conclusion I believe that the two main reasons to why there is a lot of violence in the Oakland community are gentrification against the poor and police brutality. With how the crime rates have been going up I think that violence will still continue. Crime rates might reduce over time but it isn’t certain that violence will stop.

Annotated Bibliography

Aguilar, Denisse. “Police Violence interview.” 10 Jan. 2018.


Denisse Aguilar talked about the police violence in her community. She shared her opinion on how police violence has always been seen too much around the community to the point where it has become normal to see another killing on TV from a police officer. This interview is credible because this woman has been living in Oakland for years now and she has seen police violence around her community.


Areavibes. “Oakland, CA Crime.” AreaVibes – The Best Places To Live,


In this article it is showing graphs and information about crime rates in Oakland. It includes information about many other topics meaning this is a source with a lot of collected info.This source Is credible because it is info that has been collected from 2010-2018. This article shares different types of crime and the total of crimes that have been happening.


Flores, Maria . “Violence in Oakland Interview.” 8 Jan. 2018.


Maria Flores talked about her experiences in Oakland. She shared her opinion about Oakland and how it’s really dangerous and people can’t just roam the streets and be sure that no harm will be done. Everytime I would see and hear police cars passing by due to violence. This source is credible because she is someone who has been living a long time in Oakland and experienced/seen violence in Oakland happening.


Hedin, Mark. “Survey confirms Oakland homeless crisis growing worse.” East Bay Times, East Bay Times, 5 June 2017,


“In the past two years, the number of Alameda County’s homeless has shot up 39 percent, to 5,629 people, according to a recent count”. This source is credible because it’s an Oakland newspaper and it’s from June 5, 2017.


Can the Way You Were Raised Make You a Criminal?

Two of the largest factors of the human personality are nature and nurture. Some argue that the two are separate, but others argue that they are interrelated. As science has delved deeper into the human person, nature and nurture have shown equal importance to the qualities of the human being. However, Psychology is often not as exact of a science compared to Physics or Biology. With that, there is nothing necessarily proving that either of these factors are truly that important, rather, time and time again there have been patterns showing the effects of both environment and genetics.

For example, a mother could raise her child to have good manners which is an example of environment, but the child may respond better to her whims based on genetics. Furthermore, a child could be born blond, but could grow up to the expectations that society has for blonds. In this sense, we cannot be outside either our environment or our genetics, but then how can people not conform to society?

There are occasions where a person does not fit to society’s standards. This can be due to a lack of relationship with a caregiver or abuse or it can be rooted in psychological problems. These developments are just as much a part of the reality as a functioning society. So getting a person to behave and contribute positively to greater good should be easy so long as they are raised right and standards are set for them.

However, according to this article by The Economist, the actions of criminals is not so much dependent on just how someone lives. Even if society were to be truly equal to all and every person were raised well, we cannot avoid the genetics of it. The human person is prone to some amount of trouble, and some more than others. The truth is that personality may not be something predictable or easy for science in this moment and interference with personality holds its own moral implications.

Police Brutality and College Cost

Dear President,

     I think you should consider the police brutality that has risen over these recent years. Your own citizens are getting killed and injured by the very people who are suppose to protect us. Solutions I think would help are requiring police to carry body camera when they’re on duties to have evidence/proof on what’s happening. Another issue I believe should be addressed is the expenses on going to college. College is getting quite tough to pay for and lots of students going into debt when college is over. Possibly instead of putting all our spending and tax money on the military, more should be placed in the colleges as well. So more students will be able to go to college and not get discouraged by the amount of money.

Racial Profiling in Law Enforcement

Dear Next President,

Racial profiling amongst police officers is bad because stopping someone solely based on the color of their skin is wrong. This topic impacts my life in many ways because I am a young half-African American and half-caucasian male who has seen racial profiling first-hand. I wrote a research paper on racial profiling during my senior year. I am strongly against racial profiling and this was my bias. Throughout working on my paper I had to look at both sides of the argument.

I started off researching the pros of racial profiling.  I needed to find reasons on why people thought racial profiling was “good.” In doing this I came across a form of policing that was heavily used in the state of New York City. It was called the Terry Stop or the stop-question-and-frisk method. This is a method where people are stopped for being suspected of committing a crime, with a large percentage of them being African-American, Latino, and other minority races. Some people feel this is a good thing because they think it has decreased the number of murders and other crimes, drastically. I believe this is a false assumption.

In an article for the Huffington Post, Evan Defilippis states that “Nobody really knows how effective stop-and-frisk policies are. It is essentially impossible to parse out the specific contributory effect of stop-and-frisk on crime rates, relative to other police procedures going on at the same time such as computational analysis of crime patterns, hot spot policing and community engagement with citizens.” When police officers use the stop-question-and-frisk method this is also a violation of individual’s Fourth Amendment rights.

Bernard Vaughan, a writer for Reuters, wrote an article about U.S. District Judge Sheindlin where she said, “Officers often frisk young minority men for weapons or searched their pockets for contraband before letting them go, in a violation of the constitution’s Fourth Amendment that protects against unreasonable search and seizures.” Scheindlin continued by calling it “indirect racial profiling, because it targeted racially defined groups, resulting in the disproportionate and discriminatory stopping of tens of thousands of blacks and Hispanic.” I once thought racial profiling was just a tool that law enforcement officers used to help catch criminals and solve crimes but now I am coming to the understanding that it is much more than that. It is something that is racially persecuting individuals just because of their color of their skin.

A 2014 NAACP study shows that approximately 72% of all routine traffic stops on an interstate in the Northeast occur with African-American drivers. Even though only about 17% of African-Americans make up the driving population. Instead of people profiling others based on their ethnicities like people of Arabic descent, African-American, and Hispanics, we should try to focus on other policing policies we already have intact and try to make them better. Fifty-eight percent of Americans want to have harder security checks, so if we as a whole come together and improve our tactics then Americans will feel safe.

If police departments put in these new policies to cut down on crime so that racial profiling isn’t one of the factors then both sides will be happy. The police will be able to do their job effectively and won’t get criticized for it and the people on the other side won’t have to feel that they are being discriminated against.

As I stated earlier, I have seen the negative impact of racial profiling first hand. In addition, I am striving to earn a degree in Criminal Justice and later become a US Marshall. Because of my research on this topic, I have a better understanding of the importance this topic has not only in society but also in my career choice. I ask for your support in adopting policies and social regulations that would help put the practice of racial profiling to rest for good.

Thank you for your time and consideration of this important societal issue.

Jackson, Grade 12
Columbus, Montana