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The Record mherst Steele High School VOL. XCIII No. 7 Wed., January 4, 2011

Elyria Justice Center Welcomes Sixth Graders Jessica Whitman, Staff Writer Amherst sixth graders in Rosemary Hesmond’s gifted language arts classes participated in mock trials at the Elyria Justice Center with the opportunity to bring a classroom reading assignment to life before Judge Zaleski’s magistrate, Faye List, as well as a jury of students from other schools. List has been observing mock trials for five years. She believes it benefits the students by providing them with exposure to the court house and what it is like to be on both sides of the stand. List also feels that she benefits from the experience as well. “I enjoy working with the kids,” she said. Prior to the trials, students read Mildred Taylor’s Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry. The novel deals with racial injustices in the south during the Great Depression in Mississippi. The story’s protagonist, TJ Avery, is framed by two white boys for stealing a pearl handled pistol from a local store and killing the store owner with an axe. Both classes spent

weeks reviewing scripts and writing statements, closing arguments, and questions for cross examination to prepare themselves for the court room. The morning of the event, students gathered in the Nord cafeteria to rehearse their parts one last time before departing. “I’m nervous, but confident,” said Chloe Bratolli, a prosecuting attorney for the first trial. Students entered the justice center and went to the seventh floor to present their cases. Bratolli read the prosecution’s opening statement with confidence and ease. Students from Oberlin Middle School acted as the defense. The trial that followed was very animated and emotional, with witnesses taking the stand in tears to prove their points to the jury. When the jury was dismissed to discuss the verdict, List taught the students the basics of courtroom procedures. She asked thought-provoking questions to push the students to challenge their previous opinions. The jury returned

impressively soon to declare that they found TJ Avery not guilty on charges of burglary and murder. The class reported back to the jury room on the first floor for lunch and to encourage the second group of students to be positive about their pending trial. Words Sixth graders Eric Johnson, Hannah Starbuck, and Emily Gray listen to opening statements as they of advice and encouragement wait to be called to the witness stand. {Photo Jessica Whitman} were passed among members to hopethe witness stand. When students’ faces. When the the trials are beneficial. fully improve the outcome the jury was dismissed guilty verdict was anHer classes have taken in the second case. to discuss their verdict, nounced, Amherst was part in this annual event When the second group List called Gray back to ecstatic. since she began teaching at entered the courtroom, the stand to use her as an “It’s really hard to get Amherst in 1996. they were greeted by their example for how to crossa conviction. One class Overall, the students opponent. This time, examine a witness, guiding didn’t do especially better agreed that participating in Amherst faced Wellington them to say what you need than the other, it’s just this event was a rewarding in the same trial before a them to. hard to prove beyond a experience. It served as a new jury. With arguably “I’m really glad that reasonable doubt. I think fun way to strengthen unmore emotion and convic- wasn’t my actual cross it helped the second class derstanding of the novel, tion than the first case, examination with the jury,” that witnesses for the deas well as a hands-on the students did very well Gray said jokingly. fense couldn’t answer some opportunity for students presenting their sides. As the jury returned of their cross examination to learn about judicial Amherst’s Emma Gray to the room, nervousness questions,” said Hesmond. policies. did exceptionally well in became evident across the Hesmond also believes

Population Problems

Threat to Free Speech?

Population of the Earth in Billions Though it may not seem an issue in today’s 8 news and media, the world’s population has 6 skyrocketed into a press4 ing problem that cannot be ignored. 2 At the end of this past October, the world’s popula- 0 1804 1927 1959 1974 1987 1998 2011 2025 tion hit an {Graph A. Nickoloff, Source Time Magazine} astronomical height of seven billion people according is that there is no rising movement that is still to the Center for Biologideath rate. active to help the coming cal Diversity. The number Healthier people live population crisis. ‘one billion’ itself is often longer and create more Here in the United very difficult for humans healthy people, but this States, however, funding to grasp, and seven billion abundance could create has dropped for populabecomes a number almost drastic effects on the entire tion growth issues and out of the realm of human world. The Center for Biomany of the effects reveal imagination. logical Diversity’s mission themselves in population Because life expecis to encourage universal percent changes here in tancy continues to rise, the access to birth control, Ohio. According to US number of people on earth education and empowerCensus Bureau statistics, expands at an exponential ment of women. Ohio’s population inrate. According to the Doctor Karan Singh of creased 1.6 percent from World Health OrganizaWHO said, “Development 2000 to 2010. Lorain tion (WHO), the United is the best contraceptive” County alone increased 5.9 States is the third most at the World Population percent in the same time populous country in the Conference in Bucharest span. world, falling behind only in 1974. This statement This trend is frightenIndia and China. The life can be interpreted in many ing, but is more frightenexpectancy in the United different ways, whether it ing when put into perStates averages at 79 years is creating the option of spective. The Center for old, compared to India’s 65 birth control in the general Biological Diversity’s staand China’s 74. public or educating third tistics state that the earth’s With these rising life world countries. population doubled from expectancies, the populaIndia and China actively one to two billion people tion of the earth will rise take multiple approaches between 1800 and 1930, much higher since the to the impending populathen doubled again by number of deaths does not tion crisis. Asia created 1975. Every day, the earth match the number of new an early family planning has a net gain of about births. program that is still here 250,000 people and it is The Center for Biologitoday and India’s first projected to reach eight cal Diversity claims that national family planning billion people by 2020 and women in the United policy formed in 1952 also nine billion by 2050. States have the highest fer- continues today according No single global strattility rate with an average to WHO. egy exists for this frightenof 2.1 children, compared The International ing problem, and multiple to a rate of 1.6 children per Planned Parenthood approaches must be taken women in other developed Foundation and Populafor successful programs to nations. Most nations have tion Council were also work. Hopefully enough a relatively high birth rate established around the support for this issue ranging anywhere between same time as India’s poliwill exist by the time the 1 and 3, but what makes cies, which all help start a earth reaches eight billion these numbers dangerous modern family planning people.

For most Americans, freedom on the Internet is a right taken for granted without a second thought. A proposed Senate bill, the Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and Theft of Intellectual Property Act of 2011, referred to as According to a 2008 survey, 500 American teenagers’ opinions on PROTECT IP, punishment for illegally downloading images, literature, music, movies aims to curb or software. {Graph F. Mastroianni, Source KRC Research} online piracy and copyright infringement. Its House of the industries most seem to agree that the of Representatives counaffected by online piracy. Internet should not be centerpart, the Stop Online According to the RIAA, sored under any circumPiracy Act (SOPA), has over 30 million songs stances. Out of 50 students the same goal. Concerns were illegally downloaded polled on how they feel have arisen over whether from 2004 through 2009, about Internet censorthese bills will give the causing the music industry ship, all said they thought United States government a total loss of about $844 it should remain uncenthe right to censor the million a year. sored. “I think it’s wrong to Internet and take away the However, opponents control what we see online. freedoms that were once say that cracking down on Even if it violates someenjoyed. sites accused of copyright one’s copyright, I don’t If the bills are signed infringement will create an think it should be blocked. into law, copyright holders “Internet blacklist” similar We don’t need to go in the will have the power to seek to that of China, where all same direction as China,” court orders against webwebsites are strictly monione student said. sites accused of hosting or tored and filtered through “Don’t we have freestreaming pirated material. a firewall. They also worry dom of speech?” another The accused websites will that the bills could charge asked. “Isn’t the Internet then be forced to surreninnocent citizens with a form of speech?” It is der their domain names, felony charges for creating debated whether the Interand payment facilitators, or owning a website on net falls under free speech such as PayPal, will be which a user links to copy- protections, but if it does, prohibited from doing righted content. “We are students certainly don’t business with them. Search concerned that these meawant that right taken away. engines such as Google sures pose a serious risk to If PROTECT IP and and Bing may also be our industry’s continued SOPA are passed, they will penalized for indexing and track record of innovation likely be met with apprelinking to sites containing and job creation, as well as hension, but for now the pirated material. to our nation’s cybersecuInternet remains just how The bills are supported rity,” reads an open letter most people like it: free by organizations such as published in the New York and uncensored. the Motion Picture Associ- Times and signed by InterThe Record Staff ation of America (MPAA) net giants such as Google, Design Editor: Tess Henthorne and the Recording IndusFacebook, Yahoo, eBay and Copy Editor: Annie Nickoloff try Association of America Twitter. Sports Editor: Georgie Kaurich (RIAA), who work in two Most Steele students

Annie Nickoloff, Copy Editor

Frances Mastroianni, Staff Writer

Editor in chief: Renee Opel


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