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Because Florida does not automatically restore ex-felons’ right to vote, a new bill is proposed to automatically restore their voting rights.

Issue 5, Volume 58

Mar. 2018

Florida lawmakers recently declared pornography a public health risk, but have not addressed relevant shortcomings in sexual education.

Senior Connor Drucker and the rest of the global eSports community is searching for legitimacy in mainstream sporting culture.

Coral Gables SHS 450 Bird Road, Coral Gables, FL 33146

2 preview features



Alum Winston Scott revisits his glory days by playing with the Boston Brass at the school.


The boys varsity tennis team destroyed the Hialeah Gardens Gladiators in their season opener.


Students share their musical talents on SoundCloud, a music and audio streaming platform.


Innovative recovery techniques for student athletes promote effective ways to improve performance.


the scene



A year after its reunion, the school’s class of 1967 donated $16,000 to the school.


Museo del Disco offers music ranging from salsa to Lwatin disco to modern day top hits.


As graduation draws closer, seniors decide what path to take after graduating high school.


At Arcade Odyssey, customers have access to some of the oldest and newest games on the market.

opinion 13

Broad WiFi filtering in schools may limit students’ access to crucial resources and information.


A school day that conforms to teens’ circadian rhythms can improve learning capabilities.


insight 28

Consumers must differentiate between a variety of news sources on a daily basis. Here, senior Grace Sedaghatpisheh offers her visual interpretation of the reader’s burden.

The Digital Age has revolutionized the way news is produced and consumed, making news literacy a necessity for modern day life. highlights explains the challenges that consumers face in finding highquality news.


advisory board

staff writers

Editor-in-Chief Leila Iskandarani Managing Editor Vanessa Vazquez Copy Editor Jack Band Business Manager Amanda Pallas Social Media Manager Audrey Weigel Adviser Melissa Gonzalez Features Sofia Viglucci News Angelle Garcia Opinion Benjamin Estrada Sports Dylan Carol The Scene Natalie Viglucci Insight Alejandra Orozco & Sutton Payne Online Karina Wu

Makayla Bell Tatiana Campos Daniel Cortes Dilan Denham Estelle Erwich Ruben Escobar Sophia Heilman Kevin Monjarrez Thomas Morcillo Savannah Payne Arianna Peña Alejandro Prida Mathilde Requier Cecilia Rodriguez Sara Saliamonas Alexandra Torres Mariam Vela Alfredo Wolfermann

contributors Grace Sedaghatpisheh

highlights @highlightscghs @highlightscghs

19 What’s your opinion? Send us an email with the subject line “Letter to the Editor” at We reserve the right to publish any letters sent to this email.

publication policy highlights is the official student-produced news magazine at Coral Gables Senior High School published and produced by highlights staff members. highlights has been established as a designated public forum for student journalists to educate and inform their readers on issues of concern to their audience and dissemination of news and ideas to the entire school community. As the producer of a scholastic publication, highlights subscribes to the responsibilities set forth in the National Scholastic Press Association Code of Ethics for scholastic journalists and advisers. According to Miami-Dade County School Policy, student media is not subject to prior-review by administration or district personnel and as such, all content is determined by, and reflects the views of, student staff members only. highlights welcomes reader feedback. All letters should be addressed to with the subject line “Letter to the Editor.” highlights reserves the right to publish any letters sent to this email.

highlights Do you enjoy writing? Do you like photography? Do you enjoy working with layout design?

ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS Apply under the News in the highlights tab on CavsConnect until March 16. Contact Melissa Gonzalez with any questions: or Room 9220.

features 5

Estelle Erwich/highlights

Bringing the jazz back

Former Cavalier Winston Scott returns to his alma mater for a performance with the Boston Brass By Estelle Erwich & Alexandra Torres, Staff Writers


N THE NIGHT OF FEB. 7, THE auditorium buzzed with excitement. The sound of instruments being tuned and students chattering filled the air as audience members filed in. The concert held that night, called “Connections,” consisted of multiple acts, including the internationally-recognized group the Boston Brass, the Band of Distinction and special guest Captain Winston E. Scott. Scott, a former Cavalier, decorated Navy pilot and astronaut with a unique career, stood out from the rest. Throughout his life, Scott has been a high school trumpet player to navy pilot to National Aeronautics Space Administration (NASA) astronaut. Scott graduated from the school in 1968 and played in the marching band, directed by Bill Ledue. According to Scott, Ledue was a legend in band directing and is the man he owes his success to— both in music and his career. “If it had not been for Bill Ledue, I honestly don’t believe I would’ve gone in the direction that I did,” Scott said. “The kind of discipline that he instilled in us in the band... carried with me through naval aviation and through astronaut training in college.” Aside from being a mentor to Scott, Ledue also opened the door for him to attend Florida State University (FSU) by personally calling the school. FSU is where Scott first became interested in engineering and mathematics and where he first decided to pursue a career in that field. After graduating from FSU, he put music on hold to focus on engineering. He later joined the navy as a test pilot, and was eventually invited to work for

NASA as an astronaut on space shuttle missions STS-72 in 1996 and STS-87 in 1997. His perseverance and pursuit of new challenges are what lead him to earn such high-ranking positions, though Ledue’s mentorship and Scott’s love for music played a vital role in his prosperous career as a naval pilot and astronaut. “Discipline means you do the best that you can at all times, you don’t cut corners and you give one hundred and ten percent,” Scott said. “That’s what [Ledue] was able to draw out of us, and that lesson stayed with me.” After years in both the military and the Navy, Scott retired in 1999 and pursued new career paths. He became the Executive Director of the Florida Space Agency, which operates as an advisor for the state’s governor and legislature on space and aeronautical decision making. After this, Scott became the Vice President and Deputy General Manager at Jacobs Engineering in Houston, Texas. In 2006, Scott published an autobiography documenting his time as an astronaut, “Reflections from Earth Orbit.” In the book, he reflects on his time in space and how it affected him. He also dedicates a chapter to Ledue and his impact on him during his time as a Cavalier. According to Scott, his connection with his instrument is one of the main reasons for his interest in engineering and astronautics. Studies have shown that musicians and mathematicians rely heavily on similar parts of their brain. This relationship helped him foster a love for engineering and eventually pursue a career as an astronaut, while


Scott featured on his trumpet in the final song of the Boston Brass concert

still holding onto his musical roots. After nearly two decades of not being active in music, Scott returned to his alma mater to rediscover his passion for music. He returned for a special performance with the Boston Brass, a six-part band composed of musicians Jeff Conner, Jose Sibaja, Chris Castellanos, Domingo Pagliuca and tubist William Russell. The band incorporates the French horn, trumpet, tuba and trombone in renditions of popular songs and jazz music. The band performed alongside the school’s Band of Distinction, conducted by music teacher Carlos Hernandez, and Ransom Everglades Middle School’s band. They played a variety of selections, from Duke Ellington’s “Caravan” to Nat King Cole’s “Stardust.” The Boston Brass performed both alone and with students, mentoring and encouraging them throughout the performance. For the final song of the concert, the Boston Brass introduced Scott, who joined the ensemble for a performance on his trumpet, followed by remarks in which he expressed his gratitude for the school and the mentorship he received there. Aside from the discipline and determination that Ledue instilled in his band members, he also taught them to follow their passions, and Scott encourages all current students to do the same. “I would say to students to choose something that they’re passionate about, and then pursue that, and pursue it with excellence,” Scott said. “When you choose a career or field of study, find something you’re passionate about and you’ll be very successful.” h

6 features

SoundCloud students

Students band together to mix beats and upload their work to SoundCloud By Sara Saliamonas, Staff Writer


USIC HAS THE ABILITY TO turn around one’s mood, to alter the atmosphere of a movie scene or to bring a community together. At school, music is a medium that can help students escape from stress or concentrate on work. Students have gone beyond just listening to music, however. SoundCloud, an online site formed in 2007 in Berlin, Germany, is a platform aspiring

artists have been using in recent years to record and upload music to promote their work. SoundCloud has become a widely used application among students to listen and upload. Students can easily produce and record their original works and promote their music on SoundCloud. Many well-known artists started their careers on SoundCloud, including Post Malone, Lil Pump and Kygo. SoundCloud has formed an open community for artists to

connect and collaborate on their work. By liking and following stations and artists, it is easy to promote music within SoundCloud. Writing music, whether it is only lyrics, beats or both, has allowed many students to escape school work and learn more about writing, in a new, fun way. Seniors Dan Leiferman, Ivan Batista, Lucas Pinera, Andres Alvarez and Isis Billings all exercise their talents through SoundCloud.


Sara Saliamonas/highlights

Senior Dan Leiferman, also known as “D-League,” has been inspired by music for as long as he can remember. Leiferman’s music career originated in after-school rap battles in middle school, but his passion for music has extended beyond that. Throughout high school, Leiferman has geared his electives toward classes that allow him to explore lyricism. He says that his English and creative writing classes have made his songs more poetic, and have helped him communicate his messages more effectively. Leiferman attempts to find a balance between what his fans want him to write and what he likes to write— this goal comes his main source of inspiration, awardwinning rapper Kendrick Lamar. Music has had a developmental

HALL >> talk The highlights staff records what students are talking about in the hallways during passing between periods.

influence on his life. “Writing and rapping has helped me out immensely through high school because I used to be extremely introverted and would keep to myself. I think writing out what I was feeling helped me grow out of my shell and not care about what others think,” Leiferman said. His songwriting process varies as inspiration comes to him. Leiferman tackles writers block by setting up a theme and rhyme scheme for a song, then writing lines to fit both. He describes his style as lyrical, as he attempts to infuse deeper meanings into his songs through diction. “In my raps I like to tell stories or address internal conflicts with the concepts or the theme,” Leiferman said. Instagram has become a platform for Leiferman to put out his lyrics without having to produce the music. His content can be found through his account, @dleague12. Leiferman plans to write music throughout high school and beyond.



“You’re falling asleep to Skrillex?”

“Get your gravy away from my daughter.”

“I think I’ve constructed colon cancer.”

“I sound way smarter in pen. Pencil just doesn’t do it.”

“We all have that one cousin. Mine was a hippie and lived in the woods.”

“I don’t think you can go underwater swimming.”

features 7

B.I.G. GUAPO every day as she works on her music whenever she can. “Usually when my back is against the wall in a hardship I tend to write my best,” Billings said. Billings writes about the obstacles she faces in life and her reactions to them. She writes about the mini-transitions she faces through her various stages of life. Billings has a very laid-back and positive attitude toward the world and will move on in life freely. She plans on continuing her music throughout high school and beyond. Even though Billings began this year, she is thankful for the opportunuity SoundCloud has given her to make her own music.

Sara Saliamonas/highlights

Senior Isis Billings, also known as B.I.G. Guapo on SoundCloud, recently entered the world of music. As a senior, Billings began writing and rapping when her cousin died. “I didn’t really talk about it a lot, so rapping made me talk about it for real,” Billings said. Pouring her emotions into her lyrics rather than speaking about it, she transforms her thoughts into lyrics. “I started music as just a way to express myself, clear my head; I could just be free,” Billings said. “Then I actually realized I like doing it, when I hear the right beat it does something to my soul and the words just flow out. I’m aware that I have a gift and I’m doing my best not to take it for granted.” Billings is inspired by rapper Lil Uzi Vert, whose free spirit and originality motivate her to incorporate similar creativity in her music. This reflects her attitude toward her favorite genre of music, Jazz, as it makes her feel free. Billings’s writing process varies,— the longer she spends on writing lyrics, the better her lyrics turn out. Her friend from outside of school produces her music and she raps and records her lyrics over the beat. Her motivation strengthens


Sara Saliamonas/highlights

Seniors Ivan Batista, Lucas Pinera and Andres Alvarez are among some of the students at the school trying their hand at being SoundCloud musicians. Respectively, they are known as “FS Ibn,” “Lil Lactose” and “Young E30” on the application. The group began by making beats on FL Studio, a digital audio workstation, and releasing their songs to friends. The trio, known as F$, began to enjoy making music more and more. When asked about the inspiration for their group’s name, the boys said that the meaning behind F$ is a secret kept within the F$ followers and members, which extends beyond Batista, Pinera and Alvarez. Pinera’s primary inspirations are wellknown rappers such as Lil Tracy and Yung Bruh and he tries to minor their attitudes in his music. Batista attributes his passion for hip-hop to Kanye West, the rapper who pioneered his interest. Alvarez says he is inspired by “the money.”

The group raps about staying positive, enjoying life and having fun. Their makeshift studio is set up in Batista’s bedroom and is composed of a High School Musical-themed microphone Batista purchased several years ago. Batista and Pinera produce most of the music. Their song-writing process typically consists of writing verses over a beat ten minutes before recording. As for the beats, the process is a

little different. “It’s not hard to make beats; it’s just hard to get inspiration for them so it takes time until I feel inspired by something,” Batista said. “Our rap group is just about having a fun time with friends so that’s the kind of energy we want to give,” Pinera said. Eventually, both Alvarez and Pinera plan on dropping extended playlists and want to continue making music with friends. h

8 news

Bridge for Peace

The school’s annual fundraiser raises $12,000 for BLUE Missions Group’s clean water initiative


The school’s students enjoyed an international dinner in support of BLUE Missions. At the event, a local band, Castafellas, performed (top left), there was a multicultural fashion show (bottom right), and a henna artist provided temporary tattoos (top right)


In a showcase of the school’s diversity, the school’s Bhangra dance team performed at Bridge for Peace following the fashion show (right)

news 9

News Briefs By Sophia Heilman, Staff Writer

Class of 1967 donates


N SUNDAY, JAN. 28, the class of 1967 visited their alma mater for a ceremony honoring them. The class donated $16,000 for the school to buy six new TV monitors and a digital scoreboard for the gymnasium. “The new equipment we just got for the gym is going to improve the overall image of Gables and its basketball program,” junior and varsity basketball player Alex Anton said. The donation was composed of residual funds raised during the alumni class reunion the year before. The reunion began with a video put together by the school’s staff and was followed by a tour of the schools campus. “Gables High faculty, staff, students and PTSA greatly appreciate the generous donation from the class of 1967 and the wonderful example this sets for the current students to remember and take care of their alma mater in the future,” Parent Teacher Student Association (PTSA) President Parmalyn Jacob said. At the reception, representatives

of the class of 1967 gave a speech discussing their hope that the future classes will take care of and value the school like they do. h

Upcoming Events Mar. 8-10: Grad Weekend Mar. 20: Junior college night Mar. 23-30: Spring Break

Courtesy of CGSHS PTSA


The class of 1967 came back to their alma mater on Jan. 28 to donate $16,000 after raising the funds at their 50th class reunion in 2017.

April 12-14: Florida Scholastic Press Association Convention April 14: Prom Source: Cavsconnect

Seniors nominated for Silver Knight


HE SILVER KNIGHT AWARD honors seniors who are both academically successful and have contributed to their community. Nominees are recognized for a specific community service project they put together. The Silver Knight award, organized and awarded by the Miami Herald for over 20 years, is open to students in Miami-Dade and Broward county. There are 15

categories seniors can get nominated for after they go through an application process and subsequent interviews. At the end of the year, each nominated students’ work and projects are displayed at their schools. The seniors are either awarded with the official Silver Knight award or an honorable mention. “It is an honor to be nominated by your school,” counselor Khushnuma Driver said.

Senior Yanik Ariste was awarded the National Hispanic Heritage Foundation Youth Award for Business and Entrepreneurship

Check this out under the highlights tab on CavsConnect

For the 60th annual awards, the school nominated nine seniors: Melanie Wu for Art, Kassandra Luis for Athletics, who ultimately won, Yanik Ariste for Business, Natalie Viglucci for Digital & Interactive Media, Isabella Gonzalez for Drama, Yvanna Cajina for English & Literature, Sofia Viglucci for Journalism, Valeria Gutierrez for Science and Catherine Healy for Social Science. h

10 news

Seniors plan for life after graduation As graduation approaches, seniors have started to decide their post high school plans and goals By Amanda Pallas, Business Manager


T IS THAT TIME OF THE YEAR when seniors begin to get notified of their acceptances or rejections from universities, while others prepare to pursue other opportunities that await them after high school. After graduation, seniors have various options to pursue, including a 4-year college, 2-year college, the military or the workforce. “After high school I plan on attending Miami-Dade Honors or another post-secondary institution and pursuing a career in medicine. [I am most excited about] the freedom, the choice and the ability to pursue what it is you want,” senior Eric Rivera said. Some seniors have already committed to a university for next year, including those who received the binding Questbridge National College Match Scholarship which covers all college expenses. Many Coral Gables students will attend public state schools such as the University of Florida (UF), Florida State University (FSU), Florida International University (FIU) among others since it may be the cheapest option rather than attending an out-of-state schools. Multiple students at the school will also receive the Florida Bright Futures Scholarship which is based on academics and community service. According to the survey conducted by highlights, approximately 90 students have already made plans to attend a Florida school. College may not be everyone’s goal after high school, as some choose to pursue other options. Last year only 38.5 percent of the class of 2017 said they were beginning their studies at a four-year university in the fall, but a total of 93 percent went to college. The remaining seven percent of the class decided to enter the workforce, take a gap year, attend a two-year program, or join the military. As graduation approaches, the class of 2018 must evaluate their options to be prepared for the future that lies ahead of them. highlights has compiled a preliminary list of colleges, universities and other post-highschool opportunities that have accepted students from the class of 2018. h

students speak up


-Hatiem Applewhaite, Senior


-Anelys Martinez, Senior

student polls

16 percent will attend a two year college or university

4 percent are undecided 72 percent will attend a four year college or university

3 percent will enter the military or military training 3 percent will take a gap year 2 percent will go into the workforce

Out of 212 seniors surveyed As of Feb. 19, 2018.

news 11

The class of 2018 have been accepted to schools in 16 states

Vanessa Vazquez & Angelle Garcia/highlights

highlights compiled a list of the schools the class of 2018 has been accepted to so far: American University Babson College Barry University Boston College Boston University Bryant University Colby College Davidson College Drexel University Eckerd College Elon University Emmanuel College Florida International University Florida State University

Fordham University Grinell College Haverford College Miami-Dade College Northeastern University Pace University Ringling College of Art Stetson University Stevenson University Trinity University Tulane University United States Army Academy University of Alabama University of Central Florida

University of ColoradoBoulder University of Florida University of Miami University of Michigan University of North Florida University of Notre Dame University of South Florida University of Virginia Wentworth Institute of Technology Yale University

12 news

New bill proposed to restore felons’ rights The “Voting Rights Restoration for Felons’ Initiavtive” will appear on Florida’s November ballot this year By Mathilde Requier, Staff Writer


EXT FALL, THE “VOTING Rights Restoration for Felons Initiative” will appear on the November ballot. Currently, under Rick Scott’s administration, ex-felons are required to wait five years after being released before being able to submit an application to the state office of Executive Clemency for voting rights. Most applications are denied. According to the Brennan Center for Justice, from 2010 to 2015, less than 2,000 out of 500,000 ex-felons had their rights restored. Floridians can only regain their ability to vote if they individually apply to the state. The amendment would give Floridians who have already served their time a second chance at voting. The amendment was examined by the Florida Supreme Court in 2016, where it was approved as it complied to the single subject rule, which ensures that constitutional amendments only relate to one issue. Since then, more than 900,000 signatures of Florida citizens have been collected. 799,000 signatures, of the requisite 766,200 signatures for the bill to be added to the November ballot, were verified by the Florida Division of Elections. This means that this amendment, which will appear named as “Amendment 4”, will be open for public vote on the ballot of next November’s midterm election. In order for this amendment to be adopted in the Florida Constitution, 60 percent of Floridas voters would need to vote in favor of it and then the states house and senate would have to approve it. This amendment was created by the group, Floridians for a Fair Democracy, also known as “Second Chances Florida”. The organization has endorsed ex-felons’ voting rights since 2014, when the amendment was first drafted. The group’s leader, Desmond Meade, who is also head of the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition (FRRC), is a former felon who was charged with drug crimes, aggravated assault and possession of a firearm. After getting out of prison, he graduated from college but realized he was disallowed from

applying for a law license unless he got his full rights restored. Since then, Meade has been promoting the felons’ suffrage movement, with the belief that felons have the right to second chances. Florida is one of three states to not automatically give felons back their right to vote upon release from prison. In Iowa and Kentucky, ex-felons’ voting rights are fully eradicated, meaning that they can not get their voting rights back at all. According to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), if this amendment were to be passed, more than 1.5 million Floridians—approximately 10 percent of the adult citizen population of Florida—would regain their right to vote. They would do so without any restrictions or evaluations, excluding felons who were convicted of murder or sexual violence. On Feb. 2, U.S. District Judge Mark Walker ruled that the Clemency Board — made up of Rick Scott and his appointed attorneys—is unconstitutional and biased in a lawsuit led by nine exfelons and the Fair Elections Legal Network against Scott’s administration. Briefs on solutions to this problem are expected to arrive on Feb. 12 from both the plantiff and the defendant. The judge’s statement further backed the felons’ voting rights restoration cause. “A person convicted of a crime may have long ago exited the prison cell and completed probation. Her voting rights, however, remain locked in a dark crypt. Only the state has the key — but the state has swallowed it,” Walker wrote in his 43-page ruling on the matter. Recently though, a federal judge in Florida declared it unconstitutional for state policy to restore felons’ right to vote. The judge was rebuking Scott in the ruling who is the lead defendant of the case. Along with the ruling, the judge said the “disenfranchisement of felons who have served their time is nonsensical and a violation of the 1st and 14th amendments of the Constitution. He also stated that officials have extraordinary authority to control one’s voting rights. h

Quick Facts Under Rick Scott’s administration, less than 8 percent of those who applied for the opportunity to vote have been approved and have had their voting abilities restored. About 37 percent of Americans who have had their voting rights retracted live in Florida. According to a 2014 national poll, 65 pecent of Americans are in favor of automatically restoring voting rights to felons Florida is the state with the highest number of citizens, almost two million, disenfranchised due to felony convictions. During the former govenorns’ four years in office, 154,000 ex-felons had their voting rights restored. Source: CNN, NPR, Brennan Center for Justice Compiled by Mathilde Requier & Angelle Garcia

13 opinion

School WiFi censors

Broad keyword-based filtering can lead to excessive restrictions, stifling research and accessibility


filters. The report explained that such was the case in Illinois and Nebraska, where access was blocked to websites containing information about China and Iran, even though the sites were included in the Advanced Placement curriculum as required readings. With the unreasonable amount of over-blocking on school campuses, it makes it almost impossible to work on projects or research assignments. Despite this, most students can get around filters by simply working on their projects at home. However, this reveals yet another glaring issue: unequal access of information. Most students can rely on their home devices and internet to get their work done, but students from low-income families who rely on internet access at school do not have such a luxury. When assigned a project on any somewhat controversial topic, these students must trudge through site after site, hoping to find a piece of relevant unblocked information. These students make it clear that filtering causes major problems for the school population as a whole. As a response to this problem, the school provided educational databases for student use to access quality resources on a variety of subjects. One such database is Gale, which remains

dedicated to dispensing information regardless of controversy so long as it comes from a scholarly source. Although students are limited to sites which Gale considers scholarly, it still serves as a decent partial solution. Nevertheless, one complication that must be resolved is that the presence of databases is relatively unknown and unadvertised, going without mention on the school website. While a properly filtered internet is preferable, if educational databases are to continue to serve as the bandage for the current state of on-campus internet, then students should be made more aware of their existence. While it would be easy to say that filtering is the worst way to keep students “safe” after reviewing the many problems it causes, it is sadly a necessary evil. Students should not be allowed to surf through inappropriate or distracting material, but the definitions of these terms need to be made significantly narrower. In addition, as an alternative to current overfiltering, a more elegant solution would be to educate students on how to navigate the controversial topics and websites that have the school board worried. Students have the right to navigate a more unfiltered internet, just as they have the right to navigate their unfiltered lives. h

The Lightspeed Systems web filtering service partners with over 6,500 school districts worldwide. Between 2010 and 2013, the number of teachers who said web filtering was an obstacle in their classrooms fell from 45 to 32 percent. Compiled by Benjamin Estrada

Source: Lightspeed Systems, Project Tomorrow


HE INTERNET IS SCARY. While it offers students practically limitless information, it also offers access to inappropriate content that may be harmful to minors. To protect students, schools across the U.S. have filtered internet browsing on campus. However, in this attempt to shield students from the perceived dangers of the internet, filters liberally block anything that poses even the slightest “threat” to students. As a result, students must deal with overzealous internet censorship acting as barriers to education, blocking access to countless sites incorrectly deemed a danger or distraction. Internet filtering has been the subject of controversy since the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA), which offered K-12 schools and libraries funding under the condition that they must implement measures to protect children from obscenity, was signed into law. The law is directed at restricting access to lewd content online, but the definition of inappropriate content was left up to the interpretation of local education agencies and the various school boards. Consequently, these definitions tend to be extremely broad and incorporate viewpoints of small groups who deem some controversial topics offensive or obscene, which results in school districts filtering far more than what is necessary. The current system in Miami-Dade County Public Schools also lends itself to the practice of extreme censorship by filtering based on keywords. Firewall systems are in place to block anything that uses an improper word such as “sexual” or “breast.” “If [the system] sees words or topics that shouldn’t be discussed, it automatically blocks it until someone request that it be reviewed,” school network technician Brandon Watson said. Unfortunately, this has the unintended side effect of making educational research on breast cancer or sexual assault much more difficult. Not only does this affect the ability to research in class, but also what teachers can effectively teach to their students. According to the report “Fencing Out Knowledge” by Kristen R. Batch, oftentimes necessary information for certain classes is blocked by internet

14 opinion

The school day dilemma

Starting very early in the morning, the school day should begin later to encourage sleep Commentary by Audrey Weigel, Social Media Manager IVEN THE large role that school schedules play in students’ everyday lives, the way school is structured can either benefit or take a massive toll on students’ wellbeing. Sweeping changes must be made to the school schedule to improve students’ well-being, and first among them is change to start and end school later. In Miami-Dade County Public Schools (MDCPS), the typical high school day lasts from 7:20 a.m. to 2:20 p.m. However, the biological rhythms of adolescents are calibrated for start times in the late morning. Student’s natural sleep schedules and their school’s schedules do not match up, lending itself to awkward sleep schedules and severely impeding students’ learning. Numerous scientific studies have reported that students’ sleep deteriorates the earlier school starts. According to a 2016 study by medical journal Behavioral Sleep Medicine, “one factor that contributes to insufficient sleep in adolescents is the intersection between early school start times and delayed bedtimes related to physiological changes to the circadian rhythm, as well as academic and social demands.” Circadian rhythms are biological


cycles that regulate the human body and instruct people when to sleep and wake up. The circadian rhythms of students naturally change during adolescence, making it extremely difficult to rise before 8 a.m. and fall asleep before 11 p.m. Instead of beginning later to account for this, schools only push their start times back earlier, despite overwhelming evidence that later start times are the way to go. “A number of studies have shown the benefits of delayed school start times for both middle and high school students,” the same report concluded. According to the report, later school start times are associated with “improved academic functioning, better attendance, less tardiness, improved health and mood, and fewer drowsy driving accidents.” Sleep deprivation is an epidemic in American high schools, and school schedules that start early are largely to blame. The fact that high school students are chronically sleep-deprived can bring a slough of serious health problems extending beyond a simple drop in grades. A 2015 study published in the Journal of Youth and Adolescence found that suicide attempts increase by a whopping 58 percent per hour of sleep lost. A similar 2010 study authored by a


sleep medicine specialist at the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School reported that teens who only get six hours of sleep are three times more likely to suffer from depression. Long-term repercussions of sleep deprivation are even more alarming: risks of Alzheimer’s disease are increased by lack of sleep, and just a single night of poor sleep can cause a surplus of Alzheimer’s-causing brain proteins. Sleep is good, and schools need to ensure that their students are getting enough of it. Schools should also consider making changes to the structure of their calendar years. Currently, different school districts adjust the school calendar independently to meet the quota required by the state of Florida. Florida, like many other states, requires that schools implement 180 days of student instruction. Different districts have their own schedules in relation to what weeks are allocated for national holidays and breaks. As a result of Hurricane Irma, MDCPS only has 175 days allocated specifically for student instruction, falling under the state quota of 180 days. Due to the loss of seven school days, a total of five days were added, but the quota remains unmet. State and nationally administered tests could also pose an issue. During

opposable thumbs Promposals “Watching people one-up each other can be quite fun.” -Alejandro Prida, Staff Writer

St. Patrick’s day “I’ll just pinch myself and get it over with.” -Kevin Monjarrez, Staff Writer

Spring 2018 “Summer, part 1.”

-Dilan Denham, Staff Writer

opinion 15

BY THE NUMBERS testing season, students would have to be at school around 7 a.m. to take their final exams, regardless of what time their school day begins. This would not be a problem for afternoon exams, for they would most likely end around the same time that school lets out. Unfortunately, there are disadvantages in adjusting the time that school would start and end. Parents have their own set times to go to work, and this could affect their schedules. Furthermore, students who work and have very busy schedules after school could encounter conflicts if the school schedule structure was revised. Students that do not have access to a bus service could have issues with getting to school, their extracurricular activities and home. “I think [if the school schedule was changed,] I could get more sleep but then it would end later so I would have less time to do homework during the afternoon... I think you just have to manage your time better and do your homework earlier so that you don’t have to go to sleep as late,” sophomore Lia Sanchez said. Most students are involved in extracurriculars, and scheduling conflicts could arise, but this is not likely. When middle schools and high schools began shifting their start and end times, many after-school sports programs adjusted their schedules to appeal to students. It is likely that they would do the same if school schedules were changed. “I would have less time for extracurriculars, dinner, homework and everything that happens after school... I would still procrastinate in the afternoon and would have to stay up later to finish everything,” Sanchez said. If our schools cannot adjust their schedules to fit the natural sleeping patterns of their students, they will only hinder students’ achievement. Inducing sleep deprivation by making start times so early only reduces academic performance and increases risks of serious health issues— and the next step is making sure the schools know it. h

Over 87 percent of High school students in the U.s. receive less than eight hours of sleep per night. U.s High school seniors sleep an average of 6.9 hours per night, down from 8.4 hours in the sixth grade Out of 384 students surveyed:


Of students receive less than EIGHT HOURS OF SLEEP ON SCHOOL NIGHTS



73% 73%


Compiled by Benjamin Estrada

Source: National Sleep Foundation

16 opinion

TWO VIEWS: Coral Gables’ bike lanes

A new experimental bike lane program, Gables Greenways Coral Gables, but is this really a project the city should be Commentary by Thomas Morcillo, Staff Writer

N SEPT. 2017, the City of Coral Gables put a pilot program in place to provide a reallife demonstration of their bicycling infrastructure improvement master plan, dubbed “Gables Greenways.” The project aims to construct protected bike lanes, which are bike lanes that are separated from regular car traffic by planters, curbs, parked cars or posts. This project should be viewed as an opportunity to improve the quality of life and safety for the residents of Coral Gables. The demand and debate for renovated bike lanes in Coral Gables have existed for several years, and other communities in Miami-Dade County have adopted protected bike lanes, specifically Miami Beach and some parts of Downtown Miami, helping cyclists feel safer in their commutes. “Bike lanes could be very positive for the safety of bikers. I’m a biker and sometimes there’s very scary situations while you’re biking on the street and there are no bike lanes. I think that bike lanes will make bikers and their parents feel safer about biking around the neighborhood and encourage more people to bike because they feel safer,”



sophomore Madison Abraham said. In cities across the U.S., bike lanes have been shown to attract commuters who were once unsure about the safety of commuting by bicycle. A survey conducted by Portland State University (PSU) which interviewed users of eight protected lanes in five cities around the country revealed that 96 percent of participants reported that newly installed protected lanes made biking on the street safer. Bike lanes also increase safety for pedestrians, cyclists and drivers. In New York City, protected bike lanes reduced injury rates for people walking on their streets by 12 to 52 percent, crashes decreased 34 percent, speeding decreased and traffic flow remained similar, indicating that although protected bike lanes can detract from available parking and street space, they do not have a significant impact on traffic. One project that the Gables Greenway initiative can be modeled after is the Green Lane Project, organized by the group PeopleForBikes. Over five years, the Green Lane project installed 404 protected bike lanes in 107 cities across the country. The program has created guidelines for local governments to facilitate the development and construction of protected bike lanes and hosts a blog which contains statistics,

resources and discussions on protected bike lanes. These resources should be taken advantage of by the City of Coral Gables to better plan and construct a connected network of bike lanes. Studies on protected bike lanes in multiple cities have also proven that the construction of protected bike lanes has multiple economic benefits. According to the New York City Department of Transportation, local stores located on a street with a fully developed protected bike lane saw a 49 percent increase in sales, compared to an average of 3 percent for Manhattan as a whole. Another study conducted by PSU indicated that although consumers who commute by bicycle tend to spend less money per visit to establishments like convenience stores, spending an average of $7.30 per visit, when compared to those who commute by car, who spend about $7.80 per visit, bicyclists make more trips per month on average. The construction of protected bike lanes attracts these types of commuters, would prove favorable for local businesses and thus, the community. Constructing bike lanes has many benefits, including bringing customers to businesses, encouraging people to bike and improving safety. The Gables Greenways project would make a highly beneficial addition to the community and should be prioritized. h



By the numbers

The city of Coral Gables plans to spend about $3 million on the Gables Greenways project through 2021.

Source: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Statista, PeopleForBikes

In 2016, about 12 percent of Americans identified as regular cyclists.

opinion 17



HE CITY OF CORAL GABLES is launching a new pilot program called “Gables Greenways” and installing protected bike lanes throughout the city. The city commission has already budgeted one million dollars this year for the installation of these experimental bike lanes, but whether this was a misallocation of funds or a smart investment is still up for debate. Although the goal of the project is to create a safer and more efficient bicycle network, the reality is, these bike lanes would do more harm than good. So far, four street corridors have been equipped with flower planters and painted roads, and if the pilot program is a success, the city will upgrade to more permanent barriers like medians and trees. These different barriers would not just conflict with downtown construction sites, they would also eliminate a solid portion of the very limited parking spaces Coral Gables has. In fact, the experimental program is already robbing curbside parking from Salzedo Street and one side of University Drive and replacing them with two-path bike lanes. Small businesses and local merchants would be especially affected by this, and when small businesses are beaten down, the rest of the city feels the effects. According to Mayor Raúl Valdés-Fauli, the downtown Coral Gables area makes up 45 percent of the city’s tax revenue— a number that will certainly shoot down

Florida is the second leading state in the U.S. in total bicycling fatalities, after California.

once bike lane advocates have their way. “Big chain stores and restaurants have either a parking garage or a whole lot exclusively for their customers, but for most smaller restaurants like mine, that’s just not the case… The majority of my customers don’t bike to my restaurant, so if parking spaces were taken to make room for cyclists, it would be more than just an inconvenience... it could cost me my business,” Ana Pagano, owner of the Pizzarium in downtown Coral Gables, said. If city consultants want this pilot program to work, they are going to have to develop an infrastructure where these bike lanes would be separated by parked cars in urban areas— not replacing them. According to a study recently published in the Sun Sentinel by INRIX, the world’s largest traffic intelligence network, Miami is the 10th most congested area globally. Implementing “Gables Greenways” onto our roads will inevitably cause car lanes to be narrowed in order to make room for these bike lanes, and increasing the traffic in the area is something the city cannot afford. The public transportation in the city is already subpar as it is, so stripping away the one mode of transportation that most people rely on, automobile, is not a cause the city should be championing so extensively for. Intersections, like the five-way one between Granada Boulevard and Bird

Road, are especially worrisome, as not only are they extremely congested, but the utilization of bike lanes in these areas would also pose a threat to the safety of residents. With Florida being the second-leading state in total bicyclist fatalities, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, it would be naive to think that painting color-coordinated lines on the ground will somehow eliminate the carelessness of a driver and magically protect the lives of cyclists. Bike lanes will not resolve the accident rate problem in Coral Gables; they may just make it worse. According to the Miami Herald, this project would cost the city an estimated three million dollars over the course of four years— and it has already expended hundreds and thousands of dollars without making any significant progress. Squandering this many taxpayer dollars on a program that is actually detrimental to the residents it aims to serve is not just pointless, but counterproductive. If the city of Coral Gables plans on investing even more money into this program, they should begin to question whether these bicycle lanes are necessary in the first place. h


62 percent of people who live near protected lane projects would be more likely to ride a bicycle if motor vehicles and bicycles were physically separated. Compiled by Mariam Vela and Thomas Morcillo

18 opinion

Health half measures

Ignoring education issues, lawmakers have labeled pornography a health risk Commentary by Makayla Bell, Staff Writer


N JAN. 17, the Florida H o u s e of Representatives proposed a resolution that could declare pornography a public health risk, which has been recently passed. The goal of the three-page resolution states a need for changes in policy to protect Floridians from pornography. The resolution includes a list of problems caused by pornography, with no means to find solutions. Pornography may be of some risk to people, but it is not as black and white as this resolution makes it seem. Although pornography is illegal for minors to view, many still consume the material, which can cause teens to develop unhealthy sex habits. Realistically, this is dependent on how much porn these teens watch. “It’s a way to relieve stress, but [people should not] do it too much because you can get addicted to it,” junior Eric Suarez said. Perhaps the biggest contributor to pornography-related problems among young people is ineffective and sparse sexual education. In his opening statement, Republican Rep. Ross Spano, one of the resolutions’ sponsors, said that the state of Florida

“acknowledges the need for [sexual] education.” However, the resolution offers no way to give Floridians such sexual education. Instead, the resolution states that pornography is becoming a main source of sexual education for the children consuming the material, which then leads to unrealistic and possibly dangerous expectations of sex. While this may be true, the resolution does little to address these problems. Florida legally requires that any sexual education program in the state must teach the benefits of abstinence and the consequences of pregnancy, but does not require instruction on the different forms of contraception and ways to prevent pregnancy. Although some school districts, like Broward County, have taken it upon themselves to provide age-appropriate sexual education programs for all grade levels, this should be mandated statewide. While pornography can have negative effects on the public, it will not cease to exist, nor can the government prevent its distribution. Pornography has been around since the late 19th century and has always been a taboo subject, as sex had been for centuries before then. As quiet as society has wanted to keep pornography, it is a booming business that, according to Medium, makes more revenue than Major League

Baseball, the National Football League and the National Basketball League combined. Despite what the Florida House of Representatives believes, pornography can be beneficial to viewers. According to a 2008 Danish study, both men and women who moderately watched pornography had healthier attitudes towards sex. The resolution lists many valid issues that pornography can cause, but these issues only arise when pornography is abused in its consumption. The enemy here is not pornography itself; it is the amount of pornography consumers view. The key to this explicit entertainment is not to name it a public health risk as if it were a disease, but to encourage moderation and educate against abuse. Even though the resolution does bring up valid reasons as to why pornography is harmful to the public, stating that pornography objectifies women and normalizes abuse during sexual acts, simply acknowledging the issues is not enough. Aside from declaring pornography a public health risk, the state of Florida must then also propose ways to take action and help address issues caused by pornography. Without that, this resolution means close to nothing to the people it is claiming to try to help. h

Benjamin Estrada/highlights

Quick facts h

In the US, the pornography industry is estimated to be worth over $12 billion.

64 percent of people ages 13 to 24 actively view pornography at least once a week.

Source: National Center on Sexual Exploitation:, NBC News, OnlineSchools

There at least 24.6 million pornographic websites on the internet, which is 12 percent of all websites. Compiled by Makayla Bell and Benjamin Estrada

sports 19

Cavs ace season opener

The boys tennis team swept Hialeah Gardens, starting the season on a high note By Tatiana Campos, Staff Writer


ACKETS IN HAND, THE boys varsity tennis team arrived at the Biltmore tennis facility determined to start the season strong. Across the courts, the Cavaliers dominated the match against the Hialeah Gardens Gladiators at their first home conference game of the season on Feb. 14. The team, which sent several players to states last season, won by a convincing margin and set a promising tone for the rest of the season. “The team’s performance was nothing less than perfection. For most of us, this is our last year so we are really committed this season. As captain of the team, I’m going to lead us to the top,” senior and team captain Austin Weiner said. Emerging victorious, the majority of the team won their individual sets 8-0 with the exception of sophomore Christopher Brazda, who won by a score of 8-1, and sophomore Murat Serpenguzel, who won 8-5 in the most closely contested match of the day. “The beginning of the season is always against really mediocre teams because unlike Gables, they don’t have players that practice multiple times a week in and out of school,” Brazda said. “But during my set I took it extremely casually because the opposition could barely play, which is why I dropped a game.” Although this attitude usually does not lead to success, it did not matter as the Cavs were able to make quick work of the Gladiators. The team will take other opponents more seriously as the season progresses, especially district rivals like Miami Beach and Dr. Michael M. Krop. However, with a solid victory under their belt, the boys tennis team will build upon their season opener and carry momentum into the rest of the year. There were a series of stellar individual performances during the match that provided for some excitement in an otherwise uneventful open to the 2018 season. These players’ efforts in their opening match of the year show promise for the rest of the season and

Kevin Monjarrez /highlights

give the team a good shot at beating more challenging opponents later on. Effortlessly defeating his opponent, freshman Antoine Hernandez was the highlight of the match and exhibited a surprising level of power, precision, poise and expertise at his age. The match— his debut at the high school level— exceeded the team’s expectations and displayed the upand-coming freshman as a potential candidate for states and a instant asset to the team. “Antoine had an amazing match, and for a freshman that’s pretty good,” sophomore Jonathan Mesa said. “He plays very well, and if he keeps playing with Gables for the rest of his time here, I can see the team going far.” Going into the match as one of the top tennis players in the state, senior Daniel Krulig gave a performance that left the spectators in awe. Also winning his individual set 8-0, Krulig was more than prepared for their significantly


(left) senior Daniel Krulig smacks a forehand, (top right) senior Austin Weiner winds up, (center left) sophmore Christopher Brazda hits a backhand and, (bottom right) freshman Antoine Hernandez hits a winner.

inferior opponents. Trading the traditional senior year for virtual school in efforts of perfecting his talent, Krulig used the match to display what he has been practicing. Showing off with some flashy moves including an impressive jumping overhead shot, Krulig presented himself as an aggressive competitor that opponents should pay attention to at the top of the lineup. “My match went well,” Krulig said. “I played a solid match overall and I didn’t give my opponent any opportunities to come back.” Because this was the team’s first game of the season it may be too early to see where they are headed. Nevertheless, with all the young talent this season, the team plans to gain momentum after this win and make it to state’s once again. The boys expect to continue to blow their opponents away in their upcoming home game against the Doral Firebirds on March. 6 at 2:00 p.m at the Biltmore tennis courts. h

20 sports

eSports command recognition The reach of eSports is expemplified by senior Conor Drucker, who ranks highly in the state By Alejandro Prida & Daniel Cortes, Staff Writers since then, and the creation of League of Legends by Riot Game in 2009 spread exposure to western audiences, who began to take interest in these virtual competitions. Shortly thereafter, the kinds of competitions that had been held among amateurs purely for enjoyment were now getting attention from professional gamers and attracting audiences who were willing to pay to watch. And once a prospective gamer’s interest has been peaked, there are many ways they can go about entering the eSports arena. “I started just playing video games with my friends. And when I found out there were tournaments at this arcade down south I figured I should go check it out,” senior Connor Drucker said. “Their accessible nature means fewer deterrents stand between a gamer’s wanting to partake and being able to.” The competitions are centered around a number of different styles of video games: First Person Shooters, MMOs and Fighting Games among others. The game’s players, or athletes, usually spend hours trying to perfect

students speak up



-Christian Perez, Senior


the strategies that they use in their respective games, and these vary greatly from game to game. For example, someone who is skilled at targeting other players in a shooting game utilizes different skills than someone who can accomplish a precise combo in a fighting game. Many remain skeptical of eSports’ credibility as sports, citing their sedentary nature. However, the case is made by those in favor of eSports’ classification that the intense planning, practice and strategy that go into competing qualify them as sports. To an ordinary person, competitive eSports may seem like just a bunch of people crowding around screens playing video games, but to those who follow the scene and invest heavily into the competitiveness, the eSports scene holds much more than one may be lead to believe. For instance, Drucker must familiarize himself with the game used for competition as well as the possible strategies his opponents might use in order to counteract them. “Prep involves studying my




ADISON SQUARE GARDEN and the Staples Center, two legendary venues usually reserved for the professional sports teams who call them home and the occasional concert or award show, are now bursting with rows of computer monitors sitting in front of the hands that control the movements of virtual entities. eSports, broadly defined as any form of competition using video games, are an inevitable by-product of the video game industry’s increasing success. Players from around the world come together to participate in tournaments and competitions with thousands of dollars in prize money on the line. eSports got their start at Stanford University in 1972, where students competed in a tournament with a game called Spacewar. Since then, games have gradually become more complex, with developers pushing them to the limits of the internet. The high speed connectivity and larger servers developed since the start of the millennium allowed eSports the opportunity to flourish. Players in Asia have been competing steadily

-Luis Diaz, Senior

sports 21

by the numbers Projected Audience Size

Projected Market Revenue 1.5 billion

583 million 941 million

2020 492 million 323 million



Market Revenue by Region in 2016

269 million

Rest of World

275 million

North America Europe



Projected eSports

Sponsorship and Ad money

328 million


9 million

opponents and their playstyles,” Drucker said, adding “there’s a ton of work that goes into learning any game deeply. While physically execution may just be moving your hands quickly and precisely, the mental aspect often reserved for coaches more than players in regular sports is necessary for every player in an eSport.” The International Olympic Committee (IOC) recognized eSports as a sport late last year, adding validity to the community as a whole, and is considering adding it to the Olympic Games as early as 2024 in Paris. The IOC hopes that its potential introduction will cater to a younger audience in which eSports has developed. The process of developing and maintaining a high skill level in e-Sports mirrors that of a conventional athlete quite closely, studying the game and your opponents, reviewing past contests to spot weaknesses in your game, and meeting with others who engage in the same sport to hone your skills, Drucker said. “[I] play with other people locally to make sure I’m playing well, and practice combos on my own when I have time,” Drucker, who is fast not to equivocate traditional sports and eSports, said. “I don’t think they should be viewed as exactly the same because they aren’t, but they should be given the same amount of respect.” Skeptics aside, the sports world has not closed itself off to that of eSports. ESPN broadcasts eSporting events, and they have sold out large capacity venues like a world cup stadium in South Korea. In addition, New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft and New York Mets owner Jeff Wilpon have each purchased eSports teams. Perhaps most interestingly, the National Basketball Association partnered with Take-Two Interactive to establish the NBA 2K league using the NBA 2K game series, with the first season beginning May 2018. Major League Soccer has done the same, establishing, the eMLS in h FIFA18, produced by EA Sports.

350 million

1.22 billion


2020 Source:

Compiled by Dylan Carol

student polls



of students would like to see eSports become mainstream

of students have participated in an eSports competition


of students do not consider eSports a sport


of students do not think eSports should be in the Olympics

Out of 357 surveyed as of Feb.18

22 sports

Recovery methods for peak performance

Innovative recovery techniques yield effective results for athletes looking to reach new levels of production By Cecilia Rodriguez, Staff Writer


AY IN AND DAY OUT, athletes expose themselves to rigorous physical activity that pushes their bodies to the limit in order to be successful. Athletes must continuously find ways to incorporate effective recovery strategies into their everyday routine. Due to the immense amount of physical stress, these athletes benefit from a variety of techniques that help the body recover quickly. Athletes are encouraged to experiment with which techniques work best for them. There are many forms of techniques that have similar outcomes but work better or worse for each particular athlete. When the human body is in the process of recovering, the muscle fibers rebuild themselves from the damage caused by the stress exerted on the muscle. Once healed, the muscles are larger than they were before the workout or game, which makes the muscles stronger. However, if the athlete does not let his or her body recover properly after such strain, his or her body is more susceptible to injury and pain. Moreover, because large quantities of essential fluids exit the body during a workout, those fluids need to be replaced. The purpose of these various recovery methods is to replace these essential fluids, and makes them vital to any successful athlete.


One of the most well-known approaches to recovery is hydrotherapy, which is most commonly employed as a post-exercise solution. Hydrotherapy is

performed on an athlete when his or her body is submerged in a pool of water. The water in the pool is heated, which is important because heat encourages muscles to relax. The athlete would then walk back and forth or move their muscles around the pool for about 15 to 20 minutes. The movement of stressed muscles while they are in the process of healing promotes circulation and blood flow, which, according to the Gatorade Sports Science Institute, will most likely carry beneficial effects on an athlete’s “inflammation, immune function, muscle soreness and perception of fatigue.”

Cold Therapy

Ice baths and the application of ice to certain parts of the body are both examples of cold therapy. The ice stimulates oxygen flow to muscle tissue and flushes out the waste products of excessive exercise, like lactic acid. Cold therapy should be used in consistent intervals and should be done two to three times daily if there are multiple workouts or games within a 24-hour period. Cryotherapy is a form of cold therapy, in which athletes spend around three minutes in an extremely cold chamber, which accelerates the process. When the athlete steps out of an ice bath, or the ice is removed off the body, their muscle tissue warms back up. This fosters the flow of oxygenated blood back to the muscles, which makes them recover at a faster rate than usual and makes them stronger.


Recovery methods for athletes must take training, nutrition, psychological stress, lifestyle, health and environment into account to be effective. Source: Gatorade Sports Science Institute

Active Recovery

On days off, athletes use active recovery, which allows for a quicker recovery process after a training session. Athletes complete light exercises such as swimming, walking or cycling. This fosters a successful return to the athletes’ normal challenging physical activities, feeling faster and stronger than before the active recovery session. These activities focus more on assisting the recovery needs of an athlete rather than the rigorousness of the activity itself. Instead of passive recovery where the athlete does nothing at all, active recovery helps blood circulate toward tired muscles. The needed oxygen and nutrients are then delivered to the cells, resulting in the faster recovery of the athlete’s muscles.


Stretching is the simplest and one of the most effective recovery processes an athlete can undergo. An athlete should lightly stretch and move around before a game or workout to encourage blood circulation to the muscles, making them warm and less susceptible to injury. When muscles are cold and stiff, the tissue elasticity and ligament flexibility are extremely low and athletes face a higher risk of tearing or pulling a muscle or ligament. Stretching directly after a game or physical activity is important as well. After an athlete’s muscles are tired and worn out, the increased blood flow will prevent fatigue and lessen the amount of soreness the athlete will experience. h

sports 23

Athletes Speak Up

Luke Clay: Junior

Jade Maella: Senior

Daniel Perez: Sophomore

Do you believe that recovery techniques are effective? Why or why not? “I do, in the sense that scientifically it has been proven to be effective [in my] personal experience, they have had positive impacts on my tired muscles.” Which one do you use most frequently? “Stretching. I honestly can’t remember a time where I didn’t stretch before and after a game or practice. It’s like it’s programmed in my mind, and it works.” Which do you feel is the most important in your athletic lifestyle? “Cold therapy for sure. Taking an ice bath in between games makes my body feel replenished and ready for the next match.” How many times a week do you use hot therapy or cold therapy to regenerate your muscles? “About 2 to 3 times a week.”

Do you believe that recovery techniques are effective? Why or why not? “I do, because I can physically feel the improvement that the techniques bring to my overworked muscles.” Which ones have you used in the past? “[I have used] stretching and cold therapy.” Which one do you use most frequently? “Ice baths because of the back to back games on the weekend.” Which do you feel is the most important in your athletic lifestyle? “I haven’t tried any of the others that have been listed.” How many times a week do you use hot therapy or cold therapy to regenerate your muscles? “I use cold therapy at least 2 or 3

times a week but I should be using it more often since I have a very concentrated schedule.”

Do you believe that recovery techniques are effective? Why or why not “Definitely. Not only do successful athletes and coaches highly recommend them, but I have continuously felt it work on my body.” Which one do you use most frequently? “I would say it’s tied between stretching and active recovery, considering that I usually stretch before every practice or game, but I always feel the need to keep my body moving in some way after such a hard workout.” Which do you feel is the most important in your athletic lifestyle? “I think ice baths carry the most dramatic effect on my usually tired and sore body. I feel a lot less sore and more energetic after an ice bath. My coach makes us take ice baths in between games.”

by the numbers second static stretch for each muscle once per day increases muscle flexibility.

$59,000 is the amount a cryotherapy chamber costs, an extreme form of cold therapy


degrees Fahrenheit in a cryotherapy chamber

Compiled by Dylan Carol and Cecilia Rodriguez


minute intervals should be used when applying ice or using other forms of cold therapy

degrees Fahrenheit a hydrotherapy pool is heated to Source:, michaelcurtisPT

24 the scene

Music Lovers’ Paradise

Museo del Disco offers its customers a vast assortment of both vinyl and CD music By Savannah Payne, Staff Writer


Savannah Payne/highlights

ITH SEEMINGLY never-ending isles of CDs and vinyl records, Museo del Disco (Museum of the Disk), located at 1301 SW 70th Ave, is a haven for all Latin music listeners. Inside this music paradise, the walls are lined with album covers and genre posters. Some of the walls are dedicated to photos of famous artists like Andy Harlow and Nicole Henry, who have both made personal appearances at the store. Hinsul Lazo, the owner of Museo Del Disco, said his love for music started as a hobby. He eventually made it his career when he opened the shop 16 years ago after having having been in the music business for 36 years.

The music is organized by origin which highlights the diversity of all the CDs and records that are flipped through and sold each day. Each row has a themed red sign decorated with the Museo Del Disco logo and the origin of music, from countries like Argentina and Mexico. One row is devoted entirely to salsa. The range of music does not stop in Latin America, though; Museo del Disco has a section for music from European countries like France and Italy. Past the register, where a poster for The Killers hangs, there is yet another room filled with CDs and vinyl records ranging in genre from country to hard rock. The store also features a


Museo del Disco is lined with shelves of both classic and modern-day tunes from all genres.

section of music starring female lead singers, as well as a corner of Spanish lullabies. The walls that are not filled with celebrity photos have CD players, each with an attached headset mounted to them for customers to taste a sample of the music the store has to offer. Each music player has four CD ports with music already set up and prepared to play, so customers can browse not only music to buy, but also music ready to be listened to on the spot. “[The music industry] is very interesting. It keeps me on my toes. There are all kinds of different cultures of people that come to my store from around the world. I have such a wide range of products that basically at any moment anyone can walk in and find what they are looking for,� Lazo said. In one of the storage rooms, Lazo keeps a photo of himself and actor Will Smith, who he met while he was gaining ground in the music industry. Will Smith is one of the many stars Lazo has met through music. After picking through the eternal racks of music, customers can buy a souvenir from Museo Del Disco, as there is a wide variety of shirts from rock bands like ACDC and Van Halen to flip through. Vinyl records are sold from $5 to $25 and Lazo orders them directly from the record companies to get the most authentic music for listeners. All records are new and unused, so customers do not experience issues with scratched music. All music enthusiasts are sure to find a treasure at Museo Del Disco. h

the scene 25

RETURN OF THE arcade revolution V

OTED BEST ARCADE in South Miami by the Miami New Times, Arcade Odyssey stands out from other arcades for its rare selection of arcade games. Founded in 2011 and located at 12029 SW 117th Ave., this arcade offers a sizable selection of new and classic games. Additionally, Arcade Odyssey has over ten gaming computers which can run all the latest games, a variety of different consoles and a wide collection of pinball machines. Filled with 131 different arcade games, Arcade Odyssey offers its customers hours worth of entertainment. The space features some of the oldest arcade games ever made and includes popular games from the 1970s, including “Super Breakout” and “Galaxian”. The arcade also showcases many classic games such as the original 1981 “Donkey Kong,” “Mario Bros,” “Pac-man,” “Tetris” and “Tron.” Arcade Odyssey even features a huge variety of imported games like “Sega Sonic the Hedgehog,” “Ultra Street Fighter IV” and goods from countries like Japan, China and Korea. At Arcade Odyssey, customers have the chance to play games that are typically unheard of in Miami because of their extreme rarity. The arcade boasts a huge selection of snacks from other countries like Mexico, but is mostly known for having one of the largest selections of the famous Japanese soda, Ramune. Arcade Odyssey, which is open until 2 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays and 12 a.m. weekdays, prides itself in using the classic token system. Prices start at $1 for 3 tokens and ramp up to $20 for 69 tokens. Each game typically costs one to two tokens, but larger or newer games can range in cost from 3 to 4 tokens. These low cost payments make modernday gaming extremely affordable. Even more, Arcade Odyssey

holds gaming tournaments, and is the first arcade in the world to livestream matches directly from its arcade machines. The space also has a frequently updated Facebook page called “Arcade Odyssey,” where the dates of future tournaments are posted regularly. Additionally, Arcade Odyssey entertains weekly tournaments for the massively growing esport, “Super Smash Bros.,” which is played on a modern gaming system, the Wii U. Schools and non-profit organizations have the opportunity to plan fundraisers with Arcade Odyssey and receive 20 percent of all sales during the planned time. Those involved in the fundraisers can also win materials to promote the event. The owner of Arcade Odyssey, Rick Medina, has always loved arcade games, and has been collecting them for over 30 years. When he realized that there were no real, classic arcades in South Florida anymore, he decided to take matters into his own hands. “We are not like Dave & Busters [or] GameTime, which are 80 percent redemption/ticket games. We wanted it to be like it used to be, where if you were any good you could play all night for a single token— when your skills earned you the respect of your peers, not the number of tickets you have,” Medina said. In the future, Medina plans on doubling the size of the arcade. He would also like to build the world’s first video game museum, showcasing not only the history of gaming, but also systems from all around the world. With his already massive arcade collection, the creation of a museum seems very feasible. Hopefully Medina will achieve his goals and leave fans with the assurance that electronic gaming will live on for years to come with its long history displayed in all its glory. h

Dilan Denham/highlights

By Dilan Denham, staff writer

digital decade:

Arcade Odyssey is packed with classic games dating back to the beginning of digital gaming.

26 the scene

highlights has discovered a different way to dine: at gas stations. While they might not be the first place one would consider, these hidden gems offer more than meets the eye.

EL carajo W

AT FIRST GLANCE, IT MAY not seem like much but after a second look, El Carajo proves to be a hidden gem. Located at 2465 SW 17th Avenue inside a Mobil gas station, El Carajo provides customers with a one-of-a kind experience. Founder Richard Fonseca said his mission is to provide a quality dining experience in an unconventional yet convenient location. While traveling in Spain, Fonseca experienced the laid back, tapas style of dining. In Italy, he saw a restrictive style of eating which emphasized quality. Fonseca then combined the two styles of eating and thus, El Carajo came to be. Founded in 1989, El Carajo is a familyrun business. Fonseca’s sons, Richy, Javier and Carlos, are managers of the establishment. Step inside and you will be greeted by a display of desserts, sandwiches and croquetas. Behind the counter, customers can get a cafe con leche for $4. The atmosphere is set to mimic the designs of a small Spanish tavern. Open from 12 to 10 p.m. on weekdays and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on weekends, El Carajo is perfect for a delicious brunch, lunch or dinner.

One of the most popular dishes in the restaurant is the traditional paella. At $25, anyone can indulge in a fresh plate of seafood paella. The restaurant also offers tapas, starting at $4.50. Those looking for a more casual meal can enjoy the combinacion unica (unique combination) for $16.00, features a choice of meats or cheese. “What Fonseca learned from his trip was that you can do phenomenal and quality food, even in a gas station,” manager Carlos Fonseca said. With spectacular food and a wonderful experience, El Carajo is definitely a pit stop that everyone should make.

Arianna Pena/highlights


El Carajo offers a tapas style of dining which strays away from the more typical restrictive way of eating that endures today.

the scene 27

andiamo With the traditional art deco style of Miami Beach, Andiamo is sure to catch the eye of any passerby. Being semi outdoors, Andiamo is a great place to have a pizza and enjoy the Miami view. At 5600 Biscayne Boulevard, the upbeat atmosphere of Andiamo welcomes any customer. Andiamo is traditional Italian pizza at its finest with fresh and natural ingredients. The dough is always made in house and it is known as one of the best pizzas money can buy in Miami. The premise of Andiamo is to make customers familiar with authentic Italian pizza while maintaining the American twist that people know. Opened in 2011 and owned by Frank and Priscilla Crupi, the quality of the restaurant is constantly improving. The Sunday Pie is a critically acclaimed pizza, being praised by Mental Floss and the Miami New Times .The Pie has meatballs, tomato sauce, mozzarella, ricotta cheese, peperoncino, parmesan and basil, costing between $11.50 and $19.50

depending on the size. Besides pizza there are also salads, like the Greek at $9.95, and sandwiches, like Frankie’s Meatball Parm for $9.50. Customers can finish their meal off with a tiramisu for $6.75 or tartufo, traditional Italian truffle ice cream, for $5.75. “We’re really just like a family over here and that’s why I love it,” waitress Amber Gonzalez said. Andiamo offers a family friendly environment and some of the best pizza in Miami, so any traveler can be sure to fuel themselves up with a delicious and satisfying meal.


Andiamo is well known around the city for having the best pizza money can buy with a wide variety of flavors.

Arianna Pena/highlights

Fuel juice miami LIQUID ENERGY:

Fuel Juice Miami offers its customers foods and drinks packed full of nutrional supplements.

Pumping out all-organic juice in the most unconventional of places, Fuel Juice Miami offers energy boosts inside a Mobil gas station. Located at 3201 Coral Way, the tiny juice shop is completely green with its nutritious, all natural juices and Karina Wu/highlights smoothies that are served in ecofriendly bottles. “You’d never expect to find it there, and I think that’s what makes it so cool,” junior Natalia Rodriguez said. The juice-making process starts with cold-

pressing their “Fuel Premium Grade Juice” with a Norwalk hydraulic press, which is considered the most efficient juicer, ensuring that the nutrients and vitamins do not deteriorate throughout the juicing process. The freshly pressed juice is then stored in bottles made of polyethylene terephthalate, a recyclable material. Fuel Juice Miami believes that humans intake a number of toxins each day that causes them to “slow down.” The shop wants their products to cleanse and reboot the body by making it chalkfull of nutrients. The menu includes juices for $9.99 each, among them “Super,” which contains apple, kale, lemon, ginger, cucumber, celery and chlorophyll salt, and “Diesel,” made of kale, parsley, lime, spirulina and trace minerals. Their menu also has smoothies and a deli section, which offers quirky breakfast sandwiches like “My Mother (Supa Cuban)” and “Who is Ruben?” for $7.99 each. With energy-boosting juices and sandwiches, Fuel Juice Miami adds a vibrant touch to the Mobil station. h

28 insight

Caution: quality news ahead By Leila Iskandarani Social media has opened the door to outlets that attempt to deliberatly deceive readers around the world. As a result, the readers must now face the challenge of differentiating real from fake news.

insight 29


BOUT HALF OF American adults get at least some of their news from Facebook. The numbers for YouTube, Twitter and Instagram, though smaller, are no consolation: according to Pew Research Center, 18 percent of Americans get “at least some” of their news from YouTube, 11 from Twitter and seven from Instagram. The Center also reported that two-inten American adults “often” get their news on social media platforms. These numbers are worrisome because they represent a byproduct of such prevalent use of digital platforms: the mass proliferation of inaccurate information. The onset of the digital age ushered in the widest variety of news sources ever to exist—among them blogs, podcasts, contributor networks, newspapers, television shows and social media platforms. In these circumstances, a single tweet or post can be spread worldwide within minutes. Anyone with a social media presence has observed this kind of incident, which often seems more like a nuisance than a threat. For example, after a video of a 13-year-old Danielle Bregolie uttering the nowlegendary phrase “cash me ousside” went viral, Bregolie built a considerable internet presence and even initiated her career as a rapper. Other instances, however, are less amusing: during the 2016 presidential election, an article headlined “Pope Francis Shocks World, Endorses Donald Trump for President, Releases Statement,”

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which contained inaccurate information and was published in the now nonexistent website Ending the Fed, received 960,000 engagements on Facebook, according to BuzzFeed News. The propagation of this kind of misinformation has become especially problematic in recent years—in fact, during 2016, 61 percent of U.S. adults said fake news caused “a great deal of confusion” about current events, according to the Pew Research Center. Enter the news literacy movement, born in the mid-2000s with the creation of the News Literacy Project (NLP) and Stony Brook University’s Center for News Literacy. The Radio Television News Directors Foundation defines news literacy as “the acquisition of 21stcentury, critical-thinking skills for analyzing and judging the reliability of news and information, differentiating among facts, opinions and assertions in the media we consume, create and distribute.” Stony Brook University’s Center for News Literacy was the first initiative to teach news literacy in a classroom setting. In 2007, with funding from the Knight Foundation—an organization investing in the arts, journalism and 26 cities across the country, among them Charlotte, Detroit, Tallahassee and Miami— Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Howard Schneider founded the Center for News Literacy. “How is a reader or viewer—especially one not weaned on the old-media standards— to know what information, or outlet, is trustworthy? That was the fundamental question


“ “


that animated the news-literacy pioneers,” writes Ben Adler, an editor at City & State NY, in the Columbia Journalism Review. The Center for News Literacy names four “information literacy challenges for civil society” brought by the Digital Age: the large amount of information we sort through daily, making it difficult to find reliable information; the new technologies enabling the mass proliferation of inaccurate information; the difficulty of striking a balance between quick news and accurate news; and the difficulty of exposing ourselves to information that challenges our beliefs. “A healthy civil society can exist only if the public is well-informed,” reads the Center’s website. “If people can be easily led to believe rumors or gossip, the consequences can be dangerous.” Most Americans agree. According to a 2017 Gallup-Knight Foundation survey of over 19,000 U.S. adults, over 80 percent of Americans believe the news media plays a critical role in our democracy. Unfortunately, American consumers seem ill-equipped to effectively absorb news. Part of the problem is the overwhelming amount of information circulating on the Internet, which makes finding accurate news more difficult than ever. The same poll reported that 58 percent of Americans find that, because of the wide range of available news sources and information, it is harder to be informed nowadays. According to Damaso Reyes, Director of

students Speak up

-Gabriel Alvarado, Sophomore

Regarding the recent phenomenon of fake news, highlights asked students their opinions on the media’s manipulation of their audience and the reliability of news sources.

30 insight

Student Polls

FOr a better sense of the news literacy of students, highlights surveyed 375 students on how they stay informed and how they are able to decipher between reliable and unreliable sources. of students are very confident in their ability to recognize fake news




of students are “somewhat” confident in their ability to recognize fake news


Every out of students gets most their news from social media.

10% 35% 41% 13%

of students receive their news once a month

of students receive their news once a week

of students receive their news once a day

RELIABLE SOURCES FROM STUDENTS The New York Times 82% CNN 65% The Washington Post 57% Students surveyed BBC believed the 39% following FOX News 32% sources were the most reliable. MSNBC 24% Daily Mail 19%

375 people surveyed as of Feb. 19, 2018 Alejandra Orozco/highlights

of students receive their news more than once a day

95% of students believe the media has power over how the viewers perceive news

Community Partnerships and Engagement at NLP, attempting to avoid misinformation altogether would not be the most effective way of securing reliable information. Though there are some steps that consumers can take to minimize their exposure to unreliable news sources— unfollowing propagators of misinformation on social media, as well as correcting and reporting misinformation— consumers should instead focus on learning to discern reliable news from misinformation. “It’s pretty tough these days to avoid misinformation, hoaxes, conspiracy theories and even outright falsehoods,” Reyes said. “Far more important than avoiding it is recognizing it—so that you don’t believe it and don’t share it. In order to do this, it helps to be able to recognize quality journalism when you encounter it. NLP teaches that quality journalism follows seven standards: multiple credible sources, verified facts, avoidance of bias, balance, context, documentation [and] fairness.” However, this is easier said than done. The tools that enable the creation and proliferation of misinformation—new technologies like the internet and social media sites—make it even more difficult for consumers to identify unreliable information; in fact, 73 percent of Americans name “the spread of inaccurate information on the internet” as a “major problem” with today’s news coverage, reports the Knight Foundation. Such a dismaying statistic underscores the necessity of news literacy among consumers. This issue is especially important for young people, as they are more likely to get their news online. “Kids (and adults) have access to more information than at any other time in history— and it’s coming at them like unrelenting tidal waves,” Reyes said. “Much of what we find on social media doesn’t come with the context needed to fully understand what we’re watching, reading and hearing. This means that we have to work even harder to figure out what’s credible and what’s not.” Another challenge impeding consumers’ ability to find reliable news is the high demand for quick news. Though there is intense pressure on news sources to avoid publishing incorrect information so as to not break their consumers’ trust, there is also intense pressure on news sources to ‘report it first.’ The faster news is put out, the less time news sources spend factchecking their information, making it more likely that the information is wrong. Take the Supreme Court’s 2012 ruling on President Obama’s healthcare overhaul, which was initially misreported by CNN and Fox News in the news networks’ rush to get the news out. Mistakes like these can prove disastrous for consumers, who often tune out of new coverage once the information is reported. The final, perhaps most dangerous obstacle

insight 31 preventing consumers from successfully consuming news is the widespread use of the term “fake news.” Americans seem more willing than ever to label information they dislike with as fake news, regardless of the accuracy of the information. “Fake news is a term that people are using which can mean ‘I don’t like what you’re saying, despite the fact that it may be true,’” Karen Rundlet, Director of Journalism at the Knight Foundation, said. “And that is not the same as misinformation. To be honest, those two words are not a term that I use anymore, because it’s become so politicized. People don’t understand there’s actual, inaccurate information being shared, which is very dangerous … and that’s different than ‘I don’t agree with your opinion, and I don’t want to hear it.’” Fifty-one percent of Americans “sometimes” consider accurate news stories casting a politician or political group in a negative light as fake news, according to the Knight Foundation.

Such prevalent use of the term causes confusion among consumers who are attempting to discern between truly inaccurate information and accurate information. It is thus imperative that Americans leave their political affiliations behind when reading, watching, or listening to the news. Fortunately, there are plenty of resources available to consumers looking to develop their news literacy skills. NLP offers lessons aimed specifically at developing middle and high school students’ news literacy skills through its “checkology” virtual classroom. Last summer, NLP partnered with the MiamiDade Public Library System (MDPLS) to offer these lessons, supplemented with instruction from teachers with specialized training, at six different libraries to local students aged 12 to 18. NLP hopes to expand the partnership this year, as well as “encourage more educators to teach news literacy in their classes,” Reyes said. Other online resources include The New


Tips to identify Fake news


1 Consider the source.

Do you get your

TV / Broadcast



word of mouth

verified source?

local/nationally recognized?

proper domain and source?

qualified/ certified source?








Are these answers yes?

keep reading

I: Independent source? M: Multiple sources? V: Source verified with evidence? A/I: Authoritative and Informed source? N: named source?

This source may not be completly unreliable. Check for political bias and/or opinionated views. However, it is not completly trustworthy. Seek other sources.





York Times’ free Learning Network, which provides instructors, parents, and students with free educational resources—including lesson plans, topical crossword puzzles, news quizzes testing knowledge about current events, and more—using content published in The New York Times. Through its Student Reporting Labs, PBS NewsHour teaches students about journalism and news literacy with a variety of resources like its news literacy curriculum, as well as mentorships with local PBS station professionals. There is no doubt as to the importance of the news media’s role in protecting our democracy. With the absurdly large amount of information we sort through, technologies that enable the mass propagation of misinformation, difficulties in meeting the demand for quick news and difficulties in exposing ourselves to information that challenges our beliefs, Americans face a threat that, if mishandled, could destroy that pillar of our democracy. h

not REliable

Sources: Center for News Literacy & National Public Radio Alejandra Orozco & Sutton Payne/highlights

While the main-stream media might not be in everybody’s good graces, big-name publications can still be trusted for checking their facts before publishing news.


Check for quality.


Read past the headline.

Always make sure to check the author’s name and the date published. Authors should be real and the date for the news should be recent with news.

Many cited sources are clearly alarming and it easy to recognize the article as fake after reading.

4 Multiple sources.

Before regarding a source as credible, make sure other outlets are publishing similar information.

Source: International Federation of Library Associations

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Thomas Morcillo/highlights

Questions? Email us at What’s your opinion? Tell us your point of view on a topic published in highlights with an email titled “Letter to the Editor.” We reserve the right to publish any letters sent to this email.

lightbox Students hold a poster reading “We Will Not Conform” during a protest at the school on Feb. 21. The protest, a walkout aiming to bring attention to gun control issues, was held in the wake of a mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, which took place on Feb. 14.

Issue 5, Vol. 58  

Issue 5, March 2018, Volume 58

Issue 5, Vol. 58  

Issue 5, March 2018, Volume 58