Have you heard the rumor? See Spread, page 8
What’s New photocopying limits affect teachers Inside Northwest Guilford High School • 5240 Northwest School Road • Volume 51 Issue 1 • October 2013
Nikole Nguyen staff writer
New gun laws make it easier to be armed
eachers are witnessing either the apocalypse or the beginning of the new era. New photocopying limitations have been put in place to reduce the cost of excessive copy use. While Northwest teachers are adapting to the restrictions, some students have also noticed signiﬁcant changes. “We’re completing assignments through Edmodo [an online program], and we’re expected to print out vocabulary at home,” junior Jonathan Lineback said. “It’s convenient to be able to print our homework whenever and wherever we want, but at the same time, it’s difﬁcult to remember to.” As with anything, this change comes with both positives and negatives. “It’s convenient because it uses less paper,” sophomore Nathalia Be-
lalcazar said, “but it’s annoying because I’ve noticed that teachers are shrinking font sizes and trying to ﬁt a lot on one sheet of paper, so handouts and tests are harder to read.” While it may seem like more of an inconvenient decision rather than a helpful one, many teachers and students realize that it is for the better. So far, most have only felt the immediate effects of the new limitations, but others are looking forward to the long-term results. “It’s certainly more work on my end, as I have to modify much of the work in my curriculum,” says earth science teacher Judith Ransom. “But I believe that, where we can save money, we should. It’s deﬁnitely a positive change and a step towards spending less. I’m all for that.” Other teachers see this as an opening to change their attitude to become more observant of how much paper they use. “These new limitations are pushing us in a good way to think about
how much we really need,” English teacher Monica Clark said. “While I’m making different choices in the homework I assign, I really have always wanted to become more ‘paperless.’ They’re getting us to think, ‘Do I really need this many copies?’” The limitations were put in place at the beginning of the school year. While teachers have had their copies monitored during the past three years, this was the ﬁrst year that restrictions were put in place. These restrictions are attempting to reduce the amounts of copies produced by each department by 10 percent, according to Principal Ralph Kitley. “We had spent around $8,000 each of the past three years paying for excessive copies,” Kitley said. “Altogether, that’s enough for a new computer lab. That’s the sort of money that should be spent on materials for students, and I don’t want it wasted on something like copies.” Kitley realizes that some teachers will not be able to stay within their al-
lotted copy numbers. “I don’t want to punish anybody; I’m going to try and ﬁnd other ways to get teachers their copies,” Kitley said. “I want these limitations to be able to help teachers ﬁnd different methods of teaching their classes by learning from one another.” Although the limitations do conﬁne teachers and how they teach within certain boundaries, they’ve allowed schools to take on newer, more modern methods of conducting lessons. Northwest Middle School, for example, has distributed educationspeciﬁc tablets earlier this year to its students, and more of our teachers are using online resources as alternative methods to give out homework and conduct classes. “Society has changed a lot in terms of technology in the past 15 years,” Kitley said. “Education has not. We’re just now starting to turn the curve. We need to catch up with your world.”
Teachers feel effects of pay freeze
Arts & Culture Photo by Brenna Proﬁt
Strange things found in nature
Students are recognized for their summer service activites
PowerSchool replaces NC Wise Jackson Parrish op/ed editor
t the beginning of this school year, it was decided by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction that the NC Wise program previously used by North Carolina public schools would be replaced by a new program called PowerSchool. During the next 18 months, schools across the state will make the slow transformation from the 14-year-old program to the “new and improved” system devised by the company Pearson. Multiple teachers and administrators are concerned about
the new change. One issue is that the computers our school currently uses are too old, and the operating systems are not up-to-date enough to handle the new, modern software. “PowerSchool is one of those premier school data warehouse software systems currently in use,” data manager Randy Kohn said. “Time and patience is key. It is going to take time to root out all the day-to-day ‘bugs.’” This new system will also change how students can view their grades online. As of right now, there is no way for students to see their current grades at all. ParentAssist was taken out along with the old program, and administration sent out paper interims for the first quar-
ter. No date has been released as to when grades will be available online. “It makes me upset that I do lots of work at school and can’t check my progress later,” sophomore Marissa Millard said. “We have no way of knowing what our grades are until it’s too late.” The staff and students of Northwest, as well as educators across the state, are adjusting to the new system. Only time will tell if the NC state government made the right choice. “I have confidence that all the difficulties that come along with implementing a project of this magnitude will have a positive overall outcome. It’s going to take time and patience in order to see it through,” Kohn said.
What teachers think of PowerSchool
news 2-4 op/ed 5-7 spread 8-9 sports 10-11 arts & culture 12-13 features 14-15 entertainment 16
“It’s got some bugs. It’ll be good when I’m used to it.” --Social studies teacher Kate Connor
“The most annoying thing is having to log back in after every period.” --Science teacher Dr. Richard Thomas
“At this point, once again, we have put the cart before the horse, ﬂying by the seat of our pants. We should have taken a year to change.” --Math teacher Rhonda Hudson
The ongoing conﬂict Bassam Bikdash staff writer
e was having dinner with his family on a large balcony of a building. Suddenly, there was an explosion and he and his family ran inside. Panicking, they didn’t know what to do. They stayed close to the staircase in the middle of their apartment, which was surrounded by thick cement walls. Following the ﬁrst explosion and at about oneminute intervals, they heard two more explosions. After about three hours, he and his brother went outside to see that the balcony on the opposite building, the street, the roof of another building and the alley between two other buildings had all been hit by rockets. Fortunately, many houses were empty because the inhabitants had ﬂed the city. This enthralling ﬁrst-hand account was told by Syrian eyewitness, Samer, who visited his home city of Aleppo, Syria last year. Samer prefers to have his last name omitted for his safety. Approximately two years ago, the revolution in Syria started. What started as peaceful protest to oust the current regime was met with violent retaliation from the government, under the control of President Bashar Al-Assad.
See Syria, page 2
Syria New gun laws affect N.C. schools (cont. from page 1)
Lindsey McGuirk & Sarah Boggins staff writers Because of a local shooting, chemistry teacher Cynthia Mardis has changed her daily route to school. An armed robbery occurred the evening of Aug. 28 at a Greensboro Wilco gas station on Wendover Ave., which had been Mardis’s usual place to stop for gas on her normal drive to work. “Two men shot the clerk over a Mountain Dew when he tried to stop them from leaving without paying,” Mardis said. Mardis, who travels from Gibsonville, takes 45 minutes to arrive to Northwest. Now when she needs to stop for gas, she must drive an additional 15 minutes out of her way to avoid this gas station. Altercations such as this one could become more common with North Carolina’s most recent gun legislation that went into effect Oct. 1. The new law allows concealed-carry permit holders to take firearms into restaurants and bars where alcohol is served, as long as it is not expressly forbidden by the store’s owner. Guns are also now permitted in locked cars on public school campuses, universities, playgrounds and public recreational areas. Freshman Jenny Blackburn finds the new legislation alarming. “I think this is dumb because the person with the gun could get drunk and get in a fight with someone,” Blackburn said. “[The gunman] could end up shooting him.”
Photo by Brenna Profit
A fictional gunman is depicted on Northwest’s campus during lunch. A new gun law in North Carolina went in to effect Oct. 1, allowing permit holders to have guns in their locked cars while on public property, including school grounds.
Sophomore Vanessa Salazar agrees. “There will be more guns out in the open, which is not safe,” Salazar said. However, others at Northwest--including Mardis-- find the new legislation reasonable. “I don’t think it will make situations like [the shooting at Wilco] any worse,” Mardis said. “My son in-law, a police officer who works in High Point, thinks that the bad guys are still able to get guns.” Junior Peyton Warner also
supports the new gun legislation, stating these laws could help protect citizens in armed conflicts. “I feel as though this is a good idea in the event that a hostile firearm is brought into an establishment,” Warner said. A school resource officer at Northwest states his opinion concerning the new legislation. “Guns are safe as long as the people who own them practice safely,” Officer Joe Pass said. “We can never determine what a person is thinking. Hopefully,
those who carry guns on campus will display the discipline and responsibility as provided within the laws of N.C. We need to practice preventions that will make people feel like there is no need for any type of gun use.” Although Officer Pass believes that the new gun laws can be controlled, some students are still apprehensive about them. “This law is very unjust and will not benefit or keep our citizens safe. There is already enough violence; let’s not add to it,” Khanna said.
Interim athletic trainer impacts student athletes Melanie Jenkins staff writer
Her day at Northwest Guilford High School starts at 4 p.m., walking into the field house and being greeted by her fellow athletic trainers. Already, there’s a small group of athletes lounging around the sports room waiting to be assisted by her. Still in her Greensboro Orthopaedics uniform, she checks in with another athletic trainer, Kristine Burns, to see who’s already been taken care of and who hasn’t. It’s just another day for Northwest’s interim athletic trainer, Jessica Klerlein. “It’s a time-demanding and life-consuming job,” Klerlein said after she’d finished aiding the last student-athlete. “I actually wanted to be a fire fighter since I was three, but I found sports medicine in college while on the cross
Photo by Melanie Jenkins
Interim Athletic Trainer Jessica Klerlein wraps an ankle brace around an injured student-athlete. Klerlein is a substitute for recently retired trainer RJ Miles. She will soon be replaced by new trainer Jazmine Muñoz.
country team, and I loved it.” It’s Klerlein’s job to help athletes stretch out tight muscles, tape sprained ankles, aid players if they’re hurt and give advice to injured athletes. At every game,
she stands on the sidelines with medical supplies, ready to rush in and help out any injured players. “I like the thrill of the emergency,” Klerlein said.
She also has the final say in who can go back out onto the field and who needs to stay on the sidelines - a decision that’s necessary for the sake of the athlete, even if they think that they’re fine. Many times, Klerlein needs to meet back up with these injured athletes to make sure that they have been doing their stretches and not overexerting themselves. “She’s really good at what she does,” JV football player Matthew Hayes said. “She’s a good trainer.” For now, Klerlein is filling in for RJ Miles, the recently retired athletic trainer. This means that Klerlein only has a few more weeks left at Northwest until Jazmine Muñoz, the permanent athletic trainer, steps in. “I’ll still be around, though,” Klerlein said “I’ll be training the [new] athletic trainer and making sure that everything is running OK.”
This civil war is most likely part of the Arab Spring, which is the name used to refer to a series of demonstrations and protests that are occurring in the Arab world. It started in Tunisia, then spread to Egypt, to Libya, and now it’s in Syria. These protests were attempts to remove the current government. More than 100,000 people have died in the two years that the Syrian conflict has raged. According to CNN, bombs dropped on populated areas or people lining up for food have resulted in massacres. Also, millions of Syrians have been displaced from their homes. International law and international relations scholar Richard Falk describes how the Assad regime is guilty for many crimes against humanity, especially with the use of chemical weapons against the Syrian people. The Geneva Protocol, signed in 1925, banned the use of chemical weapons attacks. This was in response to some of the horrors of World War I, in which chemical weapons—including chlorine, phosgene (a choking agent) and mustard gas—caused almost 100,000 deaths. In fact, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry discussed that there was evidence from hair and blood samples that the deadly neurotoxin, called sarin, was used in a recent attack on Aug. 21 in Damascus. Sarin prevents the proper operation of an enzyme that acts as the body’s “off switch” for glands and muscles. As a result, glands and muscles are constantly stimulated which causes people to get tired and sometimes stop breathing. President Barack Obama is trying to work with the United Nations Security Council to authorize a strike or removal of Syria’s chemical weapons. As of Sept. 14, Russia agreed to the seizure of the Syrian chemical weapons arsenal. Up until now, Russia has been “a roadblock to humanity and human decency,” social studies teacher Jim Thompson said. Obama is receiving criticism from his defense secretaries concerning how he should be handling Syria. At one point, he was intent on issuing a military strike on Syria, but there has been controversy surrounding whether the United States should get involved in another war. “I would not want to be in the shoes of our leaders who have to make the tough decisions about this. My hope is that a diplomatic solution can be found,” social studies teacher Scott Bennett said. With the United Nations trying to decide on what actions to take toward Syria, the Syrian people still have to endure the struggle for power between the people and the government. “After two years of fighting, the people are tired and they just want it to stop,” Samer said.
New voting laws require ID, eliminate teen pre-registration Satoria Ray staff writer Sixteen and 17-year-olds are now no longer able to pre-register to vote in North Carolina. A program that was once designed to encourage the civic duty among teenagers was eliminated by the General Assembly and signed into law by Gov. Pat McCrory in August. Prior to Sept. 1, more than 160,000 North Carolina teenagers had pre-registered either during their social studies class
or at the DMV when having restrictions removed from their driver’s license. However, due to “too much confusion” for teens, the General Assembly passed the Voter Identification Act. “Opinions might change or you may forget what you even registered for,” senior Caitlin Huber said, who has been through the voter pre-registration process and agrees with the new law. “I think you need to be more mature.” The idea behind adopting teen pre-registration in 2010 was that teens were getting their li-
censes as well as taking civics and economics in high school. They were learning more about the voting process, and preregistering could reduce teen voter apathy. “If we’re legally able to be on the road, we should be legally able to participate in the process of voting,” junior Samantha Jester said. The new law banning preregistering took effect Sept. 1, 2013. This is one of the many laws signed by Gov. Pat McCrory in August in a huge overhaul bill. Some other laws include having
a photo I.D. in order to vote, reducing early voting down from 17 days to 10, eliminating same-day voter registration, ending straight ticket voting, extending voting poll hours and many more. These new laws were passed to “prevent voter fraud,” but critics say the new laws are being used to disenfranchise the poor, minorities and now the youth. “We’re teenagers. We have a voice,” junior Rebecca Barber said. These new laws have caused a lot of controversy and have made the national news. Some orga-
nizations have even gone as far as suing and protesting against these laws. This bill comes from the result of the Supreme Court striking down the Voting Rights Act which requires southern states, North Carolina included, that have a history of racial discrimination to have their laws approved by the Department of Justice. “The goal is to make them more civic-minded. This prohibits [teenagers] from participating in the civic process,” civics teacher Kate Connor said. “I think it’s wasteful legislation.”
Homosexual couples to receive veterans’ benefits Liz Hubbard staff writer
Married homosexual veterans and their spouses will now be eligible to receive the same benefits as married heterosexual couples in states where gay marriage is recognized. Formerly, benefits were not given to gay veteran couples because of a U.S. government statute called “Title 38,” which excluded homosexual couples. One Title 38 provision defines marriage as a union between one man and one woman, a definition which the U.S. Supreme Court determined unconstitutional under the Fifth Amendment. On Sept. 4, the Department of Justice announced that it will no longer enforce this provision of Title 38. This is the most recent step taken by the Obama administration toward marriage equality for gays. “I don’t even know why [gay equality] is a problem now,” President of the NWHS Gay-Straight Alliance, Tori Heath, said. “I hope it’s not an issue in the future because it really shouldn’t be.” In the past few years the federal government has been pushing toward same-sex marriage equality, but 37 states have still not legalized same-sex marriage. In June, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and ruled Proposition 8, which banned same-sex marriage in California, unconstitutional. Since DOMA was struck down, members of the gay community have been calling for the same to be done to the provision of Title 38 that defines marriage. Their call was answered by the announcement that the federal government will no longer enforce it. Two provisions of Title 38 were found unconstitutional last
Graphic by Brenna Profit
A veteran holds a rifle with a rainbow flag, a symbol of gay pride, flying in the background. As of Sept 4, the Department of Justice has given legally-married gay veterans the same spousal benefits that married straight veterans receive.
year, but while the Department of Justice stopped defending them, the Executive branch continued to enforce them until they were proven unconstitutional in a court of law. Enforcement of the provision that defines gay marriage will now cease completely. Federal laws regarding samesex marriage are only applicable in states where same-sex marriage is legal. Gay marriage was not recognized in any state until
May 2004 when Massachusetts legalized it. Since then, California, Iowa, Connecticut, Delaware, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, Maine, Washington and Maryland have done the same. “Recently, a few states had [same-sex marriage] legalized,” Heath said. “That’s just one step closer to having it legalized everywhere, and I feel like this generation is more open-minded.”
While giving gay veterans equal benefits is a step toward equality, many U.S. citizens do not believe in same-sex marriage and most states have not legalized it. “I don’t like [gay marriage]; I don’t support it at all,” junior Rebecca Barber said. “The Bible says that marriage should be between one man and one woman.” As some states move in the same direction as the federal government and push for marriage
equality, 35 states have banned same-sex marriage. North Carolina is among the latter; therefore, any laws concerning gay marriage rights that are passed by the federal government will not affect its residents. “I would hope for gay rights to not exist [in the future],” Barber said. “However, since the world is changing and people are more tolerant now, I think there will be equality eventually.”
The Northwest bunch
New teachers join the faculty for the 2013-14 school year Chloe Keveryn
How long have you taught? Four years What have you taught? Civics and Economics Favorite food? Gumbo
How long have you taught? Two years What have you taught? Algebra II, and advanced functionings of math Favorite food? Macaroni and cheese
How long have you taught?: Six years How long have you taught? 22 years What have you taught?: Art I (beginning) II (intermediate), What do you do at NW? Media Specalist III (proficient), IV (advanced) Favorite food? Chocolate Favorite food? Pizza
How long have you taught? 10 years What have you taught? All grade levels of English Favorite food? Ice cream
How long have you taught? One year What have you taught? Honors Common Core 2 Favorite food? Mashed potatoes
How long have you taught? Nine years What have you taught? Algebra I, Common Core Math 1 Favorite food? Pizza
How long have you taught? Seven years What have you taught? Physics, Chemistry, AP Chemistry, Environmental Science and Physical Science. Favorite food? Steak
How long have you taught? 13 years What have you taught? Health Sciences Favorite food? Ahahi tuna
Photos and information compiled by staff writers
Before they were teachers: Howard Perlmutter Sarah Colby news editor
As a kid, most people have a dream job as to what they want to be when they grow up. Some want to be doctors, some dentists and some professional athletes. For math teacher Howard Perlmutter, he knew he wanted to be a teacher. While most people have the opportunity to pursue their dream jobs, Perlmutter did not. “My father told me he would not pay for my school anymore because he thought math meant I was going to become a teacher,” Perlmutter said. “So he refused to pay for my college. We agreed I would study finance or accounting, but I never lost my idea that I wanted to
be a teacher.” After finishing college at Florida State at 20, Perlmutter joined his father at his textile company in New York. Perlmutter took over his father’s retiring partner’s position after two years of joining the business. After another, he retired his father. “When I was 25, I had a couplemillion dollar company,” Perlmutter said. “For a long time it was pretty good.” The move of the company to North Carolina in 1991 came as an easy to decision to Perlmutter. “I was coming to Greensboro probably three out of five days a week to buy my textiles,” Perlmutter said. “My largest supplier was in Greensboro called Cone Mills. It was cheaper for us to run our business here.”
For a while, life was good. “I had profits [that] could be from three-quarters of a million to a million a year,” Perlmutter said. “That’s not what I took home, but it was a big chunk of it.” However, after the passing of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Perlmutter’s luck fell flat. After the company began failing in 2005, Perlmutter looked for other opportunities. “I heard there was a job fair on the radio, and they were looking for math teachers so I went to the job fair,” Perlmutter said. Although Perlmutter could be making far more money, he’s happy finally doing the job of which he’d always dreamed. “I love teaching,” Perlmutter said. “It’s been the best thing to happen.”
Photo by Brenna Profit
After quitting his job as the CEO of a multi-millition dollar textile company, Howard Perlmutter decided to pursue his dream of becoming a teacher. He has taught since 2005 and has been at Northwest for seven years.
Northwest Horizons wins Tar Heel Award in 2013 Staff Editorial A young man sits in the front row of journalism class. The bell hasn’t rung yet to signal the start of zero period. The other journalism students do not recognize him. They wonder if he is a student making up an assignment for English class, but he appears too old to be a student. As adviser Melanie HuynhDuc starts the class, she surveys the room and suddenly notices the young man in front of her. “Oh my God!” she exclaims. “Jonathan!” The two embrace while the rest of the class sits in awkward silence. Finally, she introduces him and he becomes, once again, part of the Northwest Horizons family. Jonathan Lindsay, 21, is a 2010 graduate of Northwest and one of the 108 students who has served on the staff of Northwest Horizons. Huynh-Duc remembers him for his artistic talent; he served as the newspaper’s first official cartoonist and graphics editor from 2008-2010. As Northwest Horizons enters its seventh year of being the school’s official student newspaper, it has reached the point where not all the students “remember” those who came before them or how it all began. In 2007, the paper underwent a dramatic transformation, renaming itself from The Northwest Express to its current name. The paper went from an eight-page, spot-color tabloid to a 16-page long tab with color on four pages.
Photo by Jackson Parrish
The Tar Heel Award plaques from NCSMA are proudly displayed in the back of the journalism class, room 102, with a photo of the 2012-2013 staff. Northwest Horizons received this award, the state’s highest honor, in 2012 and 2013.
In 2009, students found a way to afford full color on all pages, and they have never gone back since. However, only in recent years has the newspaper soared to new acclaim in the world of high school scholastic journalism. In 2011, Northwest Horizons was deemed a Pacemaker Finalist, a national award given to the best
newspapers in the nation. Though it did not win the ultimate award, the publication was featured in the National Scholastic Press Association’s annual book, “Best of the High School Press” and honored by the Guilford County School Board. That year also saw the staff ’s first Journalist of the Year runnerup, Liz Crampton (Class of 2011),
who is now a journalism major at UNC-CH. Crampton has served as an associate editor of the Daily Tar Heel and now is working with her professors on a cutting-edge iPad magazine. In 2012 and 2013, after five years of ardent effort, Northwest Horizons finally received the Tar Heel Award from the North Caro-
lina Scholastic Media Association. Also in 2013, Jen Nelson (‘13) was named another Journalist of the Year runner-up, and the story “After 17 years of hiding, I am finally myself ” by Danny Nett (‘13) was named a finalist for Story of the Year by the NSPA. The latter is a first-time honor for the school newspaper. As the staff basks in the glow of these accomplishments, it is absolutely certain that none of it would be possible without the support of the Northwest community. This year, the annual publication fee fundraiser at the beginning of the year yielded an unprecedented $1,415.81. Northwest Horizons could not possibly publish without the financial aid of its community. This support includes the more than 50 people who purchased coupon books during the newspaper’s annual Attractions Dining and Value Guide fundraiser. Furthermore, advertisers in the area have consistently shown their support, from Fat Cat in Oak Ridge Commons to the Northwest Observer. It has been said that “newspapers are dying.” In a new wave of social media and mass communications, having a school newspaper may seem to be an antiquated throwback to the past. However, Northwest Horizons feels more connected and indelible to its community now than ever before. With a new year brings a renewed spirit to produce the finest stories and the best possible reporting for the student body.
Technological takeover: How far is too far in modern society? Everywhere you go, what do you see? Laptops, TV’s and smartphones. Everything is a computer these days. Technology has taken over our world. We rely too heavily on computers to do our work for us. Technology is not a bad thing. Technology in the medical field is extraordinary. According to new study, MRI’s are now able to predict the risk of heart attack and stroke in people with diabetes. Also, the PET/MRI is a new imaging system that helps the diagnosis and treatment of several cancers. “Medical fields and communication are two technological fields that I see have been the most extensive,” AP Environmental Science teacher Dr. Richard Thomas said. “That impacts people every day.” Aside from the medical tech-
nology, communication has been greatly altered because of the introduction of smartphones. We can text, call, tweet and use the internet simultaneously. But have we gone too far? Google recently invented the “Google Glass” which is basically a handsfree, wearable smartphone. It has all the basic features of a regular smartphone. It can send messages and take pictures and videos. Plus, it is a GPS. It has the ability to capture exactly what you see. There are also attachable lenses for them to make them look like sunglasses. My question is, who really needs that? Using just a regular smartphone takes away from your life, but seeing through it at all times is just too much. “I feel like it will be hard to use
because you won’t be able to see stuff, but I think that it is a cool idea,” junior Annie Ford said. Wearable technology seems to be the new thing now because aside from the Google Glass, the smart watch has become popular among
Bassam Bikdash Sarah Boggins Liz Hubbard Melanie Jenkins Clare Kilmartin Noah McCormick Lindsey McGuirk Mackenzie Mitchell Harley Nefe Nicole Nguyen Kara Profit Satoria Ray
Willa Ma sports editor
Editors in Chief Carson Beam Sarah Deutchki
News Editor Sarah Colby
Op/Ed Editor Jackson Parrish
Spread Editor Brenna Profit
Sports Editor Willa Ma
Arts & Culture Editor Carson Beam
Entertainment Editor Nick Loschin
Webmaster Austin Drake
Graphics Editor Brenna Profit
Contributing Writer Lilac-Rain Thompson
Graphic by Mackenzie Mitchell
major companies such as Samsung and Sony. Intel had the first attempt at a smart watch in the 1970s, releasing the first watch with a liquid crystal display. Because of a lack of technology, however, the company was unable to do anything else with it. Today, Samsung, Sony and Apple have created smart watches. For Samsung, Galaxy Gear is its form of a wrist smartphone. It has features such as being able to call people and take pictures. It can also connect to a Samsung device like the Galaxy S4. The idea is that, unlike a phone, a wristwatch is always with you. You would never miss a call or text because it is always on your wrist. “I’m not against technology,” Thomas said. “I just think it has become too intrusive in our lives.” And it has. We have spent our
time creating smart watches or phones that people primarily use to play games. It has created a generation of people who completely rely on technology alone. “We do rely on technology too much; it is part of our everyday life, and it’s used for everything,” Ford said. “Some of my homework is turned in on the computer.” There are new phones, apps and other forms of technology being made every day. Who doesn’t want the newest form of technology or the best phone? We have become far too consumed with the next new thing. Albert Einstein once said, “I fear the day that technology will surpass our human interaction. The world will have a generation of idiots.” With all the technology that has already been created, the only thing that has not been invented is the iHuman.
Policies and Intent Serving as the primary printed and online forum for student opinion, Northwest Horizons publishes five issues each year by the staff at Northwest Guilford High School. The paper is supported through community advertisers. Staff Editorials are unsigned. The stance of each editorial is voted upon in staff meetings, but it requires the approval of the majority of the editorial board. All members of the school community are encouraged to use Northwest Horizons to express their views. Letters must be signed when submitted. Visit our website: www.northwesthorizons.com
We the People:
HEAD 2 HEAd The “Supreme Law of the Land” should remain intact Jackson Parrish op/ed editor
Philadelphia, 1787. Fifty-five men from across a young nation gather to create a document that will alter governments and politics around the world for the next two centuries. After many heated debates and discussions, compromises were drawn up and the Constitution was ratified June 21, 1788, officially making it the law of the land. Now, 228 years later, this same constitution, which has stood as the world’s single best form of government, is barely hanging on. Countless Supreme Court cases, acts of state governments and laws have bent, and in some places even broken, our Constitution. Take, for example, the Supreme Court case Plessy V. Ferguson. The court established the infamous doctrine of “separate but equal,” which directly went against the Constitution’s 14th amendment saying that all are equal under the law. Poll taxes passed by Congress violated the 15th amendment’s promise that all citizens should get an equal opportunity to vote, and president Eisenhower was forced to send the 101st Airborne against the mayor of Little Rock, Arkansas as the state went against the Constitution’s doctrine of the document being the supreme law of the land. All of these examples are just from two decades: the 1950s and 1960s. There are some things in the Constitution that have not been touched, however. As Americans, we take pride in the great ideals and rights given to us by the document. Republicanism, separate branches
of government, federalism and our Bill of Rights are aspects of America in which we take great pride. “Our Bill of Rights, an elected chief executive and a house of representatives that directly represents the people are some of the best aspects of our Constitution,” social studies teacher Phil Coley said. “Multiple countries around the world model their governments after ours due to these specific aspects.” We have no trouble taking these for their literal sense in the Constitution because we have no conflict with these ideals. As soon as America’s government or people want to go against something within the Constitution, they claim a loose interpretation of the document and change what they want. “Loose interpretation of the Constitution is dangerous because our government is getting involved in things the founders never intended for it to get involved in,” Coley said. It comes down to the fact that the Constitution is simply viewed as outdated and old. We believe that loose interpretation is necessary to keep an 18th-century document alive in a 21st-century world because we fear an outdated Constitution. In some cases, this mentality is necessary, but in general, not enough faith is put in the hands of some of the smartest men who ever walked on the Earth: America’s founding fathers. There is still hope, however. In over 200 years, the Constitution has only been altered 27 times, which is amazing in comparison to the hundreds of amendments made to other constitutions around the world. We still greatly respect our Constitution; it’s simply a matter of following it in a modern era.
The Constitution should not be followed to the letter
Natalie Whitehead staff writer
Should the U.S. Constitution be interpreted loosely or strictly?
The Constitution is definitely not followed word-for-word; there’s no way the Founding Fathers could have predicted how the country was going to turn out by the 21st century. Many people say that one of the reasons why the Constitution is still relevant today is because of the Bill of Rights, not even the Constitution itself. “I feel like it doesn’t really apply to us,” sophomore Kiana Villanueva said. “Not now, not directly.” Life was very different back when the document was written. Everyone lived on the east coast, and many people thought it was socially acceptable to own human beings as property. Why should their archaic ways of thinking affect our society? “If we went strictly by what was written to get the extreme constructionalist approach,” social studies teacher Kate Connor said, “it would not be able to accommodate change.” Arguing that not completely following the Constitution is ‘disobeying the simple obligations that make us American’ isn’t helpful. The U.S. Constitution used to be the basis of over 160 separate countries’ documents, but as our Constitution ages, it doesn’t have too much relevance anywhere else. As its relevance falls internationally, it will start to fall here, as well. Even starting from as early as the 18th century, the United States did not follow the Con-
stitution in its entirety. Article I says, ‘Every senator is to serve for six years except for the senators who were elected in the very first Congress who will serve for either two, four or six years,’ but in 1791, when the first state was added to the Union, that arrangement was completely disregarded. The election of senators is now staggered—it doesn’t matter if they’ve served six years or not. After that, its relevance began descending. There are many Supreme Court cases that contradict the Constitution, all the way from Roe v. Wade to Bush v. Gore. “It doesn’t really influence everything I do,” sophomore Giulia Cavalcanti said. What’s kept the country in check (for the most part) is not the Constitution word-for-word, but rather the sense of how we’re a united nation and we must work out our problems. Regardless, with how broad Constitutional language is written, we’re mostly free to interpret it in many ways. Trying to follow it word-for-word would be too difficult. “To a certain extent, almost everyone has to somehow take a loose interpretation of it,” Connor said. “Necessary and Proper Clause is there for a reason, right?” Although, even with the Constitution’s relevance slipping away, there are basics that are still followed. Freedom of speech, freedom of religion, liberty or property, freedom of the press and the list goes on. The Constitution isn’t completely outdated; it’s just not as impactful as it used to be.
What do you think?
"I believe that we should have a strict interpretaion of the Constitution because it protects our rights. If we didn't enforce it, people's rights would be infringed on and taken advantage of." sophomore Andrew Cunningham
"I believe that we should have a loose interpretation of the Constitution because things change over time, and we can see things are currently being changed because we are changing the Constitution constantly." sophomore Kacey Backus Photos by Natalie Whitehead
Under Who? Massachusetts government challenges the use of "Under God" in Pledge of Allegiance
Kara Profit staff writer Should “under God” be allowed in the Pledge of Allegiance? Recently these two words have been challenged in Massachusetts judicial courts. Originally, the Pledge of Allegiance didn’t have these two words in it. Instead it read: “I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” During 1954, however, President Eisenhower pushed Congress to add “under God.” He believed that adding these words would separate America from the Communist Soviet Union. Communism was a huge fear during this time, so Eisenhower felt this action necessary. With its origin in mind, should this be taken out of the schools? Or is this just going too far? Many people argue that religion should not be put next to patriotism. Even if they exempt themselves from saying the phrase in school, children are being forced to listen to it every day at school over the loudspeakers. Is
this an infringement on rights? “I’m a Christian, but not a lot of people are, so I don’t think it should be there,” sophomore Nicole Moore said. Some may argue that this doesn’t follow the guidelines of separation of church and state. The school, after all, is an organization funded by the government. To introduce the presence of religion would clearly be overstepping these bounds. But perhaps ‘under God’ should be in the allegiance to our nation. It sums up our patriotism, and it references our heritage. Now any mention of God is automatically breaching the wall of separation of church and state. Is this being pushed too far? “The phrase “under God’ has been part of the country for so long,” junior Alex Wirtz said. The students do have the freedom to not say those words if they are so offensive to them. It’s unlikely that children feel oppressed by hearing these two words every morning. In a random poll of students around Northwest, the numbers were close. Out of 30, 18 believed “under God” should stay as opposed to 12 who were against it.
U.S. returns as the world's global police:
Recent involvment in Syria worries Americans
try is currently facing. Not only has this plan seemed to cause its own country to submerge into reluctance and a state of fear, but also a label for who could possibly be responsible for Over the last few months, Syria has faced “starting the next war.” That’s the main point, though. There’s devastating chaos due to its civil war outbreak. With over 100,000 dead, and an estimated nothing people fear more than another war one million injured, something must be done. since it links with damaging our economy, and Their recent use of “chemical weapons” has losing American lives. “I think that we should stay out of it,” world forced President Obama to make the decision on whether or not to use military forces against history teacher Nicole Wobler said. “We don’t need another war in Iraq, and certainly don’t their country. Last year, Obama claimed that he’d re- need to go into anymore debt. It’s simply not our fight to fight.” frain from sending There are certain outin troops unless they comes, though, that we, commenced the use as a country, must analyze. of chemical warfare If we stay put, Syria may on Syria’s citizens. likely continue into the Latest news shows never ending horror story that Syria broke that it’s gotten into. If we “coninternational law and tribute” to ending their is now giving the prescivil war, however, could ident serious thought this bring back the roll of of whether or not the United States acting to put an end to this mayhem. sophomore Caleb Collison as global police? And if so, what could this mean for “I feel that we the future of our country? shouldn’t invade on “I don’t think this is the first time we’ve Syria because before you know it, we could be invading countries left and right. Instead, we tried to command other countries to put a stop should focus on more centralized issues such to their international madness, but it doesn’t as fixing our economy,” sophomore Caleb Col- seem like our place in the world to broaden our political commands to such a global degree,” lison said. However, in the long run, you have to ask Wobler said. There may easily come a day when upthe questions, “Is it our business?” or “Should we really be getting involved with the opera- roars, similar to the crisis in Syria, may begin popping up left in right in an assortment of tions of other countries?” The vast majority of the public doesn’t think places. If and when that day approaches, is it so. It clearly poses possible conflicts such as an- the responsibility of the United States to step other war, or serious threats from Syria’s ally, up and determine that what’s happening can’t continue? Or should the decision remain with Russia. Planning an action as abrupt as this without the UNSC, like it’s always been? The future between Syria and the U.S. reconsulting the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) would be an easy way for the Unit- mains alive and fragile, but the commanding Photo by Brenna Proﬁt ed States to make some enemies rather quickly, actions that lie ahead for our country are someSenior Kiane Douglas stands to pledge to the ﬂag as millions of students across the country do every in addition to the serious debt issues our coun- thing that only time can tell. school day. It is now questioned whether 'God' should be included in the pledge in the future.
Noah McCormick staff writer
We should focus on more centralized issues such as fixing our economy.
General Assembly freezes teacher pay Northwest teachers lament how they haven’t received a real pay increase since 2008
Carson Beam & Clare Kilmartin co-editor in chief & staff writer We all struggle every once in a while to pull up our grades. We put all our time and devotion to that certain class to earn an “A.” In some classes, it feels as if we are struggling for that “A” the whole year. However, imagine trying for five years. This feeling of defeat is common among North Carolina educators after the Gov. Pat McCrory signed the General Assembly’s 2013-2015 budget this summer. Teacher pay has been frozen since 2008, with the exception of a 1.2 percent pay increase last year for all state employees. The 2013-2015 budget freezes teacher pay for two more years, eliminates master’s pay for teachers who obtain their degree after May 2014 and abolishes teacher tenure. “The policies make you feel as if you are not valued by the state, your community or even your society,” social studies teacher Jim Thompson said. “It’s like a slap to the face, so to speak.” The average pay for teachers is $45,947, which does not include medical benefits, and some teachers even as low as $30,800. There are several teachers who are in their sixth year and still earning the same salary as first-year teachers. “I’m still being paid as a beginner teacher after six years,” English teacher Mariel Kirby said. “As a teacher, I feel extremely underpaid considering all the work teachers do.” Paying teachers is not a priority in North Carolina. Teacher salaries are 46th in the nation, which is $10,000 below the national average. When adjusted for the rate of inflation, teachers have actually experienced a 16-percent decline in their pay over the last decade. In response to these cuts, many Northwest teachers have been forced to take on additional jobs outside of school. As a result, they have less time to spend improving their own classrooms.
Photo by Lindsey McGuirk & Satoria Ray
Northwest teachers Debra Tatum, Steve Russilo and Linda West peer down into an empty wallet. The General Assembly’s budget for 2013-2015, which continues a teacher pay freeze since 2008, has caused many teachers to seek alternative or additional jobs.
“I have a second job,” English teacher Alex Wertz said, who works as a waiter on weekends. “It’s depressing considering the cost for living has risen since pay has frozen and I’m working for less than what was allotted for.” Freshman Faith Rickerts is a student who has experienced the effects of the pay freeze at home. She has two older siblings in college, and her mom is a math teacher at Northwest Middle School. “It’s hard seeing how much work my mom has put into teaching without an increase in
pay for so long,” Rickerts said. “I’m worried I won’t be able to go off to the college I want to go to.” In addition to not supporting its current teachers, the North Carolina state legislature also clearly does not seek to attract future teachers. This budget fully dismantles the Teaching Fellows Program, which since 1986 has given college scholarships to 400 high school seniors who go on to teach in a public school for four years after college. Currently, there are Teaching Fellow alums in 99 of North
Carolina’s 100 counties, and six of Northwest’s teachers are former Teaching Fellows. North Carolina’s public school system has a precarious future. It won’t be long that teachers will flee North Carolina or even the profession altogether. The decisions made by the General Assembly will have severe consequences, creating a suffering path for public schooling in the future. “I would argue that the current General Assembly does not believe in public education,” Thompson said.
Got a Secret...
Nikole Nguyen & Nata
Ever since we were li told not to lie. As long and told golden truths free, untainted life. Nevertheless, we lie aware of this, but hone where, and schools are d tion. Students just call th else. “A rumor is just a who wished to remain “There might be a tiny it’s nothing good.” Rumors and lies ar with a negative connota time or date, rumors ca destroy reputations an apart as a person. “People have a ten their rumor,” Assistan Hiller said. “When a p mor, they think that it’s them, so instead of ﬁgh these expectations from In other words, rum bility of completely war son’s image. But what is spread rumors, these lie never repeat?
ool rumors can have painful, dangerous effects
ittle, we were always as we were honest s, we’d live a guilt-
every day. We’re all estly, lies are everydeﬁnitely no excep-
hese lies something
lie,” a sophomore, n anonymous, said. grain of truth, but
re often associated ation. On any given an ruin friendships, nd slowly tear you
ndency to ‘become’ nt Principal Tanya person hears a ruwhat is expected of hting it, they become m other people.” mors have the caparping an entire pers it that continues to es we were taught to
“From my perspective,” freshman guidance counselor Brent Irwin said, “you can’t be feeling very good about yourself if you’re talking negatively about somebody else.” The development of a rumor doesn’t stop at ‘made up lie’—in fact, it’s a lie backed by our own bias. Spreading rumors is seen to be a popular method of indirect revenge- it’s anonymous and fatal. But there’s another victim involved. “[Spreading rumors] basically facilitates in your unhappiness and poor self-esteem. It keeps those things alive inside of you,” Irwin said. Insecurity and fear are the source of rumors, and rumors spread these emotions. In this way, one can even assert that rumors resemble a virus. “I knew somebody who had a rumor started about them, and they ended up trying to overdose,” another anonymous student said. “He ended up in the hospital, and now, people are regretting what they said, but it did affect him.” Even when students aren’t a ﬁrst-hand witness to a drastic event like this one, they are aware of the consequences of rumors. “I’ve seen rumors make people cry, even push others to depression,” another anonymous student said. “There’s even kids I know who’ve switched schools or even left school because of a rumor they heard about them, even when they know it’s not true.” Students are obviously aware of the ef-
fect rumors have on people; many of them speak from having been witnesses to such situations. But, at the same time, a social stigma has been attached to even the mention of the word ‘rumors,’ is it possible that there might even be a hint of honor associated with spreading them? The chances are, yes, it’s possible. “Spreading rumors can be associated with a position of power,” Hiller said. “It’s not intended for anyone to feel powerful doing this, but the power comes from taking your own fears and insecurities and putting them on someone else.” In an ideal society, we are honest and kind, and no one is unhappy or hurt, but we have to realize that this is the exact place we’re not living in. We can’t safe-proof the walls of our school or tend to every hurt feeling or broken relationship. Rumors are simply what they run into growing up—a part of our life throughout school. However, Irwin’s thinking is a little more optimistic. “Of course, we should take out the ‘glamour and glory’ of spreading rumors. The positive attention that many people get from spreading them,” Irwin said. “But it all comes down to just plain self-esteem. We’ve got to do whatever we can to make kids feel better about themselves so they don’t sense that need to do whatever they need to do to feel accepted.”
Can You Keep It?
Grapevine graphic by Brenna Proﬁt, Photos by Sarah Boggis & Clare Kilmartin
Where are you at football games? From concessions to bleachers, cliques emerge where students stand
Wearing rave-themed attire, the student section cheers on the Vikings during the homecoming game against Grimsley Sept. 27. The Vikings won, 39-7.
Sarah Colby news editor For Northwest, home football games are a huge social event. You get to see your friends, our award-winning marching band, and if you’re into it, possibly a good football game. With all the people that go to Northwest, naturally, groups will pop up. Standing near the concession stand, you will ﬁnd the middle schoolers cool enough to go to a high school game and some freshmen who enjoy hanging out with them. The idea is to be near the food so when others become hungry, they’ll be able to see how awesome this group is for being at the games. While this group will occasionally dress for the theme of the game, often they won’t know what it was until they get there because they don’t go to the school to ﬁnd out ahead of time. “The freshmen like to socialize because they want to get popular and make friends because they’re new,” junior Lauren Alemanni said.
Student At h l e t e Profiles Northwest coaches selected the following students for their exceptional athletic ablilties. Catch a glimpse of some of Northwest’s hardworking athletes.
On the other side of the bleachers are the deafness. These musically gifted many put on sophomores and the freshmen too cool to a show at half time nearly every game that associate with the middle-schoolers. Ironi- wows the crowd that does happen to glance cally, this group knows about the themes yet up from their oh-so-busy social lives to see. does not dress for them due to the fact that “To this day, I know not to walk in front they are “too cool.” The large majority of the of the marching band because you’ll either time spent go deaf over here or there’s is spent no room huddled in to walk,” circles talkLenard said. ing to their In the friends and center of no actual the stands junior Jasmine Lenard football lays the wa t ch i n g quintessenoccurs. tial ‘student section,’ despite the fact that the “When I was a sophomore, I never large majority of the entire crowd is, indeed, watched the football game,” junior Jasmine made up of students. Here is the very heart Lenard said. “It was merely another social of the football crowd. Unless you are entirely event to get to know more people.” dressed to the theme, do not expect to be Thus we reach the bleachers where many welcomed here. social groups form. On the far side, near the “I’ve learned that if you aren’t wearing concession stand, the very dedicated march- the proper attire for the game, you should be ing band sits, taking up the entirety of that prepared to be yelled at by seniors,” Lenard side. Walking over on that side at the wrong said. moment will result in temporary, partial To obtain a good spot in the student sec-
If you aren’t wearing the proper attire for a game...be prepared to be yelled at by seniors.
Boys’ Cross Country Aadam Haque
Photo by Clare Kilmartin
tion, you must arrive at least 15 minutes prior to kickoff and be ready to lose your voice in the pride you hold for Northwest. The closer to the front of the stands, the more pride you hold for being a Viking. “The juniors and seniors are hard-core fans,” Alemanni said. Behind the ever-growing student section is the parents of the football players. These are the people who actually want to watch the game but unfortunately got stuck behind a wall of standing, shouting teenagers. They are not afraid to yell at you if you stand in their view for too long. On the opposite side of the bleachers is the upper classmen who choose not to be in the student section. Often these are the few who go purely to watch the game and not have to join in on every cheer. While this is a novel idea, often this seems to be the least energetic and most unhappy crowd in the entire stadium. Whether people are at the football game to socialize, cheer on their child, or show the tremendous amount of school spirit they possess, Northwest has one of the biggest social events of the year, every Friday night.
Personal record: 16:56
Pre-game ritual: “I listen to music to get pumped for the game.”
Pre-game ritual: “Blast music in the locker room, our traditional run through of the gym and the Lord’s Prayer.”
Pre-game ritual: “I try to calm myself down and listen to music.” Most memorable moment: “Making my current PR at the 2013 Greensboro XC invitational at Hagan Stone Park.”
Girls’ Cross Country Shelby Spalding
Most memorable moment: “Everytime Hannah Rouse falls on her butt.”
Most memorable moment: “Beating Ardrey Kell my freshman year.”
Marching Band Karina Gomes
Position: Middle Linebacker
Personal record: 22:25
Pre-game ritual: “I get dressed and listen to music.”
Pre-game ritual: “We circle up and pray then put our hands in and say a chant.”
Pre-game ritual: “I blast Journey’s ‘Don’t Stop Believin” on my iPod and sing it out loud to my teammates.”
ritual: Pre-game ritual “The band is called to a ready.”
Most memorable moment: “During a Northeast scrimmage, a guy came to block me, and my knee went out. When I went to the doctor, I learned that I tore my ACL.”
Most memorable moment: “Going to Wilmington with the team.”
Most memorable moment: “Beating Providence in the third round of playoffs by penalty kicks my sophomore year.”
Most memorable moment: “I love the football games. I get to hang out with all my friends.”
Photos and proﬁles compiled by staff writers
cost of participating $pectrum of $pending: Theintrue high school athletics Mackenzie Mitchell staff writer As the entertainment value of sports increases, professional athletes’ salaries continue to rise. The cost of training for potential professional athletes has trickled down to the high school level. Parents of Northwest athletes are bearing the burden of these costs. “Sports become very expen-
sive,” Garry Mitchell, vice president of the Northwest Guilford High School Football Booster Club said. “Different sports cost different amounts of money.” A few questions to ask yourself are, which sport is the most costfriendly for your family’s lifestyle? How committed are you to your possible future career choice as an athlete? How much are you willing to pay to make your dream come true?—because it’s no lie; every-
thing comes with a price tag, even fun after-school activities that you hope will bloom into something you can do for the rest of your life. “Sports are great for kids,” said Felix Bello, father of aspiring sophomore soccer player Stephan Bello. “It’s the healthy, right thing to do if you can afford it.” Bello also stated that sports take a lot of time and commitment for the parents and a lot of support
for the kids. “Myles [my son] does out-ofschool football training to get ﬁt for the season,” Mitchell said. Athletics may require a large amount of time and dedication, but most student athletes and their parents know that it’s deﬁnitely worth the effort. Mitchell said that sports create “visibilities for colleges and universities.” Mitchell is right by saying that;
athletics show up on college applications, and whether or not you’re involved in a club or activity most certainly impacts a school’s decision to admit you. Some parents are still willing to take on the ﬁnancial burden to help their kids possibly reach their dreams, and in the meantime, keep them physically ﬁt. “Sports are great, but not everyone can afford to do it,” Bello said.
Gear • Knee pads: $35 • Crew Socks: $12 • Shoes: $60 - $120 • Spandex: $20 • Ankle braces: $80 Training • Piedmont Volleyball Club: $1,500 - $3,000 TOTAL: $2,487
Gear • Swim Suit: $80 • Goggles: $20 • Swim Cap: $12 Training • STAR Aquatics: $1,044 $1980 • Greensboro Community YMCA Makos: $1,055 $1,175 TOTAL $1,426
Travel costs are not included, training is annual and all numbers are averaged.
Gear • Gloves: $200 • Stick: $200 • Pads: $150 • Cleats: $100 - $200 • Helmet: $250 • Mouth Guard:$15 Training • Old North State Lacrosse: $265 TOTAL: $1,230
Gear • Stick: $200 • Goggles: $50 • Cleats: $100 - $200 • Mouth Guard: $15 Training • Panther Lacrosse Club: $800 TOTAL: $1,215
Gear • Shin-guards: $20 - $25 • Goalkeeper gloves: $100 - $150 • Cleats: $100 - $200 • Socks: $16 Training • Piedmont Triad Football Club: $750 • Greensboro United Soccer Association: $475 - $685 TOTAL $1,011
Photos and information compiled by Sarah Colby, Mackenzie Mitchell, Brenna Proﬁt & Willa Ma
Arts & Culture
Where the wild things are:
Mother Nature’s craziest and wackiest animals revealed Dormice
Mice have special, cylindrical shaped bodies that are specially designed so that when they’re in need of a tricky escape, they can slip through a hole the size of a ballpoint pen, one-fourth of an inch, in a matter of seconds. That would be like a person whose 5-foot-9 ﬁtting through a hole the size of a children’s soccer ball, 55-cm. Despite popular belief, mice cannot dislocate their joints in order to squeeze through the holes. Rather, their entire skeletal system is built in alignment with their head; if the skull ﬁts, the body follows. Mice are extremely agile and their small ﬁgures give them the upper hand when running away from predators. This winter, mice will be swarming from their woodland homes toward the warmth of human houses in order to escape the cold. They get in by ﬁnding those small, ballpoint pen sized holes in a home’s structure. Most of the time, simply sealing up those holes will do the trick to keep out those winter mice, but they’re crafty creatures. With their ability to jump up to 15-inches, their incredible swimming strength, and the fact that they can travel up almost vertical surfaces, these little critters are nature’s little burglars.
Living beneath the waters of the Chesapeake Bay lurks a deadly, undersea killer. Armed with talons that are capable of smashing brick, the peacock mantis shrimp is astounding researchers everywhere with its destructive capabilities. Being the most destructive of the mantis shrimp species, an eight-inch peacock mantis shrimp can thrust its arm-like clubs at enemies at speeds of over 80-kilometers per hour, boiling the water around its strike. If a human could access one-fourth of that speed, they would be able to throw a baseball into orbit. Peacock mantis shrimps are known for two major things: their markings, which are accentuated in neon colors representing the markings of a peacock, and their tempers. Peacocks are so aggressive, that when irritated by an unknown person, they’ll violently attack their aquarium walls until
the walls shatter and break. From there, the peacock mantis shrimp will escape from their enclosure and peruse the unknown individual until the peacock mantis shrimp is contained, or the victim ﬂees from beyond its grasp. While the peacock mantis shrimp may be the most aggressive, it certainly isn’t the largest. The zebra mantis shrimp can grow to 16 inches and prefers to smash its food to pieces, unlike the piercing methods of the peacock mantis shrimp. This gentle giant is far different from its colorful cousin. The zebra mantis shrimp has distinct, black-and-white striped markings, which give the crustacean its name. Rather than using their claws as weapons of mass destruction, the zebra mantis shrimp uses its gift to peacefully create tunnels and burrows for itself, until it’s directly threatened; then nobody’s safe from the zebra mantis shrimp’s wrath.
Desmodium Gyrans, otherwise known as the “dancing plant,” will slowly move its leaves when it feels the warmth of sunlight or reverberations from music. This Asian shrub was one of Charles Darwin’s favorites. He wrote about it in his book, “More Letters of Charles Darwin Volume II.” The dancing plant will grow to about two feet tall, and prefers to be in warm, humid climates. Very rarely are these entertaining plants discovered in nature, but when they are they are mainly found in California.
The blue scorpion, also known as the Rhopalurus junceus, is an endemic species only found in Cuba and is the largest scorpion in the country. It adapts easily to different habitats but is extremely protective of its territory. This causes them to resort to cannibalism. The blue scorpion’s venom is used in a product called ESCOZUL, a treatment for cancer. ESCOZUL was created in 2005 in Cuba, and it has shown antitumor activity against a variety of cancers. The drug also has anti-inﬂammatory and pain-killing properties
The Voodoo lily, also known as the stink lily, is a native plant of the East Mediterranean. The
plant is very appealing to look at, but it exudes an odor of rotting meat. They do this to attract ﬂies, which act as their pollinators. Flies come from miles around and slide down the spathe, a leaf like bract that encloses the ﬂower, and gets trapped because it cannot climb up the smooth surface. When the spathe withers, the ﬂy is free.
The web-footed gecko or the Palmetto gecko is an endemic gecko found in the Namib Desert. They are nocturnal and only come out of their burrows when the temperatures have dropped at night. Their skin is nearly transparent, which help it camouﬂage in the sand. The gecko has webbed feet that help it walk on through their habitat and also help them dig through mounds. This strange creature has an adhesive pad on each of their toes, which makes it easier for them to climb trees. Their oversized eyes help it ﬁnd prey and see at night. The webfooted gecko collects water in its eyes. They do this in order to store water and stay cool. When it gets too hot, they stretch their tongue out and lick their eyes for water.
Giant siphonophores are a type of deep-water jellyﬁsh that are a red-orange color. They are the longest animals in the world and can be up to 40 meters or 130 feet long. There are about 175 species of siphonophores. Despite their incredible length, the giant siphonophore is not much thicker than a broomstick. They are difﬁcult to collect because they are extremely fragile. They pass right through nets and turn into a slime. Even the slightest force can cause it to break into pieces. They consist primarily of a gelatinous material, like a normal jellyﬁsh. Siphonophores are colonial animals, which mean they are made up of many multicellular individuals called zooids. Siphonophores divide the work between the zooids. This means that some parts will catch prey, others will reproduce, some will digest food and others will focus on swimming. They are also bioluminescent; whenever it bumps into something, its stem will glow with a blue light.
Written by Willa Ma, Lindsey McGuirk, & Melanie Jenkins. Graphic by Brenna Proﬁt
Arts & Culture
Setting the Scene:
Northwest tech theater students share their part in producing a play Lilac-Rain Thompson contributing writer In tech theater, the students design sets, but they also do a lot more. Hard work and time goes into the productions at Northwest. As the tech theater class prepares for the upcoming play “Oz,” the stakes become higher everyday. “It’s easier not being on stage. You don’t have to have everybody watching you, but you still have to be just as perfect as the actors,” senior Anna Nolta said. The designing and building pro-
cess is much more difﬁcult than it seems. It takes as long to build the set and design the costumes as it takes an actor or actress to learn their lines: approximately six weeks. “I can’t imagine how some teachers teach the same subject all day long,” drama teacher Abby Cockman said. “I think it’s really neat to get to work with different students that aren’t interested in performing and are more interested in what you do back stage.” Not just one person can complete the whole set; it takes a team. The tech theater class has to start
somewhere, so this designing process begins with a sheet of paper. Planning what they are going to build, how they are going to build it and what supplies they are going to need to get the job done before their deadline are all the essential parts of the process. Designing anything, from a costume to a set to make-up, requires hours of planning that the audience may only see for a few minutes. The audience can look at anything found onstage at any point in a production and think, “Yeah, someone was frustrated while de-
signing this.” “It’s fun to get more personal time with Ms. Cockman because you get to come in after school, instead of just being in class with her,” junior Holli Benﬁeld said. Being backstage for the students in tech theater, they’re just as comfortable as the actors on stage. Of course, they’d rather be in the audience to see their creations come to life, but helping around backstage and seeing what the actors do with their set offers up excitement for the students who spent so much time designing it. “Whenever you’re in tech, you
don’t actually get to sit in the audience; you’re just waiting in the wings, and you’re seeing it from the side rather than from where the audience is sitting,” said senior Anna Nolta. Whether it’s helping with a quick change or working the lighting, they all play their part. The students who are in tech theater say they’ll never regret taking the class. It’s a large class, but all the students get the opportunity to shine. “All I know is I make a lot of friends when I work behind the scenes,” Benﬁeld said.
Photos by Brenna Proﬁt
(Left) Senior Anna Nolta and junior Holli Benﬁeld screw together two peices of wood for a set. They work from behind the scenes every show so that objectives can get done. (Top right) Senior Emmy Anderson and junior Autumn Michael sew a rainbow dress for the upcoming production “Oz.” Sometimes, building a set can take just as long as the actors learning their lines, and most times, even longer. (Bottom right) Nolta and Benﬁeld move a pillar into place to get ready for a rehearsal. The rehearsals themselves are just as important to the tech theater students as it is to the actors.
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Where in the world? How four Northwest seniors spent their summer serving others Sarah Deutchki co-editor in chief
If you had the choice to go on vacation to the beach or visit the slums of a damaged neighborhood, which would you choose? Senior Carlie Bateman spent a part of her summer looking at broken-down houses and poverty rather than tanning on the beach or going to the pool. Bateman traveled by plane to Kansas City on a mission trip this summer with her church’s youth group. The total cost of the trip was about $826 per person, and they held fundraisers to accumulate enough money for everyone to go. The group worked in an impoverished neighborhood that consisted of
Thalia Villarosa staff writer
Senior Boe Renslow spent his summer in Managua, Nicaragua, located in Central America. As tropical as this sounds, this trip was not for vacation reasons. “While I was there I spent my time helping out the city, building a soccer ﬁeld, building and preparing a garden and painting murals for the city,” Renslow said. Nicaragua is the second-poorest country in Latin America. When Renslow and friends decided to
mostly Spanish-speaking families, and they focused primarily on the children there. “It was different to see these kids who are in elementary and middle school that don’t speak very much English,” Bateman said. “It was interesting to see their culture and how different it is from ours.” Bateman and her youth group spent a week doing different jobs throughout the community, including construction and repainting the local YMCA, setting up a sports camp for the young children and helping operate an after-school daycare for elementary school kids. “It was really cool to get to know these people who live so differently than we do,” Bateman said.
Sarah Deutchki co-editor in chief
travel to a foreign country, they selected a country that really needed it. Renslow did not go with any of his family; his trip was arranged and he went with mainly college students. However, his parents and siblings are also active in helping out other countries striving for improvements and bringing the poverty level down. The Renslows take regular trips each year to serve others and to serve a higher purpose. “The eleven days I was there could not have been long enough, I would have loved to stay there forever and continue to build up their city,” Renslow said.
Nick Loschin entertainment editor
Photos contributed by featured students, graphic by Liz Deutchki & Nikole Nguyen
Sunscreen. Beach hair. Congress. Senior Olivia Anderson’s summer consisted of vacation like everyone else, but she also had an internship with Howard Coble, one of North Carolina’s representatives in the House of Representatives. Anderson spent about three hours every day during the month of August in Coble’s High Point ofﬁce. Anderson worked closely with Coble and also got to work closely with constituents, namely, the people in our district of North Carolina. “We mainly worked on immigration, or Social Security or veteran affairs,” Anderson said. Anderson says she has always
Every year, many students do summer service and sacriﬁce the cool relaxing beaches to help out those in need. Senior Rachael Gray was one of these students. She traveled to Cuba with her youth group to work for National Youth Conference for three days. She didn’t have the comfort of a bed; she had to sleep on the church ﬂoor and then spend her days talking about God with locals who attended the conference. “I was called to be in the ministry as a missionary, which was life changing for me,” Gray said. Gray said that many of the people who visited the conference
loved government, even as a young girl. She sought out the internship with Coble after she met him when he came and spoke to her AP government class last school year. “I got really interested, and I respect him,” Anderson said. The internship gave her the opportunity to really feel what it is like to be a part of the government rather than just learning it from a book. “It was amazing,” Anderson said. “It is one thing to be in an AP Government class and hear about the problems in our world. To actually be living that and hearing people’s problems makes you realize the stuff that is actually happening. It’s breathtaking.”
actually had life-changing experiences, and many even converted to Christianity. Gray has also traveled to Ecuador with her church. When she was there she helped build a church and did manual labor. She also went to a women’s prison to minster some of the women. They took their passports and locked them inside the prison so that they could talk to the women. Gray’s mother spoke at the prison while her sister translated. “A lot of people were saved that day,” Gray said. “That was the best part.” Gray has not only sacriﬁced one summer; last year, she traveled to Ecuador. She plans to keep traveling to foreign countries to aid people in poverty.
One hundred freshmen were polled to find out what they were scared of most when starting high school Getting Lost Were you afraid of being that one kid that had to pull out a map to ﬁnd your classes? That’s why they’re given at freshmen orientation, right? Thirty-four percent of the surveyed freshmen said that getting lost was their number one fear before entering high school.
Not ﬁnding new friends Coming in close second, 23 percent of freshman said having difﬁculty ﬁnding friends was their biggest fear before the start of freshman year this August. After all, no one wants to sit alone at lunch or wonder who to sit with during partner work in class.
Having too much homework Fearing that homework would consume all free time was a popular fear among the freshman class. Imagining a very large stack of homework that would take hours to complete crossed the minds of about 19 percent of freshmen surveyed by Northwest Horizons.
Getting the ﬁrst “F” High school is the time to make your ﬁrst failing grade ,whether it is on a test or in a class. About 13 percent of the upcoming freshmen feared that the work would be so hard that the dreaded “F” would appear among their grades for the ﬁrst time.
Having mean teachers Having a mean teacher came in ﬁfth for the freshmen fears. Eleven percent of the surveyed freshmen said this was their number one fear before school started. This is popular among freshman due to movies that glorify the horrors of high school instead of the pleasures.
Graphics by Mackenzie Mitchell, article compiled by Liz Deutchki
Ever walk in on the wrong part of a conversation? Ever hear someone talking and start laughing at what the person was saying, even though he or she was not talking to you? Welcome to “hall talk.”
“Then the donkey ate my papaya.” “I’m going to be a zombie vampire.” “I kept thinking, ‘Why am I riding this pig to the fair?’” “Life is more fun if you don’t use your common sense.” “Some of my friends call me Jesus.” “Coffee is like sweet nectar from the heavens.”
Graphic by Mackenzie Mitchell
Which Woods Would Win? Between Woods of Terror and Spookywoods: which is the scariest?
Woods of Terror
had relaxed my tense muscles, but my heart rate jumped back up when they told us to proceed to the front of the line. Gravel crackled underneath us as It was now my group’s turn to go. we made our way through the maze In front of me stood one of the actors of cars inching along the path to- drenched in blood. She beckoned us ward the cloud of smoke near the forward, and I felt my friends gripping entrance. Dirt and dust clouded my arm. I never would have thought the lot as people pushed past us. I that I would be the brave one in this stepped out of the car, already shak- situation. ing with anticipation, as we entered Paralyzed by the darkness, we had to Woods of Terror. feel our way through a tunnel. We conIt was “Press Night,” so we had tinued until coming to a halt. a chance to relax before entering It was warm that night, but it was the woods. Brenna unusually warm in (spread editor) octhe tunnel that we Our biggest fears cupied herself by had just entered. I sorting through wondered brieﬂy were bound to turn pictures in her why this was until camera. Carson up, and that was the a light ﬂicked on (editor in chief) and directly to the best part. tapped his foot right of me in glass and played with cages, inches from his phone. We all my shoulder, was sat gnawing on a one of the newest bit of food they provided, waiting attractions: snakes. for it all to start. As we proceeded through the rest Before entering the woods, we of this segment, my friends and I congot to enjoy some of the action be- tinued to jump out of our skin as many hind the scenes. Makeup demonstra- of the actors jumped out at us. It was tions were done, followed by a press their specialty, to say the least. conference with Eddie McLaurin, The loud noises and various corners the owner of Woods of Terror. in which the actors hid were enough for McLaurin spoke about where his me. Each segment of the attraction had inspiration has come from over the something different that frightened us. years as the attraction has grown. Clowns petriﬁed me, pirates terrorized “I would ﬂy out overnight and Brenna, and Carson silently trembled as go anywhere I could to see what I we fast-walked through the house full considered the top 20 [attractions],” of vampires. McLaurin said. “I started looking Our biggest fears were bound to at what they were doing, I thought, turn up, and that was the best part. The ‘this is incredible.’” night was full of adrenaline-pumping, After delaying my trip into the exhilarating moments of pure terror woods for about an hour or so, I that were deﬁnitely worthwhile. Liz Deutchki features editor
Nick Loschin entertainment editor
stalks and ﬁre. Around every turn was a new monster to make sure my blood was still pumping. All of a sudden, it became silent; the Torches lit the way as I made suspense built as a ﬁre erupted in the turn into the award-winning the middle of the corn maze revealSpookywoods haunted house at- ing the faces of the monsters and traction. When I stepped out of beasts. my car my heart was already racThe last and ﬁnal part of the ing as an undead scarecrow jumped Spookywoods horriﬁc experience out at me. I went to go purchase was the main haunted house. Demy ticket, and I was followed by a signed like a castle with a forebodspine-chilling pirate. ing skull at the entrance, the house Opening night was Sept. 28 and held many more monsters and even the line to start the attraction was a plane crash. The ﬂoor shifted bepacked; however, neath my feet fret not, the horand the walls Spookywoods rors still went on. began to rattle While waiting, I was scary from the as I gripped met a magician tightly to the moment I stepped rope. Next was who stuck a screwdriver up his nose a room that out of my car. as I listened to the was all strobe screams of people lights, creating entering the hauntan experience ed house. giving the efGoosebumps proliferated on fect of rapid scenes. my arms as I entered the haunted Then all of a sudden, the room house and was taken aback by a went black, and I was forced to go murderous butcher welcoming me through a tight black tube with the to my near death. Then a doctor walls pressing in on me. When I followed with his mentally unstable entered the courtyard, dwarfs and patient. The next room over con- goblins came chasing at my feet. I tained a deathly cofﬁn with a pos- passed through many more rooms sessed woman who stared at me of possessed spirits and undead through bright green eyes. versions of a cannibalistic tribe. I stepped outside to take a ride I ended my experience with a to an abandoned trail. My adrena- vortex- like simulation that caused line never ceased as people jumped me to lose my sense of direction. up on the trailer and whispered in Spookywoods was scary from my ear. Once on the trail, I was the moment I stepped out of my given a ﬂashlight to light the way all car. The acting of the monsters and the while being chased by a maniac beasts were superb and always kept with a chainsaw. me on my feet. I left the attraction Next I approached an eerie with a new deﬁnition of horror, corn maze with ﬁre and screams. I and it has changed my perception walked into the rattling of the corn of what is truly terrifying.