The Highlander May 2018 Vol IX Issue VI
Carlmont High School — Belmont, California
Blue Eyes Anti Cancer
BUILD-A-BABY Future possibility of genetically engineering your child
Photo Illustration by Jordan Hanlon
Mona Murhamer ScotLight Editor-in-Chief
When we were five years old, we decided what color our teddy bear would be, stuffed it with cotton, and dressed it up in whatever outfit we wanted. Now, instead of picking out their stuffed animals’ features, our kids may be picking out their kids’ features. Genetic manipulation of a fetus is a technology that will become a possibility for parents in the next 25 years, according to ABC News. “What’s going to happen over the next 10 to 25 years is that we are going to... understand how all of the genes in the genome effect how tall we are, whether we are likely to be thin or heavy, and then I think scientists are going to probe the brain and understand how people have different personalities and different levels of abilities,” said geneticist Lee Silver of Princeton University in an interview with ABC News. While our automatic assumption is that parents will now want to design babies with flawless skin, beautiful eyes, and shiny hair, scientists first hope to tackle the internal defects a baby may receive through its genes. With the prospect of choosing the genes that will develop into the “ideal” baby, scientists hope to create a pathway for new parents to medically enhance their child, and, hopefully, eliminate genetic diseases, such as sickle-cell anemia or cystic fibrosis. Before being able to pilot test the meth-
Weed In Medicine The future of CBD in health care and whether it’s beneficial Page 9
od on humans, researchers must first look why that same technology couldn’t be apat CRISPR, a family of DNA sequences in plied to human embryos.” bacteria that create snippets of virus DNA. While the goal would be to breed out To successfully complete the pilot test, they genetic diseases, geneticists worry that promust prevent CRISPR from creating muta- spective parents would engineer their child tions in the embryo. to be, more or less, superhuman. Over the past year, Alta Charo, a bioethAccording to Dr. Juan Carlos Izpisua icist at the University of Wisconsin Madi- Belmonte, a co-author and geneticist at the son, says researchers “have made progress Salk Institute, the hormone Erythropoietin in understanding and preventing the ways (EPO), which some athletes have been disin which genome-editing techniques, such ciplined for taking, “is produced by a gene, as CRISPR, cause unintended mutations,” so you could, in theory, engineer yourself according to Scientific American. to produce more EPO.” So, the outlook is positive for coming Modifications like these may result in generations, right? societal inequity, says Marcy Darnovsky, Not necessarily. executive director of the Center for GenetAccording to ABC News, genes aren’t ics and Society. the only factor that determine how a child “Allowing any form of human germdevelops. Factors such as environment and line modification leaves the way open for how one is raised can affect the develop- all kinds — especially when fertility clinics ment of a person, in addition to their ge- start offering ‘genetic upgrades’ to those netic makeup. able to afford them,” Darnovsky said in a Essentially, talents and traits don’t come statement. from a single gene, but rather complex geBut parents seem to be opposed to the netic makeups that can’t exactly be modi- idea of their future baby possibly ruling the fied just yet. world. In fact, according to the New York “If everyone programmed their own Times, some scientists estimate height is kids, then everyone would be ‘super smart’ influenced by as many as 93,000 genetic or ‘super athletes.’ There would be a lot of variations, and most physical diseases and the same type of people. There wouldn’t psychiatric disorders follow suit. be as much diversity or variety,” expectant Despite the complexity of the practice, mother Risa Goldberg said in an interview some scientists remain hopeful. with ABC News. “We already perfected [the technolMore importantly, some parents say ogy needed to choose genes] in mice so it’s they would opt out of genetic selection out already being applied to lots of mammal of fear of harming their unborn child. species – sheep, cows, goats,” Silver said to “We didn’t [genetically modify the sex] ABC News. “There is absolutely no reason because if something ever went wrong with In This Issue
College Pathways Carlmont students go in different directions after high school Page 10
Gender Equalty in Sports Co-ed athletics spark a united future between men and women Page 15
the child, I would never be able to forgive myself, and I’d always be looking back on it and saying, ‘Is it because I did this? And is the reason [something went wrong] because I decided to do pre-gender selection?’” Janice Chabkin, another expectant mother said to ABC News. For others, like Tara Dezham, a senior with Celiac disease, genetic selection could be a possibility in her future. “When I was a kid, I would go to parties and not be able to eat pizza and cake, and now, it’s hard because there are still some foods that don’t have gluten free versions,” she said. “I would probably choose to have the gene removed because it’s hard for me to deal with [Celiac disease], so I wouldn’t want it for my kids.” So, for now, genetic selection seems to be at a standstill while parents and ethicists alike struggle to find the balance between helping and hurting the upcoming generations. If we want options, I guess we’ll have to stick to Build-A-Bear for now.
See more topics covering subjects about the possibilities in the world’s future - Changing demographics of U.S. Page 2 - Future of gun control Page 4
- Possible cancer cures world wide Page 7
News Campus Lifestyle Features Center Community Sports Opinion Back
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Carlmont’s demographics shift Kaylee George Staff Writer
Half of the students in California aren’t white. This may seem like a shocking statistic considering America’s historically homogenous racial makeup, but with time the average American student portrays new streaks of diversity. California is already ahead of the rest of the nation, being a majority-minority state (not having a single racial or ethnic majority). The U.S. will achieve this status by 2055, according to Pew Research. In data found by the National Center for Education Statistics, children of color became the new majority in America’s public schools in 2014. Over the last 20 years, the number of Hispanic public schoolchildren has more than doubled, and the number of Asians has swelled by 56 percent. The number of black students and American Indians grew far more modestly, but the number of white students fell by about 15 percent. Carlmont student Roy Zhao, a senior, is one student who immigrated from China to the U.S. in 2016. “The reason why I came here was probably because student life in China is boring. We barely have time to do extracurricular stuff during the school year since everyone just works very hard to prepare for an entrance exam to high school or college,” Zhao said. “Education and the job market here is a lot better.” However, this shift in racial makeup has come with its challenges. There are still disparities between different ethnicities and their socioeconomic place in society, even in the diverse Bay Area. David Talcott, a teacher who commutes two hours from, Antioch, noted that although American society has become more diverse, there is still racial separation that exists. With a more diverse racial demographic, there has been
an impact on the image that certain schools portray, even in the lowest forms of education. “The elementary school that my son is set to go to in one year is ranked 1/10 on Great Schools largely because of the racial problems dealing with the poverty, the violence, and things of that nature that you don’t want to associate with school,” Talcott said. In the recent Carlmont WASC visit, the committee noted there’s a problem in how the same mainstream groups dominate honors courses, while certain subgroups are falling behind. “When we are talking about closing achievement gaps, we are talking about closing subgroups who are scoring lower than the primary groups at this school,” Talcott said. And Talcott is right. Carlmont’s student body is not majority-minority. This has caused more attention to the achievement gaps so that all students are given equal opportunities. This achievement gap not only happens at Carlmont but nationwide. According to the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights, black and Latino students make up 37 per-
cent of high school students but only 27 percent of students taking AP classes and 18 percent of students passing AP exams. Although education systems are making efforts to help bridge the gap between the racial disparities, it can sometimes be challenging as different cultures or families can value different attributes. Talcott said, “When you’re talking about race, the individual is really an amazing thing. One of the reasons they are scoring lower is because we are testing them in the same way towards the strengths of the groups that are already scoring well, so we’re missing the whole student.” Ultimately, the demographic divide has created contrasts in the education system. Now, it’s a matter of adapting to the ever-changing “average” student to allow for widespread educational opportunity. “It’s not a level playing field. There is so much more depth to people than we see at school, and it’s sad that we have to have things like achievement gaps when the problem is that they aren’t achieving, it’s that they aren’t achieving as much at the things we are testing them on,” Talcott said.
Sequoia District Demographics
Black 2% Asian 8%
Asian 21% Hispanic 46%
North American FIFA bid may be successful Ben Balster Staff Writer After losing in almost every recent bid to host the FIFA World Cup, the U.S. leads a joint bid (the United Bid) with Canada and Mexico against Morocco to be the host country (or continent) of the FIFA 2026 World Cup. Despite the combination of the three countries’ resources, the rival bid from Morocco has challenged the United Bid with the support of many African countries and some select countries in Europe and Latin America. In response to some of America’s political allies supporting Morocco, President Donald Trump retaliated through his social media. Trump tweeted, “The U.S. has put together a STRONG bid w/ Canada & Mexico for the 2026 World Cup. It would be a shame if countries that we always support were to lobby against the U.S. bid. Why should we be supporting these countries when they don’t support us (including at the United Nations)?” (sic). Trump’s threats come in the context of French and Belgian support for Morocco’s world cup bid, and while Trump’s political retaliation is considered by many to be inappropri-
ate, the Moroccan bid faces similar controversy following the effects that hosting the 2014 World Cup had on Brazil’s economy. “Obviously, Trump shouldn’t be threatening other countries over something as politically insignificant the World Cup, especially considering much of the world considers it a unifying event. However, in my opinion, Morocco should not host the World Cup,” said Thomas Leme, a junior. “Brazil had one of the world’s fastest growing economies in the 2000s, but now, after hosting both the latest World Cup and [Summer] Olympics, the economy has been completely destroyed.” In Brazil, the compounded losses from hosting both the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympics have sent the economy spiraling backward at the expense of social and political stability. “I go to Brazil every year, and I’ve noticed that everything has been more expensive the last couple of years because of all the inflation coming in due to [hosting] all these events,” Leme said. Brazil’s World Cup plans were ambitious and a lot of controversy surrounded the displacement of poor Brazilians, but the prominence of soccer in Brazil’s culture meant that a number of stadiums already existed for use in the World Cup, meaning few new ones needed to be built from scratch. “Even though [Brazil] built various stadiums for the World Cup, we [already] had plenty of big ones that only required a little bit of remodeling for the World Cup. Morocco, on the other hand, has a
much smaller tradition of soccer and will need to build more stadiums and therefore waste more money,” Leme said. The proposed plan set in the Moroccan bid calls for 14 stadiums and an investment of more than $16 billion. However, according to the New York Times, Morocco only has six stadiums, most of which do not meet the minimum standards set by FIFA for capacity and safety. Chris Alvarez, a junior, said, “Many countries see a loss of money and resources that they initially invested to boost of tourism, and while the exposure in the international community may have some benefits in this respect, Morocco would have to build a lot of new stadiums and find a way to prepare the country to host, which requires a huge amount of time, resources, and manpower.” The problem with such a large investment into hosting the world cup or another mega-event (such as the Olympic Games) becomes apparent in the years following the event’s short economic boost, when the massive stadiums and grand hotels fail to fulfill the expected returns after the event has passed. “The U.S economy can gain from hosting because we already have stadiums and venues that can accommodate the games and influx of tourism,” said Alvarez. “Other countries like Brazil didn’t have the facilities or infrastructure to accommodate hosting the World Cup, resulting in a diversion of resources away from their citizens into this one-time event.” The North American coalition of Canada, Mexico, and the USA already possess all of the accommodations other host countries lacked. In the list of cities promoted in the North American bid, 17 in America and three each in Mexico and Canada, each city has a proposed stadium that already meets FIFA’s requirements such as the MetLife Stadium for New York, the Rose
Bowl for Los Angeles, or Levi’s Stadium for San Francisco. In support of the North American bid, the United Bid Committee released the results of a study done by The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) that predicts a net economic bolster of $3–$4 billion in North America overall and goes on to report breakdowns on a per city basis. According to the United Bid Committee, “The study further estimates that individual host cities could expect to see approximately $160–$620 million in incremental economic activity. That translates to a net benefit of approximately $90–$480 million per city after accounting for potential public costs.” Despite the BCG’s report, the World Cup has had a history of underestimating costs and overestimating revenue. Even the biggest cities in some smaller host countries have seen either net neutral or negative impacts after hosting the World Cup. Leme said, “The whole state of Rio de Janeiro went bankrupt after the Olympics and is now essentially run by gangs since the government has lost all money and power, so I don’t think cities in underdeveloped countries, even big ones like Rio, can safely host the World Cup.” With many countries opposing an American World Cup in favor of a smaller country’s chance in the spotlight, the bid to host the World Cup has come down to a debate between the cultural diversity Morocco can bring as hosts of the World Cup and the potential economic ruin the megaevent can bring upon the country. “Only rich countries with pre-established infrastructure can afford to host the World Cup,” Leme said. “Unfortunately, people consider this racist, and to promote globalism they encourage some foolish, poor country to commit economic suicide by hosting these [mega-events].”
The U.S. Census affects everyone 2020 census may misrespresent minority groups Cath Lei Staff Writer
The government knows where you live. They know how you commute to work or school. They know how much you earn and they know the average income of your neighborhood. They know all of this because of the U.S. census. No matter how divided the country is, all Americans are supposed to take part and complete a data survey every 10 years. In fact, it’s enshrined in the Constitution; Article 1, Section 2 states that an “actual Enumeration shall be made within three Years after the first Meeting of the Congress of the United States, and within every subsequent Term of ten Years” (sic). But many Americans have no idea why the census is important and how it affects them. According to the Census Bureau, among the most frequently asked questions about the census are: “Is this a real survey?” “Why does the U.S. Census Bureau do surveys?” and “Do I have to participate in the survey?” When asked what she knew about the census, sophomore Sophia Krackov said, “I know that the census is used to make significant decisions on a federal level about taxes, but the
data is expensive to collect and usually does not reflect the population accurately.” And expensive it is. According to The Economist, the Census Bureau hired 550,000 employees and spent at least $12.3 billion trying to count every U.S. resident in 2010. In 1970, it cost an estimated $16 per household, $76 less than it was in 2010. On top of deciding taxes, the census is also used in other ways. Marketing sectors of businesses use the data to find their best locations according to their target demographic, campaign runners use it to figure out which destination points are necessary and which ones are easy wins, and activist groups and organizations use it to find out how to cater to different communities. But it’s hard for these organizations to provide resources for groups such as the LGBTQ community when the statistics and data aren’t accurate, or even close to the right numbers. The U.S. Census Bureau revealed in a congressional report that they would create a clear distinction on the 2020 Census between opposite and same-sex partners, but it would leave out unpartnered lesbians and gay people, bisexual people, and transgender people. According to Pew
Research Center, an estimated 40 percent of all LGBTQ adults in America identified as bisexual in 2014. Without adding in the margin of growth in the past four years, and without considering the percentage of unpartnered lesbians, gay men, and transgender people, nearly half of LGBTQ Americans will be unaccounted for. But considering the fact that same-sex marriage was legalized across all 50 states in the summer of 2015, just under three years ago, it’s understandable why unmarried LGBTQ people won’t be counted. The assumption before was that since same-sex marriage wasn’t legalized nationwide, anyone who wasn’t straight was automatically classified as unmarried. What happens next is a domino effect and it plays into everything from television to bathrooms. If media groups can’t accurately estimate the number of queer people in the U.S., they can’t state if the amount of queer characters to real people is proportional. If the government doesn’t know how many transgender people there are, the number of health resources for them could be too little. “I think having numbers relating to the transgender community is really impor-
tant,” said Spencer Stancil, a senior. “Having gender identity be a question on the census means acknowledgment of our community and could lead to an increase in resources provided for transgender people, specifically in LGBTQ spaces and communities.” LGBTQ Americans won’t be the only ones facing issues with the 2020 census. It will also be a skeptical process for undocumented immigrants and potentially specific racial or ethnic groups. It will ask about black-white origins, Hispanic and Latino origins, and about Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. According to the Census Bureau, families have “Americanized” their names or denied the existence of children born out of wedlock, and even lie about their true racial identity. The Census Bureau adds that “these inaccurate responses reflect the era’s feelings about race, ethnicity, and a host of other social conditions that can enlighten future generations.” With racial, political, social, and economic tensions once again at a high, it’s possible the 2020 census could have more inaccuracies. “Whether or not their data is counted, unregistered citizens play a role in
our society,” said U.S. history teacher Jarrod Harrison. “They’re a part of the workforce and they’re in our communities, and if the data is wrong, the resources and funds will be underestimated, which sets off a chain reaction across.” These inaccuracies are costly; data from the census and American Community Survey affects how more than $675 billion per year in federal and state funding is allocated to local, state, and tribal governments. Not only that, it also affects how many seats in the House of Representatives
each state gets. Whether the data is accurate or not, the numbers will affect real people in indirect and direct ways. “The census data has always been inaccurate to some degree, but the thing is that the government uses the data to distribute funds, decide how many seats there are in the house, and so much more,” Harrison said. “That’s why it’s important, and by not taking a part in it, it’s impossible for our society to be fully representative and functioning.”
Gentrification has various impacts on East Palo Alto Briana McDonald Staff Writer Once deemed the murder capital of the United States, East Palo Alto has now turned into a Silicon Valley hub, with the headquarters of companies such as Facebook and Amazon Web Services. “East Palo Alto (EPA) is not my town anymore, it has become something completely different,” Raquel Gonzalez, an East Palo Alto resident since 1974, said. According to the Bay Area Census, in 2010 64.5 percent of the population in East Palo Alto was Hispanic or Latino, and 15.8 percent of the population was Black or African American. Karen Sanchez, a junior and East Palo Alto resident said, “East Palo Alto was very diverse. There were Tongans, Blacks, and Mexicans, hardly any white people. In my middle school, it was all just Tongans, Blacks, and Mexicans.” East Palo Alto’s culturally diverse community was previously known to be a dangerous city. According to Mercu-
ry News, “East Palo Alto became the per-capita murder leader of the United States in 1992 because of its 42 homicides, fueled by gang and drug warfare among its population of 24,000.” Stephanie Ulloa, a junior, and previous East Palo Alto resident said, “We always saw gang violence in the news, I’ve lost two of my uncles due to gang violence.” Despite the continuous presence of violence in East Palo Alto, the city had a strong influence of culture and community. “Growing up, I felt like the people in EPA were very diverse and united. All the people who lived around me were very close friends or family,” Ulloa said. Starting in the early 2000’s, monumental companies such as Facebook, Ikea, Amazon Web Services, and Target started opening in East Palo Alto due to its close proximity to Stanford and Palo Alto. The companies also brought new demographics to the city.
Gentrification is “the process of renewal and rebuilding accompanying the influx of middle-class or affluent people into deteriorating areas that often displaces poorer residents,” according to Merriam Webster. “Now since Facebook moved in and Silicon Valley workers came in I believe that it has really messed up the culture. The residents are being forced to relocate to cheaper cities like Stockton, Modesto, and Hayward because they can’t afford the rent,” Gonzalez said. “Half the people I grew up with are not around anymore because they’ve moved out.” According to Zillow Real Estate, the median home value in East Palo Alto is $929,864. East Palo Alto home values have gone up 20.9 percent over the past year and predicts they will rise 10.1 percent within the next year. “You also have to leave the city in order to find work and stay afloat. East Palo Alto needs more jobs; If you didn’t g o to college and you’re not making
$50 an hour you’re probably not going to be able to stay,” Gonzalez said. It’s not just the cost of living that has changed in East Palo Alto, the community’s culture has taken an impact as well. Sanchez said, “The people who live in EPA now feel awkward because there are new people living in their community and it’s something that people aren’t used to. We have to start realizing that things are changing; It’s not just us anymore.” The new influx of people coming into East Palo Alto has also provided many benefits to the city. Residents say that many parts of their community have become renovated and less dangerous. With the money new residents are bringing into the city there are many more buildings being developed and more funding for schools. According to Mercury News, “In 2017, the city logged one homicide, a mid-December murder-suicide be-
tween domestic partners, not a street crime. Since 2014, the city has seen no more than a handful of killings each year. Aggravated assault totals are hovering in the ‘50s, plummeting 80 percent from four years ago.” The center once known for drug sales and gang violence named Whiskey Gulch, a strip of dive bars, liquor stores and run-down apartment buildings has now been redeveloped into a center named University Circle with businesses such as the Four Seasons hotel, IKEA, Target, Home Depot, Nordstrom Rack, Togo’s, and Starbucks, among others. Sanchez said, “It’s good that these tech companies are moving into East Palo Alto because now it’s not as dangerous, but they’re kicking people out. The people who have lived here through the bad now have to move for the people who are coming here for the good. No one is taking us into consideration, and people who have lived here are only going to suffer more — they don’t know where to go.”
Gun reform halted by mixed ideas Celine Yang Staff Writer
When Parkland happened, the conversation in America shifted to gun control — once again. This time, however, a new generation was involved. After Parkland, thousands of students across the country joined the National School Walkout, calling for change. At the walkout, many expressed frustration with the state of gun policy in the United States. But many were unsure of what the future held. “Since Parkland, there have been so many opinions on gun control,” said Jack Greco, a junior. “As for the future of gun control, I’m not sure what’ll happen — there may not be much change in gun policy, or the government could crack down on gun control.” So far, the few policies implemented have been scattered in several cities and states around the country. According to CNN, these measures range from raising the age limit for owning guns to increasing restrictions for those with history of domestic violence. On the federal level, there’s more focus on collecting data. Congress’ spending bill included a bill dedicated to obtaining more data for the U.S. gun background check system. There are a number of other policies being considered, but whether they’re likely to pass is up for question. In order to implement policies, policymakers rely on data and analysis. One research
institution, RAND Corporation, conducted a project with the goal of investigating the effects of different kinds of gun control policies. The project website said, “We reviewed thousands of studies to identify all available evidence for the effects of 13 gun policies on eight outcomes. After excluding studies that did not meet our criteria for establishing a law’s effects, we found little persuasive evidence for the effects of most policies on most outcomes.” The current state of gun control is scattered, but RAND had an interesting conclusion: after interviewing experts with a range of perspectives and political backgrounds, they found that these experts agreed on policy objectives. Instead, what they disagreed on were policy effects — the very effects RAND had worked to determine, but came up largely inconclusive. At Carlmont, many students agree that there is a need for gun laws. However, many disagree on what type of laws are needed — echoing RAND’s conclusion. “What we have in place right now is ridiculous. It’s an accessibility issue — people who shouldn’t have their hands on guns have them. A lot of the guns currently allowed were originally designed for the military, and I don’t think the average citizen needs a weapon of mass destruction,” said Liane Brown, a junior and member of the committee that organized Carlmont’s walkout. Greco, a gunowner, agreed with Brown that there should be gun laws. However, he disagreed on other points. Greco said, “I don’t think everyone
should be allowed to own a gun — there should definitely be gun laws. However, it’s not necessarily more guns leading to more violence — for instance, Wyoming has minimal gun laws compared to California, but they don’t have much gun violence. I do think that there should be gun laws, but I’ve heard some gun laws that sound ridiculous and disobey the Constitution.” According to the Center for Disease Control, although California does have more deaths from gun violence than Wyoming, Wyoming has a larger percentage of deaths per 100,000 people than California. While the current state of gun control may be largely scattered, government and economics teacher Kris Weisman predicts that when the students — the students who grew up with the experience of mass shootings — reach a voting age, gun policy will change. “As for policy, I think that assault weapons will be banned. Sale purchase of ammunition will be banned. I don’t see other policies, such as arming teachers with guns, happening because it socially and politically makes no sense,” said Weisman. “These policy changes can happen within the next 10 years, but it’s dependent on whether current students are politically active and vote.” Brown, like Weisman, agrees that students will play a roll in future gun control. Brown said, “A lot of current actions are at a standstill. I’m really proud of the walkout, but I don’t think adults give us enough credit. I feel like we, as students, can make
social change, and hopefully that translates into political change. The more people who join the cause — not just youngsters, but others as well — the more likely it is for policy to change.”
Geographic location affects education and socioeconomic status Maya Benjamin Staff Writer
A baby born in Oakland is already behind in their education, but a baby born in Redwood Shores is already one step ahead of the curve. Currently 10,000 students attend a high school in the Sequoia Union High School District (SUHSD) and each year thousands of incoming freshman enter a school district that is ranked one of the best in the Bay Area. Niche, a website that helps students and parents explore schools and districts ranked SUHSD 13 out of the 32 ranked school districts (there are over 90 school districts in the Bay Area). But across the bridge in Oakland, things are different. Niche currently lists the Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) as unranked, another setback for an already troubled school district. On Dec. 13, 2017, Oakland’s school board voted to slash $9 million from their current budget in a 6 to 1 vote. While the school board was attempting to correct years of overspending and a growing deficit, many parents were outraged due to the direct impact the budget cuts would have on their children. In an article by KQED News, an OUSD parent, Geneva Nicherie, revealed that teachers at Piedmont Elementary School regularly pay for school supplies out of their own pocket, and this will
likely worsen due to budget cuts. During the 2015-2016 school year, the OUSD budget spent $12 million on book and supplies — about $325 per student. In the 2017-2018 school year, the SUHSD budgeted around $4.6 million for books and supplies, about $460 per student, in comparison to OUSD’s $325. While a mismanagement of funds can account for some of the problems the Oakland school district is facing, some believe a lack of funding can account for the lack of resources. According to Ed 100, a website that helps people understand how school funding works in public schools, about 25 percent of school funding comes from property taxes, but in the SUHSD property taxes account for the district’s main source of revenue. In June of 1978, about two-thirds of California voters passed Proposition 13, which stipulated that property taxes should not exceed one percent of the full cash value of one’s property, but different zip codes can have different home values. According to Zillow, the current median home value in Oakland is $760,157. In comparison the current median home value in San Carlos is $1,904,528. The over one million dollar discrepancy in the median home values of the two respective cities may account for the discrepancies of the quality of schooling between OUSD and SUHSD. Carlmont currently has a 9 out of 10 rating on GreatSchools. GreatSchools is a website that takes a variety of criteria into
evaluating a school including test scores, parent/student reviews, and the amount of college prep and advanced placement courses a school has. Castlemont High School in Oakland has a two out of 10 GreatSchools rating and approximately 89 percent of their students are economically disadvantaged while at Carlmont only about 12 percent of students are considered to be economically disadvantaged. According to The American Psychological Association, studies have shown that school systems in low socioeconomic status communities often lack adequate resources, which can negatively affect students academic progress. In an interview by KTVU, Alana Corpuz, a parent of a child at Howard Elementary School, said, “There already isn’t any art at the school. We just lost a P.E. teacher. We’re about to lose another P.E. teacher. There are no extra curricular activities.” Government and economics teacher Karen Ramroth believes that the generations of poverty that have followed Oakland due to discriminatory housing practices such as redlining, urban renewal, and restrictive housing covenants, have led to generations of children who receive less than desirable schooling. “The only way to address the lack of resources schools have is to begin to correct years of poor schooling for Oakland students by reinvesting in the community,” said Ramroth. Kayla Gustafson, a junior, agrees. “All students deserve a school where they can succeed no matter what type of economic background they are from,” Gustafson said. While Oakland is trying to improve their schools by securing more funding and opening more schools like ARISE High School that boasts a 98 percent college acceptance rate and 100 percent college enrollment rate, some feel more change needs to come.
Changing times force education to adapt Schools shift teaching styles as technology improves Hanalei Pham Staff Writer
In the decade since the iPhone was first introduced, smartphones have made their way into the pockets of almost every student. In some schools, tablets have replaced textbooks, homework is sent out and submitted electronically, and discussions take place in online forums. According to Bloomberg, the pace of innovation is advancing and the world is changing at a rapid pace. According to a Microsoft ad, the people of today have more power at their fingertips than entire generations that came before them. New technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning are are more than just science fiction predictions come true. They are changing the face and future of education. According to Business Insider, such technologies and new educational software are changing the field for both students and teachers, creating philosophical shifts in approaches to teaching and remodeling the classroom. With the influx of new learning models available, many predict that traditional educational methods are bound to evolve in the next decade. The beginning of this evolution can been seen in websites like Khan Academy, TED, Wikipedia, and YouTube. Math teacher Andy Ramroth said, “I think technology, specifically the internet, is an amazing educational tool. I have seen students become so knowledgeable on subjects by watching YouTube or going through online articles, whereas previous generations had to find the right catalog card at the library. Information is a lot more available, and there is a lot of
accessible, well-taught content.” In addition to the wealth of information the internet provides, many praise technology for its adaptability of technology and ability to personalize a student’s education. According to a United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization report, “Adaptive computerized learning, intelligent tutoring systems, free access to multiple learning platforms, and the building up of knowledge through social networking has changed the face of knowledge acquisition radically. Students with access to online information and technology can personalize their learning in many more independent and inventive ways.” Technologies like DreamBox, a math education software that is used in a number of classrooms across the U.S., adapts to each
student’s skill level and allows students to learn at a pace best suited to their needs. “By bringing educators together with technology, online learning environments can improve to provide tools that people want to use, and sophisticated forms of adaptivity will help them to learn,” said Vincent Aleven, a professor at Carnegie Mellon University who has spent 20 years researching artificial intelligence for education. According to BusinessInsider, adaptive learning software is quickly replacing the role of textbooks in classrooms in the U.S., and students are tackling subjects with the aid of tailormade computer programs that accommodate their needs. Andrew Luna, a senior, said, “I really like online services like Khan Academy and Codecademy because the courses can be altered
to best suit my needs. When I was studying for the SAT, the Khan Academy practice sets would record the type questions I needed work in and keep providing me with similar questions so that I could master my weaknesses.” The U.S. Navy has done just that. They introduced an AIbased tutoring system called Education Dominance into an entry-level IT school in Pensacola. The platform works similarly to a human tutor, monitoring each student’s progress and providing personalized assessments, according to Business Insider. The Navy reported that the students who had worked with the digital tutor made enormous strides in their education, and that they consistently tested higher than students who had studied without the program’s aid. Some believe that this sort
of platform provides a glimpse into how educational models may work in the next 15 years: computers serving as individual tutors in classrooms filled with a wide array of learning styles. Ramroth said, “There have been pushes to remove classroom teachers from the equation and have students learn from selfpaced online content. For selfserving reasons, this terrifies me. For educational reasons, it also terrifies me. I think there is a lot more to education than just the information you can retain by going through an online tutorial.” However, some fear how differences in the availability of resources due to school location and funding may impact students as technology takes on a more prominent role in education. “My worry for the future, however, is that schools with resources will continue to improve and be awesome institutions of opportunity, while schools in less affluent communities will find it harder and harder to attract and retain qualified teachers,” Ramroth said. Additionally, as education adapts to changing times and technology is integrated into the classroom, many caution against being drawn in by the glamour of new and advanced tech without thought of possible drawbacks. “I think we also need to seriously look into what the possible negative side effects of its usage might be. For example, we read in class about how the internet has made it so that our generation never had to find answers for themselves because they were always on Google,” said Luna. Before we welcome AI and online tutoring sites with open arms, schools should evaluate what they are doing well and what needs improvement, and work to produce not just good, smart students, but capable thinkers.”
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Faith could save religion from its end Mackenzie O’Connell Staff Writer A priest, a rabbi, and a minister walk into the future. But will they even exist? Although religion has been prevalent in the past, it appears as though it is fading with each step into the future. All around the world countries and people have affiliated themselves with a specific religion and belief system, but primarily in the U.S., it has been seen as becoming less important in society to teens. Islam, Buddhism, Catholicism, Judaism, and the list continues. Rather than split people into groups according to religion, political affiliations such as Democrats and Republicans have become how we divide society. Mother Beth, a priest of Christ Church in Portola Valley, said, “Being Republican or Democrat has nothing to do with the important life cycles that are marked by the church such as birth, baptism, marriage, and, death, and has nothing to say about the afterlife. It is a broken world and we have the balm to soothe and help fix it focusing on peace, love, and forgiveness.” Research from Duke University and University College London (UCL) suggested that just 45 percent of young adults ages 18-30 say they have “no doubt God exists,” while 68 percent of Americans 65 and older said the same. Yet San Mateo Reverend Ben Meyers feels differently and thinks religion will remain prevalent in society.
“The book of Micah calls us to simply: ‘Seek mercy, love justice, and walk humbly with our God.’ Being with others who are about seeking, loving, and walking the same ways is essentially what makes religions relevant and worth engaging in. The best of religious practice both centers us and prepares us for the challenges of life and compels us to work for justice, mercy and the greater good. In this way, religious practices that bring people together to create greater justice in the world will always be prevalent,” Meyers said. Meyers also feels that religion is a broad concept. Devotion ultimately represents religion, not just to faith but to anything one enjoys and follows. “Religions are not always ‘religious.’ So, whether one worships in the church of baseball, soccer, mountain climbing, wealth accumulation, social status, or politics, or one tries to remain ‘agnostic’ and unengaged, that too, can be one’s religion,” said Meyers. Some religions such as Catholicism have been shrinking while religions such as Islam continue to grow and are predicted to prosper. According to Pew Research, over the next four decades, Christians will remain the largest religious group, but Islam is
expected to grow faster than any other major religion and to be one of the largest followed religions by 2050. Pew Research also projected that in the U.S., Christians will decline from more than three-quarters of the population in 2010 to two-thirds in 2050, and Judaism will no longer be the largest non-Christian religion. Muslims will outnumber Jewish people in the U.S. According to General Social Survey, in the U.S., a third of Americans will have no religious preference at all by 2030. Another factor that tends to steer people away from a population is the increase of religious extremists groups, such as ISIS, which misrepresent the Muslim people and their faith in Islam. Ian Jones, a senior who practices the Mormon faith, said, “I think religion will continue to be prevalent, faith isn’t something that just goes away. For me, terrorism and faith are separate things. Although there can be religious motives
behind it that doesn’t mean that all Muslims would ever practice it that way, it’s more the people. I hope terrorism wouldn’t drive anyone away from religion.” Social concepts that are not accepted in religion, such as being gay and gender equality, has driven people away from religions as well, such as Catholicism and other faiths. Pew Research Center has stated that 33 percent of Catholics say that homosexuality is a sin. However, others who practice Catholicism try to accept social debates such as gay marriage and contraceptives despite their religion. Fifty-four percent of Catholics approve of gay marriage and 76 percent thinks the church should permit birth control. “The world could probably do without religion but not without God. However, as imperfect as religion is, it is important to have a community of faith to help one learn and support each other,” Beth said.
Profanity has a purpose, but so does censorship Sarah Cheung Staff Writer
You’re walking down the hallway to your first class when you hear a passerby drop an f-bomb. You barely notice. Only three feet away, you catch another person complaining about how much they can’t stand their calculus class — their similar word choice begging to make everyone understand just how unbearable it must be. But you don’t even blink, much less question why you’re surrounded by vulgarities so early in the morning. We are immersed in a culture where we hear swear words on a daily basis. They are used by our peers, they are casually heard on the street, and appear in books, music, and other popular forms of media. According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, to be profane is “to treat (something sacred) with abuse, irreverence, or contempt.” All swear words fit this description at various levels, with the more commonly used and accepted ones considered the least crude. Through repeated use, it’s possible that society has become desensitized to certain words over time. This indicates that what we get offended by and to what has evolved. Philip Gooden, an author of books about language, said to Business Insider, “What makes swear words offensive is that people are ready to be offended by them […] The kind of language that you can fairly regularly hear now […] is quite standard; it’s available and accessible to pretty well anybody. But there would have been a fantastic fuss about some of these terms three or four decades back.” Obscenities can express a wide array of emotions, including anger, frustration, passion, and joy. For instance, a study by Keele University in the U.K.
found that lacing curse words into our speech can help relieve pain. Seventy-one participants were asked to submerge their hands into ice water for as long as they could endure, and 73 percent performed the task longer when they could repeat a swear word rather than a nonswear word. Beyond conveying our everyday sentiments, profanity has played a role in shaping political issues throughout history and today. In the 1971 court case of Cohen vs. California, Robert Cohen held a jacket with the phrase “F--- the Draft” in regards to the Vietnam War and faced conviction for disturbing the peace with offensive conduct. Eventually, the Supreme Court’s decision was overturned because the freedom of expression is protected under the First and Fourteenth Amendments. Since then, the U.S. has seen numerous occurrences where profanity has been used to make political statements, both verbally and on social media. Mass media also influences how we perceive so-called “bad” words. The literature taught at Carlmont exemplifies one way that students are exposed to the effects of such language. “Board policy and approvals are run by the district. We have an approved list of books to read,” said Denise Steward, an English teacher. “So then, obviously, the reason we are teaching it is more important than having the f-word in it.” Included in Carlmont’s curriculum is “The Catcher in the Rye,” a novel that contains the recurrent use of swear words that were forbidden during the 1950s. Its purpose was to shock the readers of its time and convey the main character’s restrictive environment and mental health. “Authors will do something to get the attention of the society in which they write,” Steward said.
Modern-day comfort with obscene language can be attributed to its increased frequency. The normality of its presence may pressure people to be more accepting of it, and in turn, use it in their language. “It’s somewhat natural for me to completely shut off profanity in certain situations and use it regularly in others,” sophmore, Srikar Bevara said. However, swearing often becomes disrespectful or annoying when used gratuitously. Amy Fullerton, a junior, said, “I think it’s rude to use profane language when there are so many other words in our vocabulary that communicate the same ideas. It should be used in moderation.” At the same time, the mere existence of swearing suggests that human beings desire a linguistic outlet to express themselves. Gooden said, “It’s almost as if in language there has to be a part which is a kind of dark and sinister area where people are wary about treading, but at the same time, they want to go there.” This could explain why adolescents find it thrilling to swear amongst their peers, or why it may feel rebellious to use curse words in the presence of authority. TIME writer Katy Steinmetz said, “There’s reason to believe that the more kids are sheltered from these words, the more impressive they become. Use it all the time, and you habituate; the words lose their ‘oomph.’” While society collectively discerns which words are considered acceptable in given situations, individuals can make their own choices, but should be conscious of how their language can affect how others perceive them. Steward said, “I encourage students to use academic language because in college that’s what they’re going to need to do; there’s a time and a place for profanity. And you need to know the difference between when it is and when it’s not appropriate. You need to know your audience.”
Scientists work to cheat extinction Mandy Hitchcock Staff Writer
Before 2003, writers and directors could only imagine feats of resurrection. Now, modern advances allow science fiction to be made a reality. The de-extinction process is defined by Encyclopedia Britannica as “resurrection biology, the process of resurrecting species that have died out, or gone extinct.” Head of the Hunting, Fishing, and Wetland department in Spain, Alberto Fernández-Arias, has since confronted the extinction threat. In 2003, his efforts resulted in the 10 minutes the extinct bucardo became un-extinct. The quarter-pound baby bucardo — known by its scientific name, Capra pyrenaica pyrenaica — was a clone created from preserved bucardo cells and carried by a hybrid ibex-goat surrogate mother. A lung deformity cut the newborn’s life short. Fernández-Arias and his team have yet to produce further results due to lack of financing, however, he has high hopes for the future. Recorded on his TED talk “De-Extinction”, Fernández-Arias said, “Our final goal will be to repopulate the Pyrenees [Mountains] with the bucardo.” Recent developments in DNA sequencing allow scientists like Fernández-Arias to turn their visions into reality. Once empty eggs are filled in with DNA of the extinct animal, they are then placed into the species’ closest living relative as a surrogate. However, even in an idealistic experiment, the expansion of deextinction would see species, es-
pecially those vulnerable like the bucardo and dodo, struggling to survive in a changed world. Senior Risako Nozaki, vice president of Carlmont’s Green Team, said, “I feel like de-extinction is going against Darwin’s theory of the survival of the fittest. The animals went extinct for a reason, since they weren’t able to survive in their habitat around them. Humans use the resources and the animals pay the price for it in the circumstances.” However, in the bigger picture, Nozaki concludes that de-extinction holds greater claim to benefit. “For research and science to evolve, we need de-extinction. In order for the world to continue evolving and to find more discoveries about the environment
around us, we need de-extinction,” Nozaki said. “I think we should advocate for it as long as it’s not harmful — keeping it to a minimum for animals that currently exist.” As the likelihood of de-extinction is made easier by passing time and progress, technicalities are no longer the obstacle in the path of resurrection biology. Instead, scientists begin to question the ethics and logic behind it. “If we are talking about species we drove extinct, then I think we have an obligation to try to do this,” said paleontologist Michael Archer, according to National Geographic. Towards those who feel wronged in taking on the role of God in nature’s course, Archer responds: “I think we played God
when we exterminated these animals.” However, conservation biologist Philip Seddon expresses his fears of the de-extinction consequences. According to the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Seddon said, “It becomes hard to control those sorts of populations. And there are the same fears one might have about genetically modified crops — the idea that a modification may move into relatives may jump in and out, or may not be expressed in the way that you expect.” Seddon’s fears are warranted, as seen in human interference in the ecosystems of Australia. Initially brought over to counter beetle threats to sugar crops,
the poisonous cane toad began to spread, destroying native species. Evolutionary biologist John Wiens defines de-extinction in terms of irrelevance. “There is clearly a terrible urgency to saving threatened species and habitats. As far as I can see, there is little urgency for bringing back extinct ones. Why invest millions of dollars in bringing a handful of species back from the dead, when there are millions still waiting to be discovered, described, and protected?” Wiens said in a National Geographic article. Issues of restoring the onceextinct species to their changed habitat also pose a topic of controversy towards the reality of deextinction. However, this technology can be applied to not only extinct species, but endangered ones as well. Such utilization of cloning and genomic engineering can help preserve species who don’t breed easily in captivity or face risk of possible destruction. Kara Rogers of Encyclopedia Britannica likewise notices the possibilities of expanding upon de-extinction: “Perhaps the greatest concern, however, is the potential of those technologies, as well as back breeding, to alter the course of natural history. De-extinction provides an opportunity for humans to rectify past harms inflicted on other species, as well as to expand species diversity.” Despite the challenges scientists face in the future of reestablished species, the advancements in resurrection biology technology could potentially lead to the first of many extinct species taking their first breath once again.
Cure for cancer may not be impossible Israel is leading in unique innovations for a cure Talia Fine Staff Writer Obama promised it, Russia has been working on it; rich and innovative societies have been reaching towards it for years but there’s still cancer and the disease was discovered in 1775. While the effort to find a cure is global, Israel has a multipotent attack strategy that provides insight into the future of cancercuring efforts. A few of their tactics are explained as follows. For one, they’re changing the focus of leukemia cures. Leukemia kills more than 24,000 Americans per year. The Nature Genetics page Treatmentspecific changes in gene expression discriminate in vivo drug response in human leukemia cells by Meyling H. Cheok et al confirms, “These data indicate that lymphoid leukemia cells of different molecular subtypes share common pathways… [and] changes in gene expression are treatmentspecific.” Basically, various leukemia cells respond to treatments similarly, due to genetic similarities, but gene expression can change de-
pending on alterations in treatment. Currently, leukemia treatments have the same base: chemotherapy, steroids, and stem-cell transplants. However, according to researchers at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, more individualized treatments may yield better results. Researcher Rio Gazit commented to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency: “Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all treatment for leukemia. That’s why we need tailor-made models to fit the treatment to the disease.” They’re also targeting the exact source with cancer treatment, even though that site can be microscopic. Although chemotherapy and surgery can affect the entire body, tumors can originate from tiny nanometer particles. According to Targeted cancer therapy (Abstract) by Charles Sawyers, cancer formation can be quite complex and it’s tumors’ “microenvironment” that dictates whether or not the cancer spreads. Targeting only the cancerous cells, instead of looping in healthy ones with the treatment, could not only stop it at its source, but Dr. Dan Peer at Tel Aviv University thinks it will take less of a toll on a cancer patient’s overall physical health.
Peer thinks the key is RNA — ribonucleic acid that gives instructions to DNA. Overriding that delivery system could get the cancer treatment to the right place, even if it’s only a nanoparticle. Re-educating special mutant cells will add to the care available for more personalized manifestations of cancer as well. Most people have the protein p53, which prevents tumors from forming. However, some people have a p53 mutation that makes the body more susceptible to cancer and less accepting of treatment drugs. For these mutations, reminding the p53 gene what it’s actually for (stopping tumors) could prevent a lifetime of cancer dealings and its effects. Dr. Varda Rotter et al at the Weizmann Institute have found a few molecules that could effectively “re-educate,” as she calls it, the mutant p53. They’re also working to rehabilitate non-malignant cells to keep tumors from spreading. The way tumors develop is referred to as “recruitment” by many medical journals. Tumors “recruit” new cells and blood vessels to allow the tumor to circulate and expand its reach, according to Angiogenesis and Tumor Metastasis by Bruce R. Zetter,
Ph.D. Israel’s Weizmann Institute of Science theorizes that healthy cells can be reprogrammed to defend the body against the tumor the same way a tumor can reprogram a cell to attack the body. However, problems don’t always stop after the cancer is cured. There can be lifelong problems that deeply affect post-treatment life, such as irreplaceable lost tissue, loss of limbs, and others. Scientists are working to replace the damaged areas. Dr. Jacob Hanna, also at the Weizmann Institute, thinks the key to replacing damaged body parts is stem cells, which can grow, divide, or become other cell types. It’s a safe model because the tissue transferred to the patient is from their own body. In the work Isolation, Characterization, and Use of Stem Cells from the CNS by Fred H. Gage et al at the UCSD medical school, the way a “multipotent stem cell” works is a subject “of great interest” in the future of replacing damaged tissue for all diseases — not just cancer. With these strategies among others, the idea of curing cancer sounds less like proverbial hope and more like a possibility the class of 2018 may get to see.
Meaning of free speech varies worldwide
Conservative activists in the United Kingdom, controversial speakers at universities, edgy internet comedian Count Dankula, and Canadians all share a common enemy: the controversial new limits on free speech. Canadian Bill C16 “amends the Canadian Human Rights Act to add gender identity and gender expression to the list of prohibited grounds of discrimination.” This has led to the fear that simply calling someone by the wrong gender pronoun will land one in prison for hate speech. The U.S., however, has no legal definition of hate speech. In fact, the Washington Post headlines “Supreme Court unanimously reaffirms: There is no ‘hate speech’ exception to the First Amendment” as a result of Matal v. Tam. So, questions have come up on whether or not the U.S. should follow in the footsteps of Canadians. Jaime Garcia, a history teacher, expressed concern for the restrictions on free speech. More specifically, he believes there should be wider conversations on those subjects, rather than a total extinguishment by means of the government. “You can’t silence opinions,” Garcia said. He believes the government would have great difficulty in dealing with the socio-cultural issues that hate speech laws commonly attempt to fix. This pertains to those issues addressed in Bill C16, meant to help against discrimination based off of sexual identity and gender expression. “I think that’s terrible, of course,” Garcia said. “But governments can’t enforce empathy.” Racial equality, for example, took years to come into fruition in the U.S. However, it is debatably still not here. Garcia defined hate speech as “insensitive remarks based off of race, ethnicity, and gender.” Oliver Golden, a senior and president of
the Gender and Sexuality Alliance, differed matters most. The subjectivity of humor on the definition of hate speech. also causes complications. “I’m not sure if I have a definition of hate “There’s definitely a fine line. If you take speech,” Golden said. “I suppose it would the joking out of it, that could definitely be somewhere in between incitement be hate speech,” Imison said. “It’s all and slurs, anything insulting towards a subjective.” marginalized group that could lead to Garcia believes that government control harm.” of speech verges on dictatorial. The possibility that expression can “If they don’t take in all the factors and lead to harm has shown to be significant just blatantly, reactionarily just say, ‘you throughout U.S. history. The Supreme said something we don’t like and we’re Court’s decision in Schenck v. United States going to jail you’ that’s a dictatorship,” (1919) set the standard for restriction Garcia said. of free speech based on But, free speech can also whether it would incite be a double-edged sword, Kids have to start harm to others. to minorities. seeing free speech in especially This is similar to Here we have Ku Klux Canada’s Bill C16, which action, so they have a Klan rallies, and they’re states that an event must basis for what it should demonstrating their free have “evidence that an speech,” Garcia said. offense was motivated look like—even if they “They are definitely hateby bias, prejudice or hate mongering, but what can disagree with it. based on gender identity or you do?” expression.” The U.K. also denied Jaime Garcia Edgy internet comedian Canadian right-wing History teacher Count Dankula (Mark activist Lauren Southern Meechan) has recently access into the country. been in the news for his arrest in the U.K. BBC News reports, “Southern was and fine of £800 for a hate crime; the hate informed that her actions ‘present a threat crime being training his girlfriend’s pug to to the fundamental interests of society’ by be a Nazi. Border Force.” Golden believes that Meechan partially Golden was unsure of whether or not deserved the punishment. Southern’s banishment was against free “First of all, I believe that you shouldn’t speech. need to resort to anything near hate speech “On one hand, she is being denied the to make a joke,” Golden said. “If, as a right to speak by the government. On comedian, most of your humor comes at the other hand, the U.K. did deny her on the expense of others, find a new career.” grounds fairly similar to Canada’s laws,” However, Golden recognizes the Golden said. “This is a gray enough area—I difficulties of finding where to draw the think it really depends on the country and line between humor and hate speech. that sort of thing.” “I’m not sure if there should be an Garcia believes this was a missed absolute line, because everything is so opportunity for discussion. dependent on context,” Golden said. “They’ve got to let her talk,” Garcia said, Michael Imison, a junior, believes “It gives the left an opportunity to give their controversies with hate speech are just the views. If you limit her side, you limit the result of an overly sensitive society. other side too.” “People are so sensitive these days,” Garcia believes that limiting speech, Imison said. especially those of political adversaries, Imison, however, agrees that the context is counterproductive to any hope of a
Joseph Gomez Staff Writer
compromise. “That’s the only way you’re going to come to a common meeting ground,” Garcia said. This can spill over into the educational sectors, as many colleges and universities have taken to banning or canceling controversial speakers — UC Berkeley has blocked both Milo Yiannopoulos and Ben Shapiro from speaking. Both of the latter are popular conservative voices. Golden sees a left-leaning bias at Carlmont at times. “My teachers tend to lean liberal, but they’re fine with hearing opposing viewpoints,” Golden said. Garcia believes that Carlmont has done well in handling differing opinions on campus, especially with the growing popularity of walkouts. “Kids have to start seeing free speech in action, so they have a basis for what it should look like — even if they disagree with it,” Garcia said. Imison believes that the walkouts only serve as an ineffective ideological echo chamber for the dominant opinion. “They happen quite often, but I don’t see anything change,” Imison said. Imison also doubted that there would be the same turnout for right-wing issues. “I don’t think it will get the same support as gun control or anti-Trump walkouts,” Imison said. Having walkouts during school can also have its problems. “If you want to protest, go do it on a Saturday where everyone is meeting up in San Francisco or whatever,” Imison said. “It’s not good to miss education.” Speech, whether productive, hateful, or pointless, is constantly changing. The First Amendment gave Americans the right to freedom of speech in 1791, and its definition will only evolve or devolve with time. Garcia remains hopeful for the future. “I’m glad we live in a country where we can say what we want to say and decide how we want to say it,” Garcia said.
CBD weeds its way into the medical industry Nicole del Cardayre Staff Writer
America used to shun marijuana, but now a component of the plant is becoming more widely used in the medicinal world. CBD, extracted as an oil, is made from high-CBD and lowTHC hemp concentration. THC is the acronym for Tetrahydrocannabinol, the compound in weed that gets one high. Hemp is a part of the cannabis sativa plant and is specifically grown for the industrial uses of its derived products. The reason why CBD can be used as a major medical product legally is because of THC, the component which causes a user to get a “high” feeling, is mostly extracted, and it is no longer considered to be an “illegal drug.” CBD oil, also known as hemp oil, is considered to be non-psychoactive because hemp oil only contains trace amounts of THC. According to Dr. Josh Axe, who specializes in natural medicine and clinical nutrition, CBD oil has been found to be an antiinflammatory, anti-convulsive, antioxidant, antiemetic, anxiolytic, and antipsychotic agent, and is therefore a potential medicine for the treatment of neuroinflammation, epilepsy, oxidative injury, vomiting and nausea, anxiety and schizophrenia. “CBD is one of over 60 compounds found in cannabis that
belong to a class of ingredients called cannabinoids. All cannabinoids act as ligands, meaning they dock onto the binding site of a protein and have the ability to modulate a receptor’s behavior,” Axe said. According to Medical Marijuana Inc., in the late 1980s, scientists found that CBD interacts with the body through the endogenous cannabinoid system (ECS). The endogenous cannabinoid system regulates the body’s general state of balance, homeostasis, and other functions such as sleep, mood, hormone regulation, appetite, immune response, and
pain. CBD is one of 85 cannabinoids and it is the second most popular cannabinoid in marijuana after THC. “I use CBD oil after really intense workouts or baseball games because it makes me more relaxed and I always have a good night of sleep when I take it. CBD oil always relieves any tension I have and overall de-stresses my body,” junior Jake Robinson said. According to Medical Marijuana Inc., people use over-thecounter or prescription drugs to relieve pain or stiffness, this includes chronic pain. However,
CBD oil has become more popular in recent years to relieve these symptoms and more doctors are beginning to advocate for its use. “I would be open to the idea of trying CBD oil. I have friends that have used it and they said it helped with relaxing their muscles and overall body. I guess I could say sometimes before bed, my body has some tension and if CBD oil has the possibility of easing it, then I’m not opposed,” James Houston, a senior, said. CBD oil also has been proven to help people quit smoking cigarettes. In a pilot study posted on Addictive Behaviors, scientists
found that smokers who used an inhaler that contained CBD in the end smoked fewer cigarettes and did not have any additional cravings for nicotine. According to study that was posted on Neurotherapeutics journal, CBD is considered to be a promising substance for people who have struggled with opioid abuse. “I would recommend it to people who need a source of relaxation and can’t obtain it from anything else. CBD oil is a good alternative to over-the-counter or prescription drugs, and I see it more as a natural and herbal remedy which in the long run is probably better for your health,” said Robinson. All this being said, CBD can have side effects. According to a study done by the National Center for Biotechnology Information, “Commonly reported side effects are tiredness, diarrhea, and changes of appetite and weight.” A review from Neurotherapeutics found that CBD may help reduce anxiety and overall stress that is caused by anxiety disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder, general anxiety disorder, and panic disorder. Medical Marijuana Inc. advises patients with chronic anxiety to avoid marijuana because of THC’s ability to trigger or amplify anxiety and paranoia in some people, which is where CBD comes in.
International students make connections in English speaking programs Nihal Karim Staff Writer For Rebecca Shentu, Manon Llorach, and Sarah Tocatlian, moving to a new country was just the beginning of a new journey. The transition from middle school to high school can be tough, but can be even harder for those who transition from one country to another. Many international students at Carlmont moved to the Bay Area at the beginning of high school. “I moved here from China about two years ago when I was a freshman,” Shentu, a junior, said. According to the California Department of Education’s (CDE) Data Reporting Office, Carlmont had 84 international students during the 2016-17 school year, making up four percent of the school population. “Carlmont has the smallest, yet most diverse population of international students compared to other schools in the district,” said Gregg Patner, an administrative vice principal at Carlmont. Though English is taught in many schools around the world, some international students learn English from nonnative speakers and, therefore, feel unprepared to speak fluently here. Llorach, a junior, said, “I didn’t speak English when I first came here in fourth grade. It took me about two to three years to speak fluently, but I was still worried about my accent.” In addition to this, Reclassified Fluent English Proficient (RFEP) students made up 13 percent of the Carlmont population during the 2016-2017 school year. According to the Union School District, RFEP students are international students who became fluent in English and are now put into
regular English classes. When first arriving in the U.S., international students can find it difficult to fit in with their peers because of their lack of English speaking abilities. Both Llorach and Tocatlian said that their accents made it harder for them to fit in with their classmates. “I lived in England before moving here, so I had an accent when I went to school,” said Tocatlian, a senior. “Going to a new school is hard, especially if you sound different.” Language barriers can be a problem not only in social situations but also in academic ones. Many of the classes that students take, such as science or history, don’t offer language help inside the classroom and are designed for fluent speakers. “Students have to take mainstream classes, and sometimes teachers assume that they know more than they actually do,” said Theresa Torres, a school counselor at Carlmont. “We have a classroom aid, but they can’t be in multiple places at once.” The English Language Learners (ELL) class is where international students start when they begin attending Carlmont; it helps the students learn English and provides help with homework. Since the ELL class is not a college-preparatory (CP) English class, international students might find it harder to meet the A-G requirements needed to get into Universities of California (UC) and California State Schools (CSU). “In order to meet the A-G requirements, all students need to take at least four years of English, but unlike ELL-ELD (English Language Development) three, ELL-ELD one and two don’t fulfill those requirements,” Torres said. “This means that some students will have to take English classes at summer school in order to fulfill the A-G
requirements.” On top of dealing with having to graduate, international students may not even stay at Carlmont for all four years. International students have to move for different reasons, causing them to have to deal with loads of academic and personal stress. “Some students move because their parents got a new job in the Bay Area, but others might have had to move due to economic, political, or social problems facing their country,” said Jennifer Lord, the ELL teacher at Carlmont. “It’s different for everyone, and everybody has their own unique experiences.” On top of all the academic and social stress at school, international students might have to deal with stressful situations at home. “It’s difficult to deal with things like visas and green cards,” Tocatlian said. “It’s a struggle to worry about whether or not you get to live here just because someone else decides whether to give you a green card or not.” When international students first come to Carlmont, they are tested on their English skills. The test determines the level of ELL they will take, or if they are ready to take regular English. “I transferred to Carlmont during my sophomore year and got put into this class, but I tested out of it this year,” Shentu said. The ELL teachers and mentors teach speaking, listening, writing, and similar topics with the students. They work to prepare their students for their current and future classes. “When they first come to the class, we break down the material and the expectations,” Lord said. “We practice skills such as listening and speaking in English because they are a large part of social and academic life here.”
Regardless of their English speaking abilities, students become closer to their ELL classmates and find many new friends. “Since this class is heavily peer-oriented, students are interacting with each other all the time,” Lord said. “We encourage them to sit with different people who speak other languages so that they all practice English while talking to each other.” All the students in the ELL classroom have Torres as their counselor. Torres works with them and helps them with whatever issues might be going on. “I try to come into the classroom often so that they get familiar with me and feel comfortable to come to me with their problems,” Torres said. “Sometimes when they seem too stressed or frustrated in class, they will come to my office so that we can talk and figure out the problem.” The ELL teachers and mentors make sure to show the students that there is more than one way of speaking English; the language isn’t all black and white and many different variations exist. “Language acquisition is about finding personal expression,” Lord said. “We want to teach them that having an accent is okay because everyone has their own way of speaking.” The ELL teachers work with ASB to get the students more involved with the Carlmont community. “The ELL students get to see us on our typical work days, and they usually help us with posters,” said Jim Kelly, the activities coordinator at Carlmont. Being an international student comes with its own set of difficulties, but the ELL class provides opportunities to deal with them. Lord said, “This class gives newcomers a space to try everything and develop their own academic personality.”
CARLM CLASS O Sixty-seven percent of high school graduates age 16 to 24 were enrolled in colleges or universities in 2017, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. However, the proportion of Carlmont seniors who will attend college or university after graduating is seemingly much higher. At their prospective colleges, these students expect to gain the skills and knowledge to help them excel in their futures, whether that be the career they envision right now or something entirely new to them. Kiran Boone, a senior who plans on attending Washington University in St. Louis, said, “I want to go into neuroscience, and that’s something you can’t really learn in high school; I need the skills that I’ll learn in college in order to go further in that field. My goal is to learn more about what I’m really good at, what I’m interested in, and, ultimately, how I can combine those and make a positive contribution to society.” Some of these students also look forward to the change from high school and the ability to gain in-depth knowledge about their favorite subjects. Salma Sebt, a senior who plans on attending Chapman University, said, “In high school, there isn’t much opportunity to specialize in the subject that really interests the student. Although general education is still required in college, it is not the main purpose; college students have the ability to choose the major that they truly wish to study, and they often enjoy those studies more than the general education studies that they’ve done in the past.” Many of the students that chose to go to college look forward to the new opportunities and connections that they will form as they work towards their personal goals. “I think college is good for everyone if you’re able to do it because it opens up a lot of new opportunities that you didn’t know existed,” Boone said. “Students can also find a good support network that will help push them in the right directions and, hopefully, lead them to achieve their goals.” Among those who have chosen to go to college are the few Carlmont students who plan to go to art school. Stephanie Blackburn, a senior who plans on attending Parsons School of Design, said, “I didn’t feel that a [University of California] or any other state school would give me the same program and type of attention that I needed; that’s why I chose to go to art school.” Blackburn, along with many others, has a passion, not for math or English, but for design. She hopes to strengthen her abilities and find opportunities for her future career while in college. “I applied for visual communications, and I want to do advertising, but specifically through fashion — almost like fashion editorials or fashion journalism, in a sense. I will hopefully get a job off of one of the internships that I’ll be trying to get at Parsons; I want to be working for a fashion company in five years,” she said. Other students who plan on going to an art school have a different idea of what their future will hold. Eli Melmon, a senior, said, “Art school will help me achieve both my artistic and career goals. At The University of the Arts, Philadelphia, I’ll be working in directing, playwriting, and production, and I’ll learn to create theatre that’s not only unique but also essential to society. Living in the heart of Philadelphia, I’ll be surrounded by a network of artists who can collaborate on projects and help with jobs.” No matter what their ultimate goals are, many students who have a passion for the arts look for new opportunities and connections to help further their careers throughout their college experience. “You get a lot of your jobs through your professors, so getting the network and the connections that I need locally is my highest priority in college,” Blackburn said.
Other students are very passionate about sports and hope to continue playing throughout their lives. Jackson Velschow, a senior who plans to attend Portland State University for football, said, “I’ve always wanted to play sports because I’m most happy when I’m active. I don’t really like leadership stuff, so sports are my way to really connect with the school and make my mark. My goal is to be a real competitor on the team, and hopefully, I’ll get to start for two or three years.” Some students chose to play sports next year because they want to focus on playing while they still can and hope to gain an education and a potential job as a backup plan. Mitchell Plane, a senior who plans on attending Skyline College for baseball, said, “I decided to play next year because I can work at any time in my life, but I can really only play baseball while I’m younger. I want to use baseball to get an education and a real estate license so that I can work if my baseball career doesn’t go as planned.” Many other students who plan to play sports throughout college also hope that this will help them create a network to use in their future careers. “After I’m done playing, I probably want to coach or help out in some way; I want to stay involved in sports for sure,” Velschow said. “Being on the team will open up options later because I’ll have connections with not only the coaches that I’m playing for next year but also other coaches that I meet throughout the process. I’ll hopefully end up with a large network of coaches and sports personnel, which will help me get a career that I can enjoy.”
Many seniors have high expe article showcases some of th students will take and how th
MONT OF 2018
ectations for their futures. This he many different paths that hey hope to achieve their goals.
Many students in the class of 2018 will be studying in colleges and universities next year while others will be learning in foreign countries. Jordan Greene, a senior, said, “I deferred my acceptance to Syracuse University, and I am taking a gap year. I’m still looking into a bunch of different programs, but I’ll be based in Israel. Throughout the next year, I’ll be learning about the culture and taking classes at the university there.” For Greene, the decision to travel is based on the values and experiences that she gained in high school. “Throughout high school, my Jewish identity has grown into one of my strongest values, and I think that I have learned a lot about my culture,” she said. “I just came back from a trip to Israel and Poland; the cultural differences that I saw made me really want to go back to experience more. I’m doing this now because I don’t know when I’ll have an opportunity to do it again.” Many choose to travel because it offers unique advantages and perspectives. Some students chose to travel instead of going straight to college because they hope to gain knowledge that will help them in their future careers. Greene said, “At Syracuse, I’m planning on majoring in civic engagement and public policy with a minor in Middle Eastern studies; I really want to be more involved in politics and government. A lot of the programs that I’m looking at for next year connect participants with internships, so I’d hopefully make connections with different people and companies all over the world. Also, something that I’ve really come to value and that I’ll gain next year is the importance of learning beyond the classroom, and I think that where I hope to go in the future requires a lot of that.” Some who are excited about college in the future have chosen to postpone their enrollment in order to gain knowledge that they deem necessary to their futures. “Being able to see the world and its problems first-hand instead of just learning about it in a textbook will give me a different perspective than a lot of people have, and it will help me to be successful wherever I end up working,” Greene said.
While many students will attend college in the fall, others in the class of 2018 will focus on working next year. Dylan Reinhardt, a senior, will take classes at the College of San Mateo (CSM) while he trains to be a firefighter. “I’m going to CSM to take fire science classes in order to get into the fire academy. I already go on ride-alongs with the department so I will continue doing that, too,” said Reinhardt. Reinhardt, like many others, chose to take this path because of his passion for his career choice. “I initially chose to go down this path early freshman year because I started taking classes with the Explore Program at the San Mateo Fire Department, where I got to stay around the firehouses and learn the basic protocol for firefighting,” Reinhardt said. “I decided to stick with this path because they really do hire firefighters based on experience. So, getting hands-on experience prior to applying, which is what I’m doing, is really useful in pursuing this career.” Many who chose to work next year did so with hopes that it will benefit them more than college would by allowing them to get ahead in their prospective fields. Reinhardt said, “When you’re in school, you don’t get to learn these very specialized jobs. I think that people who want to do things that schools don’t offer really need to figure out how to get access to an education and experience where they can develop their careers quicker. In the end, having experience along with the education in your desired field will set you apart from other people applying for the same jobs.”
Writing By Brooke Chang Photography By Connor Lin
What is the most significant thing you’ve taken away from high school this year?
“I’m still learning to prioritize certain things, whether it’s with family, friends, my overall well being, academics, extracurriculars, and relationships.”
“The most important thing i’ve learned is that everything happens for a reason and that there are many different ways to succeed.”
“I’ve learned there will be many ups and downs with friends and grades. I’ve learned that the people that mean the most to me will always be there.”
Hana Lip Sophomore
Sophia Campbell Freshman
Kaitlyn Parohinog Sophomore Interviews and photos by Sam Hanlon
Check out our online publication! www.scotscoop.com
A final word from...
Class of 2018 Senior Editors
Jordan Hanlon Editor-in-Chief
Connor Lin Managing Editor
Rachel Borshchenko Senior Editor
Skylar Weiss Senior Editor
When I was a sophomore in high school, I wanted to go to middle college or do independent study. I hated the social atmosphere and didn’t feel like I fit in. However, in journalism, I became an editor. Becoming an editor and learning page design was something I instantly fell in love with, and it really solidified my place at Carlmont. The skills I’ve developed as a leader, writer, and just as an individual in journalism will forever shape my passions and interests. In honesty, I won’t miss high school much, but I will miss the friends and relationships I’ve created through journalism. I will also continue to work on the newspaper at Cal State Fullerton next year.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve wanted to make a difference in the world. Through my roles as a writer, editor, photographer, designer, and ultimately, a leader, I’ve been able to help produce news stories that have impacted thousands of people. Journalism has become such an integral part of my life and it has shaped me into a more wellrounded individual. I was fortunate enough to be an editor of The Highlander for three years, and it has shown me that journalism is what I want to pursue in the future. I will continue my work as a journalist at the University of California, Berkeley, where I intend to major in business and work on the campus newspaper in my free time.
As a sophomore, I had reluctantly signed up for journalism. After being in the class for a few months, I realized that I enjoyed writing investigative pieces. I eventually became an editor in my second semester of junior year. This was definitely a challenge for me since I knew nothing about graphic design. Since then, I have grown to love editing articles, creating art for my pages, and then sharing those with the rest of the Carlmont population. Throughout my three years in journalism, I have grown as a writer, editor, and an informed person. I plan to continue to further my interest in journalism as I continue my studies in the Columbia University-List College dual-degree program.
Sophomore year, I decided to join the journalism program after overhearing that it was an easy class that I could take with my friends. Journalism class, however, is not a free period. In fact, it’s jam-packed. Journalism is the place in which I gained the most work experience. I’ve come to understand how important it is to be passionate about what you’re working on. Through my position as an editor, I’ve learned how to effectively manage a group of people while remaining approachable and non-condescending. My next chapter starts next fall, where I will be studying Public Health at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo.
‘Four Corners’ aims to ease Alameda traffic congestion
Veronica Roseborough Staff Writer
It is no secret that driving to school in the morning is a pain. All of the stress built up from late nights and loads of studying is emphasized even more so when one is surrounded by an endless string of red brake lights. Then, in six to seven hours, students and faculty are forced to face the perils of Alameda de las Pulgas once again. Unless participating in an after-school sport, waiting in traffic seems like an inevitable obstacle, one that will never be overcome. However, the “Four Corners Project” provides a solution. “The Four Corners working group is made up of elected officials from Belmont, San Carlos, Se-
quoia Union High School District (SUHSD), and San Carlos School District (SCSD) with the support of staff from each entity,” said former mayor and current Belmont Councilman Charles Stone. “It was formed at the suggestion of then assembly member Jerry Hill to help ease traffic congestion on the Alameda de Las Pulgas Corridor.” Originally, the four groups came together in order to put in lights on the Carlmont football field, according to San Carlos Councilman Ron Collins. After the task was completed, the project morphed into a traffic study and eventually a plan to reduce the build-up of cars accumulated during morning drop off and after school pick up from both Carlmont High School and Tierra Linda Middle School.
“[The project] started about six years ago, and maybe within a year, we hired W-Trans,” Collins said. In 2016, the company presented the working group with a 347-page study conducted on Alameda traffic flow. After much debate, option 3B was chosen for the future road improvements. This alternative includes three roundabouts to replace the current stop signs, as well as a new entrance to Tierra Linda and a revised entrance to Carlmont. In between the two schools, there are also plans for a crosswalk and raised median. Nonetheless, the roundabouts are truly the main solution. “Traffic circles make traffic move more rapidly than four-way stops — they keep things smoother, they manage a safe rate of trav-
el, they are safer for pedestrians as well as for vehicles, and they are effective during both light and heavy traffic,” said Alan Sarver, a board member on the SUHSD Board of Trustees. However, no plan can be carried out without overcoming obstacles. “Anytime you have separate government entities working on something together there are going to be challenges,” Stone said. “We also heard from some residents who don’t like some of the aspects of the selected alternative.” Collins also brought up the fact that because Alameda is such a crucial area of transportation, construction crews will have a very limited window in which they can work without disturbing the entire community. All in all, the project will cost
Summer school doesn’t have to be boring. At Fusion, we have the ability to customize classes to each student’s individual strengths, interests, and learning style. Every class is taught with just one student and one teacher per classroom. We offer academic tutoring, enrichment, and classes for credit for grades 6 through 12. Students can enroll at any time, and take classes at a time of day that works best for them.
around $5 million. The cities are splitting the cost while the schools provide land. The general consensus is that the project will be completed within two to four years. Ultimately, all four partners are satisfied with their progress so far as it is not often they get to work together on something like this. It affects not only those traveling on Alameda but the San CarlosBelmont community as a whole. “I’ve been very excited that the school community has been a catalyst that has really helped the cities come together and do something that’s of importance to all of the citizens that all of the organizations serve,” Sarver said. The outlook is optimistic and the solution to daily frustration is just on the horizon. All we must do now is wait.
Fusion Academy San Mateo FusionSanMateo.com 650.312.8305
New regulations pioneer concussion rates Contact sports address concern for concussions Alena Ruhstaller Staff Writer Contact sports, second to motor accidents, are the leading causes of traumatic brain injuries for teenagers aged 15 to 24. 67,000 concussions are diagnosed in high school football each year across the United States according to Prevacus, a pharmaceutical company that aims to develop new treatments for brain injuries. Since 1997, at least 50 high school football players have died from these serious head injuries. An athlete can acquire a concussion through trauma to the head that causes the brain to move back and forth rapidly, according to Heads Up, an organization created by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to educate players, coaches, and parents about concussions. The sudden blow to the head can cause the brain to bounce around or twist in the skull, which creates chemical changes in the brain and possibly damages brain cells. “There are mild, moderate, and severe concussions. One mild concussion may not have an adverse effect on the player’s health, but numerous over time can lead to neurological disorders. However, if a player experiences one severe concussion, they can suffer from memory loss and issues with concentration and other long-term symptoms,” Dr. Mona Litvak of One Medical said. Depending on the severity of the concussion, symptoms, such as headaches, pressure in the head, confusion, dizziness, fatigue, and nausea can last from as little as one day up to several months. The
long-term effects on a player’s health, however, include memory loss, personality and mood change, depression, trouble walking, and tremors, which are unintentional muscle movements that are a symptom of Parkinson’s disease. Due to the side effects and the damage to the head, the athlete is not only forbidden to participate in strenuous physical activity but is haunted by the symptoms of their concussion on a day-to-day basis. Kaija Villagrand, a sophomore, suffered four concussions in middle school and one in high school. Four out of the five concussions Villagrand has endured were from playing soccer. “My most common symptoms have tended to be migraines and mental fog. It feels as if you are wearing an extremely tight helmet and being quizzed on information you have never learned.” Villagrand said. “I was constantly stressed because I would zone out and feel as if I was going to faint if I was forced to concentrate.” Villagrand’s concussions are part of the 300,000 concussions that are diagnosed for high school athletes across the United States per year, and the rates have been increasing. Schools with athletic trainers are shown to have much higher rates of concussions compared to schools without an athletic trainer present. With a trainer, there are eight times the
amount of reported girls soccer and 4.5 times in girls basketball. This increase in the concussion rate for high school athletes is due to the athletic trainers’ ability to detect subtle symptoms of a concussion and diagnose the brain injury. The awareness for concussions in contact sports increased as well as the measures taken to prevent and protect the athletes from obtaining one. The U.S. Soccer Confederation Initiative of 2016 aimed to prevent concussions of competitive youth players by completely eliminating heading — direct contact of the ball to the head — for children 10 and under and limiting the amount of heading in practice for players ages 11 to 13. If a player suffers a potential concussion during the game, the referees must allow the player to be evaluated without penalty. “If a player is potentially concussed, the player must be taken off immediately and can’t come back into the field unless they’ve been examined by a medical professional.” Danyel Areff, a certified U.S. Soccer Referee, said. “Until two years ago, players only needed to be inspected by their coach.” Coaches’ new consciousness towards the epidemic also contributes to the rules and restrictions for concussions in contact sports. “The health and safety of a player is a
coach’s top priority, far beyond anything else in the game of soccer. As a coach, we look for players to grow their skills, learn life lessons, and work together as a team for a common goal, but in order to make any of that possible, it’s the brain that must be relied upon,” John Stuart, coach of San Carlos United Blitz, said. Once an athlete has suffered an initial concussion, their chances for a second one are three to six times greater than an athlete who has never experienced one before. “My pediatrician told me that it was 100 percent my decision on whether or not I should continue playing soccer, but both of my parents pressured me to quit because the last concussion was so awful and we didn’t know if we could go through that again,” Villagrand said. Villagrand was told by a neurologist to quit the sport and pursue a non-contact sport due to the danger of more severe symptoms in case she got another concussion. “Multiple accumulative concussions can lead to Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) where proteins called Tau kill slowly kill brain cells,” Litvak said. After experiencing three or more concussions, athletes are often forced to quit the sport that they love and find another non-contact sport to pursue instead. “I continued to play soccer because I love my club team and the adrenaline rush that soccer gives me. I didn’t want to lose the connection with my teammates and I wanted to continue playing a contact sport,” Villagrand said. “Now it wouldn’t be as hard to let go due to the way my body has reacted to so many concussions, but I would have extreme difficulty quitting.”
Olympics introduce new sports in Tokyo Molly Donaldson Staff Writer
An athlete from Ancient Greece would find the modern Olympics both familiar and confusing. While they could jump right into the traditional events like marathon and shotput, they would be amazed by events such as snowboard slopestyle. The Olympic Games, founded in 776 B.C., originated in the Ancient Greek town of Olympia as an athletic competition to honor the gods. Today, they have evolved into a global tradition that celebrates the diversity of humanity while still honoring their connection to their Greek roots. Following the conclusion of the 2018 Winter Olympic Games, spectators and athletes alike now anticipate the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo. In addition to the 28 existing summer sports, five new sports will be introduced to the 2020 Games: sport climbing, skateboarding, surfing, softball or baseball, and karate. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) ruled in 2016, after the summer games in Rio de Janeiro, that these five sports would be included in the 2020 games to appeal to the younger generations of the world.
IOC President Thomas Bach said at the 2016 press conference regarding the 2020 Games, “We want to take sports to the youth. With the many options that young people have, we cannot expect any more that they will come automatically to us. We have to go to them.” According to the official Olympics website, the new sports will introduce 18 events and 474 athletes, bringing the tally for the Tokyo Games to 11,000 athletes and 324 events. However, the sports will only be featured in the Tokyo Games, being chosen for these games in order to honor the host country
of Japan and its ever-changing youth culture. Bach said, “Taken together, the five sports are an innovative combination of established and emerging youth-focused events that are popular in Japan and will add to the legacy of the Tokyo Games.” The new sports for 2020 will not necessarily carry over to future Olympic Games. Each future host country will have a say in
what new sports are featured in their games. According to the official Olympic website, the IOC encourages candidate cities to propose events that fit their sporting, economic, social, and longterm needs. However, this does not mean that any sport is viable for the Olympics. In order to be considered for the Summer Olympics by the IOC, a sport must be practiced in 75 countries across four continents. Once a sport is chosen for the Games, it requires its own set of athlete qualifications. Surfers, for example, need to have competed in the World Surfing Games or Pan-Amer-
ican Games or be globally ranked. Climbing has its own set of qualifications. Sophomore Greta Foehr, who climbs, said, “To make it to the Olympics, you need to be good at speed, sport (which is rope), clipping in as you go, and then bouldering also. You need to be good all around.” Not every sports enthusiast is thrilled about the inclusion of the new sports, partly because there are already other established championships. Additionally, only a few competitors are allowed to compete. Joshua Engberg, Carlmont teacher who surfs, said, “I think it’s kinda cool [that surfing is being included], but I’m kind of ambivalent at the same time. The top surfers already compete on a tour. And because you only have a few slots per country, you don’t necessarily get all the best.” But even for sports with existing championships, their inclusion in the Olympics will widen their audience. Spectators from around the world are excited to find out more about new sports. Sophomore Joe Seaman said, “It’s good that the Olympics are including more people, and I’m excited to watch the new sports because it’s cool to see less popular sports become more widely accepted.”
Females break barriers in dominantly male sports Samantha Dahlberg Staff Writer Imagine if sports teams united both sexes, instead of dividing them. Some say that females and males can play together, but some say otherwise. Girls have started to make a stand and play the sport that they want to play, no matter what society thinks. Raphaelle Pelland is one of these advocates. Pelland, a sophomore who played on Carlmont’s JV football team this year, was the only girl playing among the guys. “Football is one of the most amazing sports ever, and I love everything about it. I love the contact as much as the strategy behind it, and I think it is a huge shame that the girls are not allowed to have their own football team,” Pelland said. Pelland is breaking gender barriers to make a statement because in modern society, sports tend to be divided into female and male teams. According to Arizona State University’s newspaper, the State Press, “Natural divisions may occur. For example, women may gravitate toward softball while men gravitate toward baseball simply because that’s how the sports have historically been divided.” Although girls have a physical disadvantage compared to boys, players on the football team have treated Pelland with respect as a player. “The guys treated me really well even though it was my first year on the team, and I just moved here from Canada not speaking English that well. On the field was amazing since I got to learn about who they were, and even though there is this big stereotype about football players being jerks, they are actually super sweet. Eventually, they all acted like brothers towards me which was really great,” Pelland said. Some sports teams already allow both genders to practice at the same time, and that is considered their norm.
Nicholas Chao, a junior on Carlmont’s swim team, practices with girls everyday. “[Practicing together] creates more unity between genders, yet it is unfair for the girls. Both genders get the same benefit from the practices, but it mostly only occurs in individual sports like swimming and track,” Chao said. Pelland’s coaches saw her being in contact with bigger guys as concerning due to her size. “From the beginning, I could tell that the coaches were a little bit scared for me because I am a small girl and the guys were huge. They made me feel like it was a big step since most of the time I would barely play and sometimes it would only be for the last five minutes of the game...I hated how that is what they thought of me and nothing more,” said Pelland.
Harvard Health Publishing provides further evidence of the physical differences between males and females, stating that the typical female athlete has higher estrogen levels, less muscle, and more fat, less powerful muscles, and a higher likelihood of inadequate calcium and Vitamin D intake in comparison to male athletes. At the same time, it is important to look at sports as a whole; there is always a team and everyone is surrounded by their teammates, no matter who is on their team gender-wise. According to ESPN, “In the 39 years since Title IX opened playing fields across the country to girls, the number of women playing sports has skyrocketed. Women’s professional leagues have come — some have stayed and others have gone — and the skill level of female athletes has
improved tremendously. Danica Patrick in auto racing and Kelly Kulick on the Professional Bowlers Association tour have shown that women can compete and win on an individual basis.” Sammy Blucher, a junior, plays kicker for Carlmont’s varsity football team. Darian Dennler, a junior also on varsity, has learned from his time playing with Blucher that girls have the potential to play sports with guys. “If a girl wants to play a sport that is mainly played by guys, I believe that they should be completely allowed to play it as long as they are willing to put in the time that is required to play the sport. I played football with Blucher, and it was good to have her on the team as a kicker since she could actually kick and play,” Dennler said. However, girls are not technically limited to just playing the non-contact position on the team. “During this season, they made my main position be the wide receiver and quarterback since I am small and fast. I wanted to play as their linebacker but it was always known as the position meant for bigger guys than me even though I told them that I played that position in Canada...I learned a lot and enjoyed the experience from this team but I wanted to make a difference on how everyone viewed me,” said Pelland. When it comes down to it, modern society separates sexes, and that has become the social norm. Even though most people have grown to live by this, it is still possible to find new ways to call attention to society for the better. “There’s something we have to do just to give girls the opportunity to try this. Most of them need the courage to put themselves out there and take the extra step that I took to ignore that it is just a rough sport. Everyone needs to think that girls should be considered as players, not just girls,” Pelland said.
Carlmont sports receive varying treatment due to popularity Daniel Friis Staff Writer In the fall of 2017, Carlmont’s girls’ varsity tennis team won the Peninsula Athletic League (PAL) and competed for the Central Coast Section (CCS) championship. However, only a small handful of people knew about this achievement. At the same time, the boys’ varsity football team won eight out of 10 games, their best regular season record since before 2004, according to MaxPreps, a site tracking high school sports all around the country. A large number of students and community members knew about this. Other sports besides tennis have had very successful seasons in the past. The swim team last season won PALs. The varsity baseball team won their fifth straight PAL title last year, and just a few years ago, went to the CCS semifinals. However, many students don’t know these accomplishments because they aren’t publicized at Carlmont. “I see all these people at football games, and it must feel really nice for the players to be playing
for so many people watching, all of them encouraging you. Meanwhile, if you come to our golf matches, there is practically no one there. I know that golf isn’t as intriguing as a high school sport as football is, but that doesn’t mean that we aren’t athletes just like they are,” said Alex Cohen, a junior. Sports like basketball and football are advertised more throughout the school than other sports. This is mainly due to how popular these two high school sports are. According to CNS news, 1,085,272 high schoolers played football from 2015-2016, and according to US news, 18,150 high schools have a basketball team. Because of this, students are encouraged to attend football and basketball games, which isn’t an issue, but other sports teams don’t receive as much popularity. “I feel like we give too much popularity to other sports. I think all sports should get the same coverage, but this isn’t the case. I swim for Carlmont, and we have made history in the past few years accomplishing records that are outstanding yet we barely get covered and not many know,” Amy Fullerton, a junior on the swim
team said. said Harry Devoy, a junior who Another reason why basketball runs track. and football are advertised more This uneven treatment upsets is that they are the two sports that many students who feel like they make money for the school. deserve more attention for their “To enter a football or basket- achievements. ball game, it’s $6 generally, $4 for “It’s frustrating. The football a senior citizen team had a and $2 for PAL great year sticker holdoverall, but I see all these people ers. Also, there not a good at football games [...] is a snack bar enough year Meanwhile, if you come provided that to where charges money they deserve to our golf matches, there for food,” Jusall new gear. is practically no one tin Wang said, Our prothere. a senior and the gram has supervisor of had many Alex Cohen ASB’s finance successful commission. years, and Junior Since these we have gotsports make ten nothing,” money, they have better equip- Elias Wilson, a junior who plays ment. For example, the football badminton, said. team got all new black uniforms For various football players, this year after finishing with eight they believe that the unequal wins. Meanwhile, other sports treatment isn’t an issue because of have had successful seasons in the how hard the football team works. past but were not rewarded. “Our season is longer than “Last year in track, we made anybody’s. We start in January it to CCS in many events, but not and end in November. We have many people knew about it. We three-hour practices five days a still reuse the same uniforms for week, and it is the most physically the last three or four seasons, but draining and painful sport at the football got brand new uniforms” school. So, if we do get treated a
little better than most sports, it’s for a good reason,” Julian Morin, a junior, said. The main reason for the unequal treatment of various sports teams isn’t because of one specific person or group. Rather, it is a large portion of the school that does not pay attention to a variety of sports teams. “It’s not just a few specific people who encourage students to go to specific games, but it’s a vast majority of students and staff. It’ll take a long time to solve, but if we do, there will be a lot more content students,” said Cohen. The athletes who feel like they aren’t treated as well as other sports are wanting a change to happen. “If a change was to occur, and we started to receive more popularity and better treatment than bigger sports, it would make my experiences at Carlmont better. I will remember my years playing badminton as fun times where people came and supported me and cheered me on, instead of years where there were little people in the stands and no one cared. Not only will it make me satisfied, but everyone else who feels the same way I do,” Wilson said.
Scots dive to historic depths in finals
Swim team breaks record at finals with four-title win Kimberly Mitchell Staff Writer
Two years ago, winning all four PAL titles would be unheard of. However, after years of hard work, that once far-fetched dream became a reality when not one, not two, but all four Carlmont swim teams won first place at the PAL Bay Division finals on May 5. Through team cheers and tears of happiness, the Scots pushed through, stacking up points and breaking personal records (PRs) throughout the day. After placing first in both heats in the 4×200 medley relay, the JV girls were off to a great start. JV freshman swimmer Julia Barbosa won all four of her events and Jacey Kelly broke three PRs. Sophomores Sarah Dunwoody and Raphaelle Pelland also performed well, each placing first in three of their events. “We have a good chance JV girls will win this year so we’re giving everything we have,” Pelland said. “We did really well this season and we’re in first place for most events, so we have a good chance of getting the points we need.” Unlike the boys’ varsity team who had won the PAL title two years in a row, the JV girls had yet to win a first place title. However, the girls were confident that this year would be the year that they start their own winning streak. Likewise, the JV boys had a rough start when the freshman 200-yard medley relay team of Daniel Kogan, Brennan Dai, Greg McCulloh, and Zach Nathan was disqualified for a false start. “We’re losing by around 20 points because we got disqualified in the first relay, but I think we can bring it back. We’re going to have to place first in our relays through,” Nathan said after the relay. JV coach Jim Kelly was confident in the JV girls team and believed that both varsity teams could win even if it was going to be tight against Menlo-Atherton (M-A). But after the JV boys’ disqualification and lack of first place winners, he was unsure whether they could bring it back. “Boys’ JV is a very small team so they don’t have any margin for error and they’ve already made one big error. Cost us 30 points […] a bunch of freshman boys,” Jim Kelly laughed. Though some may have thought the boys were doomed to a second place win, little by little, individual points gained by freshmen swimmers such as Khai Kober who won first in the 200-
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yard freestyle and Vyas Kepler who placed first in the 100-yard individual medley allowed the JV boys to pass M-A by a small margin. Both varsity teams started off slow with Carlmont placing fourth for the girls’ varsity 200-yard medley relay and the boys placing third, but the Scots quickly bounced back and took the lead. Varsity swimmer freshman Morgan Hawes was among the fastest of the Carlmont girls placing first in the 100-yard freestyle with a time of 52.78 seconds and second in the 200yard freestyle. “So far, I placed second and broke my PR for the 200-yard freestyle and looking at the points, I think they’re adding up really well,” Hawes said. “We’re really going to make history today and I’m honestly super excited.” Although the Carlmont swim team is filled with talented swimmers, Carlmont alumni Lukas Kelly believes that team spirit is what contributed the most to Carlmont’s success. ”My first two years [on the team] was not the best experience. We had no team spirit and we were not as successful because of that,” Lukas Kelly said. “We have a lot of talented swimmers today, but we had talent in the past as well. Without the spirit, we just couldn’t make it to the top.” Coach Jim Kelly agrees with his son in that it’s the spirit that contributes the most to Carlmont’s performance. “The comradery, the team spirit, that to me is one of the most important things that they can have because for the whole season, win or lose, no matter how fast they swim what they are going to remember in 15 to 20 years are the teammates and the bonds that they had with them,” Jim Kelly said. That team spirit could be seen throughout the meet as iconic Scot cheers echoed through the swim courts, encouraging their teammates to finish strong. Once the meet came to a close and it was time for the final scores to be announced, the Scots gathered around to hear their results. JV girls won with a total of 604 points, 276 points ahead of M-A. Varsity girls won with a total of 452 points and JV boys won with a total of 398.5 points, just 15.5 points ahead of M-A. Varsity boys were the last to be announced and ended with 559
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Rachel McCrea, a freshman on the JV girls’ team, embraces her teammates after the Scots take all four PAL titles at the Bay Division finals. “I’m just so happy and sad that today is over,” McCrea said. “I will never forget this moment.”
looks at the scoreboard in surprise after
200-yard freestyle and swimming a PR of 1:51.80. Hawes also Carlmont varsity records for her 200 individual medley (IM), 100 free, and 500 free. She qualified for eight events at CCS. placing second in the went on to break
points, 156 points ahead of M-A. Immediately following the announcement, tears began to fall as swimmers embraced each other. Others decided to jump into the pool to celebrate and soon enough almost all of the Carlmont swim team was in the pool, including coach Jim Kelly and varsity coach Fred Farley. “I’m really tired but I’m happy that this is how I finish my swim
season and swim career,” Edison Bai, a senior, said. “I only started swimming last year, but from talking to some other people that have been here for four years I know for a fact that they have been waiting for this day, the day that we just wipe out all of the other schools.” As a coach for more than 20 years, seeing the Scots win all four PAL titles is almost surreal for
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coach Jim Kelly. “You know, one thing that I always tell my swimmers is that we have to outwork our opponents in practice each day and I know we do that. Every once and a while, I step back at practice and just look at the whole pool and realize just how strong we are.” They are strong enough to make history and a legacy that will last a lifetime.
Vo l u m e I I I C o m i n g fa l l 2 0 1 8
Prejudice within society will persist despite change Katrina Wiebenson Staff Writer
Today’s society has become an atmosphere full of disagreement and hatred for those who have an opinion. Especially with the use of social media outlets, people have been voicing their wishes for the world in the future. The overall belief that the world can be perfect one day is far from realistic. Race: Race has been a controversial topic that has lasted for centuries. In 1870, the fifthteenth Amendment was ratified, giving African Americans the right to vote. Some people believed that this would be the end of racism. They were wrong. Not only are some African Americans still discriminated against, but many races have been at some point. It tends to be a very sensitive topic for many, as ethnicity is very personal. New York Times and CBS News polls reveal that nearly six in 10 Americans, including majorities of both whites and blacks, think race relations are generally bad, while nearly four in 10 think the situation is getting worse. According to Pew Research Center, most of the public acts on the social desirability effect, meaning individuals hold a bias towards others based on one’s appearance. Many races also have their own beliefs based on their own family’s culture, leading to societal stereotypes. When one makes an assumption based on a racial stereotype, many are quick to assume that they are racist and will take offense to this. Many people fail to realize that there is a difference between stereotypes and true racism, as nobody can expect people to be “color-blind” to others’ races. It is not only unrealistic, but delusional. However, we should most certainly not turn a blind eye towards racism. It is clear that there is progress to be made. That being said, race will always be prevalent in our society as we cannot change our natural instincts to judge one and other based on appearance. The public needs to start focusing on progressing towards the ending of true racism as opposed to racial ste-
reotypes. The public needs to get their perception of what is harmful and what is not in order. Gender and Sexual Equality: Race is not the only thing that is discriminated against, as gender and sexual equality are works in progress. Stereotypes today are based on certain sexualities and genders. The LGBTQ community has prevailing issues with some people not accepting alternative genders and sexualities. Although discrimination is not right in any form or extent, it is usually ignored due to sexuality being very personal and that it generally does not infringe on another’s daily life. Similarly, sexism has been an issue in our history for decades. Women are still looked down upon by some cultures and some individuals. Women have been fighting for their rights for years, with modern feminism dating back to the 19th century. According to the Pew Research Center, when asked what traits society value in both genders, 35 percent of people related women to physical attractiveness, while 30 percent related women to be commonly nurturing and empathetic. However, men were described differently. 33 percent said that men were honest and had extreme morality, and 23 percent said men were known for professional and financial success. The stereotype is used throughout our society: women are more emotional while men are more focused on work. Feminists can be unrealistic in their desires. Many jump to assume that one is sexist because they suggest women cannot do everything a man can. In reality, women cannot physically do everything that a man can do. Women are built much differently than men and have different strengths and weaknesses. According to a study in the Journal of Applied Physiology, men had an average of 26 pounds more skeletal muscle mass than women. Women also had about 40 percent less upper-body strength and 33 percent less lower-body strength. Men are naturally physically stronger than women.
While equality is a good target, it will never be reached, as each gender is different, and therefore needs different things. Feminists need to focus on equality of all genders as a whole, not struggling to prove that women are equal to men from an overall standpoint. Economic Class: Many disagree over the existence of classes in today’s society. Many Americans believe that the classes in the United States are simply split into three sections: rich, middle, and poor, with some classes getting more help from the government than others. A study from the Pew Research Center found that 64 percent of survey takers thought that too much government help is given to the rich, while 62 percent and 61 percent believed that the poor and the middle class respectively do not get enough help. It is commonly said that we should not be defined based on wealth. It is impossible for classes not to exist. Without them, everyone would be exactly the same (a.k.a. communism). Society would be a machine. According to Mike Patton of Forbes Magazine, “...when you take too much from the rich, risk-taking declines, private sector growth is hindered, government debt rises (along with unemployment), and the economy suffers.” Without the rich man, we would not have an owner of a company. Without the middle class, we would not have businessmen to run those companies, and without the poor, we would not have workers to build within the industries. Inequality is part of the human nature. We all have to be different to have a functional society. Nobody would be working hard to get what they want anymore, as we would all have the same things. Without flaws in our society, we would not be able to appreciate the great things society has to offer. Without the differences among individuals, we would no longer be such. We must realize what is harmful to our world and work towards progress, and not perfection.
School vouchers ignore the existing issues of public education Nina Heller Staff Writer
In the U.S., every child has the right to a public education. Tuition isn’t paid in order to attend public schools, but schools are funded by taxpayers. What else is funded by taxpayers? Diverting public funding away from public schools in order to send lower-income students to private schools. Called school vouchers, this funding provides children the chance to go to private school instead of public school.This may not be providing the highest quality of education. Students who are lower-income or in a minority group should be able to have the same quality of education as their higher income peers, but the solution to increasing equity in education shouldn’t be sending these students private schools with public funding, it should be using that funding to improve the public schools that families are turning away from.
Editor-in-Chief Jordan Hanlon Managing Editor Connor Lin ScotCenter Editor-in-Chief Sophie Penn Scotlight Editor-in-Chief Mona Murhamer Scot Scoop Editor-in-Chief Brooke Chang Faculty Adviser Justin Raisner
Take Indiana, for instance: its largest school district, Fort Wayne, uses $20 million of state funding on providing school vouchers, according to National Public Radio (NPR). While California and Indiana are very different economically and demographically speaking, there is no doubt that the $20 million sent to private schools would have provided smaller class sizes, newer textbooks, and an overall better quality of education in any state. According to EdChoice, a school choice advocacy group, California is not among the 14 states that currently offer school vouchers. But this doesn’t mean it isn’t relevant to Californians. The debate over school vouchers brings larger issues to the table regarding public education, and public education is far from perfect. School vouchers also blur the lines between separation of church and state. In 2002, the Supreme Court ruled in Zelman v. Simmons-Harris, that an Ohio program for school vouchers didn’t vio-
late the establishment clause of the First Amendment, despite the vouchers ability to be used at private religious schools. However, school vouchers are still a violation of church and state due to their ability to direct public funds to help support religiously directed institutions. Additionally, just because a student can use the voucher for a private school, doesn’t mean that they are getting a better education. In a study by Stanford University’s Economic Policy Institute, the test scores of students using school vouchers were lower than those enrolled in public school in the same district. School vouchers are often for low-income students, children with disabilities or for families zoned to a failing public school, according to NPR. Yet, the current Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, argues that school vouchers are about parents getting to choose a school for their children that fit their unique and individualized needs, according to her May 2017 testimony in front
of Congress. There are many ways to find a school that fits one’s unique and individualized needs. For starters, charter schools are another option for students. Vouchers cause more harm to public education than they do to help public education by using tax dollars that could be sent to improve the failing schools to fund private and often religiously backed schools. But once those children reach the private schools, what happens to them is no longer in the government’s control. They can be subject to discrimination I don’t believe that low-income and minority students should be subject to a lower quality of education in public schools. I believe that low-income students and other marginalized groups should be able to have the same resources and access to public education as anyone else. But sending public funding to these private institutions ignores the larger issues facing public education in this country, instead of fixing them.
Staff Writers Lily Bakour Ben Balster Maya Benjamin Sarah Cheung Riley Collins Samantha Dahlberg Nicole del Cardayre Talia Fine Daniel Friis
Kaylee George Nina Heller Cath Lei Briana McDonald Joseph Gomez Mackenzie O’Connell Hanalei Pham Justin Som Katrina Wiebenson Celine Yang
Rachel Borshchenko Emma Romanowsky Francesca D’Urzo
The Highlander is a newspaper dedicated to providing Carlmont students, staff, and the community with high-quality news, features, and opinion articles. We want to keep our readers informed on important issues ranging from events at Carlmont to international news, and want to engage them with unique stories and images. The Highlander is a publication completely run by the students of the journalism classes at Carlmont High School. Story ideas are generated by the students and the published content is up to the discretion of the editorial staff. This month’s editorial was written by Jordan Hanlon and the editorial cartoon was drawn by Skylar Weiss.
Learn from high school; live afterwards Use your mistakes to create your successes High school is not forever. Despite popular belief, your life will go on, you’ll make new friends, and even though these four years feel like forever, you’ll graduate and still have an entire life ahead of you. According to evolutionary psychologist Frank T. McAndrew, on the reason that high school impacts the lives of humans, “The main driver is the collision between the hardwiring of our brains that took place across several million of years of evolution and the odd social bubble created by high school, which poses an unprecedented social challenge to our prehistoric minds.” Naturally, our brain likes what’s familiar to us, what we know — which is ultimately why it’s hard for us to branch out, especially in high school, when we’re still trying to figure out ourselves. Despite the psychology behind why we stick to our familiarity, high school is not something that we should dwell on, but instead, learn from. High school is not a place that should determine your future, but help shape it. However, take it lightly; the number of friends you have or the number of clubs you’re in does not represent the rest of your life or your successes. A large part of high school is to discover what you like and dislike — and that goes for multiple things; such as friendships, relationships, passions, and more. There are the stereotypical aspects of high school that are true — such as the fact that you don’t typically stay with your
friends from middle school, and you do change, a lot. Freshman year is a new period of everyone’s life, and as fun as it is to fit in, find what makes you happy. Instead, use high school as a trial period, try new things, explore yourself. It’s okay to have more than one friend group or keep more to yourself. It’s more about what keeps you going and mentally healthy. Again, high school is a personal experience and being “popular” and overwhelming oneself isn’t necessarily a good thing depending on the individual. According to a study done by a clinical psychologist Rachel Narr, having more friends in high school can easily lead to a
more socially anxious adulthood. “Your friendships as a teenager sort of ‘set in motion’ your later social wellbeing and how you manage relationships as an adult. Researchers found that the students who had strong close friendships in their teens showed a relative decrease in depressive symptoms and a relative increase in self-worth measurements from 15 to 25,” Narr said. We are supposed to take these experiences with a grain of salt and make the most out of what we’ve learned, including our mistakes and our regrets. The stress that comes with both the social and academic aspects of school is feared, and that’s because of failure. High
school takes place so early in your lifetime, it shouldn’t be something that’s feared. It’s perfectly okay to be scared, but it’s just as normal to be able to move on. Our society almost molds our minds to believe that high school is extremely important, but it doesn’t determine the rest of your future. It is a time where one should implement new things, experiment, and there are people and certain aspects who will stick with you the rest of your life. In contrast, there are also hundreds of other experiences you will gain before and after high school. McAndrew added, “According to the ‘Social Comparison Theory,’ we figure out how good we are and develop a sense of personal worth by comparing ourselves with others; the more similar those others are, the better we can gauge our own strengths and weaknesses.” Another reason not to obsess about high school is simply due to the fact that it’s become this continuation of trials, and we’ve been the system’s guinea pigs. Us seniors especially, are the first class to take the new SAT format, and we were the first class to deal with Common Core learning. What you’ve achieved in this time should not be overlooked, but don’t let it determine the rest of your life. High school really is a trial period for college, not the rest of your life. So, treat it as one, but don’t forget to move on too.
Government needs a multi-party system
Two-party structure fails to provide ample options for citizens Justin Som Staff Writer Democrats. Republicans. Two strong candidates at the end of four years, duking it out in an election in which winner takes all. Since 1776, this has been the template of American politics. By 2030, this may no longer be the case. “We may be beginning to see the end of a two-party system,” John Kasich, the governor of Ohio, said in an interview on “This Week” in February 2018. “I’m starting to really wonder if we are going to see a multi-party system at some point in the future in this country. Because I don’t think either party is answering people’s deepest concerns and needs.” Despite the concerns of many Democrats and Republicans, a multi-party system wouldn’t be detrimental to American politics. Nor would it necessarily detract votes from the candidate who was “meant to win.” A multi-party system would instead provide for vastly different opinions than the increasingly polarized views of both Democrats and Republicans. This system would be especially beneficial during elections. Under the two party system,
voters are essentially forced to choose the candidate that they dislike the least. However, the multi-party system would definitively alter this voting pattern; with a wider set of options to choose from, voters will choose the candidate with the most benefits rather than the candidate with the least pitfalls. The two party system has been a figurehead of American politics since its founding. Beginning with Thomas Jefferson and James Madison who headed the respective Democratic-Republican and Federalist parties, the two party system has prevented long term parties besides the two main frontrunners. When third parties and offshoot political movements made their debuts in the past, the maximum lifespan of these groups was only a few years. After a brief moment in the political spotlight, these groups would often have their agendas copied by the main parties. With a variety of smaller, more focused platforms, these newer parties would be extremely attractive to Americans who feel that Democrats and Republicans cater to too many issues with no actual progress. This causes fextraneous parties to lose popularity and steadily
fade away. For instance, take a look to the Green Party, which gathered massive media attention in the 2000 election with Ralph Nader. Nader had a surprisingly large following in comparison to the mainstream candidates of George W. Bush and Al Gore. Is it just coincidence that after their loss in the election to Bush, the Democrats took on an environmentally friendly agenda in the years following, and the Green Party in recent years, has lost much of its momentum. The setting in which past third parties failed to break away from the two party system is quite different from the maturing environment of American politics. In the past, the two main parties had arguably similar ideology to that of the third parties, so it was easy for them to adopt the same principles and campaign strategies. Take the case of the far right Tea Party Movement, which died out in 2016. Championing a take-down of government sponsored health care in hand with extremely low taxes, this group was once viewed as the far right section of the Republican party. However, due to the fact that these ideals were only a shift away from moderate Republi-
cans, it was no major effort for the mainstream Republican party to absorb both the Tea Party Movement and its ideas. The increasingly extreme positions of both Democrats and Republicans deter the two party system from this trend of absorbing smaller parties and movements though. In recent years, it has become more frequent for an American to take the stance of the moderate. For the future, it may well be that Americans will become more disgusted with the two main parties and form their own coalition. Due to the fact that the taking on of moderate goals would be a step back from the extremism of both Democrats and Republicans, a party of moderates wouldn’t be as easily absorbed into the two party system. Instead, it is much more likely that this new party would take voters away from both of those parties. Yet, the largest factor that may contribute to a multiparty system will be the failures of Congress to address the more relevant national issues. To the dismay of Democrats, Congress has not instituted new mandates that tighten gun laws or give protections to civilians. To the dismay of many Republicans, a replacement plan for
Obamacare has not been made either. The behavior of these parties sets the stage for a new multiparty system. In light of this lack of reform, change may also come from the weakening bonds within the two parties themselves. Since the inauguration of President Trump in January 2017, there has been inner conflict within both parties. If Americans within either Democrat or Republican parties feel that their own subgoals aren’t being met, then there is no guarantee that they will support the different objectives of other members within the party. Thus, in this case, the wide range of goal that the two parties have each adopted for large amounts of voters, will reduce party efficiency and support. Unless the two parties finally enact reforms that are so desired by their constituents though, it is very possible that the future of American politics will lean towards a multi-party system. Due to the extreme ideologies of both sides, both moderates and small factions within the two parties have been neglected. These people have only one option; to leave the two party system and create their own groups.
Those with disabilities need equal rights Skylar Weiss Editor
One in seven. This is the proportion of people in the world that have a disability, according to National Public Radio (NPR). Many people neglect to realize that those with disabilities make up one of the world’s minority gruops. And like other minority groups, it is necessary to ensure that they are granted the same rights as anyone else; this includes the elimination of discrimination. From a global standpoint, the progress made to improve conditions for those with disabilities is still rather meager. According to the World Policy Analysis Center at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA Fielding School of Health), only 28 percent of 193 surveyed countries constitutionally guarantee the right to quality education at all levels for those with disabilities. Furthermore, 26 percent of the countries guarantee the right to health care without discrimination; 18 percent guarantee the right to work to people with disabilities. Given that those with disabilities make up one of the largest minority groups in the world population, it is disheartening to know that they are one of the last groups to be recognized for equal rights.
America needs to be constitutionally obligated to provide equal access to education, public facilities, health care, and working rights to those with disabilities. More efforts also need to be made in order to prevent potential discrimination towards those with disabilities. Although part of this social progress can be attributed to law, our culture also needs to shift towards further integrating those with disabilities into everyday aspects of our communities. One aspect is hiring more people with disabilities into local jobs. Gatepath, a local organization that aims to support those with developmental disabilities and special needs in the Bay Area, partnered with Trader Joe’s in efforts to employ more individuals with developmental disabilities. In the last four years, Trader Joe’s has hired seven employees who went through Gatepath’s program. Another way to transform our culture is to teach young people to naturally be more accepting of those with disabilities. Although some with disabilities or special needs take classes within a separate department as other students, it is important that they have the chance to interact with the campus life of all students. Doing so will drive the concept to young people that those with disabilities make up
another building block of a futional society. In recent years, students at Carlmont have made substantial efforts to connect with students who take classes within the Special Education Department, as well as provide those students with opportunities to interact with students outside the department. Reach Out is a commission in ASB whose primary job is to create opportunities for students in the department to participate in campus life and socialize with other students that they might not have classes with. For example, the commission holds Reach Out Hangouts during the school year; during a Hangout, students from Carlmont’s Special Education Department are invited to eat and chat with Carlmont students who aren’t part of the department. In our communities, the progress that has been made to grant equal rights and acceptance to those with the disabled is extremely honorable, but we as a society should be further along by now. Our culture must no longer austricize those with disabilities for being different; after all, differences account for diversity, and America is one of the most diverse countries in the world. It is time to incorporate those with developmental disabilities into society; disabilities should never be disqualifying.
Protesting works when positive Kathryn Stratz Editor
Protesting. Demonstrating, marching, rallying. The “act of objecting or a gesture of disapproval,” according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary. The goal of protesting is to change our country by pushing for respect, equality, acceptance, protection, and so much more. It is crucial in this day and age that Americans stay true to the purpose of protesting, otherwise progress will not be made. Protesting is not hateful. It should not be at least. So why do people think that showing up to rallies with signs sporting accusatory and hateful statements will accomplish something? Hate will not fix anything. It will not fix our gun laws, it will not remove the current president from office, and it will not make women more respected.
People proudly showing their “Trump is a racist” sign at a rally do not make the President reconsider how his words affect people nor does it make him want to. Such negative and emotionally driven messages only make important protests like the Women’s March be taken less seriously. Part of the problem is that people get emotionally caught up in marches like the Women’s March or those following the 2016 presidential election. They lose sight of the objective — to promote change. Not to mention, one is often surrounded by likeminded people at protests, so there is no accountability for promoting ineffective remarks, such as “F— Donald Trump” or “Not My President.” This is where progress is lost. Now, I’m not saying protests should be a throwback to the 60s, full of peace signs and flowers, as change will not happen if we are passive. We as a people are able to con-
fidently communicate what we think is right and what we need to be changed. Hateful protesting only fuels like-minded peoples’ fires and starts fires at the opposite end of the court. In other words, it keeps us at square one. If Americans want change, then they must start promoting it and not re-establishing problems that 63 percent of politically active Americans are already aware of. There is a way to bring awareness to these problems without fueling existing fires. If people who push for change remain positive, change can and hopefully will occur. Logical solutions to today’s problems are more motivating for the change-makers in the government than hate speech, as solutions provide a call to action. A recent school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School has ignited the
younger generation to take action on the issue of gun control. Three student survivors from this school, Emma Gonzalez, David Hogg, and Cameron Kasky, have taken the lead on this. These students have initiated a movement. They are providing a positive platform for the younger generation to speak up and help prevent further mass shootings from occurring. They clearly state what they think needs to change without trashing the government nor those who have opposing views. This is effective. These students are models for future activists, as they are educated on the subject, not using hate, and are standing up for change. This type of protesting will bring people together, not push them apart. Protest for change, for a solution, and don’t forget your purpose while doing so.
The Penn Perspective Sophie Penn
“I became a journalist to come as close as possible to the heart of the world.” -Henry Luce
Artificial intelligence poses unknown results For years, we’ve been hearing that we will eventually be replaced by robots. It seems as if our predictions are on track to become a reality. We’ve had machines working in industrial manufacturing for decades. Technology is heavily relied upon in healthcare and finances, and machinery permeates everyday life in a variety of ways. Reasonably enough, we have begun to fear a future in which robots and technology become so efficient and developed that these machines will replace humans in almost every aspect of jobs and production. What if they’re smarter than we are? What if they’re more efficient? What if they become so developed that they consciously overthrow the human race? These questions delve into the realm of science fiction, but there’s an unspoken knowledge that the reality isn’t too far off. However, regardless of the future of production and technology, robots can never fully replace humanity. What does it really mean to be human? To be human is to live, to love, and to die. But it’s also so much more. Consider acting: yes, we often trivialize Hollywood and the entertainment industry, but actors serve as a prime example of the uniqueness of humanity. They, along with the rest of the entertainment industry, utilize emotions, human experiences, and commonalities to tell fantastical stories. Movies can bring audiences to tears, cause them to laugh for hours, and inspire them to follow their dreams. Machines may be able to detect, understand, and mimic emotions, but they will never fully be able to express the intensity with which we feel. Similarly, professional athletes also have irreplaceable value. Sports are also a form of entertainment, but where would the fun be in watching robots that are specifically designed to be good at a sport play against each other? It’s the individuality of people’s different skill sets, capabilities, and inevitable flaws that makes sports entertaining; take that away and it’s not a sport, it’s just a show. Although our sports remain fully human for the time being, technology has even now begun to integrate into other jobs formerly held by people. Robotic automations already have been integrated into customer service; when you call an office or major franchise oftentimes a mechanical voice will respond asking you to dial a number based on your intent. However, these impersonal voice recordings tend to turn customers off - personally, I’m much more likely to stay on the phone with an actual person. When I pick up and hear the monotonous recording I almost always hang up before the first sentence is “spoken.” In theory, robots should be a positive integration into society, particularly the job force. Why wouldn’t we want machines to do our work for us? These robots have already begun to replace human workers to some degree as call center operators, surgeons, security guards, and even as drivers. Of course, they do have some benefits in these positions. They’re more efficient and precise — and you don’t have to pay a robot a salary. Economic efficiency isn’t always the most important factor though. Many seniors have been reading and analyzing Aldous Huxley’s “Brave New World,” a dystopian novel that serves as a cautionary tale for those who consider perfection and absolute stability to be the ideal of society. Because of this attempt to achieve complete control, the characters within the novel have abandoned individuality, family, love, history, and religion. But without these things that make up the rich culture of humanity, are we really still humans? “Robot” doesn’t necessarily refer only to a metal machine or a hightech computer — people, too, can become robots if we neglect to appreciate the value of creative thought and individuality, and instead strive for unification to the degree that we lose our own identities in favor of a monotonous social structure. Robotics and machinery were created because of an idea. They were created because of the human ability to innovate and envision something that has yet to exist. We are unique in our ability to conceptualize and create — no other species is capable of imagining something into existence. Although robots can be trained to physically make things from a prototype, they will never be capable of the innovation present in humanity. We brought automated intelligence to our world, and it is that very creativity that ensures that we can never be replaced, not even by our own creations.
2038: Will it be... ...a dystopia?
TECHNOLOGY Our world is about to be overrun with computers and automation, leaving us questioning our place in society and wondering if technology truly will outpace us. A world overrun by technology will produce a generation of people similar to that in the movie WALL-E. Instead of walking across a room to grab a backpack, purse, or sweatshirt, a click of a button will bring the object. Laziness will become the default, and effort will become extinct. Additionally, a social divide will become more prevalent, as those with more wealth will have access to the new technology, and those with less will fall behind and struggle to catch up. Jobs such as housekeepers, personal assistants, and secretaries, will be replaced by robots leaving many in unemployment in a market where it will be harder and harder to find jobs.
By the year 2040, each person will be more connected than ever. Quantum Run, a website that forecasts the future, predicts that by the year 2040 the average person will have 19 connected devices. These devices will be our cell phones, tablets, laptops, speakers, and even devices that have yet to be invented. That number of internet connected devices will reach more than 171 billion around the globe. This will allow more people to reach each other faster than they already are able to, as well as increase the amount of innovation around the world. This outpouring of technology will also allow humans to have more leisure time, as robots and automated systems take over day to day functions. Home automation systems such as Amazon’s Alexa and Google Home will become a household staple instead of a luxury, with everything we’ve ever wanted available at our command.
THE ENVIRONMENT Imagine summer. Not too hot. Not too cold. Just the right amount of warmth, with the wind cooling you down. Maybe an occasional heat wave here and there. Now imagine summer in the year 2100. Boston will feel like Miami. Places like Montana and Wyoming will begin to feel as hot as Arizona. It’s not that hard for this to become reality. Summer temperatures have been rising since the 1970s, and aren’t expected to stop any time soon. Climate Central, an organization which surveys and conducts scientific research on climate change, predicts that by the year 2100, summers in Sacramento will become unrecognizable from summers in Tucson, AZ, in terms of temperature. Droughts will also become more commonplace, as well as increased species extinction and sea level rise. In Fiji, more than three villages have been moved to prevent them from being wiped out from rising sea levels, with plans to move 40 more, as sea levels are predicted to rise up to one meter by 2100, according to Reuters.
While the outlook of the environment may seem bleak, technology will be able to help conserve natural resources and potentially halt global warming. According to a report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF), wind and solar will dominate the field of electricity production, becoming 48 percent of the world’s installed capacity for electricity. “This year’s report suggests that the greening of the world’s electricity system is unstoppable, thanks to rapidly falling costs for solar and wind power, and electric vehicles,” said Seb Henbest, lead author of New Energy Outlook (NEO). In addition to greater capacity for renewable energy, the increased use and availability of electric cars will also help out the earth. Electric vehicles have finally crossed the threshold with sleek designs from Tesla and other companies, but it is up to the rest of the world to purchase them. In order to reach the target set by the Paris Agreement, the world will need 600 million electric vehicles by 2040, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA).
POPULATION The attitudes of Americans can also drive people into a more negative and hopeless society, causing many people to fall into a trap of endless pessimism. According to a survey from the Associated Press National Opinion Research Center (AP NORC) in 2014, 54 percent of those surveyed expect life in America to go downhill by 2050. Some of the issues that Americans see as concerning for the future include runaway technology or runaway government, rampant poverty or even vanishing morality. The media that Americans are consuming, such as dystopian-themed books may also be driving this trend of an increase for a negatively predicted future. “The books we read kind of become a part of who we are. When we read books, that are nothing except ‘the government’ is evil, and people are terrible, and if we are left to our own devices then we will all kill each other. If that’s all we are given to read, then that is all we are going to think about,” Shea Rouland, a senior, said. Books like “Ready Player One,” “Divergent,” and “The Hunger Games,” all have dystopian societies that face the consequences of overpopulation and are rampant with injustice, hunger, and social strife. According to Rouland, instead of giving people a place where they can feel hope, these books instead contribute to the growing negative atmosphere. “Dystopian books are very cynical and because there is so much of it out there, it leaves a void at times when we want to read hopeful stories,” Rouland said.
According to Pew Research Center, the U.S population will look dramatically different by 2045. The U.S. Caucasian population will have significantly declined, but Hispanic, Asian, and African-American populations will have grown. Current minority groups will become majority groups, allowing racial discrimination issues to become more widely addressed. Along with racial and ethnic changes, religion won’t be as divisive by 2050. According to Pew Research Center, Christians will still be the majority of the population by 2050, but this majority will have shrunk. The number of Americans who are “unaffiliated” and the Muslim population will catch up to the Christian population. This doesn’t necessarily make a utopia, but with the majority population projected to have shrunk, the possibility for a society with less religious strife exists. “People use religion as an excuse to justify hate, but hopefully as people seek to connect with others in the world, they will come to appreciate different experiences and hate,” Michael Lewis, a student at Hebrew Union College, said. Additionally, acceptance and understanding will flourish as the world becomes more diverse, and people will continue to seek ways to come together, regardless of race or religion. “As much as people are going to be leaving formal institutions such as churches or synagogues, I think people are going to find more and more of a need to join some sort of group—whether it is an adult sports league or a brunch group,” Lewis said.
THE ECONOMY Baby boomers have ruined our lives. According to Pew Research Center, population of those aged 25-64 will have decreased by 2055, and the population of those 65 and older will have grown. According to the Social Security Administration, the Social Security Trust fund is expected to be exhausted by 2040. Social security is funded by two trust funds: one for retiree benefits and one for disability benefits. The fund “running dry” doesn’t mean that no one is receiving social security benefits, but it does mean that people will get less of their promised benefits. According to CNN Money, people will receive only 79 percent of promised benefits; someone expecting to get $2000 each month would instead get $1580. Because Americans are living longer today than they ever have before, the Social Security Administration has considered reducing retirement benefits, either by raising the retirement age or through life expectancy indexing.
Economic problems in the United States could be soon be remedied with a new type of welfare system. According to Quantum Run, a Universal Basic Income (UBI) will be used to help economic problems in the future. A UBI is a type of welfare program in which all citizens or permanent residents of a country receive a regular, livable sum of money, from the government. A UBI can help solve the problems associated with mass unemployment. A UBI gives all citizens an income individually and unconditionally. This is important because as the world becomes more automated, people will lose their jobs. A UBI would help the economy by guaranteeing a basic living standard for everyone, as well as help compensate for those who were pushed out of their jobs due to changes in technology. A UBI will also increase spending levels of both leisure items and necessities due to the cushion of money people will have, regardless of their employment status, according to Quantum Run.
Article by Nina Heller, Page Design by Sophie Lynd
Carlmont High School