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Volume LXXX, No. 7
PHOTO COURTESY OF MR. PATRICK ANDRÉN
As the clock struck closer to ten, an eerie silence permeated the room. I found it difficult not to hold my breath in anticipation. Unable to focus on the lecture at hand, I looked at the faces of my classmates, searching for some sign that they too were preparing to leave. The discussion around the day had been much more hushed than I had expected. Besides the few pieces of information about date and time, I heard little to no opinions on the merits of action versus inaction. Although I was committed to the cause and to my choice, I planned to respect the decisions of
others by simply not bringing it up. And then the clock struck ten. Slowly, half of my class and my teacher stood up and exited the room. I gazed back at those remaining, hoping for some reason or explanation for why they had chosen to stay. I had subconsciously assumed everyone would walk out. To me, the day was not about guns or political warfare; it was about our safety as students. Regardless, I made my way out to Lancaster Avenue. The image of students and teachers alike pouring out of their classrooms and forming
Robotics return to Worlds DANIEL CHOW ’20
Since taking home the victory during the Eastern Pennsylvania State Championship in early March, four Haverford teams have qualified
Intel Chen ‘19 working on a robot.
one united group struck me as quite powerful. Once I was out there, I had forgotten about those still in math class. This was my first protest. Although I had always been fervent about political discourse, this feeling was completely new. The protest didn’t have to be silent; it had already taken my breath away. Dr. Ehrhart was standing next to me, proudly yet tragically holding his sign. I learned what it was to stand for what you believed in. Countless cars drove by honking or waving or giving us a thumbs up in quick solidarity. Those moments
were unfortunately overshadowed by a man who drove right up to us screaming, “You won’t ever take our guns.” I learned what it meant to be judged by my actions alone. But with every vocal counter-protester, a brave quip rose from the crowd: “You have a nice day too!” I let out a small chuckle; I learned that words cannot penetrate a group in common bond. Never in my life will I be able to recreate that moment. But most of all, I don’t want to. cont. pg. 9
Four Fords explore India YAN GRAF ’20
for the 2018 VEX World Championship in Louisville, Kentucky. Competing against more than five hundred teams from dozens of countries across the globe, The Cavalry will represent the school at the competition. Each year, VEX Robotics, an organization dedicated to immersing students in STEM, challenges more than ten thousand high school teams to a unique objective-based game. This year’s game is called “In the Zone,” a challenge that pits two teams of two against each other to see which team can score more points in a given time frame. Teams are given a variety of ways to score points, ranging from stacking cones on heavy mobile bases, placing the mobile bases into designated zones, or stacking onto a stationary goalpost in the center of the field. Fifteen seconds at the beginning of each match are given for the robots to complete their “autonomous task” — a preprogrammed action that the robot does on its own, followed by a minute and forty-five seconds where the drivers take to the joysticks. At the 2018 Eastern Pennsylvania State Championship at Norristown High School, team 169A (Fifth Formers Scott Shaw and Will Clark and Third Former Safa Obuz), placed first in the qualification round, dominating in all six matches. cont. pg. 16
DR. MIKE NANCE
Tyler Zimmer ’21 writes on the current baseball season on pg. 11
This past spring break, four students travelled to India to participate in an exchange with the Welham Boys School in Dehradun. Over the course of two weeks, they had gone from the bustling metropolis of Delhi, to the ancient wonder of the Taj Mahal, to the foothills of the roof of the world, the Himalayas. As the saying goes “India is a continent masquerading as a country,” and the India exchange program allowed students to gain insight into a part of the world that does not often penetrate the Haverford bubble. Through friends made and sights seen, students learned that India is diverse and rapidly changing. Students observed the immense cultural heritage India possesses and saw how different the country is from our own. “My most memorable experience,” Fifth Former Mike Yoh said, “had to be feeling the culture shock of visiting Old Delhi on our first full day in India. My newness to the country combined with the sights, sounds, and smells of the area made it a very enlightening experience.” Throughout the two weeks, the four managed to experience countless facets of Indian society, including wonderful cuisine. With street foods, homemade pumpkin curry, and even Chinese Indian (or “Chindian”) fare, the food in India is a memorable experience, and it makes a trip as
eye-opening for one’s stomach as it is for the rest of one’s senses. cont. pg. 16
PHOTO COURTESY OF YAN GRAF ’ 20
From back L to right: Sr. Lluch, Yan Graf ’20, Michael Yoh ’19, Ben Holkenson ’20 and Andrew Hubschmidt ’20
EUSHA HASAN’ 18
Dr. William D. Ehrhart opposes arming teachers on pg. 7
The Index - Editorial
New schedule needs adjustments
The new schedule pilot induced excitement, worry, and skepticism in students and faculty alike. The Upper School spent seven days experimenting with the upcoming schedule to garner feedback on how to improve it for next year. The updated schedule consists of two long blocks, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Ranging about 80 minutes, the lengthy
duration allows for students and teachers to completely dive into their subject, enter into intellectually stimulating tangents, and review past lessons. By removing passing time and shortening the number of periods from 7 to 6 per day, students also received a larger amount of free time in their schedule. Much of this freedom intentionally facilitated more out-of-class meetings between students and faculty.
Though the schedule progressed learning and student-teacher contact, there are still several issues that need to be resolved before full implementation next year. Both the new and old schedules offer a positive variety to the everyday class; the former, however, takes this to a great extreme: some days are nearly devoid of any morning or afternoon classes, and others are completely packed with little free time.
2017-18 Editors-in-Chief (L to R): Samuel Turner ’18, P.J. Rodden ’18, Nick Chimicles ’19
Thus, it is essential that the added free periods are evenly distributed throughout the cycle. Over the next coming months, teachers will need to rethink the way they utilize and approach those lengthy blocks of time. A traditional lecture is no longer effective in this kind of environment. Conventional methods of teaching will fail to satisfy students’ attention spans. The new schedule forces both teachers and students to interact in a creative way. The schedule revision advocates a hands-on learning experience, something quite exciting since it was unattainable in the former schedule. A double block in last period has also caused great despair amongst the student body. After a demanding morning and early afternoon, students are far less concentrated and motivated by last period, itching to escape to sports or return home. With double periods consistently after lunch being problematic, it would be ideal for flex time to occur mostly in the afternoon. Not only would this minimize the number of last-period doubles, but it would also mean fewer students would miss class due to early dismissal. Before the piloted schedule is fully implemented next year, the administration should address three major issues: balancing free blocks, ensuring appropriate use of extra double block time, and adjusting the last period double block. The trial run was a sure success, and feedback from it will be essential in crafting the perfect schedule.
Letter from Student Council representative Justin Meyer ’18 Student Council kicked off the spring with its Third and Fourth Form Formal a few weeks ago. Four hundred students attended the event from all three schools. Even with this success, Student Council is stepping on the pedal in the final months. Heading into April, the Council may hold a student assembly to bring back some of the competitive vibe EA Week presented.
As a representation of the student body, an important part of our job is recognizing student accomplishments. The soft robotics team represented Haverford well in Phoenix, Arizona, winning Best Poster in the competition and presenting as the only high school team out of the four hundred fifty teams there. This award is normally presented to graduate students working
towards their Ph.D., but Haverford emerged victorious. The team included Sixth Formers Xavi Segel, Matthew Baumholtz, Cal Buonocore, and Kyle Wagner, Fifth Formers Intel Chen and Henry Sun, and Fourth Formers Aditya Sardesai and Bram Schork. The tennis team hasn’t yet played match due to bad weather but is seeking their ninth consecutive
The 2017-2018 Student Council.
Inter-Ac title under Sixth Form captains John Walsh and Grayson Potter. The baseball team is off to a hot start with a 6-2 record, crew looks for a strong outing out on the river, and lacrosse sits at 6-3. Haverford looks to capture the InterAc in spring sports and regain our Heyward Cup crown.
MR. MARK FIFER
The Index’s 2017-2018 Staff
P.J. Rodden ’18, Samuel Turner ’18, Nick Chimicles ’19, Editors-in-Chief Neetish Sharma ’19, News Editor Eusha Hasan ’18, Features Editor Toby Ma ’20, Assistant Features Editor Will Henderson ’18, Opinions Editor John Comai ’18, Opnions Editor Grant Sterman ’18, Politics Editor Robert Esgro ’19, Assistant Politics Editor
Nick Chimicles ’19, Head Web Editor Lleyton Winslow ’20, Head Web Editor Noah Rubien ’20, Web Editor Aditya Sardesai ’20, Web Editor Will Merhige ’18, Social Media Editor
Bobby Stratts ’18, Staff Photographer
Ms. Alicia Evans, Faculty Advisor Mr. Thomas Stambaugh, Faculty Advisor
All opinions and viewpoints expressed herein do not necessarily reflect those of The Index or the school. The Index is designed and produced digitally. Photographs may be retouched. Submissions and letters to the editors regarding any and all articles are welcomed at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Index, a member of the Columbia Scholastic Press Association, is composed on Mac OS X, using Adobe InDesign CS 2018. Its surveys are conducted via SurveyMonkey and are advertised on Facebook to current Haverford students. Graphic designs are created by Index staff via Canva. Southern Dutchess News prints 200-400 copies of each issue, and its editorial staff distributes them in the Upper School on the day of release. The Index serves the needs of a total school population of 1091 community members, consisting of 975 students and 116 faculty members.
Gaspard Vadot ’18, Arts Editor Vincent Scauzzo ’20, Assistant Arts Editor Matt LaRocca ’18, Sports Editor Nick Pippis ’19, Assistant Sports Editor
The Index is a student-run publication of the Haverford School that does more than bring news: it provides the diverse perspectives of the Haverford student body. It is an outlet for student writers to take stands on issues they deem important. It chronicles the daily struggles and accomplishments of the Haverford community. The Index also provides a forum for discussion of pertinent issues, such as student culture, academic policy, and Haverford’s place in world affairs. The Index presents new ideas and aspires to influence constructive change.
Contact The Index: 450 Lancaster Ave, Haverford, PA 19041 email@example.com Twitter: @Haverford_Index http://www.havindex.com/ (610) 642-3020 x. 1222 Volume LXXX, No. 7 - April 20, 2018
The Index - News
Fords win Best Poster at MRS Soft Robotics conference
INTEL CHEN ’19
YAN GRAF ’20
The Haverford Soft Robotics team recently attended a memorable event in Phoenix, Arizona — the annual conference of the Material Research Society (MRS), a scientific group that aims to advance material sciences and to build a global network of researchers in the field. The organization has 14,000 members and spans 90 countries, and works with prestigious institutions such as the University of Cambridge. The team presented their product design: melting down gummy bears into 3D-printed molds, which solidify into inflatable, edible, biodegradable robots. Despite being the only high schoolers at the conference and competing against leading researchers in material science, they won the Best Poster Award out of 450 submissions. Dr. Adam Stokes, a leader in the soft robotics field and professor of electronic and electrical engineering at The University of Edinburgh, remarked, “This group of high school students managed to produce scientific work that was judged as being of world-leading quality at one of the top conferences in the world.” This is not the first time the team has come out victorious. The team also attended the Harvard Soft Robotics Design Competition earlier this school year, taking home the gold in the High School Division. Since then, the students have filed for a U.S. patent on one of their designs. The students learned many lessons on their trip to MRS. Sixth Former Matt Baumholtz said that his biggest takeaway from the event was that “infiltration of a whole area of research is capable at any age.” Baumholtz believes the fact that high school
students were even able “to be invited, present, and win there, sounds, and frankly is, a little ridiculous.” He added, “Heck yeah, I’d do it again! The presentations there really piqued my interest.
Online privacy poses threat
Internet privacy poll based on 136 responses to a Google Forms poll.
me to dive deeper into this field of science, to be like them. I still have a lot more to learn.”
The Soft Robotics team with their winning poster in Phoenix, Arizona.
MATTHEW SCHWARTZ ’21 87 million people. That is the newest estimate from Facebook about how many accounts had their data stolen by Cambridge Analytica back in 2014 according to The Atlantic. Facebook’s inability to keep account information safe, along with their response, or lack thereof, is causing many to raise concerns about how their personal privacy is being treated by tech giants such as Google, Facebook, and others. “I don’t think that it worries me too much,” said Third Former Franklin Dai, when asked if the amount of information tech companies have on him is concerning, “but if the problem keeps persisting and companies keep messing up like Mark Zuckerberg at Facebook, then I might begin to worry more.” The issues that have plagued Facebook can be avoided if other companies understand how they have gotten to this point. Back in 2014, Facebook’s rules on data available to apps were fairly relaxed and, in this case, got taken advantage of. A personality survey was sent across Facebook and, as with many surveys, it attracted a lot of clicks. Each time someone clicked on the survey,
It was all so cool, coming from very cool people in a very cool place.” Fifth Former Henry Sun said, “I felt stupid among all these smart scientists, but that inspired
MS. MARION JACOB
The senior experience NEETISH SHARMA ’19
it not only took some of their information, but all of their friends’ information too. This information was supposed to be used for academic purposes, but ended up being used for anything but. A company named Cambridge Analytica was able to use the data they collected, such as what pages people liked or followed and create a profile on them that was used to target people with certain political leanings or interests and advertise specific information to them that could have possibly influenced the 2016 presidential election. “I don’t want my [info] getting leaked to all the [advertisers]. It’s kind of creepy...you’re looking at something on Amazon, and then you go to another page and then there’s that thing from Amazon...same thing happens on social media...” said Fourth Former Caleb Cannon. Those thoughts echo the opinions of many who are just beginning to realize that they are not the customer— but the product. The true customer often lies in whoever is purchasing advertising from the online companies used by billions each day. According to reports, 98% of Facebook’s global revenue in 2017 was from advertising alone and their total ad revenue has gone up 570% over the past five years. Online advertising works in a fairly simple, but secretive, way by using something known as Canvas Fingerprinting, which creates a profile of website users, containing information on the websites users visit and website activity. These profiles are then sold to advertiser so that they can better target their ads. But online privacy is not just about worrying who is tracking your browsing activity. It is also about your posts on social media and who gets to see them. Third Former Geordy Holmes, who despite currently keeping his social accounts private, is still a bit concerned about who sees his posts: “I’m kind of worried now, I feel like some of the people I did let follow me a long time ago still follow me, and I think that’s a little strange.”
Senior year has been known to be a rollercoaster. After a busy summer, Haverford’s Sixth Formers arrive with expectations and assumptions,, all with an intention of setting themselves up for the best path to college. The process does not even begin senior year but rather earlier. Stress, planning, and the process of filling out college applications begins late junior year, with senior year as the culmination. Teachers are bombarded with recommendation requests, traffic is filing in and out of the college counseling office, and stress levels are high. Students rush to fill out early applications and scholarship work; many contend that this period is the most stressful of their lives. Essays require deep introspection, something hard to find in a cloud of stress. As the year progresses, some Sixth Formers inevitably begin to slacken, a phenomenon known as “senioritis.” This is common across all high schools, and it begins at different times for different people. Those who find out where they are going earlier towards the end of fall or beginning of winter begin catching senioritis quickly, but many are still fully engaged in the process, as they are not met with this relief until late March. Sixth Former Eusha Hasan said, “In senior year, there are two types of stress. I’m going to differentiate between active and passive stress. What entails active stress are things like grinding out essays, talking with college counselors, planning out time, and reflecting on yourself and what you want to write about. Also, SATs or ACTs can be actively stressful if you don’t take care of them until senior year. However, I think essays are the most actively stressful.” The difference between active and passive stress truly begins to reveal itself as applications are completed. The pressure of actively grinding out college application work transforms into a nailbiting anxiety: pending acceptances. With not much to do, seniors find it easy to let their minds drift into anxiety as they wonder what they could have improved upon. “Once you submit all your applications, you feel this really huge sigh of relief, but then that’s
where the passive stress comes in,” said Hasan. “What could I have done better on my application? I should’ve added this. I should’ve taken out that. I should’ve put this award instead of that. Oh, I have a typo. These factors all come into play during the passive stress phase. The best way to alleviate the passive stress is to find something else that you really like doing beyond school so you can get your mind off of the process. For three whole months, you’re going to be waiting for your decisions to come back. You can’t just live your life stressing.” As the year closes, seniors begin to find out to where they have been accepted, and decision making is key. The passive stress has begun to wear off by now, and all that is left is acceptance of outcome and decisions for the future. Many continue to slack off even more, sometimes not being aware that this could entail rescindment from admission.
Some advice I have for current juniors is to really get started on essays as soon as possible. Start writing, or at least start brainstorming. -Eusha Hasan ’18 “I’m hoping that everyone, all one hundred and five of us, graduate. So far, that has been the case,” remarked Hasan. “Once decisions come in, however, some kids unfortunately think they can slack off and do stupid things. The trend shows that kids start to not to homework, study for assessments, or even come to school sometimes. It’s just a time for all seniors to unfortunately start crashing.” “Some advice I have for current juniors is to really get started on essays as soon as possible. Start writing, or at least start brainstorming. Brainstorming is the hardest part actually; writing is the easiest. Don’t wait until fall.”
The Index - Features
Robotics run at Worlds, cont. Picking team 169Y (Fourth Formers Daniel Chow, Aditya Sardesai, and Fifth Former Will Vauclain) and team 6121C from Conestoga as alliance partners for the elimination round, the Haverford-led alliance continued to go on undefeated and win the championship, qualifying for the World Championship. Teams 169C (Fourth Formers Toby Ma, Noah Rubien, and Sixth Former Michael Feng) and team 169E (Fourth Formers Alexander Greer, Bennett Twitmyer, and Fifth Formers Intel Chen, Jared Hoefner, and Third Former Maxim Kreider) went on to find success at the competition as well and also qualified for the World Championship. With only six weeks to prepare for such a large event, the Cavalry immediately sprang into action. Spending long hours in the robotics workshop after every school day, Saturdays, and even throughout Spring Break, the Cavalry has been working tirelessly building, driving, and programming their complex robots. Third Former Maxim Kreider says, “It is important to utilize our time effectively in order to compete at the highest level we can to achieve our full potential.” “After states, in terms of design, it was clear that we needed to move in a new direction,” said Fourth Former Toby Ma. “We started rebuilding our robot to create a better design that would more effectively play the game.” In regards to the team dynamic, the enormity of the event plays a big role in how the team has been feeling. Stress and tensions rise as the date grows closer. Robotics mentor Mr. Adam Myers comments on the importance of dealing with the stress. “It is important to manage attitude as much as anything coming into a big competition because it’s such a high-stress situation,” Mr. Myers said. “One of the strengths of the team is how well everyone gets along and together. In a moment of stress, we are all prone to saying or doing things we don’t really mean. It is important to take breaks and step away from the work from time to time, it’s not only good to work with a clear head, but with the best attitude for the work.” Overall, team spirits remain high as the Cavalry continues to refine their work. “We’re feeling
good. Really good,” says Fifth Former Intel Chen. For some members of the team, this will be their first World Championship experience, while other members will be returning from previous years — Fifth Former Scott Shaw will participate for the sixth time.
Maxim Keider ‘21 works on his robot.
Students disagree about arming teachers EUSHA HASAN ’18 In light of the recent school shooting in Parkland, Florida, President Donald Trump voiced his support on Twitter for arming teachers in schools, which would give them the power to neutralize a school shooter on site. Democratic and Republican politicians have debated the issue ad nauseam but have reached no consensus, leaving ordinary Americans unsure what actions should they take next. Haverford students have now joined the conversation, polarized on both sides of the political aisle. Sixth Former Xavi Segel, despite being progun, holds a firm stance against arming teachers: “It solves nothing and creates more problems.” “[Arming teachers] changes the teacher-student relationship. Faculty members should be hired to teach, not to protect, and possession of a firearm, voluntary or not, imposes a distracting guardian mentality into the classroom.” “Also, the risk of students accidentally—maybe through a prank or dare—discharging the firearm would certainly result in a rise in accidental gun deaths, a group already ten times larger than all mass-shooting fatalities,” Segel said. But many students disagree. Sixth Former Zach Mattiola sees no reason why some teachers should not be armed. “I believe that teachers should volunteer to be trained and armed during school. This way, we can ensure that the teachers who are armed feel comfortable enough to carry guns. I know there are many risks that go along with it; however, I believe that with proper training of the teachers who volunteer to be armed, we can limit the risk that goes along with it,” Mattiola asserted. After the Parkland shooting, Mr. Matt Green spoke to the upper school. He assured students and faculty that new rules, such as escorting unchecked visitors to the front office and not allowing strangers into the building, would be implemented as another barrier against a potential shooter.
Fourth Former Max Kaplan believes the administration has done its job to prevent a mass shooting from the inside. “It is a very safe space, and the students are almost all down to earth and would never even let the thought of themselves doing such a thing,” Kaplan commented. “I find that help for those who struggle is readily available and those who need it usually get it, and that eliminates the possibility of a student doing such a thing.” On the other hand, Fifth Former Nick BrillEdwards thinks the community would never enforce such restrictions. “Students may still let people in because it seems quite rude to just ignore people at the door,” Brill-Edwards said. “We are in a school that emphasized helping others and it is a bit contradictory to include aspects in our community like not helping certain people get in our building.” Mattiola sees no other way to protect Haverford other than arming teachers. “The only way to fight this problem is to protect ourselves,” he asserted, “A mass buyback is out of the question. Gun-free zones only make it easier for evil people like the Parkland shooter to kill people. I know there are a few guns on campus [in the hands of security], but a few guns in a safe halfway across campus are not enough.” “If you really want to keep Haverford safe, find a few teachers to volunteer, give them real training on how to use a gun, and arm them,” Mattiola said. In an affluent, stable community like Parkland, nobody would have ever suspected a shooter to commit one of the deadliest school shooting in human history. Mattiola wants to learn from Parkland, so he refuses to let his guard down just because he attends Haverford. “I feel safe at Haverford, but I’m sure the students at Parkland felt safe there too,” he added. “We live in a well-off area, but anything can happen.”
Garrett Johnson ’19: nunchucks and knives TOBY MA ’20 For the past few years, Fifth Former Garrett Johnson has been engaged in a unique activity at school and at home. Johnson practices with the butterfly knife, or balisong, and nunchucks. Nunchucks are a traditional martial arts weapon from the Japanese island of Okinawa. The weapon became popular in the United States from martial artist and actor Bruce Lee and a later appearance in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. “There’s big nunchucks and little nunchucks,” explained Johnson, “Big nunchucks are what Bruce Lee uses and are basically ‘weapons’…I can basically swing around the big ones really fast and catch them behind my back since I have decent strength and speed in my core and arms. “Little nunchucks are what you’ll see the crazy karate people doing flips with and spinning insanely fast.” Because Johnson’s father did kung fu as a kid, he gave Johnson his first pair of nunchucks, which were made of foam. Johnson, who is a fan of Bruce Lee and also practiced kung fu, quickly picked up the weapon. “After a week of nonstop practice,” recalled Johnson, “I had every Bruce Lee movie memorized and eventually started learning the performance-based tricking/flow style of nunchucks which use smaller, lighter nunchucks.” “I’ve practiced three to five hours a week — depending on how bored or motivated I am — since then with a nicer wooden pair.” A year ago, Johnson was introduced to the balisongs when he saw people doing it on Instagram. He bought his first one on Amazon and “practiced nonstop for months.” “I used to do marching style snare drumming and I draw all the time, so my hands and fingers
are really fast and can weave in between different parts of the knife when doing tricks,” said Johnson, “For example, I have a balisong move where I’ll start closed, spin it around my finger twice, spin it upside down, flick it in the air, spin upside down twice, throw it up, release my hand from the whole thing, and catch it with the blade (comb) out.” With all the quick and intensive movements involved in doing balisong tricks, it is no wonder that Johnson has to keep buying knives to fuel his hobby. Johnson said, “I’ve had four [balisongs] because I flip them really fast for long periods of time to the point that they break.” Despite the fact that nunchucks and balisongs are both real weapons, Johnson refrains from using weapons that could be potentially dangerous when doing his tricks. “I use real knives and batons when I’m out late in Philly doing stuff, [but] I’ve only had to pull them out a couple of times. “I mostly use weapons for performance or passive exercise… Live weapons are for live situations.” Johnson has met many new people through his hobby. “If somebody sees you do anything cool, they either start to learn it or reveal others that do it,” stated Johnson. “I practice by myself, and every now and then I’ll run into people with nunchucks or balisongs, and we’ll trade tips or tricks or challenge each other. Some of my friends are really good though, and they push me to one up them. “There’s a huge balisong collecting base on the internet where they circulate crazy money for
the real knives and modifications and stuff, [but] I don’t get down with the real knives like that. “Unfortunately, there’s no secret club where people flip knives and nunchucks in a dark room.” “It’s dope to challenge my mind and body equally,” Johnson said. “Every new trick leads to
the next one, and if I learn them all, then I get to make some up. “I imagine that the thrill of spinning two small sticks on a chain… is what some feel from plowing down a line of dudes on a football field. I don’t really get that from regular sports.”
PHOTO COURTESY OF GARRETT JOHNSON ’19
Garrett Johnson ’19 practicing with nunchuncks .
The Index - Politics
School Walkout, I was determined to be a part of it.” Similarly, many felt the walkout was a way to voice student concerns. Sixth Former and guncontrol supporter Grant Sterman said, “I felt it was extremely important to honor the Parkland victims because they were no different than me.” Sixth Former Miska Abrahams said, “I’d want someone to walk out for me … Empathy.” Like many others, Sterman, Abrahams, and Ehrhart walked out in recognition of what hap-
pened in Florida, but they were not only out there to show their support for the community but also to send a message to Congress. Dr. Ehrhart said, “I am willing to concede hunters their rifles and shotguns. But AR-15s and AK-47s and other assault weapons, no, these have no business in the hands of civilians.” Dr. Ehrhart disagrees with the current interpretation of the Second Amendment: “The men who wrote the 2nd Amendment had in mind flintlock muzzle-loading muskets, not the weapons of mass murder available in the 21st century.” Sterman said, “Semi-automatic weapons have no business being in public hands.” While many who supported and participated in the walkout see semi-automatic guns as unnecessary and harmful, others who did not participate in the walkout see owning a weapon as a constitutional right authorized by the Second Amendment. Many say there are more effective alternatives to stopping gun violence than ultimately banning semi-automatic guns and protesting ineffectively by walking out. Third Former Henri Waché said, “I think having mental health services be more available and more advertised would make a difference in lowering the number of mass shootings. I believe firearms aren’t the problem... people are.” Some wonder how to stop the easy accessibility to guns in the United States. This side of the argument disputes that firearms are the problem but more that the low detail and ineffective background check system and lack of mental health institutions are to blame for the recent gun-violence spike. Third Former Ryan Gaffney said, “I didn’t walk out because I don’t think the problem is people being able to have guns, but the people who get the guns and the way they use them.” All can agree, despite the different approaches to solutions to this growing issue in the United States, that the fight is not about good and evil but simply different sides of one good.
Students honor Parkland victims with walkout AGUSTIN ALIAGA ’21 On March 14, 2018, students and teachers across the nation decided to take action on gun reform. Students and teachers walked out of their classes from 10:00 am to 10:17 am in order to honor the seventeen victims of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and also to alert Congress of their opinions on how we, in America, should use guns.
Many saw the walkout as an opportunity to show Congress how many people are affected by guns following the horrifying incidents at Parkland. Upper school history and English teacher Dr. William Ehrhart said, “When the murders occurred at Sandy Hook Elementary School, but nothing in the U.S. changed at all with regard to gun laws, I gave up on America… But when I heard Emma Gonzālez speak after the Parkland murders, she made me ashamed of myself… So when I heard about the March 14th National
Ms. Zoë Blatt holding up a sign at last month’s school walkout on Lancaster Avenue.
MYLES FORD ’18
Young political voices speak COLE STECKER ’20 The Parkland shooting, which took place at Stoneman Douglas High School on February 14th, is yet another example of a horrible act carried out against America. The Parkland shooting sadly claimed the lives of seventeen students and injured fourteen more, becoming one of the most deadly school attacks in U.S. history. Every American mass shooting rekindles the ongoing debate around gun control: a debate without clear sides. It is not as simple as Democrat vs. Republican or Conservative vs. Liberal. Each side of the debate is moved by its most extreme members which lead to intensified internal and external conflict. In the aftermath of this most recent shooting, we have seen a significant change in the discourse. The students of Stoneman Douglas High School have taken up the call for increased firearms regulation. In the past month since the incident, it seems that the faces of the Stoneman Douglas students have been omnipresent in the national media — none more so than student spokespeople David Hogg and Emma Gonzālez. They are the two most notable activists to emerge from the tragedy, and they have been the face of the #NeverAgain movement. Both students have made appearances on CNN, MSNBC, Fox News and other national media discussing their views on legal and regulatory remedies to end or at least decrease gun violence in our schools. Both Hogg and Gonzālez push the idea of doing “something” to end gun violence. Students and the youth of America should have a say in politics. We are the future voters of America. Not too long from now, we will be the largest voting block in the country, and we will have the power to mold it however we choose. For now, a majority of the students of America cannot vote. The Parkland students have a unique
and unfortunate outlook on the gun dispute in our country. They have experienced the horror of an active shooter, and they have used their experiences to push their agenda on gun control.
Students and the youth of America should have a say in politics. We are the future voters of America. The mainstream media has used the Parkland students as the perfect army. The media portrays this army as one that is immune to all criticism and is fueled by strong emotions. If you criticize their points, then you are supporting the death of innocent children. The voices of the Parkland children should be heard by lawmakers, but they should not be heading the anti-gun agenda. They are far too emotional in their debates after the severe trauma, which makes it difficult for anyone to oppose them without appearing like an unsympathetic demon. Their emotion easily appeals to the mass hysteria of the situation, which distracts lawmakers and the media from the true debate around the Second Amendment. Emotion should not be the primary driving force behind one side’s argument, yet having the Parkland students overinvolved in the debate makes it such. Their horrific stories should be heard, but the real factual debate needs to take place in order to reach an equitable solution. Gun control is a complex issue that will be debated for many years to come, but as the youth of America, we should entrust our lawmakers and politicians to make the correct conclusions and legislate in the American interest.
Dr. William D. Ehrhart and Miska Abrahams ‘18 protesting on March 14, 2018.
MYLES FORD ’18
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murder committed by officers of the law, and it should be treated as such. The officers involved should be criminally prosecuted as any citizen who commits murder would be. Given recent history, the chances of these Sacramento police officers being put on trial for murder are slim to none. The New York Times reported: in 15 of the recent high profile deaths of African-Americans at the hands of police, only two officers were convicted and a whopping seven were not even charged with a crime. The Stephon Clark case comes on the heels of an Ohio grand jury decision not to charge police officers in the shooting death of Kareem Ali Nadir Jones. While the circumstances around the case in Ohio remain unclear, they didn’t matter to the grand jury; to them, the murder of an African-American man evidently doesn’t warrant a trial. Similarly, the police involved in the highprofile shooting death of Alton Sterling will not be charged, despite the Baton Rouge police department admitting to officer misconduct, not to mention the viral video evidence of Alton Sterling’s gruesome death. To make matters worse, the Baton Rouge police department only recently
fired the officer who killed Sterling. This means he was on active duty for more than two years after committing murder. Recently, the other officer involved was suspended for a mere three days before being reinstated to active duty. The actions taken against these police officers were warranted but long overdue and simply not enough. As of this writing, now 16 days later, none of the Sacramento police officers responsible for the death of Stephon Clark have been suspended. Imagine a world where a murder is caught on tape and the killers are allowed to walk free and continue to work while the press defends their innocence. This is the United States we live in today. It is ethically wrong to let these officers get away with murder, and it is also illegal. If the roles were reversed and an AfricanAmerican man shot a police officer eight times in the back, would the response be the same? Would the media defend him? Would he be able to keep his job? The job of a police officer is quite simple: to protect and serve. But, who are they really protecting and serving?
Innocent and dead: policing the unarmed Black man TYLER CAMPBELL ’18
PHOTO BY JOHNY SILVERCLOUD VIA WIKIMEDIA
Black Lives Matter protest on November 10, 2015.
Michael Brown is dead. Freddie Grey is dead. Eric Garner is dead. Now, Stephon Clark is dead. Sadly, this list of African-Americans killed violently by police in recent years is painfully long and only getting longer. The recent death of Stephon Clark on March
18, 2018 in Sacramento is no isolated incident, just the latest in a nationwide trend. After Clark’s death, questions loom about what will happen to the officers involved in the murder. Clark was shot 20 times while unarmed in his grandmother’s backyard — eight times in the back. In what world is a 22-year old with a cellphone a threat? This was not an act of self-defense but a savage
Generation Z and the war on guns DAVID MCKAY ’18 “This is a matter of life or death,” say the student survivors of the February 14th Marjory Stoneman Douglas school shooting in Parkland, Florida. Parkland students have become the leaders of the #NeverAgain movement, which seeks to end school shootings and gun violence. These students are photogenic and articulate, making them clear choices to be the face of this movement. Yet, while the students of Parkland may have the loudest voices and the most public platform to express their viewpoints on gun violence in the United States, their views do not represent all of Generation Z. According to a USA TODAY/Ipsos poll taken after the Parkland shooting, only 47% of students aged thirteen to seventeen believe that tightening gun laws and background checks will prevent mass shootings. Furthermore, only eighteen percent of students polled said they would participate in the March For Our Lives. As student advocates of gun-control gain popularity and the media depicts Gen Z as anti-gun, pro-gun students feel overshadowed and unheard. Many pro-gun high school students believe that the issue of school shootings is complex and multi-faceted, such as addressing mental health, school security, law enforcement, background checks, and the fact that studies show school shooters always “leak” their intentions. Pro-gun students further believe that those calling for
stricter gun control are uninformed about and unfamiliar with firearms. Yes, the students of Parkland have endured a terrible tragedy, and it is admirable that they are taking steps to enact change, but surviving a mass shooting does not make one an expert on guns or gun violence in America, just like surviving a car accident does not make one an expert on car safety. There is a reason high school students do not dictate policy; we are uninformed on the complexities of issues we view as singular. Evidence shows that schools are safer than they were twenty years ago. Since the deadly mass shooting at Columbine High School in 1999, approximately 200 public school students have been killed while at school, according to research by James Alan Fox, the Lipman Family Professor of Criminology, Law, and Public Policy at Northeastern University. Mass school shootings are incredibly rare, representing an extremely small fraction of the gun violence epidemic in the United States. The statistical chance of dying in a school shooting is 1 in 614,000,000. If students across the country truly want to “march” for their lives, march for the increased rate in suicide among teenagers, deaths resulted from distracted driving, or the opioid crisis, which are killing far more teenagers per year than guns. If America wants to solve the issue of gun violence, all voices need to be welcomed and heard.
March for Our Lives in Washington, D.C.
PHOTO BY TED EYTAN VIA WIKIMEDIA
California ruling could change the face of health HARRISON FELLHEIMER ’18 Six letters, two syllables no one ever wants to hear: cancer. As scientists conduct more research and world mortality rates continue to rise, authorities inform the general population about the foods and drinks they consume. In California, a local judge ruled that coffee sellers must warn customers about the risks of cancer associated with each cup. Roasting coffee beans kindles a chemical reaction which releases acrylamide, a chemical many regulatory agencies believe could cause cancer. But, these studies are based off of testing on
animals who ingest and metabolize the chemical differently. Acrylamide’s effects on these animals have little to no relevance in humans. Additionally, the chemical comes from a natural process that produces a scarce amount at a harmless level. Many other studies show drinking coffee on a daily basis actually benefits one’s health, in addition to decreasing the risk of many forms of cancer. Contrary to the many other staples in the American diet, coffee provides antioxidants beneficial to one’s general well being. One cup of black coffee yields fewer than five calories and contains little-to-no sugar, depending on personal preference. Sugary products such as ice cream, cookies,
and gummy bears, however, are proven to feed cancer cells. There is a direct correlation between sugary products and diabetes, yet there is no warning on the packaging. Government should focus its attention to stamping warnings on products that are scientifically proven to contribute to cancer as opposed to putting it on coffee, a somewhat healthy product. Doing anything in excess is bad. So, if the government wants to warn people about cancer-related products, they should make it for a specific size of a coffee cup that is considered unhealthy. A study in which California implemented a sales tax on sugary drinks such as soda showed positive results. Researchers found that there was a reduction in sales. Methods such as these could be the
more effective way to prevent people from drinking excessive amounts of coffee and influencing people to become healthier. People have the right to know about this chemical and its consequences. But the health benefits of drinking coffee greatly outweigh the possibility of reducing the amount of coffee consumed by placing a cancer warning on the cup. Today, a staggering number of adults are obese, and the rate continues to increase. Governments need to turn their attention towards solutions that will have a measurable effect on the population. Putting warning signs on coffee is not the solution.
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The tail wagging the dog DR. WILLIAM D. EHRHART
I was dismayed to hear that Florida’s Republican governor had signed a bill raising the age of gun purchase from 18 to 21, extending a threeday waiting period, and banning “bump stocks” while at the same time authorizing teachers to carry firearms, a bill that manages to be at once both cowardly and insane. Cowardly in that the “gun control” provisions are all-but-meaningless: raising the age of purchase has no practical impact because a shooter can get something with which to shoot easily enough; consider that the 20-year-old shooter in Sandy Hook used an assault rifle his mother had purchased legally. And one can easily fire a semiautomatic weapon 60 to 100 times a minute simply by pulling the trigger for each shot. Pulling a trigger doesn’t take very long. Meanwhile, arming teachers as a solution to school shootings would seem utterly unbelievable if it were not actually happening. Witness this new Florida law. As a Marine veteran of combat in Vietnam, I have an understanding of what happens when people start shooting. Even with the vaunted training I received in the Corps, I can tell you that it takes tremendous willpower and self-control to remain functional when someone is shooting at you. Now picture a school cafeteria where someone is blasting away with an AR-15 and several 30-round magazines. Children are dead. Children are wounded. Blood is everywhere. People are screaming and crying and running helter-skelter. Pandemonium such as you cannot imagine unless you have ever been under fire. And you think some high school biology teacher is going to step into this situation, calmly pull out his or her 9-millimeter pistol, take careful aim, and deftly kill the child who is blazing away? Cool thinking, expert marksmanship, steady
GREY RUMAIN ’18
nerves. Problem solved. Right? In your dreams. Yet 18 states allow K-12 teachers to carry firearms on the job. Or does Florida make it 19? But here’s the best part. The day after the Florida bill was signed, I woke up to discover that the National Rifle Association has filed a federal lawsuit blocking this new law because, says the NRA, it violates the 2nd Amendment by punishing law-abiding citizens for the actions of a few deranged whackos. Yet I am a law-abiding citizen, and I am being punished every day, having to live in fear of being gunned down in the school where I teach, or at the mall, or at a Flyers hockey game, or a rock concert, or anywhere else in these United States of America because of the deranged whackos of the NRA who think the 2nd Amendment gives them the right to make millions of law-abiding citizens live in terror on a daily basis. Indeed, the NRA is the most insidious and lethal terrorist organization on earth, and it is perfectly legal, operates in the open, spends millions of dollars buying spineless politicians, and blames gun violence on everyone and everything under the sun except the guns. Look, you want to have bolt-action hunting rifles? Okay. Shotguns? Okay. Handguns, even though most firearms deaths are caused by handguns? Okay, I can even live with those. But AR-15s, AK-47s, and their ilk? They’re not called “hunting rifles.” Or “self-defense rifles.” They’re called “assault rifles.” They are designed to do one thing: kill as many people as possible in the shortest time possible. The Marine Corps didn’t give me a deer rifle in Vietnam, or a shotgun, or even a pistol. I was given an M-16 assault rifle. My job was to kill people with it. The 2nd Amendment gives the people the right to keep and bear arms, but it qualifies that right by placing it within the context of a well-regulat-
Mental health also to blame for U.S. gun violence
Everyone remembers the 2012 tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. An armed man walked into a school, killed twenty kids, six adults, and then himself. Since that day, there have been more than 1,600 mass shootings in the United States. Gun control and mental health are the largest components of American government that boil to the surface when the discussion of gun violence begins. From a political standpoint, Republicans tend to blame the mental health system, and Democrats claim that the U.S. needs tighter firearms restrictions. Citizens disagree on a single course of action. But that is where, as a nation, we need to be: restrict guns laws and fully fund our mental health system. In February of this year, The New York Times released an op-ed titled “The Mental Health System Can’t Stop Mass Shooters” by Amy Barnhorst. Barnhorst claims that we will never be able to predict the next act of terrorism — a scary thought — and that people with mental health issues do not seek help. “The mental health system does not identify most of these people because they do not come in to get care,” wrote Barnhorst. “And even if they do, laws designed to preserve the civil lib-
erties of people with mental illness place limits on what treatments can be imposed against a person’s will.” So, the logical solution would be to restrict gun ownership. Yet even with restrictions, the buying and selling of illegal arms will never stop. Sure, it may slow down, but it will never come to a full hault. So… what do we do? We attack the issue from both sides. Aiding the U.S, Mental Health System (MHS) or restricted firearm policies will never ensure the security of this nation. But if the MHS were better funded, by let’s say the 13.5 billion dollars that the firearms and ammunition industry produces in taxes annually, and there were stricter gun laws, there would be a serious halt in mass shootings. It begins with unity — when both sides of the political spectrum put the safety of their country before their own personal beliefs and realize that their solutions alone will not fix the issue. Then, with a stronger Mental Health System and legal restrictions on gun ownership, mass shootings in the U.S. will decrease greatly. I can see it now. But it is far away, down a long road.
An AR-15 gun.
GRGGFKS VIA WIKIMEDIA COMMONS
Dr. William D. Ehrhart served in the Vietnam War.
ed militia. Neither Devin Kelley nor Adam Lanza nor Stephen Paddock nor any other of these mass killers belonged to a well-regulated militia. And the amendment doesn’t say that Tom, Dick & Harry have the right to own 20 or 30 or 50 high-powered assault rifles. Or even one high-powered assault rifle. It doesn’t give people the right to own bazookas or M-60 machine guns or 81-millimeter mortars. Why should any civilian be allowed to own a weapon that is designed to do the same thing as bazookas, machine guns, and mortars?
The dirty truth behind affirmative action
JOSELUIS89 VIA WIIKIMEDIA
March for Affirmative Action in Washington, D.C. on February 12th, 2013.
Call it fair. Say it heals historical wounds. But the truth is race-based affirmative action in the college process divides the country, stripping opportunities from those who truly need them. But there is still hope. The human mind is obsessed with stereotyping; it incites bitterness between groups over traits like race and gender. To combat this instinct, progressives throughout American history have valiantly fought for equality for marginalized races. But with these good intentions, progressives consistently make one mistake: they use stereotypes to break stereotypes. Race-based affirmative action stereotypes students to “restore equality,” fostering the same racially toxic atmosphere that progressives worked to eradicate. By implementing race-based affirmative action, colleges assume all black, native, and Latino students are disadvantaged and all white and Asian students are privileged. Yes, blacks, natives, and Latinos have been undermined by slavery, imperialism, and migrant labor respectively, restraining several generations from realizing their full potential; that is undeniable. But it is also undeniable that many black, native, and Latino families are affluent, with ex-
EUSHA HASAN ’18
When will law-abiding, responsible, patriotic Americans finally decide to put a stop to the NRA tail wagging the American dog? When will we throw out of office the craven politicians who kowtow to an organization that terrorizes the rest of us daily? And as for arming teachers: when I joined the Marines, I expected to be given a weapon and trained how to use it. When I became a teacher, I did not expect to be expected to kill my students. If you expect me to do that, you are stark-raving mad.
EUSHA HASAN ’18 traordinary examples outlined in Shomari Wills’s book Black Fortunes. Despite common liberal stereotypes, poor white and Asian families exist: the national poverty rate for both groups between 2007 and 2011 was above 10%. Think about an impoverished Vietnamese family in Philadelphia. Think about descendants of white yeomen, outcompeted by wealthy plantation owners in the antebellum South. The world is not as black and white as many believe. Race-based affirmative action assumes students’ race directly relates to their families’ privilege, which is simply incorrect. A better system, income-based affirmative action, favors poorer students in the college process over their richer counterparts. This system makes perfect sense: a student’s family income, unlike race, directly correlates to how many opportunities he had to reach his fullest potential. A lowincome student – no matter black, white, Latino, Asian, or native American – would not have the same opportunities to acquire a private-school education, study abroad, or conduct research like a high-income student, so the former deserves a headstart when clashing with his rich competitor for a college admissions spot. Detractors believe income-based affirmative action would spoil the diversity of cultures and ideas on campus. But they forget this system would still boost marginalized races in admissions. On average, black and Latino families earn about half the income of white and Asian families, so most black and Latino students would still benefit from an income-based system. And as a bonus, wealthy students like the Obama sisters would–rightfully– not be favored over a poor white or Asian student. Income-based affirmative action harnesses the strengths of the race-based system without preserving the loopholes that well-off minority families can exploit. Colleges need to stop systematic stereotyping and start accepting the truth behind race and income.
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College applicants no longer prepared to stand out ED KING ’18 With college invitations less available, students no longer stand out. Top colleges in the nation release class profiles, flaunting their newest records and percentages, hours before their regular admission decisions go live. According to Princeton’s Office of Communications, this year “Princeton University has offered admission to 1,941 students, or 5.5% of the record 35,370 applicants for the Class of 2022, in what is the university’s most selective admission process to date.” While the statistics might be impressive for Princeton, the top-rated university in the country, it seems almost impossible for students to gain admission. Luckily, students know if they have the best grades, well-written essays, near-perfect test scores, and extracurricular leadership they stand a chance… or they used to. The average application takes ten minutes to read. Between long essays and recommendations it is a simple matter of time — quick-toread grades are not given as much thought. More likely, good grades and tests keep you alive rather than set you apart in the process. It is simple: 4.0 GPAs and 1,600 SATs no longer separate you. Princeton, among other Ivy League schools, admitted a record low number of students, but
other statistics tell more interesting stories. Of the 35,370 applicants, “14,273 had a 4.0 grade point average, and 17,692 had scores of 1,400 or higher on the two sections of the SAT.” One may argue GPAs and SATs give students across thousands of schools comparable data points. But, as doing well in standardized testing becomes a matter of money through tutors etc., top schools, including Bowdoin, Wake Forest, and Bates, decided to no longer require standardized tests. Further, GPAs have experienced significant inflation over the past 20 years, with 38.9% of students in 1998 maintaining A’s as compared to 2016’s 47%. So, what can be highlighted on applications? The answer: experience something different. Each applicant has gone to school, taken classes, and done homework. Many play sports. Many participate in clubs. Standing out is hard. Colleges look for diversity, not just racial diversity. With interest in running the high-grossing business most colleges are, they must diversify; similar to how stockbrokers diversify trading portfolios. This diversification bets any given class has a wider range of opinions and experiences to inculcate the wisdom, knowledge, and opportunity each applicant seeks when applying to the Ivy League. Getting your application deemed a viable investment depends on how special you are — not
in the way your mother thinks you’re special, but in the way you have something no one else does. Go out and do something, pursue a passion,
An email from Princeton University to an applicant.
A push to break the silence: peer counseling
Peer Counseling member Intel Chen ‘19 shares with a fellow student.
At a school where we so highly value brotherhood and community, a program like Peer Counseling is valuable beyond words. As school comes to an end, due dates approach, and finals loom, stress levels are higher than ever, and anxiety pervades the student body.
Sixth Form Peer Counseling Chairman Jack Denious has found that most men “like to suppress emotions, never talk about them, and act like they don’t exist. What we don’t realize is that suppressing our emotions and not seeking help turns stressful experiences into anxiety, panic attacks,
publish a work, invent a product — make yourself better than everyone in something that matters to you.
and spurs of anger.” Society’s narrow definition of a “man” some times discourages young men from tackling uncomfortable but important topics. “Another part of preparing men for life that we need to improve on is these false ideas of masculinity,” said Denious. The student body’s perception of masculinity may be fabricated: expressing oneself is not a “feminine” trait. Peer Counseling directly addresses and amends this misconception. Students disagree as to whether Peer Counseling should be mandatory, but everyone should participate in Peer Counseling. Whether you are telling your story or listening to someone else’s,
ED KING ’18
MITCHELL HARK '20 there is always something to learn. Applying these concepts to the daily schedule, however, would be difficult to manage and enforce. You cannot force a student into expression because that is extraction; therefore, Peer Counselling cannot be mandatory. Still, the student body could improve its willingness to try something new. The program dramatically helps develop students’ social skills and relieves anxiety.
Graduation project expectations too high WILL HENDERSON ’18 With just over a month of school remaining, graduation projects are fast approaching. From the initial proposal and essay writing to the committee reviews and feedback stage, this threeweek period is built up into something much bigger than it actually is. Graduation projects are nothing more than a time to get students who mostly know where they are going to college off campus; they cannot cause trouble and they are not able to disrupt class. In the past, projects have certainly been interesting and impactful, but the overwhelming majority are not remembered a week after the program concludes. While a project has the potential to show off everything a student has learned at Haverford, let’s not kid ourselves: nobody is curing cancer here. The letter regarding these graduation projects admits, “most of [Haverford’s] students have limited specialized skills.” Though I do not
know the details of any person’s internship, it is probably safe to say they will not be doing the company’s accounting or making deals with any clients. And that is fine. They shouldn’t be expected to do that, and we shouldn’t pretend that an eighteen year-old’s high school internship is materializing into anything substantial. The same goes for independent studies and hands-on projects. Though these are certainly easier for a high school student, I cannot realistically imagine a teennager, who is about to graduate and start his summer vacation, would push himself to work six hours a day for three and a half weeks. Again, that is fine because the true reason for a senior project is not to change the world; it is, frankly, to get the most disruptive people off of the campus and out of class. For my project, I’m writing a “survival guide” about what to do in Upper School. Somebody I know built a canoe for his project. Another person studied Italian cooking with his girlfriend’s mother. Two other people conducted a “pizza tour of the Main Line.” One student spent three weeks creating a table useful for holding cups and ping pong balls. While all of these projects
may be enjoyable for the people participating in them, we should realize that the impact of these undertakings will probably not be felt by the entire community. Again, that is fine.
Yes, I am excited for my project, as I’m sure many other students are. But, I am equally as excited to relax a bit more, to not worry about school work, and to finish thirteen years at Haverford on a great note. Haverford needs to be more transparent in communicating its message about graduation projects. These undertakings are either things that students would enjoy doing, or they are something from which the community would benefit. They are not a time when students will get realistic job experience; they are not a time when students will be changing the world; and they are almost certainly not a time when students will be working for six hours every single
day. Lastly, this is not really a privilege for students. While, yes, it is a unique opportunity to be able to take time off of school to pursue something that could be of interest, the school benefits just as much from this. First, the most care-free students will not be on campus to cause any distractions. But second, let’s say there are one or two — maybe three — really cool projects each year. I can’t imagine Haverford wouldn’t want to put those on its website, in its magazine, and on any other medium that the community (and prospective families) will see. Don’t forget, however, that for every three projects that are truly impressive, there are about ninety-seven others that few will remember. Yes, I am excited for my project, as I’m sure many other students are. But, I am equally as excited to relax a bit more, to not worry about school work, and to finish thirteen years at Haverford on a great note. Don’t expect to be blown away by my project, or any other project for that matter, but do expect to have a quieter, more manageable student body in the last three weeks of school.
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If the evidence is here, why don’t we listen to it?
Sixth Former Kyle Wagner always has his phone, even when napping.
“It is believed that sleep is a restorative process and a basic biologic need,” said Dr. Neil Kline, a sleep physician at the American Sleep Association. If this is the case, then why are millions of adolescents around the world turning a blind eye to it? The millennial generation has been plagued by a significant first-world issue: the damaging relationship between technology and sleep. Technology has forever impacted our world, for better and for worse. While it has obviously opened the doors to a world full of opportunity, its harmful effects on the younger generation must be addressed. Technology use near bedtime is extremely prevalent in America. Devices used one hour before bedtime are most strongly connected with sleep complaints. The blue light that is emitted from these screens can delay the release of sleepinducing melatonin, increase alertness, and reset the body to function on a later schedule, according to the journal Physiological Reports. A Bank of America Trends in Consumer Mobility Report released in 2015 shows that seventyone percent of survey respondents say they sleep with or next to their smartphones. More specifically, that study says that 55 percent who sleep with it on the nightstand, 13 percent
#MeToo movement and origins of sexual harassent TROY GIBBS-BROWN ’18 In the midst of the nationwide #MeToo movement, our country currently struggles to understand where sexual assault, harassment, and degradation of women originates. A podcast titled “Beyond #MeToo: It Starts in Middle School” uncovers the hard truth that today’s generation of teenage boys often get their preliminary ideas of what sex is from pornography and from the “knowledge” of other boys their own age. Pornography projects a number of false sexual perceptions, like the idea that the male always gets the sex he wants or that being overly physical to-
wards your partner is a norm. In The New York Times Magazine article, “What Teenagers are Learning from Online Porn,” a young man addresses a porn scene as an impactful moment in his life, as the scene displays a woman neglecting a man who was too gentle during sex, preferring another who aggressively took excessive control. As young boys continue to view similar scenes and depictions, their understanding of how sex “should” be and how it “should” go skews. Teenage boys turn into men who can become vulnerable to feeling offended if a woman does not give him the sexual attention he may desire. When placed in these situations, some men catch themselves harassing the women who denied them, often degrading them with offensive terms,
spreading rumors, or lashing out and forcing sex upon them. This trend has influenced the youth, becoming more prevalent in middle schools across the country. A 2014 study shows that, out of 1,400 middle school students, 52% have experienced verbal or physical sexual harassment. Among these experiences, unwanted physical touching represented 21.6% and rumor-spreading represented 18.9%. These staggering results prove that boys are failing, at a young age, to understand sexual boundaries and respect others. A call to action is required. Our society is failing to educate these boys, who need something other than erotic films and sex stories to learn from. Societal norms need to be abandoned and
I hate the Snapchat update A Snapchatter overwhelmed with messages.
The Snapchat developers recently introduced a controversial update. User accounts randomly updated as Snapchat’s developers gradually rolled out the change. Many people dislike the new update, but I hate it. The new update is a clear and desperate at-
tempt for Snapchat to rake in even more revenue. Prior to the update, Snapchat was sectioned into three parts — one where you see who snapped you, one where you take pictures, and one where you see friends’ Snapchat stories. Snapchat stories are short videos posted by your friends that are
Student walkout reflection, cont. Those moments where I found myself enjoying the feeling of the protest, I was quickly reminded of why I chose to be out there in the first place. I was not there to skip class or because I felt a social pressure to do so. I was not there to be in a cool Instagram pic or because I had been brainwashed by liberal propaganda. No, as I stood in the bitter cold for those seventeen minutes, I was there for my own protection, for the protection of those around me, and for the protection of those still inside the comfort of the classroom. I had made the decision to protest, because those kids should not have died, and I didn’t understand why everyone wasn’t in agreement about that. The seventeen minutes felt like a much longer period, but I felt it wasn’t enough. A minute of time spent per kid, whose lives should’ve lasted for tens of thousands more. It made me angry. I was angry that we live in a country where
someone no different than me went to school to learn and was shot for no reason. I was angry that students don’t get to feel 100% safe at the one place they should be. I was angry that there were kids back in school whom I found out just wanted to nap, rather than be informed about their choice. I was angry that kids were finally standing up for our livelihoods, only knowing that ultimately nothing would get done. I wanted something to be done; I wanted something to change. As 10:17 approached and we made our way back to class, the day continued as usual. I would’ve loved a moment to talk with those who chose to walk with me and those who chose to stay. But, all these thoughts amassed in an ability to speak, so I stayed quiet for the rest of the day. I wondered to myself if I had really done anything of significance, especially if no discourse even among my friends had arisen. Later that night, I saw a picture on Facebook of the protest.
PARKER GRAVINA ’18 who sleep with it on the bed and 3 percent who say they sleep with it in their hands. In 2011, the National Sleep Foundation conducted a “Sleep in America Poll.” Nine of 10 Americans reported using a technological device in the hour before bed. Furthermore, the numbers show that people 30 years of age were more likely to use cell phones than those over 30 years. These results are staggering. The addiction of modern millenials to their devices is greatly detrimental. Poor sleep is a risk factor for obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and depression, according to a 2016 study. It is sad that young people ignore these potential consequences just to scroll through Twitter one last time. If the evidence is here, why don’t we listen to it? Many people will say that the alarm clock function on the phones is essential to wake up. But the answer to this argument is simple. Buying an alarm clock will fix this issue. A bed is supposed to be a place of tranquility where people can recover and rejuvenate. It is a shame that today’s millennials can’t seem to listen to the evidence that is right in front of them.
talks about appropriate sexual interactions need to be adopted. One solution is social activism theater, like Arts Effect NYC’s production, Slut: The Play. The show displays the dangers and reality of early-on sexual harassment in teenagers’ lives. The results of these efforts are all beneficial. By viewing these everyday phenomena from different perspectives, teenagers and their parents are invited to go home and discuss topics like sexual harassment in a more comfortable environment. But both parents and their children need to be open to these attempts at improving our tainted society. With efforts like these, we can prevent living in a country where women feel the need to fear for how a man might react if she doesn’t give him what he thinks he wants.
JONNY SONNENFELD ’20
only viewable for 24 hours; the intent is to show a funny or interesting event that happened during their day. The new update changes the format to just one screen. And perhaps the most frustrating part of the new update is that after opening a Snapchat, the sender’s name disappears and reappears way further down. This new feature neglects all chronology. A second change comes in the form of an entire page dedicated to advertisers. For many users,
Snapchat has served users as their main means of communication with friends. Over the past few years, the app essentially became an interesting twist on a free-to-use instant messaging platform. This new update soils the app’s friendly reputation, morphing it into a media consumption platform for advertisers and Snapchat executives to profit.
The image struck me with how large and unified our group looked. I figured this image may have more of an impact than the protest itself. Quickly, a slew of comments flooded the picture. Some were alumni or parents saluting us for our bravery and thanking us for standing up for a good cause. I wasn’t looking for a pat on the back; I was looking for a change. All I did was walk out of school. Others were from alumni, parents, or even random strangers who militantly condemned us for bringing politics into the school environment. I assumed this attitude towards students was the same reason the Parkland students’ call to the FBI for help were answered. Not only that, but I saw many repetitions of the message I heard from those dissenters who cowardly screamed at us and drove away during the protest: “Stupid snowflakes, you’ll never take away our guns.” For whatever reason, this comment struck a nerve. Not once during the protest did one person
mention a gun ban. Not in the organizer’s statements, not in any conversations after, and not on any signs did anyone, let alone the entire group march for all firearms to be stripped from the hands of Americans. Additionally, the day never once occurred to me as a Democrat vs. Republican issue. In fact, I saw people next to me whom I knew for a fact I had disagreed with politically, and that there were people back in the building who probably match me on most topics. Comments like those diminish the efforts of the protest, and, more importantly, the tragedy of seventeen innocent high-schoolers dying at the hands of a fixable problem. We need to be more open to having difficult conversations in a respectful manner. We need to realize that as teens, we do have a voice and we can make an impact. In the end, the protest was one of the most impactful events I had ever experienced or taken part of, but I would hope to never have to see one again.
The Index - Sports
Trackmen look forward to first home meet JACK BALLENGER ’21 Spring Track runners are extremely excited. This spring, the team will frequently run in meets at Haverford and other schools. “There are InterAcs coming up pretty soon, so we’re pretty excited for that,” said Sixth Form long-distance captain Mark Gregory. As of now, spring track has only run in two meets, one at Haverford High School and one at Plymouth Whitemarsh. Head coach Mr. Luqman Kolade explained that there has been a lack of meets and only a small amount of people have run. Two meets have been cancelled because of weather early this season, one at Springside Chestnut Hill and the other at Malvern. Next Tuesday, April 18th, however, the team will run at Haverford. Further along in the season, students will run in Penn Relays. “Well, the big one is Penn Relays, and that is always exciting,” said Gregory. “So, it’s pretty cool being able to go because you know it’s Penn Relays. It’s massive.”
Sixth Former Mark Gregory and Fifth Former Khalil Bland taking the lead in action last year.
Netmen bounce back from California trip
Sixth Former John Walsh returns a shot.
MR. JIM ROESE
Coaches, captains, and players all have high hopes for the tennis team. Considering the varsity team has won the Inter-Ac title for the past eight years, the team is on track for another winning season. The team spent spring break in Newport Beach, California at The National High School Tennis Invitational Tournament, where schools from all across the nation played in an extremely competitive event. Head Coach Mr. Antonio Fink said, “The national tournament in California was as tough as we thought it would be, and we ended up with a 1-3 record to end up in the top 15 in the nation. We lost to the #1 seed and eventual champion in the first round and ended up winning our last match.” Varsity Coach Mark Gottlieb said, “We had a great trip to California, and we played some of the best teams in the country. We won a match and lost to three tough opponents, and Sixth Former John Walsh was named to the all-tournament team.” While the invitational was critical to the start of the season, the focus of the team is now shifting. After winning the past eight Inter-Ac titles, the clear goal is to keep this streak going. Sixth Form Captain John Walsh said, “The upperclassmen have to bring the intensity we saw in California and transfer it into our upcoming season. Coming in as one of the favorites to win the Inter-Ac this year, we need to bring that intensity
MR. JIM ROESE
AGUSTIN ALIAGA ’21 to every match.” Fourth Former Sunny Yu said, “The team looks really strong right now, but there is always room for improvement.” Yu and Walsh agree that with hard work the skilled team will be able to keep the Haverford Tennis legacy alive. Walsh said, “Our team goal is to bring home our ninth straight Inter-Ac title.” “I want to keep the legacy alive by winning another Inter-Ac,” Yu said. Adding to the work that the team has put in by competing in California, Coach Fink has also helped his team improve by having inside workouts whenever the weather does not permit for practice, a common occasion with the weather this spring. Mr. Fink said, “Every time it rains during practice time we work on building up our endurance, strengthening our core, and accelerating our tennis muscle memory.” This constant work on endurance and fitness is often what Coach Fink thinks leads his team to success. In tennis, stamina is key, and the lack of it can be a huge disadvantage. Gottlieb emphasized the point by saying how he as a coach is big on both “active footwork” and “high intensity,” both of which can be achieved by fitness. The tennis team is looking sharp and on track for a ninth league title. Yu said, “I think we are going to be ready against any team this year.”
Rowers placing well in early Flicks MITCHELL HARK ’20 With winter training completed, the crew team has started the season strong. The team participates in a regatta every Saturday or Sunday on the Schuylkill. In their first Flick they placed third, for the second flick they placed first, and for the third the Fords placed second. Each regatta consists of hundreds of schools from all over the region, so a top-three finish is exceptional. Much like any year, the team seeks hardware and, as Mr. Suter put it, “world domination.” Although multiple athletes graduated last year, with this year’s highly experienced line up, their goal is definitely achievable. Sixth former Captains Jack Costello, who will attend Dartmouth University next year, Tim Scheuritzel, who attend Princeton University next
year, and David McKay, who will attend Colgate next year, serve as the biggest role models. Fifth Formers Aidan Lowe and Nelson Liu were tapped by US Rowing to represent the Philadelphia region at the World Championships. And Jeffrey Pendergrast won an international regatta with Captain McKay. The strong competition the Fords face this season will create intriguing races. Local teams like Lasalle, St. Jose Prep, and Malvern are typically fast and provide a challenge. But, with the continuous support from the student body and the well-prepared squad, the Fords hope for a worldclass season. MR. JIM ROESE
Sixth Former David McKay and company preparing to disembark from the Conshohocken Rowing Club.
The Index - Sports
Sixth Form guides Diamond Fords TYLER ZIMMER ’21 Finally, the weather is cooperating with the baseball team. With no snow plow, the fields took a bit longer to be ready than those of other sports. Despite practicing within the confined spaces of the gym for the earlier part of the season, the Fords managed to flourish early on. The baseball team won its first five games, including routing Upper Darby and Lower Merion by scoring ten runs in each. Along with these wins were a series of homeruns by a powerful middle lineup. Fourth Former Pat Toal and Fifth Former Zak Summy each stand out as prominent pitching threats, having allowed minimal runs in their opportunities.
“Every player, regardless of if they are on the bench or on the field, [must] be invested 24/7 and bring a lot of energy to the games.” -Justin Meyer ’18 Not all of these wins came easily, as the second game of the season against Garnet Valley was settled by a walkoff homerun in extra innings by Summy. The Fords defeated Germantown Friends by only single run, showing their ability to perform in close games, which most likely will prove to be vital later in the season. Sixth Former Justin Meyer, when asked about the team’s chemistry, said, “I feel that the team chemistry is comparable to the [2016 PAISAA champion team].” While baseball is primarily played one man at a time, the team’s chemistry shines through on defense with strong coordination and reliability. Meyer’s goal for the team is to win the Inter-Ac and State Championship, but he believes that it will only be possible if “Every player, regardless
of if they are on the bench or on the field, [must] be invested 24/7 and bring a lot of energy to the games.” Sixth Form pitcher and second basemen Tommy Bagnell said, “It is important for [the team] to be ‘loose’ in the sense that we have fun while practicing and playing, but also know when to focus up and get to it. I try my best to keep a loose atmosphere around the team but then buckle down and focus when we really need to.” These two Sixth Formers will look to make the most out of this season with great incentive, as it will be their last one. Bagnell said, “It is helpful that since all five of us Sixth Formers were able to play on the [2016 PAISAA champion team], we bring good experience to this year’s team.” Meyer, Bagnell and classmates Isaiah Winikur, Nick Holtz, Grady Nance provide the leadership necessary for a successful season. Leadership will play an integral role coming down the stretch, as rituals such as having all players on the fence cheering for the batter has proven helpful with the team’s energy and desire to win. With a stacked conference in the Inter-Ac, the Fords will need to continue to play fundamental baseball and score runs as they have so far, averaging nearly ten runs per game. After an unsatisfactory season last year, the Fords look to continue their strong play through their competitive Inter-Ac games and further, hopefully repeating their 2016 PAISAA title. As of early April, MaxPreps had the Fords listed in the top twenty in the state, so work still needs to be done to realize their goals. Led by Coach Bob Castell and Sixth Form captains, the 2018 baseball team look to be crowned Inter-Ac champions once again. Sixth Formers Isaiah Winikur and Justin Meyer swinging for the fence.
DR. MIKE NANCE
Laxmen shooting for fourth league championship MATT LAROCCA ’18 Three championships. Twenty-eight wins. Two losses. The Haverford lacrosse team has been nothing short of dominant in the last three seasons of Inter-Ac play. Led by Sixth Formers T.J. Malone, Luke O’Grady, Tim Carlson, Harrison Fellheimer, Scott Deck, and Ed King, the 2018 team hopes to continue their success. Fifth Formers Peter Garno, Ryan Niggeman, and Gavin Burke will also contribute to the team this year. Starting goalie Fellheimer said, “Our goals for the rest of the season is to win out and win an
Inter-Ac championship.” So far, the Fords have opened up the season 4-3. They have faced some of the best lacrosse competition in the country such as Boys’ Latin, McDonogh, Gilman, and perennial rival Culver from Indiana. Every year, the Fords use these games to warm up for Inter-Ac competition. Fellheimer said, “After coming off a tough loss against Boys Latin, we were able to beat McDonough which gave us momentum and win our next games against St. Paul’s and Gilman.” “This team has amazing chemistry,” Fellheimer
said. “We don’t have one standout player, but what makes us good as a team is that we all have good chemistry and work well together.” The Fords also emphasize the importance of playing tough defense. “Winning faceoffs, having possession of the ball, and getting stops on defense are the biggest keys to winning the Inter Ac,” said Malone. The Fords face a tall task in winning a fourth consecutive Inter-Ac championship and finishing undefeated in the league. In the Inter Ac, Malvern and Episcopal both have strong teams this
Lacrosse team gathers for a huddle midgame.
season. Fellheimer said, “Malvern has a lot of offensive talent returning from last year, so it will be a good test for our defense. Episcopal is a wellcoached team on both sides of the ball.” Last season, Malvern finished second place in the league and dealt the Fords one of their two Inter-Ac losses. Along with Inter-Ac competition, the Fords also will play local powerhouses Lasalle College High School and St. Joseph’s Prep.
The Index - Sports
Phillies fans’ renewed hopes ALEX CIARDI ’18
KEITH ALLISON VIA WIKIMEDIA
For Phillies fans, the last five years have been long… very long. Losing season after losing season, the Phillies have redefined the definition of bad. They have shown the baseball world that yes, it is possible to have 183 people pack into a 45,000 capacity stadium for a game vs the returning national league champions. This is the team that once had more people show up to the postgame firework show than the actual game itself. A team that once gave Ryan Howard a twentyfive-million-dollars-a-year contract after hitting for .219 in 2012.
But, this year is different. For the first time in awhile, there’s a sense of positivity around the future of the Phillies. In the second half of the 2017 season, the Fightins were a .500 ballclub and hope to continue their progress into 2018. Rhys Hoskins has emerged as a player who can hit 30-40+ home runs a year while not striking out every other at bat. Aaron Nola is one of the top 15 starting pitchers in the MLB and, in his last two outings, has had an ERA of 1.96. J.P. Crawford has turned into a vacuum at shortstop who can get on base at a drop of a hat. Last but not least,
Scott Kingery was recently named the 35th best prospect in baseball. Many people believe he is the most talented player in the Phillies organization. In Jake Arrieta’s opening press conference, he summed up the vibe going into the season. “A message I really want to send to not only the players, but Philadelphia in general and the entire Phillies nation, is that what we’re going to do here is that we’re going to promise a fight...There’s no guarantee you’re going to feel good, have your best stuff or get a great night sleep the night be-
fore. But what we can promise is we’re going to have conviction. We’re going to fight. We’re going to win at the end of the day,” Arrieta said. These aren’t the same Phillies we have seen over the last five years. This team has the talent, the manager, and the fans to put the Phillies back in the playoff conversation and to make baseball relevant in this city again.
Can the Sixers complete Philadelphia’s year? RYAN LAROCCA ’20 2018 has been quite a year in Philadelphia sports. It all began with the Eagles’ first Super Bowl victory in franchise history. The Villanova Wildcats Men’s Basketball team followed the Birds’ lead and won the NCAA tournament. The Flyers just qualified for the playoffs, and the Phillies are maintaining a winning record. Michael Carter-Williams, Nerlens Noel, Jrue Holiday, Jahlil Okafor: all victims of The Process, a process entailing years of losing. Recently, investment in The Process has been paying off. On
March 26, 2018, the Philadelphia 76ers achieved their first playoff berth since 2012. Led by young stars Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid, and Dario Saric, the 2017-2018 season has been a memorable one for the Sixers. Sixers fans have flood the halls of Haverford and talk shows of the nation. Charles Barkley, a former Sixer and current announcer, suggested an optimistic outcome: “I’ll make a prediction. The Eagles won. Villanova won. The 76ers are going to win the championship.”
It is an intriguing thought, especially considering their current sixteen-game win streak (spanning through March and April). However, there is only one problem with this thought: a 6’7” kid from Akron. Winning the Eastern Conference in each of the last eight seasons, LeBron James has statistically enjoyed the best season of his career. Lebron James is not the only challenge the Sixers would face in the Eastern Conference. The Sixers play the Miami Heat in the first round who feature three-time NBA champion Dwyane
Joel Embiid dunking on the Wizards, February 25, 2018.
Wade and all-star Goran Dragic. The experienced Heat will present a challenge in the first round, but Philadelphia fans hope the Sixers will come through again.
KEITH ALLISON VIA WIKIMEDIA
The Index - Arts
the game and the simple plays, that’s the hardest for teams to break because everyone wants to play ‘Hail Mary’ ball instead of short passes to move down the field,” said Sixth Former Bobby Stratts. By mastering the basics of the game and dominating in their fundamentals, the Fords have translated their strategies from practices to matches. “Our team has already had promising success. In our first three games we’ve tied Strath Haven, a Division 1 team, beaten Archbishop Carroll, a Division 1 team, and in our most recent match, beaten St. Joseph’s Prep 15-6,” said Sixth Former and CoCaptain David Aspinall. Boasting a dominating record thus far, the Fords show no signs of slowing down. Under the leadership of Mr. Greg Ressler, Mr. Sam Walters, and Dr. Andrew Fenton, every match serves as an opportunity to learn from their mistakes. “Although our team has yet to be beaten, we have been continuing to address our weaknesses at practice. Specifically,
we have just implemented a new facet to our offense that has shifted me from a main handler to a main receiver, a position that compliments his strengths of running and catching. This has given Co-Captain George Maguire more responsibly as a main handler, a position where he can shine as a skilled disc thrower. This slightly new setup has given the team’s offense much more chemistry and it should give the team even more of an edge in future matches,” said Aspinall. The Fords look to pursue another successful season and will encounter some very competitive matchups along the way. The team chemistry, athleticism, and hard work will push the Fords one step closer to win what they deserve: the Cities Tournament title.
Ultimate strives for city title P.J. RODDEN ‘18
DR. ANDREW FENTON
Fifth Formers George Maguire and Nick Parente running down the field.
The slow transition into spring has not halted the success that the Ultimate Frisbee team has brought on this season. Their desire to grow stronger as a team both on offense and defense has set the tone for the season. The disc squad is looking to repeat similar success from last year as they continue to focus on their upcoming league matches and the Cities Tournament in May. With a fresh mix of new and veteran players as well as a core group of upperclassmen leaders, the team is ready for the challenges that they will face within the coming weeks. The sight of crisp passes, agile footwork, and effective communication on the field all starts from the hard work that is put in at practice. “We focus on learning and mastering simple parts of the game so that they can be fully understood. We just put in new plays recently to expand the use of our offense by allowing different types of cutters to have different roles to benefit from. If we understand
Why you should see “Love, Simon” ROBERT MANGANARO ’18 Love, Simon, which opened in theatres on March 16th, has grown into a cultural turning point for representation in modern media. The film focuses on Simon (Nick Robinson) a closeted high-school senior. Nobody knows his secret, so for the most part his life is completely normal. Simon has three friends: Leah (Katherine Langford), Abby (Alexandra Shipp), and Nick (Jorge Lendeborg, Jr.). The film presents a fairly standard high school movie plot: parties, football games, and romance — it’s a romcom. The main character just happens to be gay. The film addresses touchy issues with the delicacy and finesse to make interactions heartwarming and endearing instead of sloppy and unrealistic. This entire project was picked up by 20th Century Fox, based off the book Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda, and directed by Greg Berlanti. Having a gay director helped shape the film on a much more realistic level than what would have been achieved otherwise. Watching the film, I remember saying, “I remember what that felt like,” and “That’s such a real thing,” to myself whenever the idea of sexuality was addressed. The most touching moments involve Simon’s family and friends. The idea of acceptance pervades the movie,and creates an environment where Simon can be proud of who he is.
The most important thing about this movie, bar none, is just its existence — a large studio production about a closeted senior which stars members of the LGBT community that aren’t just white. Representation is the name of the game. During the filming of Love, Simon, two of the actors in the cast came out as gay or bisexual. These are adults who are independent members of society; if this project helped these adults be more comfortable with who they are, then it would do wonders for teens who feel like they’re alone. Greg Berlanti said that this was “the movie he wish he had growing up.” Representation matters. Knowing you’re not alone in what you’re going through, seeing people like you being accepted enough to star in movies is something many take for granted. What makes Love, Simon stand out from many of the other LGBT focussed films are the facts that the movie: actually has a happy ending. The story of Simon’s coming out process isn’t “dealt with,” by characters because it isn’t a “problem”; it’s something to be celebrated, and the film makes sure to make that as clear as possible, “This movie doesn’t just say, ‘Hey, it’s OK to be this way.’ It’s saying, ‘No, it’s f*cking great,” said Keiynan Lonsdale, who plays Bram.
This kind of film is exactly what a lot of people, what a lot of kids need to see; to know that being the way that they are is ok, no matter who that is. The most beautiful part of the film is that it’s not just a coming out story, it’s a coming of age story. While addressing some controversy over his coming out, Simon says, “I used to justify it by saying ‘Why is coming out only a gay thing?’ But then I realized that announcing who you are to the world is scary as eff; what if the world doesn’t like you?” Instead of labeling it a film for gay people, think of it as a film about identity; a film about growing as an individual. Wanting to be accepted for who you are is a very universal idea, and this movie is no different. It’s very rare to see a male love interest in another leading male character, especially in high school. To see two guys dealing with this in such a sensitive, beautiful, but realistic way makes it surprising that Love, Simon is so unique. The success of this film will open new doors for LGBT characters in shows and movies, and will inspire generations to come. Do your best to make it out and see it in theatres. You won’t regret it — everyone deserves a great love story. PHOTO VIA WIKIMEDIA
Mural artists collaborate with local creators OBAIDA ELAMIN ’20
Students work on a mural arts project.
MS. ZOË BLATT
The Mural Arts Program, supported by Ms. Zoë Blatt and Mr. Christopher Fox, has arrived: after many long afternoons over in West Philadelphia, they have begun to finally start painting. A brief history of mural painting shows how difficult it was in the past and how the process of mural making has evolved. The process starts with finding a piece of real estate, a wall that is viewed often and is big enough. Next, the artist talks with the host community about topics or ideas for the mural. Community students then make many sketches that were incorporated into the mural. The artist draws an image of the mural and divides it into boxes which are drawn on a much larger scale on the wall. The process then takes a turn as artists begin physically painting the mural. Back in the day, murals were painted directly on the wall, after applying a coat of primer. This made for many difficulties as the weather dictated when the mural could be painted, and it was also a problem because the amount of work the community could do was limited by peoples’ height— they weren’t allowed to go on the ladders or the hydraulic lifts for liability and safety reasons. Nowadays, the individual pieces
are cut into squares from a fabric nicknamed “parachute cloth”, a synthetic woven fabric. The cloth is painted on with UV-protected acrylic paint to keep the art from fading. Artists then coat the dried, painted square with a clear acrylic polymer, much like what is in acrylic paint, though clear -- if you’ve ever felt dried acrylic, it’s virtually the same. They use the same substance to bind it to the wall. Joshua Mays (Artist) and King Britt (Producer) are both based in Philly and have background in the city. Joshua has created commissions in Washington DC, Denver, Portland, Philadelphia, Oakland, London, Johannesburg, Mexico City, and Jakarta. King Britt grew up in southwest Philadelphia. Now a house DJ and producer, King Britt was raised in a household filled with music, from James Brown to Duke Ellington. While attending Temple University, he began producing his own tracks and also met Ishmael Butler (aka Butterfly), who introduced Britt to his jazz-rap group Digable Planets. Acquiring the nickname Silkworm, he toured with the group for more than two years. bedroom and MIDI recording studios. cont. pg. 13
The Index - Arts
PHOTOS BY MR. MARK BERLINGER
The framing of an old model Porsche 911b out of manually cut pieces manila folders.
Artists of the Issue: Stuart Be A revised model of the inline four made out of varying paper types and some chipboard.
Berlinger working on the (L) 360 autocad modeling of a V6 engine to 3D print engine parts, (R) the crankshaft and underside of a V12 engine, (Bottom) and a model engine including an inline four, flat six, flat four and larger scale inline four.
The Index - Arts
PHOTOS COURTESY OF XAVI SEGEL’18
Laser-cut silhouette of the artist’s face morphing into a sea trench.
erlinger ’18 and Xavi Segel ’18
BOBBY STRATTS ’18
Segel spent two months designing this model of the USS Zumwalt.
Details of a model for a permanent human settlement on Mars.
The Index - Arts
munity in his work with youths in the winter and spring terms to make an original score and design a specific soundtrack. The score will be housed in the smartphone app and users will be able to access different content, including interviews with community members, sounds that youth created,
augmented sections of the mural, and more. Students interested in coming along and helping should go see Ms. Blatt. The process is very simple, no previous experience is necessary; all you need is to fill in the numbering spaces with the corresponding color. The colors are already mixed and
Mural collaboration, cont. The result was a worldwide dance hit, 1993’s “Tribal Confusion” by E-Culture. Britt and Wink formed their own label, Ovum Recordings, and worked on production as well as remixing for artists including Tori Amos, Donna Lewis, Solsonics, and Mary Wilson.
Mural Arts will work with Blue, a local augmented reality technology firm, to develop a smartphone application for the mural. The firm will map the mural by connecting different content to different images in the mural. King Britt will play his part in the mural’s impact on the com-
West Side Story explores racial tensions VINCENT SCAUZZO ’20
this night, Glavin’s knife got too close to OvertonClark and the Shark was punctured. Playing it off well, Jackson showed no distinguishable sign of pain, and Glavin appeared not to know, because he didn’t look surprised either. This could be attributed to the skill these two actors possessed, their ability to keep to their character while on stage is an impressive talent, and one that comes with the years of experience both students have. West Side Story’s score contributes to the musical’s success. Composed by Leonard Bernstein, the soundtrack from the musical is one of most famous and is actually rather difficult. In songs like “Maria,” Fifth Form tenor John Williams — playing the lead role — had to go into a high falsetto
MS. ANN GLAVIN
The Jet gang gathers together in West Side Story.
West Side Story is one of the most renowned and profound musicals in existence because of its message and its iconic musical numbers, namely “Maria” and “America.” Originally derived from Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, West Side Story is the tragic tale of two lovers whose gangs, because of their racial differences, are bitter enemies. In the Haverford School production, the directors and producers took a risk and cast minorities as members of the Shark gang and white students as members of the Jet gang. However, big risks sometimes lead to big rewards. In this case, casting according to race made the play more exciting and
added to the plot drama: it actually made the play seem more realistic. Mr. Brendon Jobs was called in to help with the dialogue that came with the racial issues of this play, using real experiences to channel emotions. At the Saturday night showing on March 10th, a very unique event occurred during the climactic fight scene between the two gangs. Fifth Former Jackson Overton-Clark, a member of the Sharks, was stage-fighting Fourth Former Pearse Glavin, a Jet, when Pearse made his planned move to lunge at Jackson with a pocket knife, suggesting Jackson being stabbed in the gut and dying. However, on
to reach some of the notes. English teacher Mr. Luqman Kolade was surprised at how happy John looked throughout the first act, and Fourth Former Aidan Lowe thought John fit the role perfectly. The subtext and musical numbers of West Side Story alone, even without a great cast or acting, make it a play to well worth watching. However, Haverford and the sister schools stunned with this one, coming close to matching the unbelievable performance of last year’s Oliver. The visible racial divide and impressive acting made for an added, almost unexpected level of drama and realism. People looked like they were having a good time while on stage, which is always important. It was long, but never dull.
The Jets prepares to face off against the Sharks.
asks current questions
MS. ANN GLAVIN
OBAIDA ELAMIN ’20 Black Mirror is a non-continuous, science-fiction TV show addressing the flaws of technology. The showrunners achieve this by telling a story about a dystopian society. The greatly anticipated fourth season of Black Mirror premiered on Netflix in December. Season four had more happy endings than the previous seasons, and the episodes still managed to convey the meaning or moral of each story well. The following is a review of the first episode of the latest season, “USS Callister.” Caution: spoilers ahead. The first episode keeps the flavor of the show without being too morbid. The movie-length episode opens with a Star Trek-esque set where we are introduced to Robert Daly, as he sees himself in his world. The captain along with his crew are in pur-
suit of the comical villain Valdack, and they manage to destroy his ship thanks to Captain Daly’s quick thinking. But Valdack manages to escape in a lifepod. We find out soon enough that Daly is actually the chief technical officer of Callister, Inc., a company that created Infinity, a game that uses new technology to hook up to your brain to simulate a reality where you are in control of a spaceship in a massive procedurally-generated universe. Despite being the co-owner of the company, Daly is shamed by many of the employees. The new intern Nannette Cole joins the company because of Robert and his genius code. Later in the day, when Cole gets Daly some coffee, he spots her talking to Lowry, another employee, about her
relationship and intentions with Daly which she says are strictly professional. Daly, who was fond of her, is dismayed. After hours, Daly finds and swabs Cole’s coffee cup from the trash. He puts it into a machine, and Cole wakes up inside the world of Space Fleet, a TV show that Daly liked. After meeting the rest of the crew, she understands that their DNA and consciousness was uploaded into a modified version of Infinity that Daly controls. The audience soon becomes accustomed to Daly’s true personality: overbearing, entitled, and abusive of his power. In a complex plan, they manage to escape into the online Infinity Universe while Daly is stuck inside his own universe with all of his controls revoked, seemingly left to starve in the
real world. All elements of this episode were very real. The Infinity universe was inspired by No Man’s Sky, a game that also has a procedurally-generated universe. The simulated reality is similar to the technology in our current virtual realities. One major issue it brings up concerns digital consciousness. Two sides could be argued in this case. Since digital consciousness is aware and is able to freely think and act, it should be treated as a human — with all of humanity’s rights. The other side to the argument is that it’s all code and that code has no rights. So as to not spoil any more of the story for you, I’ll let you enjoy the rest of the season for yourself.
Another important part of Indian culture students experienced was the integral and diverse role religion plays. We visited Hindu temples, including one with an entertaining cast of monkeys; great mosques; and explored the interesting, but precarious situation of the Tibetan buddhist population living in exile. At Sikh temples students participated in the volunteer kitchens that provide food for thousands daily. Most memorable was the daily Hindu ceremony we witnessed on the banks of the sacred Ganges river. Fourth Former Andrew Hubschmidt found
these experiences intriguing. “It gave me a chance to see myself, the temples and customs of other religions that I have learned about in school,” Hubschmidt said. While students visited plenty of famous monuments and religious establishments, they also learned a great deal on average Indian citizen’s daily life. While India is immensely wealthy in culture and history, it can be easy to forget the daily lives of the people who make the country what it is. Michael Yoh said, “I also learned a lot about
daily life in India. Very few trips give you the opportunity to sit down and have tea with a farming family living on the outskirts of a small town to learn about their culture.” Students connected closely with their exchange students. Whether they were teaching the four how to play cricket, showing new foods we had never heard of, or explaining aspects of Indian life they did not know beforehand, they became great friends and assisted the Fords in cultural understanding. Fourth Former Ben Hokenson said that he
learned “The value of having long-lasting friendships with people around the world.” Students also learned about the inner-workings of the Welham Boys’ School and other schooling systems in India. Most had never visited a boarding school. “I would recommend it to other students based on the cultural experience you get out of it,” Yoh said. “The company that ran our week-long tour, India by Design, is one of the best tour companies out there and definitely gave us a great experience.”
Picking team 169Y (Fourth Formers Daniel Chow and Aditya Sardesai and Fifth Former Will Vauclain) and team 6121C from Conestoga as alliance partners for the elimination round, the Haverford-led alliance continued to go on undefeated and win the championship, qualifying them for the World Championship. Teams 169C (Fourth Formers Toby Ma and Noah Rubien and Sixth Former Michael Feng) and team 169E (Fourth Formers Alexander Greer, Bennett Twitmyer, and Fifth Formers Intel Chen, Jared Hoefner and Third Former Maxim Kreider) also qualified for the World Championship.
With only six weeks to prepare for such a large event, the Cavalry immediately sprang into action. Spending long hours in the robotics workshop after every school day, Saturdays, and even throughout Spring Break, the Cavalry has been working tirelessly building, driving, and programming their complex robots. Third Former Maxim Kreider says, “It is important to utilize our time effectively in order to compete at the highest level.” “After states, in terms of design, it was clear that we needed to move in a new direction,” said Fourth Former Toby Ma. “We started rebuilding
our robot to create a better design that would more effectively play the game.” In regards to the team dynamic, the enormity of the event plays a big role in how the team has been feeling. Stress and tensions rise as the date grows closer. Robotics mentor Mr. Adam Myers comments on the importance of dealing with the stress. “It is important to manage attitude as much as anything coming into a big competition because it’s such a high-stress situation,” Mr. Myers said. “One of the strengths of the team is how well everyone gets along and together. In a moment of stress, we are all prone to saying or doing
things we don’t really mean. It is important to take breaks and step away from the work from time to time, it’s not only good to work with a clear head, but with the best attitude for the work.” Overall, team spirits remain high as the Cavalry continues to refine their work. “We’re feeling good. Really good,” says Fifth Former Intel Chen. For some members of the team, this will be their first World Championship experience, while other members will be returning from previous years — Fifth Former Scott Shaw will participate for the sixth time.
India trip, cont.
Robotics run at Worlds, cont.