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table of contents Letters to the editor can be on any topic or of any length. They may be edited for length or libelous content. Letters to the editor are accepted in room 220.

trojan torch Volume 45 Issue 2


Future Renovations Common Core Yogurt Delite Apple v. Samsung Egyptian Riots China and Japan Homecoming Editorial Tanning China Globalization Riots Staff Facts

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AP Human Geography Media Effects 8tracks Cross Country Step Team UTK Football Odd Sports Pitch Perfect / Twilight Saga Finding Nemo The Office Ben Rector

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Editors Alex Agee Aubrey Andrews Mackenzie Clark Corena Hasselle Sarah Hasselle Katherine Keller Sydney McNeill Emily Taylor Maria Yousuf Business Managers Corena Hasselle Maria Yousuf Circulation Manager Alex Agee Design Editor Elizabeth Butler Photography Editor Sarah Hasselle Reporters Johni Armstrong Mary Byars Jesse Cochran Andrew Collier Lindsey Dunn Jed Finley Natalie Hampton Emily Jackson Kent Kirby Hailey McKee Mary Catherine Newbill Ravi Patel Sydney Robey Suzanne Schultz Stephen Simpson Eri Sugiyama Laurie Williams Shehla Yousuf Advisor Suzanne Edwards



Trojan Torch Dyersburg High School 125 Hwy. 51 By-Pass Dyersburg, TN 38024

news Renovations:

Four more phases to go

Photo courtesy of Neel Durbin

Last year the DCS board decided to begin renovations on the 41-year-old building in five different phases to minimize impact on students in the classroom. Above are the digital blueprints showing the end result of current renovations to the front of the high school.


ithin the next eight to ten years, more renovations will be made to the 41-year-old facilities at this school. Renovations will include updates to classrooms, science labs, restrooms, the football field and the gymnasium. After 41 years of use, nine years longer than the previous high school building was used, the school is in need of renovations. Because of the 1991 North Carolina Americans with Disabilities Act, or ADA, schools must be up-to-date on the correct standards. Older buildings, like the high school, were given more time to reach compliance. Twenty-one years after the bill was passed, administrators decided the envelope had been pushed too long and put the renovation plans into action. “I think more renovations to the school will be fantastic, even though I will not be here to enjoy them,” junior Anna Decker said. Instead of tearing down, then completely rebuilding the 41year-old building, director of schools Neel Durbin and the school board have chosen to construct the updates in a five-phase plan. The updates will be made in increments over the next eight to ten years with one year between each update. This one year period after each phase is complete is planned so each renovation can be paid off, avoiding any unnecessary taxation to citizens.

“We have tried to minimize the impact (on students and faculty) as much as possible, but things like this are never a painless process,” Durbin said. Like the construction on the front of the building, all costs will come out of the capital expenditures, or the money that is used by Durbin and administrators to fix any mishaps at any of the schools. The budget of the capital expenditures is funded by the state and the community. The first phase of the plan is already underway as the sign at the front of the building says. The first phase, the remodeling of the front of the building, is the largest update, creating the most impact on the routines of students and faculty. The other phases will most likely begin over the summer or at the end of the school year. Most updates will take two to four months; therefore, overlapping into the school year at some point is unavoidable. Also underway is the replacement of the HVAC system, or heating and air conditioning, in the school. Over the past month, the basement, where the air conditioning system is kept, has been under construction. All of the windows in the school building were also replaced with safer, more energy efficient ones over the summer break.

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Changes in education are due to Common Core Standards Johni Armstrong Reporter ith all the talk of Common Core standards floating around the classrooms, some students are becoming curious about not only what this phrase means but also why it


is important. The Common Core state standards are a clear set of shared goals and expectations for what knowledge and skills will help students succeed in college and careers. The standards will not keep local teachers, principals, superin-

English teacher Laura Wright writes on her chalkboard daily the Common Core standards she is teaching.

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tendents or school boards from deciding how the standards are going to be met. The main objective of the Common Core standards is to unite education requirements across the nation. For example, if a student moves from one U.S. state to another and both states have adopted the Common Core standards, each would have the same curriculum for the year. This is a way of making it fair for students who move. “I think it’s a good idea because when I moved in 5th grade, my new classes were way ahead of me,” sophomore Carolyn Fowlkes said. According to, 45 states and 3 U.S. territories have formally adopted the Common Core standards. Tennessee adopted the standards on July 30,

Photos by Johni Armstrong

2010. “These new standards will be more stringent than current standards,” curriculum coordinator Kim Worley said. The purpose of the Common Core State Standards Initiative is to prepare students to compete with other students across the state, the nation and the world. It will also keep education standards focused and coherent. “Mainly freshmen and sophomores will be affected, but juniors will experience some changes in testing,” Worley said. One main change to standards is increased levels of thinking. “There used to be so much material that had to be covered that there was no thinking involved. Now we are training teachers to make students think on a critical level. We have already started working with the teachers. Each teacher has had 3 hours of training, but language arts teachers are having more,” Worley said. Along with critical thinking, there will also be more constructed response. End of Course tests will no longer be completely multiple choice but will also contain constructed responses. “There will not be more tests; they will just be a little different,” Worley said. The standards are applied mainly to the subjects of math and language, but the skills taught in these classes will be connected to the skills taught in other subjects. “After students and teachers are adjusted to the Common Core standards and the new way of thinking, I believe this is the best thing for students,” said Worley.

New yogurt shop ‘Yogurt Delite’ pleases frozen yogurt seekers Corena Hasselle Business Manager ocated in the same plaza as Huddle House, China Star, Express Donut and Java Cafe, a new frozen yogurt shop, Yogurt Delite, opened up at 1130 U.S. Hwy 51 Bypass W. in August. Painted with bright-blue and lime-green on the inside, this colorful shop is decored with groovy lights and modernistic tables. In the first weeks of October, the owner of Express Donut, Sothea Soeun, whose donut store is located next door, purchased Yogurt Delite from former owner Jimmy Sinis. Both Yogurt Delite and Express Donut are open daily from 5a.m. to 7p.m. and 5a.m. to 1p.m. on Sundays. Inside the yogurt shop customers have the option to choose the amount of frozen yogurt they want from several different yogurt dispensers. The “menu” consists of flavors such as french vanilla, peach cobbler, chocolate, white chocolate mousse, birthday cake and strawberry, with a total of 12 options to choose from. Different flavors have been added over time, sometimes from the suggestions of customers and Honey Hills Farm, the company that Soeun purchases from. Toppings include a variety up to 50 choices: brownie pieces, gummy worms, M&Ms, cookie dough bites, etc. After customers are done picking out their favorite flavors and their toppings, they can check out at the counter where the cashier weights the yogurt cup and charges the appropriate price. Then if customers are still hungry, they can simply walk across the room to purchase a few donuts. The stores have been combined by a break in the wall in between that connects the stores, adding more seating space and waiting room. “The skills and knowledge I have in baking gave me the idea to open Express Donut and it provides great investments for my family,” Soeun said. “In Martin I had a restaurant, and across the street, someone opened a yogurt shop like this one. I saw that people loved and enjoyed it very much. I thought Dyersburg was a very nice town, and I was surprised that it didn’t have one,” Sinis said. “My brother used to own a restaurant near the old Kroger called Olympia. That’s why I moved here. Ever since then I had always lived in the West Tennessee area, opening restaurants,” Sinis said. “Customers can now have the option between cheap, freshly-made donuts or healthy, low-fat yogurt. We have even added free wifi,” Soeun said. “In the future I plan to add internet stations for customers to use and to look for drive throu capability if available,” Soeun said. “I like how they are combined; I have two choices now,” senior Lauren Martin said. “The frozen yogurt was very delicious,” senior Kristen Turner said. “I liked how people can help themselves to any and all of


the different flavors available. I was clueless as to where to start,” senior Matthew Daniels said. “I like their choices; I dislike when they weigh my yogurt,” freshman Kyle Bennett said. “Don’t pack the yogurt down to add more toppings.” “I like the coffee flavor with the cheesecake bits the best,” junior Anna Decker said. “I sampled all of the flavors and felt pretty happy about the freedom that the shop offers,” Daniels said. “I like how you can serve yourself and put as many toppings as you want. They have such a wide variety of toppings,” Martin said. “I thought I broke the weight machine because I lifted the scale up and the top fell off,” Bennett said. “My favorite flavor is chocolate with gummy worms and pretzels. It sounds gross, but it’s great,” Martin said. “My favorite is cookies and cream yogurt with sour gummy worms and smashed up Oreos,” Turner said. “I love yogurt!” Martin said.

Photo by Corena Hasselle

The bright and colorful decor at Yogurt Delite offers an inviting and upbeat atmosphere for customers to enjoy.

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Apple wins big over Samsung Ravi Patel Editor inally, it was over. The nine jurors came back into the courtroom after deliberating for roughly 21 hours, and announced Apple as the winner in their U.S. fight against Samsung. The jurors had given Apple nearly 1.05 billion dollars in damages from Samsung, creating one of the most memorable tech lawsuits in recent years. The case, which began in April of 2011, claimed that Samsung had infringed on Apple’s intellectual property, specifically its patent protected technology, user interface design and product styling. The case primarily focused on the iPhone, iPad and Galaxy product lines. Apple claimed that rather than fairly designing products to compete, Samsung simply stole and built competitive products from their design. Apple has filed numerous specific claims against Samsung asking for roughly 2.5 billion dollars in damage and a ban on specific Samsung products such as the Galaxy S2 i9000 and Galaxy Tab in the United States. However, while some Apple claims are broad, such as tap to zoom and potentially encompassing more than just Samsung products, the question the jurors face is whether Samsung intentionally copied all the features implemented by Apple just to create phones and tablets that will present direct competition. The original California case has caused the two multinational companies to begin over 50 lawsuits in ten different countries. “You have to protect your product. Would you not protect your product at all costs?” history teacher and tech officianado Jeff Golson said. But what does this verdict mean to the consumer? A price increase in Samsung phones might have purchasers reconsider their decision. “I would not be pleased. I would not even buy the (Samsung) phone,” senior Whitley Jump said. “I would reconsider my decision to buy it--price matters,” senior Bailey Austin said.


Photo by Ravi Patel

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“It would depend on how bad I wanted it and how much it increased,” senior Josh Williams said. However, the lawsuit should not cause any change in prices according to the local Verizon store and other reports. If Samsung is required to stop its U.S. sales, new versions of its products will likely be released. The verdict for the California case has proved that multinational technology corporations are willing to sue and countersue anyone in order to keep their intellectual property safe, even a crucial component supplier as in the Apple vs Samsung case. Though Apple has won the case in the United States, cases in Asia and Europe are still ongoing. Additionally, Apple is suing Samsung for another 700 million dollars, which could possibly be followed by more lawsuits.

Middle East protests premeditated Shehla Yousuf Reporter ecent riots in the Middle East ended in bloodshed. “Justice will be done,” President Barack Obama said according to CNN. His response was to the the death of U.S. ambassador Christopher Stevens. The uprising in the Middle East that caused the murders of Stevens, diplomat Sean Smith and two Department of Security officers was believed to have been a result of an inflammatory 14-minute video called Innocence of Muslims. It shared controversial views on fundamental Islamic beliefs and mocked the Prophet Mohammed. The video was thought to have caused an immediate outcry, the Libyan government has even issued arrest warrants for seven people who helped create the provocative video, as well as for Jones. In the statement, the prosecutor claimed that the video harmed national unity by insulting and publicly attacking the Islamic faith and spreading false information. However, new intelligence appeared indicating that the attacks were premeditated and orchestrated to coincide with the anniversary of 9/11. According to local Libyans, the mob was planned ahead of time by foreign fighters tied to Al Qaeda. The Libyan president has conducted the arrests of 50 civilians in connection with the attack under the impression that the riot was planned. “The way these perpetrators acted and moved...this leaves us with no doubt that this was pre-planned, determined,” Magariaf said according, to ABC news. The U.S. government is blaming the fact that they took several months to uncover the truth on a massive intelligence failure. “They should have looked into it more and paid more attention to the attacks,” senior Cortlyn Westbrook said. Attackers armed with mortars and rocket-propelled grenades mobbed the U.S. consulate. A grenade was left inside the walled


Photo courtesy of EPA

Debris from the fallen U.S. consulate cover the streets, including an American flag surrounded by piles of rubble.

Photo courtesy of AFP/Getty Images Pakistani protesters burn an American flag on September 20th in a demonstration. There have been several such riots.

compound, leaving all residents facing explosions in the building and attackers outside. Stevens, Smith and the Department of Security officers died from smoke inhalation as they were trying to escape. Libyan civilians attempted to rescue them, but it was to no avail. Stevens is the first American ambassador to be killed since 1979. “We will not waver in our commitment to see that justice is done for this terrible act,” Obama said according to CNN. The U.S. will be dispatching surveillance drones to hunt for the militants responsible for the attack. The drones will be used to gather intelligence that will later be turned over to Libyan officials. However, these are not the only measures the United States will be taking. Two American destroyers are being moved to the Libyan coast, both heavily equipped with weaponry. The “weaponry” includes missiles that can be programmed to hit specific targets. “We extend our apologies to America, the American people and the whole world,” Libyan president Mohamed Yousef El-Magariaf said according to ABC news. “It was completely unneccessary,” sophomore Ladarious Rogan said. The flag-covered coffins of the four men were carried to Andrews Air Force Base. “Their sacrifice will never be forgotten,” Obama said according to CNN. Funeral plans are still being arranged.

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Island dispute targets China, Sarah Hasselle Photography Editor hina and Japan have been fighting for a long time. Even after Japanese occupation of Taiwan and Manchuria, Japan continued to think the land was theirs,” Chinese Shogun owner Leo Liu said of the JapaneseChinese tension aroused by protests in big cities in China over the purchase of the Senkaku (Japanese) or Diaoyu (Chinese) islands, in the East China Sea. The islands were controlled by Tokyo but claimed by China. The catalyst for the protests was the Japanese purchase of three islands from its private owners for a net worth of $26 million USD. Protests were permitted as long as they remained nonviolent. Nonetheless, photographs show Chinese ransacking stores and destroying Japanese-made cars. Protests in Beijing and places such as Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenyang have prompted a halt of production in some Japanese companies in China such as Toyota and Canon.


Right: A large number of protestors gather to protest Japan!s claim of the islands. Below: A Chinese man stands on top of a Japanesebrand police car and shouts protests. Bottom left: A group of Chinese people march the streets of Hangzhou to protest.

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“Crazy,” senior Japanese exchange student Eri Sugiyama said. “Most of the Japanese don’t pay as much attention to demonstration. I feel sorry for the Japanese people who live in China.” Following the announcement, the Chinese Navy sent units to patrol the territorial waters. They interrogated the Japanese. Japan continued to warn against vessels entering their newly nationalized waters, but Chinese patrol ships continued to wait in nearby waters. Ships from Taiwan, a territorial state of China, have also been sent. Entering the waters to protest, Taiwanese fishermen as well as the Taiwanese Coast Guard have been greeted by the Japanese Coast Guard’s water cannons. According to the Chinese ministry of defense, the Chinese military released its first aircraft carrier to “raise the overall operational strength of the Chinese Navy.” Some suspicion has risen about the timing of this formal action. The Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda faces an upcoming election which could be pressuring him to not appear “weak” on the island situation with China.

Japan’s patched-up relationship “Both Japan and China think that the island is theirs,” Liu said. Ownership of these islands, along with other islands, has been disputed for several decades. Japan expanded its empire in East Asia from 1895 until after Japan’s defeat in World War II, involving itself in two wars with China, but the claims on the land were difficult for China to keep because of its lack of military power. These islands were controlled by Japan from that time until after Japanese surrender, when the United States took over the administration of the islands in 1945. In 1972, the islands reverted to Japanese control under the Okinawa Treaty, meant to restore relations between the United States and Japan. In 1972, Japan agreed to give Taiwan back as a territory to China, but agreed to disagree over the claim of the Senkaku and Diaoyu islands. The ceremony celebrating the 40th anniversary of this agreement was postponed, and later cancelled, because of the recent tension regarding the islands. “Chinese people will not forget what the Japanese did in China,” Changchun Foreign Language School student Allen Ray said of the tension regarding the two countries. “Chinese people think the islands are their territories. Most people who were activists do not know the history well. I think we should rationally negotiate with Japanese,” alumna Yiruo Zhang said. “I believe the Chinese have a right to protest,” senior Josh Williams said. China recently warned the United States not to get involved in separate territorial disputes in the South China Sea. The

United States agreed to stay out of it. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s response to this warning was urging for the Chinese to resolve disputes without force. The United States’ position on the dispute, however, still angers Beijing and causes some worry in Tokyo. The United States is hindered by a treaty made in 1960, the Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security between the United States and Japan, which was made to eliminate any future conflict between the two. According to some, the United States should be in the blame for giving the islands to Japan in the 1972 Okinawa Treaty. Protests, though, seem to be centered on Japan. A United States ambassador was harassed while attempting to enter the American embassy in Beijing while demonstrations were held near the Japanese embassy, but Chinese authorities quickly moved the demonstrators away. Some people in China believe that the United States is backing up Japan. One thing that the islands hold is natural resources--potentially billions of barrels of oil. Both countries are conflicting with each other partially for the potential value of the what the islands contain. “I believe that Chinese people should not protest because Japan is smaller. So, they deserve the islands,” freshman Matthew Hampton said. “It's all about military affairs and natural resources. There is plenty of petroleum in the fishing islands, and it is a good location for military reasons,” Zhang said.

Protests have been vicious in China; Japan!s protests have been in response to China and have been small and relatively peaceful.

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editorials Students long for real homecoming Staff Editorial


n 20 years when we look back on high school, what will we remember? Of course graduation and prom will be on top of the list, along with best friends and favorite teachers, but what about homecoming? Homecoming this year has felt close to nonexistent. With no homecoming games during school hours, no dress-up days, and a 30-minute pep rally, homecoming has not felt the same as in previous years. Football homecoming is supposed to be an exciting time of the year, during which students get pumped up for the upcoming game. The pep rallies are supposed to be loud, crazy and exhilarating. But how can we fit so much excitement into a 30-minute time slot? Homecoming games are supposed to be full of participation from an array of students, but there were no games during school throughout this football homecoming week. Past games have included “Tug of War,” “Orange Crush,” a Twinkie-eating contest and class scavenger hunts. These games brought student excitement that carried over to the football game. Perhaps the lack of school spirit for this game was due to the lack of pep rally events and homecoming events. The absence of dress-up days has caused homecoming week to lose its exciting spirit. Dress-up days are the days we, as students, will remember years after we graduate from high school. Other homecoming events, such as Powder Puff and boys’ kickball, were held after school. The disadvantage to holding these events after school is that many students are not able to participate because of conflicts with other extracurricular activities or jobs. We understand that curricula expectations and teacher accountability have increased greatly within the last several years. These changes are responsible for the lower number and shorter duration of pep rallies and homecoming activities.

Sophomore cheerleader Meg Alford and senior cheerleader Madison Hall get the crowd fired up at the homecoming pep rally.

In regard to dressup days, perhaps administration could allow students to dressup two or three days of the week during homecoming. Although we were allowed to wear tshirts the last day of homecoming week, it is not the same as an actual dress-up day. Another suggestion may be for only seniors to participate in dress-up days. Through this tactic, dress up days would be seen as an incentive that behavior must be good for future classes also to participate in dressing up. As for the seniors, allowing them to be the only students allowed to dressup could be seen as a perk and privilege as well as an earned experience after having gone through four years of high school. We hope some of the suggestions will be considered for our basketball homecoming this winter.

Photos courtesy of Connie Wright

Senior football players get involved at the homecoming pep rally by volunteering to play a rolling game.

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Students watch intensely as cheerleaders try to get the crowd involved during the football homecoming pep rally.

= Photo by Mary Byars


Tanning: Setting the body up for destruction Mary Byars Reporter corching of the skin, burning of cells, radiation that is killing the body--Is this a new nuclear weapon? No, it is tanning, better known in the medical field as one of the most prevalent causes of skin cancer. Thousands of men, women and teens today are using various instruments to fit the “perfect” look in today’s society. Having the newest hair style and clothing trends, having the latest technology, having a clear and spotless complexion and having dark, tan skin is society’s perception of beauty. Although tan skin might seem attractive to the eye of some youth, is tanning your skin really worth all the damage it is doing to your body? When lying in a tanning bed, most do not think about the harmful rays that penetrate their skin. These rays are called ultraviolet rays, more commonly known as UV Rays. UV rays are unseen rays that are a part of the energy transmitted from the sun. According to, UV rays assist our bodies in making vitamin D, which strengthens both bones and teeth and also helps our bodies build immunities to numerous diseases. Despite the positive effects, ultraviolet rays can ruin one’s body if someone spends large amounts of time in the sun or in tanning beds without the correct protection. Using sunlamps or tanning beds can lead to overexposure to ultraviolet rays, causing skin cancer, sun burns, premature skin aging, unknown allergic reaction to the radiation and immune suppression, as well as both short and long-term eye damage. According to, skin tanning products are designed to use one or more ultraviolet lamps and are intended for irradiation of any part of the living human body. Transmission of ultraviolet radiation induces darkening of the skin. The ultraviolet lamps produce radiation within a prescribed range of wavelengths and are intended for use in sunlamp products only. The tanning of skin by using these ultraviolet lights can affect the body in numerous ways. Many people are aware of the harmful effects of tanning on the skin yet continue to subject themselves to these problems. The most understandable reason is of the pressure today’s society puts on the individual. People feel they must look a certain way to be accepted in a particular group, so they do what-


ever it takes to fit in. Diseases such as melanoma and sexually transmitted diseases are often spread by tanning beds. Although getting an STD may seem like an extreme possibility, it is becoming more common in today’s society. STDs can spread among tanning bed users. Without the proper cleaning and sanitizing of tanning beds, these diseases have found yet another way of spreading. If having tan skin is a top priority of your life, consider using natural light. When sunbathing, use proper protection to keep your body young and healthy with no harm. Tanning has serious consequences, and the implications should be considered before one lies in the radiation of a tanning bed. Remember, one’s outward look should not be as important as the health within. Next time darkening skin becomes a priority, ask yourself, “Do I honestly need to put my body


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Trying for China:

From West Tennessee to the East by Mackenzie Clark Editor recently had the pleasure of meeting with Riki Jackson, one of the directors the Confucius Institute at the University of Memphis. I scheduled a meeting with her to solidify my future in doing something I love: learning the Chinese language and culture. But it is more than that. China is a big place with a big history, and I want a piece of it. We talked about a lot of things, from the green tea she offered me to possible career choices in China, from my freshman year at college to the internships I could have senior year at the legislature in Nashville. This could give me a head start into the State Department and diplomacy. Globalization is a big topic, and I think the lack of education in this subject is why I have always gotten a lot of flak for this early career move. A lot of the time, whenever I mentioned it, I heard anything from “ching chong” to warnings of China being a “dangerous country.” Normally, it would not bother me, but since I have chosen this intricate language and country to be the figurehead of my formal education, I am deciding to set the record straight about a few things. First of all, China has the largest population of any country in the world, and Chinese is the most widely spoken language. Mainland China holds almost 20% of the world’s population at 1.3 billion, as of 2011. China has five thousand years of recorded history behind it, but a large portion of that was spent closed to those from the West. China is a country shrouded in the unknown. That makes it enticing to a student like me. Second, China has a fast growing economy, based on the interchangeable parts they manufacture and the resources they mine. They have set records for



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growing the greatest in the least amount of time, but this leaves them in a very fragile situation. While the economy is set to grow, demographics show that the dependent ratio of the population is going to skyrocket. That means there are going to be a lot of elderly being supported by a few young people. This is just what is happening here in the U.S., but on a larger scale. The problems are one and the same, and whatever one country decides could be an example for another. However, diplomacy is required for this kind of action. Third, all countries must unite in the face of global population growth. The population is set to level at the earliest in 2050, and as education and industry grow in developing countries, the distribution of wealth is going to become a touchy topic. These are the kinds of things students need to learn about in schools. Globalization is a big topic that affects each student’s life. And it is more than just China; it is any developing country in the world. China is just my choice. I’m going to do what I can to make a bridge between my own country and China. So what can we do to raise awareness about globalization? We can teach it more widely in schools and offer our students more languages to learn. We can open them up to the world and take them outside of Dyersburg, out of West Tennessee, out of our country. As future working citizens of the United States, we need a strong education in how the world is developing, especially in times when there is widespread unrest and political upheaval.

Attack results in foreign policy nightmare Jed Finley Reporter


lections are near. As always, two realms of presidential responsibility dominate the election: foreign and domestic policy. President Barack Obama has kept a seemingly tight ship concerning his foreign policy, especially with the location and killing of Osama Bin Laden. Despite Obama’s triumph here, his foreign policy has largely remained out of the spotlight, falling behind issues closer to the American people like healthcare reform and the state of economy. On September 11, 2012, an organized terrorist group attacked the United States Consulate in Benghazi, Libya. The attack resulted in the deaths of U.S. Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stephens and three security personnel. The Obama administration initially attributed the attacks on the U.S. Consulate to protests to a low-budget American film titled The Innocence of Muslims, an anti-muslim video uploaded to Youtube in July 2012. However, the administration’s official position on the cause of the deaths of the four U.S. officials has since changed. The administration now acknowledges that the attack was not the result of protests against a little-known American film, but rather a planned attack by an organized militant group. The White House’s official position began on the night of September 11 when Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called the attacks a response to inflammatory material posted on the internet. However, the White House’s position began its evolution when Obama delivered a speech condemning the attack as an act of terror on the same day. Throughout the next weeks the administration began referring to the event as a terrorist attack but without significant planning or premeditation. At a briefing on October 9, senior state department officials revealed that there were no protests or demonstrations in response to the anti-muslim film on the night of the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, contradicting the White House’s initial statement that the attack resulted from protests against the anti-muslim film. By this time controversy began arising as to the administration’s shaky position on the events at the Consulate. Carney stated that the administration gave its best information as it was provided by the intelligence community. On October 24 emails leaked from between the White House and Pentagon showed that the White House had knowledge that Ansar al-Sharia, an Islamic militant group, had claimed credit for the attack just two hours after the attack began.

The House Committee on Oversight and Government reform has since begun investigations on the events of the attack and the government’s response. The CIA and U.S. military in the area had drones surveying the area at the time of the attacks. Sources report that U.S. forces in the area were capable of intervening during the attack. More information has since surfaced showing that the U.S. Consulate in Libya reported deteriorating conditions and requested additional security personnel prior to the attack on September 11. Those requests were denied by the State Department. The approach of the presidential elections begs the question: Did the current administration intentionally attempt to disguise its own foreign policy failures by blaming the terrorist atttack on a film? At the very least, the fiasco represents a communication breakdown between the current administration and the populace, one that could have been avoided had the White House originally been honest in its explanation. However, the situation could have been avoided entirely had the White House taken a stronger stance in foreign policy, by asserting the United States’ presence and granting the necessary military personnel to the Consulate.

United States Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens officially reopened the U.S. Consulate in Libya on August 26, 2012, when he welcomed renewed diplomatic relations with the North African country after the turmoil of the Arab Spring. Stevens was killed during the attacks on the American embassy in Benghazi, Libya.

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features Staff confess hidden talents Lindsey Dunn Reporter he world is full of interesting people, some of whom work inside the walls of Dyersburg High School.

Is Dyersburg where you pictured yourself when you were 16?


“No way! I wanted to work in a law firm in downtown Memphis, Atlanta or Nashville, and I wanted to wear a suit every day.” Katie Hill

What are some interesting talents you have and how did you find them?

“Not at all. I was dreaming of being a lawyer when I was 16. (I) thought I would have a big office in New York City or something!! I love my job now (because it is) much better than going through legal messes!!!” - Jared Street

“I love helping people shop and pick out clothing to fit their body type. I also love doing makeovers and helping people feel good about themselves. I have always loved fashion. I have a degree in Fashion Merchandising.” - Sandra Lanier “Drawing (from) high school art class.” - Grady Andrews “Grilling...while serving in the military on training mission, my platoon would get food from the mess hall, and I would make a grill out of just about anything and cook for them.” -Ron Johnson “I like to sing. When I was four and my dad would have to bring businessmen to eat with us, I would sing and dance for them!” - Angie Pickens

“No way -- thought I’d be a hippie living abroad.” - Athena Goodall

Are there any really cool things that you wish you could do? “I think it would be really cool to get to go on the show Survivor.” - Jared Street “(I want to) skydive (and) scuba dive” - Errol Hook “I want to hike down to Phantom Ranch at the bottom of the Grand Canyon. I’d also like to raft the Colorado River.” - Suzanne Edwards “(I want to) fly a helicopter.” - Angie Pickens

Photo courtesy of Chris Solomon

Are there any interesting facts about yourself? Experiences? “(I)!performed live on the Apollo Theater Stage in Harlem, New York and did NOT!get booed off!” - Athena Goodall “I recently found out that I have an older sister that my mother had put up for adoption when she was 16. She lives in San Francisco, and I met her in July.” - Chris Solmon “In 5th grade at Central Elementary I was in the talent show for impersonations. I sang a Johnny Cash song and two Loretta Lynn songs. The Loretta Lynn songs I sang were ‘Don't Come Home a Drinkin’ with Lovin on Your mind’ and ‘You Ain't Woman Enough to Take my Man.’ After we got home from the talent show, the principal, Oscar Bruce, called my parents to tell me these songs were not appropriate to sing at a school talent show. My parents said they didn't know beforehand what I chose to sing since I sang all the time anyway! HOW EMBARRASSING!” Angie Pickens

What were your ambitions growing up as a kid? “Be a GoGo dancer.” - Athena Goodall “Pro football player.” - Grady Andrews Chris Solomon and her sister Carol hold hands in an emotional first meeting this summer in San Francisco, California.

“I wanted to be a marine biologist and work with humpback whales.” - Angie Pickens

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Director of Schools Neel Durbin returns to classroom to teach AP Human Geography

Photos by Jesse Cochran

Senior Megan Purvis quickly writes down notes as Mr. Durbin teaches the class about the push and pull factors of migration.

Jesse Cochran

Reporter P Human Geography, a course that used to be part of students’ everyday schedule and offered to sophomores, is now offered to juniors and seniors and requires students to arrive to school at seven a.m., three days a week. “The only thing I dislike about the course is having to get up early, ” junior Anissa Watkins said. The class is being taught by Director of Schools Neel Durbin. “Juniors and seniors are much more prepared than the sophomores that I have taught in the past for Human Geography. The knowledge that the students have from taking other classes is very valuable. In the past, I was one of the teachers who would build the base, but now I am reaping the rewards of what other teachers have done. The students are very prepared to rise to the challenges of this class,” Durbin said. The class meets three days a week for 50 minutes, so as one could imagine, there is a lot of material to cover in a little bit of time before the AP exam. But since the class is composed of only juniors and seniors, one could only think that they will be able to do well.


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Director of Schools Neel Durbin gets back into the swing of teaching AP Human Geography after a two year break.

“I believe that we will succeed. I always hope to have 100% pass the exam, and this year I believe we have a great shot,” Durbin said. The students are also getting some rare opportunities that most high schoolers are not given. “We will be involved with fieldwork for the city, and I hope to give them opportunities to take a few ‘short’ trips within the state. Right now international travel is up in the air,” Durbin said Students say that they are glad that they were able to take this class. “When I heard about the course, I couldn’t wait to take it with Mr. Durbin” junior Clayton Addison said. Some may wonder why Durbin would like to add teaching AP Human Geography to his plate. “I like to be around young students who have so much ahead in their lives. Students inspire me. We have to succeed in education; our future depends on it. Getting to know students makes me secure when I think of what is to come. We have a few problems; but the majority of our students are hard working and optimistic, and they are certainly intelligent enough to succeed, and it is a pleasure to be back in class,” Durbin said.

!"#$%&$'()*"'+",&$-./",,$0'%1)"&20*'3&40-"' Alex Agee Editor n recent years, the media’s effect on young women’s body image has been an issue of concern. Many people believe that television and magazines hold girls to impossible standards. The majority of models on television and magazines are well below a healthy body mass index (BMI). Some individuals think this leads a young, impressionable woman to believe that in order to be “beautiful,” she must be unhealthy. “They always show super skinny women, making women everywhere think they should look like that,” senior Emily Mckee said. “(The majority of the media consider beautiful women to be) stick thin, have clear skin and wear lots of makeup and expensive clothing,” senior Julia Frye said. Many magazines airbrush and photoshop their pictures, promoting unrealistic body images. Fortunately, the American Media Association took notice of this practice and adopted a new policy against altering photos. According to a Kaiser Foundation study by Nancy Signorielli, fifty-eight percent of female characters in movies had comments made on their appearance, and twenty-eight percent did on television. Thirty-seven percent of articles in popular teen magazines had articles that focused on young women’s appearances. Fifty percent of advertisements used beauty as a technique in selling their product. “I think the media portrays women’s body image inaccurately


by putting a false image of perfection,” senior Madelyn Howe said. Because the media has portrayed young women as being thinner and thinner, many girls have made that their ideal appearance. The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute conducted a survey and found forty percent of nine and ten-year-olds had tried to lose weight. Another one of their studies reported that fifty-three percent of American girls at age thirteen were not happy with their bodies. The percent increased to seventy-eight percent by the time they were seventeen. However, some media has a positive effect on young women. “I think there are types of media out there that show real women who are beautiful,” sophomore Kendra Lyte said. Seventeen magazine recently started Seventeen Body Peace Project. The Seventeen Body Peace Project is a treaty that young women sign promising to try to stop the negative thoughts about their bodies. Those who have signed have taken an oath to “quit judging a person solely by how his or her body looks”, “remember that the sun will still rise tomorrow even if I had one too many slices of pizza” and “quiet that negative little voice in my head when it starts to say mean things about my body,” among other things. “The media needs to be conscious of how they portray women because they have a huge influence on young adults. The media can make the difference between a young lady feeling negative and self conscious about her body or loving and accepting it,” senior Ellen Staggs said.

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Social media gains new contender:

Natalie Hampton Reporter s social networking has become a more prominent part of adolescent life, new social network sites have been emerging rapidly. One of the newest social networks that has become popular in the United States is This website is both a social network and an online radio. Members create different playlists with their favorite songs and artists, then post the playlist for others to listen to during their daily activities. Members can also follow their friends and comment on the various playlists that are created. When one first logs onto the site, one is asked what type of music he or she would like to listen to. Playlists are categorized by genre, mood and artist; they range from mainstream hits to unknown covers. Once someone tells the site what he or she wants to listen to, 8tracks pulls up a list of any playlist that has been placed under that particular category. That person can then decide which playlist he or she wants to listen to. David Porter, the website’s founder, believes that handcrafted playlists are much more effective than normal algorithms, which are very complex formulas that will give the musicologists a certain answer to the kinds of music that people will like. According to Porter, algorithms may be able to play songs that are similar to each other, but they cannot add any type of variety to the songs.


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One popular site that uses algorithms is Pandora. 8tracks is frequently compared to Pandora, and users go back and forth when it comes to which site they prefer. “I prefer 8tracks because you will get more variety of music than Pandora,” junior Jessica Morales said. On the other hand, some students would rather use Pandora. “I like Pandora better than 8tracks because you can find specific songs that you like more easily than you can on 8tracks,” freshman Matthew Hampton said. Another feature that is unique to 8tracks is the DJ feature. DJs can add their personal mixes onto 8tracks and create a free webpage that lists all of their music. People all over the world can listen to their music and follow them. “I think it’s great for DJs to be able to express themselves through their favorite mixes on their own webpage,” junior Krysta Milburn said. 8tracks is completely free to the public. There is no cost to become a member, and people who do not wish to be members can still enjoy the online radio part of the site. New playlists are made each day, so people can always find new music that they enjoy. “I would recommend 8tracks to my peers because you can listen to any type of music that you want to. You can go by whatever mood you are feeling, and the site has playlists for you even if you can’t decide what you want to listen to,” Milburn said.


Cross country team hopes for success Katherine Keller Editor he cross country team is gearing up for another strong season with high expectations including competing in the state tournament in the fall. With the loss of key seniors last year, the cross country team looks to the younger runners on the squad to lead the team to victory. The team is also welcoming a new coach into the spotlight, Seela Newbill. “I decided to begin coaching because I enjoy running,” Newbill said. She has stepped up and begun leading the team in practices and meets. She also encourages the team to put on their best performance every time they compete and sets high standards for the team to follow. “I expect each runner to run their best at each meet,” Newbill said. The team’s practices consist of running a three to four mile


course around town, sprinting intervals and short runs before race day. In cross country, the top six runners on the team to finish are the most important. The first five count for team points while the sixth member to finish is used in the event of a tie. Obion County and Dresden appear to be the toughest opponents the team will encounter this season. The team is motivated by opponents with top finishing runners and looks to continue to push themselves and beat their competitors. The team has set various goals as a unit, and individual goals as well. Each member of the team has set a goal to beat their best times. “I look to make it to state,” senior Angela Yarbury said. “My goals are to improve my pace and place in the top ten at Regionals,” junior Ryan Phillips said. “I want to make it into the top 25 runners and run three miles in at least 25 minutes,” freshman Chase Petty said. The runners also practice healthy habits and fuel their bodies with the proper foods and stretching to make sure that they maintain their tip-top shape. “I always drink plenty of water to keep my body hydrated,” Phillips said. The cross country team looks to run all the way to state this year under the guidance of Newbill. Photos courtesy of Andrea Mckee

Junior Lucas Galewski sprints to overtake a Peabody cross country opponent to the finish line at a recent meet in Union City.

Freshmen Amanda Dunn and Aloysius White compete in a cross country race in which!the team!placed third overall.

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Stepping it up: High school welcomes new kind of dance team Lauri Williams Assistant Editor his year the sounds of stomping and clapping can be heard in the commons after school. These distinct noises are courtesy of the high school’s new step team. ISS teacher Jackie Bartlett is sponsoring the team, but she is quick to pass off the idea of starting a step team to the team’s members. “The vision to start the team actually belongs to a group of students who aren’t a part of the other traditional school clubs or sports. Stepping is something that they are passionate about, and they needed a sponsor. I decided to give it a shot!” Bartlett said. “I did step team because I wanted to do something different than what most people did at school,” sophomore Montana Snow said. Also heading up the team are Family and Consumer Sciences teacher Sandra Lanier and choreographer Craig Clay. There are no special characteristics required to be on the step team, just a love of the sport. “This is a team that is all inclusive, regardless of race, gender or background,” Bartlett said.


The team is hoping to be ready to perform during the halftimes of sporting events at the high school by the next trimester. Members would also like to eventually to attend competitions where they can stomp it out against other step teams. But just like the dimension they add to their routines through the motions and music of their hands and feet, the steppers and coaches are striving to add more depth to the team as a whole. “It is my hope that by the end of the school year, the members of this team will learn to strengthen their weaknesses by relying on the concepts of strength, faith, family, leadership, teamwork, love and maturity. We will also be doing community service which will teach about service and giving,” Bartlett said. Earning respect from the staff and students at the high school is another important goal that the team hopes to achieve this year. But regardless of whether or not the team brings home any trophies, the steppers are sure to have fun participating in a sport they love. “Step team gets to bring a new addition to Dyersburg High,” junior Chari Swift said.

Phts by Laurie Williams

Sophomore Robert Underwood practices a move that the team will use in one of the new routines that they are perfecting.

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Sophomores Eriona Dixon, Myah Taylor and Ashanti Degraffenried work on the beginning of their current routine after school.

Tennessee back in spotlight? Sephen Simpsn Reporter his year, the Tennessee Volunteers football team looks to build on what seemed to be a dismal 5-7 season in 2011; a tall order considering the many changes the program has experienced. The Volunteers have seven new coaches in their midst. In fact, not a single defensive coach returned to the team after last year’s major downfall. Tennessee has suffered back-to-back losing seasons for the first time since joining the SEC. However, in 2011, one or more of their losses could potentially be chalked up to injury woes. The Vols started this season with a primarily healthy roster full of young talent and depth, just a couple of assets that this program has been lacking since the start of the decade. This young Volunteers squad eagerly got the season started in Atlanta, Georgia, facing the North Carolina State Wolfpack, led by their star-studded defense. But it was not just the players who were excited to get the season under way. Knoxville sophomore and avid game-goer Emma Caylor speaks for not only herself, but the rest of the student-fans when she said “We got discouraged towards the end of last season with all of our injuries. This year, our goal is to stay positive and let our guys know we believe in them.” With the help of enthusiastic fans such as Caylor, the Vols were able to beat the Wolfpack by two touchdowns and follow


Photo courtesy of Adam Brimer

Zach Rogers, Cordarrelle Patterson, Justin Hunter, Tyler Bray and other team members hang their heads after a tough loss to Florida. Photo courtesy of Amy Burgess

Junior quarterback Tyler Bray cocks his arm in hopes of firing the football into the hands of an open receiver.

that win up by thrashing the Georgia State Panthers 51-13, heading into the much anticipated Florida game 2-0. With the Florida Gators having won the past seven games against the Volunteers, many said that the game had lost the big-stage-rivalrymood that the matchup used to contain season after season. As one of the biggest hyped games of the weekend, Lee Corso and the College Gameday crew were stationed in Knoxville for the nationally televised game. For the first time in nearly a decade, this game had serious implications on both team’s seasons. Caylor was just one of many who was buying into all the hype of the game. She informed us that some of the professors on campus were releasing class early and even awarding extra credit for attending the game. It was official, the spirit on Rocky Top was back and bigger than it had been for quite some time. With a sellout crowd on-hand at Neyland Stadium, the Volunteers football team had roughly 100,000 fans cheering them on. However, this immensely large fan base was not enough. The Gators managed to beat the Vols 37-20, deflating much of the “Big Orange” faithful. This marks the eighth win in a row against the Vols for the Gators and the fifth straight against the Vols while playing in Knoxville. Fortunately, the Vols were able to bounce back against the Akron Zips, defeating them 47-26. After their bye the following week, the Vols were handed a tough loss by a strong Georgia Bulldog team, beginning a three-game losing streak, including losses to a tough Mississippi State team and the top ranked Alabama squad. Derek Dooley and his Tennessee Volunteer football team are still searching for their big, signature win. Being Dooley’s third season as head coach of the Vols, many fans and Knoxville alumni are putting him in the “hot seat.” However, as a program that is accustomed to success, it is not unreasonable that people are calling for his firing or resignation after back-to-back losing seasons. Dooley’s ultimate goal would be to obviously help the program return to national stardom, but until the team can grasp its first signature win, winning season, and bowl win, it is hard to see the team in the national spotlight. Photo courtesy of Michael Patrick

Junior receiver Justin Hunter makes the catch and is tackled by a Florida defender before getting the chance to turn up the field.

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Odd sports grow in popularity Hailey McKee Reporter ere--in West Tennessee--simple sports like rugby, lacrosse and polo are considered strange and uncommon. However, these sports pale in comparison with the originality and diversity of other sports that are regularly played around the world. In Gloucestershire, England, thousands of people from all over the world gather to watch the highly-respected sport of cheese rolling, which has been played annually since the 15th century. As the name implies, a 7- to 9-pound cylindrical block of Double Gloucester cheese is rolled down a steep hill named Cooper’s Hill, and men and women literally hurl themselves after the cheese in an attempt to catch it. The cheese plummets at a rate up to 70 mph, fast enough to knock over and injure spectators. Why cheese? Superstition has it that the cheese symbolizes an encouragement to harvest. Cooper’s Hill is very steep, unmaintained, about 200 yards long and is tall enough to overlook miles of Gloucestershire’s town and country. How players stop is unpredictable and up to them. Injuries including sprained ankles, concussions and broken bones are common, and not a single player leaves without a fresh battle wound. Fortunately, first aid is always available at the bottom of the hill.


The first person to cross the finish line wins the cheese, which is more of a matter of pride than an actual prize. Another odd sport that is considered normal in other countries is bossaball, which was invented in Spain in the early 2000s. Spain, Brazil, Ecuador and the Netherlands are some of the main countries that take bossaball quite seriously. Bossaball is a mixture of volleyball, soccer and gymnastics. It is played on a giant inflatable with a net in the middle, resembling a volleyball court. These inflatable courts are usually placed on beaches. There are three to five players on a team, and one is stationed on a trampoline in the middle of his or her side of the net. Players are allowed to volley the ball up to six times per possession, but only one time with their hands. Black flips and scissor kicks are encouraged in returning the ball; in other words, the fancier, the better. The scoring team gets 3 points if the ball lands on the trampoline and 1 point if it lands on the inflatable, not counting the “bossa wall,” which is the wall around the trampoline. The first team to receive 25 points is the winner. “You will definitely see me cheese-rolling and playing bossaball someday,” freshman Aloysius White said. Visit and for more information, photos and videos on each of these unique sports.

A bossaball team attempts to fashionably volley the ball to the opposing team by having one player take advantage of the trampoline.

Competitors in Gloucestershire, England, race down Cooper!s Hill, each striving to be the first person to catch the cheese.

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Two players show that style is an important factor in bossaball by adding elaborate flips and kicks into their plays.

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entertainment New musical comedy Pitch Perfect brings back collegiate a cappella Sydney McNeill Editor ollowing in the footsteps of Clueless, Bring it On and Mean Girls, the new musical comedy Pitch Perfect dramatizes an a cappella group, The Bellas. Mickey Rapkin, the author of the non-fiction novel Pitch Perfect, is a senior editor at GQ magazine for men. While at GQ, he spent a season covering competitive collegiate a cappella. Based upon his experiences, he wrote a novel about an all-girls group. Now, it is featured as a musical comedy on the wide screen. Hitting theaters as a major motion picture, Pitch Perfect stars Anna Kendrick as Beca, who is in her first year at Barden University. Caught


singing, she is cajoled into joining her school’s all-girls singing group, The Bellas. Also starring as part of The Bellas is Brittany Snow, Anna Camp and Rebel Wilson as Chloe, Aubrey and “Fat Amy,” respectively. Once a part of the group, Beca injects some much needed-energy into their practices in an attempt to better their reputation. As the a cappella group rebuilds, Beca introduces them to a set-list that includes more up-todate music. The girls are now ready to take on the campus boys in a heated competition. The movie features music from Kelly Clarkson, Miley Cyrus, Sia, Madonna and Ace of Base. Pitch Perfect is now playing in theaters everywhere.

Breaking Dawn: Part Two brings romance epic to an end Sydney Robey Reporter rapping up the Twilight saga, Breaking Dawn: Part Two is coming soon to theaters. In the previous movies, Bella Swan has gone through a lot of hardships for her love, Edward Cullen. Now in the last movie, Bella will be fighting for her newborn, Renesmee. In Breaking Dawn: Part Two, Bella is enjoying her new life as a vampire. Un-


fortunately, after the Volturi is informed of the birth of Renesmee, the Cullen family’s happiness ends. The safety of the child is threatened, because she could reveal the Volturi’s secret. As a result, the Cullens join forces with other vampire clans to protect Renesmee from the threat of the Volturi. Breaking Dawn: Part Two is supposed to bring the romantic epic that has entranced millions to an end. Will this movie hold up to the expectations it has set for

itself? “They have done a good job with the movies so far, so the final one will be the best,” sophomore Jenna Lemon said. “This movie will be good because Bella is now a vampire, and that was what all the books and movies were leading up to,” sophomore Kendra Lyte said. Coming November 16, Breaking Dawn: Part Two will wrap up the beloved Twilight saga.

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Finding Nemo swims into theaters with 3-D technology Suzanne Shulz Reporter eturning to theaters in 3-D is the 2003 animated Pixar favorite Finding Nemo. Blue tang fish Dory and clown fish Marlin return to share their adventure once again, only this time the characters come to life in 3-D. This movie is about the adventure of a widowed clown fish, Marlin, and his story of rescuing his kidnapped son, Nemo. On the first day of school, Nemo and his father fight over Nemo’s restricted


amount of freedom. Later, Nemo hopes to prove his bravery when he ventures away from class into the open ocean, where he finds himself competing in a race with his friends to touch a boat. As he approaches the object, Nemo is caught off-guard by two divers who then capture him. Marlin, unsure of what to do, swims after his son but fails to reach the boat before it leaves. He continues his journey to find his son, and along the way, he meets some creative characters. One of the most well known characters from this story is Dory. Being a blue tang fish, she does not have many friends. She is also famous for her short-term memory loss.

“My favorite character is Dory because she tries to help out but often gets confused,” senior April Dunevant said. Marlin meets Dory on his search, and she tags along for the rest of the journey. At first, Marlin is not able to handle Dory’s personality, but he soon grows to enjoy her presence. “One of the best lines featured in the story is when Dory sings ‘just keep swimming’ multiple times,” senior Justice Mance said. While his father is searching for him, Nemo figures out he has been placed in a dentist office’s fish tank. Nemo makes new friends while there, including Gill, Bloat, Peach, Gurgle, Bubbles and Deb. They help him escape by launching him into a water pipe connected to the blue ocean. Nemo and his father are reunited soon after he escapes, and they come to an understanding about their earlier disagreements. The process of converting this animated flick was very simple. 3-D is created by using two cameras, thus forming two different angles. Finding Nemo was produced in this advanced technology for an estimated five million dollars and is ranked as the highest grossing G-rated animated film of all time. The 3-D release is not only for money, but the producers hope to also entertain as well as inform people of the ocean life. “I think this movie will be more enhanced in 3-D because it is such a colorful movie, and 3D will make it even more excellent,” junior Jalonn Fryerson said. This father-son underwater adventure is currently showing in theaters in hopes of impressing an audience of all ages.

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NBC’s The Office comes to an end

Andrew Collier

Reporter ince 2005, NBC sitcom The Office has been entertaining audiences all over the country. The Office is a television show that takes place in the Scranton, Pennsylvania branch of the fictional Dunder Mifflin Paper Company. The Office depicts the everyday lives of the employees at work, and it is widely enjoyed and has been described as the highest-rated scripted series on NBC. There have been many changes to the show as the seasons have passed. For instance,The Office lost their star in season 7. Michael Scott, played by Steve Carrel, left the show after recording over one hundred episodes. His departure disappointed many who had come to love Michael. Today, we find ourselves in the ninth and final season. Why is NBC ending the show? The Office recently lost writer and executive producer Paul Liberstein. Liberstein will be concentrating his efforts on the new NBC show, The Farm. The Farm will star former The Office employee Dwight Schrute at his new job on his family farm. The final season began September 20 and is scheduled to last for 24 episodes. Many guest stars will highlight the season and interview for The Office manager position that was left vacant by Michael Scott. Sophomore Harris Murray, a loyal fan of the show who has


been watching since season 4, is upset that the show will be coming to an end. “When Michael left The Office, I wasn’t really sad; I just kind of lost interest in the show. Michael’s personality is what made the show what it was. I didn’t care about watching the show anymore regardless of the replacement. I will definitely be checking out this last season though,” Murray said. “I don’t think they should bring Michael back to the office because that would defeat the purpose of him leaving. However, I do believe that they should keep us up-to-date on his life outside of the office,” Murray said. Murray’s favorite episode of The Office was “Goodbye Michael Scott”. “This was Michael’s last episode on the show. It was my favorite episode because it looks back on everything that has happened in the office so far, and it wraps up Michael’s time on the show,” Murray said.


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Ben Rector shows music goes Something Like This to benrec .com rmusic

M.C. Newbill Reporter number of singer/songwriters tend to lie low their whole music career, often singing in corner coffee shops or casual benefit concerts; Ben Rector seems to have overcome that stereotype. Rector started his career as a University of Arkansas student by entering songwriting contests. People started hearing his name through the grapevine, and before his college days were over, Rector had sung in over two hundred shows. Shortly after he got his degree, Rector moved to Nashville to pursue his music career. He recorded two full-length albums entitled Twenty Tomorrow and Songs That Duke Wrote, but Rector was not fully on the music scene until his third album Into The Morning was released in 2010. After performing with artists such as Colbie Caillat and Train, Rector decided to go back to the studio.


Something Like This was released in September of 2011 and topped number one on the singer songwriter charts on iTunes. Recently, Rector released a music video on YouTube in tribute to the late Whitney Houston’s “Wanna Dance With Somebody.” In the video, Rector is not only singing, but also playing piano, acoustic guitar, bass, drums and other percussion instruments. Rector’s music has grown popular with a number of young women. “My favorite song is ‘She Is’ because it is a great song that I listen to when I’m having a bad day, and it just reminds me that I can be whatever I want to be” sophomore Meg Alford said. “Ben Rector’s music makes me happy because it is so upbeat,” junior Anna Decker said. Rector recently wrapped up his tour with southern rock band NeedtoBreathe. He is currently touring the country singing at rustic theatres and doing solo performances at college campuses.

Rector poses at a photo shoot to promote his album Songs That Duke Wrote, which is his second album.


Ben Rector poses for the cover of his album Into The Morning, which was released in 2010 and is responsible for putting him on the music scene.

Rector plays the electric guitar, one of his many instrumental talents, at Lincoln Hall in Chicago.

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oto ourtesy of State Ga ette After taking the PSAT during their sophomore years, seniors Will Clifft (above), Maria Yousuf and Emily McKee (right) were recognized on September 12 for their outstanding performance on the test. Clifft has received the title of a National Merit Semifinalist in the 2013 National Merit Scholarship Program. In order to become a National Merit Finalist, Clifft will have to receive a certain score on the SAT (which varies from year to year) and must maintain a certain GPA. He is one of 22 students in DHS history to receive this honor. He plans to attend either the University of Memphis or the University of Tennessee at Knoxville and major in International Studies. Clifft is pictured above with Principal Jon Frye, mother Lisa Clifft and father Clint Clifft. Pictured to the right are Maria Yousuf and Emily McKee who have, been recognized as commended students in the 2013 National Merit Scholarship Program; however, they will not continue competing in the competition. Yousuf has not yet picked a college, but plans to study medicine. McKee plans to attend the University of Mississippi and major in PrePharmacy.

oto by Katerine Ke


Issue 2 12-13  
Issue 2 12-13  

Issue 2 12-13