13 Reasons Why The 'Clay Jensens' Of The World Are Dangerous

13 Reasons Why The 'Clay Jensens' Of The World Are Dangerous

Nice guys finish last? There's a reason for that.
Warning: This article contains spoilers and triggers such as suicide, rape, sexual assault, self-harm and mental illness. Read at your own risk.

The latest season of the Netflix series, "13 Reasons Why" has sparked its usual conversation about mental health and how it is represented in the media. The first season received an abundance of backlash as viewers were concerned with the graphic scenes portrayed. After the release of this second season, many are still troubled — and rightfully so — by the show's interpretation of mental health awareness. In watching the show myself, I picked up on a particular issue that carried on, perhaps subtle to some and more obvious to others, throughout the entire season.

The show's main character, Clay Jensen, exhibited some dangerous behavior as a result of his trauma coupled with the toxic masculinity he held.

1. He never fully deals with his trauma.

This is nothing to shame him for necessarily, but his inability to confront his trauma head-on creates many conflicts between him and his friends, family, and even strangers. The stress put on him by the events of the past six months create an unhealthy headspace for him.

2. He lashes out at others, often unfairly.

Due to this bottled up anger, Clay is frequently seen yelling at almost every character he interacts with in the second season. His anger is warranted some of the time but other times his friends and family bear the brunt of his indignation.

3. He harshly judges the rest of the characters.

It is made known throughout this season that nearly every person played a role in Hannah's unraveling and unhappiness. Clay, however, spends much of the season forgetting that he, too, played a role and ends up verbally attacking people after their testimonies. Perhaps his guilt is being projected onto the rest?

4. His obsession with Hannah is unhealthy.

We're all aware that Clay was in love with Hannah and nobody should expect him to simply get over it in a matter of months but he spends almost every waking moment thinking, speaking about, or doing something for Hannah. He treats it as if Hannah was only his and therefore he is the only one who can talk or think about her.

5. He tries to guilt-trip his girlfriend into staying.

When his girlfriend, Skye, invites him to visit her at the mental health facility she was sent to and lets him know about her bipolar disorder diagnosis and how she plans to move away in order to cope effectively, he turns on her. In true Clay fashion, he makes the situation about him, saying she is going to forget about him, questioning her decision to take medication and overall making her feel guilty for making an informed and mature decision.

6. He makes everyone else's trauma his own - and he wants to right all of it.

Clay often attempts to make everyone else's trauma his, too, in order for him to be able to speak on it without blame (or so he thinks). In doing this, he also makes it his mission to fast-track everyone's recovery process.

7. Slut-shaming Hannah was a frequent occurrence.

As the trial went on and intimate details of Hannah's romantic and sexual life were revealed, Clay became more and angrier. He confronted Hannah's past romantic or sexual partners and even lashed out at the vision or ghost of Hannah that was following him around for most of the season. He shamed her for being with more people than just him — as if that's any of his business. (Clay and Hannah were never even dating.)

8. His feeling of entitlement clouded his judgment.

Due to the fact that Clay felt so entitled to Hannah and being the only person she had gotten intimate with, he let this mindset drive most of his actions, instead of acting based on reality.

9. He was only interested in helping Justin for his own reasons.

Clay helped Justin get clean but not without constantly ridiculing, manipulating, and berating him just so he could get Justin to testify like he wanted. His intentions were not to get Justin clean for his health, but so that Clay's end goal would be fulfilled.

10. Clay was inconsiderate of Jessica's attempt at recovery.

Clay wanted Justin to testify so that he could out Bryce as Jessica's rapist, without letting Jessica know of the plan. Once it was revealed to her, she let him know she was not comfortable with someone else deciding how or when her story is told yet he continued to push her and disrespect her wishes.

11. He did not understand how to respect boundaries.

This was a common theme throughout the season for Clay. When Skye ended their relationship and asked him not to contact her, he decided to call her cell and home multiple times a day for weeks, leave her messages, and show up at her house. He continually disrespected Jessica's desire to keep her trauma to herself.

12. Victim blaming at The Clubhouse.

When Clay, Justin, and Sheri were looking through the disturbing photos taken from "The Clubhouse" Clay wondered out loud why the girls in the photos had gotten themselves into a "bad situation." It was unwarranted and harmful and Sheri shut him down, letting him know his attempt at victim blaming wasn't okay or even helpful.

13. His hunt for justice was led with the right intentions but he ran people over to do it.

Clay Jensen ultimately wanted justice for the girl that he loved but it was unfortunate that he hurt as many people as possible to do it. Many aspects of his character are aspects of immature men that exhibit this behavior every day and it's important to raise awareness for that as well.

Cover Image Credit: Netflix

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9 Reasons Crocs Are The Only Shoes You Need

Crocs have holes so your swag can breathe.

Do you have fond childhood objects that make you nostalgic just thinking about your favorite Barbie or sequenced purse? Well for me, its my navy Crocs. Those shoes put me through elementary school. I eventually wore them out so much that I had to say goodbye. I tried Airwalks and sandals, but nothing compared. Then on my senior trip in New York City, a four story Crocs store gleamed at me from across the street and I bought another pair of Navy Blue Crocs. The rest is history. I wear them every morning to the lake for practice and then throughout the day to help air out my soaking feet. I love my Crocs so much, that I was in shock when it became apparent to me that people don't feel the same. Here are nine reasons why you should just throw out all of your other shoes and settle on Crocs.

1. They are waterproof.

These bad boys can take on the wettest of water. Nobody is sure what they are made of, though. The debate is still out there on foam vs. rubber. You can wear these bad boys any place water may or may not be: to the lake for practice or to the club where all the thirsty boys are. But honestly who cares because they're buoyant and water proof. Raise the roof.

2. Your most reliable support system

There is a reason nurses and swimming instructors alike swear by Crocs. Comfort. Croc's clogs will make you feel like your are walking on a cloud of Laffy Taffy. They are wide enough that your toes are not squished, and the rubbery material forms perfectly around your foot. Added bonus: The holes let in a nice breeze while riding around on your Razor Scooter.

3. Insane durability

Have you ever been so angry you could throw a Croc 'cause same? Have you ever had a Croc bitten while wrestling a great white shark? Me too. Have you ever had your entire foot rolled like a fruit roll up but had your Crocs still intact? Also me. All I know is that Seal Team 6 may or may not have worn these shoes to find and kill Osama Bin Laden. Just sayin'.

4. Bling, bling, bling

Jibbitz, am I right?! These are basically they're own money in the industry of comfortable footwear. From Spongebob to Christmas to your favorite fossil, Jibbitz has it all. There's nothing more swag-tastic than pimped out crocs. Lady. Killer.

5. So many options

From the classic clog to fashionable sneakers, Crocs offer so many options that are just too good to pass up on. They have fur lined boots, wedges, sandals, loafers, Maryjane's, glow in the dark, Minion themed, and best of all, CAMO! Where did your feet go?!

6. Affordable

Crocs: $30

Feeling like a boss: Priceless

7. Two words: Adventure Straps

Because you know that when you move the strap from casual mode chillin' in the front to behind the heal, it's like using a shell on Mario Cart.

8. Crocs cares

Okay, but for real, Crocs is a great company because they have donated over 3 million pairs of crocs to people in need around the world. Move over Toms, the Croc is in the house.

9. Stylish AF

The boys will be coming for you like Steve Irwin.

Who cares what the haters say, right? Wear with pride, and go forth in style.

Cover Image Credit: Chicago Tribune

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From One Nerd To Another

My contemplation of the complexities between different forms of art.


Aside from reading Guy Harrison's guide to eliminating scientific ignorance called, "At Least Know This: Essential Science to Enhance Your Life" and, "The Breakthrough: Immunotherapy and the Race to Cure Cancer" by Charles Graeber, an informative and emotional historical account explaining the potential use of our own immune systems to cure cancer, I read articles and worked on my own writing in order to keep learning while enjoying my winter break back in December. I also took a trip to the Guggenheim Museum.

I wish I was artistic. Generally, I walk through museums in awe of what artists can do. The colors and dainty details simultaneously inspire me and remind me of what little talent I posses holding a paintbrush. Walking through the Guggenheim was no exception. Most of the pieces are done by Hilma af Klint, a 20th-century Swedish artist expressing her beliefs and curiosity about the universe through her abstract painting. I was mostly at the exhibit to appease my mom (a K - 8th-grade art teacher), but as we continued to look at each piece and read their descriptions, I slowly began to appreciate them and their underlying meanings.

I like writing that integrates symbols, double meanings, and metaphors into its message because I think that the best works of art are the ones that have to be sought after. If the writer simply tells you exactly what they were thinking and how their words should be interpreted, there's no room for imagination. An unpopular opinion in high school was that reading "The Scarlet Letter" by Nathaniel Hawthorne was fun. Well, I thought it was. At the beginning of the book, there's a scene where Hawthorne describes a wild rosebush that sits just outside of the community prison. As you read, you are free to decide whether it's an image of morality, the last taste of freedom and natural beauty for criminals walking toward their doom, or a symbol of the relationship between the Puritans with their prison-like expectations and Hester, the main character, who blossoms into herself throughout the novel. Whichever one you think it is doesn't matter, the point is that the rosebush can symbolize whatever you want it to. It's the same with paintings - they can be interpreted however you want them to be.

As we walked through the building, its spiral design leading us further and further upwards, we were able to catch glimpses of af Klint's life through the strokes of her brush. My favorite of her collections was one titled, "Evolution." As a science nerd myself, the idea that the story of our existence was being incorporated into art intrigued me. One piece represented the eras of geological time through her use of spirals and snails colored abstractly. She clued you into the story she was telling by using different colors and tones to represent different periods. It felt like reading "The Scarlet Letter" and my biology textbook at the same time. Maybe that sounds like the worst thing ever, but to me it was heaven. Art isn't just art and science isn't just science. Aspects of different studies coexist and join together to form something amazing that will speak to even the most untalented patron walking through the museum halls.

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