There's Too Much Going On To Ignore The News

There Is Too Much Going On In The World For You To Ignore The News

It's time we took our heads out of the clouds and look around to see what's happening to other people.

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Unless you live in Paris, Sri Lanka, or anywhere near Washington DC, you probably haven't recently experienced a major news headline firsthand. Therefore, it's easy to forget about everything happening in the world, good or bad, that doesn't apply directly to you.

However, that doesn't make it irrelevant to you. It's so easy to get sucked into your own personal issues that you don't pay attention to the world's issues.

About one billion dollars were donated to the Notre Dame cathedral since it caught fire on April 15. Even more surprising is this huge amount was donated only two days after. While this money will help to repair the physical damage done to the cathedral, it can't fix the mental and emotional damage to the people who were devastated by the event.

When a major event occurs, we can often observe the way it has affected people's mental health, which is usually the most overlooked. Some of us can't look past the surprise the event caused that we turn a blind eye to those most impacted by it. Those who lost their loved ones, those who saw a building they loved be burned down to the ground, those whose lives have been changed forever. We are more focused on our own problems that we ignore the aftermath of a major tragedy.

Your own personal issues are not any less relevant, but there are some who try to go about their normal everyday lives with previous terror and trauma endlessly playing through their mind. The same trauma that goes overlooked after a few days of news coverage.

There may not be many ways to help these tragedies, but staying woke will help in more ways than one. Keeping your head out of the clouds and paying attention to the consequences of actions heals more than you think. Expressing sympathy to those who feel like they have lost everything is crucial. Donating money will help, but only short-term.

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Boys No More: The Story Of Benjamin Eastman's Murder

Benjamin Eastman was only 16 years young when his best friend Benito Marquez (16) and Marquez’s older brother Jonathan Adamson (21) gruesomely took his life.

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Benjamin Eastman, a 16-year-old boy from Randle, Washington, was found dead late June afternoon he had been reported missing by family on June 24th. His remains were discovered by the Lewis County's Sherriff's Office just four days later in a marked, shallow grave.

Benjamin was allegedly reported missing after his family could not reach him when he left his home Sunday morning after being invited by his best friend, Benito Marquez, to go camping. Benito reported to police that Eastman had failed to show up to his home that Sunday morning. Four days after and still there was silence from Benjamin, Benito Marquez posted on Facebook pleading for anyone who knew the whereabouts of the boy to contact police or Benjamin's father.

On the same day, the boy's remains were discovered on Marquezes family property in a shallow and obvious grave. When asked about the grave, Benito claimed the grave belonged to the family's dog that had recently passed away, given the situation police investigated.

Marquez is not the only suspect in the case.

Benito's 21-year-old brother, Jonathan Adamson, was also a suspect in the gruesome murder. Their mother, Kindra Rose Adamson, and Jonathan's girlfriend, Emma Brown, were just recently arrested when police found that both knew about Benjamin's murder after it occurred and did not report it to authorities. Kindra also helped the boys flee East after the incident. Both are being charged with 1st-degree criminal rendering.

Police have reported Adamson as giving information from the night of the 24th. Adamson claimed the two had knocked Benjamin to the ground, kicked him over 100 times, sexually assaulted him with a stick, and for good measure, hit Benjamin over the head with a rock multiple times to assure he was dead, all within a span of 20-45 minutes. The autopsy report corroborated Adamson's story and stated the cause of death was, in fact, a blunt force trauma to the head.

After Eastman was presumed dead by the brothers, they stripped their clothes and his to burn them, along with the shovel used for the initial burial. After an unspecified amount of time, Marquez and Adamson became paranoid of the possible discovery of the body so they moved the remains to a more shallow place on their grandparent's property and marked it with a cross made of sticks. They did not burn that shovel, nor did they dispose of the matching twine and plastic found in the barn that was used on the body.

As of July 2nd, the brothers were arrested by a state trooper on their way to Ellensburg. Marquez and Adamson are facing charges including 1st-degree murder, rape of the 1st degree, tampering with evidence, and unlawful disposal of remains. Their bail has been set to $10 million bail and although Marquez is only 16, he will be facing an adult trial. The only motive discussed at this time was the possibility of a girl being the cause of the dispute. Adamson has been arraigned as of July 12th and has pleaded not guilty to all charges placed against him.

Now that I have presented all of this information to you, let's look at the unsolved parts.

Evidence:

This evidence seemed a little to easy to find. From the outside looking in, it appears they wanted the body to be found when it was. Many people in law enforcement understand the saying "only the stupid ones get caught." Is that the case here? The positioning of the evidence also seems too cookie-cutter. After burning the first shovel, they left the head in the fire pit. They marked the grave with an obvious cross with upturned soil.

Benjamin was reported by many as happy, caring, and loving. So why is the motive for his murder not being discussed further than "possibly over a girl?" Benjamin's father seems to be handling this extremely well and claiming he will continue to approach this case with love instead of hate because that is what his son would want. He heard of the rape of his son in court, and somehow only stared at the brothers. I'm not saying he's responsible in any way, but I think he may know more than he shows, maybe even about a motive with the closeness of the two.

Finally, why did Marquez lie about the grave and what happened, but not Adamson? How could Adamson so easily tell the story? Maybe it's possible that the only involvement Benito had was luring Benjamin to the area.

The case is still fairly fresh, however, these should be some of the first things investigated before the arraignment which has already happened for one of the brothers. l believe there's a lot more to the story that is not being noticed/talked about.

Cover Image Credit:

Igor Trepeshchenok / Magdeleine

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A Response To Common Core: If Only School Academics Could Change

The common core isn't what we need. We need to change every school for the better!

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Ever since high schools have opened up, there are minor changes that need to be implemented in order to better the schools for students' futures. Students need the ability to learn about the various majors that colleges offer them before going into college and also need a de-stressor element during the school day. With the implementation of required career pathways and instructional focus, high school students will be able to enter college with a set mindset of what they want to go through the exposure and experience of the field from career pathways, along with build time management skills for their work.

High school students are not exposed to all the majors that they have interest in and are not given the opportunity to truly learn the fundamentals of a major with the # of classes and AP courses they desire to take in high school. With the implementation of a necessary two major career pathways throughout high school, students will be able to learn about the variety of majors and figure out what they truly have interest in. Schools can have basic major career pathways that give background knowledge about different fields, which will allow the students to see what they enjoy. For example, some of these classes could include marketing, medical, computer science, culinary pathways and more.

In these classes, first-year pathway teachers would teach the students about the basics of the career, along with the specific fields that the students can choose in this pathway. In the second and third years, teachers will be able to teach students about the hands-on experience that students need to apply. With this, if a student doesn't enjoy a field, the next year they can change and find one that they can pursue in the future; this helps guide students in college.

Two career pathway classes will be necessary for two years in order to graduate. This allows students who enjoy their fields to pursue the career for four years and have a side career that they wouldn't mind having as well. In addition, a period of time set aside called Instructional Focus (IF) would bolster the quality of a student's high school experience. Being a specific period in one's daily schedule, this forty-five minute period would occur every Wednesday. It serves the purpose of a study hall and "flex" period. A flex period would give the students the flexibility to move to different classrooms and teachers, with a hallway pass with the teacher's permission. This time is specifically allocated for students to make up missed work/tests, finish up homework and consult teachers and peers with academic regard.

Essentially, this extends the learning experience from simply doing homework at home alone to interacting in an engaging manner with the task they are given and truly absorbing all information. Sometimes, high school classes can pile up and become somewhat strenuous and difficult; this instructional focus period acts as a means for alleviating some stress and allowing education to focus back upon interactive learning.

While the need for career pathway classes sounds theoretically tangible, some would argue that most students already know what they're going to major in in college, which would be a waste for these students. Although some students believe they know exactly what major they are going to pursue in the future, only 25% truly stick with it. It is stated on Central College (Central College is a website that allows students to research their college, admissions and excess information about the college major details), "75% of American college students start college undecided or change their major."

This depicts the need for experience prior to going to college. Though the student knows what field to major in from now, they will have experience with a second major that they'll know they can join if they decide to switch in high school. By having two major career pathways each year, students won't be wasting money on classes to figure out what major they like, but will instead be able to join the major that they know they already have experience in. This will allow students to save time by choosing their field in high school along with achieving more earlier in the future.

One may question the academic and professional nature that Instructional Focus theoretically promises; this could be a time students utilize inappropriately for non-academic reasons is an argument that may come up. However, this is in no way a "free" period for students to do as they please. Instead, students are still in a traditional classroom monitored by their 4th-period teachers. The presence of teachers and faculty as supervisors addresses completely any concern for lack of supervision. Also, the flexibility of IF is enforced with careful attention to whether a student actually needs to be in another teacher's room too, perhaps, make up a missed test.

The passes that allow students to transition are a blue color that cannot easily be replicated, require a teacher signature, and require information about what the student is doing and where he or she will be. Supplementary to this is a sign out sheet used whenever a student transitions. Overall, an instructional focus period should be seen as necessary and vital to a student's quality of life in school and not a means of deviating a student's attention away from academia; it actually focuses attention more towards it. To provide more consistency and make such theoretical ideas seem more tangible, a schedule model has been created that high school can adopt and follow.

Following the traditional 7-period schedule, the classes will be divided as such: five core classes that include the necessary graduation requirements, two career pathway classes, and one instructional focus period. Students will still attend 7 classes but will be given the opportunity to choose career classes that truly depict the field that they have chosen. Instructional Focus will allow them to catch up on assignments along with giving a de-stressor to those who just need a break from studying once in a while. With this schedule, students will be given extra time while also allowing teachers to catch up on the grading that students complain about falling behind. This model reaps the benefits of consistency and tangibility, as a school schedule should be. This schedule is not a big deviation from the standard schedule we use now, but instead supplementary to it and adds the benefits of career pathways and instructional focus.

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