Eighteen, Feminist, Pro-Life

Eighteen, Feminist, Pro-Life

How I get away from murder.
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Before the storm: August 2017

This past June, I was liberated from the constraints of truancy laws and graciously gifted with the opportunity to begin paying life-altering amounts of money for my education. Graduating high school and starting college is a beyond exhilarating time that presents opportunities to meet new people, explore a variety of interests, and expand my intellectual understanding of the surrounding world. With now less than two weeks until I move into my apartment on campus, I could not be more exhilarated to jump into this new environment. As I continue to friendzone procrastination and flirt with the immense duty of packing, I immerse myself in both daydreams of wonder and frets of panic. As much as I would like to reveal that optimism outshines my fears, I have sworn myself to truth in my writing career. Thus, I often find myself obsessed with the thought of rejection; that is, the thought of rejection based on my beliefs.

I am a life activist. To me, this means that all life is sacred in all forms and need be available to all and protected by those with the power to do so, such as governments. My goal? To overturn the Supreme Court decision of Roe v. Wade to criminalize abortion while convincing the masses that murder is never the option.

I do what my means allow, though it may not be earth-rattling support the movement needs. I attempt to enlighten my Facebook friends by sharing articles from pages such as the March for Life and Live Action. I engage in debates with colleagues and provide alternative solutions to coping with an unwanted pregnancy. This past January, I participated in the annual March for Life, and cannot wait to attend next year.

This all might sound like something your great-aunt would do to "support the cause." I understand it's not much and, frankly, acutely annoying to my peers. Or so I have been bluntly told. It is not what many young adults are fighting for. In fact, it's what many are fighting against, but I refuse to lose sight of my goal.

What alarms me about starting college is being surrounded by a demographic that is largely known for promoting a "woman's right to choose." In the past, I have lost lengthy friendships and been called fairly vulgar things for merely discouraging someone from killing their child.

I would like to denounce intimidation and fear, but I am truly worried about what I will face for the next four years because of my beliefs and activisim. The truth is is that while the masses demand "tolerance," they do not mean acceptance for what they themselves do not support. Biggotry and hipocrisy are wildfire both on- and off-line because there is no room for opinions that are not trending. I, myself, have been accused of being "anti-feminist" and "narrow-minded" because my view on abortion was different from theirs. Toleration, right?

I am an eighteen year old woman ready to make a name for herself, break boundaries, and defend the right for all people, regardless of gender, race, sexual orientation, and yes, even life stage. People are people. As a feminist, I seek opportunities to provide women and men equal opportunities to succedd. While my position as a life activist may not be so Tumblr or Tweet-worthy, I nevertheless look for chances to end abortion internationally.

So no, I am not a baby-boomer. I am not a submissive housewife. I am not even a Bible-junky here to spread God's word. I am merely a youthful feminist that knows that life is life, no matter how small.

If you think you are alone and need to shut down your voice because it does not agree with the majority in you demographic, know that your voice matters just as much as anyone else's, even if it needs to be a little louder. And if you think that the pro-life movement will cease because it's not trending, know that there will always be at least one of this generation that will never stop fighting until she reaches her goal.

Cover Image Credit: Richard Curtis's Adobe Blog

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I Am A College Student, And I Think Free Tuition Is Unfair To Everyone Who's Already Paid For It

Stop expecting others to pay for you.

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I attend Fordham University, a private university in the Bronx.

I commute to school because I can't afford to take out more loans than I already do.

Granted, I've received scholarships because of my grades, but they don't cover my whole tuition. I am nineteen years old and I have already amassed the debt of a 40-year-old. I work part-time and the money I make covers the bills I have to pay. I come from a middle-class family, but my dad can't afford to pay off my college loans.

I'm not complaining because I want my dad to pay my loans off for me; rather I am complaining because while my dad can't pay my loans off (which, believe me, he wants too), he's about to start paying off someone else's.

During the election, Bernie frequently advocated for free college.

Now, if he knew enough about economics he would know it simply isn't feasible. Luckily for him, he is seeing his plan enacted by Cuomo in NY. Cuomo has just announced that in NY, state public college will be free.

Before we go any further, it's important to understand what 'free' means.

Nothing is free; every single government program is paid for by the taxpayers. If you don't make enough to have to pay taxes, then something like this doesn't bother you. If you live off welfare and don't pay taxes, then something like this doesn't bother you. When someone offers someone something free, it's easy to take it, like it, and advocate for it, simply because you are not the one paying for it.

Cuomo's free college plan will cost $163,000,000 in the first year (Did that take your breath away too?). Now, in order to pay for this, NY state will increase their spending on higher education to cover these costs. Putting two and two together, if the state decides to raise their budget, they need money. If they need money they look to the taxpayers. The taxpayers are now forced to foot the bill for this program.

I think education is extremely important and useful.

However, my feelings on the importance of education does not mean that I think it should be free. Is college expensive? Yes -- but more so for private universities. Public universities like SUNY Cortland cost around $6,470 per year for in-state residents. That is still significantly less than one of my loans for one semester.

I've been told that maybe I shouldn't have picked a private university, but like I said, I believe education is important. I want to take advantage of the education this country offers, and so I am going to choose the best university I could, which is how I ended up at Fordham. I am not knocking public universities, they are fine institutions, they are just not for me.

My problems with this new legislation lie in the following: Nowhere are there any provisions that force the student receiving aid to have a part-time job.

I work part-time, my sister works part-time, and plenty of my friends work part-time. Working and going to school is stressful, but I do it because I need money. I need money to pay my loans off and buy my textbooks, among other things. The reason I need money is because my parents can't afford to pay off my loans and textbooks as well as both of my sisters'. There is absolutely no reason why every student who will be receiving aid is not forced to have a part-time job, whether it be working in the school library or waitressing.

We are setting up these young adults up for failure, allowing them to think someone else will always be there to foot their bills. It's ridiculous. What bothers me the most, though, is that my dad has to pay for this. Not only my dad, but plenty of senior citizens who don't even have kids, among everyone else.

The cost of living is only going up, yet paychecks rarely do the same. Further taxation is not a solution. The point of free college is to help young adults join the workforce and better our economy; however, people my parents' age are also needed to help better our economy. How are they supposed to do so when they can't spend their money because they are too busy paying taxes?

Free college is not free, the same way free healthcare isn't free.

There is only so much more the taxpayers can take. So to all the students about to get free college: get a part-time job, take personal responsibility, and take out a loan — just like the rest of us do. The world isn't going to coddle you much longer, so start acting like an adult.

Cover Image Credit: https://timedotcom.files.wordpress.com/2017/04/free-college-new-york-state.jpg?quality=85

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A Little Skepticism Goes A Long Way

Be informed citizens and verify what you see and hear.

rahma
rahma
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These days more than ever before we are being bombarded constantly by a lot of news and information, a considerable amount of which is inaccurate. Sometimes there's an agenda behind it to mislead people and other times its just rumors or distortion of the facts. So, how do you sift through all this and get accurate information? How can you avoid being misled or brainwashed?

This is an important topic because the decisions each of us make can affect others. And if you are a responsible citizen your decisions can affect large numbers of people, hopefully positively, but negatively as well.

It's been said that common sense is not something that can be taught, but I am going to disagree. I think with the right training, teaching the fundamentals behind common sense can get people to have a better sense of what it is and start practicing it. All you will need is to improve your general knowledge and gain some experience, college is a good place for that, then add a little skepticism and you are on your way to start making sensible decisions.

One of the fundamental things to remember is not to believe a statement at face value, you must first verify. Even if you believe it's from a trusted source, they may have gotten their info from a questionable one. There's a saying that journalists like to use: "if your mother said, 'I love you' you should verify it.'" While this is taking it a bit too far, you get the idea.

If you feel that something is not adding up, or doesn't make sense then you are probably right. This is all the more reason to check something out further. In the past, if someone showed a picture or video of something that was sufficient proof. But nowadays with so many videos and picture editing software, it would have to go through more verification to prove its authenticity. That's not the case with everything but that's something that often needs to be done.

One way of checking if something sounds fishy is to look at all the parties involved and what do they have to gain and lose. This sometimes is easier to use when you're dealing with a politics-related issue, but it can work for other things where more than one person/group is involved. For example, most people and countries as well will not do something that is self-destructive, so if one party is accusing the other of doing something self-destructive or disadvantageous then it's likely that there is something inaccurate about the account. Perhaps the accusing party is setting the other one up or trying to gain some praise they don't deserve.

A lot of times all it takes is a little skepticism and some digging to get to the truth. So please don't be that one which retweets rumors or helps spread misinformation. Verify before you report it.

rahma
rahma

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