I'm With Her: A Skilled GirlForce

I'm With Her: A Skilled GirlForce

How International Day of the Girl Child Changes My Perspective on Female Empowerment

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Growing up as an Indian-American girl in the United States, I learned to find a perfect balance between expectations of me at home and within my family as well as living up to society's standards in terms of my stature, behavior, and willpower. For decades and centuries, women and young girls were out of the spotlight and waiting for the opportunity to soar in many fields. Historical transformations throughout the globe made an impact on the integration of women into the workplace and politics, among other forays, but there is still room to improve.

There are over 1.1 billion girls on our planet facing a multitude of obstacles. Over one-quarter of young people, most of whom are girls, do not get to go to school and thus cannot get employed anywhere. In some societies, women don't go to school to get married early on, rearing the family and still live their lives without a sense of worth.

In an ever-changing, revolutionary society, I believe that every child and girl should have the freedom to pursue education to become successful professionally and socially. Each girl should be able to walk out on the street with her head held high, unafraid of what is yet to come or worried about what every individual will say about her. In order to revolutionize female empowerment and encourage girls to pursue their goals, the United Nations created the International Day of the Girl Child in 2011, with the mission is to, "galvanize worldwide enthusiasm to better girls' lives... [and] reach their full potential". October 11 is not just any other national [insert food here] day to get free items, but instead, October 11 serves a powerful purpose: to encourage legislators, leaders, and individuals of all ages to make a profound impact on the lives of girls in their communities.

Now is the time, more than ever, to invest in the education and human rights of women (of impoverished and affluent communities) from an early age so that future generations will not have to face scrutiny anymore. It is time for legislators worldwide to make a difference in their communities.

October 11, 2018, marked the seventh year of the International Day of the Girl Child. With the theme "With Her: A Skilled GirlForce", 2018 marks the beginning of a year of investment to improve skills for girls and young women to enter the workforce. By training girls to be employable, they can become the successful entrepreneurs physicians, journalists, astronauts - anything that they dream of.

2018 also commences the launch of Michelle Obama's Global Girls Alliance, which Obama mentioned in an interview on NBC. Obama's program supports grassroots leaders worldwide who understand the challenges girls face on a regular basis and initiates strategies to overcome common challenges. Through Global Girls Alliance, Obama plans to drive global awareness and generate commitments to help girls around the world.

The United Nations and the Obama Foundation are two examples of organizations that want to change a girl's life for the better as soon as possible. But now, I encourage individuals of all ages to bring awareness to their communities and schools. Through fundraising initiatives for organizations like the Global Girls Alliance, having empowerment training and self-defense for women to be successful outside of the home, small programs can build up to make a successful movement for the future. As Former First Lady Michelle Obama said, "an educated girl can lift up her family, her community, her country". It is time to stand with her.

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As A Female Christian Millennial, I Fully Support Alabama's Abortion Ban Because I Know God Would, Too

A life always has worth, no matter the circumstances.

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Alabama's state legislature passed a bill on May 14, 2019 that makes it illegal for abortions to be performed past six weeks of pregnancy. Doctors who are caught violating the law could be sentenced up to 99 years in prison. The bill is the strictest anti-abortion bill to date this year as states try to pass laws to challenge to Roe v. Wade in the Supreme Court.

While the law does allow an exception to women whose lives are at risks, it does not allow for abortions in the event of rape or incest. I support Alabama's new law, and I applaud them for their efforts to protect the rights of unborn children.

As a Christian, I believe that life is a precious gift from God and should be treated with care.

The sixth commandment is, "Thou shalt not kill," and Jesus said the second greatest rule was to love your neighbor as yourself (Matthew 22:39-40). I believe this applies to every person born and unborn. But, even from a secular perspective, there are reasons that support an unborn child's right to life. Let's break down two of the most important components of the bill: abortion itself and the case of rape and incest.

A big argument in the debate is whether a baby is alive before it is born or only after it is born.

I believe can be explained and answered with simple medical science. In the medical profession, a person is pronounced dead when there is no more activity in the brain, known as brain-dead.

At that point, they consider there to be no more life in the body.

The opposite of death is life, so if you have electrical signals still coursing through your brain, then you are alive. A fetus begins to have electrical activity in its brain at six weeks. Most women do not find out they are pregnant until around that time, so by the time they decide to have an abortion, the baby, by all medical accounts, is alive.

Another indicator of whether a person is dead or dying is their pulse.

The pulse is how many times a person's heart beats per minute. If a person does not have a pulse, they will more than likely die if their heart cannot be resuscitated because no oxygen is getting to their brain.

Medical personnel does everything they can to start a person's heart back because they know that the heart is key to life.

A baby's heart begins to beat at five weeks old, again before the mother knows she is pregnant and can choose to have an abortion. Since the United States' justice system upholds that killing a person is wrong, then shouldn't killing a baby, who is alive, be wrong too? I think this is plenty of proof that aborting a baby is killing a living person and is therefore wrong.

Rape and incest are two horrible acts that should be punished. It is never the victim's or conceived a child's fault in the situation.

Given the reasons above for why abortion is wrong, I also believe, while both crimes are horrendous, that abortion is still not the answer to this problem. I do understand, however, that women, because of the traumatic experience or other reasons, may not be able to care for the child.

As such, I am an advocate for adoption.

There are many couples out there who cannot have children on their own who would love to adopt. In order, for this to be a viable option, though, Congress needs to make amendments to adoption laws.

Adoption is outrageously expensive, much more costly than an abortion, and is a long and tedious process.

Though the laws are in place so that not just anybody can adopt a child, the government still could stand to relax laws a little. Another option could be to offer aid to those who wish to adopt specifically to cover adoption expenses or to only those who meet certain requirements. If we want to protect unborn children, we must give women and families more viable options.

I know that my views are not popular, but God did not call us to be popular, He called us to be His disciples.

I will not compromise my convictions because I am in the minority. I support the women who have to face this dilemma, and I pray that they and our government officials make the right decisions and aid these women and families in need of help.

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We're All Thinking It, I'm Saying It: Too Many People Are Running For President

I'm all for options, but man, do we really need 24? I mean, I can barely pick a flavor of ice cream at Baskin Robbins let alone a potential President.

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There are, currently, 23 Democrats running for President. On the Republican side, there's, of course, Trump, but only one other candidate, former Massachusetts governor Bill Weld. Democrats have a whole range of people running, from senators to congressmen, a former vice-president, and even a spiritual advisor. We can now say that there are DOZENS of people running for President in 2020.

Joe Biden has been leading the pack for quite some time now. He was even leading polls before he announced his campaign. Although he is the frontrunner, there really is no big favorite to win the nomination. Biden has been hovering around the mid-30s in most polls, with Bernie Sanders coming in second. Other minor candidates in the hunt are Elizabeth Warren, Pete Buttigieg, and Kamala Harris.

After the surprising defeat of Hillary Clinton in 2016, Democrats have become electrified and have a mission to take back the White House after winning back the House of Representatives in 2018. There are so many people running in 2020, it seems that it will be hard to focus on who is saying what and why someone believes in something, but in the end, there can only be one candidate. This is the most diverse group of candidates ever, several women are running, people of color, the first out gay candidate, and several more.

There could be a problem when it comes to debate time. I mean, the first debate is next month. Having around 20-plus people on stage at the same time, debating each other kinda sounds like a nightmare. How can someone get their point across in the right amount of time when someone else is going to cut them off? Debates are usually around an hour and a half. So, if you divide it up, each candidate would get just under five minutes to speak. That would be in a perfect world of course.

Democrats seriously believe that they can beat Trump in 2020. They say they have learned from the mistakes of 2016, and have the guts and the momentum to storm back into the White House. By July of next year, there will be only one candidate left. Will they be able to reconcile the divide during the primaries? We will see. It will surely be a fun election cycle, so make sure to have your popcorn ready and your ballot at hand to pick your favorite candidate, no matter what party you lean towards.

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