3 Places Where We Could See a Little More Love

3 Places Where We Could See a Little More Love

“This is the message you have heard from the beginning: We should love one another.”1 John 3:11 NLT
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The Media

Now this one's a no-brainer. We watch Fox or MSNBC or whatever news you like to watch, read, or listen to, and they all have this recurring theme of negativity and hatred. Whether it's across political party lines, showing how much ISIS hates infidels, or just how much people might hate each other in their own communities, it all takes a toll on how we view the world. Now the world is not by any means a perfect happy place, but we can make it better place by showing the love that we need and hopefully the people in the media will come to realize that one day and start showing more fluffy dogs and people helping out at the local shelter and stuff like that. 

Our Churches (Yes I Said It, Our CHURCHES) 

As the subheading states, yes I said it. Believe it or not there's a good amount of people who have come to use the church as a place to judge people on how righteous they are based on how they look and act in a certain fashion. In the church, which Jesus taught to strictly oppose judging lest you be judged. So quit looking in the offering plate to see how much the other person didn't put in, and look at the person to see how much you need to put into them. Quit looking at a person and judging them based off of what they wear to church and ask what your heart is wearing; is it Love, or judgement? Just show the love like Our Savior, Jesus, intended.

Ourselves

Oddly enough, we don't show ourselves enough love. I know I've lived it where I wake up hating myself everyday just for being awake, I've been there, but I didn't stay there; I knew I shouldn't, and you shouldn't either. Just show yourself some love, treat yourself, read a good book, read The Good Book. We just need to quit putting so much on ourselves to where if we don't accomplish every single thing we set out to do, then we see ourselves as failures. We're going to mess up every now and again, but don't think those mess ups define you. I believe we're defined by the love Jesus showed for us on the cross. We're worth someone's perfect life. We're pricelsss. You're priceless, not worthless. 

Now this isn't the only places where love needs to be shown. This is just places where I've experienced that need it maybe a little bit more. Everybody needs love; it's who we are. Let's not limit our love to specific places but wear love like we wear our clothes, and take it with us wherever we go.

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The University Of South Florida Student Government Election Is On, Here Are The Deets

May the odds be ever in your favor.
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On February 13, all the candidates running for the University of South Florida Student Government elections announced themselves. It comes as no surprise that Moneer Kheireddine and Shaquille Kent, this past year's Student Body President and Vice President, are re-running for office. They do have opponents, though. Gabby Cruz and Scott Tavlin, running for President and Vice President, respectively, are looking to broaden the horizons.

I had the chance to talk to all four of these wonderful people and got a peek into what they are going to do if they win the election. Not only that, but I also got a glimpse of who they are as people, and what means the most to them.

When I asked Gabby and Scott why they decided to run, Gabby said, "We're both really involved on campus and can't help but love the school." Together, they want to give the school everything they can, including the value of time.

Their platform is based on what they believe in. Gabby told me Scott and she sat down and discussed which core values they thought reflected them the most, and they came up with the following: Service, Family, Advocacy, and Tradition.

"Vote for us if our platform is what you believe in," Gabby said.

To find out more about their campaign, visit their website at gabbyandscott2018.com

Moneer and Kent have a different standpoint. Because they have already served, they made the point that there would be no transitionary period to go through because they already know who to go to.

For those of you concerned they haven't done much this current term, Moneer told me, "We haven't announced or released statements about what we've done because they are in progress and not complete." Things take time, and cannot be done in the blink of an eye.

Moneer and Kent have the platform "H.E.A.R. What We Stand For" which stands for Heritage, Entertainment, Access, and Representation. They are big on culture and want no part in extreme politics on campus.

"If I was me, I'd vote for me," Kent said.

To find more about their campaign, visit their website.

Both encourage a safe and healthy environment during this election process. In fact, they're friends and have served in many group organizations together.

"We all have an understanding," Scott said. "We want to leave a positive example on this election."

Cover Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

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After Stoneman Douglas, High Schoolers Are Being The Change They Want To See

We will no longer be silent.
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I want it to be known that the gun control revolution was started by high school students.

Let's throw it back to 1999 and what has been widely regarded as the first major school shooting in America—Columbine. The Columbine shooting was the first of its kind. The school itself didn't know how to react as there really was no such thing as a "code red." Police were the same; they didn't know how to respond to the situation. The police did not have blueprints of the school and had very few ways to communicate with the students and teachers within the school.

The two shooters of Columbine checked every box on the list of things we are told to look out for. They made home movies of them shooting guns, made a movie for a film class at school that alluded to a school shooting. One of the shooters even wrote an essay that raised the eyebrow of his teacher. This teacher called his parents in and talked to them, but no further actions were taken. Both students kept in-depth journals that even had details and drawings of their plans. There were so many red flags that went unchecked.

Cut to today and every student from kindergarten to seniors in high school, and even college can tell you their code red drills. Turning off the lights, locking the doors and hiding in the corner of the classroom. We have been taught the signs of a school shooter and have been told to report anyone suspicious. Most schools have fences that surround them, metal detectors and armed police officers on campus. Every action has been taken by schools and the student and faculty within the schools to avoid events like Columbine, or more recently Stonewall Douglas, from ever happening again. Now it's time for the government to do the same.

For the past week, high school students have been screaming at the government on both the local and federal levels to make changes to our lax gun control laws. There have been walkouts scheduled for the next months both to honor the victims of shootings and to raise awareness for the dire need to make changes to our current legislation.

Today (February 21), was one of the first major high school walkouts across the country, and I'm proud to say that my school participated.

At 12:06, when the bell rang, a large majority of the over 1,500 students at my high school walked out of class and made their way to the football field. We walked the track, with many of the students holding signs, and chanted for change, for no more lives lost.

At the end of the 17-minute walk, we stood in the middle of the field and chanted "Douglas Strong" before taking a moment of silence for the victims.

The entire walkout and protest had been put together by teenagers through social media. Teenagers have stopped sitting back and being silent and have started to take action. We are no longer being spoon-fed what is being told to us by the government and authority. We are too young to vote, but we will not let our voice go unheard. We are being the change we want to see.

It is time for people to sit down and listen to what we have to say. Or schools, our one safe zone, is under attack and it seems like no one wants to listen. We are screaming for help and refuse to be silenced.

Cover Image Credit: Rylee Nelson

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