I Walked Out For a Different Reason You Probably Wouldn't Expect

I Walked Out For a Different Reason You Probably Wouldn't Expect

I want a movement that genuinely and strategically wants to solve the problem at hand.
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In the past couple of weeks, I have tried to compose my thoughts before writing or even publishing an article about the events in Parkland, gun control, and mass shootings. I did this in order to truly understand the debate that has shaken our government the past month to its core, and demands for reform. I took my time to listen to the arguments from both sides, and from then, I would construct my thoughts and opinions.

Last week, as the Parkland teenagers encouraged the nation-wide "School Walk Out" I sat in my seat during my 10 AM class, wondering if I should partake. For my university specifically, the Walk Out was barely spoken about, so most students either were not aware it was even occurring or they had no idea what it was. After my professor highly encouraged anyone who was thinking of going to feel free to attend, I decided to walk out of my class twenty minutes early, curious and anxious.

I was totally unaware of what I was walking into. On my way to the middle of campus, where my fellow students who also walked out would convene, I began to think about why I was "walking out". First, I was not guilty of missing the last couple minutes of my other class, because when you are a college student, the world is your classroom. As a student of a school that is rarely to never politically active, I thought it would be a great opportunity to learn and observe others taking part in political activism, something I have rarely seen in my entire life. But more importantly, I thought about the victims of Parkland, Florida. I thought about their friends, their families, and their school that will never be the same ever again.

I walked out in their honor. I walked for the futures that they could no longer have, finishing the rest of high school and beginning universities, maybe even my own. I walked out with all my thoughts and prayers, what everyone else would criticize as insignificant, on my shoulders. Because with every step, I could not help but pray that these victims are in a better place.

As I arrived at the middle of campus, I was surrounded by signs that read: "Never Again" or "Are We Next?" I felt my stomach turn as I began to realize the other's reasons for walking out of class. Throughout the course of the couple minutes I observed, I heard multiple speakers mention their opinions about gun laws and restrictions in order to protect our schools. Despite the artistically beautiful poems, speeches, and other heartfelt messages, I failed to recognize their objective of the Walk Out.

I wondered if this was all just another public outlet that was acceptable for people to ridicule politicians and other Americans who disagreed with them politically? And if so, this was a movement that I did not wish to be a part of. And that is not because I disagree with their message, which is to assure that Parkland is the last mass shooting within a school, because any person, regardless of political background, agrees with that statement. I disagree with the notion of disregarding people who do not agree with you simply because of their political opinions.

I want a movement that is willing to listen to opinions from both sides, that is willing to ask questions, challenge others, and offer bipartisan change to ensure safety for all Americans. I want a government that calls in gun experts to clarify the capabilities of certain gun models before creating laws. Because mistakes without proof and evidence will only cause more problems and loopholes for the future, and that can possibly allow another atrocity to happen. And as I previously mentioned that, no one wants that. I want a movement that genuinely and strategically wants to solve the problem at hand.

Until then, this will only continue to be a screaming match between both sides, and nothing will ever contribute to the most effective change that both sides want to accomplish.


Cover Image Credit: Juliana Cosenza

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15 John Mulaney Quotes And Jokes To Get You Through The Day

"I went to the Delta help desk, which is an oxymoron..."
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This is going to sound bad, but it takes a lot for me to laugh out loud. Sure, I will chuckle at jokes and find things funny, but to make me belly laugh is a whole different story. I have never found comedians to be that funny and never thought I would. But then John Mulaney was introduced to me, and let me tell you, he is hilarious. Everything that comes out of his mouth is quotable and I use his jokes to respond to people every day without fail. Here are only some of his hilarious quotes and jokes.

1. “You have the moral backbone of a chocolate éclair.”

His Bill Clinton bit is one of the highlights of his show, “The Comeback Kid,” and I would highly recommend watching it. All in all, John as a kid comes home and he tells his father, “I’m gonna be a Democrat and I’m voting for Bill Clinton.” His dad responds with, “You have the moral backbone of a chocolate éclair.”

2. “Anyone who’s seen my d*** and met my parents needs to die; I can’t have them roaming around.”

After talking about how he got cheated on, Mulaney goes on to explain how it’s creepy to have an ex out there who knows so much information about you after things have ended. I died laughing when he said the above quote.

3. This:

4. His "Back to the Future" bit.

I can’t even choose one quote from this sketch because the entire bit is hilarious. Mulaney goes on to talk about how the plot of "Back to the Future" must have originally been pitched and in reality how weird the plot is when you actually explain it. It’s legendary.

5. On the phone with Blockbuster.

6. “Because Bill Clinton never forgets a b****.”

This is the punchline of the Bill Clinton sketch, essentially, so just watch it — I promise you it is well worth it.

7. Midgets.

8. “We started chanting, McDonald's, McDonald's, McDonald's! And my dad pulled into the drive thru, and we started cheering and then he ordered one black coffee for himself and kept driving.”

As a kid, anytime you saw a McDonald's your parents had to stop. But instead, John Mulaney’s father wasn’t having it and decided to do one of the coolest and funniest things.

9. "In terms of like, instant relief, canceling plans is like heroin."

10. “One black coffee, same motherf***er."

Yes, Bill Clinton sketch again. But, what’s great is how Mulaney ties previous jokes into other sketches. So when Mulaney’s mom got an invitation to a fundraiser where you could meet Bill Clinton, and having told a story about how his mother knew Bill Clinton in college, she said, “We have to go see Bill!” Mulaney’s father then replied with, “Why? It’s not like he’s gonna remember you.” And after a half gasp, half laugh from the audience, Mulaney goes, “One black coffee… same motherf***er.” Hilarious.

11. Opinions in school.

12. “I’m standing in the basement and I’m holding a red cup, you’ve seen movies. And I’m standing there holding a red cup and I’m starting to black out and I guess someone said like something something police. And in a brilliant moment of word association I yelled “F*** da police!” And everyone else joined in. A hundred drunk white children yelling f*** da police.”

Enough said.

13. Presidential Family Feud

14. This:

15. “Because it’s the one thing you can’t replace.”

Now, his last one may not seem funny at all as a quote, but the story Mulaney tells to set up this punchline is the greatest. If you already read the joke above, you know that Mulaney was talking about a party he went to in high school. The ending of the story was that the kid hosting the party said that someone at his party stole old antique photos of his grandmother. Two years later Mulaney’s friend shows him a closet in his house filled wall to wall with old antique photos. So Mulaney goes, “Why?...Why do you do this…?” and his friend responds with, “Because it’s the one thing you can’t replace.” And that, my friends, is quite a great story. Mulaney never fails to make me die on the floor laughing.
Cover Image Credit: laughspin.com

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Irish-American History Is Just As Important As Any Other Culture, You Can't Prove Me Wrong

I cherish being Irish and I will not let anyone let me feel bad for that.

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Depending on when you're reading this, Saint Patrick's day has either just passed or is around the corner. For me, Saint Patrick's day is tomorrow. I've been debating this article for some time now because I didn't know how it would be perceived. At this point, though, I feel it's important for me to get out. No, Irish people were never kept as slaves in America, and I will never be one to try and say they were. However, Irish people were treated tremendously awful in America. A lot of people tend to forget, or just try to erase entirely, the history of the Irish in America. So much so that I felt shameful for wanting to celebrate my heritage. Therefore, I want to bring to light the history that everyone brushes under the rug.

In 1845, a potato famine broke out across Ireland. This was a big deal because the Irish lived off, mainly, potatoes. They were cheap, easy to grow, and had tons of nutrients. So when the famine struck, many people either died of starvation or fled to America in seek of refuge. When the Irish arrived in America they were seen as a threat to the decency of America. People viewed them as drunk beasts, sinful savages, barbaric, violent, belligerent, stupid, and white apes. When the Irish would go to look for jobs, many times they found signs that read "Irish Need Not Apply," even when the job was hiring. Therefore, the Irish did the jobs no one wanted, and even jobs African slaves wouldn't do. The biggest example of this is when Irishmen built canals and drained swamps. They were sent to do these things because of the enormous amount of mosquitoes; in the swamp, they would get bit and ultimately die of malaria.

Also, during this time, Irish people were poor and therefore lived in the same neighborhoods as the free African Americans. A lot of the Irish people were friendly with their neighbors of color and even got into interracial relationships. Because the Irish lived in these neighborhoods they were seen as dirty and even a lot of people at this time put African Americans higher on the totem pole than Irish. One person during the time even said, "At least the black families keep their homes clean."

The main reason American's outlook on Irish people changed was that most Irishmen took up fighting for the Union in the Civil War. I make this argument, not because I think the Irish suffered more than African slaves. I don't say this in means of trying to erase the struggles of the African slaves. I do not think that any of our ancestors should have been treated the way they were. I mean to say that the Irish did in fact suffer. Irish people were treated wrongly on the basis of...nothing. Simply because my ancestors hailed from the shores of Eire, they were treated with malice. And I write this simply because I want people to remember. I want people to understand what happened.

On Saint Patrick's Day this year, next year, and for the many years to come, I want people to embrace the Irish culture. I want the folks of Irish heritage to not be ashamed of where they come from; to not be ashamed to share their culture the way I have for many years. I want everyone to have a beer, wear some green, eat a potato or two, and dance the Irish step; to celebrate the history of Irish people with a bit more understanding than before.

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