We're All Scared And Your Stats Aren't Helping

We're All Scared And Your Stats Aren't Helping

What exactly are you trying to accomplish by having a fact war anyway?

After the recorded deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, tensions between law enforcement and their communities have never been higher, and the response from anyone and everyone with a voice, in particular the supporters and opponents of the Black Lives Matter movement, reflect the same trend.

Supporters of the Black Lives Matter movement and members of the black community are justifiably outraged at the killing of their people by police officers for no reason and when other non-lethal means could have been implemented, and even more so when their movement is met with the #AllLivesMatter response that illustrates the ignorance of the unspoken but implied "too" in black lives matter. They are frustrated that racial disparities in the United States are not being discussed with as much passion, especially by the first black president, and with how their daily encounters with racism are being brushed under the rug.

Opponents of the BLM movement and/or those who don't understand what it means to face racial discrimination every day are recognizing the problem of police unfairly targeting minorities as one that is not as big of a problem of the black-on-black crime and gang violence in the black community, backing their claims with countless statistics on how black people kill members of their own race more than any police officer has or will in X amount of years, and how the problem within themselves, not a few "bad apples," should be solved first and foremost.

Both sides have valid points, but the crucial differences only make everyone's problems worse. Opponents use statistics to show that racism isn't as bad as the BLM movement claims or directing the blame onto the black community and tend to only accept them as the means of truth. Statistics have historically been a way for the elite to discuss lower classes, those deemed unable to report their own experiences, but not only can statistics be easily manipulated and misleading, the demand for them in civil causes like these is an overt distrust in someone's point of view and withholds from them the benefit of the doubt. Even if black-on-black crime is numerically worse than police killings, they fail to realize that most crime is interracial and that the select cases show a much larger problem in the country, the subconscious harboring of racism that results in discriminatory practices. Not all supporters, however, are productively seeking civil justice; they are looting, rioting, and killing police amongst their own for goodness sake, only added fuel to opponents point that they are treated the way they should be. They also need to realize that there are evil members in every community, including the black community and instead of defending for the entire race as a whole, which only perpetuates the divide, stick up against the ones that give the rest of the community a bad name, and not be so quick to stand up for someone just because of the color of their skin.

The political and racial divide in the country is growing every day, and both sides are to blame as they cannot stop blaming each other. Neither side knows what to do or how to treat each other, so they resort to what they know and act according to what they don't know. Racism is hate that is powered by fear which is powered by ignorance, and nothing will get better without everyone taking responsibility and strong leadership.

Cover Image Credit: Donald Trump

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To The Girl Struggling With Her Body Image

It's not about the size of your jeans, but the size of your heart, soul, and spirit.


To the girl struggling with her body image,

You are more than the number on the scale. You are more than the number on your jeans and dresses. You are way more than the number of pounds you've gained or lost in whatever amount of time.

Weight is defined as the quantity of matter contained by a body or object. Weight does not define your self-worth, ambition or potential.

So many girls strive for validation through the various numbers associated with body image and it's really so sad seeing such beautiful, incredible women become discouraged over a few numbers that don't measure anything of true significance.

Yes, it is important to live a healthy lifestyle. Yes, it is important to take care of yourself. However, taking care of yourself includes your mental health as well. Neglecting either your mental or physical health will inflict problems on the other. It's very easy to get caught up in the idea that you're too heavy or too thin, which results in you possibly mistreating your body in some way.

Your body is your special, beautiful temple. It harbors all of your thoughts, feelings, characteristics, and ideas. Without it, you wouldn't be you. If you so wish to change it in a healthy way, then, by all means, go ahead. With that being said, don't make changes to impress or please someone else. You are the only person who is in charge of your body. No one else has the right to tell you whether or not your body is good enough. If you don't satisfy their standards, then you don't need that sort of negative influence in your life. That sort of manipulation and control is extremely unhealthy in its own regard.

Do not hold back on things you love or want to do because of how you interpret your body. You are enough. You are more than enough. You are more than your exterior. You are your inner being, your spirit. A smile and confidence are the most beautiful things you can wear.

It's not about the size of your jeans. It's about the size of your mind and heart. Embrace your body, observe and adore every curve, bone and stretch mark. Wear what makes you feel happy and comfortable in your own skin. Do your hair and makeup (or don't do either) to your heart's desire. Wear the crop top you've been eyeing up in that store window. Want a bikini body? Put a bikini on your body, simple.

So, as hard as it may seem sometimes, understand that the number on the scale doesn't measure the amount or significance of your contributions to this world. Just because that dress doesn't fit you like you had hoped doesn't mean that you're any less of a person.

Love your body, and your body will love you right back.

Cover Image Credit: Lauren Margliotti

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Poetry On Odyssey: Light A Candle

It's what is in bold that matters. In love, in life, in everything.


Light a candle when you make love; one that smells like lavender or sugar cookie, something relaxing or something sweet.

Buy her flowers and chocolates from Dove; pink roses and dark chocolate will do.

Plan a date; Chinese takeout and star gazing on the hood of your car.

Plan a trip; to anywhere.

Pick the movie; comedy, action, romance or whatever you please.

Bite her lip; softly.

Hold her hand; fingers intertwined.

Let her cry; on your shoulder for as long as she needs.

Be the overly nice, loving, sweet guy; never stop being that guy.

Tell her your secrets; all of them.

Tell her she is beautiful; as often as you can.

Tell her you love her over and over until she knows that it's true; she undoubtedly loves you that much too.

Make her dinner; Italian is nice.

Make her gifts; something from the heart, with an inside joke and some soul.

Make your life together pure bliss; smiles, laughter and love. So much love.

Remember her favorite color; it's red.

And ask her to meet your mother; that's terrifying.

Give her your undivided attention; text her good morning, good afternoon and goodnight and please don't ignore her when she just wants to fight.

And never forget to mention all the things you love most about her; her curly hair, her crooked smile and her dorky laugh.

The way she sarcastically says "yes sir" when you demand that you kiss her; it's adorable, rather juvenile.

Take her mini golfing, bowling and shopping; she hates all of that but with you it's not so bad.

Laugh and laugh like you forgot how to stop it; she will probably snort she's laughing so hard.

Sing to her; her favorite songs.

Get a dog with her; she's allergic though so be picky.

Buy a house; she wants to do that on her own, but it would be better with you.

Get down on one knee; surrounded by the autumn leaves.

Do everything with her; instead of with me.

Be her best friend; that's all that she wants.

Be all that you can; for her, for you.

Be the very best man.

But don't you ever forget

In the mix of this love

I was the one that told you

To light a candle and buy her chocolates from Dove.

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