By Lauren Broker
Student drivers of Independence have faced new obstacles in parking, new rules and restrictions set in place by the administration. Many students park in the designated staff lot despite having the student lot open to them. This has caused a discourse about the dynamic of student and teacher parking. Many teachers have felt this to be a bother because students may be taking their available parking spots.
Administration has set in place new rules regarding students who park in the staff lot saying “Students are not to park in the smaller staff lot… Cars that do not have a decal properly displayed are subject to towing at the owner’s expense.” Senior Pauline Ong speaks about the difficulties of moving lots due to the new restrictions, saying, “I think it’s very inconvenient to students like me who play large instruments or have their first and last class closer to the staff lot. They should have us park near the back or place a limit instead of telling us to move completely.”
Along with setting new rules about the consequences of parking in the staff lot, administration spoke up on where students should be dropped off and picked up. The bus loading zone, aka the shadows, is the proper place of pickup for parents to drive through. Administration has even began putting cones down in the morning to fix the flow of traffic for teachers trying to park. “I think that the idea of making all students be picked up at the shadows is a good idea in concept but there’s so much traffic now that it doesn’t really make it worth it,” says junior Alyssa V.
In addition to parking in specific lots, and using the right drop off and pick up zone, student drivers are also asked to place parking permits within their vehicles. “Honestly I don’t mind the parking permits. I think they’re easy to get and not a big problem. It’s mostly just the parking that’s an issue,” said senior Nina T.
By Steven Doan
Cypher Cup is one of the largest “Breaking”/Breakdancing events in the Bay Area. It is a dancing event also known as a, “Jam”. This year, it was hosted in the city of San Jose, California on February 23. Due to its large reputation in the “Breaking” community, it provides a motive for people from across the world to attend the event. People who take part in this dance genre (“Breaking”) are called Bboys and Bgirls.
Independence High School’s Hip-Hop club, Cloud 9, is apart of the Breaking community with its veteran members and newcomers. Some of these veterans and newcomers were able to experience Cypher Cup this year and were quite awed by it.
Senior Gary Moi shares, “Cypher Cup is one of the biggest Bboy/Bgirl competitions and people from all over the world participate in the battles. Bboys and Bgirls also come to watch the battles and socialize with the community.”
Cypher Cup is a large event enjoyed by people of all ages and backgrounds as well as people who are curious about the scene and are willing to participate in the jam to either support their friends, families, or just be there to watch. Events like these are not hosted only for the battles, but they serve as a gathering and convention to unite the community, reminding the people in the scene that they are brought together because of the love for this dance and the sharing of this culture.
“It’s honestly a great experience for both newcomers and veterans to the scene,” Gary says.
Sophomore Salina Truong adds, “I was extremely excited to see my friends compete and was super lucky to experience it. I liked the atmosphere because it was so hype and how people easily conversed with each other.”
As Senior Alex Trinh concludes, “It was an exciting experience with many amazing dancers and intense battles.”
By Matthew Valenzuela-Serrano
As the presidential election comes around next year, Bernie Sanders, the Independent/Democratic Senator from Vermont, has announced his grassroots campaign to run for the presidential office. The term ‘grassroots’ means a public funded and envisioned campaign. Bernie Sanders was the underdog in the 2016 election, the year when he slowly built a closely knit following around his ideas such as a federal minimum wage of 15 an hour, free medicare, free public college, and higher taxes on the wealthy.
These ideas have been sitting on the minds of the middle class ever since then, and now he announced that he will run again in 2020, which excites not only myself but many people around the country. So far Senator Sanders is the only candidate from 2016 that has decided to run again in 2020, thus giving him an edge in support over candidates like Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren.
Polls have shown that Sanders had more popularity with Latinos, Blacks, and other minority voters than Hillary Clinton and Trump combined. People want social and economic reforms and Bernie Sanders promises just that. In the news you’ll hear him be called a socialist, which scares many people in older generations, but really it’s the ideas that he stands for. Our social norms and economic value need to adapt to the times we live in.
Of course, being against big pharma, the NRA, and Trump could prove difficult. But the voice of the American people is stronger.
By Simran Singh
Thank u, Next, Ariana Grande’s fifth studio album just dropped last Friday along with music video for ‘Break up with your girlfriend, i’m bored’. Thank u, Next released after 6 months, after ‘Sweetener’ released. Usually artists take a year break after releasing a album, but Ariana decided to not take a break and continue dropping music whenever she wants to. This is the first time a artist has done this.
12 new tracks off Thank u, Next. First Track is ‘Imagine’, that is imagining of what could’ve happened with a lover if things didn’t go so sour with mix of beats. Second Track is ‘Needy’, a r&b laid back track about being needy and feeling sorry that she feels this way. Third Track is upbeat NASA, using cleverly the space station’s name to say that she needs her own space. Fourth Track is ‘Bloodline’ a reggae influenced track with trumpets, about not loving someone enough to be in your bloodline. Fifth Track is ‘Fake Smile’, opening with 70s/50s’ vibes, and transitioning to today, it brings up that she is no longer going to be having a fake smile on and she’s going to heal. Sixth Track is ‘Bad Idea’, of wanting to go back to somebody and knowing it’s wrong. Seventh Track is ‘Make Up’, breaking up with somebody just to get back together with them. Eighth Track is ‘Ghostin’ a eerie moody song sampled from deceased ex boyfriend Mac Miller, which the song talks about him and how she should be ghosting her current lover. Ninth Track is ‘In My Head’, the song is opposite of the previous track of imagining someone of how they would be like and finding out they’re nothing like that. Tenth Track is ‘7 rings’, the r&b infused trap track about how she uses her riches to buy gifts for her family & friends. Eleventh Track is thank u, next, the song that started it all, instead of calling her exes out, she thanked them for the things & lessons she learned and is grateful for the experiences. The last track is ‘Break up with your girlfriend, i’m bored’, this track is a lot less serious than the other ones, fun vibes, about wanting a guy even though he’s taken. Ending the album with a less serious note is a good thing, as ‘Sweetener’ ended with ‘Get Well Soon’, which is about the Manchester attack and how we can help each other heal.
Thank u, Next is also the first album where she has co-written all of the tracks. She added her own raw touch to the tracks with not adding Pharrell who produced her previous album which didn’t do as well as her earlier albums. This way of dropping music along the way might even further her career even more. It is currently #1 on the iTunes charts.
You can listen to ‘Thank u, Next’ on Apple Music, Spotify, Pandora, Google Play Music,etc.
By Enya Bours
Sunset Season begins with the song “Idle Town,” a tribute to his high school memories and hometown. It is a slow song with nostalgic vibes, reflecting the moments he describes. Next in the album is “Generation Why,” a song that brushes over both the stereotypes and truths as well as the overall mindset his generation has about life, given how they consistently joke about death. The line “‘Cause we are the helpless, selfish, one of a kind / Millennium kids that all wanna die” seems to hit millennials in particular. “Crush Culture,” probably one of the more upbeat songs in the album, follows. In it, Gray discusses his confusion of the obsession his peers have over finding love as well as how he feels as a nineteen-year-old who still has not had his first kiss. “Greek God” talks about the less favorable people in one’s life who may severely they may influence you, but also how with time they fade into the background and you move on. The album concludes with “Lookalike,” a song that describes how when you fall in love with someone, you take bits and pieces of them with you. It is a gentle song that wraps up Gray’s EP perfectly.
You can listen to Sunset Season on Spotify, Google Play Music, Deezer, iHeartRadio, and iTunes, and learn more about the song lyrics at Genius.com.
By Guest Journalist Jefferson Liu
Starting with the massacre of students at Columbine High School in 1999, the gun debate has been a contentious issue. Here’s a different perspective on gun rights, from the IHS Association of Conservative Students.
Some claim banning guns will lead to fewer murders. That is false. According to the Crime Prevention Research Center, Ireland banned guns in 1972 and Jamaica banned guns in 1975; both countries spiked in homicide rates, continuing to 2005. In England and Wales, gun bans in 1997 led to homicide spikes as well. However, Attorney General Jeff Sessions has stated that during the same period (1970s-2005), the US decreased its homicide rates while increasing gun ownership. We can infer that guns are deterrents to crime in this context, since knives, according to a 2014 Smithsonian report, are weapons of choice for committing crimes in regions with strict gun control.
Guns can kill many people in a short amount of time, but compared to other attacks, cause fewer casualties. Globally, other weapons can cause more casualties. In China, a country where guns are completely banned, a man killed 8 students and wounded 5 others in six minutes, as reported by The Guardian. The Diplomat and China Daily both reported that in 2014, 29 people were killed and 143 others were injured within 10 minutes during a terrorist attack in Kunming. An Al Jazeera article mentioned of a truck attack in France that killed 86 people and injured 458 in 5 minutes.
Gun control supporters claim stronger regulations and stricter background checks on guns must be done. In a sense, that is right, since recent mass shootings in America were perpetrated by mentally unstable people. In their coverage of the trial of James Holmes, the 2012 theater shooter, the Denver Post reported that he had suffered mental health issues for a long time, and showed signs of violent intent. In the aftermath of the Parkland school shooting, a local news station indicated that shooter Nikolas Cruz had a long history of animal abuse, had a history of "a pattern of disciplinary issues and unnerving behavior." Florida state investigators also found that Cruz was suffering from depression, autism, and ADHD. Virginia Tech shooter Cho Seung Hui also suffered from anxiety, selective mutism, and severe depression. From this, the commonality of many mass shooters is noticeable: each had at least one mental illness. So yes, there does need to be regulations on guns, but not stricter gun laws. The issue is mental health, and to address this, conduct stronger mental screening, a 30-day wait period, and mandatory gun retraining every three years. If blanket regulations were applied to gun transactions, it would simply limit the ability of legal gun owners to prevent crimes.
Others argue our rates of gun violence are high compared to countries such as Finland or Switzerland, and Italy. First and foremost, the United States has around 313 million people as of today, which is far higher than Finland's 4 million, Switzerland's 8 million, and even Italy's 61 million. As indicated by the demographic comparison website NationMaster, when there are more people, the possibility of crime is higher. A possible counterargument that could be brought up in the face of this reasoning would be China, which has a low crime rate overall. But this was only achievable through stringent and omnipresent governmental control of citizens' rights and harsh punishments, something prevented in the US by the 8th Amendment.
Someone else could argue for gun control based on Japan’s gun laws, but these arguments are unsuited for the context of this argument. Why? The United States shares a very long land border with a comparatively unsafe country: Mexico. It is public knowledge that drug cartels have smuggled arms and illegal narcotics into the United States across the land border in various ways. As cited from Politico, it is difficult to patrol constantly the airspace, land, and the underground between the border of the US and Mexico, which is approximately 2,000 miles long and is the most frequently crossed border in the entire world. By contrast, Japan is an island nation entirely surrounded by ocean, and entry can only be achieved through air or sea travel. Business Insider noted that inspecting maritime and flight travelers and cargo is easier than monitoring every border, every crossing, and every person crossing for the sake of gun regulation.
Bans and excessive regulations are not the answers to the problem of mass shootings in the US. Rather, making sure legal guns stay out of the wrong hands will see the answer to the single most important issue of our safety and our children's safety.
By John Pham
Advertisement has been apart of everyday life since 1836. There are multiple kinds of advertisement photo, poster, video, news, etc. However, there are also different strategies of advertisement and methods for them. For example, false advertising that completely lies about their product, there's subliminal which hides and shows you secret messages to lure you, and then there's deceptive advertising which really hooks people in. deceptive advertising is when a company makes their product more appealing using photos and persuasive voices. An example of deceptive advertising is mainly in your fast food restaurants like McDonald's, Wendy's, and Subway. There are various methods for different foods like for burgers from in and out they use angles and carefully place ingredients to make photos like Wendy's they also adjust lighting and do whatever is possible. A junior by the name of Brandon said:
“It makes me feel really lied. They should at least make their food look more real or make it up to that standard. It's like being cat fished. I feel the same about subway. So they should have a disclaimer about how it really looks”
For places like Bonchon, which is not a fast food place but an actual restaurant, their staple seems to be their chicken which is highly advertised. Their chicken seems to be a reflection of their advertisements unlike fast food restaurants but even real restaurants have their flaws. A junior Andrew Lim and Eric Mok said:
“That actually looks pretty close and it looks really good some could say it makes good on it promise”
In all, deceptive advertisement can really make you hungry for their product even making lots of people like in Eric Mok Words said:
“Why are you showing me this? Are you trying to make me hungry? Do you have food on you right now?”
By Matthew Valenzuela-Serrano
Is it too hot or too cold? Or both?
During the year you’ll hear students complain about the temperature. It can be cold and someone will say, “It’s too cold, I miss summer,” but that same student may also say, “It’s too hot, I miss winter.”
Since Independence is in the Bay Area, we never experience snow or hard rain. If anything, we have great weather all year round, yet we’re still unhappy. Why is that so?
Every year the East Coast gets hit with snow storms and hurricanes, the midwest gets some hurricanes and tornadoes, and the west coast is either on fire or always having an earthquake, but we rarely experience bad weather that other regions do here in the bay.
Junior Josh Pastores said, “The weather is all over the place. I think it was too hot for too long and the fires at the end of Autumn kinda ruined a lot of things for everyone in San Jose.”
Many teachers leave their doors open during the day and some even leave the AC on. So it would seem that quite a few teachers are not as bothered by the weather as the students are.
In the end, ask yourself, are you spoiled? There are cities right now getting snow, while we get rain and sunshine.
By Lucile Gonzales
Let's be real, IHS has a littering problem. Students walk around carelessly throwing
their trash on the floor or when failing to make a shot into the garbage, they leave it wherever it lands. The campus is fairly big, thus the issue of littering is very substantial.
When asking janitor Miko Angeles if he was surprised at the amount of trash he sees around the school he responded, “Uh no I mean I've been there so, I mean, I went to highschool too and ya know it's just human nature”. Angeles also said depending on how much trash, its takes about one to one and a half hours to clean up. It’s quite baffling and saddening to think of littering as “human nature” even though its hurting our earth as well as the humans and animals that live on it.
The littering situation occurring throughout the Independence school corridors is also affecting our classrooms, as sometimes students carelessly leave food lying on classroom floor during lunch. “ When students leave food and spilled drinks lying around, it attracts ants and roaches,that could potentially cause a health hazard”, Guadalupe Alvarez, Spanish teacher at Independence says.
Picking up and cleaning up after one’s self is an easy task, there are trash cans all over the school so there really is no excuse to throw garbage on the ground. Students should be more considerate of the people who pick up their trash and the animals who are harmed by it. Not to mention when students throw their cigarette butts on the ground, which is not only harmful to animals, but to your body.
By Matthew Valenzuela-Serrano
The Camp Fire, which is located north, has been ablaze since November 8th. With wind currents blowing all the smoke to the Bay Area, students can only hope for schools to close early to set off Thanksgiving Break.
As the air quality continues to get worse, our wonderful Superintendent has reassured us that the air is safe for students to attend school for 8 hours a day every week, but has cancelled a football game three different times and even went as far as to relocate the game to Monterrey.
There is a common feeling between each student with regard to how the school district is failing to meet our demands. They have yet to hand out N95 masks, forcing students to wear the incorrect masks or none at all.
On the evening of November 17, the school twitter had announced school will continue until the air quality index reaches 270, ending the tweet with #sixerspride. But students did not stand silent and called out the twitter account, one comparing the school forcing students to breath smoke to the treatment in a concentration camp.
Over the break it rained, vanquishing the smoke and clearing the air. So now do Sixers still have the same opinion about school, or did we forget over the break?
Senior Bernadette Vila said she was, “upset about the situation, but felt different after the break,” saying she didn’t want to add two extra days to the end of the year.
Sixers got vocal about their frustrations, but it seemed it wasn’t too bad, as most students still showed up for the week.