Club Spotlights at CHS

BY: AREEBA JALEEL & RIA DEVGON

Anime Club

Looking for friends and like anime? Check out Anime Club in Room 2330 (Mrs. Duncan’s room). The club meets every Friday to nerd out and watch anime. If interested, you can join the remind @chs0otaku.

Science Olympiad

Science Olympiad is a club where all together a group of students compete in 23 events pertaining to various scientific disciplines, including earth science, biology, chemistry, physics, and engineering. The club is very fun and collaborative; if interested, you can contact the club advisor Raqhi Sarsour or join the remind@arogya

Robotics Club

A group of students who are interested in learning about and working with robots. The club participated in robotics competitions, where teams of students must design and build a robot that can compete against opponents in a series of specific challenges. If interested, you can contact the club advisor at jcrooks@wcpss.net, and you canjoin the remind @chsrc1819

Speech and Debate

Speech and Debate is a club where students learn and use the skills needed to write, edit, and present either topics of interest as speeches, or arguments in formal debate. You also can compete in tournaments! If you like to write, argue, and work with friends, this club is a great fit for you! If interested, you can contact Mr. Jessee at pjessee@wcpss.net

Key club

Being in Key Club allows you to perform acts of service in their communities, such as cleaning up parks, collecting and organizing food drives. If interested, you can communicate with the leader through remind @649eb4.

World Lit Book Club

Do you enjoy reading? If so, then you should definitely take an interest in joining this club. A group of excellent readers, usually consisting of a number of people who read and talk about books based on an agreed-upon reading list. If interested, you can contact the club’s advisor, Ms. Stevens, at gstevens@wcpss.net

Red Cross Club

Its mission is to educate and empower students through constructive training and effective leadership and provide opportunities for directing and harnessing their energy into worthwhile humanitarian activities. If interested, contact the club advisor at kfitzpatrick@wcpss.net or join the remind @h33k7ff

IMProve Club

Being in this club allows you to interact with other students while pitching in ideas on how to improve the school’s campus. Our latest project is working on a plan to paint a mural on the 400 building. If this is something you want to take apart of, contact Mrs. Reid at sreid3@wcpss.net or join the club’s remind: @imps19 

Knitting Club

Do you love to knit? Do you want to learn how to knit? If so, this is the club for you! This club meets together to learn the skills of knitting to create fabrics to show off their style. If you are interested, contact Mr. Tarasco at ptarasco@wcpss.net.  

Muslim Student Association (MSA) 

MSA strives to build unity through diversity and education. It aims to provide for people of all backgrounds, levels of knowledge, and to learn fascinating stuff about the Muslim religion. If interested, you can join the remind @828ace8, or contact Mr. Ashburn at sashburn@wcpss.net

What Are The Hong Kong Protests All About?

BY: SARAH GOVERT

Every weekend for the past four months, protesters in Hong Kong have taken to the streets to send a message all the way to Beijing in mainland China. Since the protests began in June, they’ve escalated in violence and frequency. According to BBC News, protesters stormed “Legco”, the Legislative Council in Hong Kong in July, defacing parts of it through graffiti and symbols. On October 15th, in what would have been the first meeting of Legco since the defacement, opposing lawmakers jumped onto tables and began shouting at Chief Executive Carrie Lam, as she was about to begin her speech, leading to the suspension of her annual address. In August, a protestor was injured, leading to other protesters wearing red-colored eye patches in solidarity. Continuing protests at the Hong Kong airport have led to hundreds of flights being cancelled. On October 1st, the 70th anniversary of communist rule in mainland China, the protests hit their most violent day yet, with an 18 year old being shot in the chest and protesters fighting law enforcement with projectiles and poles. (BBC, 2019)

But what began the widespread protests in the first place? The answer is quite simple: the introduction of an extradition bill this past April.

According to BBC, the extradition bill “would have allowed for criminal suspects to be extradited to mainland China under certain circumstances” (2019). Citizens of Hong Kong feared that this would lead to unfair trials and give mainland China greater influence over Hong Kong. The mass protests and demonstrations that resulted led to Lam agreeing to suspend the bill on June 15th, mere weeks after it was introduced. However, the protesters demands haven’t yet been fully met. Some pro-democracy protesters have adopted the motto: “Five demands, not one less!” These five demands are as follows: “protests not being characterized as riots, amnesty for arrested protesters, an independent inquiry into alleged police brutality, implementation of complete universal suffrage, and the withdrawal of the bill.” (BBC, 2019) Only one of these demands has been met, so protests are expected to continue. 

On Wednesday, October 23, Hong Kong’s security minister announced the formal withdrawal of the extradition bill. This movement forward proves that public outcry is continuing to move forward legislators. These widespread protests have also invoked global economic conflicts which has led to many American politicians taking a stance. To learn more about how American companies are involved in the movement in Hong Kong, check out this article.

Further Reading:

Hong Kong protests explained:
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-49317695

Lam abandoning speech after protests:
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-50065292

Formal withdrawal of the bill:
https://news.yahoo.com/hong-kong-completes-process-withdrawing-080100864.html

FEATURED IMAGE: GETTY IMAGES

THE Top 5 Halloween Movies

BY: AMARAH DIN

When you think of Halloween, you imagine crazy decorations, trick-or-treating, haunted houses, and costume parties. When I think of Halloween, I see an excuse to sit at home and watch some horror movies. However, not everyone can sit through two hours of one gory Saw movie(though, I would highly recommend you all watch the Saw series), or the jump-scares of IT, or the suspense of Annabelle. So here is a compilation and rating of my favorite childhood films that exude Halloween vibes. If you’re like me and don’t have any plans for Halloween Eve, then consider watching one of these films.

5. Halloweentown (1998)

Halloweentown Trailer 

Halloweentown would come on Disney Channel every Halloween in the 2000s, and I loved all the magic in it! Not very scary, but it’s definitely a movie that will make you smile and reminisce about the good old days.

4. Twitches (2005)

Twitches Trailer 

My sister and I watched this religiously when we were younger. From the magical powers, to the dark forces, and to the reuniting of a family, this movie will warm your heart and remind you what being a sister is all about.

3. Beetlejuice (1988)

Beetlejuice Trailer 

Forget everything you learned from TikTok about this movie: the only song that’ll be stuck in your head is “Day-O.” The wildness of Beetlejuice, the teenage angst coming from actress Winona Ryder, and the cheesy effects is everything that makes viewers laugh. 

2. Coraline (2009)

Coraline Trailer 

This movie is another one of my favorites, but maybe that’s because I dressed up as Coraline last year. This flick was ahead of its time! The plot leaves you wondering about the hidden world that Coraline inhabits, and you’ll wish that you lived in the Pink Palace apartments.

1. Monster House (2006)

Monster House Trailer 
First place HAD to go to Monster House! This film indulges in the classic “creepy old neighbor” stereotype and reveals secrets about what’s really going on behind closed doors. It’s a perfect balance of scariness and humor and will surely make your All Hallows’ Eve a bit more spooky.

COVER IMAGE: IFC CENTER

In Case You Missed It: Ellen & George W. Bush

BY: ALEXIS COPE

On Sunday, October 6, celebrity talk show host Ellen DeGeneres, accompanied by wife Portia de Rossi, attended a Dallas Cowboys football game with former President George W. Bush and his wife Laura. During the game, DeGeneres and Bush were pictured laughing together during the second quarter, and DeGeneres herself took a video of the four of them together enjoying the game.

Twitter, Instagram, and other platforms exploded with the news, users responding very strongly to these pictures, both with heavy support and heavy disgust. Celebrities like Kristen Bell, Jamie Foxx, Mark Ruffalo, and Jameela Jamil even voiced their own opinions on the subject.

Many users were distraught that she was sitting with Bush, who, during his presidency made a series of highly controversial decisions, including a devastating post 9/11 invasion of the nation of Iraq. Bush explained the reasons for the invasion in October of 2011: “…to disarm Iraq of weapons of mass destruction, to end Saddam Hussein’s support for terrorism, and to free the Iraqi people.” It is estimated that 3,200-4,300 civilians were killed during the conflict.

Others, however, were supportive and backed up the talk show host, saying she inspired them and was sharing a message that the world needed to hear: love. 

24 hours after the photos went viral, Ellen responded on her show with a monologue biting back at the hateful responses. “People were upset,” she said. “They thought, why is a gay Hollywood liberal sitting next to a conservative Republican president?” She then went on to say how she believed that we need to remember that it’s ok to have different opinions and that people should be more accepting and courteous to those we disagree with.

“When I say be kind to one another, I don’t mean only the other people that think the same way that you do. I mean be kind to everyone. Doesn’t matter,” DeGeneres concluded to roaring applause. “Even people who are already playing Christmas music.”

A collection of tweets and instagram posts highlighting opinions on the topic.

Road to Regionals

BY: LEANNE KILLMEYER

Carmela Mangini, a tri-sport athlete, is a senior here at Cary High School. Carmela was sad to be finishing her final season of tennis, but luckily, her season got extended a little longer. Last Tuesday and Wednesday, the Cary High Lady Imps Tennis team went to Conference and competed against seven other schools. “I wasn’t expecting anything to come out of conference, and I went into the tournament with that mentality, but as I played and progressed, that mentality soon changed.” Carmela was not undefeated in the tournament, in fact, her one loss motivated her to come back stronger in the next round—the round that ultimately earned her spot in Regionals. 

“I  was proud of myself for playing two tournaments—so double the people—to fight for a fifth-place spot. That showed me that I could actually do something with tennis.”

Carmela Mangini is the first Cary female tennis player to go to regionals in seven years, and this is only her fourth year playing. 

Carmela Mangini with her senior teammates: Haley Talton, Lindy Gupton, Leah Bittler, Naomi Admasu, and Claire Guilbaud. 

When Carmela was young, she played tennis with her dad for fun—just hitting the ball back-and-forth. This sport wasn’t completely new to her, but it may as well have been. Her friends are the reason she joined the team; she didn’t know the rules or techniques—only how to hold a racquet. To get a better understanding of how the sport works, she played a few matches freshman and sophomore year. “Everyone has to start somewhere, I started near the bottom.” Junior year, things changed. Carmela got the hang of the sport and began perfecting hitting and placing techniques, thus making the game a lot easier. “I moved up junior year to about fifth place on the ladder of six and it was really an accomplishment because I hadn’t been on the ladder before. That gave me the motivation to keep playing and working hard.” She was even awarded the Most Valuable Player award at the End of the Year Banquet. The summer before senior year, Carmela and her teammates played constantly on the court in their neighborhood; her skills continued to develop in the off-season. Then her season started—“I remember feeling pretty confident, but I didn’t think that I actually had the ability to go far.” During this last season, Carmela was able to move up to number two on the ladder. 

“I think the real thing that kept me going was my teammates; I have gotten to know them a lot over the past four years. We all started together as freshmen, and I wouldn’t be where I am without them. With them, I was always had a good time on the court.” Carmela’s teammates, coaches, parents, and friends are so proud of her. “Even if I don’t progress further past regionals, I still think that this experience has inspired me to keep working harder no matter what sport I’m playing or what I’m doing.” Carmela sees herself taking up tennis recreationally in college. “The sport has taught me so much, I can’t imagine stopping now.”

“This season has been one of the best I’ve ever had and I can’t imagine myself not playing in college. I went into the sport not really knowing anything, but by the end, I’ve grown so much. Tennis matches take a long time, so I also learned how to balance sports with academics and friends. It’s taught me many valuable habits and skills. It’s just been so great and I’m so lucky that I got to experience it with a lot of fantastic people along the way.”  

So Why Is There No School Wednesday?

BY: JACK MORGENSTEIN

If you’re anything like me, teacher workdays are to school like Morgan Freeman-narrated nature documentaries are to America. That is, everyone loves them and not a soul would mind just a few more. Before the school year starts, administrators from all parts of WCPSS convene like witches in covens of old, and one of the most important things on their dockets is the schedule for the upcoming year. Managing school days, holiday breaks, summer, and makeup time (along with a million other factors) is a delicate balancing act, during which WCPSS must please teachers, students, and principals alike. However, this Wednesday, October 9th, is no normal teacher workday; and for that matter, last Monday, September 30th, was no normal teacher workday either. These two “teacher workdays” are actually meant to recognize the two most important holidays in the Jewish faith: Rosh Hashanah, on September 30th, and Yom Kippur, on October 9th, exactly 10 days later. This might make you ask yourself, “Wait, there are Jews in Wake County?” The answer is that there are more than you might think, and I know this for certain… because I’m one of them.

For the last few years, we’ve had teacher workdays on these holidays as part of WCPSS’s effort to become more inclusive of Wake County’s rapidly changing population demographic. Something many take for granted is not having school on major Christian holidays; but for years, I’ve had to miss many days of school every semester, just because of my religion. Not falling behind on schoolwork every time is something I couldn’t be more thankful for, now that WCPSS is beginning to recognize the two holidays.

So, now you know why we have school off on a random Wednesday halfway through October, but what are Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur? The Jewish holiday most gentiles have probably heard of is Hanukkah, but in reality, Hanukkah is a minor holiday to religious Jews. Collectively, Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur are known as the “high holidays” a remark on their importance in Judaism. Rosh Hashanah is the Jewish new year. Yeah, that’s right: Jews all over the world celebrated the new year in September. Fortunately, it’s not just a case of mass delusion; Judaism actually runs on a separate lunar calendar from the 12-month Gregorian system we all know and love. In our calendar, we have 365 days a year, with a leap day every fourth year. The Jewish calendar is 353-355 days long in a normal year, with a whole leap month added seven years out of every nineteen. What this means is that Rosh Hashanah fell on September 10th last year, fell on September 30th this year, and will fall on September 19th next year. But in all three years, Rosh Hashanah fell on the Jewish Tishrei 1. It’s 2019 on the Gregorian calendar, but to Jews, it’s 5779. Crazy, right? 

             Rosh Hashanah itself is as straightforward a holiday as they come: I go to services in the morning and then have another service in the evening. The reason the new year is so important to Judaism has a lot to do with what it represents. Judaism is very big on forgiveness, and on Rosh Hashanah, you look back at your year and reflect on what mistakes you made. The evening service incorporates throwing breadcrumbs into a lake, symbolically casting off the sins of the previous year. But, just throwing some breadcrumbs into a lake isn’t enough to truly atone for a whole year’s worth of misdeeds. That’s where Yom Kippur comes in.

Yom Kippur is always exactly 10 days after Rosh Hashanah, a time period known as the Days of Awe. During these Days of Awe, Jews are supposed to continue reflecting on the previous year, specifically performing repentance, prayer, and charitable acts to close out the year on a good note. Requests for forgiveness are expected to be shared between family, friends, and neighbors. These sentiments build in the Jewish community until the day of Yom Kippur, translated as literally “day to atone.” From sundown the day beforehand to sundown on the day of, Jews are instructed to fast. Fasting is the practice of not eating or drinking for extended periods of time. By faithfully fasting, it is seen in many’s eyes as a request for forgiveness from god. At sundown on Yom Kippur, Jews break the fast with friends and family. This feast with those you care about most is meant to kick off the rest of the year on a positive note.

No matter what faith you follow, it’s always important to occasionally take a look at the diversity surrounding you. This Wednesday, when you’re sitting in your bed, procrastinating on that math homework you don’t want to do, take a moment and think about the Jews within your own community, who are fasting while doing the exact same thing.

Stop the RDU Quarry!

BY: JACK MORGENSTEIN

The melting of the polar ice caps. The burning of the Amazon rainforest. Thousands of species going extinct annually. If you’re anything like me, these issues produce visceral feelings of hopelessness, sorrow, and insignificance. As high school students in North Carolina, what CAN we do about global climate change? Using metal straws, reducing waste, or conserving power are all important actions, sure, but in the scheme of things, these actions mean very little. Research has shown that over 66% of man-made emissions are directly caused by companies rather than consumers. Recently, Wake County approved one of these companies to begin a massive new development over public lands, and this issue is something each of us can play a direct role in stopping. 

Graphic showing the effects of quarries on natural resources. (https://www.rduforest.com)

In March of this year, The RDU airport authority (a governmental organization) approved a lease allowing Wake Stone Corporation to develop a quarry on 105 acres of public land, as well as designate an additional 506 acres for commercial use. Currently, this heavily forested land is adjacent to William B. Umstead State Park and is home to an unknown multitude of plants and animals. Once the quarry is built, these thousands or even millions of living creatures will be either killed or displaced. Not only is this morally despicable, science shows us how harmful this could truly be. Each year, 611 acres of trees produce enough oxygen to sustain almost 11,000 people and remove almost 1,600 tons or 3,200,000 pounds of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Further, tree root systems are absolutely essential to maintaining water quality throughout our aquifers and watersheds (both of which directly feed into our water supply).

Map showing the location of the projected site for the new RDU Quarry. (https://www.rduforest.com)

Not only is this deal morally compromising and environmentally damning, a Wake County Court Judge ruled that it failed to follow federal regulations and NC state law regarding approval for how the deal plans to use the land. The main legal problem with the RDU quarry deal is that the land was previously designated for “aeronautical use” and before this land can be repurposed (such as for a quarry), the FAA needs to approve a “release” of the land as well as disseminate a Federal Register Notice. Despite the fact that neither of these steps were followed, Wake County Stone is continuing exploratory drilling in the area. 

Debra Laefer is an NYU professor of Civil and Urban Engineering. In 2003, she conducted research in Fountain, North Carolina near a quarry of similar size to the proposed RDU quarry. She found that a quarry near a residential area can cause millions in structural damage to houses over time. The RDU quarry would be significantly closer to houses than the Fountain, NC quarry ever was. The stated purpose of this quarry deal is to help fund a 4 billion dollar infrastructure plan. It’s worth noting that previous to the RDU quarry deal being signed, The Conservation Fund offered a 6.4 million dollar lump-sum payment for the land, which then would’ve become a part of an expanded Umstead park. This lump sum is not any less money than RDU may receive from the rock quarry if you factor in losses from property damage caused by the quarry. 

What all this means is that the deal for the RDU quarry is morally reprehensible as it will lead to unnecessary death and suffering of wildlife, environmentally detrimental towards air and water quality, legally flawed, and was chosen over a deal that is significantly better for our environment. However, hope is not lost, there are still many steps each of us can take in order to halt this repulsive agreement. 

What You Can Do:

  1. To learn more about the RDU quarry read here:
    https://www.rduforest.com/stoprduquarry
  2. Sign this Change.org petition: https://www.change.org/p/rdu-airport-authority-save-the-forested-lands-near-old-reedy-creek-within-rdu-s-project-area
  3. Email or call your elected officials, Wake County commissioners contacts can be found at http://www.wakegov.com/commissioners/districts/Pages/default.aspx
  4. Message our Governor Roy Cooper through https://governor.nc.gov/contact/contact-governor-cooper?fbclid=IwAR3p-ViOLD9XBZdTBnq6gXCuhHluAeqbrBsvPTMEYsW84P-uXiZh73Q9bHs
  5. Support this GoFundMe: https://www.gofundme.com/rdu-forest-save-the-trails
  6. Most importantly, spread the message about how our very own government plans to use public lands.