Latest Articles

Preliminary Plans for Cary Towne Center Remodel Released to the Public

By: Alexis Cope

Plans for the revitalization of the Cary Towne Center were released to the public over the first weekend in October. The project calls for the complete demolition and redevelopment of the 87-acre plot of land nearby Cary High School. 

Built in 1979, the Cary Towne Center has undergone little remodeling since. In recent years, businesses have left the space, and the mall has become a widely acknowledged dead zone. Several attempts to attract developers in the past have failed, with the most notable being the possible construction of an IKEA outlet on the lot, plans which later fell through. 

However, it has been confirmed that big-name developers Turnbridge Equities, based in New York, and Denali Properties, based in Texas, will be working to completely rebuild the land. The new center, dubbed Carolina Yards, will incorporate retail, living, hotel, and office space with exciting and exquisite modern designs. With its proximity to local RDU airport and nearby highways, Carolina Yards will serve as not only an accessible local landmark, but one for those traveling as well. 

Carolina Yards will include the few businesses still situated in the Cary Towne Center, such as Belk and Dave & Busters, while incorporating new ones in the areas of cuisine and other forms of retail. The development will also include outdoor pavilions and new roads to connect the hotels, residential spaces, and offices.

This project falls in perfect line with the revitalization that has been happening over the past few years in Cary. Recently, a new, more modern regional library was built to accommodate the greater demand for books and other resources in the city, and planning for the Downtown Park, a seven-acre park consisting of a playground and gardens, among other elements, has been released within the last year. The announcement of Carolina Yards is simply another grand proposal to make Cary a more family and business friendly area. 

Carolina Yards will also be developing on pre-owned land, rather than clearing previously wooded areas for construction, an action that has been taken by several other construction companies for their creation of residential spaces and other facilities. This is not only beneficial for the local environment, but it also creates new life in an area that was not filled with it already. 

Groundbreaking for Carolina Yards is scheduled to take place in February of 2021, and construction is expected to be completed towards the end of 2022.

To view pictures, maps, and other information on the Carolina Yards project, visit www.carolinayards.com.

Thrifting in Cary: A Review

By: Lindsay Gorman

Thrifting has become a popular trend in the past couple years due to fashion bloggers and YouTubers. Not only is thrifting affordable, it is sustainable for the planet when you buy secondhand clothing. I think thrifting is exciting because it’s a mystery every time as to what you might find, and you can go home with a clothing item nobody else has. I’ve been thrifting for a couple years now, so here is a rating of the thrift stores in the Cary area: 

Thrift 2 Gift

☆☆☆☆☆

Thrift 2 Gift is a branch of Seeds of Mustard Ministries, an organization created after the death of a young boy named David in a car accident. Seeds of Mustard donates money and life items to the children of the Dominican Republic, and Thrift 2 Gift was opened in 2010. This is my personal favorite thrift store!

Location: 900 E Chatham St 

GCF

☆☆☆

GCF is a nonprofit chain with more than 157 community-based locations throughout the United States and Canada. Their website states: “Goodwill focuses on employment, education and life- enrichment opportunities throughout 51 counties throughout Eastern North Carolina.”  I have found some cool pieces here, but prices could be lower.

Location: 220 Kilmayne Dr

Dorcas

☆☆

Dorcas Thrift Shop is run by Dorcas Ministries. Dorcas Ministries has been around since 1986 and opened their first thrift store in 1972. In 2011, they moved into their current location for more space, and they have expanded their services offered. I rated Dorcas two stars because it can be super busy and hard to move around, and I usually don’t find anything here. 

Location: 187 High House Rd 

Durham Rescue Mission

☆☆☆☆☆

Durham Rescue Mission is the only thrift store not in the Cary area, but I wanted to include it because it is a really huge and cool place. Not only does DRM have a store, they also are the oldest and largest long-term homeless shelter. They are an amazing organization, and their thrift store is a must to check out. 

Location: 10701 Glenwood Ave

Plato’s Closet

☆☆☆☆

If you’re looking for name brand items at a lower price, Plato’s closet is your go-to. You can bring in your name brand clothes, and they will go through them and give you money for the items they take. It’s a great way to make money, and you can go shopping while your clothes are being looked at. The prices are more expensive than your typical thrift store, but not as much as if you bought them new from the mall. 

Location: 111 Crossroads Blvd

Trump’s Nominee to Take Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s Seat: Amy Coney Barrett

By Lelani Williamson

President Donald Trump has nominated Amy Coney Barrett to take recently deceased Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s open seat on the Supreme Court. Trump stated that Barrett is a “woman of unparalleled achievement, towering intellect, sterling credentials and unyielding loyalty to the Constitution.” Barrett, elected by Trump in 2017, is an appeals court judge for the Seventh Circuit. She is also a professor at the University of Notre Dame Law School where she teaches classes on constitutional law, the federal courts, and statutory interpretation. Barrett is a devout Catholic and a proven conservative. In the past, she has served as a clerk for former Associate Justice Antonin Scalia of the US Supreme Court, and was a previous candidate to fill a seat on the Supreme Court after Justice Anthony Kennedy retired (a seat that went to Justice Brett Kavanaugh). 

In regards to her opinions and interpretations, Barrett is a textualist and originalist. She is pro-life and has been involved with Faculty for Life, Notre Dame’s anti-abortion group. Although she has stated that it is unlikely the ruling of Roe v. Wade would be overturned, critics still believe that she intends to overturn the ruling that legalized abortions. Barrett was also the one person that disagreed with a decision to prohibit a felon from possessing a firearm, stating that “founding legislatures did not strip felons of the right to bear arms simply because of their status as felons.” She also declared that she would not be beholden to the doctrine of stare decisions. This doctrine asks the court to follow the precedents set in similar cases, but she has made it clear that she will “enforce her understanding of the Constitution rather than a precedent.” Additionally, Barrett has been involved with organizations such as the American Law Institute and the Federalist Society, which advocate for textualist and originalist interpretations of the United States Constitution.

As a candidate, Barrett has been met with both support and disapproval. Feminists and the community of Democrats are making it clear that they don’t want Amy Coney Barret to replace women’s right activist and liberal Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Women all around the world view Ginsburg as a “feminist icon,” leaving the person chosen to take her seat big shoes to fill. However, some people don’t think Barrett will fill these shoes the proper way. Law professor Lara Bazelon stated that “the next Supreme Court justice will cast crucial votes that affect women’s fundamental rights, including the right to control their own bodies and to gain access to affordable health care for themselves and their families. The fact that President Trump’s nominee is a woman matters less if she does not support the causes at the heart of the long, continuing march for gender equality that Justice Ginsburg championed.” Senator Kamala Harris has also stated her opinion on the matter, saying that Barrett “will undo (Ginsburg’s) life’s work.” 

Although Barrett has some who don’t agree with her nomination, Conservatives believe she is the perfect candidate. President of the Susan B. Anthony List, Marjorie Dannenfelser, said that “she is the perfect combination of a brilliant jurist and a woman who brings the argument to the court that is potentially contrary to the views of the sitting women justices.” Along with Marjorie, law professor Jonathan H. Adler has stated his views that “as a scholar and a judge, she has shown herself to be a very careful and deliberate thinker who is concerned with getting the right answer, whether or not it’s the popular answer.” They see Barrett as someone who will add to the court with her unique views and perspective. 

No matter what way people view Amy Coney Barrett, her confirmation process is set to begin on October 12th. She has spent the past few weeks meeting with Senators ahead of her confirmation hearings. As Trump has tested positive for coronavirus, Barrett has been taking safety precautions to ensure that she, nor anyone else, will obtain the virus so that they can proceed with her confirmation process happening over the next few weeks. 

The Life of Ruth Bader Ginsburg

By: Celia Pope

Ruth Bader Ginsburg was one of America’s greatest female political leaders. 

Ginsburg spent her life pushing through years of adversity and served for thirteen years on the Supreme Court, successfully fighting against gender discrimination and attempting to unify the liberal block of the court, as well as breaking many barriers of unfair gender-based legislations. Sadly, on September 18, 2020, Ginsburg passed away after a long, hard battle with pancreatic cancer. Though her death left the nation in shock and sorrow, we can’t help but realize what an amazing legacy she left behind and how much Ginsburg changed. She not only caused an entire societal transformation, but altered the way America would look at the world forever.

After pushing through years of adversity and struggles with money and her mother’s death, Ruth Bader became Ruth Bader Ginsburg after marrying her husband Martin, and had her first child. Soon after she began her studies at Harvard, her husband was diagnosed with cancer, which, though caring for her husband and maintaining her position at top of the class posed a challenge, never deterred her academic excellence at the school. The struggles of motherhood and having to face extreme discrimination from being in a male-dominated class, even from the highest authorities, began to push her limits. However, being the persister she was, Ginsburg pushed on and not only graduated from Harvard and served as the first female member of the Harvard Law Review, but also went on to do the same at Columbia University and graduated top of her class once more in 1959.

After years of working as a clerk and searching unsuccessfully for a fair job at a firm, she decided to follow her other passion and joined the Columbia Project on International Civil Procedure. During this time, she lived abroad in Sweden to research for her book on Swedish social procedures. Upon her return in 1963, she was hired as a professor at Rutgers University Law School, a position she held until accepting an offer to teach at Columbia in 1972. Ginsburg also directed the influential Women’s Rights Project of the American Civil Liberties Union during the 1970s. In this position, she led the fight against gender discrimination and successfully argued six landmark cases before the U.S. Supreme Court. Ginsburg took a broad look at gender discrimination, fighting not just for the women left behind, but for the men who were discriminated against as well. After serving for the U.S. Court of Appeals for thirteen years, Ginsburg was finally appointed by Bill Clinton to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg began her career as a justice where she left off as an advocate: fighting for women’s rights. In her years as a Justice, she did many incredible things, such as writing the majority opinion in United States v. Virginia, holding that qualified women could not be denied admission to Virginia Military Institute. Instead of creating sweeping limitations on gender discrimination, she attacked specific areas of discrimination and violations of women’s rights one at a time, so as to send a message to the legislatures on what they can and cannot do. Ginsburg did not shy away from giving pointed guidance when she felt the need, even in situations such as helping Obama write his first legislation, the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009. 

According to Oyez.com, “Until her death on September 18, 2020, Ginsburg worked with a personal trainer in the Supreme Court’s exercise room, and for many years could lift more than both Justices Breyer and Kagan.” Ginsburg never missed a day of oral arguments until 2018, not even when she was undergoing chemotherapy for pancreatic cancer, after colon cancer surgery, or the day of her husband’s death. Ginsburg relentlessly proved that she was a force to be reckoned with; anyone who doubted her ability to effectively complete her judicial duties would just have to look at her oral argument records to see that she was among the most avid questionnaires on the bench. Ginsburg was an inspiration to all people around the world and was living proof that you can’t judge a book by its cover. If you look inside her book, you could find one of the most relentless social justice warriors in political history.

A Recap of the First Presidential Debate

By: Sarah Govert 

The first presidential debate took place on Tuesday, September 29th between current President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden, with Chris Wallace of Fox News moderating. With the election looming a little more than a month away, this debate was crucial in firmly establishing opinions and views of each candidate and possibly convincing some Americans watching who to vote for. The debate covered six broad topics: Trump and Biden’s political records, the Supreme Court and the vacant seat, coronavirus, the economy, race and violence, and the integrity of the election. I’ll be recapping three of these topics in this article, and they are as follows: the Supreme Court, race and violence, and the integrity of the election. Let’s take a look at what the two presidential candidates had to say.

The Supreme Court:

In the week following Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s passing, President Trump has nominated Amy Coney Barrett to succeed her. This nomination has caused great tensions lately, as statements that were made by Republican Senators when former president Barack Obama attempted to nominate a Supreme Court Justice in the last year of his term have come to light once more. When President Trump was asked about why he is correct in his argument that a nominee must be considered, he stated “We have the Senate, we have the White House, and we have a phenomenal nominee, respected by all top, top academic — good in every way, good in every way.” Trump then goes on to say that they won the election, so they have the right to nominate a candidate, stopping after that point. In response, Biden commented that “the American people have a right to have a say to who the Supreme Court nominee is, and that say occurs when they vote for United States senators and when they vote for the President of the United States.” He goes on to say that Americans won’t get the chance to have a say anymore if the nomination goes through, as the election has already started and tens of thousands of citizens have voted already. He ends this point by saying that we should wait and see what the outcome of the election will be before moving forward with a nomination, and is then cut off by President Trump.

Race and Violence:

This segment of the debate begins with moderator Chris Wallace asking about the statement that President Trump made in Charlottesville, Virginia in 2017 following a white supremacist and neo-Nazi rally, after which President Trump stated that there were “very fine people on both sides.” Wallace asks from both candidates responses, as well as how they will deal with race issues, and Biden leads off the segment. He discusses how he has never walked away from trying to make America a place with equality for all, even though it hasn’t been accomplished thus far. Biden brings up the Charlottesville rally, describing the scene of anti-Semetic slurs and Ku Klux Klan members, emphasizing on how Trump called these people “very fine.” He goes on to discuss the peaceful protests that occurred after the death of George Floyd and how Trump had the military tear gas the protestors. He ends his point by stating, “The general who was with him said he only, all he ever wants to do is divide people, not unite people at all. This is a president who has used everything as a dog whistle to try to generate racist hatred, racist division.” Trump responds to Biden’s statements by bringing up a crime bill in 1994 done by Biden, in which he called African-Americans “super predators.” He then goes on to discuss how his campaign has the support of law enforcement. This segment concludes with the issue of systemic racism and injustice in America, with Biden stating that there is systemic injustice in education and law enforcement and the way that it’s enforced. He discusses how police officers must be held accountable and ends his section by reinforcing that peaceful protests are the answer. President Trump is then asked by Wallace about systemic racism and why he ended sensitivity training that addresses white privilege and critical race theory. He responds to these questions by saying, “I ended it because it’s racist… It was a radical revolution that was taking place in our military, in our schools, all over the place… They were teaching people to hate our country. They were teaching people that our country is a horrible place, it’s a racist place.” This segment is then concluded by Wallace.

The Integrity of the Election:

The final segment of the debate discusses the integrity of the elections and the confidence that both of the candidates have in the fact that the election will be fair and legitimate. Biden begins this segment, first talking about how people should go to iwillvote.com and decide how and when they’re going to vote in the upcoming election. He further reassures watchers of the debate in the legitimacy of mail-in ballots, stating, “His own Homeland Security director, as well as the FBI director, says there’s no evidence at all that mail-in ballots are a source of being manipulated and cheating.” He goes on to say that in-person voting will be able to happen as it usually does, with poll workers working diligently to make sure that all votes are counted and voters are able to stay socially distanced. He also restates that he will accept the results either way, win or lose. Biden ends his segment by reinforcing the need to vote, saying that “You will determine the outcome of the election.” However, President Trump uses his two minutes to express his views that this election is “going to be fraud like you’ve never seen.” He uses examples of finding ballots in creeks and wastepaper baskets already, saying that it’s a “rigged election.” Trump does agree that if it’s a fair election, he is “100% on board.” Wallace ends this segment of the debate by stating that on Election Night, Americans might not know who the president will be, possibly for weeks after. 

And with that final statement by moderator Chris Wallace, the first presidential debate of 2020 is concluded. The next debate will be broadcast on October 7th from the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, with Vice Presidential nominees Mike Pence and Kamala Harris debating, starting at 9 pm. To check out President Trump’s and former Vice President Joe Biden’s websites, see the additional resources listed below. The full transcript of the debate is also listed.

Additional Resources:

Websites:

https://joebiden.com/

https://www.donaldjtrump.com/

Transcript:

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/elections/2020/09/30/presidential-debate-read-full-transcript-first-debate/3587462001/

The First 2020 Presidential Debate: A Headache

By Amarah Din

If you watched the first 2020 Presidential Debate, you probably developed a migraine. Regardless of what side of the political spectrum you fall on, we can all agree that this debate was a disaster from start to finish. From constant interruptions, to arguments, to yelling-fits, this debate perfectly showcases the current state of America.

Moderated by Chris Wallace from Fox News, the debate left voters asking themselves a slew of questions. Are we politically stable? If our political leaders can’t be respectful and civil, what’s to be expected for the future of our nation? Was there a “winner” in this debate? When do we draw the line in politics? And do we draw it before or after attacking family members of the opposing side?

One thing is for certain: there were no surprises.

Joe Biden announced he wasn’t in support of the Green New Deal as stated on his website; he has a new plan, but we don’t know what it is. He openly supported law enforcement and referred to the system as having a “few bad apples.”

Donald Trump attacked Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, for his previous drug addiction and falsely claimed he was dishonorably discharged from the military because of it. Trump also failed to condemn white supremacy and instead told the right-wing extremist group, Proud Boys, to “stand back and standby.”

It is not enough to sit back and hope for the best for the 2020 election. We must take to the polls and vote. Whether it be by mail or in person, early or on November 3rd, make your voice heard. This debate might have caused a nationwide headache, but we can persist through the chaos.

The North Carolina Voter Registration Deadline is October 9th. We encourage anyone and everyone who is eligible to vote to utilize their rights. To vote in the 2020 General Election, visit this website to register:

https://www.ncdot.gov/dmv/offices-services/online/Pages/voter-registration-application.aspx

The Fight for Democracy Infiltrates Hollywood

By Kiera Kofkin-Hansen

#BoycottMulan is a hashtag trending on Twitter and various other social media platforms and has been for almost two weeks now. The reason behind people’s negative views towards Disney’s newest live action film is mainly due to controversial tweets posted by the lead actress Liu Yifei supporting the Hong Kong police and seemingly disapproving of the pro-democracy protests, which have unfortunately turned violent as a result of police brutality.

The Chinese government has long been in control through the Communist Party, but Hong Kong’s government had always differed from the rest of the country — up until now. Hong Kong was a British colony for the better part of a century, and therefore had a different governing style and way of life for its citizens compared to the rest of the country. However, in 1997, the British government returned Hong Kong to China with the expectation that Hong Kong could proceed with their more democratic ways for another 50 years. Unfortunately, in recent years the Chinese government and Hong Kong Police have violently enforced multiple laws infringing on the basic human rights of its people and attempted to convert the Westernized city to be on par with the rest of the Communist-run country. Laws that restrict freedom of speech and threaten to throw any that oppose the ruling party in prison have only grown stronger in Hong Kong, as the political activists and democratic saviors have grown continually weaker from the immense force of the government. 

Liu Yifei is the star of the new Mulan movie, meaning that her actions now potentially have large consequences for the movie which she acted in, and based on the hashtag flooding people’s Twitter feeds after her questionable post, it has. Yifei shared a tweet from a government-run newspaper supporting the Hong Kong police stating, “I also support the Hong Kong police. You can beat me up now,” and then furthered her political statement by adding, “What a shame for Hong Kong.” This tweet is highly controversial due to the fact that the Chinese government and Hong Kong police department are blatantly trying to strip the citizens of Hong Kong from the basic human rights that they have enjoyed for years. 

Many people are outraged by Yifei’s support for the injustices occurring in China, as she stars in a children’s film with a theme of standing up against oppressors and “the normal” in society, exactly what the protesters in Hong Kong are attempting to do. Throughout history, boycotts have proven successful in accomplishing their goals, and in today’s day and age, a simple hashtag can go a long way in fighting for justice. By boycotting the Mulan movie, supporters of the protests in Hong Kong hope to relay the message that those who support oppression should not be supported, and those who aim to be or portray role models should practice what they preach. 

Police Brutality: Modern-Day Lynchings

By Amarah Din

TW: This article recounts the event of George Floyd’s murder.

A scene from the protest in Downtown Raleigh on May 30th, 2020

Every week a new video is posted on social media revealing an encounter between police officers and black people. These police officers use excessive force against black people, even when the victims show little to no resistance of arrest. Oftentimes, these cases involve victims who are wrongfully accused of a crime they did not commit. There are even instances where white people will take matters into their own hands and murder black people on the street. Too many of the videos result in the death of an innocent black person.

George Floyd was a 46-year-old man, a father to his six-year-old daughter, Gianna, and the boyfriend of Courteney Ross. On May 25th, he went to a convenience store to buy some cigarettes. The clerk believed that Floyd was paying with a counterfeit twenty dollar bill, so the cops were called. Multiple cop cars showed up, and the infamous police officer, Derek Chauvin, took it upon himself to place his knee on the neck of Floyd, even though Floyd wasn’t resisting arrest, nor was this a violent crime. For 8 minutes and 46 seconds, Chauvin dug his knee into the neck of Floyd. Recordings of the event capture Floyd’s cries for help. He cried, “My stomach hurts. My neck hurts. Everything hurts.” He called out for his mama. He stressed, “They’re going to kill me.” The most saddening plea: “I can’t breathe.” Chauvin continued to kneel on Floyd’s neck, even after he was found to be unconscious. George Floyd died at the hands of a man who swore to protect people, not kill them. Derek Chauvin murdered George Floyd. 

It’s important to note that the bill was found to not be counterfeit, but regardless, no force of this kind should ever be used on civilians. If George Floyd was not a black man, many can assume that this murder wouldn’t have taken place. White privilege has been prevalent since the beginning of time throughout the world, yet some people choose to deny its existence. White privilege is what causes a white man, Brock Turner, to serve only three months in jail for rape while a black woman, Cyntoia Brown, was sentenced to life for defending herself from a rapist. George Floyd doesn’t have the pleasure of experiencing the life he deserved simply because of the racism within law enforcement and in America.

I am frustrated. I am half white and fully benefit from the color of my skin. I know that my white privilege will grant me opportunities that my black brothers and sisters will never have the pleasure of seeing. I am angry. The first police officers would patrol runaway slaves, and today they are used to watch over black neighborhoods. The justice system in America was not created to serve the people, but to silence them. I am done. The American government has always sat back during conversations of advancing the rights of African Americans. Now is the time to demand justice.

Protesters in Downtown Cary on June 6th, 2020

To Trayvon Martin, to Tamir Rice, to Michael Brown, to Eric Garner, to Sean Reed, to Yassin Mohamed, to Breonna Taylor, to Ahmaud Arbery, to Tony McDade, to George Floyd, and to the entire black community: we see you, we hear you, and we will fight with you.

Here is a link to petitions, donation sites, protest information, numbers and emails, etc. to help support the Black Lives Matter movement today:

https://blacklivesmatters.carrd.co/

Influential Women of the World

BY: AMARAH DIN

Every year on March 8th, people from across the globe come together to discuss the issues that women face and how society can progress in caring for women. This day is known as International Women’s Day. In order to further commemorate and honor the contributions of women in history and society, beginning in the 1980s, March was declared as Women’s History Month. Instead of waiting for others to make change, there are women who spark movements themselves. These women have crossed boundaries and broken glass ceilings to help their communities and the world. In the spirit of Women’s History Month, here are some extraordinary women you should get to know.

Malala Yousafzai

Yousafzai is an activist for girls’ education. She’s been advocating for a girl’s right to education ever since the terrorist group, the Taliban, banned women from attending school. After speaking out against the injustices in 2012, she was shot by a member of the Taliban; fortunately, she survived. She was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize at the age of seventeen. She now attends Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford. Get to know about her current activism:

https://malala.org/

@Malala on Instagram and Twitter

Nadya Okamoto

At sixteen-years-old, Okamoto co-founded the organization, PERIOD, to provide menstrual aid to girls in need after experiencing homelessness in herst years of high school. The organization distributes pads, tampons, and menstrual cups to people experiencing period poverty. PERIOD has served over 850,000 periods globally and hopes to destigmatize the topic of menstruation. In 2018, Okamoto wrote the book, Period Power: A Manifesto for the Menstrual Movement. She has sparked dire conversations about the reality of menstruation and has helped so many girls with their struggles. Take a look at the organization’s goals and find a chapter near you:

https://www.period.org/

@NadyaOkamoto on Instagram and Twitter

Greta Thunberg

Thunberg is widely known for her environmental concerns and protests. The seventeen-year-old from Sweden started the movement, #FridaysForFuture, to promote the creation of climate policies regarding the crisis affecting the earth right now. She has faced much backlash from climate change-deniers, but persists in raising awareness and rightfully demanding climate action. Get to know about her movement:

https://www.fridaysforfuture.org/

@GretaThunberg on Instagram and Twitter

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Ocasio-Cortez is the U.S. House Representative for New York’s District 14. Majoring in International Relations and Economics, AOC graduated from Boston University in 2011. She has proposed legislation like the Green New Deal to combat climate change. Her goal as a congresswoman is to provide justice for people of all races, genders, economic backgrounds, etc. Get to know about her goals for America:

https://ocasio-cortez.house.gov/

@AOC on Instagram and Twitter

Helena Gualinga

Gualinga lives in Sarayaku, Ecuador, a part of the Amazon Rainforest. The indigenous people that make up her community have faced oil companies taking over their land and destroying everything in sight. At the 25th annual United Nations Climate Change Conference, Gualinga called out world leaders for not doing enough to combat the lasting effects of environmental injustice against native people. She speaks for indigenous groups all over the world. Learn about activism within the indigenous community:

https://www.wecaninternational.org/post/people-power-rises-for-climate-justice-at-cop25

@HelenaGualinga on Instagram / @SumakHelena on Twitter

Yara Shahidi

Shahidi is a model, actress, and activist. She inspires black girls through her role in the shows, Black-ish and Grown-ish, and many others; she has shown continuous support for the Black Lives Matter movement. Shahidi co-founded an organization called, Eighteen x 18, which encourages the youth to vote and also started Yara’s Club through the Young Women’s Leadership Network of New York to tackle poverty through education. She currently attends Harvard University where she is double majoring in sociology and African-American studies. Get to know about her organization:

https://www.eighteenx18.com/

@YaraShahidi on Instagram and Twitter

Roxane Gay

Gay is the author of best-selling books, such as, Bad Feminist, Hunger, and Not That Bad: Dispatches from Rape Culture. She often discusses the importance of girls breaking societal standards. She mainly writes fiction, but a lot of her work is about the struggles of being a queer black woman and dealing with eating disorders. Her work is eye-opening and inspirational to many readers. Learn more about Gay’s past and her literature:

http://www.roxanegay.com/

@roxanegay74 on Instagram / @rgay on Twitter

Meghan Markle

The Duchess of Sussex is known for her acting career and relation to the Royal Family, but Markle has been an activist since her youth. Early on, she protested against the Gulf War and sexist television ads, and she volunteered at soup kitchens in her teenage years. As a growing actress, she began speaking out against sexism within the industry and in foreign countries. She regularly visits and donates to struggling communities. She is an inspiration to young girls around the world. Take a look at the organizations and charities Meghan Markle supports:

https://www.royal.uk/wedding-charity-donations

Emma Gonzalez

After surviving the 2018 Parkland school shooting, Emma and her classmates have continuously fought for gun control in Florida. They started the March For Our Lives movement, which sparked a nation-wide school walkout. Students all over the United States have hosted protests, marches, and walkouts since then. Emma has called out the National Rifle Association for their blatant disregard of the death by gun violence statistics in America. Her outspokenness inspires students to demand change. Learn more about the movement:

https://marchforourlives.com/

@emmawise18 on Instagram / @Emma4Change on Twitter

Bored? A List of Things to DO

By Amarah Din

Bored? A List of Things to Do

By Amarah Din

Wake County has cancelled school at least until May 15th, due to the COVID-19 outbreak, which means students get to stay home and de-stress, while also navigating the new waters of online instruction. But what do you do when you’re bored out of your mind after the first couple days of break? Here are a few fun activities you can do while practicing safe social-distancing:

  1. Draw or paint the view from your window
  2. Learn a magic trick and perfect it
  3. Reorganize your room
  4. Write and send a letter to a family member
  5. Sort through your clothes and make a donation pile
  6. Read a book series
  7. Listen to a new genre of music
  8. Find a recipe with the ingredients you already have at home
  9. Deep clean a room in your house
  10. Knit a scarf
  11. Write a short story
  12. Learn a new language
  13. Treat yourself to a day of self-care and relaxation
  14. Complete a 15-minute stretch every day
  15. Dye your hair!
  16. Watch a documentary on Netflix
  17. Clean your white shoes
  18. Do some research on an unsolved mystery
  19. Learn how to play a song on an instrument
  20. Organize your binders and bookbag
  21. Reach out to an old friend
  22. Play an Olympics-style competition on iMessage games with your friends

These next few weeks are going to feel like an eternity, but we’ll get through it!