Tag Archives: Opinion

We Ain’t Clownin’ Around

With Halloween right around the corner, conflict is brewing in America concerning… clowns. Yeah. Clowns. That’s the level we’re at. Following the stabbing of a Pennsylvania teen by a clown, there has been a surge of these “clown sightings” as the media refers them.

What do these clowns do? Where are they found? Why are they doing it? We all have questions. Sparking a huge social trend #creepyclown or #clownsighting, these clowns stand eerily, and begin chasing the person who is recording. The natural reaction for anyone is to run. Especially when they are running at you with a knife, baseball bat, or even a chainsaw. At the end of August, the most disturbing sightings were about clowns trying to lure children into the forest or into vans.

Then came the stabbing of the Pennsylvania teen on the 25th of September, sparking the Penn State clown hunt. Hundreds of students marched the streets at night armed with sports equipment. Pretty awesome if you ask me.

Not only are these clowns chasing people in multiple states, even assaulting them, they are threatening their local elementary, middle, and high schools. They’ve posted threats on the schools’ Facebook pages, then deleting them, but we all know that the police can recover those “deleted” posts. If you didn’t, then think twice before you post something stupid. These clowns have actually caused many lockdowns across the country, just hanging around the schools.

This whole thing seemed like either people, and crazy people, around the U.S. planned this, or people want to hop on the bandwagon. No one knows who is really part of this clown cult, who is just in it for sick pranking, and what their motives even are. Urban terrorism? Ruin Halloween with a national prank? Purge reenactment? Actually that sounds the most likely if you think about it. Also, there needs to be a new Purge movie but that’s besides the point.

I’m not going to act all tough and claim I’m a master clown hunter, but if I see a clown approaching me at high speeds, I can’t legally say what I’m going to do, but they say the best defense is a good offense. I’m really not in the mood for this sort of nonsense, as well as many students, parents, and community members.

It’s ridiculous that this is the level we’re at. Really? You’re going to dress up as a clown, wield a weapon, chase people, hang around schools, which some take it further as to destroy property and assault. At the same time, we can’t believe everything. Most of the evidence is on Instagram, where you can find dozens of similar videos, but some of them…well a lot of them seem or have the potential to be fake. Then there is the fact that the reports of attacks have been faked, and arrests have been made for prank calls. It’s also a ‘he said, she said’ sort of situation–a prime example being the clown sighting in Belterra.

It also feels like this thing has been blown out of proportion. People want to act like there is a Halloween war coming and now is the time to choose your side: the creepy clowns, or the fearless clown hunters. Plot for a new Purge movie? James DeMonaco, make it happen. A few serious clown-related events have sparked this idea that every bored loser dressed in a clown costume is out to kill or kidnap with more and more pranksters joining in. It’s sad to see this affect the professional clowning community who fear for their lives for doing their jobs, but this is why we can’t have nice things.

If you wan’t to survive this clown-pocalypse, it would be best to adopt Coach Daniel Foster’s two step emergency plan: “Step 1: Don’t waste your time on this. Step 2: Go to class.”

 

 

Written by Nifa Kaniga

Opinion Editor

Entertainment Editor

OPINON: Students have the power to help victims of Syrian conflict

IMG_1391Syria, a small nation in the Middle East, is currently in the midst of a massive civil war, one that has been brewing since 2011, and has finally managed to spill over in the past couple of years. What began with a group of protesters raging peacefully against the government establishment for maltreating 15 schoolchildren has erupted into nationwide war against the president, Bashar al-Assad, by rebel forces.

The conflict has since evolved from a relatively simple for-or-against the presidency to a dangerous fight that includes IS, an extremist Islamic group, the UK, and the US military forces.
However, the real cost of this war is not the damaged political systems, nor the chemical weaponry that is reported to have been used. It’s the civilians. And in particular, the children.

Over 4 million people have left their home country, becoming legal refugees by order of the UN, and over half of them are children. The war has targeted healthcare centers and schools, leaving another 7 million that are internally displaced without proper health services to take care of their children. Those that fled have taken refuge in many of the neighboring countries, but in many of those countries, the infrastructure cannot sustain such a huge influx of people, and many are still living in derelict conditions.

This is, and has been, a huge humanitarian crisis, reportedly the biggest since the Rwandan genocide about 20 years ago. But it doesn’t seem like the world is paying it much mind. Actually, and especially over here in the US, I’d be willing to bet most of us didn’t even know something of this scale was even occurring.

But I don’t fault us for that. We live in a society that is one of the most ethnocentric in the entire world, always has been. A lot of us grew up thinking the American way was the only way, and this has hugely shaped our worldview. We laugh and make fun (though lightly, I’m sure) of people who mispronounce words because their accents are slightly foreign. Ethnic food here consists of Americanized Chinese food, Americanized Italian food, Americanized Mexican food, the list goes on. Most of the Internet is written in English.

Most of the way we’ve grown up really is without knowledge of what’s really happening in the world, and it seems that people are fine with that. But what’s ironic about that is that we also live in a world where most, if not all, of the information we could ever want is right at our fingertips. It allows us to be able to connect with the entire world from any one place on the planet, a truly awesome feat. And we can use that.

It’s important that we educate ourselves. Things are happening in the world, big things, and there are ways we, supposedly lowly high school students, can help. We’re not powerless to the world around us anymore. Syria’s children are crying for help.
Let’s see how loudly we can answer them.

How to help: go online to https://www.mercycorps.org/donate/syria
Or to find out more: go online to http://www.bbc.co.uk/newsround/16979186

Written by Tricia-Marie Thomas (’16)
Contributing writer