Why It’s So Important To Have Your Friend’s Back

The first time I ever had to use four-wheel drive was when I carpooled with a friend to a wedding out of town. Margaret (the name of my vehicle) climbed what seemed like a full 45-degree angle up a rocky hill. I was wearing dress heels, a floral-patterned cutout dress, and had to brush the hair that got stuck in my lipstick to watch all of the other cars behind me struggle to reach the top of the hill where our friends were getting married. It was a beautiful ceremony. However, there is something that happened on the way there that has stuck with me.

My friend and I ended up meeting in Bakersfield since it was in the middle of where the two of us lived. It was easier to meet there since both of our parents were still living in Buck Owens’ paradise. Before getting on the freeway to leave town, my friend pointed out the gigantic Confederate flag that used to wave alongside the busy long stretch of road.  

“How does it make you feel seeing that?” she asked, referring to the flag that was designed to represent a divided nation, and that turned into a symbol of hate.

“You know what?” I said, still barreling down the stretch of road out of town. “I don’t like to see it, but I rather see boldness and honesty when it comes to racism than those who are quietly racist behind my back.”

Continue reading “Why It’s So Important To Have Your Friend’s Back”

Thoughts About A Box

I walked into my classroom the other day, for the first scheduled class, and my teacher introduced herself and then began talking about the course.

“Have you guys ever heard of the phrase ‘thinking outside of the box’?”

Everyone in the class casually nodded and some students slowly started raising their hands to answer the rhetorical question.

“Well that phrase is completely outdated,” the teacher explained. “I want you to throw it out.”

Throw what out?” an eager freshman shouted.

“The box—I want you to throw the box out,” she continued. “The phrase implies that there is a box to begin with. Your thinking should be uninhibited and not based off of any set box or form. You should have your own opinions and think about things without the thought of a box.”

I was reminded of this “thinking without a box” when I ran into a story on Bloomberg about mixed-race Americans. I thought to myself, what box do multi-raced individuals check on the Census? Why do we even have to check a box on tests and other things? And how do we get around this thinking with a box? Continue reading “Thoughts About A Box”

The Trayvon Martin Case and Florida’s Stand Your Ground Law

I hope by now everyone has heard about Trayvon Martin, the unarmed black 17-year-old, who was shot and killed a month ago by Neighborhood Watchmen, George Zimmerman. The currently nationally recognized case has thousands of individuals upset at the fact that Zimmerman was not arrested and was instead just asked to move out of his townhouse.

The controversy has highlighted a lot of racial tension that possibly took place between Zimmerman and Martin, as well as the Sanford Florida police’s handling of the situation in justifying Zimmerman’s act under Florida’s Stand Your Ground law.

Obviously many are outraged and say that Zimmerman’s actions do not apply to this law, others say this law is outdated and should be tossed out, and some curious people agree with the Florida police’s initial conclusion and believe that Zimmerman’s actions were indeed justified under the law; I believe, however, that we should keep the law, but that this incredibly insane act on Zimmerman’s part should not be justified under this law.

Here are some of the facts Continue reading “The Trayvon Martin Case and Florida’s Stand Your Ground Law”