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Published by The Chronicle, 2018-01-26 07:08:52

Edition 15.5

The Chronicle published on January 26, 2018.

Vol. 15, Issue 5 | William Mason High School | 6100 Mason Montgomery Road Mason, OH | 1.26.18

thechronicle

Black students
speak out against
RACISM in Mason

SEE STORY PAGE 11

Photo by Tanner Pearson


2 News January 26, 2018

Hazing drives universities to shut down ‘Greek Life’ on campus

Lauren Thomas | Staff Writer G

Greek Life is rushing out the door of The extent of hazing on college campuses
universities.
1959 1961 1962 1963 2015 2016 2017 2018
As spring pledges begin to collect
their letters of recommendation and At least one person has died from a hazing related incident every year since 1959.
house doors open, the overhanging
gloom of recent events cloud the re- 82% of hazing 55% of students involved in clubs, 40% of students admit to
cruitment season. Brotherhood and sis-
terhood are the values that have rooted deaths include alcohol teams, and sports have experienced hazing knowing about hazing activities
Greek life for centuries. Recently major
universities like Florida State Univer- At the University of Kentucky, a Graphic by Ryan D’Souza
sity, Ohio State University, and Indiana popular out-of-state choice for Mason Statistics compiled by Lauren Thomas
University have shut down Greek life in students, 26% of students opt to partici-
response to the heightened violations. pate in Greek Life. Behind the elegant
mansions and cheerful recruitment
Although universities are vague videos, the Kentucky sororities have
when it comes to the specific violations, made a point to keep their philan-
the deaths of students have forced them thropic efforts on par. In an open letter
to take action. Just last spring, a Penn from the Chapter President at UK’s
State Beta Theta Pi pledge fell twice Alpha Delta Pi, senior Camiran Moore
down a flight of stairs to his death after said choosing Alpha Delta Pi felt like
consuming what a forensic pathologist coming home and speaks highly of her
called a “life-threatening” amount of sisters’ strong morals.
alcohol. Video surveillance of the night
depicts other fraternity members car- “I have a passion for serving others
rying him, turning him over, pouring selflessly and giving back to the com-
liquid on his face and slapping him. munity,” Moore said. “I now have the
They also put a backpack on him to pleasure of sharing this common goal
make sure he remained on his side and with my sisters as we fundraise for the
would not choke on his own vomit. Alpha Delta Pi Foundation, Inc. and our
local Ronald McDonald House Chari-
On November 3, 2017, a 20 year old ties of the Bluegrass.”
Florida State pledge at Pi Kappa Pi was
found unresponsive after attending While many are critical of the orga-
a party the previous night. Just years nizations, students like Maddy Recker
before the pledge arrived on campus, are anxious to join the sisterhood in
Pi Kappa Pi had organized several years hopes of having a core group of friends
of an event dedicated to raising money and a network to accompany her mar-
for a charity called, “Push” that serves keting degree.
people with disabilities. Members of the
fraternity also asked people to sign a “It doesn’t really scare me because I
pledge never to use the word “retarded”. feel like I see more fraternities getting
The philanthropic acts and the detri- in trouble than sororities,” Recker said.
mental hazing create a problem for “I want to do business so in a sorority
many universities as to what action to I will be able to meet a lot of people
take. and begin to form my own network of
people. Specifically with Marketing--
In response to the deaths, conse- there is event planning with sororities
quences have been suspensions of and advertising for fundraising events
Greek life and most importantly, in- or even formals that will help me later
novative programs designed to ensure on.”
the safety of students such as alcohol
limitations.The majority of these pro-
grams urge students to report incidents
of hazing and harassment.

Despite the bans and violations
that headline the news, many sorori-
ties and fraternities are philanthropic
and career-orientated. Co-ed business
organizations, such as Miami’s Pi Sigma
Epsilon, “provide its members with
professional development, leadership
opportunities, and support for for scho-
lastic achievement” according to their
site. According to their site, every year
the organization donates over $10,000
and 200 hours to the Miami University,
Oxford, and Cincinnati communities.


January 26, 2018 Feature 3

Deaf students introduce new perspective on school environment

Andrea Hefferan | Staff Writer wear them for a year without them Born deaf, freshman Grace Bagadiong has a cochlear implant to help her hear.
hurting.”
There is no place on Earth where Bagadiong wears her hearing aid on her left ear. She wears a cochlear implant on her
one can experience total silence. At There are many things others can right ear.
all hours, sound surrounds us. But for do in order to make it easier on those
some, these sounds never reach their who are deaf or hard of hearing. Rhein Photos by Andrea Hefferan
ears. maintains that being able to see others’ Sophomore Grace Rhein wears hearing aids to assist her hearing ability.
faces makes it simpler to decipher what
Of every 1,000 people under 18 years they are saying.
old, 15 have some kind of hearing
impairment. This can range from minor “(Others should) face me when they
hearing loss to total deafness. Living talk and talk a little bit louder,” Rhein
in a world full of sounds is difficult for said. “It doesn’t need to be crazy loud,
those who cannot hear them. but just not mumbling.”

Freshman Grace Bagadiong, who is Another way in which the deaf and
deaf and has a cochlear implant and a hard of hearing process speech is lip
hearing aid, says the hardest part about reading. Bagadiong must rely almost
her hearing loss is not being able to solely on this method to understand
participate in everyday chatter. what others are saying to her.

“Some deaf people just wish to “As a deaf person it is easier to read
participate in conversations and most lips because they rely on their vision
of the time they are not really a part of more than hearing people,” Bagadiong
conversations,” Bagadiong said. “When said. “ They see things more than
they are in a conversation with a bunch anybody else. They just know what the
of people they can’t hear one voice on words are by reading your lips and how
its own. You have to hear one voice at a your facial expressions look.”
time instead of two voices at the same
time because you can’t control hearing Some sounds that are heard every day
two different voices.” can be painful for people who are hard
of hearing to listen to. Epstein’s ears are
Many people who are legally deaf more sensitive to certain pitches that
wear a cochlear implant, while those would not bother a hearing person.
who are hard of hearing usually just
need a hearing aid. Deafness can vary in “Some people have a really high
each ear, as in Bagadiong’s case, so she pitched voice,” Epstein said. “When they
has an implant on her right ear and a say certain words, in the way it comes
hearing aid on her left. out, it’s very high pitched and screechy
to me. It’s really painful.”
“A cochlear implant is a techno-
logical device that’s inside your ear,” Hearing loss can also affect speech.
Bagadiong said. “There are wires that Because of a weak cochlear implant,
go inside your head and they are con- Bagadiong had difficulty learning how
nected to the cochlea, which transfers to speak.
sounds to the brain. A hearing aid is
like a speaker that sits on the ear and is “My speech sounds a little different,
just a bit louder.” so it’s also hard for (others) to under-
stand me at the beginning of the con-
Hearing aids and implants help those versation, but when time goes on, they
wearing them pick up sounds that hear- will understand me better,” Bagadiong
ing people often dismiss as background said.
noise. When sophomore Grace Rhein
got hearing aids at sixth grade, she ex- Not being able to hear well makes
perienced a whole realm of new sounds learning a slow process, especially at
that made it all worth it. a young age. However, Bagadiong and
others like her are perfectly capable of
“It was really crazy,” Rhein said. “A being successful in school.
lot of the sounds I’d never heard before,
like clocks ticking or people whispering “I really like showing that I can still
behind me in class, (and) people walk- work in school and I can still learn,”
ing in the hallways.” Bagadiong said. “Most people think
deaf people cannot learn everything in
Even though this technology is avail- school. But it just takes time for them
able to combat hearing loss, it is not to learn.”
always user friendly. Sophomore Sarah
Epstein, who is hard of hearing, does No matter how little the hearing loss,
not enjoy the sensation of her hearing Epstein feels any imbalance of one’s
aids. senses affects people deeply.

“It’s like wearing earbuds all day, “I think a lot of people might not
every day,” Epstein said. “It prevents air think of hearing loss as a big disabil-
from getting into your ears so it gets ity, but it is,” Epstein said. “I think that
really uncomfortable. And I had some having this kind of thing makes you
nerve issues in my ear so I couldn’t more aware. Any change to your senses
really messes with people and I feel like
(other) people should be more aware of
that.”


4 Feature January 26, 2018

sound therapy

Autonomic sensory meridian response videos help students relax

Luke Hutchinson | Online Editor Growth of ASMR on the Internet Mitan said. “There are multiple types
of SPD, but the most common are
Listen carefully. 5.2 million over-responsive and under-responsive.
ASMR is the experience of a tingling I am over-responsive, which means my
sensation on the skin that usually YouTube videos are tagged “AASSMMRR”” senses are more heightened than the
begins on the scalp and moves down average person. I am most sensitive to
the rear of the neck and upper spine; 11 taste, touch and sound. Because I am
the feeling is often triggered by specific so sensitive to noise, especially loud or
sounds or visual cues. nneeww vvideos are uploaded every hour unexpected noise, I enjoy ASMR.”
Junior Jordan Yakubowski said she
discovered ASMR through slime videos, 2.9 million Mitan said her excessive reliance on
and believes the phenomenon became ASMR to relax has made the satisfying
popular alongside the recent slime fad. people are subscribed to YouTube’s top 5 ASMR channels* sensations more of a rarity, which is an
“Last year my friend would bring understood concept among frequent
slime to school, and on Instagram there *GentleWhispering ASMR, Heather Feather, ASMR Requets,Massage ASMR, and TheWaterWhisperer listeners.
were these recommended slime videos Statistics from SmartAsset.com, ASMRrat.com
from ASMR accounts,” Yakubowski “Because I listen to so much ASMR, I
said. “I started watching them and im- Graphic by Ryan D’Souza experience what is known in the ASMR
mediately felt very calm. The videos Statistics compiled by Luke Hutchinson community as tingle immunity,” Mitan
I watched did not include talking, said. “Tingle immunity is the idea that
but just different types of slime, like Neither Yakubowski or Sim watch “I mainly watch soap carving videos you no longer feel the tingling sensa-
crunchy and clicky slime.” videos with people directly whispering and bag openings,” Tran said. “The tion because you are overexposed to
Inspired by the variations of slime to the viewer, but Sim said these types sound of the knife hitting the soap is ASMR triggers. It can last a couple days
and the sounds they evoked, Yakubows- of videos are where the purpose of calming because I do not like the sound or a couple months -- everyone is dif-
ki said she started making slime, and a ASMR is often misconstrued by critics. of silence, so when I study or fall asleep ferent. I still feel the physical sensation
few videos as well. I need to hear something rather than ASMR brings, but it is rare, and when I
“I started making my own slime “Some people think it’s a fetish when hear silence and start thinking a lot. It’s do, I replay the video a ton. The sensa-
out of a borax solution with glue and they see people whispering in your ear, an odd concept with a bad reputation, tion is this prickly feeling on the back
shaving cream,” Yakubowski said. “You and they don’t understand how there but it helps people.” of my head that sometimes spreads to
can make all different types, you can could be a ‘tingling’ feeling,” Sim said. the top of my neck.”
put beads in it, and it’s very fun. I have “I personally do not feel tingly, I just For freshman Elizabeth Mitan, who
multiple jars of slime in my house, think it is nice to feel like you’re some- was diagnosed with Sensory Process- Mitan ended up creating an ASMR-
and I sometimes make ASMR videos where else, and I mostly use it as white ing Disorder (SPD) at three-years-old, oriented Instagram account, but said
with them on my spam (Instagram) noise while I study.” ASMR is more than a study agent. She she deleted it because she feared some-
account.” said her sensitivity to sound makes her one from school would find it.
The ASMR community extends far Sophomore Lindy Tran also uses experience the widely-known tingly
beyond slime videos, with YouTube ac- ASMR videos as white noise while sensation. “I deleted my ASMR account due
counts like “GentleWhispering” racking studying or sleeping, because she said to hate,” Mitan said. “The hate did not
up over one million subscribers. Senior the sound of silence would otherwise “SPD is when the brain can not bother me, but the more people who
Josephine Sim said she uses different keep her from focusing. respond to outside stimuli normally,” found my videos, the more I got wor-
ASMR videos that utilize three-dimen- ried someone from school would find
sional sound as background noise when the account. ASMR is often mocked in
she studies. school, however, I have met a handful
“ASMR was suggested to me on of people who really enjoy it too.”
YouTube because I previously listened
to low fidelity hip hop when I studied; Senior Alisha Butler has a sister at
I guess ASMR fell under the same University of Cincinnati who manages a
relaxing category,” Sim said. “I watch YouTube account named “TheWhisper-
videos with ear tappings, which is where Wizz”. The account currently has over
there are ear molds, and sometimes the 8,300 followers, and while Butler does
person will fill it with something like not personally experience ASMR, she
kinetic sand and then clean it out. I also said she does not judge people who do.
watch interactive sorts of videos, so if
it’s a movie scene, these show what the “My sister decided to start her
surrounding areas would actually sound YouTube channel because she watched
like in first person.” ASMR so much and was very interested
in how it helped her sleep,” Butler said.
“I personally do not feel the tingles
from it; I think it depends on the per-
son. It is a little weird, but I can’t judge,
because I believe it can genuinely help
people relax.”


January 26, 2018 Feature 5

Money-making potential forces YouTubers to be more professional

Ria Parikh | Staff Writer a quota saying creators were not al- Photo by Tanner Pearson
lowed to make money if they had not
They’ll do anything for the views. surpassed 10,000 views on their channel. Sophomore Judi Hu films the introduction of a video to be posted on her YouTube channel.
Over the past few years, YouTube has Hu said this quota is beneficial because
evolved to a become a more profession- it ensures that people are joining the their audience, but it can degrade other started on YouTube and grown through
al platform in which creators can make platform the right reasons and that You- aspects of the YouTube community. YouTube because that makes them
videos and make a name for themselves Tube will benefit from the videos. more a part of the community.”
from their living room. But recently, “I think it’s disappointing,” Pellegrini
creators and viewers have experienced “Them having a minimum of 10,000 said. “It’s slowly trashing part of the Pellegrini said this decision represent-
a shift in YouTube. Sophomore Judi Hu is pretty good because they want to community, and some genuine people ed a shift in focus of the platform.
makes videos for her YouTube channel, make money too from your videos, who can actually make crazy amazing
and she said the platform has become even though they probably make mon- art to put on their (thumbnails) they “I think it says that the business is
more professional and she has noticed ey even if you have very little views,” will just never do it. While other people very money oriented,” Pellegrini said.
more emphasis on the monetary aspect. Hu said. “If you see a really small You- are getting to higher and higher (lev- “They want money, and they’re going
“Over the past few years, I’ve noticed Tuber with 10 subscribers or something els), they just stay there because they to do whatever it takes to step up, go
that there’s been a significant growth or with one or two views and you see don’t clickbait.” against their competitors, and they need
in monetizing videos and putting ads them monetizing their videos, then it’s a money to do that. They are going to do
in videos,” Hu said. “(There has been clear remark they are just trying to earn Hu said while it is not harder to whatever it takes to get as much money
an increase) in clickbait and making money. So from my point of view, it’s create content while keeping views in as possible to build their business.”
thumbnails really attractive. Even probably a beneficial thing.” mind, she has found herself second-
though it’s always been a hobby, it’s guessing the content she wants to focus Despite this, Pellegrini said the grow-
gone from something that is more Pellegrini said it is beneficial in mak- on creating, since making a video that ing business side of YouTube causes
casual and where you use a webcam to ing people accountable for the effort hit a significantly high amount of views them to be more open and honest with
film to using very high technology.” they put into their channel, but it can for her channel. their audience.
Freshman Ethan Pellegrini makes cause people to become obsessed views
YouTube videos as well and said the and obtain them in unfair ways. “When I got the big view count, I was “The other day, they posted that they
fact that YouTubers can make a lot of (debating) turning the channel into were trying really hard to fix every-
money from creating videos has its ben- “The good part is, if every single more of a DIY dance costumes channel, thing,” Pellegrini said. “This is the first
efits as well as its downsides. Pellegrini human made money off of YouTube, rather an a beauty channel, because my time in a while that they spoke openly
said that while it increases drive and they would all just do it for the money,” beauty videos don’t get many views,” about what they are doing. Usually,
motivation in creators, it also causes Pellegrini said. “This is something they Hu said. “So I was like, ‘Maybe if I when they do talks, they are very cen-
them to feel an obligation to play a had to work for, and if they set a goal switch to that path, I might get more sored, they don’t say what they’re doing,
character online. to do it, then props to them, but then subscribers, and I might get more views. they keep it on the downlow.”
“I play a whole other person that who it’s bad because it causes people to pay But then again, I just want to make
I actually am,” Pellegrini said. “It works. money to get views. YouTube hasn’t re- content that I like.” Sensing a trend, Fisher predicts that
That’s what a lot of people do. I do it to ally found that algorithm to catch every major YouTube stars will fall victim to
provide entertainment, but the bad part single thing. People pay something like Last month, YouTube released You- the accumulation of views and money,
is that people buy into it and think it’s $100 for 100,000 views.” Tube Rewind 2017 which is a recap of just like they did on Vine, a popular app
real. You have to look at a video from a the year as it pertains to YouTube. Many that shut down.
creator and take it with a grain of salt.” YouTubers have used strategies like viewers felt that after watching it, You-
In order to make more money, You- ‘clickbaiting’ to increase the views on Tube chose people who would attract “It’s kind of like how Vine was,” Fisher
Tube announced in 2014 that they have their channel, which increases their views over people who the audience said. “Vine started out very pure, and it
launched YouTube Red, which is their salaries. While not a new thing, clickbait honestly watches to be in the video. Pel- was just funny moments, and then it
first ever paid subscription. On this plat- has recently taken flight views have legrini agreed and said YouTube should kind of turned into an industry. I think
form, creators can make longer, more moved to the forefront of many YouTu- pay more attention to the people who that’s what scripted things and killed
professional videos that can potentially bers’ minds. This means that a creator have actually grown on YouTube. the app and made it go downhill. I
be comparable to mainstream televi- will essentially title their video some- think that’s where the big, mainstream
sion. thing untrue that they know will spark “Half of the people on there didn’t YouTubers are headed right now. But
Senior Nick Fisher said although he the attention of their subscribers, which come up from YouTube,” Pellegrino there are still a ton of smaller, more
does not use YouTube Red, he thinks increases the amount of views they get said. “They came up from Vine, then newer to platform YouTubers that are
that it is something beneficial to sup- on that video. Fisher said that while (when) Vine shut down, they went to awesome and they keep that spirit of
port YouTubers who want to create effective, clickbaiting makes YouTubers Instagram, and then YouTube as the original YouTube alive.”
more mainstream content. seem dishonest to their audience. only other way they can make money.
“I personally don’t use YouTube Red,” They should shoot for people who have
Fisher said. “I’ve never really used it. “Someone will be like ‘A Q&A
The only good thing about it is that you exposing my personal life,’ and then it
can watch YouTube videos while keep- would just be like, ‘What did you eat for
ing your phone closed. But otherwise, breakfast?’” Fisher said. “It makes me
it’s like another creative outlet for have to sit down and watch the whole
(content creators) to (make content), video because it makes me actually
and if people want to support a YouTu- want to know more things about that,
ber of their choice, it’s allowing them and you’re giving them a unique view
to support them in that way and on a which is giving them more money,
bigger scale.” more ad revenue and things like that.
A few months ago, YouTube released It’s another part of that distrust. ‘Are
they really going to talk about this, or is
it is just clickbait?’”

Pellegrini said YouTubers feel like
they always need to clickbait to keep


6 Feature January 26, 2018

Photo by Ryan D’Souza

Students gather around a ouija board
in attempt to communicate with spirits.

Spirit boards used to communicate with ‘the other side’

Alexandra Lisa | Staff Writer house. Obviously, none of the movies attends the outings with Burke, said the be like, ‘I won’t talk to you until this
follow that. There’s more of a chance of outings started as a fun, eerie thing to person leaves.’”
For many people, a ouija board is something going wrong in your house, mess around with but got serious after
the star of a 2014 horror movie. For one and the consequences are worse if they made contact with their first spirit. Burke also said it is common for
group of students, however, it is a direct something does go wrong.” people not to believe, even after she
tie to the flip side. “The first one said she was Tabitha tells them things they can not explain.
Other rules include not leaving the Green,” Romer said. “She said she had
Senior Hallie Burke and her friends planchette, the small triangle, on the been kidnapped and killed. We tried “I know there’s subconscious-mind
have been visiting abandoned places board and remembering to say goodbye to look it up but nothing came up, but stuff that makes you secretly want
in the Mason area for just over a year, when you end the session. Failing to say when we just searched ‘Tabitha’ there something to happen, and that might
contacting spirits through the use of a goodbye and leaving the triangle on was a girl named Tabitha who was make the planchette shift, but when ev-
ouija board. Perhaps most famously de- the board leaves an open connection; kidnapped from Tennessee, and reports eryone is around the board, you’d think
picted in the movie bearing their name, in either scenario, the spirit could come said she was taken in a green mustang. they’d push in different directions.”
Ouija, ouija boards are plaques with the through and get stuck on the wrong I remember feeling really weird after Burke said. “All but one person is look-
numbers 1-10, the alphabet, “yes,” “no,” side. Burke has also been present for that.” ing at the board upside down; it’s harder
and “goodbye” written or engraved on incidents when the spirit has tried to to spell things out like that. The idea
them, and they act as communication force its way through. This find, along with many other in- that someone in the circle is faking, it
devices between the living and the stances, has convinced a once-skeptical just doesn’t add up.”
dead. Burke said ouija boards are often “When the planchette starts counting Romer that these interactions are real.
given a bad rap, especially because of down the alphabet or counting down Despite this, however, Romer does not Burke said people should be more
how they are depicted in horror movies; from ten, that means it’s trying to get tell many people about the activities. open-minded about the possibility of
however, Burke and her friends have through,” Burke said. “That’s only hap- contacting spirits.
done research on the subject and say pened with us once. We were talking to “I usually just tell the people that I do
there are rules to using the board that a spirit, and we asked if we could say it with,” Romer said. “When I leave the “Now I’ve kind of made it a goal to
can ensure safety and that people in the goodbye, like we always do. Normally, house, I just tell (my parents) I’m hang- prove to people that there’s more to
movies never follow. it would move to ‘goodbye,’ and the ing out with friends, I don’t get into the world than what they see,” Burke
session would be over, but this time it specifics, and I don’t tell a lot of new said. “There are a lot of theories about
“Firstly, you aren’t supposed to ask moved to ‘no.’ Then it went back and people. When you tell people, they don’t whether there’s anything after death,
questions about the future,” Burke said. forth between ‘h’ and ‘a,’ spelling out believe you, or they think you’re weird.” and now I can say, I know there is, but
“So when people ask whether they’re ‘ha, ha, ha,’ and it started going down people are very quick to dismiss it. They
going to die, they’re breaking the rules. from ten. When it was about to reach Skeptics also hinder the accuracy of don’t think it’s real. When I combat
You aren’t supposed to use the board in zero, I actually moved it; I pushed it the connection, according to Romer. that, and I give them the evidence I’ve
a graveyard, because it’s disrespectful, to ‘bye,’ and we didn’t go back to that made, and I ask them to explain that,
which most people get right, but you location.” “When there’s too many people who they’d say ‘I don’t know.’ No one has a
also aren’t supposed to use it in your doubt it, it doesn’t work,” Romer said. good answer for why they don’t believe
Senior Justin Romer, who regularly “Sometimes, if there are people there it, they just don’t because that’s what’s
who doubt it or who are laughing, it more comfortable for them.”
will ask for certain people to leave. It’ll


January 26, 2018 Feature 7

Actors learn stage combat for winter production

Alekya Raghavan | Staff Writer is. After that, he goes into a monologue of like patting your head and rubbing
about his nose. It’s a comparison of the your stomach, one of those things. It’s
Mason Drama Club is proving that Jonn Baca demonstrates stage combat. two aspects of him.” a challenge, but it makes it that much
the pen and the sword go hand-in-hand more fun.”
with its winter production of Cyrano de other person.” Depending on the production, stage
Bergerac. Stage combat is more comparable combat can include both real and fan- Rivers said that additional challenges
tasy choreography. Generally, fight di- of stage combat include its memoriza-
In the play, which opens on January to a dance routine than a legitimate rectors tend not to compose scenes with tion and physicality.
26, seniors Gerardo Contreras and Liz fighting discipline. Actors convey a nar- the actions that actual fighters would
Rivers engage in a dramatic duel to the rative, or extend one, through clear and use. This is usually for dramatic effect “Memorization was really hard for
death in the large and elegant Parisian deliberate actions. A scripted fight may as well as to help the audience better me, personally,” Rivers said. “You have
theater of the Hotel de Bourgogne. take longer to read than perform, but follow the scene. According to Baca, to think about your lines and then you
Contreras’ character, the titular Cyrano the effect is the same. Contreras said what goes into a scene is determined by have to think about a whole fight, and
de Bergerac, provokes Rivers’ Valvert that the scene serves to introduce the a number of factors. it’s really important that you do things
into a gripping sword fight, all while duality of the character and as well as correctly so that you’re not hurting the
delivering an impromptu poem. And the basis of the play’s plot. “It’s multi-faceted,” Baca said. “You other person. It’s also physically taxing;
in true theatrical fashion, his last line is have to take into account what show it’s cardio as you’re running around and
accompanied by a striking sword thrust. “[Cyrano] can do everything: he’s a you’re doing, what the stage looks like, jumping.”
poet, he’s a super-skilled sword fighter,” what the audience is willing to put up
In charge of composing this scene, Contreras said. “He only has one major with violence-wise, what the actors Baca, who has directed fights for
down to the last parry, is Jonn Baca. flaw, his nose, which makes him ugly. are capable of, what the set is capable
Baca is a professional fight choreogra- The role of this particular scene with of, what the budget can handle, and Rivers falls to the ground in fight scene with
pher with Cease and Desist, a Cincin- the sword duel is to display Cyrano’s how much time you have in rehearsal. Contreras.
nati-based stage combat workshop. skills with a sword as well as his skills Depending on all of that, you have to
Stage combat is a form of theatrical with his mouth and what he can say. It’s tinker with the story of the fights. My several theatre companies, colleges,
choreography that involves any act of one of the opening scenes, so it shows goal is to tell a good story with clean and high schools across the country
conflict, danger, or violence performed you, from the get go, how amazing he technique that is safe and doesn’t neces- over the past 14 years, said that he
for entertainment. The complexity of sarily have to be flashy, but it does have enjoys working with high school actors
the routine can range from something to be well done.” because of their openness and desire to
a simple as slipping on a banana peel to learn.
fighting Darth Vader with a three-foot The major concern with stage combat
lightsaber. is actor safety. For this reason, many “(High school students) are some of
real combat techniques are modified to the most enthusiastic actors that you’re
“What we’re doing is a movement make sure that actors do not risk each ever going to find,” Baca said. “I find
discipline for acting; it’s to tell a story,” other’s health and well-being. Often, a that I can get a lot more out of high
Baca said. “Actual combat is designed to movement is aimed short of or extend- school actors than some professionals
hurt, stop, kill, maim. Most actual fights ed past the scene partner’s body during that have been in the business for years.
are dirty, they’re ugly, they’re not fun attacking actions. Trust and communi- I love that sense of enthusiasm and the
to watch, and they’re over very quickly. cation during the scene is key. Largely, willingness to try. It’s the fun that they
Theatrically, you’re going to want the safety of a particular routine bring into every rehearsal that I really
something that lasts a little longer. depends on the combined professional enjoy working with.”
You want to be able to see the conflict judgement of the performer, trainer,
between the characters. It’s all about and director.
telling the story of violence; whereas,
actual combat is about hurting the “Safety is first and foremost in theatri-
cal combat because you don’t want your
Photos by Tanner Pearson actors getting hurt and you don’t want
Seniors Gerardo Contreras and Liz RIvers choreograph scene under Jonn Baca’s instruction. your audience members getting hurt,”
Baca said. “Everything you see on stage
from a slap, a sword fight, gun fights,
domestic violence, pratfalls, everything
has to be meticulously choreographed
to keep the audience safe but also make
sure that it looks real to them. You have
to make sure (the actors) understand
the techniques that are going to keep
them safe and realizing that there is no
safe weapon, just safe ways of handling
it.”

Contreras said one of the challenges
he faced was delivering the movements
and his lines at the same time.

“I have a poem that I say while I’m
fighting that definitely makes it a lot
harder,” Contreras said. “Not only am I
concentrating on what I’m doing next
with the sword, but I also have to con-
centrate on what to say next. It’s kind


8 Feature January 26, 2018

Essential oils used as therapeutic
tools in the classroom

Riley Johansen | Staff Writer “I think learning for me how they -Promotes clear, healthy skin
work with the body and how the cells -Natural insect repellent
Mason High School’s staff and interact with one another and talk to -Gives hair a healthy, vibrant glow
students have sniffed out a new way to each other within the body, the science
help relieve stress and distraction in behind it is the most interesting thing -Calming properties and promotes nervous
the classroom. about them.” system when used internally

Essential oils are naturally found in AP Language and Composition -Supports healthy metabolism
bark, seeds, flowers, and more found teacher Lori Roth has found very -Helps immune system
in plants and have been used in food, similar results when using them in her -Used to flavor food for internal
beauty products, and health care for a classroom as well. Roth values the ben- health benefits
long time because of their mental and efits they provide as well as the support
physical benefits. However, the use of that the students receive from knowing -Helps digestion in capsule form
these oils is now becoming increas- that their teacher is trying to provide a -Used in combination with other oils
ingly popular in the households of way to manage their stress. for a soothing massage
students and teachers along with their
classrooms at MHS. “I think it adds a comforting envi- Photos by Riley Johansen
ronment to the classroom and makes Graphic by Ryan D’Souza
Former Mason Middle School teach- it more homey,” Roth said. “It doesn’t
er and supervisor of the Special Educa- feel so much like a classroom, it feels
tion department at Sycamore Christina more inviting. The kids know that
Layton has been using essential oils for you care about the fact that they are
over two years along with researching worked up or worried and that you are
how they work and new ways to incor- trying to inspire them in another way,
porate them into her and her family’s so they know you are constantly think-
daily life, which eventually integrated ing about what they need.”
into her classroom setting as well.
Layton says since she has began to use Roth’s efforts have not gone un-
the oils she has noticed major changes noticed by her students. Junior Emma
in her households’ health and mindset Etherington says that she finds the
and found ways they could help her presence of essential oils in her class-
students as well. room calming and makes the room
feel more open.
“The byproduct (of using essential
oils) is that my son stopped needing “I find that the most stressful classes
his inhaler,” Layton said. “I’ve noticed have diffusers and essential oils in it,”
that my kids aren’t sick as much, if Etherington said. “I would say (they’re
ever, because everything I do has oils beneficial) because the aroma in the
from plant based products to help room is noticeably different, it’s not as
fight germs and build the immune stuffy or gross in the room. Especially
system. I even noticed that there were since that class had 50 people in it, I
certain blends that I could do for my didn’t feel as claustrophobic because of
kids when they were doing homework, the fresh air in there.”
and homework time wasn’t as big as
of struggle anymore. In the classroom Essential oils are proven to have
it was kind of the same thing, with benefits in and out of the classroom for
research that supported when there is parents, students and teachers. Despite
a type of aroma that you have in the the plethora of advantages coupled
classroom when teaching a subject, with essential oils, there are still skep-
(when there’s the) the same aroma tics. Layton says that people who still
when you’re testing there’s a better aren’t sure about using them should
recall.” stay in their comfort zone and give
them a try for a little while to truly see
Layton also says that the driving fac- the benefits.
tor behind her interest in essential oils
was learning how they benefit you on a “I always tell people to give it a try,
cellular level. and I tell those that are skeptical that
they should stay in their comfort zone,”
“The whole reason essential oils Layton said. “I’d say just try one thing
work is that the plant cells in them that you want to focus on, and think
are the most closely related to our about one thing at a time. I don’t think
human cells as compared to synthetic I’ve ever had a single person say that
or man-made substances,” Layton said. they were completely uninterested
after giving it a try.”


January 26, 2018 Feature 9

trending now Video game has fans pulling all-nighters

Jacob Brase | Staff Writer games. Most students at Ma- is approaching 300 wins in
son High School have been Fortnite, said people posting
One hundred players. One introduced to the game this screen provokes compe-
giant island. The Last Man through social media, where tition among players.
standing wins. their friends who play often
post their accomplishments. “If you see someone put-
Sound familiar? Fortnite: Senior Connor Gary said ting five wins up on their
Battle Royale is an online the social media presence of snapchat story, you kind of
video game which sprouts ‘Battle Royale’ makes many want to be competitive with
from the ‘Hunger Games’ people want to play. them,” Krueger said. “People
genre, where contestants get jealous, and people get
only have one goal: survive. “I’ve seen many of my mad when they lose, it just
Each player starts in the friends post pictures on has an addictive aspect to
‘Battle Bus’ where they their Snapchat stories,” it.”
skydive, then pick a place Garry said. “There’s also a
on the map to start. What lot of memes and gameplay Krueger said ‘Fortnite’ has
happens next is total chaos, on Twitter. Social media something special about it
as contestants acquire weap- shows people who haven’t that will give the game con-
ons, attack their opponents, seen the game before and tinued success in the future.
or simply fight to stay alive. it makes them say ‘Wow I
want to be better than you,’ “It never gets old, wheth-
Upon the release of ‘Bat- and it really introduces er it’s playing with friends,
tle Royale’ on September people to the game.” or the survival aspect to
26, the game has amassed it, I just can’t get enough,”
over 30 million players to When a player wins the Krueger said. “A lot of other
date. Epic Games can credit game, a screen appears de- games get old quickly, but I
most of this rapid success claring themself‘#1 Victory don’t see the success of this
to the game being free, a Royale’. one ever slowing down.”
rarity among popular video
Junior Nick Krueger, who

Nick Kreuger, junior Connor Garry, senior “There’s a lot of strategy in
(Fortnite),” Garry said. “You can
“I’m approaching 300 wins, either go guns blazing and at-
so I would definitely consider tack everybody, or you can be a
myself the best player at Mason noob, get one kill and still win.
High School,” Kreuger said. I usually play in ‘Squad’ mode
with a few of my friends, and me
and my boys feel like we’re some
of best players at Mason High
School.”

AJ Kraus, sophomore “I’m an avid video game
player so I thought I’d check it
out, and I instantly fell in love,”
Kraus said. “Fortnite is like The
Hunger Games: you have to
fight your way to be the last man
standing. It’s a really competi-
tive game for me, and when you
finally see that victory royale
screen, you just feel a rush of
excitement and satisfaction.”

Photos by Jacob Brase


10 January 26, 2018


January 26, 2018 Cover Story 11

Senior Jordan Dawson RACISM IN MASON
Photo by Tanner Pearson Insensitive remark sparks

frustration in black community

Asia Porter | Editor-in-Chief

R acism is real and it exists in Mason.
Whether that racism be attributed to bigotry or just plain igno-
rance, black students at Mason High School are saying enough
is enough and are demanding they see change in their district.
The demands were sparked on January 10, when news outlets
across Ohio posted articles detailing an incident in which a white teacher
reportedly told a black student an angry mob would form and lynch him if
he did not focus on his school work. Renee Thole, a social studies teacher at
Mason Middle School, confirmed she made these remarks and has apologized
for them. Thole has since been ordered to attend cultural training, a letter
of reprimand has been placed in her file, and she has been placed on paid
administrative leave. The story was an unfortunate reminder to many who say
they have experienced racist comments while attending MHS.

Senior Jordan Dawson said she feels the district neglects to handle such
comments whether intentional or unintentional with the severity and atten-
tion that they necessitate.

“That is a very serious topic, and I feel in a predominantly white school,
sometimes racism is played down because it might not affect them personal-
ly,” Dawson said. “I feel like ignorance and arrogance often go hand in hand,
and I feel like the students at this school--the majority, people whose race is
represented and their race is very prominent--some of them have told me that
racism does not exist, and that’s because it does not exist to you, but it does
exist to me, which is not saying that you’re wrong, but it’s also not saying that
I’m wrong. It’s saying you’re just not acknowledging my point of view.”

Mason City Schools released two statements following reports of Thole’s
comments made back in December. Neither statement written by Superinten-
dent Dr. Gail Kist-Kline explicitly stated the comments Thole made, but both
expressed the district’s zero tolerance for racial slurs and insensitive commen-
tary.

“We recognize that we have much more work to do,” Kist-Kline wrote. “We
know we have ground to make up with those we’ve let down. We will not shy
away from difficult conversations that may be hard and messy. We will con-
tinue to engage with our community on issues of racism and discrimination.”

Dawson said the statements are unconvincing.
“I feel like it’s kind of like a New Year’s resolution,” Dawson said. “It’s some-
thing that you’re going to follow through with for about two weeks, and then
the third week, you’re done.”
Senior Amaya King cited this incident and other remarks that she has en-
dured as a black student as a recurring ignorance in Mason.
“It makes you feel unsafe and uncomfortable,” King said. “It’s hard to learn
in this environment when you feel like you’re being targeted. I call it implicit
bias when you say something, and you don’t know that it’s racist. There’s a lot
of implicit bias at Mason. I feel like I always have to be on defense as a black
student here.”
King attributes this need to often take a defensive stance to the lack of rep-
resentation of black students. As a result, King said she is often forced to play
into a common stereotype held of black people, specifically black women.
“I feel like I have to scream or yell or be that angry black woman to be
heard,” King said. “If someone says something offensive, I have to raise my
voice, I have to have an attitude in order to get my point across, which is not
how I want to be represented. We’re less than four percent of the school. The
only time you hear about us is when we’re fighting or we’re in a sport. All
around, people think that all we’re good for is sports.”

[Continued, page 12]


12 Cover

RACISM IN

Students call for open lines of communication

Ryann Richardson attacked by a bear, being chopped in Arthur-Mensah said while he got body,” Richardson said. “You need to
sophomore half and being stung by bees. along with everybody, he felt the need talk to the black kids. You need to talk
to act cautiously, saying as a black to the other colored kids. Colored is a
[Continued from page 11] While artists in the entertainment student, you not only feel the pressure variety. That doesn’t just mean black;
industry often use the word in lyrics, of making your own personal impres- that means Latino, Asian, anybody re-
Ignorance is having a lack of infor- due to its history, many members of sion, but also representing your race ally. They almost need to have a meet-
mation. In the case of racial tension, the black community find the word to in the best manner possible. ing and ask, ‘What’s up with you guys?
ignorance often leads individuals to be intolerable and do not approve of Is this okay? Are you okay in this
spew racially-demeaning rhetoric people, including black people, saying “You can get along with everybody, environment?’ and really check up on
unknowingly due to their lack of it. but being black in Mason, what you us, not just once, but several times.”
awareness of how what they said could have to be aware of is how you act,
be offensive to another race. It starts at home how you talk,” Arthur-Mensah said. What is Inclusion?
“It’s the pressure of representing the
The “N” Word Ignorance is often cited for foul lan- black community. As a black person, Arthur-Mensah defines inclusion
guage said in the hallways, insensitive you always have to prove yourself to as not only having a diverse student
Senior Khitajrah Allen said she has comments made in the cafeteria and everyone because the expectations body but exploring it, emphasizing
often heard the ‘N’ word said by her racially-demeaning outbursts in the may not even be that high of you to understanding cultural differences
peers whether or not it was directed classroom, but prejudice, a precon- begin with, so I think you always just over simply observing them.
at her. Allen said the racial slur is ceived opinion not based on fact nor have to prove yourself in these set-
unacceptable regardless of the color of reason, can also be to blame tings.” “Well inclusion to me would be
your skin; however, King said igno- recognizing and understanding what
rance plays a role in why people may Senior Kaleab Jegol said this starts King also moved into the MCS makes other people different and
think otherwise. at home, and he calls for the district district and said she was surprised to what they bring to the table,” Arthur-
to recognize and build relationships see how some people reacted around Mensah said. “There needs to be initia-
“You can’t say the ‘N’ word,” King with parents to collectively obliterate black people. tives that promote inclusion among
said. I don’t care if it’s in a song; bleep incidents spawned from prejudice. students. For example, a course over
it out. You can’t say it. That’s unaccept- “When I came here my freshman inclusion and diversity in our world
able. You’re not allowed to say that “I think that making parents as year; I’m from Dayton, Ohio, and it today that students are able to take.”
word, and I think it’s a lot about the partners is important because a lot of was a culture shock to me,” King said.
history.” the instances that have happened are “People think it’s okay to say certain Jegol said inclusion can not be so
ideals that are acknowledged at home, things. Like when I first got into my easily defined; however, he extended
Historically, the ‘N’ word was used and prejudices start at home,” Jegol first class, someone asked to touch my beyond diversity, pointing to equal-
as a way to strengthen the idea that said. “I think that we all need to own hair. A teacher came and touched my ity as a key element to what defines
black people were lazy, worthless and up to the prejudices that we have, and hair, interrupting all of class as if that inclusion.
dirty. The African American Registry, I wish that the school would tell par- was okay. And, you can’t react like the
a nonprofit educational organization, ents to talk more about what they feel crazy black lady because that makes “Inclusion to me is--especially in
said in the early 1800s the word was about race and their opinions on race you look bad.” a school environment--where every
firmly established as a racial slur. As and identity and hopefully breaking student can feel like, whether it’s their
years went by, children’s books were those structures of stereotypes in their The role of MIC peers or their teacher, (they) see them
created by whites, promoting the slur. heads at home.” as equal,” Jegol said. “You throw the
‘The Ten Little N*****s’ was one of the Arthur-Mensah and King both serve word around, inclusion, and a lot of
first of these books to be written and Kaleab Jegol as board members for the Mason In- times, in a community like ours, it’s
detailed how ten little black boys were senior clusion Club (MIC). Formerly known like, ‘Everyone is already inclusive,’
killed or attacked in various ways--the as Mason African American Students and many don’t see that there are
first by choking himself, another by Born in Louisville, junior Douglas for Change (MAASC), two years ago, many students that feel disadvantaged
being swallowed by a herring, being Arthur-Mensah attended a school dis- the board elected to change the name
trict with a black population greater of the club in order to create a more Jordan Dawson
than Mason’s. Upon moving to Mason, inclusive environment conducive senior
to discussion applicable to a greater
range of students. At the end of
the 2016-2017 school year, the board
instituted the first non-black board
member and has partnered with the
Muslim Student Alliance, Gay Straight
Alliance and Social Justice Club
for panel discussions and interfaith
events.

Sophomore Ryann Richardson is a
member of MIC and said the club’s
open discussion style allows her to
voice her sentiments regarding cur-
rent events and things going on in her
community, something that should be
enacted in Mason outside of the club.

“You need to talk to the student


r Story 13

N MASON

n as incidents of racism arise in school district

or not looked upon the same. It’s students fall off because they aren’t leges and Universities, surveyed an Douglas Arthur-Mensah
kind of hard to define exactly what on that same playing field that they’re unnamed university with 60 percent junior
inclusion is, but my sisters go to the expected to meet.” of the student body coming from
intermediate school, so I feel like for various minority races and found even like, and they don’t know what your
them, it’s seeing themselves equal as During a December meeting, MIC on such a diverse campus, students’ culture is like.”
their friends.” invited Assistant Principal Dion Reyes friend groups aligned with this pat-
to speak to them in order to gain tern. Blacks were mostly likely to have HBCU versus PWI
Amaya King insight as to how racial comments are homogenous groups at this particular
senior handled administratively. The topic of university, and 1 in 3 whites had a Allen has not yet decided where she
clothing, specifically those expressing similar setup. Japanese and Filipino intends to go to college next year but
The key to achieving an inclusive racial or political commentary came students reported the fewest instances said she is between the University of
learning environment is communica- up when members asked why students of racial congruence. Alabama and Tennessee State Univer-
tion, according to Richardson. were permitted to wear t-shirts bearing sity, TSU being a Historically Black
the confederate flag, but others had Allen said she has noticed this in College and University (HBCU).
“They need to have open arms, and been asked to take off Black Lives Mat- Mason’s lunchroom.
I understand they have open arms ter apparel. Founded in 1837, HBCUs were
right now, but it just doesn’t feel “You can see the different cliques minorities’ primary source of higher
like it,” Richardson said. “The way Arthur-Mensah said it is instances are split up into race, you can see it if education; however, today, even with
that Mason is--the way that it is set like this that elicit his despondence you look at the lunch tables,” Allen thousands of options, hundreds of
up--there’s not as much diversity, and that change is coming. said. “You see that the Indians are sit- thousands of young black men and
there’s not as much inclusion as there ting together, white people are all sit- women still choose to attend a pre-
needs to be. In order to go forward “There’s been many incidents like ting together and black people are all dominantly black college.
with that--with inclusion--they need to this in saying that you’re taking ac- sitting together. Last semester I had
start having us voice our opinion first tion, taking action, yeah well we don’t this white boy come up, and he said, Allen said having moved into
and actually listening and taking into see it,” Arthur-Mensah said. “I’m sorry ‘Oh my friend was talking about this. MCS, she feels attending an HBCU
consideration what we think we need to say it, but we don’t see it.” This is the black people table’ because will make for a more understanding
to do.” it was all the black girls.” environment, one in which she will
Racial homogeneity be able to better perform; however,
Leveling the Khitajrah Allen she said Mason neglects to inform stu-
Playing Field Racial socialization is society’s senior dents of these options, partially due to
conveyance of the meaning of a race their not knowing of their existence.
After the initial communication, or ethnicity to youth, thus, impressing Jegol said district-wide initiatives
Jegol said Mason needs to take steps upon them the significance of their ra- that promote students meeting new “I think minorities should push
towards providing its students with cial community to society. In a society students could help to break up the towards HBCUs,” Allen said. “You can
equal opportunity to thrive in the where blacks are often marginalized homogeneity. just do better at an HBCU, I think,
district. and deemed lesser, racial socializa- around peers that you’re comfortable
tion can lead to decreased self-esteem “Maybe it’s promoting meeting a with. I feel like when I first came here,
“It begins with creating structures among young generations. peer that doesn’t look like you (or) it was overwhelming to see so many
and curriculum that works for all stu- some kind of cultural engagement caucasian people and not a lot of
dents,” Jegol said. “We already know, Richardson said integrating lessons class,” Jegol said. “It’s also important people of my skin color here. Mason
and many studies show, that whites and speakers meant to instill a sense that we don’t say, ‘Learn from people pushes college so much, but they
and Asians are at an advantage a lot of of unity would help to combat nega- of other cultures’ more we make it, still have yet to talk about an HBCU.
times when it comes to schooling, so I tives that can result from racial so- ‘Learn from your peers as people I even had to tell some of my fellow
think it’s creating a curriculum where cialization, providing blacks and other that are equal as you’ because a lot of minorities what an HBCU was. That’s
all students are on an even playing minorities with an outlet of support. times when we say ‘Learn from people really sad actually.”
field. A lot of our black and hispanic from other cultures,’ we assume that
“I know there are only 160 black it’s going to be awkward because [Continued, page 14]
kids overall at Mason High School out you don’t know what their culture is
of about 3,400, and that right there Photos by Tanner Pearson
is devastating,” Richardson said. “I
would love to have more time and
conversation with them and see what
they think. That’s a really big issue
for myself: it’s unity. It’s not just unity
with each other as a whole--as the
community--but it’s a unity within our
little group, our little four percent.”

While this unity can be a positive,
such as offering familiar faces and a
sense of comfort, the issue schools and
universities face is students nation-
wide have shown a habit of gravitating
towards individuals of their own race,
meaning conversation between ethnic
groups is being limited.

Diversity Digest, a newsletter
published by the Association of Col-


14 Cover Story January 26, 2018

RACISM IN MASON Junior Douglas Arthur-Mensah
Photo by Tanner Pearson
District called to thoroughly
focus on its imperfections

[Continued from page 13]

There are still many black high school seniors who will elect to at-
tend Predominantly White Institutions (PWI) over HBCUs in the fall.
King, who has committed to Purdue University, said she feels more
confident walking onto Purdue’s campus in the fall, whose overall
minority population is 35.3 percent compared to Mason’s 26 percent,
according to College Factual and US News.

“I’ve always been a pretty strong person mentally, but Mason has
made me--I voice my opinion, I don’t care who’s listening--it’s made
more bold,” King said. “I think it’s made me a much stronger person.
It’s kind of sad; it’s a double-edged sword: I’ve kind of had to develop
thicker skin in a white community. I do think that’s a positive that I’ve
made myself stronger, more resilient, and that’s translated into my
athletics and academics. I’m prepared now.”

In order to combat racial congruity in the district while still em-
powering minority students and highlighting their worth, King urges
the district to modify Mason’s curriculum, adding in historical les-
sons which explore the contributions minority races have made to the
nation as a whole, in addition to the Mason community and school
district.

“We’re not educating our students about the accomplishments that
black people have done in history as opposed to the lynching and all
the bad stuff that happened to us,” King said. “Slavery is pretty much
the only thing you learn in the curriculum about African Americans.
Talk about different cultures and their history. There’s a lot of hispanics
here that don’t feel represented. There’s a lot of students coming here
internationally from different countries that feel misrepresented like,
‘Just because I’m a Muslim, I’m a terrorist.’ It’s just about educating
about their history and current events.”

Regardless of what action the district plans to take, King said it is
important to act swiftly, or Mason risks its students graduating feeling
as though they were not valued.

“I am so sick of Mason acting like we are this perfect little school,”
King said. “Our education is good academically, but socially and mor-
ally, it’s come to a point where something needs to be done, or else
students are going walk out of high school feeling like they weren’t
important. How is that going to reflect on the school after people like
you and me leave, after all the African American and minority students
leave? How is that going to affect the rest of (those minorities’) lives?
People aren’t thinking about that.”

Moving forward, Richardson said Mason needs to acknowledge the
bad in their schools just as much as they do the good and understand
there is work to be done.

“I don’t know if they’re really going to push this forward and say ‘this
is wrong,’ and they know it’s wrong, but it’s all happiness with them,”
Richardson said. “Not everything is happy right now. Not everything is
good right now just based off of what just happened. There’s not always
good, and you can’t cover that up.”

King said the district needs to step up now.
“If African Americans and minorities in the school don’t start seeing
a change sooner or later in administration, in the curriculum, in how
teachers speak to us, in the environment in general, there’s gonna be
some type of protest,” King said. “Honestly, if I don’t see a change, and
I don’t feel like my voice is being heard, there is no other way to get
their attention; we’re at that point in time.”


16 Feature January 26, 2018

Graphic by Ryan D’Souza
Photos by Freddie Wilhelm

From left to right; senior Musa Khan, sophomore Kara Flynn,
junior Scott Leathers and English teacher Thurman Allen.

Netflix show reminiscent of ‘The Twilight Zone’

Freddie Wilhelm | Staff Writer of your actions, and it makes you involved in (the show).” fairly new. ‘Black Mirror’ is different
The screen turns black showing think, which is what society needs With the growth of the Black because production value is higher,
right now, which is why I think the and storytelling is more detailed
nothing but your reflection, as you creators wanted to make this show.” Mirror, it has begun to draw many because they have more time. The
stare into the ‘Black Mirror’ before similarities to the popular show ideas are the same in both, but
you, you begin to reflect upon your Senior Musa Khan said he often from the 1960s, ‘The Twilight Zone,’ ‘Twilight Zone’ tends to be more
every action. thinks about the choices made by which, like ‘Black Mirror,’ brought preachy, while ‘Black Mirror’ tends
characters in the show and whether up questions about everyday life to be more thought-provoking.”
‘Black Mirror’ has grown to or he would make the same mis- and social order during the time.
become a popular anthology series, takes. English teacher Thurman Allen While ‘The Twilight Zone’ im-
a collection of different shows all said both shows effectively use tele- pacts people over 50 years later,
with different characters and plot “I’ve actually thought about some vision to portray their message. ‘Black Mirror’ has not yet hit the
but following a similar format, on of the technologies that they’ve same heights as the popular televi-
Netflix. Created by Charlie Brooker, shown in the episodes, and I put “The thing that connects them is sion show from the 60s. Khan
the show depicts various tools of myself in the shoes of the charac- the medium of television and sto- said ‘Black Mirror’ could have the
technology taking over the lives of ters and whether I would abuse rytelling to make comments of our same impact on our generation if
characters. these technologies the same way,” society from the safe distance of the it achieved the same viewership as
Khan said. “It makes me think future or alternate universe,” Allen ‘The Twilight Zone.’
Viewers of ‘Black Mirror’ often about if we’re headed in the right said. “The idea is that these shows
notice how the show portrays oc- direction with some of our technol- say something, but they phrase it as “I think that ‘The Twilight Zone’
currences that could happen as a ogy.” this is what we could be heading for is a bit different than ‘Black Mir-
result of the growth of technology if we aren’t careful or what would ror’ because ‘Black Mirror’ has
in society, such as hacking, steal- Black Mirror offers users of the happen if we took this idea too far.” been around for four years on the
ing identities, and the creation of streaming service a different taste, BBC, and it’s only now become
devices that can replay memories. not only of drama, but of conse- While 50 years have passed, the mainstream because it’s on Netf-
The show offers many instances in quence. Junior Scott Leathers said message of the shows has remained lix,” Khan said. “I don’t know if it
which the characters’ irresponsibly the show is enticing to him due to the same; both reflect upon societal will have the same impact because
choose to use and abuse the tech- the reality it creates, and negative growth, either from technology or ‘Twilight Zone’ was one of the
nology at their disposal. Sophomore tone following the actions of the from different scenarios. Allen said breakthrough shows of its time,
Kara Flynn said the show grants the characters in the show. although the shows have the same and it was the first of its kind. I’d
viewers a look into the consequenc- ultimate goal, they go about achiev- like to think that ‘Black Mirror’ will
es of their choices. “I like that (Black Mirror is) ing that goal in different ways. have this impact, but it depends on
depressing, a lot of shows are light whether Netflix can make it com-
“It touches on our society and hearted, but (Black Mirror) gives “The basic idea is the same but pletely mainstream.”
makes us think about the conse- you a dose of reality.” Leathers said. the format is different,” Allen said.
quences of the choices we have,” “It could be realistic -- you can see “‘Twilight Zone’ tends to be more
Flynn said. “It makes you aware it happening down the line -- which staged because they were written
makes it scarier, and gets you more by playwrights and television was


January 26, 2018 Sports 17

100‘Keeping it’

sports

Photo contributed by Mason Wrestling

Members of the Mason varsity wrestling team celebrated senior Eric Vermilion and junior Sam Glassco each winning their 100th career varsity wrestling match at the West Virginia Army
National Guard Duals on January 6. Glassco and Vermillion joined teammate (junior) Chris Donathan who won his 100th career match earlier in the 2017-18 season.

Pair of Comet wrestlers eclipse 100 win milestone on the same day

Bryan Hudnell | Staff Writer school wrestlers don’t achieve,” McIntire said. McIntire said. “They exhibit leadership those values daily. What I want for all of
Senior Eric Vermillion and junior Sam “It says that the wrestler is dedicated to their through how they work each and every day. our wrestlers is to learn how to be great
sport and the constant pursuit of reaching They help the team by modeling what it both on and off the wrestling mat so that
Glassco each secured their 100th career var- their goals.” means to be a Mason Comet wrestler and all when they leave Mason High School, they
sity wrestling win at the West Virginia Army With a 23-2 record and 11 pins thus far in the sacrifice and dedication that comes with will have a solid foundation on which they
National Guard Duals January 6 and joined the 2017-18 season, Vermillion reiterated that. They show gratitude for what they have can continue to grow from throughout
teammate, junior Christopher Donathan in the impact his preparation has had on his been given and they are teammates you can their lives.”
eclipsing the century mark this season. performance this season. rally behind.” Although collecting 100 wins is meaning-
“It’s a pretty good reminder of why I work McIntire further explained what it meant to ful to him, Glassco has greater aspirations
The milestone is an indicator of a wrestler’s hard,” Vermillion said. “It’s about getting be a Mason Comet by emphasizing life values for himself and the team moving forward as
dominance over their career and Glassco those wins and helping the team out however that will become even more relevant after both will attempt to secure a state champi-
and Vermillion were able to share the honor I can. It’s cool that Sam and I both were able wrestling. onship.
of breaking the 100 win mark at the same to get it the same time.” “My expectations for Sam, Eric, and the rest “I’m trying to win state,” Glassco said. “I
tournament. Head Varsity Wrestling Coach Both Glassco and Vermillion compete with of the team is to achieve the goals that they think I have a really good chance at it. The
Matt McIntire defined the significance of the the best wrestlers at the top of their respec- set out to achieve from the beginning of the 100th win was nice, but I didn’t really get
accomplishment for a wrestler and the hard tive weight classes. According to McIntire, season while maintaining high character, a time to think about it because I have that
work required to obtain it. the two wrestlers impact the team just as good work ethic, and trust,” McIntire said. greater goal ahead of me and it will push me
“One-hundred wins means that the wrestler much off the mat as much as on the mat. “We build every day on those three pillars, for the rest of the season for sure.”
has put in the time, work and effort to “Sam and Eric both bring a lot to the table,” and we expect our wrestlers to maintain
achieve something that a lot of other high


18 Sports January 26, 2018

BEAST MODE NUMBERS

ALLISON 5 MASON SWIMMERS IN THE
TOP 10 IN THE GMC FOR
BLOEBAUM THE 100 YARD BUTTERFLY

LEADS THE GMC IN THE 500 AND 1 NUMBER OF LOSSES THIS
200 YARD FREESTYLE YEAR BY THE ACADEMIC
2ND IN THE GMC IN THE 200 I.M TEAM
WITH A TIME OF 2:09.43

124 YEAR GMC CHAMPION WITH THE ASSISTS BY SOPHOMORE
MEGAN WAGNER VS HAMILTON
VARSITY TEAM
MAKING SOME NOISE
PREGAME PLAYLIST
CHRIS
CHRONICLE
CAMERA DONATHAN
CAUGHT YA !
STATS
You never know when a
Chronicle photographer 25-0 Record, 10 pins
might be around !
ETHAN

DEVYAK

STATS

2nd in GMC in 200 yard
freestyle, 5th in
100 butterfly

Staff Photographer NOAH
Tanner Pearson captured
junior guard Landen Long PEDELTY
extremely focused on
catching a pass vs Lakota STATS
East.
13.1 points per game,
3.4 assists, 1.4 blocks

NEWSWORTHY

On, Saturday, January 6, Junior forward Sammie Puisis scored 38 points in a girls basketball win over Hamilton, which tied a school
record. Puisis shot 14-19 from the field. and 7-10 from behind the three point line. It was a great performance for Puisis, and she has
led the team to a 12-3 record so far this year.

stats and ranks as of January 17


January 26, 2018 Sports 19

COMING BACK

STRONG

Girls swim team has the weapons
to make run at a state title

Joey Deaton | Staff Writer strong as they were a year ago, been harping on us like, ‘Just enough to get them. To have
The Mason girls swimming but the level of dominance the because we beat Upper Arling-
Comets displayed did come as ton doesn’t mean we won state’. Photo by Tanner Pearson
team does not know the mean- a bit of a surprise. We still have six more weeks
ing of rebuilding year. until we can do that. I think Senior Allison Bloebaum dives in during practice
“I don’t think necessarily it that we bode, well but we’re not
For the Comets, each and was a surprise,” Bloebaum said. counting anybody out.” the Lugbill twins, as well them on our team, along with
every season brings up fresh “We knew they were holding a massive amount of other the Anchrum twins, they’re
talent that helps the team com- back one girl who is going to The Comets have a strong underclassmen that contribute going to be a huge asset to us.
pete for state titles. The team, be very dominant, but I don’t freshman class, including the to the varsity team. Bloebaum Just with Leanna (Wall), Harna
which has finished second in think any of us were expect- likes of Emma Dalton, who said said Mason girls swimming (Minezawa), and McKenzie
the state the past two years, is ing to win all of the swimming the Comets can continue to will be a force to be reckoned (Grau), all of those juniors we
once again poised to make a events.” improve through practice and with for years to come. have, it shows how good we’re
run for the title. hard work over the course of still going to be even when
Mason also placed first at the season. “What this says about our Ashley and me and (senior)
Although the girls graduated the Southwest Ohio Classic on depth is that we have rising tal- Lauren Thomas are gone. We’re
the likes of Ashley Volpenhein, January 13 out of 39 girls teams, “I think this team has a lot ent always coming up,” Bloe- still going to be a powerhouse
the All-American, 7-time state winning with 515 points over of potential,” Dalton said. “I baum said. “The Lugbill twins in the next three to four years,
champ who now swims at Stan- Cincinnati St. Ursula’s 311 in think we could definitely win actually moved to Mason this and I’m excited for the future
ford University, the Comets second place. state. We just have a lot of re- past summer, so we were lucky of Mason swimming even
opened up their 2018 campaign ally good swimmers and every
with a huge win over 2-time Bloebaum said this was a per- single class from seniors down
defending state champs Upper fect way to start the year, but to freshmen will be really good
Arlington. Mason not only won it does not guarantee a return this year. We have a lot of prac-
the dual meet by a score of 123- to state. tices but working your hardest
60, but was victorious in each in every single one can get us
and every swimming event. “It gives us a huge boost of there. I think we already have a
confidence and a lot to look really good team, and we could
Senior Allison Bloebaum, forward to for state, but we’re be really great.”
who is the defending state not counting anybody out,”
champion in both the 200 Bloebaum said. “Last year we The class of 2021 also gives
and 500 meter freestyles, said also beat Upper Arlington, but the Comets the Anchrum and
that Upper Arlington is not as we did not win the state title, so
(Coach Mark) Sullivan’s really

Mark it on your Calendar

Greater Miami Conference Championship | February 2 & 3 | Mason High School
Division 1 Sectional Meet | February 5-10 | Mason High School
Division 1 District Meet | February 14-17 | Miami University
Division 1 State Championship | February 22-24 | C.T. Brannin Natatorium Canton, Ohio

Mason Manta Rays swim club earns national recognition

Kaitlin Lewis | Staff Writer across the United States and the team this season. says Mason junior Scott Shepa- young team. Walker said that
On December 15, local swim- were the only club in Ohio to “I feel like everyone knew rd, who has been in the club for the ninth place team, ranked
win a gold medal this year. six years now. The competition just below the Manta Rays, has
ming club program the Mason Swimming clubs who are there was that goal coming within the team pushes the been around since 1977, a sig-
Manta Rays was awarded a gold awarded a gold medal are able into this season,” Walker said, athletes to perform their best. nificant amount longer. Being
medal from the USA Swim- to apply for grant money from “So everyone was more focused awarded a medal from the USA
ming Club Excellence Pro- USA Swimming, as well as the and more invested. Realizing “When we gain faster swim- Excellence Program is exciting
gram. This voluntary program right to use the Club Excel- we (were) closer to this goal mers, there’s still only four for any team and was almost
recognizes top USA Swimming lence Program logo on their made (us) harder working.” spots for the relays,” Shepard shocking for this club.
clubs as a way to promote the website for promotion. said, “So you have to step up
development of well-rounded The Manta Rays swimming and fight for your spot. It is a “If you have ask anybody, I
athletes, as well as provide This is the first year the club was established in 2004 team sport, but you still have to think they would be surprised
resources to motivate clubs to Manta Rays have been awarded by the current head coach, compete with your teammates. on how the Manta Rays have
work towards higher athlete a gold medal from the Club Ken Heis. Being a newer club, (The) rivalry with teammates developed,” Walker said, “I’ve
performance. Excellence Program. Mason however, does not hinder the really helps you to improve. ” definitely learned to adapt to
junior Karson Walker, who has athletes’ experiences or perfor- adversity and preserve more,
The Manta Rays were ranked been on the Manta Rays since mance. The club recruited even Compared to other USA because the Manta Rays have
eighth out of 3,000 teams he was six, said that winning faster swimmers this season, clubs who were also recognized had its ups and downs, and I
gold was a common goal for creating a competitive atmo- by the Excellence Program, have too.”
sphere between teammates, the Manta Rays are a fairly


20 Sports January 26, 2018

FOR THE LOVE OF THE GAME

Competitive cheerleaders pursue
passion outside scholastic competition

Lauren Serge | Staff Writer past mistakes. Paschke said legiate Athletic Association Photo by Ryan D’Souza
There is a lot to cheer about the teams are perfecting their (NCAA) Division I, there was a Senior Sydney Schuster and the Queen City Storm competitive cheer
routines by focusing on prior limit of 85 scholarships avail- team practice their routine on January 14.
when it comes to the determi- criticism received by judges. able for member schools to
nation of competitive cheer- award each team. Contrastly, are in levels five and six, and I each of the girls with a sense of
leaders. “We started our competitions cheerleading, which obtains a really look up to them because community as they decide to
back in October, and we got mere fraction of such scholar- they’re really good and serve further their passion.
The Queen City Storm (QCS) feedback from our judges then, ships, is not recognized as part as great role models,” Paris
is home to an abundance of so we improve our difficulties of the NCAA. said. “Since I joined somewhat “I’ve been doing it so long,
talent. The gym holds indi- based on that feedback to im- late compared to most people, and I love the environment,”
vidual teams, where girls are press the judges more this time Paschke, who cheers for both I know that I likely will not Schuster said. “It drives you
placed into positions based on around,” Paschke said. “For QCS and Mason, said the mini- reach that level, but I still love to be a better person because
their strengths and levels that each practice, we run through mized support and opportuni- to watch them which motivates you form bonds with all the
increase in difficulty as they the entire routine four times, ties for cheerleading merely me to want to win and go to athletes and coaches. It’s just a
progress. On February 3, QCS and in between each, we work increases the determination to big competitions.” great way to get to know more
will attend a competition in on whatever we didn’t hit.” persist. Paschke said the inabil- people and do something you
Columbus, and stress is high, ity to obtain credit for the sport Their dedication to a seem- love in the process.”
as their performance could In school, competitive cheer and the scarcity of scholarship ingly thankless sport awards
potentially earn the teams an acquires minimal recognition, possibilities widens the enthusi-
invitation, or bid, to compete in which sets the bar higher for asm the girls have.
a national competition held in the teams to shift their tri-
Florida. umphs to the forefront. Senior “The sport is extremely
Sydney Schuster said the inat- stressful and frequently disre-
Junior Mallory Paris has been tention is intertwined with the spected, but being a part of it is
a part of QCS for five years and misconception that competi- like an escape for me. You get
has a position on the Riptide tive cheer and sideline cheer to make friends with people
team. Paris said the teams are are synonymous, making it from other schools and have
under an amplitude of pressure harder for the teams to express some of the most fun experi-
to perform well at this event. their individuality. ences throughout your life,”
Paschke said.
“Prior to competition, our “When people hear that I
practices run exactly as our do cheer, they tend to think Though cheering does not
routines would on competi- of sideline cheer, but the two render many tangible ben-
tion day, all of our tumbling, are vastly different,” Schuster efits, Paris said her greatest
stunting, jumps, and dances said. “We aren’t vocal during motivation and enjoyment in
altogether,” Paris said. “It’s our performance, and we do cheerleading is generated by
gonna be really hard because stunting; whereas, sideline her admiration towards her
it’s a large competition that cheer isn’t allowed to do so. fellow cheerleaders who have
requires more teams, which As a whole, cheerleading still advanced to higher levels. The
makes our chances of scoring is not viewed as a sport, even levels are determined by the
the bid slimmer.” though we undergo the same limits and capabilities each girl
physical contact. We get hit, we manifests in stunting and tum-
Sophomore Hannah Paschke get bruises, we just don’t wear bling. Paris, in level four, said
has been with QCS for 11 years the pads.” she hopes to accomplish higher
and said the likelihood of levels in the future.
garnering the bid depends on In 2017, out of 129 football
whether they extinguish their teams in the National Col- “There are some teams that


January 26, 2018 Opinion 21

Staff Editorial

to the editor Obsession with views results fatality
after Tide Pod Challenge goes viral

With a world revolving around social media and with popularity and fame is what drives all of those
viral videos, people will go out of the way to get people who see a meme about Tide Pods on Twitter
their post the most likes, views or retweets. to set up a camera and film themselves eating it or
to film a dead man as a “joke.”
At first, harmless stunts like the Cinnamon
Challenge and Planking filled up the internet. This is disgusting and should not be tolerated.
Although stupid, the various challenges and pranks Even with Youtube and Twitter’s efforts to keep
performed in order to garner views and like were these videos off of their platform, they are still
tolerated and even enjoyed, for after all, no real watched by thousands and even millions. While
harm could come out of it. most agree that the creator is at fault for making
and posting the video, it is Youtube and other social
Eating cinnamon, however, is not comparable to media sites need to take action in recognizing inap-
eating laundry detergent. The Tide Pod Challenge propriate or dangerous content, perhaps by seeing
reached viral levels on the internet after memes something along the lines of “eating tide pods” in
peaked individuals curiosity and enticed them to eat the title or description, and preventing it from being
the product for attention. posted. Yes, social media platforms have made the
efforts to regulate these videos. Facebook made the
Tide had to release a public service announce- attempt after a live video broadcasted a man being
ment to explain to people that they should not eat murdered in Cleveland back in April. Even so, these
laundry detergent, something that should be com- efforts have not been ineffective in stopping Tide
mon knowledge. Poison Control also informed of Pod videos and Logan Paul’s of the world.
reports of fatalities as a result of consumption. The
challenge should serve as an example to all that The responsibility, however, does not only lie
there are some things you just should not “do for with social media companies. We, as viewers, have
the Vine.” progressed since Youtube’s creation in 2005, moving
from watching videos with light-hearted humor, like
While the internet has its undeniable advantages, a baby named Charlie biting another baby’s finger
individuals’ unrestricted access to and ability to post to the content that trends nowadays showcasing
certain content can go too far. These challenges are people injuring and killing themselves and other
destroying lines defining what is socially acceptable people for views.
and intelligent all for the extra like or view.
We, as consumers and users of social media, have
Recently, popular Youtuber Logan Paul posted the responsibility to have a taste in videos we watch
a video where he encountered a man who had and post. By watching, we add fuel to the fire and
recently commited suicide. To post this video is ir- encourage creators to continue posting the idiotic
responsible, insensitive and selfish. Paul’s video sent content they have been. By posting, we set a stan-
the internet into an outrage; however, the video, dard for what is appropriate for the internet. The
despite only being up for two days, reached over result is a space in which we push our bodies to the
five million views in its short tenure. It is instances limit, doing things we otherwise never would. While
like this and the Tide Pod Challenge that encourage pushing the limit in certain contexts is beneficial,
people’s stupidity. It justifies not thinking before when that context is eating laundry detergent, it is
posting something. not only a bad idea, it is fatal.

The worst part, however, is even though these Do not eat Tide Pods for views. Do not post videos
videos are cruel and fatal, people do not care. They with dead bodies for likes. The fact that things like
see others on social media racking up retweets and this have to even be said is an unsettling assessment
likes and say, “If he did it, why can’t I?” What people of how our society thinks and what it finds humor-
are lacking is perspective. People on the internet to- ous.
day are obsessed with views and followers, but that
should not be what is important. Their obsession

The Chronicle’s Policy

The Chronicle is the official student The Chronicle is published monthly. The Chronicle is a member of The The Chronicle Staff Online Editor Bryan Hudnell Freddie Wilhelm
newspaper of William Mason High Call 398-5025 ext. 33103 for infor- Columbia Scholastic Press Association, Editor-in-Chief Luke Hutchinson Luke Hutchinson
School. mation regarding advertising in The The National Scholastic Press Asso- Asia Porter Business Manager Riley Johansen Adviser
Chronicle. The Chronicle reserves the ciation, Quill and Scroll International Managing Editor Aniya Longmire Kaitlin Lewis Dale Conner
The Chronicle promises to report the right to refuse advertising it deems in- Honorary Society for High School Jour- Delaney Turner Staff Photographer Alexandra Lisa
truth and adhere to the journalistic appropriate for a high school publica- nalists and the Ohio Scholastic Media Sports Editor Tanner Pearson Millie Ortega
code of ethics through online and print tion. Association. Eric Miller Staff Writers Rahul Parikh Connect with
mediums. Visual Design Editor Jacob Brase Ria Parikh the Chronicle:
As an open forum for students, let- Contact Information Ryan D’Souza Joey Deaton
The Chronicle is produced by students ters to the editor are welcome, but are The Chronicle Andrea Hefferan Yogesh Patel @mhschronicle
enrolled in Journalism I, II and III. subject to be edited for length, libel, ob- William Mason High School Alekya Raghavan
scenity, clarity and poor taste. Letters to 6100 S. Mason Montgomery Rd. Nathalie Schickendantz facebook.com/
Editorials reflect the staff ’s opinion the editor may be dropped off in room Mason, Ohio 45040 Lauren Serge mhschronicle
but do not necessarily reflect the opin- C103 and must be signed. (513) 398-5025
ions of the school administration or the Lauren Thomas @mhschronicle
Mason City School District.


22 Opinion January 26, 2018

Firing Thole will Editorial Cartoon
not solve Mason’s
problem Support of Oprah candidacy hypocritical

Asia Porter |
Editor-in-Chief

Upon hearing a Mason teacher had threatened a The best way to apologize is to let your actions show with the individuals you are trying to include.
black student with lynching, I was appalled. you are sorry. The community needs to see evidence And, let’s not forget Tanisha Agee-Bell, the mother
that the district is actively addressing racism in Mason
The connection between lynchings and blacks, in rather than reading emails that say it is. of the boy in Thole’s class and more than decade-long
my mind, is a concept that is fairly apparent to Ameri- member of the MCS Diversity Council who went to the
cans, but even if the average citizen is unaware of this Thole is only now attending cultural training. Every- January 5 school board meeting to speak about what
weak point in our nation’s history, it is a connection one claims Mason is this incredibly diverse district, yet happened to her son. Agee-Bell was asked to speak
that a social studies teacher should undoubtedly be teachers are not required to attend training to learn in private after the meeting was over. Mason’s press
able to draw. how to interact with the supposed diverse student releases state the district will not shy away from messy
body. conversations, but their actions show otherwise.
Renee Thole could draw this connection; however,
she failed to draw it prior to making the threat. The Making such training mandatory would make Firing Thole would have some purpose. It would
story exemplified the power of not thinking before students feel valued. I have attended Mason my entire send a message that racist comments are not tolerated;
speaking and, more dangerously, prejudice. life. I have been asked once what it is like being a however, I would also argue the national backlash the
black student in a white district, and not a single district received in wake of this incident already did
Mason City Schools initially ordered Thole to attend school board member, principal nor superintendent that. Firing her does not even scratch the surface of the
cultural training but later placed her on administra- was present for this discussion. So, when I see my dis- effort that needs to be dedicated to this issue. Racism,
tive leave and put a letter of reprimand in her file. For trict saying they are dedicated to creating an inclusive ignorance and prejudice are real and exist in Mason,
many, this was not sufficient. learning environment for students, I do not believe it, and it is going to take a lot more than taking away a
because in order to do that, you have to communicate woman’s job to fix that.
Many want her fired. I do not.
In the statement released by the district, Mason
defended their decision to not fire Thole, citing her
previously clean record. If the district were to go back
and fire her now, their intentions would not be pure.
Mason would be firing her to avoid negative press
rather than recognizing what she said was racist and
genuinely finding it to be unacceptable.
Furthermore, Mason is facing an issue that is greater
than this one teacher’s comments. This incident
showed that the district is not the inclusive district
it is made out to be on Twitter. This incident showed
that people, whether it be students or teachers or
administrators, have hidden prejudices. While I would
not have complained if this teacher were fired right
when the incident happened, it would not have solved
anything. The sad thing is, some people will never
recognize there is an issue until some drastic measure
happens. This was our drastic measure.
In order to remediate this issue, we need to be
proactive rather than reactive, attacking the source,
prejudice and ignorance, rather than bandaging the
situation with press releases and lack luster apologies.

Fans’ change We see fans burn jerseys and send on TV went viral immediately, and the Bills Mafia tailgating tradition. Another
in tune after death threats to players when they leave long-suffering fanbase saluted Dalton fan raised money to get one of Dalton’s
players’ a team or make a crucial mistake in for his heroics. face and donated the remaining money
performance a big time game. They are accused of to Dalton’s charity after paying for it.
refreshing being traitors and often have vulgar Some fans even began to express
accusations directed towards them. their gratitude tangibly by donating Additionally, the Bills Organization
Bryan Hudnell | Whether it is on the field or on social to Dalton’s charitable foundation, The sent the Bengals quite the dinner. They
Staff Writer media, it is safe to say that passionate Andy and Jordan Dalton Foundation, sent 1,440 wings, 90 pounds of celery,
fans take it too far. which helps seriously ill children and 30 pounds of carrots, six gallons of blue
Much of what we hear and see their families with medical expenses in cheese, and nine gallons of wing sauce.
regarding fans’ interactions with Until the script is flipped, and every- Cincinnati. A popular donation amount Instead of eating it themselves, the Ben-
athletes is negative. I remember body wins. was $17, a dollar for every year it had gals were also charitable and decided to
cheering at my TV screen when a been since the Bills clinched a playoff donate them to the Autism High School
Bengals fan threw a beer bottle at Ben Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton res- spot. Dalton recognized the generos- at Cincinnati Children’s.
Roethlisberger during the 2016 playoffs. cued the Buffalo Bills from yet another ity and took to Twitter to thank Bills
Being a Bengals fan has its moments missed postseason when he connected fans for their efforts. As of January 10, It’s not new for athletes and teams
where yelling a curse word or repeat- with receiver Tyler Boyd for a 49-yard $345,000 was donated to the foundation to raise money for various individual
edly hitting the closest nearby object touchdown on a fourth-and-12 with 45 from around 15,000 donors. causes, but what’s different about this
has unfortunately become a common seconds remaining to beat the Ravens response is that it’s a specific reward
occurrence. during Week 17, securing the Bills’ To take it a step further, one Bills for performance on the field, and that
playoff spot. Video of the Buffalo locker fan got a tattoo of Dalton jumping and is a precedent well worth setting in the
room reacting as the players watched breaking a table, which is a common future.


January 26, 2018 23


24 January 26, 2018


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