Is University Worth It?

By Bailey Welshans

The future has a lot to hold but going to college doesn’t have to be one of those things. In the society we live in today, however, it seems that everyone thinks you need a college degree to be successful.

That is a completely false statement. Attending a college like a community college is not only more financially responsible, but for many it’s the best choice.

For many students, a university may be the best choice and I understand that. There are some career paths that require a university degree, such as engineering, nursing, business, or law. I realize that many also believe the “college experience” is the right next step. The parties, relationships, and moving out of your parents’ house are also among the appeals to college.
However, if you don’t know exactly what you want to do for a career, why spend all the money just to possibly change majors halfway through college?

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Out of School Suspension: More Harmful Than Helpful

This outdated discplinary practice damages students’ futures

Imagine if the prize for winning Senior Survivor was a free week of excused absences from school. The number of people that would sign up to participate would skyrocket, and the amount of money fundraised would double.

This would be a great incentive because this is something almost any student at Dexter High School would like to receive. So, why is this same “prize” commonly used as a means of discipline in schooling systems across America?

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Phone Off!

Phone use in the movie theater is out of control

By Jimmy Fortuna-Peak

You’re sitting in the theater, as the lights dim down and the film starts. It cost $10 to get into the show, but that’s okay. The big screen, the atmosphere, and the surround sound makes it worth the price. Just when things are all set to begin, someone in the front row pulls out their phone and starts scrolling through their Facebook and Twitter feed, completely distracting you from what’s being shown on the big screen.

In recent years, cell phone use in the theater has grown significantly, and it seems to still be rising. Whether before or during the show, you are almost always guaranteed to see a phone screen light up at one point or another.

The price of a night out at the movies has skyrocketed in recent years. The cost of tickets along with concessions can add up to about $20-$25 per person in some situations. This price alone has caused fewer and fewer people to go to the theater, and having someone make the movie unwatchable by using their phone makes people avoid the theater all together. 

Theater attendance in 2017 was the lowest it’s been in 25 years. To counteract this, some theater chains have tried to improve the theater experience by implementing reclining seats and gourmet food. However, this solution misses the root of the problem.

Some critics claim declining theater attendance to be an effect of the lower quality films that have been coming out in recent years, while others believe it is because of newer, better home video options. Both contribute to theater attendance, however, I believe the biggest reason is the inability of people to be able to stay off their phones for two hours. People go to the theater to get the most immersive movie experience possible. Phones tamper with and downgrade this experience, causing people to be less likely to go to the show. That is why theaters should start focusing on ways to prevent phone use rather than better seating and food.

Some theater chains in London have talked about creating phone detecting devices that would shine a laser in the face of someone using their phone during the show. Others have talked about distorting cell phone connection inside the theater’s premise. However, both methods have serious flaws such as eye damage and the inability to contact help in an emergency. Both are just in discussion and shouldn’t be anticipated any time soon.

If cell phone use is to be stopped, it needs to be enforced by the movie-going public. Using your phone before the show and during the opening previews is acceptable, but once the lights dim and the logos appear, the phone needs to be silenced and put into the pocket. If you absolutely need to use your phone during the theater, walk out, do what you need to do, then re-enter the theater. If you see someone on their phone during the show, don’t be afraid to tell them to turn it off. Everyone else in the theater will thank you for it.

Going to the movies is supposed to be fun. It’s supposed to be two hours of pure escapism where you can laugh and/or cry at the story in front of you. Phones have ruined this experience.If you can’t stay off your phone for two hours, then you have a serious addiction and should seek help immediately. It is up to us to stop this and make the theater an escape once again. Just sit back, relax, enjoy the film, and turn your phone off!

Guns: Do Something

By Joe Ramey

Recently, progression has been a hard idea to grasp. The laws surrounding the use and acquisition of firearms in the United States are clear, yet the second amendment itself is outdated and riddled with grey areas. With recent tragedies in mind, reform is essential now more than ever.

Though the Bill of Rights states that every United States citizen has the right to own a firearm, that does not mean that all legal guns are comparable in way of caliber and potential damage. The right to bear arms grants U.S citizens the ability to purchase and lawfully use firearms. This right is highly debated because it makes the purchasing of deadly weapons easier.

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We Voted it, We Got it

The heat directed at the school’s new athletic development simply isn’t justified

By Tate evans

When DHS students walked into the school after winter break, many of them were surprised about what had happened to the school’s skyline. While plenty had heard of the bond and how we were getting new sinks, it was apparently so long ago that everyone forgot about the new developments being built right next door. Surprised and feeling not consulted, some people understandably disagreed with the school’s decision to chop down a section of forest near the parking lots to make way for the football fields. In fact, some questioned even the reasoning as to why the school even needed new sporting fields in the first place.

All those concerns are fine and well, of course, and it’s the responsibility of every student to be knowledgeable and concerned about the impact we’re having on the environment around us. Keeping this in mind, however, there is a clear difference between un-notified, sloppy action and thought out, responsible planning, with the latter of which being exactly what we got after winter break.

Let’s start at the beginning. Many months ago, those with the power to kill or move forward on this bond were given quite clear knowledge of what exactly they were voting on. Besides being told in writing of the planned development, they were even shown an artist’s rendering of what the school would look like with the new sports fields, with the area depicted covering the spot where development is occurring today. It’s quite difficult to make the argument that nobody knew when those who cared enough about the bond to show up to the vote were provided with more than adequate materials detailing the proposed changes. At the end of the day, it’s fair to question if we needed the fields, but to question the validity and say no one was told is misleading at best.

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Social Media’s Flaw

Unfortunately, social networking has begun
to divide us more than unite us

By Jimmy Fortuna-Peak

It’s everywhere. No matter where you go, what you do, or who you talk to, the craze of social media is there to follow you. Programs like Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat were originally meant to help bring people closer together, but as these sites have grown, they have begun to tear their user’s personal relationships apart.  Continue reading “Social Media’s Flaw”

What Is Free Speech?

Despite being one of the most talked about topics in the news today, free speech is only being used as a buzzword

by Isabella Franklin

“You also had some very fine people on both sides,” said President Trump on August 15.

Though it may sound like he’s discussing the results of a close football game, he’s discussing Charlottesville protesters who chanted Neo-Nazi phrases such as “blood and soil” and “Jews will not replace us” while carrying torches. Why wouldn’t joining a group of Neo-Nazis disqualify you as a very fine person, or even an acceptable American? How is Neo-Nazi speech okay in the United States?

Free speech is an incessantly discussed topic in the news, but the discussion never progresses. The phrase “free speech” has been thrown around so much that it’s become a useless buzzword to raise attention and alarm. In reality, the definition of free speech is fairly convoluted.

The first amendment was created to allow citizens to speak against the government with no punishment. This is called political speech, and it’s the only fully protected type of speech. The congressional definition of speech includes symbolic speech, such as physical actions and displaying symbols.

The amendment doesn’t protect all forms of speech, however. Speech is prohibited and can be regulated if it’s considered defamation, fighting words, threats, or similar. Anything that isn’t unprotected speech or political speech is a gray area. Generally, as long as it isn’t unprotected speech, anything goes.

Now, that doesn’t always apply. Students are legally subject to their school’s rules. If school policy bans a type of speech and it disrupts school, then the school can shut it down. The same goes for platforms such as radio stations or ads, and private organizations; the government or organization may shut down what it deems offensive.

DHS’s code of conduct says that students cannot disrespect the civil rights of others, cause a disruption, display things intended to be offensive, be discriminatory, and must obey the law at all times. For an example of how this applies, if you were here last year the day after Trump was elected president, you might remember kids chanting “repeal the 19th amendment” (women’s voting rights) in the halls, along with making otherwise stupid comments. While they may have been joking, it heavily violates DHS policy. Free speech doesn’t protect being an asshole.

So, what does the Constitution have to say about arguments involving free speech?

One dead horse that the media continues to beat is NFL players kneeling for the anthem. Kaepernick’s choice to kneel is the embodiment of symbolic political speech. He couldn’t be in a more respectful position, especially considering that army veteran Nate Boyer originally suggested that position to respect fallen soldiers. The flag code doesn’t say you have to stand, and it wouldn’t override freedom of speech even if it did. People need to either focus on the significance of kneeling or stop talking about it, because nothing is being accomplished.

Something that doesn’t fall so neatly into protected speech is Trump’s constant flow of insults. One of many cases of this defamation is him accusing women suing him for assault of lying. His attorney is defending him by saying that calling them liars is political speech. If “political speech” means “any comment on anything that involves the law,” then sure. Otherwise, this was just a characteristically ineloquent and non-political ad hominem attack.

This brings us back to the idea that Neo-Nazis have fine people among them. They went on a liberal campus, shouting inflammatory phrases to cause tension, anger, fear, and, ultimately, violence: the exact definition of fighting words. Their actions shouldn’t be supported by any American who believes in the Constitution’s establishment of our rights. Yet, people still choose to focus on some NFL players rather than real issues.

America is, at least in concept, founded on respect and liberty. Freedom of expression was established so that anyone could safely practice whichever religion they wanted, fight for whichever causes they believed in, and more; it wasn’t established so that people could denigrate others for their own gain. Americans have yet to live up to the potential for equality and unity that our government set up for us.

How can Americans call people exercising their right to free speech to peacefully protest un-American while arguing in favor for giving people as disgusting and un-American as Neo-Nazis a platform?

Religious Holidays

Despite more than 60% of students practicing Christianity, DHS should consider minority religions’ holidays

By tess alekseev

“Imagine if Christmas didn’t fall into winter break. People would be outraged,” sophomore Aden Angus said when asked how not getting Jewish holidays off affects him.

It seems unrealistic (because it is), but, just for fun, imagine if it didn’t. Imagine the number of students that would miss school on Christmas, Easter, or other major Christian holidays. In Dexter, it would be a ridiculously large number, easily large enough to cancel school.

So why is it not the same for Jewish and Muslim students?

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