The Deadlines Schools Give Us
Is anything ever really done? Some people find comfort from the thought that things can always be added to, always be changed, always be improved. Others find the fact daunting that nothing will ever be complete, never be perfect, never be ready. Sometimes it depends on the context of the project, other times it just depends on the person. School does not differentiate though. There are due dates the same for everyone whether the person feels they can do more or not. Even in classes where it doesn't make sense to have a hard deadline, there still are. Take an art class for example. Most people argue that art is never done and can always be improved. You could paint something, repaint it, and repaint it over again. Art is also something that people who take it seriously will want to spend a great deal of time on to get their best version. It's true that without deadlines, some people would never turn anything in. It's true that deadlines are needed, but how strict should they be?
Welcome to College!
Starting a new school can always be difficult, but there's something about starting college that is infinitely more terrifying. It's often your first time living on your own, you're living in a new place, and there is much more freedom to choose. At least, that's what I thought going into college. The truth isn't quite what I thought it was. I should preface this, however, with the fact that I am going to city college currently and plan on transferring to a four year school later, so some things may be slightly different than for university students. Still, many things will hold true for both city college and university students.
Waiting to Die
Dear Love, I’m not dead yet. It seems I’ve been waiting here forever just to die. I’m not all that surprised though; it doesn’t seem like anyone ever dies around here unless its from old age or a prison brawl. I heard one guy died here, after waiting forty years, from natural causes (“Nation’s Longest Serving Death Row Inmate Dies 40 Years After Conviction”). I hope I don’t do that. The anxiety of waiting would probably kill me first. I also heard that in the last forty years only thirteen people have been executed (Ron Briggs con 3). Thirteen! Can you believe that? Why bother putting us on death row if they aren’t even going to kill us? They might as well lock us up for life; it’s pretty much what they are doing anyways. Why do they want to kill us anyways? Do they find justice from it? Is killing me the only way they can feel at peace? Do they worry that I'll escape and cause more trouble? I don't want to live my life on the run. At least here I have food and shelter. There's no guarantee that I would get that out of here. Let me tell you, I thought killing that man who hurt me would give me peace, but it didn’t. It made everything worse. Do they think it will stop others? They obviously don’t know deterrence theory. I doubt they have even heard the term swiftness of punishment or certainty of punishment. It means that for a punishment to be a deterrence it has to happen soon after the sentencing and has to happen with certainty (Schram and Tibbetts 70 -71). Well, I’m still not dead and I’m not sure I ever will be killed. And if I hear one more time that killing me is the only way to keep me from killing again, I swear (George W. Bush pro 11). What about all the murders not on death row? The murders in prison are allowed to murder? What’s the point of regular prison if you really believe it won’t hold? Don’t even get me started on the brutalization effect. I still don’t understand how the death penalty isn’t just someone seeking revenge. Killing is killing, whether someone decides it's legal or not. Might as well let vigilantes do the work and save the police some time. Anyway, how are you? Did you fix your financial problem? You know it would be less of a problem if taxes weren’t so high. It costs you $384 million an execution to do it the ‘right way’ (con 3). Makes you wonder what a bullet would cost. But then again, it’s easier to say it’s not murder when nobody’s pulling the trigger. Plus, someone could miss with a bullet and fail the execution. Not that that ever happens with lethal injections or electrocutions. Oh wait, yeah it does. So who knows, maybe when they finally call my number I won’t die. I’ll just be a vegetable. There’s one guy in here that keeps getting his number called but keeps getting rescheduled (“Upcoming Executions”). Honestly, it seems like more people are getting rescheduled than executed. Anyways, I hope you’re doing well. I miss you, I love you. Hopefully this will all be over soon.
Oliver Queen: Hero or Villain?
Oliver Queen is a vigilante character on the television show Arrow. He became the crime fighter known as the Arrow after returning home from being trapped on a terrible island for five years and watching his father die. He is given a list from his father just before he dies, which tells Oliver about all the people in his home city that are secretly committing felonies and getting away with it. Oliver promises to hunt down every name on his father’s list and bring them to justice, which usually involves murdering the person. He does a lot of good for his city and helps protect it from many dangers throughout the show, however, he is still technically a criminal. Although Oliver Queen is not the typical criminal, many theories of criminology can still be applied to him.
EXT. NIGHT. JACE is crouching behind a bush at the park. There is almost no moon tonight, so the park is very dark. Jace is peeking between the leaves of the bush at a man. BRAD is holding a bottle of whiskey and walking slowly down the path in the park towards the bushes where Jace is hiding. Brad takes a swig of the whiskey and is clearly drunk. Jace stands up from out of the bushes. Brad slurs all his words.
I’m not really a party person, yet here I was, standing in the middle of a loud room full of teenagers. I guess the movies weren’t too far off from a typical high school party. I had gone with my sister who had dragged me with her so that she wouldn’t have to be alone. Prom was coming up soon so she wanted to meet more guys who might take her. I felt horribly out of place in a party like this. Everyone was drinking. I don’t drink. Ever.
The scream was loud and piercing; almost inhuman. Just a moment before, the three of us had been sitting on this old abandoned school rooftop. We’d been drinking beer, telling jokes, and just having a good time. It was a regular spot of ours. We didn’t look around the rest of the school much, but this building was tall with a big flat roof we could all sit on. Nobody would bother us up here. My friend, Jack, had climbed down the building to go pee in a bush somewhere. Me and my other friend, Jared, were just sitting up there waiting for him. But that was before the scream.
Why AP Classes Aren’t Worth It
After a full school year of hard work, late nights, and stressful days, many people did not receive the credit they had worked so hard for. Despite the good grades many of them had, they simply did not fit the rubric of the AP® test in the end. I had managed to pass the exam, but I watched as many of my friends and classmates, who in my opinion were more deserving, looked at their score and found that they had not made the cut. In fact only 58.3% of my peers that I surveyed actually passed the test. I found myself wondering what the point of the AP® test was and why we even had to take it. We all had already worked hard for the grade we received in the class, what more was there to prove? AP® classes should be treated as equals to college classes; there should not be more work than college classes and there should be no more poorly conceived standardized tests.