Staff Editorials


Editorial: 9/11 has lost significance in comparison to modern terrorism

Sept. 11, 2016 was a day similar to many others in the 15 years since the horrific terrorist attacks on the Twin Towers. A day involving Americans coming together to mourn the loss of our citizens to terrorism. Although Sept. 11 used to be a sorrowful holiday to feel grief for all those who suffered 15 years ago, this day of remembrance simply does not mean as much to Americans anymore.

Terrorism has become a more and more threatening affair around the world. On Sept. 11, 2001, the hijacked airplanes crashing into the Twin Towers in New York City marked the beginning of an era of unrest in the U.S. and around the world regarding terrorism. According to Uri Friedman from The Atlantic, reports of terrorist attacks from extremist groups such as I.S.I.S. and Al Qaeda are becoming more and more common around the globe. It seems that at least once a month there is news of another awful attack shaking the foundations of our nation. In the past year, France has been hit with two terrible terrorist attacks including the suicide bombings and hostage shootings in Paris on Nov. 13, 2015, as well as an attack in Nice on July 14, 2016, where a truck driver ran over innocent people who were celebrating Bastille Day. It is hard for us as Americans to feel as much pain on Sept. 11 when remembering the attacks that happened 15 years ago, because similarly awful terrorist attacks are occurring in the present.

Sept. 11 does not even have the same significance in the minds of the new generation of Americans anymore. In schools, students in ninth grade and below are learning about the attacks on Sept. 11 as a historical event and not as a horrific memory in their lifetime. Many of these kids do not even know what life is like without constant terrorism. Even in our own country there have been recent school shootings such as Sandy Hook as well as another shooting at Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Fla. and one at an office holiday party in San Bernardino, Calif. These random attacks on citizens in the U.S. have caused what seems like an everyday sadness, which make annual remembrance days such Sept. 11 less and less unique.

Besides an increased number of the terrorist attacks themselves, another issue concerning 9/11 is that Americans are lacking the sense of unity that we possessed 15 years ago. With technology getting better and more social media sites being readily used, most Americans showed their lament toward Sept. 11 on social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook or by tuning into their TVs to watch a broadcasted 9/11 ceremony. This year compared to years past, fewer Americans made the effort to bond with their neighbors and fellow Americans or come together as one nation to contradict the evil of these terrorist attacks. The headlines of the 15th anniversary celebration were not even of mourning the attacks, but instead on our current presidential election. Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton abruptly left the memorial ceremony at the 9/11 memorial site in New York City claiming of sickness and overheating. These headlines can be seen in credible news sites such as The New York Times, CNN and NBC News. It seems that more news articles and coverage were given to Clinton on Sept. 11, 2016 than about the actual terrorist attacks themselves.

The motives and feelings of Americans have simply changed over the past 15 years and our ideals have morphed alongside our emotions and the constant sadness that terrorism that leaves as a black cloud over our nation. Sept. 11 will always be an important date in American history, but it has certainly lost its meaning as unique day of mourning the effects terrorism.

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Editorial: Millennials prove to lack patience

A situation alarmingly familiar to any Millennial: a Wi-Fi connection lost, the next episode of “Orange is the New Black” buffering, an angry teenager smashing a laptop keyboard searching for a purpose (and wireless Internet).

Presenting “The Microwave Generation.” Instant gratification is the newest fad; impatience is all the rage. Children and young adults yearn for immediacy at the touch of a button.abby editorial

Dating is no longer a laborious process, as flirting is accessible with a swift slide into someone’s messages, a stark contrast against past generations’ suitors performing calculated moves for long periods of time. Rising musical artists and DJs crank out mediocre, sonically saturated tunes faster than they can say “new single,” designed to please the masses. Everything is just a click away, and according to America’s youth, that’s the way it should be.

Millennials are often the butt of a generational joke. But they should not be underestimated. Contrary to popular belief, they have not tainted society with their presence. In fact, the 21st century has been fruitful with accomplishments that would not exist without Millennials, including same-sex marriage. Today’s youth is intelligent and both culturally and politically aware, fighting political apathy with a log onto Twitter to live-tweet a presidential debate. They are on the front lines for change, utilizing the technology that has been placed in their hands to fight injustice in different communities of minorities. Race and police brutality became a worldwide issue with the help of a hashtag (#BlackLivesMatter) and the Syrian refugee crisis was brought to 4.6 million followers on the Instagram account @HumansofNY, where creator Brandon Stanton went to Syria to document and ultimately help fund multiple refugees with a crowd-funding link to donate. It is inspiring to see a new group of young adults grab life by its horns with a zest for social progress, all while clutching an iPhone in hand.

With that said, this emerging behavior is breeding society into restless human beings, but Millennials don’t know any better. They are born and bred into a generation of rapid receipt of information and entertainment; it’s hard not to blame them. This thought process is created with a more connected environment. Children hold and navigate iPhones before they can read the alphabet, immediately weaving new relationships between them and the efficiency of an industrialized, technological world. These connections are the only form of communication that today’s adolescents have been exposed to. Old habits die hard, especially when they’re clad in shiny colors and are preloaded with new episodes of “House of Cards.”

The pleasure of the process is one worth basking in. If today’s youth demands everything immediately, there is no fight. No accomplishment to wear proudly after a series of losses. A reward is more satiating if earned after a cycle of successful and unsuccessful attempts, no matter if that reward is a quickly loading Netflix episode or a new relationship blossoming on the promise of patience.

Convenience is not futile; it should definitely be clutched and appreciated. But in a world where restlessness is advancing, it is important to remember that patience is a virtue. It teaches empathy, generates a positive attitude, and makes gratification all the more satisfying. So, the next time a journey presents itself as an opportunity: don’t take the shortcuts. In the end, it’ll be just as rewarding as finishing a season of “Parks and Recreation” on Netflix.

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Editorial: Anti-bullying campaigns should continue throughout year

Throughout every high school in the US, some students pretend to be “tough.” They push and shove their way through the halls. They don’t apologize or even care who they hurt.  Instead, they just demand that other students turn over their lunch money, or worse, their dignity. This type of behavior must not be allowed to continue; as a school we must come together.

On Oct. 15, Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) conducted their annual “I’m Against Bullying” campaign.  Using the social media app Snapchat, students and others were asked to use a geo-tag to share the message with everyone they could. Celebrities, including Demi Lovato and Ellen DeGeneres, tweeted and posted videos promoting the hashtag “Spirit Day.” Most of the time, however, we just post or scroll numerous messages without considering the true meaning behind the post, or even thinking about the vast resources that social media offers.

While having an “I’m Against Bullying” Campaign is a fantastic first step, just one day of “awareness” is definitely not enough.  This momentum must be broader and expanded to the other 364 days of the year.  Bullying takes place everyday and has become a widespread issue that should be stopped.

The “I’m Against Bullying” Campaign must do more than posting pictures or getting people to retweet catchy slogans and wearing purple on the third Thursday of October every year.  This is simply not enough to stand up to bullying.  Through peer counseling programs or a positive word at a key time, our fellow students must know that they are not alone. By giving our fellow students our support, they will have the confidence to report incidents to the proper authorities.

A notable case of bullying was with teenager Brittany McMillan, whose bullying case received much attention. She turned being a victim into being a victor after she realized what was going on in her life was wrong and wanted to make a change.  Since then, she started the “I’m Against Bullying” program in 2010.

According to, 20% of high school students experienced some form of bullying; this includes physical mental or cyber bullying.

Not only do people bully in person, but people also bully behind a screen. Now, rather than hiding behind big muscles, bullies hide behind their computer monitors.  “Cyber bullies” use their keyboards to type mean things to hurt others.  They post unnecessary tweets about them or even pictures of them.  Bullies even make fake profiles to hurt teens.  One example of this was Amanda Todd, who was a cyber bullying victim.  She was forced to expose herself online in a provocative manner and was personally humiliated. After posting a YouTube video describing her experience with flashcards, she could not live with the humiliation and committed suicide. Since then, over 17 million people have viewed her video, which received international attention.

The United States Center for Disease Control reports, “suicide is the third leading cause of death among young people, resulting in about 4,400 deaths per year.”

Teens need to feel safe while going to school and should not have to worry about what a bully might say or do to them. They need to be aware of a safe environment and this can be accomplished by defending others when witnessing bullying.  Being a bystander is just as bad or worse than being the bully.  If we just watch these situations, they will keep repeating themselves.

If we “Stand Up Against Bullying” every day instead of just once a year, there will hopefully be change.  Wearing purple for one day is not enough to take a stand against bullying; people need to start taking more of an action every day to end bullying once and for all.

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Editorial: Adidas raises bar with James Harden signing

As James Harden recently signed a contract with Adidas, reportedly worth $200 million over 13 years, Adidas obtained an NBA All Star and reigning MVP frontrunner who will be big for this company.

Adidas seems to be climbing its way up the endorsement ladder.  With this signing, Adidas now has some top-tier NBA players endorsed who are all entering the prime of their NBA careers including: John Wall, Derrick Rose, Damian Lillard and newly acquired James Harden.

Although this contract involved an absurd sum of money, this signing is really going to promote the brand and help brighten the future.  A bright future is something that Adidas needs, considering the fact that after they signed Derrick Rose to a five-year $95 million dollar contract in 2011, Rose was plagued by injuries the following three years. He was sidelined the second half of 2011-2012 and all of 2012-2013 with a torn ACL, and a good chunk of the 2014-2015 season with a torn right meniscus. Adidas has clearly been in need of a new face of its brand, and that is exactly why it made the Harden signing.

When Harden entered the league in 2009, he trademarked the slogan “Fear the Beard.” Harden is on the rise, and has been ever since being traded to the Houston Rockets in 2012.  He has finished top five in scoring, all of the past three seasons. Harden had never eclipsed 20 points per game in his tenure with the Thunder.

It has been a tradition for some players to grow out a playoff beard, but Harden’s thick beard has always gotten special attention.  Fans have worn fake beards to games in support of Harden.  This is great for Adidas because Harden’s beard helped him become more recognizable and well known around the league.

Besides the ability to grow a long and luscious beard, Harden also cares about the way he looks and dresses.  When it comes to promoting a brand, fashion is always a huge factor.  Because of his fashion sense, Harden may be able to come up with some new and improved ideas for this company.

In 2014, Adidas fell behind Under Armour to number three in sportswear market sales and Nike recently took over the Jordan brand. They realized they needed to take a risk.  Obviously there is more competition in the market now, and that risk can lead to reward for Adidas.

Most importantly, James Harden is a great role model and great competitor.  It is not often that a high-caliber, high market player hits the endorsement free agency.  Adidas acted fast and made a great choice.  Although $200 million dollars sounds crazy, it was a great investment for its future.

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Opinion: Social media users fail to fact check

While on social networks including Twitter and Instagram, users may have recently been noticing an influx of rumors and fake promotional offers circulating on their timelines. With social media usage becoming increasingly popular every year, knowledge of what is fact and what is not is beginning to fade away.

Everyone likes to hear about freebies and giveaways, or so it seemed recently when a rush of fake airline accounts flooded Instagram. Claiming to give free one-way tickets to the first 15,000 followers, fake accounts were created on behalf on Delta, JetBlue and American Airlines. Fact checking should be a priority for those interested in a particular issue.

With the recent presidential campaign, Tweets, YouTube videos and images all affected the public’s thoughts toward the candidates such as photos published by Time magazine of vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan’s workout, or the viral YouTube remix version of President Obama’s “you didn’t build that” comment.

Every time a political debate was aired, biased sources or social media users would spin what the candidates said in an attempt to create controversy. This led to more and more people spreading these exaggerated rumors.

Gossip and scandals can largely affect the public’s opinion regarding someone who was looked up to as a hero or an inspirational figure. Recent rumors about Lance Armstrong cost him his seven Tour de France medals, and even a month later, his name has been all over the news due to his decision to step down from the Livestrong Foundation. As a reaction to all of this, people have left negative comments on his personal accounts without understanding the full story.

Many people believe what is being fed to them only because they see it is trending or because people are posting their thoughts about it. Although the oversaturation of information floating on the web creates a difficulty for users seeking the truth, it’s a better bet to rely on verified Twitter, Facebook and other social media accounts than third party sources. And, in the case of a scandal, where the particular celebrity would have bias, fact checking with verified news sources is best. With this system implemented, false statements about people, companies and events could easily be avoided.


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Opinion: Athletes, coaches miss too much school time during season games

For districts, regionals and states, members of sports teams miss a substantial amount of school days to compete. For example, the football teams missed days of school during football season to travel upstate to play Manatee High School in Bradenton, Fla. High school students and teachers involved in sports teams miss valuable school time each season and changes should be implemented to fix this.

Since missing school causes students to be behind in their studies and gives them many hours of make up work, a solution to this problem could be to schedule more events on weekends instead of during the school week. Also, the teachers who coach teams lose time to teach lessons, and their students won’t absorb the lesson as well if their teachers are missing school time.

Coaches may not want to give up their weekends to coach, but it saves sick days that the teacher-coaches would otherwise have to use. To convince the coaches to do this, the schools might want to give extra money for the dedication of these coaches. This could be money brought in from fundraisers or other events to raise money.

With travel costs and eating expenses, it is very hard for a coach to make a reasonable salary coaching. Obviously, if a coach loves his sport, losing money won’t discourage him or her that much, but not everyone wants to donate time and not get too much in return. Golf coach Vincent Grossi estimates that he loses over $1,800 per season that he coaches. He misses about 10 teaching days a year, for which he has to take sick days. With little financial incentive to coach a team, the number of good teacher-coaches will drastically decrease in the future.

Missing classes because of sporting events is a problem that both student-athletes and teacher-coaches experience. With the Advanced Placement (AP) classes and schoolwork piling up with Broward County’s new seven-period schedule, missing school is not beneficial for a student to play a sport. To fix these issues schools could consider better scheduling so sports don’t interfere with class time.



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Opinion: Effort must be made to keep hallways trash-free

The number of times students need to redirect their route to class because of spilled chocolate milk, squished pizza and smeared fries on the floor is completely out of hand.

With only seven minutes in between classes, students don’t need to waste time trying to avoid the trail of leftover lunch all over the floor. School lunches on the ground lead to hallways being congested in one section as students avoid the disgusting remains. It is not fair how one person’s laziness in throwing out food can lead to many people arriving to class late.

Inconsiderate people who don’t throw out their trash shouldn’t dictate whether or not someone makes it to where he or she needs to be. This whole process wastes time between classes, creating stress for students with great distances between classes and causes late arrivals.

Not only does leaving leftover lunch remains around the school waste time and cause tardiness, seeing scraps of food that have been walked over by hundreds of students is just repulsive. No one is volunteering to see someone’s uneaten food spread out in the hallways.

The custodians shouldn’t need to spend extra time during and after school cleaning up after thoughtless students. Custodians work hard enough, and they definitely don’t need lazy high school students making their jobs more difficult.

Students have lashed out on social media about this problem. Senior Ryan Gunderman said the scraps of food that decorate the halls turn the school into a hazard.

“Did I mention the pizza slices left on the floor act as great lubricants to the floor?” Gunderman said over Facebook. “It practically turns the hallways into Cypress Bay on Ice.”

Students should not have to fear for their safety when trying to get from place to place.

Students need to take pride in their school, and that starts with maintaining a comfortable and clean environment. Being able to have so much freedom as to where students are allowed to eat is a privilege that more people need to respect.

The solution isn’t difficult. Take five seconds, locate a trash can and be respectful of the student body’s time and safety. Students spend most of their day at the Bay, so everyone should keep it as clean as possible.

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Opinion: Concussion tests for football players should be thorough, done often

Josh Witt was the star linebacker for the Lightning varsity football team for two consecutive years. Upon graduating in 2012, he accepted a full athletic scholarship to play football at the University of Miami. But Witt’s collegiate football career has ended almost before it started.

Due to his repeated concussions in high school, Witt suffered damage that doctors discovered after he accepted the offer. The doctors determined that it would be detrimental to his health if he continues to play football. It is fortunate that the doctors caught it early enough that no major damage was done. If Witt continued to play, there may have ultimately been life-altering consequences.

This incident is a perfect example of why more thorough testing needs to be done in high school. If the concussion damage had not been found like it was by the university’s doctors, the damage would have been more severe and life threatening. High school sport representatives need to be more aware of the possible injuries that come from high-contact sports. Examples of Witt’s unfortunate experience happen in all levels of football. Undetected sports injuries require the utmost precision and care to ensure that concussions don’t interfere with the future lives of players.

Concussion tests should be completed after every contact activity or game in high school, instead of only if the player thinks he has been concussed. This will guarantee that a player is not playing under concussion-like symptoms. Many times players are trying to play the hero by staying in the game while suffering an injury, while ultimately it is hurting them. A concussion occurs when a sudden blow or force hits the skull. This causes an inflammation of the soft brain tissue and damages the blood vessels.

Short-term effects of concussions are headache, nausea, and blurred vision.  A player experiencing these symptoms could continue to play, furthering the damage to the brain.  The cumulative effects of concussions could eventually cause permanent brain damage and long-term disabilities.

A recent example of this would be former linebacker Junior Seau. The Miami Dolphins alumnus committed suicide this past May. Many people believe that continuous sustained concussions from playing football may have contributed to this event and other side effects like depression and epilepsy.

It is imperative that a law be established to detect concussions early in high school before they develop into a chronic situation. Football should not ultimately lead to a life of suffering and there are precautions that could help this.

Emphasis should be put on prohibiting contact with the head, which could lead to severe concussions.  Helmet safety is an ongoing process and companies are always producing the “new and best” helmets for players to wear. Concussions and other serious injuries are going to occur.  It is what the team doctors do when the player has these symptoms that is crucial.

Team doctors should be certified officials that know what to look for when assessing the situation of the incident.  If a high school team cannot afford the registered team medical staff, the county should provide it so all schools can run a successful and safe football program.

Changes like these should take place in every high school around the country.  It will make sports like football a lot safer to play and easier to enjoy without worrying that people playing could potentially get permanently injured.

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Opinion: Teens lack concern over tropical storms

The desire for students to have an extended weekend has reached a new low: praying for school to be cancelled due to hurricanes. It is clear that the current student body, while residing in Florida, has yet to live through a seriously devastating natural disaster. Otherwise attitudes toward this type of situation would be far from lighthearted, as they currently are.

It is almost sick to think that only one week into school, students flooded each other’s Twitter feeds with joyous “NO SCHOOL MONDAY!” tweets; as if the abnormal rain, tornado warnings and aggressive gusts of wind allowed them to carry on with their usual weekend activities. Although tropical storm Isaac was not a major threat to the area, perhaps the bigger threat is the level of ignorance that people display by not sympathizing with those whose communities could have been devastated by such conditions, like they were in Louisiana. Considering the major damage that a hurricane can cause seems to be the last thought on countless teenage minds, because having a single day off seems more rewarding than waking up at 6 a.m. for school.

Nowadays people are accustomed to carrying on with their recreational activities before setting their priorities straight. And as always, use of time differs among students. While some see hurricane days as glorious times to cram in every last chunk information for a test and spend the day studying, others simply waste away the hours by doing something as ordinary as watching television, playing video games and sleeping. In this particular case, majority rules all. Facebook statuses and tweets expressed the immoral satisfaction that a hurricane threat brings to students’ lives.

Teens see serious natural phenomena like hurricanes as a cheerful opportunity for a long weekend. If that is because they have been fortunate enough to only experience minor street floods and a temporary loss of electricity, then may the odds always be in their favor. But with that being said, longing for hurricanes to set their paths towards South Florida to have an extra day off continues to remain unjustified.


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