2020 Elections Politics The World

We cannot excuse Joe Biden’s behavior even if we hate Trump

Opposition towards the Trump administration has skyrocketed in the wake of continual Black Lives Matter demonstrations. Many, even Republicans, have called out Trump’s handling of the protests problematic, inadequate, and even opportunistic. He has routinely called on the military to intervene in peaceful protests, blatantly incited violence, and taken advantage of the political climate to take favorable photos. Just as anger against Trump grows, so does appreciation for Democratic presidential nominee, Joe Biden.

Recently, my social media feeds have been flooded with endorsements of Biden, often accompanied by images of him with protesters. I don’t mind this; I’ll be the first to admit that Trump proves himself more incompetent and bigoted each day. However, in our rush to disavow the Trumpian ideologies, we should be careful to embrace Joe Biden, and the Democratic party in general, as our savior.

For one, Biden still has sexual assault allegations against him that the Democratic machinery has conveniently swept under the rug. Tara Reade’s sexual assault accusations against Biden has not been met with the outrage it should have been. Reade’s accusations have been ignored for decades and we are continuing to dismiss her now.

In fact, at this point, it’s rare to see any articles or publications telling her story. Rather, Democrats have done their best to push it aside, make excuses, and maintain an idealistic image of Biden.

But we can’t pretend that Reade’s story is irrelevant, or an isolated incident. After all, let’s never forget that Biden voted to confirm Supreme Court Justice, Clarence Thomas in the wake of sexual assault accusations from Anita Hill.

Staffers of his have even come out and voiced their discomfort about the environment that Biden creates.

Biden’s reputation with sexual assault has always been problematic, whether it be allegations against him or his support of other harassers.

But, with this along with growing political tension between civilians and the police, one of the most important issues on people’s minds right now is police reform. Both of these misgivings unsurprisingly go hand in hand. It is all about the maintenance of power. Trump has made his stance clear in that he continues to support the status quo of police departments and tactics. Consequently, hate mounts against him each and every day as he attempts to justify the violence of the police.

However, I’m hesitant to say that Biden is the opposite of Trump in his policies.

For example, Biden recently said that police need to be trained to shoot people in the legs rather than in more fatal ways. Why not teach them not to shoot at all, while upholstering any surviving racist tactics or training? Essentially, to Biden, police reform doesn’t mean changing the culture of authority in this country, or ensuring accountability. It just means making sure officers only maim, not kill.

Biden has a slippery reputation with racism. During his time as Senator, Biden played a major role in the rise of mass incarceration. And he was proud of it. 

He worked with segregationists on criminal justice policies that pushed the country towards the racist and troubling policies of today. 

And recently, in an interview with Charlamagne Tha God, Biden stated that “if you have a problem figuring out whether you’re for me or Trump, then you ain’t black.” 

It’s clear that Biden is using the fact that he’s a Democrat to excuse all his behavior and continue to market himself as the best choice for Black people and other marginalized groups. But we can’t avoid holding him accountable anymore. 

I don’t write this article to discourage voting or democratic political engagement. Obviously, if you are able to, please do vote. It’s undeniable that in our society voting is the most powerful tool that citizens have. However, we must not forget that voting alone is not enough. We must also hold Biden accountable for his actions, too. The lesser of two evils logic might justify us voting for him, but it does not, in any way, excuse his behavior. That is reprehensible.

When we are too fast to assume Biden as a hero, we fail to hold him accountable. Often, when I mention Biden’s flaws to people and the importance of making him confront his problematic views, I’m told that highlighting his flaws will only ensure another Trump presidency. Here’s what I say.

Hold them both accountable for their actions. What’s stopping us from doing that? Democrats are always racing to highlight how dangerous, bigoted, and supremacist Trump is. Republicans are always quick to highlight Biden’s precarious reputation.

But accountability shouldn’t be a partisan issue. We shouldn’t be ignoring the narratives of Tara Reade and Anita Hill just because we want Biden to secure the presidency, the same way Republicans cannot keep ignoring the incompetence and bigotry that Trump continues to display, even more so now amid a harrowing pandemic and widespread calls for civil rights reform.

Whoever our next president is, don’t we want them to be conscious of their problematic views, apologetic of their past, and open to true change? Because, if we don’t force our politicians to claim responsibility to their actions, can we really expect our society to change?

Biden may be the best choice for America at this point, but that doesn’t mean we should be excusing his actions for the sake of partisan politics. Being a democrat does not equate to a shield from accountability for highly problematic and unruly behavior.

Books Pop Culture

NaNoWriMo is about trying, and it’s worth it even if you fail

National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo for those who like fun acronyms, is every November. It’s when writers all over the world lose their minds trying to write 50,000 words of a novel in 30 days. It’s super fun, I swear.

I’ve participated three times, and “participated” (aka written about 500 words) another three. I wasn’t going to try this year, because I was in the middle of revising an entirely different novel, but somewhere in June, this idea popped into my head.

It was a scene, really: a girl walks down a street in New York City. It’s summer, the air is thick and condensation drips off air conditioners above her. I knew she was headed toward an important interview.

Halfway down the street, the girl stops and has a panic attack.

That image stuck with me. I’m really big on writing stories about mental illness, in fiction and nonfiction alike. And this character, I quickly learned, had OCD, something I’ve never officially been diagnosed with but that several mental health providers and I agree I likely have a version of.

So this story, this image, it stayed in the back of my mind while I worked on my other book. It wouldn’t let me go. 

Writers all over the world try to write 50,000 words in 30 days. It’s super fun, I swear.

But I was committed: I needed to finish the novel I’d been working on since late 2016! Until one day halfway through October, I was eating Dunkin’ Donuts in Central Park with a writer friend, and mentioned I’d thought about trying to finish my book before November 1st so I could start NaNoWriMo.

Long story short, my friend encouraged me to do just that, and somehow a week later I found myself done with one book and diving into preparing for the next.

It was a daunting task, honestly, because I had so much ground to cover and I’d been working on one draft of this book since February 2018. For 20 months, I slogged over one book, rewriting word after word, trying to make it perfect, trying to make it enjoyable and amazing and the kind of book I can eventually publish someday.

I just couldn’t motivate myself. Which — what an awkward thing to admit right as I’m talking about doing NaNoWriMo, which requires so much motivation. Even though NaNoWriMo is a whole nonprofit organization, and they provide a lot of support to writers throughout the month, there’s no one forcing me to write the book. 

The burden is on me, the writer, to sit down and make time.

When life gets busy and it feels like there isn’t time to do anything, NaNoWriMo gets cut.

Which is where I’ve gotten into trouble in recent years, and especially this year. Because the truth is, no matter how much the organizers try and encourage writers — through authorial pep talks and community events and little badges on your profile essentially saying “you’re doing great” — when life gets busy and it feels like there isn’t time to do anything, NaNoWriMo gets cut.

It’s really easy to just shrug and say that since no one’s expecting a book, I’m not going to finish it. If there’s no one to disappoint, what’s the problem?

Well, that’s the thing. I’ve held this story idea in my heart for close to five months now, letting it percolate, and I’ve grown attached to it. I’ve grown attached to my main character, who just wants to go to the school of her dreams and tells one lie, which leads to another, which leads to a whole summer full of lying. 

I think this story can be really good and important. So as hard as it is to sit my butt down and write when there are a million other things to do, including just wasting time watching YouTube videos, I’m going to keep writing. Whether I make it to 50,000 words or not is an entirely different question, but I’m not going to give up before Nov. 30

Because that’s what NaNoWriMo is all about: trying. Maybe you fail, maybe you succeed, but no matter how many or few words you put down, you still wind up with more than you started out with.

Food & Drinks Life

7 delicious Arab foods you absolutely need in your life

For many first-generation Arab immigrants one of the pressures we face is to be as connected to our native culture as possible. Having a connection to your mother country isn’t a bad thing at all, it just can be hard sometimes, especially if you speak broken or no Arabic. Thankfully, one of the more delicious ways to bring Arab culture into your life is through food.

In a sea of McDonald’s and Burger Kings, however, it’s not always easy to find something as good as the food you can get back in the native country. Personally, I’m Egyptian-American so finding an authentic Egyptian-based (or even just generally Middle Eastern-based) restaurant is like finding a needle in a haystack; it’s very hard to find, and when you do, it usually isn’t the best. So, for me, I grew up on my mom’s food where every other week or so, we’d have fatir for breakfast, goulash for lunch, mologhaia (also spelled molokhia) for dinner.

Now, my mother’s food is absolutely amazing and I live for the days when I can have goulash for breakfast, lunch and dinner (it’s THAT good). However, I can’t exactly squeeze all you readers into my mother’s kitchen, therefore, I bring to you a list of seven salivatingly delicious Arab foods that will have you going for thirds, fourths, even fifths:

1. Fatir

[Image Description: Fatir presented on a plate.]
This thin pastry is perfectly complemented with honey and/or sugar, and your mom will still let you eat it for breakfast!

2. Shakshuka

[Image Description: Shakshuka inside a pan.]
Shakshuka is basically the love child of eggs and ground beef, with your choice of vegetables sprinkled about. Personally, I like no veggies on my shakshuka but you do you boo.

3. Goulash

[Image Description: Two pieces of Goulash on a plate.]
Of all the Arab foods in the world, goulash is fave because it is soft (yet slightly) crispy phyllo bread, stuffed with either ground beef, cheese, spinach or all three, and it is HEAVENNNNNNNN….I live for goulash.

4. Mologhaia

[Image description: Mologhaia presented on a plate.]
This lovely mixture is a dark green sauce I like to eat with rice and some chicken but it’s still just as lovely by itself as a soup.

5. Koshari

[Image Description: Koshari presented in small cups with different sauces.]
Koshari is a combo of macaroni shells, rice, red sauce (typically tomato sauce), lentils and fried onions.  Koshari reigns high on my fave foods list, second only to goulash. And if you happen to go to Cairo, Egypt anytime soon, pass by Koshari Tahrir in Tahrir Square because theirs is the best….after my mom of course 😉

6. Shawarma

Shawarma - 8 Foods you Should Taste in Egypt
[Image Description: Shawarma wrapped in aluminium foil presented with vegetables.]
This is a pita sandwich with lamb or chicken, tzatziki sauce and any kind of vegetable you may or may not want! Eating it is absolute heaven and I highly suggest having just lamb and tzatziki sauce as it is mmm, mmm, good!

7. Zalabia

Image result for Egyptian Zalabia
[Image Description: Zalabia presented on a plate.]
If I had to pick one non-chocolate dessert to eat for the rest of my life it would be zalabia. I mean, just imagine such fluffy goodness – basically a better version of a doughnut hole – combined with honey, sugar and/or any kind of melted chocolate….oh gosh, sorry about that, I was drooling at the thought of zalabia. *sighs*

Now you guys are ready to up the ante and impress your friends and family next time you have to make some food last minute for a potluck, or rather, the next time you get that undeniable, what-ever-shall-I-do craving for amazing food. You’ll be thanking me when you take that first bite of goulash and sigh happily. You’re welcome in advance.

Love Wellness

Here’s how you can survive your family this Thanksgiving

Even if your family is picturesque, Thanksgiving invites stress, anxiety, and drama. It’s never easy to travel home only to be reprimanded or curiously examined while trying to mentally compose your sanity. 

As Martha Beck wrote on Oprah, “Your assertiveness training goes out the window the minute your brother begins his traditional temper tantrum. A mere sigh from your grandmother triggers an attack of codependency so severe you end up giving her your whole house.” 

Look, we’ve all been there. 

In short, families are strung together by threads, and generations, of dysfunction. Our similarities and differences can impact and deconstruct any sanity-saving tactics we had pre-planned before stepping foot into our childhood homes. While family is a comfort, it is also disruption. Especially for those of us who live far from our immediate family. 

[bctt tweet=”Families are strung together by threads, and generations, of dysfunction.” username=”wearethetempest”]

Your life in your new city, with your friends and your career, may drastically differ from the life you left behind.

But, here you are, heading home for the holidays.

Your ticket is purchased, your bags will soon be packed, and your nerves are already shot. How can you stay mentally sound through relentless grilling and family expectations this Thanksgiving break?

We have a few tips to help ease the pain.

1. Remember that it’s all in the family

Two women getting dinner at the table in the kitchen holding plates. One is smiling at the camera.

While your mother’s antics and questioning may not seem to be the most loving or nurturing form of affection, she’s still your family. As is everyone involved in the holiday spectacle. While you may not have chosen them, they share your blood, your quirky behavior, and your family tree.

Think about yourself for a moment before going into the holiday season. 

Where do your insecurities stem from? Why do you feel attacked when your dad mentions your career? Where does your anger go after your mother questions your intimate relationships? Of course, your feelings are valid, but try to unpack your trigger points so you can get some insight into why you’re reacting emotionally to particular topics. 

It can help you once you’re in the moment and face to face with the topic at hand.

[bctt tweet=”Try to unpack your trigger points so you can get some insight into why you’re reacting emotionally to particular topics. ” username=”wearethetempest”]

2. Give yourself space

Woman walking down a dirt road

If you need to make a quick phone call to chat with a friend, or go for a walk for some brisk air, then so be it. 

The best advice, for you and for your family, is to give yourself the mental space in order to enter the situation with a clear mindset.

Dr. Ken Duckworth from the National Alliance on Mental Illness said that “There’s this idea that holiday gatherings with family are supposed to be joyful and stress-free. That’s not the case. Family relationships are complicated. But that doesn’t mean that the solution is to skip the holiday’s entirely.”

Much of what contributes to dysfunction is what is deeply rooted in the past

Obviously, Thanksgiving isn’t the time nor the place to begin unpacking years of painful memories. For now, if anything arises that you can’t handle, excuse yourself and find a moment alone where you can rest, think, and most importantly, breathe. 

You don’t need to remove yourself entirely from Thanksgiving, but giving yourself a bit of space can help calm the air for yourself and for your relatives.

[bctt tweet=”Thanksgiving isn’t the time nor the place to begin unpacking years of painful memories.” username=”wearethetempest”]

3. Consider their voice

A man and a woman facing away from each other looking upset

Take the time to understand their thoughts and processes, where they’re coming from, and why they consider their opinion so righteously valid. If you still feel that they are wrong or being inappropriate, that’s only fair, and you have the right to think so. But first, consider their thoughts and their voice, even if it differs from your own.

You can’t change your family, whether it’s politically or simply a state of mind.

Of course, this isn’t to say their opinion is correct.

But we cannot write off others voices without accurately considering them. If you listen to their side of the argument, or conversation, you can begin a dialogue that will probably involve a large amount of debriefing.

If their voice isn’t worth considering, see the next tip. If you can slightly understand their opinion, calmly explain your voice as well and encourage them to acknowledge your choices.

[bctt tweet=”We cannot write off others voices without accurately considering them.” username=”wearethetempest”]

4. Choose to leave if necessary

Woman driving a car with the sun streaming in the window

Remember, Thanksgiving break isn’t forever. 

It’s a day, or two, or possibly three, and then you’re back to your Utopian bubble in your city of choice. Soon, you’ll be able to revel in your calm space away from anxiety or stress.

Is cousin Greg simply too much? Is aunt Susan a deeply negative impact on your self-esteem and overall well-being? Then that’s it: leave.

You aren’t chained to your family by any means—your choice to see them over holiday break is a gift you can choose to snatch back if necessary. Do not feel as if you have to be present in order for everything to be harmonious. Sometimes, life isn’t built on harmony and if you feel your mental and emotional health is at risk from being around your relatives, you can eat turkey somewhere else.

[bctt tweet=”If you feel your mental and emotional health is at risk, you can eat turkey somewhere else.” username=”wearethetempest”]

Before entering the holidays, remember to set boundaries for yourself.

Decide which people you can safely interact with and which ones you should avoid. Decide which topics you can discuss and which ones you can skip. And most importantly, maintain these boundaries.

Don’t let your family bully or guilt you into anything.

Family love is unconditional, meaning that whatever the comments may be, or what the arguments may entail, at the end of the day you’re together, but that doesn’t mean their love can’t be toxic. 

[bctt tweet=”Don’t let your family bully or guilt you into anything.” username=”wearethetempest”]

We get it, it’s complicated, it’s messy, it’s family. 

But if you take care of yourself and follow these tips, you can make it through Thanksgiving relatively unscathed. 

Food & Drinks Life

You can’t have a real Southern Thanksgiving without these fabulous dishes

My grandmother, Doll, makes some of the best food I have ever tasted. It’s rich in butter (so much butter), fat, cheese, and all of that delicious bad stuff. She spends the week before Thanksgiving cooking cornbread for the dressing (and no dressing is not the same as stuffing and I’ll fight anyone who says otherwise), several pecan and apple pies, and other desserts like peach cobbler. As you can imagine, her house smells amazing. Now, because our family shares differing political views, we don’t discuss politics at the table. Instead, all the focus is on food, and unfortunately, football. Because I hate the NFL and don’t really do sports in general, my focus is 100 percent on the food.

The dishes featured are a few of my personal favorites. It’s not a real holiday family gathering if these dishes aren’t there, am I right?

Cornbread Dressing

The dressing is NOT stuffing. I repeat dressing is NOT stuffing. It’s so much better than stuffing. Doll makes a giant pan (it even has a designated blue pan because this dish is that amazing) of this delicious dish that makes for the best leftovers. It’s made with chicken, eggs, cornbread, and a heap of spices. This is actually my favorite dish. Put a little giblet gravy on top and oh man, heaven on a plate. Because I believe everyone should eat dressing, here is a link to a similar version of Doll’s recipe. This is just a me thing, but I totally think cornbread tastes better when its made in a cast iron skillet. I actually think my mom and grandma would disown me if I made it another way.

Grandma’s Mac & Cheese

Y’all…this mac and cheese is the best mac and cheese I’ve ever had. And, I’m not the only one that thinks so. Everyone in Doll’s church circle LOVES her mac and cheese. She’ll bring it to potlucks and other church gatherings and people go wild. This mac and cheese is gooey, cheesy goodness. Doll believes the Tabasco sauce is what sets it apart from your average mac and cheese. I personally think it’s a mix of that and the like 500 layers of cheese she adds to this glorious dish.

Greenberg Smoked Turkey

This is an East Texas tradition that I never want to miss. Greenberg’s are smoked to perfection. The meat is moist and tender. Y’all haven’t had leftover turkey sandwiches until you’ve had a leftover Greenberg turkey sandwich. Basically, this turkey is life changing. Seriously. If you ever find yourself in East Texas for the holidays, buy a Greenberg turkey. Even deep friend it’s delicious! My mom isn’t a turkey fan, but she’ll gobble up a Greenberg.

Broccoli and Rice Casserole

I think this might be one of my top favs. It’s cheesy and all around delicious. I won’t lie. I have hidden leftovers so no one else can have any. Doll is on to me, but she’d never rat me out because I’m her favorite (sorry sis if you’re reading this). This dish is to die for. Doll uses a blend of cheeses for the cheese sauce, chopped broccoli, and white rice. It’s not at all healthy, but oh my gosh is it delicious.

Green Bean Casserole

Although this is a typical Thanksgiving dish, my Doll makes it especially delicious. It’s creamy, but it also has a slight crunch thanks to the fried onions on top. But the best part about this dish is that Doll usually only makes it for me because no one else in our fam loves it as much as I do. It pays to be the favorite grandchild (sorry not sorry sis) #winning

And of course, Sweet Potatoes

We eat these all year round, but it’s not Thanksgiving if Doll doesn’t make sweet potatoes drowned in butter. What’s great about sweet potatoes is you can have it as a side, and then have it for dessert later. You just gotta add marshmallows and boom. More sweet potatoes. The only sad part of this dish is there usually aren’t many leftovers.

Now it’s time for dessert. Doll usually makes two pecan (pronounced peh-cahn) and apple pies, usually a peach cobbler, sometimes a cheesecake if my grandpa requests it, and a pumpkin or rice pie. Other family members also bring stuff, but to be honest, I’m only interested in the pecan and apple pies. The pecan is my favorite because when I was little, that was the dish I always helped make. In fact, if you look at Doll’s handwritten recipe, it will say “Gracie’s Magnificent Pecan Pie.” You wish you had a pie named after you *insert sunglasses emoji here.*

Since we all believe we make the best Thanksgiving Dinner, let’s all enjoy it with our friends and family. And if you’re like me, a Democrat surrounded by Republicans, ignore everything but the food. Just keep eating, eating, and eating and eventually, you’ll fall asleep and then no one can tell you how wrong your opinions are.

USA World News The World

Castro, Ohio State, and South Korea: The Week in Review

We get it, Wednesdays can be tough to get through. In an effort to keep up with the world’s ever-changing news landscape, we’ve put together the top 10 headlines from the week so you can stay on top of things.

1. Hugely controversial figure, Fidel Castro, passes away

Cuban dictator Fidel Castro died at the age of 90. His ashes are currently being transported from the Cuban capital of Havana to Santiago de Cuba. The Cuban exile community in Miami celebrated the end of an era with celebrations on the streets. Meanwhile, state security has begun a fresh round of repression against dissent during the declared 9 days of mourning following Castro’s death.

Castro’s death was met with a wide range of emotions. The Black Lives Matter movement published an article on Medium mourning the death “El Comendante.” Others are unapologetically celebrating, calling this the end of a “dark era.” 

2. International community efforts to save Aleppo may be too little, too late 


Claims of “never again” rung hollow once more as the Syrian government’s assault on the city of Aleppo nears its final stages. With the help of Russia, Syrian forces have almost completely eliminated any rebel presence in Aleppo, along with all the hospitals and tens of thousands of civilian lives. Details are hard to come by in the days following an uptick in the offensive, and France has called for an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council to ensure aid for civilians. However, it is feared that any intervention will be too little, too late.  

3. Devastating plane crash in Colombia leaves 71 dead 


The crash killed at least 71 people during a charter flight to Medellin, including members of the Brazilian Chapecoense soccer squad on its way to the Copa Sudamericana finals. Three players, two crew members and one journalist survived. Even though a preliminary investigation pointed to an electrical problem, the possibility the plane ran out of fuel has not been ruled out. The soccer club, which has risen the ranks in Brazilian soccer and has a devoted national fan base, was set to play in the first leg of the South American Cup finals Wednesday.

4. South Korea’s President embroiled in scandal 


South Korean President Park Geun-hye asked parliament on Tuesday to decide how and when she should quit, a move which opposition lawmakers dismissed as a ploy to buy time and avoid impeachment, and shifted the burden of resolving the crisis engulfing her presidency. Opposition parties rejected her offer to resign, and called on members of her Saenuri Party to join them in impeaching Park, because she has immunity from prosecution as long as she remains in office. Park is alleged by prosecutors to have colluded with a friend, Choi Soon-sil, to enable her to wield improper influence in government affairs and in fundraising by two foundations set up to back Park’s initiatives. She has denied wrongdoing but acknowledged carelessness in her ties with Choi.

5. Fires in Tennessee sweep the mountains 


Wildfires in Tennessee have killed seven people and destroyed hundreds of buildings, officials believe more than 400 buildings have been damaged in Sevier County. The U.S. Department of Justice says 49-year-old Keith Eugene Mann Franklin was arrested Wednesday on one count of destroying property by means of fire. He is accused of setting two wildfires, and authorities say Mann has admitted to setting both.

6. Ohio State University campus attack leaves over 60,000 students in shock

ABC News
ABC News

The morning of November 28th, it was initially reported by media outlets that a school shooting was taking place on Ohio State University’s campus. However, it was later clarified that the attack involved an 18-year-old student wielding a knife. Abdul Razak Ali Artan, a Somali immigrant, has been identified as the attacker. He allegedly used his car to drive into a group of students on campus, and then proceeded to attack with a knife. Police responded within minutes and fatally shot Artan. 11 students were injured.

The University is currently investigating whether the attack was motivated by terrorism.

7.  Donald Trump will leave the business world to focus on running the country


It’s been a source of recent debate as Donald Trump’s ability to assume his Presidential duties while managing his business empire is been called to question.  However, the President-Elect has now stated he will pass on his empire to his children to avoid a conflict of interest.

According to a spokesperson from the Trump Organization, “This is a top priority at the organization and the structure that is ultimately selected will comply with all applicable rules and regulations,” a spokesperson for the Trump Organization said in a statement”.

8.  Texas will now require funeral services when a woman has an abortion

The Washington Post
The Washington Post

As if Texas wasn’t already known for being in favor of pro-life laws and government control of women’s body, they proved it again this week. Texas is now requiring all women who undergo abortions or even miscarriages to now have a funeral service. This is a blow to many pro-choice activists and women in Texas who already are limited in services due to Texas laws. Many also see this as as an intense infringement of women’s reproductive rights, as well as emotional manipulation and abuse towards women who undergo abortions or miscarriages.

Considering that increasing numbers of Texan women are turning to DIY abortion measures because of the cost and lack of availability of centers in the south, this is a horrifying development.

9. Supreme Court to consider how long immigrants will be detained before a hearing


Today the US Supreme court is discussing whether immigrants that are detained for more than 6 months have a right to a bond hearing. This discussion is during a critical time where undocumented individuals fear for their place in America. Especially with Donald Trump being the new President elect with promises for deportations as soon as he enters office.

According to the National Public Radio, “These are not the usual deportation cases, where facts are cut and dried and people are deported within a month or two of their detention. Rather, these are people legally in the U.S., lawful permanent residents who the government is trying to deport because they committed a crime, or some cases, people who turn themselves in at the border seeking asylum because they claim a reasonable fear of persecution”.

Many of those that are undocumented or rightfully here in Dentitions often live under harsh conditions. With barely being able to communicate with family members and sometimes are subjected to abuse. We can only wait and see what the response will be from the Supreme Court.

10. Netflix lovers rejoice as offline viewing becomes available

The Odyssey

Are you in love with Netflix? Want to hang out with friends or with your bae outside of home and watch a movie? We got good news for you! Netflix now allows its users to binge watch offline! That’s right – you no longer need wifi or an in internet cable to do so. You can watch Netflix on to go, anywhere, and at anytime. Without the hassle of trying to join someone’s network, without the password. Just know that to watch online, you have to download your favorite show or movie in advance, and then your good to go.

Until next week:

USA World News The World

Election Aftermath, Gwen Ifill, and “Afghan Girl”: The Week in Review

We get it, Wednesdays can be tough to get through. In an effort to keep up with the world’s ever-changing news landscape, we’ve put together the top 10 headlines from the week so you can stay on top of things.

1. Historic election aftermath: Trump’s cabinet, meeting with Obama 



President-elect Donald J. Trump’s transition team is more than a month behind schedule and on a tight timeline.

Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey was replaced as chief of the transition by Vice President-elect Mike Pence. He was fired along with two officials who had been handling national security for the transition, former Representative Mike Rogers of Michigan and Matthew Freedman. The purge, orchestrated by Jared Kushner, Mr. Trump’s son-in-law and close adviser, a transition official said, was systematically dismissing people like Mr. Rogers who had ties with Mr. Christie. The disarray has left agencies virtually frozen, unable to communicate with the people tasked with replacing them and their staff.

Trump transition team officials were a no-show at the Pentagon, the Department of Energy, the Department of Transportation, and the Justice Department.

Many Republican lawyers and government officials who would have jumped at the opportunity to work in a GOP administration are balking at employment under Trump and his cabinet picks, this is particularly true for potential national security and intelligence officials.

2. Moon closest to Earth in almost 70 years

This month’s full moon came the closest to Earth that it has been since 1948. The full supermoon peaked November 14 at 8:52 a.m. EST, but it will still look “super” for about a day after its maximum.

The difference in size between the supermoon and other full moons can be difficult to see –  it only appears about 14 percent larger than usual. December’s full moon will also be “super”, though less super than November’s full moon.

3. “Afghan Girl” Sharbat Gula to travel to India just weeks after arrest

 US News TV

US News TV

Photographer Steve McCurry photographed her as a young girl living in the largest refugee camp in Pakistan, where almost three million Afghans sought shelter in the wake of the 1979 invasion by the Soviet Union.

Sharbat Gula was arrested by the Federal Investigation Agency of Pakistan on October 26 for forging a Pakistani National ID Card. She pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 15 days in jail and a fine of Rs 110,000. Following the sentence, the provincial government offered to stop her deportation from the country, but she refused to stay in Pakistan.

According to her lawyer, Gula, now in her 40s, suffers from Hepatitis C, and is now scheduled to travel to Bangalore to receive treatment.

4. Your text messages could be going to China

 The Tech Herald

The Tech Herald

The security firm Kryptowire discovered that the software transmits the full contents of text messages, contact lists, call logs, location information and other data to a Chinese server. The code comes preinstalled on phones and the surveillance is not disclosed to users, said Tom Karygiannis, a vice president of Kryptowire. “Even if you wanted to, you wouldn’t have known about it,” he said.

The Chinese company that wrote the software, Shanghai Adups Technology Company, says its code runs on more than 700 million phones, cars and other smart devices. International customers and users of disposable or prepaid phones being most affected by the software.

It was not a bug. Adups intentionally designed the software to help a Chinese phone manufacturer monitor user behavior, according to a document that Adups provided to explain the problem to BLU executives. That version of the software was not intended for American phones, the company said.

5. Toblerone changes its shape, outrages ensues



The company was able to keep the bar’s original packaging and length, but reduce the amount of chocolate, by adding space between the triangles. The bars used to weigh 170g, now weigh 150 grams while the price remains the same. Customers are now getting roughly 10% less chocolate per bar.

“The new gappy-teeth Toblerone is yet another example of shrinkflation, where shrinking pack contents allows for a backdoor price rise,” said Ratula Chakraborty, a senior lecturer in retailing at the University of East Anglia. The sharp decline in the value of the British Pound after the UK’s vote to leave the EU, otherwise known as Brexit, has affected prices. Goods including cocoa are priced in dollars, and as a result production costs have increased drastically.

6. Legendary journalist Gwen Ifill passes away

 AP photos via WBUR

AP photos via WBUR

The Tempest remembers veteran journalist and PBS news anchor Gwen Ifill, who was widely respected for her work in Political Journalism. Ifill passed away at the age of 61 on Monday after a long battle with endometrial cancer. She was also known for her extensive work with The New York Times and The Washington Post.

Ifill was a trailblazer in journalism who broke racial and gender barriers. Gwen and Judy Woodruff were the first women to serve as a co-anchor duo on the networks nightly news. She was the first African American woman to co-anchor a national broadcast and to moderate a Vice Presidential debate.

Gwen Ifill taught us the importance of taking a stand and being bold in our delivery.

7. Mannequin challenge sweeps internet in latest “craze”

The Mannequin challenge is taking over the internet this week.

The challenge requires those involved to stand completely still while someone pans the camera through the group of people- as if walking through a picture. Most are set to Rae Sremmurd’s “Black Beatles.”

8. Post-election protests sweep across America as Hillary is revealed to have won the popular vote


After Donald Trump’s Presidential win left millions of Americans shocked, anti-Trump protests have spread across the country. Some of these protests are what some may call “peaceful;” thousands have taken to the streets to declare “Trump is not my President” and to “Dump the Trump.” In Portland, Oregon, what started as a demonstration turned into a riot, with 71 arrested and taken into custody.

A frighteningly significant spike in racially and ethnically-motivated hate crimes has swept across the nation as well. Over 300 reports of crimes have been reported just this week.

The results of the election has also called the fairness of the Electoral College into question.

9. Twitter finally takes a stand against hate speech

Words hurt, and ugly hate speech won’t be tolerated. Twitter finally decided to take a stand against hate speech this week, which some say is long overdue.

Twitter can be a place that serves as a trigger for many vulnerable people online. Activists and those outspoken about world events or racism have long been harassed by those hiding behind anonymous avi’s sending them racist, misogynistic, and hateful threats. This is a step forward for Twitter and hopefully other social media platforms take notice. Especially since hate speech has been at an all time high for many victims on Twitter.

10. Oklahoma city airport shooting – what we know 

 Business Insider

Business Insider

Yesterday, police decided to shut down an Oklahoma City airport after a deadly shooting. The victim of the attack was Michael Winchester, 52, an employee at the airport and father of a NFL player. Winchester was shot and killed in the airport employee parking lot. Apparently the shooter knew the victims work schedule and waited until he left work to act.

Southwest Airlines released a news statement about their sorrow for the loss of the companies family member. Twenty-five flights were canceled that day and other flights were scheduled to land at other airports.

“Perched on the fourth floor of a five-story parking garage, Lloyd Dean Buie, 45, used a rifle to shoot Southwest Airlines employee Michael Winchester, 52, from around 50 yards away, Oklahoma City Police Capt. Paco Balderrama said at a news conference.”USA TODAY .   Investigators believe that Lloyd acted out of anger due to his recent resignation.

Until next week:

History Lost in History Historical Badasses

4 badass Native American women from history

Growing up, the only two Native American women I learned about were Sacagawea and Pocahontas. Of the 800 pages in my American history textbook, only about a paragraph or so was dedicated to them. Basically, I graduated high school with extremely limited knowledge of Native American women and their role in United States history.

Between the four of these women, countless armies were led, several battles won, and serious levels of badassery achieved.

1. Pine Leaf

pine leaf

Pine Leaf, also known as Woman Chief, is definitely someone we missed out on learning in U.S. History. Born in 1806 to the White Clay (Gros Ventre) Tribe, Pine Leaf was a woman with a fearsome reputation and courage in her veins.

As the story goes, Pine Leaf was kidnapped and raised by the White Clay tribe at the age of 10, and grew to be an independent, strong warrior as a result. She became so respected in battle that she eventually became a leading warrior chief of her tribe for 20 years, earning the title Bíawacheeitchish. 

2. Running Eagle

Brown Weasel Woman, better known as Running Eagle, also won her name on the battlefield. She was a highly respected, incredibly humble member of the Piegan Tribe around 1825. By the time she was 15, she had already proved her mad hunting skills during buffalo raids.

After her husband was killed by Crow warriors in battle, she turned to the Sun Spirit to help avenge his death. Her warrior prowess allowed her to lead countless raids west of the Rocky Mountains. Offended by the fact a woman was leading the raids against them, the Flathead tribe killed her. But not before she made a serious tough-girl name for herself.

3. Awashonks

Fierce warrior and skilled diplomat Awashonks became sachem, or chief, of the Sakonnet tribe in modern Rhode Island in 1674.

She and her tribe supported Chief Metacom when he broke a treaty with the New England colonialists after being humiliated by them for years. This conflict eventually led to what is popularly known as King Philip’s War.

The war ended in white victory, but not before Awashonks brokered peace between her tribe and the colonials again.

What I’m trying to say is: Awashonks was a badass.

4. Annie Dodge Wauneka

Annie Dodge Wanueka

Annie Dodge Wauneka, born 1910, is known as a powerhouse and advocate within the Navajo community for improved education and health. In 1963, she became the first Native American to win the Freedom Medal for her efforts.

Her passion for healthcare was also clear from a young age. In 1918, an influenza outbreak took the lives of many of her peers at her boarding school. Despite her young age, Annie is said to have gotten right into the thick of things and assisted staff in caring for the sick.

When she got older, she became involved with the needy Navajo community, who inspired her to give back. She was also a member of the Navajo Tribal Council for a total of 8 years.  Yes, Annie, yes.

Y’all, why weren’t these women in my textbooks?

Their passion, dedication, and fearlessness would have been a refreshing break from reading about the antics of white-powdered wiggies.

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Movies Pop Culture

Here’s your movie watching list for the month

Ah, November has sneaked up on us once again. Now it’s time for colder weather, all the holiday vibes, and best of all- Thanksgiving. If you’re uber excited for the holiday season and this Thanksgiving, here’s your movie watching list for this month.

Since I don’t celebrate Christmas, November is my favorite month because of all the holiday vibes you start to get. Not to mention Thanksgiving and Black Friday shopping. And even though I don’t traditionally celebrate Thanksgiving, there’s nothing like a family get together filled with obnoxious kids running around, awkward dinner table conversations, and a TON of food.

And for those of us who have Thanksgiving break, what better way to spend that time cuddling up in your pajamas and watching movies all day?  I absolutely love waking up to a rainy day and staying in bed literally all day to watch movies.

Here are 10 movies you need to watch this month:

1. Home for the Holidays 

2. Planes, Trains, and Automobiles 

3. Pieces of April

4. An Old Fashioned Thanksgiving


5. The New World

6. Son-in-Law


7. A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving 

8. The House of Yes 

9. Dutch


10. Grumpy Old Men


Cheers to the upcoming November filled with countless movies and an insane amount of Thanksgiving leftovers.