November 11 Issue 2011

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Blake Beat newspaper November 2011 Edition.


<p>Students go all out for Benny Bengal and the Chocolate Factory spirit week, p. A4</p> <p>Fasdmen;rit uhnbroiutbnsrtnrtnsrtjsrtj rysrjrstjsfsr</p> <p>Sophomores Homecoming weekend takes tragic turnx &amp; Kristen Freseby Savannah Doane-MalotteTragedy struck sophomore Deneah Gilbert October 22 when she arrived home from the Homecoming dance to discover that her mother, Daraye Aishia Tyson, was in critical condition. Ms. Tyson was pronounced dead the following day after attempted resuscitation. Says Gilbert, [My mom] was young, vibrant, really pretty and really funny. She never had an attitude; she never complained. She lived her life. Gilbert and her sister Zadreaun Lewis were extremely close with their mother, describing her as their best friend. [Ms. Tyson] was like my mom, says sophomore Mariama Ndure. Its tough for all of us, but all we can do is stay strong. Ms. Tyson was well acquainted with Gilberts friends, frequently spending time with them. Shortly after her first birthday, Gilbert lost her father to a shooting. Her mothers passing left her parentless, causing her move to Pennsylvania to live with her grandparents. Though she is close with her other relatives, moving from Maryland has been rough for her. Its going to be hard the only good thing is that were with our family, says Gilbert. It has been reported that on the night of her death, Ms. Tyson consumed a very small amount of alcohol, but suddenly had a strong negative reaction. For this reason, it is presumed that something was slipped into her beverage, but the cause of death is still being investigated. The funeral was held October 28 in her grandparents hometown of</p> <p>Volume 14 Number 2</p> <p>James Hubert Blake HS</p> <p>300 Norwood Rd Silver Spring MD 20905</p> <p>Online</p> <p>November 11, 2011</p> <p>Gilbert relocates to Pennsylvania after her mothers unexpected deathAliquippa, Pennsylvania. She looked fake, with too much make up on her; she didnt look like herself, says Gilbert of her mother at the funeral. When we saw her in the casket, it was horrible. Gilberts new community has been very supportive of her recent struggles, offering her places to stay and bringing meals for her and her grandparents. I didnt really know her that well, but I hope shes getting all the support that she deserves, says senior Paris Broadus. I cant imagine ever having to go through something like that.</p> <p>Aida set to hit Blake stage tonight for first of five performancesxby Leah Patterson &amp; Samara TuAfter months of rehearsals, Blakes theater company will premiere their fall musical Aida tonight in the auditorium at 7:30pm with general admission tickets selling at $10. Aida tells the tale of Aida, a Nubian princess forced into slavery, and her love interest with her Egyptian capturer, Radames. In this play, Aida must choose between love with Radames and her leadership over her enslaved people. Junior Charles Harper, who plays Mereb, says, Im most excited to see a big audience for opening night to set the tone for all of the other nights we will be performing. The role of Aida is double-cast, and is played by seniors Yasmin Wamala and Alex Reeves. Im just excited for everyone to see the months of hard work the cast and crew has put in come to life on stage, says Wamala. Radames, the other lead role, is played by senior Yann Ellinghaus and junior Ryan Reynolds. The cast and crew have spent their afternoons every day after school rehearsing for the play. However, as opening night approaches, their rehearsals have been extended to 9:30pm on weekdays. Rehearsals have [been] a rollercoaster so far, says Harper. Some days we hit really high points and some days we hit really low points. Because of the various expenses that come with putting on a musical, staff and students have worked hard to fund Aida. To raise money, they have held fundraisers at Panera Bread and Caf Rio. While they have only earned about $500 from these events, they have also received donations from the community. Students have also worked to spread the word about the musical. Publicizing for Aida has involved putting up posters around the community, setting up an event on Facebook, advertising in the newspaper and telling people through word of mouth. The cast and crew hope to have wide attendance for their performances, even though the musical is in the fall and not the spring this year. The musical releases in the fall because the auditorium is available and it is easier for the AP students who would have to balance the AP exams in May and the spring musical. Director Michel DAnna says the play will also be unchanged from the original, unlike their performance of The Tales of Arabian Nights. In the past, Blakes theater company has shown Junior Ryan Reynolds and senior Yasmin Wamala act tonight and will continue showing through next week. lively shows like Hairspray and The Tales of Arabian out a scene in the fall musical of Aida, which opens --photo by Dennis Chan Nights. However, this fall musical is far from that. With a much more serious theme, the cast and crew are experienc- challenge people, says senior ensemble member Raquel night, as well as Thursday, Friday and Saturday next week. ing a change from the usual. Usually Mr. DAnna likes to Castillo. Students can see the show tonight and tomorrow Tickets can be purchased in advance or at the door.</p> <p>Varsity boys soccer loses controversial game in regional semifinal, p. D1</p> <p>Negative costs of beauty outweigh looking good, p. C 4-5</p> <p>Students review performance of iPhone 4S, p. C7</p> <p>Stabbing rumor created by student spreads through Twitter and other media, p. A3</p> <p>Out-of-control student drivers forget dangers on roadby Joal Chen x &amp; Janine TairaTeen drivers are 50 percent more likely to crash in their first month of unsupervised driving than after the first year, according to a study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. The University of North Carolina Highway Safety Research Center, which conducted the study for AAA, concluded that travel related to school events leads teen drivers to carry more passengers, sharply raising the risk of a serious or fatal crash. Students also believe loud music and other distraction impair inexperienced drivers. Says senior Lynne Virgil, I think the amount of people allowed in the car with [teens] at one time should be limited. Failure to slow down or yield is also a common mistake made by new drivers, causing 57 % of all crashes in their first month of provisional driving. Due to inexperience, students are also more likely to make simple mistakes, such as not signaling for a lane change or not checking a blind spot, which can have disastrous results. Virgil admits to almost crashing after not checking her blind spot one night. Students feel the need to continuously communicate with one another, even behind the wheel. Though it is illegal and strongly discouraged, young drivers still text and drive. AAA states using a cell phone while driving quadruples the risk of crashing. Teenagers always feel like they are invincible, says senior Courtney Cristaldi. [When] they text and drive or drive past curfew or speed they [think] they will be okay. Fellow students and parents worry that new drivers take advantage of the power associated with having a license. They think having a license allows them to drive recklessly, says senior Danielle Blocker. [They] dont realize that they dont know what theyre doing. Blocker has been in cars with teen drivers who drove recklessly and barely avoided crashes. Teenagers, nevertheless, are not the only risky drivers. Multiple students have seen adult drivers making dangerous decisions on the road. Ive seen adults have their blinkers on for miles which can be an indicator of drinking and driving, says junior Emily Tempchin. Some [adults and students] are reckless and think nothing bad can happen to them, adds Virgil. This causes crashes because you never know what they are going to do.</p> <p>A2</p> <p>November 11, 2011</p> <p>The Blake Beat</p> <p>Teenagers always feel like they are invincible. When they text and drive or drive past curfew or speed, they think they will be okay.Courtney Cristaldi</p> <p>Sporting pepper spray becomes safety trend among Blake femalesby Savannah Doane-Malotte x &amp; Kristen FreseCarrying pepper spray, though a punishable offense inside school, has become a trend among teenage girls as a safety precaution against rape and other crimes. Many girls carry pepper spray regardless of the school rule, as they think it is a necessity to their well-being. We should still have the right to protect ourselves, says senior Samantha Tyler*. It doesnt matter whether its [in] the halls or the streets. The school rule explicitly states that students are not allowed to have any type of device to cause injury to another person inside school. Anyone caught with a weapon, including pepper spray, can be expelled or even reported to the police. Living in the DC Metropolitan area, many female students fear for their safety in everyday situations - even in attending school. Says senior Amanda Read*, Girls are targeted more and can be more easily taken advantage of, which is why we feel we need extra protection. Media coverage of crimes involving the kidnapping and rape of young women has increased awareness of their vulnerability. In the state of Maryland, pepper spray is categorized as a dangerous weapon and people may only possess it for very specific reasons. The law says that if a person feels that it is necessary to carry mace in order to be safe, it is not a crime. However, it is up to a judge to determine what a reasonable precaution is. Many parents provide their children, often young girls, with pepper spray so that the family feels secure. Says parent Amelia Castillo*, I think girls should carry pepper spray to protect themselves from being attacked, especially when they are alone. Ms. Castillo has her own daughter carry mace because she knows that a girls physical strength can often not match the power of an attacker. Some students worry that the possession of pepper spray could get out of hand if used in a non-emergency situation. They also question whether pepper spray is powerful enough to keep someone safe. Says senior Christian Jeong, It is a type of protection, but it isnt enough to [completely] protect anyone. Companies and foundations such as Safety Girl and Girls Fight Back, which educate young women about the importance of self-defense, have created feminine pepper spray products. These can be bought in several different colors and patterns, and are small and portable. Some can even clip</p> <p>Weapon for emergencies provides security to parents, Bengals alike</p> <p>to backpacks or key chains, making them accessible and convenient to use. The school rule states that pepper spray is a weapon and being caught with it can lead to suspension with a recommendation for expulsion. Administration stresses the trouble that a student could get in for carrying mace, but understands the desire to feel safe. Assistant school administrator Rudy Tyrell Jr. says, I think its a reflection of our societys moral decay and predilection for depravity. Its sad. He recommends carrying a whistle and a cell phone with the non-emergency police phone number. To feel safer, Mr. Tyrell also suggests that girls take self-defense classes and always travel in groups. It is important for girls to follow their instincts about what is safe, and to try to avoid instances where they may feel uncomfortable. *Names have been changed.</p> <p>Fall Blood Drive saves lives, over 95 pints donatedx by Emily Eaglin &amp; Nicole Sterling</p> <p>The Blake Beat</p> <p>November 11, 2011</p> <p>A3</p> <p>Successful, noble cause draws in many BengalsLast weeks fad was dressing up as bloodsuckers for Halloween; however, Mondays red hot trend was donating blood through Inovas annual blood drive. Bengals were more than eager to donate blood at Mondays blood drive, donating a total of 95 pints and saving 285 lives. I feel like Im helping someone, says senior Brian Battaglia. Why not [give blood]? Its an easy way to help others out. The vast majority of student blood donors feel this accomplishment as well. There are countless reasons to donate blood to people who are in need of it. As a young generation its important to carry donations forward, adds Inova blood donation services worker Terrance Cochran. Even those who fear the procedures persevered through donations. I was really scared; people were holding my hand and they couldnt find my vein, says senior McKayla Adam. Im terrified of blood and needles, [but] I did it [and others] should too. With the help of many student and teacher donors, this years blood drive had a higher turnout than that of previous years. As long as students met the age and overall health requirements, students had the freedom of donating. For some, blood drives can be surprisingly relieving. I feel like donating blood can help relieve stress [and] build better self esteem, says Inova donor center trainer Val Thomas. As for the new shirt that comes with every donation, most donors agree that it is a great garment. With the motto Others Live Because I Give, donors could really relate to the shirts message which contributes to the shirts hip and</p> <p>FAFSA process clarified by financial aid workshop for parents, studentsx by Samara TuSeniors and their parents attended the financial aid workshop November 1 to learn about the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) process and other student financial aid programs, including grants and scholarships. At the workshop, students learned how the government calculates their need and how they can potentially receive more money to cover college expenses even if they do not have critical financial need. Says senior Nnamdi Odoazu, [The workshop] was very helpful in the sense that we know everything were supposed to access and what was required. Melissa Gregory, Director of Financial Aid at Montgomery College, explained how the federal government uses a formula to determine how much aid they could give to a student. The formula subtracts the Expected Family Contribution (EFC), the amount the family is reasonably expected to contribute towards college, from the Cost of Attendance (COA) which is the combined expenses at a college like tuition and room and board. While the average of the EFC is about $12,000, students who show that their EFC is low can earn more federal money. However, the monetary aid that the government gives out depends how much they have saved. Some families may not need financial aid to cover their students tuition, says college and career coordinator Kathy Moore. [However], middle class families can qualify for financial aid you wont know unless you apply! While it is not hard for a student who is in critical financial need to receive money from the federal government, many students who do not show critical need are struggling to find money to pay towards their college. Say...</p>