Seventeen-year-old Brandon Tejada feels that common sense is not very common at all. The more we strive for the next best thing, he says, the more our basic thinking decreases. “People in society today are getting dumber and dumber because people get too lost in technology,” says Tejada, from the John D. O’Bryant School of Math & Science. Jason Thai, a junior at the O’Bryant, believes that our sound judgment is being eaten away by our superspecialized culture. “Nothing is common in this world,” says Thai. But, teens say, it’s not too late to find a core direction. After all, says 16-year-old Margaret Anne Fortune, from the O’Bryant: “It’s something you learn.”
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A University of Chicago study published in November found that children brought up in atheist and non-religious families were more generous than kids from religious households. Before reading an article on the study, I -- like many others -- was under the impression that the opposite was true, considering how many religious parents have told me that “God is love.” Of course, we don’t hear a lot about the non-believers out there, so those thoughts are one-sided. However, the study said: “Since 5.8 billion humans, representing 84% of the worldwide population, identify as religious, religion is arguably one prevalent facet of culture that influences the development and expression of prosociality. While it is generally accepted that religion contours people’s moral judgments and prosocial behavior, the relation between religiosity and morality is a contentious one.” Indeed, I believe that every child’s kindness and motivation to share stems from how they are raised by their parents and not necessarily from the religion they’re introduced to.
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Winter, Winter is cold. And I ain’t talking about the weather. She’s a girl, a fierce young adult....who’s all about herself. Winter, the cold one. She’s stuck on Midnight. And I ain’t talking about nighttime. I’m talking about a tall, dark, and handsome one. And he doesn’t pay Winter any mind. Winter, freezing cold. Had everything she ever desired. Winter was spoiled and rotten. Ricky Santiaga got her anything she ever needed. But she kept wanting more and more. Then, day after day... Night after night… She ended up with nothing. Hopeless...and in trouble.
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Why Some People of Color didn't send sympathy cards to France after the Terrorist Attacks  Not everyone hoisted the French flag on their Facebook page after the November terrorist bombings and shootings in Paris that ended up killing 130 people. Across social media, there was a backlash from some people of color who felt the international rallying cry #prayforparis underscored a double standard of sympathy for their own recent series of killings by police and others in this country. “Notice how white people easily empathize w/victims of international terrorism while denying the domestic terrorism inflicted upon us,” one black activist tweeted. Other postings pointed out France’s involvement in the slave trade, such as this one that wondered how “black people are praying for a country that is responsible for the enslavement of their ancestors.” Young people interviewed, including teens of color, said they understood the anger directed at the French but felt it was misguided. “Just because we’re not being supported doesn’t mean you guys shouldn’t be supported,” says Sarskiyya Wallace, 16, from Margarita Muñiz Academy. Seventeen-year-old Amina Mason, who goes to school in Jamaica Plain, says blacks should have mourned for the Paris victims despite France’s racist legacy. Staphanaika Janvier, 16, from Muñiz Academy, feels that people in America were right to be there for the French since they helped the US after the attacks of 9/11.
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Public schools should teach sex ed to inform young people about human reproduction, lower the risk of spreading diseases, prevent unwanted pregnancies, and encourage healthy relationships. Opponents say that teaching sex ed in school will encourage young people to become sexually active before they are really ready. Furthermore, they say that teaching children about sex is for parents, not schools. But every public school student should have access to sex ed because it’s a way of maintaining a healthy society and lowering the risks of poverty.
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