Report Archive

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Book Review of The Butterfly Garden

Stella Miller
May 20th, 2018 - Greenville New York
Arts and Culture      

The Butterfly Garden, by Dot Hutchison, is about a team of FBI agents interrogating a young woman named Maya about the infamous Butterfly Garden. The Garden is a literal garden, built into a larger estate by a deranged man called the Gardener. The Gardener had kidnapped and raped several generations of girls. Maya is the main character, and she acts as the protector and friend to all the other girls.
The main characters are Maya and FBI Special-Agent-In-Charge Victor Hanoverian. Maya’s biggest struggle was trying to keep herself and the other kidnap victims alive in the Garden. Eventually, one of the girls, an insane teen named Sirvat, blew up the Garden. The girls had been rescued by firefighters. Maya started out with a hard shell and even harder emotions, and she ended up with cracks in her shell and a more vulnerable attitude. One theme could be growing used to letting people in and accepting their help.
The novel had a very sophisticated writing style; very well-written, with the perfect amount of details, a realism-themed mood, and varying sentence lengths.

“Some people stay broken. Some pick up the pieces and put them back together with all the sharp edges showing.”

Book Review of Crank

By Natalie Wysokowski
May 20th, 2018 - Greenville New York
Arts and Culture      

The book I took the time out of my day to read was Crank by Ellen Hopkins. The main focus of the book is clearly given away in the title. Kristina, the main character, visits her estranged father in Albuquerque over the summer for a few weeks. During her stay, she meets Adam in her father’s dingy apartment complex. They have an immediate attraction to each other and he begins to introduce new experiences to Kristina such as drugs and tobacco. Due to these experiences, Kristina becomes a new, rebellious person who goes by the name ‘Bree.’ When her time is up in Albuquerque, Kristina has to leave Adam, but a piece of Adam will always stay with her - he is the cause for the drug addiction that she spends the rest of the novel battling. Her home life becomes a downward spiral as Bree begins to prioritize boys and getting her hands on any drug to feed her hunger; whereas, Kristina struggles to maintain her grades and regain herself.
The main theme of Crank is to emphasize the consequences of drugs. Kristina or ‘Bree’ are fictional characters, but her experiences surely are not. The shocking plot twists can easily be a reality, and the author uses these elements to stress the importance of her theme.
Since Crank fits under the verse novel genre, the structure of the sentences and Hopkins’s use of vocabulary is very complex. The format is seemingly choppy and at times hard to follow. The vocabulary sets a dark and expressive mood or tone. At times, her words make you stop and think about their meaning.
“Life was good before I met the monster. After, life was great.” (Page 1).
“Fear. Need. Concern. Lust.” (Page 438).

Cavaliers Sweep

By Colby Klob
May 16th, 2018 - Greenville, New York

The conference final matchups are set. The Cleveland Cavaliers, who swept the 1 seed Toronto Raptors to advance, will be facing the Boston Celtics with Terry Rozier, who has been showing immense talent in the playoffs. In the West, the heavily anticipated Warriors and Rockets matchup has been set and should be a very entertaining series. My question is, will LeBron and his Cavaliers be able to get through the 2 seed Celtics?

Playoffs Round Two

By Colby Klob
May 20th, 2018 - Greenville, New York

The second round of the NBA playoffs started on Saturday, April 14th. The final contenders are the Golden State Warriors and the Houston Rockets in the West, and the Toronto Raptors in the east. The Raptors are the probable finalists in the east, while the pretty much inevitable Rockets and Warriors series should be the most entertaining series in recent basketball history.

Blood and Snow Poem

By Colby Klob
May 20th, 2018 - Greenville New York
Artus and Culture

Blood and Snow.

I dreamt of snow
white as the sun
a surrounding area,
so distorted and full of noise
I couldn’t make it out.
Then the sounds became
vivid gunshots, screams of savagery,
soldiers shoulder to shoulder
at the ready.
Suddenly, I realized the snow, once white
was crimson and black,
stained with blood and mud.
I looked up from the corrupted beauty of the snow.
I saw dark eyes full of death.
He looked me in the eyes
from what seemed mere inches away.
Only when he raised his gun did I realize
he was on the other side.
I looked down into my own hands,
a long gun of my own.
It felt like a century.
I watched the enemy fire his gun.
I closed my eyes awaiting death's embrace,
but, opening them,
I knew I was alive.
In an instant, without any thought,
I raised my gun and fired.
The bullet met its target.
All sounds drowned out.

His coat, the color of the blood-stained snow.

The Thought of It Poem

By Ericka Spence
May 20th, 2018 - Greenville New York
Arts and Culture

The Thought of It

The thought of it makes me
fill up with confidence.
as if I were a sparrow
flying wherever I please
soaring through the door
of my childhood,
landing in lofty trees.

At fifteen,
a freshman in high school,
I dreamt of graduation
holding the keys to my car,
parking in the student parking lot.

When I rode the bus in the afternoon
after a long day of school,
I would close my eyes and imagine the future,
thinking of foreign destinations
letting my hair go wild,
itching to fly
feeling the breeze of the world beneath me,
leaving the nest my mother built for me,
or walking through the door of my childhood
into the universe.
Today the world is mine.


Update on the Cavaliers

By Colby Klob
May 10th, 2018 - Greenville, New York

As of May 3rd:

The Cavaliers and LeBron James have secured a 2-0 lead against the Toronto Raptors. LeBron best his former record of 5 made fadeaways, with seven in game two. LeBron and the Cavaliers have had an iffy season putting it kindly, but the new team seems to be working fairly well after trading away names like Derrick Rose and Dwyane Wade. The surprising thing is, it is not all LeBron. Players like J.R. Smith, who has grown into an essential role in the Cavaliers offense, and Kevin Love, an incredibly versatile player, have carried their own weight in the series.

Moth Poem

By Colby Klob
May 20th, 2018 - Greenville New York
Arts and Culture

And Then,
it all stopped
I changed.
I came out of my cocoon
a moth
through the seasons.
I had grown from a young,
naive boy, plastic sword in hand
to a young man,
a man who feared the pain
he caused others.
Every year, I evolve from my past self
to a new model of my own character.
I change every day
like the rabbit changes its color
by the seasons,
I conform to the everchanging styles
of my American generation,
adapt to surroundings.
To adapt is to survive.
I’ll find my own way
in the rabbit hole
of life.
trying to be prepared

for anything.                                                      

Boston Celtic Blank Cleveland Cavaliers 2-0

By Colby Klob
May 20th, 2018 - Greenville New York

Boston Celtic Blank Cleveland Cavaliers 2-0

With their amazing coach Brad Stevens, the Boston Celtics have managed to grab a 2-0 lead over the Cleveland Cavaliers.

With the rookie of the year candidate Jayson Tatum, sophomore Jaylen Brown, and Veteran player Al Horford, in addition to the star point guard, Kyrie Irving, who has the best handle in the league, and starting small forward Gordon Hayward, who are both currently injured, there is no denying the Celtics future dominance in the NBA, if they can manage to stay healthy.

The Truth Behind Sexual Assault

By Kasey Pfleging
May 20th, 2018 - Greenville, New York
Recently, there have been more and more issues on the news about sexual assault. Because of this, an increasing number of questions have arisen. Questions like, “Are that many people really assaulted?”, “Can we trust the women who say that they’ve been assaulted?”, and “Why don’t the assaulted women come forward?” These things have made me want to learn more about the topic. After researching about sexual assault I’ve come to the conclusion that sexual assault is a big problem in the United States, for many reasons. Sexual assault is rarely adjudicated correctly, disproportionally affects certain groups of people, and the percentage of false accusations is low.
The judicial system regarding sexual assault is very flawed. According to a study from the Department of Justice, “out of every 1,000 rapes, 994 perpetrators will walk free” (National Crime Victimization Survey). That is one of many reasons that victims choose not to report their assaults. 13% of victims don’t report their assaults because they believe that the police would not do anything to help and 2% didn’t report because they believed that the police would not be able to help (Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics). Also, rape kits cost $400-$1500 to be tested and, because of the Violence Against Women Act, a victim should never have to pay for theirs to be tested but some states “have loopholes that force survivors to do just that” (30 Alarming Statistics That Show The Reality Of Sexual Violence In America by Alanna Vagianos). There are many issues with the judicial system regarding sexual violence.

Certain groups of people are affected more greatly by sexual assault than other groups of people. People such as transgenders are at higher risk of sexual assault. 21% of TGQN (transgender, genderqueer, nonconforming) college students have been sexually assaulted while only 18% of non-trans females and 8% of non-trans males have been (Association of American Universities (AAU), Report on the AAU Campus Climate Survey on Sexual Assault and Sexual Misconduct). Another group of people at higher risk of sexual assault are American Indians. They are twice as likely to experience rape or sexual assault than any other race (Department of Justice, American Indian Crime). “People with intellectual disabilities...are the victims of sexual assaults at rates more than seven times those for people without disabilities.” (The Sexual Assault Epidemic No One Talks About by Joseph Shapiro). That statistic was found by NPR in unpublished Justice Department data on sex crimes. Groups of people like American Indians, transgenders, and disabled people are at higher risk of sexual assault.

False accusations regarding sexual assault are very rare. Studies show that false reporting only happens between 2% and 8% of the time. A study of 2,059 cases of sexual assault in eight U.S. communities found a 7.1% rate of sexual assaults (Lonsway, Archambault, & Lisak, 2009). Another study of 812 reports of sexual assault from 2002-2003 found a 2.1% rate of false reports  (Heenan & Murray 2006). Research shows that rates of false reports are often inflated because of a weak understanding of sexual assault and inconsistent protocol and definitions (Lisak et al., 2010). The rate of false reporting, between 2% and 8%, is the same as the rate of false reporting for other felonies (Lonsway, K., Archambault, J., & Lisak, D., 2009).

Some people will say that sexual assault isn’t a big problem in the United States. They will say that it’s not a problem because it has fallen at a rate of 63% since 1993 (Department of Justice,  National Crime Victimization Survey, 2010-2014). Though the rate has fallen 63% there are still, on average, 321,500 victims (age 12 or older) of rape and sexual assault each year in the United States. That number means that there is another American assaulted every 98 seconds. Though we have made great improvements, we still have a long way to go.

There are many reasons that sexual assault is an issue in the United States. One reason sexual assault is a problem is that the judicial system is very flawed in the way it deals with the crime. Another reason is that it disproportionately affects certain groups of people more than other groups. Also, the rate of false reporting about sexual assault is very low.  This is not a problem that we have or can adjudicate our way out of, but we can start to develop a culture that is more aware of the size of the issue, and that we need to teach people, starting at a young age, about this topic, and what consent means.

Book Review of The Butterfly Garden

Stella Miller May 20th, 2018 - Greenville New York Arts and Culture       The Butterfly Garden , by Dot Hutchison, is about a t...