Stevenson captains are ready to kick off this weeks homecoming game
Stevenson captains are ready to kick off this week’s homecoming game
Ava Treakle

Stevenson football looks ahead to homecoming game this Saturday at noon vs. Misericordia

After four straight wins, Stevenson football is back at home this Saturday at noon for the homecoming game against Misericordia University.

The Mustangs have dominated over the last few weeks, only allowing 13 points to be scored against them in their last three outings.  

Junior QB No. 9, Nyaire Wilson (Ava)

On the offensive side of SU’s game, Louis Clouser (32) has been a new dominating force. With 95 rushing yards and two touchdowns during last week’s game against Alvernia University, the junior running back is someone all fans should be looking out for.  Junior RB Maurice Hammond (21) has been another key rushing player for the Mustangs, also scoring two touchdowns last game and rushing for 65 yards. Nyaire Wilson (9) continues to be the backbone for Stevenson’s offense, playing a well-rounded overall game. Against Alvernia, the junior quarterback contributed one touchdown, 115 passing yards, and 15 rushing yards.

Defensive standout, junior Daniel Johnson, No. 54 (Ava Treakle)

The Stevenson defense has shown their grit over the past few games, evident by such low points scored against them in the recent stretch of games. Among the top contributors were multiple juniors. Daniel Johnson (54) has been a force to be reckoned with, contributing seven total tackles and two sacks against Alvernia. Gavin Shields (34) and Anthony Lembo (22) contributed six total tackles each during their last game, with Shields also adding 1.5 sacks. The junior-heavy defense looks to hold Misericordia to another low scoring game.  

Misericordia is 2-4 (2-3 MAC) coming into the homecoming game while the Mustangs sit at 5-1 (4-1 MAC). Tune in at noon this Saturday to see SU battle to extend their four-game winning streak to five and be sure to keep an eye out for the consistently impressive offensive and defensive leaders.  




Monday 8 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Tuesday 8 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Wednesday 8 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Thursday 8 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Friday 8 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Saturday 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Sunday 12 p.m. - 10 p.m.

Preston Speight (with Hannah Sobieck)

BEST DIRECTOR - "Revisionist History"
Hannah Sobieck (with Holt Hendershot, Ian Bair, Riley Frutiger, and Andres Johnson)

BEST ACTOR - "Revisionist History"
Andres Johnson

BEST ACTRESS - "Mourning"
Colleen Dinne

BEST SCREENPLAY - "Revisionist History"
Riley Frutiger

Ian Bair

BEST EDITING - "Ascending Aorta"
Brendan Hylton

BEST DOCUMENTARY - "My Real Parents"
Zhanna Snyder

Friday, April 12 - 7 p.m.

Saturday, April 13 - 7 p.m.

Sunday, April 14, 2 p.m.

Monday - Thursday: 8 a.m - 10 p.m.

Friday: 8 a.m - 6 p.m.

Saturday: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Sunday: 12 p.m. - 10 p.m.

  • Monday, May 13, 10:00 a.m. – School of Humanities and Social Sciences & Beverly K. Fine School of the Sciences
  • Monday, May 13, 3:00 p.m. – Brown School of Business and Leadership & School of Design, Arts, and Communication
  • Monday, May 13, 7:00 p.m. – Graduate Schoon
  • Tuesday, May 14, 10:00 a.m. – Nurses’ Pinning
  • Tuesday, May 14, 10:00 a.m. – School of Education & Sandra R. Berman School of Nursing and Health Professions
  • April 15: "Spider-Man"
  • April 22: "Spider-Man 2"
  • April 29: "Spider-Man 3"
  • May 6: "The Amazing Spider-Man"
  • May 13: "The Amazing Spider-Man 2"
  • May 20: "Spider-Man: Homecoming"
  • May 27: "Spider-Man: Far From Home"
  • June 3: "Spider-Man: No Way Home"
A poem by Drea Trumble
A poem by Drea Trumble


A slight sapling at the start,

the same as you and me,

is how the story begins

for this young oak tree.


A seed carried in the wind,

a journey taken all alone

before coming across a space

she could finally call her own.


Through the roughest days

and all of the darkest nights

The little sap tried it all,

before finding her own vice.


The vice she chose to help

On the windiest of days?

The sun who always shown

the very kindest of rays.


And so the two shared

the struggles of the days

and both knew the other

Convinced them to stay.

Day One                                                                Day Two

No. 8 St. Lawrence 9, No. 16 YCP 8 (OT)          Dickinson 11, YCP 8
No. 7 CNU 17, No. 4 Dickinson 9                         St. Lawrence 13, CNU 12 (OT)
No. 2 RIT 15, No. 14 Washington & Lee 9          Hamilton 16, Lynchburg 15
No. 3 Tufts 19, Hamilton 12                                  RIT 16, Tufts 11
No. 12 Lynchburg 15, Stevenson 9                    Stevenson 10, Washington & Lee 9


  • YCP - York College of Pennsylvania
  • CNU - Christopher Newport
  • RIT - Rochester Institute of Technology

Rowan University April 4th, 7 p.m.
Eastern University April 6th, 2:30 p.m.*
Hood College April 10th, 7 p.m.*
York College of Pennsylvania April 17th, 7 p.m.*
Albright College April 24th, 7 p.m.*

*MAC conference game

Tim Flanagan - 15
Tim Flanagan - 3
Aidan O'Brien - 7
Justin Novoa - 35
Tim Flanagan - 10

2024 UCHC Men's Hockey Championship Tournament Schedule

Wednesday, February 21 (Quarterfinals)
No. 8 Nazareth at No. 1 Utica – 3-0 Utica
No. 7 King's at No. 2 Stevenson – 5-1 Stevenson
No. 6 Chatham at No. 3 Wilkes – 5-1 Wilkes
No. 5 Manhattanville at No. 4 Alvernia – 6-1 Alvernia

Saturday, February 24 (Semifinals)
No. 3 Wilkes at No. 2 Stevenson- 4-3 OT Stevenson
No. 4 Alvernia at No. 1 Utica- 7. p.m 4-0 Utica

Saturday, March 2 (Championship)
No. 2 Stevenson at No. 1 Utica– 7. p. m.

2024 UCHC Men's Hockey Championship Tournament Schedule

Wednesday, February 21 (Quarterfinals)
No. 8 Nazareth at No. 1 Utica – 7 p.m.
No. 7 King's at No. 2 Stevenson – 5 p.m.
No. 6 Chatham at No. 3 Wilkes – 5 p.m.
No. 5 Manhattanville at No. 4 Alvernia – 7 p.m.

Saturday, February 24 (Semifinals)
Lowest Seeded Quarterfinal Winner at Highest Seeded Quarterfinal Winner - TBA
Second Lowest Seeded Quarterfinal Winner at Second Highest Seeded Quarterfinal Winner - TBA

Saturday, March 2 (Championship)
Lowest Seeded Semifinal Winner at Highest Seeded Semifinal Winner – TBA

Muhlenberg  Feb. 17th, 7pm
Dickinson March 9th, 7pm
Lynchburg March 15th, 8pm
Washington & Lee March 16th, 8pm
Elizabethtown March 27th, 7pm

Philip A. Zaffere Front Entrance

Monday 8 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Tuesday 8 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Wednesday 8 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Thursday 8 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Friday 8 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Saturday 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Sunday 12 p.m. - 10 p.m. 

America is Comically Cyclical

Since 2020, America can be characterized by daily mass shootings, widespread distrust in “the media,” and a turbulent government highlighted by a seemingly endless battle between a bullheaded businessman with no political background and a confused, tired shell of an alternative.

Long removed are we from the patriotic days of inspiring heroes like John F. Kennedy fighting for our rights under constant constructive scrutiny from the journalistic greats of Bob Woodward, Carl Bernstein, and the once “most trusted man in America,” Walter Cronkite. We no longer engage in a civil political discourse, but rather all-out war with the other side amid constant echoes of “the problems with the media.”

Although in recent years we’ve witnessed unprecedented crises, this is not the first time parties are drastically opposed, people are looking to act out or place blame, distrust in the media spreads due to wrong or lacking information, and the common person becomes suddenly caught up in the constant stream of noise and empty promises from whomever they decide is the lesser evil.

In 2012, on the heels of masterpieces like “The Social Network” and “The West Wing,” award-winning writer Aaron Sorkin created a show about a hypothetical broadcast news network that avoided the bias and fluff typically present in news to deliver nothing but facts and good journalism to the country.

“The Newsroom” features a popular and well-liked anchor Will McAvoy (Jeff Daniels) as he works under senior producer, and ex-girlfriend, MacKenzie McHale (Emily Mortimer) to get the people the good information they deserve with their team of dedicated, yet sometimes clumsy, reporters.

Although released in 2012, the show takes place beginning in 2010 and attempts to depict how real historical events could have been covered such as the killing of Osama Bin-Laden, the rise of the tea party, or the 2012 presidential race between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney.

At the start of the first episode, McAvoy is a member of a panel and is asked “can you say why America is the greatest country in the world.”

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After a few quips, McAvoy responds that “it’s not the greatest country in the world professor.”

McAvoy alludes to the plethora of statistical evidence describing all the areas that this “great” country is lacking in what New York Times reporter Alessandra Stanley mocked as a “profane, eloquent, Sorkinesque rant against pat jingoism and willful ignorance.”

Although Stanley may have thought the show to be overwritten and sometimes containing corny dialogue, it is unavoidable that the “jingoism,” or aggressive patriotism, that McAvoy protests has been a recurring problematic theme time and again throughout American history

McAvoy also made a point of how we used to fight for a different set of values.

Unfortunately, we’ve diverged from such a moral code and all sides of the political spectrum seem more prideful and vehemently opinionated as ever. We’ve all been able to bear witness to the dangerous results of mixing loaded language with devout supporters who feel unmoving in their version of truth.

As mentioned, a major storyline in the first season is McAvoy’s rigorous coverage of the populist tea party movement where he scrutinizes congressman after congressman with the important questions because he finds it necessary for people to have access to the most crucial information. He does not want a party in power built on brash policies and overly conservative decision making that could have potentially harmful implications for the American people.

McAvoy finds such a problem with a party diverging from their traditional values and losing focus of the right goals that on air he said, “the most conservative republicans today aren’t republicans,” and goes on to criticize their use of dangerous rhetoric, eventually describing the movement in terms of their inciteful language as “the American Taliban.”

I didn’t watch “The Newsroom” as it aired in 2012, I watched it in 2022. Somehow, watching hypothetical coverage of a political era I was too young to understand felt perfectly relatable.

Though the never-ending conveyer belt of growing pride and lack of trust seems inevitable, the first step in reversing it means rationally obtaining the necessary information to make a decision not to buy in. Anyone can say they don’t trust the overarching media or don’t care for politics, but without intentional intervention, the belt rolls on.

At one point McHale states her reasoning for producing their broadcast specifically.

“The key to democracy is a well-informed electorate,” McHale said. “When there is no information, or much worse, wrong information, it can lead to calamitous decisions that clobber any attempts at vigorous debate.”


2024 UCHC Men's Hockey Championship Tournament Schedule

Wednesday, February 21 (Quarterfinals)
No. 8 Nazareth at No. 1 Utica – 3-0 Utica
No. 7 King's at No. 2 Stevenson – 5-1 Stevenson
No. 6 Chatham at No. 3 Wilkes – 5-1 Wilkes
No. 5 Manhattanville at No. 4 Alvernia – 6-1 Alvernia

Saturday, February 24 (Semifinals)
No. 3 Wilkes at No. 2 Stevenson - 3 p.m.
No. 4 Alvernia at No. 1 Utica - 7 p. m.

Saturday, March 2 (Championship)
Lowest Seeded Semifinal Winner at Highest Seeded Semifinal Winner – TBA

America is in need of self-reflection

At a time when cultural awareness, progressive movements, political turmoil, and social media trends have defined the last decade of this country, it seems like Americans are more focused on staying in touch with everything about the country, but have lost touch with the self. 

Michael Jackson’s “Man in the Mirror,” originally released in 1988, can transcribe an issue with the modern state of America, the message of the song having lasting relevancy. This issue of a lack of touch with oneself has plagued this country for many decades, and the problem has only gotten worse in the digital age where people can be distracted by others’ “more interesting” lives.  

A similar behavior was discussed in the texts for one of the courses I am taking this semester. The TLDR of the discussion was that modern Americans cannot stand to be alone with their own thoughts. Today, we are so used to having something to take our mind off of ourselves, that we very rarely take the time to tune in to oneself and our own lives and problems. 

The song urges people to start change with themselves, “look in the mirror” before they attempt to tackle the problems around them. oSiedah Garrett, a co-writer for the song, told “To make a difference on the outside, you have to first start from within. So I think that Michael just got it. He got the meaning of the song right away.”  

Yet, somehow, we are still the same ones who have this immense concern over what is going on all around us. The year 2020 felt like a huge turning point for the country as well as the world as there was so much going on at the time, from Covid, to the rise of TikTok, to the presidential election, and the resurgence of the Black Lives Matter movement among George Floyd’s death.  

But during all this time when people were supposed to be quarantined and socially distant, a time when people should have been able to have deep self-reflection, these struggling times seemed to have the opposite effect.  

For instance, in the wake of George Floyd’s death, the Black Lives Matter movement saw a strong rally on social media and in the real world. On June 2, 2020, millions of people across Instagram posted a blank black image on their page to show their support for the cause. There were endless Black Lives Matter protest that summer across the country.  

The question is: “How many people really focused on their own individual contribution to the issue?”  

The entire movement became more of a trend than something that people truly dedicating themselves to inspire change. And as that trend died down, so did the support for the movement, and there has still yet to be legislative action taken to fix the issue at hand. 

This is just one example of how people in this country tie themselves to trends and movements, and lose focus on individual improvement, self-reflection, and self-accountability. As Michael Jackson sings in “Man in the Mirror”, “If you wanna make the world a better place, take a look at yourself and make a change”.” 

America is beauty

As Americans we're often obsessed with the idea of physical perfection. J. Cole's 2013 song "Crooked Smile" stands as a unique and powerful anthem that challenges these norms and celebrates imperfection.

The song provides a lens through which we can examine the concept of American beauty, showing that it's not defined by flawless appearances, but rather by the authenticity and resilience that come with embracing one's imperfections. 

"Crooked Smile" dives into the societal pressures placed on women to fit into traditional beauty standards.

J. Cole's lyrics are a moving reminder of the constant expectations that women face, as he raps, "I keep my twisted grill, just to show them kids it's real. We ain't picture perfect, but we worth the picture still."

In these lines, he acknowledges that perfection is an illusion and encourages women to break free from these beauty norms. True American beauty, as outlined in this song, is about having the strength to defy societal expectations and embrace one's true self.  

"Crooked Smile" promotes self-love and acceptance. It's a reminder that true beauty comes from within and that loving oneself, flaws and all, is the ultimate expression of confidence.

J. Cole sings, "Love yourself, girl, or nobody will."

These words resonate with the American ideal of individualism and self-empowerment.  

In the land of opportunity, where individual freedoms and self-expression are celebrated, self-love becomes a vital factor.

The song's message of self-love and acceptance doesn’t stop there, it extends to issues of social justice.

J. Cole frequently uses his platform to address systemic racism and police brutality, drawing attention to the countless injustices present in American society.  

"Hey officer man, we don't want nobody getting killed. Just open up that cell, let my brother out of jail," J. Cole said.

These lines show that American beauty is not just skin deep; it's also about fighting for justice, equality, and a better future for all. In the essence of American beauty, "Crooked Smile" pushes a narrative that goes beyond the surface level of appearances.  

It reminds us that true beauty is authenticity, and authenticity is capable of challenging societal norms. American beauty isn't about conforming to an idealized image; it's about embracing our crooked smiles and imperfections. It's about self-love, self-acceptance, and the resilience to take a stand against injustice.  

J. Cole paints a portrait of American beauty that is both real and inspirational. Cole's "Crooked Smile" isn't just a song; it's a reflection of the American spirit.

It embodies the idea that beauty isn't about adhering to impossible standards; it's about celebrating what makes us unique.

It's a reminder that embracing our imperfections and loving ourselves is a powerful act of self-expression and empowerment.

In a nation that should fundamentally value individualism and self-determination, this song speaks to the heart of America itself.  

As we listen to the words of "Crooked Smile," we are reminded that true beauty is not defined by flawless faces but by the courage to be ourselves. It's a call to embrace our quirks, to love ourselves, and to stand up for those who can't. In this way, "Crooked Smile" becomes a testament to the diversity of American beauty, where every imperfection adds to the richness of the story.  

J.Cole's message echoes across the nation today, reminding us that our crooked smiles are not a sign of weakness but a symbol of strength. This song is not just a melody; it's a mirror reflecting the essence of American beauty.

It tells us that we are beautiful in our imperfections, that we are strong when we love ourselves, and that we have the power to change the world when we stand up for justice.  

We are all part of the beautiful fabric that is America, and our crooked smiles are what make us unique, strong, and undeniably beautiful. 

America is sexist

“Boys will be boys.” 

The stupidest saying that can come out of someone’s mouth, be written on a piece of paper, texted on an iMessage, or posted on social media. However, after watching "The Notebook" for the third time, I feel as though director Nick Cassavetes and the writers of the 2004 film probably disagree. 

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 Even before looking at the content of the film, it is important to know who operated behind the scenes in terms of the main department heads who worked on "The Notebook." For background, a department head on a film set is the main person in control of a specific area such as camera, sound, directing, editing, and so on. The film was created by director Nick Cassavetes, cinematographer Robert Fraisse, screenplay by Jeremy Leven, and based on the best-selling romance book by Nicholas Sparks.  

The first thing I find interesting about this is that the film has all male department heads.

As a woman in film, it’s no secret to me that the male gender controls the industry.

Dr. Martha M. Lauzen is “a nationally and internationally recognized expert on the employment and representation of women in media.” She has done extensive research on statistics of women in film in the year 2022, and her results are mind blowing.  

In 2022, women directors, writers, producers, editors, and cinematographers made up a mere 24% of employees on the top 250 grossing films, a marginal 7% increase from 1998. In 2022, three out of every four employees at the top of the industry, were men.  

From the very beginning of film, men have maintained this dominance. While many things in the world have begun changing in the right direction, this industry hasn’t.  

The first film ever made was a two second “film” called "Roundhay Garden Scene" in 1888 from male director Louis Aimé Augustin Le Prince.  

Another important piece of film history was the 1903 silent comedy "Mary Jane's Mishap" credited for being far ahead of its time of filmmaking. Taken directly from Internet Movie Database (IMDb), a short synopsis of the film reads “Smith casts his wife as a sluttish housewife who is mutilated by lighting her oven with paraffin.”

At first, I thought Smith was the husband in the film, but I was wrong. Smith, or George Albert Smith, was the film’s director who did cast his own wife to be exposed in such a way that gives the impression that women are stupid and careless.  

In today's industry, I would expect for women to be shown in a better light. So why is it that when a woman is an authoritative figure and has high power in a film, she is still somehow sexualized? Why can’t she just be successful and not also shown naked? I’m not sure why, but I’d love to ask director David Leitch of the 2017 film "Atomic Blonde."

This movie follows Lorraine, a female undervocer MI6 British intelligence agent during the Cold War. Her mission is to find a list of missing agents, and solve the murder of a colleague. The film is action packed, quick, mysterious, and shows how strong a woman can be.

Later on in the film, we’re shown a man waking up in a bed with three naked women, amongst other nude scenes. Sure, I understand that romance is almost always in a film because that’s what people want, But there can be romance without showing women naked or performing sexual acts for men. 

It’s also important to note an opposite reaction I’ve had while watching an explicit film. Janicza Bravo directed the 2020 film "Zola". This movie is quite literally about sex work, but the women are never shown nude. In fact, there is instead a short compilation of full-frontal nude men.

When we watched it in class, most of the class gasped at this scene. However, other times when women were shown nude, the class was mostly silent, with a few “ooh’s.”

I have a strong feeling that people were surprised by the men because they aren’t typically shown nude, whereas nude women have become a commonality in film. 

In a country where masculinity is synonymous with power, the film industry as a whole and films like "The Notebook" draw perfect parallels to the sex-driven nation we live in.

America is perception

America, the land of opportunity and freedom, or so they say.  

If you peel back the layers, you'll find a nation where perception is the key to shaping its reality in ways you might not even realize are possible.

When listening to coverage of a debate I would've sworn that the two different channels I had watched were covering two different events. This is where the phrase "America is a perception" becomes evident, and it's a concept rooted deeply in the realm of government scandals.

In this era of information overload and spinning, perception becomes as important if not more than the truth itself. One of the most striking examples of this intersection of perception and reality is the Watergate scandal, carefully depicted in the film "All the President's Men" (1976).

In American history, Watergate stands as a stark reminder that perception can eclipse facts.

Everything began with a break-in at the Democratic National Committee headquarters, a plot hatched by individuals within former President Richard Nixon's administration.

The 1970s, a time before smartphones and social media played a role in the success of this break-in. Back then, the ability to manipulate and control narratives was less complex, and as we know now, this contributed to the unfolding of this scandal. 

But the true significance of Watergate went far beyond the initial break-in. What truly defined this scandal was how the perception of it evolved.

As more information and leaks came to light, the trust the American public placed in their government plummeted. Watergate was an eye-opener to how perception could shape the destiny of a nation.One way to see this is through Nixon's approval rating between 1969-1974.

On Jan. 28, 1969, Nixon had an approval rating of 60% and a disapproval rating of 5%. On Aug. 5, 1974, Nixon had an approval rating of 24% and a disapproval rating of 66%. One of the biggest approval rating dives in presidential history.

"All the President's Men", directed by Alan J. Pakula, portrays the investigative journey by Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, two hardworking journalists from The Washington Post. The film is a deep exploration of the power of perception through their eyes, showing us how  a scandal and subsequent unwavering hunt for the truth can rewrite the course of a nation. 

There's a pivotal scene where Woodward meets the elusive informant, Deep Throat, in a dimly lit parking garage.

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As Americans, we often view things through a financial lens, making Deep Throat's advice to "follow the money" seem like common sense today. However, back in those days, the financial aspect of investigations was far less prominent. This simple yet powerful advice led Woodward and Bernstein to uncover crucial information about the Watergate scandal.

This investigation led to an evolution how political actions and scandals are scrutinized, with today's discussions often beginning with money and financial implications. 

The power of "All the President's Men" isn't just in its retelling of the Watergate scandal, it lies in its reflection on the impact of perception.

Before Woodward and Bernstein uncovered the scandal, Nixon was seen as one of the most accomplished presidents in American history. He had navigated the Vietnam War, negotiated a groundbreaking arms treaty with the Soviet Union, and boosted diplomatic ties worldwide. Achieving all this in a single presidential term was nothing short of astonishing. 

However, once the scandal unraveled the perception of Nixon dramatically flipped. Concrete evidence from those infamous tapes showed him for what he was: a liar.

While it's no secret that politicians often bend the truth, hearing the President himself admit to criminal activities was a game changer. It swiftly altered the public's perception and trust in the government. It's a moment where the balance of perception and trust forever shifted in the public's eyes. 

Watergate isn't the only government scandal illustrating the notion that America is nothing more than the public's current perception.

The Teapot Dome scandal of the 1920s and the Iran-Contra affair in the 1980s are additional instances where public perception played a crucial role in shaping the outcome. These scandals, alongside Watergate, spotlight the lack of trust and the ever-changing nature of perception in American governance. 

In conclusion, the phrase "America is a perception" summarizes a fundamental truth about the United States. The nation's history is scarred with government scandals that support the idea that public perception can influence political destinies as much as the facts themselves.

"All the President's Men" captures this concept through its lens on the Watergate scandal and the media's responsibility in informing public perception. It's a lesson that in a democracy, what the public perceives holds as much weight as the concrete facts.

The perception of the American government is a force with the power to change the course of the nation. So remember, in the upcoming season of American politics, perception often steals the vote. 

America is a political dystopia

Dystopian fiction is an increasingly popular genre in America, and can serve as a very powerful lens for us to view our society through. Media like the show, "The Handmaid's Tale," make the most of this idea, calling attention to dangerous ideas already present in our society and portraying the end results of this harmful thinking.

In fact, the main antagonistic force in the show - the theocratic Republic of Gilead - directly mirrors the misogynistic control over women's bodies that we see in our own society.

Using religion as a way to control others is not a new idea in our world, and plenty of art has portrayed this idea in countless different ways. However, "The Handmaid’s Tale" goes a step further by mixing this with divisive political issues of our modern era.

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Does a society that sees childbirth and fertility as the main value of a woman sound much different from how certain politicians talk about abortion now?

Taking freedom from women and reducing them to childbearing objects is certainly something that a disgustingly high number of men fantasize about. 

The theocratic government of Gilead doesn’t stop at simply mandating religious laws though, twisting the words of their religion to fit their own needs. Mirroring our own society of dishonest politicians, the story is full of contradictions in the moral code of its leaders. Anyone living in modern day America must know what it’s like to feel helpless in the hands of leaders who pretend to have our best interests in heart. 

The series also calls attention to a very important part of the structure of our government: the separation of church and state.

While this might seem like a given in America, countless religious groups have been working towards eroding this barrier for decades. This story shows just how bad things could get if that separation were to be broken, and serves as a rallying cry for our nation to keep our government as secular as possible. 

In fact, I believe that because the original novel - written by Margaret Atwood - was made as a response to the rise of conservatism in the 1980’s, it is explicitly trying to call attention to the parallels between its dystopia and our own potential political reality. It urges the audience to be vigilant when dealing with extremism of all kinds, and it also serves as a stark reminder of how far things can spiral out of control if we aren’t careful.

While our government is far from perfect, it is set up to systematically avoid our country crumbling into a mess like the one present in "The Handmaid’s Tale," and should serve as motivation to keep it that way.  

So, after analyzing "The Handmaid’s Tale," I was left with one big question.

In a country filled with constant political and social unrest, could our society ever become like Gilead? The audience is left to decide for themselves, but it certainly warns against becoming complacent in the face of censorship and oppression.

The story not only calls on us as citizens to uphold our political institutions against the hands of evil, but also for us to look inwards and ask ourselves if we would be on the right side of history in a situation like this. Overall, it is a chilling reminder of the end result of the political ideas in modern day America, and it challenges us as the viewers to do our part in preventing a dystopia like Gilead from ever becoming a reality. 

America is engrossed with growing up

For many American children, there is a question asked that they will be faced with for the rest of their lives. One question with countless possible answers and no set timeframe for when it is answered. The age-old question, what will you be when you grow up?  

This question is often asked as early as kindergarten, as if a child has had ample time to even consider what they would want to do with their lives. A child doesn’t even understand the concept of double-digit ages or the concept of years in time, yet they are asked what they want to be when they grow up. The 2015 film “The Little Prince” perfectly demonstrates that America is obsessed with this idea of growing up. 

The film is an adaptation of a classic tale of the same name written by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry in 1943. The original story was known for its fantastical elements and points to the theme of growing up. The book was adapted into an animated film in 2015. 

The Girl, whose name is never given (voiced by Mackenzie Foy), is the main character in this adaptation of The Little Prince. The girl resides with her single, workaholic Mother, who has high expectations for her daughter (voiced by Rachel McAdams). The Mother and the Girl move into the school zone so that the Girl can be accepted into a prominent school. In addition, the Mother creates a strict study schedule that the Girl must adhere to over the summer break. When left alone for most of the day, the Girl quickly gets sidetracked by her strange neighbor, the eccentric old Pilot (voiced by Jeff Bridges). 

The Pilot and the Girl end up becoming friends. The Pilot tells the Girl of his experience meeting the Little Prince, an inquisitive little kid, after his jet crashed in the Sahara Desert. The Girl and the Pilot grow closer every day, and she begins to open her mind to her imagination. She becomes entranced by the story. However, she is constantly battling the structure her mother has built for her, what the Mother considers “essential”. One day, after a big argument with the Aviator, the Pilot becomes ill, and the Girl goes on a mission to find the magic of the Little Prince for herself. What she finds is not what she expects. 

The Little Prince may just seem like a fantastical kid’s movie, but underneath all the fluff is a very real problem: America’s obsession with growing up. With every birthday, a child is reminded that with a new age comes new responsibilities and priorities. “Oh, Grow Up” has become the common phrase of reprimand for behavior deemed too unacceptable for someone’s age. Mass media portrays the working household, starting in a child’s teen years working in retail or fast food. There is an entire generation whose comfort show is about people working in a paper company.  

From young ages, we are taught you go to school, go to college, get a good job to raise the next child to go to school, go to college, get a good job. We see this in The Little Prince, as the Mother gives the Girl step-by-step instructions for her life plan, stating, “The minute of the hour, the hour of the day, the day of the week, the week of the month, the month of the year, the year of your life!” (Osborne, 2015). Many kids in America are often focused on the next. From elementary school to high school. High school is the most accelerated space. Within four years, sometimes even two, a child is tasked with getting good enough grades to get into post-secondary education. They are expected to be active in clubs, take rigorous courses, decide on a major, find colleges that have that major, apply to those schools. Then they must decide where they are going to go, apply for scholarships to pay for school, choose housing, the list goes on. All between the ripe ages of 14-18. Because you have to grow up at some point, right? 

The Little Prince shows the dangers of being too focused on growing up. When the Girl makes it to the world of the Little Prince, she is met with rainy weather, high office buildings, and people blankly walking by with briefcases in hand. She quickly finds out that there are no children here, that children are not even allowed! In this world all people are put through a program, depicted much like school, to grow up. This leaves the environment of the world dismal and dreary. This may seem like an exaggeration; however, America often looks this way as well. There is a focus on keeping your head down, climbing the corporate ladder, but many adults are left unfulfilled. This is seen in the new trend of quiet quitting, where employees do the bare minimum in their jobs (Daugherty, 2023). Many are less engaged and unenthusiastic toward their jobs. 

Though this reality is bleak, the film does not leave us without the solution to this problem. The Girl takes the grown-up Little Prince to the planet of his Rose, where physically she (Rose) is withered. The Girl believes the Rose to be dead, but then the Little Prince remembers. He remembers his childhood, turning back into a child at the end of the movie. He states, “It is only with the heart that one can see rightly” (Osborne, 2015). While that may seem like a wishful phrase, it helps the Girl realize that to grow up, does not mean she must forget her childhood. It does not mean she must lose her inner child. It is in protecting the inner child, protecting “the heart”, that she is able to see clearly. With this knowledge the Pilot, in his hospital bed can tell the Girl that she “…will make a wonderful grown up” (Osborne, 2015). America must cultivate proper childhoods with children, allowing kids to be kids. Assisting and guiding in the decisions that can overwhelm a child. America must place value in who a person is, not what a person can do. Only then will we also be able see the magic of The Little Prince. 

America is fame obsessed

America being obsessed with famous celebrities is not a fresh idea in today’s world and it hasn’t been since decades ago. 

For decades, America has been consumed by all sorts of media. Music, movies, television, and even blog posts. American citizens love to hear about their favorite movie, television or music star. We as a country are nose deep into what these celebrities are up to, that we are entertained by anything that goes on in their lives. Sure, people love to hear about the good things in a celebrity’s life, but when it comes to the sad things that happen in their life, we are still entertained by it.  

Take reality shows like “Keeping Up with the Kardashians” for example. People tune in to see Kim Kardashian’s “boujee” lifestyle. But one thing that all reality shows love to promote is drama. Often in reality shows, they show bad moments in the stars' lives whether it may be an argument or one of the stars crying, or even physical fights. The viewers love the drama. They love to see relationships and friendships be broken as a form of entertainment. 

“The Truman Show” (1998) directed by Peter Weir is a film that explores this idea in a way. “The Truman Show” is about Truman played by Jim Carrey, and his life that is being broadcasted to the world without him knowing. As the film goes on, Truman begins to see how things are not what they seem.  

Throughout the film, people tune into the show, seeing Truman being borderline tormented by the crew of the show, and the viewers at home love it. They are glued to their screens as Truman’s life is becoming a living hell every second.  

At one point during the film, Truman holds scissors to one of the cast members’ necks, threatening to hurt her if she does not tell the truth. The audience just watches, not thinking that he could snap and potentially witness a murder at most. This is one of many instances where we watch Truman suffer through traumatic events.  

Truman finds out that his “dead” dad, is alive, and that the people in his show are being paid, while finding out that the world he is in, is not the real world. Even throughout the film, the cast members promote products that are also sponsors of the show, which is also a tactic that reality shows use where rich celebrities talk about brands such as Prada, and Dolce & Gabbana. 

Towards the end of the film, Truman talks to the creator of the show, Christof. Christof convinces him to stay in the world he has created for him, but Truman goes against his orders and leaves the set of the show. During this, the audience is once again, glued to their screens, wanting to see what happens.  

After Truman leaves the show, the audience cheers and everyone from around the world is in an uproar. After this, the broadcast is cut, and we see two people ask, “What else is on?” as if they did not watch a real person go through traumatic events as his life took a complete 180 and they shrugged it off as if it was nothing.  

This can be seen as an accurate representation of how people watch reality TV show stars go through their tough times and depressing moments and they watch it for entertainment.  

Screen Rant wrote an article on “The Truman Show” and it goes into the idea of the world being consumed by the media saying that it “explores the manipulation of reality by a media corporation, highlighting how the media shapes and sells an alternate reality for entertainment and profit.” 

With people watching these reality shows, people often do not think about how the stars feel. They do not know what it is like to feel the way they do. And sometimes it is often shrugged off that we watch celebrities at their lowest and it is used as a form of entertainment. While these stars go through depressing moments of their life, moments that most people do not want to be shared with the public, people criticize and love to watch someone’s life crumble and it has been happening for years.  

The idea of watching someone’s pain and suffering for entertainment just sounds wrong. Many people do not realize it, but that’s what is going on. As of now, it does not appear that anything will change in the next few years, as there are a lot of reality TV shows that are continuing as well as new ones that are premiering on famous streaming services such as Netflix. 

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    abigale eashOct 19, 2023 at 2:02 pm

    fascinating article ava