By: Charli Gaklin
On Monday May 25th, a black man named George Floyd was brutally murdered by a Minneapolis police officer. An officer knelt on Floyd’s neck while Floyd pleaded with him to get off and stated that he could not breathe several times. A video of the murder, which was shot by a bystander, was shared throughout social media platforms with condemnations of the officers who have since been terminated from their job. Despite being let go, the officers have not been charged with any criminal offenses.
Similarly to the murder of Ahmaud Arbery, this horrific incident has brought the conversation of both police brutally against minorities, specifically black people. Black men in particular are 2.5 times as likely to be murdered by police than white men, that’s about 1 in 1,000 black men. Black men are the most vulnerable when it comes to police brutality due to obvious racism and stereotypes. In my head I keep wondering: Why are these incidents still happening and why do people still not care about police brutality? This needs to stop. The racism and the violence against innocent people is unacceptable in this day and age.
We as a country need to do better. While other politicians from across the country have sent out statements, President Trump has yet to speak on Floyd’s death, however, he still continues to tweet. Something needs to change in terms of the mistreatment of black people by police. We, as both Americans and human beings need to take action to ensure equality and justice for all.
By: Meghana Nakkanti
It is the year 2020, yet innocent people of color are still being shot. Unlike the stories we usually see, this time, an innocent black man was shot by people who weren’t police officers. Since 2012, the United States has seen hundreds of people shot. These people are hardly incriminated. Take the case of Amber Guyger, an off-duty police officer who shot unarmed Botham Jean in his own apartment. She ended up getting 10 years in prison, and eligible for parole in five years. Meanwhile, possessing 1-2 grams of certain drugs can get between 2-20 years in prison.
Ahmaud Arbery was a black man from Brunswick, Georgia, where he used to run everyday for years. He was a friendly man who waved to his neighbors as he ran. However, in February, a pick-up truck with 2 white men was parked along the side of the road. Both men in the truck were armed, and ended up fatally shooting Arbery.
This is a tale that we have seen time and time again. Living while black. Tamir Rice was killed at a playground in Ohio; Terence Crutcher was killed while being pulled over by police; and Walter Scott killed in Louisiana leaving a convenience store. This bigotry and hate needs to stop. A black man is more than 2.5 times more likely to be shot than a white man. This story of hate ended up in a life lost. However, Arbery and his family didn’t even get justice. The criminal justice system chose to not incriminate the two men responsible for his murder. America can do better. Black Americans are Americans too, and it’s time that their lives were valued. No one should have to fear for their lives because of the color of their skin, yet that is the world that we live in today.
Written by: Shahd Khourshed
Humans are Earth’s virus, and COVID-19 is the vaccine.
Social media platforms, such as Twitter and TikTok, have been praising and sharing this idea for the past weeks. That dangerous statement (however well-intentioned it may have been) has brought back ecofascist tropes fueled by environmentalism and negligence for human life. Yes, Italy’s canals are clearing and China’s air pollution is decreasing, but encouraging a positive correlation between the coronavirus and the environmental benefits is suggesting that a loss of human life is necessary for the sake of future sustainability. The trending tweets assume there’s a direct link between humanity and the well-being of our environment. Normalizing this ideology through social media can only continue hurting already vulnerable communities.
Minorities are already struggling enough during this pandemic. Asian Americans are suffering from hate crimes and racism because COVID-19 is being labeled as the “Chinese Virus.” Hispanic and African-American households aren’t earning their paychecks because many businesses are closing. To top it off, there are tremendous mortality disparities between minority groups. That fact alone reinforces that all the “We are the virus” statements are contributing to and reinforcing ecofascism.
Ecofascism, simply put, is environmentalism with xenophobia and the elimination of people of color. It’s the belief that sacrificing minorities is “worth it” if the Earth wants to continue providing for future generations. This ideology is deeply rooted in white supremacy and violence against non-white and marginalized populations, turning them into scapegoats. The trope that there must be sacrifices for the good of the environment takes advantage of many lives and can result in genocide. After all, when it’s decided that some groups of people must sacrifice themselves, the groups chosen are often the marginalized populations.
Besides being racist and classist, ecofascists also blame climate change on certain groups of people rather than the companies emitting all the carbon. Instead of understanding that our dying planet is due to the capitalism of oil companies, they choose to hold individuals accountable for our environmental problems. This mindset is dangerous and, to be frank, isn’t doing much to save our ecosystems. Eliminating certain groups isn’t the answer. Working together to reduce carbon emissions and water pollution will help sustain the Earth.
Though everyone who retweeted those messages wasn’t necessarily aware of their underlying meaning, I believe that we should be aware of the negative effect of our words. These ecofascist beliefs are hurting humans who have just as much of a right to live as anyone else on this planet.
about the Author
About Shahd: "I’m a freshman from Texas who wants to make a difference someday in the medical field. When I’m not contributing to GenZ Writes, you can find me rewatching disney movies and reading classic literature. I’m also a part of my school’s DECA and HOSA chapters."
By: Farishta Anjirbag
On 3rd May, 2020, India woke up to another controversy. A group of boys -- mostly schoolboys -- had been exchanging photos of their female classmates on an Instagram group chat called “Bois Locker Room”, to objectify and sexualize them. One of their classmates, having acquired screenshots of this chat, exposed the group on Twitter. Among the screenshots was a picture of a snapchat conversation between two boys, wherein one was instigating the other to gangrape a female peer. For obvious reasons, this conversation was the most controversial, and contributed immensely to the vast reach of the post.
Written by: Kyra Variyava
To the non-believers of our generation,
When we talk about this generation, there is a preconceived notion of us being the
depressed, aimless, wavering, unsatisfied bunch of kids who constantly have something
negative to say about the world. And I don’t live under a rock. I’m aware that we’re still a
world under construction and we have a long way to go, but I refuse to believe that
we’re the kind of people that sit back and do nothing. And there is no escaping the
hypocrisy, is there? On one hand you say our generation isn’t doing enough and all we
care about is ourselves, but on the other hand you criticize us saying we’re too loud and
obnoxious- so since you couldn’t make up your mind and chose to comment on our
generation- let me remind you of all the incredible things that this generation has
actually managed to do:
By: Ishita Khambete
We are currently in the middle of a pandemic. This pandemic has devastated lives, families, and peoples’ safety and security. We can see it because people have lost their jobs, family members, and an overall sense of normalcy. To add more to the mix, studies have shown that because of the pandemic, domestic violence has increased significantly.
Written by: Nandiinii Gupta
South Korea had become one of the fastest countries to control the spread of COVID-19 in the
region. The novel technological and scientific proficiency is certainly admirable.
However in light of recent events, it turns out that the country might be running the risk of a wide spread infection again, as a 29 year-old man living in Yongin tested positive for the virus.
Written by: Amanda Sherman
Over the past 8 weeks, the whole of America has been embroiled in national turmoil. Ever since mid-March, when a large segment of the country shut down its schools, students have been forced to adopt unconventional measures to further their education. Notably, using online platforms such as Google Classroom or Zoom.
Written by: Nandiinii Gupta
In times like these, the necessity for expression is becoming greater by the day. The only
refuge people are finding is in practicing different arts and crafts. This isn’t limited to
traditional artists who are creating masterpieces with their brushes and colors. It extends way