The World Is Our Oyster

    Every day that passes is a day closer to the elections. Every night, there would be a headline on the news about this candidate having a problem with another candidate or anything concerning our politics. A major problem about our government or our justice system would pop out once in a while and I’ve noticed that more and more people are paying attention to what’s happening today. More importantly, I’ve seen that more of the youth are voicing out their opinion and saying what they believe in.

    I remember hearing from my sister that there are people asking why we are getting involved with political issues and voicing out our opinions about the government when we are minors and not yet eligible to vote. Personally, I was rather confused about this and slightly offended. Just because we are minors doesn’t mean we can’t pay attention to what’s happening in our country. It’s important to be able to learn about the issues of the country and not censor ourselves to what really is going on today.

    In To Kill a Mockingbird, a book I’ve recently read, I’ve learned a many amazing lessons and here are some of them:

Think for yourself.

Bad things happen.

Do not be afraid to stand up for what’s right.

You can never fully understand a person until you see things in his point of view.

    For me, these lessons are what the youth should always keep in mind. Thinking for ourselves is important because not everything the crowd likes is what’s right. Bad things happen. Of course. The world isn’t perfect, but we shouldn’t try and hide from the awful things that happened previously and what’s happening right now. When we voice our opinion, there will definitely be people who believe we are wrong and that we are not saying the truth. Instead of insulting them or pushing them away, we should try and understand what they believe in and what they’re trying to say. Most importantly, always stand up for what’s right. If there are people who are pushing you down, use them as a stepping stool to rise up. In my opinion, we shouldn’t be afraid to expose ourselves to reality. The world is our oyster and we should welcome whatever life has to offer us.

Equality For All

    There have been so many articles circling around the internet lately about equality and racism. I’ve read a few about people being killed for no apparent reason. I’ve recently seen a video of a black girl being beaten up by a police officer while she was just seated at her school desk. Coming across these issues, I can’t help but wonder how we are going to achieve world peace if we can’t even get rid of racism or inequality in our own country. I’d now like to talk about a few of these topics.

     My mom, sister, and I watch the news almost every night and I’ve noticed that there are still many issues about rape. Majority of the victims are females and most are teenagers. I don’t understand how this is still one of the top crimes out there when men and women are all equals. Our bodies shouldn’t be sold or used for pleasure. We are ALL created by God in His image and we all have the same rights.

    Speaking of rights and equality, To Kill a Mockingbird is a perfect book that talks about it and also focuses on racism. In the book, multiple characters strongly believe that white people are typically better than blacks. It also talks about how some people judge others based on their social status. In my opinion, these still occur today. If people find out that you live in the slums of some neighbourhood, they’d probably assume that you’re a criminal or a gangster when you could be the smartest kid in your class. Another reason that they may criticize you for is your religion and nationality. Nowadays, if people find out you’re a Muslim or if you’re Arabic, they’d generally think that you’re dangerous and ruthless. These could all be completely wrong. Recently, there have been a few terrorist attacks around the world by ISIS, but that doesn’t mean every Middle Eastern person is perilous. I think this is one of the biggest problems now. Just because they’re the same nationality doesn’t mean they make the same choices.

    I don’t understand why these kinds of issues still exist today. It’s 2016 and it’s a new year. It’s time we change our mindset and get rid of our judgement towards people. We could easily get rid of these problems if we all stopped degrading each other. We all have a purpose in this world no matter how difficult times could be. 2015 has just ended and another year has just started. Let’s use this opportunity to help change the world step by step.

    Here are a few videos about indifferences towards other races particularly Muslims. They helped me open my mind even more to the fact that we are all children of God even if we’re all different nationalities.

Anti-Racist Short Film

Muslim Hate: A Social Experiment In America

Blind Trust Project

Put Racism In The Right Place (short video)

Why “To Kill A Mockingbird”?

    The moment I started reading To Kill A Mockingbird, I kept wondering why that was the title. I couldn’t piece together why that was chosen to be the name of the book. Many chapters in, I’ve finally learned why. Long story short, Scout and Jem received air rifles as gifts. Atticus, their father, tells them to shoot tin cans, but never shoot mockingbirds. He tells them that it is considered a sin to kill one. It’s considered a sin to kill a peaceful mockingbird because they do nothing but provide music for us. They don’t do any harm to us and we shouldn’t harm them back. “Do unto others what you want them to do unto you.”

    I was very fascinated with the meaning behind the title, so I made a two artworks related to mockingbirds.

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To Kill A Mockingbird

What is the meaning of boldness?

    Boldness means to have confidence that what I say or do is true, right, and just.

    For the past few months, I’ve been reading a book called “To Kill a Mockingbird”. In this book, there is a man who has this specific character trait in his personality. His name is Atticus Finch. He is the father of Jem and Scout Finch and he is a lawyer. From what I’ve read, I’d say he is a very respectful and kind man. It is said in the book that he is working on a case and his job is to defend Tom Robinson, a black man. Back then, racism was particularly common, meaning that black people weren’t seen as equals yet. For him to defend a colored man, he would need to be rather bold to not only say the right words, but know that they are appropriate ones to state.

    In my point of view, his biggest challenge isn’t his job, but how he has to treat those who speak unacceptably about him. Their neighbor, Mrs. Dubose, would tell his children that he’s no better than the “niggers” he defends and quite a lot of people would call him a “nigger-lover”. Aside from the foul sayings folks say about him, he’d still keep his head up high and respect each and every one of them. As an example, he would still greet Mrs. Dubose with a smile every time he passes by her home. Isn’t that nice?

    He’d still manage to respect everyone no matter how rich or poor they are or if they’re colored or not. He sees everyone as equals. Luke 6:31 says, “Do for others just what you want them to do for you.” If we want to be respected and treated nicely, we’d have to treat others the same way as well.

    From the moment Adam and Eve sinned, we are born into this world with a sinful nature. I believe that one of the most common sins we commit is to judge others. We’d think that we’re higher than them or better than them. God says that we must be humble at all times. He is the ultimate Judge in this universe. Every one of us is created in God’s image and we shouldn’t look down on others.

    Tragically, once we sin, we hide it with another. Our sins multiply without God and they separate us from Him. If we want to be the best person we could ever be, we should let Him in our lives. Once we let Him lead our lives, it would certainly be easier to to be bolder in everything we do or say.