Donald Trump Banned From Social Media

By Colin Corrado 
Staff Writer

   After inciting violence and instigating his supporters to storm the capitol on January 6 in an attempt to stop the certification of Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 election, former President Donald Trump has been banned from Twitter.

   Trump’s Twitter ban originally started as just a twelve hour long ban on January, with Twitter saying that three of his tweets violated their policy and Trump would regain access to his account on January 8 if he deleted the tweets in question, but on January 8 Twitter elevated the ban on his account to a permanent one as they believe the tweets Trump had made were “in violation of the Glorification of Violence Policy” and “likely to inspire others to replicate the violent acts that took place on January 6”. Trump attempted to use his TeamTrump campaign account to circumvent the ban but the account was suspended within minutes of Trump making tweets

   Along with Trump’s suspension, over 70,000 accounts belonging to followers of QAnon, an alt-right conspiracy theory, have been suspended. These users attempted to migrate to an alternative social media platform named Parler following the mass deplatforming on Twitter, but Apple and Google quickly removed the Parler app from their respective stores and Amazon Web Services stopped hosting the site, though Parler is now using a russian hosting service.

A Failed Attempt at Assaulting The U.S. Constitution

By Daniel Lennon
Staff Writer

On January 6, 2021 the Former President of The United States held a protest with thousands of his supporters at the Ellipse in Washington D.C. This event held a wide range of participants, some  attending to protest the election results in a quiet and simple manner, to hear out the President and hear what he had to say and what claims the Former President wanted to convey to his group of loyal supporters. They carried flags, wore hats and shirts and said chants in support of the Former President, there had been hundreds of these rallies and events held by the Former President throughout his four year tenure. However, on this day.. January 6th a large group had been staging, speculating and planning a way to make their voices heard. This plan was not a standout protest to support the embodiment of the First Amendment, as many Ameericans do. This plan was influenced through social media staging, posts and many unfounded claims and lies that had built an unequivocal mindset that would threaten our democracy. It would threaten Republicans, Democrats, Independents and mostly importantly, The American people and our was of life. The unthinkable became reality that day.

On a chilly, cloudy afternoon a large group of people made up of hundreds marched down the small roads and through the neighborhoods entrenched in democracy, that neighborhood being Capitol Hill. Upon arrival they surrounded the Capitol. An overwhelmed and severely unprepared police department stood in their way. Little barriers and no unified command by incopetent leadership left individual officers to fend for themselves, while other officers are still being questioned for their involvement in this insurrection. This group charged the barriers, overran police officers and began assaulting members of law enforcement left and right. They formed at the steps of the capitol building, where our democracy was at work, confirming the President-elect of the United States Joseph Biden. As they kept the charge windows were smashed. Officers were trampled, one D.C. police officer was thrown on the floor by this group of savages and was beaten faced down, another was crushed into a doorway as he and other D.C. police officers tried to stop a mob of insurrectionists at the frost door. The group persisted and did enter the capitol building. Invading the senate floor and Speaker Pelosi’s office. People’s lives were lost, including a hero police officer Brian Sicknick. The damage was done, the divisiveness conveyed and evil breached the sacred dome that so many have died for and so many are buried just a short distance away. Nonetheless, this insurrection was pivoted later in the night by police agencies across the D.C. metro area and members of the National Guard, the U.S. The Constitution still prevailed. A President elect was certified, Vice President Pence gained Bi-Patrisan credit for his roles in standing up for what the American people and for what our Constitution holds near and dear, freedom and democracy.  

Just yesterday, a new President was inaugurated, Former President Trump holds a Senate Impeachment Trial in the near future with his reputation and credibility still dangling by thread and gone for so many Americans, our resiliency still prevailed and it always will.  For the first time in over 155 years our nation’s democracy was tested on a strenuous level and it, as always prevailed and came through the light to show us, we are all American and we should all stand for what is right!

The Ultimate Guide to Having a Galentine’s Day

By Ally Haddad
Staff Writer

   With February comes candy and couples but it can also bring about pre-Valentine’s Day stress for those of us who are single. However, whether you’re celebrating V-Day or avoiding it all together, you can still celebrate Galentine’s Day. 

   So what is Galentine’s Day? Is it even a real holiday? Galentine’s Day is a time to celebrate your love for your lady friends on February 13th, the day before Valentine’s Day according to Urban Dictionary. The fake holiday started getting recognition in 2010 when in the show Parks and Recreation, the fictional character, Leslie Knope, introduced the holiday in an episode titled Galentine’s Day. In the episode Leslie and her gal pals participate in “Ladies celebrating Ladies.” over a brunch. Since the term came to popularity, the fake holiday has been unofficially added to everyone’s calendar as a way for singles to still have fun over Valentine’s Day.

   There’s no wrong way to celebrate this holiday. Galentine’s Day isn’t an anti-Valentine’s Day but rather a day when you and your best gal pals can come together to celebrate each other no matter your relationship status. During the pandemic, it’s tough to plan a get together with friends so plan accordingly to what you’re comfortable with. Some suggestions include an at home spa day, bake off, game night, or even going on a hike. Binging rom-coms over a sleepover or even hosting a DIY day is always a fun option. You can find several valentine’s day themed crafts and DIY decor on pinterest. Hosting a small gift swap for your friends is also an excellent idea. No matter how you choose to celebrate, remember this is a day to celebrate the great friendships you have in your life regardless if you have a significant other on Valentine’s Day. 

Kim Kardashian and Kanye West split

By JoJo Okrah
Staff Writer

After six years of marriage in early January of 2021, t.v. personality Kim Kardashian announced her divorce to her to be ex-husband, rapper Kanye West.

According to West she’s tired of the relationship. She says “I’m done.” 

Many fans say that the relationship has been dead for a while now. Kanye has been reportedly airing out their relationship woes at his presidential rallies and church concerts. Kanye running for presidency put a big rift in their relationship. Fans and the media started to suspect something was up when they didn’t see Kanye in Kim’s family christmas pictures that were posted to her Instagram.Sources close to the family say “They are keeping it low-key but they are done,” and that “divorce is imminent.”

There has been a meme circulating around social media saying, controversial make-up guru and business mogul Jefferey Star was in a relationship with Kanye wi=hile he was still married to Kim, and that was the reason for the divorce. However, Star refuted in his newest vlog the rumor saying that it was false and to stop.

Kardashian even hired Hollywood divorce attorney Laura Wasser to settle their affairs. As of right now Kanye isn’t with his family as this is happening. He is in the couple’s 14 million dollar ranch in Wyoming. The divorce will be discussed on the new season of Keeping Up with the Kardashians which will also be the last.

Should President Trump Be Impeached?

By Brett Tobiassen
Staff Writer

President Trump has already been impeached once, but not removed from office. Congress is moving towards impeaching the president this week. His impeachment passed the house and will be decided by the senate.
Is it right for him to be impeached? Maybe, but either way it’s not worth it. Today is January 14. Trump has six days left in office. Six. Impeaching him will overshadow Biden’s first days in office. Trump doesn’t deserve impeachment. He incited the initial protests, but he never told anyone to storm the capitol. Zero politicians had consequences for encouraging Black Lives Matter protests that caused insane amounts of damage to private, family owned businesses. President Trump seems to be a common enemy to many, but why? Trump gets slammed for everything he does and is constantly under the mainstream media microscope. 

More illegal immigrants were deported by ICE in 2012 to 2016 (Obama’s second term) than in 2016-2020 (Trump’s first term), but Trump gets labeled as a racist. Democrats and Republicans are a dying breed. Democrats are more worried about getting rid of President 

Trump then helping their own district. Republicans are more concerned with defending Trump then helping their own state’s and districts. 

Instead of voting on stimulus and other essential things, congress is voting on impeaching a president who has 6 days left in office. It is completely ridiculous and will not help a smooth transition of power from President Trump to President-elect Biden.

The Power of Social Media In Society

Megan Reese
Staff Writer

    Our generation has grown up with tablets in our hands at all times, phones used as maps, and answers at the click of a button. This gives an insane amount of power to not only technology but to the people that create it. The question remains, is that power positively or negatively impacting our world?

    As children, we were told to spend car rides looking out the window and enjoying the ride. Now, kids are being handed an iPad with an endless amount of screen time. Within our society, there are many different aspects such as political, cultural, economic. The scary part is that upon the rise of technology, every single one of those aspects is being impacted by social media. Politicians are vocal via social media platforms, young girls are taught what society deems as “perfection”, and full-time, paid jobs are created for social media “influencers”.

    Let’s start with politics within social media. In 1789, George Washington wasn’t able to tweet every time he needed to make an announcement. Now, it is much easier for politicians to express their concerns or celebrate an accomplishment. With that power, also comes consequences, and we’ve seen that first hand with former President Donald Trump being banned from various social media platforms. Amongst all of the controversy surrounding freedom of speech and social media, it is still incredible to see how a group of people can be swayed by a single tweet. However, once you make it known that you are interested in a certain topic or opinion by liking it, that platform will feed into the interest and continue to show you similar posts. Although this sounds like a good thing, it may block other opinions and close one’s mind entirely when it comes to a certain view or policy. The issue with social media and politics is that people just see something they find interesting or even appalling, and share it without fact-checking or considering the source. 

    Next is the social/cultural aspect of our society. Teenagers have been fixated on the number of likes and comments on their posts for so long that they allow those numbers to consume them. These numbers ultimately affect how they think of themselves and can lead to a number of mental health issues.  Social psychologist Jonathan Haidt, Ph.D., a professor at the NYU Stern School of Business, explains that “social media starts to dig deeper and deeper down into the brain stem and take over kids’ sense of self-worth and identity.” The other issue with social media is that it becomes highly addictive, like a drug. Especially with the pandemic, teens tend to spend most of their days online which can affect them physically, mentally, and emotionally. 

    From an economical standpoint, this is where they all collide. The new Netflix documentary, “The Social Dilemma”, goes into so much detail about how we are literally the product to these big tech companies. Our attention is being sold to advertisers with each click. A spine-chilling quote from the movie, “Social media is a marketplace that trades exclusively in human futures.” Even with these intimidating words, there was obviously a positive impact this kind of technology was presented for, like the idea of working as a social media manager or influencer. Young adults and technology have made it possible to work on your own hours, in your own home, all on your phone. This is a very exciting advancement and can affect the economy in a positive way.

    Social media brings the good and the bad, and although it may seem like a scary (or not so scary)  place, depending on your own opinion on the matter, we as a society are progressing. When we progress, we need to make advancements, and social media is this generation’s huge advancement. With this advancement comes a lot of power, and it affects everyone.

Are Virtual Sports Working for Spring Athletes?

By Madeline Singer
Staff Writer

Even with the vaccine being given to various groups of Americans, covid-19 rates continue to increase. Damascus High School has successfully completed fall and winter sports virtually, and recently started the online spring teams. I, a second year journalism student, have played lacrosse for our high school since freshman year. Like many others, I enrolled in virtual lacrosse to keep my skills up and continue participating in our school activities. 

Mackenzie Jablonski, a junior, is also participating in virtual lacrosse. Athletes are “happy to be able to engage as much as possible with their former teammates, even though the situation is not ideal,” Mackenzie expresses. The Varsity coach, a Damascus graduate, Eilis Hagan, and Junior Varsity coach, Alex Hall, lead zooms and push out information to keep players active. The information includes ways to improve stick skills, mile runs, and more lacrosse related activities. 

Another junior athlete, Sami Rich, is part of the virtual softball team and enjoys it greatly. She says it’s a great way to stay in touch with her team and stay moving in the nice weather. All coaches are flexible and understanding of the student’s busy schedules. 

All together, virtual sports have been successful, and have made the best out of the circumstances.  

2021 Grammy Awards Postponed

By Kahlia Sorto 
Staff Writer

   The 2021 Grammy Awards, originally scheduled for January 31st, have been postponed due to COVID-19 concerns. With the rising infection numbers in Los Angeles, where the event will take place, the awards will now take place on March 14th. 

   The Grammys have planned to only allow presenters and performers on-site during the show. “Nothing is more important than the health and safety of those in our music community and the hundreds of people who work tirelessly on producing the show,” said a statement from the Recording Academy, which runs the Grammys. It is uncertain whether Trevor Noah will still host the awards ceremony, as it was scheduled. 

   Dua Lipa, Taylor Swift, Roddy Rich and more were announced as nominees on November 24th. Beyoncé leads the pack with nine nominations, including Record of the Year and Song of the Year. Meanwhile, first-time nominees include Megan Thee Stallion, BTS, Harry Styles and the Strokes. 

   The Grammys will work with the circumstances given, due to the pandemic, and are hoping for the best. Of course there has been some controversies with the nominations, not every artist got recognised in the way that they should. With smash-hit records, both Nicki Minaj and The Weeknd could have expected to make a Grammy mention; but neither were included. Their fans are enraged over the controversy, seeing that the artists failed to get the credit they deserve in this latest round of Grammy nominations.  For those who will be tuning in, the winners will be announced at the 2021 ceremony, taking place in LA on March 14th.

Senate Proceeds With President Trump’s Second Impeachment

Mackenzie Lionberger

Editor-in Chief

  On January 6th, the United States Capitol was invaded by supporters of President Trump to protest the 2020 Presidential Election results. Following the attack, Congress has set for February 8th for the trial of Trump.

   A few hours before the attack, Trump held a rally hours before the Senate Republicans would continue debating the legitimacy of the election results. During the rally, the president said,  “you’ll never take back our country with weakness. You have to show strength, and you have to be strong.” After Trump made his speech, the mob marched to the Capitol which began peacefully for 90 minutes until Trump supporters and White supremacists stormed into the Capitol. Senators were forced to evacuate the premises, some even hiding under their desks and wearing gas masks. 

   The rioters fought their way into the Senate chambers and many recorded themselves scrummaging through senators and lawmakers personal items and papers. An infamous photo that spread online was taken of a man sitting at Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi’s desk, with his legs perched on her desk. Offices in the Capitol were destroyed, historic statues were vandalized, windows were broken, and some rioters brought arm straps and firearms with the intent to kidnap or kill senators. Even Vice President Pence, once Trump’s closet allied, life was in jeopardy, with rioters seeking for Pence and threatening his life. The insurrection cost 2 Capital officers their lives and killed three rioters. 

   While the nation’s Capital was invading, Trump finally told the domestic terrorist to go home after hours that it was reported they broke in. Once the police were able to escort everyone out, the Senate continued its voting on the legitimacy of the election, with many Republicans condemning Trump. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said that the president “provoked” the riots to occur. Pelosi officially signed for articles of impeachment against the president for the second time in Trump’s first and only term. The Senate still is awaiting to hold trials against Trump with some Republicans like McConnell, who believe they must hear the defense against Trump, before making any serious decisions.

   Impeachment managers from the House of Representatives duty will be to prove that the actions educated by Trump were “will remain a threat to national security, democracy and the Constitution if allowed to remain in office.” Many argue in the House that Trump should be barred from ever holding a federal position again. Supporters of Trump like Senator Ted Cruz, have claimed that impeachment seems unnecessary since Trump is out of office however, many Democrats want to ban Trump from every serving a federal office again.

The managers said, “threatened the integrity of the democratic system, interfered with the peaceful transition of power, and imperilled a coequal branch of Government,” referring to Trump’s actions. It is not clear how and when the Impeachment trials will continue after the 46th President, Joseph R Biden Jr was Inaugurated with running mate, Kamala Harris.

Creating Easy to Make Valentine’s Day Treats

Samantha Fato

Staff Writer

If you’re in need of a fun activity to do during Valentine’s Day in quarantine, then these easily made chocolate covered sweets are just for you. These treats are simple to make, and delicious to eat. 

 These treats are so easy and fun to make, and can be created in so many different ways. This process can be used with multiple types of foods such as bananas, pretzels, strawberries, apples, cookies, and more. The chocolate being used can also be changed up to your preference, any chocolate, dark, white, milk, and even ruby chocolate can be used for these treats. As for decorations, you can use nuts, drizzle on some icing, or any type of sprinkle.

   Along with personalization, you can make these treats for multiple occasions such as birthdays, get togethers, holidays, or even just a fun thing to do with the ones you love.

   For the sake of this recipe, pretzels will be used as the exemplar!

The ingredients and materials you will need are listed below…

  • Chocolate melts with the flavor of your choice
  • Pretzels (or whichever food you would like to work with!)
  • Pink and red sprinkles
  • Wax or parchment paper
  • A microwave safe bowl
  • A cookie sheet
  1. Take your cookie sheet and paper, and set the paper across the sheet.
  2. Next, grab your microwave safe bowl and pour your chocolate melts in.
  3. Once they’re in, put the bowl in the microwave and heat it up until it has fully melted, taking out the bowl occasionally to stir it. In most cases the melting process will take approximately two minutes, depending on the microwave. 
  4. Once your chocolate has melted, dip your pretzel in it, covering about 90% of it, leaving a bit of space without chocolate at the bottom so it’s easier to grab when eating it. 
  5. After each of your pretzels have been covered, place them on your tray of paper.
  6. Then, put some sprinkles on top!
  7. Let them sit until they’re dry.