Rise

Being a teenager is all about overcoming the obstacles that stand in your way. It's about overcoming hardship, tragedy and moving to the aftermath of every catastrophe. We as teens can do so much, have such a meaningful impact, and truly make a difference in the greatest times of need. We're different from any other group because of our forever young style ingenuity, fierce passion for life, and unpredictability. We've got to use our assets and gifts to do something magnificent, amazing and truly worthwhile remarkable. It's time for us to rise.

Relevance, it seems like everyone's new favorite comeback is "you're irrelevant" and while most of the time we're joking what does that even mean?  It's saying that someone else's life doesn't matter, they're useless or waste of life. It's not what you meant, but it could definitely be taken that way. Everyone and mean, every human being matters. No matter what they've done, or who they are. Life is precious and should be cherished like the true gift it is. The horrendous shooting that took place during a midnight screening of the Dark Knight Rises in Aurora, Colorado where so far 12 people have been declared dead, and 50 (reports vary) injured. Armed with multiple firearms, tear gas and heavy armor, James Holmes opened fire on a crowd of innocent moviegoers in one of the most deadly catastrophic massacres in recent American history. It's absolutely mind boggling, disgusting and cold blooded foul that one person can destroy so many lives. This is what's relevant, this is what matters right now. To the people who say that this "isn't a big deal" - or a "laughing matter" or an imitation to the movie being shown, you are irrelevant. Keep your insensitive, inhumane, and truly despicable comments to your damn self. This is not the time nor the place for your conspiracy theories or to make light of something so devastating. To the teens and others who don't care, and think that this "could have happened anywhere" - well it didn't happen anywhere, it happened there, and only there. Just because news doesn't directly impact your life does mean you should be apathetic about it. You should care because you're human, you have emotion, and you can show sympathy. This is a national matter, meaning it concerns all of us. It shouldn't take chaos to get us all to come together, but that's what it always comes down to. Rise and respect these people together.

Shootings are so senseless. They make no sense whatsoever. What motive, what could possibly drive you to enter a movie theater, on this highly anticipated movie's premiere night and kill people, indiscriminately. No targets, randomly, out of nowhere? That's terrorism - inducing fear through violence. We, especially as teens have been desensitized to violence. It's a proven fact. There's violence all around us, in movies, television, lyrics on the radio and everywhere in between. People being gunned down, stabbed, raped, and souls torn apart and you have the audacity to tell me you don't care. You know why I know people don't care because they can joke about these things like someone's murder, a brutal sexual assault, or disfiguring accident. It's not okay, and it's not funny. Snap out of it, wake up, and get active in this world. These just aren't stories you see on the news, and while what happens on the small or big screens or on your computer may not be real it's what the mean that really matter. This stuff should bother you, it should make you feel something, and it should bring you to the brink of sanity with heartbreak, vengeance, or something. I know that entertainers have done their job properly when I'm moved deep down, when I'm on the verge of tears, when I stand up and yell, or when I'm on the floor laughing. That's real - and when it comes to tragic news, we're not immune, we're not numb and we're not detached, these are issues that affect us all. Rise above the desensitizing and realize how gruesome, how graphic, and how damaging all of these things are.

The Dark Knight Rises - let me tell you about my movie-going experience. Yesterday morning I woke up with so many notifications on my phone, but one really jumped out at me. I read about the shooting, and just sat up and was shocked. I had nothing to say, just awe-struck about how crazy what happened was. Then I considered not going to see TDKR later that day, but I did anyway. One of my best friends, Taylor, and I made it to the movie theater and just like I expected it was still jam packed. The movie starts, and I can't really get into it. Usually I'm obsessively drawn into the world of whatever I'm watching and can't shake it afterwards but I wasn't pulled into the movie. A half hour into it, an usher comes out of nowhere and walks around the theater - I can honestly say I was terrified. The moment he was directly in front of the screen gunshots went off in the movie and I was truly scared senseless. It was terrible, the fear of a masked gunman entering this theater was too much to handle. I'll say it effectively marred my movie experience.The movie on the other hand was exceptionally okay. It wasn't the best movie I'd ever seen, but it was still pretty good. It moved really well, and time passed without me noticing. Best performances were from Anne Hathaway and Joseph Gordon-Levitt hands down. The camera angles and cinematography were amazing and the "Bane" score was intoxicatingly memorable. The chanting of thousands of people, pure genius. Bane, was crazy as heck and Tom Hardy did an awesome job of portraying him, ruthless, massive, and menacing. Christian Bale on the other hand is not my favorite at all, when he's in the Bat Suit he does this thing with mouth that just bothers me, looking like a snake about to pounce. There were a few scenes that didn't make sense (*spoiler alert, skip this sentence if you haven't seen this movie because it's worth watching - how did Bruce Wayne make it from the pit back to Gotham City, if he was broke?). Overall the movie was pretty good, but not the best in my honest opinion. I definitely liked the Avengers better, more witty banter (I understand Batman is supposed to be dark and brooding but literally every character except the Bat himself could make a joke or say something quotable his best "I'm not afraid, I'm angry" really?). Plot twists kept coming, but I won't spoil them. This movie deserves recognition for sure. Rise.
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So what can we do as teens to stop things like this from happening? It starts with ourselves and watching out for others. The days of "I gives none" about anyone except for myself need to end. When you care about other people that's when change can happen. At school watch for signs and get help when needed. Mental health is serious thing to be considered and you can't just write people off as crazy - that's not how that works. Be smart and stay clean. Underage drinking, and drug usage lead to people some really crazy things, and when you can avoid them, please do. We can better than that - who really wants to go through life blacking out, not remembering the best years of our lives, and in a constant drug induced haze - if that's you, you might need to get your priorities checked. We can rise and learn to talk, effectively without resorting to violence. Name calling, rumor spreading, and other conversational drama does not have to lead to "somebody getting their ass beat." We're capable of being civilized young adults, who can resolve conflict when adults are too immature or preoccupied to. We can think differently and move beyond these things, we can rise and do better.

Being a teenager is all about making it past the toughest of times. When things are falling apart around you, when it seems like you're down and not able to get back up, and when all hope is lost, that's when we as teen, no people rise. We rise, unite, stand, and fight for what's right, what's just and what's fair. This is the world we're going to inherit, we'd better start acting like it. Rise.

My blog post question for the day is ... what do you think about the right to bear arms - should ordinary citizens be allowed to carry guns? Me, personally do not think so. That's why these things happen, we pay our taxes to fund police forces for a reason - let them do their jobs and prevent extreme people & criminals from getting fire power to cause harm.

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