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College Students and Their Substance Use

Cannabis. Marijuana. Hemp. Weed. Pot. Dope. Grass. Mary Jane. Bud. Ganja. Reefer. Dank. The Devil’s Lettuce etc. One person may wonder, how can so many words mean one thing? But to a stoner, these words are used daily. Marijuana use is especially prevalent for the younger generation, namely college students.

According to the University of Michigan, who performed a study on marijuana use in colleges in the United States, marijuana use among full-time college students is at an all time high. In 2016, they reported that 39% of full-time college students had used cannabis at least once in the past year. Even more shocking, 4.9% of full-time college students indicated that they were daily or near daily users of the illegal drug. When comparing this statistic to the Morningside student body, that would mean about 65 students at Morningside are daily or near daily users of marijuana.

Between the ages of 19 to 22 is when young adults show an increase in experimenting with drugs and alcohol but the statistic is much higher for college students. The American Journal of Public Health found that the college setting almost promotes substance use, but they suggest that this could be because for most students this is the first time living without supervision.

For Sarah Baker, a student at Morningside College, she actually started smoking at the astonishing age of 13. Sarah states, “I was young and influential. I was doing a lot of new things at the time.” Sarah falls into the daily user category. She smokes four to five times throughout the day. Sarah has anxiety and claims that smoking marijuana helps her get through the day.

When asked about stoner culture in colleges she states that she has noticed three types of stoners. “You’ve got the stereotypical stoner that is lazy and is doing nothing with their life, the stoner that you wouldn’t suspect is a stoner, and then the third is the person that uses for medical reasons,” says Sarah.

Sarah is definitely in support of the legalization of marijuana but she does admit that it isn’t for everyone. “I think it’s great for certain people and it can be a bad thing as well for others.”

Morgan Simpson, another Morningside student, agrees with Sarah’s view. Morgan claims that there are benefits to smoking marijuana but it depends on the person because it affects everyone differently. Unlike Sarah, Morgan is a recreational smoker. She only smokes about once a week, sometimes less.

Morgan started smoking marijuana in high school at the age of 17. She was friends with an older crowd at the time who smoked so she decided to try it out for herself. Morgan thinks that stoner culture in college is different than most people think. She states that it isn’t just the outcasts that do it in college like is usually portrayed. “I think that it is more than a culture. Literally everyone is doing it. All cliques, all types of people,” she says.

Patrick Meyers, a professor at Morningside, has noticed the change in stigma around marijuana. Back in his day marijuana was thought of as a gateway drug and he thinks that it is still thought of that way by the older generation. Patrick is for the legalization of marijuana, as well stating, “I see very high functioning people using marijuana recreationally.”

Patrick thinks that one of the main reasons that marijuana should be legalized is because of the racial discrimination behind the drug. He thinks that it is the “driver of change even for people that don’t use”.

Patrick started smoking marijuana in high school at the age of 16 because of peer pressure. He admits that his first time was not a great experience. “You end up having to buy it somewhere shady and end up doing it somewhere shady. It doesn’t feel safe and it doesn’t feel recreational. No one wants to break the law, particularly in high school.”

When he was a young adult he only smoked about four to five times a year. Patrick ended up quitting at around 27 years old because he was trying to quit smoking cigarettes at the time and felt like smoking marijuana was a trigger for him.

Stoner culture to Patrick doesn’t represent a lot of the people that smoke recreationally. He claims that there is a subset of the culture that is true as in any culture but it doesn’t represent all people that smoke pot. The one thing that comes to mind for him when thinking of stoner culture is the famous stoner movie Half Baked that was released in 1998.

Even though students are more prevalent to try marijuana for the first time in college, most the time it doesn’t stick. Most people live in areas where it is illegal and like Patrick said, no one wants to break the law. This trend could be changing soon though with the national legalization of marijuana on the horizon. The Iowa Department of Public Health announced last Tuesday that Sioux City will be opening their first medical marijuana dispensary due to open as soon as December 1.

 

My America

My America is Racist

My America Thinks They’re the Top Dog

My America is Fat

College Culture- Rough Draft

Cannabis. Marijuana. Hemp. Weed. Pot. Dope. Grass. Mary Jane. Bud. Ganja. Reefer. Dank. The Devil’s Lettuce etc. One person may wonder, how can so many words mean one thing? But to a stoner, these words are used daily. Marijuana use is especially prevelant for the younger generation, namely college students.

According to the University of Michigan, who performed a study on marijuana use in colleges in the United States, marijuana use among full-time college students is at an all time high. In 2016, they reported that 39% of full-time college students had used cannabis at least once in the past year. Even more shocking, 4.9% of full-time college students indicated that they were daily or near daily users of the illegal drug. When comparing this statistic to the Morningside student body, that would mean about 65 students at Morningside are daily or near daily users of marijuana.

 

I have three interviews planned which will be the bulk of the paper. I’m still trying to figure out what to focus on.

 

Every Morningside Student’s Pass Time

Shutterbabe Review

My first thoughts about the book Shutterbabe by Deborah Copaken Kogan were that this book is a great read for photographers and journalists. After further inspection though Shutterbabe is really an amazing tale of adventure, love, and self- growth.

Written over the course of the authors early 20s, Deborah Copaken Kogan writes about her adventures as a photojournalist. Throughout the book she recollects the adventures she experienced after graduating and moving to Paris to follow her strive for adventure. Each chapter tells of an adventure and of the man in her life at the time.

The stories range from shooting images of war in Afghanistan to capturing the revolution in Russia. In the beginning Deborah gets into a lot of horrible situations because of her ignorance but by the end she is a seasoned photojournalist that has become very successful through her experiences. Each story Deborah meets a new guy that impacts her in a certain way until she finally finds the guy that she falls in love with and eventually marries.

I would be lying if I said that I understood everything that was discussed in the book since a lot of the photography description left me skimming over numbers and words that I had no meaning to me. Also the chapter she spent in Russia was hard to read as well because a lot of the words were Russian words that also had no meaning to me. Having a knowledge of journalism and photography definitely would’ve advanced my understanding of the book.

Kogan’s descriptions also were pretty lengthy for my tastes. I understand that as a photojournalist, the author described her surroundings very well but I felt like a lot of the description took away from the actual story. Deborah also frustrated me early on in the book because of all of the stupid decisions she made but at least she learned from them.

I am used to reading books that have plot twists or unpredictable endings so it was a little hard getting to the end of the book but it was a very good read overall. Kogan’s experiences shocked me and her vivid writing helped me see what she saw and felt in her adventures. I still can hardly believe her visit to the orphanage in Romania.

After reading Shutterbabe, I have so much respect for Deborah Copaken Kogan and photojournalism as a whole. The book expertly depicts the self-growth that the author went through during those years. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone seeking adventure and romance.

 

Movie Review- Calendar Girls

Calendar Girls is a comedy that I would describe as a “feel good movie”. It’s the type of movie that makes you feel good afterwards and I found it very entertaining. Besides the fact that you see a couple different naked, old lady bodies throughout the movie, I really did like the message behind the movie. The movie encouraged women empowerment and even old age empowerment, if that’s even a thing. I feel like the movie itself is very inspiring especially since it is based on actual events.

The movie starts off at a Women’s Institute meeting where the main characters are bored as hell during one of their weekly meetings. The main character, Chris, played by actress Helen Mirran, comes up with the idea for a nude calendar after finding nude magazines in her son’s room and seeing a nude calendar at the mechanic’s shop where she’s getting her car fixed.

She ends up concluding that her and her group of friends could do the same thing to raise money. The money ends up going to their local hospital because her best friend’s husband died of leukemia there. A lot of the people in the women’s organization are appalled at the idea but a lot of them decide to do the calendar with Chris anyways.

The calendar ends up being a huge success despite their age and ends up helping them raise around $1 million. The movie goes through the different challenges the women face from  husband scandals to delinquent kids that act up because of the photoshoot.

All in all, the movie was very entertaining throughout. I thought that some of the storyline got a little repetitive since they showed Chris’s son walking into weird situations where his mom was basically nude like four times. Also I feel like the son’s role in the whole movie was very annoying and they dramatized the whole situation a little much for my tastes. I feel like they could’ve done more with a couple of the supporting roles since I found their situations a lot more entertaining than the main character’s.

Overall the movie was very uplifting and body positive. I liked the message that women are beautiful no matter what age they are. I can’t believe that it actually happened too. It’s funny to think that there were literally a group of old ladies posing for a nude calendar in the late 90s. In my opinion I would rate this movie a four out of five mostly because of the message behind the movie.

 

A Tradition of Neglect

In 2014, a British woman named Laura Cunliffe reportedly threw her kitten Mowgli in a microwave oven for a minute, cooking the cat’s organs from the inside. The lady was punishing the cat for eating her goldfish. After the cat was taken out of the microwave, the poor creature lived for another 90 minutes yowling in pain until it died. The woman was jailed for 14 weeks.

In 2008, two Australian men kidnapped a puppy named Peanut in the night from his owner and proceeded to torture the animal to death at a nearby park. The two men recorded the incident while they cut the puppies’ limbs, nose, and eventually it’s head off. The men laughed throughout the recording. The two men claimed that it was an act of revenge against the dog’s owner.

Even though these animal abuse cases are of an extreme nature, animal abuse happens every single day around the world. Animals are tested on, slaughtered for their meat, fur, or other organs, and forced to fight or race for people’s amusement. People forcefully inbreed animals to create the “perfect pets”, cage them for our observation, and much more.

To say that humans think that they can do whatever they please with these creatures and the Earth around them is an understatement. One of the main ways humans take advantage of their less intelligent counterparts is through breeding animals to eat. People eat animals because we have always eaten them. It has often been thought that humans can’t survive without the protein that meat supplies the body but scientists have proven that there are many ways humans can obtain protein.

What gives us the right to do these things? Peter Singer, an Australian moral philosopher, once said, “If possessing a higher degree of intelligence does not entitle one human to use another for his or her own ends, how can it entitle humans to exploit non-humans?” With that being said, there is no question that humans believe they are entitled to the Earth and all the creatures that inhabit it.

Dylan Root, a senior at Morningside College, is a vegetarian and an animal lover as he puts it. A vegetarian is a person that doesn’t eat meat and sometimes other animal products especially for moral, religious, or health reasons. Dylan decided to become a vegetarian two years ago because his sister was a vegetarian. He says that it doesn’t feel right eating other sentient beings, or beings with consciousness.

“I feel like animals are just as valuable as human beings maybe even more valuable. If you think about it, when human beings do violent, hurtful things it’s usually thought out but when animals do these things it’s based off of instinct”, says Dylan. When asked if human beings feel entitled over the earth, Dylan agreed wholeheartedly. He states that we might even be a little too intelligent if we can kill animals without any remorse or thought.

Dylan thinks that people feel like meat is needed for a healthy diet but he says that he gets by just fine with a mostly plant based diet with some seafood and protein. He says that he feels so much more healthier now and rarely gets bloated or sick.

“It’s hard to fall out of tradition and it’s easy to turn your eyes and not look at what really is going on in front of us. It’s hard to see the truth because it’s hard to take in,” says Yvette Jurado. Yvette has been a vegan for about a year and a half. A vegan is someone who does not eat or use animal products. A personal choice she made after she was introduced to the cattle industry. She claims that the industry is inhumane; she believes killing animals should be looked at for what it is, murder.

Yvette thinks that humans have other options than eating animals; she feels that the land that we use up to mass breed animals for slaughter could be used as farming ground instead. She realizes that eating animals is very normalized now but she says that, “we should go beyond ourselves and do what’s best for the Earth and the animals around us”.

Yvette thinks that animals are treated very poorly around the world. “They have no voice so there’s no way for them to fight back. Why is our life greater than their lives?” she says. When asked if she thinks that things will ever change she believes it will but very slowly. “When people see animals being treated poorly, we don’t want to see it; one by one we can change the world” says Yvette.

Anecdote

At the end of the summer my patience at the bar was thinning. Working 25 plus hours every weekend all summer can wear a bartender down. I was working the night shift at Doxx that Saturday and had been there since 4 p.m. I had been dealing with rude bikers all day.

Bikers are my least favorite customers working at the bar. They always smell like B.O. and leather. They are almost always racist and angry drunks. Not all of them of course but it’s hard to ignore the ones that are since they seem to come in droves.

I had been dealing with sexist, misogynistic comments since 4 p.m. and it was getting close to 10 p.m. Only five more hours to go. It started with this old biker man with a long ghosty beard that easily reached his chest. The biker called out to me, “Hey girl! Come grab me a beer.” I tried to compose myself as I walked over to ask what he would like to drink.

He ordered a miller light pint. I poured the beer and walked it over to him and told him the price. “That’s a bit pricey don’t you think?” He proclaimed as he handed over the money, without tipping a single penny I might add. At this point I was annoyed to say the least.

I answered with, “Well it’s only $2.50, that’s a pretty good price.” The man answered with, “What do you know? You’re just a dumb, little girl.” So I replied, “Well you’re just a pervy, old man, what do you know?”

Right as the words flew out of my mouth, I knew that that was not a way that I should speak to my customers. The comment definitely had caught the man off guard. I waited for the anger to come but he just burst out laughing like I had just said the funniest thing he’d ever heard.

 

Kaycie Strobl

My name is Kaycie Yvonne Strobl. I’ve never met anyone with the same first name as me before, at least not spelled the same. I was supposedly named after a country song, which is pretty ironic since I can’t stand country music. I asked my mother one day why the hell she chose those letters to spell my name and she literally told me just so that it would be unique. I would appreciate it if people would stop making Casey’s General Store jokes at me, it’s not even spelled the same.  

I never willingly tell people my middle name just because I think it’s kind of weird and whenever I tell friends it becomes my new nickname, always. I don’t even put it on any of my credit cards just to avoid people asking, what kind of middle name starts with a “Y”? In high school my friends used to call me Yeven on the basketball court; apparently it’s a spin off from my middle name somehow.

My last name, Strobl, actually stands for “one with shaggy hair” in German. I would try to fight this meaning but in terms of my family, the meaning fits very well. All of my family has the classic bohemian mop on our heads that is hard to tame. Usually it’s spelled with an “e” before the “l” but I’m pretty sure it was accidentally changed going through Ellis Island.

_______________________________________________

“Hey Kaycie! Could I get some Casey’s pizza please?” I’ve actually had people make jokes like this to me. It’s usually from my older male family members with their terrible dad jokes or from my regulars at the bar so I actually have to fake laugh like they weren’t the thousanth person to make that joke to me.

I’ve recently noticed that every Kaycie spelled with a “K” that I’ve ever met is always small, white, and a brunette. I have no idea if that’s steroetypical of me to notice but please prove me wrong if you can.

My name is often spelled wrong. Last year in band class my director had spelled my name “Kayci Strobl”. He would always pass around a sheet of our names for us to check for spelling so he wouldn’t get our names wrong in the programs for our shows. I wrote a note by my name that said “add an ‘e’ to the end”. Then that saturday at the concert, to my dismay, my name was spelled “Kayci Stroble” in the program. 

 

Human Entitlement- First Draft

In 2014, a British woman named Laura Cunliffe reportedly threw her kitten Mowgli in a microwave oven for a minute cooking the cat’s organs from the inside. The lady was punishing the cat for eating her goldfish. After the cat was taken out of the microwave the poor creature lived for another 90 minutes yowling in pain until it died. The woman was jailed for 14 weeks.

In 2008, two Australian men kidnapped a puppy named Peanut in the night from his owner and proceeded to torture the animal to death at a nearby park. The two men recorded the incident while they cut the puppies’ limbs, nose, and eventually it’s head off. The men laughed throughout the recording. The two men claimed that it was an act of revenge against the dog’s owner.

Even though these animal abuse cases are of an extreme nature, animal abuse happens every single day around the world and not just against people’s pets. Animals are tested on, slaughtered for their meat, fur, or other organs, forced to fight or race for people’s amusement, forcefully inbred to create the perfect pets, held in cages for people to see, and much more. To say that humans think that they can do whatever they please with these creatures and the Earth around them is an understatement.

Humans have had domain over the Earth for about 6 million years. The Earth has been around for billions of years but in the course of a couple hundred years humans have destroyed the planet almost beyond repair. With things like overpopulation, pollution, global warming, genetic modifications, deforestation etc. mankind has managed to wipe out entire species of plants and animals.

What gives us the right to do these things? Yes, we are harming ourselves in this process but we are also harming the environment and countless other creatures. Peter Singer, an Australian moral philosopher, once said, “If possessing a higher degree of intelligence does not entitle one human to use another for his or her own ends, how can it entitle humans to exploit non-humans?” With that being said, there is no question that humans believe they are entitled to the earth and all the creatures that inhabit it.

Dylan Root, a senior music education major at Morningside College, is a vegetarian and an animal lover as he puts it. A vegetarian is a person that doesn’t eat meat and sometimes other animal products especially for moral, religious, or health reasons. Dylan decided to become a vegetarian two years ago because his sister was a vegetarian. He says that it doesn’t feel right eating other sentient beings, or beings with consciousness.

“I feel like animals are just as valuable as human beings maybe even more valuable. If you think about it, when human beings do violent, hurtful things it’s usually thought out but when animals do these things it’s based off of instinct”, says Dylan. When asked if human beings feel entitled over the earth, Dylan agreed wholeheartedly. He states that we might even be a little too intelligent if we can kill animals without any remorse or thought.  

Dylan thinks that people feel like meat is needed for a healthy diet but he says that he gets by just fine with a mostly plant based diet with some seafood and protein. He says that he feels so much more healthier now and rarely gets bloated or sick.