Friday, September 18, 2015

Feminism debate rages, fueled by 'Meninist' Twitter account

Juliana Discher I Staff Writer

“Meninism” and feminism: two concepts that sound similar, but each conjures up a starkly different set of opinions.

The “Meninist” account on Twitter has flourished in popularity over the past year. According to the British Broadcasting Corporation, it was originally started by men making jokes, but has become a channel to express the difficulties of being a man in the 21st century. The main account currently has over 1,000,000 followers with numerous replica accounts.

Self-proclaimed “meninist” and junior, Elijah Kelly, said there is a misconception with what being a “meninist” truly means.

“The ‘meninist’ account basically attacks feminism, not feminism that promotes gender equality, but the radical, modern-day feminists that want to end Father’s Day,” Kelly said. “Feminism nowadays is an idea that promotes gender equality with words, but then does the exact opposite with actions.”

When he saw a viral hashtag on Twitter that promoted the ending of Father’s Day, Kelly said he began to resonate with “meninism”.

“There was a viral hashtag going around that said ‘#StopFathersDay’ and when women start that up, it’s ridiculous,” Kelly said. “There are women where if a guy holds a door open, they will tell them to close it, and that’s just crossing the line.”

Kelly, who owns a “#Meninist” t-shirt said he is passionate about the core belief of “meninism”, not the controversial tweets posted by the account.

“When most people see the t-shirt they automatically assume I am against women,” Kelly said. “It’s not a sexist account, but it is about taking a stand for men against the radical feminists’ attacks. The Twitter account with the sexist tweet—I just read that as a joke. I don’t support sexism. I am for gender equality, but against the radical feminists.”

According to government teacher Maria Mueller, there is somewhat of a negative connotation attached to the word feminism, which dates back to the 1970s.

“Feminism is an advocacy for the equality of women,” Mueller said. “I think that the term has been a bit demonized...I don’t think it has anything to do with being ‘anti-male’. I think it’s simply about challenging the status quo, which of course has always been: men rule, and women do what they are told.”

Mueller said she feels the “meninist” account is more of a joke, and not a legitimate attempt to better the condition of men.

“I don’t imagine anyone would take anything on there seriously,” Mueller said. “I don’t think there is much value because they aren’t generating meaningful conversation. It’s not a forum for any real kind of discussion of equality; it’s just a lot people trying to be funny or sassy.”

According to junior Catherine Carey, she avoids the “meninist” account at all cost.

“It’s just a troll,” Carey said. “It started out against feminism, but I think now it knows it gets people going and gets people angry. It just keeps doing and doing it because it’s getting the attention it wants.”
As a supporter of equal rights for all, Carey said she finds the account disrespectful.

“I get mad that they will degrade anybody,” Carey said. “They offend people like it’s not a problem. They attack anybody who is not a white male. It just brings people down. ”

Even though men will point out that the account is a parody, Carey said it doesn’t make what they post acceptable.

“Guys might think it’s just a joke, and I am all for a joke, but when you are deliberately hurting somebody—what’s the point?” Carey said. “If you’re not going to say something to somebody’s face, then why do it online or through an anonymous account?”

According to Carey, if the “meninist” account was really trying to make a difference to improve the condition of men, then they should be going about it differently.

“If you’re a feminist, you’re a feminist no matter what gender you are,” Carey said. “If you are a true feminist or ‘meninist’ then you would be fighting for men’s rights... You wouldn’t be fighting just because a girl put you in the ‘friend zone’. You would be fighting for all people’s rights equally.”

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Thursday, September 3, 2015

Journalistic Drive

This is big.

Those were the words I uttered when Mr. Conner announced that there was talk of adding a journalism elective to Mason Middle School.

We had already spoken as a staff earlier in the year about revamping the middle school's newspaper--Mason in the Middle. We intend on helping them publishing two print editions this year and having them sell ads to raise revenue.

I remember last year, my first time as a staff writer for The Chronicle, having the first edition come out. I held the crisp, inky paper in my hand and read my name and my story. It was not only a proud moment, but a thrilling one. It gave me the journalistic drive that I carry to this day.

So the idea that middle school students will get that same tingling thrill I possess, is special to me.

The earlier that we expose journalism to these students, the more likely they are to latch on and find passion in the field. The Chronicle has gotten some of our own writers from Mason in the Middle: Eric Miller, Arnav Damodhar, and Asia Porter. These writers came into the high school knowing the basics of story writing and photography.

I care a lot about the Chronicle. I care that the CSPN stays updated, that '#TweetToTheEditor' goes well, and that stories are given my best effort. That means I also care about the future of The Chronicle. Even though I graduate in 2017, I want the Chronicle to remain a respected and dignified news outlet at Mason High School.

A journalism elective could not be a better use of the middle school's money and time. We will surely reap the rewards. The seventh grader who falls in love with journalism could be the next Chronicle editor-in-chief, or even the next New York Times editor-in-chief.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Boys water polo wins three of four matches in Mason Invitational

Juliana Discher I Staff Writer

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