Thursday, September 12, 2013

September 18, 2011

Tuesday, September 20, 2011 By Ivan Serna, Editor-in-Chief -

"This is Wayne's world, and y'all a bunch of tourist," Lil Wayne announces on Tha Carter IV, and can anyone disagree? In a dying music industry he managed to sell over a million copies of Tha Carter III in its debut week, and Tha Carter IV nearly matched that feat, selling 964,000 copies in its first week according to the Billboard Charts.

His first album since being released from Rikers Island prison, the songs sound heavier and more intense, both in the music and lyrics, it has the attitude of Tha Carter II and the huge, polished sound of Tha Carter III. Weezy doesn't disappoint with Tha Carter IV.

Intro, Interlude, and Outro are all basically one song broken up throughout the album. It's an all star cast putting in their signature sounds on an orchestral beat; from Andre 3000's laid back voice and creative lyrics, to Busta Rhymes impossible to follow machine gun flow. But no one, not even Weezy himself, tops Nas's verse "Let's get one thing straight that my crown ain't for testin'testin', Chop heads off like King Henry the 8th, guillotine to ya neck." Lil Wayne might consider himself to be the best rapper alive but Nas shows him up in his own song.

How to Love may have been a top 10 hit, but to be honest it's the weakest song on the album. It's the popiest song Lil Wayne has ever released and just doesn't really fit right on the album. It sounds like Wayne just wanted to get on the charts, so technically it was a success.

Tha Carter IV showed us something that we've never seen from Wayne before; political consciousness. On President Carter he talks about his views of the war, the country and the reality he sees. He even criticizes Obama by saying "I'm much more than a good speech." The song is disgustingly simple; it's just Lil Wayne and a haunting chime for four minutes on his future campaign song. The song finishes with Lil Wayne's chilling Address to Nation "Gorillas in suits, The holy war, the spiritual troops, Fighting over the mythical truth, Drowning in the political soup, They shoot missiles and nukes, Taking out such a pivotal group, The body count is the physical proof, And they thought drugs were killing the youth."

Tha Carter IV has a range that Wayne has never demonstrated before. From the slow lyrically driven Nightmares of The Bottom, to the heavy hitting berserker Megaman, and even the lyrical nonsense on 6 Foot 7 Foot, Lil Wayne adds yet another monstrous album to his ever expanding discography. Tuesday, September 20, 2011 By Meiby Nodarse, Staff Writer

Thousands of men and woman all over America make the decision to give their lives to our country, and pursue a career in the armed forces.

We see them on television; hear about them on the radio, and read of their heroic acts in the newspaper. However, we have yet to realize some of these brave people and their families live within our community. The Ovalle family is a perfect example of one of those families.

Graciela Chela Ovalle has three sons, Angel, Kevin, and Lee Roy, two of which are currently pursuing a career in the army.

"I worry about them, and I just hope nothing happens to them or the country," said Graciela Ovalle.

Angel Ovalle (21 yrs. old) was recently located in El Paso, Texas preparing for his recent deployment to Afghanistan at the beginning of August. He is specialized in many areas, but his main occupation is 88mike, which entails driving trucks and other vehicles.

He has been in the armed forces for about 18 months and that's just a small portion of his 8 year contract. Angel is currently engaged and his fiancis also in the armed forces, working in the communications field.

"I am always worried about him, however when I receive a letter it takes some of the weight off my shoulders and reassures me everything is alright," said Graciela.

Kevin Ovalle (17 yrs. old) graduated high school this year. He is currently completing his 3 months of basic training in St. Fortsill, Oklahoma. Next he will be transferring to Georgia for another 5 months of AIT training, which is specialized training in technology. Kevin's contract includes 10 years of service.

Both Angel and Kevin were excited about joining the armed forces, which is more than can be said about their mom. But can anyone blame her? Her sons are entering suspenseful and potentially dangerous careers, which include long periods of time away from home, which is a mother's worst nightmare.

She asserts, "I wasn't too happy about it, but it was their decision and I supported them." Graciela also said, "There is a positive side to all the worry and time apart. They will come out with a paid college education and really good benefits."

Lee Roy (15 years old) added, "It really sucks not being able to see or talk to my brothers as much as I would like, but I know this decision will pay off in the future."

Lee might also follow his brothers' footsteps and join the armed forces when the time comes. For now Lee says he is focusing on his studies here at John I. Leonard.

The Ovalle family is admirable, just like every other military family. They go through all the regular family issues and drama, but with the added worries and stress of being apart. This just shows how strong these families have to be to provide love and support for their far away loved ones. Saturday, September 17, 2011 By Brittney Perez, Staff Writer

The Lancers Girls' Volleyball team started off the season with a victory against the Lake Worth Trojans, winning all 3 games.

When asked what she expected of the next game, Coach Martin commented, "I want a victory against Forest Hill today and I want the team to play hard and stay focused."

First year captain Laura Galvis said, "I feel it's as if it's harder to be captain because coach expects more of me and I have to work harder than others. I think that this year will actually be better than last year because we all work as a team and we have stronger chemistry."

According to Coach Martin, sophomore Taylor McWilliams was the player with the best game against the Trojans with 16 service points, 8 assists and 5 kills she had quite a game.Following up McWilliams was captain Alma Colas with 24 assists and 10 service points.

"Now that I'm the captain I always want to be better, help everyone, but also work hard on myself at the same time," said Captain Colas.

The Lancers are on an undefeated streak and hopefully they keep up the work, effort and perseverance to keep their team up and going for the rest of the season. Saturday, September 17, 2011 By Ricardo Rodriguez, Section Editor and Illustrator - Ricardo Rodriguez

With a goal of running for president in the 2012 election, the now famous Michelle Bachmann assures to bring a "fresh, new voice to the White House." By using words like "fresh" and "new", one would have thought this was America's chance for a strong woman with a unique perspective on politics and the economy. In reality, Bachman is simply the opposite and she's coming for you, America!

Since setting her eyes on the President's seat, Bachmann has been a hard candidate to shake off. Like Hurricane Irene, a natural disaster she so jokingly laughed about, calling this "God's punishment," she has been building up her strength, as well as her supporter count since we first saw her weaseling her way up to the top for her name on the ballots. Quickly, there are comparisons of Bachmann to Alaska's former governess and previous vice presidential candidate, Sarah Palin, but don't be fooled one bit. Bachmann has been dealing her cards in very a clever manner to get where she is and has no plans on stopping any time soon, until she makes it to the White House. So what do we know about Bachmann?

Raised in a Democratic family, Bachmann proclaimed herself as a Republican by her senior year of high school. Her youth was influenced by religion, which included her family of Lutherans. A young political activist, Bachmann is a proud supporter of pro-life, which is the campaign against abortion.This is understandable in Bachmann's case, herself being the former foster mother of twenty-three children. The age old debate is sitting on Bachmann's plate, something she'll delightfully like to hardheadedly tell you about, unless you're on the opposing team.

Along with her husband, Bachmann own Bachmannsince it was in 3D.

This movie starts off like almost every other shark movie out there: an attack. It leads the audience to believe that there will be many more coming our way. In the beginning however, Sara, played by Sara Paxton, invites six of her friends to stay with her at a lake she grew up at for the weekend. While everyone is excited for a short, but much-needed break, the creatures in the water are carefully timing their appearance.

Soon enough characters start dying from the sharks following their every move. Nick (Dustin Milligan) does his best to hold his and everyone else's composure together, although that doesn't really improve the situation considering wherever they go for assistance, there's already a shark awaiting them.

While trying to receive help from a once considered close friend to Sara, everyone that is still alive and breathing discovers that sure enough, he's in on the act as well; that is feeding humans to the mighty hungry sharks and recording their struggle underwater to receive money.

All in all, unless you look forward to seeing predictable attacks and hearing ridiculous lines, don't go to watch this movie. Saturday, September 17, 2011 By Jasmine Samuel, Staff Writer -

The award winning band The Red Hot Chili Pepper's anticipated album, "I'm With You" hit stores late August with many mixed reviews.The band having many hit singles in the past has created many high expectations. Referred to as the comeback album, it was supposed to satisfy the millions of fans.

"Adventures of Rain Dance Maggie," was the first single off of the new album and hopefully the last.It is the least rhythmically challenged song of the album and has a catchy chorus. The guitar later in the song can only be described as epic, and the cowbell adds a nice touch. Definitely the best song off the entire album.

The rest of the album is somewhat of a disappointment especially "Even You Brutus," "Dance, Dance, Dance," and "Happiness Likes Company." The placement of the songs on the album make sense last because they were the worst. While listening to the songs the question "what is this?" came to mind several times.

However not every song was terrible, the beginning of "Did I Let You Know" actually makes you want to finish the song unlike many of the others. The use of the trumpet made it original like so many of their previous songs. Also "Goodbye Hooray" is listening worthy especially due to the psychedelic like instrumentals and calming vibe.

The instrumentals in the album were outstanding, but lead vocalist, Anthony Kiedis didn't mesh as well with the instruments like on previous albums. Josh Klingoffer, lead guitarist replaced previous lead guitarists in 2009 and really proved himself in this album because the guitar sounds amazing.

Generally speaking, the album was a disappointment for not showing up their previous album "Stadium Arcadium" or any of them for that matter. Though some of the songs are reminiscent of their extraordinary talent, this is not an album to get excited about.

Saturday, September 17, 2011 By Frechelle Arias, Staff Writer -

Don't be afraid of the dark is a sci-fi horror fanatics dream. Mind you this is not insidious; the horror in this film is strictly sci-fi. For people who prefer horror to sci-fi, this film will be less appealing. The beginning is a little slow and hard to sit through, but the gruesome parts are definitely cringers. The creatures are hair-raising and the darkness is suspenseful.

The story starts out with this old man, who apparently loses his son to voices deep within an ash pit. We don't find out what creatures the voices belong to till way later on in the film; for now all you see is their eyes. This old man calls the maid down to the basement where he murders her and takes out her teeth in a gruesome manner to feed the creatures in return for his son. Something important about these creatures is that they only like children. So, in anger they pull the old man into the pit and the story begins.

Baliee Madison plays the role of a little girl named Sally, who because of her withdrawn state was sent by her mother to live with her dad Alex (Guy Pearce) and his girlfriend Kim (Katie Holmes).Kim desperately wants to befriend sally, but sally is unwilling. She only has one thing on her mind, to go back home.

Sally uncovers a basement in the mansion her dad is restoring and currently living in it until it is fully restored. Intrigued by the new found basement, Sally discovers that there is a terrible secret in the house that no one believes, and Sally is constantly being harassed by these creatures. She is warned to leave the house, but since no one believes her she remains. The only thing she can do is keep the light close by. Saturday, September 17, 2011 By Kevin Davalos, Staff Writer

Bowlers at John I. Leonard started off the season against Forest Hill September 13th.The bowlers were excited and ready to put on their shoes.

"As always, it was a pleasure.I had a lot of great kids bowling and just enjoyed the season. One bowler, Sydney Woods advanced to the state tournament,"said Coach Noroski of his time with the bowling team last season.

"I only have two returning players from last year, so it will basically be a new team.I am up for the challenge,"added Noroski.

The bowling team is going to strive for excellence and is hoping to make it to the state tournament.

"I always have high expectations.I have been coaching for roughly ten years and have made the state tournament every year.However, having fun and enjoying the bowlers outside of the classroom is always a great learning experience,"said Noroski. Saturday, September 17, 2011 By Johanna Navas, Staff Writer

Although Hurricane Irene was one of the less hazardous storms as far as hurricanes go, it's path through New York made it just as dangerous as Katrina was in 2005.

Because of an explosion in the population along coastal areas of the Northeast during the past several decades, a hurricane this strong hasn't affected the Northern East Coast for at least the past twenty years.

There have been past hurricanes that impacted the major metropolitan areas of the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast, but these hurricanes are rare.

Irene first came ashore on the morning of August 27th near Cape Lookout, North Carolina, and then slipped back over water farther north near Virginia and Maryland before hitting land again in New Jersey.

The next major city in the hurricane's path was New York, and, for much of the night, the metropolitan area was pounded with heavy rain and wind, causing power failures and flooding.

"Rivers and streams are reaching record levels as a result of Hurricane Irene's rainfall," reported the USGS.

Unfortunately, these floods caused six deaths in the state, leaving many devastated family members and damages that can't be repaired.

Besides that, USGS crews keep on collecting and analyzing storm surge data from Hurricane Irene and documenting coastal erosion impacts. Other research groups are out sampling water for pesticides, E. coli, nutrients, and sediment to document water quality impacts in areas affected by the hurricane.

Of course, some concerns after Irene were a bit more sentimental. Families from the 9/11 attack were worried about the memorial in lower Manhattan, and were relieved to see that it remained unscathed. It withstood pounding rain and high winds without a problem. All 225 trees on the memorial plaza remain standing.

Despite the damages, civilians go about their days as they would any other, with clean ups and repairs as an exception. Saturday, September 17, 2011 By Natalie Gomez - Staff Writer

On August 24th Living for the Apocalypse aired on TLC. This show began because 50 million Americans said that the world was coming at an end. This show was very interesting to see these families actually training weapons and their kids in this adventure.

The families this TV show are ready to show their kids about how to prepare for the apocalypse. The first episode was very interesting and very similar to the rest.

They have a secret place prepared for when this occurs. In case of invasion, this place has a high point. These families need a lot of dried foods, thousands of gallons of water, fuel and wood to heat with.

These families had lots to contribute. How can they possibly think this is ok to show and teach their children? Audiences assumed that this show is not based on true facts. It's a make believe adventure. Saturday, September 17, 2011 By Kiara Rivera, Staff Writer -

We put their pictures and posters up on our wall, we memorize all their songs and we admire how they look.

Obviously, all types of celebrities have a great influence on there audience. So ask yourself, would you let your sister, brother, daughter, son, admire and honor a cocaine addict? Do you think cocaine addicts are a good influence?

Take Lindsay Lohan as an example.Everyone adored and looked up to her; she worked hard, was beautiful and did many positive things.Now she's been to jail three times, is on house arrest, has been to rehab and has an alcohol and cocaine problem.

We always see these kinds of celebrities on magazine covers and on television driving drunk, dying, dead, or doing drugs and these are the people we let our children hang pictures of on their bedroom walls with honor.

Even the Kaiser Family Foundation survey revealed that two in every three parents feel that their children are being exposed to too much inappropriate content in the media.

Soon enough our children will be saying, "Oh, well, Lindsay Lohan is drinking and doing cocaine. Plus, she's pretty and famous so why can't I drink alcohol and do cocaine also? How bad can it be?"

This is exactly what we're letting our children think and wonder with the role models they have been choosing. This is why we need to lead them in a better direction with better influences.

But it isn't all bleak.Celebrities like BeyoncKnowles has never been known to have a drug or alcohol problem and has never been in a crazy scandal. She finished school, has an amazing career, has been married for 3 years and now has a baby on the way.

These are the kinds of role models we need to put in front of our children. Saturday, September 17, 2011 By Justin Fertig, Sports Editor Garrett Vallis works hard conditioning for the upcoming games. - Bridgette Gamble

All eyes will be on Junior Quarterback Adam Johnson this year. With a lot of new faces like Jerry Jones and Kenute Morris the Lancers are sure to light up the football field. Especially with a reloaded coaching staff dedicated to helping our Lancer football team succeed.

In Johnson's first official varsity quarterback start, he helped the Lancers beat the Warriors of Jupiter 22-7 in the high school opener.

With a new offense, the fans were in for a big surprise when they saw them come out in a conventional spread offense, nothing like the typical Wing-T offense the Lancers have been running for the past couple of years.

When asked about expectations for the team Johnson simply replied, "Hang a Banner, that's what were aiming for right now; winning districts and hanging a banner in our gym."

"Since the first day of summer we've been in the weight room, in the classroom going over plays and on the field conditioning and it's going to make a big difference when we show everybody what we're capable of," said Andres Figueroa, Junior Safety for the Lancers.

"Country Tough" is the lancers motto this year and it showed against Jupiter and Royal Palm Beach who last year gave the Lancers an upsetting district loss.

Country Tough represents going to work and getting done what needs to be done.

"We eat breakfast at 6:30 in the morning and if we miss breakfast, we go to work hungry," said Coach Monroe. Saturday, September 17, 2011 By Kaye Johnson, Staff Writer -

Students attending John I. Leonard High School are getting hounded over a tardy policy and overcrowding, which there is no control over.

The halls of John I. are packed like a can of worms, and the tardy policy hooks students and throws them into the sea. The overcrowded school is a challenge for students to make it to class on time. Students are getting punished like criminals and forced to go and sit in the tardy room.

Not only is the tardy policy a source of stress for students at John I., but it is also a waste of valuable learning time for students.

"I think the tardy room is ineffective," said Amy Denicolais, 9th grader at John I. Many students have a long way to go between classes and sometimes it isn't possible to make it to class on time.

Students who are willing to do well in school will not live up to their potential if an unfair policy is holding students back. Being held responsible for the overflowing hallways is no way to go through a school year, and students should not need to struggle to make it to class at the right time.

All students should be given an equal amount of education; even if a student walks into class a few seconds late, the learning right needs to be given to us.

Whoever knew that simply getting to lunch would become a game? As soon as the lunch bell rings, the cafeteria becomes a shark frenzy. Students are starving by lunch, and the oceans of students are forced to cram together just to eat. The patience is short and the lines are long.

"Our school should open up more lunch lines. Some days I don't even have enough time to eat my lunch," said Denicolais.

Let's say a student decides to stay an extra minute to their lunch because the lines were so long that purchasing lunch didn't happenuntil 1 minute before the bell. What is the consequence? The tardy room, possible detention, and the cycle keeps on going. Whether it's more lines or longer lunches, something needs to be done.

The overcrowded cafeteria and overflowing hallways at John I. should be no reason for students to be punished. Especially not punishment that takes educational time for granted. As students, they try their best to succeed in school. In return, do not cast their education out to sea. Saturday, September 17, 2011 By Itzel De Alba, Staff Writer -

"One Day" the optimistic expression that you would someday win at the pursuit of happiness. A clear motive of the romatic drama starring Emma Morely (Anne Hathaway) and her love interest as well as best friend Dexter Mayhew (Jim Sturgess). Directed by Lone Scherfig, who so brilliantly captured the romantic ambiance between the two protagonists, throughout the years. This film exemplifies how relationships deepen and morph over time.

Two people, Twenty years: Emma officially meets Dexter, a care free, live in the moment lad, on the night of their graduation from university. A few drinks too many leads the two stumbling to Emma's loft, where little occurs besides an agreement to remain friends, which stifles and romantic feelings between them. The two characters go through a series of unfortunate events from which they help each other through, always keeping their friendship and underlying love alive.

A successful film is not only a few well written anecdotes sprinkled with love, it takes a more then talented cast to make it work, and Anne Hathaway did just that. As always Hathaway did a phenomenal job of capturing her character Emmas intellectual, witty sarcastic humor, known well to Hathaways repertoire. Starting as an unfulfilled writer and then flourishing to a published writer in Paris.

One day was an absolute joy to watch, from the witty sarcastic humor that tickles the mind, to the heart warming story, Viewers may find themselves continually rooting for Dexter and Emma ending up together no matter how many times they quarrel and separate. This is without a doubt a film to leave its name lingering on the tongue. Saturday, September 17, 2011 By Dylan Benevento, Section Editor A large scale concern has recently arisen in the state of Texas, specifically in the Hays County area, due to the arrest of two men for the possession of large quantities of illegal substances.

It isn't just Texas that needs to be concerned with the recent uprising of drug arrests. The pair have openly admitted to receiving the majority of their drugs from other states.

The two men, Martin McCann and Spencer Cohen, have also stated that they were a part of a country-wide distribution, Florida being the second highest state for their drug distribution attempts.

Taken from a recent survey done by CBS News, Florida's illegal drug-related deaths have increased by over nine percent since 2010. With over 2,700 deaths caused by illegal substances, people demand to know just how far someone would go to make a sale.

The answer is too far.

Illegal drug sales can happen anytime, anywhere, and being illegal makes them unsupervised. There's no telling who is buying or selling, and who would be more at risk.

"Any of us who are parents are scared to death of our kids using drugs," said Florida Governor Rick Scott. "I've had drug abuse in my family, and it's just devastating."

A recent survey conducted here at John I. Leonard found that out of 15 studentsinterviewed, 9 of them admitted to having access to drugs. Teens as young as 13 have openly stated that they have tried drugs, and men like McCann and Cohen care little about who would make the purchase.

Florida is the only state in the nation that doesn't require prosecutors to prove a person knew he was carrying illicit drugs to gain a conviction. Florida remains one of the top states for illegal drug distribution, despite the known consequences.

Illegal substance abuse isn't picky about who it affects. There are just as many adolescent deaths as there are adult, and unfortunately, the incarceration of this drug duo won't lead to the total shut-down of all illegal drug distributions everywhere.

However, McCann and Cohen are going to be in prison for five years at the least, though their time behind bars is sure to increase. It's safe to assume that these men are officially out of business. Tuesday, September 13, 2011 By Matthew Townsend - Staff Writer

This year the cross country team has some new runners. The team will also look forward to seeing which athlete will take the place of Ryan Pickering who graduated last year. They are all looking to improve on the success they had last year as any team would.

Charlie Bengston is a cross country runner at John I Leonard. In an interview with Charlie Bengston he told us his goals for the season. Charlie is a very cool guy that has a lot of goals for the new season, he seems to be a leader and a good teammate. With this kind of player the cross country team seems to be heading straight to success.

Bengston was nice enough to answer some questions. In the interview he was asked what his goal was and he said, "My goal this year is to get into the low 16's and high 15's in the 5k cross country race and to get my team in the top ranked".

As Charlie strives to reach his goals he continues to improve as a runner. The biggest question was how he and the team planned to recuperate now that Ryan Pickering has gone to college. "We have accumulated some more runners this year. Our returners are trying to help lead our first year newcomers we are also doing our best to live up to our potentials.

The cross country team is dedicated to working hard and achieving their goals. Tuesday, September 13, 2011 By Arlet Napoles, Staff Writer

By now just about everyone should know that our country is in recession. Some are even calling this the biggest slump since 2002 and according to the U.S treasury the U.S. Dept. is over $14.5 trillion.

According to the CIA World Factbook, the U.S Dept. is the largest in the world because the purchasers of treasury bills still reasonably expect the U.S economy to recover enough to pay them back. For foreign investors like China and Japan, the U.S. is such a large customer it is allowed to run a huge tab and continue buying exports.

Even before the economic crisis the U.S Dept. grew 50% between 2000 and 2007 from $6 to $9 trillion. The $700 billion bailout helped the Dept.grow to $10.5 trillion by December 2008.

Weekly applications for unemployment are a closely watched number on Wall Street and as stocks edged lower in early trading Thursday, the government reported that claims for unemployment rose last week meaning that the number of layoffs is increasing. The outlook for our economy will not improve if the applications for unemployment don't fall below 375,000. The government reported that there was zero job growth in the U.S in August 2011.

There is still positive news.According to the Commerce Department, the American exports of cars airplanes and other goods reached an all-time high this past July. Economists said the jump in exports suggest future growths in the U.S economy. Tuesday, September 13, 2011 By Kimberly Swan, Staff Writer -

Gonzalo Lopez-Gallego was the director and the two actors were Ben Anderson (Warren Christie) and Nate Walker (Lloyd Own) and they did not know what they were doing. Apollo 18 was released on September 2 and it was about these two men going to the moon and experiencing strange events. As they explore the moon they witness something they wish they never had.

The movie had only one setting, three people, two-three boring songs, and horrible camera views. The camera would zoom in on a guys face and he wouldn't even say anything. It was so stupid. Reviews on the internet about the movie have people complaining about how it wasn't scary and how boring it was. You would completely agree with them if you saw the movie.

There were some good parts in the movie, though. Their acting was brilliant and the graphics were good. The moon was made well and realistic. They acted like actually astronauts. You'll be impressed with that aspect.

Do not waste your money going to the theaters to see Apollo 18. It was a terrible movie and you would hate to spend your hard earned cash. It was such a waste of time, staring at a wall seems more exciting. Wait for the video. Tuesday, September 13, 2011 By Bridgette Gamble, Photography Editor - Bridgette Gamble

Each year countless brutal rape cases are reported in the United States and around the world, and even more go unreported. Obviously as the numbers climb, more people become aware of the severity of the crime, but who are they blaming?

Normally one would assume that the blame lies solely with the attacker, being that they are willingly inflicting pain mentally, emotionally and physically, on their victims. However, this is not always the case. In some cases the attacker is actually protected for what they have done, and the victim is questioned as to why and how they provoked the attack.

In an interview on, former English teacher Jessica Smochek spoke about how she was brutally gang raped in Bangladesh in 2004 while serving the community in the Peace Corps. Though she alerted a Peace Corps medical officer, he refused to give her a proper physical exam and confiscated her cell phone to keep her from telling any of her fellow volunteers. He proceeded to instruct her to lie to those that asked, and fabricated a story about Smochek returning to the U.S. to get her wisdom teeth removed.

As she arrived in Washington D.C. she was asked by a Peace Corps official to write down everything she had done to provoke the attack. Smochek was even called to a meeting where several women in her former volunteer group were informed by the country director, without Smochek's permission, about what had happened to her.

"Then he told them that rape was a woman's fault and that I had caused what happened to me by being out alone after 5:00 PM," Smockek said in the interview.

Various other cases are reported like this one, where the victim is at blame for the horrific crime committed against them. But can a vulnerable woman or young girl really be held responsible for a monstrous, sick individual's actions? The answer is most clearly no. Especially in the case of the young girl earlier this year, who remains unidentified for security purposes, that was raped on Weymouth Street off of Haverhill, just one street south of Tenth Avenue where our beloved John I. Leonard resides.

The four-year-old was found in early January of this year stumbling out of a small wooded area on her street, barefoot, dirty, and crying for her mother. According to the story posted on, Jim Hight was on his routine Sunday morning walk when he took a shortcut and found the little girl.

And these instances pop up all over the country.An eleven-year-old girl in East Texas was gang raped, however many people were raging over the selective use of quotes in the story that suggested the girl had contributed to the assault against her by "wearing makeup and fashions more appropriate to a woman in her twenties," according to a story written on

The point is, the eleven year old did not ask to be assaulted, nor did the four-year-old, nor Jessica Smochek. Is it not just as heinous to blame these victims as it is to commit the original crime? Tuesday, September 13, 2011 By Kimberly Swan, Staff Writer -

Jay-Z and Kanye West joined together and made the album "Watch The Throne" and it was an outstanding CD. This album came out on August 8th, and it was worth the money. If you love rap/hip-hop, you would go crazy about this CD.

According to blogs on websites, this album is number one on the US Billboard 200 chart, selling over 400,000 copies in the first week. Also, people can get a free download of the album if they presale Jay-z and Kanye West's fall tour tickets. When the 2-double deluxe album came out, it was only going to be at Blockbuster for 10 days.

The beat to the music is creative and awesome and the lyrics make you feel like you know exactly how they feel and understand what they're talking about. That's how it makes you feel when they say, "Oh, I love you so! But why I love you, I would never know!" in the song "Why I Love You" (track 12). Kids can relate to these songs and fall in love with them quickly.

Jay-Z and Kanye West decided to feature Beyonce, Frank Ocean, and Mr. Hudson in some of their songs to make the music more interesting. And it turns out, that made the songs better. "Lift Off" featuring Beyonce is a brilliant song. That was a great idea to add her in their album. Mr. Hudson was excellent in my favorite song, "Why I Love You". Frank Ocean was also featured in the first song, "No Church In The Wild" and it was pretty good.

You would not regret buying this album. If you look forward to new rap/hip-hop releases, you should desperately buy it. It was worth the money.
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