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YPIE QuaranTimes Volume 14

Updated: Feb 13

January 30, 2021


Happy New Year! by Jaylene Anderson, YPIE Scholar 2025


In this Issue


Pandemic News

  • A New Variant for COVID Found in the U.S. (New York)

  • New Zealand Virtually COVID Free: How Did They Do It?

Politics

  • Is Trump’s First Amendment Right being Violated?

Entertainment and Lifestyle

  • Painting a Better Future

  • Anime Recommendations

  • The Normalization of Pedophilia in the Media

  • "13 Reasons Why" Controversy

Our Voices Heard

  • Undecided Major

  • The Exploitation of Martin Luther King Jr.’s Legacy

  • The Ironic Insurrection

YPIE QuaranTimes Staff


Editors

Salamatu Lawal, Editor-in-Chief

Alyssa Lee, Our Voices Heard Editor

Catarina Mendes, Politics Editor

Julia Azulay, Entertainment and Lifestyle Editor

Shemar Forbes, Layout Editor & Director of Communications

Yismel Castro, Layout Editor


Contributors

Jaylene Anderson

Julia Azulay

Paola Baizan

Yismel Castro

Hillary Diaz Castillo

Shemar Forbes

Vanessa Gentile

Alyssa Lee

Catarina Mendes

Raquel Negrón

Mina Romanowski

Danielle Yeboah


Advisor

Max Silverman


Welcome to the YPIE QuaranTimes

Produced by YPIE’s Journalism major, the YPIE QuaranTimes is a way for YPIE students to connect and share experiences during these unprecedented times. YPIE Scholars are using this time in so many creative, meaningful ways. As such, the YPIE Journalism major hopes to highlight all of the talents in our community through this publication.


Pandemic News


A New Variant for COVID Found in the U.S. (New York)

By Paola Baizan, YPIE Scholar 2027


On January 4th of 2021, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the first case of the new COVID-19 variant found in New York. Scientists believe that this new COVID-19 strain originated in the United Kingdom and may have started spreading in September of 2020.


This new COVID-19 variant has formed as a result of a mutation from the original strain. Many viruses, like the flu and COVID, copy their DNA in order to make more copies of themselves.


While the viruses try to replicate their DNA, changes may occur during this process which may alter the DNA resulting in mutations. These mutations can cause the virus to become more infectious. The new variant recently found in New York seems to spread faster than the original strain but doesn’t seem to be any more dangerous.


The individual who was infected with the new COVID-19 variant, B.1.1.7, was a man in his 60’s who lives in Saratoga County. He had not been traveling prior to being infected, which has caused many to believe that it may have been contracted within his community. Governor Cuomo also mentioned that the man who has been infected was experiencing COVID-19 like symptoms, but is now recovering safely. He was affiliated with a jewelry store in Saratoga Springs called “N. Fox Jewelers”. Anyone who has visited this jewelry store from December 18 to December 24 is being asked by the state government to get tested for coronavirus as soon as possible.

Employees and some other people who were present at the jewelry store during those dates have also been tested. By January 5th, four people had tested positive for COVID-19 at this location, but it is not certain if it was caused by the UK variant.


The Emergency Medical Service (EMS) Coordinator of Saratoga County, Mike McEvoy, has stated that about 70% of the COVID-19 cases in Saratoga County have come from small gatherings. He has also stated that the vaccine symbolizes “a light at the end of the tunnel.” McEvoy advised all the residents of Saratoga County to take the vaccine once it is available to them and to keep practicing all the safety precautions that have been enforced so far, such as social distancing, wearing masks, and frequent hand washing.


As of Wednesday, January 13th, 15 cases for the new COVID-19 variant have been confirmed in New York by Governor Cuomo.


Since the UK variant is rapidly spreading, please remember to be responsible by taking all safety precautions seriously in order to stay safe!


Mellow by Shemar Forbes, YPIE Scholar 2025


New Zealand Virtually COVID Free: How Did They Do It?

By Catarina Mendes, YPIE Scholar 2025


As the world continues to battle the devastating COVID-19 virus, some pockets of the globe, notably New Zealand as well as parts of Australia, have successfully been able to virtually eradicate the virus. For people in these areas, life has seemingly returned to normal.


News of the potential consequences of COVID-19 spread first began to surface in late January of 2020. In February, New Zealand began to take precautions in an effort to prevent and manage any coronavirus infections that may occur. They began preparing hospitals for an influx of patients with what was then seen as a flu-like virus, as well as instituting border control measures, with its borders still currently closed. On February 26th, the country reported its first known COVID case, and it soon became apparent that community transmission had been occurring. However, to date, New Zealand has only recorded 2,246 cases and 25 deaths, with 2,145 of the patients having recovered.


The country is currently on level one alert, the lowest in its 4 tier COVID-19 alert system. People no longer have to wear masks except on public transportation in the city of Auckland and on flights, nor are social gatherings restricted. New Zealand children were able to return to school as well, and it has been noted that the country’s economy has rebounded. This is a far cry from the situation in the U.S., where COVID is still running rampant as the country experiences more and more devastating death counts daily, sadly breaking records for the deadliest day in U.S. history. Hospital beds in many regions continue to be in low supply and high demand, and nurses and doctors are now more than ever under immense pressure and stress. Many people are continuing to struggle financially as businesses are forced to adhere to strict capacity restrictions or even shut down.


However, both countries have offered people financial support, with the U.S. allowing people to receive stimulus checks and many states passing various provisions such as ceasing all evictions and offering grants to small businesses. Many banks and organizations have also offered loan cuts or forgiveness. New Zealand’s government has pledged NZD $62 billion, or about USD $44 billion to stimulate its economy and protect jobs. In addition, its banks have also dramatically cut interest rates.


One month after its first reported COVID-19 case, with just 100 known cases of the virus, the country went into strict lockdown, the success of which allowed it to begin returning to normal life much quicker than most other nations. Meanwhile, around this time, the U.S. had 160,530 positive positive COVID tests. This equates to roughly 500 positive tests per 1 million people, or 2,500 per 5 million, which is about the population of New Zealand. Lockdowns had only just begun to be imposed roughly two to three weeks prior, with U.S. President Donald Trump admitting that the U.S. government had known about the coronavirus and its potential to become a pandemic as far back as January. However, he had neglected to inform the American people just how serious the situation could become, as he had wanted to avoid a panic. It is now known that COVID was within the country and it started spreading across communities as early as January.


For the U.S., and most of the world, what New Zealand has been able to achieve is something that can only be dreamt of for now. Even with mass vaccination campaigns underway, many governments do not expect to have their populations fully vaccinated soon. Many are also skeptical of the vaccine due to potential side effects as it is so new and was created hastily. However, scientists claim that it is safe and effective.


So why can’t we achieve something like what New Zealand has been able to achieve?


To begin with, New Zealand is a small island nation, making it easy to control who comes in and out. The country’s population of just over 5 million is also tiny compared to the U.S.’s roughly 320 million. The U.S. is far larger in a geographical area and is more accessible as it directly borders two other countries. Its vast area also allows for diverse viewpoints, and in many areas, large percentages of the population feel that being asked to wear a mask, remain in lockdown, or take a vaccine is a violation of their rights. While there was some resistance towards wearing face masks and imposed lockdowns in New Zealand as well, the smaller population most likely aided in preventing mass infection at catastrophic rates.


While the U.S. tried to impose strict lockdown regulations such as closing non-essential businesses and issuing stay at home orders, many protested, often without masks, which served to exacerbate the spread of the virus. There were similar protests in New Zealand as well.


Even after lockdown restrictions were lifted, New Zealand residents are still warned to remain careful and vigilant. After 102 days of no reported COVID-19 cases, an outbreak was detected in Auckland in August, forcing the city into another 6-week long lockdown. While the threat of COVID-19 now seems far from reality, residents are still encouraged, though generally not required, to wear masks and practice social distancing, as well as remain diligent in their daily hygiene practices such as washing hands and coughing away from others. They are directed to stay home if sick and get a COVID test if they are experiencing symptoms. They should also keep track of who they’ve been in contact with, in case they become infected. Measures like these help people remain mindful of their actions and their well-being in order to help contain any potential outbreaks while still functioning practically normally economically and socially.


New Zealand is one of only a handful of countries in the world that has managed to become virtually COVID-free. As the rest of the world continues to fight this pandemic and encourage people to protect themselves and others, one can only hope that soon the world will defeat COVID-19 once and for all.


Politics


Is Trump’s First Amendment Right being Violated?

By Yismel Castro, YPIE Scholar 2025


One of the fundamental purposes of the First Amendment is to preserve the freedom of speech of the American people. The government has a duty to protect it, as our Constitution states, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press.” This amendment specifically highlights the limitations of the U.S. Government and the rights of the American people that cannot be infringed upon by the Congress of the United States.


Former President Donald J. Trump was banned from several social media platforms following the scandal created after a mob of his supporters violently stormed the U.S capitol. His permanent removal was set in place to prevent any further comments that may eventually lead to violence in the future.


Debates have emerged on whether or not Trump’s ability to exercise his First Amendment right is being violated by the censorship of various platforms including Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram. The answer to this dispute is: no. The First Amendment was set in place to prevent the government from censoring the American people; however, it does not stop private platforms from eliminating anyone who violates their terms and conditions.


These platforms have come to the consensus that Trump is a danger to American society due to his continuous allegations of voter fraud and his inability to accept his defeat. By allowing him to continue employing such forms of communication, he would be given the chance to encourage his followers to do unimaginable things that may destroy the balance of our Constitution.


The decision to ban Donald Trump is, therefore, justified. These platforms are within their rights to follow the policies of their terms and conditions. By inciting his followers to engage in violent acts, Trump hit the last straw and was simply removed. To participate in these social media platforms, he has to follow the proper guidelines and refrain from making spiteful comments.


In order to preserve the integrity of our government and the respect of the fair election process, the ex-president of the United States needs to be reprimanded for his successful endeavors in provoking violence. The goal of these social media platforms is to simply eliminate the threat of a recurrence of events.


Entertainment and Lifestyle


Painting a Better Future

By Shemar Forbes, YPIE Scholar 2025


Last year, Netflix announced that they are planning to release Fate: The Winx Saga, a

live-action, young-adult drama adaptation of the Nickelodeon animated series Winx Club, on January 22, 2021.


According to Netflix, this series explores the lives of five fairies attending a magical boarding school, where they must learn to "master their magical powers while navigating love, rivalries, and the monsters that threaten their very existence."


While most fans were initially excited about the show’s announcement, many are now conflicted after watching Netflix’s recent trailer release. In the trailer, two characters that were originally people of color are being portrayed by White actors, causing many viewers to denounce Netflix’s adaptation for whitewashing, a practice where White actors are selected to represent non-White characters.


But this is not the first time Netflix has been caught whitewashing. For instance, take a look at the 2017 Netflix series Death Note. Based on the manga and later anime series Death Note (2003), Netflix's adaptation cast Nat Wolff, a White actor, to play the role of the Japanese main character. In fact, the adaptation included a majority White cast and almost immediately faced backlash for it.


Whitewashing is not only found in Netflix shows and movies but also in the entire film industry. This is illustrated in the 2015 film Aloha which featured Emma Stone as a character of Hawaiian and Native American descent and the 2013 film Lone Ranger which starred Johnny Depp as a Native American warrior. Not to mention, the 2008 film 21 which cast White actors to represent Asian-American students.


As we enter 2021, streaming services and the film industry as a whole should aim to accurately represent people of color in the media to ensure that the future generations can live a life of inclusivity and equality.


Attack Titan by Ben Rodríguez, YPIE Scholar 2028


Anime Recommendations

By Mina Romanowski, YPIE Scholar 2025


We’re in the middle of winter, so it is only appropriate to make some hot cocoa, grab a big warm blanket, and watch some anime to wind down. But who said staying inside had to be boring? There are so many different genres, so sit tight and choose from this selection that ranges from power-wielding warriors to sweet high school romances.


Fantasy/Action:


Attack on Titan


Teens Mikasa, Armin, and Eren live in a post-apocalyptic world where the last of humanity lives behind a wall. They navigate the trials of facing Titans, survival, and arguably the hardest challenge: dealing with the other humans themselves.


*Note: A new season came out on December 6, 2020.


Jujutsu Kaisan


By far one of the animes that had me most captivated and grabbed a hold of me within the first episode. It follows teenage boy Yuji Itadori, who finds himself the vessel of an ancient curse Sakuna which he manages to control as best he can. Watch to see how he and others around him navigate the trials that come with defeating curses, saving others, and helping ease the pain of death for many.


Akame Ga Kill


A young man ventures out seeking to become one of the world’s best assassins and raise enough money for his family. However, his journey is much harder than he expected as he’s forced to find the line between what is truly good and evil. After finding a group that shares his goals, he initially struggles fitting in but is later accepted.


The Seven Deadly Sins


In a world similar to that of the European Middle Ages, the feared yet revered Holy Knights of Britannia use immensely powerful magic to protect the region of Britannia and its kingdoms. However, a small subset of the Knights supposedly betrayed their homeland and turned their blades against their comrades in an attempt to overthrow the ruler of Liones. They were defeated by the Holy Knights, but rumors continued to persist that these legendary knights, called the "Seven Deadly Sins," were still alive. Ten years later, the Holy Knights themselves staged a coup d’état, and thus became the new, tyrannical rulers of the Kingdom of Liones.


Sword Art Online


Gaming is an escape for many people of all ages, but what happens when you find yourself unable to leave this fantasy world? Follow the people of sword art online as they navigate the reality in a video game. Will it be their end, or will they escape?


Mystery and Thriller:


Death Note


This anime is a personal favorite of mine. It follows the story of a young teenager who finds a notebook that grants him the ability to kill those he inscribes. Keep in mind though, that with great power comes a price. So, what’s his price? Watch to find out.


Kakegurui


Teen girl Yumeko Jabami arrives at a prestigious high school where the road ahead and at times her life itself is at risk as a result of gambling.


The Promised Neverland


Imagine if you found out your caretaker took you in for sinister reasons? What would you do? Well for a few young orphans this is their tragic reality. Watch now to follow their journey as they look for ways to escape. I sure hope they do.


Romance:


Vampire Knight


Young orphaned Yuki finds herself ironically being both attacked and saved by vampires all on the same night. This anime follows her starting ten years later when she’s now adopted daughter of the director of Cross Academy and takes on the role of guardian of the Day Class. Watch her journey of romance and turmoil.


Angel Beats


Does life really stop once you die and reach purgatory? I don’t know and neither do the teenagers of this high school. They navigate the struggles of realizing they are in fact in purgatory and fighting for the rights of the dead.


Darling in the Franxx


Set in a time where children rarely saw their teen years, a group of teenagers combat the dangers of robots, the supernatural, and the pains of growing up in this futuristic apocalyptic setting.


High School:


Kaguya-Sama: Love is War


Watch as the president and vice-president of the student council of Schuchi’in Academy navigate both the trials of high school life and their feelings for each other in this romantic comedy.


The Irregular at Magic Highschool


Taking place in a world where magic exists, this anime revolves around siblings who work to attend high school whilst keeping their connections to the infamous Yotsuba clan secret. Unfortunately, their secret comes to light.


Musical:


Your Lie in April


Young orphan Kousei gave up playing the piano, although it was the one thing in the world he was famous for. Why did he do it? Will one arguably equally talented girl change him for the better and bring meaning to his music once again?


Sites/Apps to stream these anime shows:

  1. Netflix

  2. Crunchyroll

  3. Funimation

  4. VRV


I hope you enjoy these recommendations! Stay warm and enjoy your downtime!


The Normalization of Pedophilia in the Media

By Vanessa Gentile, YPIE Scholar 2027


Tony Lopez and Zoe Laverne: these TikTok stars have recently been under fire for allegedly grooming minors. Pretty Little Liars and Dawson’s Creek: these shows depict pedophilic relationships as normal and even glamorized. MAPs: this community of pedophiles tries to pose as members of the LGBTQ+ community. What do all of them have in common? All have seemingly faced little to no backlash for their actions; all have been normalized by the media.


Tony Lopez, a 21-year-old TikTok star, still maintains a whopping 20 million followers, even after all the controversy. He had been caught in the middle of drama before, including racist and homophobic tweets, but this controversy was like no other. A girl by the name of Cay has come forward to accuse Lopez of sending explicit messages and pressuring her into hooking up with him when she was only 15. Another girl was 13 when Lopez told the girl that in order to get him to follow her, she needs to send him “sexy pics.”

He knew the girls’ ages and when one tried to expose him, he begged her not to show anyone because “[my] rep would be done,” according to Lopez. When he was exposed for grooming and later admitted it himself, his followers were loyal, saying that they forgave him. But even so, a lawsuit is now against him.

Zoe Laverne is another TikTok star who is under fire for similar accusations. At 19 years old, she currently has over 17 million followers. She is another controversial influencer, displaying narcissistic tendencies after breaking down in response to Charli D'Amelio surpassing her in followers. A bad reputation was made worse when videos of her kissing a 13-year-old fan named Connor surfaced.

Zoe was quick to defend herself, saying that she knew what she did was wrong. However, Connor tried to justify it, claiming that the two “caught feelings'' for each other. Many people suspect that the two have done more than just kiss, but there is no way to be sure.

Pretty Little Liars and Dawson’s Creek feature predatory relationships that were widely normalized. Both of these series have a student-teacher relationship trope, which is either largely ignored or even encouraged by the people around them. Most series usually use these tropes to inform about the dangers of predatory relationships (for example, the mini-series A Teacher on FOX), but these specifically try to display them as socially acceptable relationships.

Finally, there is MAP or “Minor Attracted Person'', which is a community predominantly located on Twitter that makes efforts to be included in the LGBTQ+ community. These people claim that expressing intimate feelings towards children is normal, but most refuse to act on them. Even if they refuse to, they still openly talk about the feelings they have and claim to have pride.


The MAP community has even made an effort to fit in by creating flags similar to LGBTQ+ flags to fit in. The scariest part is that these are everyday people and some have even felt enough confidence to show their faces.


The biggest problem with all of these issues is the influence it has on younger audiences. Most people on the internet, especially those on TikTok, are children. If children are exposed to these situations and see no repercussions for predator’s actions, they could perceive them as normal. They may feel comfortable enough to even converse with predators and get taken advantage of. The media’s constant ignorance towards pedophilia is wildly unsettling and can lead children down the rabbit hole of abuse and sexualization.


Zoom by Shemar Forbes, YPIE Scholar 2025


"13 Reasons Why" Controversy

By Raquel Negrón, YPIE Scholar 2026


13 Reasons Why was one of the most talked-about shows from 2017 to 2020. It was mostly discussed when airing out all the opinions related to the show’s problematic scenes. In the season 1 finale, the main character Hannah Baker is depicted taking her own life. Many parents became alarmed as they started to notice their young children watching this show.


The storyline caused an outcry from many families as they thought the show and the character’s actions glamorized suicide. The creator of the Netflix series, Brian Yorkey, and a majority of the cast spoke out to try and maintain the show’s innocence.


They said that the whole purpose of the 13 Reasons Why production was to encourage conversation regarding mental illness between adults and teens. Its intention, according to them, was to teach that you can seek help if you’re at an extremely low point.


Even though the cast went on and shared their feelings about the show, Netflix ultimately decided to take the scene out of the show for good after seeking advice from a medical professional. Netflix also took to adding an end credit that provides a website where one can seek help from professionals if they find themselves in need of it.


However, many people who are big fans of the show attempted to deflect the backlash that the cast received.


People claimed that after consulting sources, parents should just closely monitor what their kids watch, yet that often doesn’t happen. It also comes down to how one perceives the show as well as one’s outlook on these kinds of situations in real life. That is why there was much discourse regarding this show for so long; all the different opinions that from the viewers presented an issue of glamorization versus accurate depiction.


Our Voices Heard


Undecided Major

By Hillary Diaz Castillo, YPIE Scholar 2025


Being undecided is not an option for those of us with immigrant parents.


I know this because of the look that my mother gives me every time I tell her my plans for college. Well, my lack of plans for college. Her eyes shine with judgment, while every single engine in her mind tries to understand what’s wrong with me.


Seriously, what’s wrong with me?


“You like to read, don’t you? You should be a lawyer.”


I don’t want to be a lawyer. I know that. My mom knows that. Still, I smile and tell her that it's an option. One of the last options in the bucket of bad ideas, but still an option.


She doesn’t mean any harm. College works differently in Latin America. You don’t go to college undecided and then after some time decide what you are going to do. No, that’s stupid. You go to college knowing what field you are going to study so one day you can be a lawyer, a doctor, or a business person, and you can leave Latin America.


But I’m out. Surrounded by Starbucks and endless opportunities, I still don’t know what I want to be. And it’s not because I’m lazy, but because I don’t know myself yet. I only know the things that I ought to be and unhappy is not one of them.


According to my parents, these are American ideas. Dangerous ideas. Ideas that are born from privileged people that have the means to travel the ride of life with accommodations. We are barefoot, and walking around without a clear path is considered a waste of time and money.


I wish I could tell them that they are wrong, and that, according to NCES, approximately 80 percent of students change their majors; that uncertainty is temporary; that, I won’t disappoint them.


However, I’m scared.


Terrified, to be more precise. The expectations that come from graduation are devastating when one is unaware of what course to take in life. Sometimes it feels like I’m not allowed to be doubtful and that my inability to choose a major is a direct result of some fault in my character.


Suddenly, being a lawyer doesn't sound like a bad idea. Even if I still don’t want to be one, I desperately hold on to any path that promises success because it is more attractive than walking in the dark.


It's not fair. Education should not be a reflection of society's pressure to follow the glorified dream of economic stability. Instead, education should be a representation of a desire to improve as individuals and allow ourselves to grow in an academic environment of curiosity.


Being undecided shouldn’t make teenagers guilty, but rather excited for the multiple opportunities that may come in the future.


Sweater Weather by Shemar Forbes, YPIE Scholar 2025


The Exploitation of Martin Luther King Jr.’s Legacy

By Julia Azulay, YPIE Scholar 2027


As Black History Month approaches and the nation continues to honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., it is imperative to consider every aspect of his life and work which remains relevant to this day.


However, information that reveals his radical and progressive stance on social justice is often disregarded because they destabilize his accepted image and were lost in the wave of extensive knowledge. This can be partially attributed to American politicians who often distort and abuse Dr. King’s statements.


Dr. King’s desire for his children to live in a world where they would “not be judged by the color of their skin but the content of their character” sparks an incessant debate that plays a pivotal role in policymaking.


The argument about how policies should be implemented has led to a clash between colorblindness and race consciousness. Combatting the aftermath of slavery, segregation, and existing systemic racism in America is further rejected when White conservatives utilize King’s word to advocate for colorblindness. This rebuttal formulated by various sides of the political spectrum in the face of affirmative action has many issues, including the fact that King didn’t want his children’s skin color to be ignored.


However, overtly race-conscious partisans and programs also hold a negative impact, specifically a segregative effect. Direct action with initially good intent realistically results in overemphasizing the otherness of Black Americans and distancing them from the White majority.


When the resolution to this conflict is ultimately pondered on, a complex yet conspicuous solution shines through from one source: Dr. King’s speech. He did not speak of an either/or remedy, but rather a both/and. In accordance with his words, the real answer lies in the middle, where the judgment of the content of one’s character accompanies the understanding of how their disposition was shaped by the color of their skin.


An additional controversy surrounding the portrayal of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is the concealment of his reformist views that typically do not infiltrate common knowledge distributed by educational institutes. Some teachers and educators are assigned a sanitized narrative of King’s activism, and this must be altered by discussing his underrepresented beliefs.


For instance, during a speech entitled “The Other America” delivered at a Michigan high school in 1968, he empathized with those who did not adopt the concept of nonviolent resistance. Although Dr. King is normally illustrated as a peaceful individual who condemned rioting or violent protest, he expressed understanding of rioting and even dubbed it “the language of the unheard” in this address.


Another progressive, positive organization that sprouted from Dr. King’s teachings is the Black is Beautiful Movement. It gained momentum at the time he gave a speech incorporating messages about self-love. He encouraged Black people to embrace their identities and convey pride in their blackness. The lessons drawn from this speech can be detected in modernized social justice movements, which places self-acceptance on a high pedestal of importance.


Finally, Dr. King’s deliverance of “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop'' in Memphis, Tennessee to support the Sanitation Workers’ Strike contained rousing themes. One that was overlooked, however, was the point that urged Black citizens to build up Black-owned businesses and boycott corporations that did not acknowledge their identity. He confronted especially large companies and banks in Memphis that implemented discriminatory hiring policies.


To conclude, this prominent face of the civil rights movement should not be remembered for surface level postulations that misrepresent his entire legacy. He preached and demanded justice in various ways, some more radical than an average person may expect. In order to comprehend how his vision took shape in the recent Black Lives Matter movement, one must enlighten themselves about Dr. King’s many contributions to the insistence of equality, whether they were noncombatant or more pressing than predicted.


The Ironic Insurrection

By Alyssa Lee, YPIE Scholar 2026


January 6, 2021, marked the storming of the United States Capitol by volatile Trump supporters and White supremacists.


The riot was incited on the premise that this mob would somehow successfully overturn the results of the election, and former President Donald Trump would remain in power.


Taking a look back at the events that unfolded that fateful Wednesday afternoon, one can see that they were riddled with irony.


During the midst of the failed coup, “Blue Lives Matter” flags could be seen flapping violently in the wind, whilst their carriers were simultaneously engaging in physical altercations with the law enforcement they claimed to support whole-heartedly. It seems as though, in the blink of an eye, blue lives no longer mattered.


Within seconds it had been revealed that this movement was created simply to suppress Black voices, rather than to cheer on the men and women who adorn the blue and badge that accompanies it.


Not only could “Blue Lives Matter” flags be seen but flying proudly above the mob were a multitude of American flags.


How does one proudly wave around an American flag during an insurrection against the very country? How can one dismiss the fundamental principles of our nation, yet strut around with the flag in hand?


And to top it all off, multiple Trump supporters took to Twitter in the month of November to state that when the results of the election are released and Joe Biden wins they will accept him as president. They then went on to say that if Donald Trump won the election, all the Democrats, liberals, and leftists would take to the streets, rioting, and looting.


However, when the electoral college convened to validate the results of the election, it was evident that Joe Biden had won, and by a lot. Soon after, self-proclaimed Trump supporters began rampaging through the streets, storming the U.S. Capitol, and doing everything they swore the other party would do.


It is only fitting to deem the participants of this insurrection as walking paradoxes, seemingly contradicting themselves with every move they make and through every word that passes their lips.



Learn more about the YPIE QuaranTimes.

Interested in contributing? Email YPIEQuaranTimes@gmail.com or Max Silverman, YPIE QuaranTimes Advisor and Director, College Readiness.

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