Weekly Digest #27
The Paperless Press- Weekly Digest #27
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Misinterpretations- The words that bring down civilizations: The family edition
By: Abhimanyu Rao
Everyone loves their parents, and all parents love their children, but sometimes, children, or more specifically, teenagers, get annoyed by their parents. There are times when parents end up saying certain things because they care too much about their children, but the way it sounds to their children is very different from what the parents intended it to sound like. This may strain the relationship between parents and their children, and that will negatively impact both the parents and their children. In order to prevent that, The Paperless Press brings to you…
Misinterpretations- The words that bring down civilizations: The family edition, directly from the mouths of teenagers, to this weekly digest, with no middleman, and reliable sources. So what are we waiting for? Let’s begin…
*These statements are not ranked, but are simply given in the order we received them.*
1.A 9th grader who wished to be kept anonymous had a lot to say about how parents keep on telling them that the exams were only a month/ a week/ a few days away, and how that makes them feel annoyed because they know that already! This is very disappointing to that person, and to anyone who can relate to this, as it comes across as if our parents don’t trust us, or think of us as responsible enough to remember when our exams are, or to start preparing for them on our own. Parents, we know you do this because you care about us, but please trust us to remember the basics. Or at least don’t start reminding us way in advance about the obvious.
2. Another teenager who also wished to be kept anonymous said,“Parents keep on telling us to work, and they keep on telling me to study,study,study, but there are more things than studying to do. They look at other things too, but it is usually about studies.” Does this seem relatable? Just like with the previous statement, teenagers feel that their parents do not trust them enough to believe that they can take control of their respective lives, and also, as our source for this statement has very rightly pointed out, while studies are very important, there are a lot of other aspects of life that are equally, if not more important.
3. Nandini Bhan, a 10th grader, had quite a lot of things to say on this topic. Firstly, she said, “ I’m on the verge of being the most relatable teenager on the planet when I say, the first thing that I don’t like being told by my parents, specifically my mom, would be telling me to do something I was already about to do. This could include homework but the list can be a few metres long.” This is very relatable, isn’t it? Next, she told us about the stories we all have heard at least once in our lives, the infamous ones that begin with “When I was your age...”, which makes sense, because I’m pretty sure a lot of teenagers who hear those stories might feel that they are being unfairly compared to their parents, and that this is a veiled way of telling them they are not good enough. Nevertheless, parents, while we all love your stories, and they do inspire us, they also make us feel inferior, and as if you feel that we are not good enough.
4. One specific topic that we kept getting responses about, was… the phone! Several teenagers felt that it was unfair for parents to tell children to put their phones down, and decrease their screen time, when they themselves see their parents using it a lot, even for things like watching videos and checking Facebook/Instagram. Naturally, teenagers find it unfair that they are not allowed to have a similar freedom. Teenagers feel it was more than a bit ironic for parents to give lectures on reducing phone use while themselves clicking away on their own phones. All the people who sent us this response also felt that they should not be criticised for doing things like checking Instagram/Snapchat or watching videos in their free time, as long as it did not interfere with their other work.
5. The last and final entry in this article is… Something that I had not expected to see, but it is nonetheless extremely important. So, without further ado, the last response, the only one that had only one person who sent it, sent by Vyoma Lal, a 9th grader, was, drumroll... ‘Telling me to act my age’. Most teenagers have already heard this several times, but what does this really mean? I think, that while parents are trying to tell us that we cannot always be a part of very important decisions, if we are not ready to make them, but what it comes of as is one of the things that The Paperless Press has been trying to remedy since day one, and that is to show to the world that children can also have their own opinions about a lot of things, and so this statement was actually more fitting than when I first saw it.
To end this, I would like to say to the parents:
Dear parents of the world,
We know that you all care about your children more than anything and you mean well. This article was in no way meant to offend you, and if it has offended you, then I apologise for this. This was merely meant to give you an insight on what the children and teenagers of the world think about the lessons you give, which are very valuable, but are sometimes taken in an incorrect way. We hope that parents reading this will get an insight into the way their children’s minds work, and be able to communicate better with their children.
5 Lessons of Democracy from the Capitol Riots
By: Agastya Rao
Windows were shattered, flags were carried, policemen were brutally attacked, and doors were broken open. These were the Capitol Riots, just a few days ago in Washington DC, the heart of the United States of America. Even though there was mass violence and destruction, there is a positive take away from all this. Here are 5 Lessons (photo credit-The Financial Express) of Democracy from the Capitol Riots, 2021-
1. Freedom of Speech and Expression- the limits
There is a very thin line between exercising the right to freedom of speech and expression of extremism and riots. This line was crossed by the MAGA (Make America Great Again rioters= far-right Trump supporters). Even though the rioters claimed to be fighting for America, they were definitely not fighting for truth and justice, but for a distorted version of supremacy they had come to believe).
2. Hatred can be incited very easily
Hatred can be incited as quick as a matchstick can be lit, and it soon spreads like a forest fire. It took one small speech from a leader, vitriol filled message boards on the internet; and in a blind rage there were rioters armed with guns, molotov cocktails, and flags of the confederacy. Now, as negative as this sounds, we can learn something from this- we should always think before we say anything, believing anything and share anything. It takes one Whatsapp forward or tweet for a message to spread and incite hatred. Let's all be mindful about what we write and say. Let us not rely on “Whatsapp University” for the news; and take a breath to verify forwarded information / information on the internet before hitting that forward button.
3. Heroism means listening to your conscience and performing your duties - for the police staff who saved the senators and Republican senators who voted for Trump to be impeached
When hundreds and thousands of rioters charged at a small group of policemen, they did their best to stay strong and protect the Capitol building. Most of the policemen were ill-equipped for a riot, and only a few hours later did riot police reach the capitol. Even then, they tried their best to protect the Capitol and the people within.
Donald Trump was recently impeached by the House, for ‘incitement of insurrection’. This will now be taken to a vote in the Senate. Meanwhile, the other people who stood up against Donald Trump, who was a member of their own party, were the 10 Republican Senators who stood up for what was right, and voted for democracy, and against Donald Trump. One of the senators who voted against Trump, is the daughter of Former Vice President Dick Cheney, Liz Cheney. The lesson here is that listening to one’s conscience and safeguarding democracy is more important than following Party lines blindly.
4. No category of people is higher or more important than others
It was the very concept of so-called ‘White Supremacy’ that led to a tumultuous presidency by Donald Trump. It is important that the world learns that ‘no category of people is higher or more important than others’. We are equal, deserve equal rights and equal treatment. America has constantly had issues with racism and it is time for racism to stop. The BLM protests should have been enough to give a strong message to America, and to fight for what is right. The entire world is in a state of shock over recent events in the country that has called itself the defender of democracy, perhaps it is time for everyone to introspect about the concept of equality and democracy itself.
5. When an election is legitimately completed, you can’t undermine it and be a sore loser.
Millions cheered when Joe Biden was announced as the President Elect by the AP, and millions also (sadly) jeered at Joe Biden when he was announced as the President Elect by the AP. The latter are the MAGAs and Trump supporters. Remember the article I wrote in Weekly Digest #9, Donald Trump did a full 180 from the article on the Spirit of Sportsmanship and How not to be a sore loser. Donald Trump announced that there was mass voter fraud. Donald Trump continued on his Twitter fueled rant about how there was a big voter fraud, and how he should have one the elections.
On The Paperless Press sore loser charts, Trump ranked #1 with a 100% SLRR (Sore Loser Rant Rate). Donald Trump not only caused political unrest, but also showed no faith in democracy and voting. As the inauguration date comes closer for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris to take office, we can only remain positive and hopeful :). Democracy is about the will of the voters being supreme and no one has the right to indulge in next level ranting and inciting hatred after a legitimately conducted election. #MakeAmericaSaneAgain
The Oddities of Space!
By: Mihir Rao
If you look at the night sky, you would probably see only a few stars and the moon in the sky. Well, for those who grew up in urban cities, that’s the norm, right? Well, during a citywide blackout in Los Angeles, the police actually got an emergency call about ‘weird clouds in the sky’. Those weird clouds were our galaxy.
And believe me, space gets much, much weirder than that.
In my article a few digests ago, I talked about black holes and how weird they are. Well, they are weird, but let me explain a bit more about them. Black holes have 3 parts- The accretion disk, the event horizon and the singularity. Well, what is weird about the black holes, is that- well, there isn’t anything specific about the black hole that is weird. EVERYTHING about the black hole is weird!
Firstly, the thing is black holes are small. If you have seen pictures or articles on the black hole, you will think that they are massive monsters of cathartic destruction. Well, if our sun became a black hole, it would only be a few kilometres wide!
Next, if you fall into a black hole , then to someone else watching (but why would you watch that?!), the person who is falling into the black hole would stop right before they reach the center, and just fade away into nothing… weird, right?
Now, everyone knows that there are three states of matter right? Solid, Liquid, Gas. This has been taught to us at school, we all probably know this. Some people who know a bit more, might say that there are actually four states of matter. Solid, Liquid, Gas, and Plasma, with which electricity and lightning is made. But, that is not the complete answer.
There are MANY more states of matter than that.
Let me start off with a bang. Everything has a mass, right? And in my previous article, I also explained the fact that anything with a mass will pull other things to itself. Exotic Matter is quite the opposite. Exotic Matter has a negative mass. I know, this is one of the most weird and strange concepts and even I can’t fathom to comprehend anything having a NEGATIVE mass. But, exotic matter does, and it could be the key to teleportation!
Lastly, we have one of the most important things in the world. Time. Time, as many people know, is relative. This means that if you are moving fast, then time will be moving slow for you. When you sit in a car, and you are moving at a fast pace, other objects appear to be moving slowly, right? This is true because of time being relative. And if you are moving at the speed of light, time just stops moving!
So, we all have to learn, to enjoy life to the fullest here on our little blue planet, because time moves by fast, and even if we have oddities in space that we are yet to discover, we have our little oddities on Earth that makes life so special.
Enjoy life. Travel with Trivago. (Ha ha!)
By: Abhimanyu Rao
Teenager Aidan Jackson suffered a seizure while playing an online game with a friend Dia Lathora, who stays in Texas, 5000 miles away. His friend showed remarkable alertness and presence of mind by alerting police in the UK via an emergency number for the EU, and saved Aidan's life. This just goes to show that video games don’t necessarily have to dull a person’s mind!
In a show of remarkable altruism, Arkansas based Dr Omar Atiq wrote off nearly USD 650,000 of patients' outstanding bills for lifesaving cancer treatment. This is a great show of altruism, but it also shows the unfortunately high prices of medical treatment, and how governments should do something about it.
Practicing what they preach has always been scarce in the dirty game of politics, but not all politicians are just empty promises and words. Congressman Andy Kim cleaned up heaps of trash left behind by unruly insurgents who stormed the US Capitol. This was a very heartening to see, as it displayed that even in a race to votes where there are usually a lot of empty promises, there is still some kindness and honesty.
Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales launched an 'Earth Charter' (Terra Carta), a Magna Carta for earth. This seeks to safeguard the planet by making private companies more sustainable, and will really help us in a time when protecting the environment that has been healing for the past year is a prime concern.
A group of fifty countries, chaired by France, the UK and Costa Rica, have come together to conserve and protect 30% of the world's land and oceans by 2030. The High Ambition Coalition for People and Nature made this agreement at the One Planet Summit for Biodiversity in Paris. This is another great happening, as it once again promotes the protection of the healing earth.
By: Agastya Rao
1.Elon Musk recently became the World’s Richest Man….for just one night! The next day, Tesla’s stocks fell and Elon Musk dropped back to the second spot!
2.Ekatrina Nekrasova from Russia, managed to swim through 85 meters of the frozen Lake Baikal. She may also have created a world record. This amazing feat was done, after swimming under water, and holding her breath under the frozen ice of the lake for 1 and a Half minutes! What a feat!
3.Scientists have identified the presence of a non-tobacco plant in ancient Maya drug containers, buried more than 1000 years ago on Mexico's Yucatan peninsula. This paves the way for studies to find out types of plants that were smoked or snuffed among the Mayan communities. What a find!
4.A new study by Columbia University shows that it may be possible to extract energy from black holes, through breaking and reconnecting magnetic field lines near the event horizon (the point from where nothing, not even light, can escape the black holes gravitational pull). Wouldn't this be an amazing discovery?
5.The Orion spacecraft for NASA's Artemis I mission to the moon is ready to fuel up and after its launch later this year, will venture thousands of miles beyond the moon during its approximately 3 week mission. Who doesn’t love space travel?
6.A new study led by Northwestern University is in the process of solving the mystery of how RNA molecules fold themselves to fit within cells and perform specific functions. This will be pathbreaking in understanding and treating RNA-related diseases, such as spinal muscular atrophy and maybe even Covid-19.
7.Astronomers are rewinding the clock on the expanding remains of a star that exploded nearby, in the Small Magellanic Cloud (a satellite galaxy to our Milky Way). Why, you ask... Well, they are using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope to calculate an accurate estimation of the location and time of the supernova blast.
8.Scientists have used drones to transmit light particles (photons), that share quantum linkage (entanglement). This may make it possible to bring quantum internet to us via drones. This will allow distant quantum computers to work together or perform experiments that test the limits of quantum physics.
9.Congressman Andy Kim cleaned up heaps of trash left behind by unruly insurgents (link back to the Cover Story) who stormed the US Capitol. It is heartening to see people's representatives practicing what they preach.
Entertainment quotient for the week:
C. Disney + Hotstar
WandaVision [MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) fans do NOT want to miss this one!]
By: Mihir Rao
Tennis- Australian Open Qualifiers
Andy Murray, the Scottish tennis player who won 3 grand slams, He may or may not be able to play the tournament, even though he got a wildcard entry into the tournament. We hope that he recovers, and we wish him the very best.
In other news, the Celtics won on the 16th of January 2021, with a 27 point difference. Jaylen Brown got the most points with a total score of 21 points, 8 assists, and 2 rebounds. Also, the Lakers won on the same date, making their winning streak go to a humongous 11. The LA Lakers went up against the New Orleans Pelicans. LeBron James (LA) and Zion Williamson (Pelicans) had the same points- 21. The Lakers won the game 112-95.
-On the 31st of December, Real Madrid finished the match tied with the opposing team, Elche with a 1-1 score. Real Madrid got 14 shots, 6 shots on target and 18 fouls. Elche got 6 shots, 3 shots on target, and 8 fouls.
-British Football Legend Wayne Rooney, has retired from playing football and is now set to take up the role of the Manager in the Derby County FC.
-Arsenal and Germany National Team Football star Mesut Özil is set to leave his current football club Arsenal and will leave on a Free-Transfer to the Turkish football club Fenerbahçe S.K.
From the 15th to the 19th of January, there were Test matches happening between India and Australia. As of the time this article is being written, Australia has 369 runs and no one is out, and India has 62 runs and 2 wickets. And in a match between Ireland and UAE that happened on the 8th of January, UAE won by 6 wickets.
From the Literary World- Your Weekly Book Review
This week’s top book- A Velocity of Being: Letters to a Young Reader
By 256 Authors/Scientists and Personalities, edited by Maria Popova and Claudia Bedrick
Video Book Review #12
Reviewed by Agastya Rao
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