Category Archives: national news

Jan-Feb Political Wrap Up: Biden’s Inauguration and Trump’s 2nd Impeachment

By Edmund Shryock, Political Correspondent

On January 20, 2021, the world looked to Washington D.C. as President Joe Biden was officially inaugurated as the 46th President of the United States, continuing the 232-year tradition of a peaceful transfer of power. However, this Inauguration Day looked vastly different due to the Coronavirus, as the national mall was not crowded with people but covered with American flags. Kamala Harris was also sworn in as the first woman Vice President in American history.

The tone of this inauguration was different as it was four years ago, as a theme of unity was a major bullet point in President Biden’s Inauguration Speech. “We look ahead in our uniquely American way – restless, bold, optimistic – and set our sights on the nation we know we can be and we must be,” stated Biden, as he spoke in the exact spot where weeks prior violent rioters stood trying to stop his certification as President.

Another difference in this inauguration compared to previous ones was that former President Trump did not show up to the inauguration, becoming just the fourth President in history to purposely not attend his successor’s inauguration. This showed the vast differences between Biden and Trump’s personalities and their feelings towards each other. Trump left the White House before the inauguration with Melania and his son Barron on Marine One. They landed at Andrews Air Force Base where Trump gave a farewell speech to his supporters at the same time as the inauguration. Trump’s Vice President Mike Pence did not join him, however. Pence attended the inauguration with his wife, showing the gap that was formed between the two after Pence did not stop the certifying of the 2020 electoral ballots like Trump wanted him to.

Impeachment Trial

A sampling of headlines around the country from Trump’s second impeachment on January 13, 2021.

As Biden stepped into the White House, Trump stepped into a Senate Impeachment Trial. The trial lasted from February 9-13. Ultimately, Trump was acquitted on charges of “incitement of insurrection,” as the 57-43 senate vote fell ten votes short of the necessary ⅔ majority to convict him. The seven Republican votes for conviction represented the largest bipartisan vote for an impeachment conviction of a U.S. president.

On January 13, 2021, Donald Trump became the first President in history to be impeached twice by the House of Representatives. The vote passed with 222 Democrats and 10 Republicans voting to impeach, breaking party lines. However, Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnel did not push to have the senate trial start until after Trump was out of office. If the Senate had found Trump guilty in the impeachment trial he would have immediately been removed from office.

However, since Trump was already voted out by the people, he could have faced a different set of consequences. If the Senate had convicted Trump, then he would have been the first President to actually be convicted (although it would have taken another vote to have Trump barred from office, meaning he could not run for President again). Another vote from the Senate would have also stripped Trump from his post-Presidency benefits, such as a yearly salary and his own personal secret service for life.

Trump could still face a criminal prosecution or civil lawsuit arising from the Capitol assault, and The Shoemaker Bugle will update this story if anything comes up.

Black History = American Heroes

By Angelica Moreno

The Shoemaker Bugle honors Black History Month with profiles of these 12 American heroes.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

Born on January 15, 1929, Dr. King’s goal was to relieve America of its racist values and bring unity among the races. He was the leader of the Civil Rights movement and fond of peaceful protest. The face and voice of human rights gained  national recognition with the Montgomery Bus Boycott after Rosa Parks declined to give up her seat in a time of segregation. After 381 days of protest, the Supreme Court ruled segregation on buses was unconstitutional, and that paved the way for the Civil Rights Movement to expand with high respectability being generated toward Dr. King. Everyone believed in him and peaceful protest to progress history. Most notably known for his “I Have a Dream Speech” on August 28, 1963, as more than 250,000 people listened, King got to deliver his speech from the steps of the Lincoln memorial for all of America, even his enemies.

“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character. I have a dream today.”

-Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Bayard Rustin

Born on March 17, 1912, American leader Rustin was a popular protest organizer for social movements. Starting in his teens, he began to peacefully protest racial segregation. From there on, he would organize protests for movements anywhere he went. In its first breaths of the Civil Rights movement, in 1954, Rustin became Dr. King’s chief organizer and went onto organize the March on Washington a decade later, in 1963, which included King’s famous “I Have a dream” speech. His homosexuality was off-putting to leaders of the movement, so he didn’t get recognized for his actions until later in his life. 50 years after the Civil Rights movement, President Obama awarded him the presidential award of freedom which praised Rustin’s determination towards true equality.

“We need, in every community, a group of angelic troublemakers.”

-Bayard Rustin

Malcolm X

Born May 19, 1925, American-Muslim minister and human rights activist Malcolm X is one of the most notable symbols of black liberation in modern history. With his extremely powerful words on racial issues, he was a hard-hitter with his speech and actions, differing in his views of peaceful protest from MLK. One of America’s biggest threats during his prime of activism, he cultivated a global following. His “less-than-appropriate” manner of speech came from anger about discrimination and inequality. So for all those too scared to speak like him would be his supporters.

“The injustice that has been inflicted on negroes in this country by Uncle Sam is criminal. The government is responsible for the injustice. The government can bring these injustices to halt.”

-Malcolm X, referring to police brutality

Frederick Douglass

Born around 1818, American leader of the abolitionist movement and writer Douglass was a highly famous intellectual of his time that sought to abolish slavery. A self-freed slave, he never knew his age (as all enslaved were mostly never told of their birthday and/or maiden name to be kept ignorant of their own nature and being). On one of the many plantations he was on as a child, a slave owner’s wife took to him and taught him how to read. He was beaten for knowing how to read but gained more knowledge on his own. Then he went on to write books about his struggle and gained popularity. He would give speeches while traveling around the country and even was one of the key consultants who convinced Lincoln to abolish slavery in effort to support the civil war with more troops.

“If there is no struggle, there is no progress.”

-Frederick Douglass

Harriet Tubman

Born in the early 1820’s as “Araminta Ross,” Tubman was an American abolitionist. She freed over 300 people from slavery in the 1850’s realizing that slavery occurring anywhere in America was uncalled for. This feat in history caused her to move higher with her courage in which she became a Union Army nurse, scout, and spy during the Civil War. From these attributes, she became the first woman in U.S. history to lead a military raid and free enslaved people. Her plans to better the community of black people never stopped, from raising money to building schools and hospitals, to supporting women’s suffrage. Even on her deathbed, this prominent woman in history, continued to be of relief to America’s racism.

“I go to prepare a place for you.”

-Harriet Tubman’s last words

James Baldwin

Born August 2, 1924, Baldwin was an American writer and activist for his people. As a teen, he was a preacher and from that, he was able to develop his writing style; however, because of the limited outlook the church had for racism and the lack of support for homosexuality, he lost interest. In his early twenties, he moved to Paris and began to write his take on racism in America. One of his most famous works, “Notes from a Native Son,” depicted class, race, and sexuality and from that he became an influential prominent black writer, as well as a liaison in the Civil Rights movement. He debated Robert Kennedy, Malcolm X, and many others. With his uncanny ability to get respect from white people in debates and openness of his sexuality (during a time of rampant racism and homophobia), he was seen as a threat to the American government. He was ahead of his time and a path maker for the future.

“I love America more than any other country in this world, and, exactly for this reason, I insist on the right to criticize her perpetually.”

-James Baldwin

Langston Hughes

Born February 1, 1902, Hughes was an American writer, one of many leaders of the Harlem Renaissance, and an early founder of “jazz poetry.” He wanted African-American values intertwined with writing and a new form to be born in “jazz poetry.” Predominantly white people had been in the spotlight for literature since the dawn of reading literature, but Hughes gave poetry a new flow and style. Black representation could now be seen in writing and be shared in his community.

“Good morning daddy, ain’t you heard, the boogie woogie rumble of a dream deferred.”

-an example of Langston Hughes’ jazz poetry

Emmett Till

Born July 25, 1941, Emmett Till was lynched at only fourteen years old for accusations of harassing a white woman. He was brutally beaten to death by two white men who claimed to be defending a white woman from Till. Mamie Till Bradley, mother of Emmett, was so distraught over her son’s death that she needed for the world to see what they had done to her son. By sending pictures of his distorted face to magazines and newspapers, along with a public open-casket funeral, publicity was given to Emmett Till’s murder. In the three-day trail for the murder of Emmett Till, the all-white jury found the killers not guilty. Seven years after its time, one juror confessed that most of the jury did find them guilty but deemed life in prison too harsh on white men for killing a black boy.

“I thought of Emmett Till, and when the bus driver ordered me to move to the back, I just couldn’t move.”

-Rosa Parks on Emmett Till’s impact

Ella Fitzgerald

Born April 25, 1917, American jazz singer, Ella Fitzgerald is known as the first lady of song. Fitzgerald was, and still is, a highly influential part of music history. Having an impeccable voice to make the world swoon with tenderness and admiration, even Marilyn Monroe couldn’t get enough of her. After winning a singing competition at Harlem’s Apollo theater, she got connected with Chick Webb and recorded one of her first songs, “Love and Kisses.” From there on out, she would collaborate with big names in the jazz business like Louis Armstrong, Count Basie, The Ink Spots, and many more, which landed her as a prominent figure in jazz history forever.

“The only thing better than singing is more singing.”

-Ella Fitzgerald

Jackie Robinson

Born January 31, 1919, Robinson, baseball’s Civil Rights leader, was the first African-American to break the color barrier and play Major League Baseball. He made history when he was sent out to the field to play first base for the Brooklyn Dodgers on April 15, 1947. A decade later he helped the Dodgers win their first World Series in 1955 (Brooklyn’s only championship). Even with his impact on cutting segregation out of the major leagues, racism still flowed through the stadiums and games. Having to endure immense bigotry throughout his character, he is a legend to have not have quit on us, history, and the black community. His number 42 is retired throughout all of Major League Baseball.

“A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives.”

-Jackie Robinson

Ruby Bridges

Born September 8, 1954, six-year-old Bridges made her impact on November 14, 1960, when she was the first African-American child to desegregate an all-white elementary school in New Orleans. In 1954, the Brown v. Board of Education supreme court case ruled that segregation in schools was unconstitutional, but the school still did not comply with the ruling. Finally, a federal order was issued five years later to slowly begin segregation, starting with four black children on their first day of first grade, and Bridges was one of them. U.S. Marshals escorted the girl to school and caused an uproar so badly that almost all students and faculty withdrew their positions in the school. She and the only teacher who would teach her, Barbara Henry, went on to manage the school year alone and Bridges went onto second grade successfully. 

“My message is really that racism has no place in the hearts and minds of our children.”

-Ruby Bridges

Angela Davis

Born January 26, 1944, America leader Davis is a human rights activist, intellectual, and advocate of prison abolition. An icon for once being on the FBI’s most wanted list and facing the death sentence in California, Davis has gone on her whole life fighting for justice of black people and reformation of the criminal justice system. Seen as a threat for leading the prison abolishment movement, she was ruled as “armed and dangerous” by the FBI. After being imprisoned for 18 months for connections to a murder, all her charges were acquitted and now she had an inside look of what is is to be a criminal in America, which encouraged her activism to continue and never stop. She is now a professor at UC Santa Cruz.

“I’m no longer accepting the things I cannot change… I’m changing the things I cannot accept.”

-Angela Davis

The COVID-19 Vaccine: How Does It Work?

Here are the facts on the amazing science behind the quickest vaccine ever produced
By Andrea Arias

In April 2020, amidst the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, when the question “When will the vaccine be ready?” first arose, the New York Times released an article where they projected that the vaccine could take until 2033, even though health professionals were aiming to get it done by August 2021. Little did they know that in a little over eight months, the first vaccine for COVID-19 would be approved. Remarkable.

Before the COVID-19 vaccine was created, the quickest vaccine was for the mumps in the 1960s, and that vaccine took 4 years. So, why was the COVID vaccine projected to take so long, and how were we able to get it done so quickly?

–Vaccine Development Process–

Vaccines have always been projected to take years, this is due to the process that takes place to create a vaccine. The process of creating a vaccine is done by using a deactivated version of the virus or a “live but mild version” of the virus that has grown to be less severe. This is then injected into someone, which allows our B cells to create and synthesize antibodies to fight the virus if we are ever to come in contact with a live version.

While this is the traditional and most common vaccine (flu vaccines were created using this method), due to the severity and need for a Covid vaccine as quickly as possible, some companies decided to use a new method this time. Since SARS-CoV-2 was a new virus (SARS-CoV-2 is the name of the virus and COVID-19 stands for the disease, Coronavirus Disease 2019), with no previous research or understanding of the virus it would be difficult for a vaccine to be created.

–mRNA Vaccines–

The new method used to create the COVID-19 vaccine is called an mRNA vaccine. mRNA is messenger RNA, and its job is to produce proteins. So, how does an mRNA vaccine work? Well, by encoding mRNA with the information needed to produce the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein, this allows the body to then realize that this protein is an invader and produces antibodies to fight it. Essentially, it is the same process as a traditional vaccine, but instead of using a version of the virus, a synthetic mRNA is injected and binds to human cells and then creates a “spike” protein (which is what allows coronavirus to infect other cells).

Only two companies decided to take the approach of using an mRNA vaccine, these two were Moderna and Pfizer. The latter is a company under a German government program that is pushing for a vaccine, and the former is a company under the Operation Warp Speed started by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. With the press release from Moderna and Pfizer, we are able to learn how Phase 1/3 went, and how quickly these two companies were able to come up with a solution and vaccine in just 8 short months. According to BioSpace, by Phase I both Moderna and Pfizer achieved outstanding results in non-human models that produced sufficient CD4+ T cells against the virus (see graphic, below). CD4+ cells are “helper” cells that trigger the body’s response to infections.

This is being attached to T cells which are the key white blood cells for the immune system. Along with this, within the first phase both Moderna and Pfizer realized the importance and essential need for a two-dose vaccine. This was discovered because it was found that 43 days or two weeks after the second dose participants had the same level of antibodies as people who had recovered from the virus. While during Phase I Moderna only managed to create a protein, mRNA-1273, that could protect against replication in the lungs of SARS-CoV-2, in a later phase they found how to also prevent infection from the virus. 

–Other Promising Vaccines–

While the mRNA vaccines by Moderna and Pfizer have been the quickest to be created and released, they are not the only vaccines being created. There are three other types of vaccines being used by other companies to help put a stop to this pandemic. Novaxax is creating a protein-based vaccine, which uses related versions of the spike protein and injects this into a person. By doing this, the protein tutors the immune system in how to fight the virus. This, in turn, allows cells to be pushed into the frontlines, dedicated to fighting the virus. Protein vaccines have been around much longer and have been proven to be highly effective, but they are slower to produce than mRNA vaccines.

Research on the Novavax vaccine has found that it has the highest neutralizing antibodies reported yet. Another type of vaccine is the adenovirus-based vaccine; Johnson & Johnson as well as AstraZeneca have been trying to create this type of vaccine, and it appears that Johnson & Johnson has succeeded. Adenovirus-based vaccines are prepared by inserting a transgene cassette into the adenoviral backbone by homologous recombination, which is an exchange of genetic information from similar or identical molecules or DNA or RNA. According to the CDC, this is a vaccine that is taken orally and is only used in the military, and none exist for public or general use in the U.S. Similarly to the protein vaccine, adenovirus vaccine technology has existed for several years but has not been used to create a general vaccine for public use.

–Timeline of Historic Vaccines–

  • •December 31, 2020 The first case of Coronavirus Disease 2019 was reported in Wuhan, China.

    •January 29, 2020 The first lab-grown 2019-nCov was created. This at the time was the first step for a traditional version of a vaccine for COVID-19 to be created. 

    •February 13, 2020 A radiologist from Wuhan published findings of a chest CT scan which suggested four evolutionary stages of COVID-19, these four stages being the early stage (0–4 days), progressive stage (5–8 days), peak stage (9–13 days), and absorption stage (≥14 days). Within this time, researchers found that there was an abnormality within the patient’s lungs. 

    •February 17, 2020 Just a few days later, it was revealed that warmer weather and humidity might not affect the spread of COVID-19 like many had suggested. This posed a problem as, unlike the flu, a person is likely to contract the disease at any point and time of the year. 

    •February 24, 2020 With shocking speed, Moderna, one of the companies to later release a well-developed vaccine, sent a vaccine to phase 1 testing in the U.S.

    •February 26, 2020 Novaxax announces possible candidate against the Coronavirus.

    •March 16, 2020 Moderna vaccine testing begins.

    •March 30, 2020 Johnson & Johnson announced a lead candidate for their version of the COVID-19 virus. The Janssen vaccine is not a mRNA vaccine but an adenovirus based vaccine.

    •April 29, 2020 The first group for Phase I testing is injected with the Pfizer vaccine.

    •May 15, 2020 The Trump administration announces ‘Operation Warp Speed.’ This is done to speed up the process of the vaccines currently being tested, which at the time were Moderna, Pfizer, and Johnson & Johnson.

    •May 25, 2020 Novavax initiates the start of Phase 1/2 testing in Australia, for their NVX-CoV2373, protein-based vaccine.

    •May 29, 2020 Moderna starts their evaluation of the vaccine in Phase II. They ran a placebo-controlled experiment to confirm the dose and evaluate the safety of the vaccine.

  • •May – July 2020 Seven pharmaceutical companies were approved into ‘Operation Warp Speed.’ These were: Johnson & Johnson, Merck & Co., Moderna Inc., University of Oxford in collaboration with AstraZeneca Plc, and Novavax, Pfizer Inc. *Note: Pfizer was not initially involved but a deal was made for 100 million doses of their vaccine in mid-July*

    •June 5, 2020 The BBC announced for AstraZeneca that they will begin producing potential Covid vaccines. Around this time, AstraZeneca’s vaccine also passed to Phase I. AstraZeneca’s vaccine is not an mRNA vaccine but instead a double-stranded DNA vaccination rather than a single-stranded mRNA. The vaccine is called ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 or AZD1222.

    •July 27, 2020 Moderna begins Phase III testing of their mRNA-1273 vaccine. On this day, Pfizer also chose their lead mRNA vaccine to advance into Phase II.

    •August 24, 2020 Novavax advances to Phase II of Phase 1/2 clinical trial of their NVX-CoV2373 vaccine.

    •August 31, 2020 AstraZeneca’s advances to Phase III clinical trials in the U.S. for all adult groups. 

    •September 2, 2020 AstraZeneca temporarily pauses clinical trials of their Covid-19 vaccine, AZD1222, due to an unexplained illness that occured in the UK during their Phase III testing there. The clinical trials have to be stopped to ensure the safety of all participants. 

    •November 8, 2020 Pfizer conducted their Phase III trail revealing an efficiency rate above 90%

    •December 8, 2020 The first person to receive the Pfizer vaccine is a 90-year-old woman in the United Kingdom.

    Photograph: Jonny Weeks/NHS England/Getty Images

    •December 10, 2020 Pfizer publicized the results of the Phase III clinical trial. There were 43,448 participants, 21,720 of which received BNT162b2, the vaccine, and 21,728 received a placebo, using the two-dose regimen of BNT162b2, which was given 21 days apart. This demonstrated the vaccine to be 95% effective against COVID-19.

  • •December 11, 2020 The U.S. FDA approved the first Covid vaccine for emergency use in the U.S., the Pfizer vaccine.

    •December 18, 2020 The FDA approved the Moderna vaccine to be the second vaccine approved for emergency use in the U.S.

    •December 20, 2020 The U.K. authorized the use of the AstraZeneca covid-19 vaccine.

    •December 28, 2020 Novavax announces the start of their PREVENT-19 Phase III trial in the U.S. and Mexico.

    •January 8, 2021 A Pfizer press release announced that their Covid-19 vaccine is effective against the multiple mutations recently discovered.

    •January 28, 2021 In a press release by Novavax, they stated that in their Phase III trials in the UK proved their vaccine is 89.3% effective against Covid-19. (This test was conducted against the new variant in the UK as well as during a time of high infectious rate, meaning they are looking to create a strong vaccine to stop the multiple mutations of Covid-19, including the one in South Africa.)

    •February 3, 2021 AstraZeneca announces that their vaccine is 100% effective against severe cases of Covid-19, making it likely the most effective vaccine to be released.*

    *Note: this is only against severe cases, hospitalizations, and death; it is still likely to get coronavirus but the likelihood of being hospitalized is very slim from these results.

    •February 4, 2021 Johnson & Johnson requested emergency authorization from the FDA for their COVID-19, vaccine which has been found to be 72% effective, less than both Moderna and Pfizer but large nonetheless for such a short period of time. The J&J vaccine was also able to test against the new variant of the virus present in the U.S., South Africa and Latin America at this time.

    Photo Illustration by Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

    •February 7, 2021 Africa suspends the rollout of the AstraZeneca vaccine due to minimal protection it provided for the variant identified there.

For more constant updates on new vaccines and other vaccines not listed above check out the New York Times Covid-19 Vaccine Tracker which is updated constantly. They also do a great job in breaking down all the vaccines and their purposes.

Opinion: Biden Is A Much Needed Change

By Daisy Penaloza

The Drama is Ending

America has suffered for the last four years because of the horrendous acts of former president Trump. Trump never behaved as a president should behave–putting his country and its people first–and this was as clearly seen not only by our own country’s citizens, but by the entire world.

Trump never once did anything to save or to really help the country as a whole, but he’s surely done much to help himself and his own personal political agenda.

From deeming different groups of people as “criminals, terrorists, rapists, drug dealers,” plummeting the economy like never before, and knowing the dangers of COVID-19 yet letting it worsen, Trump made his mark as the worst president ever.

Additionally, as a result of the Trump-incited insurrection that took place on January 6 and the resulting death threats to both President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, the U.S. placed 25,000 National Guard troops and Secret Service, as well as other law enforcement personnel around them at the U.S. Capitol in order to ensure the safety and security of all involved on Inauguration Day.

Hope for the Future

Now that President Biden has taken office, Americans can breathe a sigh of relief as they finally have hope for a brighter and calmer future. 

President Biden receives the Covid-19 vaccine

Life still won’t be easy, and as always, it will get tough at times. But, with the help of the new president and his cabinet, our country may finally receive what it needs–unity.

Biden and Harris will have tons of work to do working to rebuild everything the previous president ruined, but it is a challenge that they both are eager to take on.

President Joe Biden has proposed some wondrous and amazing policies. First, he promised to get the raging pandemic under control. He is making public announcements asking Americans to wear masks and take precautions, and he is working to obtain vaccines and distribute them as quickly as possible. He also wants to work towards more ways to reduce climate change, empower and protect women, and even advance LGBTQ+ equality!

Even though our leadership has finally changed, this is not the time for complacency. 

The fight for our rights is over when the need for a fight is over.

For more information on President Biden’s plans and policies, check out his official campaign website.

Capitol Riot: Student Voices Ring Out

By Daisy Penaloza

Rattling Insurrection

The events that took place on Wednesday, January 6, 2021 at our nation’s Capitol Building have rattled everyone, including cadets and students at Southeast Academy and JGHS. 

Students in Shock

Many cadets watched in disbelief as events unfolded. Daniel Ramos, a junior at SEA, shares his impressions: “I feel ashamed [of] the people who made a fool of our country and [of] themselves.” Similarly, JGHS senior Joseph Nunez laments, “It is ridiculous and disgusting that these people with privilege are doing an act of domestic terrorism on our country.”

Our very democracy was challenged by these rioters, and students are questioning the motives behind it. “Why would they disrespect their country’s symbol of a democratic government?” asks Cpl. Sarah Shim. An article in the Washington Post attempts to answer that question. Trump lost the election, yet he convinced his supporters that it was “stolen” from them. President Trump further encouraged followers to go to the Capitol to intimidate Congress and stop the certification of the electoral college votes. This dangerous rhetoric is what instigated these heinous actions. 

The United States is a country at war with itself, and this civil unrest will have long lasting ramifications. Senior 1st Lt. Nieto believes that our current leaders share much of the blame because not “all politicians” have a positive influence on their followers. Additionally, she states that, “Opposing political views not only have an impact on an individual, but [also on] all of society.”

All eyes are upon our nation. Since we as a country have wreaked “havoc” on ourselves, observes 1st Lt. Kushal Tavva, this insurrection has, “turned us into the laughing stock of the world.” SEA Journalism staff editor and reporter Ace Castro adds to this sentiment, stating, “Not only are our enemies laughing at us, but our allies might… be embarrassed to be ASSOCIATED with us!” 

Students Call Out Inequity

The sharp inequity between how these mostly white rioters were treated as opposed to the treatment inflicted upon the protesters of color during the Black Lives Matter movement last summer did not go unnoticed by students. 

Sophomore Paul Vargas noted that, had this been a BLM riot, “They would have armed guards and armor around the Capitol.” JGHS senior Kaitlyn M. agrees. The BLM protesters were calling for “basic human rights,” yet they were met with armed guards in “riot gear.”

Jon Schuppe of NBC News noted that while some police officers did try to deal with the insurrectionists, “Others took selfies and appeared to offer no resistance, allowing dozens of rioters to leave without being arrested.”

Alternative Opinion

But not all students see it this way. At least one student believes that the difference in police response has more to do with the fact that the authorities learned a valuable lesson about using excessive force and less to do with discrimination or white privilege. Cadet Eric Rodrigueza explains, “I believe that the reasoning for [police] lack of action against the protesters/rioters is that they were trying to prevent what had happened before.” Rodrigueza adds, “I truly believe this is the reason why [the police] choose to let the protesters/rioters enter the U.S Capitol.” 

No matter where we stand politically, I hope we can all agree that what happened at the Capitol Building on Jan. 6th was wrong.

Student Reactions

Click here to see more student reactions to this historic event.

COVID Vaccine News Round-Up

By Hermaione Sanchez

For all of us, the goal should be to get vaccinated and reach herd immunity in order for this pandemic to be over. According to experts, 85% of Americans need to be vaccinated in order for this to happen. As of February 8, 4,746,539 vaccine doses have been given out. About 40 million people live in California, and of these, only 9.6% have received the vaccine.

Here’s a round-up of more vaccine news:

  • Health-care workers were first on the list for these vaccines, along with long-term care facility residents. 
  • On January 13, Governor Newsom announced accessibility to those 65 and older. 
  • Newsom also announced major vaccination sites like Dodger Stadium, Disneyland, CalExpo, PETCO Park in San Diego, and more.
  • On January 25, it was announced that the next phase will be giving accessibility to age-based groups.
*Availability and distribution depends on the country and the doses provided. It is always best to check up on your county’s information and stay updated to see if you or anyone you know qualifies.

As of the first week of February, L.A. County has received 1.2 million doses, and 89% of those have already been used. 184,000 doses were received last week, too. Many of those were saved as a second dose. 218,000 doses are expected to be received this week and more than half of those are going towards the second-dose vaccine. In L.A. County, as of February 8, only those aged 65+, health care workers and residents/staff at long-term care facilities are eligible for the COVID vaccine. Those eligible can make appointments through this link: http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/acd/ncorona2019/vaccine/hcwsignup/ 

In L.A. County, starting on February 16, those in need of the second dose were able to obtain it at Pomona Fairplex, the Forum, Six Flags Magic Mountain, The Los Angeles County Office of Education in Downey, Cal State University Northridge, Balboa Sports Complex and El Sereno. Proof of the first dose will be needed in order to enter and get vaccinated.

Meet California’s New Senator: Alex Padilla

By Monse Juarez

When California Senator Kamala Harris became the new Vice President, her spot had to be filled by somebody new. Enter Alex Padilla.

Alejandro Padilla was chosen by California’s Governor Gavin Newsom to fill Kamala Harris’ seat in the senate for the remainder of her term. Newsom’s decision does not come as a surprise considering Padilla’s extensive experience as a public servant in California.

Senator Padilla and his family have been residents of Los Angeles since his mother and father immigrated to the United States from Mexico. After graduating from high school, Padilla attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. At MIT he earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering. After attending MIT, he was selected to become Los Angeles City Council President. He made history as the youngest Los Angeles City Council President. He later became a part of the state senate in 2006 and he went on to represent that people from San Fernando Valley.

During the time that Padilla served as a state senator, he managed to pass over 50 bills that helped the issue of climate change. Alejandro Padilla’s already extensive accomplishments led him to become the first Latino Secretary of State that California has ever seen. Padilla has been breaking racial and socioeconomic barriers since he first began his journey as a public servant in the state of California.

Kamala Harris only needed two more years to finish her term as a senator; so now that Mr. Padilla is filling in for her, a lot of politicians are watching. If Senator Padilla proves to be a productive and effective senator, it could mean that he would be able to get re-elected with the support of his party.

Editorial: U.S. Capitol Building Chaos Shameful

By The Shoemaker Bugle

Violent protests by an angry mob of President Trump supporters took place at the Capitol Building in Washington D.C. on Wednesday, leading to a suspension of the official count of the 2020 Electoral College votes by the House and the Senate (pictured, above, protestors clash with police–Julio Cortez/AP).

In the ensuing chaos, a woman was shot and killed while at least five others were taken to the hospital, according to NBC News. The Senate recessed its Electoral College debate after the mob forced a lockdown and Vice President Mike Pence and everybody in the Capitol Building was quickly evacuated.

Lawmakers from the House and Senate were meeting in a joint session on Wednesday to certify electors in the final step ahead of President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration later this month. They did not get very far, breaking for debate when the third state’s envelope–Arizona–came up for certification and discussion.

During the session, news quickly shifted to a mob of Trump supporters, who broke through police barriers and eventually entered the Capitol building, engaging with riot police as Congress held a joint session to count the Electoral College votes which would clear the path to President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration later this month.


The D.C. Chief of Police declared the event a riot, and the National Guard was brought in just before the 6:00pm EST curfew to clear the area and secure the Capitol Building. After a delay of several hours, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi planned a return to the Capitol to continue certifying the election results. They assembled again at 8:08pm EST with an opening statement by Vice President Pence, who boldly declared, “We condemn the violence that took place here in the strongest possible terms… Violence never wins. Freedom wins… Let’s get back to work.”

“We will not be intimidated. We not be kept out of this chamber by thugs, mobs, or threats… We will certify the winner of the 2020 Presidential Election. Criminal behavior will never dominate the United States Congress. The American people deserve nothing less.”

Senator Mitch McConnell, in his opening statement after Congress finally re-convened

Senator Charles Schumer (who is soon to be the Majority Leader in the Senate) closed his remarks by adding, “Democracy will triumph as it has for centuries.”

World leaders also reacted in shock to today’s events. America, a beacon of hope and a shining example of democracy around the world, has stunned our allies with today’s actions. In a historic week that also saw Georgia elect two new Democratic Senators, violence and chaos stole the headlines.

The Shoemaker Bugle condemns the violence, chaos, and unprecedented interruption to America’s democratic process. We feel that today’s events are shameful and shocking, and this will be seen as an embarrassing day in American history.


Striking photographs illustrate the extent of the chaos and violence (photos courtesy Getty Images, unless otherwise indicated):

Never before in the United States of America has a Confederate flag appeared in the halls of the U.S. Capitol Building… until Wednesday.


Biden Statement (photo: New York Times)

Former President Barack Obama’s Statement

Statement from former President George W. Bush

In a video that was later removed from YouTube and Twitter, President Trump addressed a mob of his supporters in a new video, calling for ‘peace’ and telling them to ‘go home’ but continued to tout the false narrative that the election was ‘stolen.’ The video is unable to be shared as it has been deleted. Shortly after 7:00pm EST, it was announced that the President’s Twitter account has been locked for at least 12 hours.


note: This editorial represents the sole opinions of the Shoemaker Bugle student staff & editors

My Covid-19 Experience

By An Anonymous Student

On November 15, 2020 I woke up with a sore throat in the morning. I did not know how I got it, especially after not being sick for months. But something was not adding up. During this whole pandemic my family and I were always at home, still leaving us in shock to find that I got Covid.

After the first day, my second symptom was a runny nose which started on Monday. On that day, my nose hurt so bad when I would sneeze, my chest would hurt, and my nose was super red after blowing it with so much tissue. My trash can was full of tissues and that was the most that I have ever filled it up with. I had also lost my taste and smell and those were only Covid symptoms I got, but I would never have thought that it would be that. 

The next day, I went to take a rapid Covid test. When you put the swab in your nose it is super uncomfortable; it didn’t hurt me, however it can hurt others because everyone is different. An hour later, the laboratory called my mom saying that I was positive for Covid-19. I was in shock that I got it and I honestly did not know where I got it from. I was not scared though, because you have to stay strong and keep a positive mindset.

So once I got my results, I ate and then went to my room for the rest of the night and then started my quarantine the next day. My quarantine was hard because I’m not used to being in my room for 14 days and doing nothing but I made the best out of it. I did activities such as painting, playing board games, and vibing to music.

I thank God that we all got mild symptoms and my family members are healed. We are lucky that we did not get as sick because we did not get it as bad as other people have. I am very thankful that we are healed and we all got better. My parents had a trip to go to and they had to cancel it because they did not want to leave us alone while we were supposed to be at home. It was very hard for us, too, because we had to stay home during Thanksgiving, but we made the best out of it.

It was also hard because some of my other family members were also affected with the virus, including my parents. But let me tell you this–if you are affected by the virus, make sure you take a lot of Vitamin C and teas with lemon and honey. These natural home remedies helped me a lot throughout the two weeks that I was home. After one week, my smell started to come back but my taste buds are still not 100% there, but I know it will come back soon.

If you have been affected by Covid-19, please stay home and away from others and quarantine yourself until you start to feel better again. If you think that Covid is not real, it IS, because my family, and I all experienced it firsthand.

Opinion Column: Chaos with Coney Barrett

by  Angelina Carranza

Amy Coney Barrett was appointed to be a new justice of the Supreme Court. Within the court, she can pass legislation and vote to overturn laws that are in place. According to an article for NBC News, some of her rulings may affect the LGBTQ+ Community and women’s rights in the state of Pennsylvania and possibly other parts of the country.

One upcoming case is Fulton v. City of Philadelphia. This involves whether or not a child welfare service needs to work with same sex couples. These changes could bring total chaos to the state. This is an injustice to these two communities because of how hard they’ve fought for their rights. If Justice Barrett eliminates the ability for same sex couples to adopt, it will destroy families.

This same NBC article also mentions that several years ago, Barrett worked against same sex marriages, too. So she doesn’t even want same sex couples to be allowed to marry. Why would anyone want to take away the right of marriage for people who love each other?

Abortion rights is another issue that Barrett seems to oppose. It’s a woman’s right and choice whether or not to eliminate an unplanned pregnancy. This topic includes lots of different situations such as young females who get their menstrual cycles at early ages and who get sexually assaulted. These young girls are at an age where their bodies haven’t reached full capacity, and carrying and delivering a baby could cause them real harm or even bring about their death.

How is it possible for this new Supreme Court judge to take away rights so easily when they were so difficult to acquire?

These are basic human rights that people have fought hard to obtain. I would hope that a woman like Amy Coney Barrett would know how important basic women’s rights are. I don’t understand why she wants to stop other females from exercising their rights when it’s not her choice or her decision? She should not allow her own opinions to influence her rulings. She should not take something away from females or other people just because she doesn’t personally agree or like it.

Both the LGBTQ+ community and the community of women fought for their human rights, and they all still live in a country where their voices are able to be heard. They, and everyone, have the right to be free and to express themselves. So, why does Barrett want to come into office and take away these rights?

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