It was the week of February 13, 2021 when an unusual snowstorm hit Texas, leading to massive damages including power outages, no water, no electricity, and very limited supplies, including food.
The storm left millions of people in a very dire situation. Many of their houses’ pipes burst open causing water to gush and flood the floors. This led to the point where they had to boil water from the snow for the heat inside their homes. The storm was so bad that it also delayed the federal government’s delivery of Covid-19 vaccines which had caused many other shortages.
In one of the most unexpected snowstorms of early 2021, approximately 58 people died, including an 11-year-old boy who froze to death. The parents of this young child filed a lawsuit of $100 million dollars after not having any electricity. In Houston, a woman and her 7 year old daughter died inside her car while it was parked and running in the garage in an attempt to keep warm. Most families were cooking outside, charging phones in their car and using snow to melt and shower. All of the wild chaos made it very difficult for hospitals to take care of patients.
While some schools were open in Texas, the storm then led to them being closed for several days as their crews would have to repair pipes, damages, and clean the classrooms. The horrific snow storm temperatures were the coldest it has been since the year of 1989. Driveways were covered in snow, and without a car or road access, it was difficult for the residents of Texas to go to their grocery stores. The only way to get there was by walking. When residents could drive, the weather conditions caused more than 450 car accidents between the days of Sunday and Tuesday in the Houston area alone.
The stores looked like it was the beginning of Covid-19 all over again. There were long lines to get in, all shelves were empty, including all toilet paper and wipes. Water, first aid kits, and food were also eventually completely gone. When you’re in a situation like this, you don’t know what to do; so, some people started panicking.
Overall, around 290,000 Texas residents were left without power and more than 22 million other people across the South were put under frigid temperatures in the coldest winter of their lives.
Despite the pandemic going on, Covid-19 is affecting thousands of people each day. Focusing on school, I believe that it is best for students to stay home because it can protect their health and their families. If a student tests positive for Covid and is at school, that student is putting everyone at risk, including their family at home. There is a vaccine for Covid from Pfizer or Moderna, and this helps for people who have little chance of getting the virus. Right now, however, almost every school in California is doing online learning which is especially good for children since they are at such a young age.
•Teachers getting vaccinated?
Many teachers want to be vaccinated so they can go back to work, but few have gotten vaccinated due to limited supply. Taking the vaccine can give you mild to severe side effects such as fatigue, fever, or body aches, but many teachers say it’s worth it. I believe that despite the vaccine for teachers, we should still stay home because if a student has the virus at school then it could spread to others.
Covid is a virus that we have never seen before in our time. Thousands of people are dying from it every day because of how contagious this virus really is. It is very important for every single person outside to wear a mask because the virus can spread so easily with just one breath.
Therefore, it is best for us to stay home despite the fact that learning in school is much easier than having to do a Zoom with other classmates. In the end, our health and families are more important.
Hello! My name is Mathew Ruiz, and I am a 17-year-old teenager who is currently attending John Glenn High School as a senior. I am currently not involved in any sports, but I have been in karate and baseball when I was younger. Some of my favorite hobbies are painting, drawing, watching movies, listening to music, and watching wrestling. My favorite news sources include The Los Angeles Times, KTLA 5 and CNN. I am glad to be a part of the journalism class this year because I love to write and talk about news.
A breast cancer survivor named Koko was diagnosed with breast cancer in the year of 2005. She had just gotten engaged when she found the lump in her breast. Her doctors told her that she was too young to have cancer. Koko was diagnosed with late-stage inflammatory breast cancer which is a very aggressive cancer. She was then told that she had a five percent chance of surviving two years. Koko and her husband later learned that the chances of her getting pregnant were very low, given the treatment she’d have to go through. But Koko did not give up. She kept a positive mindset and exactly two years later she got surprising news, she was pregnant. Her miracle son, Christian, had changed her life in every way because it was a miracle. Now, Koko was completely cancer free, but she then found out that she had another lump in her breast. She was absolutely shocked that this had happened to her yet again, but she devoted herself to her family and started a fundraiser to raise money. Till this day, Koko beat cancer and she lives happily with her son and husband. I then asked her, “How did you feel when you found out you were diagnosed with cancer?” She then responded, “I was not afraid.” She also said, “Cancer was the best, worst thing that ever happened to me.”
Wendy Hammers: Speaker #2
A pancreatic cancer survivor named Wendy Hammers was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer more than 5 years ago. She was diagnosed with cancer when she was at a young age. The cancer was stage ½ I believe. She had a 6% chance of surviving. This is not something that she takes for granted. Wendy is grateful to be alive and healthy living in an amazing body. After she had just found out that she was diagnosed with cancer, her doctors did everything they could. She had a total of 12 rounds of chemotherapies and she said “I was afraid of needles.” Wendy said that after losing her dearest friend to cancer, she had gotten diagnosed with cancer as well at a later time. I asked Wendy, “Were you afraid of Cancer?” She then responded, “I was not. I knew that I was not alone in this and that everyone including myself was supporting me.” Her husband, son, family and everyone else supported her and it made her happy. She is an inspiring woman that also happens to be an actress, and has had roles in a couple of shows.
As most of you may know, TikTok, formerly known as Musical.ly, was going to get banned. Recently the President of the United States, Donald Trump, announced that he will be banning TikTok. He wants to ban TikTok because “the app poses a threat to national security because of its ties to China.”
I believe that TikTok makes it easier for people to create, especially if they are stuck on what they want to do. After Donald Trump announced that he would be banning TikTok, millions of users around the world were worried. TikTokers started using their big platform with millions of followers using #SaveTikTok to get many people’s attention and spread awareness. Later, Donald Trump gave technology company Microsoft the okay to buy TikTok with a deadline of only 45 days. TikTok is fighting with Trump to continue operating in the United States.
This app can pave the way for other influencers/creators to build something new. It’s easy to express yourself through your content. The second most followed creator on TikTok, Addison Rae who dropped out of Louisiana State University to become a full-time influencer, made a video about herself stating the following, “Me at LSU tomorrow” as she captioned in her video. This means that many other creators, not just her, want TikTok to stay as it has become one of the top apps in the industry today. So what is going to happen next? Is TikTok really going to stay? Will it get banned in the U.S. although TikTok is still available to other users around the world?