“There are multiple ways to say goodbye” Story by Alistair King

“There are multiple ways to say goodbye” Story by Alistair King

For the past couple month’s students have been perplexed by one thing… What’s Mrs. Amanda’s big news? Some people got close with guessing that she would be travelling overseas, and the top guesses were Pregnancy/Ability to Conceive, and Husbands Paperwork came through. While these weren’t correct Mrs. Amanda Stated that “It would be lovely to see his green card.”

Today we finally found out the truth, and the news is that she got

New Campus, Mrs. Amanda's new campus will be amazing.
New Campus, Mrs. Amanda’s new campus will be amazing.

accepted to Washington State University with a full scholarship to get her masters in Spanish. Mrs. Amanda stated that “As a teacher you can’t get ahead in a bachelors degree, it’s not enough money.”

That’s what makes this an amazing opportunity; she has been offered a full ride as well as a stipend to attend the school. Not only that but full health benefits. Mrs. Amanda states “This is my dream.” She applied for this opportunity and out of a mass of teachers, “they were crazy enough to pay me to go back to school.”

Teachers these days are not even remotely paid enough to get this opportunity by themselves. They often have to rely on spousal support,

Mrs. Amanda will be studying Spanish literature such as Don Quixote, other traditional Spanish literature, and some modern literature.

Another question is now in people’s heads is why did she hide this from the students? As she puts it “I’m not afraid of going back to school, I’m afraid I’ll hurt people by leaving. I don’t want people to be hurt.”

Mrs. Amanda will be kept close to us in these following years as she gets her Masters degree. She has taught us a lot and would like to leave us with this final message.
“I wanted to say that in foreign languages there are multiple ways to say goodbye. I’m not saying goodbye, but when we meet again. Even in death I don’t believe in goodbye. I’ll always be around.”

Thank you, Mrs. Amanda, for your kind heart and everything you’ve given us; we will see you around.

Castle Cancelled after 8 Seasons… Story by Marcus O’Cyrus

Autograph?... Richard Castle, Nathan Fillion, reaches for a pen for what he thinks is a potential autograph while Kate Beckett, Stana Katic, prepares to detain Castle for questioning. This is the first introduction of the Beckett and Castle characters which lead to 8 seasons.
Autograph?… Richard Castle, Nathan Fillion, reaches for a pen for what he thinks is a potential autograph while Kate Beckett, Stana Katic, prepares to detain Castle for questioning. This is the first introduction of the Beckett and Castle characters which lead to 8 seasons.

Fans had to know it was coming; it was just a matter of when.  The crime drama Castle had ended its long eighth season run this year.  The season finale was May 16th 2016. The ABC network first broadcasted the show for half a season starting March of 2009.  The show’s successful trial half season of 10 episodes gained it another 7 seasons and a grand total of 173 episodes.

What made the show a success was Nathan Fillion’s, Richard Castle character’s childlike behavior and comic relief to the stress of each gruesome murder case.  Stana Katic, Kate Beckett, co-star of the show played off of the Castle character with wit while demonstrating a strong female role.  The show did center on an overused template for murder investigations while the main characters had an overarching plot stretching sometimes across several seasons.

The show had a unique blend of crime scene investigations, comedy, and drama; it stood the test of time for eight years.  Rumors have been spreading that some of the cast were having onset relationship difficulties, but an eight year run of an average of 23 episodes per season can pay a toll on any actor.

Many of the fans for the show followed Nathan Fillion from the cancelled, half season, Joss Whedon show, Firefly.   In fact, the show Castle guest starred many of the cast members from Firefly and a few tributes/inside jokes were made for the fans over the past 8 seasons.

Is this really the end? Richard Castle, played by Nathan Fillion and Kate Beckett played by Stana Katic, lie in wait for the end of the show Castle Season 8 episode 22, the finale.
Is this really the end? Richard Castle, played by Nathan Fillion and Kate Beckett played by Stana Katic, lie in wait for the end of the show Castle Season 8 episode 22, the finale.

It is unfortunate that ABC did not put much celebration for the season finale of a show many fans followed.   Earlier this year ABC was planning to drop Stana Katic’s character for a possible ninth season, leaving Nathan Fillion to carry the show.  However, the final call for cancellation was made known right before the season eight finale, which can be seen in its haphazard 47 second ending.

Many will miss the show’s clever wit, especially season four, episode 22’s murder suspect and it’s a zombie high-five.   If you find that you would like to invest some summer evenings to watching Castle, you can rent the series through Netflix or check the show out from the local Sandpoint Library, which is now carrying seasons one through seven.

Haiku: Ode to Castle Season Finale

You entertained me

Castle writers lost perspective

I watch you no more

Rated M for Marketing… Story by L.B. Van Dine

: Rated M by the ESRB… this is what people will see on the cases to games that are recommended to 17+ players
Rated M by the ESRB… this is what people will see on the cases to games that are recommended to 17+ players

It’s incredibly noticeable that the standard of what is and what isn’t safe for children to view is changing. When you look at a game rated “T” for teen what do you think most teenagers think? Apparently most don’t find these games appealing considering that these games are becoming more incredibly scarce as more games are being produced. This is the exact same thing that happened to the G-Rating concerning movies. There are no longer movies being released with the rating as “G” because that causes immediate judgement and the film will not receive nearly as much profit as Rated R Dead Pool for example.

Halo 5 sold less than all of its previous games in the franchise. This could all be due to a poorly made game, but the Halo series is one of the most iconic series’ on the Xbox, why didn’t it get the same sales as its predecessors? Could it be the fact that Halo 5 has been rated-T and the moment kids saw that rating in the corner it lost its appeal?

The most mainstream games are rated M for mature matters such as blood and gore, drugs, sexual content, inappropriate language, and graphic violence. However, just because they are rated M it doesn’t mean that it’s only interesting to a mature audience. According to a survey by The Pew Research Center reported “in 2008 that 97% of youths ages 12 to 17 played some type of video game, and that two-thirds of them played action and adventure games that tend to contain violent content.” Just because something isn’t recommended to children doesn’t mean it isn’t marketed towards them.

Various games… that are popular with many people and a large amount of the interest is with children photo by dailymail.co.uk
Various games… that are popular with many people and a large amount of the interest is with children photo by dailymail.co.uk

Today, many kids are constantly lining up to buy big titles games such as Call of Duty, Battlefield, and Grand Theft Auto.  Many voices heard online are the voices of children online, probably no older than eleven years of age. It shows that a rating holds no meaning it is merely a regulated recommendation, but it’s pretty noticeable that people often ignore these recommendations.

Some of these games seem like they can make the cut and be considered games rated for Teens, but there are many on the internet who feel that game industries add extra blood, gore, and profanity only to get the game to reach rated M on the Entertainment Software Rating Board’s scale. One hundred percent of students asked at FBCHS believe that the gaming industries would purposely rate these games as mature to market and make it seem more appealing to children.

 

Editorial: Students sue the U.S. Government over Climate Change… Story K

Students protest the government's failure to respond to climate change
Students protest the government’s failure to respond to climate change

It is surprising to see that a judge in Oregon did not dismiss a lawsuit filed against the federal government for its failure to take action against fossil fuel emissions. Usually the issue of the future of our planet is ignored because the corporations that are poisoning our planet control our government. The so-called “representatives” are wealthy elites working in the interest of big business.

The future of our planet is in our hands
The future of our planet is in our hands.

What makes this case especially interesting is the fact that these are children who are trying to make a case against the government. Will government act in its own interest or in the interest of future generations? If we were in their position, I think a lot of Americans would side with the children. Different sources have different views on how much of America believes in global warming. Thinkprogress.org says 70% of Americans believe in global warming. Wikipedia says 67% believe it is a threat.

Graph of climate change - provided by NASA
Graph of climate change – provided by NASA

The case being made is that by failing to take action against climate change, the U.S. government is denying them their constitutional right to life. If we are not following the constitution, then we are no longer a constitutional republic. If most of America believes in global warming and think it is a threat, then how can the politicians do nothing about it and claim they act in our interest?

I think the most important question here is: what kind of world do we want to make for our future generations? How do we want our society to be remembered? If we start asking those questions, then it could make a difference.

For more info visit Democracy Now!

Innovations of the Week… Story By Alistair King

Nailed it… Students had the opportunity to display their projects to the school on these posters.
Nailed it… Students had the opportunity to display their projects to the school on these posters.

In this article we take a look at the innovative projects being formed by students of the FBCS. What are their projects? How will they change the world and what other ideas do they have? We are here to find out.

Just looking… Willem shows off one of the papers he’s writing for his project.
Just looking… Willem shows off one of the papers he’s writing for his project.

Willem Herman has an idea about streamlining the reality field. He wants to create a Virtual Program that will be used by realtors to allow prospective clients to see the house from their own homes. He believes that this can really change this field because being able to check out houses from your home won’t force you to drive to houses in other areas. He said that this idea took him about 5 minutes for the basic idea and another week to start formulating it. If he had to choose a completely different project it would be “Refrigerator Cargo Pants.”

Making it up to you… Sloan and Shaelyn could change the make-up game forever.
Making it up to you… Sloan and Shaelyn could change the make-up game forever.

Next, is Sloan Warner and her partner Shaelyn with their idea for a machine that will color match your make-up. This machine will “scan your face and make a base.” This will allow people to find the perfect makeup for their skin and not waste their time and money buying make-up that may not look the best. This will also allow companies to save money by only printing products that fit people. Sloan stated that this took her and Shaelyn about two and a half weeks to come up with because ideas kept getting thrown away.

A++… Andrew and Brandon are hard at work hoping to develop a class around their project.
A++… Andrew and Brandon are hard at work hoping to develop a class around their project.

Last for this week we have Brandon Michelsen and Andrew Van Winkle with their new video game called Steamrunner. The premise of the game is based around steampunk where you run around obstacle courses and collect pieces of inventions from famous inventors. He wants this to lead into an area of gaming that applies learning to fun games.  Brandon and Andrew have been discussing this project for little over a year before deciding on applying it to the innovation project. If he wasn’t working on this game Brandon would be working on “a self-charging generator, but that’s all I want to disclose.”

This is a great start for the innovation project, and it can only get better. Keep an eye out and keep working on your project!

Unlocking the Secret of Communication Story By: Andrew Van Helsing

Unlocking the Secret of Communication Story By: Andrew Van Helsing

vanwinkleandrew_415_91575_wolf howl-2Do canines communicate using dialects like humans? One of the largest studies on canine dialect and howling has uncovered some vocal fingerprints which may lead us to understand the meanings behind wolves’ howls. Originally, there was a repository of 6,000 different howls, ranging from domestic dogs to wild wolves. Researchers narrowed this number down to 2,000 and used a mathematical computer algorithm to create 21 different howl types used by the candid species. The types of howls range from a flat, monotonous howl to a strong, modulated howl.

Dr. Arik Kershenbaum, from Cambridge University, states, “we’ve known for a while that you can detect differences in wolf howls by ear…we don’t know whether the cues that we are picking up on as humans are the same cues that are being detected and interpreted by the animals themselves.” Because of this, they went on to research the similarities and differences that were found in the howls, without human perception interfering. The study found that smaller canids have the more modulated howl while the larger canids have more of a monotonous howl. Kershenbaum also mentioned that we could use that information from the research conducted to better track and manage the wild wolf populations.

For example, red wolves are interbreeding with coyotes, which is causing major problems, as they are on the brink of extinction. One of the main reasons that they are breeding is because of the fact that both of their howls are classified as type 3. Researchers are hoping to use triangulation technology based off of the dialect study, so they can prevent the red wolves from doing this. They plan to use recording devices to send pack warnings to other wolf packs so that they can separate the two breeds. This technology also wields the possibility of preventing wild wolves from approaching populated areas, which, in turn, reduces the chances of conflicts between wild animals and humans. Kershenbaum said that they could play back appropriate howls to wolf packs, such as “we’re a strong aggressive pack” and not “we’ve found some interesting food here and we’re going to eat it.”

vanwinkleandrew_415_91576_dolphinspeak-2Prior to this study, Kershenbaum had also done research on dolphin communication and found that if you slow down a dolphin’s whistle, then it sounds like a wolf’s howl. He is sure that the secrets of the human language and its development lie within calls of social animals like wolves and dolphins. Is it possible that we could learn to understand and communicate back with other animals in the future? It may be more probable than you would expect.

The Prom 2016: A night in review Story By Mack Jastle

 

While the announcement that school prom would be at school itself would be expected at most other schools, at FBCS, the announcement was met a good helping of confusion.

Tranquility…An outside pavilion area gave students a place to talk and relax after dancing. Photo-by: Mary Jensen
Tranquility…An outside pavilion area gave students a place to talk and relax after dancing. Photo-by: Mary Jensen

It has long been a tradition for the FBCS Student Council to find a venue outside of the school to host the prom.  Whether it’s the Panhandle State Bank or the Heartwood Center, prom was always held at locations outside of the school itself.

However, this year was different.

Originally located at the Granary across from the Evan’s Brothers coffee shop, the prom was moved to the school due to a lack of early ticket sales.  Decorations for the dance began on Thursday and carried into Friday, hinting at the transformation that the school would undergo for the dance.

‘What was the theme of those decorations?’ you might be asking.   For this year’s dance, the theme that was selected was Italian Formal.  Plenty of rich golds and purples adorned the school on Saturday night, while a chandelier swung overhead.  A nearby table, supplied with snacks and desserts, provided nourishment to those brave enough to cut a few moves on the dance floor.

At the kitchen area, President Elle Mearns and her brother Conrad dished out fancy drinks and martinis (no alcoholic of course), of all shapes and sizes, quenching the thirst of the student body with grace… and just a hint of lemon.

In total, sixty-one tickets were sold, with most the sales occurring on the ‘Twin Ticket Thursdays’ that the Student Council implemented amid concerns of ticket prices being too high.  This awareness, coupled with the decorations students could see being put up, spurred many to buy their tickets before it was too late.

High Rollers….Several students try their hand at biribi, a classic Italian game. Photo-by: Mary Jensen
High Rollers….Several students try their hand at biribi, a classic Italian game. Photo-by: Mary Jensen

At the dance itself, the garden area behind the school was transformed, with pavilions and tables providing students a place to cool off once they had danced to a few songs.  It proved popular both as a place to hang out and talk, or just a place to cool off after tearing up the dance floor.

Back inside the main room, a chandelier hung suspended over the commons, with large bands of fabric stretching out from it like an explosion.  Numerous stars and globes hung from the strands of fabric, creating an entirely different atmosphere than what is normal in the commons.

A photo booth was set up inside the room to take pictures for free.  Students could buy the pictures for later if they liked how they turned out.

All in all, the prom was a very fun and exciting event.  Everyone who went had fun, and it was a blast for everyone.

Michigan Governor Rick Snyder Vows to Drink Water from Flint Michigan! Story By: Dave Dowel

Michigan Governor Rick Snyder Vows to Drink Water from Flint Michigan!

Story By: Dave Dowel

Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has been busy in the aftermath of a lead poisoning crisis in Flint - Photo by Associated Press
Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has been busy in the aftermath of a lead poisoning crisis in Flint – Photo by Associated Press

Why Rick? Why are you doing this, oh wait you are doing this to prove that Flint Water is safe. Well, it’s not; the EPA says it’s not. Why can’t you believe them, they’re the EPA, but no your government is not trusting anyone and saying the water is complete safe? Yes the EPA said filters are helping, but they are not cleaning everything out. So to prove them all wrong you are going to drink the water for the next month at home and at work in Ann Arbor. He will refill on water when he visits every week.

The EPA was told Flint residents to try their tap water, while the lead is still exceeding the Federal Standards. Flint residents are still in danger because the lead is still exceeding the safe it’s according to the EPA. The real question is why was the Municipal government not do anything about the Flint water problem.

The city of Flint, Michigan, stopped sourcing its water from Detroit’s system and started pumping from the Flint River to save money. – Photo By Steve Carmody
The city of Flint, Michigan, stopped sourcing its water from Detroit’s system and started pumping from the Flint River to save money. – Photo By Steve Carmody

Is this simply a political move by the governor to save his job? The Flint water situation really started in 2014, when the City of Flint start pumping their river instead of pumping from Detroit because it was cheaper to pump from the flint river. The Flint River water was corrosive enough to erode the lead piping and that is what put lead into the water. Over time the lead became too toxic and many people developed medical problems. Virginia Tech tested the water and stated that it had too much lead. After that, the mayor tried to keep it covered up, but one of the doctors figured out that the water had too much lead in it and the secret was out. Virginia Tech when to Flint, to bring the bottled water to Flint, Michigan. Then the EPA stepped in and that’s where we are now.

Unregulated Mushrooms… Story by L.B. Van Dine

Genetically Modified Organisms or GMOs are foods genetically engineered in labs that could be potentially dangerous. Normally, the USDA would regulate these foods and check for any potential hazards; however, these foods are making their way into our supermarkets without having to go through the USDA’s safety check. The question is, can these unregulated foods be a danger to the people who eat them?

A mushroom packaging company… is preparing to ship out unregulated GMO Mushrooms to our supermarkets. Photo by David Mdzinarishvili
A mushroom packaging company… is preparing to ship out unregulated GMO Mushrooms to our supermarkets. Photo by David Mdzinarishvili

Yingyong Yang is a student from Pennsylvania State University who is responsible for engineering these mushrooms. Yang used a gene slicing technique known as CRISPR also known as Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeat, to successfully remove the browning gene from mushrooms while increasing their shelf life. Yang stated outright that his product wouldn’t be regulated by the USDA. Why is that? It’s because these mushrooms are outside of the USDA’s jurisdiction. Along with these mushrooms there are thirty other genetically modified organisms that have made it into the supermarkets due to loopholes that are out of the USDA’s reach. This means there are over thirty different products in our supermarket that could be labeled “organic” while in fact, they were made in a lab and just avoided the USDA’s concern.

Bruised White-Button Mushrooms… With the browning gene removed, this won’t occur as easily with supermarket mushrooms. Photo by kitchenexperiments.net
Bruised White-Button Mushrooms… With the browning gene removed, this won’t occur as easily with supermarket mushrooms. Photo by kitchenexperiments.net

The reason these mushrooms avoided being checked was due to the method the mushrooms were engineered. Typically the USDA is only concerned with foreign objects being added to the supermarket product. However, the difference between these mushrooms and other GMOs is nothing is being added to these mushrooms; rather genes are being removed from these mushrooms. The browning genes that cause these white mushrooms to turn brown and bruise are being removed.

Other than the USDA is unwilling to step in and examine these mushrooms and make sure there are no issues with selling these products to the masses. The FDA considers all GMOs okay and healthy for consumption, and the EPA only monitors foods that use pesticides. This means we have no official government organization monitoring if this food is safe for human consumption, or if these mushrooms will have any impact to our environment.

Giorgo Mushroom Co. is the company that funded Yang’s GMO mushroom. However, once the final product was produced the company was hesitant to put their label on these mushrooms. They aren’t sure if it is a wise choice considering the controversy there is surrounding genetically engineered foods. While many scientists say there are many misconceptions about GMOs, they won’t deny the possible dangers about them. In a survey taken in July 2015, 37% of adults saying they thought eating genetically modified organisms was generally safe, while 57% said that they thought it was unsafe.

In America any genetically engineered food is allowed for consumption, but not many other countries follow our example. Many European countries including France and Germany have banned the cultivation and sale of these foods. Other countries that have GMOs banned include Austria, Hungary, Greece, Luxembourg, and more. More and more countries are banning the distribution of these foods, but the United States of America seems to be the only country set on keeping these foods available to our people.