‘Fault In Our Stars’ trailer, and more news to note

The Marquee Blog

Today’s talk you might’ve missed:

  • We’re so ready to have a complete cry-fest when “The Fault In Our Stars” is released that just looking at this trailer makes us tear up a bit.
  • Country music’s golden girl is rolling in ACM Awards nominations. Miranda Lambert, along with Tim McGraw, leads Wednesday’s nods with seven. [THR]
  • After Trent Reznor threw his middle finger up at the Grammy Awards, the show’s executive producer has apologized for cutting the rocker’s set short. [MTV]
  • Get ready to join the Big Sean-and-Naya Rivera ‘shipper club after reading her interview in Cosmopolitan Latina. The “Glee” star gives adorable insight into their relationship, saying she thinks the rapper will be “an amazing husband … and a great father someday.” [Cosmo]
  • Elton John is getting in on the Katy Perry, One Direction and Justin Bieber concert film action. “The Million Dollar Piano…

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15 minutes of fame

Breaking news stories in the news on January 23, 2014:

  • a family of a pregnant and brain-dead woman in Fortworth, Texas, ask a judge to allow the family to take her off life support, sparking massive debate between pro-life and pro-choice abortioners, and hospital officials who refuse to end her treatment, even though the baby may not even survive birth and the hospital bills are running up thousands of bills for the family
  • two people charged, convicted and sent to prison for abusing feminine activist Caroline Criado-Perez over Twitter
  • three bombings ripped through downtown Cairo, Egypt, destroying the police headquarters and city hall, killing five passerbys
  • Justin Bieber was arrested for a DUI
  • three dead and thirty are missing after a fire destroyed a nursing home in L’Isle-Verte, Quebec; too cold for workers to search for remains

One of these is not like the other.

How many of you reading this right now, heard about these headlines? How many made top world news?

In every CBC, Global News, The National and Toronto Sun headline I read online, each one was bombarded by atleast one picture or one headline leading to Justin Bieber after he was arrested for a DUI in Miami. It seems to me that he’s only getting so much publicity because hes FAMOUS. Everyone adored him, and now we are just watching him fall, which is what half the world has been waiting for. But honestly, how does a 19-year old getting a DUI trump over a COUNTRY BEING BOMBED. What makes Justin Bieber’s life and mistakes so much more interesting than any one elses? Yeah, he’s a 19-year old, they make mistakes, everyone at that age does. But if it was just a random, drunk teenager who no one knew from Stratford, Ontario, no one would be reacting like this. He’d be in jail by now. But no, not precious Justin.

I have no interest in Justin Bieber, I don’t care about the fact that he’s going down, even though we all knew it would happen eventually. I don’t care about his music, I just ignore the popstar all together. But I think there is something wrong with society the day a popstar makes world news for 24 hours straight over politics or human rights. Those are the things people should be paying attention to, because those are the things people want to hear because they apply to the public. Justin Bieber got a DUI. Does that affect you 2,000 miles away? Didn’t think so.

And to those beliebers who want to “free” Justin? No way in hell would I want to see him walk free. Just because he’s famous and rich doesn’t mean he can throw some money at the judge and he can walk free. He was driving 50 miles over the posted speed limit, and was above the legal alcohol limit. If he was a regular person, Justin could be sent to jail for up to six months. He could have hurt someone. I don’t want to see him get away with this, and I definitely am sick of stupid stories about celebrities buying the latest thing or wearing the latest trend trump over the news stories that people actually need to hear.

 

life after death

okokok. PERFECT timing to do a book review on a book about heaven and what not, since recently my philosophy class just had a massive debate on whether there is a God or supreme being (I’ll save that rant for another blog post). However, what makes this so perfectly timed is that right at the time of the debate, i had just finished reading about 3/4 of one of the most eye opening books i’ve ever read in my lifetime.

the book, Proof of Heaven, written by Dr. Eben Alexander, M.D., is, technically speaking, a documentary in itself. Dr. Alexander had suffered a serious seizure in the early 2000’s, which resulted in doctors discovering that his body had contracted a serious, bacterial form of meningitis that affects 1% of the 1% that contract the disease. his body and organs filled with pus as a result of so many white blood cells attempting to attack and rid the body of the bacterial meningitis, usually caused by a harmful strain of E. coli. Dr. Alexander was placed in critical care for a week in a medically-induced coma so that his brain could rest while doctors attempted to clear his body of the harmful infection. while he was in his coma, he says that he had travelled to another world, almost like another dimension, that was neither human nor super natural in its kind, but more a place of extreme beauty to what some could compare to as “heaven”. 

now, Dr. Alexander tells the reader from the start that he was not a man of God. he went to church a few times, but had never really believed in the power of miracles. while he was separated from us on earth, he described the dimension that he went to as divine beauty, a beauty that can only be described when “present in the soul”. he goes on to say that he could hear angelic voices around him but saw nothing, not even his own body. his senses were present, but nothing else was present around him. the colours that we know of on the physical world stretch farther and create whole new spectrums in this so-called “after life”. it is in this realm that Dr. Alexander meets an angelic being, almost like a butterfly or a fairy-like creature, who he says “speaks to him without speaking”, guides him with her eyes, and allows him to hear any voice, even her own, who he says “sings to me clearer and more harmonious than any choir or person on the physical earth”. this angelic being guides him through the deepest of supernatural realms, where he meets and speaks to the Divine source of the universe itself. 

this book is so amazing, i can’t emphasize that enough. the words are so simple, yet his use of them makes his remembrance of events sound so deep and intellectual. i don’t believe that there are any words that could have described the depth of his journey, it almost seems contradictory to use simple language to describe it, but in a sense, the only way to explain the presence of any Divine being is “it just exists”. for example, he says “i was present in my body and i was, in a sense, colourful. i was every colour of the rainbow spectrum that you could imagine and more, but at the same time, i had no physical body, only super-physical”. simple language, but it is so simple that it allows your imagination to run free as to what kind of existence he was experiencing at the time of his out of body experience. although Dr. Alexander’s book and experience all together have been struck down by other medical experts, saying that he was “just hallucinating”, this books gives greater insight into helping us answer the age-old question: is there a life after death?

i am not a believer in any sort of “God”, whoever he may be (sorry if i offend anyone), but i am on the fence about a supreme being who created us all. SOMEONE or something had to have created who we are, we are far too advanced to not have been created purposely for some reason. this book is a must read for those who want an explanation or are curious about religion and afterlife.

three knocks

three knocks

  A massive headline was written across the second 2014 issue of Maclean’s magazine that read: MISSING SHIP L’ACADIEN II DISCOVERED. To many treasure hunters, collectors, and the curious public, this was quite the opportunity. Ship wrecks often meant money to be harvested, … Continue reading

Uganda: when ugonda learn? (lame, i know)

It really seems to me that instead of this world working forward to create a better world for us to live in, it’s working backwards. Maybe to create new obstacles to work for a better world. 

As of December 20, 2013, Ugandan advocates have passed an “anti-homosexuality” bill that states that anyone who promotes homosexuality or takes part in “aggravated homosexuality” will be sentenced to an indictable offence of fourteen years in prison.

(CNN) — After years of controversy, the Ugandan parliament has passed a bill that punishes certain acts of homosexuality with life in prison.

A Ugandan lawmaker first introduced the bill in 2009, sparking worldwide condemnation for tough measures that included the death penalty.

It was briefly shelved amid the backlash. At the time, some European nations threatened to withdraw aid to Uganda, which relies on millions of dollars from the international community.

Before its passage Friday, parliament adjusted the death penalty clause to life in prison for “aggravated homosexuality.” It includes acts where one person is infected with HIV, “serial offenders” and sex with minors, Amnesty International said.

In cases where one has HIV, the punishment applies even when the sex is consensual or protected.

“Ugandans have been anxiously waiting for this bill. This day will be a good day for all Ugandans,” said Benson Obua Ogwal, a member of parliament for Moroto.

The bill also proposes years in prison for anyone who counsels or reaches out to homosexuals, a provision that would ensnare rights groups and others providing services to lesbians, gays, bisexual and transgender people.

In a world where these kinds of things are finally becoming more acceptable and more outspoken, the other side of the world is working to diminish the rights of those who want to love who they want. This is definitely the love of power working over the power of love. What is aggravated homosexuality anyway? Aggravated homosexuality is literally what the western part of the world defines as “PDA”, or public displays of affection. Hand holding, a peck on the lips, even a hug with the same sex in public WILL LAND YOU IN PRISON. You want to talk to someone about your change in sexuality? It could be seen as promoting your sexuality to others and again, CAN LAND YOU IN PRISON.

Ugandans did have their reasons for passing a bill like this. By making homosexuality essentially illegal, they hope to bring down HIV/AIDS stats by discouraging intercourse between two men or two women. They hope to bring down rape stats in prisons and in the public domain, as well as maintain the morals and traditional family values of the average, heterosexual Ugandan family. In retrospect, it does seem to uphold somewhat reasonable points, arguable, but reasonable. But is sending people to prison the right way to carry it out? Before the bill was passed, it was written instead of a indictable prison sentence, that “anyone found promoting homosexuality or participating in aggravated sexuality”, they would be sentenced to the death penalty. No matter what religion you are, or what country you are from, you should never have to give up your life just because someone thinks that who you choose to love is a “disgrace to the culture’s traditions”. The Ugandan government has even gone so far as to write in the bill that any citizen found participating in homosexual acts outside of the country may be extradited and brought back to Uganda for prosecution. This bill also discourages and illegalizes all LGBT-activists groups, individual LGBT-rights supporters, media organizations, whole companies, and non-governmental organizations.

As a person from a recently split family as a result of my mom switching to homosexuality, I take great offence to this. My mother could literally be prosecuted just for loving my step mother. There are so many other points I could make to this case that makes it seem like this bill is just insane, but this post would be about the length of my last english essay. The world should be working together to make life easier, not more difficult. Just because someone may not like it, does not mean they have the right to punish you for who you want to love.

a dark tunnel

I’m at a real breaking point in my life right now. For those of you who don’t deal with mental disorders, I am so beyond jealous. I’ve dealt with most of my high school career with depression and anxiety and it is so overwhelming to feel like you have a thick blanket wrapped over your body for four long years, and no matter how hard you claw at that blanket, it won’t come off, it keeps getting tighter and tighter, darker and darker. Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about what I want to do for the rest of my life, because everyone else is applying to schools, etc. and all I can think about is how badly I just want to graduate and leave. It almost sounds mean to say, but besides my family and my friends, my town has nothing left for me. I don’t want to spend four more years in school. I don’t want to spend four more years crying over my marks and the number in my bank account. I don’t want to spend four more years trying to be that perfect image of myself that I’ve kept in the back of my mind since I was in grade eight. I’m tired of always pleasing others and striving to be the best and meet all these goals and expectations that others have for me. I can’t do it anymore. And I sure as hell don’t want to sit in a job for the rest of my life after I get a degree. But that’s what society says, right? I think differently. Everyone goes to school, and then works to pay off those huge student loans. But soon the love of the money becomes too great and we obsess over it, how much we have in our bank accounts, we flaunt it to those who don’t have it. I don’t want to be another person who obsesses over the money they earn and the things they have, or the fancy piece of paper framed in a walnut picture frame in your home office that says you have the knowledge to continue to live the rest of your life. I don’t want to wait until I’m 40 years old, married and have kids to finally do something with my life.

I’ve also been thinking a lot lately about how fucked up our society is (pardon my language). We pay to live. We work to earn our keep and we still end up paying for other people’s mistakes. The expectations get higher and higher in our school systems and in jobs, and the higher those expectations get, the higher the stress level gets, the more people that break down under the pressure. Our society is so faulty. No one said we were a perfect society, but hey. These are all reasons why I’m so excited to leave after high school. No more expectations, no more trying to push myself to the point of tears. No more stressing myself out because of what the school system or what the government says. 

Its funny, the more I read over my rant, the more it sounds like I’m talking about conspiracy theories. I’m just tired of rules and expectations, I’m sure everyone is. I just want to be out of this dark tunnel. This world has better things for me.

what you are not

You are not your designer clothes

You are not the makeup you cake on your face every morning

You are not the books and notes in your backpack

You are not the 52% on your math test 

You are not the four classes you sit in for six hours a day

You are not the homework you do for four hours a night

You are not your job

You are not the dollar sign on your paycheck

You are not the things that you own, nor are you the things that you want. 

You are the reflection in the mirror every morning

Plain and calm

You are the colours you dress yourself in to stand out

You are a creative mind in a technological world

Waiting for the first jump of creativity

You are a student of the world

You are worth your actions and your words and thoughts

You are more than a person

You are a soul.

The Next “Twilight”

For those who haven’t read or started watching the trilogy, you are missing out. And for those who’ve been dying to watch it, SPOILER ALERT! It’s gotta be the best movie of the year. Yes, Catching Fire seems like more of a preteen movie, and I think it’s more or less coming off as the next Twilight series fan craze. But if it is, I’m definitely going to be one of those fans lining up for the next movie.

Catching Fire starts out as Katniss Everdeen returning home after she and her partner, Peeta, won the 74th annual Hunger Games, defying the capital and President Snow. Unfortunately, winning means that they must pick up and leave their loved ones to go on a victory tour of all twelve districts. Along the way, Katniss senses that some sort of rebellion or uprising is happening and that its being kept a secret, but President Snow, president of Panam, is keeping her under a watchful eye. Being the manipulative man that he is, he sends all the victors from the previous 74 years to be chosen to participate in the 75th games, knowing that Katniss, the face of the rebellion, would be chosen and would most likely be killed off during the games. But much to his dismay, Katniss and her allies devise a plan to electrocute the other players, and end up exploding the arena’s force field with a shock of lightning. Upon waking in the Panam hover craft, Katniss discovers that half the tributes in the arena were there to protect her and keep her alive, because her senses were right: a rebellion had begun and she was their “mockingjay”. The movie ends with Katniss’ face writhing with anger after she finds out that her district had been destroyed, and she was now residing in the once thought to be vanished district 13.

Its SO hard to not just say that this film is just absolutely perfect and fantastic in every single way. It’s the only film that I can think of that captures the novel absolutely perfectly, and that comes out 10x better than the first installment. First off, director Francis Lawrence did an amazing job at directing, because he captured ever little detail that the novel had, right down to the tension and intensity when the tributes are standing on their platforms right before they jump into the sea to race for their weapons. The budget was nearly twice that of the first installment, The Hunger Games and it truly shows in the out-of-this-world costumes like Effie’s gold hair to match her gold.. well, everything. The colourful array of makeup jobs, such as the lace eyelashes and rhinestone designs on her neck to match her so-called wedding dress, array of make up jobs, and especially the extra cast members. The A-list cast did an excellent job at showing the insensity, anger, and secretive ways that the novel showed. The plot line was definitely more intense and kept you sitting on the edge of your seat, and the cliff hanger ending closely resebles that of the final scene of Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 1, leaving you with only an image of Katniss’ face as she plots her revenge. The movie just makes you want to keep coming back for more and more, and if the third installment is just as good as the first and second, those line ups will be right out on the street. Katniss is only one girl, but her determination and rebellion is an anecdote in a world full of male super heroes out there. It’s so much nicer to see a girl hero among everything else out there.

who said school is the only option?

it’s that time of year everybody! yes, the day we’ve all been anticipating. its finally come time to get our university pins. funny how that little line consisting of five characters gives you entrance to the rest of your life.

what really gets me is that 90% of this world is filled with people who think that school is the only option. you have to go to school, get a career, and work 45 years in a job that you don’t want, all to contribute to something greater that is supposed to keep our society-based world turning. and if you don’t go to school and head off to do something else, well, you might as well just tattoo “FAILURE” on your forehead, because you’re not comforming with the rest of us heading off to post secondary education.

over the last month or so, i’ve really been trying hard to decide what school i want to go to. and the more i think about it, the more stressed i become, as most of us do. it costs upwards of $70,000 for a four-year degree just to fill our brains with higher knowledge. we are literally paying as much as a downpayment on a house would cost to sit in a lecture hall every day for four years, and most of us aren’t even guaranteed a job afterwards to pay off that huge debt. it just doesn’t make sense why society has all of us (for lack of a better word) brainwashed into thinking that we HAVE to have post secondary education, and we HAVE to get a job that contributes to the greater good afterwards. there is so much of the world out there to see, so many other things you could be doing, and probably learning MORE than what you would learn in a university lecture hall.

what i’m saying is, school doesn’t have to be the only option. yes, it is the safety net after highschool. that’s where all of us want to go, because its safe, you know you aren’t the only one doing it. “getting your life started” shouldn’t mean deskwork for four years and then another forty years at a desk job. it should mean exploring, and learning through experience. the world has so much to offer, but no one gets to see it because we are all so focused on what society sees as “the bigger picture”. i truly applaud those who decide not to go to higher education, because i find that those who don’t, see that there is more to this life than books and pencils. usually those are the ones who change the world.

anyway, that’s my rant for the day. school just isn’t my thing, as much as I love it. the world has greater things waiting for me.

I refuse to be a punching bag

Recently in the news, a heading caught my eye.

http://www.wsoctv.com/videos/news/hickory-man-arrested-and-charged-with-beating-wife/vCH3NG/

“Hickory Man Arrested and Charged with Beating His Wife to Death

HICKORY, N.C. — 

A Hickory man is accused of beating his wife to death, then lying to police about it.

Investigators said Marvin Hill called 911, claiming his wife slipped and fell inside the couple’s home.

Sheriff deputies said when they got to the house, they found signs of a struggle and injuries to the woman’s face. 

Now, Marvin Hill sits in jail, charged murder after he beat her until she died in their home, south of Hickory, deputies said. 

Investigators said when they got to the home, furniture wasoverturned, and it appeared Hill struck his wife with his fist before calling for help, claiming she had fallen.”

As I did more research on this breaking news story, I found that the woman suffered from broken limbs, including both her legs, arms, back and nose. Even when I typed the title of the news story into a search engine, HUNDREDS of news articles about domestic abuse flooded my computer screen. It really just blows my mind how many stories of domestic abuse are still coming to light in newspapers, TV, magazine ads, etc. and still, NO ONE has learned that this is NOT okay, and violence never solves anything, especially when you feel you are unable to control yourself. We hear stories of it, how to prevent it, and what to do if you’re in an abusive relationship, and still, we hear stories of it and make jokes about it. 42% of women have been sexually assaulted by their own partner, and have been injured by it in some way or another, and up to 70% of all female murder victims in the world are killed by their intimate partner. It’s shameful that we still see stories plastered everywhere but yet it’s still almost a weekly occurance in the news that we see yet another woman that is assaulted by her husband or intimate partner. And not to say that men are the only ones to blame, because it is proven that 38% of all domestic assault cases are perpetrated by women. I just cannot fathom why someone would ever want to hurt someone they love to the point of death. When we choose to love somebody, part of what comes with love is wanting to protect and shield them from any danger, and loving unconditionally. Hurting someone to the point of death should be the last thing on your mind. 

This is only furthering the stereotype that men use violence as a means of dominance, and that women are “stupid” or “dumb” for staying with a lover who is an abuser (in this story, we don’t know that there is a history of abuse, but in many cases, there is). Maybe it’s the media’s fault for using violence as a means of entertainment, provoking emotions in some people, such as anger, that are uncontrollable. Maybe it’s the fact that most of society sees women as petite, frail, and “easy”, making us easier targets, knowing that we won’t fight back. Or maybe it’s the age-old argument of nature versus nuture, maybe we learned it through situations of anger or abuse when we were younger, or maybe we are born with the built up anger to hurt. Either way, this is a major societal issue that needs to be solved, human beings are not to be used as punching bags.

http://www.stopvaw.org/prevalence_of_domestic_violence