‘What Works’ Week 11

Headline: A Black Senate Candidate Stumps in Mississippi, but His Party Holds Him Back

 

On October 25, an article was published on The New York Times out of Indianola, Mississippi, about the struggles an African American male has faced during his life.

Thirty years prior to this article, the young man, Mike Epsy, was a young lawyer and was working towards becoming a member of Congress. Due to his race, many whites didn’t shake his hand. Fast-forward 30 years, and some of that racial tension has dissipated. Epsy is a former member of the House and also served as Bill Clinton’s agriculture secretary.

Epsy was the first African American Senator since the Reconstruction, which is a huge barrier to cross. In the article, it states a major issue that is at stake with the midterm elections coming up on Tuesday, November 6: “convincing voters in an overwhelmingly Republican state to break partisan ranks and support a party that has gone all but extinct in major offices in this part of the South.”

In this year’s midterm election, Epsy is doing all he can to win the votes of the people, by doing what President Obama did in elections past, as well as things Obama failed to do, which is win the votes of the white voters in Mississippi who are farm owners, landowners, liberals and the young.

After reading this entire article, I think it does a great job of reporting. It doesn’t show just “one” side of the political spectrum. It shows both Democratic and Republican views, while highlighting the life of Epsy. It shows the changes that have been made since the height of racial tensions many years ago, but it also shows that the tension is still prevalent in areas today. We are supplied with a host of well-acclaimed sources as well, which also bring credibility to the passage.

All in all, I thought this was an extremely well-written article. I never knew all of this information about Mr. Epsy, or even who he was, before reading this. I feel more informed and prepared for the election coming up, and I’m sure this article aided in the decision-making process this coming Tuesday.

‘What Works’ Week 10

Headline: Why Spain is Set to Become the Country With the Longest Life Expectancy

 

Teen Vogue published an article under their food category about why Spain is the country with the longest life expectancy. I was first drawn to this article by the title — because who doesn’t want to live longer? Personally speaking, if there’s anything the Spaniards are doing to live longer, I want to get in on that!

 

I thought this article worked for more reasons than one. First off, it was informational. In magazines, most of the time you reach for the magazine because of the cover. In this online edition, you get to choose what you want to read. I loved that in a magazine that is about fashion, we get information about other cultures and information about life in general.

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation ran a report and published it in The Guardian and found that Spain would be the country to have the highest life expectancy by the year 2040, and the United States ranked 64th. The reason for this is the widespread opioid crisis here in the U.S.

 

The article goes on to discuss that the reason the Spaniards will live so long is due to their diet. Being near the Mediterranean Sea, they eat what is known as “The Mediterranean Diet,”  which is a diet that consists of local fruits, vegetables, olive oil, grains and fish. I think that by adding links to this information made it easier to understand and an easy way to follow this diet and promote a healthier heart.

 

All in all, this article was informative, including links to statistics which builds the credibility of the article. I had honestly always been curious about the Mediterranean diet, and after reading, know I will try to add more of that to my diet, even though I already eat mostly fruits, vegetables and whole grains.

‘What Works’ Week 9

Headline: Can You Get Sick From the Flu Shot?

With the colder weather quickly approaching, many people are eager to get their flu shot.

In this article published by Teen Vogue on October 17, writer Bartie Scott addressed why some people are apprehensive about getting the flu shot.

Even though many people die yearly from the flu, some people refuse to get the flu shot. Why? The article suggests that many parents don’t allow their children to get the vaccine because they believe it will actually give them the flu.

A survey was held that showed over half of the parents believed this.

After speaking with doctors from Orlando, the article stated that the doctors said that the vaccine does not, in fact, give people the flu. The vaccine is made by giving off the flu virus that has been inactivated or using a single gene from the virus that will not cause infection.

I believe this article works for many reasons. It is very informative about the flu vaccine. In my opinion, I personally have always thought that the reason I got the flu was because of the fact that I got the flu vaccine. Every year I have gotten the vaccine, I have gotten the flu. And even though that isn’t proven to be true, I always thought that was the reason; therefore, I never got the vaccine. However, in this article, doctors also stated that “if you come into contact with the virus before the vaccine becomes effective, you may get sick and perceive it to be because of the shot.”

This is a very ‘newsworthy’ article and informative. I think that people who read Vogue will be interested in this information. It’s a great way to provide the audience with informative data. Also, they provided us with statistics and numbers, which help us know that this is true.

All in all, I really enjoyed this article and thought it was great. And who knows, maybe I will actually get the flu shot this year?!

‘What Works’ Week 8

This week, Teen Vogue published an article about Taylor Swift’s comments about the midterm elections.

One reason I was drawn to this article was that it was about a celebrity and her political views. Another reason is that I just love Taylor Swift, because she’s Taylor Swift.

A lot of times, celebrities are always given grief about any-and-everything they post. They can’t say what they want or do what they want to do because they have millions of people watching their every move; however, with Swift, she goes against the grain and tells people the truth.

I thought this was a very good article because it highlights important issues in our country today. I truly think that celebrities should be able to say what they want to. After all, we are allowed to say whatever we want to — unfiltered. I know that celebrities are held to a higher standard almost, but I think we need to accept their opinions.

Another thing I liked about this article was the photos and the connection it made to social media. In today’s society, we connect to social media now more than ever. Having that example in this article was a great addition.

All in all, this article was very useful as it highlights celebrities using their platform to their advantage

‘What Works’ Week 7

This morning, Teen Vogue published an article on their website about how this famous star deals with break-ups. 

Noah Centineo, an American actor, recently posted a video on Glamour where he read tweets from his viewers and answered their questions about relationships, breakups and life. 

For starters, I think this article works because of the information it provided. The public is always so quick to listen to the advice from actors, especially after a breakup, We, as those who are not in the spotlight, seek advice from those who seem to be able to bounce back from a relationship so quickly. 

In Centineo’s video, one fan asked him how he got over a breakup, and he stated this compelling remark: “Focus on yourself.”

One reason why I think this works so well is because of the weight his answer carries. This remark is applicable to so many aspects of life.  He doesn’t say this in a selfish way but rather as a way to cope and move on. 

So many times we see celebrities almost bashing their previous relationships, but this was a very mature way to deal with a breakup. By focusing on himself after a breakup, he found out more of what he liked to do, and I think that is something worth noting. 

Centineo also answers how he deals with stress and feeling overwhelmed, to which he replies, “I don’t.”

In the last line of the interview, he humorously added that he takes bubble baths to relieve his stress. 

All in all, this article was beneficial and very interesting to me. I enjoyed having a celebrity being real and raw with his audience, which is crucial. Breakups are hard, and dealing with stress is also hard. It was just almost a breath of fresh air to have a celebrity’s opinion and to know that he does, in fact, stress a lot and feel overwhelmed.

 

‘What Works’ Week 6

Headline:  Nappily Ever After Celebrates the Natural Beauty of Black Women

On Friday, September 21, Teen Vogue published a story about the release of a new Netflix-original movie, Nappily Ever After.

This op-ed piece was written by Teryn Payne, and in my opinion, it is very well-written. Most women struggle with accepting their bodies, hair, etc. in their natural state; however, this piece challenges us women to do that.

As a female who also has curly hair that often resembles a lion’s mane, I resonated with this piece and movie. Growing up, I did everything I could to make my hair less natural. I would blow dry, straighten, crimp, curl with rollers and put all kinds of chemicals in my hair because all the girls my age had beautiful, long straight hair.

And I thought that’s what I wanted. Or I thought that’s what was deemed ‘acceptable.’

However, in this article, Payne challenges us women to embrace our natural hair, especially black women.  The reason I liked this article and thinks it works so well is because it makes me think of how society has completely transformed our way of defining what is beautiful and what is not.

This opinion-piece was raw, authentic, thought-provoking and just an all-around good read. In addition, it made me want to watch the movie, which I think is something that is reflective of good writing.

In the article, pictures were also present to add another dimension. It validated the reality of embracing the natural beauty of black women. In the movie, the main character shaved her head to allow her hair to grow back in its natural state. She received hateful comments from her boss, her so-called fiance and society.

But she finally attained that level of confidence she had always wanted.

And that’s better than any ‘hate’ comment we could ever receive.

All in all, this article was touching, inspiring and thought-provoking. I enjoyed the point of view it was told from and the style in which it was written.

Weekly ‘What Works’ Assignment: Week 5

By: Abby Vance

Headline: Is teen vaping really an epidemic?

NBC News recently published an article about the new hobby teens are investing themselves in: vaping.

When I first saw this article, I was drawn to it by the title. Because my age-group wasn’t introduced to vaping as teenagers, I was somewhat oblivious to the shocking number of teenagers vaping. In this article, a doctor stated that 12 patients of ages ranging from 12-20 vaped using ‘Juul,’ which is a type of e-cigarette that can be purchased in many flavors.

In my opinion, I thought this article was very informative. Because I am not well-informed on ‘Juul’s’, vaping, or any type of electronic cigarette or nicotine-giving device, I was interested in learning more about them.

I will say, however, that I wish the first direct quote would have been something more informative. The first quote given didn’t really add much to the story, and I found one near the bottom that would have been much more effective at the top:

“This is the next teenage epidemic and by the time we figure the long-term consequences out, a whole generation of kids, their health is going to be impacted,” Thompson said.

Although we wouldn’t know who Thompson is without it being addressed previously, this quote would be much more impactful instead of it being near the end. Because many people want the most important information first, I think that having this quote at the top would show the urgency to stop teenage vaping.

The article also gave us photographs of people using a Juul so we could see what they look like. I thought this was great because it added another dimension to the story.

In addition, I felt that the information given was important and helpful. At the end, the article states that the AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics) wants to do all it can to ensure young people are not becoming addicted to these because of the abundant flavor options available.

All in all, I thought this article worked on many levels, as it was educational to know the impact vaping is having on teens. Because some teens and adults think that vaping is an ‘okay’ thing to do, I think this article addresses the seriousness of this epidemic.