Freelance Writer – Annette Hyder Wed, 05 May 2021 01:33:11 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Freelance Writer – Annette Hyder 32 32 La Jolla’s Max Smith tops UT football awards list Wed, 05 May 2021 00:44:00 +0000

With shortened schedules, there will be no official All-CIF teams for Season 1 sports.

But the Union-Tribune – writer John Maffei and freelance writers Terry Monahan and Jim Lindgren – decided to compile a list of winners with input from county coaches.

Player of the year

Max Smith, LB / RB, La Jolla, senior

Headed to the Naval Academy, the 5-foot-11, 190-pound Smith ran 61 times for 364 yards and four touchdowns in five games. He also caught 15 passes for 159 yards and two scores and had 150 yards on kick returns.

It was on the defensive end that he shone, finishing with 22 tackles, a sack and a pair of tackles for the loss.

“And that’s our long snapper,” said La Jolla coach Tyler Roach. “We had a great team, a great senior class. And Max was our boss.

The Vikings finished 5-0, beating Helix in the last game of the season.

“We could have complained, but as a team we decided to make the most of what we had,” Smith said. “The team left nothing on the pitch. We wanted to show that La Jolla County could play. I think we did.

“Although he is an offensive force, Smith plans to focus on defense in the Navy.

“They recruited me as an athlete, but I’ve been playing on the defensive side of the ball my whole life,” he said. “This is where I am comfortable.”

Smith reports to the Naval Academy at the end of July. Like 75% of football rookies, he will spend a year at Naval Academy Prep School (NAPS) before joining the college football team.

He’s not sure where he’ll go, but he has an eye on the air force or the Marine Corps.

“I can’t wait to get to the academy,” Smith said. “This is my entire goal.”

Offensive player of the year

Aidan Sayin, QB, Carlsbad, Sr.

Headed to Penn, Sayin led the Lancers to a 5-0, completing 58 of 81 passes for 962 yards and 12 touchdowns – five of those touchdowns came in his last game. He did not throw an interception and made 71.6% of his throws.

Defensive player of the year

Malachi Williams, DB, Catholic Cathedral, Sr.

A free safety, the 6-foot, 200-pound Williams was key to a defense that only allowed the 5-0, No.1-ranked Dons 14 points.

Kicker of the year

Devin Bale, PK / WR, La Jolla, Sr.

Headed to northern Colorado, Bale led the county in scoring kicks with 39 points – 27 PAT and four field goals. What sets him apart is that he averaged 20.5 yards and had six touchdowns on 16 pass receptions.

Coach of the Year

Thadd MacNeal, Carlsbad

The Lancers fired just three starters from last year’s squad. But the team came together, finishing 5-0, edging their opponents 240-42.

Assistant Coach of the Year

John Montali, Catholic Cathedral, Defensive Coordinator

The Dons 5-0 have been loaded, and Montali has made the most of his group, allowing just 14 points – all in one game against Saint-Augustin – this season.

Most Inspirational Player

Manai Hazlett, RB, Del Norte, Sr.

He missed the 2019 season after being diagnosed with cancer. Given the green light to play this season, he had 19 carries for 140 yards against Rancho Bernardo in his first return game. The cancer returned, however, and he had 20 carries for 108 yards in his last game as a prep before returning to the hospital for treatment.

Well-being teams

After winning six games in the past three seasons (one last season), Sweetwater – under new coach Ervin Hernandez – went 5-0 with a powerful running game.

Since his last 10-game winning season in 2003, Fallbrook has gone 40-131-2, been shut out 35 times, and was outnumbered 4,936-2,686. But Warriors coach Troy Everhart have gone 3-3 this. season and are about to turn things around.

Best Offensive Lineman

Dylan Smith, Carlsbad, Sr.

The 6-6, 295-pound Smith is a 3-star rookie interested in USC, UCLA, Colorado and Oregon.

In the discussion: Shawn Martinez (Helix), Troy Faulkner (Mission Hills), Trevor Cass (Ramona), Isaiah World (Lincoln), Louie Lauifi-Tufaga (Catholic cathedral), Tangi Pongia (Saint Augustine), Uriel Camacho (Sweetwater) ).

Top quarterback

Justus McComb, Granite Hills, Sr.

He had a big year, completing 52 of 79 passes (65.8 percent) for 941 yards and 15 touchdowns with just two interceptions and rushed for 425 yards and seven touchdowns.

In the discussion: Dennis Andrew (Orange Glen), Justin Brown (Grossmont), Jackson Stratton (La Jolla), Gunnar Hensley (Mission Hills), Carson Taumoepeau (Mt. Carmel), Clash Orsborn (Mission Bay), Trevor Appelman (Mater Dei Catholic).

Superior wide receiver

Jalil Tucker, Lincoln, Jr.

A 4 star rookie with great speed and hands. He has received offers from Oregon, Arizona, Arizona State, Boston College, BYU, and USC.

In the discussion: Diego Solis (La Jolla), Nathan Acevedo (Grossmont), Malachi Keels (Orange Glen), Jared Forster (Santana), Matt Martin (Mission Hills), Rex Haynes (Catholic Cathedral).

Top running back

Lucky Sutton, Catholic Cathedral, Sr.

The catalyst for an attack that racked up 223 points, he ran nearly 1,000 yards, including 258 against Lincoln and 192 against St. Augustine. And he would have had more for the Dons 5-0, but several games ended with a stopwatch with Sutton on the sidelines.

In the discussion: Mario Villa (Sweetwater), Jason Oliveira (Patrick Henry), Major Givens (Steele Canyon), Christian Washington (Helix), Erik Hernandez (Castle Park), Cash Jones (Ramona), Mazlo Norwood (Carlsbad).

Best Defensive Lineman

Jaxson Moi, Catholic Cathedral, Jr.

A 6-4 stick and 260 pounds of dynamite, Moi is a 4-star rookie with 17 offerings, including Arizona, Cal and Boise State.

In discussion: Trey White (Eastlake), Ezra Christensen (Poway), Zach Burton (Granite Hills), Gracen Halton (St. Augustine), Finley O’Gorman (Steele Canyon), Thomas Marron (Mission Hills)

Best linebacker

Jaiden Letua, Mission Hills, Jr.

His coach calls Letua “a hell of a special player.” He was the anchor of a defense that allowed only 41 points. He’s had a defensive TD in three straight games – two interceptions and one fumble.

In discussion: Willie Peterson (Serra), Tre Edwards (Mater Dei Catholic), Aidan Arguilla (Otay Ranch), Zack Schipper (Vista), Raymond Cruz (Chula Vista), Albert Vargas (Sweetwater), Harmon Savaiinaea (Cathedral Catholic) , Malcolm Williams (St. Augustine), Tyson Chavez (Mission Hills).

High defensive back

Darren Barkins, Catholic Mater Dei, Sr.

A driver who was timed at a quick 4.6 seconds into the 40-yard dash in a combine, Barkins is a cornerback at a standstill. 3-star rookie, he signed to play for Oregon.

In the discussion: Malosi Iuli (Bonita Vista), Dakota Landry (Mt. Carmel), Dee’Shon Swafford (Catholic cathedral), Cameron Dingman (Ramona).

Best All-Around Player

Vance Jefferson, Poway, WR / QB, Sr.

Receiving big players, Jefferson has also lined up as QB Wildcat for the Titans. On his last touch as a senior, he went 91 yards for a TD as a QB. A 3-star player, he is considered one of the best unsigned seniors in the country.

In the discussion: Stephen Britton (Santa Fe Christian), Jacob Laverdiere (Mont Miguel), Adrien Chargualaf (Steele Canyon), Marco Notarainni (Torrey Pines), Hamadi Sharif (Crawford), Skai Donnell (Mission Hills), Fernando Morales (Central ).

Teams to watch in 2021

The best teams in 2021 are the best teams that finished the shortened 2020 season.

1. Catholic Cathedral (5-0): County’s best defense sacks key players.

2. Carlsbad (5-0): Sophomore’s QB Julian Sayin replaces his brother.

3. Mission Hills (5-0): Quarterback Gunnar Hensley is set for a great senior season.

4. Lincoln (4-1): The senior high class is gone, but WR Jalil Tucker and QB Sam Cooper return.

5. La Jolla (5-0): It’s up to QB Jackson Stratton with the senior high class gone.

6. Eastlake (4-0): The coaching turmoil hasn’t derailed the Titans, who have a ton of players back.

7. Granite Hills (5-1): QB Justus McComb is gone, but there is a return of talent.

8. Ramona (5-0): The big, bad Bulldogs have a lot of comeback, and Team JV was undefeated.

9. Poway (5-0): Key QB players Dylan Curry and RB Luke Gonzalez were sophisticates, but Vance Jefferson is gone.

10. Saint Augustine (2-2): The Saints rebuild around Gracen Halton, Justin Stearns and Jake Bolin.

Do not sleep

Helix (2-4), Rancho Bernardo (4-1), Point Loma (0-1), Montgomery (4-1), Santa Fe Christian (5-1), Madison (2-3), Christian (3- 2), Torrey Pines (3-2), Oceanside (0-3), Sweetwater (5-0), Mater Dei Catholic (3-2), Castle Park (3-2), Fallbrook (3-3).

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The ultimate skin care routine for dry skin Thu, 29 Apr 2021 22:22:33 +0000

Do you have dry, dehydrated skin? Do not despair. There is a skin care routine for that!

Maybe your skin is tight, scaly, scaly, or a combination of the three.

We have what you need.

The following skin care routine and recommendations for dry skin can leave your skin feeling happy, hydrated, and glowing.

Whether it’s a proven skin care regimen, how often you wash your hair, or what cosmetics you care about, beauty is personal.

That’s why we rely on a diverse group of writers, educators, and other experts to share their advice on everything from how product application varies to the best sheet mask for your individual needs.

We only recommend something we really like, so if you see a store link to a specific product or brand, please know that it has been thoroughly researched by our team.

According to a Study 2020A consistent, consistent skin care regimen can result in measurable changes in dry skin.

Dry skin can be uncomfortable and is usually marked with peeling, itching, and cracking. While dry skin typically affects the hands, arms, and legs, it can affect any part of the body.

According to Shawnda Dorantes, RN, BSN and co-owner of Beauty salon medical spaThere are several causes of dry skin. These include:

  • environment
  • hard water
  • genetic
  • excessive washing
  • exposure to irritants
  • medical conditions, such as hypothyroidism or diabetes

These factors can be mainly classified into two categories, according to a medical esthetician Olivia sparks.

“The causes of dry skin can be categorized as internal or external, and the easiest to treat are the external factors,” says Sparks.

These include factors such as:

  • humidity
  • bathing habits
  • use of harsh soaps

According to Sparks, dry skin, flaking, and chapped lips may be due to vitamin B deficiency.

A deficiency in B vitamins “will also make you more sensitive to certain skin care products and to sunlight,” she says.

Talk to your healthcare professional about taking a vitamin B complex supplement.

While the causes may differ, anyone can practice a dry skin routine that will be to their benefit.

“As the skin dries, it shrinks and causes cracks, which can get deep, painful, and even start to bleed. The cracks allow germs and bacteria to enter the body, which can potentially lead to skin infection, ”says Melanie Speed, RN, BSN, CAN and owner of Impeccable aesthetics.

When it comes to a skincare routine for dry skin, keep the five steps below in mind:

  1. Purify with a hydrating cleanser that does not disturb the outer layer of the skin.
  2. Your with alcohol-free toner to restore skin pH.
  3. Target specific skin problems with a serum.
  4. Hydrate with a nourishing, non-comedogenic moisturizer to lock in hydration.
  5. Protect harmful UV rays to prevent sun damage.


Your first step is to choose a hydrating cleanser. You want a cleanser to remove dirt and oil without disturbing the outer layer of the skin.

A good ingredient to look for is hyaluronic acid, as in Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser or CeraVe Hydrating Facial Cleanser.


Many toners use alcohol as the main ingredient, which dries out the skin. Look for an alcohol-free toner with active ingredients that restore your skin’s pH levels.

A great option is Alaffia Everyday Coconut Facial Toner.


This step helps target specific skin problems. Focus on hydration with a pure hyaluronic acid serum such as Ordinary hylauronic acid 2% + B5.


A good moisturizer will lock in the benefits of a serum. Use a moisturizer specially designed for the face daily.

According to Sparks, “Face moisturizer should be really nourishing and hydrating, but avoid products that might clog your pores.” It’s a safe bet to look for “non-comedogenic” on the label.

Kavita Mariwalla, FAAD certified dermatologist and board of directors, recommends SkinFix Barrier + Triple Lipid-Peptide Face Cream.


Daily use of sunscreen prevents harmful UV rays from damaging the skin.

“I recommend wearing sunscreen to protect your skin from harsh UV rays regardless of your skin type. For sunscreen, I like ISDIN Eryfotona and La Roche-Posay Anthelios”, Says Mariwalla.

Lower cost options include Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Lotion Sunscreen or Aveeno Protect + Hydrate Hydrating Sunscreen.

A skin care routine for your body will be similar to your facial routine. The main difference is in the products you will use for each.

The first step is cleaning. Choose a product that includes moisturizing ingredients like Sebamed Gentle Hydrating Cleanser or CeraVe Hydrating Cleansing Bar.

Then move on to hydration, ideally by applying while the skin is still damp.

Look for creams and ointments that contain one or more of the following:

You may find that you benefit from ointment or cream over lotion because they contain more oil and less water.

AmLactin Rapid Relief Repair Lotion is my favorite body [moisturizer] because it contains 15% lactic acid, ”explains Mariwalla. You can also try Ceramedx ultra hydrating cream.

Surprise! It is the same.

A dry skin routine for men is the same as for anyone else. While some men may have different fragrance and packaging preferences, all skin types need the same type of care.

There are a few things to keep in mind when you have dry skin that you may not have thought of.

Don’t overdo caffeine

“Try not to consume too much caffeine. Too much caffeine and not enough water will dry you out in the blink of an eye, ”says Sparks.

Take it easy with the hot water

Hot showers or baths can strip the skin of natural oils. This can cause irritation, dryness and sometimes even damage the skin.

Instead of a steamy shower or bath, keep it just warm enough to soothe and relax without drying out your skin.

Research shows that an optimal bath temperature for healthy adults is between 40 and 43 ° C (104 to 109 ° F). If you are pregnant, elderly, or have a health problem, lower temperatures are recommended. Talk to your doctor.

Avoid aggressive products

Some products can make dry skin worse, such as:

Don’t skip the sunscreen

“Protect your skin from sunburn and skin damage, which will make it tight, dry and aged,” says Dorantes.

Don’t underhydrate

Lotion collectors, rejoice! It would take very hard work to overdo it with the moisturizer.

Twice a day hydration is ideal, according to Mariwalla.

“Don’t apply moisturizer just once a day. Make sure you apply it twice, and one of those times should be on damp skin, ”she says.

Although dry skin is usually harmless, there is still the possibility that it is caused by a disease like eczema or psoriasis. Talk to your doctor if you suspect an underlying skin condition.

Additionally, Mariwalla explains that a broken skin barrier can lead to infection. It is important to protect the health of your skin to avoid this.

Speed ​​warns you to wear gloves to protect your hands when working with chemicals or a lot of water.

If you have dry skin, following a daily skin care routine is the best way to find relief. By cleansing, toning, conditioning and hydrating your skin, you are taking steps towards a healthy and happy dermis.

Consult a dermatologist for the ideal routine for you.

Ashley Hubbard is a Nashville, Tennessee-based freelance writer specializing in sustainability, travel, veganism, mental health, social justice, and more. Passionate about animal rights, sustainable travel and social impact, she seeks ethical experiences whether at home or on the road. To visit him website.

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Journalists are building their brands in a growing ‘direct’ sales model Wed, 28 Apr 2021 06:45:00 +0000

Substack has some 500,000 subscribers who pay an average of $ 5-10 per month for popular newsletters

NEW YORK – Anna Codrea-Rado has made a name for herself as a freelance journalist, attracting an audience of 2,500 people for her e-newsletter, “Lance,” aimed at helping other freelance writers.

Then, in 2019, she joined a wave of writers charging subscription fees for her weekly newsletter using the Substack platform, switching to the direct-to-consumer model.

“At the time, I thought it was crazy to charge people for emails,” said the British writer who also produces her own podcasts.

But being a freelance writer it has become “a game changer in terms of paying on time and like your cash flow,” she said.

The number of its subscribers quickly dropped to 130 but then gradually rebounded to over 300.

“It was a good source of income,” even though she suspended the pay model during the coronavirus pandemic.

Codrea-Rado’s experience highlights a growing movement in news media, where traditional organizations face increasing economic hardship, with writers creating their own brands to connect with readers, bypassing traditional media .

Freelance writers can have their own online webpage, newsletter, podcast, or even connect via SMS through the Subtext platform.

Jeremy Caplan, director of teaching, learning and assessment at the Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at the City University of New York, said reporters were taking advantage of consumers’ growing willingness to pay for subscriptions , ranging from services like Netflix to Spotify to meal kits.

“People just got used to the idea of ​​micro-subscriptions on a small scale,” Caplan said.

“And they subscribe to several video services and maybe several audio services or whatever, from music to fitness.”

– Small costs add up –

Substack has some 500,000 subscribers who pay an average of $ 5-10 per month for popular newsletters.

The 10 most popular newsletters generated around $ 15 million in revenue last year, according to the platform.

A few well-known journalists have put their reputation to good use. For example, Pulitzer Prize winner Glenn Greenwald, who resigned from The Intercept last year following an argument with management, reportedly received over $ 80,000 a month from his Substack newsletter.

Some say the trend is being driven by the worsening crisis in the media sector which has made life difficult for many salaried journalists.

“The lack of a living wage and the lack of perks that companies offer are driving more and more people to try to get out of these companies and make deals with Substack, or some other group,” said Jon Schleuss, president of NewsGuild. which represents journalists in dozens of news organizations.

The market is increasingly competitive with new entrants such as Ghost, which offers low-cost newsletters, TinyLetter, ButtonDown, and Patreon, a long-standing platform for creators and artists.

Social media is a key part of attracting readers, and the big platforms are part of the action as well.

In January, Twitter bought the writers platform Revue, and Facebook unveiled plans for its own platform in March.

David Sirota, founder of The Daily Poster, another platform for writers, said that the newsletter model “allows us to create a truly independent, non-corporate medium that can challenge the power and get feedback and feedback from our supporters. “

But there are challenges, Sirota said.

“The hardest part of this model is that it takes time to expand our work and our audience, and there is no shortcut to developing a meaningful relationship with a growing audience,” said he declared.

“Journalism takes a lot of time and work … I don’t particularly like asking people to participate, but it’s the only way to start a truly independent medium.”

Isaac Saul, creator of political newsletter Tangle, which has some 3,000 paid subscribers, said the model had advantages.

“For me, the best part is that I am not associated with any other brand or institution, so my readers can pass judgment on my work based solely on my writing,” Saul said.

“In the political arena this is a huge advantage and it helps me avoid readers who might otherwise prejudge my work.”

Tangle “is all about exposing people to a wide range of political views,” he said.

“The gist of what I do is summarize the positions of the right, left and center on a political story, and then share my own point of view. So I’m definitely trying to escape traditional perceptions of bias in the media. “

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Ypsilanti officials to explore traffic calming measures on four main roads in the city Wed, 28 Apr 2021 04:03:08 +0000

Staff from the town of Ypsilanti and partners in the region will test design concepts this summer to calm traffic and improve pedestrian and cyclist safety on four stretches of road.

The city collaborates with the Washtenaw Area Transportation Study (WATS) and Saint Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor study possible traffic calming measures on Second Avenue between Michigan Avenue and Monroe Street; Cross Street between Prospect Road and River Street; Prospect Road from Cross at the northern end of the city limits; and North Mansfield Street from Washtenaw Avenue to Congress Street.

These areas have been targeted due to recurring complaints of speeding and other dangerous driver behavior, and repeated requests to improve safety along these routes.

Bonnie Wessler, project manager for Ypsilanti’s utilities department, says that all of these areas are “higher capacity streets that carry a relatively large volume of traffic and are major routes in and out of town or areas. neighborhoods of the community ”.

“Vehicle speed definitely has an impact on how safe people feel to be able to walk or cycle somewhere,” she says. “And the speed of vehicles absolutely contributes to the level of injury in an accident. We want all legal users of the road to feel safe.”

The effort was modeled on a similar project carried out by WATS in Chelsea.

“They did low cost tactical interventions in several streets over there and partnered up with St. Joe Chelsea,” says Wessler. “It was such a success that we wanted to replicate it here.”

It made sense for the local health care system to partner with the project given that many hospital workers live or travel in Ypsilanti, she said.

Wessler said city staff will send out flyers to solicit the opinions of residents in target areas on proposed solutions. As the list of treatments is reduced to the best for each zone, the districts will receive a second mailing.

“We don’t want to put something on the street for someone they don’t want or that doesn’t work, or maybe they’ve seen somewhere else and don’t believe it will work here,” Wessler says. “A lot of these treatments we’re testing are relatively new to road safety, maybe around ten years old.”

She says when the roundabouts were first built in the area, they looked new and unfamiliar, and some of the new traffic calming treatments may look new as well.

For example, a “walkway” treatment already in use in the city uses pedestrian signage on either side of the roadway and thin plastic “drop posts” attached to the ground that bounce even after being hit once or twice.

“This visually makes the roadway narrower, even if the traffic lanes are perfectly sufficient for vehicular traffic,” says Wessler. “But because it visually narrows the road, it draws the driver’s attention to the crosswalk where pedestrians can legally cross and helps the driver drive slowly and navigate carefully.”

Project updates will be available on

Sarah Rigg is a freelance writer and editor in Ypsilanti township and project manager for On the Ypsilanti field. She joined Focus as a news editor in early 2017 and occasionally contributes to other Broadcast media group publications. You can reach her at

Photo courtesy of the city of Ypsilanti.

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EMU student launches non-profit organization to provide financial aid and community support for mental health Wed, 28 Apr 2021 04:03:00 +0000

A new Brighton-based nonprofit created by an Eastern Michigan University student aims to provide financial aid and community support to people with mental health issues.

The sunflower project was created last year by Hannah Palmer, a student at Eastern Michigan University, a five-time suicide survivor who has interacted with more than 50 service organizations since she was first diagnosed with the depression and anxiety in 2015. Palmer found that people repeatedly asked him how they could help their own friends or family members who have mental health issues. She has also often been asked how to deal with the social stigma and financial challenges of solving mental health issues.

“As I looked for the best ways to answer people’s questions, I realized there were some gaps that needed to be filled,” says Palmer. “I’ve always wanted to start something like The Sunflower Project and finally decided that now is the time to do something.”

According to the so-called “bankrupt student”, starting a nonprofit in the midst of a pandemic is particularly “intimidating”. However, she says the additional mental burdens people face during COVID-19 call for immediate action.

“Even in better times, getting mental health care is financially difficult,” says Palmer. “In fact, I haven’t even been in therapy myself since the start of the pandemic. My sessions were $ 150 each and my therapist didn’t take out insurance. Unfortunately, many do. of people.”

Over the next few months, Palmer will be actively working on the financial support aspect of his organization. She is currently hosting conferences in Washtenaw, Livingston and Ingham counties in return for donations. It aims to raise $ 10,000 to provide scholarships for people with diagnosed mental disorders who need help paying for treatment or who need help paying for their education because they cannot apply for other scholarships. .

The donations will also be used to cover the costs of certifying people in Mental health first aid. The training course teaches people how to help a person in crisis until appropriate professional help is obtained.

“I’m really thrilled to be a voice for those who believe they can’t speak up, for whatever reason, about their mental health,” says Palmer. “I hope people will contact me and help me build more positive conversations about mental health in our community.

Jaishree Drepaul-Bruder is a freelance writer and editor currently based in Ann Arbor. It can be reached at

Photo courtesy of Hannah Palmer.

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Long-running Ann Arbor nonprofit refocuses efforts on reforming Michigan’s youth justice system Wed, 28 Apr 2021 04:03:00 +0000

the Michigan Center for Youth Justice, an Ann Arbor-based advocacy organization, may have changed its name in 2020, but it’s hardly the new kid on the block.

For more than 60 years, the nonprofit organization formerly known as the Michigan Council on Crime and Delinquency has been a leader in partnering with communities on crime prevention strategies, promoting access fair and equitable justice, expanding community alternatives to incarceration and improving outcomes through safe and effective treatment.

“Historically, we have always focused on the policy issues facing both the criminal justice and youth justice systems here in Michigan,” says Jason Smith, a longtime staff member who has become director. MCYJ executive in January. “In the last decade, there have been more advocacy organizations that have taken the lead and doing a really good job in the adult system. But there really was no organization across the board. the state that focused exclusively on young people. “
Jason Smith, Executive Director of MCYJ.
Even before the official rebranding, recent initiatives by the organization included the Raise the Age campaign, which succeeded in raising the age of juvenile court jurisdiction from 17 to 18, preventing young people from surrendering in adult courts. And he succeeded in passing a law improving the protection of the confidentiality of the files of minors. And Smith, like many of his staff, has a background as a social worker who has provided direct service to youth involved in the justice system. The name of the organization and the change in leadership seemed natural – and necessary.

Since Michigan’s juvenile justice system is run at the county level, there is no statewide data source to rely on to lobby for legislative changes. How many children are in the system at any given time?

“There’s an estimate we can give, but it’s hard to know a really precise number. And of those kids, what’s the breakdown of offenses? Are they there for violent offenses or things like truancy? ” Smith asks. “We have been successful over the past two years in advancing our policy priorities with very little data, but it will be increasingly difficult to do so.”

Lobbying for the creation of a statewide data collection system is one of the ongoing initiatives of the MCYJ.

Decentralization of the youth justice system also means that counties individually dictate important decisions on issues such as resource allocation, programming, and philosophy regarding community care or detention.

“We call it ‘justice by geography,’ which means a child’s experience in the justice system can really vary depending on where they live,” says Smith.

Fines and court costs are also at the discretion of the counties. The MCYJ’s current debt-free justice campaign aims to normalize these costs.

“If we are to have a justice system, it should be predictable across the state,” says Husain Haidri, MCYJ’s outreach and community engagement manager. “But also, families who are affected should be able to leave with a child who can reintegrate without being burdened with debt. Our goal is to eliminate these fines and fees.”
Husain Haidri, MCYJ outreach and community engagement manager.
Every community in the state of Michigan – ethnic, racial and socioeconomic – is affected by youth justice, Haidri notes. And yet, he says, it is an invisible problem.

“There is a lot of confidentiality around these cases, which is a good thing, but it is difficult for people to realize the structural problems of the youth justice system because these stories are not public,” said Haidri.

He works to find families of affected youth who are ready to share their experiences.

“We can teach them how to effectively share their story. Then we can organize public education events and coffee hours with lawmakers to raise awareness about this important issue, ”he says.

MCYJ has also launched a new two-pronged volunteer initiative. The Advocates program invites people to connect with any aspect of MCYJ’s work, whether it’s fundraising, campaigning, or graphic design.

“What I’m really passionate about is engaging local artists who can present these issues in creative ways,” says Haidri, who himself became involved with the MCYJ as a volunteer while working on the campaign. Raise the Age.

The Ambassador program is a longer term commitment, in which volunteers will be trained to share the history of the CJSM with their work, their university and their faith communities. Ultimately, Ambassadors will create advocacy centers around the state that can inspire citizens to lobby their lawmakers.

“What really excites me is that people from diverse backgrounds are finding common ground in youth justice – an issue that doesn’t get as much attention – and that produce, ”says Haidri.

Smith notes that at the same time the MCYJ is shifting gears, as is the youth justice system itself.

“He’s moving away from the era of fighting crime and the politics of the ’80s and’ 90s, to realize that young people who have problems are still children,” he says. “You have to recognize that to help them be successful in solving the problems or needs that took them to court or law enforcement in the first place.”

As courts shift to therapeutic and rehabilitative relationships with youth and improve engagement with family members, the MCJJ advocates for best practices.

“Like any other helping profession, the youth justice system is an ever-changing system,” says Smith. “You always find better ways to serve children without harming, but rather to help them. Our goal is to continue this evolution.”

More information on MCYJ is available at the organization’s website.

Jeanne Hodesh is a freelance writer based in Ann Arbor, where she covers small business, food and culture. She holds an MA in Fine Arts from Hunter College. His essays and articles have appeared in Lenny Letter, The Hairpin, and Time Out New York, among other publications.

All pictures from Doug Coombe.

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5 reasons I won’t be a successful freelance writer Wed, 28 Apr 2021 01:11:59 +0000

I’ve probably been stuck in a writer’s block 9/10 times every time I try to write. I have an idea of ​​what to write, but I question my ideas a few minutes later. My vocabulary shrinks the minute I try to start writing, and I end up looking at a blank document most of the time before I’m ready to quit for the day.

Some say you have to find your motivation that will motivate you to become a writer. I say I have a ton of reasons to motivate me. But I think motivation is only part of the equation in keeping your momentum alive.

There are days when motivation won’t do anything for me because I let my impulse control my actions and behaviors. I succumb to comfort rather than wanting to face putting myself out.

While I am driven to fulfill my dream of becoming a successful writer and reap all the rewards that come with it, I am not disciplined enough to create a lifestyle dedicated to content creation.

The reason?

Well they are listed below.

1. I am not a constant reader.

I do not read a lot.

At least more.

I loved to bury my nose in a book when I was a kid. But my passion for reading waned with age. I was frustrated with myself because I was going to the bottom of the page and my mind would be elsewhere. I would completely forget where I am.

I try to be read consistently.

I set myself a goal of reading 30 minutes a day! I even hit my reading goal for a few days and finally didn’t. I started 3 books since last year and haven’t finished any.

What does this have to do with my writing? I have read in many articles that to be a good writer you MUST be consistent with your reading.

To anyone reading this, I want you to enjoy reading what I write. I want you to hear my voice in what I write.

But I buried this with this huge fear that what I’m producing isn’t going to be good and that my writing isn’t worth reading.

2. I create goals and I don’t stick to them

As mentioned in my reading goal, I’m so excited to start a goal and then I don’t see that goal until the end.

In the self-help articles I’ve read, I’ve used tips like “write down your goals” because they’re supposed to motivate you to stick with that goal.

If it worked for you, great!

But I’m not sure it really works for me.

I was so overwhelmed by the goals I set for myself, whether they were short term or long term goals. I have now realized that I expect so much of myself.

Although I can be capable of anything, I am also a human being. I think it is sometimes scary to pursue your goals because it takes time, discipline and commitment to stick to it. It is either you are in it or you are absent.

You are either ham or eggs.

The pig or the chicken.

3. I’m not ready to be uncomfortable

I’m afraid, there I said it.

I’m afraid to put my handwriting in there with my name on it. I’m afraid to prioritize something that I constantly tell myself I’m no good at and get something out of it.

I have two jobs. I have a stable income. I have job security.

I’m comfortable where I am, but I’m not happy.

I’m trying so hard to gain the confidence to put the things I’m writing out there all the time. But as I mentioned earlier, I’m so scared and see a big flaw in my writing that I’m not ready for people I know to read my writing.

Crazy, isn’t it?

I don’t let anyone I know read the things I write because I’m nervous to hear their comments. Which is so silly because it shouldn’t matter. But deep down it is.

I read two articles last week that really flipped a switch for me!

The article below which was written by Tom kuegler helped me understand that the people you know only really care to read your writing when it’s about them. If you’re like me and afraid to show off, read this and his other work. It provides valuable advice that you can apply in your life if you’re struggling to become a great writer.

Tim denningThe article below has guided me towards the perception that it doesn’t matter what people think of your writing. Feedback will be negative or positive. Your work will be loved by some, loved by others and hated by many.

It has helped me understand that no matter who can read my writing and what they think about my writing is not my concern. It will put me off and hurt in the long run if I write just to please everyone.

Check out his article below as well as his other work for more content on how to gain a different perspective when you think failure is your only other option.

4. I have an all or nothing state of mind

Does anyone else share this mindset? Where do you give your all or do you make no effort at all?

Well, this all or nothing mentality is my holy grail.

Either you give it your best and your audience is worth reading it, or you don’t post anything at all.

I typed and deleted so many pieces that I wrote because I felt it was stupid or that no one would want to read what I wrote.

I didn’t believe in my writing skills.

I thought all I was capable of was being a writer on content factories like UpWork or Fiverr.

I considered myself a total fraud.

I wasn’t sure if I would publish anything that I created. I craved perfection and it just didn’t happen.

But having that all-or-nothing mindset bothers you. The perfectionist mindset will drive you mad. It is not something that you should be going through. Nothing is ever covered in pure perfection.

I will never achieve or ever get closer to my goals if I continue to have this type of mindset because something is always better than nothing.

Flaws make things unique.

Nothing good comes quickly.

Baby walk first, run later.

5. I procrastinate

I procrastinate so much that it’s ridiculous.

When I was in college, I did my homework the same evening. I would study hours before my exams! I wrote down schedules, created all kinds of checklists, and marked days on my calendar that I would dedicate to helping me prepare for my exams or start my homework.

But no matter how far in advance I prepared, I was never mentally ready to do the job.

It is much easier to plan how you want things to turn out than to achieve them.

The only reason I even started my assignments at the very last second possible was that there was a due date.

As a freelance designer of any type, you set your own deadlines.

You set your own goals.

You are working on YOUR time that you set for yourself.

And yes, I want to reap the benefits of being a smart and talented writer.

I want to be able to introduce myself and say I wrote this! There are so many reasons to motivate me to get closer to my goal. But I’m also the reason I procrastinate.

I waste my time prioritizing other things like social media, TV, and other unnecessary things that make me semi-happy. It’s hard to stay consistent with my writing and be confident enough to finish what I started.

In order for me to become a better writer, I have to take myself seriously. If I don’t set a time or deadline, who will?

All of these reasons being said, I think I’m ready to recognize the flaws that keep me from being the creator I want to become.

Which is easier said than done.

I realized that the goals I create overwhelm me because I put so much on my plate that I’m just the chicken. I am the eggs.

If I allow motivation to be my only driver, I will also let impulses come in when motivation no longer feeds me. I need to discipline myself to be able to question myself on days when motivation is not accessible to me.

I just need to commit to taking baby steps, being consistent and disciplined because that will help me become the writer I dreamed of being.

To be successful is mind over matter, just remember that you are also human.

Being able to learn about yourself and be the best “you” is the hardest part of self-discovery! Hope you enjoyed this piece and thank you very much for reading!

If you liked what you read, check out my other work!

Previously published on average


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A deadly wave Wed, 28 Apr 2021 01:00:00 +0000

A virulent second wave of the coronavirus continues to wreak havoc on the lives of Indians, ravaging city after city and city after city. More than 15,000 people died in one week. The second most populous country on the planet has also witnessed the highest number of coronavirus cases in a single day since the pandemic hit it last year.

India’s health care system appears to have been overwhelmed. We witness heartbreaking scenes of people lying on footpaths, main roads and hospital corridors with their loved ones, desperately calling for help. Indian Prime Minister Modi has described the wave as the contagion storm but it appears he has not made enough preparations to deal with the impending calamity.

The Indian Prime Minister has been accused of allocating a colossal amount for the construction of the parliament building and a jet for himself amid the ravages of the pandemic which has not only affected millions of Indians but has also deprived a large population of the Southeast Asian country of livelihood. Modi’s election campaign in West Bengal has also been criticized; it is believed to have also contributed to the worsening of the situation. Many accused him of neglect and indifference to the plight of the population. His critics blasted him for sacrificing the interests of the people to appease the corporate sector and big business.

A number of Modi’s critics believe the country’s poor have been killed twice – first economically and then physically. When contagion hit the country last year, millions of daily bets and working poor were left at the mercy of circumstances. The government announced an unplanned lockdown leaving these workers stranded, forcing them to travel hundreds of kilometers, and even thousands of kilometers in some cases.

The government’s failed attempts to deal with the situation have created immense hardship for people living on the lower strata of social stratification – but instead of softening their mysteries, the government has come up with a bailout that has largely gone benefited big business and big business.

Even the looming specter of death and destruction could not deter India’s ruling elite from fighting with Pakistan and China, spending billions of dollars in the unproductive sector of the economy. When the leaders of the right-wing Hindu parties were busy making threats against their sworn enemies Pakistan and China, the greatest enemy of the Indian people reared their monstrous head, but the Indian nationalist leaders were not interested in solving the problem. by taking drastic steps to improve. the failing health system. Instead, they struggled to cooperate with giant arms companies in an effort to obtain deadlier weapons and military hardware that could do little to save the lives of tens of thousands of people who perished. during the pandemic, and there seems to be no respite. existential threat.

The situation in India also revealed the hypocrisy of the advanced capitalist countries which imported vaccines from the South Asian country but failed to provide the necessary assistance which could have helped to prevent the dire situation that arose. in the past. about months. It is also surprising why the Indian decision did not stock enough vaccine for its own population when it was the center of vaccine production around the world.

Indian rulers could have used the logic of the Western political elite who obtained orders for their own people, forcing companies to prefer states where production took place. India is the world’s largest producer of the vaccine and it should have had at least enough vaccine that could have prevented large-scale deaths. But as the Indian ruling elite was more interested in serving the interests of international business than in making efforts to alleviate the hardships of its own people, it did not set such conditions effectively. Although he is now trying to secure a substantial number of vaccines, such belated actions cannot right the wrongs that have already affected millions of people.

In this situation, many Pakistanis have shown magnanimity of character. Despite the anti-Indian sentiments that have been stirred up here by right-wing clerics and organizations, we have seen many Pakistanis express their sympathy to their Indian brethren. The Edhi Foundation has offered its services to India. The government has also sent a good gesture by offering aid and relief. Even Pakistan’s religious leaders have shown solidarity with the Indian people by praying for their health and well-being. It bodes well in the midst of the storm of hatred and warmongering.

The pandemic has made it very clear that it is not political hostilities that pose an existential threat to humanity, but disease, natural calamities, environmental degradation and our indifference to indicators of human development. In recent years, India has left the UK behind in military spending, becoming the fourth country to invest heavily in this unproductive sector of the economy that rarely benefits ordinary people in all countries. .

The South Asian country is also one of the greatest powers in conventional warfare but, while the UK has vaccinated a large number of its population, India’s percentage in terms of population is insignificant. The ruling elite sitting in the corridors of power in New Delhi at first showed indifference to the plight of the people and then turned to complacency to appease big business.

Superstitious Hindu leaders also complicated the situation. Instead of asking the government to take swift action to deal with the looming threat, they have come up with bizarre solutions to tackle the pandemic. The government’s decision to allow religious gatherings has also proven to be catastrophic, but unfortunately it is the ordinary Indian who is most affected by these government decisions.

The way the Indian state of Kerala has dealt with the coronavirus indicates that the Indian people have the capacity to overcome this natural disaster, but it is very unfortunate that those who try to invest in human development are challenged by it. corporate elite of the country of Southeast Asia.

Kerala is believed to have one of the best human development indicators in India. Some estimates suggest that it is the most literate state in the largest democracy. Its health system is much better than that of other regions of the country. The Indian ruling elite and its subordinate corporate media are fiercely anti-China. So they would never try to learn anything from this country. They have no positive opinion on Communist Cuba which also defeated the pandemic. There is therefore no question of learning anything from this small island country which benefits from one of the best human development indicators in Latin America.

But Kerala is part of India. Modi and his annoying henchmen may have political differences with the people who run the government in the South Indian state, but they could still learn from them the policies that helped the Communist government overcome the crisis. The state is also ready to help. It is time for the Indian political elite to accept this and also agree to take the help of any country that could help the Indian people in these difficult times. Recalcitation on the part of India’s ultra-nationalist Hindu rulers will only add to the woes of the Indian people who are groaning under the mighty tentacles of the coronavirus.

The writer is a freelance journalist.

E-mail: [email protected]

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Writing home: a new editor on the block | Columns Tue, 27 Apr 2021 22:15:00 +0000

Scrolling my phone one evening, daydreaming about my next summer off, my alerts informed me of a message from a friend. The opinion she shared was about opening a position at the West Side Journal. Rad! I applied immediately. I knew a better part-time job than carpooling would come up, but I hadn’t thought of such a good match.

I am in love with the written word. Writing expresses our deepest thoughts, connects people around the world or right around the corner, and opens up possibilities for us. Being part of a publication right here in Port Allen is a perfect way to practice my passion.

The Journal warmly welcomed me to its team last week. In addition to writing, I work as a college English teacher in East Baton Rouge. The idea of ​​regularly reporting while setting an example for my students thrills me. Writing is so important!

Since 2010, I have been funding other income with freelance writing as an environmental news reviewer, book reviewer, contributor for a California newspaper, website editor, and social media post creator for customers. Although I have done a lot of practical writing, it is a dream to someday finish a fictional book. Reading comes with teaching territory and it is a favorite pastime to escape stress.

Speaking of escape, traveling is another of my favorite things to do. I left the country for the first time at the age of 30, traveling alone in Peru and learning as much Spanish as possible to communicate with the residents. Pre-pandemic plans have taken me to Morocco and the streets are filled with post-Ramadan celebrations. I have visited Ireland and Hungary and aim to see a lot more.

I am a curious creature and I feel more whole when I have new experiences; learn things that were not familiar before. I have lived in Louisiana for less than 5 years, but I enjoy our peaceful community bordered by the Mississippi. I am intrigued by the rich history of this region.

Now, I was born and raised in Northeast Ohio, but I never liked winter too much. I left in my twenties for the west coast and finally sailed south. For the past three years, I have made my home in the Oaks neighborhood of Port Allen.

You may have seen my dog ​​and I walking the sea wall in the wee hours of the morning or trotting the streets of our city trying to cut my mileage time. I’ll take my natural curiosity to town and report back to you. I am honored to cover the most important news and events for our community. If you have a great story to share or just want to say hello to me, please feel free to contact me at I would love to hear from you!

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John Grindrod: baseball gloves, memories of half a century of Lima Tue, 27 Apr 2021 20:00:11 +0000

Baseball historian John Thorn has done extensive research on the baseball glove and identifies the first professional player to wear a glove in an era when the game was played with his bare hands. He was St. Louis Brown Stocking Charlie Waitt, who in 1875 played on first base with a flesh-colored glove that was about the size of a handball glove. As for the color, Thorn said it was because Waitt was hoping no one would notice.

So, using that as a historical starting point, maybe the memories of their first baseball gloves that many will share today won’t seem so old.

As for the youngest of my guys, Brad Clark, 57, he remembers a model made by Rawlings with Cesar Cedeno’s autograph etched into the leather. Cedeno was best known as Astro 1970 during the team’s rainbow-colored jersey years. The glove was a fastback model, a longer glove that did not have a strap on the back of the glove, which caused Brad a problem.

“Without a strap, it meant I couldn’t hang my glove on the handlebars of my bike.”

As for Dave Busick, 64, a Tiger fan from a young age, his first glove was MacGregor model Denny McLain. In the year 1968 Tiger World Series winner McLain of Detroit, almost no doubt given the way the game is played today, became baseball’s last 30-game winner.

For Dan Moening, 65, his first glove was a Zoilo Versalles Rawlings. Versalles was a Cuban-born shortstop whose best days were as a Minnesota Twin.

For Tom Cullen, 69, another infielder from the early 1960s who grew into a player good enough to play collegially, he fondly remembers his first glove with the embossed signature of a player he has learned to admire, Nellie Fox.

Recalls Tom, now a nationally renowned glass artist: “I remember the glove was undersized compared to others that my friends had, but, as an intermediate fielder it was important a once I caught the ball I took it out and on first quickly. “

I couldn’t help but think of the recent passing of great Joe Morgan of the Reds, who played second baseman so well with one of the tiniest gloves I’ve ever seen when I saw him on display during one of my trips to the Sports Hall of Fame. in Cooperstown.

Cullen’s childhood friend Peter Linneman, 70-year-old Lima, now Philadelphian, remembers his first glove being a helping hand from his dad, a 1940s model with split fingers, which means the glove fingers were not laced.

I have a similar split-finger glove, saved from a yard sale quarter-box, with Hal Newhouser’s name visible on the outside finger. Newhouser, a left-hander, had a wonderful three-year run in the mid-1940s as the Tiger, winning 29, 25, and 26 games from 1944-46.

For Jim Penn, 69, he remembers his first glove being a Rawlings, a glove he loved and used so much, he learned on his own to remodel and repair it many times.

To local lawyer Brad Kelley, 69, he says: “When I started playing organized ball, my dad told me to empty the equipment bag, and what fell last was my glove. . What last hit the ground with a breastplate, mask and shin guards was a catcher’s glove. And this is where I first put the tools of ignorance!

Bill Gephart, 70, also donned these same tools and remembers his first glove with a mixture of tenderness and reverence, as those who fell in love with baseball early on tend to do.

“I remember that catcher’s glove well, a Gus Triandos model (a 13-year-old MLB veteran in the 50s and 60s). It was almost like catching with a pillow and it was the best glove I have ever had.

For John Whittaker, 72, who gets my vote for the best brother-in-law of all time, he remembers growing up in Tiffin sliding on a six-finger Rawlings, a musical role model of Stan “The Man.”

Early catcher Bob Riepenhoff, 73, tired of these tools of ignorance by his last days of elementary school and remembers another glove with much more detail and fondness, an outfielder’s mitten wearing an embossed autograph of longtime fielder Tiger Dick McAuliffe.

For Bob Seggerson, 72, he remembers a model Mickey Mantle.

Segg recalls, “I got it from Repp from Mr. Mort, and the one thing I remember the most is I liked the smell of the leather in that glove.” To this day, when I smell leather, I think of that glove and the exuberance I felt while playing baseball.

For former Lima Senior Spartan John Bean, 73, his first glove was a brand some may not remember.

“It was a Sonnett, autographed by Ralph Kiner,” Bean recalls. “Later I switched to more familiar models like Spaulding and then to the MacGregor Ken Harrelson model that I still have today and use the game with my grandchildren.”

Thinking about those names made me smile. Neither Kiner, who led the National League on the circuits for seven consecutive years in the late 1940s and early 1950s, nor Harrelson was particularly well known for his defense. In Kiner’s case, it was his power that got the approval. As for Harrelson, just a career .239 hitter, it was his flamboyant lifestyle that may have played a part in gaining the approval.

And, finally Harry Johnson, at 77, my older brother, his first glove was a first baseman’s mitt with the embossed autograph of Ferris Fain, whose prime years first played with the Philadelphia Athletics in the 1940s.

Said the man affectionately known as Grogan in town: “And I could use this mitten better than Fain ever could!”

Boys and baseball, no matter how old the boy is, they will almost always remember those first precious possessions, the ones they valued more than the legendary Crown Jewels.

John Grindrod is a regular columnist for The Lima News, freelance writer and editor, and author of two books. Contact him at

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