TORCH

Hook Up Culture

By Morgan

Sex, and the implications thereof, differ from culture to culture, from era to era, and from individual to individual. For most Americans, the notion that one should wait until marriage to have sex is uber conservative and outdated- even my parents and grandparents admit to having engaged in premarital sex.

While it does seem like the rules governing proper sexual conduct are loosening up and allowing today’s American youth (and the youth of citizens of virtually any relatively secular nation) to feel free to experiment sexually to a certain degree, it seems to me that, as a general rule, I find that from year to year, sex means less and less to teens of comparable ages. […]

Sex, TORCH|

Lost One

By Brandon

I lost one
The one thing that kept me up at night.
The lucky charm I always wanted.
I lost the questions marks at the end of each sentence.
The thing that shined so beautifully.
But sadly this thing was never meant to get lost in my hands.

Poetry, TORCH|

Nobody is Pro-Abortion

By Morgan

To be pro-choice is not to be pro-abortion. There is no such thing as pro-abortion.

When a husband takes his comatose wife off of life support, that does not mean he wants her to die. When a mother takes care of her sick child, that does not mean she derives pleasure from the vomit of her kin. Every day, people do things that are hard for them, things that they don’t want to have to do, things that make them question their moral codes and their priorities. Every day, people have to make decisions that impinge on their lives not just for that day, but the entirety of their lives. These decisions, within the parameters of the law, are our own prerogatives, as we are the only ones who are equipped to understand our very own unique circumstances.

Abortion is not something that anybody enjoys or takes pleasure in, but are a necessary reality nonetheless. Abortions are personal, emotional, and pragmatic. Abortions have to do with quality of life, both for the pregnant women and for the zygotes that are provided with the controversial fate of never being given life, versus being given a life that won’t be able to treat them well, and that might not allow them to thrive.

[…]

Now is Your Chance

By Amy

MTV is trying to cast LGBT teens aged 15-25 for an upcoming special about being gay!   Now is your chance to speak out about being gay.  Millions of gay teenagers are being bullied for their sexuality just because people are ignorant about what it means to be gay and how hard it is to be something […]

Bullying, Gender identity, LGBTQ, TORCH|

Urgent help needed: protect the future of working women

By Sheniece

Call The White House Today:

Support Access to Birth Control for All Women

Health care reform will let many women access birth control without copay.

But women whose bosses oppose birth control are at risk of having that coverage taken away.

Call The White House Today!

Dial (202) 456-1111 right now.

Here’s your message:

“I am calling regarding the […]

Reproductive rights, TORCH|

Why Blame Us?

The following is a letter that Omar submitted to the Daily News in response to an editorial they published about the high rates of teen pregnancy in the Bronx.

By Omar

A new study reports that teens in the Bronx have high pregnancy and STI rates, even though they have the same amount of sex as teens […]

Cat Calls Suck

By Sophia

I was on the way to school this morning, minding my own business, coffee in hand, when out of a parked car came two craned necks, two guys nearly breaking their backs to get a good look of my butt.  Great.  I love feeling like a sexual object.

This isn’t unusual at all, since I deal with it almost everyday, and so do most women and girls.  It has become an awful fact of my daily life – no matter what I am wearing, I will always garner unsolicited male attention.  It is more than just a quiet humiliation – often, it is very obvious, and other people on the street may notice it.  A look or a whistle is incredibly damaging for me – all I want to do is scream in the guy’s face, but that wouldn’t do much.  This kind of behavior stems from societal values, bred-in-the-bone ideas that have been around since biblical times, which say that women are sexual objects, and should be treated as such.  How do we even begin to reverse this kind of behavior?

[…]

Future Plans

By Tamara

It’s almost every child’s dream to move out of their parent’s house. I have this sudden ferocious motivation to reach that exact goal. Many people I know want to move away but it’s just an empty thought for some people because they aren’t being realistic. Where are you going on your own when you […]

Dreams, Future planning, TORCH|

It’s Anti-Bullying Week

By Theresa

“The bullying stopped when I claimed myself and proved that I wasn’t afraid. A lot of it was when I was hiding when I was younger.”~ Randy Harrison

I can relate to this quote by Randy Harrison because I once was a victim of bullying. Being a young kid who felt that hiding from the […]

Bullying, TORCH|

We Are So Different You and Me

By Tamara

I have to do current events assignments for my government class each week so I always choose the news-paper as my main source. I picked up the October 5th New York Post and was flipping through it to find an interesting article relating to society or government. Despite the fact that I wanted to get the assignment over with for the week, I looked through the paper to find a few more stories out of boredom. The cover story was about a helicopter tour gone wrong; the next story was about a man who had gotten robbed, it seemed like nothing out of the ordinary, so I overlooked it as I was flipping through the paper once again. At some point, I had been reduced to read the robbery story. The story was about how clothing mogul, George Bardwil was robbed at gunpoint in his own home while hosting a party. The robbers made off with a $300,000 value of money and jewelry.

Bardwil reacted to the incident by saying, “If it had been $5 million or $6 million of jewelry, I’d be upset.” Although he also mentioned that the stolen items are just trinkets and that his life is more valuable, which is an understandable reaction, it makes me angry, as a person of the middle class, to think that $300,000 could be so worthless to him. In my neighborhood, many people struggle for financial support because of obstacles such as living situations, immigration status, and income, and to think that Bardwil thought nothing of what was taken. People are in need but people like Bardwil are not putting these things to good use. […]