Five Abandoned Places to Explore In New Jersey This Creepy Season

Five Abandoned Places to Explore In New Jersey This Creepy Season

Today is the first of October, which means it’s the scariest time of the year.  Many people enjoy the Halloween season because of the costumes, the candy and the thrills that come from urban exploration. To start of this Halloween season, here’s a list of abandoned places in New Jersey that you can explore…some at your own risks. 

  1. St. Patricks’ Cemetery (Hibernia, NJ)

A short hike along the wildcat ridge trail lies a cemetery in the mountain ridge. St. Patricks’ cemetery (est. 1869) is the final resting place to 440 Irish immigrants, many of whom worked the mines in the area. The small mining community called the “Hibernia Village was home to 800 residents. The town welcomed immigrants from Ireland, Austria and Hungary. It had a church, and a school. The Town saw a decline in the early 20th century when in 1910, the church burned to grown. In 1915, the mining company shut down the mines in this community.  There is still a town, with businesses but you can still find the remnants of the mines are still present. The Cemetery only has 40 of tombstones that stood the test of time.  Today, the descendants of these miners go up and clean the graves of their ancestors. 

2. Wallpack (Wallpack township, NJ)

Wallpack was the first incorporated municipality in Sussex County, NJ dating back to 1731. In 1955, A proposal for the U.S. Army of engineers made by congress made plans to alleviate flooding on the Delaware River by constructing a dam. This Dam, which would have been 10 miles south of Walpack would have created a lake that would put Walpack underwater. Residents were against the proposal but eventually, hundreds of Walpack’s residents were forced moved out. Soon financial problems a rised as the funding for the dam was allocated to funding the Vietnam War. Although the dam was never built, the town never fully regain its population. At it’s peak, Walpack was once home to more than 800 residents. As of 2020, the town of Walpack only has 16 residents.

Today, Walpack serves as an open-air museum where people can go and explore abandoned homes, a post office, a church and a school.  On Each house, there’s some information on who was the last owner and what their occupation was.  

3. The deserted village (Berkeley Heights, NJ):

Located in the Watchung Reservation, the Feltville Historic District, also known as “the deserted village”, was a small mill town and farming community. The first settler was Peter Willcox, an Englishman who moved to the area from Long Island in 1736. He bought land and built a sawmill that was later demolished as more people came to the area. In 1844, David Felt, A businessman from Boston, Massachusetts bought land from the Willcox family to expand production from his mill. He built the mill, two dams for the mill, and a town for the workers. He named the town “feltville”

After 15 years and other failed business ventures, David Felt sold the property and the town became known as “the deserted Village”. In 1882 the Land was bought by Warren Ackerman who turn the town into a summer resort called Glenside Park. However, as people started to vacation down the shore for the summer, thus closing Glenside Park in 1916. The village was left vacant again.  In the 1920’s the Union County Park Commission purchased the area and included it in the Watchung Reservation.  It was added to the National Registry of Historic Places in June of 1980. 

            Today, the remain structures include eight houses, a church, a carriage house, and a general house.  Only three families remain as permanent residents, but the remainder of this site is open to visitors who want to learn history or urban explorers.

4. Abandoned Hagedorn Psychiatric Hospital (Glen Gardner, NJ)

Opening in 1907,  The hospital was first called the Musconetcong Sanitarium for tuberculosis diseases, providing health care to 500 patients a year. Between 1907 and 1929, over 10,000 people were treated at this facility. In 1970 the hospital closed and was left abandoned. In 1977, The Senator Garret W. Hagedorn psychiatric Hospital was built next to abandoned tuberculosis hospital. In 2011, The hospital shut its doors for good.

Today, you can still visit the asylum, however it’s highly recommended you go either in the morning or evening because the grounds are still own by the state of New jersey and trespassers will be arrested and pay a fine if found on the property. EXPLORE AT YOUR OWN RISK!

5. First Street jail house (Newark, NJ)

 

Built in 1837 by English Architect John Haviland, who was known throughout the world as the “jailer to the world” because of his construction of jails and prisons one of which was the notorious Eastern State Penitentiary. The building is a two-story built was originally the Warden’s house and the east wing. As Newark’s population began to grow in 1890 the prison expanded its original structure with 300 more cells, a North wing, women’s’ wing, a hospital, Garage, and laundry room.  The prison was often overcrowded due to events like the 1967 Newark Riots. It served as Essex County main jail until 1971 when a new prison was built. In 1991, scenes for the Spike Lee film, Malcom X were shot at the Jail.  In that same year, the old Essex County jail was added to the National Registry of Historic Places. In 2003, a fire burnt down the woman’s ward. 

There have been plans to revive the building. Rutgers Law School tried to de-register the building from the NRHP for it to be demolished and build a new facility for law students.

Today the building is in a state of disrepair. The jail is rapidly decaying, and many sections have already fallen due to the lack of maintenance and having no security around the building making it accessible to trespassers and urban explorers.

However, be very careful when visiting because it is said that gang activity happens here as well as drug deals gone wrong. Several corpses have been found in the cells and on the grounds of this structure that may have died from overdose. 

27: A year of change.

The age of 27 is such a weird age. 27 is the start of your late 20’s and while you’re still holding on to your youth, you are in fear of turning 30. yes you will still party but now it’s more toned down in fact you don’t feel the need to party as often as you did in you’re early 20’s. At 27, you buckle down and become more serious with your goals and where you want to see yourself 27 years from now. You look back at your life and wonder if the choices you made were really your own. You wonder if the career you are currently in or the job you are currently working is the best fit for you. You might get a lil envious seeing engagement or pregnancy announcements but it doesn’t it will not happen for you eventually. And if it doesn’t your life isn’t in shambles.

In Astrology, 27 is considered “Saturn’s return”, which starts in your late 20’s and ends in your early 30’s. This means that you start to put away childish things and truly become more mature. Once Saturns’ return ends you not only become more wiser and you are on the path you need to be on.

In numerology, you have to add the numbers of your birthday (9+5=14), then add the numbers in the current year (2+0+2+1=5) and then you add the two answers you got (14+5=19) and then add the numbers until you get a single digit number (1+9= 10) (1+0=1). I did this I ended up with the number one. In numerology, the number 1 is the root towards opportunity in our lives. If you get a 1, it symbolizes power and taking action. Number one encourages you to embrace new beginnings and take control of your future. With all this numerology and astrology talk you might be wondering what I’m trying to do here.

The song “landslide” by Stevie Nicks was a song about the changes and challenges of life. When Stevie Nicks wrote this song she was 27. I feel some of the lyrics truly reflects how 27 feels. This year I will be turning 27, I actually turn 27 a month from today and I’m feeling all sorts of emotions. Feelings of life being at a standstill because of the depression and psychotic break that made me graduate from college 3 years later. The darkness that I felt that thinking that I would never see 25. Things are starting to become brighter for me now. I know people say that every birthday is transformational but I truly believe 27 will put my life in the trajectory of where I should be. And as I enter into my 27 year, I can’t help but to reflect on my life. to think about all my life choices, the choices that was “forced” on me, my dark days and my good days. I think of all the things that I was able to overcome. and I overcame a lot considering that most of my teachers from secondary education didn’t even think I would make it passed the first semester.

Now, I’m not gonna tell you all about what I’ve been through, I’m not gonna tell you a sad story of a girl with a horrible life because my life wasn’t really that horrible but it wasn’t all that great. For most of my 20’s and my college career, I was in my darkest hour but my darkest hour made me realize that I’m a lot stronger than I thought I was. This past year I received my bachelors degree, which was something I thought I would never accomplish. However, because my college career wasn’t as good as I wanted it to be I actually grew to hate the major that I was in and never took it seriously., I only cared enough to pass and my GPA went from a 3.1 and I graduated with a 2.4. this pandemic made me realize that I actually that holding a camera isn’t what I want to do. I don’t dream of being in a newsroom or working in media, in fact its very draining. I’m thinking of becoming a lawyer.

I have started on a course in paralegal studies in order for me to get a paralegal certificate. I’ll work in a law office for 6 months to a year before I go back for a second bachelors degree in History with a minor in Gender Studies. Then right after that I’ll take my LSAT and go to Law School. I already have two in mind. I probably won’t become a lawyer until I’m probably in my early 30’s but hey, better late than never right?

Hopefully, this time next year I’ll be making blog post on my start in my legal career as a paralegal.

Solo travel as a women.

As a young girl, I’ve always had an interest in travel. I remember being glued to the travel channel as kid watching Anthony Bourdain and Samantha Brown. Just like probably everyone else in this world, I want to experience a different country or even state before I take my last breath.

I loved reading stories of back-packers exploring the great wall of China or mount Kilimanjaro. I loved hearing stories of finding friends in different cities. I was inspired by these stories. I knew I wanted to travel.

However, I never realized how hard it was to do solo-travel until college. My mother often forbade to travel by myself unless I’m accompanied by some friends, my sisters or even a man. She typically wants me to wait until I get a boyfriend or even a husband before I start traveling which is somewhat gross. However, I like doing things alone sometimes.

Every time I tried to do something solo like attend a concert or attend it was always interrupted by my mother trying to get someone to go with me last minute. I understand most of that is a result of her own unresolved trauma.

In the past, when I use to plan day trips and adventures with my friends, they always feel through. I decided that I can’t wait for people and that I actually enjoy my time alone since I’ve been a loner pretty much all my life. In June of 2021, My first solo-trip was to a city known for it’s arts, culture, unique history and… a 60% crime rate, I went to New Orleans. I booked my hotel room back in March, booked my flight in April and had the time of my life. However, being an adult at home with not-so-accepting parents was my only obstacle. They want you to be an adult but will still limit you regardless of if you have college degree or not, regardless of if you’re over 21, and regardless of if you do the household chores. I didn’t tell my parents until the day before my flight that I was going to New Orleans and will be gone for the week. You can bet there was a little conflict but they knew there wasn’t anything stopping me from going. I am an adult, I made my own money to go on this trip, My bags were packed, I was vaccinated, and I was ready to go.

Solo-female travel isn’t anything new. However, with the fears of human-trafficking, kidnapping, and even murder. Most women are discouraged from traveling solo. We are advised to have someone be our companions when taking trips to these destinations in fear that we may end up on the missing persons database or being sex-slaves to a drug cartel. While these things are real-life dangers, we shouldn’t let that stop us from achieving what we want to do with our lives.

With Everything in Life, you have to be careful with every situation you face. I was tired of waiting around and told that I’m too young to do these things. I was tired of having to wait on a man to live my best life. I know I am more than capable of traveling by myself.

What traveling solo taught me is that shouldn’t be afraid of what is out there. And there is danger on every corner but you can’t stop yourself from living your dream life because of that. It taught me strength because I use to be so shy, nice and withdrawn. It gave me confidence I never knew I had. And helped me form bonds with people I could’ve never met if I had just stayed waiting for someone.

Sorry, I’ve been gone for so long…

I’m back.

I decided to take a mental break from this blog this past summer. Actually, I procrastinated. I want to keep up with this blog. Write more about the handmaids’ tale and give advice to anyone starting college. However, I took a break and tried to live in the moment this summer instead of focusing on this blog but to give an update, I was focusing on myself and what the next chapter of my life would bring. 

As I have written before I am a non-traditional recent college graduate. I’m 26 and still figuring out if the current life choices I’ve made were the right choices, thinking about my mental health and being worried about the future. Summer 2021 made me understand what I want to do with the next 20 years of my life. 

I’m sorry for being away for this long but now I’m back!

For the next six weeks I will produce more blog post on life and how I am growing and changing into the adult that I want to be and will give life lessons on things that helped me and lessons on thing that I wish I knew earlier.  

“Handmaids walk in two’s” review of Handmaid’s tale Season 4 episode 5 “Chicago”

So we open up this episode with June dreaming about the warm embrace of her husband, Luke. She wakes up to Janine having sex with Steven. In the last episode, Janine brought it upon herself to have sex with Steven in order to stay at this hideout.   June is starting to see how this resistance really works. June she thinks the resistance under Steven’s leadership is a weak one.  June wants to fight wants to kill these  Gilead’s soldiers but Steven is only thinking about survival. On a mission June finds out that they there’s another resistance militant group in Chicago, the NightHawks. June then makes the decision that she no longer wants to be a sitting duck. She wants to fight back. She tells Janine that they must leave tonight but Janine doesn’t want to go. Janine believes she can create a life in the ruins of Chicago, she’s thinking about becoming a mother again. June tries to make her realize that Steven only sees her as a play thing and that you can’t make a life here. However Janine isn’t letting up and June realizes that she must go alone.

Back in Boston, Commander Lawrence is trying to get his seat back at the Commander’s table. However, the other men don’t trust him too well with what happened with the children. He makes a proposal to bring in foreign aid to the soldiers in the resistance areas that includes Chicago.  In another clip, Aunt Lydia is in retirement or in Gilead-ian language “out of commission” she is still respected as an aunt but is no longer in charge of the Handmaids. She still wants to be useful for Gilead. In the evening, Aunt Lydia and Commander Lawrence both form an alliance. Actually, aunt Lydia tried to threaten him about how he worked with June. Yet they still used each other to get back the power they once had. They agree however Aunt Lydia still wants June to be brought back to Gilead in order for her to be punished. Lawerence gives her the okay. Now, Commander Lawrence has always been a confusing character but right now, we aren’t sure if he wants to gain the trust of his fellow commanders to overthrow Gilead or if he is just done with June and just wants his power back.  

 

Nick, while still claiming he loves June, still trying to find her to make sure she is safe. He gets a message from one of the Martha’s about June’s whereabouts. He tells Commander Lawrence about this. However Commander Lawrence is up to something. In the meeting room, all the commanders have decided to bomb the rebel occupied areas. Commander Lawerence, knowing that June is in Chicago, votes yes and this was actually a test for Nick, I believe. Nick is in charge of the Army and was forced to make the decision to bomb Chicago.

 

Back in Chicago, June is walking alone trying to find the Nighthawks when she hears someone behind her. Thinking she’s being tracked by guardians, she hides inside a car that has been flipped over. She peaks out and notices that it is a woman, it’s Janine. Janine had left the resistance hideout and told June, “handmaids always walk in twos”. This is symbolic of Janine’s Kindness and her loyalty. She looks up to June and will always have her back no matter what. Once they reach the NightHawks, hideout. She noticed that it’s deserted. They can tell the nighthawks left in a hurry. They look up at the sky and they see bombers. Janine and June run as fast they could they didn’t escape. In the rumble, June is woken up but Janine is nowhere to be found. She calls out Janine and hears a familiar voice, but it is not Janine, it’s Moira.

So. What will happen in the next episode? Will she escape to Canada and abandoned her mission to get Hannah? Will she testify against the waterfords? Will we ever know what happened to Janine? We just have to watch the next episode to find out.                                        

 

“What is Mayday?” Review of season 4 episode 4 of The Handmaids’ Tale (spoilers):

June trying to make Janine realize that their friends are dead

Season 4 episode 4, of The Handmaids tale entitled “milk” was pretty calm. Nothing too suspenseful, everything However we got to go into a character’s past which I was excited to know about. And Just like the week before, after the gym I Sofritas burrito bowl with chips from Chipotle. Came back home and made me a limoncello mojitio. Sat back and watched episode 4, “Milk”.

The reason why this episode is entitled milk is because it is about June and Janine traveling to Chicago after jumping a train car filled with milk. Most of the scenes that show Janine and June feature them in this freezing train car drenched in milk. So Janine and June pretty much go at each other in the milk car. Janine is furious at June for telling the Eyes the location of the Handmaids. June responds back to her saying that she should’ve left her in Boston. Both are sad over the fact they lost their friends. Then we cut to Rita’s Life in Canada.

Not much is known about Rita’s Life Pre-Gilead. We only know that she had a son who was a soldier that died but we don’t know which side he was fighting on. We now know that she had a sister and a nephew that still might be in Gilead since Moira Confirmed that there isn’t any record of them being in a refugee camp in Canada. Rita is one of those unassuming characters. Like Everyone in Gilead, we are not sure who to trust. Rita comes off as somewhat snarky in the first season, we are not sure if she is pro-Gilead or against it, but we do know she is just trying to survive. In the second season we learned that Rita, is willing to take risks as she helped bring baby Nicole-holly to Canada. Because of this, June knows she can trust Rita with the plan to take 86 children to Canada.

In this Episode, we see Rita making bread. What I noticed about this scene was the lighting. Typically, when they show scenes in Canada or the past, it’s not too dark, its brighter, it shows the sign of freedom and almost refreshing. However, in this scene in Canada it was almost reminiscent of Rita’s life in Gilead, dark with only natural lighting coming from the sunlight. I believe the directors did this to show that although Rita is free in Canada, Gilead is still apart of her. Moira also tells her that Serena wants to see her. She almost didn’t go to see Serena, but I believe Moira convinced her, by telling her she’ll get closure.

Rita in the kitchen in Canada. Making bread in dark lighting.

When visiting Serena, she actually doesn’t tell her off. She’s kind to her, still referring to her as “Ma’am” out of respect. Serena reveals to Rita that she is pregnant with a baby boy and unfortunately that boy belongs to Fred. Serena doesn’t want Fred to know that she is pregnant. One thing I noticed about this scene, was Serena referring to her as “my sweet Rita”, which I felt was condescending. She doesn’t apologize for her treatment towards Rita, almost as if she wants something out of Rita. Which if you watched episode 11 of season three of handmaids tale, Rita does mention that Serena-Joy always acts nice when she has something up her sleeve. Then near the end of the episode, we find out that Serena wants Rita to testify for her at trial. With class, Rita gets her revenge. She goes against Serena, and tells her husband, Fred, that Serena is pregnant by showing the picture of Serena’s Sonogram. Thus letting the audience know that she is not a friend to the Waterfords.

Then her part in the episode ends with her eating sushi and snapped peas that she probably bought from a restaurant near by. A luxury that Gilead doesn’t have. This meal pretty much symbolized what we take for granted. Because Rita had to cook all the time. There was no off day for her and in Gilead, you aren’t really given a choice of what you want to eat. So seeing her eat sushi, the writers are telling us that she is no longer a Martha and she doesn’t have to cook.

Noticed how the lighting is different here then in the firs scene with Rita in this episode. It’s brighter meaning although Gilead will always be with her she is now a free woman that doesn’t take orders.

I think we underestimated Janine, but we must understand that Janine is a victim of Trauma. Sometimes with Trauma, people can go back to a Child-like state. And that is pretty much what happened to Janine. She went through the trauma of loosing her son, the trauma of being gang-raped, the trauma of losing an eye, then being blamed for her sexual abuse. During the indoctrination of the handmaids we noticed that Janine tried to be tough but then was broken down by aunt Lydia. However, Janine was tired of people treating her like a little kid

Janine at Planned Parenthood before Gilead.

Although she is still a little kooky, you can see that Janine is getting back to who she was before Gilead. In this episode we were blessed with a small background to what Janine’s life was like pre-Gilead. She was a waitress at Denny’s living in a Attic apartment with her son Caleb. She was a single mother who found out she was pregnant with another child. She goes to a Clinic disguised as an abortion clinic but this is actually a center that discourages and shames women from having an abortion. This center wasn’t something that the writers thought up to show that Gilead was already in the making, these centers do exist in the United States and they are called pregnancy crisis centers. They are all over the United States and the main goal is to have woman carry their pregnancy to full term. In fact, in some states doctors are legally obligated to guilt a pregnant person into not getting an abortion.

Also in the last scene of Janine’s flashback I noticed that Janine was wearing a pair of black Nike Air Force one’s. Which, if you follow internet memes or street or sneakerhead culture, you’ll know when someone is wearing a pair of Black AF1’s, it means that the person wearing them is a tough person, a fighter. Which if you know how hard Janine had it before and during Gilead, you’ll know she’s been through it. Not sure if the show producers, writers or costume designer, knew what they were doing but I thought that those choice in shoes was interesting and I’m not even a sneakerhead.

June and Janine in Chicago.

We then follow June and Janine into the ruins of Chicago and meet the leader of the rebel Resistance, a man who goes by Steve. Steve is shocked at the state of the country. He says he can’t fathom that the United States has sex slaves. June then corrects him, saying that it isn’t the United States anymore, it’s Gilead. They learn about the dire state the rebels are in. Although they are winning, resources are scarce. In fact, Steve tells them that they haven’t had anything coming to them in weeks.

Steve, then ask for “payment”, meaning that he wants some sexual favor from either June or Janine. June sacrifices herself to repay Steve. Nothing comes of it, Steve reassures June that she doesn’t have to go through it if she doesn’t want to and tells her to go. This doesn’t mean that Steve is a hero and he’s far from a feminist, he’s just in denial of the current state of the country. Before leaving June ask, “this isn’t Mayday is it?”, and Steve responds with something different than “no”. In response to June’s question he asked “what is Mayday?” This tells us that, even though Gilead is within the United States, they still don’t know what’s going on. Although June and Janine found refuge in a group of resistance fighters, Mayday is something that is in Gilead and they are truly there alone.

June has come far in the series, in the first episode her goal was to follow orders and stay alive. She didn’t know if she could trust Emily just yet because you don’t know who is for or against Gilead, however when she learns of the resistance she wants in. In season 2, her goal was to get out of Gilead with her new born baby but at the end, she gives the baby to Emily and stays to find Hannah so they can both get out of Gilead. In the last episode of season 3, she accomplishes her plan to bring the stolen children of handmaids to Canada. After this, we notice that June is trying not to get caught. However, she is still trying fight against Gilead. She doesn’t really have a plan anymore. Janine, who was hard on her in the beginning of the episode, realizes in the end that June is trying. Even though June pretty much volunteered  to be a leader, it was something she was thrown into. June is only in this fight for Hannah, like a mothers’ love she’ll sacrifice herself in order for Hannah to get out of Gilead.

Right now we can only wait to see what happens in the next episode.

I watched the first three episodes of season four of the handmaids tale and …woah. (A little spoiler)

I have been a fan of the handmaids tale for a little over ten years. I actually watched the 1990’s movie first before I read the book in high school, not as assigned reading but as free time. Due to the pandemic, a lot of shows had to put off filming and this included the handmaids tale. But to make up for lost times, The show-runners decided to upload not one, not two, but THREE episodes on the hulu streaming platform. So after I got back from the gym, I made myself a shrimp po’boy with sweet potato  fries and some white wine and sat back to watch the most gut-wrenching show on hulu.

McKenna Grace as Mrs. Keyes:

(Photo credits: Hulu)

So I wanna start off by saying that McKenna Grace, who plays Mrs. Keyes is going places. She made her mark as a serious actress playing Mrs. Keyes.  When I heard she was going to play a wife in this season of The Handmaids Tale, I was a little shocked and a little worried.  I had a icky feeling about having a child actress play a wife. Reason being is that, Mckeena Grace is only 14 years old, meaning that they actually had a child actress play a child bride. Typically on television shows and movies, they often have actors and actresses in their 20s and early 30’s play teenagers on television. On season two of the Handmaids Tale, they had Sydney Sweeney play a 15-year-old econowife to Nick.  Sweeney at the time, was 21 years old. Casting McKenna Grace to play a teen wife, brings realism to the show since child brides do exist in real life.

She hates Gilead and wants to prove to June that she is up for a battle. At first, Mrs. Keyes comes across as hard, although she gave June and the other Handmaids sanctuary, she still reminds June that she is still in charge. She is determined to prove to June that she might be young but she had a lot to handle and is determine to take down Gilead. It’s so weird to see June get disrespected by a 14-year-old but in Gilead We learn that she lives a sad, lonely, miserable life and like most women in Gilead, she is a victim of sexual abuse. Although she is a wife, she didn’t want to be one. She didn’t want to marry a man who could be her grandfather. This child is being robbed of her formative years due to a system that treats woman and girls as property of men. June sees Hannah’s future in Mrs. Keyes and wants to make sure Hannah doesn’t become victim to this life. And as rebellious, as smart, and as determine as she is, Mrs. Keyes is still a child who is scared and isolated yet still needs the guidance of a mother figure that looks for in June. We don’t see Mrs. Keyes after episode 2 because according to nick, she was returned home safely.

Nick betrayal:

If episode 3 of the handmaids tale hasn’t told you about Nick’s true intentions, then you really haven’t been watching. Since season one, I never trusted Nick. A lot of fans fail to realize that Nick also contributed to the making of Gilead. In season 3, it was revealed that he was on the frontlines in the crusades that turned the United States into the totalitarian dystopian society that is Gilead. His alliance is more for Gilead than June and episode 3 proves where his alliance is at. Do I think he loves June? Yes. Do I think he’ll risk his life for June? No. As the season goes on, I believe he’ll become more power-hungry and his love for status and power in Gilead will overcome his love for June and his daughter Nicole.

June being a leader?

The republic of Gilead changes people, and it did change June. Now, if you remember June from the book, she was pretty much happy with her life before Gilead. She had a career working as a book editor, she had a loving husband and a daughter, Hannah. Actually, the book mentions her mother being more of hardcore feminist while June just took feminism for granted. In the last episode of season 3, June realizes in order for change to happen you can’t rely on others and sometimes you must sacrifice yourself for the betterment of others. At the end of episode 3 in season 4, we learn that with change comes sacrifices. We know that June is responsible for many deaths in the handmaids tale, she does feel guilty. She does feel guilty that she ratted out her friends’ location and she does feel guilty that Alma and Brianna have died. However, when it comes to a revolution, people will die for the greater good of others.

After watching all three episodes, I can’t tell you where this season will go. I know June will make it to Canada and testify at the Waterford’s trial. However, I’m still holding on to hope that Hanna makes it out and is safe and sound with Luke and Moira. I hope Janine makes it out and get a glass eye. Although the trailers shown that the Waterford’s might go free, I really hope they don’t. And since today is Wednesday another episode of handmaids tale is on hulu right now, and I can’t wait to see what happens to June.

The Hard Truths about Healing.

            In the past I’ve been hurt, bullied, violated. For this decade we are living in I’m trying to reflect and I’m trying to heal from my traumas to move forward in my life. Throughout this journey of healing I had learn a few things that might help others who are going through the same situation as me. Here are the the five hard truths that I learn about healing:

Healing takes time:

Healing is something that takes time. When I was younger, I always thought all my problems would be like problem in a TV show; solved with in a 30-minute time frame. However, Life doesn’t work that way. Healing takes years and learning how to cope with the pain takes time.

Healing does not come with an apology:

I have been violated in the past. I have been cyber-bullied. I have had things said about me that wasn’t true and has never been apart of my character. For the longest time, I’ve been going back fourth on how these people had done me so wrong and how they easily got a way with it while I’m still struggling to cope. Maybe I should’ve confronted them, tell them what they did and how it had impacted my life. Maybe they were going to see the pain and apologized for what they did. Truth is, people in general never apologize for the wrongs they did to other people. People typically find reasons as to why we mistreat others. Some may even lie just to justify the mistreatment toward other people. As time goes on, don’t look for an apology you may never get one.

Don’t look for divine revenge:

One mistake we make in our journey is that we think divine revenge or justice will happen  to those who mistreated us, abused us, or violated us. When I found out that one of my abusers works a CIO job that pays him 50k annually. I was hurt it had been 7 years since I had last seen him and thought he his life was going to go down hill. When I found out that another one of my abusers had started their own family, I was still hurt. Hurt that maybe if I had spoken up sooner maybe their lives wouldn’t be so sweet now. Hurt that I was still suffering while they could lead normal and successful lives. Now Karma is real, what goes around does come right back around. However, healing goes without some divine intervention of revenge. However, this does not mean you can’t take revenge. My revenge was getting my bachelors because it showed, whatever they tried to do, did not work. You have to take power into your own hands at times.

Seeing those those that did you wrong lead terrible lives won’t make you feel better:

I’m doing better than the girl that bullied me when I was younger. I’m a college graduate, I travelled outside the country.  I’m finally checking off things on my bucket list. The girl who bullied me is a single mother with a bum for a baby-daddy she lives off government assistance and still lives with her father in section 8 housing. The boy who also bullied me, was a star student. An athlete, and a honor student, in the top 15% of his graduating class. He even got a state scholarship to attend college for free. I never knew that karma was real until checking up on him. Today he’s 31 and working as a waiter in a restaurant. You’d think he’d go farther given his stats but didn’t. Especially since he had more opportunity than me. Although writing this part made me feel a little better, overall I still don’t feel any different. I have to learn how to move on in life. Or else you’ll always be stuck and never go far in life.

You can never return to who you were:

One thing that people often don’t realize about healing is that you can never be yourself again. You do not have time machine to fix what has already been done. You can’t go back before the rape. You can’t go back before the bullying. You can’t go back before the abuse. You can still be you, but you must understand, you’re different now. You can still laugh and make good memories and maybe trust again but it will never be the same. You have to learn how to live in the present, you have to let go of the person you were before the trauma. Because that will always be apart of you. You just have to learn how to live with it. Soon, you’ll be able to conquer it.

Side note: don’t drink away the pain, don’t snort away the pain, don’t smoke away the pain. All of this is only creating more problems while not facing the problem head on. Learn to deal with the pain. Speak with others on the pain. That pain a trauma will always be apart of you but if you let it negatively effect you it will always consume. 

Once you learn these hard truths, you will prosper. You’ll laugh,  you’ll smile, you’ll go on adventures. You can never go back to who you were before the trauma, however you can heal and become a stronger person.  

Why Ma’Khia Bryant’s death wasn’t justified.

As the world cheered at the guilty verdict of disgraced cop Derek Chauvin, another black life was lost to a police shooting. Ma’Khia Bryant was a 16 year old girl living in Columbus, Ohio. She was an honor student, Her mother described her as a loving caring girl. She made hair tutorials on TikTok, she was just like any other teenager. However, according to internet sources, Bryant was living in a foster home and was a target of bullying by her foster sisters. On a Tuesday afternoon,  Ma’khia was about to be jumped by these girls. Someone called the police. To defend herself in this fight, Ma’Khia grabbed a weapon, a knife. When the cops came on the scene, they saw Ma’Khia about to stab one of the girls who jumped her. The cop shot Ma’Khia four times in the back, Bryant died at the scene.

Now, not much is known about what led to this tragic situation. However, reading a few opinions on twitter and facebook, many people are were saying that the cop’s response was justified. Which is reasonable, she was about to stab someone. However, the officer should’ve deescalated the situation, not use deadly force within the first 15 seconds of being there. One reason why the cop was wrong is because Ma’khia wasn’t attacking him. She didn’t lunge at him with a knife, her back was turned towards him. He could’ve used a taser in this situation to subdue her but didn’t. Instead, he reached for a gun and shot a 16 year old child. He could’ve taken her out of the situation and have Bryant taken to a clinic that provides mental health and counseling. Instead, we have another black mother preparing her child for a funeral, another black mother who woke up this morning knowing that she won’t experience her daughter going to prom, going to college, or get married.

Now, before you say, “but…she had a knife and was going to kill that girl!”, there have been many cases that cops were dealing with a violent person using weapons and the cops arrested them. One example of this is the case of Eliza Wasani who, back in 2017, Stabbed an uber driver to death within minutes of driving with him. She was found hiding behind a nearby building holding a  machete and a butcher knife. Cops had to tase her down and took her into to custody. She is currently serving a 27-year sentence. So why is the Ma’khia’s Case justified, especially since her back was turned and wasn’t attacking the cop?

Eliza Wasani

Lastly, I am not saying that Bryant did was good. Her response to bullying was violent and we could’ve ended another life, it  would’ve sent her to prison.  I am saying the cop had no right to use deadly force. Ma’khia’s death could’ve been prevented if the police just gave the same response they gave Wasani.

How White Male Mediocrity and Tall Tales got Madison Cawthorn Elected into congress

Congressman Madison Cawthorn

In January, I was watching the impeachment trial of Donald Trump after the insurrection of the capital when a certain congressman caught my eye. His name is Madison Cawthorn, he is a congressman from North Carolina and at the age of 25, he is the youngest member of congress since Jed Johnson jr. Even Donald Trump said he was the future of the Republican Party. This fascinated me. My first thought was, “what did he do to get into the House of Representatives at such a young age?” Was he a legacy like Ron Paul or Matt Gaetz or any Kennedy? Did he go to Harvard at the age of 15? Is he a decorated veteran of the U.S. army? Surely this young, vigorous man had some outstanding quality that made people vote for him to be at the capital. So, I did what any researcher would do and looked him up on google. This extensive search led me to his Wikipedia bio and what I found out about him is less than stellar, something that would make you wonder what was his promise to the voters that voted him in?

            Madison was a high school football star who worked at chick-fil-a. In 2014, during spring break he and his friends got into a car accident that left him partially paralyzed from the waist down. He claims that this accident had a negative impact on his life. Claiming that he was left for dead by his friend in a fiery blaze. That it messed up his chances of being admitted to the naval academy. While attending Patrick Henry College and majoring in political science, He claimed that the brain injury from the accident caused him to drop out of college after pulling straight D’s in his first semester.

Which doesn’t even make a lick of sense? You don’t need to major in political science to be a politician. Many of our political leaders didn’t major in that. However, the fact that he flunked out of a major involving politics while running for political office is pretty telling, right? That’s like someone practicing law without a license because they already received low marks on the BAR and refused to take it again.

Not only did he flunked out of college, he did not go to learn. At the Patrick Henry college, where he attended in 2016, Cawthorn found himself being the leader of a well-known club in the school called “the douche club”. More than 20 people said that Cawthorn was known for his inappropriate sexual behavior towards women. The earliest allegation goes back to 2014, before Cawthorn even attended the school. A woman claimed that he pressure her to sit on his lap and made her kiss him when she was 17 and he was 19. After this accusation, three more women came forward speaking on his predatory behavior at Patrick Henry College. Cawthorn would take them on these rides called “fun rides” and would make advances towards them. One of his former male acquaintances, said that he bragged about pulling a women into his lap and assaulting her. Two RA’s from the college, put out fliers warning students about Cawthorn and not to ride in his car. Obviously, he has denied most of these claims.

            He worked as a staffer in former Congressman Mark Meadows office in 2015-2016, where he claimed to be a full-employee but only worked part-time. He is a business owner of SPQR holding LLC, a real estate investment firm that he launched in 2019, that had no income and he was the only employee. So, how did a subpar small-town high school football player with no college degree or military certification was able to get elected into congress? Through lies and pity.

            He ran on a campaign of lies and pity. In a 2020 campaign ad he claimed that his dreams of joining the naval academy and his less than stellar performance at Patrick Henry College were derailed by this accident. He was known locally as the teenage boy who survived this horrible car accident. However most of the claims he made in the ad where exaggerated.

Madison Cawthorn Claims he was left for dead by his best friend in a fiery blaze. He also claimed that he was announced dead on the scene of the accident. So which one is it? Was he left for dead? Or was he mistakenly announced dead on the scene? Truth is, his former friend, his parents, and medical records dismissed these claims. Bradley Ledford, former friend of Madison Cawthorn, stated that he (Ledford) pulled him out of the wreck while Cawthorn proven to be incapacitated that night.

He claimed that the accident ruin his plans of joining the Navy. He claimed that he was accepted into Harvard and Princeton but turned down their offers of admission but that was a lie, he never even applied. However, Cawthorn admitted he was rejected by the naval academy before the accident. He claimed that he was looking into wheelchair racing and was looking to competing in the paralympics but he wasn’t performing on a competition level. Also he blames the brain injury he has as the cause of him flunking out but not the fact that he was trying to chase some tail and publicly outed as a campus creep. It’s also weird how a man who thinks his brain injury made him “less intelligent” thinks he’s the perfect candidate for congress.

            Now, I know we should all be looking at this Madison Cawthorn’s journey from car wreckage to the House of Representatives as inspiring but it’s not. He’s nothing to aspire to. This man, other than working in Congressman Meadows’s office part-time (which I don’t even know how he was able to pull that off), was not qualified to hold office. He lied his way into Public Office. And the funny thing is, He was able to win over 2 candidates. A qualified military vet, morris davis, claiming he wasn’t patriotic enough and ran a smear campaign against Lynda Bennett saying that she was a “never trumper”. While Madison Cawthorn painted himself as this bright, young, example of the all-American boy and a war hero even though he never served this country. Voters in North Carolina voted in someone whose only qualification is what? Chick-fil-a and high school football?!

Madison Cawthorn is an example of how white male mediocrity is often rewarded and how the rest of us must work double or even triple to get a quarter of what he was given. White women and people of color often have to prove ourselves exceptional just to get to where Cawthorn is and still aren’t respected or held in high regard. People consider AOC “under-qualified” because she was a bartender but fail to realize she graduated from Boston University with a degree in economics and with honors. But Madison Cawthorn with his reputation as a campus creep was tooottally qualified to run for office. Am I saying that we should only pick politicians who at least have bachelors degrees? No. Am I saying that all white men are mediocre? No. I am just pointing out the double standard. Madison Cawthorn became the youngest elected congressman since Jed Johnson Jr through being mediocre. And if this is the future of the Republican Party then the party is truly a joke.

Edit: I also added that Cawthorn’s parents even said he lied about the accident

Source: thenation.com ,Mic.com, citizen-times.com