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The MacArthur Research Network on Youth and Participatory Politics (YPP) formed out of recognition that youth are critical to the future of democracy and that the digital age is introducing technological changes that are impacting how youth develop into informed, engaged, and effective actors.

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Updated: 10 min 6 sec ago

An Ode To My Dads On This Father’s Day

7 hours 52 min ago

This Father’s Day, I have a lot to celebrate. I have not one, but two dads; my biological father and my stepdad, my mom’s husband.

I know what you’re probably thinking. There must be bad blood between my father and my stepdad, but that’s never been the case. Actually, they’re pretty close.

They sit together at school events. They laugh at each other’s bad jokes. For birthdays and holidays, they buy joint presents for my brother and I. It’s not uncommon for strangers to mistake them for a couple.

It’s hard to pinpoint a certain reason for two people, especially in a situation like this, to get along. When I asked them, they didn’t know. Ultimately, I think they both just want the best for my brother and I, and our family. My step dad never tried to replace my dad, and my dad knew that.

My parents, all three of them, function as a team that provides my brother and I with all the love and support we could ever need. That can seem really odd to others, but I’m extremely grateful for it.

 

Categories: Blog

Did You Know: Vape Scholarships for College

June 15, 2018 - 4:13pm

Did you know that vape companies are offering scholarships for college? Charlie Stuip has the details and her thoughts on the scholarships.

Categories: Blog

10 Strong Queer Voices to Follow on Instagram Immediately

June 15, 2018 - 3:15pm

Instagram is one of the best ways to develop your LGBTQ+ pride or allyship. The platform can provide community for queer folks while also helping cis-, straight allies learn and educate themselves on these issues. One of the best parts about Instagram for me was seeing photos and videos of happy, out influencers which helped me build a higher level of self-esteem.

Just in time for Pride, here’s out list of queer influencers you’ll want to add to your feed.

1. Forestqueer

Forestqueer is a butch lesbian living in San Francisco. I’ve been a follower of this page for a while and let me say, I’ve learned a lot. Whether you’re interested in class consciousness or the photos of dogs, this account is worth the follow.

have i made myself queer?

A post shared by Nick Witherow (@forestqueer) on Jun 9, 2018 at 3:14pm PDT

2. Theaidsmemorial

Theaidsmemorial is a page that chronicles the lives lost to AIDS. Some may find this account depressing or hard to read, but I find that learning about the lives that we have lost and memorializing them bolsters my pride in the community.

. . “I wrote this in despair and fury on the day Carl Valentino died on June 13, 1996. . “Carl Valentino, pictured left, longtime openly gay school teacher and gay rights activist, finally called it a day this evening at St. Luke’s Hospital in NYC after an exhausting battle with AIDS. . Carl was that rare activist with mouth unbridled, for whom even political opponents paid tribute because his retelling of the truth was so fearless and clear-eyed. . He was on the Board of Directors of the original Community Research Initiative of NYC. . Carl got his skinny butt out there for many a gay rights demo, be it @glaad, Gay Activists Alliance, @actupny or Queer Nation. He was instrumental in organizing the @aidswalkny 1987, sponsored by @gmhc. . Carl accompanied me on visits by The Holiday Project, a do-gooder group, to PWA wards in city hospitals . . . once at Rikers [Island] Prison. . On one of these visits in 1989 at the VA [Veterans Administration] Hospital, I had invited along my @actupny comrade @thediamandagalas; she and Carl bonded for life that day. I was proud of that fact. . Carl leaves a loving immediate family in Brooklyn, his faithful and tireless lover Derek Fox of Manhattan, and a slew of inconsolable friends who are glad to have been privileged to share this cosmic party for awhile with Carl. . His death is a crime and his life was a triumph, but we are all too shredded right now to issue a manifesto and call for the destruction of certain landmarks. But you get the sentiment . . .” — by Jay Blotcher @jayboyusa . 1. May, 1987 — Carl and me, co-organizers of @aidswalkny 1987 at the end of the event that afternoon. . 2. New York City, June 1987 —Carl (left) and the late Kiki Mason, who also died of AIDS, at my birthday party at La Cascada Cafe, Chelsea. . 3. May, 1987 Empire State Building — Organizers of 1987 @aidswalkny. From left: @leifgreen, #JoeUmbrino, Carl (seated) and @denissenjohn. . 4. #CentralPark, NYC — From left: Journalist-novelist @jimprovenzano, me, Carl and activist #AmyBauer. . 5. Carl at party a couple of weeks after @aidswalkny. . #whatisrememberedlives #theaidsmemorial #aidsmemorial #neverforget #endaids .

A post shared by THE A I D S M E M O R I A L (@theaidsmemorial) on Jun 12, 2018 at 10:22pm PDT

3. Lgbt_history

Lgbt_history is a historical Instagram account that posts pictures and information of queer people often in a time when being queer was a punishable offense. This account shows how far we’ve come.

Happy Pride, L.A.! . Picture: “HIS” – “HIS TOO,” Christopher Street West Parade, Los Angeles, California, July 4, 1976. Photographer unknown, collection of @lgbt_history. #lgbthistory #HavePrideInHistory

A post shared by lgbt_history (@lgbt_history) on Jun 10, 2018 at 10:47am PDT

4. H_e_r_s_t_o_r_y

H_e_r_s_t_o_r_y Ah yes, another historical instagram account. But, this account boosts lesbian visibility and fights erasure by posting photos of lesbians and wlw throughout the ages.

HAVE A BROOKLYN PRIDE! Photo by #BettyeLane 1984, from the collection held at @lesbianherstoryarchives btw BK Pride Twilight March starts at 7:30pm down 5th Ave in Park Slope. (Google for better details). Go to @gingersbarbrooklyn after

A post shared by ⚢ LESBIAN CULTURE ⚢ (@h_e_r_s_t_o_r_y) on Jun 9, 2018 at 9:43am PDT

5. Chellaman

Chellaman is a deaf, mixed race, genderqueer artist living in NYC. Chella also has a YouTube account where he posts transition updates and a day in the life videos. Not to mention, his art is stunning.

KEEP YOUR QUEER FAMILY CLOSE

A post shared by Chella Man (@chellaman) on Jun 7, 2018 at 9:53pm PDT

6. Eli Erlick

Eli Erlick is the co-founder of Trans Student Educational Resources and is a graduate student at UCSC. She posts stunning photos while commenting on toxic masculinity and other important topics. I came for the photos but stayed for the discourse.

I really want to take this pride month to celebrate friendship and connections with community members. Instead of a corporate pride preaching rainbow capitalism, we should take some time to consider how significant the queer and trans people in our lives are. Ask yourself where you would be without a queer family member or friend. Then ask where they would be if things like pride or the Stonewall Riots never happened. In the closet? Forced out of their families? This is just one part of why we cannot let pride be about vodka and rainbow flags. I’m certainly not saying we can’t have fun but that we should make this a time to truly celebrate our queer and trans loved ones, now more than ever. . . . . . . . . . . . . #queer #wlw #tomboystyle #womenlovingwomen #genderqueer #sheer #genderqueer #ftm #mtf #gayfashion #floral #collarchain #gaygirl #bayarea #santacruz #berkeley #sanfrancisco #transwomen #transwoman

A post shared by Eli Erlick (@elierlick) on Jun 5, 2018 at 5:02pm PDT

7. Adam Eli

Adam Eli is the founder of Voices 4_, a group dedicated to liberating queer people from oppression in other areas of the world. Eli is a Jewish gay man and often posts about how these identities intersect and the struggles that he faces.

@brandonjwolf is a pulse survivor, activist and dear friend. I interviewed him for the cover of @dazed Summer ‘18 with photos by @ryanmcginleystudios . At the end I asked him : Is there anything else you would like to say? Any final thoughts? Brandon: I think this piece has a unique opportunity to acknowledge the disparities in the gun violence prevention movement. To acknowledge its complexities, but also to reflect on the power of potential unity. If the country could unlock the intersection of these communities being impacted by gun violence… we would be unstoppable. The solution to this problem will be found in our ability to unify communities, lift up unheard voices, and stand together to take on a deeply corrupt and violent system. Photography @ryanmcginleystudios Styling @emmawyman Hair @jawaraw Make-up @francelledaly

A post shared by Adam Eli (@adameli) on Jun 13, 2018 at 11:13am PDT

8. Transnormativity

Transnormativity is a queer freelance photographer. A Klass, the person behind the account, is successful in making their followers feel supported and loved within the community by posting sex-positive and body-positive images of themselves and others. This account will boost your self esteem and make you feel like a better person just by indirectly interacting with Klass.

the proofs arrived today and i couldn’t be happier with how they came out. feeling lots of emotions

A post shared by america’s next top bottom (@transnormativity) on Jun 12, 2018 at 8:16am PDT

9. Raindovemodel

Rain Dove — Raindovemodel — is a gender neutral model who seeks to highlight the disparities between the treatment between men and women in the fashion world.

“You be prettier with a little lipstick. Maybe even fuckable.” Said a designer in London during fashion week castings once. So I gave it a try. But they were wrong about one thing- it didn’t make me “fuckable” it made me “Don’tFuckWithMe”able. Lipsticks, blushes, mascaras etc shouldn’t be labeled as beauty products. They should be labeled as art products. They help us express ourselves and what we want from the world- just like our clothing or body language. But you can not find Beauty in Lipstick. Rather only in the state of BEing. That’s the key to BEauty. To BE. And if BEing a Being who wears lipstick is part of the You that is You then that’s BEautiful. Because you are being honest about who you are and how you like to express yourself. Not because you have some color on your lips. Also! Don’t get caught up in the socially constructed suggestions for how to wear cosmetics. Do your own authentic honest thing. Have fun. People may give you a hard time for being You but take pride in the fight. Take pride in your commitment to yourself. Take pride in your honesty. I got you. I love you. You’re not alone. #MakeUpSociety #MakeupIsTheMatrix #Lgbtq #genderqueer #genderfluid #lipstick #lipstickittotheman #makeuptutorial #braveheart #lovewins (PS happy 666th post! So many people said in the comments I’d go to Hell for the way I put this on haha. Seems appropriate since heaven is in the clouds and I’m scared of heights. I used to be a firefighter, the flames don’t scare me much. )

A post shared by Rain Dove (@raindovemodel) on May 9, 2018 at 9:53am PDT

10. Dykeanotherday

Dykeanotherday is an account that posts historical photos and profiles of lesbians and other wlw. History may seem boring and out of date but this account is not.

the black lesbian caucus at nyc pride | 1972 | #lesbianpride #pridemonth #blacklesbians #70slesbian

A post shared by dykeanotherday (@dykeanotherday) on Jun 9, 2018 at 12:36pm PDT

Categories: Blog

Here’s Why The Senate Voting to Pay Its Interns Is So Important

June 15, 2018 - 2:17pm
Carlos Mark Vera, center, and Pay Our Interns chief of staff Guillermo Creamer, left, meet with Senator Chris Van Hollen, a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee who was pivotal in building bipartisan support for the fund. (Photo courtesy of Carlos Mark Vera/Pay Our Interns)

The days of unpaid internships are over — at least in the U.S. Senate.

Thanks to a historic vote by the Senate Appropriations Committee Thursday, all senators will receive funding to compensate their interns in the 2019 budget year. Currently, less than half of Senate offices — 26 Republicans and 21 Democrats — pay their interns in some form, according to Roll Call.

The $5 million fund is the result of over a year’s worth of advocacy by Pay Our Interns, a bipartisan group with the mission of ending unpaid internships in Congress and other industries.

Carlos Mark Vera, 24, who founded the organization in 2016, said he was “shocked” by the Senate’s decision to fund internships, especially as many federal agencies face deep budget cuts.

“Even with the Republican majority, we got $5 million,” Vera said. “This has never happened in the history of the Senate.”

While interns in the House of Representatives were once paid through the LBJ Congressional Intern Program, this is the first time the Senate has set aside funding to pay interns.

Vera, a former unpaid intern in the House of Representatives and the White House, understands the struggles that come with working for free in the nation’s capital. A summer internship in Washington D.C. can easily cost upwards of $6,000, a price tag that many college students cannot afford to pay.

“This new funding sends a strong message that the Senate is ready to invest in our country’s youth,” Vera said. “Additionally, thanks to this fund, the child of a coal miner, of a janitor or a factory worker will now be able to come to D.C., intern, get paid for it and eventually become staffers.”

The hefty cost of interning in Washington has led to controversy over the lack of diversity among interns in the capital. When House Speaker Paul Ryan posted a selfie with an almost entirely white group of U.S. House interns in 2016, the internet responded with the hashtag #InternsSoWhite.

A post shared by Speaker Paul Ryan (@speakerryan) on Jul 16, 2016 at 11:12am PDT

Many college students, especially those interested in politics and activism, have come to expect that they will not be paid for their work as interns. Annie Roebuck, a senior at American University who interned for Pennsylvania Senator Bob Casey in 2017, said she accepted the unpaid status quo when she decided to work on Capitol Hill. Casey’s office offers some paid positions but does not pay most of its interns.

“No one likes working for free but I understand that there are a lot of interns on the Hill,” Roebuck said. “It seems like every college student in D.C. does it, so it wasn’t surprising that I wasn’t paid.”

Vera has been working to change this mindset on Capitol Hill and within other industries, particularly nonprofits. He said part of the problem is that students continue to apply for unpaid positions and do not ask employers about payment. Some employers will pay interns but do not offer the option upfront, he said.

“You have the upper hand, you don’t have to accept this,” Vera says he tells interns. “We can ask for more. We can demand to get paid.”

Vera’s ideas have quickly caught the attention of some of the country’s most powerful political figures. Last year, his group convinced the Democratic National Committee to pay its interns, arguing that it would diversify the applicant pool.

Now that the Senate has made the same move, Vera thinks others will follow.

“By the Senate passing this, it sends a strong message to nonprofits, organizations, and agencies that not paying your interns is probably going to be something that is going to end very soon,” Vera said. “With this vote, we’re laying the seeds for the national internship movement in the United States.”

The Senate’s intern stipends would allow students like Roebuck to intern full-time or stay in D.C. over the summer. Roebuck said she ruled out applying for a summer Congressional internship because she “would have been losing a lot of money every day.”

Roebuck hopes the stipend is enough to afford the high cost of living in Washington D.C. and not just cover transportation costs to and from the Capitol.

“The living cost here is so high that it’s difficult for me to actually see a real expansion in the economic diversity of interns overall,” Roebuck said. “It might give more opportunities to people like me who are already in this D.C. circle, but I’m not sure it will really bring in outsiders.”

Categories: Blog

These 7 Anti-Gun Violence Groups Are All Led By Young People

June 15, 2018 - 1:01pm
The die-in on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. on June 12, 2018. (Photo by Haley Samsel for Youth Radio)

Even as schools and colleges have let out for the summer, the dialogue on school shootings and gun reform isn’t going away.

Just three weeks after the most recent school shooting, and less than a month since the shooting at Santa Fe High School, student activists aren’t slowing down in their pursuit of gun control. In fact, many are ramping up, preparing for November’s midterm elections.

Adult-led groups have been fighting gun violence for years. Since the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School massacre, the spotlight is on student effort.

Here are the six major student-led organizations fighting to end gun violence in America.

1. March For Our Lives

Who they are: One of the first and most well-known of all of the recent movements, March for our Lives was founded by the survivors of the Parkland, Fla. shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Hosting the historic March for Our Lives rally in Washington, D.C. cemented the faces of its founders, like Emma Gonzales and David Hogg, as icons in the student-driven fight for gun reform.

Their focus: The org already has an impressive list of policy agendas that include items like universal background checks and high-capacity magazine bans. They also touch on the importance of addressing the roles domestic abuse and mental health play in gun violence. Using a number of tactics for organizing including rallies, marches, petitions, voter registration drives and social media campaigns, the organization has become a model for other student activists looking to engage on the issue. And they held an enormous march event on March 24 in Washington, D.C. and across the country and world.

An early look at some of the signs in D.C. #MarchForOurLives pic.twitter.com/49eIAJKEx8

— youthradio (@youthradio) March 24, 2018

How can you get involved: The Road to Change summer tour, their new effort, kicks off along Midwestern and Southern states this week. Students can join in on the rallies along the way in addition to registering others to vote, and starting local action clubs using their toolkits.

2. Students Demand Action

Who they are: As the first group to publicly form after the Parkland shooting — just two days after — Students Demand Action emerged as a gun safety advocacy group for and by students through the existing Everytown for Gun Safety organization.

Their focus: The campaign aims to provide resources for students to create local chapters that organize around gun legislation. Through starting student demands groups, creating a database to monitor NRA funding to local congressmembers and organizing voter registration drives, the group is cultivating student leaders to work within their home communities and schools on gun reform.

How can you get involved: Students can join their Instagram and text message campaigns to get the word out to other youth, and create their own student demand groups using the organization’s resources.

3. Team Enough

Who they are: Team Enough was also catalyzed into action after the Parkland shooting. Launched May 22, 2018, the group is a division of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. But Team Enough wants to show the diverse face of gun violence in America that plagues communities of color at disproportionate rates. The coalition has organized a superstar squad of outspoken activists on gun control, including Parkland survivor Aalayah Eastmond, March for Our Lives speaker Matt Post, Youth Over Guns founder Ramon Contreras and Women’s March youth organizer Kaleab Jego.

Their focus: The new group’s first matter of business is mobilizing young people to the polls in November in order to elect candidates that will advance its three main priorities: universal background checks for gun sales, a ban on assault weapons and the implementation of “extreme risk” laws to remove firearms from those identified as potentially dangerous. Above all, they aim to elevate the voices of marginalized groups and people of color into the mainstream dialogue on gun action.

4. Orange Generation

Who they are: While most of the other groups on the list formed in response to Parkland, Orange Generation is the newest group to emerge, as it launched in the aftermath of the shooting at Santa Fe High School that killed 10 in May. Survivors quickly formed Orange Generation — orange being the official color of the anti-gun violence movement in America — representing a generation of students that have grown up seeing gun violence in their schools and communities.

Their focus: The group has a few unique goals. In addition to supporting common-sense gun reform, CDC research on gun violence and mental health reform, their website states that they aim to provide rehab services like counselors and PTSD clinics for recovering survivors of gun violence, and financial support to families of people injured in mass shootings.

5. StudentsMarch.org

Who they are: Not to be confused with studentmarch.org, the 2015 rally for tuition reform, StudentsMarch.org (with an “s”) first formed by organizing the March for Our Lives in Dallas. The high school students used the march as a launching point for more sustained activism in Dallas and beyond. When the NRA hosted its national convention in Dallas just two months later, the organization jumped back into action by holding a march with students across the country to focus on cultivating student advocacy.

Their focus: This month, the group launched its first individual campaign. Named #WeAreThe97, the goal of the 97-day campaign leading up to November elections is to identify the elected officials that stand with the 97% of Americans that support universal background checks on firearms (and those that don’t).

How you can get involved: StudentsMarch is encouraging other students to contact their officials and urge them to support universal background checks before Sept. 7 when the org will release a list of elected officials who support and oppose the issue, heading into the Nov. 6 elections.

6. Youth Over Guns

Who they are: Youth Over Guns was created in March after students across the country walked out of class for 17 minutes to honor the 17 victims of the Parkland shooting. Founder Ramon Contreras, a 19-year-old New York City student, told local media he felt that there was not enough of a focus on how gun violence impacts communities of color. Youth Over Guns launched their first action on June 2 when they held a march across the Brooklyn Bridge that drew thousands of participants, as well as a smaller sibling march across the Golden Gate Bridge.

At the #YouthOverGuns march over the Brooklyn Bridge, @Everytown @MomsDemand #TeamEnough #MSDStrong and more are represented among those marching. #WearOrange pic.twitter.com/j1XwWxh6Ie

— youthradio (@youthradio) June 2, 2018

Their focus: Youth Over Guns is vocal that they are marching for more than just awareness. With a specific aim at ending gun violence in communities of color, they are calling for legislators, stakeholders and volunteers to invest money and resources into local efforts for preventing gun violence. They also work to dismantle the underlying issues — like the school to prison pipeline and lack of quality education — that lead to gun violence rather than just the effects.

How you can get involved: The group is active in New York and holds regular actions in the area.

7. National Die-In

Who they are: The National Die-In movement was co-founded Orlando natives Amanda Fugleberg and Frank Kravchuk, along with Nurah Abdulhaqq. Fugleberg and Kravchuk got involved in the movement against gun violence after the Pulse nightclub massacre not far from where they’d both grown up. The student activist group held a rally and die-in on Capitol Hill on June 12.

The die-in lasted for 12 minutes, 720 seconds – one second for each mass shooting that has taken place since Pulse. "Congress, you're killing us" one participant's sign reads. pic.twitter.com/PXqa1UDA7K

— youthradio (@youthradio) June 12, 2018

Their focus: Their website says, “We aim to commemorate the 49 innocent lives lost in the Pulse Nightclub Massacre on June 12, 2016, and every life lost to gun violence before and after this tragic event. We also demand that in response to our protest common sense gun control finally be passed.”

How you can get involved: At the time of this writing, the organization doesn’t have any upcoming events planned.

Categories: Blog

FEELS Makes Its Return This Weekend

June 15, 2018 - 12:51pm

By the Bay and for the Bay is the sentiment that FEELS 6 prides itself on. The music festival and art show, started in Oakland, California will move to Richmond, California this Saturday, June 16, to showcase local Bay Area talent alongside national stars. Youth Radio’s live-streaming team, All Day Play, will also be in attendance live streaming the event on Twitter and YouTube. 

Here’s who we’re most excited to see from this year’s FEELS music lineup:

Queens D. Light

The sky is within reach with Queens D. Light. The rapper will surely take you on a cosmic trip during her set at FEELS 6. Hailing from Oakland, her raps are serious and confident, reflecting a call for action, and aided by the sample and effect heavy production that builds her unique sonic world. Out of all the acts that Feels 6 will showcase, Queens’ set will exude a therapeutic chill. Check out the tracks “California Wildflower” and “Shroomin’” to feel the hypnosis.

Namasté Shawty

DJ Namaste Shawty, who has been posting her mixes on SoundCloud since 2016, knows how to make a crowd go wild and keep it wild. Her mixes boasts hard-hitting music that rep hyphy, trap, and alternative sounds that are guaranteed to make you hit a move or two. Namasté Shawty also doesn’t shy away from touching on issues such as racial representation and gender equality to make the dance floor an inclusive and fun space for all.

Kelis

Kelis, the loving, eccentric personality who famously brought all the boys to the yard in 2003 is headlining this year’s FEELS 6. A veteran of the industry, Kelis’ artistry has always been out-of-the-box with her vocal style and her fashion choices. Standouts from her discography include “Caught Out There” where she yells about a cheating man with a funky flair, to “Milkshake”, an anthem celebrating the power of her sexuality, and “Rumble”, an earthy track that sees her break down her divorce backed by soulful vocals. I expect her performance at FEELS 6 to bring out the sassy, groovy, and sexy Kelis we have all grown fond of throughout her career.

ALLBLACK

Oakland’s very own, ALLBLACK is the next upcoming rapper out of the Murder Dubs. ALLBLACK builts a buzz around his name with his early projects No Shame 2 and his Kimson EP, where he raps about the ins and outs of pimping. Having recently sold out his first headlining show in Oakland this month and turning up the Fox in front of a sold-out crowd alongside SOB x RBE earlier this year, the rapper has solidified his position as a contender to be the Bay Area’s next star. On his latest project, Outcalls, ALLBLACK collabs with Southern California rap group, Shoreline Mafia, 03 Greedo, and Vallejo’s Nef The Pharaoh.

Rexx Life Raj

The Berkeley native Rexx Life Raj “rapsings” soulfully about daily life and everyday struggles. Rexx developed his love for music through church and started rapping when he was only six years old. With school as his main priority growing up, Rex received a D1 scholarship to play for Boise State’s football team. However, instead of pursuing a career in professional ball, he decided to chase after a musical career as a rapper. In 2014, his first EPs, Hidden Clouds and Portraits lead to his debut studio album, 2017’s breakout Father Figure featuring hits such as, “Moxie Java,” “Shit n’ Floss,” and “Handheld GPS.”

BbyMutha

As her name suggests, BbyMutha is a hailing rapper from Chattanooga, Tennessee, the mother of 4 proudly raps about her femininity and the struggles of raising kids as a single parent. In 2016, she released an EP, Glow Kit, that features the singles “Roses” and “Rules.” She raps about the rules of hooking up with desperate men and plotting on her man’s sidechick. BbyMutha definitely raps about interesting topics and delivers them in a very smooth way. She brings back the old school feel of rap.

Categories: Blog

Meet The 22-Year-Old Chicago Activist Running for Mayor

June 15, 2018 - 7:31am

Ja’Mal Green. (Courtesy of Ja’Mal Green)Ja’Mal Green is a candidate for Chicago mayor. (courtesy of the Ja’Mal Green campaign)

Ja’Mal Green is no stranger to taking risks for what he believes in. The 22-year-old Chicagoan has been seen everywhere from community rallies to national town hall meetings speaking out on issues including city spending, public school funding, and police brutality.

At 15, he started Majostee Allstars, a community organization that organizes peace marches and school tours. He is the co-founder of the Major Green Music record label.

And now the community activist is making history as the youngest candidate to run for Chicago mayor — one of 10 running to unseat Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

Green filed paperwork with Illinois State Board of Elections in April to create the political committee Green For Chicago. To get on the February 2019 ballot, he’ll need to collect 12,500 signatures on his nominating petitions beginning Aug. 28.

Youth Radio correspondent Kyler Sumter spoke with Green about his campaign and his decision to seek Chicago’s top job.

The following interview has been edited for clarity and length.

Kyler Sumter: When and why did you decide to run for mayor?

Ja’Mal Green: Earlier this year, I talked with some mentors about how we’re going to make sure that this is the (current) mayor’s last term. I asked them about running because I have some mentors that are pretty well connected in the city, and they were not interested.

I didn’t know exactly where to start, and I had to build the infrastructure as well as wanting to create a platform that speaks for all communities. I started 13 committees, and I put experts in different policy fields whether that was home ownership, education, cannabis, LGBTQ, women’s rights, etc. to work on committees to talk about how to move forward policies in those departments that they were experts in, and we created an amazing platform.

What does it feel to be the youngest person in this race?

The youngest person in history [to run for mayor of Chicago]! It’s definitely a history-making moment, but it’s not about making history for me. It’s more about how I want to be able to inspire young people all over the city — and all over the country — to step up, to speak out, to do what’s right, to be civically engaged, and to do something positive.

Me running for mayor represents young people everywhere and what we’re able to do. I guess it’s a proud feeling, but I will feel prouder once I have seen young people step up and continue speaking out like they’re doing around the country.

What are your biggest worries/concerns about the city?

That there are kids who won’t make it to the next day. Kids are being killed at an alarming rate right now. In Chicago, if you live in the South, West or East Sides you are lucky to be able to make it to the age of 21. It’s a celebration. And my worry is all those families and all those kids who are losing their lives.

I think that’s one thing that keeps me up and stays on my mind. We’ve got to save our young people because they are the future. And the elder generations, their time is almost up. We’re killing off our next politicians, our next lawyers, our next doctors.

You’ve spoken out publicly against Mayor Rahm Emanuel, and the city’s selective spending in certain Chicago neighborhoods. How will your platform address the city’s spending issues?

That’s one of my biggest issues. We have not prioritized all communities in the city of Chicago. When we prioritize certain communities, they’re getting a lot of funding. We have to make sure we have a financial tool that benefits other communities that aren’t giving benefits and not continue pouring into these communities that get investments when it’s not happening in other places.

I’m going to create a financial tool or change the way that TIF (Tax Increment Financing) works to make sure that there will be money going into a fund that will benefit the South, West and East Side communities. And I’m going to attract economic interests to these communities, whether that is grocery stores or whether that is a big company that will bring jobs that’ll spur that economic growth that these communities need.

Violence is an issue that constantly comes up when Chicago is mentioned. If elected, how will you work to help combat violence and make Chicago safer?

Part of that is definitely that economic plan. Another part of that is, I have that experience. I’ve been on the streets and seen all these problems firsthand. I’m connected to a lot of the people in the streets as well.

I will be able to push different programs and initiatives in these communities that I know will work, that I know will reach the people and empower the people in these communities that are doing the work to expand.

I’m not going to come in as mayor and try to set up shop everywhere and do all the work myself. I’m going to go help expand those who have been doing the work for so many years that need the resources and funding.

And we’ve got to invest in technology in the police department — we have cameras that never work when something happens. We need to make sure we have updated technology.

What are some of your favorite things about Chicago?

The culture. The way we speak to each other, the colloquialisms. The love what Chicago gives you.

People living in poverty in these neighborhoods that have these bad schools, that are seeing people get shot, you would think they would be depressed. And they’re not. They still love each other, they still show love to each other, especially those that are working on their behalf, and the city of Chicago really shows them love. And they still have hope.

That’s motivating. That’s something that I love, that people still have hope that things can change.

For more information about Green’s campaign, visit https://greenforchicago.com/.

Related: These Teen Boys Really Are Running for Governor of Kansas

Categories: Blog

Youth Radio: Smart Talk Episode 7

June 14, 2018 - 3:10pm

Welcome to the seventh episode of Smart Talk on Youth Radio Raw.

Make sure you tune in every week on Fridays from 6:15 to 7:35 pm!

On this show, you’ll hear the recent news, personal experiences and a diverse selection of music.

For photos of the show, go to Youth Radio’s Flickr page.

Check out live coverage of the show by following @YouthRadioRaw on Twitter and @yr_raw on Instagram.

 

Categories: Blog

Youth Radio Raw: Smart Talk Episode 5

June 14, 2018 - 3:05pm

Welcome to the fifth episode of Smart Talk on Youth Radio Raw.

Make sure you tune in every week on Fridays from 6:15 to 7:35 pm!

On this show, you’ll hear the recent news, personal experiences and a diverse selection of music.

For photos of the show, go to Youth Radio’s Flickr page.

Check out live coverage of the show by following @YouthRadioRaw on Twitter and @yr_raw on Instagram.

Categories: Blog

Endeavor

June 14, 2018 - 1:32pm

     

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Darkness had fallen and the young man squinted, straining to make out his path as he picked his way through the foliage. His eyes were tired and hopeless. Dirt caked his face and hands, darkening his complexion, and his once neatly-trimmed hair was now a wild mess. Cold and completely alone, his limbs felt as if they were made of iron, and each step was a battle to live. His body cried out in protest, but with the little strength he was able to muster, he managed to progress forward at a painfully slow rate. Hunger bit at his stomach, demanding attention, but he forced himself to disregard the pain, knowing that there was no way to find relief. Consumed by fatigue, he fell to his knees in exhaustion.

     Tucked away in the pocket of his dirty, worn pants, he carried a small syringe of opium, a final resort. He knew that if he was to turn back a fate worse than death awaited him back home. Attempting to flee the motherland was treason, punishable by years of forced labor, so he staggered onward. He knew not where he was going, his only hope was to find something or someone to help him.

     Min-jun was nineteen, barely a man, when he had decided to leave. He had not known about the poor reality concerning his standard of living until his older sister, Seo-yun, who had courageously fled several years prior, told him stories about the opportunities offered by South Korea. He yearned to be reunited with his beloved sibling, but it was impossible for them to see each other in person. In order to talk with her over the phone, Min-jun was forced to sneak to the edge of town and climb a tree, to be sure that their conversation was not overheard. If he was caught, he could be accused of treason and punished harshly. From   

     Seo-yun he heard of the abundance of security, food, and clothing provided by the South. She spoke of her job working at a hair salon in Seoul, and how sweet and kind the old woman running the place was to her. She had left with his father several years ago, leaving him alone with his mother. Tragically the two travelers became separated and only Seo-yun managed to escape and made it all the way across China to Laos. There she sought out the South Korean embassy. They took her in and provided her with food and temporary housing. The next few days they spent organizing a way for her to safely get to South Korea.

     Min-jun didn’t build up the courage to leave until prompted by their town’s rationed food being diminished to two small meals a day. His mother, Eun-woo, a sort, middle-aged woman with kind eyes and long dark hair, insisted that he take one of her daily meals. At first, he refused, but she wouldn’t let him leave the house without satisfying his hunger. This ritual was performed every morning. Mother and son would sit together, but she would neglect to touch her food. He would finish eating his portion and then she would offer him her bowl.

     He was deeply disturbed that they had to resort to such behavior. As children they were taught that the Great Leader would care for his people, but despite this promise, they had been left to starve. He could see the hunger chewing away at his mother’s body. Before she had been skinny, but now she was reduced to a blanket of skin draped atop a skeleton. Eun-woo tried her best to hide her suffering from her son, but Min-jun knew her well and could tell that she was in pain. He could no longer bare the discomfort she was experiencing on his behalf. His mother was slowly wasting away while he continued living his normal life. He was captivated by what he had heard from sister about the South. He longed for a life that he could spend not worrying about whether or not he or those he loved would have enough to eat.

     Seo-yun had saved up what money she could to help her brother afford a broker’s services, as they often demanded a costly exchange for freedom. The two siblings devised a plan that would likely lead Min-jun to liberation. Eun-woo was too weak and in no state to travel. As much as it tore them asunder, they knew that they would have to leave their beloved mother behind. The plan was for Min-jun to reach China’s border and hire a broker to smuggle him across. He was wary as many brokers had been known to betray clients, turning them over to China’s border security, who often returned people to the government of the North. Once captured, they were guaranteed to face terrible consequences.

     The plan was executed smoothly until Min-jun’s fears manifested into reality. He traveled to a nearby town to meet with the broker, a wild middle-aged man, with long, dry hair. Together they decided upon a time and a fee. Despite the young man’s attempts to negotiate, the service cost him and his family just over eight and a half million won, that equated to nearly the entirety of their savings.

     Several weeks after their meeting, the time had come for him to leave. He met again with the broker under the cover of darkness. Min-jun was hidden in the back of a van among boxes of various goods. His hiding place was dark and smelled of mildew. All he could hear was the constant hum of the engine and squeaking of the vehicle as they went rocking and lurching over the uneven ground. He lost track of time and the uncomfortable heat caused glistening beads of sweat to appear on his face.

     Things came to an abrupt stop and soon after the van’s doors were wrenched open. He heard the deep voice of the broker commanding him to get out. Not entirely conscious of the situation, Min-jun, clambered outside and was immediately comforted by the fresh air embracing his lungs. Warm morning sun rays caressed his face. Before he had time to realize what was happening, the broker slammed the van doors closed, got into the driver’s seat, and started the engine. Fear and anxiety arose in Min-jun, as the machine coughed to life. As the van began to drive away, he started to run after it in protest. His actions were useless, however, and the vehicle disappeared into the distance. The betray left a sour feeling in his mouth. The broker’s duty had been to provide him with a means to travel through China to Southeast Asia. Now he was alone in a strange land. He desperately examined his surroundings. He was in a rural environment and roads wound aimlessly across the emerald landscape. Doubt plagued his mind and lowered his spirits, but he chose a direction and began to walk. He didn’t know where he was going, but he dared not follow any roads as he may be seen and suspected.

     Darkness had fallen, swallowing the young man, and consuming his being. He wept on his knees as he was overwhelmed by the lack of authority over his situation. Desperately, he searched for a motive to carry on and found the faces of his family and all that they had sacrificed for him to be granted this opportunity. He was grateful for them and all that they had done. He hoped that if he was to make it to the south, he would be able to forge a new and better life. He felt renewed as a wave of power coursed through his body, reenergizing his fatigued limbs. He picked himself up from the dirty ground, his figure straightening as he rose. Hope once more burned in his heart, fueled by the desire to survive.

Categories: Blog

Youth Radio Raw: Smart Talk Episode 4

June 14, 2018 - 1:25pm

Welcome to the fourth episode of Smart Talk on Youth Radio Raw.

Make sure you tune in every week on Fridays from 6:15 to 7:35 pm!

On this show, you’ll hear the recent news, personal experiences and a diverse selection of music.

For photos of the show, go to Youth Radio’s Flickr page.

Check out live coverage of the show by following @YouthRadioRaw on Twitter and @yr_raw on Instagram.

Categories: Blog

YouTube Influencer Enya Umanzor Gets Real

June 14, 2018 - 7:22am

Enya Umanzor became social media famous on Vine–that’s how I discovered her. Once Vine shut down, she shifted her focus to YouTube. Umanzor says she started creating videos for “fun and to entertain people” and not so much for the fame. But at only 19 years of age, she has over 800 thousand subscribers on her channel, enjajaja.

I chatted with Umanzor about the downfalls of being a social influencer, the struggle to stay relevant and how she navigates YouTube’s algorithm.

This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

Michelle Ruano: Can you describe your channel?

Enya Umanzor: I always describe [my channel] as a buffet: You can walk in, and most likely you’ll find something you’re in the mood for.

I do a mix of makeup rants, comedy, I have some more serious videos, and I have some vlogs. I have just about anything you expect to be on YouTube.

MR: I’ve been reading about how burned out YouTubers are getting by trying to keep up with YouTube’s algorithm. Are you experiencing that issue?

EU: I can’t say that I’m burnt out because of the algorithm. For me, it’s a different case because life, in general, has kind of burnt me out a little bit. It hurts sometimes when you put more effort and care into a video and it just doesn’t do as well as you would want it to because of the algorithm.

I don’t fully blame the algorithm because I also think you do need to know your audience. For instance, sometimes I feel like I’m not posting enough and that’s why my algorithm will shift and drop. There’s no real way of knowing, but I think it works on how consistent and how long your videos are.

So for instance, right now Shane Dawson is very consistent. His videos are super long, and I think the algorithm works in his favor.

MR: Are there other issues you see influencers facing with YouTube?

EU: One thing I do think will kind of affect how hard it is to keep a job like this or at least to pursue this job is YouTube changing the viewing requirement. For instance, you have to have 400 hours of viewing, I believe, instead of 10,000 channel views to be monetized.

With so many creators seeking this as a job, I believe YouTube decided to make it a little harder because paying so many people for this job kind of becomes difficult.

MR: Do you ever struggle with creating content because of how competitive YouTube is?

EU: I think so, only in the aspect of finding yourself questioning if you should do things differently because you’ll have people who started at the same time or after you, yet they are surpassing you. It does make you sit back and think like, oh man, should I have done [the video] like that and should I act like this? It’s easy to think about that and to have that be a factor in you becoming competitive with everybody around you.

But I try not to fall into it because once you do, it becomes a competition. You find yourself not satisfied with anything you’re doing.

MR: Consumers only see the glamorous side of being an influencer, but what is it really like?

EU: The whole community itself kind of reminds me of high school, if that makes sense. There are the popular kids and the art kids, and that can be difficult because you can find yourself envying the popular kid and wanting to become that, but you kind of just have to settle down and figure yourself out. One of the cons: there’s no guidebook to [become an influencer]. It’s something you kind of have to figure out yourself.

And there are so many questions you will have and won’t be answered, and you’ll forever feel like this is something that’s going to slip through your fingers if you don’t watch it carefully.

MR: What are some tips you can give to any future or upcoming influencers?

EU: I definitely think if you’re starting a YouTube channel and you’re going into it as a career, it should be something you want and love to do. You should have a love for entertainment, whether that be just beauty or comedy or starting a news channel. It should definitely be something you love to do and you’re interested in, almost like a hobby that you just want to pursue further because if it’s not something you really love, I think it shows.

And for a lot of viewers, that rubs them the wrong way and you get very polarized views, almost like Jake Paul. So I’m not sure if that’s something most people want to carry.

Related: Trans YouTubers Say They Are Being Censored. Is It The Algorithm?

Categories: Blog

5 Things That Make The Summer After High School Awkward AF

June 13, 2018 - 11:36am

Yay! You graduated! You’re an adult… or are you? The summer after graduation is pretty awkward as you try to embrace adulthood and figure out the rest of your life. No pressure.

Here are 5 things every newly graduated senior can relate to.

1. Your curfew feels awkward

Do I really need a curfew? For the three months between graduating high school and leaving for college, do my parents have any say over what I do? I mean, my curfew used to be 12, but if in three months I’ll have virtually unlimited freedom, what do I do for the time in between?

2. Your parents stop paying for stuff

I recently went grocery shopping for the first time, and I asked my dad to pay me back… He still hasn’t. It’s awkward to want freedom but still rely on my parents to pay me back for the $14.37 I spent on kale and kombucha. But seriously, since when did people decide that a high school diploma comes with a newfound sense of finances?

3. Adults expect you to actually do stuff for them

I mean, yeah, I could balance cheerleading, debate team, homework, and work in high school, but all of a sudden it’s up to me to pick up my brother, go to the pharmacy, and make my own doctor’s appointments? Who decided that? I’m still too young to be doing all that. I don’t even know how to call my doctor. Those are adult things. And I’m not an adult. Yet.

4. You have an unreasonable amount of free time

Like, what do I even do this summer? Do I keep that school grind going, participate in activities, and plan how to incorporate extracurriculars them into my college life — or do I take a well-deserved break after four years of hell and sit on the couch in my PJs until 4 p.m. eating chips and binge watching On My Block?

5. You still think like a child

Incredibles 2 comes out June 15. So as a recently graduated high school senior, am I throwing all my maturity out the window to stand in front of all the 8 year-olds in line to get the best seats in the theater? Obviously.

You can choose to spend this weird time of your life however you want. Appreciate the time when you’re filled with freedom but still have support (especially financial) from your parents. It may be the only time in your life to actually relax.

High school is over. College is starting soon. Take a breath before jumping into it. But maybe learning how to make a doctor’s appointment on your own has some benefit.

Categories: Blog

Warriors Parade 2018 Highlights

June 13, 2018 - 10:36am

We celebrated the Golden State Warriors’ back-to-back championship in the heart of downtown Oakland! Here’s a recap video.

Categories: Blog

Breaking Beauty Standards

June 11, 2018 - 4:15pm

By Aaliyah Jensen, We ‘Ced Youth Media

Since I was 11, I have struggled with trying to figure out who I am and loving myself. I’ve never quite fit into a category. I’m not the pretty girl in school, or the smartest kid in the class, or the athlete who takes home all the trophies.

Making my way through middle school and high school with this identity crisis has been tough. First-hand, I know what it’s like to walk down the halls and be intimidated by all these pretty thin girls with long pretty hair and smiles, and immediately feel horrible about yourself. All it takes is a couple seconds to start questioning your own self-worth and beauty, and begin wishing you were someone else.

I guess my crisis comes from society’s faulty beauty standards. American standards and expectations for what is considered beautiful imposes unrealistic norms upon women. Skinny waists, large butts, long hair, plumped lips, long legs, toned stomachs: these are the standards that women are expected to live up to.

Everyone is beautiful in their own way. We don’t need and shouldn’t have magazines and Hollywood dictating how we view each other. It’s truly sad how rarely we are told that we are all beautiful.

Celebrities and Instagram models are praised for their unrealistic bodies. Society somehow expects us to look and act like them, and if we don’t, we’re unattractive. We obsess over trying to look and be like others so much that we lose ourselves and our own self identity. Looking a certain way doesn’t bring happiness, and until we realize that, we’ll continue to feel miserable in our own skin.

At school, I always see girls “hating” on each other because of their appearance and I find it disgusting. While I myself have been guilty of indulging in such behavior, I’ve come realize that it is wrong. When you pick apart another girl’s appearance they start to doubt themselves and feel as if they are not good enough.

We all have enough insecurities as it is, the last thing we need is someone judging us.

Magazines, media, and social media make it so hard for young girls to come to love themselves. I want to be able to walk down the halls and look at the girls around me and acknowledge their beauty while also trusting mine. I want to be freed from the shackles of America’s beauty standards. I don’t want to keep comparing myself to Kylie Jenner. I don’t want anyone to think that if they don’t look like her, they’re not attractive.

I want to be able to look in the mirror and say that I like myself for who I am, and not that I hate myself because I don’t look like the heavily photoshopped celebrities in tabloids.

Eventually, you get to a place of self-love by empowering yourself. Making yourself aware of how extraordinary you, as a person, are. You also get to a place of self-love by empowering others, making them aware of their beauty also, from the inside and out.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not at all perfect. I’m still on my journey to self-love and acceptance and finding who I am. But I have realized that we are all beautiful, no matter what size or body type.

Hate is such a strong force, but love is even stronger. If we could just all love who we are, and love each other’s differences we could truly accept ourselves and everyone around us. If we are all liberated, then no one can tear each other down. I am who I am. I am beautiful in my own way and I am happy with that.

Read the original version of Aaliyah Jensen’s piece at We ‘Ced Youth Media.

Categories: Blog

Student Finally Feels Represented In The Classroom

June 10, 2018 - 7:00am

 

It’s a natural reaction to turn away from that which we perceive as different. But it’s hard when the thing that’s different is me.

I’m Indian-American, but most of my classmates are white. Recently, my teacher announced we were starting a new unit on Indian culture. Finally, a class where I already knew the answers. Then a boy in my class blurted out, “Why do Indian people wear those weird red dots on their foreheads? Don’t they know it looks like blood?”

I stared at him in shock. Indian women put red vermilion powder on their foreheads as a symbol of marriage. In India, red is considered the color of togetherness and understanding. As the teacher continued the lesson as if nothing had happened, I shrank lower into my seat.

I realized that my classmates shunned me because they simply did not understand. The problem with this cultural divide is that it doesn’t allow students to learn how to be open to things that are different. And this openness is the key to social change.

Categories: Blog

Local LGBTQ Youth Share Their Experience Living In Conservative Kern County, California

June 9, 2018 - 11:00am

By Andrew Alvarez

Kern county is a place where social change is infrequent while conservatism is common.

With pride month coming up in June, it is important to give recognition to social issues that LGBT youth face, and the impacts of Kern County’s conservative social climate.

South Kern Sol hit the streets and asked local LGBT youth, “What is it like being LGBT in Kern County?”

“I am ‘out’ to my immediate family and they are very supportive of me, so I have support at my house. Though, when I go out in public, I hear and see how my situation is not similar to other LGBT youth.” – Emily Nunez, President of the West High Gay Straight Alliance Club

“Many times it can be difficult and scary to go out in public and be yourself because you never know what response or look you’ll get from people. However, I’ve realized that over time people have gotten more comfortable with the idea of accepting LGBT people.” -Julissa Morales, junior at West High

“It’s challenging, but doable. I feel like even though Kern County is conservative, there are many who identify as LGBT. So I always feel like I have people like myself to rely on.” – Chyna Patz, vice president of the West High Gay Straight Alliance Club

“The truth of the matter is that although we live in such an advanced era, change has yet to occur. Kern county is one of those places where it feels like you have to worry about your safety if you are LGBT. Personally, I believe living in a conservative county allows LGBT people to fight for their voice to be heard. Living in a conservative place gives me, gives other people, the ability to make change happen.” – Jovanny Ruvalcaba, junior at South High

“It is not homophobia, but ignorance that runs rampant in Bakersfield. If they knew of the injustice or at least took time to look at a LGBT individual, they would learn to be empathetic people.” – Julian Melendez, senior at Foothill High School

“Personally, being LGBT in Kern County has brought a lot of stress onto my daily life. My hope is that people in Kern County will begin to see LGBT people as people — not a threat to their society. I am thankful that there are active LGBT voices in this county who are bringing change to issues like this.” — Helen Magana, junior at West High

“Speaking as a trans male who’s bisexual, living in Kern County can be hard at times, but it can also be a smooth breeze with the right people around you.” —Dylan Strope Morgan, sophomore at West High

“Being a part of the LGBTQ+ community in such a conservative places as Kern County is more difficult than the average person might think, considering we are in what can be argued as a state where progression is very much needed. There is a fear of being judged, rejected or even the fear for your life. We constantly change things about ourselves to conform to what society wants and often time find it difficult to be real and honest and true to yourself. Being LGBTQ+ in a conservative county is frightening and creates a certain barrier around the individual that may never leave them in their lives.”  —Breanna Michelle Castro, junior at West High

Read the original version of Andrew Alvarez’s piece at South Kern Sol.

Categories: Blog

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June 8, 2018 - 5:28pm

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5 Ways To Have Fun This Summer Even If You’re Broke!

June 8, 2018 - 2:13pm

It’s nearly summer, the season of large-scale, expensive music festivals, road trips and long vacations. But, if you’re a Nochella–you know, a no-fund-havin’ individual–those options might be out of your price range. But don’t sweat it. We got you covered.

Here’s some tips for you to still manage a fun summer without burning your wallet.

1. Listen to some podcasts

No, seriously, they’re not just for 40-somethings. Podcasts can also be popular with young people! From pop culture to music to true crime, there is a podcast out there for everyone. Some of my favorites right now are “Stuff You Should Know” by How Stuff Works and “The Ross Bolen Podcast” by Grandex Media. I like to listen while I drive, bike, run trails or chill on my lazy days.

To find your perfect ‘pod, visit your local search engine or podcast app. Then, crack open your bev of choice and enjoy the audio experience.

2. Visit a museum (and find out when you might be able to get in for free)

Museum visits are probably one of the most slept-on activities, but to be honest, they’re actually a fun way to learn about arts and retaining history while avoiding the price you’d need to pay for classes. Plus you get free air conditioning alongside your stimulating experience.

Most museums have a monthly free day or serious discounts for students. Go to your favorite museum’s website and look for deals.

3. Make over your living space

If you’re more of the summertime homebody, no problem! If you’ve missed spring cleaning, it’s not too late to kick off your summer with a fresh new take on your space by deep-cleaning and rearranging furniture in the room where you spend the most time. For example, if it’s too hot in your room, you can move your bed closer to the window to get some wind action going on–it’ll change your life, trust me.

Changing up your room will provide minor change and excitement in your life. And it’s the little things, right? Plus, it’ll throw your friends off next time they’re over and you’ll be able to stream your shows from a clean new view.

4. Hit up free local arts and culture shows

Are you an aspiring concert goer but don’t have the funds to be buying Kendrick concert tickets? No problem. Just hit up social media, such as browsing Facebook events, to see if there are any block parties happening or local street festivals going on in your area.

There are also websites in many cities for local events and venues with free or suggested donations. Sliding scale is your friend.

5. Beach bum it all day with friends

This one is definitely a no brainer, even without a whip. For transportation, you can get yourself an Uber Pool, or better yet, hop on public transit. If you have a friend who does drive, just throw down some gas money and you’ll be on your way.

There are tons of other fun cheap things to do–we just hit the tip of the iceberg. Did you think of any other fun cheap things to do over the summer? Tweet us your suggestions @youthradio and have a good summer!

Categories: Blog

National Anthem Protest From The White House To The Locker Room

June 8, 2018 - 1:53pm

After an interesting week between the NFL, the Philadelphia Eagles and President Donald Trump, Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins decided to speak out during a press conference. Silently.

Categories: Blog

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