OFF COURT TOPICS
NEW YEAR, BETTER ME!
Every time a new year comes around everyone says "new year, new me". But why a new you? You don't need to establish a new identity, you just need to improve the person you are. Correct faults, fix flaws, and enhance all the good things that are already there. Make yourself better, not new. The new you might end up with issues too. That's why we should strive to be better than who we were yesterday; not try to wake up a new person, but rather wake up being the same person just a lot better than who we went to sleep as.
2018 and every year from now on say goodbye to new year, year new me and say hello to new year, better me!
TRYING IS FAILING
This video of a 2015 interview with Kobe Bryant in which he talks about failure being nonexistent, reminded me of a valuable life lesson I learned. I thought I should share it and make a note not to forget it.
A wise man once said "trying is failing." I didn't quite get it when I first heard it, but later came to realize what it meant. What Kobe says in the video makes it even more clearer. If you didn't watch the video, Kobe says that failure doesn't exist, it can't exist if you learn from what you didn't accomplish, do it again and succeed the next time around. Failure only exists when you give up. This is where "trying is failing" comes in to play. If you're continuously trying, but you never progress, did you really accomplish anything? If your'e trying to do something, you're not actually doing it, and if you're not actually doing it then you're failing.
There's nothing wrong with trying, it shows your commitment to want to get something done. But, only trying isn't enough. Your ultimate goal is to do what you set out to do, not just to try and do it. At the end of the day you want to accomplish your goal. A lot can be said about trying, but even more can be said about doing.
So stop trying, and start doing!
Watch the full video here.
Meek Mill is being faced with two to four years in prison for violating his probation and everyone has mixed feelings about this. On one hand, we have those saying his sentence is unnecessary while we have those who feel it is perfectly fine. We all know we have a flawed justice system. It doesn’t treat everyone the same and doesn’t always serve the justice we expect it to. Despite that, laws are laws. If you’re on probation and you violate that probation, regardless of the crime or how long it has been, you must be prepared to suffer the consequences. From what we know, Meek Mill violated his probation multiple times and was given multiple chances to get his act together. Is his sentence unfair, probably considering people have done far less time for far worse crimes, but, when you know there is a system in place that isn’t in your favor, why not do what is necessary to avoid it? I know that’s easier said than done, but it’s possible. It isn’t fair that certain people in this country have to do that, but for now it is necessary.
Whether or not you feel Meek Mill’s sentencing is deserved or undeserved, we must acknowledge that this is happening every day to others who truly don’t deserve it. So, what are we going to do about it? We can’t only care when this happens to a celebrity. Thoughts, prayers, complaints, and comments on social media aren’t enough. We need to act if we ever want to see this pattern broken. “We must be the change we want to see in the world.” Vote, educate yourself and others, hold yourself accountable for your actions, hold others accountable for their actions, do what needs to be done to affect change. You must work to dismantle the very system built to be your downfall and build it into something that equally stands for all. It’s unfortunate what happened to Meek Mill, but until we see real change in our ourselves, our behaviors, and our criminal justice system it will keep happening.
Yesterday, I was riding the train and witnessed something inspiring. A man on one side of the train recognized this kid he knew, so he got up walked across the train and started having a conversation with the kid. Most people when they see someone they know from afar they generally don’t even speak if the person doesn’t see them or acknowledge them first. I thought it was great that this man not only spoke to the kid, but also took an interest in his life. The man asked the kid about school and his grade, they talked about the kid playing football and a few other things for their short time on the train together. Some of you may think this isn’t a big deal, but it probably meant more the kid than we’ll ever know.
We should make efforts to take an interest in people other than ourselves from time to time. We never what’s going on in someone’s life and that simple conversation could be life changing. It means a lot to someone when they know people care. So, I encourage you to be inspired by this story and take an interest in someone. Check on your friends, see someone doing something cool acknowledge it, give some encouragement to someone who needs it, or support someone’s dreams because it can really make a difference.
BACK TO SCHOOL
For most kids, hearing "back to school" has to be one of the worst things ever. They'd rather extend their summer and put school behind them just a little longer, or maybe a lot. But for me however, I'm actually a little sad I won't be returning to school this fall. That's probably because college is a lot different from primary and secondary education. Some of my best experiences happened in college and I spent many summers awaiting move-in day to go back.
Whether its elementary school, middle school, high school, or college, students are returning to school in the upcoming weeks and I thought it would only be right to speak on the subject. As you get older, you tend to value education way more than you did when you were a kid. When I was growing up I didn't like to read, I didn't think reading was interesting or could be fun. But now, I realize reading can be both of those things; reading is fundamental, and you can learn so many things from cracking a book open every once in awhile. (Though, you don't just have to limit yourself to books.) This goes to say, that is my advice to students and people all over, value education! Education is not just attending school, it's not finishing school and doing more school. Education is taking opportunities to learn something new. This could be by reading, watching a TV show or movie, talking to someone older than you about their experiences, talking to someone who has different views from yours, exploring new places, or even reading a blog. Education can be found in the most unlikeliest of places. When you discover those places you'll know more than you did the day before. Place value in learning new things and being curious. The more curious you are the more open to knowledge you will be.
What's your advice to students heading back to school? Be sure to share with them or share my advice if you don't have any of your own. Don't be afraid to educate others, because knowledge is power.
Colin Kaepernick has been a focal point of media attention for some time now after this past NFL season when he decided he would not stand during the national anthem. Whether you agree or disagree with what Colin Kaepernick did, you have to respect how he has stood his ground for what he believes. None of us really know for sure if Kaepernick doesn't have a job right now because of the choice he made, but we can see how it is hard not to believe his protest is not a reason as a result of the backlash he received. Regardless, through it all Kaepernick has continued fighting for what he believes and even done more charitable work in the meantime. He has not turned away from causes that desperately need attention.
Kaepernick has sacrificed a big part of his life, playing in the NFL, for issues that are important to him. Some of us are not even willing to sacrifice time and effort for what we believe, let alone our careers. I don't believe Kaepernick was trying to disrespect the American Flag, our military service men and women, or our country; he was simply standing or rather kneeling for his beliefs and the rights of others. People may not agree with what he did, may not care about the issues he is fighting for, they may not like him as a player or even a person and that's fine. But, his continued effort despite adversity is admirable. Colin Kaepernick should be viewed for what he is, a shining example of fighting for what you believe. I hope people can see the good in this situation, and be inspired to stand up for what they believe even in the face of adversity. As Dr. King once said, " The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy." I wish Colin Kaepernick the best of luck with his career and the fight for social change.