Author Archives: Elasha Young

About Elasha Young

Elasha Young, Editor-in-Chief, a journalist in the making. Everything is a story. It's my dream to tell them.

Stay-in Place New Order Takes Effect for the Bay Area

On March 31 at 11:59 p.m., a new stay-in-place order took effect to reduce the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). The new stay-at-home order will be extended through May 3, 2020, in order to preserve critical hospital capacity. 

Six counties: Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, San Mateo, and Santa Clara, as well as the city of Berkeley, have instituted the new order that requires nonessential businesses to remain closed and for residents to stay indoors and only leave home when doing essential activities, such as grocery shopping.

According to Dr. Chris Farnitano, health officer for Contra Costa County in a news release, “extending the stay-at-home order should reduce the number of sick patients seeking care at one time, giving us time to acquire more medical supplies for providers who will be providing care to people sick with COVID-19.” 

In the same news release, Dr. Farnitoano adds that “the extension will allow doctors and nurses to better treat those who do get sick and save countless lives. The new stay-at-home order will supersede the previous order and go into effect immediately.”

The new order defines what essentials business are, what activities are prohibited, and new directives. The use of playgrounds and other similar recreational areas is prohibited and closed for public use. Sports requiring people to share a ball or other equipment, as well as shared public recreational facilities such as golf courses, tennis and basketball courts, etc. are prohibited. 

Funeral homes and cemeteries; moving companies, rental car companies and ride-share services that specifically enable essential activities are still allowed. Essential businesses that continue to operate facilities must scale down operations to their essential component only.

The new order also requires essential businesses to develop a social distancing protocol before April 3. Most construction, residential and commercial has been deemed nonessential and is prohibited. However, the expansion of essential businesses now includes service providers that enable residential transactions (notaries, title companies, realtors, etc.).

Director of the San Francisco Department of Public Health, Dr. Grant Colfax, stated in a recent news release, “what we need now, for the health of all our communities, is for people to stay home. Even though it has been difficult, the Bay Area has really stepped up to the challenge so far, and we need to reaffirm our commitment. We need more time to flatten the curve, to prepare our hospitals for a surge, and to do everything we can to minimize the harm that the virus causes to our Communities.”

Coronavirus (COVID-19), is a virus so new and unique that it has no approved medicines or vaccines and social distancing is the most powerful tool to slow the spread.

Black Scholars pose for a picture

5th Annual Black Scholars Family Night

What is Black Excellence? Black excellence is beautiful, intelligent, resilient, and powerful. Feb. 25, the Black Education Association (BEA) hosted its 5th Annual Black Scholars Family Night to celebrate Black Excellence at Chabot College. 

Brain Augsburger, Extended Opportunity Programs and Services (EOPS) counselor and Black Excellence Collective (BEC) Coordinator opened the night with a heartfelt speech on what black excellence is and what it means to the college. It gives students something to celebrate their hard work, receive recognition for keeping a Grade-point average (GPA) of 3.0 or better.      

Following Augsburger’s inspiring welcoming speech, all attendees rose in honor for the Black national anthem “Lift Every Voice and Sing” sung by Robyn Jackson. Bringing tears to guest eyes, Jackson sang with the voice of a thousand angels.    

Umoja Program Coordinator and counselor Tommy Reed reassured students that they were there to be honored for all the long hours and late nights. 

“We are here to celebrate you. We are here to hold you up. We are here to celebrate your greatness,” Reed says passionately while seeming to make eye contact with everyone in the crowd. 

The Black Scholars Planning committee and volunteers put their best foot forward to provide a platform for students to be recognized for their hard work and excellence. Several achievement awards were given out in a variety of categories.

Voted for by their peers, Skyler Robinson, a Chabot basketball player and member of the Striving Black Brother Coalition and Tiffany Williams, were crowned Black History Month King and Queen. As a part of being crowned, both Robinson and Williams received a $250 scholarship. 

BHM King & Queen Sykler Robinson and Tiffany Williams
BHM King & Queen Sykler Robinson and Tiffany Williams

Stacy Thompson, Chabot College Vice President of Academic Services, expressed how proud she was of all the scholars in attendance. “We know we can’t do it by ourselves or without the help and guidance from our ancestors.” 

Over 300 black students were honored for their academic achievement for the 2019 Fall semester, and 33 educators were nominated by students to receive the Educator of Excellence Award.

Dr. Kamela Peart, My Sister’s Keeper (MSK) Coordinator, and counselor awarded students with a GPA of 3.0 — 3.99 with the Chabot Black Scholars Honor Student Award. Dr. Jeanne Wilson, Dean of Special Programs and Services, presented the Dean’s Award for Highest Academic Achievement for students with a 4.0 GPA.

Alia Gross, Chabot student, received a Dean’s Award for her 4.0 GPA was nervous and excited, not knowing what to expect. “This is my first award and for it to be a Dean’s Award is just crazy,” Gross said while laughing nervously. “This is an honor.”

Augsburger closed the ceremony by thanking the guests for taking the time to come celebrate Black Excellence as well as the sponsor’s Student Access, Success, and Equity Committee, the Student Senate of Chabot College and BEA.

Editorial: Emergency Preparation

Natural disasters are happening every day all across the world. You can’t stop it, but you can prepare yourself in case of an emergency. Any emergency. Whether it’s an earthquake, fire, or even a windstorm. 

Being ready means being equipped with the proper supplies you may need in the event of an emergency or disaster. Keep your supplies in an easy-to-carry emergency preparedness kit that you can use at home or take with you in case you must evacuate.

According to ready.gov, a “basic emergency supply kit should include the following recommended items: Water — one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation. Food — at least a three-day supply of nonperishable food. Battery-powered or hand-crank radio and a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio with tone alert.”

“Over the last five years, weather-related deaths are up 41% from 2014, while the number of weather events has increased 5% and injuries have decreased by 40%. In 2018, 62,339 weather events resulted in 782 deaths and 1,797 injuries,” according to injuryfacts.nsc.org.

In California alone, between 2014 and 2018, there have been 7,128 weather events that caused 790 injuries and have a death toll of 293. Heat waves, winter weather, and wildfires were responsible for the most deaths during 2018. 

“The most deadly weather events in the United States over the past five years include Hurricane Irma, wildfires in California, and Hurricane Harvey,” according to injuryfacts.nsc.org.

According to the National Safety Council (NSC), “an unforeseen emergency can strike at any given moment at home or work.” That’s why it’s imperative to have employees that are aware of how to respond quickly and effectively.

Keep a kit in a designated place and have it ready in case you have to leave home quickly. Make sure all members of the family know where the kit is kept and how to handle all items inside.

Be prepared to take shelter at work for at least 24 hours. Work kits should include food, water, necessities like medicines, walking shoes, and be stored in a “grab and go” bag. In case you are stranded, keep a kit of emergency supplies in your car.

You do not know where you will be when an emergency happens, prepare supplies for home, work, and your vehicles.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggests that you plan for before, during, and after an emergency. Planning won’t stop the inevitable, But it will at least keep you prepared.

R.I.P. Kobe Bryant, the Black Mamba

Known to the world as one of the best NBA players to have graced the court and referred to as The Black Mamba, Kobe Bryant was one of the greatest players to wear an NBA uniform. Bryant played for the Los Angeles Lakers for all 20 seasons of his career and led the team to five NBA titles. 

Bryant, born Aug. 23, 1978, in Philadelphia, PA, died in a helicopter crash Sunday, Jan. 26, in Calabasas, California, at the age of 41 alongside his 13-year-old daughter Gianna” Gigi” Bryant and seven others.

Wearing the number 24, Bryant was a shooting guard, and an 18-time All-Star and two-time NBA MVP. Bryant averaged 25 points a game in his career and ended as the NBA’s fourth-highest scorer of all time and the NBA’s first guard to play for 20 seasons. 

Bryant started his career with the Lakers in 1996. He was the youngest person ever to play in an NBA game. Bryant was just 17-years-old when he signed with the Lakers, but he didn’t play in an official NBA game till he was 18. 

In April 2001, Bryant married 19-year-old Vanessa Laine, and the two stayed married through all their trials and tribulations. 

The basketball legend partnered with the nonprofit After-School All-Stars as part of the Kobe & Vanessa Bryant Family Foundation. He also ran an annual summer camp called the Kobe Basketball Academy.

In November 2015, he announced that he would retire at the end of the season. On Apr. 13, 2016, Bryant sold-out the Staples Center and gave fans everywhere a magnificent performance in the last game of his career, scoring 60 points and leading the Lakers to a win against the Utah Jazz. 

Bryant leaves behind his wife and three daughters Natalia Diamante, 17, Bianka Bella, 3, and Capri Kobe, 7-months. His parents Joe “Jellybean” Bryant and Pam Bryant, along with his two sisters Sharia and Shaya Bryant.

A public memorial service will be held Monday, Feb. 24, at 10 a.m., in Downtown Los Angeles, at the Staples Center.

Chabot’s New Student Senate

Chabot College announced the following newly elected members of the Chabot Student Senate are Ashanti Robinson as President and La’Roy Fitch Jr. as ICC Chairman for the 2019-2020 academic year. There are five new representatives Navin Bansal, Ranjit Cheema, Chunyan Lin, Alejandro Schimmels, and Yinglin Yu.

All seven were sworn into office September 30, 2019, in the boardroom located in 200 building on Chabot campus surrounded by their fellow senate members.

Robinson’s role as President is to act as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Student Senate here on campus. In this position, Robinson must take action on and enforce all policies and legislation espoused by the Student Senate. In her first senate meeting as President, she did just that with her strong presence and natural-born leadership ability.

Also, Robinson will be the official representative of the Student Senate at an assortment of other college committees and serve as the chairperson in Student Senate meetings.

According to Robinson’s candidate statement, she, “Plan(s) to strengthen the communication between the student body and the Student Senate by directly working with smaller groups on campus to keep the conversation and representation going.”

With several items and policies on the ballot, Robinson has her hands full as this year’s student body president. ICC Chair is the liaison between the clubs on campus and the Student Senate. This seems to suit Fitch’s framework and his affiliation with clubs here on campus, such as but not limited to Change-It-Now (C-I-N), Striving Black Brother Coalition, and the Justice Arts Collective. 

A goal Fitch set during his campaign for ICC Chair was to put himself and the community in a position to take action and be an active resource for the campus. “Build bridges, don’t burn them down,” states Fitch in his 2019 campaign video.

Being the ICC Chair is a job that Fitch has worked hard for, and just like Robinson, Fitch carried himself with dignity, grace, and excellence. From the looks of things, he’s the right man for the job.

That is what this year’s Student Senate of Chabot College (SSCC) is trying to accomplish — getting the job done. Every goal that was set is in the works to be fulfilled by the Senate and the advisers. 

The 2019-20 school year is sure to be a progressive one. There are a fair amount of changes that the Chabot campus will be seeing, and they are all for the betterment of the college.

Hustlers Review

The movie Hustlers brings you a sexual-storm that makes you want to drop it like it’s hot while showing the strength of sisterhood and being unashamed in your skin.

Being a stripper is a way of life for some or a way to make ends meet for others. Based on actual events from Jessica Pressler’s Dec. 28, 2015, article in New York Magazine and Lorene Scafaria’s direction you take a never-ending cycle of drugs, sex, and money, not necessarily in that order. That doesn’t stop until it’s too late.

Jennifer Lopez plays Ramona, a smoking hot stripper, who is about the mighty dollar. She is the moneymaker at a Manhattan strip club. This movie takes you down a timeline with Ramona and Destiny (Constance Wu) and their so-called family.

In 2007 Ramona met a skinny little Asian woman named Destiny and saw the potential in her. With four little words, “Climb in my fur,” Destiny’s life changed. 

Women in the club who didn’t give Destiny a second glance were now giving her private lap dance lessons. One, in particular, is Diamond portrayed by Grammy winner Cardi B, her first words to Destiny were “Bi***, stay out my section,” but now that she is close with Ramona, Destiny has some clout. 

Romona is a lioness and lethal weapon and very manipulative and verges on being a narcissist. Destiny, a follower, gives you the notion that she will never be a leader. Even at the end of her journey, the only thing she leads herself into is becoming a snitch and losing what little family she had left.

Destiny had a horrible childhood. Her parents left her at her grandparents’ house and never turned back. You guessed it. Yup, she’s a people-pleaser who will do anything to fit in, which leads her into trusting too easy and loving too hard.

Ramona, Destiny, Mercedes (Keke Palmer), and Annabelle (Lili Reinhart) were all strippers with the need for money and each other. But who needs who more?

Some would call what Ramona is doing pimping, but considering they never had sex with any clients; it’s not pimping. However, when you throw the label family on it, it becomes a little hard to see through the ugliness.

When things get risky for the “family.” Ramona is on this “me me me” kick. Destiny wants things to run smoothly. Mercedes wants to marry her jailbird boyfriend, and Annabelle is just a cat-loving homebody, who vomits every time she gets nervous.

You can see things are about to go south. So many different personalities being run by one puppet master, Ramona. Feeling she can get more bang for her buck, Ramona suggests they recruit new girls for their business.

If you’re thinking they were selling their goodies, you; my dear reader are wrong. It’s worse.

Imagine being a grown man with Wall Street money, Ivy League education, and the world at your fingertips, just looking for a good time. It’s just your luck you meet a beautiful Latina (Ramona) who has not one, not two, but three just as beautiful sisters.

Mind you, Ramona’s sisters are Asian (Destiny), African American (Mercedes), and Caucasian (Annabelle). Some look a little suspect to me. They are ordering round after round, yet you’re the only drunk one. 

The strippers were drugging these men with Ketamine and MDMA (methylenedioxymethamphetamine) cocktails. Then they would drain their bank accounts of fifty thousand dollars a swipe, and they were swiping their VISA’s like windshield wipers during a hurricane.

One of Ramona’s new recruits is a junkie and snitch, and just like that, their ship went down like the Titanic. Everyone was arrested. Destiny snitched on everyone because she just remembered she had a baby with rapper G-Eazy, who plays Destiny’s deadbeat baby father, Johnny.

This movie overall was booty-shaking good. I enjoyed every minute of it, as did moviegoer Samantha Gibson and others that clapped their hands as the credits rolled.

“I’m glad I got to see it early, but it’s definitely worth the wait for those who didn’t,” says Gibson while exiting the theater.

In The Heights

On April 10, 2019, the Chabot College Theater Department presented “In the Heights,” a musical that gives you a feeling of strength, compassion, and mindset to deal with everyday life in the wake of tragedy. If you like dancing, singing, and a fantastic message you are going to love “In The Heights” as much as I did.

Created by Lin Manuel Miranda and directed by Dov Hassan this musical gives you raw emotion and hope. The issues about money, death, and community life touch something special that makes you feel like you’re getting to know new friends and learning some Spanish along the way.

“In The Heights” brings friends, family, and community together in a way like no other. The set was simple, yet everything had its place. The tight-knit community is a real example of “it takes a village to raise children right,” and that’s what you feel when you’re watching this play.

The 26 members in the cast and the ensemble came together as one unit but, it wasn’t just the cast that made this production come to life. The production team, running crew, front of the house, reprographics, technical crew, and the administrative team all put together something that needs to be shown to the world.

Everyone has a place in this magnificent production. The whole cast played a significant part in this production. I believe they all captured their role and captivated the audiences at the same time.   

Chaton Cleveland, a play attendee that has seen two Chabot College theater productions sat in the third-row program in hand with the light in her eyes.

“This is better than the first one I saw. I love Nia Rosario (Ariel McEtchin) and the Priauga guy (Seth Mijares). Whoever did the choreography did an amazing job. It just works, and you have so many things to look at,” Cleveland stated during the 10-minute intermission.

“However, I’m kind of partial because Benny (George Gill) is my brother,” states Cleveland while settling back into her seat for the second half of the play.

A key player in this production was Abuela Claudia (Joanne Lopez). Her role as the community heart was incredible. It caused the crowd to reflect on how strong family bonds can be.

Abuela Claudia was Usnavi’s (Jose Avalos) grandmother and is basically the grandmother of the community because everybody referred to her as Abuela, which means grandma in Spanish.

Door attendant Young Tommy thought the play was very entertaining. The audience felt the same considering they gave a standing ovation.

I would encourage everyone to see the master production like Chabot student Chris Watton. “I want everyone to see this. It’s worth way more than $10,” Watton states while exiting Stage One.

I give this play 10 out of 10 it’s a great production that is full of life lessons.

R.I.P. Nipsey Hussle

For those who know of Ermias Asghedom better known to the world as Nipsey Hussle, your heart is in deep anguish. Hussle was more than just a Los Angeles “rapper.” He was a father, son, philanthropist, businessman and most importantly an activist on a mission to enlighten others.

Hussle, born Aug. 15, 1985, was tragically gunned down in front his store on Sunday, Mar. 31 in South Los Angeles, CA.

The Grammy-nominated Hussle began his career in 2005 releasing his first mixtape, titled “Slauson Boy Vol. 1,” which later became the name of his own recording label, one of his many businesses.

Nip, as many would refer to him, was a community ambassador who began his journey to better his community by giving back in many ways. He spent years reviving the Crenshaw Corridor food district and also donated a new pair of shoes to every student of 59th Street Elementary School and fostered repairs to the school’s playground structure.

With the community work Hussle put forth, he continued to put out music that connected to the community. He continued to spread greatness through his music and his activism.

In 2010, he was featured on the song “We Are the World 25 for Haiti,” and was selected to be the part of the XXL Magazine’s “Annual Freshman Top Ten,” a hand-picked selection of up-and-coming artists. XXL labeled Hussle “Most Determined” of his class, and LA Weekly called him the “next big L.A. MC.”

In 2013 Nipsey began dating Actress Lauren London who remained the love of his life throughout the years.

London posted several pictures of Hussle and herself on Instagram captioned “I am completely lost. I’ve lost my best friend, my sanctuary, my protector, my soul … I’m lost without you. We are lost without you, babe. I have no words.”

Hussle leaves behind his two children, daughter Emani and son Kross, his partner London, his brother Samiel (Blacc Sam) Asghedom and sister Samantha (Sammy) Smith.

The community has definitely lost an iconic figure who will be greatly missed among his peers and fans. The music industry will forever be missing a key named Nipsey Hussle.

Funeral arrangements are being held at Staple Center in Los Angeles, Thursday, April 11, 2019.

How to train a dragon: Bland

If you’re a fan of the “How to Train a Dragon” franchise you might be a little disappointed with this third installment “How To Train A Dragon 3: The Hidden World.” I’m not saying it’s a bad movie. A child would definitely love it. As for me, I feel it could have been better based on the length of time it took to create. Fans have been waiting for some time, and the 2019 release didn’t quite hit the mark.

I was expecting so much more, it felt like the movie was rushed and not finished. Some would go as far as to say they were ripped off.

Yes, it gives you valleys of entertainment and laughter, but it all just seemed to be missing some key components that I think would have made an enormous difference.

Jay Baruchel and America Ferrera make a dynamic duo as Hiccup and Astrid, soon to be the new clan leaders these two have their work cut out for them in this movie. They face a villain who reminds me of Count Dracula from Hotel Transylvania with a Hitler complex.

Grimmel the Grisly, played by F. Murray Abraham, is precisely what you see when you picture a villain tall, lanky, bossy, and cruel. Trying to wipe out all Night Furies, Grimmel sets his sights on Toothless, the last Night Fury and Hiccup’s best friend.

Jairon Williams, a 7-year-old, an attendee at the movie screening expressed how upset he was to know what Grimmel was trying to do. “He is a bad man, and he should go to jail,” Jairon says while looking up at his mom for confirmation.    

What I was expecting and what I got were polar opposites. I was hoping for this fantastic world of dragons, but only got seven minutes of the Hidden World when I feel they could have done a lot more. The only dragons that they really show are the same ones from the past movies and Netflix series.

Ashley Harrison, a 12-year-old moviegoer, was amazed by the graphics in the film but thought they could go a little deeper into all the different types of dragons. “I didn’t know what half the dragons were. I hope they come out with a book,” stated Ashley.

The movie did have some fantastic moments of suspense especially when they discovered a Light Fury. The love story between Toothless and the new Light Fury was quite epic if you speak dragon or understand the mating dance for dragons.

Hiccup’s mother Valka, played by Cate Blanchett, was present in this movie. Her role was not as prominent as it was in franchise’s sequel. She was a proud and helpful mother in this film. How they incorporated the clan of Berk was quite amazing. You get to see all the new personalities, not just Fishlegs, Snotlout, Ruffnut, and Tuffnut.

The How to Train Your Dragon Trilogy was a strong franchise, entertaining and family-oriented. It is a must-see but it’s a must see from the comfort of your own couch. It would be easier to digest the medium raw chicken they are serving in this movie. I’m not satisfied in the least.

Isn’t It Romantic? – Just a Cliché

The 2019 hit “Isn’t It Romantic” crosses all spectra of romantic comedies. Rebel Wilson and Adam DeVine give you a feeling of nostalgia with all the standard cliches most have seen for since the dawning of romantic comedies.

Todd Strauss-Schulson put his best foot forward on this film, it gives you all the things you associate with a romantic comedy. The basic stereotyped characters such as the competitive women in the workplace, shallow men who live in their perfect little bubble, and the flamboyant gay best friend are all used to make points about clichéd characterizations in other movies.

Wilson’s character Natalie is a New York architect that is convinced that happy endings don’t exist and romantic comedies are all a lie, which causes her to have little to no love in her life.  Day-to-day living is what Natalie is accustomed to and trying to make a name for herself at the architect firm.

DeVine’s character Josh is a project manager for the same architectural company. He is a fun loving free-spirit who just wants Natalie to give him a chance, but of course, Natalie friend-zoned him.  Josh is like the “Little Engine That Could” he never gives up.

“I know what’s going to happen because of these cliches, you can see it coming,” moviegoer Crystal Singh says. “I can’t help, but wonder which cliché it’s going to be.”

Being a cliché film you know everything is going to have a happy ending, but not before all the trials and tribulations that lead up to a massive chase and some sort of grand gesture.

That’s precisely what happens to Natalie when she tries to evade a mugger and runs smack dead into a subway pillar and knocks herself unconscious. And you guessed it, into a parallel universe where the grass is always greener.

Waking up in the hospital in a fancy room with a handsome doctor ironically named Dr. Hansom, played by Tom Ellis, Natalie finds everything is bright, beautiful, happy and PG-13 movie at it’s finest.

Natalie realized something is insanely wrong and must figure out how to rectify the situation so she can go back to her normal boring life. To break this curse, Natalie thinks she has to make someone fall in love with her, but it’s not that simple.

Not only does Natalie have to figure out how to get to her normal life back she realizes that everything that glitters isn’t gold.  Even when things seem like they couldn’t get any better.

This is especially true when gorgeous Isabella played by Priyanka Chopra falls for Josh after he saves her from choking and she has love at first sight moment, how ironic. This is when Natalie has a revelation that she has to make her handsome boss/client Blake played by Liam Hemsworth fall in love with her.

Blake goes from being a mean boss with an American accent who doesn’t take Natalie or take her work seriously and thinks she is a coffee girl at the firm to prince charming who seems like everything is peachy and perfect.

Kind of like the evil Prince Han in “Frozen,” Blake’s obnoxious, yet it’s not until he tries to steal Natalie’s idea that she sees the light and realizes that Josh is who she is in love with, but Josh is newly engaged to Isabella.

To get Josh to fall in love with her, she does everything she originally was against like singing karaoke in front of a crowd at Josh’s engagement party with a rendition of Whitney Houston’s “I Want To Dance With Somebody.” The group responds because everybody already knows the choreography.

That wasn’t enough to sway Josh to fall in love with her; the next best thing to do is stop the wedding, which she did, only to realize that she has to love herself. With this new outlook on life, she drives off, right into a pole.

Waking up in the world where she has her regular old life back Natalie starts taking charge of her life with new insight and realization that she is perfect the way she is.

Full of laughter and F-bombs “Isn’t It Romantic” is sure to be a blockbuster hit and it is a must watch but at home. Definitely a Netflix and chill type of movie.