Marching for Equality

By Kelly Hammond

On January 20, only one year after the march in protest of the newly inaugurated Trump, women across America and other countries gathered in their cities to show their continuing disapproval of the president’s policies as well as support the fight for gender equality.  Thousands of people gathered in their local streets once again to display their feelings about the unfair pay gap, lack of women in political offices, and the recent spark of the #Metoo movement.  Protesters wore their famous pink hats from last year’s march as a symbolic message of female empowerment once again.  

The unexpected US government shutdown that fell on the day of the march was put into effect after the political debate concerning legalities of immigrants.  However, this only fueled women’s motivation to fill the streets and use their voices to fight for the rights of immigrants too.  The shutdown stirred up even more emotions from protesters who were already against the recent actions taken by Trump’s administration.

Although a majority of the protesters had differing political views from the Trump administration, including the support of Planned Parenthood and the pro-choice movement,  it is also important to point out the religious diversity that was at this march.  Hundreds of men and women joined the wave of female empowerment on this day with their Feminism and Faith in Unity rally.  People of the Catholic, Episcopalian, Muslim, Unitarian, Lakota Sioux, and Buddhist faiths all gathered to pray for rally participants and the equality of all women.  Lizzie Berne DeGear, a member of the The Women Who Stayed- a religious organization that supports the equality of men and women- said, “Thanks for this opportunity to bring our faith to our feminism, and our feminism to our faith.”

Before the march, a 42-year-old protester named Claudia Grubbs explained,

“I feel like going to the march will help re-center me, refocus me and not make me feel like I don’t know what is happening to our country. I feel like it’ll help me gain a sense of balance and a sense of purpose, and help me pursue things that I want to pursue.”

Like Grubbs, many women used this opportunity to reiterate their goals in this journey towards women’s equality.  While supporting the march in Las Vegas, singer and feminist, Cher, said “This is one of the worst times in our history and that’s why I honestly believe women are going to fix it.”

To check out more about this historic march and see pictures of protesters around the world, visit: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2018/01/21/protest-movement-women-march-around-globe/1051822001/ & https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/20/us/womens-march.html

Picture by Chris J Ratcliffe, Getty Images: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2018/01/21/protest-movement-women-march-around-globe/105182200

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The Ultimate Christmas Playlist

By Kelly Hammond


Click here to listen to the full playlist filled with a mix of new and classic Christmas songs!

  1. Ariana Grande // Santa Tell Me
  2. Justin Bieber // Mistletoe
  3. Donny Hathaway // This Christmas
  4. Mariah Carey // All I Want for Christmas Is You
  5. Kelly Clarkson // My Favorite Things
  6. Band Aid 30 // Do They Know It’s Christmas (2014)
  7. Straight No Chaser // The 12 Days of Christmas
  8. OneRepublic // Christmas Without You
  9. Jackson 5 // Santa Claus Is Coming To Town
  10. Andy Williams // It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year
  11. The Ronettes // Sleigh Ride
  12. Bobby Helms // Jingle Bell Rock
  13. Brenda Lee // Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree
  14. Burl Ives // A Holly Jolly Christmas
  15. Idina Menzel & Michael Bublé // Baby It’s Cold Outside
  16. Michael Bublé // It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas
  17. Nat King Cole // The Christmas Song
  18. Glee Cast // Last Christmas
  19. Dan + Shay // Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas
  20. Bing Crosby // White Christmas
  21. Josh Groban & Faith Hill // The First Noel
  22. Dean Martin // A Marshmallow World
  23. Burl Ives // Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer
  24. Jimmy Durante // Frosty The Snowman
  25. Faith Hill // A Baby Changes Everything
  26. Stevie Wonder // What Christmas Means To Me
  27. Dean Martin // Let it Snow
  28. Pentatonix // Silent Night
  29. Justin Bieber // Christmas Love
  30. Jose Feliciano // Feliz Navidad
  31. Josh Groban // I’ll Be Home for Christmas
  32. Pentatonix // Mary, Did You Know?

Mercy Day

By Kelly Hammond


Mercy Day is a beloved tradition in the Mount community that takes place every September.  While most girls are just get excited to be out of class for the day, the meaning behind Mercy Day goes much deeper.  In honor of Catherine McAuley, the founder of the Sisters of Mercy, Mount students spend this day providing service on campus and throughout the community.  Students trade in their hounds tooth skirts for a pair of jeans and gloves, and travel to various sites including Susan G. Koman, Calvary Cemetery, Helping Hand, the Compassion Center, Access Schools, Allsopp Park, and more.  This allows everyone to have the humbling opportunity to serve those in need and live like Catherine herself.  

When I was told that I would be going to a cemetery for Mercy Day, I was honestly pretty scared.  When most people hear “cemetery”, they automatically think of spooky ghosts, dark lifeless trees, and haunted graves.  However, what I found on my journey was quite the opposite.  The sun washed over the green, tree-filled area and illuminated the headstones of various shapes and sizes.  When we first arrived, we made our way through the front of the cemetery, past graves and presents left by loved ones, towards Bella Brown.  We took a moment of silence to remember her joyful and compassionate personality; a perfect reminder for us on a day focused on serving others.

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We then headed to the area of the cemetery where several Sisters of Mercy were buried.  It was sorrowing to see the rows and rows of disheveled and unclean headstones.  Most of these graves-some of which were almost 200 years old- looked as if they hadn’t been cleaned since they were put there.  

To give these headstones the proper TLC they deserve, we used sponges, brushes, and rags to gently remove the dirt and moss growing on the stones.  This experience gave me a new perspective on the word “cemetery”; one that doesn’t include scary ghosts, but instead a reminder of how we can still care for those who have passed on.  Even when we lose a loved one, honoring their memory by caring for their grave is just one way to continue serving them.  

Other members of our newspaper staff, Breanna Racher and Raehana Anwar, told me what they learned from their Mercy Day experiences.  Breanna said,

 “it seemed like what we were doing was very insignificant…until two women that were there told us what we did in an hour and a half would have taken a week for them to do.”  

Raehana recalls a similar feeling and says, “At first I thought cleaning up bikes couldn’t really do much to help the community, but after hearing about how excited the kids would get and how meaningful it was to them, what I was doing seemed to have more purpose. I felt like I really was impacting people’s lives, just by fixing up some bikes.”  Both girls’ time at their service sites proved the big impact we can make when we come together to help others.  

—Timelapse of Raehana and friends building a bike at their service site—


By Raehana Anwar