the westminster news
Published by the students of Westminster School
By Alex Shao ’22
(Image Credit: Tim Caynes )
Recently, students experienced a boundaries training course, which talked about inappropriate deeds including being a bystander. After the course, I contemplated this topic and realized its relevance in the context of a movie I had recently watched. Titled “Judgement at Nuremberg,” this movie depicts a post-World War II trial of German judges. During the trial, the German defense attorney, Hans Rolfe, says the famous line: “Ernst Janning’s guilt is the world’s guilt — no more and no less.” He argues that one cannot simply decide someone’s guilt because it is always an “easy thing to condemn one man in the dock.” Instead, everyone involved in the condemned actions has to bear responsibility for the damage caused; however, the responsibility of the entire collective, in this case the Nazi party, is diffused among so many individuals that one cannot easily decide who is guilty based on their actions.
By Serin Lee ’22
(Image Credit: iStock)
Plastic is used everywhere by everyone, and it is no secret that plasticware is moving into the seas instead of being recycled. More than 8 million metric tons of plastic enter oceans each year, and scientists all-around the world are working on a solution to plastic pollution. The latest breakthrough is the discovery of a highly efficient plastic-eating enzyme.
By Jonah Prentiss ’22
(Image Credit: Creative Commons)
With the recent passing of supreme court justice, vanguard of gender equality and political icon, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the replacement to her supreme court seat in Amy Coney Barrett has garnered widespread attention, both due to her originalist ideology as well as the controversial timing of her nomination. Opinions of Barrett’s nomination, similar to most recent political matters, are simply another example of the sharp division of the U.S. population along the partisan lines that have been carved deeper into American politics during recent years.
By Aleyna Baki ’21 and Alice Liu ’23
(Image Credit: The Economist)
Dead civilians in flag-draped body bags, young boy-conscripts with rifles, churches turned into shelters, streets carpeted with glass, cars opened like tin cans — this is the current state of Nagorno-Karabakh’s 30 years of conflict.
By Shui Se Phoe ’21
(Image Credit: Business Insider)
After governments imposed nationwide lockdowns in response to COVID-19, people in countries that have normally resisted Amazon are now succumbing to the e-commerce giant. Italy, one of the first countries to be hit hard by the virus, was the most noticeably transformed as Italians shifted to buying items online in record numbers. And now that it’s started, the trend toward online shopping in Italy has yet to slow down despite the Italian government’s relatively successful response to the pandemic and current reopening of retail stores. Small and midsize businesses, an integral part of society and the economy in Italy, were forced to sell on Amazon during the lockdown and have expressed fear that they may lose out against the monopoly that Amazon is beginning to gain.
By Lucy Jones ’21
The COVID-19 pandemic undeniably put this year’s Spring 2021 Paris Fashion Week to the test. With necessary 6-foot distancing, mask wearing and limited traveling, it would be an understatement to say each fashion house had its setbacks. Pre-pandemic, each show would be packed with photographers, bloggers, editors and the world’s socialites, but just as everyone else has been forced to adjust, so has the fashion industry. This year, houses such as Louis Vuitton, Balenciaga and Chloé wanted to create a physical runway show but in a new and pandemic-safe style. From creating digital seating to using socially distanced runway locations, each house added its own personal touch to the necessary precautions each had to take.
By Niclas Swahn '22
Ten years ago, Chinese entrepreneur and software engineer Eric Yuan started a small video conferencing company in the face of scrutiny from the market. Investors doubted the possibilities of another service in a market dominated by Microsoft’s Skype. It only took nine years and a pandemic for Zoom to take over the video-conferencing world and become a staple in our daily lives as students.
By Margot Douglass '22 and Ceci Owen '22
(Image Credit: dragana991 )
Now that masks are a part of our daily lives, it's important to remember that they can be so much more than just bland surgical masks. Masks can be a cute accessory or even a statement that everyone stands in awe of. We all know that masks can be a bother, so why not make them fun? Many companies have started designing their own masks, so here are just a few recommendations for the safest and most fashionable ones.
By Kellen Seeley '22
(Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech)
This September, an international team of astronomers discovered phosphine gas in Venus’ atmosphere approximately 55 kilometers above its surface. The team detected phosphine gas by using the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope in Hawaii and the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array in Chile. Investigations are now underway to determine if the phosphine is of biological origin.