A negative news week

After almost 15 weeks of school, the students of Starr’s Mill are finally getting a well-deserved break. The last few weeks have featured nothing but sweat, pain, and hard work for the Mill’s students. Now, however, freedom is in their grasp. For The Prowler writers, the semester has brought all kinds of headlines and this week is no exception. So before the people who bring the news take a long week off, a final round of news needs reporting. With a Middle Eastern earthquake, a California school disaster, and a trapped president, The Prowler has the stories.

Earthquake rocks the Middle East  (11/13)

Late Sunday night, a tremendous earthquake hit the Middle East along the Iran-Iraq border. This earthquake is said to be the most powerful of the year. Aftershocks of the earthquake were felt in places from as close to Turkey to as far away as Lebanon, Kuwait and Pakistan. The earthquake was so powerful that 445 people are already confirmed dead and 7,100 more injured.

Both Iraq and Iran were quick to react. Both countries sent clean up as well as rescue crews to help start cleaning up the damage the earthquake caused. However, despite this earthquake being the worst of the year, it is most certainly not the worst earthquake this region has seen. In 2003, a 6.6 magnitude earthquake struck, leaving 26,000 people dead.

Shooting near California elementary school (11/14)

Tuesday morning, four people were shot and killed around multiple locations in the Northern Californian town of Rancho Tehama. The assailant was Kevin Neal, a local who in this past January was set on bail after stabbing a neighbor of his. One of the such locations was next to an elementary school. Along with the four deaths, around a dozen people were injured, two of which were children. Luckily, no children were killed in the incident.

The night before the shootings, the attacker apparently shot and killed his wife, hiding her in the floorboards only to be discovered by the police the next day. There seems to be no cause behind the whole rampage, and even more odd is the fact that Neal drove around the town, shooting at several seemingly random locations. One thing that is for sure is that more details are likely to emerge on the cause of this tragic event.

Zimbabwe president trapped in his home during military coup (11/15)

Monday, a military coup began in Zimbabwe and is still currently unfolding. Not much is known about the revolt, but insurgents have captured the state broadcast center and parts of Harare, the Zimbabwe capital. Military has been seen patrolling the streets but it is unclear which side the military supports.

The United Nations and African Union condemned the revolt, calling for peace and an end to the fighting. Supporters of the revolt disagree and call the revolt a “bloodless correction.” Militants have cornered the Zimbabwe president into his home as of Wednesday. As of now, details are still emerging and it might be a few more days before more information is released.

SpaceX is launching a secret payload this evening (11/16)

Thursday, SpaceX will launch one of their Falcon 9 rockets from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center. The payload, which has been named Zuma, is top secret. What is known about the payload is that it will launch between 8 and 10 p.m. EST. Northrop Grumman, an aerospace and defense company, has confirmed that it procured Zuma’s launch for the U.S. government. The branch responsible is currently unknown.

Northrop Grumman has described the payload as “restricted.” The rocket will enter low-Earth orbit, where it will complete one lap around the planet every 90 to 120 minutes. Nothing else has been said describing Zuma’s contents, its purpose, or who is responsible. This intense level of secrecy is uncommon, even when sensitive national security satellites are launched. Time will tell what this rocket’s mission truly is.

The death of rapper Lil Peep sheds light on the reality of addiction and depression (11/17)

Gustav Åhr, a rapper known as Lil Peep, died of an assumed drug overdose this week at the age of 21. Police have stated that after searching his tour bus an overdose of Xanax is what most likely killed him. His death has brought awareness to the severity of depression, and the fact that “popping pills” is not an act that should be taken lightly.

Drug use and depression have been heavily glorified in recent hip-hop culture. Lil Peep’s death has only further unveiled the opioid problem that already exists in America. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated that two million Americans have abused prescribed pain pills. In 2015, 52,404 deaths by overdose were recorded in the United States. Lil Peep was known to have depression, and the pills he overdosed on were supposed to treat him. His death proves that mental illness needs to be properly treated, not glorified.