We invited high school students to submit a letter on any recent Times article. Popular topics included why high school doesn’t have to be boring, leggings, plastic bags, beauty, the college admissions scandal, asking kids what they want to be when they grow up, the murder of an Uber customer, basketball’s “one and done” rule and social media/technology/video games. Here is a selection of our favorites from among the more than 800 responses.
To the Editor:
Re “A Breaking Point for Stretchy Pants?” (Thursday Styles, April 4):
“Every girl in this classroom is wearing pants!” observed my Honors English 10 teacher, contrasting today’s gender roles with those of Jacobean England. When Shakespeare wrote “Macbeth,” this was unheard-of. In 21st-century New Jersey, leggings are the norm.
Maryann White, the mother who wrote a letter to a school newspaper, asserts that women should refrain from wearing you’re-asking-for-it leggings so that men can better control their primal impulses. We should avoid our favorite garment for the “greater good.” We must censor our wardrobes to help men practice self-control.
I thought that in the epic battle for women’s equality, sometime between the 19th Amendment and #MeToo, the question of women wearing pants had been asked and answered. Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines pants as “an outer garment covering each leg separately and usually extending from the waist to the ankle.” It’s not complicated. Leggings are pants. If men have impulse-control issues, that’s not our problem.
We women of Gen Z have bigger dragons to slay. Look for us pushing boundaries — seeking parity in pay and congressional representation. Look for us in the C-suites and on Capitol Hill. We’ll be the ones wearing the leggings.
Elizabeth Hirschfeld, Mountain Lakes, N.J.Mountain Lakes High School, 10th grade
To the Editor:
Re “Someone Is Always Trying to Kill You,” by Sonia Nazario (Sunday Review, April 7):
I was born and raised in El Salvador, where domestic violence, rape and murder became normal for women. I grew up with the fear of never seeing my grandmother when she went out to do errands. My grandmother told my siblings and me about being nearly killed by my alcoholic grandfather.
Sadly, my mom and my aunts were beaten by my grandfather when he got home drunk because they complained about not having enough food after he had spent all the money on alcohol. I heard about other girls my age being raped and left in places where no one could find them.
When I was 12, my family moved to America, seeking a safer and better life. Luckily, I found it. But when thinking about where I stand today and where other girls and women are in Central America, I feel angry at myself, as I am safe while there is a girl out there taking her last breath.
Many families are running away because it is their only option. They are just looking to live without being hunted like animals.
Alicia Argueta, Sandy Spring, Md.Sandy Spring Friends School, 12th grade
To the Editor:
Re “Is Being Trans Like Being an Immigrant?” (Op-Ed, nytimes.com, April 3):
As a teenager raised by parents who immigrated from Iran, I agree with Jennifer Finney Boylan in that both immigrants and transgender people face unwarranted prejudice, causing them to often feel unwelcome and subordinate to those who have not changed their country or gender. For example, sometimes my mother tries to hide her Persian accent when she speaks, attempting to shield her Iranian roots. I can imagine that transgender people endure similar struggles, blanketing their true persona.
When I think about the preconceptions that face immigrants and transgender people, I envision Walt Whitman and his words about America’s dinner table in his poem “Song of Myself”: “This is the meal equally set … I will not have a single person slighted or left away.” If an individual living in the 19th century clearly understood that America’s table isn’t complete without all who long to dine, regardless of their differences, why do we, in 2019, still struggle to be open-minded?
Like Ms. Boylan, I think that we need to shrink chasms and extend bridges. We must invite those who have changed their country or their gender to our tables, respecting them for both who they were and who they have become.
Nadia Farjami, Laguna Hills, Calif.St. Margaret’s Episcopal School, 11th grade
To the Editor:
Re “Stop Calling Asian Women Adorable” (Sunday Review, March 24):
Growing up in a white society as an Asian-American girl, I was constantly reminded that I was different. My Caucasian peers pestered me with questions about where I was really from, why my eyes were smaller and how to say things in Chinese. They placed their fingers all over me, on my hair and my skin. I felt stripped of my individuality, like an animal showcased at the zoo.
It seems to me that at this age, people should be more cognizant about their actions. Nevertheless, I, along with my other Asian friends, continue to endure dehumanizing comments. We are commonly depicted as objects to obtain or challenges to surmount. I have heard various guys say that they have always wanted to “try” an Asian because they are “exotic,” “petite” and “doll-like.” They tell me that as a Chinese girl, I would look more attractive if I put my hair in pigtails, if I used more makeup or if I wore short skirts.
I am not an accessory to try on and admire — and then take off when you get bored. I am a human being with a name. I want to be seen for who I am, not for my race.
Megan Ying, Rockville, Md.Richard Montgomery High School, 11th grade
To the Editor:
Re “Stop Asking Kids What They Want to Be When They Grow Up,” by Adam Grant (nytimes.com, April 1):
As a high school senior, this year I am hearing a cacophony of “what are you planning to major in?” or “what do you plan to do when you’re out of college?” How am I supposed to know what I want to do for the rest of my life right now, and why do I need to know? Not having a specific profession in mind does not make me any less driven or motivated; in fact, I believe it makes me more curious and interested in the world around me. Almost every day I change my mind. Today, I want to major in anthropology, but yesterday I felt that environmental science was my calling.
I love the idea of aspiring to be a “person of integrity,” but most adults in my life certainly do not think that’s enough. Today, success is often measured in terms of money. How can I possibly be successful if I am not rich? To be honest, some of the happiest people I have ever met are barely making ends meet.
Is it really so terrible to simply want to be happy when you grow up?
Jade Strapart, Portland, Ore.Northwest Academy, 12th grade
To the Editor:
Re “You Underestimate Yourself,” by Spencer Greenberg and Seth Stephens-Davidowitz (Sunday Review, April 7):
In our current predicament as high school students, my friend and I know not only what it’s like to underestimate (and sometimes overestimate) our abilities, but also what it’s like being surrounded by over a thousand people doing the same.
The end of sophomore year can mean beginning to seriously consider our future, and, in turn, questioning what we want to do and whether we’re good enough to do it. As the authors note, we humans are often overconfident about our abilities, with the exception of things outside of our comfort zones. I’m probably overconfident about my singing ability, but, like most my age, I lack confidence in something so unknown as my future, and how my decisions may determine it, for better or worse.
Appropriately, as I’m pulled from my comfort zone writing my first letter to the editor, I question whether I’m as good at writing as I thought. Maybe not. Or maybe I shouldn’t be so hard on myself. My aforementioned friend constantly compares himself with others, although he told me the other day not to do so myself. Maybe he’s right, and maybe we shouldn’t be so hard on ourselves. And maybe others should follow suit.
Matthew McMorrough, Ann Arbor, Mich.Skyline High School, 10th grade
To the Editor:
Re “Where’s Your Climate Plan, Mr. McConnell?,” by Michelle Cottle (Editorial Observer, March 27):
I am 17 years old. I have lived on this planet for 17 years, observed for 17 years, seen increasingly frequent notices about animals becoming endangered for 17 years. I have watched news reports of deadly weather events and people being told to evacuate their homes, and I have watched politicians do nothing for 17 years.
For much longer than the 17 years I have been on this planet, politicians have been trying to play a game of darts with no target. The Green New Deal may be a target that seems to many to be “far-fetched” or “too optimistic,” but at least it gives us something to aim at.
Republicans such as Mitch McConnell have pointed their fingers and laughed at the few politicians aiming for a chance to stop this planet from overheating. To those laughing, I have a question: Who carries more shame? Those who aim toward a way to make life better for as many people as they can, or a 77-year-old politician who seems to have noticed less in his lifetime than a 17-year-old?
Julia Herkert, Verona, Wis.Verona Area High School, 11th grade
To the Editor:
Re “Olympic Athlete. Brilliant Mind. ‘Never at Peace’” (front page, April 9):
I applaud this article drawing attention to an athlete’s suicide. At the same time, it’s key that the media avoid propagating misconceptions about suicide, even accidentally.
The online headline, “Olympic Cyclist Kelly Catlin Seemed Destined for Glory. Then She Killed Herself,” implies that Catlin’s talents should or could have prevented her from taking her life. Though the story does point out underlying problems in her pristine-on-the-surface life, I spotted several mentions of how strange her death seemed in the face of all her achievements.
As impressive as her talents were, mental health and personal accomplishments should be sharply distinguished. As a high school student, I can say that many of the smartest, most hard-working people I know struggle with suicidal thoughts, depression and self-harm. My cousin, a captain of her Model U.N. and cross-country teams, died by suicide.
Mixing achievements and health brings into play a dangerous idea: that if someone looks to be doing well on the outside, he or she must be doing well on the inside, too. I’ve done my own share of hiding how broken I was inside while masquerading as the perfect student. It’s sad that we still automatically associate a 4.0 G.P.A. with well-being.
Aviva Bechky, Rockville, Md.Montgomery Blair High School, 10th grade
To the Editor:
Re “It’s Dangerous to Be a Boy,” by Michael C. Reichert (Sunday Review, March 31):
I am a 17-year-old boy. When I was in my first year of high school, I was at the bottom of my “friend group.” I was the person who if he were to just disappear in the middle of a group lunch or conversation would not be missed or even noticed. I was teased, I was abused, I was excluded. But hey, boys will be boys.
Once, all of the other kids in the group practically forced me to fight one of my friends. This other kid was on the bottom of the friend group with me, only kept around because of how easy it was to make fun of him. This other kid and I had a relationship in which we constantly bullied each other not out of real spite, but to gain respect and approval from the rest of the group.
When they made us fight each other we were not enemies, there was no ill will between us. We were simply like dogs or bulls, animals thrown into a ring and told to fight or die. To the rest of the boys, we were not people, we were entertainment. Each member of that group was focused on one thing: getting to the top. We would step on, or fistfight, anyone we deemed a threat.
It was ridiculous, it was unhealthy, but above all, it was teenage boys.
Adam Winchenbach, Rockville, Md.Richard Montgomery High School, 11th grade
To the Editor:
Re “New Kind of Recruit for Rebranded Boy Scouts: Girls” (news article, March 4):
Growing up, I loved to tag along with my younger brother’s Cub Scout, then Boy Scout, activities. The closest thing available for me at the time was Girl Scouts, which I quickly realized was completely different and not right for me. My brother was earning merit badges, going backpacking, camping, caving, canoeing, skiing and climbing, while my Girl Scout troop was doing arts and crafts, planning spring balls and selling cookies.
As soon as I was old enough, I joined Venturing, a coed organization within the Boy Scouts for ages 14 and up. Since then, I have met some of my best friends and learned so much about outdoor skills, teamwork, physical fitness and leadership. Most of all, I’ve found a love for the outdoors that my Girl Scout troop never gave me the opportunity to explore.
The Eagle rank is one of the most internationally recognized youth awards and, until now, it was unavailable for girls to earn. I am on the path to Eagle Scout, like thousands of girls across the country. As women increasingly step into corporate, academic, civic and political leadership, we will need every one of these Eagles.
Tara Presnall, Chevy Chase, Md.Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School, 11th grade
To the Editor:
I thought “Rituals of Honor in Hospital Hallways” (nytimes.com, April 2), about “honor walks” for dying patients about to donate their organs, was a beautiful piece. As a registered organ donor myself, I found that thinking about the honor walk provoked mixed emotions. I felt fear that it could be me being wheeled down that silent hall. But I also felt a pride in humanity for acknowledging the sacrifice the donor made and showing respect.
Too often people imagine organ donation as a grisly, thankless process that leaves behind nothing but a cotton-stuffed corpse. However, this article shows that it can be beautiful and somber, and leave behind tears of joy as well as sadness.
I will never be glad to die, but should I be in such a situation, knowing that my heart could beat in a little girl’s chest or my eyes peer from the face of a young man, I could at least feel content.
Grace Foskett, Hudson, OhioWestern Reserve Academy, 11th grade
To the Editor:
Re “Celebrating the ‘They’ Mitzvah” (news article, March 28):
I was thrilled when I heard about the steps religious communities are taking to make traditional celebrations more inclusive and accepting. As a gender-nonconforming student living in a conservative Christian family, I am aware of the bitter, often heartbreaking sting of knowing that the people who are supposed to be closest to you would be repulsed if they found out who you truly are.
The preservation of tradition is important within any community, but the creation of a b’nai mitzvah proves that these traditions can be adapted to create a sense of acceptance and support that is vital to anybody adopting an identity that is different from what society dictates as “normal.” This is especially true for teenagers, whose changing bodies provide them with conflicting signals that are often difficult to interpret.
By showing that they are willing to exert the time and energy necessary to change the gender of classical Hebrew words to fit the identity of a young child, these religious officials prove they are committed to creating a community that does not discriminate against its members. A community free from bigotry and other forms of hate. A community I would be proud to live in.
Danny Bean, Fort Wayne, Ind.Homestead High School, 11th grade
To the Editor:
Re “Seemingly Friendly Ride-Share Drivers Were Predators, Lying in Wait” (news article, April 5):
I am not allowed to take an Uber by myself, according to my parents. But I do not argue with them on this one. The death of Samantha Josephson reaffirms my parents’ rule and my own fears. I am 17 years old and I am scared to be a teenage girl in America.
My 21-year-old brother is allowed to ride in an Uber by himself. In fact, he gets a monthly allowance that goes straight to his Uber fund for his weekends while he is away at college. But the “103 Uber drivers and 18 Lyft drivers [who] had been accused of sexual assault or abuse” and the driver-imposters awaiting drunk females outside of bars and nightclubs make it so I will not be able to do so.
There is a double standard in America: Boys are allowed to travel alone, yet girls are cautioned constantly to never travel on their own. “Do not walk home at night alone,” I’ve been warned, but I cannot take an Uber alone either. How is a young woman in America supposed to get home safely?
Hope Kahn, Columbia, Md.Wilde Lake High School, 12th grade
To the Editor:
Re “What to Do When You’re Bored With Your Routines” (Smarter Living, nytimes.com, March 29):
Thanks, Julie Fraga, for the list of psychological life hacks, but I’d rather be honest with myself. Yes, boredom is a real and very human affliction, but just like with mental illness, we often choose to medicate it instead of getting to its root. Using “chopsticks” for your life, or making small differences to everyday boring tasks, is a solution that is temporary and slightly condescending.
If your commute makes you feel depressed, the answer is not to take a different train. If you feel undermined or bored by your partner, having a spontaneous dinner party is not going to turn you into Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams. It’s going to make you feel like a toddler given a different colored spoon when you won’t eat your applesauce.
That’s not to say switching things up isn’t good for you. I think striving to be unique in everyday life is refreshing and can make you forget about harsh realities. So the next time you’re bored, don’t think about what to do on the train, or what to do about your boss. Think about what you’re doing on this planet, and know that it’s in your power to choose.
Kate Jeffrey, New YorkThe Beacon School, 11th grade
To the Editor:
Re “High School Doesn’t Have to Be Boring,” by Jal Mehta and Sarah Fine (Sunday Review, March 31):
Thank you for listening to students. Our thoughts, ideas and opinions are too often dismissed. Yes, school can be boring; no, we aren’t just saying that to get back to our iPhones.
My generation loves social media as much as the next one, but we have other interests and passions. It shouldn’t be standard to find high school so slow, disengaging and draining. Just as the authors described, my classmates and I are full of energy and excitement when the clock hits 3. We can’t wait to break away from the factory-like routine of our school days. It’s not the teachers, and it’s not the subjects; rather it’s the way in which the whole system is set up.
We are young, but we are not clueless. This country needs to stop treating us so condescendingly, as if we don’t know how to appreciate our education. We are eager and willing to learn, but schools need to work with us a little. Get us out into the world.
New York City is home to countless museums, historical sites and relevant work experiences. We have six hours a day, five days a week. Let’s at least have a little fun. What, anyway, is so radical about school not being boring?
Bella Irwin, New YorkMillennium High School, 11th gradeB:
踢足球游戏【地】【球】【外】【围】，【太】【阳】【系】【防】【线】【一】【期】【工】【程】【黑】【色】【防】【线】，【赵】【信】【和】【天】【使】【冷】【正】【面】【色】【凝】【重】【的】【看】【着】【外】【面】【的】【天】【渣】【集】【团】。 “【小】【伦】，【联】【系】【上】【不】【易】【没】？【天】【渣】【的】【进】【攻】【速】【度】【要】【比】【我】【们】【预】【计】【的】【还】【要】【快】！”，【赵】【信】【向】【葛】【小】【伦】【开】【了】【暗】【通】【讯】。 “【赵】【信】，【小】【伦】【正】【准】【备】【展】【开】【天】【刃】【审】【判】。【陈】【不】【易】【那】【边】，【暂】【时】【还】【没】【联】【系】【上】，【不】【过】【我】【想】【他】【也】【快】【回】【来】【了】！”，【怜】【风】【回】【复】【道】。
【继】【续】【一】【成】【不】【变】【下】【去】，【恐】【怕】【亚】【伦】【他】【真】【的】【没】【有】【办】【法】，【在】【这】【时】【继】【续】【保】【持】【着】【自】【己】【的】【冷】【静】。 【然】【而】【再】【去】【让】【眼】【前】【的】【事】【情】，【可】【能】【会】【在】【之】【后】【面】【对】【的】【问】【题】【可】【能】【会】【做】【出】【来】【的】【合】【适】【的】【理】【解】【和】【处】【理】【中】。 【更】【进】【一】【步】【去】【对】【于】【事】【情】【在】【一】【开】【始】【具】【有】【值】【得】【清】【楚】【的】【认】【知】【和】【合】【适】【的】【理】【解】。 【然】【后】【的】【事】【情】【又】【需】【要】【被】【人】【们】【再】【去】，【有】【着】【何】【种】【看】【起】【来】【像】【是】【最】【佳】【的】【清】【楚】
“【也】【可】【以】【但】【是】【你】【把】【衣】【服】【弄】【坏】【了】【你】【要】【先】【裁】【的】【衣】【服】【还】【可】【以】！” 【男】【人】【气】【的】【脸】【色】【微】【微】【发】【红】，【掀】【起】【了】【手】【来】【就】【要】【打】【人】。 “【啊】，【就】【你】【们】【这】【几】【个】【女】【的】，【还】【想】【逼】【我】【买】【这】【件】【衣】【服】，【还】【真】【老】【子】【怕】【了】【你】【们】【了】。” 【符】【离】【儿】【眼】【看】【着】【两】【个】【人】【一】【言】【不】【合】【就】【要】【打】【起】【来】【了】，【连】【忙】【拉】【住】【了】【电】【店】【员】。 “【算】【了】【吧】，【不】【要】【因】【为】【这】【点】【小】【事】【情】【真】【闹】【下】【去】【了】，【衣】
【这】【个】【世】【界】【的】【人】【虽】【然】【骁】【勇】【好】【斗】，【崇】【拜】【强】【者】，【打】【架】【斗】【殴】【那】【是】【常】【态】。 【但】【是】【也】【恰】【恰】【如】【此】，【在】【这】【个】【世】【界】【没】【有】【人】【会】【瞧】【得】【起】【持】【强】【凌】【弱】【之】【人】。 【这】【个】【跟】【这】【个】【世】【界】【人】【类】【的】【历】【史】【有】【关】，【纵】【观】【人】【类】【的】【历】【史】，【都】【是】【一】【路】【被】【欺】【负】【成】【长】【的】。【早】【些】【年】【甚】【至】【是】【别】【人】【的】【盘】【中】【餐】。 【这】【种】【血】【泪】【史】【使】【得】【人】【类】【极】【其】【鄙】【视】【那】【些】【欺】【负】【弱】【小】【者】。【而】【另】【一】【方】【面】【弱】【小】【没】【关】踢足球游戏【然】【而】【这】【位】【公】【主】【在】【蜃】【都】【城】【的】【荒】【淫】【之】【名】【却】【是】【家】【喻】【户】【晓】，【府】【中】【更】【是】【男】【宠】【禁】【裔】【众】【多】，【可】【即】【使】【是】【这】【样】，【依】【旧】【有】【不】【少】【人】【前】【赴】【后】【继】【的】【想】【要】【爬】【上】【她】【的】【床】【榻】。【有】【些】【即】【使】【是】【被】【强】【迫】，【碍】【于】【皇】【家】【颜】【面】【与】【势】【力】，【也】【根】【本】【不】【敢】【声】【张】，【只】【得】【暗】【吞】【苦】【水】。【但】【有】【些】【却】【是】【为】【了】【荣】【华】【富】【贵】、【高】【官】【厚】【禄】，【才】【不】【惜】【委】【身】【于】【她】，【甘】【愿】【成】【为】【她】【的】【裙】【下】【之】【臣】。 【纵】【使】【是】【阅】【男】
【抬】【起】【手】【掌】，【看】【着】【一】【点】【点】【崩】【溃】【的】【魔】【力】【光】【辉】，【姬】【光】【语】【气】【一】【如】【既】【往】【的】【平】【淡】：“【只】【是】【想】【要】【借】【着】【这】【种】【法】【则】【的】【对】【冲】【确】【认】【的】，【但】【既】【然】【有】【更】【好】【的】【选】【定】【也】【便】【无】【须】【用】【这】【种】【低】【服】【从】【的】【方】【法】【了】” 【咔】【嚓】—— 【脚】【下】，【漆】【黑】【的】【螺】【旋】【之】【环】【一】【点】【点】【显】【化】，【从】【天】【际】【那】【庞】【大】【的】【圆】【环】【内】【疏】【散】【而】【出】【的】【无】【视】【樱】【色】【箭】【矢】，【突】【然】【间】【有】【跨】【越】【一】【半】【的】【数】【目】【向】【着】【这】【道】【螺】【旋】【之】【环】
【黎】【擎】【瞳】【孔】【一】【缩】，【真】【的】【假】【的】？【这】【么】【巧】【合】【的】【吗】？【硬】【接】【了】【一】【次】【爆】【炸】，【就】【到】【了】【那】【药】【剂】【师】【的】【魂】【归】【之】【地】？ 【等】【等】！ 【黎】【擎】【想】【到】【了】**【先】【前】【的】【表】【情】：“【师】【父】，【刚】【才】【那】【爆】【炸】，【不】【会】【是】【你】【做】【的】【吧】？” “【哈】？【怎】【么】【可】【能】【呀】！【为】【师】【怎】【么】【会】【做】【这】【么】【无】【耻】【的】【事】【情】【呀】。【那】【个】……【你】【先】【处】【理】【眼】【下】【的】【问】【题】【吧】。【为】【师】【去】【看】【控】【制】【器】【了】。”【说】【完】，**【就】【溜】
【不】【得】【不】【说】，【古】【云】【峰】【的】【战】【斗】【经】【验】【却】【是】【很】【足】，【对】【战】【局】【的】【把】【握】【也】【很】【准】【确】，【远】【战】，【确】【实】【是】【凌】【晓】【峰】【较】【为】【薄】【弱】【的】【一】【点】。 【他】【现】【在】【的】【综】【合】【实】【力】，【绝】【对】【比】【一】【般】【的】【先】【天】【宗】【师】【要】【强】【大】【很】【多】，【无】【论】【是】【莽】【荒】【气】【还】【是】【自】【身】【体】【质】，【都】【能】【做】【到】【碾】【压】【一】【般】【先】【天】【宗】【师】。 【但】【是】，【说】【到】【底】，【他】【到】【现】【在】【为】【止】，【都】【还】【不】【是】【一】【个】【真】【正】【的】【先】【天】【宗】【师】，【体】【内】【的】【莽】【荒】【气】，【最】