On the 7th of
December, 2016, two bodies were discovered in a well in Williamstown, North
Carolina. The bodies were identified as 14-year-old Taylor Carroll and her
mother 40-year-old Dawn Ward, who had both been reported missing by Dawn’s
mother the previous week. She had gone to their home and discovered a broken
window but was unable to find her daughter or granddaughter. Dawn had died from
one stab wound while Taylor had suffered several stab wounds.
It wouldn’t be long until
police arrested 25-year-old Jeffrey Ward, Dawn’s estranged husband. An investigation
uncovered that the couple had a tempestuous relationship and that Dawn had
filed a domestic violence protective order against Jeffrey. He had threatened
to kill her and her family on a number of occasions. Those who knew the family said that while Taylor wasn’t Jeffrey’s daughter, she treated him as her own father.
ABC Family’s “The Fosters” delivered the youngest gay kiss in TV history when junior-high boyfriends Jude Foster (played by Hayden Byerly) and Connor Stevens (Gavin Macintosh) tenderly locked lips in Jude’s bedroom. Jonnor would later go on to attend an LGBT prom and share a slow dance. Outside of the show, Gavin and Hayden have attended numerous LGBT events and have been outspoken advocates for the LGBT community.
The English TV series “Cucumber” had a side story exploring how far straight(ish) boys will go to monetize social media by appealing to gay men when Adam Whitaker (played by Ceallach Spellman) and friend Tomasz (Matthew Bailey) stripped down and lip-synced homoerotically to Katie Perry’s “I Kissed a Girl” – finishing up with a passionate kiss of their own.
Nick Jonas reignited his solo career with a new, self-titled album and series of racy photoshoots that had him performing on nearly every awards show and at numerous pop festivals over the course of the year. He also continues to reprise his role as the sexually confused MMA fighter Nate Kulina on DirecTV’s “Kingdom,” and had a recurring role as Boone Clemens in the first season of Fox’s “Scream Queens.”
17-year-old model Lucky Blue Smith came out of seemingly nowhere to become modeling’s IT boy. Whether it was walking the runway for some of the top design houses or his own spreads in high-end fashion magazines, it was impossible to escape the platinum-haired bombshell.
Cody Christian joined the cast of MTV’s “Teen Wolf” for Season 5 as the unbelievably hot but thoroughly evil Theo Raeken, testing how much fans could love and hate a character at the same time. He also continued to reprise his role as Mike Montgomery on ABC Family’s “Pretty Little Liars,” even getting his shirt off to expose a sweaty, adonis-like torso (a feat he repeats multiple times on “Teen Wolf,” as well).
Mateus Ward delivered a nuanced and frightening performance as a teenage mass-murderer in TNT’s “Murder in the First,” absolutely carrying every one of his limited scenes.
British Olympic diver Tom Daley proposed to boyfriend and American gay-rights activist Dustin Lance Black.
And last but not least, Troye Sivan had a break-out year with his first studio album and his first of many concert tours to come. “Blue Neighborhood” debuted at No. 6 on the Billboard charts in his native Australia and at No. 7 in the U.S. (One Direction was in the eighth spot that week). His video trilogy of songs from “Blue Neighborhood” present a haunting tale of young gay love and loss in a not always accepting society.
Originally Mrs Butler’s recipe, Ruth experimented with added flavours after falling in love with some of Phyrne’s Turkish Delight. A sweet and delicate jam that compliments croissants, scones, and plain bread. This recipe makes approximately 1 litre.
1 kg of strawberries 1 kg of sugar 60 ml of lemon juice 60 ml of rosewater
Wash and dry your strawberries before hulling them. If you prefer chunky jam, half and quarter the berries, but if you prefer smoother jam mash the berries with a potato masher. Place berries, lemon juice and sugar in a large saucepan. Stir mixture and then cover and leave for at least 2 hours or overnight. This allows the sugar and lemon juice to draw the pectin from the berries and makes a nice cohesive jam. After allowing the mixture to steep, place saucepan over a low heat and slowly dissolve the sugar. Make sure to stir the mixture to prevent any sticking or burning. Now add the rosewater and bring mixture to a rolling boil for 10-20 minutes until jam is set*. Skim the scum carefully off the top and throw away. Allow jam to sit for about 10 minutes so the fruit can settle otherwise the berries will float in your jars. Pour into sterilised** jars, seal and allow to cool. This jam can be stored in a cool dark place for up to two years.
* To test whether your jam has set, place a small plate in your fridge as you begin cooking the jam. When you think it might be ready take the plate out and drop a small amount of jam on the plate. Wait a moment then push your finger against one edge of the jam drop. If the drop crinkles as you push it, the jam is set.
** It’s extremely easy to sterilise jars, just wash them in the dishwasher or in the sink then place them on trays in an oven set to approximately 100c (fan forced) and wait about 10 minutes. The jars will be sterilised after this
The thing that apologists of characters like Grant Ward or Kylo Ren do not seem to be able to process is that:
Even if you start from the idea that these characters were abused and victims of indoctrination (something that was canon for Ward and something that was not canon for Kylo Ren)…
Even if you accept the weak justification that HYDRA and the First Order are not literally Nazis, the former being founded by a character meant to be the most Nazi of all Nazis, the latter committing actual genocide in their destruction of five planets, and both organizations relying heavily on Nazi imagery, design, and iconography…
There is a point where a person is accountable for their own actions.
Grant Ward and Kylo Ren are adults. Not children. And just because someone may have had a bad childhood - something that I will emphasize again has not been canonically established in the case of Kylo Ren - that is not an excuse for assault, murder, torture, rape in Grant Ward’s case, and so on.
Grant Ward and Kylo Ren have both been portrayed as being aware of their actions and having autonomy of choice. We see both characters acknowledging the possibility of other decisions. We see them considering those decisions and choosing otherwise. They are in full possession of their decision making abilities.
Grant Ward and Kylo Ren are not Bucky Barnes, who continued to fight his conditioning whenever possible and was forced back into a subservient state when this was discovered. They are not Rip Hunter, who was literally rewritten by someone with direct access to his mind, his emotional connections to past and present warped and obliterated.
Unlike Bucky Barnes, there is no one actively interfering when Grant Ward and Kylo Ren take the time to consider the decisions that they’re making. No one is shoving them back into any terrifying science fiction machine. Unlike Rip Hunter, both characters are aware of and still retain their emotional connections to characters like Thomas, Daisy, Han and Leia. They have consciously chosen to reject them.
Grant Ward and Kylo Ren are tragic characters in a way. But they aren’t tragic for “dying without anyone getting a chance to know who he really is” (in Ward’s case) or “for being rejected despite being mentally ill and an abuse victim.”
Grant Ward and Kylo Ren have proven who they are many times over. They’re not being rejected for mental illness and abuse.
They’re being rejected because they have committed murder, torture, betrayal, rape (Ward), ordered a massacre and assisted a genocide (Kylo) and so on.
The tragedy of Grant Ward and Kylo Ren is that both characters could have chosen to be other than what they are, and have repeatedly decided to be monsters instead.
Film Noir Fitzsimmons AU for @chinesebakery for the I Love Photoshop Exchange!
Fitz and Simmons are undercover SHIELD agents who meet by chance while tracking down suspected murderer Grant “Hive” Ward. Once they realize they’re on the same side, they team up and locate Ward in record time. Once business is out of the way, Simmons wastes no time asking out Fitz. Of course he accepts, and the rest is history.
TV reporter Alison Parker and cameraman Adam Ward were shot to death during a live television interview on CBS Roanoke affiliate WDBJ-TV Wednesday by gunman Vester Flanagan who recorded himself carrying out the killings and posted the video on social media after fleeing the scene. Flanagan rented a car at the airport and then started driving east. Police finally cornered him just before noon, but he refused to stop and sped away from troopers. Flanagan then crashed the car off the road and when police surrounded the vehicle, they found him suffering from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. He later passed away at a hospital in northern Virginia.