My final project was baed in secession. I focused on the CalExit, an act for California to secede from the Union. I also looked at Dystopian literature. From there, I combined the two, and wrote a story based off a new country. The country was called the New Republic of California, a country founded from half of California. I looked into the requirements for secession, as well as the results of possible secessions.
For my art portion, I focused on the map of the New Republic of California. By using maps, like this, I figured out the political leanings of the state of California. From there, I used a process called Gerrymandering, which is dividing the districts to give an advantage to a political party. I split the state in half, giving the NRC the west side of the state.
From here, I divided the piece of land into three pieces
From here, I made them into regular districts, setting up a regular independent country.
For my english portion, I made a fictional story set in the NRC.
While the sun was shining through his window, Preston Hewitt was writing. Preston had always liked writing. Once he could hold a pencil, the tip never left the paper. He wrote in journals, on loose paper, anything he could get his hands on. At his school, most kids liked to doodle, but Preston wasn’t an artist. Writing had always been a good outlet for him. “Preston, honey! Are you all dressed for school?” It was his mother, who always worried about him and if he was ready for school, or if school was good. Preston never knew why, but it made him try hard on tests and papers. “Yeah, mom. I’ll be out in a second.” He called back. Preston gently placed his notebook in his bag, making sure it didn’t get caught on any of his books. He put the bag over his shoulder and walked into the living room. There he found his mom, resting on the couch before she left for work at the capitol building. On the television, a man was talking about the amazing NRC meal crate. “The New Republic of California meal crate is perfect! It provides the whole family enough healthy, tasty food for a whole month! By the time you’re out, a new crate will be at your door!” He said with a smile on his face. “Hm, maybe we should do that! I’m sure the boss man would be happy with that, huh?” The boss man she was referring to was her supervisor at the capitol building. He made sure his mom didn’t have any errors on the papers she wrote because if she did, she could get him in trouble. “Maybe you should get going, Preston. I’m sure the bus will be here soon.” Preston said goodbye and walked out of the house. The sun was bright and warm. Preston looked to the left, where he saw a large orange bus turning the corner. The bus pulled up to his house, and Preston climbed up. “Hello, Preston Hewitt.” The camera spoke. In the last six years, the New Republic of California had removed the need to drive; vehicles did it themselves. Preston tapped his finger on the pad, which told the school he was there. The bus took off and resumed its journey to the school.
Preston’s first class was history, his least favorite. He always found it slow and dull. His time was better spent writing about zombies or making new poetry. “Alright class, take out your books! Today, we’re getting to the start of our Nation, the most important part of history! Page 66 through 135.” His teacher Mr.Rannels seemed excited to sit around while his class read. Preston groaned and took his book out of his book. He flipped to page 66 and began to read. Halfway through reading, his teacher instructed the class to write a summary of what they read. Preston wrote:
The New Republic of California was founded in 2021 when the American legislature agreed to allow secession of the state of California. Prior to that, a ballot was formed in the year 2018. After the legislature agreed in a special Constitutional Convention, California set its borders, leaving out half of the state, and taking the rest for itself. Today, we live in what many would consider the perfect society. We have self driving cars, healthy families, and resources to spare.
Preston knew his summary was all over the place, but he had something else on his mind. He knew that deaf people couldn’t talk without sign language, but what if you didn’t know sign language? Or what if you weren’t deaf, but had to be quiet? You could always pass notes, Preston thought, but that seemed immature. His thinking was cut off. “Alright, class! Good work today. I’ll be collecting your papers, so be ready to submit them.” The bell rang and Preston sat his paper in the submission box. The rest of the school day flew by, including his favorite class, Language Arts. He hoped his mother would be in an excited mood about, well, anything.
When Preston entered his house, he didn’t see his mom. Maybe she’s just running late, Preston thought. It wouldn’t be the first time. So he went to his room and put down his bag. He went to his desk and grabbed the new edition of his favorite comic book series. He had been waiting for a special time to read it, but it seemed like a good idea to read it now. He sat on his bed and opened the first page of “The NRC heros, Vol. 6.” This issue was about a dog who saved a group of children by biting a suspicious looking man running towards the children. His mother had always told him the stories were made up, but he liked them anyways. In the comic, the dog couldn’t bark, so he had to run faster to catch the man. It made Preston think about history class. What if he could never talk again, and he could only write what he thought? That wouldn’t be so bad. Preston finished his comic and realized he had nothing left to do. He had no homework, his mom still wasn’t home. So he sat back, closed his eyes, and drifted off to sleep.
Preston woke up to the sound of his front door being thrown open. “Preston! Preston!” His mother shouted. Preston jumped up and sprinted into the living room. His mother looked bewildered. “Mom? What’s going on?” Preston asked. His mother approached him and leaned down. “Go get your notebook. Now!” She whispered. Preston had no idea what was going on, but he did as he was told. He walked to his room and sat his bag on his bed. He tried unzipping the pocket but he couldn’t. His hands were shaking, and he couldn’t get the bag out. He closed his eyes and took a deep breath. He put his fingers around the zipper and pulled down. With the motion, the pocket opened. Preston grabbed his notebook and a pen and returned to the living room. He flipped to an open page and and sat the book on the table in front of the couch. His mother snatched it up and slashed the pen across the page. SHe flipped the book to him. It read: “WE CAN’T TALK OUT LOUD. THEY ARE LISTENING.” Preston looked at his mother in horror. He opened his mouth but his mother shushed him. He looked down at the page and read it again. He took the pen and wrote: “What’s happening?” He gave the book back and looked around the room. How could they be listening, he thought. His mom sat the notebook on his lap, with the words, “GOVERNMENT EXPOSED. THE PEOPLE KNOW. WE HAVE NO POWER.” “What are you talking about?” Preston asked. Preston’s mother walked to their T.V, and set it to the only other channel besides the news, the Classical Music station. She turned the volume all the way up, and looked at Preston with sadness. “They can’t hear us now. Listen, someone leaked everything.” His mom whispered. “Everything? What’s that mean?” Preston asked. “All our secrets, our problems. The people know.” “But what do we have to hide?” His confusion was growing. The NRC seemed perfect. Hardly any crime, healthy community. “The President, Howard Draper… He’s not in control. He never has been. There’s somebody else pulling the strings. And… There’s several crooked politicians here. They take bribes, smuggle drugs. This place is not okay.” His mom said. “Then why are we here? Why haven’t we left?” “Nobody leaves this place. It’s not allowed. Once you’re here, you’re stuck.” “But why? I don’t understand any of this, mom.” “Just listen, we can’t talk about this anymore. We need to hide, okay? We’re leaving home. Get your stuff together.”
Still confused, and now frightened, Preston ran to his room to gather his belongings. As he stuffed his clothes into a bag, his hands refused to settle down. They shook and shook as he cried and cried. He felt as if though he couldn’t breathe. He closed his bag and threw it over his shoulder. He marched out to the living room, where he saw his mother, bags packed, ready to go. He couldn’t believe that just this morning they were watching the Government try and control what they eat. He never thought they could harm him, but he was wrong. “All ready?” His mother mouthed. Preston nodded, and opened the door. “HALT!” Preston looked up at six men, covered entirely in black, with guns pointed at him and his mother. Preston’s mother dropped her bags and raised her hands. “Jeanette Hewitt, you will be coming with us!” Another voice shouted. Preston didn’t know what to do anymore. He was feet away from death, but his mother seemed confident. All of a sudden, a black van drifted across the corner, reminding Preston of his bus ride earlier in the morning. Preston glanced back at his mom, now wearing a smirk on her face. The van sped down the street. “What the f-” The van smashed into five of the men, leaving only one. “Mom, what’s happening?” Preston yelled. The side door of the van opened up, revealing two men and two women, all equipped with guns of varying sizes. One of the women opened fire, striking the only survivor in the face, killing him instantly. “Nice shot.” Preston’s mother said. “Get in the van, Preston.” His mother ordered. Shocked, Preston hurried to the van and climbed in. The closer he got, the more familiar one of the men looked. How could he not recognize him? The man had looked just like Preston. Dark skin, with eyes that followed suit. They had the same nose and ears, too. “Preston, this is Keith, he’s your father, and he’s… He’s going to help us out.” The other man, who was revealed to be a person who worked with his mother, closed the door to the van. The women were friends of his mother's coworker, and each of them shared one desire: To leave the NRC. Preston was overwhelmed. What started out as a normal, boring day, turned into the strangest, scariest day of his life. He had never met his father, who apparently was some rebel, fighting to bring the NRC down. Preston didn’t know how to feel. Happy? Determined? His thoughts were interrupted by one of the women. “Here, hon, you got a little bit of blood on your shirt there.” She began wiping the drops off his shirt. Preston hadn’t even thought about that. He had just witnessed six men have their lives taken away. “Who were those guys?” He asked. All of the adults looked at each other as the van started to drive off. “They’re called Die Klinge,” his father said, “they’re killers supplied by the government. If a politician has an enemy, he tells Die Klinge, and they take care of it.” For what seemed like the millionth time in the past hour, Preston was shocked. What else didn’t he know about his home? The van was slipping through traffic, narrowly avoiding oncoming cars. “Where are we going?” Preston asked. “Well, it’ll be dark soon, so we’ll have to find somewhere to hide for the night. After that, we’re going to the border. We’re finding a way out of here.” It was Lucas, mom’s coworker. The sun set as the van drove through deserted streets and alleyways. While on one road, a billboard flashed pictures depicting Preston’s mother, and the rest of the crew. Above the pictures, large white words appeared, spelling out, “WANTED.”
Everything about Preston’s surroundings made him uncomfortable. The dingy smell, the sound of dirty war dripping in the corner. Or maybe it was the fact that he was surrounded by wanted rebels. He knew that if they were discovered, his family would be killed. It made him wonder if they would kill him too, despite being a child. Judging by what Preston learned in the van, he figured they’d kill him as well. “Our Government is full of killers and liars. They brainwash us, tell us what to eat, cover everything up,” his father had told him earlier. Now, Preston was sitting in a stranger’s basement, huddled up with 5 adults, whispering their plans to leave the Country. “Listen, Preston,” his mother said, “we have a job for you.” “Um, okay. What is it?” He asked. “We need you to distract some police officers, son. You’ll go in, and tell them you can’t find your parents. While you do that, we go in the police station for a signal emitter. We need the emitter to get through the border. Once we have it, we’ll have your mother come in, and tell you she lost track of you. That’s all.” His dad’s plan seemed like it would work out, so he agreed. “We’re doing this early tomorrow morning, so get some rest, son.” Preston knew he should, but as much as he tried, it just wouldn’t seem to happen. He tossed and turned, and never opened his eyes. But he didn’t sleep at all.
On the ride to the police station, Preston had doubts about the plan. He thought that maybe the police wouldn’t pay attention to him, or maybe they wouldn’t be able to find the emitter. He had to trust his dad, though. The van stopped in an alley three blocks away from the police station. “Alright, Preston, are you ready?” His mom asked. She gave him a kind smile, and then looked towards the police station. Out front, there were two police officers, the ones Preston would be distracting. “Alright, let’s go.” His dad said. Preston started walking through the alleys, until he got to the police station. As he approached the officers, he ran through his script. “Um, officers, I need help. I can’t find my mother.” Preston said, trying to alter his voice. “Oh, well how about you come into the station with us, we’ll help you out.” The police officer smiled at him, and Preston knew this is what his dad wanted. The officers walked him up the steps and into the building. “Guys,” the other officer said, “we got a kid who can’t find his mom.” The other officers walked out into the front room and gathered around Preston. He knew that around this time, his father and the others were breaking into the back of the building. “Well hi there!” A female officer said to Preston. “What’s your name?” She asked. “Um, it’s… Jonathan. Jonathan Akron.” “Well, Jonathan, we’re here to h-” The new police officer was cut off by the sound of a loud explosion. Over the officers radio’s, the station heard: Reports of seven explosions in the following cities- Siskiyou, Humboldt, Marin, Fresno, Santa Clarita, and Kerin. All stations, stay alert. Send out patrols, and any spare personele to any of the sites. Turmoil erupted in the station. Officers began turning on the T.V’s to watch live coverage. Others ran to the back for supplies to take to the explosion sites. Preston was sure his parents knew what happened, but did they know that officers were coming back? The female officer hurried over to Preston and sat down next to him. “We’re gonna keep you here for a bit, okay Jonathan?” She said. Preston had no idea what to do. He looked at the entrance over and over hoping his mother would rush in, but she never did. Preston nodded his head, and leaned back into the chair. While he sat, he tried listening around in hopes of hearing something about his parents or what had just happened. According to the news station, there were over 300 reported deaths, and possibly more. Officials didn’t know details, but were citing it as a terrorist incident. “Um, I have to leave.” Preston said. The lady, who another officer referred to as Clara, looked incredibly disturbed. “Well, you can’t leave now! There are terrorists around, and you’re alone! I can’t let you.” She said. Preston was stuck in the police station, alone and clueless. He had two options: run out the door, or stay in place. The plan his parents had formed didn’t involve terrorist attacks. “But, I think I know where my mom is!” Preston said, trying to think of ways to get out. “Well, then I’ll go with you.” Clara suggested. Preston was trapped because he could go back on his idea and raise suspicion, or go with the plan and risk exposing his parents and the crew. “Fine, come with then.” He said, walking to the door. Clara followed him outside where they saw several helicopters and planes filling the sky. “Jeez, it really is serious.” Clara said, looking at the ground. Preston, trying to figure out what to do, went left, the opposite direction he came from. He walked down the street, where he saw a group of people walking together, who he recognized as his parents and their crew. He knew he couldn’t just run up to a pack of shady people, but they were walking towards him. He knew that one of them would notice him incredibly soon. They got closer and closer before Clara reached out in front of Preston. “Don’t move, Jonathan. You there,” She said, looking at the crew, “freeze!” Preston’s mother looked over at him, making sure he was safe. “Go back to the station, Jonathan. Now!” Clara shouted. His father looked at Preston, before reaching into his pocket. “Sir, please slowly remove your hand from your pocket!” Clara yelled. Preston’s father then flashed a smile, and removed his hand from his pocket. In his hand was a small black device. “Don’t worry ma’am, I’m not here to hurt you.” Preston’s father said. He clicked the device and just as he did, a large blast exploded from behind them. “Holy sh-” Clara yelled, before being knocked out by one of his mother’s coworkers. “What is wrong with you guys?” Preston shouted. “Y-you’re terrorists! You kill people! Were you the ones who blew up the other places too?” “Look, honey, you’ve been through a lot. Maybe we need to just calm down, okay?” “No, I’m not calming down! You’re evil! I am not going with you!” “You need to listen to me, Preston. The place we live in is not safe! It’s corrupt, and it’s controlling. The monitor and decide everything for us. They tell us what food to eat, they tell us what’s healthy. They take all of our information and give us none in return. This is a war, and we’re the fighters. You need to learn this.” Preston could tell his father was upset, but he didn’t care. Preston turned away from his parents, and started walking. “Preston get back here!” His father yelled. But Preston didn’t care. He continued down the sidewalk. He reached the flaming police station and walked inside. The interior was an inferno. Bodies and debris were scattered throughout the building. Preston scanned the room until he saw who he was looking for. The first police officer he had talked to. He ran over to the man, who was laying on the floor, lifeless. “I’m, so sorry. I didn’t want this to happen.” Preston whispered, with tears running down his face. Preston didn’t know how unstable the building was as he laid with the man. Crack. Preston heard a loud noise, and then nothing at all…
social studies portion
For my social studies portion, I focused on timelines leading up to and past the creation of the NRC. I focused on the NRC itself, as well as an economic timeline. I chose different events based off of the changing political climate, as well as my own predictions, to decide where the world would head. I did things like form wars, cut supplies, etc.
This is an example of an event I created on my economic timeline. The event was based on the treaty signed to end the Korean war. I had several other events, but the file was too long to put into the website.