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Pop Culture

Video of 8-year-old's fierce martial arts skill with a sword is wowing people all over again

Jesse-Jane McParland, now 16, has been wowing audiences since she was tiny.

swordfighting, martial arts

Jesse-Jane McParland wowed everyone at the 2014 World Kickboxing Championships.

Her name is Jesse-Jane McParland, she's from a "wee small Irish town," and she's one of the best martial arts performers in the world.

McParland, who is nicknamed JJ Golden Dragon, holds more than 300 martial arts titles, including 12 European Champion titles and 21 World Champion titles—and she's only 16. She's been called a martial arts prodigy, and a video of her competing in the World Kickboxing Championships in 2014 that has resurfaced shows why. People simply can't get enough of her sword skills and her gumption at such a young age.

"Absolute ledge," wrote @Itsweary, captioning the video, which has been viewed more than 9 million times on Twitter and 11 million times on TikTok. "The ending…"


The ending they're refering to is McParland letting out a primal scream after wowing the audience with her sword routine. It's clear that she gives her all to her sport and people loved seeing such fierceness and discipline in such a small package.

"Here's what I see," wrote one commenter. "A young girl who will grow up with confidence and inner strength. And no man will dominate or control her. She won't settle for anything less than equality and respect."

"Absolutely unbelievable," wrote another. "You know what I liked the most? With all that skill, talent agility dexterity and unbridled fury, she STILL remembered to bow at the end. She will do great in life."

Watch:

McParland is from the small town of Armagh in Northern Ireland and she began studying martial arts at age 3. In a 2015 interview, she told Ellen DeGeneres that she had done ballet and Irish dance, and her parents had tried to get her into basketball, but when she saw people doing karate she was hooked. At first, her father said no as he thought karate was too dangerous, but she was able to convince her parents to let her try karate.

She said when her mom asked her why she didn't like ballet and Irish dance, she replied, "Mommy, not every girl dreams of being a little princess."


McParland became a contestant on Britain's Got Talent in 2015 at 9 years old and made it into the finals as the audience's wild card choice. She has since acted in movies and television shows including "Into the Badlands" (2015), "The Martial Arts Kid" (2015) and "Robyn Hoodie" (2017).

According to her Facebook page, McParland is currently recovering from major surgery but will be back to her martial arts moves soon. "Nothing gonna keep me away from what I love!" she wrote. She recently started a TikTok page, and you can follow her @jessejane_mcparland.

Check out her most recent video share, with not one sword, but two:

@jessejane_mcparland

#fyp #bluepeter #bluepeterbadge #foryoupage #jessejanemcparland

Go, JJ Golden Dragon, go.

Health

A child’s mental health concerns shouldn’t be publicized no matter who their parents are

Even politicians' children deserve privacy during a mental health crisis.

A child's mental health concerns shouldn't be publicized.

Editor's Note: If you are having thoughts about taking your own life, or know of anyone who is in need of help, the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline is a United States-based suicide prevention network of over 200+ crisis centers that provides 24/7 service via a toll-free hotline with the number 9-8-8. It is available to anyone in suicidal crisis or emotional distress.


It's an unspoken rule that children of politicians should be off limits when it comes to public figure status. Kids deserve the ability to simply be kids without the media picking them apart. We saw this during Obama's presidency when people from both ends of the political spectrum come out to defend Malia and Sasha Obama's privacy and again when a reporter made a remark about Barron Trump.

This is even more important when we are talking about a child's mental health, so seeing detailed reports about Ted Cruz's 14-year-old child's private mental health crisis was offputting, to say it kindly. It feels icky for me to even put the senator's name in this article because it feels like adding to this child's exposure.

When a child is struggling with mental health concerns, the instinct should be to cocoon them in safety, not to highlight the details or speculate on the cause. Ever since the news broke about this child's mental health, social media has been abuzz, mostly attacking the parents and speculating if the child is a member of the LGBTQ community.

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Famous writers shared their book signing woes with a disheartened new author.

Putting creative work out into the world to be evaluated and judged is nerve-wracking enough as it is. Having to market your work, especially if you're not particularly extroverted or sales-minded, is even worse.

So when you're a newly published author holding a book signing and only two of the dozens of people who RSVP'd show up, it's disheartening if not devastating. No matter how much you tell yourself "people are just busy," it feels like a rejection of you and your work.

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This article originally appeared on 04.15.19


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This article originally appeared on 01.22.19


The legality of abortion is one of the most polarized debates in America—but it doesn't have to be.

People have big feelings about abortion, which is understandable. On one hand, you have people who feel that abortion is a fundamental women's rights issue, that our bodily autonomy is not something you can legislate, and that those who oppose abortion rights are trying to control women through oppressive legislation. On the other, you have folks who believe that a fetus is a human individual first and foremost, that no one has the right to terminate a human life, and that those who support abortion rights are heartless murderers.

Then there are those of us in the messy middle. Those who believe that life begins at conception, that abortion isn't something we'd choose—and we'd hope others wouldn't choose—under most circumstances, yet who choose to vote to keep abortion legal.

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