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Message on International Women’s Day


By Hilde Kate Lysiak

When I first started the Orange Street News three years ago I never intended to be a role model to other girls. The truth is, I just wanted to be a reporter. All I cared about was getting the news to the people.

But it wasn’t long before I became a role model, whether I wanted to be or not. Every day I get messages from girls from all around the world who have heard about my work.

Many even say they are inspired by me. That is very flattering.

A lot of them first heard about the OSN after I was first to break the story on a murder in my hometown of Selinsgrove. After my reporting (which was much better than the competing newspaper who didn’t even get to the scene until more than two hours later) many people in my town were angry and told me girls should be “playing with dolls” and having “tea parties,” instead of reporting the news.

Screen Shot 2017-03-08 at 10.04.16 AM

I think that a lot of girls heard about that and saw my story and it made them think about some of the unfair ways people have treated them in their own lives. A lot of people ask me how I deal with it and if I get upset.

Yes, I get upset. But only for a minute or two.

See, I know that sometimes people treat me differently because I am young and I am a girl, but I am not a victim. I’ve never been a victim. I never will be a victim. I don’t think these kind of people really matter.People who want to judge me because I’m a girl can’t stop me. And they certainly can’t hurt me. These people have no powers over me. All they do is make themselves look small and stupid.

I know there are times when I still get treated differently because I am a girl. Recently, after exclusively breaking a story about allegations of corruption at a local fire station, haters came out and told me I should be “playing with dolls” (how original, right?)  Even the local District Attorney tried to push me around. But that didn’t work either. 

But I know that I am very lucky to live in America. In other countries girls are not as lucky as I am.

On July 28th, I met Malala Yousafzai. It was amazing getting to meet her! She used to live in a place where people thought girls can’t be educated. But she stood up to the government and got her education, anyway. One day, when she was on the way home from school, she was shot. After that, she moved to the U.K. and has not been able to go back to her home in Pakistan since.

Malala spoke about how in so many countries around the world girls don’t have the same chances to follow their dreams that I do.

Hearing those words broke my heart.

It made me think about all the young girls around the world and all the amazing things they could have created that we will never see because the people in power are trying to prevent them from showing their strength.

Are they afraid to see their strength? I don’t know.

I know so many of them are fighting very hard to be heard. I hope they keep fighting. I hope they never give up. I believe there will be a day when all girls have the same freedom that I have. I just hope that day comes soon.

Until then, they will continue to be my inspiration.

12 comments on “Message on International Women’s Day

  1. Ryan Smith
    March 8, 2017

    What an awesome editorial, Hilde! I’m an old reporter (nearly 40!) and let me say this: You’re absolutely right not to let government officials — or anyone who thinks girls shouldn’t be reporters — push you around. The only requirement to be a reporter is the desire to tell people the truth about what’s happening around them! Keep fighting the good fight and bringing great journalism to your community!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Message on International Women’s Day | Meghan Marentette

  3. Meghan Marentette
    March 8, 2017

    Reblogged this on Meghan Marentette and commented:
    I want to share this blog with you from the Orange Street News, written by a 12 year old girl, Hilde Kate Lysiak. You might have heard of her – the 9 year old who was repeatedly told to go home and play with dolls when she began her newspaper in her small town, USA. I’m glad to say she is still reporting! She is a bright light in this world. But still, she is often told to go play with her dolls instead of being an intellectual inquisitive human being. She has a great attitude about it, and gives me hope for the women of our future. She had this to say for International Women’s Day:


  4. Benay
    March 8, 2017

    You’re incredible — thank you for being you!


  5. Dewey Pittman
    March 8, 2017

    Wish I could live long enough to see you win your first election! You go, girl! You’re my hero!


  6. K. Paul
    March 8, 2017

    Your parents should be very proud of you young lady.


  7. Susan
    March 8, 2017

    Impressive, as always Hilde. You are an inspiration to this middle-aged woman!


  8. Klemens Graf
    March 9, 2017

    Hello Hilde,
    Great Job! In times like this we need journalists who just telling the truth.
    Nevertheless they are young girls or old men.
    “Times like This” is ment as times when the credibility of the US-government is completly obliterated within less than a week after the inauguration of the president.
    (Kellyanne Conway: “… Alternative Facts …”)
    Free und unindepndent media are the backbone of any democracy, of a free and liberal society as it was menat by the creators of the US-constitution.
    Look at Turkey – more then 100 journalists are in prison, bcause they were doing they job. No free media -> no freedom for the people and no checks and balances.

    Yours sincerely

    Klemens Graf from Hilzingen, Germany

    Sorry for my English


  9. Pedro
    March 9, 2017

    I served for over 30 years in the US Military, and in the countries I visited, girls/women were either respected and permitted to serve in their armed forces, while in other countries girls/women were not respected and instead seen as possessions to be controlled. Hilde, stay strong, and don’t let the people here in the US that have no concept of what a strong American is, because they are weak.


  10. Pingback: OSN Top Stories of the Week! | Orange Street News

  11. AC Smith
    March 15, 2017

    Hi, Hilde.

    I’m one of those who learned of your work when that first “controversy” went viral.
    As an aging news guy old enough to be your grandpa, I’ve been impressed and admiring of your work ever since.
    I confess, it’s been a while since I’ve been here — life kinda got extra busy in my corner of the world these past few months.
    So I’m just now seeing this op ed. Great perspective. Hard to believe that after three years “on the beat” there are STILL so-called adults that think they can discount your work or shrug you off.
    Stay true to yourself and your journalistic dreams.
    Our future needs young women like you.



  12. Pingback: OSN Top Stories of the Week | Orange Street News

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