Writing Reflection 3

•May 6, 2010 • Leave a Comment

The writing or creative process is very different for many people.  Some stick to a single method, while others collaborate multiple methods.  For me, I use different methods pending on how much I know or like the subject.  If I know a plethora about a subject I will write like a brick layer, letting one idea flow to the next.  If I don’t care for the topic then I have to write and re-write, then revise like an oil painter.  I used to be the paper and pen kind of writer, but as the years go by and the papers get longer and longer I have switched to typing all my work.  The creative process can be very mystical.  I can concur with Bob Dylan when he says that his best work just flowed and came naturally.  The best pieces that a person writes seem to just manifest out of the blue and spew onto the page.  The first song that I wrote that people really admired was something that I had written in five minutes with hardly any thought.  I think this works because when a person just writes from off the top of their head then those words  are derived from the core of that person.  The words don’t have time to be ruined or distorted with too much analyzation; they come straight from the heart.  People can really relate most to words that are pure and close to the human condition, not revised or heavily contemplated.  This kind of “penetrating magic”  does not mean that everything that is recorded off the top of ones head is going to be sublime.  There is a certain type of connection that has to be infiltrated to release really creative statements.  Just like a truly great singer needs to be that special place where they are completely in tune with their soul.

Weblog 5

•April 16, 2010 • Leave a Comment

Donors

Gift cards and cash have become the easiest gifts to give to people. What about an organ? The question is usually debated by people who say that donating an organ should be out of selflessness and others say that donors should be compensated for such an important gift.  Giving an organ away is a big deal and finding a standpoint on this issue can be gray.  Dr. Satel believes that donor compensation should work together with the current system of altruism. On the other hand Peter Laird believes that   reform on this topic cannot be fixed so easily with provocative solutions.  Either way deciding the code of ethics for donating will not be successful because when it comes down to it people are the ones that have to live by these set of ethics and most people today are all about “self-interest” opening the doorway for corruption.

Dr. Satel wants to raise the number of organs donated because of the thousands of people waiting on them.  She postulates that if a stranger cannot give another person an organ how can donors numbers be increased without compensation.  She argues that altruism can force family and friends into donating or face guilt from other members.   Compensation would help, but some among the transplant organization feel that they might be donating for the wrong reasons.  EIther pro or con to both ideas Dr. Satel thinks that only a combination of both policies can include everyone’s happiness.

Mr. Laird believes that altruism is best and the procedures and policies implemented are not only for protecting the donor and recipient, but also to protect the employees apart of the organization.  If any discrepancy is postulated and not documented and thoroughly checked the employee could face serious consequences.  The medical field has to uphold its own set of ethics in order to provide checks and balances to people working with life or death situations.  The patients, even though their situation is life or death have to realize that in order to get an organ they have to go through the right hoops before receiving the goal.  Just like all things.

This was a very difficult topic to sort through with so many levels of emotion and unstable variables to count.  A person should have to right to decide if he wants to give an organ and if he then medical compensation should be awarded.  Take two people.  One gets the donor organ and gets to live. The other looses an organ and may possibly suffer health problems later for doing so.  It should not be about right or wrong, it should be about balance.  One person receives a new lease on life and the other should get free medical care and follow ups to ensure his good deed was not in vain because the donor died of a complication in the later years. Technology has forced us to make decisions that should not have to be made.

Writing Reflection 2

•April 12, 2010 • 1 Comment

I love collaborating with people because of the old saying “Two heads are better than one.”   People can get inspired by others or can feed off the chemistry a group can emit.    Teamwork can be a beautiful thing.  However, it can be a total nightmare. When no one in the group “gels” or there is a conflicting of ideas can make the creative process die and wither.   It all boils down to the kind of people that make up a collaboration.  I have problems working in groups sometimes when I don’t get a chance to be hands on.  I need to be all up in a project for others to get my help or feedback.  If I am not amongst the leaders of the group I will not participate.  Not because Im anti-social or  mad when things don’t go my way, but because I do not focus well when Im not extremely involved.  I am a leader so I must help lead.  Otherwise, I am very good with collaboration.  People can always tell me what their thinking without being afraid of my response.  I am a great listener and am very attentive to everyone who is part of the process. Hence why I must help lead so I can make sure everything is handled correctly and with care.  For instance I was working with a group in Oceanography to sort through sediment.  Other members took right to the jobs and started doing things leaving me to record the answers.  I can’t just dive in without assessing the job and figuring out the best way to proceed.  Each member did there job and gave me there answers, which I recorded without any remarks.  At the end of class the teacher reads the answers and our group finds that all the answers are incorrect. To there surprise, not mine, they made a mistake reading the measurements.  So, because I was not apart of the actual process the group suffered.

Weblog 4

•March 22, 2010 • Leave a Comment

CNN posted several articles about the case of Andrea Yates drowning her five children.  The articles are all similarly depicted as mostly an informational piece with some slight sensationalism in the descriptive imagery of Mrs. Yates and her family.  It appears that the medical field, law enforcement, and the mentally ill all have their own set of rules and qualifications.  However, if one is breached then all the rules and qualifications must match up in order for that breach to reap consequences.  Mrs. Yates in my opinion should be drown just as she did to her helpless offspring.

The articles explain the situation and the back and forth of lawyers trying to work the system to their advantage.  The criminal justice system is only the administrator, keeping order while each side tells their story.  The medical profession gives expert advice and uses science to back up their theories for either side of the story.  The mentally ill commit crimes and use their illness to evade consequences.  All together it gives a perception that all people are flawed.

Most all media is covered giving information and then tying it with something that evokes emotions so that people will listen.  It portrays the criminal justice system, medical profession, and mentally ill very accurately. Since all these groups are made up of people it all works the same with people trying to do what they can with the information presented and making the best course of action.  Again since these groups are made up of people mistakes and injustices should be expected.

Weblog #3

•March 16, 2010 • Leave a Comment

Who is an American?  The first word that should be used to describe Americans is diversity.  A writer for the New York Times named Ann Quindlen wrote an article that prefers the metaphor of a “mosaic” rather than the “melting pot” as used before.  I agree with this newer metaphor of a mosaic piece of art always being formulated into a constantly evolving picture.  Since our economy and employment have been suffering, it has created a closing mind frame of not wanting others to receive our privileges.  Quindlen highlights on the conservative view of an “American” and how delirious the conservatives are of their own country’s past.

The summary of the conservative viewpoint is that Americans want immigrants to immediately learn English and assimilate to our culture, rejecting their origins.  If not we want them to go back home.  How realistic is this view?  When our country was founded and made prosperous no one was originally born in America.  When the pilgrims arrived they spoke in their native tongue and incorporated their past into developing their future.  Change does not happen quickly and to assimilate into an area takes time and patience.  Just like a mosaic has to be prepared and each piece placed to give a bigger picture or effect.  The “melting pot” metaphor suggests that all ethnicities are blended together to make a unit.  That part still holds true, but immigrants do not want to shed themselves of their original culture.  It makes them who they are.

Each person no matter what ethnicity all has its place or serves its role and together all the pieces make a larger single picture or America.  All Americans have roots in different parts of the world, but we all have the same goal.  To be successful and have freedom to exercise individuality and to raise a family in a safe tolerant environment where each child can choose his or her direction in life.  Quindlen emphasizes that the mosaic is always unfinished because new tiles are being added to symbolize that America is always evolving.

Writing Reflection Evolution

•March 2, 2010 • Leave a Comment

My writing as evolved immensely from my high school days.  Run ons, misspelled words, and grammatical errors use to fill my pages.  When I had to write papers I would always receive comments about how the information was excellent, but the pages were bleeding with corrections.   Eventually with practice and re-learning the rules things eventually ironed out.

In high school I loved imagery because that, to me, made the story come alive.  Unfortunately, I used imagery in a bad way by trying to pack as much detail in as possible resulting in long run on sentences.  Early on in high school it was difficult for me to organize my ideas and pick topics.  I didn’t know how to effectively structure my outline for maximum effect.  However, the worst would be all the grammatical mistakes marked in red.  Towards the end of high school my writing became a formula.  I was able to write in a more concise manner.  Practice proofreading helped to greatly reduce grammatical errors, as well as procrastination.

College writing seems to coming together.  My sentence structures are more diverse, and transitions progress smoother.  At the college level I pay closer attention to who my audience will be.  As a college student we have to not only appease a certain level of expectation, but to cater it to each professor you have.  Making sure that I appease my audience is crucial to the effect your work will valued.   Also I feel that I can articulate in a more efficient way, to use writing as a tool instead of an assignment.  Like most of us probably, we find that are evolution of writing can parallel to are evolution as adults.  Fumbling  around just doing it for the sake of progress and then eventually everything comes together and makes sense.

What do I think?

•February 8, 2010 • Leave a Comment

What do I think?

PART I:

1. Legalization or decriminalization of medical and recreational marijuana.

2. The outrageous cost of college expenses.

3. The need to reform the United States educational system.

4. The clean water crisis.

5. The rise in inflation.

6. Globalization

7. Conversion to the metric system.

8.  Technology is hindering the quality of human interaction.

9. The all time high rate of unemployment.

10. Year-round schooling for American students

PART II: Legalization or decriminalization of medical and recreational marijuana.

 1.  What do I know about this issue right now?  

Several states have passed or loosened laws on medical marijuana.  This has been an ongoing problem for many years however, until having to face economic strife has it been brought to the forefront.  Also states have lessened the laws about marijuana from criminal to civil crimes.  Since marijuana is not legal, there are thousands of people in jail for simple possession and distribution. 

2.  What have I heard or read about the issue? What have I seen or experienced?

I have heard and read about economist and politicians pushing for legalization to help stimulate the economy. Virginia is currently developing its own viewpoint and policies concerning the issue.  I have seen lives hindered by unjust and false accusations.  I’ve have seen people die or become heavily addicted because they have to use a “legal” medicine or substitute to aid them with their ailments. 

 3.  Why is this issue a problem? Who does it affect? How does it affect them?

 This issue is a problem because people lives are at stake.  People with ailments such as rheumatoid arthritis, muscular sclerosis, cancer, nausea, and more cannot get the relief they need.  Everyone needs a vice and they are not allowed the vice that is most healthy.  People die or their condition worsens.  Recreational users can face criminal consequences or are led to use something that is worst but legal.

4.  What position do I hold on this issue?

 I support that it should be legal or decriminalized

5.  What reasons can I think of to support this position?

 Making marijuana legal would stimulate the economy by cutting judicial costs and raising revenue collected. It would also create more jobs for the unemployed.  Patients could receive a medicine that doesn’t kill you.  People would be happier.

6.  What evidence would help me develop my reasons in more depth?

Scientific research has found good results from marijuana consistently over decades.  Alcohol, which is acceptable by the government, kills everyday and if it doesn’t kill it makes people, angry, abusive, and reckless.  There are millions of incident reports involving alcohol related deaths.  I haven’t found an incident report linking marijuana and death.

PART III

      1.   How would I describe one of the positions held by people who might disagree with me?

 The position that marijuana is a gateway drug and leads to harder substances and abuse.  They feel that if people obtain marijuana and see that it’s okay then they would want to try other things. 

     2.   What reasons and evidence might they offer to support their position?

 People that abuse hard drugs like heroin or crack say that they started with marijuana.  There is scientific research against it, but it stems from bias leaders and false propaganda. 

 3.   What past experiences do people on the opposing side seem to share?

 Usually they say they have had a bad experience with a friend or family member that caused problems for them or the other person.  Or they have never known anything about it and they just go with whatever they’ve been told. 

  4.     How do their experiences seem to differ from mine?

I am curious and question authority when something doesn’t make sense.  Family background and upbringing may have an affect.  They don’t see the bigger picture and just focus around what affects them. They have never come into contact with it to form their own beliefs. 

   5.    Why might these experiences have led them to take their positions?

 They feel that they don’t what to make mistakes that there friends or family made.  They have no experience so they are just speaking from others opinions.  It is illegal and considered highly dangerous by the government so that is how it must be. 

   6.     Is there a set of experiences shared in common by people on each side of the issue?

 Maybe that there should be guidelines and restrictions if legalized.  Maybe both sides have seen the unjust treatment toward marijuana users

  7.      How do these differences influence how I will respond to their position on the issue?

In order to make a valid response I must clear up the misconceptions and stereotypes imbedded in the opposing side.  Stress that the things that are legal, like prescription drugs and alcohol are causing much greater problems than a plant.  Also stress that people are going to use whatever they like no matter what. By stopping the use of marijuana, it makes society shift to find something else for example the growing numbers of adolescents abusing prescription drugs that they can get from the convenience of their own homes.

What do I believe?

•February 1, 2010 • Leave a Comment

Part I

      1.            I believe that people should help other people and learn to relax.

      2.            I believe that society can put unwanted pressures on its members and is a reflection of who is in control.

      3.            I believe that government should always be evolving to meet the needs of its people.

      4.            I believe that justice doesn’t always prevail and innocent people fall victim to unsound judgment.

      5.            I believe that knowledge is power and needs to be cultivated everyday.

      6.            I believe that science is important to understanding the world around us.

      7.            I believe that reality is always better when it’s dreamt about.

      8.            I believe that life unpredictable and difficult but can be wondrous and rewarding.

      9.            I believe that happiness is a state of mind that is different for everyone.

  10.            I believe that goodness can enrich your life and the life of others.       

  11.            I believe that death is tragic and inevitable.

  12.            I believe that God and his plan can never be truly understood or predicted.

PART II:

I believe that – knowledge is power and needs to be cultivated everyday.

1.What reasons can I think of to support my belief?

The more knowledge a person has, the more they understand why things are they way that they are and they understand how and why things work.  So for that reason it is more likely that other people will listen and respect that person.  Also when a person has more knowledge they are able to use their resources most efficiently and effectively.

2. What evidence supports my reasons?

Very wealthy people like Doctors, lawyers, and business men and people that control operations have a great deal of knowledge.  A homeless person is powerless because he doesn’t have enough knowledge or ability to strengthen his knowledge and use his resources to get what he needs.  Instead of reading at the library about job skills he/she is getting drunk to pass the daunting time.  People who don’t care to learn never achieve their goals.  Also if your in a group of people and there is a person that usually doesn’t know what he’s talking about, you are more likely to not listen to him or take him seriously.

3. How was my belief formed?

I have always been in higher achieving classes and that is when I first observed that knowledge is power.  The smarter you are, the more advantages you have.  For example, if you are an intelligent child and turn in a packet of work with most of it correct with a few incorrect answers the teacher is more likely to miss it because they are used to that child always having the correct answers.  When people know you are smart they are more likely to trust you because you are supposed to know what you’re doing.  In conclusion you are given more advantages, you are trusted, and people respond to what you have to say. 

4. What have I read or heard that has influenced or shaped my belief?

I have read Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell, which is a book about a different perspective on success.  In this book there is a chapter in which they did a study on children in an intense educational program.  This program allowed students to cultivate there knowledge academically and socially.  This program helped students reach their potential and be more successful in the world. 

5. What have I seen or experienced that has influenced or shaped my belief?

People with lot knowledge can work a system to their advantage.  I have seen people being talking down to because the speaker didn’t think that the other person was smart enough to speak with.  People will not value your opinion or they treat you like a child.  Less knowledge spawns feelings of inferiority and helplessness.

6. How  have these experiences led me to my present position?

I see that being knowledgeable allows a person to achieve whatever they desire because they can take advantage of the opportunities that are presented.  I see people get ignored and become helpless because they didn’t try and expand or even use their knowledge.  However, the people I do see using their knowledge in situations are getting the best deal on a car, or able to get that job because they read the interviewer’s favorite book

7. What effect does this specific belief have on the choices I make on a daily basis?

This belief has made me work harder in everything to become a lifelong learner.  Also this belief has made me take on challenges and learn to assert what I do know to accomplish my goals. 

PART III.

1. How would I describe one of the positions held by people who might disagree with me?

Doing is more important than knowing.

2. What reasons and evidence do people on the opposing side use to support their positions?

A person, who can read and chooses not to, is the same as a person who can’t.   Good judgment is more important than knowledge because without good judgment a person can’t use their knowledge correctly

3. What past experiences do people on the opposing side seem to share?

A person that doesn’t know very much and wants a job so they go on several interviews is going to be more successful than the smart person who only went to a couple interviews of their specific choice.  Experience in doing is more powerful than having a lot a stored up knowledge.

4. How do their experiences seem to differ from mine?

They feel that by doing all that there is to do get you more power than people who spend time learning about how to do it.  Doing things without knowing how to do them right sets a person up to make many more mistakes than someone who took the time to learn to do it correctly the first time. 

5. Why might these experiences have led them to take their positions?

They may have been lucky enough to fall into something and they feel that going out and experiencing everything gets you more power.  They feel that learning from their mistakes is more important than formal learning.

6. Is there a set of experiences shared in common by people on each side of the issue?

We all experience some luck in going out and experiencing things that lead to good opportunities.

7. How do these differences influence how I will respond to their position on the issue?

I feel that they raise a good point, but in the end lifetime learning and knowledge is key to power and recycling that power.

 

Hello world!

•January 20, 2010 • 1 Comment

Hi my name is Cory and I am new to the blogging world, however I am ready to share my thoughts and opinions on important issues.