I’m a Grateful Person #gratitude

Every November we take a moment to either express our gratitude or our thankfulness. But like the saying says, Happy people are actually grateful, it is the other way around. Those who are grateful are happy.

For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food, for love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

I am grateful for everything in my life.

Such as:

  • the support of my family
  • the job I have with my employer
  • the feedback from my readers
  • the education provided by my professors
  • for the grades, I have received
  • having a pup like Keelaa for a new writing coach
  • for what I have managed to write this month in NaNoWriMo
  • and most of all for being alive and thriving in this bizarre world we live in.
Advertisements

Battling Over Old World Views – America’s Dysfunctional Society of Unrest

 

Confederate monuments are statues of the past. A different life, a different time. Those statues are what keeps the southern society locked into their past with constant reminders of what came to be a horrific event. The Civil War which was fought on the grounds of slavery and the southern landowners didn’t want to give up their free farm labor. The industrial revolution took place and lessened the need for extra farm hands. Cotton was picked by machinery, tractors plowed the fields, and textile mills introduced manufacturing.

Individuals could make more money providing for their self vs. employing someone to do all their work for them. Europe noticed this trend first and decided to release slaves from bondage.

In the article, Tempers Flare Over Removal of Confederate Statues in New Orleans, posted in the New York Times, Mr. Suber’s perspective is, ““let everybody take a whack — just like the Berlin Wall.”” (FAUSSET, 2017)

The argument is made about the statues belonging to history, but many believe that this part of history will be forgotten or wiped clean by the removal of their long treasured reminders of a time long past. These statues are being moved to a history museum where they fit properly in today’s society. The museum would be a better place, offering preservation from the elements of weather, and society could benefit from them being placed in an establishment meant for learning.

Another perspective mentioned by Fausset in his article is by Mr. Stewart, an 81-year-old business man, and civic leader. ““I ask you, Mitch, should the Pyramids in Egypt be destroyed since they were built entirely from slave labor?” he wrote.” (FAUSSET, 2017)

Some people are angry by the fact that the statues still stand as a horrific reminder of the past. Many would love to obliterate the memory. Mr. Stewart is from a different era. He was born in 1936. That says a lot right there about his beliefs. Times have changed, many opinions are changing, though apparently not quickly enough. The same racial mentality still exists in the United States even to this day.

Times are changing, and the beliefs of White Americans need to change soon because soon European white Americans will be the new minority living in the land of opportunity for some. According to the article, It’s Official: The U.S. is Becoming a Minority-Majority Nation, posted by Wazwaz, “They may not know it, but for kids under the age of 5, the day the United States became a minority-majority nation has already arrived.” By 2060 the minority population is projected to rise to 56 percent making no majority groups turning the United States into a plurality nation. (Wazwaz, 2015)

Some factions believe that whites are superior to others. A belief that passes from one generation to another taught from parent to child. Such belief continues the problem of the color line which is the relation of the darker to the lighter races. Society is still plagued by color lining which is noted by the demonstrations taking place to this day in the United States. Over 100 years have passed since slavery was abolished. Why are Americans stuck in the past?

Just the other day there was another demonstration taking place in Charlottesville, Virginia and people died because of the violence taking place over the removal of the statue of Robert E. Lee. A car with an Ohio license plate plowed down over 34 people in a crowd of people injuring several and killing a woman. Many of the activists believe they are acting on Trump’s words of taking back America. The protestors said they were, ““going to fulfill the promises of Donald Trump” to “take our country back.”” (STOLBERG & ROSENTHAL, 2017)

 

 

We could compare the statues to the Roman Colosseum or the pyramids of Egypt, but they only remain because they were able to weather the ages of time. A statue is more likely to crumble to pieces if left to battle Mother Earth. The Roman Colosseum and the Pyramids both have other benefits keeping them precious to mankind, being the architectural designs involved with the structures. Yes, they have history, but their design is more important than their history. And a slave revolt did take place by one of the gladiators of the Roman Colosseum. (10 Amazing Facts about the Roman Colosseum, 2017)

After this last demonstrative exhibit of violence, statues that are tied to hate should be removed from the public eye. People have become too passionate about objects to the point that they believe you are taking a statue of their God away. An idol they have put higher than themselves. Christian faith commands that no idols be created. The violent nature of the demonstration demonstrates why the commandment about idols made the top ten of what not to do and society has once again not followed the rules.

If the European nations can accept those who do not look alike and accept other peoples beliefs and cultures, why is America, the melting pot of the world, the least likely to accept anyone who is different from themselves?

Americans once called Native Indians barbaric, look who is barbaric now. US!

References

10 Amazing Facts about the Roman Colosseum. (2017). Retrieved August 13, 2017, from Roman Colosseum: http://www.romancolosseum.org

FAUSSET, R. (2017, May 7). Tempers Flare Over Removal of Confederate Statues in New Orleans. The New York Times. Retrieved August 13, 2017, from https://www.nytimes.com

STOLBERG, S. G., & ROSENTHAL, B. M. (2017, August 12). Man Charged After White Nationalist Rally in Charlottesville Ends in Deadly Violence. The New York Times. Retrieved August 13, 2017, from https://www.nytimes.com

Wazwaz, N. (2015, July 6). It’s Official: The U.S. is Becoming a Minority-Majority Nation. US News and World Report. Retrieved August 13, 2017, from https://www.usnews.com

 

I’m a Feminist are you a Feminist?

 

Go, feminists! Treat everyone like you would want yourself treated.

 

Feminist – The belief of equal rights for both men and women. The term that began in 1895 as an organized movement for women’s rights and interests. (Feminism)

Image courtesy of creative commons license by … juliejordanscott Feminism, VDay 2007 and Me | by juliejordanscott via flickr.com and google images

“I need feminism because all the heroines in my stories are feminists. They are not only strong individuals, but they will stand for what they believe in and not back down regardless of the odds.” – Linda Nelson

 

I guess you would say that I would call myself a feminist. I believe in equality for the most part and women are not as weak as some would like to think. Women have internal strengths that even men can’t touch. That which lacks for in physical form is made up on the emotional and intellectual level and also the psychological level

I may not have the physical strength of a man, but I have my inner strength. Feminism is a balance between genders bringing about equality across the scale. Imagine what the world would be like if both genders worked harmoniously together with equal responsibilities.

 

An article written in the New York Times during 2014, Who is a Feminist Now? Featured actresses and other Hollywood stars arguing over what feminism meant. Many had no clue to even the origins of the women’s movement. The feminist movement brought about women’s rights and began in 1895. If it hadn’t been for that movement, women would still be staying home having baby after baby, no right to vote, and no rights to an education. Several women in the article fear to call themselves feminists, thinking it means to not like men or they have to do everything themselves or bring about a power trip. (MELTZER, 2014)

Feminism is more of a social problem that has a political and economic impact of equality between the sexes. Women do want representation. If they must pay taxes, then they should have voting rights. They do many of the same jobs that men perform. Not every job is designated to a gender role these days. There are men nurses, women politicians, women mechanics, and even women driving race cars such as Danica Patrick. So, should women seek equality socially, politically, and economically with equal wages?

Even men and boys can be considered feminists. Some men chose to stay home and raise the children while the mother goes to work. Why do men need to miss out on the first steps of their children and the women witness it all?

In many countries such as Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden there are family leave policies in place that promotes family life. These parents receive multiple forms of paid family leave in the kind of social-insurance which lowers the employer’s resistance to hiring young workers such as women who would probably be leaving for periods of time to tend to family life like child care. Social policy is in place to help everyone not just lower-income workers. These European nations are caring for their people equally.(Gornick, 2010)

The statement made by Ellen Page, in the article, Who is a Feminist Now, “we still live in a patriarchal world when feminism is a bad word,” does bring to mind the reluctance of the United States to accept equal rights. Knowing how many strides made in Europe showing the United States behind the times socially and economically. The world is changing slowly, and America, unfortunately, is still in the dark age.  (MELTZER, 2014)

In response to the #YesAllWomen social media hashtag, violence against women is common around the world. Did you know that many women are raped by their husbands and never report the incident?

But women are not the only victims of domestic violence and rape. Men are also victims too.

When it comes to murder, some countries still live in darker ages than the United States where honor killings still go on, or women are sold like cattle for marriage purposes. (Henslin, 2017)

So, why do we need feminism?

I don’t think I would want to be sold like a farm animal for breeding purposes and I certainly would not want to be a victim of murder. I also like learning so without feminism I would not be able to have a college degree or work outside the home.

Everyone should have equal opportunities to find and experience prosperity and happiness.

 

References

Feminism. (n.d.). Retrieved August 6, 2017, from Merriam-webster: https://www.merriam-webster.com

Gornick, J. C. (2010). Atlantic Passages: How Europe Supports Working Parents and Their Children. In D. S. Eitzen, Solutions to Social Problems (pp. 101-103). Boston: Allyn & Bacon.

Henslin, J. M. (2017). Sociology: A Down-To-Earth Approach. Boston: Pearson. Retrieved August 6, 2017

MELTZER, M. (2014, May 21). Who Is a Feminist Now? Retrieved August 6, 2017, from The New York Times: https://www.nytimes.com

We need Feminism Because. (2013, July 9). Retrieved August 6, 2017, from University of Cambridge: https://www.cam.ac.uk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Social Progress Decline of America Sucks Life From American Dream

The President wants to make America great again even though many argue that the country has never lost its ranking. However, it never ranked that high, to begin with, and too much focus has been placed on GDP over the years that Social Progress in the United States continues to slide down the scale of the quality of life. The United States ranks 16 with Sweden on top as the most livable country all due to the social policy of taking care of all the citizens of their country and not just the wealthy. Other nations feed, shelter and offer health care for all and not just a few.

Social Policy in the U.S. will take care of their poor to a small extent. Many go without any help.
Did you know that early childhood deaths rank higher in the U.S. than most countries?
We can blame substance abuse, poverty, or negligence of the social structure in the American society on the high childhood deaths. Our nation is technologically advanced; there is no excuse why children should face such odds of survival in America. Dr. McCoy on Star Trek would be appalled by today’s society and poor survival rate of the lowest class.

Gross Domestic Product also known as GDP tracks the income of a nation. However, this is based on the averages of the society. There are those whose wealth is recorded in the billions; this will offset those whose wealth is null. There is a better way to measure the quality of life in a country, and that is by using the Social Progress Index. How is it that the United States is considered to be the wealthiest of nations and rank at 16 on the quality of life index? Canada, Sweden, France, and many other Western Nations when it comes to the quality of life out rank the United States. They do this by funding welfare policies with tax or VAT revenues. Everyone in these countries has healthcare and can afford to put food on the table and sometimes with the monthly rent monies. (Reid, 2004)

The United States has the highest rank among its peers when it comes to social problems. Those issues are of murder, rapes, robbery, incarceration, drunk driving, fatalities, cocaine use, and greenhouse gas emissions. The social problem list for the U.S. continues with acid rain, forest depletion, hazardous waste per capita, garbage per capita, and cars per capita ( other than public transportation). Moreover, continues with even more problems such as elderly and children living in poverty, homelessness, bank failures, divorce, single parents, infant mortality, the death of children under age five, and teenage pregnancy. One would not be able to tell any of this by using the GDP index. (Eitzen, 2010)

Fact: The United States is the only industrialized nation that has no form of universal health care. (Eitzen, 2010)

Some may not think it is fair to compare the United States with smaller countries such as New Zealand and Switzerland, but why not? They are taking care of their population and with much lower crime rates. Our nation may have a higher population but we are spread out more, and this is supposed to be the land of opportunity. I don’t think crime was to be one of those opportunities. Why else do the people immigrate to America?
To find work, to own a home, to have a family and receive good medical care and education.

Perhaps it’s the beer and pizza, or maybe the cheese and wine.

The United States boasts of having the best academic schools in the world such as Harvard, Perdue, and Princeton which is mostly open to those who can afford such schools. Many American students can’t afford a higher education regardless of the college they choose. Other nations compared to the U.S. provide higher education regardless of the student’s income level. If the student can maintain the grades, then the education is provided at a much lower cost or free. With higher education comes lesser crime, a much better solution than incarceration for the many. (Reid, 2004)

America even has the best hospitals, but not everyone can afford the medical care. Prescriptions are outrageously priced, and many of the elderly can’t afford to pay those prices. They are forced to choose between taking their medication or food.

If that is the case, then I’m not looking forward to retirement anytime soon.

References

Eitzen, D. S. (2010). U.S. Social Problems in Comparative Perspective. Boston: Allyn & Bacon.
Reid, T. R. (2004). The European Social Model. New York: Penguin Press.

My Sociological Adventure continues – Part II

Chapter 2

.

Ethnocentrism – judgment of others ways against our own.

Cultural relativism – trying to understand a culture on its terms.

Everyone has the tendency to judge other cultures against what he or she considers to be the norm. The way life engraves into our being from early childhood and when those things begin to change we naturally try to resist them, not many people like change. However, the change should be embraced. It is how we evolve not only as human beings but also as individuals. I once heard that there is no such thing as perfection. Perfection means to be at the end with no change in sight, but life continues to evolve in infinite ways.

“I am the alpha and the omega, the beginning and the end.”

However, always evolving.

Heaven is perfection or is it?

There are so many different cultures in our world it would be a shame not to experience at least just one. I would love to experience them all. Each one would provide a learning experience that could change me as a person and evolve me as an individual.

Imagine what it would be like to merge all the cultures of the world into one.

Would that be confusion, conflict, or absolution?

Language Barriers

The United States is behind those cultures of other nations when it comes to language barriers. Did you know that most countries teach English as a second language when a child enters early grade school? Many cultures not only teach English but also the languages of the border countries. It is not uncommon for those cultures to speak up to four different languages. Why doesn’t the United States follow suit?

Public education only teaches English during grade school. Our country can teach multiple languages to children at an early age because of the diversity of the social background that makes up our nation. We have African, Middle-Eastern, Japanese, European, Chinese, and Spanish speaking individuals are constantly immigrating to our country. There is no reason our nation should be a one language nation.

It is a “Known fact” that most children will learn anything from a peer faster than from an adult. Our school system could take advantage of this fact and promote acceptance of the new student immigrant by teaching our English to them while they teach their language to our students, which in turn would lower the language barrier that creates misgivings and isolation from a community.

I tried tirelessly to teach my children how to swim. However, when their friends came along and took over the swimming lessons they were swimming like pros in no time.

 

Belonging to Subcultures

I am a member of the romance writing subculture. We express our selves a bit more than most people in the form of writing while thinking about happy endings of love and romance. Some may consider romance writers to be a counterculture because they believe we write nothing but smut. No, we write stories that are about individuals that develop their characters into something other than what they were at the beginning of the story. Romance or love is an added element that requires the ending to be happy at the conclusion.

Many people, especially Americans, love to read Romances. They want to experience the success of the individual and the happiness associated with finding that one true love.

 

Chapter 3

The two agents of socialization that have influenced me most over the years were my high school years and the environment of my first employer – New England Business Service. The attitudes of North Middlesex taught me that education does matter. My education instilled strong beliefs and values that have remained with me to this day. The years of working for my first employer created the work ethics that I still follow which is that of respect, consciences attitude, and dependability.

“Proper” Relationships

My view of “proper” relationships of men and women are to each their own. Love knows no barriers and should not be discouraged. The original decree between men and women of the Bible was to populate the earth but, hello, we have enough people on our planet. We can stop populating anytime and still have enough people for the next 50 years. If our population grows too much, we might be reduced to eating each other to be able to provide food to sustain our species. Hmm – maybe that is how the zombie apocalypse starts.

Changing Life Course

My life course has changed multiple times over the years. I’ve been a student and a child; then I became an adult. When I became someone’s mom, my responsibility changed. I became responsible for someone other than me while earning a living. It appears that I have changed life course every ten or twenty years. Now that I am in my middle years I have once again changed my course toward bigger and better things that are looming on the horizon. Even the way I viewed my gender has changed multiple times. First just a girl and then a woman to a female and again a woman only this time a much stronger individual that is seeing equality for the first time in their life.