Sunday, March 27, 2011

Extended Comments: Emily

Wise's Between Barack and a Hard Place
Extended Comments:

I really liked the ABCD acronym that she started with.  The fact that we have to “accept blacks and change the views of discrimination” is perfect to describe what is going on in today’s society.  It seems like it would be a simple fix to just accept everyone.  It isn’t a matter of liking everyone or relating to everyone, it is just the idea that you can understand where they are coming from and acknowledge that people are different and have different outlooks on life.  I just connected it to myself because one of my best friends is Dominican.  I have known her for 9 years and when I first met her I remember other people I was with saying that she probably didn’t speak English and was most likely bad at school.  They continued to say all this stuff and I remember thinking that I didn’t know her so how could I really talk about anything about her.  She actually is very smart in school and can relate to me better than most people of my own skin color.  This acronym just made me think about her because if I didn’t accept her, maybe no one else would have.  How can we change something that no one will stand up against?  It is just like Johnson explains; we have to say the words out loud in order for them to be heard.
She then connects both the Wise and Herbert piece.  I found the Wise piece extremely interesting because I didn’t know that you could have two types of racism.  I actually found myself agreeing with how Emily explained what Wise was saying.  Racism 1.0 is the idea that Whites are put before Blacks and literally signs distinguish where each race can go.  Racism 2.0 is the idea of stereotypes and how most Blacks are seen as poor or involved in crimes.  However, Barack Obama is the exception because he is proven to be smart, but more so he has a white parent.  The idea that most blacks are poor instantly made me think of my VIPS experience.   Most of these kids act really really good to get stamps or stars from the teacher because they know that if they get so many they get a prize.  They can pick from erasers, pencils, candy and more.  They always pick the school supplies over the candy because it is something they need that their parents may not be able to afford.  It is sad to think that all except one or two kids in my class have free lunch because their parents don’t make enough money to pack them lunch. 
The last point that I really liked from Emily’s post was “can an average person of color amount to something the way and average white could?”  This brought me all the way back to the first weeks of class when we went over SCWAAMP.  I wrote about how I would have a completely different life if I woke up a different person.  If I was a boy, or if I was black, or if I was extremely poor I would not have the same outlook on life.  I believe that the answer to her question at this point would be the majority of the time no.  Society still has not allowed for everyone to be consistently equal.  Of course there are people who do well, like Obama.  He is the first black president of our country.  That is an extreme breakthrough.  However, in my opinion, it doesn’t happen enough to say that someone of color can always amount to someone that is white.

I found this online and just thought it was a pretty ignorant thing to be posting.  One of the biggest stories I know about is the Petit Family because they live in my town.  The two killers are both white and I would actually like to talk about this further in class because I feel like most of the stories I hear about are involving whites and just don’t know if it is because I am white so that is what I see on the news or if this statement is just total crap.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

In Service of What?

Kahne and Westheimer's In Service of What
I really enjoyed the piece.  I think that the idea of getting involved and being a part of service learning is a great experience for everyone.  There are many ways for people to get involved and that’s exactly what the article shows.  It allowed for people to understand that any little thing they can do can influence someone else in a way that they may never know.  In reading this article I thought about being in the providence school system and how just giving a little of my time to help out those younger than me and in need of extra assistance can change their lives as well as mine.  I probably never would have step foot inside the school building but now that I have I don’t really want to stop.  I enjoy going and wish I had more time during the day to spend with them.  Even though I may not understand what is going on in their lives, I am someone reliable that they can depend on seeing every week.  It would be an even closer experience if those students saw me outside the classroom but I realize their is only so much we can do.  It really is a rewarding experience no matter if you do it to try to change something or if you do it as a charity project.  In the end, someone is benefitting and that should be enough in itself.
This article really made me think about all the work I have done in the past and whether or not I did it because I thought I could change the world or if I just did it to help out.  I think that I know that just one person can’t change the whole world but that one person can make a difference in another person’s  life.  If everyone just does one thing that can help someone else, then maybe the world could be a closer and safer place for everyone.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Unlearning the Myths That Bind Us

Christensen's Unlearning the Myths That Bind Us
Christensen’s argument is “Our society’s culture industry colonizes their minds and teacher them how to act, live, and dream.”  This is done through children’s books, movies, and other media and technology. 
I completely agree with the idea that what we see in the media influences how we grow up and act.  It is apparent in the beginning of her article when the student made a comment about stories not being cute, but learning to manipulate people into believing one thing.  I was stunned right then at how true most of this was.  It continued to show how cartoons and movies are stereotypical as well.  There is barely any evidence of black, poor, or even GLBT people on TV.  The focus is primarily on whites.  When children watch TV they are actually watching a false reality of how the world is.  For instance, Disney movies only show one way of life.  Until last year, you never saw a black princess in a Disney movie.  This was also a very controversial idea.  I believe that if we follow Christensen’s idea of influencing people, we should at least do it in a good way.  We should be showing black people, as well as GLBT.  The book, Prince and Prince we read the other day was the first time I have ever seen a children’s book, movie, or idea revolved around this issue.  The quicker we get the information out, the sooner we solve the problems around these issues.

I would like to talk about the movies on TV and see if anyone actually has seen a movie around any of the issues we talk about in class because I don’t believe I have.  It is time that we start speaking about the issues and solve whatever problems there are.