Manipulation

To believe or not to believe

Media

The media provides information on global and local events. The media can portray news in a positive or negative connotation. The media plays an important role in the lives of people as it has the capability to change our opinions on certain matters. Media can be used to promote or demote celebrities, businesses, events etc. The media manipulates our brains and forces us to believe what is not true by using bits and pieces of minor information and using it against that certain person or event. Media has different ways to convey its message such as through the television, radio, social media, motor advertisements, music apps, online advertisements etc. To be ‘media literate’ is to be aware of all the events occurring around us and how the media is describing it. It is to know what is right from wrong because you, yourself have researched the news rather than your opinion relying solely on what the media is expressing. To be media literate is to confidently stand by your opinion with strong evidence and not falling for the propaganda. Many present day people are not media literate because they are either too busy or too lazy to search the truth about any matter; they would rather believe the false evidence being provided. The media tends to beat around the bush rather than express the main idea. For example, if an event is hosted for a certain positive reason, the media will use minor information to manipulate its audience to believe otherwise. It will portray the event in a negative manner to make the story juicier and more appealing. The media’s job is to entertain its people, not necessarily lie, but not necessarily tell the truth.

Social Media

Activism to Slactivism

Whether we like it or not, social media plays a huge role in our everyday life. Social media is how we express our opinions, biases, stereotypes because we are too afraid to say these in person. I enjoyed the ability to choose a topic that interested me and the criteria which limited how I wrote to highlight the important thoughts and arguments in my essay. Islamophobia is a critical issue itself globally but social media furthers this problem. People write anything they desire without a second thought on how it can affect another individual. On social media, everyone can see what you say and believe. This can be positive in a way to raise awareness or negative in a way by making the problem bigger than it already is. How is that possible? If there is a tweet against something I believe in, I won’t scroll past it, I will take time to construct a well-articulated response. Someone else will then do the same and this will go on and on un till the tweet is trending on twitter. Society is slowly becoming more and more dependent on technology. I believe in 10 years social media will have an even heavier influence and control over our lives than it already has. All arguments will begin and end on social media, all opinions will stay on social media. The concept of activism will disappear as slactivism takes over. In order to take action, people will begin online petitions and groups that tweet against another group. Individuals with a common belief will come together on social media and attack another group. However, this will not benefit any party. At the end of the day, all the arguments and riots will end on social media and you will continue with your life as is. No solution will come to any of the problems because people will be too afraid to step out of the comfort of their home into the real world, people will be too terrified to reveal their face from behind a phone screen and stand up for they believe. As years pass by, the influence of social media will increase and society will become more fearful and hesitant to express their opinion outside of the virtual land.

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Frito-Lay, in its 2016 Super Bowl commercial, advertises a popular brand of chips, Doritos, with its repeating promotional tactic, babies. Frito-Lay begins with a couple at an Ultrasound while the husband is eating a bag of Doritos and the wife says “He’s eating Doritos at my Ultrasound,” the husband then waves the Doritos chip around the stomach which attracts the baby in the direction of the chip as seen in the ultrasound, finally the commercial ends with the wife annoyed by the husband’s childish behavior; she snatches the chip from his hand and throws it across the room, not to realize the baby is still attracted to the chip and yells indicating the baby is coming out of the womb. The purpose of this commercial is to convince the audience to buy Doritos Chips. In a very humorous tone, the commercial is intending to attract young teenagers with its creative advertisements.

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Donald Trump Lies Yet Again

“The wives of the 9/11 hijackers "knew exactly what was happening" and went back to Saudi Arabia two days before the attacks to watch their husbands on television flying the planes.”

–Donald Trump


Donald Trump made this absurd claim during the March 3rd Republican presidential debate in Detroit. He believes that all the wives, girlfriends, and family members of these hijackers were aware of the 9/11 attack and fled the U.S before the attack so they can see the tragic incident on television. Although, after further research, it has come to attention that only 2 of the 19 hijackers were married and one had a girlfriend. No one in any relation to the terrorists resided in the U.S for months leading up to the attack. As expected, Trump’s facts are false. In order for me to make a clear stance on this argument, I must make sure the information and sources which are being provided to counterpart Trump’s claim are reliable and accurate. We cannot stop at what has been provided, to have full understanding on this topic, we must ask more questions and do research on our own. This will help match the information we find to one that is provided which will help conclude the liability of the information. I believe that it is merely impossible for the family member of each and every hijacker to be aware of the 9/11 attack. These terrorists usually lose touch with close family and friends to focus on their mission and not be distracted. If Donald Trump’s claim was anywhere true, he is probably concluding one man’s story and summarizing it as a group action.

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Ted Cruz Makes an Absurd Claim

The "federal government is going after school districts, trying to force them to let boys shower with little girls." –Ted Cruz


This statement was said by Ted Cruz on November 19th, 2015 in an interview with Steven Crowder. This story is not at all about girls and boys wanting to shower together but merely a controversy of what are the limits and rights of transgender at schools. Some students at school feel uncomfortable when a male who classifies himself as a female would like to change and shower in the girls locker room. Schools and counties must set strict guidelines for any further incidents to be prevented. It is concluded that you must attend the bathroom or locker room of the original sex at birth. In order to make a complete unbiased stance on this argument. Further research is required for people who have surgically changed their gender. Would the same rules apply? I must put myself in their shoes and imagine how I would want to be treated. I believe unless a person has surgically and lawfully changed his or her sex, they must classify themselves in their original sex in these circumstances.

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Bernie Sanders Defies Statistics

"When you're white ... you don't know what it's like to be poor." –Bernie Sanders


Bernie Sanders stated this ‘fact’ on March 6th, 2016 in a democratic debate in Flint, Michigan. Both Bernie Sander and Hilary Clinton were asked for their thoughts on racial discrimination. Bernie Sanders had answered with a false statistic that whites do not nearly suffer as much poverty as other races. Although, this was not his intention. Bernie Sanders began with saying how whites do not face as much discrimination based on their skin color. They will not randomly be “hassled when you walk down the street” or “dragged out of a car.” He then got off track and spoke on the issue of poverty and concluded that whites do not experience much poverty compared to others. This claim was later researched on and proved to be false. In order to form an opinion, we must ourselves research the statistics and see how accurate Bernie Sanders’ claim was. I believe Bernie Sanders did not attend to make such a claim but in the moment expressed this concern. He probably did not intend for it to defy any statistics and slipped off his original statement of racial discrimination.

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A Nation of Proles

From the very beginning to the very end, each and every sentence reminded me of men and women in our society. “Gutters” represent filth, getting down and dirty, common human characteristics. We certainly go through a phase of sexual desire. The age description of an ideal marriage is however contradictory to today’s society. Towards the end, the description becomes clearer. Both, women and men, are capable of heavy labor, watch sports, drink beer, and step forward to solve any absurd quarrels between friends and neighbors. TV, media, social media tends to condition society on certain ways to act. They develop a subconscious of social norms that are not legitimate. Some examples are that men can only do physical labor or take care of a household. Media tends to portray women as weak and helpless. Society is so caught up in sports and reality TV, which is ironic because no such things happen in reality, that we tend to forget real issues. How often does one hear a group of people talking about the score from yesterday’s football game and what Kim Kardashian said? Every day for most. How often do people sit down and talk about global warming and the new law that just passed? Not quite often. When society is not aware of serious matters taking place around them, they will not notice if any changes are to occur. It will be simpler to control them because they have no idea what they are being controlled of. This statement pertaining the unawareness of control provides an explanation of the development of Oceania in 1984. If we do not pay attention to our surroundings and our government, it will be fairly easy to snatch our rights away without us showing any concern. Why give someone rights they aren’t even aware of? The people of U.S have the right to freedom of speech and press. If someone in this country was unaware they held this right, they would not be much affected if it was taken away. Losing focus makes us weaker. The latest Kim Kardashian stories will not help one succeed in life or to protect themselves. If a person was taken to court and was not aware of all their rights, this could result against their favor. It is essential society learns about their environment, who governs them, and ask questions. Without questions we consent the government to give or take away certain rights. We need to begin giving ourselves more credit for our capability to understand and articulate. Why do we get aggressive when our favorite sports team loses? We disagree and dislike the tactics and team members of the opposing party. If there are certain rights we dislike, why abide by them? We must take a stand. If we do not speak up today and focus on real world issues, we won’t have any rights given to us. It is time to step out of the virtual life and start focusing on reality.

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http://perezhilton.com/category/kim-kardashian/#.VvyPueIrLIU


Another interesting Kim Kardashian update. Now how exactly is this news going to help us throughout or day? IT won’t. It is merely a distraction and form of entertainment. It is justifiable to take stress off of work and focus on unnecessary things for pleasure but 24/7 isn’t a break. “On Wednesday, it was revealed that Kim Kardashian West and Kanye West have finally packed up their two kiddos and moved out the Momager's residence.” That’s pretty interesting for a split minute but news gets old easily. We can’t focus on Kim Kardashian’s life forever. By devoting our time in her business, we make her rich, but in return we lose focus from our work and source of income. Media and reality shows are too distracting present day. We never know when to stop and how to differentiate between reality and entertainment. It’s time to focus on our well-being and stop getting distracted.

Revolution

On August 22nd, 1791, slaves from the French colony of Saint Domingue revolted against the French into a civil war. For several hundreds of years, blacks and whites have been discriminated; whites are viewed as dominant and provided more privileges. Blacks are oppressed, treated unfairly, and forced to work under the control of whites. Although, everything comes to an end and it was time to end this injustice. A man named Dutty Boukman, a high priest of voodoo and leader of the Maroon slaves, began the Haitian Revolution. On August 14th, 1791, during a religious ceremony at Bois Caïman, he announced that slaves must take a stand for themselves. Many prior rebellions had taken place for the same purpose but resulted unsuccessful. The Haitian Revolution was inspired by the French Revolution however; they used as their inspiration the French’s “Declaration of the Rights of Man” (“Top 10 Revolutions Felt Around the World,” 2010). The slaves seeked for revenge from their masters. With the use of “rape, torture, mutilation, and death” (“Top 10 Revolutions Felt Around the World," 2010), the slaves slowly took over small regions of Saint Domingue.

The revolution would not have been successful without the cooperation and team work of all the slaves. Surprisingly, the slaves had taken over all of the Northern Province in the next ten days. Due to the positive results, more slaves confidently joined in this revolt; the increasing number of supporters eased the defeat of the French. Although, the plantation owners suspected such a revolution and were completely bear and armed. This in turn resulted in causalities for the slaves as well. By 1792, the slaves were successful in controlling one third of the Island and demanded for rights. The Legislative Assembly in France was helpless and was given no choice but to do as the slaves demanded. In March of 1792, the Legislative Assembly granted “civil and political rights to free men of color in the colonies” (“Top 10 Revolutions Felt Around the World,” 2010). The French had declared war on Great Britain in 1793; the Spanish joined the British and helped them fight against the French. The slaves allied with the Spanish and British to not only eliminate slavery but the French control in its entirety. “By August of 1793, there were only 3,500 French soldiers on the island” (“Top 10 Revolutions Felt Around the World,” 2010). By 1794, slavery was formally abolished by the National Convention and all black men were granted rights they had been longing for centuries. An estimated number of 100,000 blacks and 24,000 white deaths resulted.

This revolution is quite similar to what is currently taking place in 1984. Slowly, the brotherhood is growing and with every additional supporter, they are one step closer to defeating the government of Oceania. Just as in the Haitian Revolution, the people of Oceania do not hold certain rights and must abide by absurd rules. The people of Oceania, much like the slaves, are coming together for a common purpose. In a way, the Haitian Revolution also reflects societal injustices of present day. The Haitian Revolution fought for the rights to all men regardless of color. In today’s society, women, regardless of color fight for certain rights for equality. In the past, uprisings have been against racial discrimination but today we all continue to fight for gender rights.



Works Cited

"Haitian Revolution (1791-1804) | The Black Past: Remembered and Reclaimed." Haitian Revolution (1791-1804) | The Black Past: Remembered and Reclaimed. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Apr. 2016.

"Top 10 Revolutions Felt Around the World - Listverse." Listverse. N.p., 04 Oct. 2010. Web. 19 Apr. 2016.

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Reflecting Back

Throughout the semester, I as well as my smore entries have grown. Looking back at my very first smore entry, it is not very difficult to infer I was a new writer. I begin every sentence with “The media” and carry that pattern throughout the reflection. I was also very tempted to repeat the same ideas in different words. My first reflection expresses the same thought through synonyms. Also, I tend to only answer the guided questions provided rather than provide my own feelings and beliefs about the topic. One very important thing this class has taught me opinion vs. argument. I believe I have mastered the art of stating my opinion without actually speaking it. My opinions are not naked, they are backed up by a great deal of facts and evidence making it a valid argument. An opinion alone is very pitiful and does not stand a chance but with a sufficient amount of proof, no age or sex limitation can stop a person from voicing their belief. Compared to the other Language Arts classes I have taken, this by far has been the most expressive and open-minded class. I have been given several opportunities to research on topics I care about and form arguments upon them. I have always been wanting to be more aware of global events that occur around us and this Media Literacy class allowed me to become more knowledgeable. Most importantly, I was not judged when stating my views on a presented argument. Most of the times we were given a broad topic and given the freedom to carry that topic as we wish. This was the one aspect of this class that I very much enjoyed. One thing I would like to change about this class is offer more research writing assignments. Although many people may not agree, research has broadened our knowledge and ample amount. Being “assigned” to state our opinion makes our beliefs stronger and thus makes us a stronger individual. I can confidently say that I know where I stand in life with the social and global issues around me.


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Techonolgy Taking Over

Technology and more importantly social media was originally intended for the purpose of connecting everyone globally. However, it has done the complete opposite. While we continuously tell ourselves that our iPhone connect us through instant imessages, we forget that we are being disrespectful to the company right next to us. We are too focused into the virtual world and forget about the reality. Slowly time will turn this into a permanent situation where the only connection we will have with our “friends” will be through Instagram and Facebook. To prevent this from further becoming a problem, we must become the change. Asking others to be cautious of their use of technology will bring no change unless we ourselves take the initiative. It’s easy to talk the talk but it’s difficult to walk the walk. I will begin serving as a role model myself. I will spend time talking to my friends face to face rather than on facetime. Addiction to social media has definitely proved to be very unhealthy. Instead of enjoying our meals, we take a Snapchat to inform others we are having a meal. Instead of enjoying our time with our friends and creating memories, we take videos to show everyone we are having fun. It is not necessary that every memory should be shared, some should be kept sacred and among the few who are a part of it. It will not be easy to control the addiction of social media but one must start out slowly. Start at home alone, put your phone to the side while you enjoy some peace and quiet. Maybe next time the entire family places their phone to one side while everyone enjoys their meal without any unnecessary interruptions. Changes will not occur in a split second, they will take time and require patience. I will use social media and technology generally to stay connected to friends and family who live in distances where it is not possible to meet up often. However, I will ensure that friends who are reasonable distances from me are personally connected rather than through technology. Technology shouldn’t be a necessity, it should be a privilege.


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