Bullets & Ballots Game Analysis

Migration of Power

Lauren Pardue - F - 1 April 2016

What The Game Was About:

The game was about Guatemala, and the transition of power between the five different groups: Guerrillas, Peasants, Guatemalan Government, Army & Wealthy, and the United States. The 3 day activities showed how power moves from different groups, how people migrate from different groups, and how some people who have nothing can mean everything to some people. The Army & Wealthy had the most money and MSUs, while the Peasants had nothing. Even though they had nothing, the Guerrillas needed the Peasants the most. The Army & Wealthy needed everyone's support, and the Guatemalan Government just needed anybody that would keep them in power. With this game, it gave everyone that played it a good understanding that 'humans migrate, create cultural mosaics, and balance the forces of cooperation and conflict among different social groups.'

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Humans Migrate

Migration Analysis: What it is

Migration is a big part of human nature; they always go where they want to. Different reasons can cause migration, such as war, health care, or a better life overall. For example, in 2014, there were more than 11.7 million Mexican immigrants residing in the USA (Zong). Migration is the reason why the US is a Melting Pot, it's a reason that the world has more knowledge of other cultures, and it's a reason why everyone is of different ethnicities. In Bullets and Ballots, migration was when one person would leave one group to join another, or when two groups joined as one.

Photo: Goldfish going from one bowl to another; shows how migration works

Migration Application: why people do it

Many reasons can cause people to migrate, but the biggest reason is because people want a better life. Back to the Mexico and US example, the reasons for those people migrating to the US could be for a number of reasons. Probably, though, the main one is that the US is a better place to live than Mexico, and that's for many reasons also. The US has a low percent of the population under the poverty line, as Mexico has a whopping 53.2% of the population under the poverty line (US vs Mexico). Since so many people are migrating to the USA, it effects my life greatly. In the game, people migrated to benefit themselves, benefit their group, or benefit their country. For example, when the Guerrilla's main leaders got murdered by the Death Squads, half of the group left to join others, while the other half stayed true to the Guerrillas and did not migrate.

Photo: Ethnicities and their migration from country to country

Migration Transfer: How it effects my life

When I grew up, my town was filled with snobby Caucasian families. Most of the kids in my school were Caucasian, and there were probably 3 families of a minority ethnicity. Ever since I got out into the world, though, I have been introduced to many cultures and backgrounds, and that is due to the migration of people, ideas, and traditions. In the game, it effected the Guerrillas greatly; the merging of the different groups and the migration from members of the Guerrillas to the other groups left us defenceless and uncapable to win.

Photo: A way someone can be introduced to different culture; Chinatown

This Is Why People Migrate

Humans Make Cultural Mosaics

Mosaic Analysis: What is it

A mosaic is a beautiful piece of artwork made out of different things, such as glass, objects found around the house, and more. When you have a human mosaic, though, it is clearly made out of humans. The artwork is not literal art, but it could be. Or, it could be the creation of ideas or beliefs, traditions or cultures. A cultural mosaic is what's created when persons from different backgrounds come together and live in one community, ultimately coming together to create one town that is unique and unlike any other. In the game, the cultural mosaics was the 5 different groups, and how they effected each other in the game.

Photo: America is a cultural mosaic of different backgrounds, but we all live in one country; "a melting pot".

Mosaic Application: Why it happens

Cultural mosaics happen when one country's beliefs mixes with another country's beliefs, or their traditions, or their religion. For example, America is considered a "Melting Pot", meaning that not just one type of person lives here. We are not all Caucasian and Catholic. America has numerous religions, numerous races (some are even mixed [e.g. I am Irish, French Canadian, and a couple of other backgrounds. I am not just 'American', but I am all of those backgrounds]), and numerous cultures. In the Bullets & Ballots game, the cultural mosaic was the relationship of the different groups and their relation with their country. When the people from different groups interacted, it increased the detail into the mosaic; the ideas of the Peasants and the Army/Wealthy mixed together, as the Guerrillas and the Guatemalan Governments ideas mixed together.

Mosaic Transfer: How it effects my life

As stated earlier, cultural mosaics effect my life greatly. Myself, as an American, would not be who I am today without the cultural mosaic my family made. My papa, as an Irishmen, would not have met my Nana, a French Canadian, if the mix of cultures in the US did not exist. Because of the different aspects of life in this country, my mom was able to meet my dad, my nana was able to meet my papa, my grandmother was able to meet my grandfather, and so on. All these people come from different backgrounds, with different ethnicities and belief with them. Since the US is the "Melting Pot", it brought all of these things together to create one giant Cultural Mosaic, which is what made my family, your family, and everyone else's families. Without this mosaic, we would not have the strong diversity that we have now.
Melting Pot vs Mosaic

Humans balance the forces of cooperation and conflict among different social groups

Balance of Forces analysis: What is it

The balance of the forces of cooperation and conflict among different social groups is basically like a food chain. For example, in a high school movie, the jocks might have a force of cooperation with the cheerleaders, yet they might have a force of conflict with the nerds/geeks. In general, it is a balance of forces between fighting and friendship. In the Bullets and Ballots game, the Army/Wealthy had a force of conflict against the Guerrillas, as the Guerrillas had a force of cooperation with the Guatemalan Government. The Guerrillas tried to get a force of cooperation with the Peasants and the US, but it just didn't happen, as they already had one with the Army/Wealthy.

Picture: Balance between good and bad, much like conflict and cooperation.

Balance of forces application: Why it happens

A balance of forces happens when different social groups feel differently towards others; it could be good or bad. Many social groups, like in the example above, do not like other groups. Yet, they might like other ones. In the Bullets and Ballots game, there were 5 social groups. When they were created, they sent the groups to different rooms to learn more about their group, and they were told who they like and who they don't like. As a Guerrilla, we were told that we like the Peasants but we do not like the Army/Wealthy. As for the Army/Wealthy, they were told that they did not like us yet they loved the US. So on and so forth went for the different groups.

Picture: A rock balancing

Balance of forces transfer: how it effects my life

The balance of forces effects my life in many ways, such as it effects everyone else's life. Different social groups, such as mine in school, does not get along with other social groups. Another example of this could be political parties. Democrats do not like Republican views, and vise versa. Sometimes, though, they can cooperate instead of have conflict and work together to create something beneficial for the US. In the game, the groups that needed each other the most, such as the Peasants and the Army/Wealthy, created a cooperation force between themselves, and they also did with the US. Though the US and the Army/Wealthy did not get along at the beginning, they got along at the end. The group that had all the power to change their balance of force was the Army/Wealthy, then once the Guerrillas rose up to the challenge, they sent out Death Squads to kill off the Guerrillas so they could stay in power. It changed so they could stay in power, and have control of all the forces of balance.

Picture: Magnetics balancing

Works Cited

Zong, Jie, and Jeanne Batalova. "Mexican Immigrants in the United

States."Migrationpolicy.org. N.p., 17 Mar. 2016. Web. 30 Mar. 2016.

"United States vs Mexico." - Country Facts Comparison. Find The Data, n.d. Web. 30 Mar.