Unit #3 SA: Environment & Society

Christian Nelson

Where Does Our Oil Come From?
The above video acts as a segue into the topic of natural resources and interactions between major belief systems creating conflict. It also does a great job of showing the problems within and between countries based on their environment and societal views.

Unit #3 Claim:

"Exploitation and competition over natural resources and interactions between major belief systems may create conflict."

Analysis

Unit #3 Claim In My Words:

"The unfair utilization as well as any competitiveness over valuable assets and communication across differing major religions could possibly result in clashes."

Religion Explained Through Metaphor:

"If your brain is the hardware and your mind is the operating system, religions are the software installed on it (and sometimes it's really difficult to uninstall them)."


This metaphor acts as a modern way to think about religion. Once a belief is established within a group of people, it's very hard to change their idea. This could also mean that people who have a certain belief will create conflicts to defend their religion, or attack others.


Below is a photo that represents the struggle/tension between the religion of Islam and Christianity.

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Application

Past & Present Real World Examples Of The Unit #3 Claim:

  • Fracking in America: "Fracking Media" exposed the negative side to this industrial process that gets many Americans their needed oil/methane. Fracking causes serious pollution and little is known about the long term effects. This leads to conflict (over a natural resource) between groups that frack that want to make money, and environmental groups/towns that are affected by this process
  • Religious practices: In Morgan Spurlock's documentary, "30 Days-Living With Muslims in USA", the hate and fear Christian's have towards Muslims is shown in a realistic yet biased manner. It shows the assumptions people make of one another and the conflicts that are created due to differing religions/beliefs.
  • The Middle East: This entire area of the world directly represents this claim as it is in a constant and brutal state of conflict as a result of the copious reserves of oil and other natural resources, and the religious diversity. The Middle East is not the only group involved with the series of conflicts in its borders, as America, Russia, The U.K., and many other European countries have represented themselves in this struggle.
  • Current Events: Extremely recently on May 22 of 2016 a high school in Ohio canceled the 70 year old school tradition of reading 'The Lords Prayer" during graduation because an Atheist group complained about the promotion of Christian faith. Every day there are religious conflicts like this, or conflicts over natural resources. These conflicts can also be very small and personal, or even international troubles.

A Possible Future Keeping The Unit #3 Claim In Mind:

It is my prediction that The Middle East will continue to see massive conflicts until it has lost its supply of fossil fuels (natural resources), or it has been militarily taken over by another country (like America). When either of these have happened I believe the area will calm down and rebuild its crumbling infrastructure. My predictions are based off of my background knowledge on The Middle East, and how I know that a lot of influence comes from possession of natural resources, which leads to conflict. This highly concentrated amount of valuable resources in The Middle East combined with the variety of religions that are struggling for power creates massive conflict that will only be resolved by a higher power (like the USA). Those are my thoughts on the future of the Middle East.

Transfer

How Does Any Of This Affect Me?

The enduring understanding of this unit affects me directly in many different ways. Although this claim may seem like it affects only the big picture, it can be found throughout anyone day. The exploitation and competition over natural resources can lead to things like higher gas prices, or certain crops not being in the market. Interactions between major religions could be as simple as speaking to a member of a different religious community. These are all things that happen to me on a daily basis, and will continue to happen to me that often.
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Real World Examples Of The Unit #3 Claim That Affect Me

  • As aforementioned the prices of oil, and whether some products are in stock or not affect me (as well as interactions with people from other religious groups)
  • I'm at home and all I want the last pack of Oreos, but my brother takes it so I fight him for the snack. This is a "prime" example of the enduring understanding. My brother is taking a limited resource that I wanted as well, and conflict sparks from that decision.
  • My mother's side of the family is Jewish and my father's side of the family is Catholic so they fight over whether we should celebrate Hanukkah or Christmas at home is another example of the claim in my life. In this situation my parents who both have different religions are arguing about which religious holiday to celebrate. So in this case conflict is created because of the interaction between different major belief systems.
  • In English class we have open note grammar tests, but there is a limited supply of grammar books within the class. Many students end up fighting over who got to the book first, and who then gets to keep and use it on the test. Even in school we can see a clear example of the claim as students create conflict over the distribution of a resource that everyone wants.