Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Extra Credit Mary Knab

"The Square"  Review By: Mary Knab

The documentary "The Square" directed by Jehane Noujaim was a very eye opening documentary. The way the I wasn't originally excited about the documentary but it actually ended up being very interesting. The moods in the documentary that you get are very overwhelming. Watching "The Square" was a emotional roller-coaster for me. It took place in an area in Egypt called Cairo. This area is not the best area to be in and that's why this documentary talks about the issues and political situations that are going on in Egypt. Weather it's between the police, and people in the area, a lot of the problems in the society there is the violence. The documentary shows the problems in the government but they also show how the people stay together. The military and political situation in Cairo brought in a lot of protesters and revolution go getter's. The protesters were not scared to die for their beliefs. I respect that a lot because clearly they were very passionate about what was going on.

The Tahrir Square was a major setting for this documentary. It was iconic because this is where the protesters and revolutionaries gathered. The way the event was captured was very ideal, images captured the military fighting back and trying to stop the protesters. People were being ran over by tanks and vehicles and that is one way the emotional factor is presented. By seeing these images it made you feel very sad and mad at the government. They did a really good job portraying how bad it really was. All the protesters were against the dictatorship of Hosni Mubarah.
The documentary did a really good job on showing both the conservative and liberal views. The people of the Tahrir Square were very poor and that was very hard for them. It made me think of when I researched child soldiers because the kids there were working at the ages 7-10. That's crazy for me to consider because of where I was raised. I haven't had to work full time or even pay for anything. Kids that age should be having fun not working full time. 

The situation in Egypt has made an uproar through the time the documentary came out to now. The people of Egypt made Mubarak step down. Obama was very upset with Mubaraks resigning, he said ""The Egyptian government must put forward a credible, concrete and unequivocal path toward genuine democracy, and they have not yet seized that opportunity"
Social Media had a big part in this, Facebook and Twitter was a full outrage of what was going on. It plays a huge part in the world because unlike the old days people have their own voice they can speak up now. Facebook made it easier to document because the footage couldn't have been removed. This reminds me of how recently in the news videos are being taken of cops abusing and taking their authority for granted. I think that its a blessing we have our hands on things like video recorders and phones so that we can too make a difference and stand up for what we believe in. I think that this was a good documentary to watch and I am glad that I did. It connects to different things that are going on in our world. 

Extra Credit Nathan Finneran

The Square
1.)The Square is a documentary that depicts the active revolt against political and military corruption of the Egyptian government. The film took the audience through the ups of progress in the movement as well as the catastrophic downs caused by the violence of the Egyptian military. The film did very well showing the dedication of the revolutionary activists providing many excerpts of people saying things such as "the more they (the military oppression) kill the more we believe in our cause.". Many protesters made it very clear they were not scared to die for their cause and many did. The film used many powerful images of the gruesome violence used by the military to break up the protests taking place in Tahrir square. From the lacerations on the back of a protestor to the image of groups of people being mercilessly run over by tanks and transport vehicles. The film was able to truly grab the hearts of the audience allowing them to connect to its cause. Another strength of the documentary was the way the storyline was so well organized. The film followed protesters as they fought against dictatorship of Hosni Mubarah but then returned to fight military rule and once more to rise against the presidency of Mohamed Morsi. This progression showed that the revolutionaries were not just interested in the fall of a leader but that they wanted change in the way they lived and freedom for their country. Something I didn't like about this film was the use of subtitles. Obviously with this film taking place in Egypt the characters in the heart of revolt do not speak English. I felt as if the subtitles were hard to follow because I was so captivated by the images being shown at the same time. The film could have been made better if the subtitles were replaced with verbal English translations over top of the native language in the background so the viewer can get the most out of the entire film.

Out of the many themes present in this documentary the two most important themes are that of hope and freedom. Hope comes from the optimistic views of the many protestors fighting for their freedom and to get their voices heard. At the end of the film Khalid Abdalla talks about how hes aware change of the magnitude the revolutionaries want will not happen in two years but they want to lay the foundation for change for the future. The message of freedom is very clear throughout the entire film. It is the motivation for the revolution and it is what the Egyptians believed they were being cheated of. 

2.) The revolution for political justice and the abolition of the police state status of Egypt started January 25th 2011. By February 11th dictator Hosni Mubarah stepped down from his position as leader after seeing no end for the revolt any other way. However, little change came from the resignation of the former dictator as military oppression stepped in blocking the citizens from their goal of freedom. Without the leadership of a dictator the race for presidency began causing ongoing problems. Mohamed Morsi, representative of the Muslim Brotherhood was elected president beating out the opposition of former dictator Mubarah. This change did not bring the freedom citizens had hoped for when the brotherhoods religion driven government suppressed many under its rule who didn't express the Muslim faith. To this day the revolution in Egypt has not quieted. In fact according to CNN the number of casualties at the hands of state forces in the 6 months leading up to the start of the year are the largest seen in modern Egyptian history. Now under the rule of former military general, Abdel Fattah the same protesters, made up of rights campaigners and civil society activists, that started the revolution years ago continue to fuel that same revolt.

 Social media often gets a bad reputation as a time wasting collection of pointless information however this is not always the case. For Egypt social media played a pivotal role in getting the word out about the reform and hardships Egyptian society was going through. As the Egyptian government and military tried to hide the violence taking place in the square protestors were ability to expose the unnecessarily violent ways of soldiers via social media. Another place where we can see social media playing a key role in exposing injustices is right here in our home country of America. A controversy that has become very prevalent recently police cruelty with two incidences in particular that have blown up with the help of social media. The most recent being a video of a man named named Eric Garner who was killed by police officer Justin Damico after being approached on suspicion of selling untaxed cigarettes. In the film Garner can be observed saying the words "I cant breathe" 11 times as the officer held him in a choke hold banned by the NYPD. As the video spread through social media so did outrage as a grand jury decided not to indite Damico for the death of Garner.

Extra Credit - Mitch Huge

Mitch Huge

The Square

I thought that "The Square" gave an in depth perspective of the people in Egypt's view of the political protests going on in their country. This film did an awesome job of really getting you behind the lines of the protests. I really liked how they would actually bring cameras with them when they were in rock and gun fights to document what was really going on during the protests. I have never seen a documentary that showed the bare bones side of conflict, you never get to experience the true side of tragedy.The characters in the the film are Ahmed, Ramy, Aida, and Magdy. It does a great job of showing the progression of events through this protest. The protesters  took Tahrir Square in protest and demanded that they would not leave until Marduak resigned. Marduak showed his cruelness by how he handled the protests. He fired live bullets, beat protesters, ran people over with vehicles. Something that I did not like about the documentary was the fact that it was in subtitles for most of the movie.I felt like it was distracting because you had to read most of the time when you wanted to see what was going on on the screen.

The use of technology was something that is new to the protest world. People would publish statuses regarding the square and what was going on during that day. Videos would be posted of brutal police force on the protesters. This let the world really know what was actually going on in Egypt. They would communicate on where they were protesting and eventually the government shut down the internet to prevent these things.


Extra Credit-Emilia Martin

1) "The Square" was a really informative and interesting documentary about the issues that have been going on in Cairo, Egypt regarding the revolution and revolts against the government and leadership there. The film did a great job of showing what it was like to be on the inside of the revolution to get a bird's eye view of what everyone was fighting for. I thought this documentary had a lot of strengths to it, one being that it focused mostly on one individual, Ahmed, and his fight against the government and all the people that he made connections with and fought with. It helped the audience really get in touch and see what was going on on the inside of this revolution. Another strength of this film was the actual filming quality of it. Because it wasn't an actual movie with professional videographers, and was filmed probably by a journalist or a reporter with a hand help camera really gives you a sense of the instability and chaos that was occurring in Egypt for the last 2 and a half years this uprising. The filming brings the audience into the chaos along with the others there because it is so raw and so real. One weakness I thought this documentary had was the use of the subtitles. Of course because the revolution was in Egypt, the language was not going to be english and subtitles were definitely needed, however, because the viewer constantly had to read the words on the screen it took their eyes away from what was going on behind them. I often times was distracted by looking at the pictures or the videos of what was happening and missed some of the subtitles and got lost in what was going on.

There were many important themes and ideas that was occurring during this documentary. One major theme that was really prominent was the fight for freedom from the 30 years of rule from Leader Mubarak and his emergency laws. They people of Egypt rebelled together in the Tahirir Square for 2.5 years to get away from that type of government and live a life of democracy and freedom. They couldn't be silenced. Another theme that was very evident was the unity the people had to fight together as one against the President. Although they feel apart when the Muslin Brotherhood took control, those rebelling against that group stayed together as one unit fighting for the same thing. One last theme in this film was the use of social media and how it played a huge roll in aiding the rebellion and revolutionists. Its purpose was to serve as a way to expose the leaders faults and what they were doing to those who were fighting like abusing them and destroying their tents in the square with the cameras that people collectively used.

2) In Egypt in 2011, protests started to overthrow the President Mubarak and his emergency laws and unjust government. People of all religions and cultures came together in unity to oust him and when he finally stepped down Egypt held its first presidential elections. One side was the for the Muslim Brotherhood and the other was for Mubarak to be elected again. The Brotherhood won under the rule of President Morsi but just after a year he was forced to step down because the revolution and rebelling continued in The Square because people were still unhappy with the new ruler. The Brotherhood stood for a government run primarily by religion--The Muslim religion which suppressed all others and discriminated those who didn't follow that faith. The rebellions continued after he stepped down as did the chaos of trying to find  new leader that was just and fair and wanted freedom and equality of all people. Those who once fought together, the Muslims and other Egyptians, to over thrown Mubarak are now separate because they do not see eye to eye on political justices or ways of government. Now in Egypt the former military general, Abdel Fattah has been elected President.

Social Media played a huge role in the uprising in Egypt because a lot of the time, the things that were going on in the square or with the military were not publicized on the news, not on CNN or NBC but were broadcasted through videos on youtube and other websites which was evident in the documentary "The Square". Social Media was how a lot of people communicated with each other throughout the revolution to let others know what was happening and that help was needed. Another example of power abuse and unrest in the world is in Syria. Syria, which is mostly populated by Arabs, some Kurds, and some Iraqis refugees, are protesting against ruling regimes in The Middle East. Syrian protestors are demanding the removal of President Bashar al-Assad and his government. In response to this revolt, the president sent in his troops into the cities; many have been killed and/or injured during this combat. The media is getting involved with the issue little by little but sometimes seems to be very one-sided. Revolts and fighting is still occurring today.

Last Exploration, Jenn Peddicord

Part 1: I decided to take a paragraph from my Essay 2 narrative. I wrote about the summer I got to work a whole month at a YoungLife camp in Goshen, VA. I talked about how influential and meaningful to was to be there as well as spending time with those I had hardly knew at the beginning. The paragraph I chose was..." I made some of my best friends that summer because we could cut out the bull of trying to impress one another and just be real about where we were at in our faith, our struggles, and our life back home. What a privilege that is to be able to be fully known by someone and be fully loved, without feeling like you have to hide behind a façade." It was important to me because that summer is something that is forever ingrained in my mind. I learned a lot about myself that summer and grew so much. The friends I made there left a mark on me and I am the person I am today because of them.

Part 2: One cause I really wanted to talk about is the Fringe App. I talked about it briefly in my extra credit assignment but didn't give it nearly enough credit. The Fringe App was started by my friends brother in law, Miles Miller. It is an app that joins together the people of Columbus and homeless people living on the streets. The app is created so those who pass or come across those who are homeless can be recorded on the app. Their location and their needs are put on the app and a team of drivers go around and provide them with the things they requested. This app is not only to help stop homelessness but build a community behind the cause. On December 20th, starting at 8pm "Fancy Party" is being held to raise awareness and contributions to The Fringe App. All proceeds go to benefits the homeless as well as building a team of more volunteers to serve these friends of ours.

Exploration 8

Essay two where we had to write about a time where we learned something. This one was the most fun to write and had a lot of meaning. I talked about a special needs boy I helped with my senior year of high school and how he taught me that its easy to look on the brighter side of things. One of my favorite parts was when I wrote about a time that he had had a bad day in gym class and I told him that it was okay and that I wasn't mad at him and when we got back to the room he asked me stay him for a few more minutes till he calmed down, and then after about 5 minutes I asked him if it was okay if I left and he told me to stay the whole day. It was just a sweet moment and it's one of my favorite moments. The other moment I wrote about was a time my grandfather taught me and my cousins to be grateful for how easy we had it in life by telling stories of his father and grandfathers lives on the reservation and how life was hard for him growing up in a time where Native's were treated poorly. The most powerful part about that story was some how he stated he wasn't ashamed of where he came from and that he will always honor his heritage and for us to be grateful towards him and our parents for all the hard work for us to live a wonderful life.

Recently there was a little boy from Childrens who made a video for Cardale Jones wishing him luck for the Wisconsin game by telling him to "be brave, if i can beat cancer, you can beat Wisconsin.Go bucks!" I just thought it was so sweet and I definitely cried! Kids are just so sweet, I sometimes feel like theyre smarter than adults. This little boy just seems to have such a big heart. I just found this video to be so cute and sweet.It definitely touched my heart. Pediatric cancer is a cause that means a lot to me. A little boy I coached had it but he is now fully recovered and a level 5 gymnast!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jg1E2D_LhAY

Extra Credit Jenn Peddicord

I found this film to be very moving and inspiring. It gives you a first hand view of what really was going on in the midst of the revolution and how people we really suffering verse what you saw on the news. The revolutionaries passion and willingness to stand together as one, regardless of the opposing religions, and fight for a democracy gave me a heart of respect for the Egyptian people.

 I think the personal effects that made the storyline was a huge strength for this film. It created an authenticity to the film and helped you really get to know the key players in the revolution. The use of technology and social media had such an important role in the impact this film made. It got the word out as best it could and actually used social media as a tool not just a waste of time. One weakness in the film was the constant use of subtitles. It definitely was powerful to use the native language, which is beautifully spoken, but sometimes the constant need to read the subtitles distracted me from what was happening in the background.

The huge them in this documentary was definitely, freedom. But one thing that played into that that definitely changed the progress of the revolution was the fact that as a nation, as the people, as Egyptians they stood together for the majority of the revolution. It wasn't until religion became mixed with politics, by electing a president apart of the brotherhood that people became less concerned about freedom and more about having someone with the same religious beliefs in power regardless of the consequences it would impose on others.

Egypt now under rule of President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi. The people of Egypt are still being oppressed by dominant rule that is masked as a "democracy". On December 2nd, 2014 188 people were sentenced to death because they were supporters of the Brotherhood and for killing 11 police officers last year. The tables have turned. Although they have a president who is trying to in force a new constitution, blood is still being shed. And now its the muslims being targeted. 

Social media played a huge role in this uprising. It was able to get the word out and expose what truly was happening in the streets. It raised awareness and helped people join the cause. One thing I think of as a way people locally are usin social media and technology to raise awareness and help people is The Fringe app. The Fringe App was started by Miles Miller trying to raise awareness about homelessness in the city of Columbus. The app was created so when you pass by or walk past a homeless person you go on the app put down their location and what they are asking for. Then a team of drivers who work with The fringe, drive to that location and provide them with food and any other needs the have express. There are different symbols on the app that identify if the person has moved, been helped, etc. This is a really cool way for people to help stop homelessness and become more aware about the stories of those that are living on the streets. For me, growing up in a suburb I was never really taught how to go about dealing with a homeless person. That sounds bad but I was always told a negative perception that all they are going to spend their money on is food. While for some that may be true but for others its just a series of bad luck. 




Final Exploration Nathan Finneran

1.) Where I think my writing was at its best this semester was in essay two. For essay two I wrote about my first of 5 trips to Bay Saint Louis Mississippi for hurricane Katrina relief efforts. I think one reason I was able to write on this topic so well is because it was a very meaningful experience in my life. During my trips I was able to meet some incredibly optimistic people in a time of their lives where they had just recently lost every possession they owned excluding what they could fit in their cars when they were evacuated. I also remember this trip so vividly because it was the first and only time I've ever experienced destruction and loss at that magnitude. It was a truly humbling experience to be able to help families who had everything swept out from underneath them confining them to a FEMA provided camper, no bigger than a single bedroom.

2.) Leah Still, 4 year old daughter of Cincinnati Bengals DT Devon Still was recently diagnosed with pediatric cancer. The cancer was discovered when on the way to her dance recital Leah became sick and was taken to the hospital for evaluation. Devon was put into a difficult situation when the treatment for his daughters cancer was quoted around $1 million, he needed football for the funds but wanted to spend every second he could with Leah who was given a 50% chance of living. Devon decided Leah was more important devoting his time to her instead of football. As a result Devon was waived from the team until head coach Marvin Lewis made arrangements to keep Devon on the practice squad allowing him the insurance he needed to help him pay for his daughters treatment. In addition the Bengals made Still's jersey available on their website with 100% of the proceeds going to pediatric cancer research. Within the first 24 hours the jersey was on the market over 1000 had been sold at $100 a piece, including 100 which were purchased by New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton. Within that first 24 hours Still's jersey because the fastest selling jersey in Bengals history. This story is important because it shows that even in a nation where greed has spread like wildfire good people exist to rally around someone in need of support. Here is a link to an interview ESPN did with Still http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=espn:11524346

Exploration 8 Chandler Fullenkamp

"It is in a little shopping center close to downtown Dublin.  It has a bunch of small shops and a couple restaurants to eat at.  The store itself is smaller than the regular Kroger so it hides with all the other shops.  When you walk in you will see the customer service desk and the 5 registers.  If you look to the left you would see the 6 self-checkout registers.  The registers that we use aren’t anything special, it’s just a conveyor belt to bring the groceries to me, the scanner, and another belt on the other side to bring the scanned groceries to the bagger.  At the beginning of the register they have all the little things like candy and magazines.  There is about 20 aisles in the store with the usual various departments like the deli department and the bakery and the meat department.  In front of where I stand is the scanner and the keyboard to type in the codes for the fruits and vegetables."

This paragraph is from our literacy narrative essay.  I chose to talk about my work and I think this paragraph was one of my best writings of the year.  I think I had very good description about my work and what it is like to walk and what I see.  I think that my literacy narrative was one of my best essays too.
 

Exploration 8-Nick Bogdue

1. This was from one of my papers I wrote in this class, and I like it because this was a great time in my life that I will never forget.

I worked there almost every day in the summer, with one other person working with me. I became really good friends with the people I worked in the trailer with, because we would spend nine hours a day locked inside a food truck together, so we got to know each other pretty well. When i was at Flannagans it didn’t even feel like work because I had so much fun. We were not very busy, which led to my manager having to shut it down, but while it was open, it was a blast. I would just sit in there, watching people play volleyball right in front of us. Then i could just open the back door and watch people swim and drink in the pool bar. Since me and my friend Brian worked there so much, the workers at Flannagans and usual customers there would get to know us, and we all became pretty good friends. I would be leaning over the trailer, and workers would just come give me random high fives. Another reason I loved the trailer was because since people got alcohol there, they would give pretty good tips once they've had a couple. We would see a lot of interesting things there, have had some crazy situations, and saw some things I probably shouldn’t write about in this paper. We have had customers try to slip us beer, but we would politely refuse. One time we had this guy try and walk in the trailer because he thought the girl I was working with was cute, but thankfully he came to his senses and walked out when we asked him to leave.   We would have a lot of people tip more then the amount there food was worth, which made me extremely happy. The food truck was amazing, and I made memories there that will last a lifetime.

2. I chose to do lyrics to one of my favorite songs,The Last to Say, by Atmosphere. I love this song so much, and the lyrics in it are so deep. It's a really sad song about abuse, but the way Atmosphere tells the story is really poetic, and definitely worth a listen!
As far back as he cares to remember,
He used to see his old man lose the temper.
And Mama's pretty face'd catch it all.
On a regular basis the nest would fall.
But he was always safe from dad's rage
'Cause mama's sacrifice in his place.
Two dozen years, Of the blood sweet and tears.
Avoid the mirror, losin' her hair from the fear.
She never left him, stayed inside.
He beat her up until the day that he died.
In fact the biggest beating was the day that he died.
Cause now it's too late for her to make a new life.
She gets to mourn for the touch of a punch.
Won't ever admit that she ain't clutching it much.
Someday she'll die and still won't be done.
The anger lives on through their son.

Cause he saw, he caught it all,
A childhood of watchin' ma and pa get raw.
It's too bad for him; Naw' that's half the truth.
Cause you back with him now and he's smackin' you.
What happened to you? You don't have a clue.
Did your mamma use to suffer accidents too?
I never knew that you would stand for abuse.
I guess I just assumed that you would pack up and move.
Think about when you left him, Last time,
You said out loud, You'd never forgive past crime.
Sunglasses so dark, scarf around the neck to cover the choke marks.
And since you got it justify returnin',
You convinced yourself that he's just a hurt person.
You wanna blame that cross he bares,
But his pop's not there when he tosses you down stairs.

Let me be the last to say, please don't stay.
Let me be the last to say, you won't be okay.

Please put your shoes on and step into that warm weather.
Go get yourself a more better forever.
Gotta put it down, you gotta leave it,
And don't ever come back again; You gotta mean it.
Just tear it all apart and build new,
Cause' if you don't kill him he's gonna kill you.
You can't hold hands when they make fists,
And I ain't the first to say this but,

Let me be the last to say, please don't stay.
Let me be the last to say, you won't be okay.
Let me be the last to say, please don't stay.

Here is a picture of Atmosphere

Here is a picture of the place I talked about in my writing, Flannagan's.





Exploration 8 Mary Knab

1) My favorite piece of writing that I enjoyed was Essay #1. This essay was when we were supposed to "profile" someone or some place. My original piece was not as well as it should have been but while redoing my writing, I felt as if that was my best piece. The way I progressed from when we did our first paper to now was a crazy transformation. I didn't feel as if I was changing as a writer until I redid the paper and saw the difference between the two essays. I talked about my dad which was a hard topic to talk about but once I started talking about him, it was very hard to stop. I started to think about all the reasons why he makes such a good father and how I am going to prove to everyone in one essay. Here is a little snippet of my paper which, I feel like I did a good job representing how I felt at that moment and my thoughts.

"In February of 2014 my father was taken into the hospital for a tumor in his stomach. The doctors were pretty sure that the tumor was cancerous and that he might not have much longer as he had been losing a lot of blood. Selfishly, I began thinking about everything that he would miss in my life; walking me down the isle, graduating college, being a grandfather, and so on. It was earth-shattering news for our family that no one expected. During his time in the hospital,  all my dad could think about was his family; not work, not his health, nothing but what matters most to him. Once again he pushed through a rough patch in his life and today he is better than ever. It was a long recovery but my dad is one of the strongest fighters I know. Just the thought of loosing my father still gives me the goosebumps to this day."


2) One thing I want to share with my class is that live every day like it could be your last. You don't know what will happen tomorrow so love the ones around you and start to respect people as if you could lose them at any moment. I feel like nowadays people take a lot for granted and kids my age expect a lot from people because of the way we were raised or where we grew up. The best thing you can do is learn who you are and treat people the way you would want to be treated. I have met a lot of people in this class that made the semester very fun and exciting to learn and everyone has their own special talent you just need to find it to let it out. Do what YOU love, and make your life YOURS.

Exploration 7 Mary Knab

The Joy Of Part-Time Work

The blog that I chose was very interesting to me. I chose it because I work part time and I wanted to see Mr. Money Mustache's view and joy of part time work. There are many joys in part time work for many reason. The flexibility of when you can work and the way it can work with school, family, personal is why people do tend to lean towards part time work. There were many good points in this blog that talks very highly of part time work. Most people think that part time may pay less and not be very sustainable as a job. Mr. Money Mustache changes that view in this blog.

 He states that, "But your personal life will take an even bigger leap upwards. Imagine: EVERY weekend is a long weekend. An extra fifty-two days, or Ten Weeks, of vacation per year. Your free time jumps by 50%. You can use the extra day for self-development: sleep in a bit, do a huge workout and/or bike ride, get the groceries, read a book, practice a new skill, then cook a fancy dinner for yourself or your family. Isn’t that better than the fifth day of work?"

I loved this statement because it actually talks about how working part time may be very beneficial in the end. I work part time and always wish that I could work full time and work more to earn more money and experience. This blog proves that even with part time you can earn almost the same without having to be there. He also states that the business does need your help and that many people feel less stable jobs are part time but that isn't the case.

I also really respected how Mr. Money Mustache said, "When you work at your own pace, however, everything changes. You get to decide what your goals are each week, and balance your work production against other things that are important to you". Those two sentences were very beneficial to me because it gave me motivation to work at my own pace, with not only work but school. You can control your goals and I really respected that line. I feel as if many people will rush you in the business and school but you have to go at your own pace to get things accomplished to your maximum worth. 

Monday, December 8, 2014

Exploration 8 - Nate Allen

My favorite piece of writing that I have done all semester is probably from my second essay where I talked about the passing of my brother and how it changed my life. It was very personal and hard to write about and it felt good to kind of talk about the things that I don't talk about in every day conversations. It helped a lot because I was completely honest about the situation.

The one thing that I could share with everyone in this class is to do what you love most. I play rugby and the reason I do is because that is the only time that I remember my brother with perfect clarity. Rugby was an activity that I got to share with my brother Nick before he died. Part of the reason I play now is because I know that Nick can't anymore. I also love to run people over, it's the only place where being overly aggressive  is accepted in my life. There are so many people that never end up doing what they love and that's what I want for everyone is to do what they love.

Extra Credit - Nate Allen

The Square was a riveting documentary about how the revolutionaries in Egypt were constantly fighting for presidential change.They wanted a free state where Christians and Muslims could coexist without riots and constant fear of being killed in the streets while protesting. I thought it was a very good documentary that showed the ugly truth of how certain parts of the world have bad issues where the citizens cannot express the freedoms that we can in our country.While watching this documentary I felt very sad when I thought about how these poor innocent people are being murdered in the streets for trying to express themselves in a free environment. At the same time it was amazing to see how there were still people that wanted to make a change instead of surrendering and accepting the fact that their government and military were corrupt. I also liked how they wanted to show all of the violent and corrupt events. That certainly isn't what I was watching on the news during this time, I remember seeing the riots but never saw the army running over innocent protestors and shooting live ammo at them. A lot of the time you never get to see the raw footage of horrific injustices. I t made me feel good that this footage managed to make it out of Egypt without being taken by the army. This documentaries strengths I believe are what I already mentioned and it was the fact that they were able to show the raw footage of this conflict. Also the fact that you get to look at a culture that is in turmoil and how the true Egyptians continued to fight. The only weakness that I would have to mention is the fact the documentary is in subtitles. For me I hate reading while watching movies because it gives me a headache.

Egypt's current situation is one of uncertainty. On one hand they were able to get President Mosli to step down but that just means that the interim president is one that shares the same ideas and still has the military handle the countries issues with violent results. It is quite resembling of the South African apartheid in that the government of Egypt is trying to separate the citizens and they are using very violent methods to do so. The best part of this whole topic is how the story got out. Khaled Mohammed used Faccebook to share these gruesome videos and horrific stories of protests gone wrong. Facebook was the reason that this documentary was made possible by showing the footage before it could be taken. Overall this documentary was excellent and worth watching, and it most certainly affected how I look at issues that I see on the news. It makes me want to dig deeper on every bit of news I see because you never know when the news is being corupt or not showing the whole truth.

Extra Credit Chandler Fullenkamp

The Square

The documentary The Square is a film that shows the true horrors of the Egyptian revolution of 2011.  A revolution that still continues on today.  It films a group of revolutionaries such as Ahmed, Ramy Essam, Aida, and Madgy- who is a Muslim brother.  The film shows the progress of the revolution and how they came together as a group to show their power.  The biggest movement was when they took over the Tahrir Square and demanded they will they will not leave till the dictator, Marduak, steps down. The crowd chanted, “The people demand the fall of the regime!” That day came on February 11th, 2011.  There were many fights that were beginning to break out between the army and revolutionaries.  The revolutionaries tried to keep the sit-in in the Tahrir Square peaceful, but the army brought real ammunition.  The army had connections with the media so it was also corrupt and only showed biased media.  Elections were eventually held and the Muslim Brotherhood won and ran for presidency.  They elected President Morsi.  He gave himself unchecked powers shortly after he became president which rally upset the people.  In the summer of 2013, protests increased against Morsi.  He would also be pushed out of power but the fight still goes on today. 

I found this documentary very interesting and it was very informing.  It had some strengths that made it very capturing.  It was filmed in first person so it made it feel like you were there which helps attract viewers and it was a documentary so it was made to inform people.  After watching this film, I think that this was a big deal that was not very exposed, obviously because of the corruption of the median in Egypt.  Some weaknesses of this film would be that it is biased towards the revolutionaries and did not show any of the army or president’s point of view.  Also, it was pretty long.  I think it would have been more powerful if they kept it shorter.  

Exploration 8


Part one- I am really proud of the third essay that I wrote in this class. I wrote about animal testing and how I was both for and against it. I liked being able to take such a different view on something that is usually just one side or the other. It also made me realize how my own personal experiences really do effect the way that I make choices like this. I don’t think that if people so close to me were sick I would be for animal testing at all, but because I do know people that are suffering from diseases like cancer, and how some of the tests that they are conducting could really save peoples lives. “And in the end he had beaten the cancer, he had won that long and hard battle, but the other had snuck up on him like an unworthy opponent, attacking when his back was turned, and killed him. If there is new evidence that can stop things like this from happening, then yes, for the most part, I think it’s worth it.”



Part two- Something that I feel that is very important today is sexual assault. According to RAINN “Every two minutes another American is sexually assaulted, 60% of sexual assaults are not reported to the police, 97% of rapists will never spend a day in jail” I believe this is something that really needs to change. People should be able to walk home without the free of being attacked, or at the very least feel that they can go to the police without being ridiculed, or relive the torment of what they already went through. I also feel like this is something that not a lot of people really want to talk about, because no one really knows what to do or say about it. But I believe that if people just start talking about it, then maybe we can come up with a better solution in dealing with how to stop it or just make it so people feel that they can come forward. 

There are so many ways that people can help, or get involved, even just talking about it, we can really make a difference. 

The National Sexual Assault Hotline and OnlineHotline, operated by RAINN, provide much-needed support to victims of sexual assault and their friends and family. Sign up now to give those affected a safe place to turn when they cannot find their voice.
RAINN relies heavily on volunteers to raise the funds necessary to operate the National Sexual Assault Hotline and Online Hotline, educate the public, and pursue public policies that will bring more rapists to justice.
Are you willing to help educate the public about sexual assault by sharing your story? We are looking for victims and friends or family members of victims who are willing to share their experience.
Talking about sexual assault is a powerful way to help reduce the stigma, teach young adults ways to reduce their risks, and help survivors learn where to turn for treatment.
All RAINN Affiliates serve victims of sexual violence. Volunteers and staff at these organizations are trained on issues surrounding sexual violence and can provide support and information about individual or group counseling, medical attention, reporting a crime to law enforcement as well as many other services.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Extra Credit-Danny Lucia

The Square is a documentary that is directed by Jehane Noujaim. The way I would describe this movie is intense. Some moments in the film make you extremely sad and some make you happy. When watching this I really understood how hectic Cairo Egypt is. This movie is about the many struggles that Egypt is facing because of the political problems. It shows many scenes of police brutality that are graphic. They also show the country coming together to try and solve their problems. It really shows that the army isn't keeping them safe, but killing innocent people. This video shows that there wasn't a revolution going on, but there was a war. Another thing it does is it shows how little the leaders in Egypt were willing to compromise. An important statement that was made was, "If you take down the leader and he replaced with someone from the same circle. You are doing the same thing." This is what happened when Mubarak, the leader of Egypt, stepped down. They elected had else that wasn't going to change anything. Egypt leaders just sent the army out to go use deadly force on people who were just stating their political views.  The revolutionaries went to Tharir Square, which the movie is named after, and set up tents to protest. These were all taken down by "thugs" and the army. This was sad to see because everyone in the United States respects our army and puts them very high in society. It does a good job in showing how little everyone trusts the army in Egypt. They are not doing a good job protecting the people like in other countries. They said their reason for recording The Square was, "We need to show them the truth, as long as there is a camera the revolution continues."
One of the strengths of this film is that it shows a lot of things that will get to your emotions. One of these examples is when they show the clip of people getting ran over by the army trucks. They showed an image of a man that had a deformed face because of this. They also did a good job showing both sides to the argument. They interviewed the army leader and he said that they need to give the government a chance. Another strength of this film is how close they get to the chaos. Some parts they are in the middle of the war zone and I got into it when they did that. Overall, it was very well done and had awesome clips.
The weakness of this The Square is how they have to use subtitles to understand the people. At some parts I would lose focus because they are speaking another language. It made it confusing at some points. Sometimes I felt like I was watching the same scene twice because they were so similar.

After doing research on the current situation in Egypt, I found out that they are still having problems with leadership. After Mohamed Morsi was elected president and kicked out of power they elected Abdel Fattah el-Sisi as president in 2014. Egypt is still struggling right now with poverty and are having trouble with religion. One of the biggest challenges that they are having is getting people to protest right. People are fighting back and killing police officers. This makes the government unsure on how to have peaceful interaction with people. Military and people are still violent towards each other and it is very bloody. On December third 200 defendants were put to death because they killed police officers. The best hopes for this situation is for everyone to get on the same page. They need to be more organized when they protest.
Social media helped play a role in the uprising by coordinating protestor events. I also saw in the movie that people would put up videos of themselves talking about their opinions. It also helped honor the people that have died for their revolutionary goals. I have seen social media playing a role in the Ferguson case. Many news stations are trying to stick by the side of the system and others are saying that the final verdict was wrong. A lot of different celebrities that people look up to are talking about this. People of the family are putting out different things on all kinds of social media sites that are positive and negative.
http://topics.nytimes.com/top/news/international/countriesandterritories/egypt/index.html