Monday, February 23, 2015

Roger Ebert

This last week I enjoyed learning about Roger Ebert. I believe this unit was probably one of our better ones, not just because it was positive compared to our unit of racism. But it kind of opened my eyes of something awesome someone did after going through something that should have crippled them. But Ebert never truly lost his voice after getting cancer in his lower jaw. Sure, he couldn't talk, but his voice was louder than ever. I also didn't realize that things like Alex, his computer that talked for him existed. My original reaction was to feel sorry for him, or pity him. But as we went on in the unit and went over what Pity is, I realized there really is no reason to pity him. Sure, he has lost a few things on the journey of life, but the only thing to pity is unhappiness which far from what Roger was like.

The big question in this unit is why some people sink or swim when faced with personal tragedy. I do think it has to do with how much preparation you have had for the personal tragedy. As in, your more likely to sink if a relative close to you dies in a freak accident out of nowhere. But even within the group of people who had that precious time to prepare, people sink. Why? It could have to do with your own character at that point in your life. If your depressed, a loss or personal tragedy will probably be the nail in the coffin. But if your self-confident and walk with a stride in your step, that's almost like an extra preparation. Other than those two theories, I can't think of any other reason. Se people might need help from others but ultimately it depends on how you feel like at some point in your life. But ultimately, the best you can do is be positive. Roger Ebert should and was applauded for what he did. He proved you can never truly lose your voice.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Review over Rasicm Unit

Over the past few weeks I have learned a lot about modern day Racism. Mostly about his hard it is to tell Institutional Racism from just plain evil. For the most part, a majority of people are not outwardly racist. I've learned and been thinking from a new perspective that modern-day racism is subconsious. This bias is forced through institutional racism. Society gives us a subconsious small dislike from an early age.

This can more easily explain the recent police brutality towards blacks. Policemen are really the only people put in the position to act on that bias. The rest of us are under the protection of the lack of tools and responsibility. But an officer's job is to be aware and look out for suspicious activity. In this way, their bias can affect their awareness. The failure to indict these police officers is most likely the result of institutional racism. As society tells you to trust the police officers and in places such as Ferguson most of them are wrongly, white. Despite most of the population of the town being black.

More specifically relating to what I researched, I have discovered the idiocy of immigration laws in our country. Starting off with John Adams' ridiculous auditions acts to suppress free speech using some laws preventing immigrants to naturalize. At one point our country allowed immigrated who lived here for 5 years to naturalize. Now, it's 14 years. Immigration indirectly relates to our racism topic because the laws and groups/clumps of foreign population creates a sort of dislike towards that group of people. The most prominent example is Mexican immigrans. Wether they are "illegal" immigrants or not, most people have a subconscious or they are aware of  their dislike of Mexican immigrants.

Immigration is a touchy subject because many people disagree of what you need to be allowed to come together into another country as a citizen. That is understandable. But so often we dehumanize immigrants with terms such as "illegal" and "alien." I personally think that to help society cut down on institutional racism and strong feelings for immigrants, it starts with how we portray them. Using dehumanizing words such as "alien" doesn't help.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Passion Project Update 2

Update for 10/3 to 10/10
Now that we have the plot line down, we started writing a basic script. Although we all agreed to go ahead and make a crazy specific script we have go go by. This is more like a guide for when we film. Ashwin and I went to Justin's house to go over what we have and expand our plot line and script. We went to possible locations to film and decided we should all get our own costumes ourselves. That is one thing I have to look into because the others for the most part have or are getting their stuff. Something I see as a problem for our entire group is how loosely we make our script and how improv-ish we are gonna do this. Because despite having a good idea of what we are gonna do, we need to make sure we have everything ready for a certain scene.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Passion Project: First Reflections

These first 2 weeks for our passion projects have been helpful in starting our video. We have done a lot of the beginning stages. Our group has been working on our plot line roughly and been working on our characters. We have been looking for music for our video and deciding what our characters should like. I personally have took on the role of a mage in our final fantasy-like video. Although, nothing is final at the moment. We have not really encountered any obstacles really(Except for Tom learning to throw cards). However, I anticipate a lot of editing problems to overcome later once we actually start recording.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Empathy is the solution?

After listening and reading Jeremy Rifkin's thoughts, I do agree with his ideas on empathy to an extent. I do agree that empathy is the solution to unify humans as a race. Basically, Rifkin believes empathy is "the invisible hand" that can extend to everyone on Earth. Empathy is how humans can unite as a race before it's too late. I like his term as referring to nations as "fictions". Mostly because that is what a Nation is. Why identify ourselves as Americans from the U.S.? Why restrict ourselves with borders? Nationalism repeatedly causes problems, enemies, and wars. This is all true, but it's impossible to fix. Unfortunately, this idea of everyone using empathy to solve our problems, which in theory could work, is idealistic. Despite living at a time where we know more about what goes on in the world, I don't think we can empathize with the people who have completely different experiences than ourselves. I could never imagine being someone dealing with starvation every day and trying to survive. Sure, I can research the hard life some people live, but even that is doubtfully drawing a 100% accurate picture of what goes on in their lives. I may be able to empathize with people facing the pressing issue of bullying because that is right here where I can see it. But issues like world hunger and lack of any medical care is not something an average person can experience here. Not only that, but some people simply do not care, which is unfortunate, but true. Not all people can be reasoned with. Not everyone wants to empathize. Rifkin stated that if we can empathize with our own groups of religion and nations, we should be able to empathize with all humans as one race. But we can't empathize as a whole because we don't have any connections with our race as a whole except being human. Which most don't consider a connection because of how vastly different our experiences are depending on where we are. 

Friday, March 28, 2014

Passion Project Update 2nd Semester

I have made a lot of progress on my Passion Project. With the first 5 Fridays I finished my script of what I want to do in my animated movie. Although, I definitely could have done more, I think what I have done is satisfactory. The obstacles I have faced in what I have done was thinking of what I actually want to do. After all I might think I want to put something in it and realize I can't when I make the actual animation. My movie is about a normal school day because that's what I can most relate to. Of course I make it closer to MY normal day to make it easier for me. An example of something I might take out of the movie is lunch conversations because it would make my movie longer for unimportant information. The next obstacles I have to prepare for is how smooth I want my animations to be. Like if I want a crazy good movie animations. But also how should I express the people when they talk. That's the kinda stuff I have to overcome now.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Passion Project Update/Reflection

I have done a bit. But I want to do more research and put more info in the powerpoint. My topic is Optical Illusions. I've read into to it obviously and it seems really interesting. Unfortunately the progress is a little low. I just need to work more in the last 8 weeks because I have to finish the powerpoint. Obstacle? No idea yet. Just time management I guess.