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HOW CINDERELLA MAN SHOWS REPRESENTS CONTEMPORARY STRUGGLES IN ACHIEVING THE AMERICAN DREAM

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The American Dream is a relatively ambiguous term. It has meanings that range from the success of the individual, to the national hope for equality and justice. Many people who arrived in American when the term was first used believed it meant the pursuit of a lifestyle that would allow them to live a life where equality and justice reigned supreme, and where everyone had a chance at attaining happiness. This definition will be applied to this essay’s look at the American Dream’s relationship to the 2005 film Cinderella Man. The movie depicts boxer James J. Braddock who is struggling to support his family during the Great Depression. Prior to the Depression taking hold in 1929, Braddock had a strong career as a boxer. But he invested into stocks most of the money he realized from that success. He would later lose this money during the market crash. He broke his punching hand around the same time, and this made him relatively ineffective in the boxing ring. His license was revoked and he had to try to work shifts at the dock. But they were scarce, and they paid very little. After a while, his hand healed, and he was asked to fight the runner-up to the heavyweight title of the world. After he won, he was asked to box again, and he kept fighting. He eventually won the heavyweight championship of the world, and those who were struggling to make ends meet rallied behind him, vicariously living the American Dream through him. Braddock, as depicted by Russell Crowe in the Ron Howard Film Cinderella Man, represents the American Dream, and his 1930s struggle relates to the challenges faced by people in attaining the Dream today.

The American Dream as depicted in the film, relates closely to how Americans are struggling today. James Truslow Adams is credited with coining the phrase: “[The American Dream is] that dream of a land in which life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement” (Brock, 2). He goes on to say it is more a term that people other than the upper class would really understand. However, contemporary economic and social challenges are making it difficult to achieve the American Dream. Defaulting mortgages, high fuel prices, high tuition prices and outsourced jobs, for example, are just a few of the challenges people face, (Jillson, 4). The American Dream was once something that was attainable by everyone. However, the challenges that people are facing in the 21st century have resulted in the unattainability of the dream for many people. This has been fueled by challenges that were not commonly faced throughout the history of the United States, except during the Great Depression in which Braddock literally fought for his family’s survival, and people have a similar fight today. “Despite two long economic booms in the 1980s and 1990s, the dream has been fading for many Americans” (Jillson, 4). This shows the similarities in the challenges that were faced in the Great Depression, with the challenges that are being faced now in achieving the American Dream.

Americans are currently disenfranchised due to an education system that makes it challenging to achieve the American Dream. According to The American Association of Community Colleges, competition from abroad is making it challenging for Americans to enter the education system so that they have the tools to succeed. The economic challenges that have been faced by Americans over the past several years is similar to what Braddock, and many others went through during the Great Depression. Ron Howard, director of the film, said he took a keen interest in the Great Depression, and his words reflect the similarities between the contemporary times and the 1930s’ Great Depression. “While the economy is mostly up and then sometimes down – the Internet bubble bursting felt a little bit like ’29, where people had overextended and fallen into that trap again – we’re anxious” (Cinderella, 7). The challenges to which Howard is referring came prior to the Great Recession, as the Internet bubble burst early in 2000. The Great Recession had a much larger impact on the economy and is a better comparable to the Great Recession. But his comments help draw a link to contemporary challenges and those that Braddock faced. Howard provides a valuable perspective on the reasons why he wanted to make the movie, and this allows the reader to see whether the intention of the movie was to communicate the American Dream. Howard does not specifically mention the American Dream, but he does discuss the challenges that were faced during the time, and compares them to the challenges faced after the Internet bubble after the turn of the century. That brings the context to a more contemporary time, and adds an element of relevancy when discussing the American Dream now, and how it was applied during the period Cinderella Man depicts.

Cinderella Man shows that attaining the American Dream is possible even at the worst of times. Braddock was at the bottom with many people, but he showed he could rise to the top with hard work. People rallied behind him, and he represented what they might be able to achieve. It did not take the American people a long time to discover the substance of the American Dream. It is the pursuit of happiness, liberty and life. Braddock showed the dream can be applied to anyone, because it is not mean to just say that some women or some men, or some white men or some white women; it means all people of any gender and race, (King Jr., 2). This text provides a valuable look at what the much-admired Martin Luther King Jr. thought of the American Dream. It provides the perspective of a black man who was going through a time of oppression for his people. Similar to how James J. Braddock was experiencing a very low point, King Jr. was experiencing a low point. Similarities between these two men provide a valuable take on how the dream has applied to disenfranchised Americans throughout history.

The American Dream is under siege, (Reclaiming, vii). Specifically, this is in relation to the contract between a generation of Americans and the next. It is becoming progressively more difficult for Americans to realize their dreams, as there are new challenges faced every day. These challenges might not be as obvious as the 20% unemployment reached during the Great Depression, but it is becoming much more difficult to achieve the type of lifestyle where Americans feel affirmed that they have realized an ideal lifestyle. Education is a main component in attaining the American Dream in contemporary times, and it is becoming more challenging to achieve due to increasing costs and competition. Furthermore, the greed that possesses many of the “haves” is colliding with the dreams of the “have-nots.” Corporations continue to provide the wealth to their top executives, who then collaborate with politicians in “old-boys clubs” to increase their monetary supremacy over the majority. That makes it vitally important to improve community colleges to ensure that the needs of students are attained, and they can compete to make their way to the top. But utopia is letting fewer and fewer people through its razor-sharp doors. While times are tough for many people today, Cinderella Man shows how someone can rise to the top even during the worst of times. The film represents a hope that even when life seems unbearable, hard work and persistence can result in achieving the American Dream, even if it is only there for a few.

Works Cited
Brock, Charles. “The Institute on the American Dream.” Penn State University. Web. 27   Oct.     2013

“Cinderella Man.” Columbia University. Web. 27 Oct. 2013.
Cinderella Man. Dir. Ron Howard. Perf. Russell Crow, Renee Zellweger, Paul Giamatti, Bruce McGill, and Craig Bierko. Universal Picture/Miramax Films. 2005. Film

Jillson, Cal. “Wide Awake and Worried: Today’s American Middle Class.” Southern Methodist University. Web. 27 Oct. 2013

King. Jr. “The American Dream.” Stanford University. (1965). Web. 27 Oct. 2013
“Reclaiming the American Dream.” American Association of Community Colleges. 2012. Web.   27 Oct. 2013.

COLLECTIVE IDENTITY: DIFFERENCES AMONG MEMBERS IS INEVITABLE

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People motivate collective action when they face what they perceive to be unjust, in an attempt to rectify a depriving situation. Social scientists define collective identity as being people who share common interests, experiences and solidarities. This collective identity can provoke group action, which can drive a social movement. German philosopher Karl Marxargued that unity among workers eliminates differences among the employees and creates solidarity among group members (Bantjes, 2007, p. 19). Contrary to Marx, contemporary trends of social movements, such as the gay movement, feminism, and anti-corporate globalization have proven that Marx’s suggestion is not always the case today. Increased education among the general public and the development of advanced forms of communication and transportation allow people to learn from other social movements, which they can support or oppose. Today, the employment field is much more diverse, people are able to participate in a wider field of interests, and information is readily available. Because of this, people posess several complex aspects to their identity than just proletarian or bourgeois. Despite the many advantages gained from diversity, should protest group solidarity depend on the elimination of differences?

In order to create a collective identity in a social movement, clear boundaries are required to define the group’s identity. For instance, the queer movement contains lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered individuals. In fact, the queer movement simplifies complex sexual identities of people under the ambiguous umbrella of “sexual minorities.” It is similar to refer to those of many races as “people of colour,” which becomes an inclusive and difference-erasing shorthand for a long list of ethnic, national and racial groups (Gamson 1995 p. 395). Some people argue that each subgroup should hold their social movement separately to accommodate the views and goals of each subgroup. Gamson adds that “identities are indeed much more unstable, fluid, and constructed,” (1995 p. 395). Each social movement requires a collective identity to set boundaries that define a group and develop an awareness of the group’s unique and shared values. This type of focus could lead to actions that address the group’s problems.

It is normal for people to have multiple identities that change over time. Poletta and Jasper explains using Gould’s concept that “identities come not from fixed categories like race, class, gender, or nation, but from common positions in networks,” (2001, p. 288). Now many more aspects should be revised and considered for collective identity. After all, every person has a different identity, which is hard to be converted into simple unified categories. To create a collective identity of a movement, it is important to estimate to what degree participants share similar values. For example, the participants of the queer movement are lesbians, gays, bisexuals, and transgendereds. But the problem of this collective identity is that members within it do not share a strong sense of belonging than a collective identity group for specific lesbians, gays, bisexuals, or transgendereds. It will be impossible to organize social movements without setting clear boundaries with exact goals, and it is difficult to claim that the goals of gays are always necessarily the same as those of transgendereds, for example.

Creating a collective identity is also challenging the idea that people’s shared interest is simply not enough to motivate individuals to participate. People are driven into movements out of a sense of deprivation or inequality, particularly in relation to others or to their own expectations. But first of all, participants see others who have more access to power, economic advantage or status, and they strain to gain power for themselves for these benefits. But when the situation doesn’t improve, people are likely to rebel because their expectations have outgrown any results they were expecting. Nevertheless, people hesitate to join collective identity groups because they can give them disadvantages in their daily lives. It is human nature that people opt to freeride. Those who participate in the early stage usually face a high level of hostility and challenge. It is true that many pioneers of social movements face imprisonment, threats and violence. The great social movement pioneers and leaders – Martin Luther King Jr, Nelson Mandela, Mohammad Ghandi, and San Suukyi – faced systematic restraint and suppression. Most social movements fight for vested rights, but people who benefit from inequality become upset. Poletta and Jasper argue that “creation of strong movement usually leads to a backlash of those portrayed as the enemy may be angered or frightened into counter organization,” (2001 p. 297). People fear that they might face an ordeal if they side with underdogs; therefore, they tend to wait until a significant event occurs before joining the fight.

I think the only way to encourage people to participate is to create a stronger solidarity among the group members. In other words, emphasize the importance of belonging to the organization. The individual needs to show that they are beneficial, in order to be considered one of the members. Also, it is important to have charismatic leadership to lead the group, or an incident that makes a impact on society. The civil rights movement in the United States started with Rosa Parks’ refusal to move to the back of the bus, and Martin Luther King Jr’s charismatic leadership that stimulated African Americans to recognize the importance of collective identity and collective activities. Consequently, a strong collective identity and activity created a miracle and fueled social change. I think Nazis also used strong leadership to promote what they considered to be racial superiority. It should be noted that the Germans before World War II were obsessed with collective identity, which was based on Aryan ethnicity. It is true that “…collective identity [is] the relation between identity and an individual’s calculus of self-interest,” (Poletta and Jasper 2001 p. 299). It will be a huge challenge for social movement activists to persuade people to join a common identity.

The pitfall of Marx’s idea is that it was developed to describe the conflict between proletariats and the bourgeois. In today’s world, people have unlimited access to worldwide news via the Internet and access to education, creating broader types of identities. Also, collective identity is shown in a much narrower and more detailed scale compared to the past. Society has become too complicated to be understood completely, and to fall into broad categories. Marx argued that the elimination of differences among workers will eventually create solidarity, but I don’t think similarity necessarily creates solidarity in present social movements. Development in communication, transportation and media now show live broadcast to the world, depicting global movements in detail. Media especially contributed “… to the U.S. civil rights movement throughout the 1950s and early 1960s,” (Bantjes 2007 p. 68). Bantjes goes on to say that civil activists used media to collect supporters and advertise their purposes (2007, p. 69). Media brings social movement into the public, to which viewers gain access. For instance, Arab Spring was highly affected by the media, which caused the continuous liberation of Arab countries. People’s cell phones are now used as a broadcasting station to post quick reports about issues and events. As media and social networks prevail, people start having varying perspectives on a single issue. Also, the media is used as a tool to recruit new members, inciting audiences to become involved in social movements. Consequently, huge numbers of people start creating sub-divisible groups for efficiency. In the military, we divide troops into divisions, regiments, battalions, companies and squads for efficiency.

People’s level of involvement, opinions about the issues and ways to approach to them are diverse. During the 1950’s civil rights movement, many African American leaders had different approaches and perception about their inequality. Furthermore, people participating in animal rights movements are also divided into various groups. These sub-groups result from different approaches and interpretations of the issue. I use the term sectarianism, in which subdivisions occur due to different denominations of the class, region or factions of a political movement, to identify differences within collective identity groups. When looking at the European Union, every member shares some common characteristics, such as geographical region, though they are considered to be separate countries. Social movement about an issue is not performed by a sole identity group but rather though a cooperation with multiple activist groups. Unorganized mass is slow and inefficient; therefore, dividing people into groups enables each cluster to be swift. Multiple groups sharing common interests compete and cooperate to meet common goals. I think people share stronger collective identities for the purpose, rather than identity and belonging to the subdivision group. For instance, when working in an environmental social movement and choosing environmental NGOs to work for, I would join a group that fits my perceptions, characteristics, beliefs, and accessibility, more that joining for the notion of being a part of a group. The problem of collective identity is that it doesn’t have a fixed boundary. For instance, I could belong to a collective identity to share common interests in global environmental protection theory while also belonging to an NGO’s environmental protection theory. It seems like it is a system of chain of command like in the military: soldiers belong to the nation but also to the division or regiment they serve. It is important for people to prioritize their collective identity to decide which collective identity is greater than the other. But in my opinion, collective identity for the macro level is more important.

I think these differences among participants promotes social change. Difference among participants doesn’t always mean conflict or disintegration. It promotes diverse strategies to be used. In military, troops get stronger when infantry, artillery and airforce is combined, rather than having the sole infantry. Everyone has different abilities and backgrounds to be considered. It is true that many social movement groups face conflict with other groups during the process of social change. Although, it is usually not a destructive process, it is a process of adjusting their opinions in order to achieve a collective goal. For example, Malcom X and Martin Luther King Jr. both worked for the civil rights movement, but they had different approaches to accomplish the goal: Malcom X used Islamic influence and ideas compared to Martin Luther King Jr. using a peaceful approach. Their religions, jobs, education, and approaches were different, but they both greatly contributed to the civil rights movement. When we use people with different abilities at the right position, synergies happen and result in a surplus outcome. It shows that differences actually promote diversity of tactics in social movement theory. In Arab Spring, a person only shared the common aspect of being a citizen of an Arab country, but still proved successful movement to create change in society. In Arab Spring, it was very effective that people from various sectors of countries united to protest against the government. If only a portion of people were on strike, it would have been impossible to achieve the victory. It was possible because different participants from different areas paralyzed their country’s system, which caused isolation of the government.

Despite differences among participants and subgroups having advantages, differences among participants also has disadvantages. First, it is harder to bureaucratiz as a collective identity. It is essential to be bureaucratized to perform social action. Strong charismatic leaders are needed in order to make successful social movements. Many movements are created around some charismatic leader as a symbol or representative of the movement. We need a bureaucracy to build frameworks, morale and to make decisions. The leader gives motivation, guidance, confidence and acts as a negotiator with external forces.

Due to the diversity among participants, it will be extremely hard to elect a charismatic leader. People will have different agendas to recognize a person’s leadership. For instance, when I was in Afghanistan, people had a hard time finding the charismatic leadership to fight against feministic equality. They had several feministic identity groups promoting equality in sex, but their activity was unorganized due to the non existence of a bureaucracy to fight as a whole. They held several meetings to find out a way to act as a collective activity, but without bureaucracy it was nearly impossible to elect a co-president of feministic groups because they had different economic and social backgrounds. Secondly, group disintegration happens and a lack effective cooperation. It also applies to subdivision groups that each subdivision group cannot challenge alone, due to their inability to react. Collective action is required, rather than individual small movements. This leads to the final aspect of disadvantage that takes severed damage or even scatters after the backlash of “…enemi[ies]… angered or frightened into counter organization,” (Poletta and Jasper 2001 p. 297). For instance, during the 1990s when social movement groups were criticizing the multinational corporations, corporations responded to them by suiting unimaginable amounts of compensation to fight against movement groups. This disintegrated several activist organizations into dust. In South Korea, Samsung suited union workers for $30 million and was able to successfully eliminate union from their corporation until now. In the 1990s, Samsung Union was not smart enough to cooperate with the human rights movement and other union groups; therefore, they lost the suit and was disintegrated. It shows that a single activist group usually cannot continue after a backlash from powerful exterior forces. However, differences among participants doesn’t necessarily disintegrate solidarity. Only partial aspects differences matter to solidarity. There are many aspects of “differences” and only a few aspects relate to group solidarity. Group consciousness, recognizing the importance their purpose to change, is more important. People in Arab Spring had greatly prioritized the purpose of their collective actions, rather than considering the differences among themselves. Its only purpose integrated the entire nation to bring flowers in Arab.

To conclude, many social movements were successful without the elimination of the differences of participants. It seems group consciousness of recognizing the importance of the social movement activities and motivations for the changes are tremendously important for solidarity and, furthermore, the achievement of goals. The elimination of differences is only one of many ways to bring solidarity to a group. Difference between participants will create diversity and a mosaic in developing ideas of social movements. For me, I think social movement is like a car operating with people’s purpose and passion as fuel, bureaucratics as wheels, a charismatic leader as the steering wheel, and participants as different bodyparts of the car. It is important for these members to recognize that they belong to a system, and their purpose is to move humanity to a better place. To achieve this purpose, it is crucial to tolerate the differences and work together for a greater cause.

References
Bantjes, Rod. (2007), Social Movements In a Global Context. Canadian Scholars’ press Inc.
Toronto: ON.

Gamson, Joshua. (1995). Must Identity Movements Self-Destruct? A Queer Dilemma*.    Social problems, 42, 390-407.

Poletta, Francesca & Jasper, James M.. (2001). Collective Identity and Social Movements.
(pp.283-305).

QUESTIONS ON CLEAN WATER

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Q6: Access to Clean Water
Approximately one billion people throughout the world lack clean drinking water(UNICEF, 2013). The task of making clean drinking water more accessible to people is a major problem that the world is confronted with, and it is one that is very manageable with the proper attention. This paper looks to examine the various challenges that are faced throughout the world when it comes to clean drinking water, and to provide the reader with a general idea about how to get to the point where clean drinking water becomes a reality for people throughout the world. While providing the billion people throughout the world with access to clean drinking water is a major challenge, it is one that can be achieved with proper information sharing and dedication of funds from the developed world.

Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia provide examples of areas where making the transition from not having access to clean drinking water to an environment where access is readily provided. These areas are among the most challenged regions in the world for access to clean drinking water. One of the biggest challenged in improving the availability of clean drinking water is in the monetary cost, which governments have consistently not been willing to support. “The problem of providing clean water is most acute in developing countries, particularly in Africa, where creaking infrastructures struggle to keep pace with fast-growing urban populations’ in rural areas, millions of water pumps stand unused waiting to be repaired” (Making clean, 2013).

But while sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia receive much of the attention when it comes to the need for clean drinking water, Latin America also suffers from a deficit. For example, people from Ecuador who do not drink the water. The area is a tropical paradise, filled with pink flamingos, iguanas and various other wildlife. The locals swim in the ocean with sea lions, and the environment looks very pure, but the water is extremely contaminated. “As far as I know, there’s been no conclusive analysis of precisely what parasites, bacteria and viruses are in the water. It runs nicely through pipes into many homes and businesses. But it needs to be boiled to be safe to drink” (Treaster, 2013). Not all people have the water readily available from pipes to boil. Many others need to walk many hours to lakes and stream in order to have enough water for a few days, before they have to return to the source again. This severely disrupts the lifestyles of the people who often miss work and school so that they can walk for an entire day sometimes to retrieve as much water as they can carry, and this water is not typically safe to drink. Often, drinking the water will results in stomach illnesses, but a lack of access to clean drinking water kills two million people each year. The majority of those who die are younger than five years old (Treaster, 2013).

While the problem is already extremely severe, the issue is going to get worse, as the global population continues to increase, and this will cause people to have to share the limited amount of available drinking water. Furthermore, the high temperature that will result from climate change is anticipated to generate longer dry stretches, which will continue to pressure the amount of available water. This will limit the amount of precipitation, while increasing the amount of evaporation (Treaster, 2013).

In order to deal with the problem of a lack of drinking water, there not only needs to be more dedication from the developed nations of money. It is also important for everyone to use less water, particularly farmers. “Experts estimate that at least 70 percent of the world’s water goes to irrigate farm crops and nourish livestock. Much of that water could be saved through the use of drip irrigation, which takes water directly to the roots of plants” (Treaster, 2013). However, drip irrigation is expensive, and most farmers would need considerable government subsidies to pay for the practice. Furthermore, as the global population increases, the demand on farmers will increase much more rapidly. This is because food will be more needed now than ever, and that means the need to produce much more efficiently, and that is something the drip irrigation does not facilitate.

Q7Site an example.
I went to an eco-village one fine summer’s evening and I saw how an eco-village could be run. It was being operated very efficiently, and couldn’t believe the amount of effort that was being made in addressing all of the ecosystem concerns, and this was being done very efficiently. It made me wonder about the ways that I could improve this area. And it also made me think about how a nation could be run based on a system like this – not one that is operated based on the capitalist system, but one that is operating based on a system where everyone is playing their part to make a better environment for everything that is involved in the space around them. This would also mean providing a way to have access to clean water.

Q8. Justice and the environment
Justice and the environment is a very important class to me because I am such a believer in the environment and I know there is a way to improve the state of our environment in a very effective way. It is important right now, in the globalized economy, to move forward in the right way. As more and more nations are developing their own economies, and as they are becoming more influenced by the global village that is taking shape around them, this is an important time to move forward in the right way.

Q9. What students need to learn about justice?
Justice should take into account everyone who is effected by a decision. This could mean that the person who is in India and not having a lot of human rights, should be given the opportunity to live a life free of suffering. And this opportunity should be given to them by the global community. The global community has a major responsibility in ensuring the happiness of everyone on this planet. And decisions should not be made based on what is good for a singular country. The good of the whole needs to be considered.

Q10. Suggestions to improve my class
I would improve my class by including a section about corporate social responsibility, which is having an ever increasing role in the outcomes of so many nations throughout the world, because of the global village that is developing around us.

MANAGERS AS DECISION MAKERS

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Many managers face the challenges of making decisions in the workplace on a daily basis. Sometimes they have the assistance of team members to decide what is best for the company’s bottom line, but sometimes managers are confronted with the task of making the decision on their own. This is often where a manger can thrive, or in some cases, where they can crumble. While some decision can be relatively simple, others are extremely challenging and deal with an array of possibility to which the outcome is difficult to know.

Identify a Problem
Identifying and diagnosing the problem can only be accomplished by acknowledging that a problem exists and needs to be assessed and fixed. To determine whether a problem is present, a manager must have a goal ready from which to compare the current state of affairs: they must see the way things are and understand the way they ought to be. The Manager can compare current performance to past performance and the current performance of comparable companies. The anticipated future performance is another area where a manager can find information to assist in the decision-making process, (Yates, 2013).

Identify Decision Criteria and Allocating Weight
Using already-established decision-making criteria in identifying the best intervention strategy will improve any team characteristics that are deficient. A mix of improvement interventions should be determined in order to apply the criteria for each member of the team. When it is known what can be done to address the characteristics that are lacking, management will be better able to select who is the best candidate for the team.

In allocating, decisions are often based on options, projections and opinions. It is important for the decision-maker to give weight to give each of these components. This requires good judgement to be able to see what the best course of action should be, (Arsham, 2003).

Developing, Analyzing, Selecting and Implementing Alternatives
The manager must next develop alternative possible decisions. This requires the linkage of the diagnosed problem with possible outcomes. Either the decision can be ready-made or custom-made. The ready-made solution is usually a decision to which the manager has already thought of or used. This is common for managers who have many years of experience in their current role. The quality of education the manager has can also provide them with a greater array of information to fall back on.

Analyzing the alternatives is mainly driven by figuring out the value of each of the possible decisions and determining the best possible choice. When alternative decisions are approached with sufficient thought, the best decision is more easily recognized.

Selecting is when a manager turns their planning into action. This can be a difficult step for many managers who are often comfortable with the planning stage, but get cold feet when it comes time to execute. This is a time when many people question every aspect of their decision and begin to assume the worse. This is also called “paralysis by analysis.” To overcome this, managers can determine the best possible outcome of alternative decisions and then choose the option that has the best result – a process referred to as “maximizing.”

Implementing the decision is the act of carrying out the choice. The responsibility of carrying the decision out can be delegated to other people, but the decision-maker needs to sometimes carry out the action by themselves. Often, an operational manger is needed to carry out the plan. Other times, a decision can be made but not carried out. This is common when talking a lot is mistaken for actually performing the task, (Arsham, 2003).

Evaluate Decision Effectiveness
Finally, evaluating the decision needs to be undertaken to collect information about the decision’s success. Goals, such as a 10 per cent increase in revenue over the next year, a 40 per cent reduction in debt over the same period, or 100 per cent of deliveries on time are effective at evaluating whether a decision is being accomplished and what the rate of accomplishment is. Data can then be gathered to analyze where the plan is meeting the goals and where it falls short.

References
Arsham, H. (2003). Leadership Decision MakingUniversity of Baltimore. 
Yates, F.J. (2013). Decision Management. Michigan Ross School of Business.

DEAR PRESIDENT BARRACK

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Dear President Barack Obama,

I am writing to tell you about what I think of Carried Interest (section 7701(0)). As you may already know, there was a ruling made in the court case Dagres v. Commissioner where the Treasury Department has been given an opportunity to write regulations that raise the taxes on Carried Interest. The decision on Carried Interest affects both the fund managers and the people who pay the fees for these fund managers. There needs to be less of a tax break for those who are the fund managers because the Carried Interest is giving them too much. Right now, the top rate on the gains that fund managers owns is 15 per cent, and that makes the tax applied to Carried Interest less than half of the 35 per cent top rate for ordinary income. There is way too much leeway to these fund managers who receive about 20 per cent of the profits of the funds and are only taxed a maximum of 15 per cent on those profits. These are essentially treated the same way as an investment is treated. But Carried Interest is not an investment and should be taxed as part of the fund manager’s income taxes. That would put it in the ballpark of being taxed at up to 35 per cent. That’s obviously something the fund managers wouldn’t want, but the extra tax revenue that could be attained by closing this tax loophole would mean that every day citizens such as myself, who is forced to pay up to 35 per cent of their earnings on taxes would have less of the tax burden, (Norris, 2012). These rich fund managers would be taxed more and this would make it so the general population didn’t have to pay as much. Either that, or the extra tax revenue could be put into social programs, for example.

In the Dagres V. Commissioner, Dagras earned $10.9 million in compensation while also netting $43.4 million in capital gains from 1999 to 2003. These capital gains were garnered through Carried Interest. The case was brought before the courts because Dagres’ share of the profits indicated that he was involved in a trade or a business, or that he was acting as an investor. And the Internal Revenue Agency said that he was acting as an investor. However, because of the Carried Interest law, the Tax Court disagreed with the ruling and according to Treasury Regulations. Dagres was allowed to have his deduction because his Carried Interest was considered compensation for the trade, (Carried Interest, 2011). To me, this is outrageous. The money he earned was clearly in response to his responsibilities as a fund advisor. This should obviously be designated as income, as it is a regular pay he received for doing his job.

Mr. Obama, I know that you have already pushed for a change on the Carried Interest, and Congress has backed off twice in the past on this topic, but I urge you to keep fighting to ensure that these fund managers aren’t going to profit, while the general population continues to suffer.  In order to correct the injustices that have happened in cases such as Dagres v. Commissioner, there needs to be a repeal of the Carried Interest legislation so that the super wealthy aren’t given tax breaks as the rest of us continue to suffer. As the fiscal cliff approaches, we need to make sure we are doing everything we can to ensure that the tax cuts to the wealthy are deemed unacceptable, so that we can begin to lower the taxes that are charged to people of modest- to low-income. This is also one way to help our economy recover from the recession. Without taking away some of the privileges that were given to the wealthy by the George W. Bush administration, there will be no justice for this country and the economy will continue to suffer.

Yours truly,
ZZZZZZZZ
Works Cited
’Carried Interest’ in the Cross Hairs.” (2011, Aug. 6). The Wall Street Journal.

Norris, F. (2012, Sept. 13). “A Tax Tactic That’s Open to Question.” The New York Times.

CONCUSSIONS

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Concussions, or traumatic brain injuries, are significant problems in public health, and it is a common issue among athletes. About 1.4 million people suffer from a concussion each year in the United States. The severity is often measured in a range of severity, from mild (which results in a change in patterns of the neurons), or severe. The severe type accounts for about 15% of all reported concussion in the U.S., while mild concussions account for about 85% of all cases. Concussions typically have minor effects on the long-term functioning of the brain. Symptoms often show up right after the concussion, and they are typically resolved within seven days. “Precisely, cognitive functioning improves to baseline level within 5-7 days, and equilibrium deficits disappear within 3-5 days after the insult” (Charland-Verville et. al., 2012). However, the effects of a concussion can often outlast that time period, and there can even be permanent effects.

In looking at former athletes who had a history of sports-related concussions, there were both decreased neuropsychological performance during tests of the executive functioning, as well as bradykinesia as much as 30 years following their athletic careers. Furthermore, athletes who sustained repeated concussions showed mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer’s disease. The patients were not considered to be demented, but they did exhibit memory impairments and are more obvious than what was expected among their age group and their levels of education. “Alogn the same lines, an autopsy done on former National Football League players revealed brain tissue evidence of chronic brain damage” (Charland-Verville et. al., 2012). The concussions also affected the motor function, which was shown in the gait patterns. Studies on the brain structure indicated long-term effects of concussions. In fact the entire spectrum of traumatic brain injuries results in white matter alterations, which are associated with cognitive impairments.

Trauma to the head accounts for about 20% of the olfactory dysfunctions, and three potential mechanisms have been developed to explain the olfactory dysfunctions that set in after traumatic brain injury. These include the stretching/shearing in the olfactory nerve, a cerebral hemorrhage, and a skull-base/face fracture or contusion. “Furthermore, the degree of olfactory loss is correlated with the severity of injury, and stronger olfactory impairment is therefore usually considered to be a sign of greater severity of head injury” (Charland-Verville, 2012). Also, the patients who have posttraumatic anosmia show a reduced rate of olfactory build volumes. This results in 56 to 65% of the patients with a variety of forms of concussions, showing an impaired ability to identify odors they are smelling. Among those in the regular population, about 20% show an olfactory dysfunction. A possible underlying factor of this could be the reduced brain perfusion of largely the frontal areas of the brain, in patients with posttraumatic anosmia. “Olfaction has gained increased attention in clinical settings, because specific olfactory alterations are associated with neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, which in turn may be a long-term consequence of concussions (Charland-Verville, 2012). This of a particular concern to athletes because of the cumulative effect of repeated concussions.

Works Cited
Charland-Verville, V. (2012). Olfaction in Athletes with ConcussionOceanside 
Publications.

DEGREES OF DEMOCRACY: A COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS

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Democracy” is a key term in the definition of what constitutes the free world. The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy defines democracy as, “… a method of group decision making characterized by a kind of equality among the participants at an essential stage of the collective decision making,” (Democracy, 2006). Essentially, democracy takes into consideration the belief system of the majority in making decisions that affect the general population, and the reader can take this definition as being at the core of democracy. But that simple definition does not do justice to the many complications that arise when combining each nation’s accepted beliefs and whether democracy, at its core, can truly exist in the many complicated nations in which it finds itself attempting to emerge. In this paper, I will discuss the different forms democracy takes in four nations throughout the world. These will include Egypt, India, China, and the United States. I have chosen these countries because they represent a nation fighting for democracy, a country that has managed to stay democratic over what many academics consider to be slim odds, a country that is not democratic, and a nation that has been democratic since its creation. These extremes represent democracy’s polarity, which is often driven by the interaction of church and state or the interactions between democracy and secular belief systems. By analyzing an assortment of opinions from academics, and comparing those to real-world political systems and events, I will come to the conclusion that the separation of church and state is a prerequisite to ensuring that the democracy, at its core, can rule.

Egypt
It should be noted that while democracy is associated by many in western civilization (which I consider to include North America, Western Europe and parts of Eastern Europe) as being inherently good, the beliefs of the majority in some countries, many of which are in the Middle East, should not be carried out in regular political practice. According to Huffington Post writer Terry Newell, “Protests in Egypt, Libya, Bahrain, Yemen and Jordan may lead to free elections, but those elections contain the seeds of anarchy and despotism as much as those of constitutional government and personal liberty,” (Newell, 2011). This could cause a person to wonder whether the voice of the people in this situation should be heard, as it could only lead to anarchy and despotism.

But while Newell has a pessimistic view on democracy in the Egypt, former United States President Jimmy Carter outlines his beliefs in a lecture at the American University in Cairo, saying the Egyptian protests will set an example for other countries. He alludes to a separation of church and state as the fuel that will pull Egypt, and many countries throughout the world, out of dictatorship and into democracy: “To succeed, it is important that you demonstrate that Christians and Muslims can live together in harmony and with mutual respect, and that Arabs and Jews, Palastinians, Americans like me, can work together for the common good,” (Carter, 2012). Carter admitted people have doubts about the future of Egypt, but he says democracy is inevitable.

Areas that need to be ironed out include, for example, the position of parliament when compared to the president, the prime minister’s role, the responsibility and level of power of the president, and the military’s role. Carter suggests developing a military that is similar to that found in the U.S. He said members of Congress decide the military roles and activities. This is just one example of the ways in which democracy forges itself into a society. Instead of order handed out by a dictator, the military is guided by a group of elected officials.

As the facts prove, however, the progress towards democracy of which Carter is hopeful hasn’t been fully realized, not yet at least. The democratically elected parliament in June has been dissolved and proposals for a reinstatement of aspects of martial law were uncertain prior to the election. An addendum to the Constitutional Declaration, which was designed by the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces to provide privileges to the military by including them in the constitution’s drafting process, was in violation to an agreed-to commitment to the Egyptian population to transfer all power to an elected government. This represents, as Carter says, interference in a constitution by an unelected military body.

Despite the difficulties moving forward, and the constant interference by unelected bodies in developing the nation’s constitution, Carter believes Egypt will overcome the boundaries and emerge as a democratic nation – but he emphasises the need for acceptance of people of all colors and beliefs for the core of democracy to gain prominence. “Human beings, no matter the color of their skin, no matter their religious beliefs, no matter whether they are a man or woman, are equal in the eyes of God and should be treated equally by government as well (Carter, 2012).

India
So as one nation battles for democracy, another that is considered a democratic nation since claiming independence from Britain in 1947, is struggling with its identity of being democratic. “Democratic theory holds that poverty, widespread illiteracy, and deeply hierarchical social structure are inhospitable conditions for the functioning of democracy,” (Varshney, 1998).  So if this is taken to be true, and assuming acceptable living standards are inherent in the core meaning of democracy, then has India really been successful at establishing itself as a democratic nation? But as the BBC points out, a democratic country in poverty “demonstrated beyond argument that poverty, massive illiteracy and diversity on a sub-continental scale were not arguments against democracy, they were arguments for it,” (Kesavan, 2007).

Since becoming a democratic nation, India has only once abandoned its democratic beliefs – for 18 months from 1975-77, (Varshney, 1998). For six decades, India has had over a dozen parliamentary elections and countless more state assembly elections. As part of a building block to a democratic nation, the press has played a key role in being watchdogs over the conformity to the democratic process. This is something many would believe to be fundamental to maintaining and supervising democratic nations, (Rummel, 1989). Ashutosh Varshney, author of “Why Democracy Survives,” agrees: “The press has remained vigorous, free, and unafraid to challenge the government, as even a cursory sampling of morning newspapers will show.”

It appears that despite a high level of poverty – possessing approximately one-third of the world’s poor (The World Bank, 2012) – India has managed to keep true in its commitment to maintain democracy’s core values. After all, voter turnout, which was about 45 per cent in the first election in 1952, has been tallied at 60 per cent in recent years (Varshney, 1998). That compares to about 57 per cent in the last U.S. presidential election (McDonald, 2012).

But despite the appearance of the success of democracy in India, threat still looms: “That India still practices democracy is in and of itself unique, and theoretically counterintuitive,” (Varshney, 1998). The political unrest felt in India has a population unhappy with the living conditions in which it finds itself.
The only threat to democracy in India is the possible election of a political party such as the Bharatiya Janata Party. The party supports a European nationalist ideology that favors rule by the nation’s majority, which would be Hindus, in this case (Kesavan, 2007). This could cause a merger of church and state, and the destruction of democracy in the name of Hindu beliefs. However, the BBC states: “The republic’s statues and the rulings of their authorised interpreter, the Supreme Court, make it nearly impossible for political parties to fundamentally alter the basic structure of the constitution.

China
China is currently ruled by the Communist Party of China, centralizing the state and maintaining a unitary government, military and media. The national constitution guarantees the legal power of the Communist Party (ChinaToday.com). The party has been in power since 1921, making democracy at this point an unlikely outcome. Unlike in Egypt, where religion was a main catalyst for the former dictatorship, China completely separates church and state in a secular regime.
According to Cheng Li, director of research at The Brookings Institution, an independent research and policy institute, “To expect that the Chinese Communist Party can pursue democratic reforms and clean up corruption is akin to asking a doctor to perform surgery on his or her own body,” (Telhami, 2007). The quote outlines the inability of corrupt systems to restructure themselves, eliminating potential corruption and instituting a democratic regime. However, as proven in the Egyptian protests, people do have the ability to overcome undemocratic rule.

As previously mentioned, the media is a key component in the maintenance of a democratic regime, holding the party in power accountable to the public by communicating any transgression. It should be noted that the facts point out that Chinese media doesn’t represent the type of journalism that promotes democracy (Gurmann, 2012). But similar to the protests that have taken place in Egypt is a culture that is becoming fed up with a government they have no control over.

In 2002, with tools purchased from a hardware store, a group of citizens in China broke through the communist regime’s multi-billion-dollar information blockade. Three men devised a plan while in prison to use wire cutters and a DVD player to broadcast what they claimed to be the true acts of the ruling Communist Party of China when it banned the falun gong practice of meditation and spiritual beliefs. The men climbed electrical poles and found cable boxes that they spliced with a DVD player. A total of 15 channels were interfered with and broadcasted the men’s video for approximately one million people to see at once. After five men set themselves on fire, claiming to be practicing the mediation technique, the government banned the practice. However, those suspicious of the exhibits claimed the state-run media created propaganda in an attempt to ensure the government turned public opinion against the practise. But those who practiced falun gong knew the burning demonstrations were fake. Western media eventually discredited the ban on the spiritual practise, but because of Chinese censorship, the masses in China were unaware of other holes in the Chinese government’s attempt at tricking the public.

One of the men who helped broadcast the DVD to the masses, and who was subsequently sent to jail, said the men were driven to what they did because they had no way to speak for themselves. The video they created showed people practicing fulan gong throughout the world and they showed what actually happened during the apparent self-immolation. The result was masses of people taking to the streets to practice the meditation, not knowing the communist party wasn’t responsible for the videos and they hadn’t reinstated the practice.

Police responded by having an officer positioned at each telephone pole in the city. Law enforcement would go on to arrest approximately 5,000 people over the following three weeks for practicing fulan gong. Police beat to death almost all the men behind the broadcast. The sole survivor remains locked up. One of the fulan gong practitioners escaped to Thailand after being in prison for his beliefs 10 times and he is now living in Canada, fighting to prevent what he and others like him went through. The men’s sacrifice spawned over a dozen similar broadcasts throughout China in the next several years, damaging the credibility of the communist party, while striking a cord for democracy (Gurmann, 2012).

The fight these men started, and the protest that erupted, is similar to the protests in Egypt that lead to a move towards democracy in that political system. While a non-democratic party may have the rule, the events that occurred in Egypt prove that others, like those who spoke out in China, could generate a movement towards democracy.

United States
The United States is one of the few nations that started out as a democracy. The values are etched into the Constitution, which many consider to be the backbone to the free world. As a leader in democracy, U.S. officials have taken it upon themselves to spread the ideology. “Scholars, policymakers, and commentators embraced the idea that democratization could become American’s next mission,” (Lynn-Jones, 1998). But according to The Brookings Institution, the U.S. has failed in its attempt to bring democracy to the Middle East, not because the Middle East can’t become democratic, but because the mission to democratize the Middle East – after Sept. 11 and the onset of the Iraq War – was based on contradictions, (Telhami, 2007).

Holding democratic elections in some countries can hinder peace, as it divides people who want democracy and those who do not. Furthermore, scholars have argued that elections in countries with conservative values fuels illiberal democracies and endangers freedom. Some have said the U.S. should scale back or end its efforts to spread democracy, which grew with the Clinton administration. “The spread of democracy – especially liberal democracy – benefits the citizens of new democracies, promotes international peace, and serves U.S. interests.” (Lynn-Jones, 1998). While Sean M. Lynn-Jones points out these concerns in his paper “Why the United States Should Spread Democracy,” he ultimately states that the U.S. should promote democracy abroad. “Global interests would be advanced if the world contained more democracies. It will often be difficult for the United States and other actors to help countries to become democracies, but international efforts frequently can make a difference.”

Conclusion
As Jimmy Carter said, “Democracy is inevitable.” When protests – such as those conducted by Egyptians and the ones executed via cable by the Chinese – are carried out, it brings a voice to the populace and quiets the dictator’s whip. While happening nearly 10 years earlier than the Egyptian protests, the Chinese cable hijacking is similar to a starting point not unlike the one executed in Egypt that caused the nation to begin restructuring its political regime, which is still going on today. The core of democracy must then be the ability of the people’s voice to be heard. While that ability is at its infancy in China, Egypt has managed to accomplish something many political scientists believed to be impossible. But unlike Egypt, China doesn’t have unbiased media available to take any protest to the world stage. The Egyptian riots fueled media response, which caused the U.S. to ask for the resignation of then president Hosni Mubarak, who eventually did step down. And as Egypt emerges out of dictatorship, it can look to India, a country that made the transition sixty years ago and is arguably still going strong.

With the U.S. unquestionably tightly tied to the democratic system, it appears that the best way to spread democracy is by initiating it when the country is at its infancy. Countries that have been closely tied to their current beliefs are not easily uprooted, as proven in the China cable hijacking, a demonstration that would have surely caused the dismissal of the political party if done in the U.S. or in another democratic nation.

Bibliography
Carter, J. (2012, July 1). Democracy is Inevitable. The Cairo Review of Global Affairs.

ChinaToday.com (N.D.). The Communist Party of China.

Democracy. (2006, July 27). Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

Gurmann, E. (2012, March 5). Cutting the Wires of China State-Run Media. Foundation for Defense of Democracies.

Kesavan, M. (2007, Aug. 15). India’s Model Democracy. BBC News.

Lynn-Jones, S.M. (1998). Why the United States Should Spread Democracy. Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs.

McDonald, M. (2012, March 3) 2008 General Election Turnout Rates. United States Election Project.

Newell, T. (2011, March 1). The Danger of Democracy in the Middle East: Free Election May Not Produce FreedomHuffington Post.

Rummel, R.J. (1989). Freedom of the Press: A Way to Global PeaceUniversity of Hawaii System.

The World Bank. (2012) India.

Varshney, A. (1998). Why Democracy Survives. Project Muse.

Telhami, S. (2007, Sept. 17). How to Not Spread DemocracyThe Brookings Institution.

DISCUSSION 2 ASSAT SHAKUR

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Assat Shakur’s autobiography provides an interesting perspective about police brutality. From the very beginning of her story, the alleged viciousness of the police is revealed and the minimalist explanation (expressed very simply) allows the reader to gain a solid understanding of the level of violence that the police were capable of. Shakur says the violence is due to her ethnicity as a black woman. The sheer violence of the opening scene brings the reader right into the book, and makes them realize the type of novel it will be.

The dynamic between Shakur and the police is one of the most notable features of the book. It is important to remember that Shakur is one of the most wanted women, and there is certainly animosity between Shakur and the police. In fact, the behaviour of the police is likely what got Shakur off of many of her criminal charges. That makes it somewhat difficult to believe what she is saying about the police. She is a convicted felon who escaped prison custody, so it is difficult to take what she says as the truth. After all, the more she discredits the police, the more she appears to be innocent.

On the other hand, Shakur claims the FBI was created to stop the black liberation movement. She says the police killed many of the leaders of the black liberation movement, including members of the Black Panthers, with whom Shakur was a member. It is very easy to side with Shakur in her argument that the police, FBI, and the American government were out to send out false press releases to discredit many of the people who were out to simply stand up for, and to establish, the rights of black people.

I believe Shakur is innocent, and I believe that she is a victim of a society that was unethically intolerant of black people. However, after reading the book, it is difficult to know if I am siding with her based on false accusations contained in the book. Reading this book is a constant struggle between hating the American government and its enforcement officers, and questioning the credibility of Shakur. However, judging by the proven behavior of the American government and the way it has dealt with those who have spoken in favor of human rights, I ultimately believe that Shakur is telling the truth.

DISCUSSION AND POSTS: DECEMBER 19

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Discussion 1
Activity 2
Responding to XXXX, in reference to “VCH Mental Health Program Closing.”           

I agree with what XXXX is saying about the devastation that is caused when social programs are shut down. This one in particular is a disturbing case, because it is not like the people using this service are free-loading. I can somewhat understand when a government tightens up on the amount of social programs when it is for initiatives such as welfare (because many welfare recipients are free-loaders) but when it is cutting people off who really don’t have the ability to get a job and support themselves, our government is letting us down.

One of the reasons that I pay taxes is so that I can live in a society where we sympathize for those who are less fortunate. I want to pay taxes so I also have the kind of support that these hundreds of unfortunate people have, if I were put into such a dire situation. I don’t want to live in a nation knowing that at any moment, the government could turn its back on me when I am most in need. I see that these closures are very common during the Stephen Harper reign.

Discussion 2
Activity 1
Subject: Half of First Nations children live in poverty
Author: Amber Hildebrandt

In this article, the author points to the monetary status of First Nations children in Canada. Amber Hildebrandt notes that about half of all First Nations children live in poverty. That stat worsens in Manitoba and Saskatchewan where about two-thirds of First Nations children are living in poverty. This article is at the heart of sociology’s study of human social behaviour, and it raises various questions about why this is happening.

The information collected is an example of positivism, because it is scientifically gathered information about the percentage of First Nations children living in poverty. It is important to make this distinction because anti-positivism information isn’t as credible. However, this study was completed by credible organizations called the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives and Save the Children Canada. Those who support anti-positivism might not think these statistics tell the full story. This is because there may be nuances in the First Nations lifestyles that don’t necessarily require the type of monetary capital that is typical for the rest of Canada. German philosopher Hegel would likely take issue to the stats because the research isn’t conducted in a way that investigates the well-being of the children in these situations. While the children could very well suffer from a low standard of living because of the lack of money they have, that wasn’t shown in the research.

Activity 2
Responding to ZZZZ, in reference to “Income inequality spikes in Canada’s big cities.

This was a well-researched post, and I agree with a lot of what is said. I liked the way the cost of living was put into context, and then a comparison was made with wages in 1982. I think this issue is certainly one that needs to be addressed, but I don’t think it will be addressed. I believe the main reason for the high cost of living here, is because Vancouver is one of the best places to live in the world. That attracts many wealthy people from all over the globe to live in Vancouver.

One of the major factors in the high cost of living is rent and purchasing a home. That is extremely high here because many of the immigrants are increasing the demand for housing. That increase in demand is outweighing supply, and that is driving the price higher. Essentially, this forces many people to either leave, or live a very poor lifestyle.

DISCUSSION WEEK 9 DECEMBER

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What stereotypes do you anticipate from this perspective?

I believe people would stereotypically label this ideal as being too idealistic. People would believe that this perspective is designed to rally people in order to achieve a common goal that would be the benefit of mankind. I can see people stereotyping the perspective as being against the current establishment. People may think the perspective is against capitalism and organized religion. The perspective could also be labelled as promoting environmental issues, and tying oneself to a tree in order to attempt to save the rainforests. This perspective might be considered extreme, and have no place in the classroom. One might think that the class would be taught by a hippy, or someone else who might be anti-establishment.

What would the arguments against those stereotypes be?

I would argue that every perspective on teaching is arguing for an ideal. Furthermore, I would argue that this perspective is only taught in the official academic setting when there is a significant amount of evidence that supports the ideal that is being advocated. For example, a movement like “Occupy Wall Street” would not be the focus of a classroom that is guided by this perspective. Instead, it is more focused on issues that are based on evidence, such as promoting the rights of women in nations where there is not an equal set up rights for women as there are with men. Also, I would argue that this perspective is sometimes necessary in order to teach the type of material that needs to be learned in order to generate positive change in the world. This perspective can is typically not forced upon people, but is used when people with a common interest and goal gather in an academic setting.

1. In your opinion, which of the Five Perspectives in Teaching do you think is the most effective in teaching ESL for Adults? Please explain your rationale.

I think the nurturing perspective is the most-suited teaching perspective in this situation. It allows the teacher to get to know the learner more, and understand the challenges that they are facing. This is an important thing to know because the teacher will need to design their lessons to specifically cater to that learner. The nurturing perspective will also learn to cultivate the ESL student’s skills, and to introduce the appropriate new ones that can augment their understanding of English. This is where the learning will really begin.

2. What other teaching techniques do you think will benefit ESL Adult Learners?

I also think the transmission perspective will help, because it will utilize base standards that ESL students typically achieve in their development. This will help gauge the progress of the learner. Also, I think the developmental perspective would work well, because it is important to assess the prior knowledge that the student has. There may be very little that the learner needs to develop, or quite a lot.

3. Can you think of any other barriers/challenges ESL adult learners and instructors may face? Please briefly explain your reasoning.

Yes. I believe these instructors will be challenged with the culture of the ESL students. It will be difficult to know what teaching method they do best with. For example, the learner may be used to a more disciplined setting where they are strictly told what to do. If they are not given strict instructions, they may neglect their work.