Sunday, January 10, 2010

Demise of solidarity

Why has there been such a deterioration of unity in society or more specifically American Society? One reason is the cultural principles and priorities that society upholds. Hedonistic elements such as sex and materialism are perpetuated by the mass media and promote egotism. American ideals that focus on self attainment and prosperity rather than communal prosperity have also contributed to the demise of community. Other divisive factors such as classism, ageism, racism, and sexism have also contributed to the dissolve of our sense of community.

While focusing on your materialistic desires you deviate from uniting for a common cause. Furthermore, materialism distracts us from fighting for something larger than ourselves whether it’s a non profit organization, religious group, mentoring program, or a political party. So instead of helping the next brother out I am worrying about getting the new Jordans that came out. Sex has us focus on what makes us look sexy and attracts the opposite sex, which there is nothing wrong with but when that is your main objective it can be self defeating. Self destructive behaviors are rooted in these elements of sex and materialism.

Indulging in materialism makes us forget what is important (which is the connection of human souls). Worrying about self gratification as opposed to catering to others' needs (which is a big part of the community) only facilitates the fall of the community. In addition maintaining the community entails sacrifice and humility which most people in modern society don’t have. This limits the potential for cultivation of a community. In order to build strong bonds in the American community we must forget about individual luxuries and work with others to establish common ground. We need to be less selfish and forge bonds so that our world is unified and this world will become a much better place. We need to love each other regardless of skin color, income, age, sexual orientation, nor religious preference! UNITY FOR THE WORLD!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Immigrant's Ambition II

When you give a foreign-born person all these resources its like giving them all the world's treasures all at once. Immigrants really value what they have. Dominicans are one of the largest foreign-born populations in New York City's metropolitan area. Dominican students continue to grow as one of the largest immigrant populations attending college. I have seen this firsthand as the largest latino population in Syracuse University was Dominicans. Not because we are better or anything but because our parents had that immigrant drive: the eye of the tiger! To elaborate on this concept if someone was African American with generations of ancestors born here then the likelihood is higher that he will take things for granted and not appreciate what he/she has whether its an ipod or heating in your residence.

Also if my mother was born here she may take things for granted but if someone is conscious enough to break the cycle and take advantages of the opportunities then progress would be inevitable because you are no longer stagnant and have now broken the mold. Even children of immigrants who were born here do not know what its like not to go to college if you don't have the funds, endure harsh weather without proper garments, not to have running hot water, to have a power outage for eight hours out of the day, or to labor at five years old in order to help out financially in the household. An American born citizen see things as necessities while an immigrant views these things as luxuries. Where an American sees a vacancy an immigrant sees an opportunity. Here lies a very powerful distinction. When you are not born here you have future aspirations to achieve success and bring more of your family to the US. If you were born here this is everyday life and you aren't exposed to any other part of the globe nor anything diffrent for a prolonged period of time so you don't value your priviledges and resources along with not proactively seeking opportunities. Out of all of the people of color, immigrants are the most successful ethnic group. Isn't that a paradox!

Immigrant's Ambition I

For some American citizens the United States of America is the land of extortion for most foreigners the Unites States of America is seen as the land of infinite opportunity. The voyage is made to the land of milk and honey where the passengers possess a strong will to succeed and a hunger like ambition. So I ask myself are people who are neither immigrants nor 1st/2nd generation Americans taking the resources available for granted? Well in my story my parents were born in Dominicabn Republic and they came to the country in the early 1980s. They lived in the South Bronx by Jerome ave. which was a breeding ground for Dominicans. Most people flock to their own ethniciy which is a natural instinct of mankind. My parent's attitude was one of positivity growth and progress. They had a goal in mind and would not let up until it was accomplished. Thye did not come here to squander time nor resources but rather to seek better opportunities for themselves and to provide a better future for their kids. They never took anything for granted from being able to send their kids to schools where they were eligible for good financial aid to having running hot water. They new they had to break their backs to get what they wanted.

My parents had a dream and behind that dream there was a vision that carried their aspiration. My parents have always progressed; we moved every couple of years in order to improve our living conditions. The central theme in my parent's lives is progression. My parents wont stop until all of their kids graduated from college. and become successful professionals. My parents push us to realize our academic potential without even knowing about what is required to acquire these grades. But they recognize our efforts and commend us whenever best suited. An immigrant's dream always encapsulates prosperity, progress, and persisitence. Most immigrant
s come here with a fighting attitude to become successful and they have a mentality that breeds success because they take full advantage of the resources available to the general public. Some of these resources are the New York Public Library, education, healthcare, and day care. They take advantage because their homeland is devoid of certain resources.

Education from Independent Study vs. School education

Does real knowledge depend on how many degress you have attained or how much independent study you have done? By independent study I mean reading history, philosophy,science etc.and analyzing the literature that is being presented to you. When conducting independent study or self edification there are no external views that can tamper with the construction of your personal worldviews. Therefore independent study allows you to formulate your own opinion on whatever information you digest. Inevitably this will cultivate critical thinking. In result you will have a wider scope of reality which will lead to questioning any concept, person, place, or thing you come in contact with. In addition independent study has no limitation to what you can study while school based education is restricted to the subject or theme of the course.

On the other hand learning in a classroom environment will give you knowledge from the teacher's perspective rather than enabling you to draw your own conclusion. Learning in a school also provides a formal education for those who prefer structure. Although, I do think that a structural type of education is critical for the degrees it offers which are prerequesites for many professional fields and are necessary for the job market. Furthermore, school based education creates a safe space for the open dialogue of different ideologies and allows students to challenge each other's view points. By listening to others' view points you become enlightened which subconsciously makes you more open minded, strengthens your ideologies, and enhances your growth. This is the disadvantage to independent study: in independent study your are auto-educating which is basically dictating your thoughts to yourself without disagreeing. This type of education does not challenge you which means it does not strengthen your point of view on any given topic. Each type of edification has its advanatages and disadvanatages. At the end of the day participating in both should be the most beneficial thing for any scholar!