GUN COUNTRY: THE DIVISIVENESS OF FIREARMS COVERSATIONS

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“My 2nd amendment says so.”


It has only been a few days since the mass shooting in Las Vegas which claimed the lives of 58 people. And already political pundits are in conversations surrounding gun ownership. Should we be able to own them or not? Should the ownership of guns be based on the caliber of weapon? Because a lot of people have no problem with handguns. But when it comes to higher caliber weapons, that’s when the conversation intensifies. And the guns of choice that causes such controversy are the following: AR-15, AK47, Tech9 Uzi, M16, and the 50/60 caliber rifles. These are weapons that can pump out multiple bullets in just seconds. Some ask, why do you need to own a gun with such force. Others say why not because it’s our rights. Well, both people for and against to an extent would be right. Well, how so?

On the side of the gun control people, there is some logic to additional control on top of the already gun control. Number one, there should be to some extent, psychological background checks in order to own firearms. Your mental health should come into play when owning a gun. Any mental instability should raise a red flag. Now, even if the person seek help and they are in a better mental space than prior, they should still have a tough time attaining a gun. Another rational argument is that it is an amendment, but the time period in which the document was written is totally different than today. In the times of the second amendment being written, they intended for people to own the guns of their time period. The second amendment also was to keep an additional checks and balance over the government so we wouldn’t be subject to abuse from the system. But if the government wanted to stop you in today’s society, your highest caliber of rifle couldn’t stop them.

As for the gun owners in America who feel their rights are being infringed upon, they have a different point of view. They understand the background checks, but guns that are killing people everyday in America are not by legalized owners. A lot of the high statistics are aimed at the inner city communities where guns are used in gangland battles. And politicians are using that statistic to restrict gun owners, while not addressing the problem in these communities. And a lot of these guns used are stolen anyways, so background checks don’t work all the time. As far as the second amendment, the fore fathers did think of the guns of their time. But using that logic, the guns of their time was muskets, but the guns of our time are higher caliber rifles. We also have the right to protect our homes and families just as well as the public figures of America. Considering the homes invaded on a daily and nightly basis are the homes of the average Joe.

In the end, political conversations have been going debating this issues for years. Nothing is going to happen because for the most part, gun ownership is seen as more of a conservative viewpoint. And even with the country switching between liberal and conservative, conservatism in America still reigns supreme. And as long as we have a large country-municipal-township-America and a smaller metropolis America, gun ownership will be around. Meaning, a lot of people against gun ownership usually live in major metropolitan cities. But America is not a metropolis, it’s a lot of towns and cities you have never heard of. And as long as they exist, we will see gun ownership in America.


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TRUTHERS: WHY CONSPIRACIES OCCUR AFTER MASSIVE EVENTS

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“Planned randomness, or randomness?”


No matter if it’s the September 11th attacks that claimed the lives of a few thousand to the recent mass shooting in Las Vegas, people are already starting to put together their conspiracies as to what “REALLY” took place in Vegas. And notice I said really in quotations. Because people have to believe that there has been some sort of foul play on the part of the government. Some type of false flag that leads us in a bad direction and away from the truth. And that truth has always been to divide and conquer. But why do people do it? Why must we come up with these different types of conspiracy theories to make sense of the events that take place in our lives? Does it have to do with some aspect of the truth? Or is it merely a reason to make sense of something that we have no control over?

One of the reasons we have these conspiracy theories is because our government is so secretive about so much. And what’s crazy at times, they don’t even have a legitimate reason to keep the secrets they keep. Once you find out what they have been keeping secret for so long, it makes you frustrated to the point where you start to get angry. And for that reason, you have these conspiracy theorists that conjure up these ideas for why it’s such a secret. For example, the John F. Kennedy assassination from back in 1963. His autopsy documents will not be released for over 50 years after the assassination of the president. And now people are thinking, our president was killed, how can the public, not even his wife be privy to what happened to her husband. But are there other reasons as to why we need these theories?

Another reason is because we live in a random universe where random things tend to happen that are out of our human control. And sense we see so much that we control, it’s hard to accept that we tend to lose control over what should be controlling. And if not for mother nature, we would say that man created the tornadoes and hurricanes we have on Earth. WAIT A MINUTE! We do point the finger to global warming, even though hurricanes have going on before the burning of fossil fuels. Our lives are mundane without the knowledge of man; and there is something, a force greater than us that we are helpless against. But the moment man breaks rules, obviously the government put this plot together. Because as powerful as our government is, how can a few or even one person do so much damage. The reality is yes, one person can; and it creeps people out.

In the end, you will always have people that believe in these conspiracies. The problem with the conspiracies are the secrecy of the people and the putting together of the plan. And even in the face of hard evidence we still deny. I heard a Russian former KGB in a video talk about people and their lack of believing even in the face of fact. He said you can show them documents, and even go as far as taking them to the place of interest. They will deny until it is far too late deny any longer. And by that time, your reality is in your face and too much to change by this time. People need answers and the harsh reality is that not everything has an answer. Some things are messed up, and that’s that.


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MEGA CITIES: HOW THE AMERICAN LANDSCAPE WILL CHANGE OVER TIME

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“The exodus within a civilization.”


In the future to come, we know that the United States will take on a major cultural shift. But what about the geographical shift that will take hold. Over the next few decades we’re going to see the country move in a direction that is in more alignment with our major cities getting bigger and the small cities and towns shrinking. The reason being is that younger generation are leaving small towns and older generations are dying.  So places with populations like New York City with a metropolitan population of close to 30 million people could see itself rising to as much as 60 – 70 million people. This will cause the wealth will be highly centralized in these bigger cities. Places like New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Atlanta, Miami, San Francisco, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Houston, and Washington D.C. could be our new mega cities. Cities that will be nothing but high rises.

But on the other hand, what could this do to the social landscape of America? In New York city, there are so many people of so many different ethnic, cultural, and religious backgrounds, people tend to have conflict. It’s easy to say diversity, but with diversity comes so many other challenges. And not to mention the educational aspects of how America will shift. These universities that consist of 30,000; 40,000; and some 50,000 students could climb into the six figure range. And with the cost of college increasing, maybe in some of these mega cities the cost could decline because of the highly populated numbers already bringing money into institutions. Or , the fact that mega cities exist might make people want to go into the smaller areas for college. There are other issues associated with these mega cities as well.

Well, crime for starters; on top of the already criminal element in these major cities. You will see people moving in that are new to the cities, who want to establish themselves in the criminal underworld. So now there will be an influx of law enforcement because we could see the criminals coming into the landscape. And on top of that, the poverty could increase because with technology moving to scale, now you have a less need for human labor. Coincidentally, this is an aspect of life prompting people to move to major cities in the beginning. Now that people are already here, there is this new element of poverty. So people will basically leave poverty in search of a better life, ending up in even worse poverty. But with all the problems, what would be the benefits of having these major mega cities, a lot.

In the end, there are a lot; a whole lot of opportunities to utilize land more. In America, with these mega cities, you will have more room for growth of crops for harvest because so much American land is not utilized. We could see ourselves becoming exporters once again. We could also see these major cities as a way to monitor more of what is going on in our country. With so many citizens living in one area, and fewer outside, then the ability to contain major problems is efficient. Also, with so many people in one area you’re getting the best of everyone, creating more innovative ideas, which could ultimately grow the country at a much higher scale than now.


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red, white, and BLUES: HOW WE ARE SLOWLY STRIPPING EACH OTHER OF FREEDOM

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“Break free from yourself.”


It has become redundant at this point, but another issue has spiraled out of control regarding President Donald Trump. This time it took place between him and players of the National Football League. This past weekend, he made comments in Huntsville, Alabama before a crowdd of his supporters regarding their protesting on the football field during the National Anthem. And the response was, as you guessed it, swift and wide spread. Because the very next day you saw over 200 players and team owners locking arms and dropping to one knee in solidarity with each other. So the response from those on the opposite side of the the protest say, “Well, we’ll show you by not patronizing football.” And the only issue with that form of protest is the flip side which is to come after you once again. Now as I sit here typing, I can’t help but to be shocked by rights we are taking away from each other. And might ask how are we doing so.

Well, I remember not even a year ago when political commentary Anne Coulter wanted to speak at Berkeley University in California. The uproar over her coming to the campus led to vandalism and rioting. The upheaval caused the event to be discontinued. Then as Colin Kaepernick took his knee to protest police brutality in America, he was ostracized in the same manner as Anne for his freedom of Image result for ann coulter berkeleyprotest. And to me the losers in all this are the American people. Not for going against the two individuals, but the fact that we are willing to attack each other’s rights because we disagree. You may not like what someone says or does, but I was under the impression that as long as no one is being physically harmed what’s the problem. Because we attack everything that is offensive to us, then everyone will be out of jobs. Since what offends us is so broad and ambiguous in our society. What is offensive to you might not be offensive to me and vice versa.

And where does it lead to next. If the people push back against the NFL, and NFL forces players to stop, then what. Now it leaves people on the conservative side open. Because it won’t stop there, it will be this constant ping pong game. And like I said prior, the only people getting hurt are the countless people that represent organizations Image result for freedomsthat don’t make big money who could lose their jobs because of the constant fighting. But that is something that does not seem to sink into the minds of so many people. We hurt those, who for the most part just want to work and make it home to their families. I’m not saying that we should stop giving our opinions, I’m simply saying, everything is not meant to be fighting. What ever happened to the right to be offended. If you don’t like something, disconnect.

And in the end, that is the main problem. People hate to have something they feel passionately about go on deaf ears. But is it real passion, or just a reason to be mad. You never know because no one is honest with how they truly feel. But why are people losing everything they work for because I disagree. I pride myself on being more liberal than conservative. But I am not compelled to boycott someone just because I don’t like what they speak about or protest. We have become our own enemies. With a $700 billion defense budget to protect us against so much, it is internal where the main problems lie today.


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WHY SO SERIOUS: ARE WE REALLY TOO TOUCHY OF A COUNTRY

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 Stop crying, everything is not offensive.”


In the recent years, the United States has gotten more and more sensitive. Some say it’s because of the media’s 24 hour news cycle, others say it’s because of the new generation. And then there is the claim that social media contributes to the sensitivity. Whatever the case may be, people are getting in trouble left and right because of something they have said or some type of action. And what’s crazy is that it doesn’t even take much to cause the friction between people. I thought this was just something that celebrities went through, but now we have average Joes telling on each other. A lot of people say it’s President Donald trump and others have said it stems from the nation’s first Black President. Well, what are some ways we have become too sensitive in our society?

One way is the idea that we disagree politically. Former Press Secretary Sean Spicer was a guest at the 2017 Emmy’s. And being that he was a former aide to Donald Trump, people went off the rails about him being present. Why, well people felt he lied for the president. Now, I know as we all do that press secretaries do as they are told. So he didn’t say any more for Trump that someone else didn’t do for another leader. But since people are so upset still over the election of Trump, anyone attached to him, past or present is catching hell. Are people right for their feelings toward Spicer, or should everyone just lighten up and have a moment? I laughed about the situation, but so many people felt it was way out of line. Yet is politics the only topic that has made us sensitive?

No, the racial conversations have emerged once again in America. A conversation that has been going on for generations, and shows no sign of going away anytime soon. Is everything racial? Especially when observing Black and White people in America. And what’s crazy, sometimes it seems like the smallest encounters spiral into something much worse. An easily avoidable situation becomes more than it has to be. Ending with the dominant society putting their own spin on what has taken place. And once that happens the story takes on a life of its own and the original circumstance no one seems to care about anymore. Everyone has their emotion and agenda, and before you know it, it becomes a populace engagement. And yet, there are still other topics that have been of interest, one being the sensitivity when dealing with sexual orientation.

Since Donald Trump has taken office, one of his actions was to refuse Transgender men and women the opportunity to serve in our armed forces. A move which caused even more controversy from the decision. It was also a move that I disagreed with because you should be able to serve the country in which you live. But even before the decision, terminology describing members of the LGBTQ community caused issues. Some say certain words are derogatory, and only members of the community can say certain words. But in the end, the sensitivity of America will eventually spill over. Because people who are overly sensitive will become victims of their own sensitivity. And then and only then will they understand the problem.


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THE VALUE OF THE DOLLAR OR SOMETHING LIKE IT: WHAT IS OUR MONEY BACKED BY REALLY?

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“What if confidence is lost?”


 The United States currency has been a long subject of debate. And that debate is, what is our money really worth? Because in reality it’s just paper. And the real confidence is in our economy. Because if our economy begins to decline, then what are these sheets of paper? Well then, could it happen? Could we see America fall into a second Great Depression twice in America’s history? With the industrial age looking more and more like something of the past, what is going to replace it? It’s going to be this new technological space. Yet we have an uneducated populace who are not only unaware, but not willing to learn this new way. And with that comes uncertainty within the market. And now what you have is uncertainty in our dollars as well. So what do you do about the potential value of the American dollar falling or even collapsing?

The fear of this could send the nation into a tail spin. We are already behind the Euro and the British Pound. And with China now the largest economy in the world, who knows, their currency could be next to surpass us. Then, once all these different currencies start to pass us, can we truly say we are still this great nation? How are we such a great place when places that are seen by us as not as great surpassing us? That image dies and so does the status of America. Now, am I saying brace yourself for a catastrophe, no. But we should be mindful of the sensitivity of the market. Let’s say though for a minute that our system does collapse. What could this mean for the countries who we owe money to in debt? Would this mean that we would have to start cyphering off assets we do have left.

These various assets could mean natural resources, or better yet, land. Imagine the chaos if people found out that we no longer were in control of our land anymore. Like I said, this is still a stretch, but it has happened before. And in the end, that is the true fear. Chaos has happened once before. And for some reason, we as people tend to always forget history and repeat the same mistakes. Hopefully, we are able to maintain our confidence in our dollars and our economy can grow. Otherwise, we’ll fall victim to our own lack of hubris and ignorance.


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HURRICANE READY: WHAT MUST WE DO TO BE PREPARED IN THE FUTURE

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“So many capabilities, yet so little ability to stop anything.”


Throughout history, the United States has gotten hit with massive hurricanes that have left devastating damage in it’s wake. A lot has been done over time to prepare citizens for storms as Hurricanes make their way across the Atlantic Ocean. Usually, we look to the strength of the storms in the Caribbean as a measure of how strong it’s becoming before it reaches the United States Image result for hurricane caribbeanmainland of Florida. And throughout time, we have also developed forecast models that anticipate the impacts of the storms. But what we have not figured out, is how to drastically decrease the devastation. Meaning, how do we defeat mother nature at her game. Yes, we build walls using sandbags and even levees, which, judging from Hurricane Katrina don’t always work. But what about a new technological levee system that is beyond what we have currently at the moment.

And what do I mean by a levee system that is stronger than what we have at the moment? I mean a levee system that not so much serves as a wall that separates us from the water on the other side. But a system that makes water difficult to hit the mainland. And I know what people might be thinking, you can’t stop the storm Image result for future leveeswater from entering. I’m not referring to the heavy rain water and winds. I mean the water coming from the Atlantic as well as the Gulf of Mexico. How about a levee system that forces water to fill up in the water before entering the mainland flooding our American cities. Meaning, imagine a system that is built under water, so that when a city could potentially experience mass flooding, the system drops the sea floor underwater forcing water to fill there before entering the land. So, think of like a beach and water flowing on the beach/on shore.

As water from the Gulf, for example, prepares to hit Houston, an underwater mechanism drops the current water floor down further. So, another example of what I mean, if you are still confused is like a house with a porch and sidewalk. If water rises against the house, it will eventually flood the home. But if you have a mechanism built around your house that drops surrounding the house, the water will fill this moat around your property before entering your home. Now, the cost of something of this magnitude will Related imagereach in the high billions of dollars. A move that our government may not be too thrilled to act on. But when you look over time at the devastation, it is actually more costly than what we already do to prepare. It’s almost like these storms over time are getting stronger and stronger.

In the end, what will happen when a hurricane eventually exceed the category 5 that we have long deemed the biggest? Will we have to design a new ranking system, which will then force us to create better means of protecting our lives and our property? Because if we don’t, with the strength of some of these storms getting stronger, the impacts will be greater than doing nothing at all. You look at today, and the damage inflicted by Hurricane Harvey, as well as Hurricane Irma right behind Harvey, and Jose behind Irma. And with forecast models, they’re helpful, and deter a lot, but more has to be done to prepare in the future.


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