Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Getting Started

On April 12th, Former Secretary of State, Hillary Rodham Clinton released a video called "Getting Started" on her official YouTube channel. You can watch the short 2 minute video down below:

The video starts to depict what people around the nation are "getting ready" for. From families getting ready to move to a new area, to people getting ready to retire; a wide variety of age, gender, ethnicity, and sexual orientation were represented in this video.

I found it interesting how every single group of people in America that you could think of were represented in her campaign announcement video. What is also interesting is that Hillary Clinton herself does not even show up until about ninety-seconds in the video. She states, "I'm getting ready to do something too, I'm running for President."

I think that the reason why almost every single group of people were represented in this video is because one of the large criticisms of Hillary Clinton is that she is not relatable what so ever to the general public. If you even Google her name one of the top websites that comes up is the Daily Caller's article on "Here Are 17 Reasons It's IMPOSSIBLE for Hillary Clinton To Relate to Normal Americans." I think that the purpose of this video was not only to announce her 2016 Presidential Campaign, but to also make her more relatable to more Americans. The way that she says that shes getting ready to do something "too" hints at that. '

Did this video successfully make Hillary Clinton more relatable to the general public? Or does her campaign team have more work to do?

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

April 14th is National Equal Pay Day--For A Reason!

As many of you may or may not know, April 14th is National Equal Pay Day declared by the United States Department of Labor. This date may seem like random date to choose but in reality, this date has a lot of meaning. April 14th 2015 roughly marks how many more days women must work to earn what a man made in 2014. (Times). 

I find it completely unfair and absurd that women still make less than men even in the same jobs. The gender pay gap has been something that has interested me because it affects so many lives of American families today. Women make up half of the labor force of the United States and some how women still make less than men do. With the start of my Junior Theme Research Paper, I decided to do my paper on the general why question: Why do women earn less than men in America? 

I think that it is completely insane that even in an advancing generation like ours, the pay gap has still not closed. Many factors such as education, gender roles/stereotypes, and discrimination play a role into why the gap exists but what else can we do as a society to close it? Women should not be treated as second class citizens so isn't it time for equal pay? Due to the Junior Theme Research Paper, my blog will now feature more posts about the gender pay gap and women's rights due to the research of my paper. 

Monday, April 6, 2015

Netflix Warns its Viewers to "Binge Responsibly"

With Spring Break coming to a close, that means its time to get off the beach and back to the reality of school work, not sleeping in until an ungodly hour in the afternoon, and for many, not binge watching Netflix. Netflix is a digital streaming company that gives its viewers seasons upon seasons of television series/shows.

On April 1st (April Fools Day) Netflix began to warn its viewers who watched more than two consecutive episodes of a show about the effects of "binge watching" TV. All the messages that warn viewers about the affects of binge watching were taken off after April 2nd. Binge watching is defined by Google as "watching multiple episodes of a television program in rapid succession." A message such as this one would often pop up to tell its viewers to take care of their personal hygiene:
Netflix advises its viewers to Shower as an April Fool's Day joke
But in all seriousness, binge watching television programs can actually effect your health. According to Lilian Cheung, Director of the Department of Nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health, she states, "There's convincing evidence in adults that the more television people watch, the more likely they are to gain weight or become overweight." Sitting and watching Netflix in a sedentary position for a long period of time seems to be linked to weight gain and type 2 diabetes. So although Netflix was kidding around on April Fool's Day, Netflix viewers should take into account the affects of binge watching and remember to: binge responsibly.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

University of North Carolina: Fake Classes and Fake GPA's

College sports have been the center of attention lately due the Final Four college basketball tournament coming to an end. Collegiate student-athletes often have a lot on their plates whether that be practice, a social life, and school work. An article on CNN brought to my attention that at the University of North Carolina (UNC), a prestigious university known for their many sports teams and rigorous academic curriculum, thousands of student-athletes for over eighteen years were enrolled by academic advisers to take fake "paper classes" to keep the athletes eligible to play in collegiate sports. The fake classes were called "paper classes" that never met and only had a "final" paper. The university is now being held under investigation by Kenneth Wainstein, a prosecutor hired by the university to independently investigate the academic fraud.

The scandal was brought into light by Mary Willingham who is a learning specialist on the UNC campus. Her job was to help athletes who weren't prepared for the academic work of the university. She stated that she, "kind of panicked" when she was helping a basketball player who could not read or write. CNN states in their article that, "many students in the basketball and football programs could read only up to an eighth-grade level."

After reading the many articles about the academic fraud committed by UNC, my first reaction is complete shock. But my question is; if there were students that couldn't read past the eighth-grade level, then how the hell could they get into college? The college process in general is quite the journey so how are universities such as UNC allowed to let illiterate students in? The answer to that is simply: sports. 

College sports teams such as UNC who've won many national championships in various sports often receive a hefty amount of money and funding. Therefore, colleges across the nation tend to focus a lot of their attention on sports. UNC is most likely not the only college who "aid" athletes by offering fake classes to raise GPA's. But to what extent is this fair? Should our nation's love of sports and athletic affairs cloud college life and the college admissions process? What about that one kid who has a perfect 4.0 GPA and studies to become a lawyer or a doctor but, does not get into because they chose an athlete over that one student? Should we value sports over academics?