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In light of the tragedy which unfolded in Parkland, Florida, the Town Hall hosted by CNN which allowed the Parkland community to address state representatives and a member from the NRA, and the numerous gun control protests which have occurred as a response across the nation, here is how the president of the United States chooses to go “Off Script”.
First, lets all remember what his scripts DO SAY when he follows them. Here is a photo from the meeting Trump held to speak to Parkland shooting survivors:
Here is Trump addressing CPAC just 8 days after the Parkland tragedy:
Maybe he should learn to stick to the script, as sad as that may be.
Although there is an obvious amount of bias within this novel, Wolff attempts to give the average American insight into one of the most controversial administrations America has seen since Nixon.
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Does Philosophy have a PR problem?
In today’s society, civilizations have become distracted/consumed with their own beliefs and opinions. This ultimately discourages civilians from asking questions or even from learning new/differing viewpoints. “Real philosophers must be willing to give up disproven beliefs and embrace the truth” (“Introduction” 4). As the introduction points out, holding on to your individual truth because of, “a right to my opinion” (“Introduction” 4) has caused people to become disconnected with being enlightened/gaining knowledge and consumed with their own “truthiness” (Colbert 4).
Society today tends to misconstrue the definition of philosophy however with words like “opinion and theory” according to the Introduction (3). “Philosophy means love of wisdom. Philosophers seek truth and wisdom above all else” (“Intro.” 3). Here is where the divide and PR problem begin, with the lack of knowledge regarding philosophy and its’ values.
Why might someone find Philosophy dangerous?
The term danger triggers one’s mind towards terms like pain, hurt, and anguish. According to Johnson, “… nothing hurts more than learning new ideas” (35). This is one reason an individual might misconstrue philosophy as dangerous. “Philosophers appetite for truth is insatiable” (“Intro.” 4). A primary technique used in philosophy to decipher truths is the method of questioning. Today, questioning may not appear to be categorized with the term danger, but think back to the time period of 427-327 B.C.E. when Socrates had to defend his life against two charges. He did so through the Socratic method of questioning and reasoning. This ultimately caused powerful Athenians to view him as “dangerous because his questioning and debate would undermine their basis of power” (Young 7). Thus, philosophy today is often misconstrued, it is viewed as dangerous because it challenges one’s perception and essentially pushes one to examine his/her life, not individually, but wholly.
According to Young, “… friendships help us to critically examine the lives we lead” (11). In order to break free from this “danger”, one must be willing to accept differing viewpoints as well as the fact of not-knowing. “Socrates is famous for saying “I know that I do not know” … philosophy was the love and pursuit of wisdom, and this required questioning others to find out what they do or do not know” (Young 7). In my opinion, the real danger in our society is ignorance. If people continue to not accept “not-knowing” society will continue living individualized without expression of differing/opposing viewpoints, or if these points are spoken, they would quickly be shut down defensively.
People view philosophy as dangerous because to most, it is unknown and misunderstood. It is our duty as philosophers to awaken/challenge those who think they know the “truth” through reasoning and questioning in hopes of inspiring those unfortunate souls to awaken to the power one can obtain only through philosophy.
Should unusual ideas, or ideas that disagree with conventional wisdom be censored?
Unusual ideas/ideas that disagree with conventional wisdom should not be censored if the societal aim is to progress with each new era of time. By progress I mean achieving finite knowledge, obtaining total equality, and the sense of internal/external examination. Censoring these ideas would ultimately lead to complacency in society, or even worse, a digression in our civilization.
According to Colbert, “Nothing endangers cherished beliefs like education and philosophy, and nothing hurts more than learning new ideas” (35). As a human, we are not seeking being hurt (i.e. new ideas) because the society we live in revolves around “truthiness and wikiality” (to use Colbert’s language). Think about your history classes throughout your middle and high school years, how brief was each lesson, how generalized were your assignments? Most students obsess about seeing an “A” on their papers, rather than wondering or asking WHY. Many a times, when a student does ask “why” or for more information on a topic, the teacher may reply with a “We don’t have time to cover that”. It is not fair to assume that the teacher’s goal is to give students a basic education, rather realize that they are imposed (by the state) to a set time frame and TEKS they must cover in order to stay on track with the calendar year. This, in my opinion, is not learning and is a leading causation of “truthiness”.
Censorship is packaged to the public as a form of protection and breeds individuals to remain mentally enclosed (i.e. truthiness). If no conversations are happening where people have varying opinions, or simply opt out of these conversations as Colbert provides an example, “I have a right to my opinion” (33), society will never discover universal truths as a whole. It will remain fragmented and individualized, it becomes, “your truth” (Johnson 28).
Photo credit provided to: oddstuffmagazine.com
Colbert and Young. Technology and Values, Wiley-Blackwell, Malden, MA, 2010.
What good do rights and constitutional laws do when a vast majority of U.S. Citizens choose to live most of (if not all of) their lives following a redundant routine from about the age of 5, with only slight variations of differences between certain age groups.
An alarm goes off, you wash your face and grab something for breakfast or opt out of food and go to your nearest Starbucks for a cup of Joe. Shortly following this comes work or school (sometimes both) where you will spend at least 8 hours of your day (for roughly about 12 standard school years). Some of us have the pleasure of working at a job that fulfills our passions and desires, (but most of us don’t) or you are stuck somewhere for the money, hoping on daily basis to make ends meet.
I feel that here is where the social divide occurs; people want to base judgments off of titles (i.e.being a doctor in today’s time = success) when in alternating thought, judgments should be based off of what we do. A title could be just that! We have all had an experience when someone with a renowned title has failed to meet your expectations, whether it had been a doctor, teacher, or engineer, one must subdue the urge to cast judgements based off of titles/ financial status. This is part of the American problem…
Transcending back to my preliminary point, once work/ school are over with for the day, Americans typically go home, shower, eat, and watch t.v. (or browse social media sites). We do this until our bodies have had enough and urge us to go to sleep, only to wake up and do the exact same thing. Although at surface this seems like a harmless way to live, I beg to differ. It’s almost like our life has become quite opposite, we claim to be alive and well, yet all the while, humanities morality is screaming out for a savior.
Americans have not only began this downward spiral of solitude and neglect, but they are also breeding this unfortunate habit to their children, only to worsen each generation at a greater magnitude every time. Be mindful that I am not claiming every American to live this way, surely there are several who have “awaken” to this truth (like me), but that is only good enough for a sparse moment in time. What good does being awake do if you are not trying to better our future, if there
is never an attempt to make a change; Those that are awaken shall not be for too long, a complacent mind is almost as bad as a clueless one.
A more plausible offense is to be awake, but stricken by distraction! Although being distracted alludes one to assume that the ability is present to shut off/turn on this feature, it is not a simplistic ability. The whole ideology around American culture sets American’s up to essentially NOT LIVE, to be stagnant, to not question/wander. Everything is handed over to us now (in a sense) in exchange for the worst element in the American Economy,
We are manipulated into thinking and placing focus on
money, it is the answer to all of our problems, with it, we can obtain food, water, medicine, shelter, therapy, and almost anything else one’s heart desires. We are not willing to fight or put in the work anymore for what REALLY matters like equality, freedom, the TRUTH. We are almost forced to be reliant on the economy, forced into bullshit labor only to still never feel satisfied because we are not fulfilling our will’s goal.
We are distracted!
Obsessing over minute instances that solely affect key people around us, closing off our mind to the rest of the world, failing to embrace other cultures and morals. Instead, we are taught to “have the London look”, or dress in designer wear. We spend our whole
“life” making money, only to spend it on irrelevant items and continue enforcing this faulted and unfair cycle of destruction.
Destruction of not only the “American Dream”, but destruction of humanity. Stop being distracted, WAKE UP!
Photo credit to: www.123rf.com
On a daily basis, humans are exposed to a series of false actualities, a series that is stuck on repeat. Although those who are fortunate enough to have able-bodied corpses contain all the power to turn this series off, they don’t. Instead, we become engulfed into this series, obsessed with trying to make it change or differ from one day to the next. We become compulsive to an extent of complacency, we trick ourselves into thinking we are “trying something new”, when in actuality we are not.
Almost every being can relate to the example I am about to declare, maybe not wholly, but to an extent. One might choose to shorten/ lengthen their hair in hopes of a “different look”, although the goal is attained, it is only at the mere surface. In actuality, the hair is still the exact same hair, just now is it projecting a new perspective. In life, their is a strife for new, although we are too busy being fooled into self generated fallacies, never further from the “new”.
What does it take, then you ponder, to be new again? To create not a new perspective, but undergo a transformation into someone who is unrecognizable to any other being that previously knew of your former existence? Here I offer you, fellow Truth seeker, an conjecture: So long as one has made any sort of impact on someone else, they are forever un-erasable. Only with time can this erratic problem be sufficed, one mustn’t spontaneously or periodically under go physical changes (i.e. the haircut example previously mentioned) rather, they must work internally. One must become an cenobite, separating himself from society in order to cleanse societal woes, trends, problems, and characters from his
After doing so, re-birth may begin. No longer will you feel the chains of society on your back, for you would have no consciences of what society considers to be relevant. You will now be on another level so to say, compared to all others who have not taken the time and patience to be re born into a society that is clean and pure, and die in one that has been run into the ground since the late 20th century.
Although at first, my wonderings may lead one to believe that I am against togetherness, against being united, this is false. We can only move closer to unity once we have united our mind and bodies individually. If you are constantly stuck in the series that is playing called “life”with no way of viewing issues from an outside perspective, stagnicity will be your only end result. Once all of humanity has taken the time to do this, or even half of the amount of countries we have on planet earth, only then I truly believe would we see a positive re birth of a society, one that is truly free.
From a philosophical historian’s outlook, I am in abhorrence to this plain idea, the idea of being a total ignoramus towards reality. Not only has the American spirit began to dwindle, but it is also in the process of a shift, one to woe! This country will soon be led by a man that has been compared to the likes of Hitler, Putin, and the Anti-Christ… to a stagnant society, there is no fault in this…
“Nothing will change, this happens every four years!” This phrase has been tossed around a great deal with intent for others to feel a sense of relief.. most simple minded humans would gain relief from this phrase, to those who are Truth seekers, you will be terrified by this complacency. No, you will not be surprised, for you have seen this country experience a complete dismantle of what was once a cherished and valued objectivity:
freedom, the American Dream.
My sanguineness is for this generation, if not future ones,
to break this routine, this broken record, this lie. As an American citizen, I feel the need to not keep the “American Dream” alive, but in fact, to kill it. Kill and re-birth this nation, create an utopian society where no man was ever judged by their race, language, god, belief, or wealth. We are now entering an era where togetherness is needed more than ever, all odds are against us (citizens) as they always have been. Lets not be stagnant any longer! Let us rise and exemplify our voices that countless men & women died for us to have; Let their deaths not be in vain.
Photo credit to: http://www.wabbaly.com/art
To make things crystal, I will begin with stating: Sat-is-fied (contended; pleased). Why is there no attachment of time to this definition? Is satisfaction directed to only be
momentarily and vanishing? Why is it internalized as finite automatically?
I once presumed that this word meant an ever lasting feeling of pleasure and contentment, until I began to realize that truly staying satisfied seems next to impossible. The human will is hungry and determined to strive, if one allows their mind/body to realize their wills’ needs, then one will be a being of success and leisure. Money will not be an object of concern, more of a mere tedious manipulation of sorrow and pain used to purchase swanky and/or vital supplies.
Love would be perfect and whole, no yearn for new, unknown, mystery… just strife for truth and contentment… one would feel the attainability of Love.
Family would be of no judgement, disappointment, or greed for everyone would be satisfied eternally where the cards currently lay. We would know how to lead the continuation in our lives without causing disease and distress onto others.
Work would always be a wonder of nirvana and euphoria, orgasmicly feeling a sense of change, inspiration, and pride throughout each and every moment spent within this area of life.
Friends would be of no constitute or necessity, they would truly be present and available for you and only you. No want for attention, information, or love would be desired for it would already be present.
I conclude with a proposition, must we as humanity create a new “word” for longterm pleasure and contentment?
Shall that word be
Shan’t it be Now?
Photo credit to www.afremov.com
When two people decide to experience the journey of life as a unit, they soon come to find that much like the Earth, they too experience seasons. Everyone has a favorite season, as well as one that is disliked… but how much control do we have on the seasons of our life compared to the seasons of the Earth?
One can not claim that they have control over the planet’s seasons, these are produced by methods beyond our comprehension (although science tries to personify the truth) as well as beyond our control. Though we can not control these seasons created by the planet, we can however prepare for them, adapt. Adaptation is not done quickly, rather over long periods of time (in relation to evolution), and is a vital point for our survival. Now that we have placed attention of the obvious, are there any relations to the seasons we can’t control, to those we can (involving each other, not the Earth)?
We have terms in today’s society that I will use in order to have you fully conceptualize the thesis at hand. Some if these will include Divorce, Marriage, Death, Birth, and Happiness. Yes, I am already aware that we as beings have different interpretations of these words, but for the sake of my work, only place your mind in the frame I am generating before you.
Spring is a time for creation and beginnings (i.e Birth), humans are pressured to feel the need to create future generations. Most of us are raised that in order to achieve the “American Dream” one must have two kids, a home, and a golden retriever. This is why most people make the conscience decision to have children. Although there are instances where the pregnancy is not planned, and can be eliminated, for the sake of my argument we will only discuss those that are planned. Why humans solely decided to reproduce may vary, but for the general portion of it, children are supposed to fill your lives with happiness and meaning. This is generally a “happy” season filled with anticipation and creation, not many people will claim to be depressed during spring time.
Summer, in my opinion, is almost a continuation of Spring. It is the growing stage, rather than the birth. During this season, people may experience exhaust as well as anxiety for what is next (Fall). This is a season where the couple seems to disagree more often than not, as well as even question if this is what they want any more. Fall does not seem to make things any better, during this time period, we are experiencing not only negative experiences with nature (i.e trees loosing leafs) but also with one another. After enduring a long summer, the happy times that once occurred during the Spring seem farther away than ever, and it becomes harder for two to make it through. For those who are however lucky enough to prosper through Fall, Winter will definitely be the season of Death. By death, I do not mean someone ending up in a casket, rather more like the death of a relationship, and
Not all ends are definite, sometimes a couple decides to experience another year together, another round of seasons. The problem with not knowing when to call it quicks is particularly troublesome. As years spent with another continue onwards, seasons begin to grow dimmer, Spring becomes less “happy” and Winter doesn’t seem like the only era drenched in sadness. Eventually, one will grow tiresome of enduring these seasons with another being that instead of making the hardship better, they make it worse. This is where divorce occurs, a final end to the promise of taking on seasons together.
Yes, divorce is an end to the routine you once knew, but what happens when you meet someone else that sparks an interest in you? Are you then thrown into another round of seasons, just with a new partner? Will the outcome be the same? Will these seasons be separated by months, or could one even argue that we can experience seasons from day to day?
How much control do we have on the seasons of beings? Is it absurd to accept that after years together, two people can accept an end, and look forward to a new beginning
Photo Credit to: MixMediaArt.net