Archive for November, 2010

What Black Friday Means to You

Thursday, November 11th, 2010

 It seems like just yesterday my house was getting bombarded with dozens of black Friday ads. Saving 40% of this, and getting $100 dollars off on that, oh and we can’t forget those three for one deals. Fighting over silly things like who will beat who running down the aisles of Target just to get that last Ipod on the shelf. It’s crazy how such a magical time of year can also bring out the savage bargain hunter in you, and believe it or not that magical savage day is just around the corner, so people get your running shoes ready, keep your coupons at hand, and let the mad dash begin.

            Black Friday, the Friday after Thanksgiving(Thursday) is not an official government holiday as many employees will most definitely not receive the day off. The increased number of shoppers creates the busiest shopping day of the year. To accommodate the rush, many retailers open as early as 4am and offer “loss leaders” and limited quantity sales to entice people to their stores. This year the estimate number of in store shoppers will jump 54 million number of shoppers from the year 2007, the holiday sales percentage will jump 8.4%, and the number of online shoppers(since last year 2009) will jump from $595 million to a billion, just because people will be trying to avoid the craziness and competences this day brings. Thank goodness for internet shopping being so popular now, saving people the hassle of leaving their own house and assuring them they can purchase an item without starting a brawl with another costumer. However, the average dollar amount each shopper spends has dropped about $17 per person since 2007, thanks to these hard economic times.

            Black Friday cheats and inside scoops are all over the internet as people give you tips on where to shop, where to find things cheaper and cheapest, and what products will be on all the popular stores ads before they are even sent out in the mail. I see scouting reports aren’t just for your favorite athlete or sports team, it’s for your favorite store now too. Black Friday is not to be looked upon lightly, just the other day I saw a page that told me to come “like” Black Friday on Facebook.  It’s becoming Facebook official now? Now we know this day is serious!!    

Shanley Schoenhofer

Interview with reggae artist Mista Majah P about his new first of its kind song “Rights”.

Wednesday, November 10th, 2010

A while ago I received a email from a friend with a link to the sohum blog, Sohum Parlance II. On it was a story about a reggae artist who is the first to stand up to the reggae community and say something quite taboo and controversial by creating a song that suports gay rights. I decided it would be a good idea to interview him on my radio show Reggae Revival and below is that interview. It starts with the controversial song so sit back and enjoy! Mista Majah P Interview on Reggae Revival Radio Show talking about his new song “Rights”. by DJ Red Rasta

Patrick Gaskins

What You Believe

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

According to the dictionary, the definition for belief is the psychological state in which an individual holds a proposition or premise to be true. Belief doesn’t have to be true, and it doesn’t have to be false. An individual who believes in a certain way should be able to do so without being criticized about their held belief. Too many times has a conversation about religion lead into a serious debate on whose beliefs are right, and whose aren’t. I think that the purpose of a belief is to uphold some type of security or peace of mind.

I consider anyone who says things like “You’re imperfect because your beliefs are different than mine, and therefore you’re going to hell,” to be very ignorant. Those who are forcing their beliefs onto others, who are not accepting others’ beliefs, or who are narrow-minded, are not open-minded enough to tell anyone their belief is wrong.

All too often I find myself battling with someone who believes my religion is false and that I am a sinner. They constantly remind me about this over and over again. I do not accept, nor do I appreciate the hurtful judgment that I am a somewhat lesser individual because I believe a certain way. I feel that as long as an individual’s belief isn’t hurting another living thing, it is an acceptable belief.

My beliefs may be very different from a large portion of individuals in a lot of aspects, and they may be very similar, but even though there are certain aspects of beliefs that I wouldn’t personally believe in, I don’t ask anyone to change their beliefs. I accept the fact that other people believe the way they do. Unfortunately, people who have this mindset rarely get the same acceptance in return. .

Religions can range from a huge spectrum of beliefs, but who are we to say that one is better than another? Beliefs should not be argued about. However, being able to share different beliefs and compare them is very healthy.

Personally, I believe in god and heaven. Additionally, I accept the fact that not everyone is going to agree with my belief, but I don’t chastise anyone because their beliefs differ from mine. In fact, I rather encourage others to share their beliefs with me. By doing so, I can evolve my beliefs to what I feel are right. It doesn’t matter that my belief in god or heaven is true or false. I believe it’s true, and by doing so I am given a feeling of hope.

It’s sad that sometimes the members of certain religions are looked upon as “perfect beings.”  However, I believe that this stereotype is the result of people who are forcing their religious beliefs on others. By constantly being criticized mercilessly by these judgmental people, the unfortunate result is that the people being criticized label the religion as a whole, as being judgmental. Really, we should try to make an effort to withdraw from this type of behavior because labeling can most often lead to negativity.

People in certain groups, whether they’re in religion or not, do not necessarily all believe exactly the same way. There are many degrees of beliefs just like there are many degrees of personalities. There are outgoing personalities, quiet personalities, and even confident personalities, and a person normally doesn’t have just one dominant personality, but a combination of a few. Some personalities may be easier than others to deal with, but they are all still very much the factors that make the individual original. In the end, our beliefs are very personal, and can really define who we are as individuals, but is it right to ask someone to change their personality because it’s different by comparison?

In my opinion, a belief is something that gives us all a feeling of peace or solitude. Whether you’re an Atheist who believes there is no god, or whether you’re a Christian who believes there is, there is still a connection to the concept of belief. Our beliefs make us feel guided in a certain way, and even though our beliefs may differ, we should still be able discuss our beliefs freely without criticizing each other.

I honestly hope I was able to convey my message accurately. Religion can be a very big topic, and although this may get interpreted many different ways, as things usually do, remember that this is solely my personal opinion.

Trevor Smith

The Gift of Laughter

Monday, November 8th, 2010

Laughter is probably one of the most useful tools when sharing an opinion.  If you can laugh at something, you can recognize the reality behind it. John Stewart has the ability to create an opinion by presenting it as a joke. Sure he’s a comedian and that is his job, but he publicly shares his opinion by filling us with laughter from his jokes. Stewart can make us laugh about things that wouldn’t normally be funny. Such things like politics, things about the media, but mostly things that are striving to be perfect. John Stewart constantly points out that, we as humans are by no means perfect, but it is our imperfections that make us truly unique as individuals, and if we can’t laugh at ourselves, how can we even think about laughing at each other?

The Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear was led by John Stewart and Stephen Colbert. The rally’s purpose was to point out that people become deranged when discussing politics and approach each other negatively when opposing viewpoints meet. The rally was supporting logical debate, as well as fostering feelings of equality. A heated argument can have very positive effects. Sharing one’s beliefs is not a crime, but a lot of the time it’s a hard thing to do. I know from experience that sharing personal beliefs and opinions can lead into places of vulnerability, but doing so leads to a more open debate. As individuals we should be able to share our opinion without being criticized or mocked, and although this type of behavior will probably take place forever, those who do mock others for their beliefs are narrow-minded, and care only for their own viewpoint.

Stewart’s ending speech at the rally focused on how we as citizens, work together to get things done. He gives us a nice analogy which sums up as; we accept each other every day for our differences because we are all going to the same place, and that even though there will be a select few who cut in front of the line, they are rare and despised.  There is a substantial amount of truth behind what Stewart believes.  If we didn’t work together and give at least a little compromise once in awhile, we wouldn’t have accomplished what we have.

So even if you’re a comedian, a politician, or a college student, sharing your beliefs is the most essential way to gain insight, as well as give insight to another person whose beliefs are different from yours. In addition, just because viewpoints are different, doesn’t mean we can’t give a little compromise and at least hear each other out.

Trevor Smith

Student Soapbox — What’s Bugging you about CR

Saturday, November 6th, 2010

Graphic Media Images

Saturday, November 6th, 2010

Why is it the media feel the need to show very graphic pictures of the cruel and sick things people do to each other? These images are meant to attract ratings and strike emotion but do they really get the point across? The answer is: yes, they get your attention; but no, they more often distract or repel the viewers from the point of the article.

A good example of this was found in Newsweek two issues ago. This is a magazine known for its articles on political, international, national and regional issues, and has in the past contained mild graphic images. However, recently they submitted a very disturbing picture I found to be borderline repulsive. This particular article was about the drug wars in Mexico, and included a picture from a blog that contained horrifying images of the brutal acts gangs have committed to their enemies. Now, the interesting thing is that Newsweek decided to post a large image in the middle of their article of two bloody victims hanging in some warehouse. Most likely, this image was probably pulled off a blog that is dedicated to striking fear into gang members. By posting the image, Newsweek can be held accountable for promoting the message the blog creator is trying to say, which is look at the terrible things we can do to you. The distracting image is more powerful than the words of the article, but it does not get the point of the article across clearly or in a positive light.

As a long time Newsweek reader, I know this magazine has recently undergone into new management. Whether Newsweek is heading in a different direction is unclear. However, I think it would be appropriate to place a warning in front of the article to notify people who do not want to be subjected to gory images. Doing that would show a little respect for their readers. By posting this image, Newsweek makes a assumption about what their readers want to see, interrupt the flow of the article, and make readers wary about turning the pages. While there are those who find the image of two bloody dead people hanging in some cold creepy warehouse fascinating, there are still many who do not.  Clearly, Newsweek wanted to get a reaction by using this particular image but I feel if backfired because it shines a negative light on their reporting tactics. It appears even Newsweek has fallen prey to the idea that, it does not matter what the image is as long as it sells. This is unfortunate because its hard to find a magazine now days that does not subject you to some degree of disturbing graphic images. Negative graphic images are enough to make someone who normally gets excited when they find a new issue of Newsweek in their mail box suddenly wary of turning the pages.

U.S. Navy Testing Protest

Thursday, November 4th, 2010

Eureka Police Protest

Thursday, November 4th, 2010

A Picture Worth a Million Bucks

Thursday, November 4th, 2010

Whenever I see the word paparazzi, I instantly have an image of a large group of people holding flashing cameras that are aimed at celebrities.  We are all aware of the paparazzi and how it has drastically grown right alongside the media. However, it seems that today the paparazzi have expanded to bizarre heights when it comes to grabbing the “perfect” picture.

How far is too far for the paparazzi?

Ron Gellela, perhaps one of the biggest influences in U.S. paparazzi culture, is a key example of paparazzi at their worst.  Gallela has a passion for snapping pictures of celebrities doing abnormal celebrity things, but he goes above and beyond what anyone should do to come into possession of these photos. For example, he has posed as an invited guest to a private ceremony, and has forged his own credentials while posing as a professional photographer. The absurd part is that he encourages other photojournalists to do so as well. It is unfortunate that these tactics actually work, but they come with a hefty price. Ron Gallela has been manhandled on multiple occasions throughout his life.

What makes the story of Ron Gallela so fascinating, is that he is pretty much a celebrity himself. Celebrities are entitled to privacy against the public, but do not have the right of privacy against each other.

What makes the paparazzi any different from a normal person?

Most paparazzi are willing to get the shot, no matter what the cost these individuals are willing to bend the law just for the sake of getting the perfect shot.  The sad thing is that these individuals are trying to make a living doing this, so they have to go to extreme lengths to make the money needed to live off of.

So, why do these abnormal celebrity pictures sell? We as a society wish to see celebrities have at least some mishaps because they are portrayed as perfect individuals. On screen these celebrities are buffed until flawless, and we yearn to view them doing things the regular public might do. However, most of the time celebrities are caught doing things that would embarrass an individual, such as vomiting beside a road, or accidentally making a funny face on camera.

A Decline in Manners

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010

It’s hard to place blame solely on the media for the lack of manners displayed by today’s generation. I think one could easily argue that parents contribute to this problem as well.  I can’t help but see some of the crude behavior reflected in younger generations growing worse. 

I think it’s true that teenagers and young children are very impressionable, and with the current economy you find more working parents leaving kids parked in front of the TV.  More often then not, many kids who grow up watching reality TV shows like “Jersey Shore,” develop behavior that most people in society would deem rude and inappropriate.  I have noticed that a lot of young kids, teenagers especially, have adopted an attitude of indifference. If something they are doing is hurtful or annoying to someone else, they fail to see things from a different perspective, and this tends to hurt them later.  If you think back to your grandparents’ time you might notice the level of respect a child demonstrated for others was greater. Somewhere along the line, a negative generational shift in manners happened.

Teaching kids to realize how they act has a big impact on how they are perceived as individuals. It would also be helpful to train them to look at things from other peoples’ perspectives and to become more sympathetic and less bossy. All these skills would allow them to learn to resolve potential conflict and enhance their relationships with others. We live in a society where, although it’s not required that we like everyone, it’s important to learn to respect other peoples’ perspectives and to compromise, in an effort to learn to work together peacefully.