2015 Earth Day Global Conversation

About this class

Participants in the 2015 Global Conversation, an event organized by Minneapolis Community and Technical College, can join this class to continue to discuss issues broached on Earth Day 2015. 

Videos of the days conversations will be shared here and students who participated in the conversation will be able to have conversations around environmental issues while other students from within the newsactivist network who may not have attended the conversations can also share in the conversation. 

There are many challenges that we face in our 21st century if we want to have a sustainable world –a more peaceful and justice world for ourselves and future generations all across the world.   How we think about and value and treat our Earth -our Environment -is a crucial component for addressing all the major challenges we currently face both locally and worldwide.   At the heart of all major global challenges  (food, water, air, energy, resources,  poverty…..) is the environment and the changes now upon us all  from Climate Change.   No one country alone can “save” our planet from our “modern” world.  Global Education and Global Communication & Relationships are essential.   The key to a better world needs countries to come together and work together to address Environment and Climate Change issues.   This can happen only if the peoples from different cultures and walks of life come together as global citizens who see a common interest.   We must do this within our own country as well as with peoples in other countries of the world.  As college educators at MCTC we want to offer our students more opportunities to meet and learn from students who live outside of the U.S. --in other countries and regions of our planet.   

The MCTC Earth Day Global Conversations Program is our first attempt to use our technology to give our students opportunities to meet and converse with students outside of the U.S.

 

 

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2 années 2 mois ago

I am commenting on this article because with Zika and other mosquito spread diseases being so prominent, it peaked my interest. I completely, 100% am in support of this plan and research on the modification of their genetics because it has the potential to help reduce the spread of diseases. Although the process does stunt their growth and make them deformed, I do believe it would be for the better of human health. One thing to consider is that mosquitoes have become more and more genetically tolerant to pesticides over the years, so if this process does become mainstream, would populations of mosquitoes eventually adapt to it?- something to think about.

I believe that if a person lives near the tropics or even in the southern U.S., he/she would definitely take an interest into this study [1]. The reason is because Zika is becoming more and more prominent as time goes on, and if scientists are able to modify them to limit their growth in population, he/she would see it in a positive light.

Reference:
[1] http://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/concerns-grow-for-spread-of-z...

2 années 2 mois ago

I am commenting on this article because I too did a summary on the same article. I find it rather fascinating that people are able to now track how chemicals used on the brain can affect parental behavior (for mice that is). It will be interesting to see if this idea of having parental behavior linked with genetics will spread to human use. I think the use of this in the future for people to find their perfect partner sounds a little weird because no one is "perfect." Another use I think this study could help get in motion is the inquiry into if there is a link between a person's genetic make-up and parental abuse.

A person's geographical location may affect how he/she responds to this post/article because if he/she lives in a region where knowledge on genetics is not discussed or taught, the ideas presented in the article may not even be in the forefront of his/her minds [1]. The reason being is because he/she may not even be considering the possibility for the use of genetics in there future choice in mate. This person is probably going to pursue "love partnership" over the potential for "genetic partnership," just because of the lack of understanding and access to such knowledge.

Reference:
[1] https://www.ets.org/s/research/pdf/poverty_and_education_report.pdf

2 années 2 mois ago

I have not, in fact, heard of Hirschsprung's disease until now! It is said to be more common on boys. Is it so much more common that it may be an X-lined disease?

2 années 2 mois ago

It's not just wolves and dogs, but wolves and coyotes are known to mix in certain areas and create coy-wolves that have behaviors of both parent species. It's also fascinating to think that our ancestors may have hybridized with other species early on in their evolution (I mean, there is evidence that we did). In a sense, it brings up an interesting objection to the typical definition of a species.

2 années 2 mois ago

While slightly off the topic of mice, there is a theory that early humans did not practice monogamy by default, but adopted the practice over time as our infants gradually required more care. They believe this to be a response to an increasingly advanced brain that required more time to develop properly, and a proportionately shorter gestation period coupled with a gradually increased developmental stage.

2 années 2 mois ago

A bit of a chicken-or-egg scenario presented here! I think that an initial lack of understanding of math can create a type of anxiety response that, since it has become epigenetically programmed, will never truly go away. In a sense, I think it's a great example of the bigger phenomenon of performance anxiety, in general. Doing math on your own versus on a test are completely different situations to which your brain will accordingly change its response, and I have even observed this in myself in non-academic situations. I find that, no matter how good I get at some performative task, there will always be some degree of anxiety that comes along with it.

I am also reminded of an experiment in epigenetics where they trained a mouse to fear a stimulus, and that mouse's progeny also feared said stimulus upon first encountering it. I don't remember what the stimulus was, however.

2 années 3 mois ago

Before I begin I would like to say that all your points are valid and hold truth to them; as it is very important to consider a person's schooling and parentage before evaluating the subject. However, I couldn't help but notice that you were missing the factor of gender and the socialisation of gender roles and norms within your plan to analyse the origins of homophobia within and across several different societies.
It's important to note that the way an individual who identifies as homosexual will face different types of oppression and marginalisation based on their gender. As children, we are taught different roles and ways to behave based on the genitals we inherit and are expected to act upon these roles we have been given for as long as we live. And it comes as no surprise that through this socialisation we learn that men are powerful, wealthy, highly sexual, and in charge. Inversely we learn that women are frail, quiet, chaste, and submissive. This sets up a dynamic where women are below men and are discriminated against because of it this type of socialisation.
However, not all men and women share the same experience as they will face more or less discrimination (or privilege) over others based on other factors such as: age, able-bodiedness, race and/or ethnicity, and SEXUALITY. Thus the concept of intersectionality comes into focus. Intersectionality is the term used to describe when an individual has one or more overlapping or intersecting identities that determines the types of oppression or privilege that they will experience.
This becomes relevant to your article because it entails what type of oppression a homosexual person may face if they were female or male (or of any race or ethnicity other than white). For example, in a particular situation, someone who is female and homosexual will have more oppression to deal with than a man who is homosexual. This is because the man who is homosexual has the privilege of being born a male. Therefore, I believe it is also important to investigate the manner in which children are taught gender and gender performance since it also has a significant effect on whether individuals grow up to be homophobic.

intersectionality: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intersectionality
gender performance:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_construction_of_gender#Applications... & http://queermodernism.blogspot.ca/2010/03/definition-of-gender-performan...

2 années 3 mois ago

The growing population of internet trolls that plague digital society have a reach that extends beyond the confines of tiny screens and binary code, even going so far as to effect the physical safety of its targets. This article was therefore fascinating, as it analyzes Google’s Perspective, a program that aims to make the internet a safer space, walking the fine line between online censorship and free-speech through an analysis founded on multiple ethical systems.
While this program would be a vital addition to the fight against internet trolls, it remains a reaction to the offense after it has occurred, whereas a preventative measure would be preferable. The first paragraph of the article mentions a study done by The Guardian wherein it was found that of its ten most trolled writers, 8 were women, and the 2 men were black. This therefore suggests that internet trolling stems from the teachings and pressures of the patriarchal world view and hegemonic masculinity, wherein the worth of a man is determined by his domination, usually of a violent or sexual nature, over his inferiors, notably women and visible minorities.
The #gamergate controversy is an example of this, wherein female video game developers and critics who challenged the issue of representation in video games were met with a violent lash back by an almost exclusively male online community. Their masculinity having been threatened, a huge number of internet trolls sought to reassert themselves through primarily online death and rape threats.
While a program such as Perspective would help in limiting the damage done through the censorship of comments such as these, the underlying issues permeating our society remain the same. If we wish to fix the issue, we must tear down the ideas at the very foundation of this patriarchal mentality, and not simply its refuse.

See:
#Gamergate: http://gawker.com/what-is-gamergate-and-why-an-explainer-for-non-geeks-1...
An introduction to the patriarchal world view: https://www.thoughtco.com/patriarchal-society-feminism-definition-3528978

2 années 3 mois ago

Hi. Your article is very informative and it brings attention to the serious problem of unemployment and its impact on society. However, I think it could lead to a deeper analysis of the problem if we consider the role of gender with this problem.

For example, you mentioned the psychological impact that unemployment has on an individual. Of course both genders would be affected. However, it might be more serious for men considering their masculinity depends on financial wealth and success. The man-box of the patriarchal world view polices men into being successful and rich and when this criterion isn't met, they are policed and criticized. For further information on men and masculinity you can visit this site: http://www.wps.colostate.edu/men-and-masculinities

Another point that the gendered world views brings up is the issue of women's expected role in society. Women are expected to be the house-wives who take care of the children. So they tend to have more difficulties in obtaining a job because they are expected to quit once they have children. Even once they are professionally engaged, when they have children they are forced to choose between either their children or their professional career. This phenomenon is called the "Mommy Track." The rates of unemployment are much bigger in women due to this issue. For further information on mommy track you can visit this site: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mommy_track

2 années 3 mois ago

What you’re doing is absolutely great, we really need more people to support this cause since there is a large amount of cases surrounding sexual assaults. There is no justice whatsoever in what’s happening these days, all these cases are being turned down are just making the idea of rape culture grow bigger and bigger. Rape culture is a set of beliefs which encourages the violence against women and male sexual aggression. Many women are currently suffering from sexual abuse and no one is standing up to it, if the judges in court are not reacting and saying things like “vigorous or creative enough in trying to stop the assault” then it will only get worse from here and people will try to assault others even more. Also, imagine women of color trying to stand up for themselves at court and being shut down, society will never be able to improve because of this. So we really need more people to join these organizations to help women reach out and stand up for themselves.

Here is an article that talks about how the victims are being blamed for rape instead of the rapists
https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/womens-blog/2014/nov/21/police-...

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