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Race Relations in America

Racism has existed all throughout American history, whether it was during Japanese Internment in the 40’s, the Civil Rights Movement in the 50’s-60’s, or today’s presidential campaigns. The problem exists, and I can say without hesitation that this issue has gotten way out of hand. It isn’t as bad as it was decades ago, but the fact that racism is still utilized today is absolutely despicable. My earliest experience with racism was after the 9/11 bombing of the Twin Towers in New York. I hadn’t experienced it first hand, but ever since then I’ve noticed that middle-eastern communities are discriminated against and generalized as “terrorists”, and I find this very unfortunate. This generalization/racial slur has been created as a result of one or multiple persons’ actions. It saddened me when I realized that the most severe forms of racism begin with one person’s bad decision. For example, during WWII, Japanese-Americans were placed in internment camps just for the purpose of public/national safety. This, however, is understandable to me because, at the time, the U.S. and Japan were enemies of war. During this war, racism against Asians rapidly increased. Unfortunately for the Asian community, it was very hard to differentiate between the different Asian sub-cultures such as Vietnamese, Chinese, Korean, etc. So, all Asians were placed in these camps regardless of whether or not they were Japanese.

I am a Vietnamese high school student, and I’ve heard racial remarks such as “Why are your eyes so CHINKY?”, “You’re pretty tall FOR AN ASIAN.”, “Aren’t Asians supposed to be GOOD AT MATH?”, and many more. These remarks mainly revolve around assumptions people have made about the Asian community. I don’t typically allow these remarks to bother me because I know that the racism I experience today is nothing compared to what others have endured.

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American Culture: 1950’s vs. 2016

As a high school student in 2016, I think I can confidently say I know what the latest fashion trends are, and I’ve gotta say. I don’t 100% approve. Today’s fashion includes crop tops, booty shorts, short skirts, and pretty much any revealing clothing article you could possibly imagine. However, I am guilty of occasionally following some of these trends. I remember in 5th grade, I wore straight-legged jeans and colorful graphic t-shirts, and I believed that I was following the fashion trends of the time. BUT… The moment skinny jeans and jeggings became popular, I constantly nagged my mom to buy me a few pairs because I was afraid of being looked down on or even laughed at for wearing my “old-fashion”, straight-legged denim jeans. Reluctantly, she complied, and ever since then my closet has always been stocked with multiple pairs of skinny in all different washes and colors. On the other hand, 1950’s fashion consisted of red lipstick, leather jackets, leather pants, and polka-dotted dresses. Similar to what I experienced, I’m sure other girls in the 1950’s were also judged by what they wore and if they dressed according to the latest trends. Overall, fashion trends have changed drastically ever since the 50’s, but the way fashion is perceived has not.

Another thing that I noticed that has changed in the past 76 years, something even more important than fashion, is technology. During the 1950’s, technology such as the radio and television were commonly used, and the very first computer was invented. Back then, people listened to music using radios the size of cinder blocks, and TVs were cube shaped. In 2016, my family and I currently have 4 laptops, 2 desktops, 1 iPad mini, 4 flat-screen TVs, 5 smartphones, and 4 MP3 players. Although, we have all of these different forms of technology, technological advances allow me to do everything necessary on one smartphone that can fit in the palm of my hand. I can listen to music, stream videos, communicate with friends and family, use social media, take pictures and video, and so much more. That’s practically more than double what people living in the 50’s could do on multiple devices.

I’ve never quite understood the term “born in the wrong era”. Personally, I believe that we are blessed to be alive in this day and age because all of the luxuries that have been created. I’m confident that our daily life will continue to improve as culture and technology continue to develop.

 

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U.S. Foreign Policies: Then and Now

All throughout history, U.S. foreign policies, whether it was during the Cold War or modern day 2016, have many similarities. For example, in the late 1940’s, the Soviet Union  divided East and West Berlin and took control of the east. They began to cut off all of East Berlin’s essential supplies such as food. The Soviets also blocked all railways, roads, and canals leading to East Berlin. This was known as the Berlin Blockade. As a result of this, the East suffered immensely from starvation. In an attempt to help, the U.S. airlifted millions of supplies into East Berlin, and this event became known as the Berlin Airlift. The U.S. continued to do so until the U.S.S.R. lifted blockade. Similar to this past conflict, in modern day Europe, Syrian refugees are searching for protection from their country due to the Syrian Civil War, and the U.S. is allowing many of them to take refuge in the states. This may not be as drastic as airlifting supplies into a country, but this is one of the very many examples in which there are parallels in American foreign policy.

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The Forgotten

Lately, I’ve been feeling really unappreciated by almost everyone I care about. Sometimes, I do things to help them out or brighten their day. Unfortunately, no one ever seems to notice. It’s not like I’m expecting to be showered with love or anything, but it’d be nice to get a “Thank you” every now and then. I’m not saying I WANT or NEED more attention, but I’d like my presence/existence to at least be acknowledged; especially by loved ones such as family members, real friends, etc. I know I’m not the most popular, but I’m also know I’m not a complete loner. I have friends and family who say they love and care about me, but their actions don’t exactly speak as loud as their words. I constantly feel neglected and forgotten, and this is one of the worst feelings I’ve ever had to endure. I want to make sure that I never make anyone feel this way because no one deserves to. Absolutely, no one.

“If they never acknowledged my presence, would they ever take note of my absence?”

I’ve been asking myself this question for years. Sadly, I’ve never gotten an answer, and I don’t think I ever will.

Anyways, here is one blogger who knows what’s up. He knows how people like me feel, and how to make us feel better.

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“Often we pass beside happiness without seeing it, without looking at it, or even if we have seen and looked at it, without recognizing it.” – Alexander Dumas, The Count of Monte Cristo

In life there are many things that make us happy like friends, family, toys, pets, many, many, things… But how did these people/things turn into such treasures in your lives and more importantly how often do we acknowledge these things? What I’ve come to realize is that these things that make us so happy seem to have been destined to make their way into our lives. Whether it’s by meeting at a bus stop or fighting at first sight and then later becoming the best of friends, these things come into your lives in the most peculiar ways. But after being around these blessed things for so long you soon forget to acknowledge them and all these…

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A Debate Gone Wrong

My English class and I were given a novel study on “All Quiet on the Western Front”. I thought the book was excruciatingly painful to read because of how boring it was. After we had read the book, we were given a final assignment relating to the book. In my head, I was thinking, “OH YES! Almost done. Let’s do this. I am so 100% done with this book”. To my surprise, the assignment wasn’t as boring as I had originally thought it to be. We were told to get into groups of 3-4 and write categorical questions about the book. Because the book was really long, we had to split it into two parts (brawls). Yes, the assignment was called a brawl. It was basically a debate with a twist.

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My Blogging Experience

Day one of my sophomore year was pretty uneventful. I went to all of my classes; all in which were pretty boring and traditional. However, as I walked into my 5th period English class, I saw my teacher, David Theriault, eye-balling me until I got to my seat. I didn’t think much of it though. When everyone was seated, he sat there silently as he looked us up and down. He began to speak with a monotone voice and a look of indifference. In my mind, and I’m sure in everyone else’s, a thought of “Oh no! This guy sounds scary. Do I really want to be in HIS class?” popped into the back of my head. We soon realized that this was just a disguise, and when he began to show us what he was truly about, we were all pleasantly surprised. A few weeks past, and Mr.Theriault introduced us to something new; a little something called blogging, and thus began my journey as a blogger.

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