The future of American people

We really need a leader (president, governor, mayor) who really represents our values, hopes, dreams, for America, not a leader like we have now who is full of hatred to many groups, and undermine things are very important to us like health care, the Republicans as of right now are having a secret meeting that is discussing health care with no knowledge or even know what is actually in the plan itself before voting and discussing it amongst other members of Congress. 

This is completely unacceptable,” Sanders told CBS “Face the Nation” host John Dickerson. “Nobody can defend a process, which will impact tens of millions of Americans, and nobody even knows what’s in the [legislation]…The reason they don’t want to bring it public is that it’s a disastrous bill, I suspect similar to what passed in the House.” “It was the worst piece of legislation, frankly, against working class people that I can remember in my political life in the Congress. Throwing 23 million people off of health insurance is beyond belief,” said Sanders.

Even many Republicans are being kept in the dark said Sanders, noting that this tactic underscores issues with the bill that Republicans would have difficulty defending, such as cutting Medicaid in favor of giving tax breaks to the wealthiest  Americans.

“So they want to keep it secret, they don’t want the media involved, they don’t want members of Congress involved,” Sanders told Dickerson. “And at the last minute they present it, they push it through and that is one-sixth of the American economy and millions of people thrown off of health insurance. That is unacceptable.”

The closed-door process has Republicans concerned as well.

“I’ve said from Day 1, and I’ll say it again,” Senator Bob Corker, Republican of Tennessee, told the New York Times. “The process is better if you do it in public, and that people get buy-in along the way and understand what’s going on. Obviously, that’s not the route that is being taken.”

McConnell defended his approach, telling the New York Times there have been “gazillions of hearings on this subject” over the years.

For Sanders, the only solution is full transparency, and on Sunday he called on Democrats to “do everything they can to oppose” the Senate bill

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lets not be divided as Americans

I really hope after everything that has been happening after Donald Trump being the next president of the United States, that we all as Americans stay united, not let politicians, political parties, and media divide us as a whole.  This really was the worst year to come as of yet because we now have a president who may or may not be impeached who has no political experience whatsoever and there are so many people who fall into the trap like Donald Trump supporters who does everything they get told to do by politicians who run every year like chanting “Lock her up” which is an reference to Hillary Clinton. We all really need to stick together, and make rallies, protests to make our voices be heard by local representatives or politicians.

How am I now compared to when I started my freshman year

I really believe that I have changed a lot ever since I started my freshman year at York College when I was a freshman, I was the quietest and I never really was involved in any activities that York College offered or even joined any clubs. Now I am 21 years old and embracing more of myself by joining clubs, being involved in Student Government. I am even being involved in York College Career Services and in the different programs that they have to offer to many students who go to York College.

I am so happy that the semester is almost over

This semester really changed me for the better, I really took more of an initiative this time around for studying for my classes this year than last semester,  I am happy that summer is coming and that is almost here, I just hope I do very in my finals and hope to get good grades this semester. Last semester didn’t go so well for me because some of the classes I had like Economics 102  and Math 115, were subjects that I really didn’t like and I don’t think  the classes were very interesting, as far as I can remember, from until I was freshman in York College, I always enjoyed classes like Sociology, English, History, Speech,  Astronomy, and Communication Technology.

My passion for helping people ever since I was young.

Ever since I was young, I always enjoyed helping people, and now I am trying to look for a career where I can help people, and my major that I chose is sociology, not everyone knows that I am always trying to be active as well as helpful in my school, it all started in Francis Lewis High School, I would always help everyone who worked in the Principal’s office, and I really enjoyed during the time I had lunch, I would always make sure that I would be right there in the principals office in case of any assistance, I never really knew what I wanted be or wanted to do in terms of my career, every time I go to the principal’s office, I would sometime realize and tell myself that I too can be a principal of a school.

 

 

I really enjoyed this class a lot.

Ever since the first day of class, I was so excited in knowing what we were going to learn and work on during the semester. I am really looking forward to taking more CT classes, so I can learn more things all these things that we learn will be very useful in our future job. I really like whenever its Tuesday, because that is when I have CT class, and by the end of the semester, I want to try to take in a lot of things that I have learned, so I can be ready for any situation. I’m happy as well as sad and will really miss this class, every time I had this class, it was always like a learning experience and I got better every time. As far as my website is concerned, I am really happy in all the work that I put in my website, I will still try to fit in more posts before we actually do presentations on it.

 

 

My reaction after Thursday’s Disability Awareness Celebration

First of all when I was there, I was really excited that everything was being setup before the event began, and then when it turned to 12 pm, I was wondering why didnt the event get started yet, but still the whole event went really smoothly, and I was nervous as well, because this was the first time where I had to sing in front of a big group of audience, and I was so happy after hearing the first performance, and then it was my turn, I did fine, but I couldn’t keep up with the lyrics, because there was someone else singing as well, and finally when it came towards my final performance, I was getting really excited and pumped, and I just have to say from hearing from many students, and friends, I know that I did an awesome job, it was so good that the president of the Helping Hands Club decided to sing with me as well as other group of people.  I am so happy that everyone enjoyed my performances that I told them that I will be back  in May 11 for another awesome thrilling performance.  Overall I really did enjoy all of the performances, and it really was a great day at the end of the day.

Sociological Research on Protests during shootings in America.

“Love trumps hate!”, “Not my President!” signs and chants like these became loud and clear as hundreds filled the streets of Time Square and other cities across the United States. It was clear that the 2016 election polarized the country and that many people were very upset with the results but what were the goals of these people who exercised their constitutional right to protest peacefully? How effective were they?

Protests involve the sociological concepts of socialization, inequality, and social institutions as a whole. This can especially be seen in the present debate on the shooting of unarmed black men by police officers. The shooting of unarmed black men and women by police officers has sparked a huge controversy in this country about race relations. The deaths of 102 such individuals in 2015 has attracted recent media attention and created a polarizing environment for police officers as well as African Americans.

Names such as Michael Brown, Eric Garner, and Alton Sterling have become widely known in American households. Cities like Ferguson and Baton Rouge now represent ideas of police brutality to some people. Protests in response to these shootings have also been controversial as movements like “Black Lives Matter” are making their voices heard across the country.

As a result, I wanted to study what made some protests for a certain cause more effective than others. I believe that more successful protests tend to better mobilize resources such as physical capital, human capital, have strong organizational strategies, and develop more connections to the political process by clearly listing out their goals. My hypothesis builds upon the sociological model of grievance theory and group-position theory of race relations. We can examine what makes up a protest and compare various recent movements like Black Lives Matter and see what makes them effective.

Before we look at why protests happen, it may be helpful to define what a protest is. Klandermans believed that protest is “a form of collective action and of social movement participation at the same time.” Over history, we see that protests can take many forms through demonstrations and civil disobedience for example.

There is disagreement on how protests form, two competing views occur in conflict studies. One view says protests occur randomly over time while other believes it is contagious and that “protest breeds protest.” (Lichbach, 1985) Multiple theories on protest activity depend on political and economic context. The Political Opportunity Structure (POS) model looks at what influence a society’s political structure has on protests. There is the idea that when political openness exists, protest activity is more likely because people know government will tolerate it (Tarrow, 1998). The opposite view also exists that closing political systems increase levels of political activity like protests.

Another interesting sociological theory behind an individual’s decision to protest is grievance theory. Feeling a relative deprivation when comparing one’s own situation to the standard motivates protesting. This is especially true for groups: “People who experience both personal deprivation and group deprivation are the most strongly motivated to take to the streets.” (Klandermans, 1997) Protesters certainly have grievances for which they are taking the time to see get addressed.

Regarding police-community relationships, multiple studies were done to get more information on why there seems to be disconnect between both sides. In “Hispanic Perception of Police Performance, a sample of 500 Hispanics in Texas were taken to evaluate police performance. There is an interesting article because it shows that the relationships between police officers and minority population of Texas aren’t so well. One common complaint is that the police officers have not provided them good service and protection, and instead the subjects felt they received harsher treatment. They also thought their local police were more likely to treat them differently and believed there should be less discrimination against Hispanics. The author of this study concluded that their findings were largely influenced by ineffective communication. (Carter, 1985)

Another article looking at policy – community relations, “Reforming the Police: Racial Differences in Public Support for Change”, shows that blacks and Hispanics are most supportive of police reform. Most Americans believe that the criminal justice system should not have any type of racial bias and the federal government should try to work for equal treatment between police officers and minorities. They also think that there should be some type of common grounds and understanding between police officers and the community. This idea supports the previous idea that more communication is needed when police officers interact with minorities. Additionally, their findings supported the group-position theory of race relations which states that prejudice lies in the structural relationship of racial groups in society (Weitzer and Tuch, 2004).

As an Asian American and as someone who is in the minority, there may have been some biases I held when asking questions regarding police relationships with minorities. However, I tried to not let any bias affect the questions asked to the participants or affect their responses to the questions I asked. Before I interviewed all ten York College students, I first received consent from them by fully explaining my study. Since my study did not do more than ask questions about current events and protests, the participants were not put in any increased risk of danger. While there were no ethical concerns in each of my interviews, all participant information and responses were kept confidential. I also decided to do interviews rather than observation because I thought this way I would get more direct answers to my questions and I would have to less guessing about what people believed about protests and police.

After finishing transcribing all my interviews, some common themes emerged in my findings. The participants ranged from lower classmen to senior classmen at York College from different backgrounds and race. One theme that came up repeatedly in my interviews was race. This was especially true when I asked them about the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement. Some responses included, “BLM represents the importance of black lives!”, “it means bringing an end to racism towards blacks”, “unarmed black men who get killed for no reason”, etc. Another common theme had to do with racial profiling. Many students believed black people were unfairly stopped and searched especially during deadly confrontations with the police.

The theme of race being an important factor in protests against police brutality is related to the group-position theory of race relations. Again, the theory could be applied here since there are less black people in police departments compared to those who are in the community. The difference in power between the two groups can influence the poor relationships police and communities of color have. This is especially true, like the students brought up, when community members think they are singled out by the police because of their race.

When I asked the participants about protests that they remembered well, one student gave a descriptive response about the Umbrella Revolution in Hong Kong. She gave a short summary of the protest in her native country, “Hong Kong students would go to the streets holding banners and protesting against the government for more political freedom.” The 2014 protest still was fresh in her mind as she remembered “the yellow umbrellas protesters used to shield themselves from police pepper spray.”

Another participant remembered about the Ferguson protests when asked the same question. They thought the protesters were trying to actively get their points across and remembered people marching on the streets after the killing of Michael Brown with their hands up. The same interviewee added, “Consistency is the key, getting the message out there more often, as compared to a failed protest where people will forget about it.”

This reminded me of how protests are related to grievance theory. The student who remembered the protests in Hong Kong also remembered the grievances of the protesters. The point of “getting the message out there” also means clearly listing what you want out of the protest. This leads me to think that the more effective protests are the ones that make known their grievances and make sure their message is consistent.

I also asked all research participants about their thoughts of how police departments and communities can achieve better relations. There was a common response of better communication between both sides. Some solutions offered by the York students were “gather ups”, and “communities interacting and speaking with local police departments.” One person pointed out that better communication would not only make communities feel safer but also will lead to more trust and less misunderstandings.

Social media and television news is how most of the participants learned about recent protests and police brutality. This is not surprising since we are in the social media age where many people get most of their information online. It was also interesting to see that even though there was one person who responded with “all lives matter” when asked about the Black Lives matter movement, they also believed the criminal justice system should not have any racial bias.

I wanted to look at the most recent protests and tension between the police and minority communities and see what made them effective. After conducting my interviews and doing a literature study, I concluded that more effective protests are those that clearly list out their goals or grievances. Based on studies, it also looks like better communication between police departments and the communities they serve is needed. This can help stop police brutality and repair some of the trust between them.

Some of the major themes that come up in my interviews were race, consistent messages from protests, better communication, and social media. Movements like Black Lives Matter are working to bringing an end to police brutality. While they probably won’t end racism, they do have a list of grievances that they make clear. Black Lives Matter clearly made their grievance known in the name of their movement. They were tired of believing that they don’t get equal treatment by the police like other races do. So, they focused on racial profiling of blacks, and raise awareness of what they have to go through as a community during every police shooting. The movement is focused on criminal justice reform and that is why people remember their movement.

Another recent protest success story is the one at Standing Rock with the message of NoDAPL. Even though it didn’t get a lot of media attention, the protesters had one main goal: to stop the proposed pipeline that would run through the land of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe. The protesters still were going strong even while being pepper sprayed and water sprayed by the police. The clear goals and grievances made by the protest made it easy for people on social media to donate to the cause. Making the government stop construction for now is no small thing and show a protest can still be effective.

This study did have a small sample size and maybe for future research, interviewing police departments about their opinions of protests and how they think to better reputations with communities could be the way to go. Race and power relations still seem to be important factors in why protests occur and grievance theory can help explain which protests are more successful. Peacefully protesting is a constitutional right and sometimes the power of a movement can have positive effects for change in the community.

 

2017- How America Has Changed Ever Since Barack Obama’s Presidency

During the year of 2017, It never really occurred to me before that Donald Trump who has no education background is going to be the president of the United States. The day of Donald Trump’s inauguration turned into a message where now everyone can run for the president of the United States. Being born here as an American Muslim was really a great experience for the most parts, there has been a worser day for all Muslims around this world than now ever since Donald Trump made an executive order to ban Muslim refugees from 7 countries, and they as well as Muslims who hold a visa or a green card when going back to their country to visit cannot be permitted to come here. I really admire and do appreciate to everyone who protested and to all the democratic senators, NY mayor and governor in taking their time to speak against this hatred. There are other people who will be affected like women, us workers, black and latino people, it will also affect people who are under medicare with Obamacare, when Trump says he will repeal and replace Obamacare, many people who have preexisting conditions as a result are not going to live much longer, all the Republicans and people in Trump’s cabinet, many of them say they do have a replacement, but in reality they really don’t, and under this plan as Nancy Pelosi nicely said, it will only make ” “America sick again”.

I am so excited for Spring Break and my father’s birthday

I am so happy and excited that my father’s birthday is almost near, and I just wish he lives a long life, as well as my brothers. There is no one in my opinion that is like my dad, he is phenomenal, an awesome and fabulous dad. He has always taken care of me and my brothers ever since we were little, he always loved us, and I am so happy to see my dad everyday, there’s not many parents like mine, who constantly love and really would do anything for their three children. Ever since we lost our mom, my dad has done everything for us so we can be happy, and I really wanna give back by doing very well in finishing college in a positive and successful tone. Everyday I always try to see how can I be also the son that my parents are proud of, so I will keep working hard everyday to make that come true. I really wish there will be  a way where we celebrated our parents everyday  and everything they do for us. Spring Break is right around the corner, and I really am excited because I will be spending it with my family. I love doing everything with my family that anyone else would do the same or in a different way.