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On thursday, which was the last day of class, we had a discussion on gentrification. Prof. Jenkins used NYC and DC as examples by showing the map of the train system. I am from the DC area, and that has been a major issue going on within the black community. There are expensive condos being built and the raising of property value in areas known to be home to lower middle-class and low income blacks. With this happening, the people in those neighborhoods are forced to move out. They are moving to Prince George’s County in Maryland, which is right past the border of MD and DC (and where I live). I don’t think the people who are doing this is solving anything by trying to make poor neighborhoods look like good areas, when the people who live there just move somewhere else and the same thing is going to happen there. They should just be left alone.

Article about this topic: http://socialismandliberation.org/mag/index.php?aid=134

Website about this topic: http://www.dcgentrification.com/

upon my studying for this final, i started to read the gidden’s text book. when i got to gender inequality, something grabbed my attention. Sociologist Christine Williams found that men working in traditionally female jobs were quickly promotedto an administrator position. ex. preschool teacher–>preschool administrator/principal.

this means that society almost subconsciously has decided that men aren’t supposed to work in jobs that are traditionally female. yes its unfair for the ladies, we aren’t considered for administrative positions before males are, but why is it such a taboo that a man may want to work in a preschool or as a nurse instead of a doctor. the heads of hospitals or schools must be making their decision at  the end of the year as to who will next be promoted, and because the social identity of women is still, even in the modernity of our society, not to be in charge. so they will choose the male. not because he is better at what he does but becuase he looks like he could lead.

what will it take to break the glass ceiling. a glass elevator all for women perhaps,or just a pioneer lady in the next election (that isn’t sarah palin). Glass ceiling says that as women tend to progress in their careers, they will do so until mid-level management positions, but they do not move proportionately to males through higher ranks of a corporation.

comparable worth, which is a policy that compares pay levels of jobs held disproportionately by women with pay levels of jobs held disproportionate to males, tries to adjust pay so women and men who work in female-dominated or male-dominated jobs are not penalized

I did some Implicit Association Tests, out of curiosity and I found out a lot of things about myself. For instance, I have a moderate automatic preference for people with light skin. I thought that this would me kind of hard to determine from the tasks I was asked to perform. But, the test seemed to be sure of itself. I suppose that without my knowledge, since my entire family has light skin, I would have a preference towards them. I don’t think this makes me racist towards people with dark skin. I think it just shows that I identify with people who look like me more than people who do not. I think that everyone would do the same. I also found that I have a moderate automatic preference towards young people versus old people. This, I reasoned was because most of the people I spend time with, are younger people. I also have had some disconcerting experiences with my grandmother who suffers from Alzheimer’s, which would probably make me prefer people who haven’t given me as many disconcerting experiences. It doesn’t mean I’m ageist, it only means I prefer people who look like me and people who look like other people that I’ve had really good times with. I also discovered that I had little to no automatic preference between thin people and fat people. I was surprised by this, because, I and my friends as well as most of the people I know and spend time with are thin, or moderately so, at least. I thought for sure I’d show automatic preference to thin people. So, this surprised me.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB122930124441705413.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

In his election-night victory speech, Barack Obama said he would be a president for all Americans, not just those who voted for him. But as a candidate he didn’t campaign with equal vigor for every vote. Instead, he and John McCain devoted more than 98% of their television ad spending and campaign events to just 15 states which together make up about a third of the U.S. population. Today, as the Electoral College votes are cast and counted state-by-state, we will be reminded why. It is the peculiar mechanics of that institution, designed for a different age, that leave us divided into red states, blue states and swing states. That needs to change.

It is ironic that the most common objection to the National Popular Vote compact is the suggestion that it is antifederalist. In fact, interstate compacts lie at the very core of federalism: individual states combining their powers to solve a problem. In this case, they would be joining forces to allow their citizens to act as one nation in the selection of their president.

Wouldn’t it seem silly if someone could be elected into office even if more people voted for the opposing candidate? That’s precisely what the electoral college allows for. Looking over the news lately there’s a lot of unrest in the system. Even Obama’s campaign revolved around “Change.”

http://www.livescience.com/culture/081205-science-genius-einstein.html

Major breakthroughs in science have historically been the province of individuals, not institutes. Galileo and Copernicus, Edison and Einstein, toiling away in lonely labs or pondering the cosmos in private studies.

But in recent decades — especially since the Soviet success in launching the Sputnik satellite in 1957 — the trend has been to create massive institutions that foster more collaboration and garner big chunks of funding.

Although it’s getting harder for a single person to make strides in technology simply because science is getting more and more complicated, this says something about the way we’re evolving as a species. Increasingly collaborative efforts are more efficient at generating innovation in a field. Open source software is a good example of how collaborative efforts have made things better for all of society. Many modern operating systems, for example, run off open source projects such as BSD, and many of the best medical advancements were done by research labs as opposed to individual theorists.

It’s all about Vampires right now with the release of this Twilight thing. Can’t say I’ve read the books or seen the movie, but here’s an interesting related article about “real” Vampires. These ones apparently feed on “energy”:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/11/23/AR2008112302158_2.html?sid=ST2008111401409&s_pos=

“We’re taking advantage of the release of ‘Twilight’ ” to try to get some truths out, says Michelle Belanger, a prominent psychic vampire and author of “The Psychic Vampire Codex.” For example, did you know that New York has at least 1,000 self-identified vampires? “If we take that as a sample,” Belanger says, “it’s less than 1 percent, but we’d still have tens of thousands worldwide.”

Repeat: Tens of thousands of people believe they are vampires. It is hard, however, to verify this, seeing as it’s a self-selecting title, and each vampire might have a different definition of what it means to be vampirical. Some are more “Anne Rice,” some are more “Aren’t you my yoga instructor?”

It’s later quoted that these “Vampires” come from all different backgrounds, and that they’re “just like us.” If that’s the case, is this any different than dividing up the rest of us based on skin color or the shape of our noses, when those have little or no impact on who we really are? Is it a form of racialization to keep us separated or are they groups to help us unify? Regardless of whether you actually believe these people, it’s something to think about in terms of networking.

Things are nowhere near the way they used to be in America as far slavery and racism. But there are things that go on that make it evident that it still exist. I don’t know what goes from one side of the fence, but being a young black male, I know how that is. We are stereotyped everywhere we go. I’m not blaming this just on other races perceptions. I think that certain black males bring it on themselves and cause these stereotypes to be created. Not all black males are thugs, ignorant, or any of the other stereotypes that are out there. For example, not every black male that enters a nice store is going to steal something. This is just an opinion of mines. And also i do not think it’s only towards black people, all groups experience this.

Here’s an article: http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/221501/racism_in_america_what_has_to_happen.html?cat=47

Your data suggest a moderate automatic preference for European American compared to African American.

I’m not particularly surprised by this result. Although I don’t consider myself to be “racist” (meaning that I don’t believe in the inherent supremacy of one ethnicity or culture over another), most of my social ties are Northern European descendants and I have a preconception of how some minorities are supposed to act due to stereo types—ones which definitely don’t hold true all the time, but as I said once a while ago: “Gangsta rappers and Mexican lawn-care companies aren’t helping anything…”

I also took the weapons test:

Your data suggest little or no association between Black American and White American with Harmless Objects and Weapons.

This surprised me a little. For some reason I expected a bias towards black americans. In retrospect I’m wondering if it wasn’t the choice of weaponry. I actually do associate guns, semi-automatic hand guns in particular, with gang violence, where as the mace and axe I associate strongly with medieval europe and thus white people.

I’ve lived in New York City all my life, in predominantly African-American neighborhoods with the classes ranging from poor to middle class. In Bed-Stuy, where I’ve spent a significant amount of my childhood, I can remember seeing only other blacks and Hispanics of various country origins. It was extremely rare to ever see a white person in the neighborhood, and if there ever was one there one would assume they were a teacher at the local elementary school, or that they were simply lost. A few short years later, there are many young Caucasians living in the midst of the project developments and broken down brownstones of the Bed-Stuy area. This is the beginning of the process called gentrification. These young white people are often of the artist population that spilled over from Williamsburg and the young hip families of Fort Greene, the two neighboring ‘hoods. I guess it’s safe to assume that Bed-Stuy will lose some of that gangsta charm it was so famous for in the 80′s and beyond within the next couple of years. It’ll be chock full of Thai restaurants and sushi joints. The streets will be ridden with coffee houses where the young and hip cool people will sit and sip the finest of javas while they type on their Macbooks and bop their heads to the latest unknown indie band playing over the speakers.  The real estate will be through the roof, with yuppies paying 1500 a month for a box with a toilet and a sink. And worst of all, there’s nothing any of the OG Bed-Stuy…ers? Bed-Stuy-ians? Whatever… There’s nothing we can do about it. Isn’t that just sad?

The Implicit Association test proved, for me at least, to have an answer that was fairly obvious to me from the start. It said that I slightly prefer black people to white people. I figured the test would say that when I began, but I would’ve liked it to say that there was no preference of one over the other. I thought I was a progressive person, but thinking about it more and more, I find that I am very aware of the racial differences between blacks and whites, and I realize that I’m simply more comfortable with the black culture I was raised with. Being black myself and growing up in black neighborhoods, it’s to be expected that I would have a preference for my own race over others. This, of course, will probably change in a few years to have a more equal preference. Being at Purchase, where white students make up a vast majority I’ll probably be introduced even more to the different culture of whites and be much more welcoming–not to say that I’m not welcoming enough as it is… >_>.

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