Monthly Archives: November 2011

There’s No Place Like Home

That’s right, Dorothy.

After being locked up in my dingy apartment, studying and working on schoolwork, nothing feels more freeing than driving back home to Linn for a break. Whereas I’m confined and kept to a rather strange schedule in Springfield, when I walked through the door at home, I could feel myself shedding those burdens at the door, ready to be picked up on Sunday when I head back to Springfield.

I love the freedom of doing what I want, not as classes dictate. I can write whatever I want, not about some topic that is somewhat boring. I can read the newspaper, not a textbook. I can actually cook, because I have time to.

Graduation is only 23 days away, and I’m more than ready for it. This Thanksgiving, I’m thankful for friends and a great family to come home to. But most of all, I’m thankful that my time in school is nearly done.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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The Occupy Movement

When I turn on the TV or pick up the newspaper, chances are that I will notice a story or piece about the Occupy Movement. Over the last 2 months, the movement has gained more and more followers, and more attention. My own views about the movement I attempt to keep to myself. My real feelings about it are not to be discussed in a public format, as is my right.

I recently covered the local movement in Springfield, which you can read about here. A few days ago, eight members of the movement were arrested, and I feel the need to address some of the people around here, as they can’t believe they were arrested. I understand where their indignant reactions come from, but they are jumping to the wrong conclusions, as far as I can see. The Occupy movement may be synonymous with change and fixing what is wrong with our country, but in this, and several other instances, people need to take it with a grain of salt.

Here’s the Springfield News-Leader’s piece on the arrest. I also want you to take careful notice of the spelling of one of the names in the story-Joann Wolfe. Yes, I am petty when it comes to newspaper articles.

Now, the thing to remember here is that THEY WERE TRESPASSING. I don’t care what you want to do, do it in a legal way. If you’re going to get arrested, at least make it worth it, right? And that is one of the issues with the movement that has kept popping up: the protesters are not going through the proper channels to do what they want to do. To occupy an area, they need either permission from the landowner, or to be issued a permit from the city or institution, and with all of the different cities across the U.S. having their protests broken up, you would think they would go through the proper channels.

For some of the comments about the police and their involvement, I will enter my own opinion. First, I respect the police, and try my best to comply. Why? Because I realize that they, like myself, have a job to do. But when they have to go arrest people for trespassing to protest, I think that is taking them away from doing their job.

Occupy Wall Street says they are using the same tactics used by the protesters in Egypt and the Arab spring. Yes, those tactics did work, but they are not all positive changes, as they have dealt with regression and little stability. In Egypt, food prices have nearly doubled since the revolution. They may have a real shot at a democratic government, but the unemployment has increased, too. Is that where we are headed with this?

One thing I want to point out is that I have officially come to the age of being a grown up, graduating, entering the workforce, etc., and this is what my generation gets when we come of age. My generation has an opportunity here. We can either be the ones that make things worse, or the ones that get through this, who deliver the answers to our problems.

I’ve heard plenty of people’s views on the movement. Some approve of it, some join it, some disagree, and some think they need to change tactics. My own views, once again, shall be kept to myself. The facts of the story, however, are quite evident. People want change. The question is simply this: how do we get it?

So, the question for my readers today is simple: how do you feel about the Occupy movement? If you agree with it, why, and if not, what would you do differently?


WordPress Isn’t Very Nice…

I’m currently in the computer lab in Siceluff Hall, where I’m supposed to be working on our new class project. That project is to set up a WordPress site and blog about anything we choose. That doesn’t sound too hard, right? Wrong! You would not believe just how much trouble you have to go through just to upload your theme that you create for your blog. It is a long drawn out process, that took us nearly an hour and a half this morning to upload a basic design. Now, we’re trying to make a good looking site and upload that, which is much easier said than done.

As of now, we have already thrown out our initial plan, as we now think it would be too complicated to run with. Sigh….

At times like these, I’m thankful for the simple blogs in life.


Speaking of Ethics…

I recently was part of a conversation in which we discussed what motivates us to do certain things, basically, what drives us to make the decisions we do. Do we make our decisions because we feel obligated to do something, or because we fear or desire the outcomes? How much of our morals and values factor into that equation? Do you feel like you make the decision, or that it is made for you?

I hope to hear some input from you on this subject, and to help start the conversation, I’ll answer it for myself.

I believe that my major choices are not usually made based on what I want, but what is expected of me. It may sound strange to some of you, but for me, it is important to do what I feel must be done, to do my duty. I have in my mind what I am supposed to do, and often it means putting aside what I would rather do. I don’t feel like it is a major loss, though, because most of the time, I’m able to do what I need to, and then proceed onto whatever else I want to do.

Actually, what really strikes me as strange is normal method of avoiding the consequence train of thought. I tend to focus on what needs to be done, rather than consider all of the implications of my actions. Sometimes it works out fine, sometimes I should probably think it over. I’m somewhat impulsive, but I think that is what has gotten me this far in life.

Let me know what you think, and where your opinions fit on this matter!

Thanks for reading,

-Ben