Monday, April 27, 2015

Changing the World!

After reading all three reading from last week and this week, the authors from each assignment, try in their own way to give a solution or their interpretation of the condition of the world they live in. In "Why the Revolution Won't Be Tweeted”, by Malcolm Gladwell, Gladwell focuses more on how effective protest were back in the civil rights movement and how people went about executing them. Due to such execution, the many protest and riots that were held caused great change. Gladwell also mentions that many of the sit-in were done mainly by college aged students. Gladwell feels as though social media has made a major setback in how people argue for change and believes we should go back to how it used to be. In Brit Bennett’s article, "I Don't Know What to Do with Good White People", she finds herself stuck in trying to believe that the white people she has come encounter with in her life are genuinely good or trying to over compensate for the history of their race. Though Bennett’s mother and father both faced some racial incidents while growing up, Bennett overall tries to see the good in people before judging them but sometimes feels as if she is just overthinking the situation. Bennett’s article ties in well with Martin Luther King Jr’s article "Letter from a Birmingham Jail", in that King also believes that white people were afraid to stand up for civil rights in that time. King focuses more on the religious aspect by questioning the men of the church in why they don’t feel the need to stand up and join the oppressed. In my opinion to the question on improving the world, I think it starts with young people. Since we are the world’s future, kids today can change the whole outlook of discrimination of race, religion, sexuality, and many other differences we face today. I also feel if there were more awareness out there about social issues going on today, more people will get involved with trying to help better the world they live in and join together to find a change.

We can't change the world unless we change ourselves!
                                                      -Christopher Wallace


  1. I am in total agreement with pretty much everything you are saying in this blog post. The three different authors do a good job of explaining what they think the world is like and even to some extent compare and contrast how it is now and how it was in the past. Malcolm Gladwell did a good job of this when he explained how protests were back in the days of the early sixties during the civil rights war and how it would be today. In Martin Luther King’s letter from Birmingham Jail, he states why he did what he did and explains that his actions that got him thrown in jail had quite the purpose behind them. Not only that but he puts others sort of on the spot when he questions why other organizations and communities would not join him in fighting for the rights they deserved. In Brit Bennett’s article she mentions how white people in our modern society are in a way putting up a front and trying to make themselves look like they would have been against racism back then too by how they are acting today. I agree with you when you say the best way to improve the world starts with the young. We cannot help what has happened in past generations but we surely can have an impact on what happens in future generations to come.

  2. The biggest overlap that I can find between these readings comes from “Letter from Birmingham Jail” and “Small Change.” Both of these readings promote the idea that the best way to go about improving the world is through direct action and hierarchical originizations that attempt to confront injustice. “Small Change” directly reference the civil rights movement stating that “the civil rights movement was high-risk activism. It was also, crucially, strategic activism.” The author contrasts this with social media activism arguing that it is not of this nature. Since Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was so crucially involved in the movement, they would both agree that the best method for improving the world is direct action. In MLK’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail, he is responding to other clergy men who describe his methods of social change as “unwise and untimely.” In that, MLK disagrees with them, urging the importance of direct action and that of hierarchical organizations in promoting equality.
    Though these two authors would agree with one another, I doubt that the author of “I Don’t Know What to Do with Good White People” argues the exact same position as either of them. What she seems to be arguing is the changing of a mindset; the mindset of expecting “racism to appear, cartoonishly evil like a Disney villain. As if a racist cop is one who wakes in the morning, twirling his mustache and rubbing his hands together as he plots how to destroy black lives.” I think that this author is arguing that we can view privilege and discrimination as we have viewed racism in the past. The best way to improve the world is therefore to change our mindset and the way that we look at the incidents of discrimination by police that we've seen as of recent.

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. Of the three readings Martin Luther King Jr.'s "Letter From Birmingham Jail" and "Small Change: Why the Revolution Will Not Be Tweeted" are the most similar, while "I Don't Know What To Do With Good White People" seemed to be much shorter and less informational. Starting With MLK's letter, he obviously supported a non-violent approach to better the world as did the other two readings. MLK however, felt great disappointment in those he thought he could count on to support a cause for the greater good. He was disappointed in white Christians that chose to either stand by or let evils of the world tear down fellow brothers in Christ. MLK's letter tried to gather Christians that believed in a morally greater good to better the world and end something as terrible as racism. The second article "Small Change..." focused on rallying of bodies/crowds of people to help cause a change. This article was about how social networking may get the word out for a problem, but doesn't especially motivate people to make the change. Finally, in "I Don't Know What to do With Good White People" the author tells a story about how staying calm and assessing the situation saved her fathers life. I believe the final article promotes a non-violent approach as well it just was not near as in depth as the other articles. I believe all three articles prove to be a great way to cause change in an ever changing world simply because they are true historical events which have taken place. A mixture of these three ideas is what it ultimately takes for change to occur however, I believe the fact that the Civil Rights Movement caused change was because if change had not occurred then the supporters of the movement would slowly become more agitated and frustrated eventually causing violent outbreaks which is essentially the worst possible outcome. I feel the fear of this harmful and violent outcome caused a more peaceful outcome. Without angry white racists realizing they could be punished, harmed, or there family being harmed change wouldn't have come as swiftly.