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Sunday, August 25, 2013

Persuasive Essay on Televison and its Effects on Children's Brains

Persuasive Essay on Television and its Effects on Children’s Brains

The television is the product of the efforts of several brilliant scientist and inventors. It can be traced back to Germany when a man named Paul Nipkow first set out to invent a device that could convert images into electrical impulses. Along the way the idea was picked up and improved on and eventually became what we know now as television. This device along with the telephone ushered the widespread use of technology in homes worldwide. It became an instant hit and caught on with almost everyone and now there is almost one or two in every household. The television revolutionized media and this was because it was free to air and the most of the channels broadcasted free (Abramson, 2003). This allowed them to connect to every home within a reasonable distance. 

Despite being a source of information and entertainment researchers are now crying foul because according to them the television can be blamed for a host of mental and neural defects in small children. There are those like Gupta and Cohen (2011) who alleged that children who watched cartoons most of the time scored lower in cognitive tests. Cognitive tests are those that measure learning. The problem that was seen was not the television per se but the content that was watched. Since the television tries to cater to as wide a market as it can, there is no viable way for it to be able to cater just young children and create what is known as age appropriate programming. The lack of age appropriate programming leads to young children watching cartoons or shows that are meant for more mature audience. Since the themes are not suited to them the children sometimes misinterpret them and also lead to their brains creating the wrong neural pathways. This leads to them growing up with mental deficiencies. This leads to what is known as teaching the brain to learn the wrong way. It might be ironic but it is already being proven in many studies. The television is a wonderful device but it should not be a replacement for the care children should be getting from adults.

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Persuasive Essay on Sexual Abstinence and Birth Control

Persuasive Essay on Sexual Abstinence and Birth Control

The population of the United States is now at 312 million (CIA, 2012). This ranks among the top five in the world. This however is no seen by the United States government as a problem. That however is not to say that it does not teach sex education in schools. In countries that are consciously fighting population explosion, sex education is a mandatory requirement in schools. In the United States though sex education is in place for a different purpose, it is in place to fight the rise in unwanted teenage pregnancies and was spurred on by the rise in the cases of STD and AIDS in the United States. 

Currently there is a trend towards the decline in the cases of teen pregnancy in the United States over the last decade. This is testament to the efficacy of the policies in sex education. Currently the leading method used is what is known as abstinence only sex education. This promotes abstinence and is against pre marital sex. The other less implemented method is known as abstinence plus or abstinence sex education and for those who cannot then birth control is taught. Abstinence only sex education is funded by the United States government to encourage implementation, while abstinence plus is discretionary and the funding is left to the school districts. 

The debate on which is better has been raging for so long. Many have said that abstinence only sex education leaves teens ignorant while others say that teaching teen’s birth control is encouraging them to experiment (Huber, 2009). Whether this is true or not is something that has yet to be proven. In reality children learn about sex from watching television and other medium. While it might be morally correct to teach them abstinence it is not sound for them not to be ready when temptation comes around. It may not sit well with the traditionalists but we are living in a different era and media is making it harder for children to embrace abstinence. We cannot stop what is happening now but we can at least make sure our children are safe.

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Essay on Pros and Cons of the USA Patriot Act

Essay on the Pros and Cons of the USA Patriot Act

 The USA patriot act was signed into law by then US President George W. Bush as a direct response to the September 11 attacks on United States soil. This incident was the first large scale terrorist attack inside the borders of the United States. The last time a similar attack occurred was when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor. Both incidents pushed the United States to the forefront of wars before it was the Second World War, now it is the war on terror. Armed with the knowledge that terrorists were slowly gaining a foothold within United States soil the government set out to look for these elements. The laws that were present then to help prosecute these lawless elements were not really helping. In essence they did were for a more lax society where there were restrictions on against searches and seizures or even wire tapping. It was signed into law and was known as the USA PATRIOT Act. The name actually is an acronym that stands for the first letters of the following: Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism (US PATRIOT Act, 2001). 

The more lax restrictions against the aforementioned were just a few of the provisions of this law. It helped in making the surveillance and arrest of known terrorist elements easier. That however is not the only side to the USA PATRIOT ACT. The American Civil Liberties Union raised many concerns against the Act. One of them is known as the roving wiretap. With the more restrictive laws of the past a wire tap needed approval for each number. But with the USA PATRIOT ACT that was not the case anymore. The wire tap could now apply to the person and not just the number. It allowed them to combat the use of disposable cellphones. The ACLU on the other hand cries foul and alleges that it could set bad precedents and it could be used against people who are not suspected terrorists (ACLU, 2010). This is just one of the many issues that arose with USA PATRIOT ACT.

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Arc of Justice by Kevin Boyle Reaction Paper

Arc of Justice by Kevin Boyle Reaction Paper

To say that Ossian Sweet was an extraordinary man who lived an extraordinary life would be an understatement. He was a man who lived during an era when the color of your skin meant everything and could dictate the job you get, your education and the way people treated you. Sweet lived at a time when slaves were just gaining their freedom (Smith, 2012). He came from a family who was poor and had to work his way to get an education. In college he had to shovel snow and do other menial jobs to pay for tuition. 

Aside from the disadvantaged life he also had to contend with his skin color. During that time being black meant you were not allowed to do certain things and go to certain places. Racism was rife and even inter racial marriages were illegal. Lynching black people was so rampant that thousands died during that era. 

So for Sweet to overcome all of these and become a successful doctor was a feat in itself. Not only was he a professionally successful he was also quite rich. His affluence allowed him to afford a chauffeured car and to buy expensive clothes. He was even able to marry a nice young educated woman who was of mixed ancestry. He faced one of the biggest challenges of his life when he bought a house in white neighborhood. The whites were not at all pleased and began to bully him by rioting in his front door. The led to shots being fired and someone dying, this led to what was known as the Sweet Trials (Aaron, 2008). He and his companions were charge with the death of a white man. During that time that was like signing a death warrant. Especially with an all white jury, however, something revolutionary happened. Sweet was not convicted and he was set free. His life after was not as rosy. His wife died of tuberculosis contracted while in jail. Sweet would eventually live an uneventful life after the trials but the incident would eventually be a precedent of the things to come.

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Essay on Ethical Riddles in HIV Research

Essay on Ethical riddles in HIV research

          Clinical trials in search of a cure for a certain disease have great and noble motives which include the betterment of humanity.  For example, HIV clinical trials are being done in a lot of developing countries especially in the Sub-Saharan region in order to better understand the mechanism of the virus and identify new ways to cure it. In spite of the authentic motives behind these clinical trials which are to find ways to cure this resistant virus, questions regarding their ethical aspects are being discussed.  How do researchers and clinicians look for the cure of HIV in the most ethical way possible? How would they pursue looking for that cure which will benefit the greater public without taking advantage to the participants or to those who are most affected by the disease?

          In the talk of Boghuma Kabisen Titanji on TED filmed at theTEDxGoodenoughCollege on May 2012, she talked about the main issues on the Ethical Riddles in HIV research. In the first part of her talk, she shared her experience of meeting a woman named Celine, a research subject in one of the HIV research subjects in the rural district of Cameron. She met her at the time the research was already completed. Titanji then found out that after the completion of the research, Celine was no longer taking any medication for her disease since she can’t afford the bus fares to go to the nearest local clinic. She also can’t walk to go to the clinic since she has a poor health. Titanji was then more surprised to know that  Celine took part on the study and was given informed consent but is unable to remember the nature and the purpose of the research, the names of the drugs involved ad the outcomes of the study. After pointing out that this seemed to be another incidence where a patient from a developing country was taken advantage for the sake of research, she then addressed the ethical issues that needed to be considered when doing a clinical research in a developing country.  

          The first point of ethical issues that she discussed was that of the informed consent. According to Titanji, the informed consent should be in a form and in a language where the local participants can understand it and thoroughly comprehend it. Content procedures used in developing countries should be different from that of the developed ones. In illiterate participants like Celine, the purpose, nature and extent of the research and other relevant information should be explained in a way that they can understand it and freely consent to participate in it. Furthermore, Titanji added hat local communities need to participate more in establishing the criteria for recruiting participants as well as the incentives in participation. The second point she talked about was that of the standard of care provided to the participants in a trial. She said that it is very important to decide what the appropriate treatment for the control group beforehand. She posed a question whether the participants should be given the best current treatment available anywhere in the world but is not easily accessible and affordable to the participants once the study ended or should they be given the best alternative treatment available and affordable in that country. She also emphasized that it is very important to assess the potential risks and benefits of the standard of care which is to be provided to participants in any clinical trial. It is also equally important to establish a standard of care that is relevant to the study and most beneficial for the participants. The third point that she discussed was that that of the need for rigorous ethical reviews. Ethical reviews are very important for the safety of the participants in a clinical trial. She addressed the need for the local government and the local communities to be more involved in reviewing ethical issues for the clinical trials being authorized in developing countries. These rigorous ethical reviews can be done through setting up review committees independent of the research sponsors or the government. Lastly, the final point she addressed was that of the need for a clear plan after the clinical research ends. She noted that researchers should consider introducing beneficial interventions to the trial population once the study completed. The possible interventions should also be available to the wider community , if not the researchers should justify the need for their study.

          Overall, these ethical considerations are very important and necessary to every research or clinical trial being conducted. The researchers should be concerned for the welfare of their participants and not just solely think about what they can gain in the study. As Titanji puts it, every researcher needs to hold the highest moral conscience to remain ethical in their research and not compromise the welfare of others in search for finding answers. Clinical trials in finding cure for HIV are indeed needed because they are the ways in which we can find new or better treatment for this resistant virus. These clinical trials may offer a lot of promising medicines for those suffering from HIV in developed countries but these trials should also serve the welfare of those participants used in the study by looking after their follow-up care and making beneficial interventions for the whole population. 



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