It’s our responsibility.

We believe that there is no imminent constitutional crisis. Moreover, we believe that all current issues with the Constitution can be fixed by reinterpretation and without the writing of a new amendment. However, the goal of our project is not to simply state that our nation can achieve change without an amendment to our Constitution; in order for our exhibition to truly move its observers, we must step the argument up to another level, one that goes beyond a simple piece of parchment written nearly 250 years ago. History has shown us time and time again that society must change before the government does, otherwise it will cause extreme backlash. For example, during the nineteenth-century, the federal government and the states began to disagree on certain states’ rights, and eventually saw themselves hurdling into Civil War, which took the lives of about 650,000 Americans – twice as much as the Second World War, not adjusted for population growth. Again during the early twentieth-century, we saw the Volstead Act become Amendment XVIII, the only one to ever be repealed, as the government decided to try change the opinion of society. Moving into later on in that century, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and other legislation amid nation-wide protests show that society must act before the feds will step in. The issues that are presented to us today, as novel as they may seem due to the progression of technology, have similar roots to ones in the past. The best way to deal with them is create a new understanding of the existing amendments through simple judicial process. A reinterpretation of the first, fourth and fourteenth amendments will resolve a majority of the issues that the Brooking’s Institute authors indicated. However, most of these issues can be curtailed by small lifestyle changes, such as increasing security settings on Facebook, or simply knowing rights. Such actions can only be taken on individually, and no one is going to enforce them. We can no longer be complacent about this in our world, but waiting for the government to step in and change everything for us will get us nowhere. John Maynard Keynes, arguably the most famous modern economist, once said, “in the long run, we are all dead.” This relates directly – yes, the government will step in, but by then we will probably be gone. We have to be proactive about these issues and demand change ourselves if we want to enjoy a better standard-of-living in our own time, through legal actions such as Executive Orders, the creation of Acts or Bills, or Supreme Court cases because the amendments are already in place, we just need to alter their meaning slightly. It is apathy that is threatening our country, not the advent of technology making the constitution irrelevant. We already have the infrastructure in place, but the Constitution’s meaning needs to be updated – an amendment will not achieve that, and perhaps create even more confusion in the long run. We hope to inspire every visitor to take a stand, to change society because the government will not unless enough people demand a new legislation. The citizens should control the government – never the other way around.

To support our position we created a museum exhibit which contained several posters, as well as a recap video to solidify our arguments. At each poster, one of our group members presented the context of the situation, what was done by the government, and what should have really taken place. The posters went in chronological order and the topics were: the Civil War, Prohibition, the Freedom Rides, Internet Privacy, and Gay Rights. At the Internet Privacy poster, Chelsea not only gave a presentation, she also demonstrated just how easy it is to get into someone’s Facebook account and potentially steal their information. At the end of the exhibit a recap video was on endless loop and can be found here: Final Video

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The posters can be found here:

This project was brought to you by Josh Friedburg, Chelsea Cerame, Sushma Sudhi, Laurel Street and Charlie Oliva.

openplanet

Freedom and Justice for *All* (revised)

Our Week at a Glance

As we continue to explore Constitutional issues and their influences on society, it is interesting to think about how interpretation of the Constitution has evolved over time, and how it has affected the history of the United States. We began this week’s class by watching “The Freedom Riders,” a PBS documentary about the Freedom Riders of the Civil Rights Movement. This film offers a historical perspective on Constitutional issues, and raises the issue of misinterpretation—as many people in positions of power denied the basic rights of black Americans, a serious misinterpretation.

Continued Study of the Constitution and Society

I think it is important to think about the ways in which the Constitution has shaped history, and the ways in which leaders have influenced the meaning of the Constitution. We have a lot to learn from the Civil Rights Movement, and the Freedom Riders in particular, about equal rights for all citizens, according to the law, as we face new issues today, including gay rights.

The Freedom Riders Documentary

Awarded the 2010 Sundance Festival award, among other recognitions, this film offers a powerful account of the Freedom Rider’s journey. Complete with real footage of the Freedom Riders, interviews with them today, and commentary from historians, this documentary will give you a new sense of the Civil Rights Movement. There is nothing easy about this documentary—it will leave you feeling shocked and appalled by what the riders endured, but at the same time, inspired by their courage. The film reflects many of the central themes of the Civil Rights Movement, and the concepts portrayed in the film are very relevant to our modern-day Constitutional crisis.

More about the Film

To read more about the making of the documentary, view an interactive map, or watch the movie, visit here.

Even a quick look at the trailer will show you some of the horrible violence endured by the Freedom Riders, and the courage they had to carry them through and hold fast to their cause. Including clips of the 1960′s footage, along with comments from historians today, the trailer provides a good idea of the film itself–although watching the whole film gives you a better sense of the Freedom Riders, the world they lived in during a segregated era in the deep South, and how much the United States has changed in fifty years.

Embedly Powered

A Noble Cause

The mission of the Freedom Riders was to contribute to their cause—to fight for racial equality by defying Jim Crow laws and riding “whites only” busses into the South. This courageous group, which had both white and black people, and both men and women, put their lives at stake when they travelled on these public buses. They knew the risks involved, and some were indeed killed, but their hope for equality and their support for each other fed their perseverance. The Freedom Riders have exemplified the need for the people to take a stand—otherwise, nothing will change. As shown in the film, the government cannot force change; people must embrace it.

Endurance

The riders remained non-violent, even when their opponents unleashed unthinkable violence on them—they showed peaceful resistance even when they were abused, arrested and taken to prison (one hour and thirty-one minutes into the movie.) The film shows some of the egregious acts committed in response to the Freedom Rider’s peaceful protests—for example, the Ku Klux Klan (with the help of local government authorities) gathered an angry mob to burn the church where the Riders were meeting with Dr. Martin Luther King, shown one hour and sixteen minutes into the film. The end of the documentary (the last ten minutes or so) is somber, reflective and very inspiring. The riders achieved great progress and drew attention to their cause, involving the Kennedy administration, and receiving international attention. The Freedom Riders have shaped history, and struggled for human rights and equality—goals we should all aspire to today.

Discussing Civil Rights Today

The “Freedom Riders” provides a solid historical perspective of the Civil Rights Movement, and raises some issues about civil rights today. Watching it provoked some good class discussion. My classmates and I tweeted through our Twitter group during the film to share opinions, ideas and insights. We tweeted about a range of ideas, including the role of the government, the role of martin Luther King Junior, the fact that civil rights remain an issue today, and the connections between this film and the other articles we have read that deal with personal freedom and rights.

The Government’s Role

From the role of the government—both state and federal—to the rights and responsibilities of the citizens, the class shared some similar views, but had differing views as well. Some think the federal government should regulate civil rights; others suggested that some a

Back to the Future: A Look Ahead

~Chelsea Cerame
The future
(Image credit:http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-jS6ssj6zBSg/TjKOOlzjJfI/AAAAAAAAB34/F2mpGrvrJIc/s1600/future.jpg)

This week was full of announcements and changes. On Tuesday we were informed that Thursday’s class would be an introduction to HTML and web design. The class would take place in the Homer Rice Center of the Library, which is located on the second floor of the library, behind the elevator. If unsure of were to go, the security guards are there to help. This workshop was to give us an idea of what the workload will be like for the final project, as well as build up the skill level of all members in the group. On the 17th of November, we will have a more specialized web design workshop that will serve to help us set up the outline of the final project’s webpage, and debug any issues we might be having. Next week, we will not be screening Frontline-Facing Death. Dr. Wharton said she felt that we needed to discuss the King speeches rather than watch a documentary, and therefore, the documentary has been removed from the course syllabus.

“I Have a Dream, that one day…” We might talk about this speech.

Dr. King
(Image credit:http://www.teamcaptainsnetwork.com/public/images/255b.jpg)

This week’s reading was the “I Have a Dream Speech”, the “Nobel Prize Acceptance Speech”, and the “Black Power Speech”. Unfortunately, due to time constraints we were unable to discuss these speeches in class. Next week these speeches will be discussed. So, if you happened to forget to read them this week, you have a reprieve. While reading speeches is one thing, seeing them is a different experience. Reading a speech simply gives the reader an idea of what the speech must have been like. When watching a speech, one can experience the rhythm of the speaker, as well as hear their tone, inflection, and see their gesticulations. It is difficult to hear the speakers tone in a written speech, or, in this case, hear their calls for equality and justice. Dr. King was first, a minister. His speeches need to be seen, or at least heard, to get the full impact of what he was saying. When one hears his speeches, or views them, one feels as if Dr. King is personally speaking to you. You get a feel for what he feels, and feel like you are a part of the 200,000 gathered in front of the Lincoln Memorial. Speeches are much more powerful when they are heard rather than read, so of your viewing pleasure, links to the recordings of two of Dr. King’s speeches have been included.

I Have a Dream Speech

Nobel Prize Acceptance speech

WOVEN readings–the book we tend to forget about

Books
(Image credit:http://www.artsjournal.com/bookdaddy/Home_Photo_books.jpg)

What would this week be without selection from the WOVEN textbook? This week’s readings were about Revising and editing, and developing paragraphs.

Chapter 25, talks about the revising, editing, and rereading process of the writing process. It instructs writers to read their paper while revising. When rereading, one must analyze one’s writing based on meaning, purpose, rhetorical stance, audience, organization, and visuals. The book suggests Peer editing as a valuable resource to help catch any mistakes that one would normally read over. The peer reviewing the paper, should make sure that everything supports the thesis, as well as correct any grammatical or usage errors. The writer must then go over the paper themselves and check that everything is organized–to do this, an outline can be created. The writer must also make sure that the visuals do not detract from the writing, and that the title and introduction draw the reader’s attention. The writer must the check the conclusion. The conclusion should show a full discussion, and leave the reader satisfied. Once this is done, the writer must check that the proper tone is used throughout the writing. If the wrong tone is used, the reader may stop reading altogether. The author should go on to check that the paragraphs are in a logical order, and the paper has the layout that the writer intended. This is NOT the end! In order to ensure that the writing is the best it can be, the writer must then go through this process again. This is done by reading the paper aloud, and ensures that simple mistakes are avoided.

Chapter 29 discusses the development of paragraphs. The reading describes strong paragraphs as those that contain important information, a topic sentence, the middle of the paragraph expounds upon the topic, and the end of the paragraph sums it all up. In order to achieve strong writing, paragraphs must be unified. By this, they mean that there should only be one topic sentence, and everything in that paragraph should be about that topic sentence. The paragraph should also hold the attention of the reader. If the writing is too dry, and boring, the reader will not read it and the author’s message will be lost. Special paragraphs are designed to add interest to the writing. Special paragraphs, therefore, tend to be anecdotes, dialogs, and even hypothetical situation, to name a few. All the paragraphs in a paper should be linked together via transition sentences and should all relate back to the original thesis. This chapter even went on to offer suggestions on how to post paragraphs online. The book says that to indicate a break in paragraphs, simply add line space between the alerts readers that one is moving on to a different idea.

These readings directly relate to what we did in class on Tuesday which was peer review each other’s stage two of the proposal essay. The readings gave us insight into how we should review other’s work, as well as how were should make changes and reread our own. These readings will also be useful to those of us who will be blogging this week and writing a reflection of this blog next week. Revision and the ability to be critical of one’s work is a skill that will never prove useless in life. You will use it in all fields—from basket weaving (You never know. Those descriptions could be tough) to management (Because chances are, your boss won’t know how to write or send out mass emails without making hilarious mistakes.) to engineering (Yes, engineers, you will have to communicate with other people!).

In my opinion, very few improvements could be made in this area. The first would be to spread the revision readings over the entire week, rather than just one day in class. The second would be to shorten the WOVEN text chapters. (They like to go on and on about a basic idea. We get bored reading it.) The last improvement I suggest would be to actually talk about them in class. A lot of us forget what we are supposed to read about in that book that is inconveniently located. Also, it is extremely possible that there are some that do not fully understand what the book is talking about. Class discussions allow us to ask questions and dispel any confusion.

Revise, Revise, Revise…

Revision
(Image credit: http://thewritecorner.files.wordpress.com/2010/02/revision.jpg)

The tail end of Tuesday’s class consisted of peer revisions of stage two of the Proposal essay. As with any revisions, there was a set of criteria that we were to look for. In this revision assignment, we were to look for:

Criteria:

Are they on track? Why/why not
Can we summarize their ideas?
What are two things that would help them in this stage?

In order to revise our partners stage two, we were told to copy their document and paste it into an edited form of the document.

From this review, we gained our peer’s perspective on the scope of this particular stage. We also gained an idea of what others thought about our proposal, and whether or not it would be enough to fully convey our message. This is useful, because the audience in this stage is our peers. We must appeal to them, so others will want to do our topic in the final project. If no one wants to talk about your topic, or agrees with you, then more than likely, your voice will be lost in the see of democracy. That is not to say though, that you will not have a chance to convey your opinion. (There may be a group that thinks along the same lines as you! )

Improvements can be made, however. If we were to do this again, I would suggest making sure that everyone posts their comments in a public document—so the original author can actually see them. I for one was unable to even see the comments that were made on my stage two.  Another improvement would be to allow time for more than one person to review a draft. One person will not catch all the mistakes, nor will they give the entire class’s perspective on the assignment. Therefore, allowing others to made comments on the draft gives the writer a better idea of what the class as a whole thinks ths point of the assignment is.
Ask ANYTHING

Tuesday’s class also included a Q&A session with Dr.Wharton and the rest of the honors 1101 class. Each member of the class had to ask one question that they had about anything related to the class. A list of Questions and their responses can be found below.

Questions and their answers

Question mark

How can we center our position on current controversial issues?
-In order to center your position on controversial issues, look for issues that are controversial now. Also, do not be afraid to look for controversies in other nations, not just the United States.

How do you prepare for class?
-Our class uses many different methods to prepare for class. Some methods include reading the articles twice, taking notes, summarizing, outlining, and RHA–Read, Highlight, and Annotate. To prepare for class, use the method that fits you best.

How do we actually post our recap to the class website?
-Using the login information provided by Dr. Wharton, log into the website. Select add new. And then post your recap blog.

Is the proposal essay supposed to be corollary to the Peach Kucha?
-In the proposal essay, we are taking our ideas from our Pecha Kucha project, and comingling them with the ideas of others. The final project which comes later, can be different from your Peach Kucha. In both the Final project and the proposal essay, we are to come up with a solution to the rapid advancement of technology. In the proposal specifically, we are to identify how we would accomplish our goals stated in the Peach Kucha project. So, essentially, the proposal essay is like an experiment in building support for our position.

Proposal essay should be about 1500 words? How are we adding on to it?
-To add on to the proposal essay, we should include examples of any multimedia that we will want in mockup of our website. The proposal essay is in three stages. In stage one we decide what we want to do. Stage two is how we plan to accomplish it. Stage three is telling or peers about it. Dr. Wharton commented that no matter how much we have written, we will have to cut, to stay under our 1500 word cap. She went on to say that this is to get you to think about what is the specific action that needs to be taken and how we will specifically get people to care about this.

Can we go into deeper analysis?
-We can go into deeper analysis; we just need to be sure everyone knows what the reading is actually saying first.
Can I be late to class to register for my classes?
Yes, you can come late to class. You can also just register during class.
For the final project, should we use the articles?
We may include the articles, but we should not allow them to limit use. If we use them, we cannot discuss them as if everyone knows about the. In the final project we are to draw our own conclusions based on the research we do. The readings were designed only to help us develop a position.

What is our end goal for the group project?
-The goal of the final project is to combine everyone’s opinions into one project. We have to blend everything into one, cohesive argument. Each group will have its own opinion, and, therefore, it will be an exercise in democracy. One way of putting it is this: the proposal essay gives us all a chance to argue our thought, but in the final project we are responsible for coming up with a consensus.

When do we need to have our groups by?
-Dr. Wharton will be putting us into groups based on our positions. We will have the opportunity to choose the size of the group. Dr. Wharton commented on the fact that since we live so close together, it would be easier to have larger groups. She announced that she was open to suggestions of the dividing of groups, and went on to inform us that we will be in groups by the end of stage 3 of the proposal essay.

Are the groups going to be along similar interests?
-Because the groups will have to form a consensus of opinion, in some case will the groups all have the same interests, and in others they will not. In any case, everyone will have to agree on the issue, just not necessarily how to accomplish it. We will be submitting a skill sheet so that the groups will not be unbalanced in terms of all the CS people in one groups, and all the n00bs in another.

For stage two, will we be receiving comments on it?
-We will have comments on stage 3, but only on stage 2 if we go in and meet with Dr. Wharton.

Is there any way we can get a general idea of our grades at this point?
-She will give us a spreadsheet and we can enter in our own grades. Dr. Wharton said that she would email those that asked a spreadsheet, which we would then enter our grades thus far and find out our overall grade in the course.

What is the purpose of the stage?
-If we fail to complete each stage, then we will not receive full points in the final grade. These stages are needed for the portfolio, to show that we have made changes to our initial drafts.

What are we supposed to do for Stage 2?
-For stage two of the proposal essay, we were to come up with something that supports our idea. We were to talk about how we planned to mobilize our ideas–basically, we would find a way to raise awareness on the issue. Because we will eventually have put the website together, poster, and public presentation together, anything that we could use in the final project is good to include in this stage. YouTube videos, audio clips, and images are all good ideas to include in this stage, as well as any ideas for a physical object like a pop-out book.

What is the purpose of Stage 3 of the Proposal Essay then?
-Stage three of the essay is designed to show our peers what we believe and how we plan to convince others to believe it too. It needs to be multimodal, and more physical than just idea’s Dr. Wharton commented that she is not asking us to do the final project now. She just wants us to get an idea of what we want to talk about, and how we plan to share our ideas.

What if we change our minds? Do we need to create a new proposal essay?
-Thankfully, if you happen to change your position, you do NOT have to go back and redo any of the previous stages. These stages are to serve as a process, and to ensure you don’t put everything off to the last minute. (You know who you are)

It is exceedingly rare, that we can just ask questions in a college level class. From this unique experience, we learned just what Dr. Wharton expects of us—something that would be nice to know in other classes. We also got a chance to really hear what our peers thought or were concerned about. These discussions may be the most beneficial things we have done in class. It helped clear up any questions and allow us to hear how others are completing the assignments .It also gave us insight in how Dr. Wharton will be grading said assignments—I can’t begin to say how useful this is. It is my hope that we have more of these discussions in class, as well as in other classes.

I propose…what exactly?

Proposal

Tuesday, November 1st, stage 2 of our proposal essay was due before class time. Despite what seemed like a straightforward assignment, this stage turned out to cause the most confusion among the class. There was a discrepancy over the purpose of stage two: were we supposed to expand our original position statement, or come up with a way to communicate our ideas? Dr.Wharton clarified that the intention of stage two was to come up with a way to effectively communicate our position statement.

**For an audio recording of Tuesday’s Lecture, follow the butterflies. I mean links!

https://docs.google.com/open?id=0B7CRXQtwpLmfMTQ5OTRiYzQtNzExNS00ZjM5LWE3ODktN2YxZTg1ZDJjZjYx

https://docs.google.com/open?id=0B7CRXQtwpLmfMzNkODI4MTYtOTFjNC00ZWM4LWFlZTItN2E3NDJlMTAzZTQ2

Webdesign and Dreamweaver…For dummies?

Dreamweaver
(Image credit: http://www.gfxtra.com/uploads/posts_images/1/4/14428/0015dc2325746422575715.jpg)

http://constitutionalupgrade.lmc.gatech.edu/wp-admin/post.php?post=638&action=edit&message=10

Thursday’s, November 3rd, class was a change in pace. Instead of meeting in our usual, humid room in Skiles, we ventured over to the Homer Rice center on the second floor of the library. There we were met with a crash course in Dreamweaver. This course gave us the basic tools we needed to start planning our final project’s workload as well as show us whether or not we had a “knack” for web design. The run-through was very helpful, and even included a packet of examples for us to work though.

Overall, this crash course enables us to plan our final projects, and decide just how much time we will need to spend on building the actual webpage. It also gave us insight on just how much effort goes into making webpages and communicating ideas via the internet. I don’t know about you, but, I’m going to be spending quite a bit of time in the multimedia lab so that my opinion is effective in communicating what I believe.
Because I know some people lose things as soon as they get them (I do it too, don’t worry.), the nifty PowerPoint Ms. Valk made for us. For the example packet, you can send her an email by just typing in Alison E Valk into the to bar of mail.gatech.edu (In an effort to protect her email from being spammed, I have not included it.)

Sorry, no butterflies here.

For a very basic introduction to HTML simply follow the link:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1HBhk7SKdqRWBuCJ0tu5Wr-E3iy8ZA_txebBlxvqHePk/

In summary, this week was not as demanding as the others before it. Discussions are now running more smoothly than ever before, and it seems as if everyone has taken a liking to the class. That being said, much was discussed and much remains to be discussed. The methods being applied to this class are unique, and it is my opinion that they should stay that way. Any comments on how I feel a particular aspect of this class could be improved, are just suggestions on what I would prefer, and may not prove to be “better” than what currently goes on.

With the semester rapidly coming to a close, projects and tests will pile up. It is my sincerest hope that this blog serves as a tool to allow those of use who had to miss class for whatever reason to keep up with what went on while you were away. Thank you for your time. Comments are greatly appreciated!

Proposal Essay Stage 3- Sourjya Rudra

Technology seems to be a double-edged sword in today’s society with some embracing every step forward and others cringing at the repercussions of such advances. Taking a time machine back to 1777, we see this country at its birth. New, undeveloped, and aching for guidance, the country entered into adolescence with the fathering of a few men that drafted the Constitution. The country grew with the people that made it up, however, it is important to realize the country grew up at a time of agriculture societies and civilians whom rode horses and trains or even walked to get from place to place. It grew up at a time when illnesses were hard to treat and flu shots were unheard of. Fast-forward to today and we realize we still follow a document written in times no citizen wants to re-visit. Why follow rules written for citizens that lived in the 1700’s? Why follow rules when the definition of a “person” includes corporations? Why follow rules when so much has changed in the way we simply live?

As illustrated by James Boyle’s essay on the definition of personhood, the lines between what is considered a person and what is not considered a person are shady at best. The definition just does not exist and the Constitution does nothing to address this problem either. A summary of Justice Douglass’s words in his dissent in Connecticut general Co. v. Johnson, reveals his opinion on the idea of personhood. He states the 14th amendment was made to protect human beings and it no way was it meant to put human beings and corporations into one grouping. “The Fourteenth Amendment was framed to protect the Negroes from oppression by the whites, not to protect corporations from oppression by legislature.” Times have changed and the constitution has yet to change along the simplest yet most complicated topics, personhood. It is time we amend the document to once in for all create the definition of personhood into what it truly is supposed to represent, you, the 6 billion, and me other people on his planet and only us 6 billion.

Technology in itself has been the reason we have massive corporations with global reach. Our advances in telecommunications, connectivity, and even financial instruments have resulted in job growth, but also the invasion of the city skylines with what are considered people. Laboratory mice that we kill on purpose, animals that we captivate for our entertainment all have “non-human” statuses but corporations have gotten this heavenly status. It is time we make this amendment to define a person and end the confusion of whether entities that we humans create are “persons” or not. We humans are the only “persons” that should have those rights the Constitution guarantees.

By amending this document, we can once again bring the power back to the people of the United States of America and provide the fine quality of life we once had in the country.

Now to inform the public about this crisis and issue we as a society are to face in the coming years is a huge hurdle. However, this is a hurdle can be crossed with the right tools and modes of informing the public. The first step to solve this crisis is to make the public aware of this problem. Now to start off, we must take a survey of how much the public already knows about this issue. As a first guess, I do not think the public knows about this issue or currently is too worried about this issue because there are more immediate issues this country is facing. It is our job to make the public aware of this and we have to start by surveying a limited sample that is available to us.

I propose a Facebook survey of Georgia Tech’s class of 2015. This class is a great place to start because of the higher than average intellectual abilities of students here. It can be assumed that the public will not have the drive and interest in issues like this as will the students at Tech. Georgia Tech would also be a great sample test for this proposal which can later be carried out to even bigger audiences in the future. A survey on facebook would include questions that would gauge how informed the public is.

I also propose a series of videos that will help the public understand the issue. Different people use different modes of obtaining information. The Facebook survey would help reach out to those who use Facebook heavily in their daily lives and these videos which could display different types of issues concerning the Constitutional crisis would reach out to audiences that like to obtain their information from watching videos or listening to information.

Lastly, I propose a grassroots form to displaying this information to the public. A flyer or brochure displaying information concerning this crisis would allow those who may to be busy to watch videos or do not have the time to be on Facebook to be informed of this crisis. Here at Georgia Tech, it is easy to find times where a high volume to students walk through a certain area on campus and that would be an amazing place to start advertising/informing students.

Through the combination of these methods and proposals, I believe that the public can be informed and be convinced that an amendment or rewrite of our constitution is needed.

Take a look at this video there displaying corporate personhood:

http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=corporate+personhood&aq=f

Now even looking at the comments of that video we see we have differing views on this issue of corporate personhood.

However, we can take this issue to a whole new ball game. We can now take this to your health. Let me first explain though.

My whole problem with this issue of corporate personhood and the reason it must stop is because of special interests that they end up having in our government. Now this next video that you will see is a link to a documentary. You may not believe the actual substance on this video but I am posting this video for you to see the relationship between big pharmaceutical companies and…yup..you guess it. Our government!

http://humansarefree.com/2011/10/doctor-burzynski-documentary-full.html

 

The documentary is truly amazing and makes you question all these seemingly legitimate organizations our government relies on and deals with. Again, I am not trying to throw my personal views about the documentary out there, I am merely  wanting you to see the relationship  between our government and industry. Its a sick relationship….

The following links will also be useful in the advertising on this issue:

http://www.cga.ct.gov/2010/rpt/2010-R-0124.htm

This link provides a good overview of the case FEC vs. Citizens United which allowed corporations to spend as much money as they wished for political candidates.

Moving on to the Facebook aspect of this campaign. I believe a survey monkey would be appropriate asking questions such as these

1. Are you aware of any Constitutional Crises?

2. Are you aware of the case FEC vs. Citzens United?

3. Do you believe corporations should have the same rights people do?

4. Do you see the connections between our government and industry valuable to the citizens of this country or not valuable or beneficial?

 

With all these ways of campaigning, the word can be put out there. Society can change in the right direction and this country can begin working for the people again. However, we must act now!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Proposal Essay: Commercials targeting different age groups By Alexa Pierre

My Position: Where do I stand?

Looking back at society in 1787, today’s population has changed quite drastically. The Founding Fathers had no way of properly preparing and planning for today’s society, which is why the Constitution needs to be amended to incorporate the changes that have taken place since 1787.

First, the Founding Fathers did not create a Constitution that incorporates the new reproductive technologies that have become almost second nature in today’s society.  One of the articles discussed in class, by John A. Robertson, states that reproductive technology should be protected, even if not applauded. As technological developments occur, technology will exert pressure on procreative practices and the legal rights to protect them. In addition, as the concept of family and parental choice change, the courts and legislatures need to respond accordingly.

Second, the issue regarding what the limits to privacy is another main reason why the Constitution needs to be amended. In regards to police forces, the Fourth Amendment does not have any regulations including limitations on surveillance technology. Therefore, there are clear loopholes that can be maneuvered around in order to violate people’s privacy without violating the Constitution. Another article, written by Jeffrey Rosen and discussed in class, talks about how 9/11 attacks could be a recurring issue in the future if no amendment is made to include today’s changes.  Unfortunately, it sometimes takes catastrophic events to make a change that will impact the population. For example, the Patriot Act was created as a response to the 9/11 terrorist attacks. We should learn from this previous catastrophe and create an amendment for the Constitution before this vicious cycle is repeated.

Finally, there is no framework for preventable material in the Constitution.  With such advances in new biotechnology, people now have the ability to create “life” that is potentially smarter than the creator themselves. That brings up a question: What exactly qualifies as a human? Where do GMO’s fall? The Constitution is not equipped with the answers to these questions. With an amendment to the Constitution, all these concerns will ideally be an issue of the past.

In conclusion, the Constitution simply cannot properly address some of the pressing issues in today’s technological savvy society. Amending the Constitution would ultimately decrease tension between the liberal and conservative interpretations of the Constitution; therefore creating fewer questions and more answers to many of the controversial issues that America faces today. Ultimately, from a national standpoint, by amending our Constitution, I believe that America could create a global response and have other countries question their own Constitution for the betterment of their country.

 

Question for thought?

Any American can say that the Constitution needs to be amended, but what steps need to be taken to effectively and efficiently raise awareness and prevent a  national socio-political crisis?

 

Proposal: Commercials targeting different age groups

According to the American Time Use Survey, Americans spend at least 2.5 hours in front on the television every day. Therefore, it would be extremely beneficial to use television as a main technique to promote the need for an amendment of the Constitution.

Commercials are an accepted concept when it comes to watching television. Companies spend millions of dollars perfecting 30-second commercials; commercials “make or break” a product. Creating specified commercials to target different age groups is a critical point to creating a lasting and memorable commercial. Therefore, I believe that creating commercials talking about why the Constitution should be amended, targeting different age groups with different commercials, would create a strong foundation about Constitutional awareness and the need for change.

Youth(12-20)

 When creating a commercial for youths, you have about five seconds to attract their attention. Within those five seconds, it is imperative to hook the viewer and get the point of the commercial known.

For youths, marketable commercials would appear on popular channels such as Disney channel, Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network, etc.  The younger youths are more attracted to happier, more humorous aspects of a commercial, so cartoon characters or friendly environments would be a good idea for attracting viewers. Even though youths under 18 cannot vote, it would still beneficial for them to be aware, and have an opinion; they are our future. Some great examples of commercials that targets teens are:

I would use the techniques and skills used in these commercials above to attract and educate the younger generation.  For example, creating a cartoon icon named “Connie the Constitution” who explains the need for a new Constitution would be a great way to attract the attention of youths. This way, whenever they see “Connie the Constitution” during a commercial, they will always be able to connect “Connie” to the Constitution. Simple ideas such as the cartoon image of “Connie the Constitution” can stick with viewers for years. Iconic commercial figures such as the Tootsie Pop owl, the Kool Aid Man, etc., are all characters that people are familiar with, and can connect their faces with their products. Ideally, “Connie the Constitution” would at this same level of commercial fame.

Also, along with commercial figures, creating a slogan would be a fantastic way to make commercials more memorable among youths. Nike, Burger King, and McDonalds, are just a few examples of companies that pride themselves in their slogans. If you were to hear “ I’m lovin’ it,” anyone, especially youths, would be able to identify the company that the commercial was referring to.  A slogan such as “A different Society, a different Time, a different Constitution” would be a great motto that “Connie the Constitution” could abide by. Even saying that slogan to a jingle would create the extra spark needed  in creating a lasting and memorable youth commercial.

 

Adults (20-60)

 Commercials for adults are a completely different ball game than creating commercials for youths.  Youths need more of an overview about Constitutional upgrade just to get a general foundation of information. Adults, on the other hand, need more of an informative commercial that goes more in depth about the details of a Constitution amendment. Therefore, I believe that creating a public service announcement (PSA) or presidential ad-type commercial would prove to be most beneficial when trying to get the word out.  Some good examples are as follows:

These example commercials above grab the audience, but it also informs the viewers on a deeper level than the youth commercials.  I believe that creating a public service announcement commercial, directed towards the adults, it would get society to take a step back and reevaluate the Constitution that we have today. Many people are oblivious to some of the main issues of today, but I believe that once they see a PSA about amending the Constitution, society will become more aware of the situation at hand.

One thing, however, that can remain constant between youth, adult, and an elderly commercial is a slogan. A slogan, no matter the age group, will always help connect a statement or thought to a company (in this case an idea for change).  I believe that the slogan, “A different Society, a different Time, a different Constitution,” really sums up the idea of amending the Constitution and why it is important.

 

Elderly (60+)

 The elderly commercial target is very similar to the adults bracket. Even though they are older, they still want to be informed and know that their opinion counts too. In many cases, the elderly are wiser and more knowledgeable than the adults.

When creating a commercial targeting the elderly, I believe that it would be the same as a PSA or presidential ad-type commercial, similar to the adults, but include a “flashback” in the commercial to remind the elderly how drastically society has changed since 1787.  For example, I would create a PSA commercial that began with pictures and videos from the Civil Rights Movement and Freedom Riders. Then it would go into pictures of today’s society issues regarding privacy, gay rights, biotechnology, in vitro fertilization, etc. I would also include possibilities of the future events such as an i9/11 attack in response to the Constitutional crisis. The commercial would end by saying that the Constitution needs to be amended in order to prevent catastrophic events such as the Civil Rights from reoccurring, and stopping future events from happening; extreme events can be prevented if America acts now.  As stated before in the previous brackets, the commercial will also include the “A different Society, a different Time, a different Constitution” slogan that has remained constant within all the commercial brackets.

 

Proposal Conclusion

With technology constantly advancing, it is best to use it to our own advantage in order to get the word out about change. There is nothing wrong with technological devices that we have today, however there just needs to be amendments added to the Constitution in order to properly control and create boundaries for these advances.

Proposal Essay Stage 3 (Catherine Chapman)

As the technological revolution has progressed at extraordinary rates, the Constitution of the United States of America has failed to keep up.  The dynamic change of science and technology and the way we perceive it has left scars on American society and American political life.  It is because of this revolution in thinking and creating that we must amend the Constitution to protect the citizens it was originally intended to protect.

The Constitution must be changed.  The ideals of such a great and lasting document are at risk of being lost and misperceived at the hands of the government, its people, and private entities.  The founding fathers of the United States had the intentions of allowing the document to change with time and to be modified as the need arose.  The concept and principle of amending the document has served as a basis for protecting the rights and ideals of the American public for over two centuries.  Elasticity is a critical concept to consider when thinking about the construction and development of the Constitution.  The founding fathers had no clue as to what the future would hold and, as a result, they created an excellent foundation that could effectively be changed and amended.  The Constitution was made so that it could be changed with time.  Let us overcome the views of strict constructionists and fundamentalists and change the document to ensure and create a better future.

Why must the Constitution be changed?

The Constitution must be changed because it cannot protect America’s citizens’ basic given rights and freedoms considering the impact of modern technology in daily life.  The rights outlined in the original Constitution were guaranteed to Americans, but the true meaning of these rights has become misshaped and convoluted through decades and decades of Supreme Court rulings and the societal response to technology.  The original Constitution was to protect us from the government and its potential misuse of power.  But what protects us from private entities like corporations and other people?  This is a fundamental problem with the Constitution.  The founding fathers never could have seen the potential for huge corporations with powerful interests.  The only thing that remotely compared over two hundred years ago was government itself.  The Constitution must also be changed because it fails to specifically define a human.  It has conquered the misconstruction of human identities before with the Civil Rights Amendment and the Nineteenth Amendment, but now it is time to tackle the topic of corporate personhood.  Others might argue for the creation of a definition supporting the life and citizenship of sentient beings and genetically modified humans as well.

The Robotic Manipulation (watch the first 45 seconds)

Also available here if you do not have a Comcast account :The Robotic Manipulation

A much larger and real problem raised by the age of technology is suppression by consent.  In Marxist study, there is a particular scholar by the name of Antonio Gramsci.  While his theory mostly applies to economic thought, it can still be relevant today.  He implies that the proletariat, by identifying with the ideals and lifestyle of the bourgeoisie, suppresses their rights and power in an attempt to further pursue an image identical to the bourgeoisie.  This idea of suppression of the majority through consent is driving many technological aspects of our society today.  In an effort to maintain and perpetuate and image of importance, we post an enormous amount of personal information to Facebook, Twitter, and other sites every day.  Just by browsing the Internet, we are leaving huge traces of personal information in our wake.  Most of us consent to this without hesitation or any sense of regret.  The Internet is not the only example of this problem, we consent to constant surveillance by the government, our peers, and other institutions without knowledge every day.  How many times have you clicked that agree button on the iTunes contract or the Flash player contract without blinking an eye.  As paranoid as my previous example may sound, something still must be in place to protect the general public from this abuse and field of misperception.  This is why Constitutional reform is needed.  This invasion of our private lives without our consent, or without or full, knowledgeable consent is a serious problem that must be addressed in the Constitution.

As of now, the Constitution just is not specific enough to handle the problems raised by technology.

How can we construct a better Constitution?

The best and most effective way to “fix” the Constitution would be to amend it.  This is the understood way to fix the Constitution, and, as of now, it is the most logical step.  Specifically, the Fourth Amendment must be changed and an amendment must be added that outlines the true definition of a human.

The Fourth Amendment is one of the most treasured and revered pieces of legislation in American history.   It states that the right of the people to be secure against unreasonable searches and seizures shall not be violated.  It essentially guarantees our right to exist without fear of unjustified government search and seizure.  This came as a result of the harsh practices of British colonial rule that resulted in the American Revolution and the Constitution itself.  The principles of the Amendment still are quite adequate, but they are only adequate as ideals.  The invasive nature of technology and those who use it poses a great problem that must be addressed in an expanded Fourth Amendment.  This amendment must specify the privacy rights of Americans on the Internet, their rights from other private entities such as Facebook or corporations, and an expanded version of specific protections from the government.  The American citizen can turn to past Supreme Court Cases (specified in this article) to see what needs to be changed and fixed in the Constitution itself.

The existing framework in the Constitution broadly defines the realm of humanity.  The Civil Rights Amendments and the Nineteenth Amendment exist to delineate the rights of citizenship and humanity given to African-Americans and other minorities and women.  While these amendments have been substantial for years, humanity as we know it has the possibility to change and be shaped in the coming decades.  The United States should be proactive to specifically define what is considered citizenship and humanity to avert a crisis of discrimination and hate against beings created or modified by technology and science.  It is very possible to have genetically modified humans in the coming decades, and their rights and what qualifies them to have rights must be added in an amendment.

Another more concrete example of the need for such an amendment is the problem of corporate personhood.  Citizens United versus the Federal Elections Commission is a landmark Supreme Court case that granted corporations citizenship and unlimited campaign donations.  This case is the perfect example of why an amendment defining humanity is necessary.  If corporations have the same legal rights as human citizens, how can ever be held accountable to the same level as humans?  In the legal system, there are regulations that prevent corporate degradation of the environment and even regulate the process of corporate integration, but the legal system fails to treat the corporation as an average citizen under the law.  The premise of equality is disregarded when corporate accountability is factored in.  Corporations are hardly ever punished for their crimes and misdemeanors.  The Constitution must include an amendment that specifically states that a citizen is not a corporation; this will work to bring about a new level of corporate accountability to the government and to the citizens of the United States.  Corporations cannot be defined as a human citizen; their function and power is incredibly greater in size than that of a human.  They must be held accountable on a different standard than citizens.

The Constitution has been misinterpreted and reinterpreted for generations, but now is a time for specification.  No longer can we just be general about the definition of humanity or privacy.  The rights of others and our own rights are at risk if we do not specifically expand upon the basic rights given in the Constitution.

What do we do to raise awareness?

To bring public attention to the constitutional crisis, a far-reaching campaign is necessary.  I suggest an advertising campaign that works through online outlets like Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr.  I even created this blog as an example what I would do.  I find that it is very visually attractive, it uses multimodal forms of communication, and it can be updated regularly.  A Twitter account and a Facebook page in the same name should be created.  The most important aspect of these campaigns is that they should be unified, they should be visually appealing to a general audience, and they should provide a simple but powerful message that can be understood by all.

Once a widespread online campaign is successful and popular, print and television advertisements would be used to reach an even broader audience.  This would hopefully cause the movement to gain political power and prestige.

International cooperation is essential to the success of the amendments and the Constitution itself.  The campaign must be taken to international organizations like the United Nations and other international non-governmental organizations.  This is the only way to enforce the rights of citizens nationwide because globalization could seriously endanger the success of constitutional change.

 So why does this all matter?

We must ensure a better future for future generations and ourselves.  Why wait until crisis occurs when we could effectively prevent technology from shaping the course of our life without our consent?  We must take legal action because technology and science is moving rapidly without waiting for society to catch up.

Diseases, a myth & Immortality, a reality ? – The Truth behind Stem Cell Research

The Issue

The day that America faces a constitutional meltdown because of stem cell research may not be tomorrow or the day after that or the next year or maybe it is.

Stem Cell Research has become one of the most controversial and unresolved topics of the century – not only just in the United States, but also on a global scale.

Why? Here’s why:

 VS

WHAT SIDE ARE YOU ON??

Today I shall make an attempt to present you with the two sides of the argument. Today I am one of you – a concerned citizen trying to bring to light the stem cell situation in the United States. Today I approach you for answers.

Our history is testament to the fact that, the power of change still lies with the people and that change starts at the smallest levels so I believe that the solution to solving this ethical and moral mess lies in educating the public about Stem Cell Research to reach some sort consensus on the topic.

The Situation

What are Stem cells?

Stem cells are primitive or unspecialized cells that can assist in tissue repair and rejuvenation. When they divide, stem cells have the potential to become any type of cell in the body.

Stem cells are of two types: Embryonic and Adult.

Embryonic stem cells are taken from the embryo – from which a newborn begins to develop. They can become any type of cell in the body as needed, such as brain, blood or muscle.

Adult stem cells on the other hand are undifferentiated cells that are taken from any part of the body. They too can become other types of tissue cells but they need to be induced to do so.

While scientists have been deriving embryonic stem cells since the early 1980’s, the possibility of inducing adult stem cells is recent.

The concept of stem cells occurred as early as the 1800’s, they became a reality a century later in 1963, when Canadian researchers Ernest A McCulloch and James E Till harvested stem cells from transplanted mouse bone marrow cells. Rapid progress in Biotechnology, in the 1980s and 1990s saw the introduction of techniques for targeting and altering genetic material and methods for growing human cells in the laboratory. These advances really opened the doors for human stem cell research.

To know more about stem cells, see this:

YouTube

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Allow me to present the stem cell situation as it stands today.

The stem cell situation in United States is still in fiasco and the situation is just too complicated to be resolved by laws, decrees and amendments.

The ethical debate of stem cell research has started since Bush’s Stem Cell Announcement in 2001. The society has spilt into two – the critics and the supporters.

The critics consist of religious and anti-abortion groups that contend that stem cell research and abortion are equivalent to murder in the name of scientific advancement and that it involves the destruction of an embryo – which symbolizes life.

On the other hand we have rallying supporters who, in the wake of the promises of stem cell research, support it as they believe stem it holds the key to curing debilitating diseases such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, spinal cord injuries, heart disease, diabetes, arthritis and other genetic conditions.

So who is right?

The answer is not simple.

The situation has only worsened by numerous lawsuits filed against the National Institute of Health and Department of Human Health Services, the Sherley v. Sebelius case and the segregation of the “United” States based on state and federal laws on the funding stem cell research. The situation took another turn after the Obama administration’s executive order to expand government stem cell funding to 64 lines of cell lines was severely criticized by Appeal court Judge Royce Lamberth.

The situation has also turned violent in some states with riots and protestors most of them ending in bloodshed and police firing.

The Problem

The problem with stem cell research is that it is still an infant technology. This field has only taken off since the 2000’s and not many scientists are doing research in it. As a result, the research findings have limited scientific backing. It also poses ethical and moral issues as the field is continuously developing. In fact, very recently, claims of scientists finally managing to develop and induce adult stem cells have been faced with the moral debate on donating human eggs to harvest these adult stem cells. Thus every new discovery in this field is a potential ethical and moral volcano, threatening to throw the stem cell situation back into the darkness.

Another major issue that has come up is the increasing cost of funding for stem cell research in this period of recession. Even with funding peaking at $546 million in 2001, the costs of research continues to rise. This field of research feeds more than 19000 mouths working part time and full time not including the number of scientists dispersed across the country. Shutting down the entire stem cell program would therefore create a more serious problem of un-employment and force scientists to move to other countries to pursue this cutting edge research. On the other hand the business is so lucrative that some families and women are willing to sell embryos/eggs for a hefty sum of cash.

The Solution

I think the solution to solving this ethical and moral mess lies in addressing several aspects of the problem.

As far as the funding is concerned, the government should restrict the funding to lines that have a direct impact on treating Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and other diseases. These lines are to be shut down or reduced once a cure or significant amount of research has been done in these lines, so that other lines of cells maybe in turn funded pursued.

In an effort to value the intrinsic value of human life, careful guidelines for ethical oversight must be carried out especially when human eggs, embryos or cell lines are used.

All proposals for research must be reviewed by a separate board of scientists and knowledgeable people aware of the ethical and moral difficulties of the field. Also the embryos being experimented on must not be allowed to evolve into more complex structures.

In order to deter money-led donations, there must be minimal or no money paid for oocytes or embryos.

And lastly but most importantly, I think the citizens of America should be educated on the aspects of stem cell research for they alone can bring an end to this potential conflict.

So how do we do it?

I believe this can be achieved by active public awareness and education workshops.

Our goal should be to reach out to the masses, to educate them, to present both sides of the coin and to enable make better decisions. We are not advocating one side of the argument but instead trying to resolve the conflict by eliciting opinion of as many people as we can and then present the findings to a governing body that can do something about it.

The Education workshops will aim to educate people in the stem cell situation by providing a brief and simple version of science behind it, the processes involved and the potential implications. At the same time, there will be discussions on reaching a consensus on the possible ethical and moral implications of this field of research. This will enable us to answer the question: Should scientific advancement be stopped in the name of ethics and morals or should man let it continue and have no regard for his own species in his selfish pursuit of longevity?

The Awareness workshops in conjunction with advertising will focus on keeping the public aware of the recent developments in the field of stem cell research and offer a platform to the public to voice out their opinions. This would include podcasts, radio shows, fliers,TED Talks, TV talk shows, Public discourses in offices, colleges, schools and social communities.

Understanding the role of technology plays in spreading opinion and influence, a database of websites would be created that focuses on creating statistics via polls and surveys and additional interactive media that provide an unbiased presentation of the argument. In order to force people to think about the other side of the coin, people supporting one side of the argument would be presented with information that opposes their stance.

In this manner we aim for an open policy debate of the stem cell situation in United States and to resolve a problem that could potentially plunge the nation into discord.

Does the constitution protect our privacy and security?

Privacy and security are quickly becoming secondary to technological innovation and research in the modern world. Considering the pace with which modern innovation has presented during the course of recent years, it is not difficult to believe or even expect that soon enough such innovation will lead to potential downfall, or have catastrophic consequences.

Currently the constitution isn’t equipped to keep up with the trend of quick advancing innovation. Written in 1787, there was no possibility that the country’s founding fathers would have been able to predict that such laws would need to be placed in the constitution. Society is changing and advancing in many ways every day, so why shouldn’t the constitution be amended to accommodate such advances?

Urgent changes need to be made in the constitution beforehand to prevent another constitutional crisis from occurring. As proposed in the essays published from the Brookings Institute, it is better to act before hand than to wait until the inevitable problems have escalated to a point of civil unrest.

Which issues am I talking about? Well watch the following video posted on the Brookings Institution official YouTube page about the new wave of technological innovation. But make sure you pay attention to the key terms PRIVACY and SECURITY!!!!!

Embedly Powered

The video explains possible risks that may be cause by the new wave of technological innovation, with privacy and security being the main concerns. During the age of Google, Facebook, online banking, and numerous other communication systems, individuals have become accustomed to sharing personal information freely. According to the Brookings Institution many websites on the Internet may be good at maintaining security but not necessarily good at guaranteeing personal privacy, or vice versa.

It is important to believe that a balance between innovation, security and privacy needs to be made clear by the government soon in order to protect the common citizens right to the issues. The government needs to act stronger, more efficiently, and faster.

Still finding it difficult to understand the issues really at stake here? Well watch this:

Embedly Powered

In  this video posted by the Brookings Institution as well, we are told about the impact that the Internet has in the modern world. As stated, “social changes are more immediate and more successful because of the internet.” But this is what is becoming a concern of the new age. Private information and civil liberties are at risk for the common person. Lets look at the government’s role when considering privacy. Currently the government has only a couple ways of dealing with issues like breaches of privacy and security. From internal management, the government can step in to regulate and build preventative measures if certain law enforcement agencies are being over aggressive about how to collect data. Additionally governmental agencies like the Federal Trade Commission are built to protect consumers, from issues like privacy breaches.  Although it may seem like such measures are capable of protecting citizens, the truth is that they may only be able to for a couple more years. Technological innovation will soon advance to a point out of reach for governmental protection.

Some argue that innovation-reaching levels of unconstitutionality is impossible, however the truth is that its production isn’t a question of possibility but rather inevitability. Jeffrey Rossen presents an example of such a hypothetical innovation that could single handedly represent the loss of both security and privacy for the common person in his essay published by the Brookings Institution.

He proposes “Open Planet”, a program designed to combine concepts like Facebook, Global Positioning devices, and face recognition technology using public security cameras creating a vast network that can track an individual’s every move while in range of such a camera. Although I agree that this program doesn’t currently exist, ask yourself what if it did? Would you feel safe? Here is a fact that may help you change your opinion: Facebook already has most of the technology needed for such a program. Scary, right?

Social networks are quickly beginning to display more power and influence over the constitution and its amendments. The government is slowly losing the ability to ensure the privacy and security of its citizens. Constitutional restrictions need to be placed on technological innovation and its uses.

We need to fix this. How? you ask–well here is my idea.

The NEW AMENDMENT FOR A NEW MILLENIUM campaign!

The country needs to become aware of the issues that will inevitably appear in the coming years. In my opinion the individuals who don’t agree with the ideas I presented above probably don’t do so primarily because the issues don’t currently exist, and the theories from which I based many of my opinions off of are hypothetical situations. So in general, they don’t see these issues as representing anything because they cant imagine them ever becoming an issue. The NEW AMENDMENT FOR A NEW MILLENIUM campaign would potentially fix this. By achieving its goal by presenting these hypothetical situations in more realistic forms it could help individuals see the importance of the issues at hand.

The most important mission of the campaign is to get the common person to consider the fact that technological innovation will soon get out of hand, and that amendments need to be added to the constitution to prevent an individual’s loss of both privacy and security.

One of the main projects would include ideas from the OPEN PLANET innovation presented by the Brookings Institution. The campaign would produce a series of about 10 mini episodes posted on the internet, that are set in a time when such an innovation would already exist and its harmful side effects were beginning to present themselves. We would try to make these “webisodes” entertaining by giving them dramatic, comedic, and suspenseful characteristics to engage all types of viewers. Through this method, we would be able to attract the audience desired. One episode would be released each week, with each one focusing on different issues of privacy and security being breached for the common people. The characters in the series would be as generic as possible to achieve the idea that anyone could experience the issues that the characters in the series are. If possible, each episode would introduce separate characters unrelated to any of the preceding episodes, however in the last episode all the characters would somehow come together in an interesting mysterious way with a tragic end. Using this method, it will be possible to understand that OPEN PLANET is a giant harmful network. Such a project will allow viewers to see the harm of the existence of such an innovation, and how its possibility is nearing.

The campaign would also produce flyers similar to the one posted below, presenting our mission statement and facts about the issues we are fighting for. Hopefully by creating interesting flyers, with each kind targeted to appeal to a different group of people, we could gain the interest desired. Along with such flyers, a website would be generated which would discuss the issues at hand, present ideas for reform, and give updates on the progress of the campaign.

 

The campaign could also hand out free promotional products such as rubber bracelets and pencils such as the ones posted below to gain additional popularity.

 

If the campaign is successful in generating talks of amendments, we could potentially set up another website for people to post ideas or comments. By this method we will allow individuals to feel involved and free to express their concerns about a constitutional addition.

In summery the government needs to find a way to become involved in innovation nationwide without hindering it and advancements in science. It needs to become involved to the point where it can confidently tell the rest of the country that nothing it being produced or exists that will cause us to feel at a loss of privacy and security. The NEW AMENDMENT FOR A NEW MILLENIUM campaign is the way I plan to achieve this. The most important thing we can do now as individuals is spread concern that the constitution will soon loose in the race of advancing technological advancements. Amendments need to be made to keep under control the advancements and research done in such sectors without hindering scientific innovation as a whole.

Proposal Essay: A Museum on Social Education and an Unamended Constiution

Proposal Statement:

The United States has changed immensely since the Constitution was written over 300 years ago. Technology has created a new living environment providing citizens with greater opportunities and new obstacles that could have never been imagined 300 years ago. The definition of citizen has too greatly developed over our nations history. The only thing that seems to have remained fairly constant is our reliance on the Constitution. The Constitution, while written so long ago, still accurately documents the mission of our nation. As we enter a new era of technology and social progress, the Constitution remains our guideline. It can be reinterpreted and used in different ways, as it has been by most presidents; however, it must remain in its original form. As Abraham Lincoln stated, “Don’t interfere with anything in the Constitution. That must be maintained, for it is the only safeguard of our liberties.”

The future posses a series of potential issues for United States citizens: gay rights, privacy issues, bio-terrorism, extended voting rights and even more unforeseeable problems. Dramatically amending the Constitution will not create a realistic solution to these problems. The role of the law in the United States should always be to support social progress and protect those that deserve protection. Yet, creating laws does not necessarily solve anything. The people must be behind any cause for it to actually translate to reality. The government cannot be relied on to enforce their laws on the people. In a democratic nation, the government does not have the power to enforce laws that are not supported by the public. The Government will always be handcuffed by politics or controlled by checks and balances. In a nation where the government operates at the whim of the people, no law can be translated into reality without public support.

The most effective way to promote progressive populous change in the United States is through the people. For the United States to see any change that translates into reality the population must be Educated or up to speed on current issues. Education, although desirable, does not necessarily need to come from the school systems. In this modern world its is imperative that the people educate themselves. The Internet and mass media allow for quick and effective spread of knowledge of news. Any American with access to a TV or an Internet connection has a nearly unlimited supply of information. Age, wealth, location or education are no longer determining factors to ones ability to access or share information. Today more than ever before the people have the power to educated each other and promote social change. It is true that law can have quicker and more dramatic effect on a society, but in the United States these laws will never become reality without populous support. If the average American is educated on social issues of the future, the Constitution will remain a steady guide into the future.

Napoleon Bonaparte suggested, ”A Constitution should be short and obscure.” The goal of our Constitution is to remind American leaders what values the country was founded on. Its designers must have expected reinterpretation and there is plenty of leeway in doing it. Complete remodeling will not lead the United States into the future. Americans themselves must learn the power of technology and adapt their lifestyles to embrace it. As problems arise they must reinterpret and change to adapt to them. There is no doubt the US will see problems George Washington could not have imagined, but his dream of a nation must remain in contact.

Proposal For Final Project:

My proposal for displaying, conveying and supporting this previously stated argument is a museum exhibit. The museum exhibit would be set up in the classroom. The exhibits goal would be to communicate my belief that the constitution does not need amendment. The exhibit would successfully support my position statement by using specific evidence in many different media.

Museums exhibits are innately effective at reaching an audience because the information can be displayed forms that attract and stick with all types of brains. I noticed this at the Fernbank exhibit when I saw that every person that entered the exhibit was attracted to a different section. The younger kids usually stopped at the children’s exhibits with pictures and large writing, some people enjoyed the 3d models or the pictures and others the videos on the wall. I personally enjoyed the timelines with facts, for some reason I love numbers and dates. Hopefully this exhibit will cater to many different visitors and reach them in a variety of ways.

Step by Step walk through of exhibits:

The first display at the entrance of the room will be the proposal statement on a large wall (cardboard cut out). The idea here is to show the general argument that I wish to support with the rest of the exhibit. This proposal statement should be in the back of every visitors mind as they navigate the exhibit.

The next display will be focused on the Freedom rides:

The Freedom Rides are a perfect example of what it takes for social change to translate into reality in the United States. During the civil rights movement, the laws were in place to give African Americans equality with white citizens, but in the South this did not translate to reality. The national laws were not enforced because the national government was handcuffed by politics and the local government were corrupt. The freedom riders set out to educated the nation of the horrors and realities of the segregated south. A large media presence on the rides forced Americans in both the North and South to see their nation in a way choosing not to see for years.

This section will be extremely image heavy. This will certainly attack a certain type of visitor, but also will be representative of the impact and horrors of the freedom rides. These images will be graphic. Americans today need to be educated on the freedom rides, just as the United States was just 40 years ago.

My third stop of this exhibit with be a video about public education. This compilation of newscasters and President Obama speaking about the importance of public education in the United States should display to viewers the importance of educating a population. The people of the United States can only progress into the future with a population that is educated and aware of the dangers and advancements of a modern world. A strong public education system is essential to keeping up with technology and the world.

President Obama on Public Education in the United States

Video will be an effective method of conveying information because video is already an extremely prevalent source of information for Americans. It allows people to see images and hear good audio This will most likely attract teenagers and people with extra time, who don’t mind watching an entire video.

My Fourth stop will be a display on the development of Internet in the United States, specifically on its impact on social media. The goal of this display will be to show that internet and social media are much more prevalent sources of information for people than school systems. It will show how the internet came to its current prevalence in United States society. It will show the power and influence news can have on a population when displayed through the internet. This display will be in the form of a timeline, which is very fact heaving. Dates and figures are another form of conveying information to a visitor. Engineers in particular will probably enjoy this section of the exhibit and learn quite a bit more here than anywhere else. Here is a brief example of a few dates and facts that it might contain.

Oct 29, 1969: Charley Kline at UCLA sent the first packets on ARPANet as he tried to connect to Stanford Research Institute. The system crashed as he reached the G in LOGIN!

1974: Ethernet, a protocol for many local networks appeared from an outgrowth of Harvard students.

June 1998: The release of Windows 98 with the Microsoft browser well integrated into the desktop shows Bill Gates’ determination to capitalize on the enormous growth of the Internet.

Facts and figures and links: 77% of Internet users read blogs

People spend over 500 billion minutes per month on Facebook.

http://tvbythenumbers.zap2it.com/2011/10/31/cable-news-ratings-for-friday-october-28-2011/109077/

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-PpJ3_laHW08/Te62FcCSd_I/AAAAAAAABrA/7u8zMlSl3d4/s1600/cnn_fox_msnbc_logos.jpg

The final section of the exhibit will be an interactive section for the younger audience. The sections at the Fernbank museum dedicated to the kids got a lot of attention, both from the younger kids and even some adults. This interactive section will have trivia about the constitution and fun fact about its founding. The section would be image heavy with pictures of all types of court cases. At the end of this exhibit each kid (or adult) can sign their own version of the Constitution. By signing this document each visitor will reassert George Washington’s statement, “The Constitution is the guide which I never will abandon.”

Sources:

http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/keywords/constitution.html#ixzz1d8PEOY2f

http://www.walthowe.com/navnet/history.html