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The Stupidity of Removing Shakespeare

Shakespeare. He is regarded as one of, if not the most influential writer in all of history. He wrote 37 plays, 154 sonnets, and 5 poems. Not only this, but he is responsible for inventing over 1700 words in the English vocabulary. It would be ignorant to deny that Shakespeare was a literary genius. Shakespeare’s work is studied in schools all over the world, and has become the figurehead of English curriculum’s everywhere.

Despite Shakespeare’s genius, there are those who wish to remove him from literature entirely. On May 11, 2017, the National Post published an article titled, “Ontario School Board Tosses Shakespeare for Indigenous Writers”. In this article, Superintendent, Mark Sherman states, “Not only do indigenous students not see their culture reflected in their curriculum, and become disengaged as a result, but non-indigenous students are not made to engage scholastically with First Nations until late in the educational game.” Now I am not against diversity whatsoever, but removing Shakespeare is not the way to achieve diversity. What makes this claim so flawed is the idea that the indigenous students cannot relate their culture to a Shakespearean work of writing. He lived during the late 16th- early 17th century, almost 500 years ago. If you ask me, I don’t think anyone can relate on a personal level to Shakespeare. We do not study Shakespeare to feel a personal connection to him; we read Shakespeare because of his literary genius, his ability to produce entertaining works of literature.

Perhaps the most outrageous reason to kick Shakespeare out, is due to “Academic Diversity”. The Washington Post published an article back in June 13, 2015 titled, Teacher: Why I don’t want to assign Shakespeare anymore (even though he’s in the Common Core)”, in which one teacher, Dana Dusbiber, cried and complained about how Shakespeare was set in place by white people a long time ago. She stated, “I am sad that so many of my colleagues teach a canon that some white people decided upon so long ago and do it without question”, which is an absolutely racist thing to say. The fact that she isn’t interested in something for the sole fact that it was written by white people is so indefensible. Her only reason aside from her apparent racism, is that she finds it difficult to read, stating, “…I dislike Shakespeare because of my own personal disinterest in reading stories written in an early form of the English language that I cannot always easily navigate…”. So, what can we take away from this? We can see that not only is she racist, but stupid as well. As an English teacher, you should have a very profound understanding of all works of literature. If you ask me, I hardly believe she is deserving of her job. Having an opinion of something, and backing it by racism and laziness, shows just how weak you are intellectually.

Our studying of Shakespeare does not come without reason. We read his works because it makes us think, and exercises our intellect. You may find it easy, you may find it difficult, but in the end, it’ll only serve to better educate you on reading and writing as a whole. We should not be casting away Shakespeare, but embracing him. He is someone to be revered, therefore we should be keeping his legacy alive.

Sources

Strauss, V. (2015, June 13). Teacher: Why I don’t want to assign Shakespeare anymore (even though he’s in the Common Core). Retrieved September 17, 2017, from https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/answer-sheet/wp/2015/06/13/teacher-why-i-dont-want-to-assign-shakespeare-anymore-even-though-hes-in-the-common-core/?utm_term=.3fdb82121ca2

Brean, J. (2017, May 11). Ontario school board tosses Shakespeare for indigenous writers. Retrieved September 17, 2017, from http://nationalpost.com/news/canada/ontario-school-board-tosses-shakespeare-for-indigenous-writers

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The Rights of a Robot

Picture a scenario where a robot, an artificial intelligence with the capability to think and act like a human being has just been created by a team of scientists. Now this robot has just been given legal citizenship by your government, how would you react? Would you accept this robot, this “thing” as a member of your society? Or would you look at this with distaste as a machine has just been publicly given human status. Whenever someone gives a scenario about this, it is typical for most people to shrug as if they do not care. You’ll often hear the phrase, “It’s not hurting me so it’s no big deal.” However, I beg to differ. This is not something to merely shrug your shoulders at.

Recently, Saudi Arabia gave citizenship to a robot named, “Sophia”. She has been noted to have superior artificial intelligence. Quite frankly, I don’t care how advanced her AI happens to be, she is no human, and therefore has no right to be treated as such.

Giving human rights to a machine, is the equivalent to giving citizenship to a pencil. If you break that pencil then you’ve committed a murder. Is that not ridiculous? This whole ordeal is just another instance of man attempting to play God.  We as human beings have been given our rights by God, thus is why they are referred to as “God-given”.

When we bestow human rights to something that is not human, we belittle our own existence. Human beings are at the forefront of the natural world. In other words, we reign supreme over our earth. We should be above our own creations and should not be stooping down to their level. The idea of giving an object human rights is absurd in of itself. Objects do not equate to man.

The Art of Handshaking

When it comes to greeting, a handshake is a symbol of mutual respect. You can tell a lot about a person based upon the way they handshake. A confident person delivers a firm but inviting handshake, whereas a meek person will display a lack of confidence in his handshake. A person who couldn’t care less about anything will give a pathetic handshake whereas a passionate person will be very expressive and friendly with their handshake. Handshaking truly is an art due to the underlying complexity and nature behind this age old greeting.

Handshakes can also be weak due to a lack of experience. In today’s age, handshaking has become less and less of an informal greeting. The only time you will ever see someone giving a handshake is whenever it is some sort of formal arrangement or event. However, I believe that handshakes should be encouraged no matter whom you are greeting.

One of the most distasteful things you can ever do is decline someone’s handshake. I would much rather shake a limp noodle, than to not shake the noodle at all. It is disrespectful to decline a handshake, no matter who the one offering may be. Even if you are bitter enemies with the person, you should still be willing to shake their hand, you will exhibit a great deal of character this way. A strong man is willing to shake his enemy’s hand.

Handshaking is far more complex then most believe. There is a good and bad way of going about shaking someone’s hand. The nature behind the handshake is what truly makes it an art form.

Egalitarianism Over Feminism

When it comes to equality amongst the sexes, feminists strive for the equal rights for women and men by destroying the supposed “patriarchy”, or so they say. The feminism of today known as “third-wave feminism” has evolved into a vindictive, man-hating philosophy that strives to belittle men and establish a new matriarchy.

Now, do I believe that all the women who identify themselves as feminists, insane? No. I know several ladies who identify as feminists, whom of which are actually sane and respectful individuals. These particular individuals are people I have come to respect despite the fact that I don’t believe in the feminist movement.

To clarify, I am not against equal rights for men and women. That couldn’t be far from the truth. Women deserve the same God-given rights as men. However, I cannot bring myself to join a movement where the majority of its members are insane man-haters. Instead, I consider myself an egalitarian, and as an egalitarian, I believe in equality regardless of sex, gender, race, ethnicity, etc.

The definition of egalitarianism according to Google is: “Relating to or believing in the principle that all people are equal and deserve equal rights and opportunities.” And While the definition of feminism is: “The advocacy of women’s rights on the basis of the equality of the sexes.”, that is hardly what this “third-wave feminism” stands for.

An interesting poll conducted in Britain found that 86% of men believed in equality of the sexes as well as 74% of women, while only 7% of people defined themselves as feminists. In America a poll conducted by YouGov and The Huffington Post found that 23% of women identify as feminists as well as 16% of men, and still 85% overall, believe in equality of the sexes.

People just aren’t buying into the movement as they used to. Feminism used to stand for the equality of men and women but now-a-days, people are becoming aware of what it truly stands for, and that’s the hatred towards men. Egalitarianism however, has always stood for equality. Feminism truly has evolved into a vindictive and spiteful movement, hell-bent on belittling men.

The Loose Lock of Prohibition

Prohibition is the act of forbidding something by law. We have seen it enacted countless times throughout history and even modern day. From alcohol and firearms to drugs like marijuana, many things have been prohibited by governments. The problem with prohibition is, while it sounds like a great idea in most cases, it ultimately leads to more problems than solutions. These problems include the development of organized crime, as well as people coming up with their own means of acquiring the banned substance. Prohibition is an inefficient means of control due to the fact that it only leads to organized crime and illegal activity.

From 1920 up until 1933, the US government put a total ban on the sale, distribution, and production of alcohol. Their reasoning for the ban was to help rid the country of alcoholism, family violence, and saloon-based political corruption. While these are all terrible things that we as people should attempt to be rid of, prohibition certainly was not the solution. What prohibition did in this particular instance is it led to the development of organized crime. During this time period, the mafia came to fruition and notorious gangsters were on the rise. One of the most notorious of these gangsters being, Al Capone whom of which was a very well known bootlegger and murderer during this time. Another problem that arose was people illegally brewing their own alcohol. There are several instances of people who had the know-how and the resources to supply themselves with alcohol as well as others. The term moonshine originated during this time as people who made their own alcohol typically did in the nighttime. It didn’t matter that alcohol was banned, people still acquired it one way or another.

Just like alcohol back then, the use, possession, sale, cultivation, and transportation of marijuana is illegal under federal law in the United States today. This is the reason we have issues with drug dealers and cartels. One of the most infamous cartels being El Chapo from Mexico who was nicknamed, “The godfather of the drug world”. Despite the law’s best efforts to keep marijuana use non-existent, their efforts are made in vain. People once again, still find ways of acquiring it and producing it themselves.

Now, when it comes to firearms, you’ll find that many countries today have completely banned firearms or have put highly strict laws and bans on them. There is a whole black market dedicated to guns and firearms due to this. Those who purchase guns through unconventional means, do so by getting in touch with those either have the ability to make their own guns, or have their own private stocks.

No matter how many bans a country places on something, it will do more harm than good. People will ultimately find their own ways of acquiring the unconventionally acquirable. Prohibition is inefficient due to the fact that it only leads to organized crime and illegal activity.

Noble Confederacy

Today, when we think about the Civil War and the Confederate States of America or the “South” as it is commonly referred as, we immediately think of racism and slavery. However, the south did not fight exclusively for slavery, and all slave owners certainly weren’t racist. Slavery absolutely played a part as a catalyst for the civil war, but it was not the only thing. The overall reason that the south had seceded was in order to preserve their way of life.

When Abraham Lincoln became president in 1860, the country was already in a heated point involving the topic of slavery, so when he took office, he was seen as a major threat to the Southern way of life. This in turn lead the southern states to secede and form their own separate confederacy. They felt that it was their states’ rights whether to enforce slavery or not. It was what the south fought for, but it wasn’t because they were all racist towards black people. The south fought for slavery because it was their source of income. The south thrived off of farming and agriculture, that was their way of life, and slavery made the farmers work easier by providing free labor.

Now, I’m not looking to justify slavery by any means, but when it comes to the treatment of slaves during this time, there were certainly cruel slave owners, but there were also slave owners whom of which, treated their slaves with dignity and respect. There were the slave owners who allowed their slaves off on Sundays and who also gave their slaves ample food and drink for their labor. Not every slave holder used sticks, there were those who used carrots or in other words, yes there were the cruel slave owners, but there were also the fair ones.

Despite slavery being abundant in the south, there were southerners who did not believe in slavery. The Confederate General himself, Robert E. Lee believed slavery to be a sin against God. However, he fought for the south as he believed he was a Virginian first, and an American second. Lee held a great sense of pride for his state, which is ultimately what many other southerners held as well.

The south fought not only for slavery, but for their livelihood, their lifestyle. Racism was not a driving force for them and not all southerners were racist, that is for certain. It should stand to reason that slavery is a terrible act and the fact that it was abolished when it was, is a great thing, but we cannot turn a blind eye to the justifiable parts of the Civil War-era south.

Gun Laws and Their Fatal Flaws

With the recent shooting in Las Vegas, people everywhere are calling for stricter gun laws. In our modern day, we seem to have this subconscious fear of firearms, that they are the root of all evil and should be treated as such. What many do not seem to understand is just how useless and dangerous these gun bans can become. Oppressive governments and wicked people have taken the lives of many due to gun laws preventing the innocent from properly equipping themselves for defense. The only thing that gun laws serve to do is infringe upon the innocent.

Here is a scenario: “An eighty year-old woman lives in a small residential neighbor. She has just returned home from an errand run at 6:00 at night. Her car is about 20 feet away from her front door. As she is getting out of her car, she is approached by a well- built man wearing a black mask and carrying a knife.” In this scenario, the woman is an elderly woman, a woman who cannot properly fight back against someone significantly younger and stronger than her. Due to the man who approached her having a knife, the woman would then be at the man’s mercy. The woman would not be able to defend herself with her own hands, or even with a knife, due to her physique preventing her from putting up a fight. Now, lets say the old woman has a gun, she then has a way of defending herself. In this instance, the gun stands as an equalizer. It gives the woman an equal chance at standing her ground against the attacker. With a gun law in place, someone in this woman’s position could end up with their possessions, or worse, their lives taken from them solely because they lacked a proper means of defending themselves.

All over the world, we have malicious individuals who would attempt to infringe on the rights of their fellow man, but what happens when these individuals are put into a position of power? Well, lets look back to WWII and Nazi Germany. When Adolf Hitler took power, there was no way for the Jews to protect themselves from the tyrannical fist of the Nazi Regime. The Jews were condemned to a life within the concentration camps. They were forced from their homes, tortured, beaten, overworked, and murdered. They were the minority, and if they had the freedom to keep and bear arms, they could have fought against the oppressive majority.

Now lets look back to Soviet Russia. Joseph Stalin was the dictator of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) from 1929 to 1953. During his reign, he was responsible for the deaths of roughly 20 million people. Many of which he had killed simply for the fact that he felt he could not trust them. He was free to end the lives of anyone he wanted due to the fact that he had complete control over every aspect of government within the USSR. Once again, the people were not equipped with a means to defend themselves against a corrupt and cruel government.

What this shows us is, when we compromise our right to bear arms, we compromise our ability to protect ourselves. History and common sense shows us that it is a necessity for we the people to have some means of defending ourselves. We can never tell when the day may come where our own rights, and freedoms will be put in jeopardy.

Religious Guilt-Tripping

Religion is something that many are passionate about. There are those who love spreading their beliefs. Preaching in the streets, preaching at a church, and attending sermons, are some of the many ways that the religious spread their faith. It is a great thing to want to share what you believe. However, the problem becomes when you have users on social media sites such as Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, constantly guilt-tripping people, including those who share their beliefs. The people who constantly denounce others for not sharing their appreciation of God or ridicule those who do not believe, only serve to turn others away from their faith.

Whenever someone on social media constantly posts, “Like for Jesus!” Or “Repost if you’re a believer!” it really comes across as preachy, annoying, and insufferable. I’ve seen many accounts that will post a picture of Jesus with the caption: “If you’re a true Christian, then you’ll like and share this”. When people do this, not only is it annoying to those who aren’t religious as it comes across as arrogant, but even to those who believe in Jesus, can feel guilty if they don’t acknowledge him everywhere as you do.

One of the most hilarious things that I’ve seen is where someone I know posted a meme with a picture of Jesus with the caption, “I bet you’re too scared to post this picture of Jesus”. What was funny about that meme was that it wasn’t a picture of Jesus at all, but a picture of Obi-Wan Kenobi from the highly popular movie series, Star Wars. This shows just how out of touch they were with modern pop culture, and only served to humiliate them amongst their friends and followers.

There is a smart way to share your faith, and an arrogant way to share your faith. You can be the type of person who chooses to lead people towards your faith through reasoning, or you can be the type of person who turns people away due to your cringe-worthy “Jesus Memes”, and guilt-tripping. It should not be a contest to determine who is the best Christian, or the biggest believer. If you believe, then fantastic! Share your beliefs with those around you in a respectful way, don’t constantly guilt-trip others in regards to their faith.