Final Project Pitch

The debate on guns in America has always been heated and controversial, but the past few years and school shootings have divided the country on the language of the second amendment. Although this is a two-sided debate, people are for and against the second amendment in several places. Even some gun owners want there to be increased gun control, and there is a multitude of people that want guns abolished all together. The issue with this debate, and every other topic of discussion in America right now, is that neither sides will listen to each other and their points of view. Most people only listen to what they want to hear, and degrade the opposing viewpoints by any means possible. It is not a healthy way to solve a problem, and this problem is not going away any time soon.

When Hillary Clinton was thought to be elected, many gun owners went out and bought ammo in mass proportions in fear of their rights being infringed upon. It is a fear on both sides of this debate that drives it, and the fears are completely understandable when explained rationally from either side.
A couple of weeks ago, three cops were shot and killed in one weekend in Mississippi, although it is unclear whether the guns were legally obtained or not. The answer to the debate is unclear, but until those debating listen to each other, a compromise will not be met with open hands.
Possible Sources:
OPD/UPD/LPD
Brookhaven Police Department
Mississippi Auto Arms

What Works: Week 11

The end of the article offered the most important part about his election chances, and that is that when he is in Washington D.C. he will have to be partisan towards his party. As moderate as he may be in Mississippi, he will still have to vote Democrat on policy issues. That is where the Mississippi voters will take issue with his election.

As his message says, it’s time to change the narrative and stop the defamation on the outlook of the state. He may be right that his election will not be held back by racist voters but by his party, that being said, acknowledging the other side in a new light will not win him the election on his own. His heart seems to be in the right place, and Nicholas Fandos did a good job as portraying him as a good career politician through his writing, but he still will have a tough time cutting through the tradition of voting in Mississippi. There are a myriad of issues those running for office can focus on about Mississippi, and his key points may be the ones that appeal to the moderate voters who would normally go right in this state.

What Works: Week 9

Turkey’s President Vows to Detail Khashoggi Death ‘in Full Nakedness’

The New York Times article published this morning and written by David Kirkpatrick was a good in-depth look at the biggest news story of the past few weeks. Now that the truth is out, that Khashoggi was killed while under the jurisdiction of the Saudi’s, Turkey’s President, Erdogan, has claimed that he will be releasing details about the event if the Saudi’s do not quickly release the full truth themselves.

The political backdrop of Turkey and Saudi Arabia has several layers, as all political issues do, that is causing this to be a bigger murder than it would be in another country. Kirkpatrick stated in the article, Khashoggi is not a  Turkish citizen, so by nature it is not a Turkish problem, however, Erdogan was personal friends with Khashoggi.

Kirkpatrick did a good job of illustrating what has happened thus far, with the Saudi government contradicting each previous story they gave every time they come out with new information. As well as detailing the events that have occurred this far, Kirkpatrick laid out the reasons for the Saudi’s and the Turkish government’s issues with each other.

Apparently, Erdogan and his government believe that it was the United Arab Emirates that attempted to enact a coup against President Erdogan in 2016. The climate is fierce in the region right now, and Kirkpatrick brought up the point that it is the biggest single event in the area since the Arab Spring revolutions.

Khashoggi’s murder story could be potentially blown off the roof on Tuesday  where Erdogan plans to unveil all the details. However, Kirkpatrick noted that there could be numerous ways this could be worked out under the table and potentially aid both sides in the end.

What Works: Week 8

M.I.T. Plans College for Articial Intelligence, Backed by $1 Billion

The article, for the New York Times, by Steve Lohr, is about the new college to be added at M.I.T. next year to embrace the ever growing world of artificial intelligence. By 2022, the school has plans  to move into it’s own buildings that will don the name of Stephen A. Schwarzman, the principal donator.

The new college will create dozens of new faculty positions that will be focusing on students that the president of M.I.T., L. Rafael Reif, refers to as “bilinguals”.

By bilinguals, Reif defines them “as people in fields like biology, chemistry, politics, history and linguistics who are also skilled in the techniques of modern computing that can be applied to them.” The two avenues of discipline that will be participating in the new college also means that the staff will come from separate schools within M.I.T. and will be changing ways of promotion throughout higher education.

The article did a good job of illustrating the creation of the college and the beginning of its inception, that began from conversations with Schwarzman and Reif.

Schwarzman recognized years ago that artificial intelligence was going to be one of the chief focuses of the technologies that would be further advancing the future. M.I.T. was fully focused on getting ahead of the curve and being proactive about harnessing A.I. technology and getting their students to be on the forefront of innovation.

What Works: Week 7

Planet has only until 2030 to stem catastrophic climate change, experts warn”

https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/07/world/climate-change-new-ipcc-report-wxc/index.html

The article posted by CNN that used info gathered by the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) since the Paris Climate Accords were signed has come to a jarring conclusion.

The world needs to come together and make radical changes to our energy consumption and output in order to keep the Earth’s temperature 1.5% C above the pre-industrial revolution levels. Since Trump pulled the U.S. out of the climate change agreement, the country has been expending much more dirty energy into the climate.

The IPCC came to the conclusion that if the temperature is not kept under 1.5% by the year 2030, there will be irreversible changes that will cause pandemonium across the globe in the form of economic turmoil, rampant natural disasters, and possibly the destruction of several ecosystems.

The report, written by Brandon Miller and Jay Croft, is scary to read to say the least. However, I worry that since there has been so much talk of global warming the past few years, this will go down as another over reaction type of headline.

Even if this is an over reaction, the constant reiteration by top scientists of the need to change our energy use and environmental pollution will need to be heeded at some point or else the world will pay, especially third world countries.

The report says that the effects will be felt strongest by those in the southern hemisphere, however, they are not sure of all the changes it will cause because of the unfamiliarity with the territory our climate is about to occupy.

The report is a great start to get people to start thinking more about energy consumption, but I will be looking for more information and predictions to come out from the IPCC’s reports.

What Works: Week 6

“Indonesia tsunami and earthquake: Rescuers race to aid victims as death toll passes 840”

Jo Shelley, Matt Rivers, and Joshua Berlinger all contributed to a story for CNN on the Indonesia tsunami and the massive destruction that has been left in it’s aftermath.

The article did a nice job illustrating the destruction, including some heartbreaking stories and quotes. However, with a story of destruction on this big of a scale, there needs to be visuals.

Under the headline, there was a short video detailing the destruction around the city. After a short introduction about the cities efforts for digging mass graves, there was an image of people standing on mounds of sand watching their loved ones being buried in body bags.

Following a slideshow of pictures that included people carrying dead bodies, looking for water and supplies for babies and children, there was a harrowing account from a woman named Mia where she and her daughters had to bolt out of the mall in the middle of the earthquake. Fun Fact in the middle of a sad story: many Indonesian people only go by one name.

Near the end of the story brought up the aid efforts and that many people were not able to access the roads where the rescue vehicles needed to go because of the destruction on the roads.

At the end, there was a story about an air traffic controller who stayed in the air tower until a plane was able to take off to safety while the earthquake began. He ended up jumping out of the tower before he believed it would collapse.

The journalists had good interviews and information that could inspire people to donate to relief efforts. The death toll is astounding currently more than 800 deaths and the fatalities are expected to grow in the coming days as the heavy machinery moves in to clear the rubble.

The story did a great job of incorporating visuals with the personal accounts and stories.

What Works: Week 4

Yet Another Worrisome Subway Statistic: More People Are Going on the Tracks

This article, by Emma Fitzsimmons, caught my eye with the title but didn’t give much more information. I felt that although I was given several statistics, nothing else happened. I assumed that the content of the article would contain solutions to the problem and a more statistical analysis of why people are going on the tracks. Instead, the article said that the motivation for going on the tracks was unclear most of the time, but it was not a suicidal attempt most of the time.

The article did provide a few interesting facts about the fast-paced world of public transit, but didn’t provide actual solutions. It was referenced that other major public transit hubs had tried certain methods to prevent people from climbing on tracks and objects falling in. However, the methods that were put in place outside of New York would have been too expensive or impractical for New York’s subway system.

Near the end of the article, it switches from possible solutions to the effects on the subway worker’s psyche when they are involved in an accident or death on the tracks. It then quickly cut to an odd ending with a man complaining that the subway was late and he was sweaty for a meeting.

I thought the article could have done a better job of being focused and provided more information about possible solutions instead of simply pointing out the problem that the subway system is currently encountering.

What Works: Week 3

“Naomi Osaka Lost Her Moment of Triumph. Let’s Not Forget Her Match.”

I chose to read this article because I wanted to know more about the match since I only saw the highlights involving Serena berating the umpire. I was happy reading the first part of the article about Osaka and her incredible victory and how she got there. After all, this is her first grand slam title and she should be the headline for annihilating arguably the greatest female athlete of all time. Instead, the response has been horrible. Serena stole the show on the court and in all the media response, despite being pummeled. In turn, she is also stealing the show in this write-up.

However, the first part of the article provided real analysis on Osaka. From breaking down how she overcame the adversity to win the grand slam, to her new coach and how he has helped her control her nerves. It was a much needed break from the Serena controversy, until the second half of the article.

The second half of the article was focused on Serena’s exploits this weekend, and two other outbursts she had in the past at the U.S. Open. Granted, it did occasionally mention that the point was that she stole Osaka’s moment, but when you are writing an article trying to change the narrative of the match, you should stick to it.

I did enjoy the breakdown of Serena’s past exploits, but that should not have been the point of the article.

What Works: Week 2

“Fish Have Feelings, Too” 

I chose this article whilst scrolling through facebook when my intellectual cousin shared it for all to see. Also, as a fan of fish, I could not pass up this title.

The article, by Rachel Nuwer, in my opinion was very well written. It was not a short read but kept you intrigued the whole time. It began with a relatable personal anecdote from a fisheries ecologist that drew you into the story. It jumped straight from the personal story to the scientific side of the article, discussing the ignorant views of science in the past and the breakthroughs that have been happening in the fish world of science.

I began to think that there was not enough factual evidence in this article to convince me of anything until it went into a study of primates and fishes pattern identification abilities. My only qualm with the article was in the study that they did not identify that “cleaner wrasses” are a species of fish. Granted, it would not take much of an educated guess to figure that out, but it still could have made the article flow better.

The last part of the article provides less science driven evidence that fish are not “aquatic automatons”. The quotes and evidence appear to be well-researched and backed up.

I really enjoyed reading this article and I hope to see more evidence the fish do in fact, have feelings.

I chose this article whilst scrolling through facebook when my intellectual cousin shared it for all to see. Also, as a fan of fish, I could not pass up this title.

The article, by Rachel Nuwer, in my opinion was very well written. It was not a short read but kept you intrigued the whole time. It began with a relatable personal anecdote from a fisheries ecologist that drew you into the story. It jumped straight from the personal story to the scientific side of the article, discussing the ignorant views of science in the past and the breakthroughs that have been happening in the fish world of science.

I began to think that there was not enough factual evidence in this article to convince me of anything until it went into a study of primates and fishes pattern identification abilities. My only qualm with the article was in the study that they did not identify that “cleaner wrasses” are a species of fish. Granted, it would not take much of an educated guess to figure that out, but it still could have made the article flow better.

The last part of the article provides less science driven evidence that fish are not “aquatic automatons”. The quotes and evidence appear to be well-researched and backed up.

I really enjoyed reading this article and I hope to see more evidence the fish do in fact, have feelings.

What Works: Week One

https://www.businessinsider.com/ksi-logan-paul-youtube-fight-ends-in-a-draw-2018-8

Headline: The boxing fight between YouTubers KSI and Logan Paul ended in a draw

In my opinion, this Business Insider article about the YouTube stars Logan Paul and KSI’s amateur boxing match held last Saturday in Manchester, England was poorly focused. The match ended in a draw and both the YouTuber’s immediately called for a rematch, evoking excitement for some, and fury from legitimate fans of the sport.

Being Business Insider, I assumed that the article would have been about how the money was made and how it was a ruse of a match just to set up another in the future for a bigger money grab. The first four paragraphs of the article were focused on the monetary matter in the event. Then, after the second picture is shown it goes on to describe the fight, almost round by round.

I thought it was a bad angle for the article because Business Insider had an opportunity to expose the fight as a scam. However, it just described the fight, in poor detail. The description of the fight was that of an average sports fan who watched the fight in one of their friends basement over a few beers.

On top of the subpar description of the fight, there were only two quotes, both less than ten words, put right after each other at the end of the article. Then the last sentence of the article says we should start taking YouTube stars seriously because of the numbers they drew. This article should have said the exact opposite and focused on the fact that the results were set up from the beginning!

Aside from the pitfalls in the article’s content, the two pictures used were basically the same and added nothing to the story other than prove they were in fact boxing. The article should have used a picture from the near brawl that almost happened in the middle of the fight.

The article could have uniquely examined the viewing habits and infatuation that so many viewers have with drama between these two scripted viral video stars who’s only motivation to fight was money (for which I do not blame them). Instead, it gave a meager description of a scripted fight.