Monday, October 17, 2011

HIV Video Response: 28 and Jaboya

The fist video featured Stephanie Nolen as she discussed her book entitled 28.  Stephanie wrote this book surrounding the issue of AIDS in sub-saharan Africa, following her four year residency studying and reporting on the subject.  During her book review, she explained many topics in which AIDS effected, including the economy and the government.  A main example she highlighted was the fact that the highest pop. of people infected with the virus were between the ages of 18-35, which serves as the steady working force.  Along with this age group being involved in the work force, it cut out an entire generation of parents, which most likely infected their kids as well.  The fact that many children did not have parents to watch and care for them, siblings had to care for each other.  If such children wanted to pursue an education, in most countries, education is free up until 10th grade, then must be paid for by the student.  Without parents to help financially, this generation was also effected as they could not receive an education past high school.  Another topic that Ms. Nolen spoke about was the campaigns and administrations created by the United States.  She stated that campaigns like RED in which Apple Inc. supports and others, have dramatically brought down the overall AIDS vaccine price to individuals in Africa.  Along with this, she highlighted the positive influence that the Bush Administration had, as it was the number one distributer of condoms throughout Africa.  Finally, her book was entitled 28, as their are 28,000,000 individuals in sub-saharian Africa infected with HIV.

The deadliest catch video surrounded the problem of HIV transmission in the Lake Victoria area.  This fishing community hosts an extremely high infection rate.  The reason for their prominent infection rate surrounds the Jaboya System.  This system is basically a prostitution scheme, as the widows and wives around the community have sex with the fisherman for money or food.  Older women take part in the Jaboya System, but it also attracts many younger females, as for may people it is the only means of a steady income to provide for their siblings.  Highlighted in the video, a women discussed her sexual activity within the system and stated that she does not always use a condom.  She backed up this irresponsible sexual behavior as she believed it was inevitable that someday she was going to receive the virus, so she didn't really care to fight off that fact.  Areas like this, with people who plainly accept the fact that they will eventually die from HIV/ AIDS, is truly amoung the greatest rates of infection, deserve to be targeted by condom distributors and United States agencies before all others.  But in reality, their is no short term answer to this problem, as the poverty continues to grow, and unsafe sexual behavior continues to be relevant.

The third video preaches additional information similar to the deadliest catch, as it focuses on the Jaboya system around Lake Victoria, and all throughout the Nile River.  Due to the steady rise in perch costs to consumers, the fishing industry has acted almost as a gold rush for males in Africa.  Within the video, interviewed males speak about their part in the Jaboya system.  They explained that instead of having sex with women from their village, they take part in other areas around the Nile.  This provides an easy unknown spreading cause of the virus, as females are infected by strangers to their life.  In accordance, the wives of such fisher man are also infected, and hindered from the fact, as the men often keep it as a secrete.  This system is extremely dangerous, and provides an extremely easy way to transmit the virus.  The more fish caught, the more prevalent the Jaboya System; the more Jaboya System, the more HIV and orphans.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Kimbel Library Videos

-The first video features the concept of summary.  The beginning of the slide illustrated the definition as- the brief restatement of a source's main ideas.  Breaking down this definition even further, the host expresses the meaning of restatement as using your own words.  This means when summarizing an entire piece of literature, one must do so in their own words; not the words of the author, or another individual- quoting someone.  Also, one must make sure to keep it completely factual.

-The second video explains how students should search for topics through the many different databases that Kimbel Library offers.  The first key point is to only use keywords.  Unlike google, and other search engines, one musts search for topics not by using questions or full sentences, but rather exclusively keywords separated by the word 'and'.  This is used as the key words find the articles that contain the info in which you are looking for.  When doing so, one must make sure they don't search for too many keywords, as this narrows down the search too much.  Instead, try using 2-4 keywords.

-The last video explains why exactly citations are important when finding research for a research paper.  We cite sources for the same reasons why we were pants... it makes us more creditable and respectable. Also, it shows your ability to follow directions.  Not following this key aspect during your research paper could result in a failing grade, if not kicked out of the institution all together.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

HIV in 1980- Uganda, Thailand, and the U.S.A.

During the HIV epidemic, the decade that carried the most advancements of the disease in both the growing numbers and attempts to end the uphill climb was the 1980s.  Although occurring all around the world, Uganda, Thailand, and the United States all shared important measures in stopping the disease.

Beginning with Uganda, this African nation provided something different than the other two.  As they did not have the economic capability to payout large amount of money towards science, they simply began educating the people of Uganda through many Non-Govermental Organizations (NGOs), while also providing condoms and complete abstinence groups.

In Thailand, the major contributors to the rising number of HIV cases within their nation was due to the extensive IV drug usage, which was also prevalent in the jail system as the security guards would often be drug dealers.  Their government during the '80s didn't see HIV as a complete epidemic yet, but offered money to advance medicine and science.  The government officially spent $180,000.

Finally the United States.  As a world power, the US took frontlines in the battle to end HIV, but if not to end, then to at least to slow it down.  Just like Thailand, the U.S. offered a huge contribution towards the scientific community, also later added on by George W. Bush as he announced his $15 billion plan.  During the 1980s, and Reagan's presidency, HIV was almost completely surrounded by the gay community, as it was though of as G.R.I.D. (Gay Relative Immune Deficiency).  This would be soon erased as all heterosexuals were coming up with the disease.

Although Uganda, the U.S., and Thailand all handled the AIDS epidemic differently, they all contributed greatly towards fixing the problem during the 1980s due to their own cultural actions which spread the infection in the first place.

Monday, October 3, 2011


As we start this new chapter of our class, moving away from marriage and towards HIV, I am excited to be educated about this topic.  I learned many new things about historic and present marriages around the world, so I hope it will be more of the same.
When beginning the discussion, the first question that arises is the exact origin of the infection.  I know that many conspiracies surround this topic.  Usually it is accepted that Aids originated from non-human primates in sub-saharian Africa around the early 20th c. AIDS is a disease transferred through the bloodstream in living beings, this is where the debate begins as many possibilities of the original transfer between human and animal can be expressed.  Could the infection have been transmitted sexually between human and chimp?  Could someone truly be that desperate?  Could it have been introduced to the human race by a open sore on the animal coming in contact with another open wound on a human?
I have not had a chance to directly talk with anyone who is infected with AIDS to become more aware of the origin and common knowledge.  Personally, I hear about the horrible stories of people suffering from AIDS, looking like someone who survived the Holocaust, but I have never closely studied nor had any part of the disease.  I understand that it has been a huge part of our world for over 100 years, and prevent in all 7 continents.  The saddest part about it, is how it continues to spread all over Africa, with no sight of slowing down due to many key factors.  These include the large amount of sexual abuse, rape, and unprotected sex.  These three factors help keep AIDS on the rise, as an individual can simply pass the infection on to dozens of people, and within those dozens of people, they can simply do the same unknowingly.
I am excited to begin this chapter, and become even more educated!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Gay Marriage?

Gay marriage is a very sensitive subject for anyone to discuss.  It is easy to offend individuals when spoken in a negative light.  Gay marriage, in this day in age, is beginning to become more and more acceptable by society as well as by the law.  It is legal in many states now, including my home land of Mass.  Personally, I believe gay marriage should be banned for eternity, and never made legal.  If two individuals of the same sex want to get married, go to Canada.  I think it is wrong for many reasons, but the most important, and straight forward, is that the bible says its wrong.  In Genesis, the first book of the bible, God created Adam and Eve, NOT Adam and Steve.  I understand that being gay is something that one can't control, and its not a decision or choice, but they should not be able to get married.  I don't mean to offend anyone and I have nothing wrong with gay people, but this is my blog, and these are just my opinions/beliefs.
Till next time,

Monday, September 5, 2011

The political controversies concerning Divorce

As states in Writing Today, there are many situations or actions that are the direct cause to a family structure being in turmoil.  These include divorce, abortion, illegitimacy, homosexuality, domestic violence, and economic insecurities (Writing Today, 736).  The most complicated both socially, and on the political scene is divorce.  Divorce is a much different issue than domestic violence or abortion to ruin a family as it is socially derived between the two individuals on their own terms.  It is much more legitimate reason to end a family, because it shows the two can't seem to be with each other.  Divorce is made more complicated also. when it involves children as well.  Divorce is extremely draining both mentally and physically for a child in all situations.  Sometimes divorce is for the better of the family, including the children, but in other circumstances, it tears a child's life apart forcing them to adapt to a completely new situation and family structure.  It makes it so hard politically now a days as it is often kept private, and the law avoids to step in.  Also in todays day, divorce is much more prevalent than it once was.  More than 50% of marriages in the United States are ended by divorce.  That is an enormous number, as a century ago, divorce was heavily frowned upon.  Politically, divorce is ultimately avoided by both sides, as it is such a sensitive topic, and not worth creating enemies over.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

8.31- Marriage in Western Civilizations, and the constaint change of traditions

As expressed in the article, "History of Marriage in Western Civilizations", marriage was meerly a sacrament engaging two individuals to unite, creating a stronger family wellbeing.  This was thought of as a business to enhance a family, economically as well as socially.  This was the standard for marriage in most all western civilizations during earlier times.  This perfectly illustrates how traditions, even the most common, like arranged marriages or for the wellbeing of a family, can be easily changed or ended over time.  Traditions are something that works for the time period and with circumstances surrounding them, but when times change, traditions follow in the same fashion.  When arranged marriages were prevalent, males held all household power, and divorce was frequent.  Husbands could easily get rid of their current wives with no repercussions what so ever.  When Christianity began to expand, these ways changed dramatically.  Divorce was now highly frowned apon, and even restricted.  This began with Martin Luther's doctrines, as he created the branch of Christianity known as Lutheranism.  Traditions, not only marriage, is something that clearly can not remain, once times change.  Family traditions, also show prime examples of this.  Say a family tradition is to either go to a certain college or eat a specific christmas eve dinner.  Often, when one year is skipped, or a generation decides to go their own way, it is extremely difficult to re-enter a tradition when a link of the chain has been detatched.  Even if it is picked up again, it will not be as strong as before.  Traditions in modern day, can be made possible, but it is much than ever before.  Individuals seemingly have more rights than ever before, both men and women, and people tend to go their own way to avoid the norm.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

My first Blog: Where I am today!

Hey guys, so I just made it through my first week of college, and the work is beginning to start...

My life story started in Beverly, MA where I was born, I moved to St. Louis, MO when I was 5 years old, where I lived until I was 14 years old.  When I was in 3rd grade I was diagnosed with a brain tumor on my brain stem.  The doctors gave me 12 days to live with out surgery, and with a successful procedure completed, I would most likely need to relearn how to walk, be blind in both eyes, and have the right side of my body compleatly paralyzed.  Post surgery, the doctors told my parents, that they weren't really sure how it happened, but when they went to remove the massive tumor and leave a stump left without touching my brain stem, it miraculously peeled off, with no radiation necassary.  As a third grader, I quickly learned not to talk life for granted, and to not sweat the small stuff.  I believe this is wheat has made me so successful thus far in my life.

When I was an eighth grader, my father took a job with Dunkin Brands, and therefore we moved to the great Beantown!  I had a great experience in Boston, and a fantastic high school experience, but I am done with the northeast and the snow that comes with it.  I decided to move back to the south where I truly believe I belong.  Its a more laid back lifestyle, and perfect for me.  I can't wait to experience what CCU, claims what they have to offer, as thus far I am loving my college experience.

I will keep the blog up and running starting today!