Self Esteem and Academic Achievement

Self Esteem and Academic Achievement
Vialle, Heaven and Ciarrochi (2005) explore through a study the relationship, if any, that exists between self esteem and academic achievement. In particular, the researchers investigated the nature of the relationship in 65 high ability secondary students recruited through a longitudinal study. The authors begin by reviewing literature on a topic that they argue most people have come to accept as a well established fact. The main intention of the research is to refute this commonly held belief. The review of literature also serves to raise some interesting questions, such as the failure of most studies to focus on self esteem and instead focusing on the appropriate educational environment. Further, the studies according to Vialle, Heaven and Ciarrochi (2005), raised the question of whether or not there exists a difference between self concept and self esteem, before proceeding to include both aspects in their research. The main intention of the research, according to the authors, was therefore, to establish the combination of factors that usually predict the emotional wellbeing of the adolescents and their academic outcomes, particularly, the relationship that exists between self esteem and academic achievement.
Due to the fact that establishing giftedness posed a challenge, 65 students from the top 10% in ELLA and SNAP scores of an existing study (Wollongong Youth Study) were selected in order to explore the relationship. The second group of non gifted students made up of the remaining 90% was also included in order to act as a control group. Initial test scores were collected while the students were in year 7 through ELLA (English Language and Literacy Assessment) and SNAP tests (Secondary Numeracy Assessment Program). The students’ self esteem was measured using the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale both in the middle of years 7 and 8. Further academic outcomes were obtained through various ends of year learning outcomes. The results displayed no correlation between self esteem and academic achievement amongst the gifted students, while displaying a slight correlation for the non gifted group, a correlation the authors attributed to the large sample size. Further, the findings on self esteem, both for the gifted and non gifted students were found not to be different. In the discussion, the authors argued that their findings essentially refuted the claim that self esteem affects academic performance, hence, the need for students to be grouped according to their abilities is evident.
Vialle, Heaven and Ciarrochi (2005) through their longitudinal study focus on an area that has indeed invoked significant debate, more so when used as an argument for or against grouping students according to abilities. Within the educational sector, the argument that self esteem does affect academic performance, has been used to discourage ability-based grouping within the school environment. On the other hand, those arguing for academic groupings, posit that grouping according to ability would no doubt assist in significant improvements in academic performance, especially amongst gifted students. These points, therefore, make the investigation of the relationship between self-esteem and academic achievement important. More so when one considers the findings of Vialle, Heaven and Ciarrochi (2005) that the correlation is weak at best, similar to findings by Tong and Yewchuck (1996) or those of Hoge and McSheffrey (1991) as cited by the researchers. These findings by the researchers in essence provide proof that homogenous groupings according to ability cannot harm academic achievement through lowering self esteem, as the two are not really connected. However, the fact that the study is carried out the way it is, raises a number of critical questions, considering that the authors actually set out to prove a particular hypothesis, rather than carry out an exploratory study that is not biased. Right from the literature review, the researchers display bias in the type of studies selected, in that most of literature selected for review is either sitting on the fence, or taking the position of the authors. Further, it is also possible to fault the sample selection, as the authors use a sample selection method that does not provide a clear distinction in terms of giftedness, instead it simply makes a selection on the basis of certain test findings which cannot be accepted as absolute. The ELLA and SNAP test scores are the only criteria used to establish giftedness, with no IQ scores being included in the process of selecting the gifted group. The self esteem score utilized by the authors is also not sufficiently capable, as other augmentative esteem tests are not carried out to confirm the esteem findings.
Another weakness that is discernible within the study methodology, is the fact that the researchers fail to take into account intervening and interfering variables that may serve to compromise the findings of the study. The failure separate the groups into either gifted or non gifted further weakens the study, as doing so would no doubt have led to a clear differentiation and determination of what effect such separation can have on self esteem and created an experimental design. Any effect the separation had on the self esteem would then have been used to establish whether or not self esteem normally affects academic achievement by establishing the existence of any fluctuations or improvements. Ideally, such separation would have a negative effect on the self esteem of the non gifted students, which would then be expected to lead to poorer academic achievement and vice versa for the gifted students. The findings of Abadzi (1985) raise interesting questions when it comes to exploring the effects that ability groupings usually have on self esteem and academic acvhievement. Further the methodology failed to exhaustively examine the relationship between esteem and academic achievement as the tools used for testing were not held constant; instead of using one standard test over the period of two years, end of year learning outcomes were used to gauge fluctuations in performance, despite the possibility that the tests would perhaps have been of differing strengths.
The study fails to put up a convincing argument against the belief that there exists a relationship between self esteem and academic performance, as most of the points raised are not backed up by the results. The authors fail in their attempt to put the debate to rest with convincing findings, with the findings in the case of the non gifted students actually backing up the hypothesis that self esteem does affect performance, albeit slightly. Further, suggestions that self esteem programs should be challenged, are made with minimal evidence that they are not effective, as the study does not include efforts to improve self esteem before measuring whether or not self esteem affects academic achievement, be it positively or negatively. Regardless of the fact that the article is helpful, it does not fulfill the minimum parameters of a scientific study.
References
Abadzi, H. (1985). Ability Grouping Effects on Academic Achievement and Self Esteem: Who Performs in the Long Run as Expected. Journal iof Educational Research 79(1), 36-40. Retrieved from http://psych.wisc.edu/henriques/papers/abadzi.pdf
Vialle, W., Heaven, P., Ciarrochi, J. (2005). The relationship between self-esteem and academic achievement in high ability students: Evidence from the Wollongong Youth Study. The

Monopolistic competition and Perfect competition

Monopolistic competition and Perfect competition
There are primarily two differences between monopolistic competition and perfect competition. In the case of the former, the number of firms involved in the competition is not infinite as would be the case in perfect competition, although the number may be quite large. Secondly, the product typically sold by each individual firm is slightly different to the others in the market (not homogenous), hence raising the possibility of advertising taking placer to highlight the slight differences in the product characteristics. A good example of a monopolistic competition is the hotel industry, where a majority of the players within the market do not really have control over the pricing and offer similar but slightly different products and services.
Question 2
Pricing strategies typically entail the use of strategies affecting pricing to compete; such as for instance lowering prices in order to maintain or improve market share. A good example is that of Starbucks during the economic downturn in 2009, whereby Starbucks reduced its prices on low end drinks such as lattes and coffee to compete with Dunkin Donuts and McDonald’s who had introduced cheaper low end drinks to take over some of Starbucks market share. This was then followed by an upward adjustment of the high end products. Non pricing strategies however include the strengthening of the brand, for instance in the case of Apple, whereby customers gladly pay more to belong to the Apple family.
Question 4
In economics, scarcity simply refers to the problem of unlimited human needs vis a vis limited resources. Considering that our resources are always limited when compared to our needs or wants, it is a must that one makes a choice over what to satisfy and what not to. In order to make an effective choice, one must carry out a cost benefit analysis, central to which is economics. A good grasp and utilization of economics makes such choices easier and cost effective to make. For instance, when choosing between traveling by rail or by road, where road costs $ 20 more but saves 30 minutes. One may choose road simply because the 30 minutes saved are worth more than 20 dollars.
Question 5
Shortage occurs when the quantity demanded exceeds the quantity supplied, while surplus occurs when the quantity supplied exceeds the quantity demanded. As such, when the consumers of a particular product exceed the number of products available (consumer surplus) a shortage is said to exist. On the other hand, when the products exceed the consumption, a surplus is said to exist. For example, when the food produces is less than what is consumed by the population, a shortage is said to occur, while when the food produced is more than can be consumed, it is said to be in surplus.
Question 6
Determinants of supply are usually number of sellers, cost of production, technology, future expectations and the pricing of a product. For instance, if a product is expected to rise in price in future, suppliers will opt to hoard the product and wait for the price to rise, hence reducing the amount in supply. Similarly, price and future expectations usually affect demand, in addition to other factors such as income, number of buyers and the price of complements and substitutes. Price is primarily affected by the demand and supply of the product.

Premium Stock Exchanges: NYSE and NASDAQ

Premium Stock Exchanges: NYSE and NASDAQ
NYSE and NASDAQ are the premium stock exchanges in the United States. They accounts for most of the trading relating to equities in North America and international market. The two exchange centers share the same platform as far as stock market is concerned with the main difference being in their mode of operation. New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) uses designated specialists who handle stocks for the clients and provide assistance incase something goes wrong. National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotations (NASDAQ) is quite different since it is totally automated. NASDAQ has built its image as an exchange that has successfully succeeded through use of technology. It is actually the second largest exchange center in the world, second to NYSE which has maintained human backstop (Oniak, Cohen & David, 2010).
NASDAQ and the NYSE operations are quite different because trade using different types of equity but they still have multiple similarities. The two organizations have established a well known trading sector not only in the United States but also in the global business. This is because they both offer high-end services to their clients. The two exchange centers share the same strength of having a well established exchange of equities between those buying and those selling stocks. Other major similarities between the two exchange centers, is that they are public trading organizations and also they are highly demanded in the stock exchange market. Even so, NYSE and NASDAQ have major differences especially in the principles relating to operations..
NASDAQ’s components are mainly technology, electronics and internet based organizations, and that explains why the exchange center is regarded as high technology market. NYSE on the other hand, components are older and established companies who operate in a vast industry. The systems on how each of these centers handle the exchange market is quite different. NYSE handles its operations on a physical trading manner, whereby representative of the companies meet and exchange on a typical market. While on the contrary, NASDAQ’s mode of operation is purely telecommunication network based. This means that physical trading is not done, rather, a direct contact system that uses the internet and advanced technology facilitates communication between the sellers and the buyers.
The cost required to invest in the two exchange centers is also different. Before investing in NASDAQ a yearly fee of $60,000 is required. NASDAQ also state the highest listing cost to be $150,000 while the NYSE states the highest listing cost to be $250,000 and an annual fee of $500,000(Floyd & Adam, 2010). This means that NASDAQ is less costly when dealing with frequent investments. The Volatility aspect of the two large exchange centers is also quite different. According to Madura (2011), volatility is the amount of returns that an investor should expect as returns after an investment. Volatility is highly dictated by the ups and downs of the security price. When the volatility is low then the returns are also low. NASDAQ stocks are regarded to have higher volatility to those of the NYSE. Other differences regarding NASDAQ and NYSE are on the strict rules of NYSE listing and the NYSE trades on a double auction market while the NASDAQ trades on an online market.
The Public company Accounting and Investor Protection Act of 2002 tend to monitor and the operations and accuracy of the two exchange centers NASDAQ and NYSE. The act assists in the management and certification on the accuracy of the financial information. It also assists in providing justice through acting as reference incases of fraudulent financial activity. With the help of external auditors the act assist maintains accuracy of corporate financial statements as well as providing additional oversight duty of boards of directors.
References
Floyd, N. & Adam, L (2010). Supreme Court Upholds Accounting Board. The New York Times.
Madura, J. (2011) International Financial Management: Cengage Learning
New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) Retrieved from ttps://nyse.nyx.com
National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotations (NASDAQ) Retrieved from http://www.nasdaq.com/
Oniak, P., Cohen, M. & David A. (2010). How Washington Abetted the Bank Job, New York Times

Corporate Social Responsibility

Corporate Social Responsibility
I do agree with Friedman ‘s views regarding Corporate Social Responsibility. This is in the sense that while there is a need for individuals to exercise good and engage in activities that benefit society, his claim that the current approach to CSR amounts to coercion and essentially demonizes profit making is quite valid. Society has through its hatred for capitalism, simply looked for a way to force corporations to share their profits with society through the veil of social responsibility. This in my opinion, amounts to curtailing an individual’s freedom, or a corporations freedom to operate. Indeed as claimed by Friedman, all profit oriented organizations are essentially in business to make profit, and as such, all activities are bound to be engaged in with the aim of achieving profit; even if organizations do so in the name of fulfilling their corporate responsibility. The only reason organizations engage in social responsibility ventures is to boost their public image, which essentially renders any such activities simple public relations exercises. For instance, an organization may fund amenities within a community in the name of social responsibility, but in essence it is only building its name in order to attract customers or potential employees, which means that the whole exercise loses meaning and instead becomes a marketing ploy. While Porter and Kramer’s arguments that corporations and societies or communities are interconnected may be true, the corporation employees are probably members of the community and can chose to act in a socially responsible manner, independent of the organization. Forcing the corporation to provide employment and further share its profits with the community through corporate social responsibility is indeed unfair on the corporation and its proprietor. Pearce and Doh, differ from Porter and Kramer, in that they view CSR as altruistic and motivated by personal values, whereas, the latter view it as not being entirely voluntary.

Native American Culture

Native American Culture
Native American culture, refers to the culture practiced by American Indians, rich in history strife and triumph. The Native Americans practiced a number of rituals and held a number of beliefs regarding certain objects or totems. Amongst them included the feather bonnet and the plains Indian horse. Both objects were held in high regard within the Indian culture, one for its divine significance, and the other for its practical utility. The feather bonnet was a type of head gear made up of eagle feathers and typically worn by medicine men or individuals in positions of great power. Due to the materials used in creating such head gear, they were not just considered symbols, but sources of great power (Understanding Headdresses and War Bonnets). The Plains Indian horse on the other hand, was a typical horse used by the Indians to increase mobility and productivity (Moore, n.pag).
The feather bonnet was considered as not just a symbol of great power but a source of power in itself, mainly due to the materials obtained from revered animals like the eagle feathers. It was believed that because great power could be transferred through the spirit from the animals used to create such feather bonnets, the power would enable the wearers heal and treat the sick. The healing power of the feather bonnet is therefore more divine and spiritual than physical. The Plains Indian horse on the other hand was and continues to be used to heal psychologically. Horses and humans have always been believed to have a deeper understanding of each other, and horses can be used to great effect to achieve psychological healing. Native Americans used interactions with horses to achieve or gauge healthy mental states, a practice that is still in use to date, for instance by the Red Horde Nation in what is referred to as NAHIP (Native American Equine Assisted Psychotherapy, n.pag)
Works Cited
American Eagle Foundation. Native American Indians and the Eagle. Web. 14 June 2013.
Moore, R. Horses and Plains Indians. Web. 14 June 2013.
Native American Culture. Web. 14 June 2013
Red Horse Nation. NAHIP. Web. 14 June 2013.
Understanding Headdresses and War Bonnets. Web. http://www.indianvillagemall.com/headdress/headdress.html

Persuasive Letter: Approval and Support for the Act

Persuasive Letter: Approval and Support for the Act
To Thomas More,
Loving Father.
Dear Father,
Approval and Support for the Act
I am writing this letter quite sorrowfully, in part due to the fact that I personally feel that you are indeed an honorable man, worthy of reward and praise. Your disapproval of both acts of parliament is justifiable as well as admirable. I have no doubt in my mind that your reasons for refusing to acknowledge the two acts are valid and worthy of consideration. The fact that the King has such low regard for the law that he is quite willing to change the law simply to satisfy his own personal desires is no doubt deplorable. The king is willing to not just divorce his wife, in pursuit of a male heir, but is also willing to walk away from the ordained path of God to do it. The motivations for pursuing these changes are no doubt selfish in your eyes and agreeing to them would amount to a demonstration of utter disrespect for the law and for God.
Further, this decision I understand, weighs heavily on your heart, as your conscience cannot allow you to support a split in the church simply to satisfy simplistic human desires. Amending the law, and denouncing the supremacy of the pope simply to satisfy an individual’s desires, even if it is the king cannot be simple for a principled individual like yourself. Bottom line, no principled individual compromises what they stand for, either for political gain, or for the sake of self preservation.
The issue in question is no doubt one of morals. The bible quite clearly outlines the conditions under which any marriage may be dissolved. The conditions under which the king wishes to dissolve his marriage raises considerable moral questions, more so when one considers the trouble it took to bring about the union in the first place. The marriage in itself was immoral, and required the pope cut a number of corners that have already brought the church into disrepute, allowing the king to divorce and remarry will only further tarnish the church’s image, no morally upright citizen would support such an action.
While I acknowledge that your reasons for not supporting the act are valid, kindly reconsider your position. Philosophically, it is argued that the best course of action for any individual to take, is usually the one that results in the greatest happiness for those involved. As such, the main motivation when taking any particular action, should always be realizing the greatest utility. In this case, your support for the act, would no doubt make the king and his supporters quite happy. It would also ensure that we are reunited as a family, which would also make us very happy. On the other hand, your refusal to support the act has brought immense unhappiness even to you, the best course of action would therefore, be for you to support the act.
Not signing in support of the act, will lead to your untimely death, as the fact that you do not support the act has already led to your arrest and detention. Your friends have already turned against you, and I have no doubt that even more will betray you as long as you keep opposing the act. Although what you have only lost so far is your position and your freedom, your continued opposition to the act will undoubtedly lead to your loss of standing. As a politician, you surely must understand that it never ends well for those who oppose the establishment.
Furthermore, not supporting the act will have negative consequences for your family as well. It is my belief that you would not like to harm your own family, although you must understand that if labeled an outcast and a rebel, our fate, as members of your family is also sealed, as we will also be labeled outcasts and no doubt be excommunicated, or worse still, murdered. If your family disappears, your legacy will also be a distant memory. In fact, you will have no legacy to be remembered for, as no one fondly remembers traitors, your death and our death or disappearance will have been for nothing.
If you support the act, I do understand that to you it will have been an act of cowardice but imagine what it could mean. The king and his henchmen already hold you in such high regard. You would undoubtedly ascend to a position of power within the kingdom. Such a high position would mean that you become a man who wield significant power, which would give you an opportunity to slowly correct and change things; giving you a real opportunity to effect change.
Finally father, supporting the act would not only spare your life, but ours as well. It would mean that our family can be reunited again, and its name would remain intact. Supporting the act would also leave you wiser, as it would also mean that you now understand who you can or cannot trust, and in due course, I have no doubt that you will be able to repay in kind, those that have turned their backs on you. Please do not let pride and your conscience cost our lives, more so one that we are not yet done cherishing, and one as capable as yours, you were meant to effect real change, stay alive and play politics like I know you can.
Your Loving Daughter
Margaret

Business plan outline

Business plan outline
Name: 4Rent Company is a classified online website which aims at building a strong customer base by providing rental services. The company will concentrate on making sure that all persons visiting the company website are able to find any item they would like to rent. 4Rent Company which has the website as the main link to the clients will focus on all type of customers, students, housewives and workers specifically those around Canada.
Category: The business is a customer to customer based business (C2C). This is because with the help of the website the customer can be able to rent their items to another customer. The company has also provided an opportunity for the customer to enquire from the other customer base whether an item is available. Therefore, 4Rent is an ecommerce partnership that promotes customer to customer business (Olsen, 2012).
Product/Service: the company will focus on providing a wide range of products to meet the needs of its diversified customers. The products that customers will be able to find on the website for rental will range from books, student items, housekeeping items, cars, furniture, hardware and technology items. This wide range of items will be attained from other clients since the website will provide an opportunity for customers to easily place an advert of any item they may not be using at the time for other customers to rent.
Competitive advantage: Ecommerce businesses are widely spend in our target market but 4Rent Company will not only attain a quick growth and expansion stages but will also achieve competitive advantage after a very short period in business (Pat, 2001). This is mainly because of the wide variety in the products offered by the company. The company competitors: Kijij and Craigslist companies do not provide a wide range of product as well as focus on different groups of clients. Therefore, since 4Rent will be able to capture the attention of not only student, but also housewives and other unrelated businesses, it is then expected to perform much better than the competitors. 4Rent will be able to attract more customers because all will expect to find whatever they are looking for in one website. By ensuring that customers are able to get the items they require easily and in a wide variety, customer satisfaction will be increased thus building customer loyalty and expansion.
Value Proposition: customer satisfaction is a key factor in the company and this will be achieved by strengthening customer to customer marketing (c2c) (Chaudhury & Kuilboer, 2002). Customer to customer marketing will enhance the ability of customer satisfaction by making sure that the customers willing to rent their items are fully aware of what the customer renting requires. It is assumed that customers are likely to understand the needs of a fellow customer better than a sales agent. The mode of marketing will also reduce unnecessary expenses arising from sales agent and other middle men, meaning that 4Rent products will be cheaper than those of other related businesses. However, the value of the company products will be based on product availability, variety, low selling price and above all quality products. The company will assist its customer to attain quality product through a quality management department which will monitor the condition of items rented via the company website.
The Market: 4Rent Company target market will be students, housewives, workers and families living in Canada. The company will be able to reach all these groups of persons through a local and classified website which will provide rental services to the customers. The website will be easy to understand therefore no training will be required. Customer to customer marketing will also assist in widening the customer base because customers will be able to provide a wide range of products for renting by other customers who visit the website (Philip, (2009).
References
Chaudhury, A. & Kuilboer, J. (2002). e-Business and e-Commerce Infrastructure. McGraw-Hill.
Pat, S. (2001). Customers.com. Crown Business Books: Random House
Philip, K. (2009). Marketing Management. Pearson:Prentice-Hall
Olsen, E. (2012). Strategic Planning Kit for Dummies, 2nd Edition. John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
 

Conservatism Versus Liberalism

Conservatism Versus Liberalism
The article “Margaret Thatcher The Lady Who Changed the World,” is a piece on The Economist which discusses the political life of the former British prime minister and how her legacy continues to live on. The article presents a unique view of conservatism, equating it to what it calls “Thatcherism.” According to the article, Thatchetr, being a conservative, significantly advocated for increased market freedom and a reduction in the levels of state interference. Thatcher advocated for increased freedom and privatisation. The article argues that she embodied conservatism by her continued advocacy for the respect of individual rights without interference and micromanagement by the state. The article depicts the difference between conservatism and liberalism when it says she (Margaret Thatcher) reversed the previously existing situation in which failure by the government was rewarded by yet more control. The assertion that the Labour party decided to adopt “Thatcherism,” by leaving economic activity to the private sector, highlights the main difference between conservatism and liberalism. Whereas one advocates for increased state control and involvement, the other (conservatism) advocates for a free market, privatisation and a market based solution, that comes about without much government intervention.
The article also captures the contrast between the two approaches to economic management by asserting that the pendulum in today’s society is increasingly swinging away from “Thatcherism (conservatism), as states are increasing their share of the economy, regulations are becoming stricter and more excessive. Even in the case of the United States of America, where Democrats are expected to be a bit conservative, the government is increasingly meddling in areas previously operating as free markets such as the banking sector perhaps due to the housing bubble of 2008. This is a clear affront to the conservative principles Thatcher advocated for, and a strong display of liberalism, usually characterized by increased state control. The article proceeds to name China as the epitome of liberalism, and a misguided belief that increased state control is a good thing.
Work Cited
Margaret Thatcher: The Lady Who Changed The World. Web. 12th June 2013. http://www.economist.com/blogs/blighty/2013/04/margaret-thatcher

Revolutionary struggle, racial differences and colonialism

Revolutionary struggle, racial differences and colonialism
Revolutionary struggle, racial differences and colonialism are common topics that arise when analyzing different historic events. These topics have best been understood and discussed using works of some of the greatest philosophers, namely: Fanon, Goldman, Martin Luther Jr, Malcolm X and John Stuart Mill. Fanon through his writing “The Wretched of the Earth” we are able to understand the psychology behind colonization and the events surrounding the historical period. In his works he focused on the relationship between colonization and liberation and deduced that people’s social movements and culture played a big role in determining their political implications during the 19th century. To emphasize on his argument Fanon brings to light the rage and frustrations that existed among the colonized groups and relates it to their culture and social movements. From the Wretched of the Earth story, it is clear that the most colonial violence cases began as a result of historical changes brought about by colonization. Multiple examples are highlighted in the story which proves that colonization increased the negative issues that existed in the colonized regions such as Africa. The author corruption and violence as the key examples to show that colonization interfered with the stability of the colonized regions for a very long time and it is actually the source of social reorganization in this areas. Fanon concludes by saying that though colonization brought social instability it also assisted in encouraging nations to embrace civil right, conscious movements and independence.
Martin Luther Jr. is another philosopher who has contributed greatly on the campaign against racism and colonialism. Luther believes that people have a right to break unjust laws. (567). He supports nonviolent resistance and strongly states it should not be considered a racial act. According to his letter from Birmingham Jail, he feels that all persons have a moral responsibility to assist in maintaining civil rights in all nations and this can only be done by breaking unjust laws. The letter act as a call of unity since it condemns social injustices but urges the public to avoid using the streets to solve racial segregation battles, instead trust in the courts and in the legal system. He does not support street riots since the justice system is capable of solving any existing public dissatisfaction. To clearly show his disproval of public violence and trust in courts he calls Martin Luther King an outsider who disturbs the peace of Birmingham streets (569). In his letter King talks about all nations being interrelated, therefore injustice in one are is injustice everywhere. The world is a mutual network and all should embrace peace. He also demonstrates this using the white power structure which oppressed the black leavening them with no choice rather than violence and demonstrations.
Malcolm X is another great philosopher who has continuously expressed the need for human rights. He expressed the need for human rights though advocating for equality among Africa Americans, among muslim and economic classess. In his greatest speech “The ballot or the Bullet he encourages the government to embrace human rights by ensuring all citizens have the right to vote. On the other hand he urges the public to express their will and power through the ballot or through voting. He states that, in all cases the problem of a nation results to be a problem of an individual. For instance, he states that a problem of insecurity, illiteracy is a common problem to the nation because it will affect all persons on social, economic and political levels. Therefore, Malcolm states that though we may ignore the “white political crooks” the effects of their leadership will be felt and noted by all. In his statements, he intends to encourage all the citizens to embrace their rights and participate in the democratic process. From his speech he democracy is a responsibility for all, while those in leadership have a duty to embrace peace and equality, the citizens should as well reciprocate by being politically mature which is shown by expressing grievances and opinions through voting.
Emma Goldman is another great philosopher who uses religion and morality to depict the duties of the government and the public. In her speech “Victims of Morality, she brings to light the beauty and importance of morality in a society. The states that good morals beginning with the citizens and the government as a whole is the first step to achieving good health, freedom and harmony in any nation. Therefore, just like morals are essential in a family so should the state advocate for good discipline in the country. However, the state officials should assist in attaining good morals in a nation by embracing equality and condemning all injustices. Her speech “Victims of Morality” tends to criticize most political actions by embracing social injustice.
Affirmative Action and Racial Equality
Racial inequality no doubt exists and is mainly due to the injustices and atrocities that have been committed by both the system and the dominant group. The notion that all men were created equal simply remains a pipe dream for the United States of America, partly because it started on the wrong foot. Right from acts such as slavery and the consideration of American Indians as 3/5 of a human being. History is no doubt littered with these injustices that have served to fuel the racial inequalities and created the monster that is now racial inequality as we see it today. Affirmative action does in my opinion help rectify racial inequality. For instance, within the educational sector, racial inequalities put students from minority groups at a disadvantage, more so in terms of access to resources and quality education. As such, recognizes the extraordinary effort it would take for students from such disadvantaged backgrounds to make it into Ivy league colleges and universities. Affirmative action therefore empowers the minority groups such as African Americans, who educational results indicate do not perform quite well, a finding that is in most cases related to their less than impressive socioeconomic status.
Opponents of affirmative action, however disagree with the notion that it helps establish racial equality. Instead, they argue that it serves to perpetuate inequality and undermine gains that have already been made so far, by depicting the minorities as weak and inferior. Further, they argue that it keeps the wounds of segregation, slavery and discrimination fresh in the minds of those affected and undermines their ability. Glenn C. Loury disagrees with these assertions, as he refers to them as myths that are not necessarily true. Loury is therefore a supporter of affirmative action as he believes that it does help rectify inequalities. Loury also challenges the notion that all races are equal, instead arguing that Whites have an undue advantage that can only be corrected through affirmative action. A majority of the opponents are either individuals who are too oblivious to the obvious advantage certain groups enjoy, or misguided members of the minority who are too idealistic to recognize the importance of affirmative action.
Abortion
The debate over whether abortion should be legalized or restricted continues to elicit numerous arguments and counterarguments, between opponents who are pro life and proponents who are mainly prochoice. I am however, of a similar opinion to Robert P. George that morally, abortion is wrong and should not be allowed. If anything, abortion should indeed be restricted. Central to the argument regarding abortion is usually the question of when exactly life begins. George argues that life begins at conception and I am inclined to agree, which makes abortion, regardless of whether the fetus was viable or not, murder. One of the core principles of ethics is that one must always be motivated to do good (the principle of beneficence) and as such, it is not possible to justify murder by arguing that it was the best course of action for those involved, more so when one considers that the embryo or fetus had no say in what can literally be categorized as a matter of “life and death.” By deciding whether an individual entity lives or dies, it is assumed that the individual need not have a say in their own life and can be equated to a few individuals playing God.
Other than the morality question, one may also argue that not restricting abortion unless in unique circumstances actually encourages reckless behavior and in a way endangers the lives of the would be mothers. The argument that an individual is not ready to assume parenting responsibilities usually trivializes the issue at stake, which is the life of the unborn fetus. Surely one must not be allowed the luxury of ending a life simply because they feel they are not prepared to care for the child, more so when one considers that giving the child up for adoption is increasingly becoming a viable option. Abortion is therefore, morally wrong and needs to be restricted.
Separation between Church and State
The establishment of a wall of separation between the church and the state is in my opinion, a necessity that must not only be upheld, but also encouraged. This is more so when one considers the potential harm bringing down the wall could lead to. The wall ensures freedom of religion, a situation that is very important in a country with diverse religions, such as the United States of America. I do agree with the views of Justice John Paul Stevens that without the wall, a number of members from other religions may become disenfranchised as would other non believers. This would probably be the case if government interfered with the citizens’ rights to worship, probably because the dominant religion would end up being forced on the minorities. As such, a wall between the two ensures that the government does not at any time display preferential or partisan treatment towards a given religion disenfranchising other citizens it is also supposed to protect.