Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Globalization of Coffee

By: Paul Barolette

     Globalization is described as the process by which regional economies, societies, and cultures have become integrated through a global network of political ideas through communication, and trade. the united states has become the main perpetrator of this offense. our economic ventures spread from latin america to asia, hitting all aspects of life. the need for  cheap goods have even affected some of our more trusted american companies such as Walmart, Target, and even Starbucks. Today Starbucks can be found on almost every corner, or intersection in our communities, but what is the story behind this coffee. The film "Black Gold' describes the trials and tribulation that our beloved coffee goes through before reaching the U.S. market. Take a look, and express your thoughts.

In Groups & Out Groups

By: Marianne Stokes
In Group
In groups are the students who graduate from High School.  The students that got good marks on their reports, the class president of the school, the cheer leaders, and the football players are in the In Group of students that graduate from High School.  They got good marks in their studies.  They were good in behavior from day to day existence, with accomplished goals.  This was their norm.  They get high paying jobs after graduation, and some go on to College.
Out Group
High school dropouts are the out group.  These students have a very different kind of norm.  Some of them drink booze and some take drugs.  Their marks are bad in school.  Some of them only go to school for fun.  Some of them only go to tenth grade in high school.  Dropouts do not get high paying jobs.  They are looked at as uninteresting and ignorant people.  Something should be done to make the out group an In Group.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Counterculture Today and in the Past

Counterculture By: Anthony Sanchez

According to our book "Sociology Matters," a counterculture is: A subculture that conspicuously and deliberately opposes certain aspects of the larger culture.

Many may argue that there are countercultures in every day communities all over the world. People that individually go against the norms and do what is not expected of them. But, a counterculture is much more than that. A counterculture is a movement, a larger group of people that believe in the same ideas and take a stance not only politically but in many other aspects such as in pop-culture.

In the United States, there has been one instance in particular when a counterculture had a large influence on the way society changed and interacted with each other. In the mid-1960s there was a strong movement that is known today as the "Hippie Movement." During this movement many ideas were spread and had successes politically. For instance the effects the Hippie movement had on the Vietnam War. The effects of the Hippie movement can still be seen today, through its music and art, but my question is: "Is it still a counterculture when more and more people begin to follow?"

Today there is a movement that many may call a counterculture. In the latest years there has been an uprising in the Gay rights movement. Someone many people would consider a leader in the movement is Lady Gaga, to the extent that many of her fans and followers refer to her as Mother Monster. Lady Gaga and her "Born this Way" movement has been very controversial and "outspoken" with their beliefs, making them clear and concise to the public.

What I find interesting is that both the hippie group and the the up rise of the gay equality movement is that both cultures are basically fighting and wanting the same result: freedom to be themselves and peace, and both movements not only spread their ideas politically but in the pop world as well. But both are still considered to be going against the norm.

Lady Gaga's song "Born this Way" not only shares its idea in song, but her ideas have been spread in the political arena, with some success as well, with the disbanding of DADT (don't ask don't tell).

Above is Lady GAGA latest video, where you can clearly see how she purposely tries to stand out and give her stance on her ideas.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Americas Working Class

By: David Newsome

What is the working class? Many define it as a class consisting of unskilled or semi-skilled laborers who work for low hourly wages instead of a fixed salary. A large majority of this class consists of blue collar workers. Blue collar jobs include construction working, pluming, bus driving, welding, mining. In addition many members of this class are also among the 45% of U.S. citizen who did not attend college.

(Click here for more on Social Class)

Income levels of this class range from approximately $16,000-$30,000 a year. This class consists of approximately 30% of the U.S. population and strongly blends with the lower middle class in which many of its members are considered to be. When the economy is tough many feel this class is effected most. Many in this social class have unstable positions in there work places and are let go from there jobs when times are hard. In addition considering a large amount of citizens in this social class lack college degrees, finding work can be difficult. As a result an increasing amount of people in this social class find themselves falling into the working poor and lower class. As prices of everyday needs such as food and gas continue to rise during difficult economic times citizens of this class feel an increasing amount of pressure. Those who are fortunate enough to keep there jobs struggle day to day to make ends meet.

(Below is a video of a working-class women who receives help from a local organization to feed her family)

World Famous Philosopher Karl Marx described the working class people as Proletariat or those who provide hard work and labor for wages but do not own there own production. He believed strongly that society's wealth was produced by the working class, even though they were actual owners of very little. For example Mechanics and office clerks do not own their work place, the tools they use or even the product of there labor. As a result they work for consistent wages which remain the same regardless of how difficult of easy there job become.

In conclusion the working class is one the largest social classes and one of the toughest to be a part of. It is full of citizens living paycheck to paycheck with unstable job positions. With a currently bad economy many find it increasing easy to fall out of this class and sadly man do as they become replaced by those with higher education.

(Karl Marx pictured below)

(Click the following links to read more about Marx's ideas)

American Education Sucks

        By: Lanisha Moore 

       The statement "American Education Sucks", while probably true compared to Finland's and China's educational system is a very vague comment and an opinion, my focus for this text are inner city schools, those in low-income and poverty stricken neighborhoods. The education system has been a staple in our country since its upbringing however, many students in well established cities, a wealthy counrty and the land of equal opportunity are falling behind. Max Weber coined the term, life chances, the opportunities people have to provide themselves with material goods, positive living conditions, and favorable life experiences. Education is one resource to obtain these goals and much more, but do all children really have a chance? Social mobility is the movement of individuals or groups from one position in a society's stratification system to another, while it is a nice term or should I say gesture, its close to impossible. Congratulations, to those who have made the transition but this post are for those who have not and the children that are still struggling in the public school system.                 


       The link above is entitled, 1 in 10 U.S. high schools is a "Dropout Factory", which are schools where no more than 60 percent of children who entered as freshman will make it to their senior year. The percentage of children not completing high school in the U.S is up 2 percent since the 1960's and honestly on reflection of those years you would think the percentage would have lowered. Social class, economic factors, and racial inequalities are all significant factors in the failure of the public school system. Inner-city schools are simply not receiving the attention that it needs and deserves, the resources are there and are not being applied. Students have to complete standardized test in order to receive funds even if it means being skipped ahead without learning. The students do not feel appreciated by their instructors, therefore not providing them with courage or reason to continue. I have attended school in North Philadelphia, Mt. Airy and Johnstown,Pa. The North Philadelphia school was prodominately black; and in a low income neighborhood, the books were old, the lessons were behind, and students did their hair and watched videos during class. My school in Mt.Airy was in a middle class neighborhood; with a variety of ethnicities, and was a pretty simple school, clean, well planned and prepared lessons. My school in Johnstown, Pa was prodominately caucasion; and low income, and it was the most beautiful school I have ever attended. There were bathrooms and a computer in each classroom, plenty of land and grass, new books and two teachers per classroom. My point is the public education system in the U.S. receive federal, state and local funds, why is one low income school receiving funds and not another? How can there be room for social change, advancement, less prisons and more schools?

      In the video below students discuss change, they admit to wanting an education, wanting careers, and how they feel about being in the public school system.


                                                       Video Letter to the President

   This below clip is a scence from HBO's hit show, The Wire. He is new to the teaching profession and can not understand the purpose of standerdized testing in his inner-city public school where the children barely know how to read and write. There are other scenes I would have enjoyed sharing, such as when he found brand new books and computers being held in a storage room collecting dust, or when he took the students out to dinner at a nice restaurant showing them a different culture and social experience. However, three visuals are more than enough.

                              American Education Sucks: to much emphasis on testing
          In Conclusion, this counrty has produced a lot of great changes, and there should be more in the years to come. The focus should be on education. This is not a black thing or white thing, rich people or poor people, its for the children. Children of all walks of life should have the opportunity to succeed, progress, and have wonderful life experiences so they can want to grow to provide the same for the next generation. Statistics are clearly showing that inner-city schools are not excelling the way they should and they can. The learning process begins at home, but for a parent working two jobs it is difficult, therefore the cycle continues. The child's future holds working two jobs and not having time to help with homework and attend parent teacher conferences. If not a life of crime or poverty, which leads to more money being spent on prisons and welfare. Instead, they can be working and building our economy. My only wish is for good education, better funds and services for our public schools.         

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


By William Davis

  What makes a person upperclass? Is it their neighorhood, their family heritage, or is it their money? There are a lot of factors taken into concideration when answering this question. What happens is that we evaluate their socioeconomic status( SES). Your socioeconomic status  is based on four important things which are your income, wealth, occupational prestige and education. Most upperclass people have a income of about $100.000 or better. Many upperclass people also have a lot of wealth which are assets such as land, properties and stocks.  Occupational prestige is basicly rating a job based its worthiness. Upperclass people have jobs such as Doctors, Lawyers, CEOs and Architects. Basicly the better your job the better rating you will receive. Doctors have a high occupational prestige.  Last but not least we have education which plays a key role in making the other 3 factors happen. Many upperclass people spend years in school to earn their masters degree and other awards associated with higher learning. This is just some of the main requirements to be considered an upperclass citizen. Inside the upperclass world you can be placed into 3 seperate catagories which  are upper-middle, upper-lower and upper-upper. The upper-middle class are the people  who make about $100,000 a year. Professions that fall in this class are Judges, Architects and Doctors.

Thurgood Marshall was a Judge on the Supreme Court which required a great of education and  isa very prestigous occupation which is why he is concidered a member of the Upper Middle Class.

Next in rank are the upper lower class. They have jobs that have 6 or 7 figure salaries. Most of the people in this rank are high level mangers, CEOs, big business owners. Famous members of this class are Steve Jobs(CEO of Apple), Bill Gates(Chairman of Microsoft), and Russell Simmons(Media and Fashion Mogul).
All  3 of these people have large incomes over 6 figures as well as large assets. I would talk about education but both Gates and Jobs dropped out of college. At the very top we have the upper-upper class. Just like the upper- lower class, they have high level jobs, very educated, own companies and have large amounts of wealth. What sets them apart is how many generations of family have wealth. For example, Bill Gates was the first of his family to achieve wealth because he helped create Microsoft. A perfect example of an upper-upper family is the Rockefeller Family. They have had wealth passed down for the last 4 generations and have had wealth for over 100 years. The whole Rockefeller family is wealthy. John D. Rockefeller who is currently the richest man of all time, started his oil comany in 1870 which lasted 40 years. According to Forbes, John D Rockefeller's net worth was 663.4 billion dollars. His children and Grandchildren have racked up their own personal net worth by starting foundations, owning banks(Citibank) and making good stock investments. Certain members of the family have achieved well respected statuses such as a gold medal winner, governor and even Vice President.

In conclusion  to become a member of upperclass society, you have to have a high socioeconomic status which includes a large income, a great education, occupational prestige and some wealth. I think that it is sad that people in this class that worked hard in school and at their jobs are only the upper-middle class which is basicly the lowest of the upperclass while the people that got rich off an idea are the wealthest people in world and most them are not that educated. The  upper-middle class are the only ones that worked to be in the upperclass.

(Below are two videos, the first one show the top 10 richest people of all time and the other video shows the top 10 riches people today)

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Rebellion and Violence

By Jusu U. Dunor

Rebellion and Human Violation!
   In the early 2000 group of Liberians decided to use violence against a leader they choose to govern them, and their action brought setback, chaos and inhuman treatment to their fellow citizens.
Rebellion by definition is the refusal of obedience or order by a person or group of people. The act of being rebellious is undertaken in every part of the world by civilians and non-civilian populist to protest dissatisfaction against a rule, law and living condition. Often the term rebel is  used to refer to individuals or groups who disobey or go against a ruler way of governing. Below is a list of the various forms of rebellion:
  • Mutiny, which is carried out by military or security forces against their commanders
  • Resistance movement, which is carried out by freedom fighters, often against an occupying foreign power.
  • Revolution, which is carried out by radicals, usually meant to overthrow the current government.
  • Subversion, which are non-overt attempts at sabotaging a government, carried out by spies or other subversives
  • Terrorism, which is carried out by different kinds of political, economic or religious militant individuals or groups
  • Nonviolent resistance or civil disobedience, which do not include violence or paramilitary force
  • Revolt, a term that is sometimes used for a more localized rebellions rather than a general uprising.
This video shows group of men, women and children rebelling against their leader in a West African state of Liberia.

In this video these rebels decided to use gun violence to express their dissatisfaction against their leader and the result of their action was horrible, terrifying and disheartening.  The action these rebels used brought destruction to their communities, displacement of their fellow countrymen and as well as trauma to the younger children and the elderly people. On this note, it is worthy to digest that violence in any form is not a remedy for a positive change. At this juncture, In order to stage destructive rebellions always take into consideration the aftermath and the plight of the masses before such undertaken against a tyrant or a dictator.

Underclass/Working Poor

By: Cheryl Chandler

Having a job or career has always been an issue for alot of people, even if you have a family or not. No one want to be jobless and noone wants to be considered underclass. The working poor/underclass clearly means: people who are economically disadvantaged despite the fact that they are fully employed. The working poor do not have sufficient income to improve their overall lifestyle. To put that in a clearer sense, people that have a job working pay check to pay check and still struggling to make ends meet. People that can't live above there means like they want to. There are alot of different defintions for the term "Underclass". It could be defined as not having the training and skills to obtain a job. And some believe those that are part of the "Underclass" partcipate in deviant behavior, I don't think thats nice at all. So which one of those defintions could be the true defintion for "Underclass". Well can we just use all of those definition and if you fall under some of those caterogies then so be it.

 According to the US Census Bureau, in 2008, 19 million people lived in working-poor families. This translates into nearly 9 percent of all American families living below 100 percent of poverty have at least one family member working. When I saw this statistics, I thought that was in 2008 I wonder what is it now. Kids are being brought into this world and some of them have no choice but to be underclass. It crazy how most of the population are under-class and/or living off of welfare and job programs to support their families.
I wonder what do children have to look forward to in the future.

From my own personal experience, people always look at the working poor or underclass and always say what we don't have. Its crazy to me because until this year I didnt know my aunt (who took care of me) was considered underclass. I say that because I got everything I wanted, our house was always clean and neat and furnished with the finest things. I always hasd the best clothes, I went on vacations every summer. I say all of tht because some working poor families still live above there means and it's ok for them. It's sad to see so many people living in conditions were it's not a health environment, mainly the children.

So in closing I found a video about Working poor/Underclass. In this video its stories of homeless people and working poor families.


By: Frank Carbone

       On March 15th, last Tuesday, the Daily News ran an article a front page article by Marc Lamont Hill that will be the reason I never buy that "news" paper again.  Mr. Hill. told his tragic tale of being a victim of racial profiling.  Mr. Hill was dropping a friend of one night in the lovely Logan section of the city.  Mr Hill happens to have a nice new BMW and dresses nice so of course he is a target by the PPD.
 "Police Officer Richard DeCoatsworth -hailed as a hero when he survived a gunshot blast to the face in 2007" happens to be the "Latino Officer" who eventually pulls Mr. Hill over.  I'll let you read the rest.

Please click here:

Really? "I silently prayed that I would make it home that night alive. After all, for blacks, our behavior does not merely determine whether we get a ticket or a verbal warning. It determines whether we live or die." Really?  That is ludicrous.  Maybe, because I'm white I don't understand if that's the case I encourage my fellow students to shed some light on that feeling for me.  I know that if I'm driving a nice car around in a bad neighborhood at night that there is a chance that I'll get pulled over because I look suspicious.  Totally understandable, it looks like I'm looking to buy drugs or up to something worse so if I get pulled over I would not be confrontational with the Police and I certainly would not fear for my life.

                                                     The hero cop in question.

   Please read the article, I don't want to rewrite it and bore you with a huge post. I just thought it was an interesting story that kind of related to the white criminal black criminal story of profiling. I am also including two more links from follow up articles from both sides of the story.

Thursday, March 17, 2011


By: Jennifer Harding

 In sociology, deviance is known as behavior that violates expected rules and social norms. Without social norms and social control, there would be nothing for us to defy. Everyone is deviant at one point or another in their lives, whether it be positive or negative, most of us have broken a social norm or a rule before.
 Over time, the rules and norms of a society often change. Something that may have been considered okay or accepted once before, may be looked down upon or seen as deviant behavior now. For example, cigarette smoking. In 1965 more than 50% of men and more then 30% of women in the US smoked cigarettes. Cigarettes were seen on TV ads, magazines and in newspapers and it was okay to smoke pretty much anywhere (hospitals, schools, restaurants). If you were around in the late 50's/ early 60's and smoked, you were seen as a sophisticated person. or someone with class. 

 By the late 60's/early 70's, people became more aware of the dangerous risks of cigarette smoking. Since then, the amount of American adults who smoke has continued to decline, now at about 20% of American men and women.
 Smoking has been banned in schools, hospitals and most public places across the country and is frowned upon in today's society. Society uses both informal and formal social control when it comes to smoking cigarettes. If a person was to smoke in a restaurant, they may be given dirty looks, stares, or even yelled at by random people (informal social control). But more importantly they would be told to get rid of the cigarette and failure to follow the rules could lead in being escorted off of the premises and/or being fined (formal social control). 

 This type of deviance was once seen as something positive and was a social norm before and has become an act of deviance over time. There are plenty of other examples of this, and even things that used to be considered an act of deviance and is now thought of as normal. As long as a society is changing, growing, learning, or falling apart, deviance will change right along with it. Lets just hope that more people will be a positive deviant to society rather than a negative one.

The "Camouflage" Crimes. (White-Collar Crime)

By: Quiessence Royster          

            Crimes are put into different categories depending on what was done, how it was done, where it was done, who did it and other similar things in the legal sense. Sociologist classify crimes in the terms of how they are committed and how society views the offenses. In the book Sociology Matters by Richard Schaefer sociologist examine five types of crime.
1. Victimless Crimes: Willing exchange among adults of widely desired, but illegal goods and services. Examples: Prostitution
2. Professional Crime(Career Criminal): Crimes committed by people who pursue crime as a day to day occupation while developing skilled techniques.
Examples: Burglary, Pickpocketing, Shoplifting, Carjacking
3.Organized Crime: The work of a groups that regulates relations between various criminal enterprises involved in illegal activities.
Example: Smuggling of drugs
4. White-Collar Crimes: Illegal acts committed in the course of business activities.
Examples: Tax Invasion, Consumer Fraud, Bribery, Embezzlement
5.Transtional Crime: Crime that occurs across multiple national boarders.
Examples: Terrorism, Money Laundering
           Now that we understand the types of crimes and the categories they fall under, lets think about the general meaning of crime. According to the same book listed above crime is a violation of criminal law for which some government authority applies formal penalties. With that being said why are the consequences for some crimes not as harsh as others? If someone steals of course they shouldn't be given the same punishment as someone that murdered, but if you commit a crime you should be treated as a criminal and have to deal with the consequences of having that label. Bringing me to my point, White-Collar crimes are crimes that are under much less scrutiny than any other crime.
          White-Collar crimes are often committed by affluent, popular,"respectable" people. For this reason alone they aren't frowned upon as much as a "regular" person that commits a crime(or even the same crime). The label white-collar doesn't carry the stigma as the label of felon which means that people who commit white-collar crimes have a pretty good chance of continuing to live their lives as a person who has never committed a crime. White-collar crimes are not even included in crime index. Under no circumstances should crime be able to be separated from the general meaning of crime. CRIME IS CRIME! Lastly, people that commit white-collar are more likely receive fines as apposed to prison sentences.
            No matter who you are, how much money you have, or whats your status if you commit a crime you should be held accountable and receive the punishment that's due for the crime you committed. As many things are unfair in the world this is another.

(Above) Milton Street. A former state senate indicted on tax invasion chargers. Sentenced to 30months in a low security prison. Released in 2010 and now running for mayor.

The New Jim Crow

The New Jim Crow is a book focusing on the immense number of African Americans in the current prison system of the US, and the necessity of a prison reform. Mostly, the war on drugs is what ends up putting people in prison, the reason why we have higher prison rates than almost all established countries. The problem is, everyone does drugs, white, black, or purple. In fact, studies have shown that white youth are more likely to do drugs than black youth. The way that this turns into a racial problem is with the police, focusing on poor communities of color when they’re arresting for drug charges. This, in turn, ends up with more African American men in the incarceration system, pulling them from their communities, families, and putting them in the system for life once they return. When one gets out of prison and is put on parole, you must adhere to being regulated, and if you don’t, you face the threat of returning to jail. Parole violations include:

  • Failing to report to your parole officer
  • Failing to take a mandatory drug and alcohol test, or failing a mandatory drug or alcohol test
  • Failing to meet curfew
  • Failing to pay court-ordered fines
  • Failing to meet community service obligations
So, after getting out of prison and trying to get your life back together, you must take your time to meet with someone who does not care about your rehabilitation, as the parole officers are over worked due to their large number of cases (because of mass incarceration), you must remain completely sober, be in at a specified time, pay money to the system that put you away (and is more than likely making it difficult for you to find a job due to your charges), and do community service. Pretty much, your plate is full. Of course, if you were arrested on a drug charge, drugs are familiar for you and once you can’t get a job and face going back to jail with out paying your fines, there’s a simple way to make money that’s very familiar; sell drugs. Our prison system traps people, and keeps people, in it. Black men are the majority in our prison systems, but there are not more black male criminals in our country than other-raced criminals. That’s where this injustice is compared to Jim Crow as the introduction to the book states:
“Like Jim Crow (and slavery), mass incarceration operates as a tightly networked system of laws, policies, customs, and institutions that operate collectively to ensure the subordinate status of a group defined largely by race.”

Here is a link to amazon where you can buy the book, if you're interested.
Posted by Lynzee Coble

Crime Globalization

By: Thu Le

Most people may first think of crime as an individual's defiant behavior against the law that will result in punishment (prison, death penalty, etc). This is true, but there are many other cases of crime that deals with socialization rather than just an individual itself. Among all the people in the world of socialization, different cultures are also effected by each other through crime.

There are enormous amount of illegal international transportations from one country to another; such as drugs and other things that are yet to be discovered. One of the most popular global crime in our history and still existing today is trafficking. There are people from different cultures that would send their children to marry Americans or other countries to make money to send back home. These immigrants also causes a stress of caution and questions of what other crimes they may bring into the country.

Here is a video with four clips that talks about some studies, history, current and varieties of crimes that can give you more expansion and details about crime.

Some crime cases may be confrontational because not all crimes can be define as wrong, wanted or evil. Some crimes pushes people into a force with no option of decisions to their actions; such as stealing food for their children or defense for protection. Other crimes of attack like Pearl Harbor by Japan or our most recent is on September 11, 2001 that gave the Americans no decision but a force to fight to protect our nation. Either way, these crimes in our globalization are harmful whether it is within the state laws or internationally.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Bureaucracy, What is it Good for?

By: Frank Carbone

    When I chose to do a blog on Bureaucracy I had no idea what exactly it meant,  so I did what any typical student would do I Googled it.  Google led me to Wikipedia.  According to Wikipedia, "the purpose of a bureaucracy is to successfully implement the actions of an organization of any size (but often associated with large entities such as government, corporations, and nongovernmental organizations), in achieving its purpose and mission, and the bureaucracy is tasked to determine how it can achieve its purpose and mission with the greatest possible efficiency and at the least cost of any resources." Wow, that's terribly wordy.  Maybe the dictionary app on my phone has more of a brief description: 1. government by many bureaus, administrators, and petty officials. 2. the body of officials and administrators, especially of a government or government department.  Ok, I kind of get it.  A bureaucracy is kind of like an assembly line style of running an organization.  Each person or department has their own particular task or job.  When I think of assembly line I naturally think of Henry Ford and Ford Motor Company.

      Henry Ford invented the assembly line as a way to make car production more efficient, safe and cost effective.

       So in theory, bureaucracy sounds like a great idea.  However, a constant problem associated with bureaucracy is "red tape" or unnecessary steps required to complete a task.  For example, when I call to complain to my cable provider that my service is not working, or costs too much, or take your pick of ridiculous scenarios, I first must go through an automated service asking me to enter my phone number, account number, address, favorite color, etc.  I am then transferred to an actual person who pretty much asks me the same questions that the machine did and decides who they need to connect me to in order to resolve my problem.  At this point I've been on the phone for twenty minutes and I am just finally having my problem addressed and usually solved in a short amount of time.  This infuriates me to no end.  
     This tends to be the common response to most people trying to navigate a bureaucracy.
Just plain silly.

In or Out

By: Paul Barolette 

Today our society is infamous for creating social groups and labeling those who may seem different. It starts at a very young age, making friends that we may deem “fun” or “cool”, shunning, and ridiculing those we find “strange” or “weird”. The groups that we involve our selves with have a tremendous impact on our lives. Throughout our lifetime we face these social groups everyday whether it’s in our high schools, jobs or colleges. As individuals we cannot help but label others, it sometimes seems that this is a trait that we cannot elude, whether it is for better or worse. These social groupings have affected the behaviors of adolescents, in the form of bullying. There have been many incidents involving adolescents with bullying, the most recent in Philadelphia.( have tried to explain the forming social groups and their behaviors, social physiologist Henri Tajfel discovered that we as a society have a tremendous ability of forming in groups and out groups within a matter of minutes. People tend hold positive attitudes towards their own groups, while having bias opinions on others. These social groupings can come in many different ways, race, culture, gender and religion just to name a few. The affect that groupings have on individuals is also relevant. Many times when we encounter a new place, or school, individuals always seem to be attracted to those of the same skin color or ethnicity. We feel safe as individuals many times in groups, and often these groups can be for the worse. What are your thoughts on this issue?

Monday, March 14, 2011

To Be or Not To Be Defiant?

By Carl Roberts

What does that word mean?

Many different meaning are derived from deviance. Some are how behavioral standards and norms are being broken by everyday people. Basically people failing to conform to socially accepted behavior and beliefs, and customs.
Deviance in today’s society is very different then how many of our parents and grand-parents perceived it.
Today’s society see's deviance as being unruly to authority or a young child being disrespectful to someone of higher stature then them. Also some crimes are signs of deviance such as grafitti by a group of young children, and many other signs of vandalism. But deviance has taken a turn for the worse since the sixties.
Deviance to them was listening to rock-n-roll and creating a hip new fad spreading peace and love.

So back then being defiant meant not wanting war with another country or listening to the Beatles. These signs of defiant behavior lead to a ban of rock-n-roll music, hippies being seen as bums and slackers with no signs of a future. The everyday working men and women seen violence as the olny option with other countries; and the devils music was corrupting the new generations soul and those who didn’t believe there beliefs and views was defiant to society.

Are these hippies being defiant by putting flowers in the soldier’s rifles? These were not signs of deviance, but enlightenment by trying to share nonviolent beliefs and love on the world. There views of love was about tryig to change the hearts of the world. One of the ways was the feel good music that the conformist seen as druggie tunes to other druggies. Later on in history many other non-violent groups were created, but none seen more defiant then these hippies.
 How could this be seen and compared to today’s society of what deviance is now and what it was then?

Thursday, March 3, 2011

How Far Would You Go? (Social Status)

By: Hilary McFillin

We have all heard of things people will do to achieve Social Status.  For some, they might give up anything just to be accepted by others in our society. 

Social Status is one of the five elements of social relationships.  It is what makes up social structure, along with  social roles, groups, social networks, and social institutions.  "Status" is the name given to define all the positions in a group or society.  There is a very large range of statuses.  A person can occupy the name of "The Queen of England" to a "daughter", or both.  There are two types of statuses, ascribed and achieved.  Ascribed status is "assigned" to a person by society.  An example is your racial background, age, or gender.  Achieved status comes through what we do to get to where we want to be in society.  Such as a high school graduate, gym teacher, or lawyer.  What I will be sharing with you is the achieved status and what some will do just to reach where they want to be or who they want to be accepted by.

Was this man willing to do anything to achieve high status?  What has recently been in the media is about a man named Bernard Madoff and his story of achieving status. Bernie Madoff was a former Amercian Stockbrocker, Investment advisor, Non-executive chairman of NASDAQ Stockmarket.  Many wealthy people in America invested their retirement money with him.  He was a very wealthy man with much respect and very powerful friends.  Many people started to investigate how he was living such an extravagent life, with a penthouse apartment in Manhattan, the shares in two private jets, the yacht moored off the French Riviera. The way he lived such a luxurious life was by the Ponzi Scheme, he stole $65 Billion from his investors. He was not a hard working well respected man, he now became a greedy manipulator, fraud.  This man did not care who he hurt to become successful, and to achieve a high status.

Bernie Madoff was charged with security fraud, investment advisor fraud, male fraud, wire fraud, money laundering, false statements, perjury, making false filings with the FEC, and theft from an employee benefit plan.  He is now incarcerated in federal custody at Butner Federal Correctional Institution, eating cornbeef for dinner, wearing orange prisoner pants and working as a janitor 35 hours a week.  He will be imprisoned for 150 years, the day of his release will be November 14th, 2139!

Bernie Madoff's son, Mark Madoff, committed suicide two years to the day after Bernie's arrest.  Bernie has incarcerated his whole family, his wife is now in hiding, her charges are pending.  Bernard Madoff's choice to get rich and achieve a high social status has cost his entire family. This is the largest financial fraud the world has ever seen.

Some people will go extreme measures just to achieve any type of status in this world.  As for Bernard Madoff, it is very sad to see that for his actions, many people were hurt, not only will his family, but also the people that trusted in him and now do not anything to fall back on.