2017-04-30 11:07 am

The Fish (Poetry)

Bishop has a wide variety of imagery in her poem “The Fish”, every sense is used to a peak a reality. In this poem Bishop uses visual imagery most of all, she explains everything she sees about the detail of the fish and the water from the point she caught it to the point she let it go. For instance she describes the fish as if it has years of wisdom and is very old and smart. In my first impression I view the fish as very old, when Bishop stated that “He didn’t fight. He hadn’t fought at all” ( Bishop 5-6) I saw a fish that was ready to die. One that had lived its life to the fullest, being caught by multiple fisherman and they had all turned him loose out of respect to give him freedom.
Visual imagery such as “His brown skin hung in stripes like ancient wallpaper, and its pattern of darker brown was like wallpaper shapes like full blown roses stained and lost through age” (Bishop 10-15). This imagery gave a scene of an old fish, well past his prime and that the fish was so used to being caught that it seemed he knew they would let him go. Each line has a view of visual imagery in it and it draws in the reader to find out more of what a simple fish was like.
Auditory imagery is a little less in this poem than visual imagery. Mainly the line of “A green line, frayed at the end where he broke it, two heavier lines, and a fine black thread still crimped from the strain and snap when it broke and he got away” (Bishop 55-60). This part shows visual imagery and a small hint of auditory mainly by those that may have gone fishing in the past. You can always tell when your line snaps from weight because you hear it sharp depending on the thickness of it.
There is lots of tactile imagery as well, it blends in with the visual imagery to make one flow of reality. In every sentence it is something that you can feel, “While his gills were breathing in the terrible oxygen the frightening gills, fresh and crisp with blood, that can cut so badly” (Bishop 21-25). Each line is a perfect vision of what is going on around her and every detail of the fish down to the White Sea lice.
I love this poem and each imagery that Bishops displays. It’s so simple and yet its complex to the point where I think, “I could never write something that well”. I like how along with the imagery there is a comparison to something that adds into each imagery that is being noticed. It all ties together so beautifully. So far I think this may be my favorite poem that we have been assigned to read from the book.
2017-04-30 11:03 am

Designer Babies

Starting with the moment two people realize they are about to be parents either for the first time or for another time. Thinking about their future and the future of their child, and whether or not they can really do everything they need to, to give them the best quality of life available. Other thoughts evolve in the mind, will the baby be healthy, will it be a boy or a girl, will it grow up to be handsome, beautiful, smart or talented? Well now, parents no longer need to wait to find out. One final decision, designer baby yes or no?
A designer baby or a child that has been turned into an experiment. “In simpler terms, using biotechnology to choose what type of baby you want.” (Hanson, 2016) Depending on religious views, what was once a product of science or a miracle from God has now become a genetically modified experiment. A designer baby is made when scientists alter the DNA within an embryo, taking out or adding a certain gene to create a desired child. With this a designer baby can be altered in multiple ways, the parents would be able to scientifically choose the sex, height, hair color, intelligence, or even certain looks of the child before its born.
No more waiting would be needed to find if they had a perfect child, because they got to choose everything. This may sound like a dream, but it can also be a nightmare in all reality. Some pros for this alteration are giving the child certain genes that the parents do not carry, reducing genetic diseases that are past down from the parents which can also help stop the passing of bad genes when the designer child reproduces. Cons of this alteration could be a termination of the embryo, the baby has no choice, it can only be done by those that can afford it, or loss of individuality. In opinions the cons outweigh the pros in just terms of accidental termination of the embryo.
Starting with the pros, with the child getting genes that the parents do not carry could be a plus. Perhaps the parents come from a line of brown hair brown eye family, and they desire a blonde hair blue eye child. If that trait is created, it is placed in the genetic line for many generations to come. Reducing genetic diseases, this may be the only real positivity to a designer baby, being able to take out a specific gene that may cause Down syndrome or Muscular dystrophy. Giving that child an opportunity to be normal and the family an opportunity to have a less stressful life by taking those certain diseases out of the genetics. Helping to stop the passing of bad genes to other generation would be another plus, such as obesity, cancers, or something small such as webbed feet.
Cons for designer babies is the whole process, first being that the baby has no choice. Just like the baby had no choice in coming into this world, the baby wouldn’t have a choice of being normal. They would always be a special human, one that was made to be their parent’s idea of perfect. This being a very expensive modification costing twice as much as it would other than having a natural child, many people cannot afford this and believing this is a good thing, will hopefully discourage people to attempt it. Loss of individuality is a big part of why designer babies are a bad idea. With genetic modification, the parents have made a child that they see as perfect, that they have high hopes for and may want them to be the best at whatever they do. In reality, they have taken away their individuality, they may wonder why they just can’t be normal, be able to fail and succeed based on who they are as a person. When in reality they were designed to succeed and be superior like robots.
Lastly for the worst of all, the termination of the embryo. This procedure is not 100% effective yet. Meaning that during the process of making the parents a perfect child, the embryo dies, meaning the baby dies. In the end, they lost an already perfect child because of something they wanted and thoughts may always be present to them of what if. What if they wouldn’t have tried to design a special child. Would their child still be alive or would they have already had all the things that they tried to genetically modify that made them special. “The potential harms, such as a parents forcing a child to study trombone when the kid would rather play soccer, don’t seem big enough to interfere with parental choice.” (Ghose, 2014) In the end the child will have their own unique personality and the parent creating them to be something they want may not even be realistic in the child’s mind because they want so much to be normal.
For instance, a movie was released in 2009 called My Sisters Keeper. The result of this movie was a family had a daughter named Kate who when she was very little was diagnosed with leukemia, as her body failed her parents were not matches for transplants to save her life. The doctors stated they could design a child to be a perfect match for Kate. So they made a designer child, a little girl named Anna. From the moment Anna was born they started taking things from her to give to Kate, using her for body parts, bone marrow etc. Forcing her against her will at times holding her down to get what they wanted. In the end she sued her parents for the rights to her own body so it would all stop. The end result is her sister died, that’s what she wanted because she was tired of fighting. Only then did the parents finally see Anna as a person.
Many people have said that they would not do what they did. In reality a person wouldn’t know what to do unless they were in that situation and about to lose a child. Had Kate been a designer baby could they have gotten rid of the gene that caused leukemia? Perhaps. If Anna was not a designer baby, would Kate have died younger? Perhaps. In the end there is no right answer, but it fell under the pros and cons of this topic. Pro, she got to grow up with her sister and help her, con was she wasn’t seen as much of a person till Kate died and having to have multiple tests and surgeries, it stole her individuality. “Based on the strong arguments against genetic engineering and the appeal of human rights, it is not surprising that so many people see this new technology as immoral.” (Catalano, 2012)
“A prominent scientist has already spelled out a list of 10 conditions, things like stronger bones, slow-fast-twitch muscles, so that the resulting child could be good at an endurance or sprinting sport, and sleep- there’s a gene that’s correlated with people needing less sleep.” (Liss-Schultz, 2016) These are no longer children, they are lab rats, no longer normal, and scientists are trying to play God. Robots that hardly need sleep, what would be next, could they go days without food and be perfectly healthy? Children are not animals, they are blessings and should not be tampered with. They were created by two people, accident or purpose they are still living breathing human beings but being a designer baby, not by choice is what they may fear most. Not fitting in, not being normal and only being the person someone else wants them to be and not being themselves.

Works Cited
Catalano, M. (2012). The Prospect of Designer Babies: Is It Inevitable? Retrieved from Pit Jourmnal: pitjournal..unc.edu/article/prospect-designer-babies-it-invitable
Ghose, T. (2014, March 13). Children to Order: The Ethics of 'Designer Babies'. Retrieved from Lives Science: www.livesscience.com/44807-designer-babies-ethics.html
Hanson, J. (2016). Retrieved from Future For All: www.futureforall.org/bioengineering/designer-babies.html
Liss-Schultz, N. (2016, February 8). We Are This Close To "Designer Babies". Retrieved from Mother Jones: www.motherjones.com/politics/2016/02/genome-embryo-crispr-designer-babies
My Sister's Keeper (2009). [Motion Picture].
2017-04-30 11:01 am

The Blind Side

The Blind Side, an inspirational movie and personal favorite. This movie is a true story of a poor, homeless and struggling African American teenager Michael Oher. Having an extremely rough life, Michael is taken in by the Touhy family. The Touhy family goes through the process of breaking into his past and gaining trust. Turning Michael into a star football player, Michael and the Touhy family are changed forever, both finding everything they have been missing.
Applying social psychology to this movie, originates from the soul of Michael Oher as he deals with low self-esteem (Kassin, Fein, Markus, 2016, pg 76) and the feelings of abandonment and being misunderstood. Dealing with low self-esteem (Kassin, Fein, Markus, 2016, pg 76) through mostly the first half of the movie, Michael doesn’t let anyone in. He has a hard time trusting people because the ones he did trust disappeared. On many occasions Michael only had the look of pain and sadness, for instance on Michaels first day of school all of the kids looked at him like he was a monster and talked about him. He also felt alone, confused and scared when he had to take a test about things he never learned about before. Only a few times would he grin, people would look at him funny, make fun of him or little girls would run away when he said “Hi”. Michael was different, massive in size and the only African American at his Christian school. Being treated different left his self-esteem (Kassin, Fein, Markus, 2016, pg 76) crushed and he felt alone. When he would start to feel better and more confident about himself an event would take place that would set him back again.
A sense of great loneliness (Kassin, Fein, Markus, 2016, pg 356) followed Michael everywhere through his life. Being taken from his drug addicted mother and separated from his siblings. Growing up on peoples couches when he ran away from foster homes. He would hear his friend Steve argue with his dad that he wanted him to leave and that he never paid attention to him alone anymore. They kicked Michael out of the house, leaving him homeless once again and feeling as lonely as ever. There was no one to care for him or to make sure he had the education and the chance in life he longed for. At first when he was taken to the Tuohy’s home they distanced themselves a little from him. Mrs. Tuohy even stated on his first night, “You don’t think he’ll steal anything do you?” “If you hear a scream call the insurance adjuster”. They had all stereotyped him because of his life situation and his color. Michael still felt lonely even though they were there, going to eat alone and sitting at school alone.
Everyone had their own judgements and using facial feedback hypothesis (Kassin, Fein, Markus, 2016, pg 62) you could see and feel the change through the whole movie. Looks of sadness from Michael at every screen shot, curiosity from Sean when he saw Michael picking up popcorn to eat after Collins volleyball game. Concern and determination from Mrs. Tuohy when she first saw him walking in the rain and freezing cold after SJ’s play. Confusion and sympathy from Collins when she went to sit with him to study in the library and always happiness from SJ especially on the car ride to buy the Madden game. Then it was all happiness, coming to the point where Michael was added to the family and accepted by everyone.
Michael and SJ had a brother hood relationship through the whole movie. Even down to the college recruiters where SJ was the confederate (Kassin, Fein, Markus, 2016, pg 44) always asking “what’s in it for me” as Michael tried to decide on which school to choose. Michael wanted to make everyone happy and felt he owed SJ his time to shine too for sending in the video. SJ and Michael did everything and went everywhere together as if their lives were one.
When choosing a college Michael wanted to please the Tuohy family by going to Olé Miss even though he wanted to attend Tennessee. Social exchange theory (Kassin, Fein, Markus, 2016, pg 384) was applied by Michael wanting to play football in college and better himself but didn’t want to disappoint the Tuohy family. After the meeting with the NCAA and running away, Michael and Mrs. Tuohy came to an understanding. “If Tennessee is what you want I promise to go to every game, but I won’t wear that God awful orange, it’s not on my color wheel and I refuse to wear it”.
When Michael ran away, Mrs. Tuohy asked Sean “Did you ever ask him what he wanted? Cuz I sure hell know I never did”. Using social comparison theory (Kassin, Fein, Markus, 2016, pg 66), Mrs., Tuohy compared herself to the woman from the NCAA. She was the only person that tried to convince Michael that Olé Miss was a setup and Tennessee was where he should be playing football. Mrs. Tuohy was a determined “in your face” kind of person through the entire movie until she felt she was making all of Michaels decisions of what she wanted for him, instead of what he wanted.
Within this movie and connected to social psychology and ripping it apart to analyze it, you realize there is so much more to the story than entertainment. Finding that social psychology is all around, in every action, every thought. This movie could be one of the top movies in learning the topics of social psychology. From self-esteem to social comparison theory and loneliness. With social perception you get to understand what others are like and how they behave. Lifestyles that are so different but are all around and applied to the world. Social perception in this movie is in a form of stereotype. Seeing someone in a certain way, but knowing that the thoughts and opinions can always change with people.

References
Johnson, B. Kosove, A. Netter, G. (Producers) & Hancock, L (Director). (2009). The Blind Side [Motion Picture]. United States: Alcon Entertainment.
Fein, S. Kassin, S. Markus, H. R. (2016). Social Psychology. Canada. Cengage Learning.