Daily Archives: December 6, 2011
We are the generation of body modifications. Piercings, tattoos and other forms of body modification are not modern innovations, but seem to have gained popularity in the last two decades. Society’s reaction to body mods is largely disapproving, especially in the workplace, and I think that needs to change.
Body modification is changing or altering your body from its natural or “normal” state to fit how you want it to look. Changes can range from simple things such as a nose piercing or a tattoo, to more noticeable things like dreadlocks. Some people do even more extreme things like get reconstructive surgery.
Changes like these are a personal decision.
Some view these modifications as a form of self-expression and a way to be different. While some may not think it is a good reason to permanently alter your body, it is still a personal decision—one that does not affect how one performs in the workplace or at school. It also does not change a person’s worth or make them a bad person.
Body mods are becoming so popular that many employers don’t have a problem with them anymore. But there are still some places that refuse workers based solely on a few tattoos or piercings. I know someone who was fired because she had dreadlocks and her employer viewed them as “dirty.”
Ignorance is a large reason for this problem. Dreadlocks aren’t dirty. There is a lot of maintenance that goes into the hairstyle. Piercings and stretched ears don’t make someone a bad person. The individual simply likes the way he or she looks.
People shouldn’t be denied a job that they are qualified for just because they look a little different. There is nothing wrong with standing out. The skills someone possesses might be indispensable, and to deny them based on something shallow is an unwise decision.
I myself enjoy piercings, stretched ears and tattoos. I got these modifications because I like them and I think they look good. It doesn’t change the fact that I’m going somewhere with my career and that I’ll make a great mother one day. It simply means I’ll look a little different. Yes, some are permanent, and I’m prepared to deal with those consequences. But I don’t think I’ll regret it. I don’t want to be afraid that my future is jeopardized because of something I find artistic.
While it is becoming increasingly more acceptable to have modifications, people who are pierced, tattooed and physically altered are still being discriminated against and denied equal opportunity.
A person’s ability to work and perform is not taken away by these changes and the judgment needs to stop.
Kelsey Sutton/Copy chief
Most people don’t think about how the hamburger on their plate got there. They simply eat it without considering what they are consuming.
Even when people do stop to think about what the food put on their plate once was, they most likely don’t have an accurate idea of what really happens to the animals most people regularly consume.
When I was a kid, I always thought that farm animals lived a happy life, roaming relatively free in big green fields until they died and became our food.
I could not have been more wrong. Most farm animals live a miserable existence in cramped quarters until they are slaughtered for our consumption.
Poultry are perhaps the most mistreated, being fed tons of fattening food, but with no room to move around. Many chickens become so overweight that their legs break from the pressure.
How can we justify this kind of cruelty? Animals can feel pain and certainly don’t deserve to live such miserable lives just so people can eat their Big Macs and chicken nuggets at McDonalds.
Most Americans would be outraged if dogs or cats were treated this way, but little consideration is given to pigs, animals that are more intelligent than dogs.
According to ABC News, IQ research at the Babraham Institute in Cambridge, England has proven that farm animals are smarter than most people give them credit for.
Something needs to be done to change the way farm animals are treated. Factory farming is not only bad for the animals, but it’s also bad for the environment.
Instead of harvesting grain to be consumed by people, the majority of grain is harvested to feed farm animals, which are slaughtered to be eaten by humans. Because farmers feed their animals so much grain, wildlife habitats are destroyed to accommodate farmers’ needs.
While getting rid of factory farms is a huge task, there are simple ways for everyone to take a stand against this torture. The most obvious way to protest is to simply stop eating meat altogether. For many people, this is too radical of a change. However, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t other ways to help.
Reducing the amount of meat and eggs you eat can make a difference. Also, buying free-range meat and eggs can help. Free-range means that the animals are allowed more space to roam. This is a small step in the right direction for farming practices.
By not supporting the business of factory farms, you are helping to not support the torture of animals and the destruction of our environment. If everyone changes their eating habits, factory farms will be forced to realize that people no longer want what they have to offer.
Farming should be done the way it is portrayed in children’s books: cows and pigs roaming across green fields, free to graze the grass already provided by nature, instead of trapped in cramped quarters and being fed harvested grain.
Meghan O’Rourke/Opinion editor
It’s been a long, hard semester, and now the end is so close I can almost taste it. Only this week and finals lie between us and the holidays, whatever holidays you may celebrate.
It’s definitely showing in the realm of advertising, too. I’ve lost count of how many Christmas sale commercials I’ve heard on my Pandora radio station. So many stores are urging us to buy their stuff that you can practically hear them tripping and shoving each other to be first in line. And it’s alarming how many people are the same way—frantic to get the best deals and the most things.
Between Black Friday and the holidays, this time of year isn’t so much the season to be jolly as the season to show American consumerism at its finest. I get the feeling that too many people focus on the giving and receiving aspect of Christmas, making it a holiday centered around the all-important stuff. As nice as it is to give and receive presents, this should not be the focus of our holidays.
Now, if you asked an average person what the holidays were all about, you would probably get an answer about joy and love and being with family. Nobody likes to admit to being materialistic. However, the fact remains that the way consumerist America shows its joy and love is to give and receive presents, making the presents the most important aspect of the holiday.
I would urge everyone not to let the consumerist aspect of the holiday season get in the way of the things that truly make this time of year special. For some people, that might be drinking eggnog, or watching old Christmas movies with their grandparents. For others it could be caroling with their friends or baking a special cake.
Spending money on whatever deals mega-stores throw at us is hardly the reason to celebrate.
I’m not saying that you should boycott big stores and buy nothing. The holidays would be pretty dreary without people exchanging gifts, and it’s true that a lot of stores offer deals on items that would otherwise be out of a lot of people’s price range.
There are also a lot of organizations that give donated toys or food to children who wouldn’t otherwise get anything, and that is a wonderful kind of charity.
Giving gifts is not the only focus of the holidays, nor is it the main one. I doubt that any of the religious celebrations that happen around this time of year place much of an emphasis on getting stuff as part of the festivities.
As we head off on our break, we should anticipate the things that actually make the holidays special, not the prospect of acquiring more things.
Sharon Gollery/Culture editor
Think about all the countless hours you spend watching YouTube videos, looking at images on Pinterest or reading posts on blogs.
Now, picture them gone in an instant due to new government regulations. All across the country, millions are using these websites for their own entertainment or learning. The government is now trying to pass an internet censorship bill called the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA).
With SOPA, corporations will have more control over their copyrighted materials. This is a good idea to a certain extent. Corporations such as the Hollywood movie studios that are supporting this bill are trying to make sure they get as much money and accreditation as possible for the products they produce.
Websites such as YouTube would not exist if this bill was active at the time of its creation. There didn’t seem to be a problem originally, but now that sites like YouTube have become so profitable, corporations want a cut of the earnings.
According to the Huffington Post, if this new bill is passed, companies would basically be able to force websites like YouTube to remove all the material belonging to the Hollywood movie industries and music production companies. This can include a demand to shut down non-complying websites.
These types of threats also affect consumers. Shouldn’t the consumer have a say in the matter? Stricter laws could possibly in fact lead to a loss of revenue for some, especially those businesses that advertise heavily on media sharing sites.
SOPA is a good idea; however, some of the guidelines established need to be more realistic to both sides. People complain about how the government has so much power now but with this new law, it will also have authority over everything that goes onto the Internet. The government should not have the ability to control every aspect of the lives of citizens.
Piracy is a bad thing. There are alternate routes that can be taken to prevent this from happening, such as establishing fees or targeting the more extreme pirating sites.
Our lives are based on the mass of freely circulating knowledge and media that can be found on the Internet. This bill challenges the building blocks upon which our generation has grown. Some regulation is necessary, but this bill is not the answer.
Meghan O’Rourke, since you are the opinion editor for The Linfield Review, I thought I would share some of my opinions with you.
In my opinion, your running bandanas are awesome.
Not only do they keep your hair out of your face, but you are also prepared to rob a bank or hold up a train full of loot.
In my opinion, your writing is brilliant, and it makes me hope that you are considering a mass communication degree.
In my opinion, we would make a great couple at cross-country prom this weekend.
I would love to take you out to dinner, wear over-the-top outfits and take an unhealthy amount of awkward pictures together.
I would love to share a dance, enjoy the company of our teammates and celebrate the end of a great season with you.
Feel free to respond via airplane banner in the sky, writing in the clouds or a parcel from an owl.
Letter to the editor