Pollution and its effects

Pollution has been an ongoing issue for years. The 2010 Top 10 list of Dirtiest Cities in America came out and seven of the cities are located in California.  This November at the ballot box in California, Proposition 23 was voted a no go. Proposition 23 would have temporarily suspended key emission-reduction tenets in the Golden State’s Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, (http://realestate.yahoo.com/promo/americas-dirtiest-cities.html).

The voters of California did not vote to pass this law because they knew taxes would have to be raised to have cleaner air. California’s state unemployment is at 12.4%. Although there is now going to be cuts so that Proposition 23 will begin in 2012.

People in the dirtiest cities of America are at a higher risk of asthma and chronic bronchitis.

It is disturbing that the people of California would rather have polluted air than to be taxed a little more to breathe clean air. Although these cities do have many factories, farming, railroads and diesel trucks, there is always room for improvement.

This statement in the article helped me understand why anyone would not want cleaner air. “It’s hard to argue against cleaner air. Thus the debate leading up to the vote on Prop 23 was effectively framed as good vs. evil. On the good side were environmentalists and the sensitive pink lungs of asthma-prone children. On the evil side: power plants, oil refiners and diesel truck drivers.”

With trying to have cleaner air, it could force factories to shut down, and then the unemployment rate would be raising more. On the other hand, shutting down these factories would make way for new technology and going more “green” in California.

According to the Lung Association 175 million Americans live in counties where outdoor air quality earned a grade of F. Let’s help fix the air we breath and take part in helping our world.

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Graphic labels on Cigarettes

An article on how the Food and Drug Administration wants to put graphic labels on cigarette packages caught my eye. The FDA is starting a new campaign, in which cigarette companies would have to have graphic pictures of lung cancer, rotten gums and teeth, and slogans such as “ I Cause Cancer” on the top of the cigarette package.

I understand that smoking causes cancer and as much publicity and public service announcements about smoking and the risks of cancer there are out there I think having to put these graphic pictures on the packages is ridiculous.  Tobacco companies have worked with the FDA for years in making sure they put warnings on their packages and the warnings are fairly large and are not hidden. This is a way for the FDA to bully the tobacco companies. Don’t misunderstand me, I think smoking is bad for the body and I would not recommend anyone to smoke.

“It acts as a very public billboard because you all of the sudden are reading something about lung cancer from that pack behind the cash register, whereas before you were just reading ‘Marlboro,'” said David Hammond, a health behavior researcher at the University of Waterloo in Canada, who is working with the firm designing the labels for the FDA (http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20101111/ap_on_bi_ge/us_fda_tobacco;_ylt=AvenmI1RU8ufDWjiYUZnqd3VJRIF;_ylu=X3oDMTJmcnJydjBxBGFzc2V0A2FwLzIwMTAxMTExL3VzX2ZkYV90b2JhY2NvBGNwb3MDMQRwb3MDMgRzZWMDeW5fdG9wX3N0b3J5BHNsawNmZWRzcHJvcG9zZWc-).

I think as adults, which one has to be 18-years-old to buy cigarettes, we already know the risks of smoking and the effects it can and most likely will have on our lives. If the FDA is going to make the tobacco industry put these graphic pictures on their product then shouldn’t the alcohol industry be putting pictures of car wrecks caused by drunk drivers and damaged livers on their bottles; should McDonalds be placing pictures of clogged arteries and obesity warnings on their menus?

I think the FDA should not set double standards, we get it, smoking is bad for you, it causes cancer, heart disease, tooth and gum disease, and other health problems.

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Human Trafficking

Human trafficking is an issue that often gets over looked. Millions of women and children are taken into trafficking and will never get out. Most of these women and children are helpless and cannot escape their situations without help from authorities. A major problem with human trafficking is the secrecy behind the issue. Human trafficking is one of the fastest growing international crimes around the world. Trafficking is considered the third largest source of profits for organized crime, with drugs and weapons being the top two. Each year an estimated 600,000 to 800,000 men, women, and children are trafficked across international boarders and sold into sex slavery.

There is now a campaign launched by the federal government that promotes awareness of the human trafficking problem. The campaign is called “Blue Blindfold”; it includes television, radio, and print ads (http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/local/awareness-campaign-takes-aim-at-human-trafficking-102436379.html). Most victims are trafficked are taken from Asian countries or from the eastern European countries.

Some may be confused with human trafficking and human smuggling. People who take part in human smuggling usually are not enslaved and are free once they pay the transporting cost, sometimes if they do not pay they will be thrown into human trafficking. Human trafficking usually is trading people to use them as sex slaves.

This subject of human trafficking is appealing to me because it is such a huge problem, but because of the conditions people are going through it is embarrassing to talk about it. I have compassion on all men, women, and children who are being trafficked; they cannot help what they are being put through. Once a person is brought of trafficking it can take months or even years for them to feel normal again and trust others.

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Online Relationships

Adults are staring to use the Internet to develop online relationships. Some view online relationships as normal and some do not; oftentimes people do not know how to respond to whether they think online relationships are normal or not. Is having an online friendship different than having a romantic relationship? Many individuals do look at maintaining face-to-face relationships through online communication as “normative”, but to have relationships online that was not started by face-to-face interaction as “non-normative.” Communication plays a large role in relationships; with online relationships all of the time there is communication, even though in face-to-face relationships one can physically “go out” and experience a physical presence, online communication is a true relationship.

One reason why online relationships are so common is because the user has the ability to change their identity. Users are able to create the person they think they are rather than the way society sees them. Men use the Internet less than women, who are more likely to use the Web to develop interpersonal relationships.

Dr. Ellen Kriedman (also known as Dr. Ellen) says online dating is an advantage for people who are uncomfortable about meeting people in public places, or who are new to an area, (http://health.howstuffworks.com/relationships/dating/risks-and-rewards-of-online-dating.htm). Not only are the regular struggles that romantic relationships have in play, but the relationship also has distance and most likely have commitment issues.

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Postal Employee killings

Two postal employees were killed Monday in Henning, TN.  Two men came into the postal office and shot the two women working.

These ladies died for what? The gunmen did not get away with anything. It saddens me that people think they can take the life of someone they do not even know for a few dollars. The two women were 58 and 33 years old. The office is a small one-story brick building where the same people came in everyday to get their mail. People who picked up their mail from the postal office knew these women; they were part of their everyday routine.

District Attorney Mike Dunavant said the case involved “disturbing violence” but did not elaborate (http://today.msnbc.msn.com/id/39723346/ns/us_news-crime_and_courts/).

The FBI was called in to help investigate for murders. The vehicle the officers are looking for is a maroon Chevrolet Malibu.

What is our world coming to when it is not safe to walk into a post office to get mail?

“Standing on a street corner near the post office, city resident Emmitt Hennings, a 71-year-old retiree, said it was hard to comprehend what happened. ‘I just couldn’t believe it, not in this town,” Hennings said. “It’s too quiet (http://www.click2houston.com/news/25427815/detail.html).’”

Even quiet towns where everyone knows everyone are starting to become targets for burglaries and murders.

The police have not determined a motive of the shooters but do think they were there to rob the post office. Hopefully these officers will find these men and put them away for life. This town is a small town and I believe they will not stop looking for these men until they are found. There is one thing about this story that gives me a little bit of hope for the world. That is when a small town like Henning comes together to mourn the loss of a member of the town they are determined to find the men who shook their town with fear.

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Obesity – A growing problem in America

Obesity is a growing problem in America. Overweight children are more likely to become overweight adults. Due to the unhealthy lifestyle of overweight children and adults there is an estimated 300,000 deaths a year (http://www.aacap.org/cs/root/facts_for_families/obesity_in_children_and_teens). This number of deaths should not be acceptable for a problem that can be treated with something as simple as eating fewer calories than needed and exercising. Schools could be blamed for children’s obesity because some schools have cut physical education classes and their lunch menus are less healthy than years ago. The first lady, Mrs. Obama has launched a program called “Let’s Move”, this program has four key goals: Get parents more informed about nutrition and exercise, improve the quality of food in schools, making healthy foods more affordable and accessible for families, and focusing on more physical education (http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/Health/michelle-obama-childhood-obesity-initiative/story?id=9781473). I think this program is a great incentive for people to step up and take action with a little help. There are certain health related issues that cause people to become overweight, but America needs to step up and take action against this disease. If parents and teachers could set an example and stress the importance of being in good health I think our country could do great things and this obesity disease could fade away.

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Facebook dangers

Facebook is one of the most commonly known social networking sites around. I can’t go a day without hearing someone mention Facebook. It is a great site to stay updated with friends and family, but it can also harm many people. Facebook was initially intended for college students and faculty before anyone could use it. Facebook is now causing big problems in people’s lives. On Facebook one can put their entire life story. There are birthday settings, notes you can write about your life, pictures to be posted, and status’s. On Yahoo news I came across a story about how Facebook is creating crime (http://finance.yahoo.com/family-home/article/110674/6-things-you-should-never-reveal-on-facebook). This article talks about how your birth date and place could help someone steal your identity. The article also said that 40% of people list their home address that is a robbery waiting to happen. There are also stories of people speaking poorly about their job on their status updates, which in return lead them to being jobless, then they complain about being jobless.

Facebook does have its pros being I love being able to share photos with my family of what I have been doing and where I have been going, but if you are not as open with your family as some are, then this could cause a fight. Seven out of ten relationships ending in divorce have stated the word Facebook in the divorce papers. This makes me think, is the thrill of being able to know what people are doing without actually talking to them worth ending a marriage? Users of Facebook have their own opinion on site. The site is a great way to get to know people and to keep in touch with old friends and family, but is the future generation of Facebook going to be a problem with confidentially?

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