|Taming of the Shrew and 500 Days of Summer|
Relationships are often pictured as a man chasing after a woman he likes, and she falls right into his arms and they get married and live “happily ever after.” In “Taming of the Shrew,” a man named Petruchio chases a girl named Katherine. Katherine isn’t your average woman pictured in movies and fairytales, she is feisty and fights for what she believes in. Due to the time being, she is being forced to marry Petruchio even though she does not want to. In the movie “500 Days of Summer,” it is almost the same exact way. The main character, Tom, has spent his whole life searching for the woman of his dreams and to marry. He meets Summer. Summer doesn’t believe in love, and expresses that to Tom, but he doesn’t listen, they get into a highly romantic relationship, and she ends up leaving him heart broken. These two stories prove how women do not always have to fall for whichever man shows interest in them, that they are human and when they have the choice, they choose what they want and what is best for them in the long run. It depends on the societal rules of the time: Summer had the choice, Katherine did not because of how women were treated in those times.
“You lie, in faith, for you are called plain Kate, and bonny Kate, and sometimes Kate the curst.”
(Act II, Scene I, Line 179-180)
Katherine meets her soon-to-be husband Petruchio for the first time, and it is not a pleasant experience for her. He forces his way to her, despite her constant disapproval of him. Amongst their bickering, this line shows the fact that Kate is known as a “curst” among the town. This is because she chooses what she wants instead of being weak and fragile as a woman was supposed to be at that time.
The way Summer is seen is almost the same way:
One of Tom’s coworkers see Tom staring at Summer. He warns him that he hears that she is a bitch and starts calling her degrading words such as a “skank.” Tom looks disappointed, replying “Why do the pretty girls think they can treat people that way?” This is because Summer has turned many guys down, not falling for their charm and choosing her own path. Because of her rejection of love and relationships, men cannot dominate her so therefore they look down upon her. In Taming of the Shrew, Katherine was looked down upon and called names by men because she stood up to them and rejected them if she wanted to. Both women, Summer and Kate, faced ridicule for making their own decisions and choosing what they want.
“Alas, good Kate, I will not burden thee, for knowing thee to be but young and light-” Petruchio
“Too light for such a swain as you to catch and yet as heavy as my weight should be.”
(Act II, Scene I, 196-199)
Petruchio persists on winning Kate over. He even goes on a high speed chase to get to her. She tells him over and over that she does not want him, but he does not care. He knows she is a woman and that he can easily dominate her and make decisions for her. He knew that eventually she would marry him anyways, since everyone wanted Kate to be married very soon and he already had her father's approval.
Summer is sitting and chatting with Tom and his friend. The friend asks Summer if she has a boyfriend. She replies no, and the two guys are shocked and start asking her if she is a lesbian. She says no, she just likes being alone. She claims she doesn’t believe in love and has never been in it. “There’s no such thing as love, just fantasy.” Tom still proceeds and falls in love with her anyways. In Taming of the Shrew, Katherine was rushed to get married. It was unusual to be her age and not have a husband. She never expressed that she did not want a husband, however, by her stubborn attitude towards the men who wanted her, it shows she wanted to find someone she actually wanted and was not going to settle for just anyone. Summer and Katherine were both, as the quote says, “too light too catch.”
“I see a woman may be made a fool,
(Act III, Scene II, 194)
Kate realises after marrying Petruchio that she was a fool. Although she did put up a great deal of resistance, her position as a woman resulted in what she did not want: to marry Petruchio. She is saying that if any women does not resist something that they don’t want at all, that they will end up getting it anyways.
Summer blatantly ends the entire relationship she had with Tom in one sentence: “I think we should end this thing.” Tom’s emotions and sadness are shown through this scene, he describes how well the relationship was going and how much he loves her and he knows that she is the one. Summer seems to be emotionless and careless, and compares their relationship to another relationship where a woman was murdered, her being the murderer. Tom’s emotions take over and he leaves the restaurant, while Summer yells, “Don’t go, you’re still my best friend!” Tom did not listen to Summer’s thoughts on love in the beginning, therefore he falls in love and she leaves him heartbroken. Summer and Kate’s resistance was blatant throughout both stories, however, both men did not listen to them.
Both Summer and Kate fight for what they want. They both allow themselves to make their own decisions on what they want and what is best for them. Although Kate obviously loses that fight, she still had her ideals on how she wanted her life to go. Kate and Summer both have a unique view on love for a woman to have: they do not need a man by their side. Even though at that time it was the norm to have a husband, Kate did not have one by her age. She denied every chance of having one because she did not like the person. Summer denied men, too, because she did not believe in love. Both women were ridiculed for crossing the boundaries of what they were supposed to feel towards love, which is the fairytale of dreaming about marriage and depending on husbands.
I heard my name twice in a voice I recognized. I sat in the passenger seat of the green Nissan Xterra. I looked over, there is my dad looking right at me, just how I remember him now, short blonde hair and light blue eyes. He had that concerned look on his face, the one I pictured whenever I thought of him. “I want you to get into a good high school,” he said, as we passed by Council Rock high school, where he went, “It doesn’t have to be down there.”
“Down there” as in Philly, where I lived, with my mom and sisters. A court ruled that my mom had custody of my sisters and I, which meant that I see my dad every other weekend. Obviously, he had always wanted us to live with him permanently, and this high school talk was one of his strategies.
“Yeah, maybe,” was all I really ever replied, being in the seventh grade and not so much caring about high school at the time. I always knew that moving to Bucks County and living with him and attending high school there was one of my options, but I always sort of knew I wasn’t going to go with that option.
Little did I know, that about 6 months later, I would no longer even have that option.
It was a Friday morning, I was getting ready for school, excited that this was the last day of the school week and that the weekend was approaching. I felt that way until my mom burst through the door sobbing like she had just heard the worst news she could ever hear, right after getting off the phone with my stepmom. “Your dad died last night,” was the only sentence she could get out.
It felt like the words pierced right through me one by one. I realized that it happened before she even finished the sentence, and it didn't take a while for me to realize, which was weird because it was extremely unexpected. I felt numb, my stomach in knots and my mind overflowing with thoughts, the craziest it had ever been and the worst I had ever felt.
I don’t remember much after that; I just remember crying, everyone in my house crying. The day itself taught me a lot about myself. Among my sisters, I was always known as the “rock” because I was the one that had it all together and was always weirdly emotionless, which isn’t even how I really am, just how I let myself be on the outside. I hold most of my emotions in.
The rest of that day was a long one. My mom, siblings, and I went over to my dad’s house, which then became known as my stepmom’s house. As soon as I walked in, the house had felt different. Or, the house didn’t feel different, I did.
After a long time of just talking and crying, I went up to the room I stayed in when I was there, just walking around it and examining things. My stepmom came in at one point.
“Sweet pea,” this was a nickname she gave me when I was really young. “You okay?”
“I’m doing okay,” I said in reply. “I think it’s Kelsey you should be worrying about, she’s been crying a lot.”
I regretted saying that immediately after. I always feel the need to make sure everyone is happy, I put myself last, and seeing my entire family in that state just added to the emotional wreckage I was already experiencing.
This caused my mind to race the entire day, focused on one question: what can I do to make everything better? But there was nothing I could do. An entire person, my dad, who we all loved was gone and there was nothing we could do.
“No, I’m worried about you.” She said, in a soft worried tone she never usually had.
I usually liked being alone with my emotions. I didn’t want to put my burdens on anyone. But when someone notices or show they care, I appreciate it. So her individual attention made me happy. After losing my dad, all the support I got from people made me realize that I can’t really face problems like these alone.
The adjustments I had to make was to live without my dad. Losing a person leaves a giant space in your life that is impossible to fill. There was no person or thing that could fill that space. You just have to get used to that space, accept the fact that it’s there and that there’s nothing you can do about it.
Being thirteen, and not having any experience with losing anyone that close to me, those adjustments were hard. It was hard not going up to his house every other weekend; not getting any calls of him yelling at me about not calling him; not hearing his voice, seeing him, or anything.
Eventually, I did get used to that lifestyle, but never fully. I still think of my dad every single day, usually when I see something that reminds me of him, like hearing a song that he used to play or just a random thought or memory relating to him that pops up in my head.
Sometimes my mom or one of my sisters would bring up something about him, and after he is mentioned, there is always a short silence. “He’s really gone?” is the question that always comes up in my head during that silence, and I assume it’s in their mind too. Then there’s that realization, that yes he is really gone, and we go on with what we were saying.
I don’t feel all that different from before that situation, but then again I feel like a completely different person. I know that now I’m much more appreciative of the people around me, and much more aware that they could go any second. I was always aware of death and that it happened, but it just never occurred to me that it could also happen to me or to someone close to me. With that situation, it made me realize it could happen to anyone.
Reading “The Yellow Birds”, a book about a man named Bartle that goes to war, I felt like I connected with him emotionally in a way that I couldn’t if I had read that book before the situation. Bartle was best friends with a guy named Murph, and being in the war, he knew that at any time he could die or that Murph could die. Before I lost my dad, I wasn’t prepared for all of that. But now I’m aware that I could die or that anyone close to me could die at any moment.There was good and bad that came out of this situation. Good and bad comes out of every situation. I learned many important lessons about death and also about life. I would never say that I’m thankful that all of this happened, but I’m thankful for these lessons that came out of it.
"God hates fags." "Homosexuals are possessed by demons." "Scientology classifies homosexuality as an illness." These are a few examples of the derogatory words written on picket signs paraded around at any homophobic protest. Many people that belong to certain religions believe homosexuality is a decision and not an identity that someone is born with. Christianity is the main religion where the mindset is that. They compare it to the means of a disorder or a disease. They believe that it can just go away with treatment, and for a time the medical community agreed. However, homosexuality cannot be cured because it is a sexual orientation that can be hidden or masked but does not go away. Trying to “treat” a person of homosexuality can result in serious mental health problems.
"If there is a man who lies with a male as those who lie with a woman, both of them have committed a detestable act; they shall surely be put to death. Their bloodguiltness is upon them." That is a clear line in the old testament of the Christian bible that shaped many people’s opinions on homosexuality. According to a Washington Post poll, 35% of Americans oppose marriage equality, meaning those people are most likely against gays and believe being gay is a decision. This was before June 26, when the Supreme Court ruled that gay marriage be legal in all 50 states. There was pride, happiness, and rainbows throughout the country but, not everyone was happy with that decision. Those unhappy people were the ones who did not want equality for homosexuals and wanted them to change.
In the 80s through the 90s, there were several methods through which Christians expressed their disgust towards gays. They have always spread their message that homosexuality is a curable disorder. Conversion therapy, a treatment that aims to convert any homosexual to heterosexual, was very popular. This type of therapy started around the 19th century, and persisted for over a hundred years. Recently president Barack Obama expressed his support for the ban of these therapies. Studies show that the conversion treatments do more harm that what is believed to be good. "There is no scientific evidence that reparative or conversion therapy is effective in changing a person's sexual orientation. There is, however, evidence that this type of therapy can be destructive," says Rodrigo Munoz, a president of the American Psychiatric Association. These treatments can cause serious mental health problems in the patients, coming from the urge of the patient to change, but being unable to do so. They just feel as if they are not normal and do not fit in with society.
Up until 1973, homosexuality was listed a mental illness in the DMV (Diagnostic and Statistic Manual.) Research into the origin, causes, and development led to its removal within the book. Some theorists argue that it emerges in adolescence, while some argue that an individual’s upbringing can influence homosexuality. Further scientific research prove not only that homosexuality isn’t a choice, it also suggests that is an inherited trait. According to a 2014 study in the journal Psychological Medicine, “A gene on the X chromosome (one of the sex chromosomes) called Xq28 and a gene on chromosome 8 seem to be found in higher prevalence in men who are gay. That study, involving more than 400 pairs of gay brothers, followed the 1993 report by geneticist Dean Hamer suggesting the existence of a "gay gene." This biological evidence contradicts the arguments that these people choose to be gay.
Religious beliefs, however, have mostly stayed the same. The Christian bible, a collection of sacred texts, has much authority over the lives of Christians. There are many verses proclaiming that homosexuality is wrong which clearly suggests that it is a choice. Fortunately, there is some evolution on the part of Christians. The Nalt Christians Project, a group of christians proclaiming their belief in full LGBT equality, says, “Without an explicit directive from God to exclude and condemn homosexuals, the Christian community’s treatment of gay persons is in clear violation of what Jesus and the New Testament writers pointedly identified as one-half of God’s most important commandment: to love one’s neighbor as one’s self.” Christians don’t have to support equality, but it is important to respect it and to know the facts and accept that it is not a decision, but an orientation.
Cox, John Woodrow. "Poll: Gay-marriage Support at Record High." Washington Post. The Washington Post, n.d. Web. 13 Oct. 2015. <https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/courts_law/poll-gay-marriage-support-at-record-high/2015/04/22/f6548332-e92a-11e4-aae1-d642717d8afa_story.html>.
"Taking God at His Word: The Bible and Homosexuality." The NALT Christians Project RSS. N.p., 23 July 2013. Web. 13 Oct. 2015. <http://www.notalllikethat.org/taking-god-at-his-word-the-bible-and-homosexuality/>.
"Homosexuality: Nature or Nurture." AllPsych. N.p., n.d. Web. 13 Oct. 2015. <http://allpsych.com/journal/homosexuality/#.VhxM_ELFvVr>.
Merritt, Jonathan. "How Christians Turned Against Gay Conversion Therapy." The Atlantic. Atlantic Media Company, 15 Apr. 2015. Web. 13 Oct. 2015. <http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2015/04/how-christians-turned-against-gay-conversion-therapy/390570/>.
Looking For Alaska is a beautifully romantic, yet dark, depressing novel by famous author John Green. It starts with introducing the main character, Miles, a dreary teenager who is obsessed with famous last words, and the reader takes on his point of view. But the unique thing about it is that the headline of the first chapter says “one hundred and thirty-six days before.” This immediately makes the reader think, one hundred and thirty-six days before what? That was John Green’s goal of writing the book in this structure, a countdown, to lure the reader in and to prepare them for whatever it is that is coming.
Countdowns can stir a range of emotions, it depends on the person. If you are impatient, you probably won’t like it. If you love anticipation and surprises, you will love it. That’s exactly whatever it is that’s coming, a surprise. Miles, the main character, wants to get away from his life and family in Florida and signs up for a boarding school in Alabama, and he explains his deeper reasoning: “So this guy, Francois Rabelais. He was this poet. And his last words were ‘I go to seek a Great Perhaps.’ That is why I’m going. So I don’t have to wait until I die to start seeking a Great Perhaps.”
As the countdown has already started, one hundred and thirty-six days, the reader probably already assumes that that is the countdown to when Miles finds his “Great Perhaps.” The reader might be questioning, why is he thinking he’ll find it at a boarding school? He gets to the boarding school, and meets his roommate named ‘the Colonel.’ They become friends and Miles’ new nickname becomes Pudge.
The Colonel introduces Pudge to his friend Alaska. Now, the reader might be assuming that the countdown relates to Alaska, because the book is called “Looking for Alaska.” He instantly falls in love with her and throughout the book he never tells her and never feels as if he’s good enough for her. They share knowledge with each other, and as time ticks on they become closer and closer. The reader may already be assuming that whatever this countdown is leading to, it may be a tragedy, which is a turn, because in the beginning you think of the “Great Perhaps” as a happy thing.
As the amount of days get lower, the reader is probably getting more and more anxious, and just wants to skip those pages all together. It locks them into the book, which was smart of the author, because who would want to leave a book and never find out what happens? Sure, you can skip pages to the part, but what's the fun in that? The structure definitely doesn’t take an instant, or as Pudge says, an instant doesn’t even exist. “What the hell is instant? Nothing is instant. Instant rice takes five minute, instant pudding an hour. I doubt that an instant of blinding pain feels particularly instantaneous.”
Reviewers weighed in on the how they feel on the structure, ¨With a structure like this, we learn the before and the after of the main event, which is something you don't see in a lot of books. Too often we're just thrown into the middle of a story with no explanation as to how the characters got there or how they know each other. However, here we start at the beginning and meet Alaska and the Colonel at exactly the same time the protagonist, Miles 'Pudge' Halter, does.¨
Without the countdown, this book would have no path. Sure, the story would stay the same, but the event could happen at any given time without any sort of preparation. The reader is there throughout Pudge’s adventure. They see him meet the Colonel and Alaska and watch his life change from boring into amazing. Although the book gives barely any details about Pudge’s past, the reader can conclude that it wasn’t anything like it was at that boarding school. Pudge is introduced to alcohol, cigarettes, pranks, actually having friends, and of course, love.
One day before. Pudge, the Colonel, and Alaska pull pranks on the Eagle, the head of the school, by setting off fireworks in the woods to annoy him, because they don’t particularly like him. They get into trouble with the Eagle a lot throughout the book, and plenty of times they were almost banned. They all go back to the room and get drunk. Things go forward with Pudge and Alaska, they kiss. But then all of a sudden Alaska starts freaking out, drunk out of her mind, saying that she has to drive to go see her boyfriend since it was their 8 month anniversary. She leaves, and the reader can already assume what will happen.
The after section of the book starts immediately in the center of the book. The reader might assume the after section already starts with Pudge knowing what happens, but it doesn’t. Pudge wakes up, still feeling alive from the night before with the love of his life, nothing feeling out of the ordinary. He and the Colonel go to the gym, because the Eagle had an announcement to make. The book is all coming together for the reader now, the answer to their everlong question, “what’s going to happen?”, is right in front of them.
Alaska died in a car accident that night. The reader is probably flooding with emotions along with Pudge. Nothing is the same for Pudge, the light was drained from his life as he reflected on the things he did with Alaska and the words he never said to her, which was that he loved her. The reader thinks it couldn’t get worse than that, until they find out the full story of Alaska’s death, and that the fireworks they were setting off in the woods was a contributing factor of the accident. Heartbroken, guilty, miserable. They are all major understatements to describe how Pudge felt.Time passes. Miles tries to solve Alaska’s death to make him feel less empty. They talk to her boyfriend, they figure out how drunk she was, they study it to see if it was intentional. The reader might have assumed that the after section wouldn’t be as long as the before, but they were the same exact length. How the reader feels after, it really depends on them. They might've felt as if the time structure certainly fit the book, or they might feel as if it would’ve been the same without that structure. At the end, time doesn’t heal Pudge, but eventually, he comes to terms with his loss of Alaska. “At some point, you just pull off the Band-Aid, and it hurts, but then it's over and you're relieved.”
(moping around) Another day here. My so called “home.” A home that’s so small, I barely have room to roam. A home with water so shallow, it doesn’t take long to swim to the bottom. A home surrounded by glass, glass that holds me back, too strong to even break, believe me, I’ve tried several times.
I’ve been here for so long, I barely even remember my old home. I remember the water, cooling me off during a hot day. I remember the air, clear and refreshing. (voice gets higher and angrier) I remember being able to look and see the endless amount of trees and space to travel. I remember eating whatever I want, yeah it was hard to find, but I remember the adventure, my friends, family.
(a little pause, sit down)
(voice gets low and sad) I remember my mom. The tallest, most beautiful hippo in the tribe. I remember riding on her back in the water, happy and joyful, feeling the slight wind against my little face and ears. Playing with my friends while I wait for her to get our food. Feeling blissful and safe, lying against her at night, staring at the big beautiful moon in the sky, excited for the next day. (slight smile)
“If there ever comes a time we’re seperated, look at that moon, every night. I’ll be looking at it too.” She told me.
(frown) And I remember that night, the last night I saw her, the night they took me away. The moon shone so bright. I was sleeping, peacefully, next to her. I was still so young, so small, I depended on her for everything. I heard her wake up, angrily grunting, and the boom, everything went black. Then I woke up here.
(angry tone) (stand up) The humans. They did it. They’re the reason I’m here. They point at me, laugh at me, make fun of me, (mocking) “Oh my god mommy look how big and fat that hippo is!” all through that glass. They’re reason I no longer see my mom, my friends, my family. The reason I have no joy.
Seeing how long I’ve been here, I’ll never get back to my old life. I’ll never see my mom again. I’ll never be happy again.
(human comes in with food, starts cleaning) Oh here comes the daily human. Hey, you again. Let me out of here. Seriously, why do you always ignore me? I wanna go home. Please.
Humans always ignore me. I guess it wasn’t enough that they brought me here, now they have to ignore me.
I guess I’ll just eat.
(starts eating) This is the only good part of being here.
(Other hippo comes over and starts eating) But I hate having to share.
(Yelling at hippo) Hey! You just took the biggest piece of lettuce! Seriously?! (hippo runs away)
(some time passes)(lays down and looks at the moon through the glass roof) Goodnight mom. Love you.
“Kara, say water.”
“Wooder,” I said.
“No, say it right. Like this. Wah-ter.”
“You say it weird.”
I hear that a lot. I am a Philadelphian. I don’t say water, I say wooder. I don’t say towel, I say tal. I don’t say aunt, I say ant. This has been something that stood out about my language. Ofcourse, not at home, not in this city, but everywhere else, I stand out because of the words I say and how I say them.
My family and I do a great deal of traveling, mostly in this country. We’ve been to Maine, Virginia, Nevada, Tennessee, North Carolina, Florida, and most of the local states, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, New York, Vermont, and Rhode Island. Nothing really stood out about us but the way we spoke.
Most people in all of those states didn’t notice. The state that really noticed our way of speaking the most was probably Tennessee. In a particular place in Tennessee, Dollywood, a waitress there liked to separate the Northern people from the Southern.
“I like the way ya’ll speak,” she said, “and ya tip good.”
I was young at the time, about six. I didn’t know I was different. To me, she was the one that spoke different. I thought I spoke “normal.” But what really is the “normal” way of speaking?
Everyone in Philadelphia is different, we speak mostly the same way, but some have different words or ways of saying things. Instead of you guys, some say yous. I don’t use this, nor do I ever say jawn, a made up word only known here. But I admit I do say “yo” a lot.
I know that some words I pronounce different, even from people in Philly. For example, the name of my eighth grade teacher, Mr. Rossi.
“Mr. Raw-si. That’s how Kara says it,” I overheard my friend Diana say.
“So? Isn’t that the way everyone says it?” I asked, confused.
“No. You sound British! It’s supposed to be Mr. Rahsi!” she said, laughing.
That annoyed me. If it’s “Rahsi” then why is it spelled with an O?!
After that, I classified my way of speaking as different. People constantly pointed out how weird I said things. I didn’t really care much, it wasn’t a big deal, it was a little annoying, but in reality everyone has a different vocabulary and language and you can’t classify anyone’s as weird, because there is no standard language or way of speaking in my opinion. Now, I would like to go back and tell every person that judged the way I spoke just that.
“It is the most vivid and crucial key to identify: it reveals the private identity, and connects one with, or divorces one from, the larger, public, or communal identity.” - James Baldwin
Language is what makes you. James Baldwin says it reveals your identity and is the most important part of it. You can tell who a person is by their language. It is what individualizes us in a society. It can connect you to a group or exclude you.
Here’s a scenario. You have a group of friends. You and the rest of a group of people speak Spanish, you fit right in. But there are many different Spanish dialects, and you happen to be the only different one. You feel weird or left out, but really you should feel unique and amazed at how amazing language is and how you stand out.
I, with my Philadelphian accent, don’t feel like I stand out. I feel slightly different, yes, but not excluded from society. I’ve never really gotten bullied, people just said things. My language does reveal who I am. When I can’t think of a word for a certain thing, I say thingy. This reveals my bad memory. I’ve gotten into the habit of saying “kk” instead of ok, this reveals my vulnerability to internet slang. I added the word “ain’t” into my vocabulary in the second grade, which really ticked my family off, “it’s not in the dictionary!” I inherited the word from friends, which shows how easily my vocabulary can be expanded from others’ vocabulary.
“I’m done.” My friend Darius says a lot after seeing something funny.
“That’s crazy!” My friend Kat says in a high pitched voice after seeing something slightly shocking to her.
And now, when I see something funny I say “I’m done.” When I see something shocking, I say “that’s crazy!” It’s funny how my language and vocabulary can be easily influenced by friends, that I’m around them so much that I talk like them. This happens to mostly everyone. This is how people develop their language. By using others’, but making that into their own.
I don’t remember learning how to speak, gaining all the words I know now, and learning what most of them mean. It’s weird thinking about how big my vocabulary is, and how I got all these words and lessons along the way in my life. In third grade, I won a lot of spelling bees and my highest grade was always English. Grammar and spelling were always my strong areas. I felt happy and proud of myself for being good at it. I’m glad I still have this skill now, for writing.
As you can see, language is something that I've used throughout my whole entire life, but never really thought upon till now, with this project. I realize the importance of it, how it connects us all as a society, how we get to know each other, and how we identify ourselves. Language is really the most important thing in the world.
Hello, my name is Kara Heenan and I attend Science Leadership Academy. In English class, we are doing a project to take part in changing the world, called You and the World. If you don’t remember from my previous blogs, I am extremely against animal cruelty. In my first blog, I gave facts and statistics on the different types of abuse and voiced my opinion. In my second blog, I provided some recent news on stories and laws on animal abuse and also shared what I did for my original research, which was examining stray animals in my neighborhood. This time around, I will be sharing my last blog with you on what I’ve done for my agent of change, and giving suggestions on how you could help.
In recent news of the world, animal cruelty cases are still popping up each and every day. In research I’ve done, I found that more cases of people abusing animals are showing up is because of law enforcement becoming stronger. In New York, they are training law enforcement to always gather important evidence of abuse or neglect for prosecuting the abuser. Costa Rica finally banned dog fighting. In Tennessee, law enforcement agencies are working hard together to make a change in the neighborhoods, they mostly see cases of neglect and hoarding. "I think that we're getting more complaints about those not because it's happening more often, but i think people are becoming more aware that it is a problem," said Frankie Bryne, animal cruelty investigator. Overall, I’m happy to see people coming together and giving these animals the justice they deserve, and I think training law enforcement is a major step forward in ending animal cruelty.
You must be the change you wish to see in the world. If you want to change an issue, you have to take part. I wanted to take part, so I heard about a shelter called PAWs. I heard that it was a great shelter, and that they were in need of money and supplies in order to stay open. After hearing this, I was concerned, and teamed up with my friend Jaiye. We wanted to help out, so we decided to have a bake sale for money to donate. Jaiye and I had obstacles on the way, we started too late, we kept trying to schedule days to sell, trying to get people to buy things, but it still made me feel good about myself to finally be able to help people and animals in need, and those obstacles don’t matter in the end.
Me llamo Kara. Tengo 15 años. Voy a la escuela de cada día y escribe mucho en en todas las clases.
Mi hermanas son Katie y Kelsey. Katie tiene 12 años. Ella juega en su teléfono y dibuja a veces. Kelsey tiene 19 años. Ella cocina de vez en cuando y dorme todo el tiempo.
Hello, my name is Kara Heenan. If you don’t remember, my first blog was about animal cruelty. I went deep into facts and statistics on animal cruelty, included some pictures, and shared some of my thoughts on it. In this blog, I will be basically describing what I have done in terms of research since then.
I did some research on the internet and found some new great news on animal cruelty laws! The representative of Georgia is trying to create a new version of their animal cruelty law so it will be easier to go after starvation and other neglect cases. The state representative is really pushing it since it not only cleans up and clarifies the existing law, it also expands it so that torturing an animal, even if that animal does not die, is considered a felony.
A new state law helped push Pennsylvania in rankings from 17 to 12 for having the best animal protection laws in the country. The new law, known as Cost of Care of Seized Animals Act, allows a shelter to make a motion to require a defendant to pay for the cost of boarding pets before trial. It really helps these shelters with the cost of taking care of the animals which is amazing!
On the side, I also did my own original research. I decided to do field observation, which is finding a place where a lot of your problem goes on and observing it and taking notes. I chose a place in my neighborhood which had a lot of stray cats and a neglected dog. When I went, I talked to a lady that lived there and she gave me details of what goes on there. I observed two cats, one Smokey, who was very sweet, and the other, who was very shy, doesn't have a name.
Shy, distant cat. Very welcoming cat named Smokey.
There was also a dog there in it’s yard named Akita. The lady told me that this dog is always in her yard and is barely ever gets let in her house. She was very sweet and seemed very happy to see me.
I could see the sadness in her eyes.
Observing these animals was very sad. The cats suffer from abandonment and the dog suffers from neglect. Both are forms of animal abuse. These animals deserve loving homes and should not be living outside. I hope this blog really made you aware of the suffering animals go through. In my next blog, I should be including details about My Agent of Change, where I will be finally getting to help these animals. Stay tuned!
You can view my bibliography here.
Me llamo Kara. Tengo quince anos. Soy estudiante de Science Leadership Academy en el centro Filadelfia. Esta cerca de Franklin Institute. SLA es interesante, más o menos difícil, pero divertida. Hay quinientos estudiantes y cinco pisos. Tenemos muchas clubes y deportes. Unas clubes son Robotics, Community Involvement, y cheerleading.
Tengo seis clases y dos electivas en SLA. Mi favorito es inglés, porque leemos y a veces dibujamos. No me gusta álgebra, porque es muy difícil y trabajamos mucho. En espanol necesitamos una carpeta y una pluma. En bioquímica necesitamos una bata de laboratorio y un libro. En historia, participamos y escribimos. Para tener éxito en bioquímica, es requerido trabajo en laboratorio y hacer projectos.
El Sr. Todd enseña historia. El es muy inteligente y bastante serio. Historia es más o menos aburrido. El Sr. Todd es trabajador profesor. La Srta. Dunn enseña Inglés. Ella le gusta leer y escribir. Inglés es de costumbre pero a veces aburrido. Srta. Dunn es habladora y divertida professora.
Me encanta SLA porque es una gran escuela. Me gusta mas el estudiantes y los profesores porque ellos son amables y talentosos. No me gusta el gran número de proyectos porque estresante pero importante. SLA es súper inteligente escuela.
In Bio-Chem we learned about respiration and photosynthesis. After we learned everything we got into groups of four and we picked a paper out of a beaker. The paper either said photosynthesis or respiration and our mission was to make a presentation about that. My group got respiration. While on this unit we learned about the different functions of respiration and our slides shows our learning. One thing that I learned that I didn't know before was that all most all living creatures use respiration.We also learned about the equation of respiration and the mitochondria which is where respiration happens. We also learned about glucose. If I was to change one thing about our slide is that I wish I could put audio over my presentation. I could not figure out a way to do that.
Hello, my name is Kara Heenan and I am a freshman at Science Leadership Academy. For a project in English 1, Ms. Dunn told us to find an issue in the world that we really care about. The topic I chose is Animal Cruelty. I am against any type of animal abuse. Animals are living, breathing things just like us and they deserve to be treated the same way we do. The type of animals I am mainly going to be focusing on throughout this blog are the two common household pets, dogs and cats.
First, I would like to discuss the types of abuse there are to these animals and the statistics. According to the Humane Society Hall County,
32% of it is neglect or abandonment
12% of it is hoarding
11% of it is shooting
9% of it is fighting
7% of it is beating
A huge factor in Animal Cruelty in our country are puppy mills. There is no legal definition of a puppy mill, but the ASPCA defines it as "a large-scale commercial dog breeding operation where profit is given priority over the well-being of the dogs." It has been estimated that there are at least 10,000 puppy mills in the U.S. More than 14 states have no laws to even address puppy mills. In these places, dogs are forced to be in cages most of their lives with no room to play or exercise. These places are crawling with dogs affected by illnesses, wounds, and diseases. No one even seems to care!
What an average puppy mill looks like
Another factor, especially in this country, is hoarding. Hoarding is keeping a high number of animals as pets without being able to take care of them properly. Approximately 900 to 2000 cases are discovered in America with a quarter of a million animals falling victim. Hoarding is usually a side effect of a mental illness in a person. It is a form of neglect. Most of these poor animals are living in a disgusting home without proper care or love but the owner of these dogs do not realize they are doing harm.
All a dog or cat really needs is love and care. They don’t ask for much. One thing people forget is that these animals have actual feelings like us. We as humans have no right to treat them as they are less important than we are. I hope after reading this article it really opens your eyes to how important it is to treat animals with respect.
A homeless man with his dog. All you need is love.
“He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men. We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals.” - Immanuel Kant, an 18th-century philosopher