Final Journal

 

The 3 biggest pieces of knowledge I would pass down to the next generation, is to cherish family meals, learn family recipes, and buy local organic foods. Eating together used to be very important back in the days, but for some reason, the amount of time families spend eating together has decreased throughout the years. Could be because children are just not engaged with the family as they used to be, and this is a norm, so what is wrong with it if everyone does it? Or maybe it could be that families just don’t have the time to be able to sit down and enjoy a home cooked meal. Granted, some people may say that eating together in a fast food restaurant is the same, but is it really? Are you in your home, enjoying a meal that was made by the family in a loving place? No. They’re in a fast food restaurant where the chain is just trying to feed as many people as possible. Their mission is quantity over quality, whereas a family meal is quality over quantity, generally.  Eating gives family a time to connect with each other after busy days.

I would also recommend learning family recipes. Food that is only known in the family, keeping the family traditions going. Our parents always talk about how their grandparents or parents used to make this all the time, yet kids are too busy on their phones to listen. Knowing and learning the recipes is a sign of caring and respect. It’s the family’s past hard work. Making the recipe just right, and the least someone can do is learn it.

Another thing I would like to tell the next generation is that buying local and organic food is very important. Today meat companies don’t pay much attention to the ethics of how they raise the animals, and although the companies sell the food for inexpensive, that doesn’t mean that it’s a better option. Huge companies also effect the local farmers trying to make a living. These huge companies own everything, and it creates a big gap in the income because then local families can’t make a profit and they start buying cheap food because it’s all they can afford and then more money goes to big food corporations. Buying local helps to disperse the money more evenly between the economic groups. Although this won’t fully fix it, it will help some.

Journal #18 – Planting the Naysayer in Your Text

“We are urging you to tell readers what others might say against you, but our point is that doing so will actually enhance your credibility, not undermine it” (79).

“It is good to address objections in your writing, but only if you are able to overcome them” (88).

I think that this reading was already a known thing, and that it’s common sense when writing a persuasive essay that it should include some counterarguments that you will then prove wrong. I like it when authors have arguments and mention what other people say and then prove how that opinion is still not the “correct” one, because that makes the author appear to know more about the subject he or she is talking about. I don’t necessarily think that adding a counter argument into a paper will not undermine it, unless you realize that you do in fact agree with the counter argument, and if that does happen, I think it would be wise to know in the essay how you changed your mind. In the end of the reading it says “the best remedy is to go back and make some fundamental revisions to your argument, even reversing your position completely if need be” (90). I think that if you do change your mind, you may not necessarily change your whole paper up again, but just mention how you convinced yourself. Though I do see how it would be helpful changing the whole thing to then fit your opinion so that your reader understands what is going on, but it’s always nice to see an author change their mind in the process, instead of the essay starting out “First I thought this, but then I thought this”. As a reader, personally, I would like to see that lightbulb switch instead of being told it does.

Journal #17 – Reconsidering the Lobster

After rereading the essay by David Foster Wallace, I still have the same negative feelings about eating other animals simply for the enjoyment of our tastes. I do feel that animals should be able to eat other animals, but with the same respect. I feel that humans should use every piece of the meat so that the animal being scarified wasn’t slaughtered for just certain part. In the while, an animal will eat another animal, but every part of that animal will be eaten by others eventually. I almost think that humans should slaughter their own animals if they really want meat. By slaughtering one’s own meat, they have a higher respect for that animal, and it will make them realize that what they’re eating, was in deed once alive. I have a hard time eating meat from fast foods because I don’t know where that meat is coming from, and how that animal was raised and killed. I only eat meat that is organic and local, because I know that the animal was raised with respect, and was thought of as meat, not money. Industries don’t see cows as meat to feed people, but as money. More cows, more money. More meat, more money. I still feel that people are able to eat lobster more easily than veil is because a lobster looks like a creepy sea alien, while a veil is a sweet fluffy cow. It’s easier to think that lobsters don’t have feelings and don’t have pain, but they do. Everything has feelings. Lobsters can feel the slightest degree in water change and migrate deeper into the ocean, so I bet you, they can feel when water is boiling.

Journal #16 – Animals Like Us

  • “So for the next 15 years, this intuitive biological classification system enabled Judith, who has a Ph.D. in anthropology, to think of herself as a vegetarian, yet still experience the joys of smoked Copper River salmon and lemon-grilled swordfish” (242).
    • This is called a pescetarian.
  • “a club that outnumbers current vegetarians in the United States by a ratio of three to one” (242).
    • Amount of vegetarians.
  • “He [Jim Thompson] carried the bird into his backyard and released it into the gray skies of Raleigh, North Carolina… I knew she wouldn’t survive, that she probably starved. I guess I was doing it for myself more than for her” (243).
    • If he stopped eating animals for the wellbeing of them, but then let the bird go for the wellbeing of himself, when he knew it wouldn’t survive, isn’t that just as bad as eating an animal?
  • “If each cat consumes just two ounces of meat daily, en masse they consume nearly 12 million pounds of flesh – equivalent to 3 million chickens – every single day” (244).
    • Cats eat more flesh than snake do.
  • “It is likely that at least 10 times as many furry and feathered creatures are killed each year as a result of our love of cats as are used in biomedical experiments” (244).
    • Cats are more deadly than snakes, yet we still find enjoyment in having them around, and still find them cute and cuddly.
  • “Objectively, the moral burden of enjoying the company of a cat is 10 times higher than that of living with a pet snake” (245).
    • People like having cats better than vicious snakes.
  • “Wouldn’t it make more sense to make these carcasses available to snake fanciers? After all, these cats [2 million] are going to die anyway and fewer mice and rats would be scarified to satisfy the dietary needs of the pythons and king snakes living in American homes” (245).
    • This does make sense. If they’re dying anyways, why not make them more useful? What stops us is our emotional attachment to cute kittens. Being eaten alive vs a quick euthanizing.
  • “I believe, however, that the troubled middle makes perfect sense because moral quagmires are inevitable in a species with a huge brain and a big heart. They come with the territory” (247).
    • I feel like what he’s saying is that someone who can eat animals, lacks a big heart, but someone who doesn’t eat animals at all, lacks a huge brain and doesn’t think logically about it.

 

I get a sense of where Herzog is getting at, and that humans keep animals for various reason, and that keeping a cat is just as horrible as a snake, and even worse since you need to kill more flesh in order to feed a cat. Since cats are more cuddly and cute, we humans can push aside those feelings for the love of our cats. There was talk in people being vegetarian and then switching to meat and visa versa, and how there isn’t a clear black in white. One can’t totally eat all meat and forget about it, and that one is totally against it and can’t see why one would eat meat. Herzog says there are people in the middle which see both sides and this is a hard choice for them because it conflicts with huge brains and huge hearts.

Journal #15 – Yes/No/Okay, But

“Perhaps you’ll worry that fitting your own response into one of these three categories will force you to oversimplify your argument or lessen its complexity, subtlety, or originality” (56).

  • I feel I do this too, I get too caught up on making it clear that I either agree/disagree with the text and end up over simplifying to make it clear.

“It is always a good tactic to begin your response not by launching directly into a mass of details but by stating clearly whether you agree, disagree, or both, using a direct, no-nonsense formula” (57).

  • First state you opinion, and then go into details so your reader knows your general idea.

I think this section Yes/No/Okay, But is basically common sense. The concept of this reading isn’t something new, if you agree with a text/person, you say you agree and then say why. Or, if you disagree, you state it and then say why. There are different combinations, as stated in the reading, how you can agree, but then twist. Agreeing with one part and then changing why you agree. Or disagreeing at first, and then giving the author credit for a part of what they did. “Twist it” move. Agreeing with one part, and then twisting it for why you have this opinion. In the end of the reading, it asks the question of “Is being undecided okay?”. The reading mentioned how it’s okay to be undecided, but sometimes the reader may get annoyed that there isn’t a clean-cut opinion, and also, how being able to be undecided is sometimes scholarly. I believe that being undecided is the same thing as agree and disagreeing at the same time. Being undecided means you don’t know which opinion you support, because you don’t agree with the author, yet you don’t disagree. So you agree and disagree at the same part. You haven’t yet made up your mind. I also, don’t see the so what, if someone is undecided. What should I get out of the paper if the person is undecided? Is it even worth reading the paper if they are? Won’t I leave the paper with the same opinion I did when I first start reading it? I like reading papers that are show me they agree/disagree, because then they back up their claim with support, and I find it more scholarly if they can do that, instead of not knowing if they agree or disagree.

Journal #14 – The Story of Service

What are the questions/conceptual interests/inquiries present in Mitford’s essay?

A big part of Mitford’s essay is talking about the embalming of a body and the preparations needed to prepare the body for the service. Mitford explores what we pay for, when we prepare for a funeral. There are different parts that go into a funeral, the clergyman, the person who digs the cemetery, the person who prepares the body, the obituary etc. Mitford also talks about how the body can be embalmed, but the family has no clue what it consists of, yet we allow it to happen anyways.

Mitford Claim:

“He has done everything in his power to make the funeral a real pleasure for everybody concerned” (52).

This claim is complicated, because all though the funeral director is the director and makes sure everything aligns well, he isn’t the one preparing the body, or giving the speech, he just simply aligns the ducks. Gives the date, shows himself at the service, but doesn’t do EVER THING in his power to make the funeral pleasurable. He isn’t preparing the body and having to deal with innards, or speak in front of a grieving crowd.

Mitford Claim:

“These some 120 hours of labor are the basic value on which the cost of the funerals rest” (42).

I agree with this claim, because what you’re really paying for, is the preparation for the funeral. Preparing the body, making a grave stone, digging the hole, hiring the clergyman to speak and then “renting” the funeral home. All of this is in preparation for the funeral, and the hours add up. It’s interesting to now what goes into the service, and in the earlier days, the amount was way cheaper  I believe. Not to mention one has to buy the actual coffin, which can be picked from other ones.

Mitford Claim:

“In no part of the world but in North America is it widely used. The purpose of embalming is to make the corpse presentable for viewing in a suitable costly container’ and here too the funeral director routinely, without first consulting the family, prepares the body for public display” (43).

I would agree with this claim, that no part of the world but North America is embalming used, because there really isn’t a point of embalming. Sure, you can get to see your loved one one last time, and you want show them as they were, and not a pale sunken body. I admire how in other cultures, they don’t need a physical object to remember their loved ones by, but rather the thought and the love they have is enough to remember and appreciate them. Embalming is money wasted because you’re going to put them in the ground anyways. The thought is nice, but people should remember the impression, and the impact the loved one had on us, and that should be the last impression they left, not a cold dead body filled with make up to remember them by.

Mitford Claim:

“In the early days of American embalming, when it was performed in the home of the deceased, it was almost mandatory for some relatives to stay by the embalmer’s side and witness the procedure. Today, family members who might wish to be in attendance would certainly be dissuaded by the funeral director. All others, except apprentices, are usually barred by law from the preparation room” (44).

I think this isn’t as much as a claim Mitford is claiming, but with the tone Mitford is expressing herself in, you can tell she thinks this is ridiculous. That a relative should be able to watch, if they have the stomach for it. It is their loved one, so why should they be banned from it by LAW if they want to be there? Is the embalmer ashamed or doing something wrong that isn’t acceptable? I agree with Mitford that a family member should be there because it’s almost like closer. It doesn’t mean that everyone one should be there, or has to be there, but that the relative should at least be given the option and the accessibility to be allowed in there.

Journal #13 – McCode

Production

Do:

  • Utilize and be efficient with ingredients. “Of the Thirty-eight ingredients…from corn” (112-13).
  • Use preservatives to keep food fresh “TBHQ, and…freshness” (113).
  • Do produce large quantities of food “One in three” (109).
  • Do get all bones out “part of the appeal…animals” (114).

Dont’s:

  • Don’t tell the customer EXACTLY what’s in it “A Full Serving of Nutrition facts” (112).
  • Do not not add preservatives  “TBHQ, and…freshness” (113).
  • Don’t under produce ““One in three” (109).
  • Don’t leave tons of bones in it “part of the appeal…animals” (114).

Be careful:

  • To make sure you get white meat actually in it “McDonalds has real…meat” (112).
  • Be careful to not add bad agents to environment (118).
  • Be careful to keep it fresh (113).
  • To add too much flavoring “grill seasoning” (114).

Promotion

Do:

  • Add fun toys
  • Do add salads to the meal “premium salad” (109).
  • Do promote cheap prices “$3.99” (110).
  • Do make it fast “serve in a flash” (119).

Don’ts:

  • List every ingredients (117).
  • Get high quality meat “534 steers” (114).
  • Don’t not use preservatives (113).
  • Don’t sell things pricey “$3.99” (110).

Be careful:

  • Listing ingredients “I picked up a densely” (110).
  • To not make meat fully unrecognizable “No they taste like what they are” (112).
  • To not add too much corn (117).
  • to please parents too (109).

Journal #12 – The Meal – Fast Foods

What are the questions/conceptual interests/inquiries present in Pollan’s essay?

The big idea that Pollan’s getting at in his essay is questioning the “purity” of fast food meals. What are they, and where do the ingredients come from? He also touches upon the idea of comfort food, and how McDonald’s serves food that are so high in carbohydrates and fats, that it’s essential a comfort food. Pollen touches on the easiness of the meal in the beginning, on how the meal is cheap, fast and able to eat with one hand while driving, ultimately making meal easy to make.

Pollan’s Claim

“Part of the appeal of hamburgers and suggests is that their boneless abstractions allow us to forget we’re eating animals” (114).

This quote brings up the idea that it’s easier to eat McDonalds meat because with the lack of bones and tendons, it allows the eater to not think of the food as once being an animals. Seeing as “one in three of them [children] eat fast food every single day” (109), this means that a lot of Americans aren’t thinking about what they’re eating. When eating meat, people should know and at least realize that what they’re eating is meat, that was once a living organism. If people can’t stand to think about that, while they eat meat, then they don’t have the right to be able to kill another animal just for the sake of eating. A student in the class once brought up the fact that in the wild, when a predator kills prey to eat it, the predator doesn’t think about how the animal was feeling, but that it feeds them. That statement doesn’t support his argument, because when the predator is eating that prey, they know it’s an animal, and they eat every bit of that animal. If they don’t other organisms do and eventually the decease animal is completely gone. In today’s world, a lot of meat is wasted. So humans should be grateful that another animal died for their enjoyment, especially at a fast food restaurant when the food their eating is mostly additives.

Pollan’s Claim

“No, I could not taste the feed corn or the petroleum or the antibiotics or the hormones – or the feedlot manure. Yet while ‘A Full Serving of Nutrition Facts’ did not enumerate these facts, they too have gone into the making of this hamburger, are part of its natural history” (114-15).

I found this quote interesting because a lot of the time, people don’t think about the life of the animal before it’s killed. A lot of people focus on how the animal was treated physically (standing in it’s own manure, being killed in inhuman ways, tortured etc.) but it’s important to realize all the antibiotics and hormones that have gone into the raising of mass production animal farms. Tons of hormones are pumped into animals so they are more meater, with growth hormones, or hormones so that cows produce more milk, hormones that create chickens to go so fast that their own legs can’t even support their weight. All this is used in “raising” animals for fast food restaurants. It’s all about finding the quickest, easiest and cheapest ways. This relates a lot to Pollan’s essay since fast food restaurants are designed to be quick, easy and cheap. Whenever people eat meat, they are also eating the chemicals and added substances that animal ate before it died. I think Pollan is trying to highlight the importance of clean, naturally raised meat.

Pollan’s Claim

“The calculation finally…blacktop behind us” (116).

In this paragraph, Pollan was figuring out all the mathematics of how much corn is in the food we eat, and he found that people eat a lot of corn with different foods. Corn is hidden in all sorts of form in the foods we at. So much so that “the amount of own that went into producing our movable fast-food feast would easily have overflowed the car’s trunk”, and this just amazes me! It really makes me question the purity of our food. Most of Pollan’s essay was about what was in the food he and his family was eating at McDonalds, and in the end, the majority of it was corn. This quote really gave a great visual on how much corn the average family consumes on only ONE meal.

Pollan’s Claim

“So what? Why should it matter that we have become a race of corn eaters such as the world has never seen? Is this necessarily a bad thing? The answer all depends on where you stand” (117).

I thought this quote was important because it really does depend on where you stand on this spectrum. For the business that make the corn, processing it was cheap, and a single crop, can be turned into 41 different items. That’s pretty efficient in my mind in terms being able to do that. For business, corn is cheap, meaning businesses can sell their food for cheaper than what natural restaurants are selling their food for, and thus the customers are happier because they paid less. Though, the customer ultimately pays the price in the end because after years of eating fast food for meals, they will most likely get diabetes Type II, they’re be obese, and be in poor healths, so in the long run, it didn’t do them any good to get food from McDonalds. The down side to all of this corn is that fact that fertilizers are added to the corn fields that then run off and into the ecosystem which causes negative effects to the earth. Also, another think that corn does is soak up all the nitrogen in the soil, which is essentially taking it away from other plants in the ecosystem that we need for air and other things, like keeping the ground from eroding. I just liked the idea that Pollan state how it depends on where you stand.

Journal #11 Hays Codes

4) How much of your parent’s ideas inform your own ideas/choices/beliefs/perspectives?

In the beginning stages of life, I think our parents ideas influence all of our ideas, choices, beliefs etc. Our parents are people we look up to, who we follow. Over years of them imprinting in our mind what is right and what is wrong is eventually going to influence who we are majority of the time. A lot of the time kids get their politics from their parents, because by the way the child is raised, it’s how they know and how they think. Sometimes, after being away from the family, one can form their own ideas, and that can differ from their parents, but otherwise, if that person isn’t getting that experience on their own, then they won’t have a much different opinion than their parents.

Movies as a Form of Education

This article was an interesting one. It talked about the Hays Code and then went into some examples. The overall objective of the codes makes sense, but the reality of them just doesn’t add up. Yes movies should not justify crimes, or degrade religions. That’s just common sense. There are different types of movies, and I think by adding these Hays Codes to movies, takes away some of the “fun” and the purpose of movies. Movies are supposed to be funny and entertaining, and how can they be that way if the movies must always be morality, politically and socially correct? You can’t make fun of the Government under the Hays Code, and you can’t excessive or lustful kissing. Some movies need to incorporate these subjects in order to make them entertaining. For example, the Purge movies go against a lot of these “rules” of the Code. The Government allows crime to be legal for 24 hours, and so people go around killing each other, so that way, there is untimely less crime throughout the rest of the years. Under the Hays Code, movies couldn’t do that. Satirical movies wound’t be allowed that mocked out Government. There are movies that are designated to be educational, but there are also movies that are meant to be entertained. Documentaries are supposed to be factual and teach people the truth, movies don’t have to do that.

If people think that movies will influence the actions of others, then what about video games? Will we have a “Hays Code” on video games? In video games, you are actually the one choosing whether to shoot someone or not, but in a movie, you’re just watching. Also, what makes a book be able to have certain things that a movie couldn’t? I feel that if someone read a book about killing someone and it being okay, then it’s the same effect as if it was in a movie, but the M.P.P.D.A allows it in books. In all, that Hays Codes are a bit silly to me.

Journal #10 – The Pleasure of Eating

What are the questions/conceptual interests/inquiries present in Berry’s essay? (1 para)

Berry is very interested in the meaning of food, and how people are eating foods today. He talks about people buying food, and how they don’t think about where that food is coming from. Berry also mentions that food, doesn’t represent food anymore because it’s wearing so much “makeup” meaning additives. Berry also says that it’s hard to be free when eating food if our food is controlled by someone else, which I can agree on the meat level, but for staple foods, it’s hard to be in control of that. Also, he talks about how food industries have now focused on quantity instead of quality.

Below, list claims/positions/arguments Berry makes in his essay. Provide a quote or paragraph where the claim is stated. Then explain why you feel it’s an important part of his discussion.

  1. Berry Claim

“The food industrialists have by now persuaded millions of consumers to prefer food that is already prepared. They will grow, deliver, and cook your food for you and (just like your mother) beg you to eat it”

This passage is significant because what’s happening with food industries are legitimate and happening. As food industries progress, food is becoming easier and easier to make, meaning already prepared food. All for the connivence of the consumer, because humans have become lazier and lazier thanks to a microwave. People can buy pre-made food and stick it into the microwave for 3 minutes and bam, you have a great steak, mashed potatoes and pea dinner. This also effects human health which has been discovered recently in the past few years.

  1. Berry Claim

“One will find this obliviousness represented in virgin purity in the advertisements of the food industry, in which food wears as much makeup as the actors. If one gained one’s whole knowledge of food from these advertisements (as some presumably do), one would not know that the various edibles were ever living creatures, or that they all come from the soil, or that they were produced by work”

It’s important to note how gross our food has become. A lot of the time, food is created in the cheapest way, meaning the quality of the food goes down. Additives and preservatives have been added to food in order to make them taste better, and although it may taste better, it doesn’t make the food better for your body. These made up chemicals are harming the overall health of humans and some linking to Cancer. People should be able to taste that food has come from earth, and with all the “make up” that’s added, people don’t even know it’s food, which is horrible.

  1. Berry Claim

“For decades now the entire industrial food economy, from the large farms and feedlots to the chains of supermarkets and fast-food restaurants has been obsessed with volume”

Everything in society today, is to make as much as a profit as possible. It’s always good to make money, but large companies are only thinking about money, meaning other things are usually sacrificed. The quality of the food is second to the quantity. The typical example are meat farms where tons of animals are treated poorly because there’s so many animals. The reason why there are so many animals are because industries are trying to produce more in order to profit. This isn’t acceptable and Berry really values the local companies that care for their animals. It’s great to know that the food we eat came from somewhere we know, which will ease our mind and our overall health.

  1. Berry Claim

“The pleasure of eating should be an extensive pleasure, not that of the mere gourmet”

I really agree with this claim, because food isn’t always about what we eat. We should also take note into how that food is prepared, or made or how it’s taken care of. Food should settle our mind as well as our hunger. When eating meat, it would settle our mind to know a calf isn’t stuck in a box where it can’t even turn around, all for the pleasure of our eating. If people don’t consider that, or just don’t care because animals are animals and are meant to be eaten, then they’re ultimately saying humans are above all else. Why? Because we can talk?  Humans are animals too, but what gives us a leg up is  because we can talk, and our brain capacity can allow us to do things that other animal can’t. A lot of animals can do things the we can’t either, so what makes us better? Sponges have been known to contain anti cancer traces in them, and we haven’t been able to come up with a cure for cancer. Cockroaches are radiation resistant and we aren’t. Dolphins can communicate through echolocation and we can’t. Why do humans get to put themselves above all other things?