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Mississippi Burning, 1989, Director: Alan Parker

This movie was loosely based on the real-life murder of  three anti racism, social activists and civil rights workers; James Chaney, Michael Schwerner and Andrew Goodman back when America’s racism has become a huge conflict over the nation, especially in the southern states and equality between black and white are very hard to achieve.

When three civil rights workers (two whites and one black) ride through Jessup county. their car is overtaken by some ‘good ole boys’ which is the old term for racist white people who in this case were cops and one of them shoots all three workers but the state claimed they only arrested them for speeding and lock them up before the workers supposedly escaped and never been seen since after being chased out of the county line.

FBI agents Rupert Anderson and Alan Ward drive towards Mississippi. Ward is in charge but Anderson knows more about the intricacies of race relations in the South which made them have a different opinion and approach on the investigation. When the two FBI went into town, the local sheriff are hostile to them because no one there likes the fact that an outsider are ‘poking their noses’ into their case.

Later at the local restaurant, Ward refused to sit in the white only section and talked to a young black man who was later attacked by the KKK (Ku Klux Klan) because beside the no interaction between black and white ‘rule’ they don’t want any of the black people to tell anything to the FBI. The KKK played a big role in the story, that’s why the title of the movie is Mississippi Burning because the symbol of the KKK is a burning cross and burning also happens to one of their preferred methods in killing their victims.

The film gives us the impression that Southern whites are extremely racist and that the blacks are unfortunate  victims of their discrimination. I think that pictures the environment  and situation of Mississippi during the 1960s very well. Though the movie was dramatized than the actual events but based on many other similar cases of racial injustice from Mississippi, the people were that hostile and dangerous.

 

 

The Wall is a movie based on the concept album by Pink Floyd whose main character with the same name. Some may think that this movie is too graphic and disturbing to watch but there is no way denying that it is a very powerful and moving film. To be honest I also found this movie too vulgar and violent for my liking but it is the theme and the concept of the movie is pain, abandonment, isolation and frustration.

After watching it you’ll understand why it has become a classic. You can imagine and actually feel glimpses of different emotion on each scenes but I think there is no way for us to really know what it feels like to be Pink unless you experienced what he did too.

Thee feeling you get while watching this movie are awe, sympathy, fear and just a little bit of disgust. The story and the hundreds of symbolism empowered by the director makes you constantly think about the meanings instead of mindlessly watching it and I found myself often confused to what it meant. Thats what I love about this, there are so many meanings behind things and every time you watch it you’ll realize and learn something new.

So far, the story is about the struggles and mental anguish of Pink. He is a rock star that has so many emotional baggage due to his less than perfect childhood. One of the reason behind his state of depression and detachment from the rest of the world is the loss of his father during WWII who was killed in action. All through his childhood, Pink craved for a father and was suffocated by the love of his overly protective mother.

At one point in his adult life, he got married though it didn’t went very well as they grew apart and his wife cheated on him when he was on tour. This experience just added ‘another brick on his wall’ where he isolate himself from the rest of the world.

He then went  in a hotel room with a groupie who tried to get his attention by being sexy when he stared off into space but ended up running away in terror when Pink snap out of his zone and thrashed the room violently.

Like many people, he wrongly turns to drugs to ease the pain which made him unconscious (and completely hairless because he shaved all his body hair) moments before his own concert. His manager found him at this state and made a doctor inject him with another drug that enables him to perform though made him hallucinate that he was his alter ego,  a Neo-Nazi dictator with his fans as his followers.

Overall, the most dominant theme I see is isolation which is very obvious due to the title ‘The Wall’ and the biggest problem that impacted on his whole life is his loss of a father figure and childhood. Your childhood does influence you in a huge way and made you who you are as a person. This fact is proved by the whole movie and growing up without a role model will only confuse you more and made it harder for you to find yourself. The over protectiveness of his mother also made it worse because she made him even more emotionally damaged than before, closing him off to the rest of the world, in fear of getting hurt. All this childhood events made him a wall where he ends up living the rest of his life behind.

On our recent assignment for humanities, I learned about China’s history on communism lead my Mao Zedong.  Mao is viewed as the great leader of the revolution by the people, making him very powerful because of his standing. When communism came into power, Mao established many reforms such as the Marriage Law and also a few mass campaign like the Great Leap Forward.

For the assignment I made a keynote describing the two topics and collect the information from the internet and Mr. Kenny’s lessons in class. I searched and read many sites but only found a few that are useful. I personally feel like I could do a lot better on this assignment than I did. I did not manage my time well so I can’t make the keynote as best as I can.

From this topic I learned that power can be earned by not only having the big / important people to be on your side but also the heart of the people, not to mention the whole army. Mao  knows this more than anyone, he was able to regain his position as the leader of China after he was demoted because of his failed Great Leap Forward plan.

This topic links to the AOI of Health and Social Education because not only that it educates us on what mistakes and negative traditions people have (e.g foot binding), but also the learning the effect that Mao and communism in general affects many people lives. He changes the way they live their daily life, their cultures and beliefs. Though Mao made really bad mistakes, the idea of communism is appealing to many people because it almost or is equal to a utopia. Even some of Mao’s reform are very positive and benefit the people very much (e.g education, marriage law, etc).

I personally think that this topic is very interesting and I hope I can learn more about the people’s lives during the revolution.

Below is the keynote I made fot the assignment;

(Concept Link: Global Awareness) Answering questions: Why and How terrorism has become global? —– There is no denying that terrorism is now global.

The risk of attacks and areas for such events are not only in just some countries now. Today almost every nation on earth are in danger so is there any safe place left? Below is a map from strategicrisk.co.uk showing global terrorism hotspots (countries that rank highly on the terrorists hit list are green, while specific targets are identified in white).

Terrorism has now become global because terrorists aren’t targeting only one country but every nations that disagreed with their cause and beliefs.  It is a fact that when the United States of America declared war on terrorism, the Arab countries declared a Jihad against the US and its allies, and the Buddhist countries in Eastern Asia because they had made allies with the Americans. The war is still ongoing until this very day and the whole world had suffered the consequences.

President Bush addresses a Joint Session of Congress, Sept. 20, 2001.

On the 20th of September 2001, just 19 days after the historical 9/11 attack, George W. Bush, who was the current President Of The United States then gave an inspirational speech to make his nation support the “War on Terror” and the Time magazine mentioned that ‘Bush’s speech “rallied” the nation in five steps‘. By doing so he had declared war on many terrorists in this world which made them team up against them too. He had explained what happened on 9/11 and declared that he did not hold all Muslims responsible for the attacks and took the responsibility for leading America through this dark moments against their elusive and unclear enemy. Bush also said “we will not tire, we will not falter and we will not fail.” which is now famous to “rallied” his nation after he said that America would “pursue nations that provide aid or safe haven to terrorism. Every nation in every region now has a decision to make: Either you are with us or you are with the terrorists.” His speech was considered a success and gave more spirit to the country after it’s temporary defeat and this declaration by Bush had alerted many countries especially the middle east and their allies. Since allies are adding up and more countries gets involved terrorism has become more global and another reason is that the idea of terrorism has also globalized. Their (terrorists’) beliefs, cause and ideas are now known all around the world and people are agreeing to it and there is also the fact that recruiting doesn’t only happen in the surrounding areas anymore but other countries too. Terrorists are now branching out to one another, more and more popped up out of the blue everywhere and they work together which covered more grounds and made them all the more threatening. The fact that America is sending their troops to someone else’s lands also made the conflict even bigger. The 9/11 attack also shocked and scared the whole world seeing that it is in the public eye and the attack itself is huge and majorly threatening. It shows how much damage they are capable of and  that terrorists are even braver and bolder than before. Muslims around the world are also offended by may peoples’ accusations to their sacred belief. Just because some use the God’s name for their bad actions doesn’t mean its true and it made them angry. Not all terrorists are Muslims and blame their actions for Jihad, many of them are just angry citizens that wants to prove a point or just catch the government’s attention and since the terrorism ways are popular they blow up things or shoot innocent people too. List of wanted people are increasing, the suspects are so many and the possibilities of new members and attacks are endless because it is unpredictable where and when they would act and it could happen right under our noses.

Map of global terrorist network

Terrorism has now become a global because it can be found everywhere and the cause of these people acting out to the government or anyone else is not only because of religion but political or economical instabilities which happen a lot in many parts of the world. Because of them airports are now a whole lot stricter, you can be a suspect just because of your nationality or religion, and you can even have a vacation somewhere and suddenly you are in the middle of an attack. Terrorist groups are now linking to one another and threats are obviously increasing. Securities are increasing everywhere yet their strikes succeeded time and time again. Here are some listed events of terrorist attacks from johnston’s archive which are another proof of their existence.

  1. 13 Dec 1921: bombing of Bolgard palace in Bessarabia (modern Moldova) (100)
  2. 16 Apr 1925: bombing of cathedral in Sophia, Bulgaria (160)
  3. 18 May 1973: mid-air bombing of Aeroflot airliner, Siberia (100)
  4. 4 Dec 1977: crash of hijacked Malaysian airliner near Malaysia (100)
  5. 20 Aug 1978: arson of theater in Abadan, Iran (477)
  6. 18 Oct 2007: bombing of motorcade in Karachi, Pakistan (137)
  7. 17 Feb 2008: bombing at dogfighting festival in Kandahar, Afghanistan (105)
  8. 26-29 Nov 2008: multiple gun and grenade attacks and hostage takings in Mumbai, India (174)
  9. 19 Aug 2009: multiple bombings at government sites in Baghdad, Iraq (102)
  10. 25 Oct 2009: two vehicle bombings at government buildings in Baghdad, Iraq (155)
  11. 28 Oct 2009: bombing at marketplace in Pakistan (118)
  12. 8 Dec 2009: five car bombings in Baghdad, Iraq (127)
  13. 10 May 2010: multiple bombings in Hilla, Basra, al-Suwayra, and other cities, Iraq (102)
Another good data is a map showing the worst of terrorist attacks worldwide with 100 or more fatalities by Wm. Robert Johnston (last updated on May 2010).
*Click on the links and Bush’s picture for article source