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Hope during Economic Crisis

Flashmob en Madrid (España) organizado por el programa de radio CARNE CRUDA 2.0 Martes y jueves, 16:00, http://www.carnecruda20.es Lunes, miércoles y viernes...

Via Seth Dixon
Emma Lafleur's insight:

A great video to show some hope in a hard time.

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Trisha Klancar's curator insight, January 13, 2013 2:15 PM

We never know when we will make a difference in people's lives. Spain has undergone a very difficult time the last couple years...this is short video reminds us we all need to smile and enjoy no matter what!

Shelby Porter's comment, September 19, 2013 1:46 PM
This video is a great example of what a difference someone can make. Before this group started playing, you could see that most of the people on that room looked down, but they certainly got some sun and happiness brought to them. It doesn't matter where in the world you are, the littlest things can certainly make a difference.
Lauren Stahowiak's curator insight, February 27, 5:21 PM

Flashmobs bring so much positive energy to any environment. In Madrid, this video shows how positive vibes from music are contagious and transmitted into positive energy at an unemployment office. "Here comes the Sun" is a way of saying things are going to get better, just look at the bright side. 

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'Honor killing' victim stabbed to death by her brother in Jordan: cops 

'Honor killing' victim stabbed to death by her brother in Jordan: cops  | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it
A woman was brutally stabbed to death by her own brother for daring to leave her house alone, police in Jordan said.
Emma Lafleur's insight:

Honor killings are found across the Middle East and South Asia, and they have been showing up in the news lately. They illustrate how difficult it is to be a woman in many of these countries because women can be harshly punished for anything they have done wrong or they can be punished for any wrong that is done to them. They can be killed by their own family members just trying to cleanse their family name from the woman's wrong-doing. Women in these areas have to be very careful of where they go and what they do and it is sometimes difficult for them to live.

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How Much Food Can You Buy For $5 Around The World?

Here's how much coffee, meat, beer, McDonald's, and more you can buy for $5 in countries around the world. For starters, you can buy a lot of beer for $5 in ... (Food $5 buys around the world.
Emma Lafleur's insight:

It's interesting to see what you can do with $5 around the world. The person who made this video made it very easy to see the comparisons between the countries. This video also shows how much different foods cost in different regions. For example, Europe had the highest prices, the US was usually somewhere in the middle, then it was usually countries in the Middle East and Asia, and finally Africa usually had the cheapest prices. It's an interesting way to compare the regions and countries of the world.

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Anti-Muslim violence hits central Myanmar

Anti-Muslim violence hits central Myanmar | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it
At least one person is dead and ten are injured after mobs of angry Buddhists burned hundreds of homes.
Emma Lafleur's insight:

This illustrates how the conflicts that arise from different ethnic groups and different religions occupying the same areas are international problems. There are some countries that are able to thrive peacefully with various ethnic groups, but there are many that cannot. Myanmar, as of right now, cannot. People are using violence to try to scare other religions and other sects of the same religion into submission or even into leaving the country. In this case, the Buddhists are trying to get rid of the Muslims. A part of the problem is that in many cases the country does not see the Muslims as citizens of Myanmar but as illegal immigrants. Therefore, they are not doing enough to stop the violence. Problems like these, when left unattended, can only escalate and lead to civil war as people try to protect themselves and their beliefs.

    The video is also powerful as these people try to rebuild their lives after being attacked and try to put out the fire. Also, if you watch closely, you see men putting out the fires with buckets of water, not with hoses and firetrucks, illustrating the poverty in this rural area. These people are afraid that they will get hurt during one of these attacks, and the ultimate question is how much will they take before they try to retaliate in order to protect their children.

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Environment, Energy and Resilience

Indonesia has the largest share of the world's mangroves — coastal forests that have adapted to saltwater environments. They play important environmental and ecological roles.

 

Mangroves play a key role of acting as an ecological buffer in coastal region that provide the area with resilience against tsunamis, hurricanes and other forms of coastal flooding.  Their role in carbon sequestration is also vital as energy emissions globally continue to rise.  So let's jump scales: how are global issues locally important?  How is the local deeply global?  How can stakeholders at either scale find common ground with the other?  


Via Seth Dixon
Emma Lafleur's insight:

It's nice to see that people are trying to save these forests and are experiencing some success. Deforestation has many bad consequences including flooding, an increase in carbon emissions, and a decrease in biodiversity. People everywhere need to learn that even though we can gain some money by using the land for something other than forest, it is more beneficial to leave the forest because it not only saves the environment, forests also directly helps humans because of the health and safety benefits. There are a lot of people around the world trying to save the forests, but sadly it is not an easy task.

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Meagan Harpin's curator insight, October 9, 2013 8:34 PM

Indonesia is home to 1/4 of the worlds mangrove trees. These trees are salt tolerant and grow along the coastlines. They provide protection from tidal floods and erosion and provide homes for the islands biodiversity. The most important thing they do however is provide the villagers with wood  to make shrimp ponds and fire wood. They also protect the mangroves ecosystem. These trees are so very important to Indonesia, their economy and their life style. 

Cam E's curator insight, April 8, 12:45 PM

Mangroves are a natural barrier to hurricanes, tsunamis, and the flooding that come with it in a very important way. It's often suggested that there is a battle between opposing sides of the environment and business, but in a situation like this, and in many others, the natural environment exists for a reason and protects the land against severe damage. In this way there's an economic incentive to protect natural environments as well as an ecological one.

Nathan Chasse's curator insight, April 14, 7:35 AM

The NPR report discusses how valuable the mangrove forests of Indonesia are not just locally important, but globally important as well. Locally, they provide protection from flooding and tsunami as well as being incredibly significant in the overall ecology of the area. Globally, the mangroves are incredibly efficient at reducing carbon dioxide compared to most other types of forests. The Indonesian people have an interest in protecting the mangroves for their own local benefits, but there is interest internationally in the mangroves as buying and protecting them allows for a country to earn carbon credits. The dilemma lies in that clearing the mangroves for agriculture is a large economic advantage, but ruins the environmental benefits. A balance needs to be struck with the international community to protect the mangroves for the world while providing significant economic benefits to Indonesia.

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Chinese and Japanese ships cluster around disputed islands

Chinese and Japanese ships cluster around disputed islands | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it
Japan said eight Chinese government ships had entered waters around a group of islands at the heart of a territorial dispute between the two nations
Emma Lafleur's insight:

This may become a larger problem if China and Japan do not negotiate or talk about these problems. Both claim these uninhabited islands and neither want to give them up. The two countries are already planning cat and mouse games with their ships and both are willing to fight for the islands. If the two countries do not resolve their problem, this could have international repercussions as many countries trade with both Japan and China and no one wants to see China and Japan going to war. They need to negotiate and figure out who owns what before some violence breaks out between the ships that are patrolling the islands.

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Coca-Cola Returning To Myanmar; Now It Sells In All But 2 Nations

Coca-Cola Returning To Myanmar; Now It Sells In All But 2 Nations | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it
With the country also known as Burma taking steps toward democracy and respect for human rights, Coke is returning after a 60-year absence. What are the two nations where it still won't be doing business?

 

Globalization has made many companies and products ubiquitious throughout the world.  We take their presence as a matter of course, a sign that the largest brands are in essentially every country in the world--but not all.  Until recently Coca Cola was not in three markets, all for political reasons.  Now that Burma is becoming more democratic, Coca-Cola will bring their product to all countries of South East Asia.  Any guesses on the 2 countries that still don't have Coke?

 

UPDATED CORRECTION: Thanks to the great people at About.com 's geography page, I was informed that there are more than just the initially listed two countries (North Korea and Cuba) not within the Coke universe (such as Somalia and East Timor to name a few).  For more on this see: http://geography.about.com/b/2012/06/15/coca-cola-in-every-country-but-three-no.htm


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Josiah Melchor's comment, September 12, 2012 11:22 PM
The Coca-Cola company has become an American Icon that speaks the universal language and trade of many. With many manufacturing facilities around the globe, Coca-Cola will continue to network the world, connecting every country to each other.
Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 24, 2:42 PM

This was an interesting but short article.  It is interesting to realize that Coke is sold almost universally worldwide with just a few exceptions.  It is truly the poster boy for globalization.

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 1, 11:03 AM

Coke is another product that is a worldwide phenomenon. People love their soda (even if its terrible for you). People that migrate from country to country bring with them unique items such as Coke, that the foreigners don't know about. This is how different countries come to pick up on other countries foods and customs.

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This Is What It's Like to Be a Muslim in Boston Right Now

This Is What It's Like to Be a Muslim in Boston Right Now | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it
When Anum Hussain heard about the Boston Marathon bombing, she immediately panicked, worried that the culprits would be like her. The 22-year-old Muslim was in the offices of Hubspot, the Cambridge marketing-software company she works for.

Via Seth Dixon
Emma Lafleur's insight:

It is very sad to see that so many people associate all Muslims with terrorist groups. They know that 9/11 was done by people who were Muslims but they choose to ignore that they were radical. They choose to ignore that there are radicals in all religions, not just in Islam. These Muslims are Americans too, and it is sad that they should be afraid for their lives after these attacks because of the assumptions that other people will make about them. They are stereotyped as dangerous, when they are not violent. I am only glad to see their strength as they try to stay strong through these attacks on their religion, and I hope that they're stories here will promote understanding and will make people want to learn more about their religion so that these stereotypes can go away.

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Courtney Burns's curator insight, November 20, 2013 3:33 PM

Being from around the area and listening and watching the tv during the boston bombings all I really thought about was how the city and families were effected by the tragic event. However I never really thought about how it impacted muslim people in the area. For people to put a blame on all muslim people is not right. We are not all the same, which means not all muslims are the same. Some muslims have lived their whole lives in the US and for people to catogorize them all as terrorists isn't right. All people should be treated them same way. It is sad to read the article and think that some muslims in Boston walk around in fear of being beat up or killed just because of their culture. The bombings effected an entire city and muslim people people should be able to mourn with the rest of the city. They grew up there just like we did. So what makes them so different from me and you? Not all muslims are killers like the two boys from the bombings. It is really sad to me that they have to live their lives in fear everyday in a place that they call home, just because of their culture. No one deserves to live like that. I can't even imagine how difficult it is for muslim people in Boston. 

Ryan G Soares's curator insight, December 3, 2013 10:38 AM

Terrorism is a huge problem in our Country today. I'm not trying to racist saying this but I feel like they do it to themselves. Coming into our country and terrorizing our nation thats okay? Yes not every Muslim is a terrorist im not saying that but you never know if they are or not. Since 911 we cant trust anyone, and theres a reason for that. I understand that they should not have to feel any different then the average American but the past is what we all dwell on.

Lauren Sellers's curator insight, May 29, 10:19 AM

Some are saying that racism doesnt exist anymore but it does. Muslims still live in fear that they are being judged everyday because some Americans generalize Muslims with terrorism

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My escape from North Korea

"As a child growing up in North Korea, Hyeonseo Lee thought her country was 'the best on the planet.' It wasn't until the famine of the 90s that she began to to wonder. She escaped the country at 14, to begin a life in hiding, as a refugee in China. Hers is a harrowing, personal tale of survival and hope."


Via Seth Dixon
Emma Lafleur's insight:

A sad but also inspiring story and an enlightening video. I see a lot of people who assume that the North Korean government and the people are one and the same, and that is not the case. It is important to realise the harsh conditions of people living in North Korea to fully understand what is happening in that part of the world. It is hard for people to leave their country and their home, but as Hyeonseo Lee explains, sometimes there is no choice.

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Seth Dixon's curator insight, March 26, 2013 12:26 PM

Not all migration is voluntary and this woman's personal struggle to flee North Korea alternates between heartwarming and heartbreaking.  Her accent is thick, but it is worth it to her her story from her own mouth. 


Tags: North Koreamigration, political, East Asia, development, states, poverty.

Emily Ross Cook's curator insight, March 27, 2013 9:48 AM

We've been studying North Korea and the conflict between North and South in our World Geography classes.  This is an interesting perspective and story - one that definitely helps to understand the plight of many North Koreans as they struggle to leave and subsequently create new lives elsewhere.

Liam Michelsohn's curator insight, November 20, 2013 4:22 PM

A very powerful and informaitivie dipiction of life as you girl for Lee, and her stuggle to get a away. Her story is increadible, I cant even begin to imaigian all that she has been thouhg sence her escape. This story reminds me alot of life how life for jews was during and the hollocust, and how the need to escape your own country became a need to survive. The fact that Lee has remained safe and is able to come out and share her story is inspiring.

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For Chinese Women, Marriage Depends On Right 'Bride Price'

For Chinese Women, Marriage Depends On Right 'Bride Price' | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it

"China's one-child only policy and historic preference for boys has led to a surplus of marriageable Chinese men. Young women are holding out for better apartments, cars and the like from potential spouses...30 to 48 percent of the real estate appreciation in 35 major Chinese cities is directly linked to a man's need to acquire wealth — in the form of property — to attract a wife."

 

Tags: gender, folk culture, China, podcast, culture, population.


Via Seth Dixon
Emma Lafleur's insight:

This article touches base on a couple of topics. First, it illustrates how the one-child policy affected China. Culturally, China had a preference for boys, so the one-child policy created a great gender imbalance. There are more men than women in China, this means that not all men can get married in China because there are not enough women. Also, women now have an upper-hand because they can ask for money, a car, and an appartment from their future husbands before getting married because there are so few women, and men now have to work their whole lives to save of the money for these bride prices. This brings up a second topic. Since the men have to work harder to save money, they help China's economy. The economy is already getting better there, but these bride prices are making the economy rise faster. Therefore, the one child policy had both negative and positive effects on China, and some couples now want daughters instead of sons because they are less expensive. Economically, there is now a preference for girls. This could be a good model for the effects of trying to control population growth.

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Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 10, 10:54 AM

With the new gender imbalance, it is interesting that Chinese families now see boys as the gender that will cost them more money in the long run, it used to be the girl that was a finical burden.  This is a big change in thinking from just a generation ago, it will be interesting to see how this plays out in china over time.

Nathan Chasse's curator insight, April 12, 11:11 AM

This article shows how the One Child Policy has skewed the gender balance in China. There is a shortage of young women and, in order to attract a wife, young Chinese men feel the need to acquire more wealth to gain a competitive advantage in a China with a surplus of men. This wealth grab is possibly fueling the housing market in China, but Chinese women are not seeing many benefits for themselves. The wealth of their husbands tends to be left in the husband's name, leaving women out of the growing economy of China.

 

There is another potential issue as well. The Chinese men are taking out loans to pay for inflated housing prices. If the housing market crashes, these marriage seeking men are left with significant debt for apartments which were overvalued to begin with.

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 9:34 PM

This article is recent too which is scary. Men should be able to pick their own brides and money shouldn't be involved. Women shouldn't have to marry someone for the sake of her family but if thats what she wants to do then fine. Different countries operate different ways and in China, this is how they work.

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Ecuador auctions off Amazon to Chinese oil firms

Ecuador auctions off Amazon to Chinese oil firms | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it
Indigenous groups claim they have not consented to oil projects, as politicians visit Beijing to publicise bidding process
Emma Lafleur's insight:

Along with the last article I posted about Chico Mendes, this article portrays how Brazil is not the only country with a problem with deforestation and killing the ways of life of the indigenous people. This is a problem across the Amazon River and the rainforest. Ecuador is selling some of their land to foreign countries for oil projects. This makes the problems larger because if Ecuador does not care about these people, there is no way that a foreign country will. Ecuador is going to kill their Amazon rainforest, their natural wonder, and put their indigenous peoples in a tough situation for oil. There are a lot of countries bidding for the land, but it seems that China will most likely get the land because they are aggressive and Ecuador would not mind if China got the land because they owe money to China. With hard economic times worldwide, and countries needing money, a lot of local people around the world, and not just in the Amazon, are finding that they are the ones that get the short end of the stick, and the environment suffers as they do as well.

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LANDFILL HARMONIC: Inspiring dreams one note at a time!

A heartfelt & moving story of how instruments made from recycled trash bring hope to children whose future is otherwise spiritless.

Via Seth Dixon
Emma Lafleur's insight:

An inspiring video of using the "trash" in the landfills of these slums to make life just a little bit better. They have recycled the trash around them to create musical instruments that they then use in music classes that make school and life for the kids a lot better. They are learning to play the violin even though a violin is worth more than their home. It is inspiring to see, and it is interesting to realize how much music has changed these people's lives while many music programs in the US are in danger of getting cut. A great video to watch and to see how an oil barrel with a couple of pieces of wood and some string can sound exactly like a cello!

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Lauren Stahowiak's curator insight, February 8, 6:38 PM

One mans' trash is another mans treasure. The typical stereotypes of slums are that they are dirty, poor and lifeless. However, the people in this slum have so much more to offer. Searching through the trash, they are able to piece together junk into recycled instruments that they use to liven the slums, their lives and the world. Music is a way to brighten their today and look forward to brighter tomorrows. 

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, February 17, 11:21 AM

This video was very moving.  I was surprised how the recycled instruments sounded exactly like the real things.  I think this should make us think about how much of the trash we generate could be put to some use besides rotting in a landfill.  It also shows the ingenuity of people to find a use for a resource even if that resource is trash.  It just goes to show that the saying “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure,” is true.

Nicole Kearsch's curator insight, October 14, 12:11 PM

This is really cool.  You would think that people living on a pile of trash would be really miserable and have a negative outlook on life, which in a way these kids probably do.  However they have found a way to bring joy to their lives and bring them closer together.  Going through the trash they are sometimes lucky enough to find actual instruments that have been thrown away, but more times than others only find pieces they can use.  Taking the pieces of trash that they find and turning them into instruments to make music is the highlight of most of these kids day.  They go to show that they can live in the worst of the worst but that doesn't mean that that will stop them from becoming something in life.

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Rapes Cases Show Clash Between Old and New India

Rapes Cases Show Clash Between Old and New India | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it
A boom and social change are pitting young working women in the city against men from conservative villages.

Via Seth Dixon
Emma Lafleur's insight:

Times are changing in India, the country is becoming more western and adopting more western ideals, but change does not come all at once. In cities women are becoming educated and getting good jobs, but just outside there are still traditional rural areas. In these areas, women stay inside and sometimes cover their faces, and are obedient to the men around them. In the city, women go out at night and are more independent. This leads to problems because men of these villages will abuse and rape these independent women and will feel justified in their actions because there is no reason for a woman to be out unless they are a prostitute. Women try to gain independence and freedom, but are in danger because those around them still believe that they have no right and do not belong in the city, working.

   Also, these rape crimes go unpunished many times because rape in India makes a woman unpure and she becomes victimized and some women commit suicide after rape because of the stress that comes from the rape itself and from the society's view of her as a rape victim.

    Rape is a growing problem all over the world, with people disagreeing on the fundamental question of what qualifies as rape. However, in India it is a large problem because there are almost two societies because the country is changing and women do not know how to live in both societies, they can either have all of the freedom and independence, or none of it. They are gaining their self-independence and will soon get all of it, but some people are still trying to hold them back.

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Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 10, 9:50 AM

The rapid modernization of India along with the rural attitudes and male centric society makes it difficult for women who are raped to get justice.  Mostly because to come forward as a rape victim will take their honor away.  If they have to admit it happened then their lives will be ruined.  Even when their family stands behind them, the women are in fear and one almost killed herself because she felt pressured to testify.  The men who rape these women are from the small villages around the area and feel free to do as they please because they do not fear that their victims will report the abuse.  Things will not change until attitudes towards women and rape change in this area. 

Jessica Rieman's curator insight, April 23, 1:37 PM

This issue is very distrubing. First of all it talks about the poor inocent women and girls who leave their house so they are automatically a victim and should be forwarned that they will be hurt if leaving thie house like as if they should be resticted to their home life and never leave. This would be demonstrated as the old India but they are living or rying to live in the New India where the Women in this soicety should nto be subjected to these kinds of crimes. For example something that really took me was "The accused are almost always young high school dropouts from surrounding villages, where women who work outside the home are often seen as lacking in virtue and therefore deserving of harassment and even rape." And then this quote by one of the accused mothers; "“If these girls roam around openly like this, then the boys will make mistakes,” the mother of two of those accused in the rape said in an interview, refusing to give her name."" Like come on get your stuff together, you should have raised your children better than this.  I have to wonder what this society thinks and whether or not people are questioning what kind of society they are living in and if this society is pressured by the values of the sexes.

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 9:06 PM

Getting away with rape in any country is absolutely disgusting. Especially in India where women have been brutalized with no punishment to the predator, these women have a right to stand up for themselves. Being stalked and raped is something that the police need to get a grip on happening to their citizens.

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In historic shift, Saudis to allow some girls' sports

In historic shift, Saudis to allow some girls' sports | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it

"Private girls' schools are now allowed to hold sports activities in accordance with the rules of Shariah, or Islamic law. Students must adhere to 'decent dress' codes and Saudi women teachers will be given priority in supervising the activities, according to the Education Ministry's requirements.  The decision makes sports once again a stage for the push to improve women's rights, nearly a year after two Saudi female athletes made an unprecedented appearance at the Olympics."  This news comes at a time when Saudi Arabia has allowed women to ride bikes (sort of).

 

Tags: Saudi Arabia, culture, gender, religion, Middle East.


Via Seth Dixon
Emma Lafleur's insight:

It will take a long time for Saudi women to have full rights, but this is a step in the right direction.

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Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 2, 9:53 PM

The article displays the constant battle the women of Saudi Arabia face on a daily basis. However, this is a small sign of women in this area slowly getting more rights. This is an important right granted to women. Being allowed to participate in sporting activities or other types of physical exercise is very important in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle. 

Amy Marques's curator insight, April 24, 2:49 PM

This is a push in the struggle for women's rights in Saudi Arabian. For the first time girls will be allowed to play sports in private schools. The ultraconservative kingdom still requires that the girls were descent and  decent dress and and Saudi women teachers are going to have priority in supervising the activities.

Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 3:23 PM

Female rights in countries like Saudi Arabia are nothing like in the U.S. Much like in other Middle Eastern countries, Saudi Arabia allows little to no extra curricular activities for girls and women. Allowing them to play some specific sports is a huge deal!

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Myanmar's Educators Reach Out to the World - New York Times

Myanmar's Educators Reach Out to the World - New York Times | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it
Myanmar's Educators Reach Out to the World
New York Times
One important question is how the university is going to forge links with the outside world.
Emma Lafleur's insight:

It is really nice to see how education is valued and it is interesting to see how it is built. After years of not being able to have college classes because of student protests, Myanmar is reopening one of their largest universities, and are asking for help from outside countries. Myanmar lacks the supplies it needs for effective classes and effective teaching so they need help from different colleges around the world so they can give their students a good and useful education. Countries around the world, including the US, are sending money, guest lecturers, and are helping train teachers to help Myanmar because they know that one of the keys to the development of Myanmar and any country is a good education system. Therefore, by helping Myanmar build their university, these countries are helping them develop.

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Stray Dogs Master Moscow Subway

Stray Dogs Master Moscow Subway | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it

"Every so often, if you ride Moscow's crowded subways, you may notice that the commuters around you include a dog - a stray dog, on its own, just using the handy underground Metro to beat the traffic and get from A to B.  Yes, some of Moscow's stray dogs have figured out how to use the city's immense and complex subway system, getting on and off at their regular stops."


Via Seth Dixon
Emma Lafleur's insight:

It's really cool how these dogs can figure out how to survive in these urban areas on their own. Dogs are so connected to humans already, but learning how to do things like this is really interesting and really cool.

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Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, February 18, 11:25 PM

This article shows how intelligent some dogs are. They are adapting to the environment around them and figuring out how to survive within the city. I give them credit, as I am sure they have their tactics to survive, whether its begging for food or traveling subways to look for food. 

Jess Deady's curator insight, April 30, 8:46 PM

Dogs are creatures of habit. They get on at one stop and off at another every day or every so often. This is because there is an abundance of stray dogs and since no one is taking them in, Moscow will continue to have interesting subway surfers among them.

Paige Therien's curator insight, May 4, 11:06 AM

Humans commonly think of themselves as separate from nature.  However, we very much are a part of it and animals, like these stray dogs, know it.  When dealing with something more powerful than yourself, you have to learn how to navigate the system in order to survive.  That is exactly what these dogs have done, literally and figuratively, by learning the complex subway systems in Moscow.  It is an example of how animals can adapt to their man-made surroundings and how persistent (the rest of) nature can be.

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Turbulence on the Mekong River

Turbulence on the Mekong River | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it
The Mekong River was once a wild and primitive backwater. Today, growing demands for electricity and rapid economic growth are changing the character of what is the world's 12th-longest river.

 

Economic progress for some often entails job loss and environmental degradation for others.  The once isolated and remote Mekong is experiences some impacts of globalization with residents having mixed feelings about the prospects. 


Via Seth Dixon
Emma Lafleur's insight:

It seems to be a theme that across the bored, people are building things that directly and negatively impact the environment and the local people. There are always two sides to the problem. On one hand, the dam can help with the development of Laos because it will bring in money, but it will also destroy the fish population and therefore many fishermen will lose their jobs and people will lose a food source. It is a difficult problem because Laos needs money because there is a lot of poverty in this rural country and the fishermen do not add a whole lot to the economy, but the people need a way to survive and make money for their families as well. It's a problem that I think will be around for generation to come.

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Matt Mallinson's comment, November 27, 2012 6:12 PM
It's sad that they have to use up this wild river. I'm not a big fan of environmental degradation but if that's what they're going to do I can't do anything about it.
Michelle Carvajal's curator insight, December 11, 2012 9:04 PM

There must be a better way to transport items and in return save the Mekong river from being degredated. Technological innovations are affecting the life in the river as local fishermen are seeing less and less fish traveling in the river. This is impacting them in the sense that they use these fish for their survival as well as for selling. They fear that in building dams and creating advanced roads over the Mekong will change their enviroment altogether and will hinder their livelihood. This is a beautiful river and I personally feel there could be a better way but there is always something sacrficed when the government choses a location to build on. - M. Carvajal

Al Picozzi's curator insight, November 26, 2013 11:35 AM

Seems the price of modernizing will be the local economy that as existed here for centuries.  It is not a small industy either, it is according to the report a billion dollar fishing industry.  However with a growing population and a demand for electricity the river is the perfect source for this power.  This globalization, like all globalization, will help some and will hurt some.  What you have to ask yourself is will it help more than it hurts?  Will it help in the long run, over time?  For everyone involoved in globalization these answeres are never the same everywhere.

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Can China become a melting pot?

Can China become a melting pot? | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it
In his first weeks as leader of the world's most populous nation, China's new President Xi Jinping has made frequent reference to an emergent "Chinese Dream," emphasizing prosperity, happiness, and a revitalized national ethos.
Emma Lafleur's insight:

As China is developing more and more, many people are moving there indefinitely. China has started its own green card program and people are starting to move to China and create a new life there. Throughout history, China has adopted some of the culture from other countries and nations and have incorporated these things into their society to create their own success. However, as people are now immigrating to China, the question is will the Chinese people fully accept them and completely allow them into their culture and society. It takes time, but the immigrants can learn the language and assimilate into the society, but many Chinese do not want the immigrants to adopt China's traditional culture as it is not a piece of the immigrants' history. However, the immigrants also help in developing China as they start companies and jobs, and it does seem that these people can become a part of the Chinese society, but it will take a long time for them to fully be a part of the culture,

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Segregated prom tradition yields to unity

Segregated prom tradition yields to unity | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it
Students at Wilcox County High School in Georgia bucked 40 years of tradition by hosting their own racially integrated prom.
Emma Lafleur's insight:

It was surprising to read this article and see that there was still such segregation in this country. However, this article shows how even though laws can change quickly people's attitudes and culture can change much more slowly. This is a part of the reason why people have a problem with gay marriage, it is something that has been banned for so long that people do not understand why it shouldn't still be banned. As always, some people are for these changes and some are against them. However, these fights go on long after the laws have changed, with this segregation it was more than 40 years before someone spoke out against the segregation. Finally, it is the new generations that make the change as they grow up in a society with their friends who come from different backgrounds and make everything seem okay so that they are willing to change.

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Laos May Bear Cost of Planned Chinese Railroad

Laos May Bear Cost of Planned Chinese Railroad | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it
China wants a railroad linking it to Thailand and on to the Bay of Bengal in Myanmar, but some international groups warn that it may put a big burden on Laos.

Via Seth Dixon
Emma Lafleur's insight:

A railroad in South East Asia will be great for China so that it can increase its trade with the countries surrounding it instead of countries that are across seas and continents. However, China will get all of the benefits of this railroad while the smaller countries, such as Laos, will bear the costs. Laos cannot afford to build this railroad, but they know that China will find a way. Laos wants the railroad so that people will go to the country and maybe the railroad can provide some tourism, although it will not be enough to sustain the economy, but the railroad is too expensive. Laos is very rural and weak and they fear that China may make them a part of China. I wonder if Laos will gain any benefits from this railroad at all, or if it will only hurt their already suffering economy.

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Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 19, 7:12 PM

The Chinese-financed railroad is being built to pass thru Laos into the mega-city of Bangkok. China wants this railroad built to further expand its trading with Southeast Asia. Laos, a very poor and rural country may see small profits from this project. The most powerful country in this area, China, should have no problem building this railroad in its weak and poor neighboring country, Laos.  

Jessica Rieman's curator insight, April 23, 4:53 PM

This article depicts the major problem between trade route going through Laos. Laos is upset because they have no input in anything even though the railways will intersect through their country by the Chinese and their railways for imports and exports. "China wants a railroad linking it to Thailand and on to the Bay of Bengal in Myanmar, but some international groups warn that it may put a big burden on Laos". China wants to link to  Bangkok and then on to the Bay of Bengal in Maymar expanding China’s  enormous trade with Southeast Asia. Creating no way for Laos to get out of this deal though there has been some hesitation there will not be any stopping the maintenance of the soon to be power railways suffocating Laos. 

 
Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 24, 2:18 PM

The article discusses how China’s wish to build a rail road through southeast Asia will most likely incur a high cost from the country of Laos that the rail road will go through.  China is anxious to regain its power in the area and its terms for the rail road will leave Laos severely indebted to China to such an extent that many see it as China trying to make Laos a vessel state.

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Japan's Geographic Challenge

Stratfor examines Japan's primary geographic challenge of sustaining its large population with little arable land and few natural resources. For more analysi...

Via Seth Dixon
Emma Lafleur's insight:

Japan's geography has directly affected its foreign policy. Its history has also shows Japan's geopgraphic challenges because Japan doesn't have enough resources to sustain its people and therefore needs to expand, and throughout history they have used force and the military to gain the resources they need while they now use trade. This is a good video that summarizes why Japan has done the things it has done and the challenges they face.

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Kevin Cournoyer's comment, May 1, 2013 12:51 AM
Unlike other larger, more geographically diverse countries, Japan is faced with the problem of a general lack of farmable land and natural resources. The fact that the country is itself an island does not make things any easier for it in an economic sense. The way the country is divided up also makes for a difficult political situation, as mountain ranges create division, and therefore, political disunity.
The proximity of the Korean peninsula and China to Japan is also important to examine. Whenever Japan wishes to acquire natural resources and other economically beneficial materials, Korea is the conduit through which Japan tends to invade the mainland, usually China. Because of this, we can see how Japan’s geographic location may cause strained relationships with its neighbors, both politically and economically. Alienating two of its closest neighbors would clearly be a disastrous move for Japan, but it may be seen as necessary due to its unfortunate geographic location.
Matthew DiLuglio's curator insight, November 27, 2013 5:31 PM

It would make sense to me that for a place like Japan to sustain itself successfully, it would have to have some help from other areas with more resources.  Again with the concept- people don't choose to be born, or where they are born... To be born in Japan is as unchosen by that person as it would be in any other country.  I don't think people should have to pay for resources that they do not have available, especially because they are on an island/island chain that simply doesn't have what they need.  I am really repulsed by the bartering system because of absolute indication of beyond excessive surplus and profit and greed and all that garbage that humanity reeks of.  Yeah some people are happy, but we could be completely unburdened of all negativity if we banded together to rid the world of negativity itself.  I know that Japan would be happy to receive everything that they need for no cost, but I also know that many people would be willing to work, and more willing to work, if they didn't have expenses to pay for... it would really be serving their life's purpose as a component of humankind if they worked to help others, rather than to pay their monthly rent.  I don't have a clue how I would go about organizing a movement to transform this idea into a reality, but I'll work on that.  In the mean time, I would advise supranationalism for Japan, and hope that with the alliance of other countries, they can band together and make deals that work for the greater good of their country, population, and the world.

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 10, 10:58 AM

This short video did a great job in explaining why Japan became expansionist in the decades leading up to WW II.  The mountainous nature of the islands and lack of arable land challenges Japan to provide food for its people.  To understand Japan you must understand her geography, this helps to understand why a country acted the way it did in the past and can be a predictor of future actions. 

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Hong Kong and China: Growing apart?

Hong Kong and China: Growing apart? | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it
The BBC's John Simpson reports from Hong Kong, where the former colony's increasing independent-mindedness is worrying Beijing.

Via Seth Dixon
Emma Lafleur's insight:

Hong Kong has a mix of Chinese heritage and culture and British ideals. They lived under the British rule for so long that they grew accustomed to the British government system and freedoms. When the UK handed Hong Kong over to China, the people of Hong Kong were afraid that the Chinese government would step in and put them under the same system as the rest of China. China decided to allow Hong Kong to have its own system, but Hong Kong still fears China stepping in and forcing them to change and conform to the rules of the rest of China. Hong Kong is now seeing some protesting and some tension from its people about becoming truly Chinese. They do not want to be Chinese, and they do not want to be British either. They want to form their own country. However, it is highly unlikely that China will let Hong Kong go, but I do wonder if the ideals of Hong Kong, like elections, will slowly spread to the rest of China and create tensions that will cause a change in the Chinese government altogether.

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Seth Dixon's curator insight, December 11, 2012 11:11 PM

When the rule of Hong Kong transferred from the UK to China in 1997, the Chinese government was careful to ease the fears of those in Hong Kong that they would not have their political and economic systems turned upside down.  "One country, two systems" was the famous slogan to sum up the policy that some felt would simply delay the inevitable.  Today, many of the youth in Hong Kong are demonstrating against what they feel are pressures to do away with their unique status and are bringing back the old colonial flag.  This is not asking for a return to British rule, but a symbolic reference to their distinct history from the rest of mainland China.  Today only 16.6% of Hong Kong residents identify themselves as Chinese, which is the lowest it's ever been since 1997.

Steven Sutantro's curator insight, December 20, 2012 9:06 PM

Interesting facts...that's the interdependence concept of Geography..

Bill Chen's comment, December 22, 2012 9:20 AM
http://www.myairmaxpascher.com/
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Boston and Syria

Boston and Syria | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it

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Nicholas Patrie's curator insight, October 6, 3:03 PM

certainly a powerful picture. as horrible as the Boston bombings were how can anyone imagine living through violence like that day in and day out.

Shanelle Zaino's curator insight, October 6, 3:07 PM

This is an incredibly moving and eye opening picture. There is so much that can seen and felt from it. Young people standing in front of a building that has been torn apart. A respectful condolence and insightful image. This gives the viewer much to think about.

Alyssa Dorr's curator insight, October 6, 3:18 PM

"Boston bombings represent a sorrowful scene of what happens every day in Syria. Do accept our condolences". These words were posted on a banner that was made by some citizens of Syria after the Boston Marathon bombing. Notice the background of the picture. It does not look like a happy place. It almost looks as if the building behind them may have been bombed. After all, the citizens do tell us that bombings happen to occur every day in Syria. Even though they live a torturous life like this day in and day out, they still felt the need to send their condolences which was very respectful. As I look at this picture more and more, I noticed that all of the people holding up the sign are male. Maybe this has to do with the bombings in such that they maybe all lived in that building in the background. It is amazing to me that despite their world being bombed day after day, some are cracking smiles, they manage to hold up their countries flag, and hold their hands up with peace signs.

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25 years after Chico Mendes, killings in the Amazon are endemic

25 years after Chico Mendes, killings in the Amazon are endemic | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it
David Hill: This week's trial of men accused of killing two activists in 2011 highlights the continuing problems faced in the Amazon
Emma Lafleur's insight:

It has been a quarter of a century since Chico Mendes brought worldwide attention to the problems of the Amazon. However, after his death had left the news, the problems proceeded. Many local and indigenous peoples are still losing their lifestyle to ranchers and loggers. Many people are also still being killed for getting in the way of the ranchers and the loggers. The governments of these countries need money now, so they jeopardize the local and sustainable economies for their money making ways which kills the forest and the local peoples. They do not see the value in the economies of the local people because their business does not seem to help the government, however without the forest, there are more and more people who live in poverty and need the government for support. Governments are killing the sustainable ways of life in order to get money more quickly in less sustainable ways.

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How Geography Explains the United States - By Aaron David Miller

How Geography Explains the United States - By Aaron David Miller | Seeing the World More Clearly | Scoop.it
Emma Lafleur's insight:

This is a great article that explains how America's location affects American's worldview. As it states in the article, America's neighbors are Canada and Mexico, niether of which are hostile towards us, and fish. Therefore, the US had a lot of room to grow and have its system of compromise. This then translates to our foreign policy where we try to make compromises around the world but the world do not have the same benefit that we do. Even though we have been attacked, we are too far away to be affected in such a way that would tear the country apart. We are safe when compared to the rest of the world because of our location, and that security affects how we react with the rest of the world.

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Mary Patrick Schoettinger's curator insight, April 18, 2013 9:39 AM

There are so many facets to geography and the United States has certainly benefitted from all of them; from location to abundant natural resources to cultural histories. I think this is a good introduction to the topic.

Louis Culotta's comment, April 18, 2013 12:41 PM
I would think that the united states treats Canada a lot better at than in Mexico because of the border issues that exist because of people trying to smuggle drugs or people into America from Mexico continues to be abig problem with the US goverment.
Maegan Connor's curator insight, December 17, 2013 1:48 PM

I think the very last paragraph of this article is one of the truest statements about America that I have ever read.  "There's so much good America can do in the world." This is absolutely true because as the author covered, the U.S. is very good at getting involved in foreign affairs and we are extremely lucky to have the borders that we do.  We're safe on this side of the globe, a world away from the places that have suffered religious and political turmoil for centuries.  

However, the citizens of the U.S. often remain marginally uneducated about out foreign affairs because of the portrayals by the media and the many covered up mistakes that the U.S. has made.  The author of this piece noted America's three major faults as pragmatism, idealism, arrogance and ambivalence.  The United States is ultimately the most conceited country in the world but it's not entirely the fault of its citizens.  U.S. media's job is not necessarily to report the truth but report the fractions of truth that will continue to inspire nationalism, even if that means leaving out the fact that many problems around the world have been increased due to America's participation.

The author of this piece pointed out America's habit of only joining in when it is beneficial for our country, even if it is not in the best interest of the people we are helping.  We offered assistance to the reformers in Egypt but ignored problems raging in Bahrain.  The U.S. has only limited understanding of many of the old, traditional cultures that reign in parts of the Middle East but that does not stop the country from trying to help and often, looking foolish or inciting more unrest.

We have grown to feel very safe in on our side of the planet and regardless of the few attacks that have penetrated America's defense, we still have a very limited world view because there are no threats from our neighbors and it is okay to be whomever you'd like to be (technically speaking because racism, sexism, and homophobia are still rampant in this country) without threats from people around you.  It would be in our country's best interest to educate ourselves on world events and other cultures to be well rounded and less offensive to those who suffer in other regions. The author called America's belief that the problems between Israeli's and Palestinians would resolve with a classic Hollywood happy ending a part of America's problem with idealism and not understanding what it is like to have neighbors who want to dive in during the midst of horrible wars and take whatever they can get their hands on.   Having the borders that it does, it was never a real threat that the U.S. faced. 

I think this article is spot on with the problems in U.S. foreign policy and how geography affects our culture and our ideas of how the world works.