Category Archives: RCL

Solar Roadways- Final RCL Post

Today, we’re going to be talking about the revolutionary idea by Scott and Julie Bursaw of Solar Roadways.  Solar Roadways is the idea of replacing the pavement and asphalt on all roadways in America with solar panels. The idea is that these solar panels could generate electricity, digitally draw traffic lines, and be easily replaceable. The idea started when Julia recommended to Scott that we should replace all roads in America with solar panels. At first, Scott thought the idea was ludicrous, but after much thought and careful planning, the idea has gained a sense of reality.

Solar Roadways is a startup company that is based in Sandpoint, Idaho. Scott Bursaw is the lead engineer on the project, having earned his master’s degree in electrical engineering. Solar Roadways first gained its insane amount of hype when they started an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign. Their goal of $1 million was reached and exceeded to the point of $2.2 million at the deadline for the project funding. This has become the #1 most lucrative Indiegogo campaign of all time.

The prototype has already been built for Solar Roadways, and it is currently in the second stage of production. In the first stage of production, Solar Roadways focused on perfecting the LED system to be implanted within the panels. These LEDs will be used to make designs collectively on roadways, easily being programmed to “paint” and “re-paint” road lines. Since the panels are pressure sensitive, the LEDs can warn a driver if there is an animal or pedestrian ahead on the road and urge them to slow down. Additionally, LEDs in the road would make nighttime driving much safer.

The second revolutionary feature of the Solar Roadways are heated roads. The purpose of heated roads would be to easily and cheaply remove any and all snow from the roadways during the winter. The panels would do so using the same technology that a rear window defrosting unit uses, simply running electric currents through the glass to heat it. This would save the millions that are usually spent on snow removal and the money lost in accidents caused by unsafe roadways.

Panels testing their snow melting ability

After doing some research, Solar Roadways concluded that glass indeed would be a suitable material for roadways. Specific types of glass actually have a hardness that is rated between steel and stainless steel. After running calculations, they determined that the glass that they would plan to use in the roadways is hard enough to sustain an 18-wheeler flipping and smashing onto the road.

At first, a troubling thought was that vehicles would not be able to get enough traction on the glass, so Scott redesigned the glass with hexagonal structures with groves that surpassed the requirements of all traction tests that they ran. They drove a tractor over the sample parking lot they made with the panels, and it found no trouble at all in this endeavor.

As for the structural support of the panels, Solar Roadways have found that they could actually use recycled materials combined with organic materials to produce a viable structural integrity in their panels. This would greatly reduce the amount of recyclable waste that is found throughout the world.

The impact of this idea would be immense. First off, the production and implementation of the panels alone would create millions of jobs. Once the panels are put in place, little to no maintenance work would have to be performed at all. One major upside to these panels is that the problem of potholes in roads would be completely eliminated, as you can’t get potholes in glass. If a panel does happen to break or begin malfunctioning, the surrounding panels are actually programmed to automatically recognize this and send a repair crew immediately. Millions of dollars are wasted and lost in potential revenue every year because vehicles are stuck in traffic due to construction. With the modular design of Solar Roadways, a construction crew would be able to get to the site and replace the panel and be gone within eight minutes, which would almost entirely eliminate traffic jams due to construction and repair.

With the implementation of Solar Roadways, there comes potential for countless possibilities. If all of the roads in the United States were covered in these solar panels, the US would actually generate three times as much energy as it uses. This extra energy could be turned into the form of revenue for the US. With the cheap cost of energy, due to its great abundance, electric cars could actually become an economic possibility. Solar Roadways has even proposed that there is potential for technology within Solar Roadways that could charge a car as it’s driving, which would immensely increase the range of an electric car, which is currently the largest drawback associated with electric vehicles. With this concept, we could nearly eliminate the necessity for fossil fuels and save our planet. Additionally, we could stop using petroleum based asphalt and pavement.

With the implementation of Solar Roadways, all internet and power lines could be put underground instead of being in unattractive looking telephone pools. Not only would this improve the view outside, but power and internet lines would no longer be damaged during storms. If all of the internet lines were replaced by optical fiber, internet connections would become exponentially faster with zero data interference.

Solar Roadways is an idea of the future. With their implementation, we would see a revolution in the world that we live in today and our standard of living could continue to rise. The United States would become a beacon of the future.

My biggest concern is: how long will it be until hackers program giant penis designs onto the road?

To learn more about Solar Roadways, visit their website. They have an abundance of information to entertain the curious mind.

The “N” Word

Today I’d like to discuss a word that many people grimace at when heard. Other people think that it’s something that has developed so much at this point that it’s ridiculous to avoid it. Some people call it dangerous. Some say that our future would be lost without it. It’s been buried, but some people say that its toxins will seep out and harm everyone around us. Today, the word I would like to discuss is “nuclear.”

Nuclear energy gets a bad rep. People have negative perceptions of nuclear energy because of events such as the Three Mile Island incident, the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki with nuclear bombs, and, most famously, Chernobyl. Today, I would like to address the fears of nuclear energy. Then, I would like to go on to explain the true risks and benefits of nuclear energy



All of these images are propaganda against nuclear energy created out of unreasonable fear. People fear nuclear energy as the monster under their beds. When one doesn’t know that the danger doesn’t actually exist, it feels very real. Once it is explained though, one can gain comfort.

Three Mile Island was the nuclear incident that contributed the most to the public’s fear of nuclear energy, which led to a rapid decline in the building of additional nuclear power plants for years after the incident. What happened at Three Mile Island was not a disaster, but rather a lesson to scientists and engineers. “In 1979 at [the] Three Mile Island nuclear power plant in [the] USA, a cooling malfunction caused part of the core to melt in the #2 reactor. The TMI-2 reactor was destroyed.” (Three Mile Island Accident.)

Now, when people hear meltdown, they instantly think of an immense disaster, though this was not the case. People think that radioactive reactors are in complete exposure to their surrounding environment, though this is completely false. “The containment building worked as designed. Despite melting of about one-third of the fuel core, the reactor vessel itself maintained its integrity and contained the damaged fuel.” There was only a minuscule amount of radiation that escaped the plant. All experiments done to measure this amount of radiation proved it to be no more than background radiation levels, “This was confirmed by thousands of environmental and other samples and measurements taken during the accident.” (Three Mile Island Accident.) The largest contributor to the surrounding panic of the incident was communication problems that led to conflicting information being delivered to the public. It would do well to note that no one was killed nor injured by this incident, and there were no lingering effects due to it.


The fear surrounding nuclear energy due to the immense devastation inflicted on Hiroshima and Nagasaki during the August 1945 bombing near the end of the Second World War is understandable. I have been to ground zero at both sites in Japan. The result of the bombings was the formation of two immense lakes- some of the largest ever formed by mankind. I took a ferry from one side to the other and it was not a short ride. Though this does demonstrate the destructive power behind nuclear bombs, it clouds the public’s judgement into thinking that all nuclear power is destructive. The way I ask you to view this is the same way that you would view fire. Fire has the ability to warm your house in the hearth of your fireplace, but it also has the ability to turn your entire house to charcoal. The difference between the two is control.


Chernobyl is the absolute nightmare of nuclear energy. The Chernobyl incident occurred in 1986 in the former USSR due to a reactor that was flawed in design and operated by inadequately trained personnel. Chernobyl was the equivalent of 1 million Three Mile Island meltdowns. The meltdown released more radiation than the intentional bombing of Hiroshima. Chernobyl was the only nuclear related accident in the world where people died as a result. Two people died as a result of the explosions the night of and another 28 died within a few weeks due to acute radiation poisoning. The incident occurred because the operators wanted to test how long the turbines would spin and continue to supply power to the main circulating pumps following a (simulated) loss of main electrical power supply. The issue with this is that, in order to test this, the Chernobyl operators intentionally turned off all automatic shutdown mechanisms- a recipe for disaster. What followed was explosions, a meltdown, and 5% of the radioactive material being released into the environment. An incident like this should never have happened. It would never have happened under educated, intelligent supervision, but it did. Let it be a lesson. (Chernobyl Accident 1986.)

If there’s anyone out there who likes numbers, the following should be comforting.

Energy Source Mortality Rates; Deaths/yr/TWh: 

Coal – world average, 161.    Coal – China, 278.    Coal – USA, 15.    Oil – 36.    Natural Gas – 4.    Biofuel/Biomass – 12.    Peat – 12.    Solar/rooftop – 0.44-0.83.    Wind – 0.15.    Hydro – world, 0.10.    Hydro – world, 1.4.    Nuclear – 0.04“”

(The Energy Collective.)

Deaths Per Year from Miscellaneous Things (U.S.):

Candles  – 126.    Roller skates  – 10.    Window blind cords  – 13.   Drawstring hoods  – 17.

(No Tricks Zone.)

Airplanes – 761


Falling out of bed – 450 (U.S.)

(Economic Policy Journal.)

Auto-erotic Asphyxiation – 1000 (U.S).

(Medicine Net.)

Now that we’re done addressing those fears, let’s talk about why we should be using nuclear energy.

Clean Electricity

Nuclear energy is perhaps the cleanest form of energy out there. The great thing about nuclear energy is that there are 0% carbon emission due to nuclear energy. The only carbon emissions are due to the transportation of the nuclear fuel to the sites, though this is a laughable amount, as 26 grams of nuclear energy produce the same amount of energy as 100,000 metric tons of coal. The energy potential of nuclear energy is immense. “In the fission of uranium 235 nucleus, the amount of energy released is about 60,000,000 times as much as when a carbon atom burns.” (Conserve Energy Future.)

Reliable, Safe, Efficient

Nuclear energy is reliable, safe, and efficient. Nuclear energy is produced and monitored by highly trained scientists and engineers at all times, which is not something that can always be said for fossil fuel plants. “The safe operation of each nuclear energy facility is overseen by experts from the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC.) American nuclear energy facilities are among the most highly-regulated in the world, with NRC inspectors onsite at facilities 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.” (Conserve Energy Future.) Nuclear energy is produced at an 91% operational efficiency. To make a quick comparison, the operation efficiency of other fuel types are as follows: Wind, 32%;  Natural Gas, 50%,  Coal, 59%. (Nuclear Energy Institute.)

Background Radiation Concern

One major concern of people with nuclear energy is radiation seeping into their surrounding environment. One thing I would love to tell you: I grew up within 20 miles of a nuclear power plant, and I didn’t even know until my senior year of high school. Living near a nuclear power plant is less dangerous to your health than having granite counter tops in your kitchen. Regard this illustration presented by the World Nuclear Organization on the radiation exposure throughout the life on an average American:

Nuclear energy is not dangerous; it is the future. In 2013, the United States received approximately 19% of its electricity from nuclear energy. (Nuclear Energy Institute.)

Though this figure is impressive, we have a tremendous amount of untapped potential.

“In 2012, France derived 77 percent of its electricity from nuclear power.” (Institute for Energy Research.)

Not only is nuclear the future, it’s lucrative- and who doesn’t like money?

Save Energy, Save the World

The biggest issue that has to do with energy, perhaps, may not be how much energy we are using, but rather how much energy we are wasting. It is predicted that the United States uses 95.1 quadrillion British Thermal Units of raw energy each year. While this is a great number, it is not an accurate depiction of how much energy actually fulfills a purpose. Experts predict that the United States’ use of energy is overall only 14%-39% efficient. (How Much Energy Does the US Waste?) This figure is staggering. This shows that the United States actually loses more energy than it actually puts to use each year. Additionally, much of the energy that we use would not be necessary if we took advantage of more efficient technology and habits!

It would appear that, in many ways, people in the United States are either wasting idle energy or using extremely inefficient technology that wastes most of the energy put into it. For example, with an Xbox a great amount of the energy wasted is due to the fact that people leave it plugged in when not using it. Even worse than the Xbox could perhaps be home computers, which are usually left on twenty-four hours a day, 365 days a year, while only being in use for maybe 10% of that time. This wastes an immense amount of energy. Devices in your household should be unplugged whenever they are not in use. If not, these “energy vampires” will account for up to 10% of your utility bill at the end of the month! (Are Energy Vampire Sucking You Dry?) Along with this, there are numerous simple adjustments which can be made in our lives to become more energy efficient.

Unplugging things in your home is not necessarily as important as being mindful of what you plug in. One of the most important adjustments to make within your home is to switch all of your lightbulbs to energy-efficient compact fluorescent lightbulbs. Though they have a higher initial cost, they will end up saving you a reasonable amount of money in the long run. Fluorescent lightbulbs use only a quarter of the energy used by an ordinary incandescent lightbulb and they last eight to twelve times longer than incandescent bulbs.

Don’t be fooled. The only reason to be energy efficient isn’t just to appease the hippies. Some energy efficiency tricks can actually save you a boatload of cash! One of the greatest energy efficiency strategies you can incorporate into your life is passive solar heating and cooling. The premise of PSHC is that you design your house in order to keep it at a comfortable temperature while using as little energy as possible to do so by allowing the sun to heat your home. PSHC is a massive money saver, as “Heating and cooling account for about 48% of the energy use in a typical U.S. home, making it the largest energy expense for most homes.” (Saving Energy at Home)

The first and most important part of PSHC is to have large, south-facing windows. Ideally, the windows should face within 30 degrees of true south. These windows should be able to receive direct sunlight from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. during the colder months. PSHC will be most effective if the floor where the sun hits it is made of something such as tile. What happens in PSHC is the sunlight comes in through the window and heats up the tile and other objects to be referred to as “solar mass.” Once the solar mass is heated, convection allows that heat to be drawn away from the solar masses and distributed throughout the rest of the home. As dark objects will absorb more light than light objects, it is advisable that the solar mass within your home be a dark color. Once the sun goes loses sight of the inside of your house, it is suggested to close heavy curtains in front of your windows in order to aid to keep the collected heat within your home.

There are a few variables to consider outside of just solar mass and window position in order to make PSHC as efficient as possible. In order to keep in the heat that comes through the windows of your home during the colder months, it is highly advised that you make sure that your home is effectively insulated. Windows and doors are important places to check for air seal effectiveness. A building professional would gladly be able to help you with this. Another great trick for PSHC is to plant deciduous trees in front of your south facing windows. The reason for this is that during the hot summer months, the deciduous trees will block direct sunlight from shining in and heating up your home, whereas during the cold winter months, the tree won’t have any leaves to block the sunlight. This will prevent from your home from overheating in the summer without having to block all of the outside light from entering your home. Depending on how many adjustments you make, PSHC can save you from 5 to 75 percent on your home heating bills for the year! (Passive Heating and Cooling article)

A few other things may be done to greatly reduce the cost of your home energy use. First off, turn down your thermostat in the winter! There is no need for you to be walking around your house in shorts and a tank top in the winter. Turning your thermostat down to 68 degrees will put your house at a comfortable temperature while decreasing your energy use and, therefore, your energy bill! In order to make your fridge and freezer as efficient as possible, it is recommended that you set your fridge temperature to 37 degrees and set your freezer to 3 degrees. These tips will save you money, and hopefully make you not too hot, not too cold, but just right!

There are a few basic things that should be said when it comes to conserving energy and saving money on your electric bill. They should go without saying, but some people still make mistakes. Always, always, always turn the lights off when you leave a room. To go along with that, don’t turn on lights during the day unless you really need them! Open the windows and let in a little bit of natural light! The other thing that is always important to bring up whenever talking about energy is the “Three R’s,” which are “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.” Do your best to not use more materials for everyday things than is absolutely necessary. If you finish using something, try to think of another use for it before you get rid of it! Last, but not least, please recycle. Recycling goods keeps our Earth green and cuts down immensely on energy and material costs.

Save money, save energy, save the planet!

Energy Consumption

There are many issues that plague our world today ranging from starvation and sickness to war and cyber attacks. Though these issues are huge on their own, the largest of all issues is in our energy consumption. Not every is sick. Not everyone goes hungry.  Not everyone is a soldier or a hacker, but we are all consumers of energy. The worst part of all is that many people have no idea what impact their energy consumption has on the world. People often don’t even know when they’re consuming energy. People say, “Oh, I don’t really use much energy. I always turn the lights out when I leave the room,” but then they throw out three polystyrene containers a day along with matching sets of plastic cutlery and wash near empty loads of laundry. People do not understand that a great deal of energy goes into all of the things we do and use throughout the day.

The two greatest issues that have to do with energy consumption are our limited resources for energy consumption and the adverse effects of each of our energy usage methods. For a little background, this is how we provide our energy today: “Oil and coal currently provide about 63% of global energy, followed by natural gas, nuclear and hydro, with the rest of the renewables — wind, solar, geothermal and biofuels combined — making up less than 2% today. (These figures don’t include biomass, like wood, straw and dung, burned in cooking fires and to provide heat, which still makes up a surprising 10% of energy today.)” (Source.)

Oil, natural gas, and coal are perhaps the most troublesome sources of energy. The first issue is: according to current reserve predictions performed by BP, there are currently only 1,687.9 billion barrels left for us to recover in the world. According to estimates by Ecotricity (Britan’s leading green energy supplier,) judging by only our current consumption of oil, we will run out of oil in the year 2052. Once we run out of oil, we will focus on natural gas and coal to fulfill our energy needs. If we increase our natural gas consumption to compensate for the absence of oil, we will run out of natural gas by 2060. At that point, we will have to rely almost entirely on coal to fulfill our energy demand. Luckily enough for us, we would have enough coal to last us 28 years, all the way to 2088. The problem is, by the year 2088 we will no longer have any sources of fossil fuels to fulfill our energy demand, not to mention the horrifying amount of carbon dioxide gas we would have released into the atmosphere at that point. (Source.) These predictions are all based upon the current reserves that we know of, so the timeline may be off by a few years considering the reserves that we have not yet discovered, but the point is made. If we are to ensure the survival of our current ways of life, we will have to turn our focus onto renewable sources of energy and we will have to innovate in them. This will be our future; we have no other choice. “As the Saudi Oil Minister said in the 1970s, ‘The Stone Age didn’t end for lack of stone, and the oil age will end long before the world runs out of oil.’”

What I say next is often regarded as a political stance, but in all reality it is strictly a scientific fact. Climate change is real and it is happening. As David King, the Former Chief Scientific Adviser in Britain, said “Climate change is the most severe problem that we are facing today, more serious even than the threat of terrorism.” A report from the United States Environmental Protection Agency says, “Earth’s average temperature has risen by 1.4°F over the past century, and is projected to rise another 2 to 11.5°F over the next hundred years. Small changes in the average temperature of the planet can translate to large and potentially dangerous shifts in climate and weather.” ( Climate change causes innumerable problems, such as floods, droughts, heat waves, the oceans warming and becoming more acidic, and most famously, the melting of the polar ice caps.

Some people argue that climate change is something that is natural and not something that the human race has caused. The problem with this is that it is basically saying, “although we have been doing many things that are known to worsen this issue, they are not the cause of the issue.” Human beings are almost solely responsible for climate change. Experts predict that one-fourth of Earth’s species will be headed for extinction by 2050 if the warming trend continues at its current rate. (Wildlife at Risk.) Some may say that they don’t care if a few animals die out, but what they fail to see is that this could drastically alter many ecosystems. If ecosystems are altered, we may face challenges in areas such as agriculture, which would be detrimental to the human population.

Climate change is caused by numerous human actions such as fossil fuel consumption, industrial processes, deforestation, and a few agricultural processes. The issue with all of these actions is that they either add greenhouse gases to the atmosphere or they interfere with the removal of greenhouse gases from the atmosphere. The function of greenhouse gases is to trap heat within the atmosphere. To clarify, greenhouse gases are not all bad. The natural level is actually important to the Earth. Without greenhouse gases, UV radiation would kill us all, there would be nothing to keep the heat within the atmosphere, there would be no gases to breathe, and the sky would be black and filled with stars all around the clock.

There is evidence that suggests that humans are the greatest cause in climate change due to an increase in greenhouse gases. For example, “Atmospheric CO2 concentrations have increased by almost 40% since pre-industrial times,” ( CO2 is not the only gas that is increasing at this rate. See these graphs to see how greenhouse gas concentrations have changed over time.

Our current energy consumption and methods are ruining the environment. We are running out of resources, and soon enough the Earth will not be healthy enough to live in to be called our home. If we do not change our actions, there will be drastic consequences.


I. Introductory Paragraph

A: Hook: Bullying is an issues that occurs in all animals that has been around for millennia.

B: Bullying has evolved throughout the past 16 years. With innovation in technology, bullies have developed new methods and their impact has gotten worse and worse. The backlash from the communities affected by bullies have been drastic.


Topic: Bullies have adapted new harmful methods throughout the times.

Purpose: It is important to analyze the problems at the root of the causes of bullying.

Subtopic #1: The evolution of bullying has made it harder and harder for victims to cope with being targets.

Subtopic #2: Evolving legislation has attempted to combat the dangerously evolving culture of bullying.

Subtopic #3: Problematically, people have begun to take a more incriminating approach to bullying rather than adapting methods to cure the hurtful mindsets that bullies have.

II: Body Paragraph (Develop Subtopic #1)

A. Topic: With new developments in how we conduct our social lives, bullies have found new battlegrounds where they may attack their victims.

B. Supporting Detail: Bullies nowadays have more methods to bully, such as through social media.

C. Supporting Detail: Bullying through social media is something that many victims feel as if they have no way to escape.

D. Supporting Detail: Through social media, bullies have the opportunities to do the cruelest they can to a person: ruin their reputation.

E. Concluding or transitional: Thankfully, bullying through social media is something than can be tracked and proven through hard evidence in order to stop bullies in their tracks before they cause their victims to make decisions that they can never take back.

III: Body Paragraph (Develop Subtopic #2)

A. Topic: Lawmakers have done their best to establish legislation to curb bullying, but the amount of legislation actually passed to combat bullying is embarrassingly inadequate.

B. Supporting detail: Surprisingly, it was not until the year 1999 that the first state, Georgia, actually passed any anti-bullying laws.

C. Supporting detail: “North Dakota was greatly praised for the law they passed in 2011, not only defining bullying but outlining preventative measures for public schools to take”

D. Supporting detail: New Jersey is the leading state of all in taking preventative measures towards bullying by passing the strictest laws around that ensure that schools prevent bullying.

E. Concluding or transitional: Although it is good progress for states to establish strict laws against bullying, these actions of good intention have negative consequences.

IV Body Paragraph (Develop Subtopic #3)

A. Topic: Bullying is an issue that needs to be neutralized as well as possible, but the measures being taken are ineffective long term measure to solve the problem.

B. Supporting detail: Bullying has recently been criminalized, yet children really do not recognize the activity as criminal.

C. Supporting detail: Bullies should be forced into counseling, not into a jail cell

D. Supporting detail: “We don’t want to make criminals out of these children. We need to treat them as kids, and we need to discipline them, but we do not need to make criminal charges against them.”

E. Concluding or transitional: With the right treatment of the issue, bullies can be helped so that we will no longer have to worry about them having victims.

V. Conclusion Paragraph

A. Summary of main points: Social media platforms have made victims much easier targets, but luckily that at least means that it’s easier for bullies to be caught in the act so that they may be stopped. New pieces of legislation have aided greatly in making sure that bullies are being punished for their acts, but it is likely that the problem is not being solved in the most effective way. Bullies do not have to be bullies their whole lives, and we have to teach them that.

B. Bullies are an issue that has been around for forever, but through our efforts, we can only hope to diminish their impact on their innocent victims.

C. Stopping bullies is about being more than an innocent bystander. Together, we can take action in order to save people from the physical and emotional harm that bullies cause.

TED Talks

Adichie used many great techniques of rhetoric in her TED talk. Adichie gave her TED talk in order to clarify common misconceptions on race for the civilized world. Adichie talked with a great deal of disappointment in her voice. She made it clear that what she has seen in today’s world is not right in her mind, nor should it be consider to be right in our minds.

Adichie utilized many techniques in order to involve the audience, while still making them reflect on themselves. The jokes that Adichie told made the audience much more comfortable with her, which is vital as she is addressing a very sensitive topic. No one wants to feel racist, but we all have some sort of prejudice in our minds against people who are different, whether it be something that we outwardly show or be it something that we keep within ourselves.

Something that appealed to me was Adichie’s use of paradoxes in order to emphasize the lack of logic in the prejudices that we carry. A paradox may be defined as a “figure that employs an apparent contradiction which, nonetheless, evokes some measure of truth.” (American Rhetoric.) Adichie used the strong power of these paradoxes in order to, in a non-aggressive way, show the error in our prejudices.

But Adichie is not without fault herself. She admits that, even as a person who has to live dealing with prejudice, she has some prejudices herself. This empathy is comforting to people who may have felt as if Adichie was talking in an accusatory manner. It is human nature to have prejudices. A prejudice is a “preconceived opinion that is not based on reason or actual experience.” (Google Source.) The problem with preconceived opinions is the fact that, by our very own nature, it is our tendency to hold on to our first impression of something, though we may have never really had any real experience with it. The hardest thing in our world today is to see people for who they are, regardless of who you may have preconceived them to be. This is Adichie’s goal for us. Her goal is to open our minds.

Rhetorical Analysis Outline

For my rhetorical analysis, I will be analyzing George Bush’s 9/11 Address to the Nation.

The context of this speech is very well known throughout the world. On September 11th, 2001, terrorists hijacked airplanes and crashed two into the World Trade Center and one into the Pentagon, while one was brought down by a passenger who thwarted the terrorist’s attempt. This act of terror resonated to ears around the world and people from all walks of life banded together to support each other.  This is the greatest tragedy our nation has ever seen.

The speech invoked a great sense of nationalism and family within our nation. Everyone seemed to be affected in some way by the attack, so we all shared some sense of fear, anger, and sadness. Bush appealed to commonplaces with phrases such as “our fellow citizens,” “The victims were in airplanes or in their offices: secretaries, business men and women, military and federal workers, moms and dads, friends and neighbors,” and “America and our friends and allies join with all those who want peace and security in the world, and we stand together.”

The falling man.

The speech attempts to instruct a world of people who will stand together, American citizens and our allies, in order to help us recover from this event. Additionally, the speech attempts to convince people why they should support the war on terror.

Frozen Moment.

The speech seeks to create an identity of the American people as a strong, supportive group who will stand together through anything and who can survive any struggle. This is connected to what is what is seen to be good and desirable because nationalism and love for one’s neighbors is essential to the strength of a nation. The speech reinforces the support in the current power relation of the strength and resolve of the American people.

The kairos of this speech is something that was very controversial. As Bush delivered the speech on September 14th, some were angered while others understood. The people who were angered were angered because they thought that our president should know how to react to any situation and be there as our leader to support us. People who understood saw that no one knew how to react to the situation, so it is important that Bush took sufficient time to give a sufficient response to the situation.

Ads for Rhetorical Analysis

There are many different ads that I am considering using for my rhetorical analysis. Below are a few.


“It’s not happening here, but it is happening now.”

This ad was very moving to me when I saw it. A lot of factors play into why the rhetoric of this piece is so strong. For starters, the kairos of the ad is blatant when the ad states that “It’s not happening here, but it is happening now.” This ad calls attention to the atrocities that are happening in the world at this very moment. The ad appeals very strongly to pathos, as the subject pictured in the image is a cute, lost looking kid, who appears to have absolutely no idea why he has a gun in his hand. This appeals to the idea of a loss of innocence, which is likely to strike right at home for a lot of people. This ad also appeals to ethos in how it uses the glass in the image to make it appear as if the kid actually is there, which reinforces the idea of just how real this problem is in today’s world.

“Sleepiness is stronger than you. Don’t drive sleepy.”

This is a very eerie advertisement which discourages driving while you are overtired. The advertisement appeals to pathos because of the car on the upper eye lid which is approaching the family on the bottom lid as the eye closes more and more. People can see what the sad outcome would be if the eye was ever to fully close. This appeals to logos because people know that it is almost impossible to fight sleep when one is overtired and dangerous things can come out of that. The ad appeals to ethos because most people know of many accidents that have happened before because someone fell asleep at the wheel. There is not much of an appeal to kairos here, as this is an ongoing problem that needs to be prevented, but can never be fully solved.

Civic Engagement Speeches Evaluation

After a long week of listening to speeches, I think that we are all reminded of something: giving a speech in front of a crowd of your peers can be simultaneously fulfilling and nerve-wrecking. On one hand, it feels great to be able to share our experiences and our viewpoints on issues, while on the other hand one feels judged by everything from one hair being out of line to a small, almost unnoticeable stutter.

I think that this was a particularly difficult assignment. Now, don’t get me wrong- I’m not saying that it’s difficult to prepare a three minute long speech, but rather it is just cruel to tell someone to find something that they would love to talk about and only give him three minutes to do so. I know, personally, I would feel much more fulfilled speaking for, at the very minimum, five minutes so that I can properly inform people about my topic, while still giving people the chance to feel engaged by it. I do understand that five minutes would give people all too much time to ramble on, but rambling and straying off-topic is in the fault of the speaker, not in the structure of the assignment.

I truly enjoyed all of the speeches that I heard, except for the speeches that felt like someone had basically read someone’s entire biography and briefly followed it with the statement “therefore he/she is civic.” I felt like people brought with them the exact enthusiasm necessary to engage the audience. People who were more passionate about the topic seemed to be more casual in their approach and therefore more involving in their delivery, while people who were more calculated about their speeches tended to feel more aggressive and caused the audience to distance themselves. Overall, I have truly enjoyed the whole experience and I cannot wait to give my speech this week.

Scout Law Artifact

For my artifact for the Unit One project, I chose the Scout Law. The Scout Law is not some random mumbo jumbo that we repeat just to appear unified; it is a personal agreement that we agree to withhold each time that we meet. It is a way of life that we dedicate ourselves to. The Scout Law is a large part of my daily life. It’s really a part of any scout’s life, whether we choose to admit it or not. The Scout Law is a code of ethics that every scout swears to abide by until the day he dies. Those who live by the Scout Law are some of the greatest people you will ever meet.

Boy Scout emblem

For those of you who do not know, the scout law is a promise to ourselves and others that we will live a certain lifestyle. The scout law is the following: A scout is: trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent. Now, some of these traits are traits that you see in people every- people who are not scouts. I do not hold some great view of scouting that only scouts possess these qualities; rather, I believe this is a code that many people live by without even realizing it.

Jensen Ackles in his class A and class B uniforms


The founder of the Boy Scouts of America, Robert Baden-Powell, observed these traits in others. He saw what great citizens people were when they lived by some of these laws, so he wanted to create an organization where people could be truly civic by living by all of these laws. In creating a more civic society, Baden-Powell succeeded greatly. I know for a fact that Boy Scouts made me a much greater person and it is a large part of who I am today.

Kairos does not work that well into the Scout Law because the best timing to implement the Scout Law into our life is all the time. The Scout Law is not about timing; it’s about a lifestyle.