RCL #5

Teamwork when it comes to group projects is the most important thing that a team can do. While some projects require different people to have very different parts, the fact that one can rely as someone as part of a team is what makes those projects able to succeed.

My prior experience with group projects tends to go one of two ways. One way ends with people not doing any work and not agreeing, then scrambling at the end and having to turn in a bad project and praying for a good grade. The other way is that we work as a team and put fourth a good project that we feel represents us well.

While in both cases we finish the project in time, I feel much better about and more proud of the second way I do a project. I feel like it is this style that we need to make sure that we do for our public deliberation. Since there are so many voices present in this project, we need to make sure that we work as a team so that all of our opinions on the project are present during our final presentation of it.

To make sure that we are working our hardest as a team, we need to make sure that everyone is vocal. People in our group need not to be afraid of presenting there points if they think that something should change or don’t like the direction that the current project is going in. We also need to make we can split the amount of work up as closest to even as we can. This will make people more likely to work as a team because people won’t be upset that they have more work than someone else. If we stick to this, we should make a good group project.


RCL #4

I think all of the Gricean Maxims are important to this presentation but there are a few we should focus on. For on I think that the maxim of quality is very important to this. Since we are presenting about a topic that can cause some controversy we should focus on what we personally believe is true and fact. Anything that is somewhat false or lacks evidence should not be brought up. For this we need to be sure that if someone says something that isn’t true we need to steer the conversation away from what they said so that we can focus on real information. We also want to make sure that we keep the presentation on topic. It can be a topic that sparks some controversy but we need to make sure it focuses on what we are discussing, free vs hate speech.


Another thing that we should focus on is keeping the crowd interested during our deliberation. The more that the crowd is interested in, the more that people will want to talk about it. The more that people get involved, it will be much easier to talk to them and enjoy what we are doing. We can try to play to the crowd and make sure they are having fun. We should also try to focus on making sure to get different people in the crowd involved. If we can ask different people questions throughout our presentation, more views on the argument will be brought up therefore giving us more to prompt the audience about. Lastly we should focus on giving an interesting outlook on our argument. If we do something different that other people will be more inclined to talk. Also, if it is more interesting more people will retain information from it. If we follow these steps our public deliberation will go well.



RCL 3 Cereal and Milk

With our increased look at the “This I Believe” podcasts, there have been a few that have stood out to me. They have made me think; they have made me want to write a reaction to it. One of those was the podcast of “I Believe to Put Your Milk before Your Cereal” by Diana Alnemri.

Originally, the name of the podcast caught my eye. I personally don’t put milk in my cereal at all but I know that it is considered sacrilegious by most people to put the milk before the cereal. The podcast starts by telling a story of how her friends had said that she was making her cereal wrong. The podcast than takes a turn which is what I find to be very interesting.

Diana focuses on how the milk and cereal represents events in life, saying that the cereal is the main events while the milk is the smaller things in between. She then proceeds to talk about that while the cereal is the meal or the main event, she prefers the milk or the smaller event that ties the event together. To give an example of this, Diana tells a story of how a group of her friends were going to a concert and while her friends were looking forward to the concert, she was looking forward to the lunch they were having before and the sleepover they had planned for after. She then talks about how she could remember very little about the concert but she remembered a lot from the other events.

It is this idea of importance of the smaller events that I really agreed with. I also tend to look forward to the smaller events that would happen. For example, if you were to ask me to recount what happened at my high school graduation I could tell you very little from the event itself. In comparison, if you asked me what we did before graduation, I could go in depth on how we were waiting to walk to our graduation and trying to figure out how exactly put the tassel on our cap. Again with after graduation, I could go in depth about going to dinner with my family and what our discussions focused . I thought that the whole theme of this podcast was one that I could agree with.

To me I can totally agree with the importance of the smaller events. I often find myself looking forward to the smaller events too.



RCL 2 The Change in Greek Life

Almost everyone can look back at their time in school and have fond memories of extracurricular activities they were involved in. They enable students to meet new friends and grow as people but Greek life is currently under question to its benefits. The Greek life system is currently under fire for the large number of hazing incidents and deaths that have been seen across all branches in the past couple of years. By Thanksgiving of 2017, three students across the nation had died at parties or initiation events related to Greek life. This is something that needs to change and something new needs to be done about.

I really think that Greek life is a very important part of colleges. The bonds that can be made in the fraternities and sororities can last a lifetime. For example, when I was younger my dad, a fraternity member when he was in university, often told me stories of how his days in the Greek life system changed him as a person or helped him meet some of his best friends or even my mom.

The fact is that the Greek life was good for my family and my dad in particular. So when my dad hear stories like the Tim Piazza story or how the air at a fraternity was able to register positive for alcohol he is shocked and appalled, telling me it was never like this when he was in school. He is upset on what the system has become today and the fact that I look at Greek life today differently than he did when he was in school.

Today, Greek life has a problem that needs to be fixed. Things like hazing and drinking have grown to a point where it is dangerous and the country is taking notice but the issue is that nothing new is happening to solve the issue. It seems to be a repetitive pattern of some terrible event happening and breaking the national news, the administration at the school says that all Greek life events will be suspended and an investigation will ensue, a penalty will be given out to Greek life suspending them for some time, the suspension will end and Greek life will be closely watched for a short period of time, and eventually things will return to the way they were before. With this method, changes happen for a time but nothing happens long term. New policies need to be put in place and I don’t know what that exactly that is. One thing that I might think work is if the fraternity houses were on college campuses, this makes them much easier to monitor. This might be one way to fix it but something needs to change. Until new policies are put in place to help control this, the good in Greek life will keep being overshadowed by its bad image.




Students told not to use term ‘Greek Life’ because of ‘cultural appropriation’

RCL #1 The American Idea

America, the nation which myself and many others call their home. America, the nation which has been the poster child for how to start and run a democracy for other nations. America, the place where millions of people have lost their lives fighting for and defending their independence. America, a nation that has never been afraid to stir up controversy and rise up are doing it once again.

Image result for usa map with a flag

In the current environment, America has one idea in mind, fight for what you believe is right. The fact is that people across the nation are taking a stand for what they believe in at such a rate that hasn’t been seen in a very long time. If you turn on the news, read a paper, check social media, you can see the multitude of controversies going throughout the country. This happens all day, every day. It’s everywhere, spreading across the nation like an epidemic. Everyone has a side, whether it be pro vs anti-Trump, Black Lives Matter vs All Lives Matter vs White Supremacy, pro vs anti-Feminism, or standing vs kneeling for the Anthem. People like Colin Kaepernick, Alicia Garza, and Hillary Clinton are at the forefront of these stands. These stands are different from the ones in the past because no longer only a few people are able to receive media attention about their opinion. With the increase in use of social media, everyone has a voice. This current idea is to fight for what you believe.

While there are many different things that could be current ideas in America I believe that the current idea in America is what it should be. While having a nation that is consumed by controversy can be bad, it is not an unfamiliar place for America. This isn’t the first time that this has happened and it has helped shape the nation into what it is today. People like Martin Luther King Jr. and Muhammad Ali became some of the most influential men in America through standing up for what they believed in. Is it possible that the voices of the next Martin Luther King Jr. or Muhammad Ali will be heard through these controversies? Also, with the increasing popularity of controversies in America, that also leads more people in America wanting to help people across the country. If the people in a country like America step up, it makes the smaller nations that look at us and think that they can do it to. So for the sake of this nation and the ones that look up to us, I believe that current idea of fighting for what you believe in is what the current idea in America should be.











RCL 10 Contract

Our topic is still currently being decided because we have had a change as to what we want to present about.


I, Nick Mallender, am focusing on the research and presentation of the project.

RCL 9- Ted Talk Outline

My Paper focuses on the term “redskin” and how its meaning and cultural significance has warn off/changed. For my Ted talk, I wish to focus on the debate over should the Washington Redskins change their name.


  • The team name is considered to be a “slur”
    • The team name is an offensive term
    • People are upset in the fact that a team at the national level chooses to be represented by a slur
  • Native Americans Voice Change
    • Many groups of Native Americans wish for the name to be changed
    • They have filled many complaints saying the team name brings upon bad stereotypes
  • First Ammendment
    • It is the team/owners right to name the team “redskin” under the first ammendment
    • It is considered to be freedom of speech
  • Time it was created
    • At the time, it was at a time where the use of slurs were not as frowned upon
  • The issues with Changing a Logo
    • You have to rebrand everything for a team
    • It is extremely expensive for an owner and a team, can lose tons of money and has financially harmed owners
    • It takes a lot of time and resources
  • Personal Opinion on whether or not the name should change


Paradigm Shift Draft

Term: “Redskin”

Original Meaning:

  • Term used as a derogatory term for Native Americans
  • Use of the term was frowned upon because of its negative connotation
  • It was basically a word that was only used in a derogatory sense

Cause of Change:

  • The NFL team, The Washington Redskins, became a team

New Meaning:

  • Term used to describe a football team or a Native American
  • No longer holds the derogatory meaning
  • The history of the word has been lost over time

RCL #7 It’s What I Do

In It’s What I Do by Lynsey Addario, Addario constantly writes about vivid events that can be easily pictured in the mind of the reader. While this is already great, Addario, being a photographer, includes many intense pictures that mirror what she is talking about. Many of these pictures show intense pictures of battle or war scenes but there are two that particularly stick out to me.


The first picture that sticks out to me is the top picture on picture page 11 between pages 146 and 147. In this picture, rockets are being launched at the enemies of Kurdish. The thing that I found most striking about this image is the fact that there is this big rocket launcher that causes destruction and death in a beautiful scenery. There is a big element of contrast between the scenery and the cannon which I find very striking.


Another picture that I find very striking is located on picture page 26 and 27 between pages 210 and 211. The picture depicts children playing around a burning car. I found this picture very striking because of how “ok” the children were with playing around the burning car. I personally have never been around something like that were people would be fine with a random car burning outside.


I feel like pictures and videos are very important to my passion blog in particular. Since I am interviewing people as the focal point of my blog, being able to put a face to the name is very important. It makes the reader more interested and connect with the player I interview. I also feel like videos are an important part and I like to include highlight reels of each player I interview. Since I am focusing on football players, certain readers might be interested in how the players are on the field since my blog focuses more on off-field characteristics. Overall I feel that the use of images and video are very important to blogging.