Jonathan Fang: (FSW): Body cameras on law enforcement officials Pt.2

Earlier this month I wrote a blog that discussed if the implementation of body cameras would begin to hold police officers accountable for their actions. After a recent event this week I know want to talk about what is going to be done to officials who are tampering with footage in order to not get in trouble. Over the past couple of years new videos being filmed have started to incriminate cops, but now we are also seeing an increase of police attempting to tamper with equipment. News segments are talking about events where the reason that there is no footage was because the cops put the batteries in wrong, “forgot to turn it on,” asked bystanders to delete what they filmed, and as of this most recent event police are now being accused of deleting video evidence. The event that I’m talking about that has made headlines recently has to do with Chicago police officers shooting a man last October. 17-year-old Laquan McDonald that night was supposedly under the influence of the drugs walking around the streets brandishing a knife and at one point starts to slash tires. When this story was first reported the officers stated that they tried to box the man in and ordered him to drop the knife, but then the man allegedly lunged at police and one officer opened fire shooting him in the chest. A year later after reporters pushed for the dash-cam video to be released Officer Jason Van Dyke has now been charged with first degree murder. The footage showed the man walking past the officers, about 20 feet to the left of them when he’s then shot 16 times and the officers leave him be until he dies. Based on the situation,whether the officer’s judgement was wrong or not will be up to the courts, however the issue that has made the case controversial is that the officers are being accused of erasing footage that captured the event from a local Burger King’s cameras. After the shooting four officers entered the eatery and after they left 86 minutes of footage was missing and during that span of deleted footage was when the incident occurred. If the cops believed they were in the right to shoot the man then they wouldn’t need to be hiding evidence that would contradict their claims. Last post I said that jurors need to not view cops as being above the law when viewing their actions on tape, but now we’re having to deal with cops messing with equipment/footage. The thing is though is that cops tampering with evidence has been an issue for decades. Hopefully the courts begin to crackdown on this so that this long-lasting problem can be properly dealt with.

Sleep Paralysis by Davin H

Sleep paralysis is temporary being unable to move or speak while falling asleep or waking up. This can lead to you seeing some pretty terrifying images and figures. The affects of this can cause insomnia, paralysis, anxiety, feeling that there is an intruder, hallucination, there have also been cases of people physically injuring themselves. The causes of sleep paralysis is unclean and hard to properly asses how this is caused. Though many sleep researcher assume that the cause is your body not moving through its stages of sleep correctly. I bring this up because I have sleep paralysis about once or twice a week. Also because of the rise in popularity of it. People are self inducing sleep paralysis for fun, as a way to have a horrifying ride, in the idea that it will be fun. The problem is, is that if people continue to see it as the few using it to have fun, it can end up being treated as though everyone that has sleep paralysis is doing so of their own accord, and not as a condition. There were many websites that I found with titles of their articles much like this, “How to Encourage Sleep Paralysis as a Gateway to Extraordinary Dreaming” along with many other website that show you the ways to induce sleep paralysis for an experience. Though this can be used to explore your dreams in a way it still affects how many people see this problem. Unfortunately, for those who suffer from this, it is more and more, being seen as a way to have just to have fun and experience something new. I don’t have anything against what a person does, but it does indirectly affect others who suffer from this, instead of those who try it for a recreation.

This link above tell the story of people’s experiences with sleep paralysis, and it does not sound fun to me, but you see for yourself.


A. Navarro- FSW- Sociology

Much of society nowadays has a distorted view of guns and the affect/effect that they cause on themselves and to other people. Its quite common to hear “guns don’t kill people, people kill people”. Even political special interest groups such as the NRA (National Rifle Association) are huge backers of that saying; however, that myth can easily be ‘shot down’.

Research from the ‘Center of Disease Control’ (CDC) have shown that approximately two-thirds of the combined homicides in the US are caused by firearms. Another shows that with each percent growth in firearm ownership in any particular state, the percentage of homicides caused by guns increase 0.9 percent (Department of Community Health Sciences, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, MA). That is almost a simultaneous growth.

So can someone still say such a derogatory comment, and be truthful? Well facts are facts.

Let me attack another myth on firearm possession concocted by society, “owning a gun at home makes people safer.” In Chicago, a six year old boy and his three year old brother were playing cops and robbers as they usually do, however the six year old brought about a new object to the game… a gun that was wrapped in the fathers pajamas. He fatally shot his three year old brother in the head. (CNN) This father was being irresponsible in leaving a deadly weapon somewhere where a small child could get to it. Sure having a firearm in your home for protection may deter possible criminal mischief, however having access to a weapon gives someone a higher chance, or a stronger possibility of using that gun, than someone who does not have one in their home, or possession.

Other points of interest include: a higher percentage of suicide from households with guns and a higher risk of getting murdered.

The second amendment, though, protects our right to own these weapons, and it should always remain protected. Society should just remain alert that this is a severe problem in todays world, and they should take the proper steps to fix these issues. Keeping weapons in a secured location, stopping illegal gun sales, and controlling who is able to receive these weapons (teens, convicts etc.), are all ways that we can help alleviate the issue of the death of thousands of lives.

This is just an opinion. You may think differently. This, though, is a mainstream problem in today’s society. That, however, is not an opinion. That is fact.

Functionalist Perspective on Education

A functionalist would start off with a set of questions regarding education and its purpose such as, how does education contribute to the maintenance and wellbeing of society? and what are the relationships between education and other parts of the social system?  Durkheim (functionalist) – writing over 100 years ago that one of the main functions of education is to bind members of society together – this creates social unity and solidarity. Therefore like the family, education is seen as functional prerequisite because it passes on the culture of a society particularly its core values.Parsons (a functionalist) writing in the 1950s and 1960s developed Durkheim’s ideas. He said education is a key component of the social body, just like the heart is integral to the functioning of the human body, education is fundamental to the health of the social body (C.H Thompson 2008). Functionalist think advanced industrial economies would probably not function without education – universities have become more specialized over time.  Functionalist also identifies education as an integral part of the social structure. All governments since WW2 have recognized the importance of education.

Hybrid Cars can Save Our Planet and our pockets

Hybrid cars can save college students thousands of dollars annually while at the same time saving the environment from the ravages of carbon monoxide if more are bought by this group. College students, on average have less money than other working adults and such high spending is always tough on their pocket book.Hybrid cars continue to increase in popularity in the United States. For college students this type of car can save thousands of dollars in gas each year.The key to hybrid cars is that their engines are a lot smaller than normal cars.According to Allan (2005) “At the heart of the hybrid lies a power-split device–a planetary gearbox that hooks the electrical engine, generator, and electric motors together. It lets the car operate like a parallel hybrid system where an electric motor can power the car by itself, the gasoline engine can power the car by itself, or both can power the car together”.In a hybrid car when you are starting to accelerate the electric motor and batteries of the car is what provides all of the power.Hybrid cars not only save gas but they are also good for the environment.Carbon monoxide is created and released into the environment when gas is burned to produce energy for regular cars. Air pollution is harmful to human health because when the quality of the air decreases it can cause respiratory problems which include asthma or lung cancer.According to Banas (2015) “On average, compact hybrid cars produce 10% fewer smog-producing emissions than their conventional counterparts”. I definatly believe that more Americans should take the air pollution and gas prices more into consideration it can be a great start in creating and eco friendly country.



Allan, Roger. “Setting the Standard for Hybrid Cars: Synergy between Gasoline-engine, Electric-motor, and Battery Technologies Vaults the Prius Hybrid Gasoline-electric Vehicle to High Fuel Savings and      Low Emissions.” Electronic Design 7 Nov. 2005: 41. Academic OneFile.

Banas, Timothy. “Environmental Impacts of Hybrid Cars.” LIVESTRONG.COM. LIVESTRONG.COM, 18 Feb. 2015.



Devon Tounjian: LSD should be legal for therapeutic sessions

LSD is a very powerful psychedelic drug that produces numerous effects. This small little blotter paper, gel tab or liquid droplet will send you on an 8 to 12 hour trip that gives the user extreme changes in their mood, emotions, and causes visual hallucinations. This chemical was legal until the government decided to declare it a schedule one drug in the mid to late sixties. The drug did not disappear and it is still widely available if ordered through the darknet, nonetheless, it is still illegal, even for therapeutic use. There is one doctor in the world who is legally authorized to give this drug to patients, despite it being globally banned.

The Swiss psychiatrist, Dr. Peter Gasser, has spent many years administering psychedelic therapeutic sessions to patients with certain disorders. In 1993, LSD was banned in Switzerland, again. Fourteen years later, the Swiss Ministry of Healthy allowed Dr. Gasser to administer a pilot study that researched the effects of acid administered to patients that he believed would benefit from the trip. “After seven years of research, the study was published in 2014 under the name ‘LSD-assisted psychotherapy for anxiety associated with a life-threatening disease: A qualitative study of acute and sustained subjective effect.’ This was the first controlled trial of the drug in the 21st century.” (VICE) Dr. Gasser believes that LSD brings additional benefits to some patients who experience it in the proper set and setting. He also believes that it can be very beneficial for some people to go into an altered state of mind and to encounter spiritual experiences.

This therapy helps certain patients, including those who have life-threatening diseases, such as cancer. LSD does not help cure cancer, but after the trip, it helps them mentally deal with their everyday life and allows them to focus on the important things in their life that matters, instead of anticipating the end of their life. Another patient that this doctor conducted a therapeutic session with was a woman who was sexually abused earlier on in her life and has been suffering with dissociation ever since she was molested. Dr. Gasser’s believed that the LSD could help her have more control over her dissociation and he received approval from the Swiss government to administer a therapeutic session for her after pitching his concept to them. After two different sessions, she was pretty happy with how it went and the doctor noted that she has benefited from the trip and it helped her deal with her dissociation.

The last patient that was mentioned in this article is a young student who had severe anxiety disorder whenever he gave a speech in front of other classmates in college. Dr. Gasser managed to get approval after proposing his theory that a group therapy session with LSD would help the student overcome his anxiety. After the group session, he came out of it saying that he had a fantastic experience and that it was the first time in his life that he did not feel threatened by a group of people.

This psychiatrist is very professional when it comes to therapy and is exceptionally knowledgeable about the positive effects that LSD can have on certain people. It is fascinating that Switzerland is the only country in the world that allows a doctor to administer LSD for therapeutic sessions. I find it rather absurd that no other psychiatrist or doctor in the world is legally allowed to conduct a therapeutic session with the legal use of LSD. It can be used to help people dealing with depression, cluster headaches, PTSD, anxiety, cancer and possibly other disorders. Obviously this drug is not for everyone, but America and other countries should defiently allow professional doctors who have an outstanding experience with therapy and psychedelics to manage therapeutic sessions for patients who truly need it.

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Preperations- Ruben FSW- P

There have been a large amount of mass shootings that have been reported on in the past years. There seems to be a lot of outrage, as there should, when these tragedies occur. People begin to attack guns and other say that these people have mental issues. With all these events happening more frequent one would assume that our government or ourselves, the victims, might do something about it.

As we all have heard, the new Star Wars movie, The Force Awakens, will be released on December 18th 2015. There has been a lot of excitement over the new film due to the new director and trailers that have been released. This might be one of the most anticipated movies in the past decade or so. Ticket websites crashed because of the amount of people that were trying to purchase tickets. With all that, it is safe to say that opening weekend will draw in millions of people to see this movie. It is sad that in our time one must worry about the possibility, that with all these people gathered in those areas, there is a chance that someone might take advantage and use it to do a heinous act. There are a couple options that movie theaters may do.

Theaters could implement a bag check area and metal detectors like they do in theme parks. I’m not sure if they have the metal detectors but either way they should install them. This would deter anyone who has a gun to come into the theater and eliminate that issue. Also implementing a strong police presence would quickly eliminate any threats.

The issue with this means that anyone that is outside the theater will know that those leaving the theater will not have any weapons on them and the only ones that do will be the on duty police officers. This means that the police department would be willing to send more police officers to patrol the theaters.

As a Star Wars fan, the premier would be tarnished to those that went and saw the first trilogy, the ones that saw those awful prequels and are looking for redemption, to the young ones who have never been to a Star Wars premier and will be the first time they have this experience like other before them. Waking up Friday, or Saturday to news about a shooting or multiple shootings might cause people to cancel their plans to go see it and will have been robbed of the experience.

Celeste: “Reaction to Foster Care Presentation”

Recently, a fellow student of “Contemporary Social Issues” gave a powerful presentation about what happens to foster children in the foster care system. He showed an (immense, intense) 13 minute video that allowed a short look into the life of a little girl’s life: before someone recognized a problem, while entering the foster care system, and perpetually enduring in “the system,” even while in a stable foster home.

He next talked about what happens to young people who “age out of the system” and also about his personal experiences. I was so moved that I once again looked into the requirements for foster parenting. I hope to someday, become a foster parent, but as a current full-time student, the present time is unlikely and unfortunate. But who am I? Do I have what it takes to become a foster parent?

Many people ask themselves, and others, that question. I found some adequate foster parenting information at that informed of the responsibilities and rewards of foster parenting. However, after having worked in social services for many years, and raising my own family, becoming a foster parent is not an easy decision. After viewing the video titled, ReMoved, (you can find it on YouTube, here is the link:,) those questions and doubts seem to disappear. Foster parenting requires doubled efforts and they are worth it. Certainly, these young people deserve opportunity, hope and love. They deserve to be cherished and provided for. It takes hard work, dedication, patience, unconditional love and more to raise any family.

I recall a novel I read last summer titled, The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh. It was about Victoria, an 18 year old girl living in San Francisco who had aged out of the foster care system. The author (a foster parent herself) quite clearly described the emotional instability of a young woman set to live in the world on her own. Victoria, strangely enough, had had the same case worker for ten years. The case worker was as clueless about Victoria’s true needs as were the families she had been placed with, until one. She was understandably a very angry person. I encourage you to find, and read this book. But the reason I have mentioned the book is because its author also founded an organization resultant from reader response. With the help of others, Diffenbaugh started “Camellia Network” ( ) that is set up to assist young adults like Victoria.

According to the website, nearly 30,000 youth “age-out” of foster care every year. They leave their foster home with a bag of clothes, and maybe $250.00. You can imagine what happens after that. The reality is that when a child has no home and no family, they have no one.

Through the website at, youth are recruited from across the country to pool resources and help kids who are aging out of the foster care system. So far, they have helped every person who has reached out. They had found a way to crowd-source a solution to the problem. Camellia network debuted in 2012 with the goal of connecting all those who age out of the foster care system with materials and support. The site links to another called Lifeset Network ( ) that provides statistics about America’s vulnerable youth and how they are being helped in many practical ways, as well as how to be involved. This is something that I can do today to help in a small, but significant way.

Shelbi M: Is healthy food really more expensive than junk food?

Many of us prefer to eat healthier, but make excuses not to. A common misconception is that healthy food is more expensive than junk food; however, research shows that healthy foods can actually be cheaper options than junk foods. The single disadvantage of health foods is their lack of convenience when compared to fast foods and prepackaged junk foods in grocery stores.

A paper published in 2010 in “Society of Teachers of Family Medicine” studied the costs of a diet based on fast foods versus a whole-foods based diet. The study found that the average daily cost for healthy food was $7.48, while unhealthy fast foods came in at $15.30 per day. By shopping at grocery stores and choosing whole foods, including dairy, lean meats, fruits, vegetables and grains, total monthly food costs were less than half of a diet composed of fast foods.

Barry Popkin, nutritionist and economist at the University of North Carolina, explained on NPR radio that the reason you end up paying more for fruits or vegetables than for a product like macaroni and cheese, is because the food industry prioritizes processed and packaged foods and therefore produces them more efficiently, which brings costs down for consumers. In addition, the transport of fresh foods is more expensive than packaged foods, which use preservatives that allow them to to travel without refrigeration or urgency.


Shelbi M: Social Worker Burnouts

Social Worker Self-Care —  The Overlooked Core Competency
By Kate Jackson
Social Work Today
Vol. 14 No. 3 P. 14

Sometimes the last person social workers nurture is themselves. This neglect undermines healthy social work practice but can be corrected if clinicians not only pay attention to client care but also to self-care. Ask 10 people if they do enough to take care of themselves, and there’s a good chance most will give you a handful of reasons why they don’t. And if you ask the same question of 10 social workers, it’s likely that an equal number will give you similar excuses. The difference is that the social workers are trained to know better.

While they’d certainly advise their clients to tend to their own needs and recognize the consequences of failing to do so, social workers frequently neglect to counsel themselves about self-care or heed the signs and symptoms of the hazards associated with their professional practices. The cost of that self-neglect is high and ranges from nagging stress that can erode health and well-being to compassion fatigue to job burnout so crippling that individuals may walk away from their chosen profession.

The need to engage in self-care is so great and the consequences so dire that the profession is stepping up in a variety of ways to deliver resources, provide training, and underscore the message that self-care is both fundamental and indispensable.

During her time as an MSW student at New York’s Fordham University Graduate School of Social Service, Jade de Saussure, MSW, OMC, continuing education program coordinator and program director of the Fordham CASAC (credentialed alcoholism and substance abuse counselor) program, noticed that students were taught how to care for their clients but were not well educated about caring for themselves. She wanted to “provide the opportunity to help create a culture of self-care.” The results of her efforts are “Self Care for Social Workers,” a bimonthly continuing education course on stress reduction skills for professionals; periodic three-hour self-care workshops that address burnout and compassion fatigue; and an off-site self-care program that brings this training, in a variety of formats, to outside agencies.