English 2100 Fall 2023:  What Goes Unsaid?

End of Semester Reflection and Grade Proposal

Your final assignment for English 2100 is to complete your End of Semester Reflection and Grade Proposal. You can access the form HERE. Please take time to think carefully and honestly about how this semester has gone for you. I am looking forward to reading your reflections. Congratulations on completing your first semester at Baruch! It has been a pleasure and a privilege to share in your time here. I hope you will stay in touch as you continue to grow and explore. (I am also here should you hit any bumps along the way….).

Wishing you the very best,

Professor Sylvor

Blog Posts: Lyrical Lemonade

Lyrical Lemonade is a multimedia company and music platform founded by Cole Bennett in 2013. Initially starting as a blog to showcase Chicago’s local music scene, Lyrical Lemonade has since evolved into a prominent brand in the music industry. The company gained widespread recognition for its visually distinctive and creatively curated music videos, often featuring vibrant and animated visuals that complement the artists’ music.

Lyrical Lemonade has played a significant role in promoting emerging artists and helping them gain exposure. Cole Bennett, the founder, has directed music videos for various well-known artists, contributing to the company’s reputation for fostering talent in the hip-hop and rap genres. Beyond music videos, Lyrical Lemonade has expanded its reach through music festivals, events, and merchandise, solidifying its position as a multifaceted entity within the entertainment landscape.

Lyrical Lemonade is now one of the biggest music media companies in the United States, and I decided to share this blog about it because as a creative Lyrical Lemonade is a staple in the community and is an example of persistence with dedication can result in success.

Digital Divide

What is a Digital Divide?

This refers to the increasing gap between regions or demographics which have access to modern technology and communications, platforms such as the web or proper reliable internet access and those who do not. This issue targeting those of low income areas, having very restricted access or even no access. This issue I feel is important especially with the dependence we hold with platforms which need a proper connection to access. From everyday life to work to school, people around the world have been cut off from this aspect which only increases with technology being furthered. This causing multiple issues especially with those younger who’s access to education depends on connection. This issue I hold as important as with technology being furthered I believe it should be more accessible to those who need it and have no access to it. This issue only will increase more with more people being cut off from these parts and create inequality.

Islamophobia(Last Blog Post)

A subject I hold dear to my heart is one that evokes strong emotions due to its misrepresentation. The portrayal of the Muslim community as criminals, terrorists, and a threat to society is not only false but also contributes to a distressing surge in hatred. Recent events have sadly witnessed acts of violence against children of the Islamic faith, further exacerbating the issue.

The aftermath of 9/11 remains a pivotal moment, fostering a widespread misconception that Muslims are inherently tied to terrorism. Regrettably, the ensuing prejudice has persisted, manifesting in personal encounters where I, as a young woman wearing a hijab, have faced hostility. Instances such as having my hijab pulled in public or encountering individuals who overtly display discomfort are not isolated incidents.

Media reports detailing the tragic deaths of Muslim children due to their faith baffle me. The notion that a piece of cloth, like the scarf on my head, could be perceived as a threat is bewildering. In my earlier years, fear compelled me to avoid leaving my home without a guardian, given the potential harm directed at a young girl solely based on her religious identity.

This environment of adversity, however, has played a pivotal role in shaping my resilience. Over time, I developed the strength to stand up against prejudice, adopting a more assertive stance. As I mature, I aspire to dismantle misconceptions about Islam and foster understanding. My hope is to contribute to a future where education can bridge the gap between my community and the world, promoting peace and unity.

Blog Entry Post: NYC Congestion Pricing


I would like to take this opportunity for me to draw all of our attention to something that might have otherwise gone unnoticed to us New York City citizens. An absurd new ruling has been given the green light and thumbs up from the federal government side of things and it has been approved for being put into motion and practiced. There is something abysmal called congestion pricing and it has plagued its way into our beautiful, beloved New York City. Congestion pricing is basically another additional tax grab from the city which is aimed at people that want to enter Manhattan. If you want to enter Manhattan at south of 61st the amount of the tolls are yet to be determined but as of right now look to be about anywhere from $10-$15. The FDR, West Side highways are exempt, car owners living in the zone, and low income individuals who make under $60,000. The goal is supposedly to use the billions of dollars that would be raised to improve and invest in the ancient, deteriorating subway system. But the Metropolitan Transit Authority has done this before and relatively recently hiked up fare prices in efforts to somehow better their public transportation systems. They already have a lot of capital which means they can make significant changes with if they chose or choose to do so but there has been no positive differences in quality; it appears that the government just wants to keep increasing the cost of living along with everything else literally make it impossible for people to function without providing them the products and services that the government proposes that they are charging you for. People that are paying for the public transportation provided by the Metropolitan Transit Authority are getting a setting that is vandalized with graffiti, polluted with bad air, litter all around, alcohol, drugs, drug addicted people, feces, urine, dead animals, infested with disease spreading rats, an extremely crime filled dangerous environment for our vulnerable, no safety when it comes to the vehicles that MTA allows to operate themselves, robberies, and much much more bad things. A lot of people need to commute in and out of the city for either their jobs, school, work etc. If there are drivers that are trying to make their livelihoods from driving how will they survive with constantly having to pay a certainly bogus fee. There will also be increased surveillance because cameras will be mounted with license plate identifiers/readers where the government is invading even more and more of its civilians private lives. Public transportation is not even where it is at or should be for people to commute using it, the timing is awful. The New York City government needs to remember the roots of this amazing country as a land that would not stand for what it has somehow gone backwards in time to, taxation without representation. American need to remain firm with their previous principles that made us who we are.

https://ny1.com/nyc/all-boroughs/news/2023/12/06/congestion-pricing-new-york-city-next-phase-mta-board-vote

Alcohol Tax

The video talks about alcohol as a drug and the main problem of this drug is excessive drinking. It was interesting to see such a simple resolution that is propose by the video which is raising the taxes for alcohol. However, the video also talks about that many states haven’t raised the taxes for alcohol for about 20 years.

Film Club: ‘A Toast to Raising Alcohol Taxes’ – The New York Times (nytimes.com)

Lack of standards for Gen Z

Leilani Tirado

The issues of Gen z

The new generation of teens and young adults, Gen Z, have had a countless amount of complaints from people in society. Gen Z consists of people from the age of 11 to 26.  As a New York resident, commuting from home and school, I have seen many young children project such bad behavior that concerns me of their safety. Living in a majority black and brown community, there is often not enough support to help the children get the aid that everyone so badly complains about. Everyday you will see adolescent children acting out of place, being involved in gangs, smoking and drinking at young ages, etc. This issue catches my attention because as I have two younger siblings, I want to see them succeed and grow up with a good structured mindset. I want to be sure that the community that they live in is safe and that they do not get manipulated or peer pressured into the wrong crowd. In an article by the CDC, they demonstrate how the highest age range rates are people between the ages of 15-24. This demonstrates how young teens, starting at the age of 15, are having unprotected sex that creates bodily issues. The standards for the next generation have decreased and create an eye-opening result of teens being “destructive” and “inappropriate”. Young adults and children are more likely to participate in take in drugs, alcohol, nicotine, and violence. Each day more young adults are getting into more fights, drinking more alcohol (underage), smoking, and being publicly destructive. I believe that by giving more resources to help, are not going to help in anyway. As this generation is more likely to do whatever they want to, they can easily find a way to avoid getting help and instead help each other stay in to wrong lifestyle. In my high school, we had to get metal detectors more than often due to students getting into fights, getting threats, gang affiliated issues, and etc. There is no reason a school from grades 6-12 should be dealing with heavy violence and children with weapons, it is a place of learning. Students should feel safe in an environment that they need to attend to for 5 days of the week. We need to set better standards for the younger children and create  better community for them to be able to become successful and follow a different lifestyle. 

CDC ARTICLE:

https://www.cdc.gov/std/life-stages-populations/stdfact-teens.htm#:~:text=About%20half%20of%20these%20infections,get%20the%20recommended%20STD%20tests.

LaTeX

LaTeX is a markup programming language that is widely used in academia to create uniform standardized documents. I do not like coding, but I truthfully find LaTeX easier and more straightforward to use than Microsoft Word or Google Docs, especially for quickly typesetting an MLA-styled essay—the kind we are writing right now.

Overleaf is a cloud-based LaTeX editor that you can use to easily typeset your essays using the LaTeX language. This is an MLA essay template on Overleaf that you can use for MLA-styled essays. I recommend writing your essay in whatever word processor you’re comfortable with and then simply pasting your essay into the Overleaf template when you’re finished—click “Open as Template,” then login through Google or whatever, paste all your stuff into the appropriate spots, click the green “Recompile” button, and then “Download PDF” (right of the “Recompile” button). This way you can maintain most of your existing workflow while getting a much nicer, properly formatted, professional-looking essay.

With that said, justified text looks way better and nobody should be indenting the first paragraph after a title—It’s so ugly. We are not writing on paper. There is no need to conserve space by indenting paragraphs instead of using line breaks. God knows why we still follow these old-ass skeuomorphic design standards. Anyways. You will probably care more about your essay if it looks nice. And should get a better grade if you follow proper MLA guidelines.

LaTeX is based on the TeX typesetting system created by Donald Knuth

Blog 2: The End of The Actors/Writers Strike

On July 14, 2023, the American actors’ union SAG-AFTRA or Screen Actors Guild began their strike over a labor dispute with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers over low pay, thanks in part to the rise in streaming services. The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers or AMPTP, represents the major Hollywood studios. This strike went on to be the longest strike in SAG-AFTRA history and its combined impact with the 2023 Writers Guild of America strike resulted in the loss of 45,000 jobs, and “an estimated $6.5 billion” loss to the economy of Southern California. On November 8, 2023, a deal between the two sides was reached with the strike proceeding to end on the following day, November 9 at 12:01 a.m. PST. The SAG-AFTRA announced a deal with AMPTP which leaves actors with one step away from getting back to work, the final step relying on union membership voting to authorize the deal the cameras can start rolling again. But unfortunately, it could be another year or even two before we will be able to see many of our favorite TV shows or upcoming movie projects on screens again. Just as with anything in life, producing these films and shows are not just as easy as having the actors show right back up on set and writers back in their offices typing away for new scripts. Preparations for TV series and movies involve a lot of groundwork, which involve the scriptwriting to set construction and costume design and preparing for fittings, makeup, extra takes, etc. Not to mention after the completion of this preproduction phase, there will be a huge rush to return all shows and films to the set simultaneously, potentially leading to congestion at prominent filming locations and an increased demand for behind-the-scenes crew that may exceed availability. I feel that this was an interesting topic to bring up as it comes to the main question of, should it have had to come this far for the actors to be able to get the pay they deserve for all the work they put into creating entertainment for the masses? If not for this strike and all the money lost, would big film industry really even care to give the actors their rightful pay.

SAG strike is done: When TV shows and movies will be back (usatoday.com)

Seasonal Depression

Seasonal depression/winter depression also known as SAD is a phenomenon caused by the reduced amount of daylight throughout the day and or shorter days. The feeling of low energy days, feeling sad more often has affected those across the US. Even reaching Canada with 15% of Canadians experiencing one episode of SAD in their lifetime. Seasonal depression is an issue that isn’t shined light on as much as it should be, affecting people without them even knowing. Ways to prepare for this seasonal depression can start with forms of self care and watching your emotions/mood. This has affected me before and other people around me which can affect my school work and personal life and I believe this issue should be brought to light more.

https://www.cbc.ca/radio/whitecoat/the-dose-seasonal-depression-1.7042171