Impact of Social Media on Society

“Do you have Facebook?”

“Yes, of course. But I don’t think you can find me, as there are too many people who have the same name as me. Try searching with my surname as well.”

“Hey, you celebrated your birthday in K-Box, right? I saw the photos in your Facebook.”

“Bro, I saw your comments about the YouTube video that I’ve posted in my blog. I’m happy that you are also deeply moved by the ‘Dancing Peacock Man’ as well.”

Social media or “social networking” has almost become part of our daily lives and being tossed around over the past few years. It is like any other media such as newspaper, radio and television but it is far more than just about sharing information and ideas. Social networking tools like Twitter, Facebook, Flickr and Blogs have facilitated creation and exchange of ideas so quickly and widely than the conventional media. The power of define and control a brand is shifting from corporations and institutions to individuals and communities. It is no longer on the 5Cs (e.g. condominium, credit cards and car) that Singaporeans once talked about. Today, it is about the brand new Cs: creativity, communication, connection, creation (of new ideas and products), community (of shared interests), collaboration and (changing the game of) competition.

In January 2010, InSites Consulting has conducted an online survey with 2,884 consumers from over 14 countries between the ages of 18 to 55 years old on social networking. More than 90% of participants know at least 1 social networking site and 72% of participants are members of at least 1 social networking site. On the average, people have about 195 friends and they log in twice a day to social networking sites. However, 55% of the users cannot access their social network websites at work. In the past, not many adults were able to make more than 500 friends, but with social media, even a child or teenager can get to know more than 500 people in a few days by just clicking the mouse. Social media has devalued the traditional definition of “friend” where it means trust, support, compatible values, etc. Although we get to know more people, we are not able to build strong bond with all the people whom we met as our available time is limited. Hence, there is an upcoming social trend of people with wider social circles, but weaker ties (people we don’t know very well but who provide us with useful information and ideas).

Social media also influences people’s buying behaviours. Digital Influence Group reported that 91% of the people say consumer reviews are the #1 aid to buying decisions and 87% trust a friend’s recommendation over critic’s review. It is thrice more likely to trust peer opinions over advertising for purchasing decisions. 1 word-of-mouth conversation has an impact of 200 TV ads. With the prevalence use of social media, there is numerous news related to it from the most viewed YouTube video on “Armless pianist wins ‘China’s Got Talent'” to Web-assisted suicide cases (e.g. New Jersey college student who killed himself after video of him in a sexual encounter with another man was posted online). Thus, does social networking make us better or worse off as a society?

Positive Effects of Social Media

Besides having opportunity to know a lot of people in a fast and easy way, social media also helped teenagers who have social or physical mobility restrictions to build and maintain relationships with their friends and families. Children who go overseas to study can still stay in meaningful contact with their parents. To a greater extend, there is anecdotal evidence of positive outcomes from these technologies.

In 2008, President-elected Obama won the election through the effective use of social media to reach millions of audience or voters. The Obama campaign had generated and distributed huge amount of contents and messages across email, SMS, social media platforms and their websites. Obama and his campaign team fully understood the fundamental social need that everyone shares – the need of being “who we are”. Therefore, the campaign sent the message as “Because It’s about YOU” and chose the right form of media to connect with individuals, call for actions and create community for a social movement. They encouraged citizens to share their voices, hold discussion parties in houses and run their own campaign meetings. It truly changed the delivery of political message.

Obama campaign had made 5 million “friends” on more than 15 social networking sites (3 million friends on Facebook itself) and posted nearly 2,000 YouTube videos which were watched over 80 million times. At its peak, their website,, had 8.5 million monthly visitors and produced 400,000 blog posts. In order to ensure that their contents were found by people, the Obama campaign spent $3.5 million on Google search in October alone, $600,000 on, $467,000 on Facebook in 2008, etc. Currently, Obama’s Twitter account has close to 6 million followers.

In 2010, after the earthquake happened in Haiti, many of the official communication lines were down. The rest of the world was not able to grasp the full picture of the situation there. To facilitate the sharing of information and make up for the lack of information, social media came in very handy to report the news about the affected area on what happened and what help was needed. Tweets from many people provided an impressive overview of the ongoing events from the earthquake. BBC covered the event by combining tweets from the work of its reporter Matthew Price in Port-au-Prince at the ground. Guardian’s live blog also used social media together with the information from other news organisations to report about the rescue mission.

It has been two years since CNN officially launched iReport as a section of its website where people can upload video material, with contact information. During the Haiti crisis, CNN had published a range of social media material but not all the materials were verified. The editorial staff would vet the reports from the citizen journalists and labeled them differently compared to unverified contents. On Facebook, a group, named “Earthquake Haiti”, was formed to show support and share updates and news. It had more than 14,000 members and some users even pleaded for assistance to the injured Haitians in the group. Using email, Twitter and social networking sites like Facebook, thousands of volunteers as part of Project Ushahidi were able to map reports sent by people from Haiti.

The most impressive part of the social media’s impact on Haiti is the charity text-message donations that soared to over $10 million for the victims in Haiti. People interested in helping the victims are encouraged to text, tweet and publicize their support using various social networking sites. The Global Philanthropy Group had also started a campaign to ask wealthy people and celebrities, like Ben Stiller and John Legend to use Twitter and Facebook to encourage others to give to UNICEF. An aid worker, Saundra Schimmelpfennig, allowed the advice from other aid workers and donors to post on her blog regarding to choosing which charitable organisations to support. In the meantime, donors were asking questions in Twitter, Facebook and blogs about their donations and endorsements of their favourite charities. After every crisis, the social media for social cause becomes a more effective medium to spread the word.

Negative Effects of Social Media

There are always two sides of every coin. Social media is just a tool or mean for people to use. It is still up to the users on how to use this tool (just like a knife, can help you to cut food or hurt others). Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project and Elon University’s Imagining the Internet Center conducted a study on “The Future of Online Socializing” from the highly engaged, diverse set of respondents to an online, opt-in survey consisted of 895 technology stakeholders and critics. The negative effects presented by the respondents included time spent online robs time from important face-to-face relationships; the internet fosters mostly shallow relationships; the act of leveraging the internet to engage in social connection exposes private information; the internet allows people to silo themselves, limiting their exposure to new ideas; and the internet is being used to engender intolerance.

Some respondents also highlighted that there will be development of some new psychological and medical syndromes that will be “variations of depression caused by the lack of meaningful quality relationships”, and a “new world society”. The term, “Social Networking”, has begun to deceive the users to believe they are social creatures. For instance, spending a couple of hours using Farmville and chatting with friends concurrently does not convert into social skills. People become dependent on the technology and forget how to socialise in face-to-face context. The online personality of a person might be totally different from his/her offline character, causing chaos when the two personalities meet. It is apparent in online dating when the couple gets together in face-to-face for the first time. Their written profiles do not clearly represent their real-life characters. It is more enticing for people to type something that others want to hear than saying the truth.

Besides the “friendship”, creators of social networking sites and users redefine the term, “privacy” in the Internet as well. The challenge in data privacy is to share data while protecting personally identifiable information. Almost any information posted on social networking sites is permanent. Whenever someone posts pictures or videos on the web, it becomes viral. When the user deletes a video from his/her social network, someone might have kept it and then posted it onto other sites like YouTube already. People post photographs and video files on social networking sites without thinking and the files can reappear at the worst possible time. In 2008, a video of a group of ACJC students hazing a female student in school on her birthday was circulated and another video of a SCDF recruit being “welcomed” (was hosed with water and tarred with shoe polish) to a local fire station made its way online.

Much news has been reported about online privacy breach in Facebook and Facebook is constantly revising their privacy policy and changing their privacy controls for the users. Interestingly, even when users delete their personal information and deactivate their Facebook account, Facebook will still keep that information and will continue to use it for data mining. A reporter asked whether the data will at least be anonymized. The Facebook representative declined to comment.

In the corporate world, human resource managers can access Facebook or MySpace to get to know about a candidate’s true colours, especially when job seekers do not set their profiles to private. Research has found that almost half of employers have rejected a potential worker after finding incriminating material on their Facebook pages. Some employers have also checked the candidates’ online details in Facebook pages to see if they are lying about their qualifications. Nowadays, younger generations have a complete disregard for their own privacy, opening doors to unwelcome predators or stalkers.

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Observations From the Coffee Shop – A Microcosm of Our Society

Coffee shops represent a unique opportunity to observe the human race in relative anonymity. Sitting in downtown Toronto in the waiting period between when my lovely girlfriend joins me and when my daughter is finished at concert she is watching I do what the average person in this coffee shop does not. I pause. In pausing I watch and pay attention to the surroundings.

The sound of milk steaming and the smell of fresh espresso. The clanging of spoons as baristas serve up highly priced custom drinks. The smell of freshly brewed coffee tinted with an assortment of aromas as perfumes and aftershave and body door at the end of the day all clash for dominance in an olfactory assault. I let the taste of my own highly priced drink (low fat vanilla latte) roll through my mouth the way I would cherish a good glass of scotch. In doing so, in consciously stopping and feeling, I open myself up to all around me…

Conversations in other circumstances that would be whispered, seam to gain a life and validity of their own as volumes increase so that friends can hear each other. Projecting their volume in a vomitus mass of words that in ordinary circumstances would not be discussed in public at all – or at a minimum in hushed tones. Always fearful that the secrets exchanged would go flying to ears that should not hear them. Yet the inside of the coffee shop seems to immune from such niceties as personal privacy. There are conversations about deals that people are working on,conversations about managers, companies, stocks – all the conversations that you would expect in a coffee shop in the heart of the financial district. There are conversations about co-workers, conversations about going out after work (but as long as *he* doesn’t come) conversations about family changes – who is getting married, having a baby, and who died.

Yet there is also a deeper more meaningful undertone. The two baristas who pause slightly when their hands touch. The shorter brunette looking at the taller blonde with a challenge as she looks away with a subtle blush. There is the business man and his female colleague. He is talking to a group in a fashion worthy of Socrates yet fails to notice how his companion cringes from his touch. Fails to recognize the plastic and rigid smile that is pasted to her face as she seems to endure the situation, falling deeper and deeper into herself as she emotionally and physically withdraws from him.

A text comes in from my girlfriend and I smile. She is on her way to me by train. Knowing the time it takes the train to travel this far, I order another high priced drink and continue looking around…

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Education Divides Rather Than Unites Society

The quality of education being delivered varies across private and public schools. Private schools being more costly can only be afforded by the relatively affluent class, whereas, public schools aren’t a burden on the wallet and therefore preferred by the common man. Although some public schools do manage to impart education of a high standard, most pale in comparison to private schools. With more funds to invest in the education of its pupils, private schools enjoy a better reputation than public schools. The reputation of the school matters a lot when it comes to college admissions where once again public school students are at a disadvantage.

In some developing countries, such as Pakistan and India, women in general and the rural woman in particular, are discouraged from attaining education. Male children are given preference when it comes to sending children to school, particularly if the household has a limited budget. Even educated individuals make such absurd choices and such practices have secluded women not only from schools but also from the workplace.

The living conditions of an individual dictate whether he/she would be able to complete his/her education or not. Therefore, for a person, who can not even fulfill his basic necessities attaining education is a much more difficult objective than it is for a person living a relatively luxurious life. Children belonging to such impoverished families find it increasingly difficult to pursue education while trying to earn bread and butter for their families. Most of them are unable to complete their primary education, not because they chose to do so but because circumstances dictated so. In such circumstances education is not assisting such individuals from breaking through the poverty cycle and thus leading to a wider gap between the rich and the poor, the educated and the uneducated.

Education standards also differ across geographical boundaries, across continents and across poles. The West is generally envied by the East for its quality of education, the reason why a number of students from the East choose colleges in the West (only the rich are able to do so). Similarly those living in rural areas do not have access to the same quality of education as those who reside in urban areas. Improvements in technology have to a very limited extent countered this issue. However, the pace at which technology is improving is remarkable and soon enough location would not be an issue.

Attaining an education might be a difficult journey for some and indeed for others an impossible one, but education does play a pivotal role in guaranteeing higher chances of employment and better paying jobs. If education is made more accessible and the quality that is imparted more uniform such that the rich are not advantaged and the poor not disadvantaged and that gender does not determine one’s chances of becoming educated and that an individual’s location doesn’t dictate the quality of education he/she is to receive, then only can education unite society.

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The Ultimate Role of Elder Law in Society

Certain professionals in the law field specialize in safeguarding the rights of the aging population. It’s quite obvious that a large percentage of the senior citizens have little or no say in the society when left on their own and this highly subjects them to risks of being mishandled by the rest especially when they don’t have relatives or close friends to take good care of them. In such instances, the Elder Law comes as the last option for such people. This team of professionals practicing the Elder Law protects the elderly from such victimizations.

How the Elder Law works

  • The Elder Law is mandated to protect the old people from going through certain hardships that result from their old age.
  • Health is one of the common factors contributing to poor life among the elderly ones and this law ensures that the necessary health care services are made available on regular basis for such people and this helps so much make their life better as compared to when left out there to take care of themselves.
  • The old ones are also not energetic to work and earn their living and this being basic can be quite frustrating if not provided. The same law is entitled to make such basic facilities available for the old ones and this further helps shape their live more.

How to contract an Elder Law firm for related services

  • Getting into an agreement with an Elder Law lawyer can cost you less than one can expect and the procedures involved are quite cheap to follow up. This ensures that no one is scared away while looking for such services and that everyone has equal rights to enjoy such services.
  • However, the charges are fair enough to bear with for most law firms providing such services. Such old people are mandated to financial support and imposing heavy charges to them doesn’t look good although not all law firms put this factor into consideration.
  • Actually such people are highly helped throughout the filling process as their age does not allow them to take such responsibilities on their own.

Other services provided by this law is ensuring that the aging ones are protected against losing their property to fraudsters and also following up certain requirements like pension on their behalf. Therefore the Elder Law should ensure that the lives of their clients are free from minor problems resulting from their old age.

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Pseudo-Feminism: The New Evil In The Society

Feminism, sexism, fascism, criticism or any ‘isms’ that prevail in this society has an underlying rule. If you misuse these terms, you are bound to look stupid to any imbecile out there. The fraudulent use of powerful words to implement ideologies and rights have recently created a dent in this society. Well, of course, we could push it away as nothing short of a Freudian Slip, but are we really going to be that ignorant?

Who is the better sex? Let us not indulge in that conversation yet, in fact, let us not indulge in that horrendous topic at all. After over grazing on a series of internet debates and mindless brain pickings, I came across a bunch of people who portray themselves as an army of righteous beings striving for the betterment of women in all walks of life. But I spotted a flaw. It was like a virus in our computers, disguised as a legitimate computer program.

They were the pseudo-feminists. The black mark we have feared all this while.

Why may you ask? Why are they the black mark in this society?

Let me give you an analogy. What would you infer about a cancer support volunteer who advocates a smoking commercial? Or a fitness centre employee who hands out free burger meal coupons? Outrageous isn’t it?

This is the similar case with pseudo-feminists. They are the people (both men and women) who claim to be feminists but yet successfully manage to ignore the true meaning of feminism, equality. You will know one when you see one. They are easy to spot. They are the ones who blather on and on about how terrible men are or how men have it easier in this world than them. Such allegations can lead to false rape accusations and denial of rape of men (Yes! Men get raped too).

Feminism demands only one thing and that is to be social equals. Everything else you have heard is utterly crass. Feminism is not misandry. They do not hate men. In a grossly male dominated world, it is hard to have a good impression on feminists.

What makes one a pseudo feminist? Well, take notes.

1. Encouraging the idea that women deserve more than men.

2. Thrusting ideologies of how women should be in a society without the consideration of free will.

3. Discouraging or patronising women who want to stay at home or choose to be home makers.

4. Condemning women who do not dress well or do not wish to wear makeup.

5. Failure to provide men with the benefit of the doubt when it comes to domestic violence or rape accusations.

6. Degrading men who choose to stay home and take care of the family.

The list goes on, but you get my point.

The word pseudo feminism has backfired on the true and honest individuals. Now, when a true judgement of equality arises, this word has been slapped on the feminists who try to make a point.

We cannot blame them. The word feminism is a misnomer among most these days. The society sees is it as a ‘dirty’ word proclaimed by a bunch of angry women with a lot of time in their hands. It is very easy to say that you are pro-women, but most of them don’t even know the true meaning and reason behind it.

But can you blame them? No. Because feminism is an abstract in itself, with a vague definite. You cannot assign a proved explanation or theory regarding the concept of feminism. Consider it as an emotion, unexplainable.

I am sure by now most of you feminists out there want my head on a spike, but I urge you to be patient. Give me the benefit of doubt.

We weld rape and harassment to feminism like peanut butter to jelly. When as a matter of fact it should be a concern to humanity and not gender specific. When a woman gets abused and raped, it should be a concern to the society, it should be a punch in the face to humanity because it can happen to men, transgender or any other gender that exist in this world. It is a matter of moral fibre.

When a woman graduates with a degree of the highest standards and yet decide to stay at home, that is her choice and not a shame to the education she received and definitely not a shame to the women of the society. This is equally applicable to men as well.

However, in the same train of thought, aren’t women really more emotionally equipped than men? I once saw this hilarious video by Mark Gungor on how men and women think differently. He said that men’s brains are made up of boxes and each box handles a specific job or emotion. Whereas a women’s brain is made up of wires, each job, emotion and memory are inter linked, one leading to the other.

I couldn’t agree more. Both men and women are biologically equipped differently. We must embrace this difference and not destroy it.

The true feminists both men and women (Ex: Emma Watson and Mark Ruffalo (The Hulk)) are too busy working to bring equality for all, they are not bigoted or biased. They fight for both men and women. They do not care if you want to work or not work, if you want to party all night or stay at home, they do not care about your job, your clothes, your looks or your financial status. But it comes down to one thing.

If you are a woman who shares a man’s status and level of authority, you make sure you get everything they have and nothing short of greatness. Because we deserve it, both men and as well as women. Opportunity and honour are the two keystones in life that must be handed to both men and women equally. Women should be able to join the hard core jobs like men, and men should be allowed to stay at home and take care of the family. That is not what pseudo feminists want. They envision a world run by women and women alone. Consider it as a mass genocide of men.

So, dear pseudo feminists, you do not get the extra benefit of respect only because you were born a girl. You will get it because you are a human and if you treat others well and so. Kindly stop giving men a reason to consider us feminists as a joke. Stop shaming men who cry. Stop expecting men to be the bread winner of the family. Stop supporting patriarchy.

Instead, stand up and fight for the women and men who have been vilified by the society as victims of rape and abuse. Stand up for equality.

Enough with the “We deserve more than men” comedy. Whom are you kidding? You are not worthy of tagging yourself as a feminist. And more importantly, do not use the word feminism to make your weak and silly argument seem credible. We know a fake when we see one.

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Family Is the Foundation of Society

It is often said that no one is perfect, but a team can be. However, we are much more than a “team.” We are a family.

In January 2011, during a celebration organized by my company, I said these words to my colleagues, with the purpose of highlighting the cohesiveness of our team.

Indeed, it’s common sense that “family is the foundation of society.”

Since my childhood, I used to hear my father saying:

A man arrives at home after a long working day. He is greeted at the door by his wife, who kisses him tenderly. The children also embrace their father warmly. With so much love, the fatigue simply disappears, giving space to the great feelings of loving and being loved.

How good it would be if, in every home, we could cultivate the atmosphere of love, peace, and serenity… So would our society become, and we could gradually build a wonderful world and an ideal future for our children – no war, cruelty, or selfishness. In fact, all evil would disappear, and we would turn to live long lives – lives filled with much more love.

Unfortunately, life concerns clearly affect family relations. Families, once well structured, nowadays face difficult times.

At least with respect to us, the Capeverdeans, emigration and the need for a better education have both caused the separation between parents and children, and these are factors that deeply affect the stability of families.

On the other hand, it is also difficult to avoid negative environments, which unfortunately, sometimes include our own schools. Facing such a high risk, it is essential that parents demonstrate, at all times, complete openness in relationships with their children, thus creating an ideal environment to clear all doubts that their children may have. Otherwise, the children are likely to start looking for support elsewhere and normally end up involved with malicious people.

At this point, I would like to stress the importance of family reunions. A snack, a barbecue, or simply going to the beach are all suggestions to enjoy pleasant and unforgettable moments. Whenever possible, those moments should be recorded on video, as this kind of stuff becomes valuable as time goes.

Let’s maintain a commitment to do something different with our family at least once a year. Christmas, Easter, and why not May 15th (the International Day of Families)… Well, actually the day does not really matter.

Everyday should be seen as a “day of families.”

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Fifty-Seven Years Old Men: The Society Expectation Theory (SET)

My father (Dad, may your soul rest in peace) built a house in Akokwa, Nigeria which had a block back fence, with the top strewn with broken glass and nails. In spite of the sharps, lizards, especially those with red heads and droopy necks, rested and crawled on top of the fence, going from one corner to the other.

On the inner side of the fence, a foot or so in front of the wall, was a lean, tall pawpaw tree. The tree was almost barren, having fed and bled for so many hungry children during the Biafra-Nigerian war. Like the red-headed lizards, we children used to stare at the pawpaw tree, hoping that it would produce one more pod. Then we would stare at the lizards with hungry eyes and I would wonder what they would do next. Would they continue crawling along the fence, or skip over to the pawpaw tree, or would they go down, diagonally across the block fence and to the ground?

Many men at age fifty-seven face the same dilemma as the old red-necked lizards. Their main preoccupation is how to proceed in life. In that mental preoccupation space, they face at least three options. They could scale over to engage life at a higher level of existence. They could continue on the even pedestal of wear and tear, mirroring the way they have lived their whole lives. Their third option, which as I remember none of the lizards chose, would be to surrender to the demands of society and run aground.

It may sound unimportant, but the choices we make at age fifty-seven can determine the way we live out the rest of our lives. Not that the decisions (material and moral) people make at any age cannot make or break them, but whereas a young man can recover quickly from a bad decision, an older person may not.

According to an Igbo proverb, the wood people gathered when they were young are what they will use in old age. On the surface, this proverb implies that they should work hard when they are young, then fold up and rest when they are old. Such a practice, if carried out, would lead to a decline in physical and mental health. The evidence of those who have chosen to do that is clear to see. A resurgence of creative energy, rather than a winding down, is what people need when they get older.

Men who, at age fifty-seven, let their body and their senses run along the same crawling path will sooner or later surrender to the challenges of life. They might have considered themselves as living a stable life, but stability does not exist in the universe. Status quo is never found in nature.

No one needs more than a second of thinking to understand that there is ongoing decay within the perceived realm of balance. A wrinkled skin everybody can see, but nobody sees internal organs. Even though they are hidden, the brain, the kidneys, the liver, and the guts are still getting as wrinkly and as fatigued as the skin. This explains why men at fifty-seven rapidly run out of breath, put on weight if they drink a bottle of lager, stout, beer or Soda, develop brain fog if someone challenges their thinking, and often suffer from urinary and genital dysfunctions.

An active lifestyle rather than a stable lifestyle is the answer to old age. The body is like a house. To maintain cleanliness, houses have to be swept, painted, and aired. Likewise, for men who are fifty-seven to keep going, they must live an active lifestyle. Fat and the accumulation of fat is their greatest enemy. Move it! Don’t get buried in fat. Go to the gym, jog, lift weights, play soccer, play basketball, run, and do all you can to remain as lean as the slender pawpaw tree.

Moreover, men at fifty-seven must choose what they eat. Salt is their greatest enemy. Avoid it with a vengeance! Half a teaspoon of iodized salt is all the body needs in a day. Resist being fed like a greedy baby who eats everything placed in front of him. Ask for meals that suit your new diet. At fifty-seven, you have earned the right to request what type of food somebody places in front of you. Cook them yourself, if for some reason those around you do not care for healthy life aspirations. Hopefully, your mother taught you how to cook when you were a child.

In his stage seven (Stagnation versus Generativity) psychosocial development theory, Erik Erikson envisioned men at fifty-seven as either being proud of their ongoing accomplishments or being sad if they lost motivation. Status quo would not cut it for men age this age. New inroads at this period in life, Erikson said, lead to a happier man, or woman. Like many psychologists and psychoanalysts, Erikson was interpreting what I think he witnessed in the interplay between man and society. What Erikson did not explicitly say, but which I find essential to understand, is that man is always answerable to the community, doing as society compels him to do.

On a closer look, any keen observer would conclude that society has always been both the bane and the savior of man. Society says, “Play your part and get out of the human stage or else we’ll get you out.” Man plays by the rules set forth by society. Age fifty-seven is about the perfect time to ditch society and chart our own destiny.

In what I call The Society Expectation Theory (SET), society expects old men to pass quickly so that younger people can occupy their jobs, their ranks, and of course inherit whatever wealth they have acquired. We need to be conscious of SET to guard against its consequences. SET, as one might imagine, is even worse in some cultures.

To all men who turned fifty-seven this year, I say to you, look ahead; take up a new endeavor. Let your brain and your mind turn like a windmill. If you are an engineer, get into law school; if you are an accountant, get into medical school. Start a philanthropic organization. Write a memoir. There is nothing anyone cannot do if they ignite their mind.

Whatever you choose, never take the easy way out and run yourself aground. None of the red-necked lizards descended from on top of the wall when we were watching them, and neither should men at fifty-seven.


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The Impact of Good Leaders in Society

Unfortunately, everywhere we go nowadays we see signs of ethical deterioration. And we ask ourselves – indeed, what is wrong with the world. The whole trend of this new century seems to be away from the principles and practices of ethics – not toward them. What is most disheartening than man’s puny spirit and man strained relationship with nature? I think we should examine our own position in relation to nature and society with the most appreciate care. Why do we tolerate bad leaders? Here, in a sentence, is the issue. One must decide how he feels about the future of his family and his community before he decides to pick the lesser of two evils. Is this really a dilemma? Frankly, is there no way out of this?

The good leader does walk in step with the sages. He knows he needs to learn more. This is because the true leader understands that everyone who wants to grow and help others to grow needs a mentor. Having a mentor can improve our chances of success. The good leader seeks disciples. He is the first one to know that he will not remain with power forever. He has a duty and a responsibility to pass on his knowledge to others. He becomes, then, a mentor. He motivates his team members all the time.

What does the bad leader do? The bad leader sits in the company of fools. He does not have knowledge. He doesn’t find himself a life mentor. Those who want to lead without listening are not working for the benefit of mankind: they care only about themselves and their political agenda. There is no full dominion over all things. Bad leaders are doing irreparable harm to their coworkers and also to their community.

On the other hand, the good leader has perfect self-control. He knows integrity pays off. He doesn’t have to cheat to win. He does choose right from wrong, and gives service to the world. Of course, ethical conduct is about self-respect.

One more thing, a good leader is the difference maker between success and failure. Good leadership offers forms of contribution that no other activity does. After all, being a leader involves the highest responsibility. Good judgement seeks balance and progress; lack of good leaders eventually finds imbalance and discouragement. Good leaders are a vital element in keeping the peace and in creating opportunities for community progress. Good leaders are the binding force that guarantees mutual respect and love.

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The Use of Ambulance Services in the Society Today

There are many situations that call for immediate or drastic medical responses or otherwise a person’s condition worsens. The ambulance service is essential in every society, in saving lives and provision of services that prevent occurrences of irreversible medical complications. Many ambulances operate from designated points like hospitals and other emergency control centers.

Some of the uses of such services include quick treatment and stabilization of casualties that lead to prevention of any mishap before getting to the hospitals. The provision of immediate and effective medical care can save a life or two and at times, it may lead to prevention of serious medical complications that may result from the emergencies that the patients are involved in. The medical crew and other persons on board get first-aid training. This makes them able to deal with situations like profuse bleeding, cardiac arrests, falls or crush injuries, among others.

The ambulances also facilitate the transportation of patients from a scene of accident to the hospital. This provides for the patients getting better and enhanced medical care that may be deemed necessary at that time. Ambulance services are also useful in the transferring of patients from one medical institution to may be a more advanced institution for more advanced treatment. Still on the transportation, the services are useful if a patient needs to be transported over long distances.

Another importance of ambulances is that they help in the provision of medical services to areas that may have been hit by disease out breaks or other serious health hazards. Another situation where these services are useful is the war zones. People get injured in war and so treatment and medical care is called for. Ambulance services can also be used in the evacuation of the injured from disaster stricken areas.

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Art is a Reflection on Society – A Perspective

Art has always been a reflection of the emotions, personal struggle, and the path breaking events of a contemporary society. When a society demands or undergoes a change, art has mostly subtly complied with it. The Oxford Dictionary describes art as “the quality, production, expression, or realm, according to aesthetic principles, of what is beautiful, appealing, or of more than ordinary significance.” In effect, art definitely is an expressive platform for individuals, groups, as well as society, especially the radical changes or events witnessed thereof. It usually depicts the current or a particular scenario in the purview of the political situation, economic, social, geographical, the emotions spun therein, the undertones of revolutions, and uprising, to name just some.

If we go periodical about discussing art as a reflection of society, then we begin from the most ancient. The ‘Prehistoric Art’ consisted of paintings on the rocks and caves, which symbolized their routine lifestyles and rituals. The paintings were therefore, an evidence of their culture, which helped historians derive information about the life, culture, and the civilization of this era. The famous ‘Indus Valley’ or ‘Harappa,’ ‘Greek,’ and ‘Egyptian’ civilizations, especially had prolific artistry, including sculpture, architecture, paintings, engravings, and metal art.

In fact, the most we know about these amazingly rich civilizations, is credited to their narrative artifacts and buildings only. For instance, the ‘Egyptian Civilization’ believed in life after death. The society therefore, had a strong spiritual framework, concentrating more on the human journey after death. They believed in immortality and worshipped many deities, a fact distilled from the paintings adorning the walls of the great Pyramids. The Greek Civilization however, was more emphatic about the human form, its poise, and beauty, reflecting mostly on the attires, body languages, hairstyles, and cultures prevailing over different periods.

Creativity adopted the sects of ‘Art Movement’ to depict the realities of a contemporary society, vis-à-vis, its stable fabric, regularly changing aspects, and even revolutions. The impact of the contemporary socio-political scenario has also always been portrayed. For instance, before the First World War, Paris used to bustle with great political activity. This restlessness somewhere influenced the development of ‘Cubism’ by Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque. ‘Cubism’ involved the depiction of a particular subject from multiple angles, a practically prevalent situation then. The artistry turned mysterious in essence, to manifest the hatching of diverse political conspiracies in Paris at that time.

Expressionism’ was another art form developed, when the society was undergoing transitions at different levels, including creative. There was a revolt against the traditional outlook towards art. A modern approach was adopted. The ‘Modern Art’ was a blend of ‘Abstract Realism,’ in which the subject was distorted to depict its reality and emotional upheaval. The colors in the paintings have nearly always portrayed the true emotions of the subject, the event, or the mood of the artists.

To conclude, we can say that art may always not be beautiful aesthetically or comprehensible to all. It however, should be powerful enough to portray the current emotions of the society, including exposing harsh and subtle truths, while also encouraging the betterments. The only constant in the world is change. In tune, societies metamorphose through different annals of time and art helps capture the resulting twists and turns in the contemporary culture and lifestyle.

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