Minecraft Chapter 1

Chapter 1: The creature

Day 1

The boys sniggered as they watched the old woman enter her house. Immediately an unpleasant sound followed by a pierced shriek was heard and the same woman came running out distraught.

“WHO DID THAT? WHO IN THE NAME OF NOTCH WOULD DO SUCH A HORRIBLE THING TO AN OLD WOMAN? SHOW YOURSELVES!”

The boys could hardly contain their laughter. She was covered in a sloppy mixture of fish, potato, melon, mushroom soup and Notch knows what else. The boys had taken the first items they could find and put them in the woman’s dispenser. As she had entered her door she had stepped on a plate which had activated all the food to be thrown at her, causing her to be presently dressed in the most disgusting combination of smells and appearances.

They loved this. They couldn’t get enough of it. They would go around the town pranking the first person they could find. It was Theo who normally thought up the ideas and it was Stevie who was the bravest and put them into practice. The others would occasionally help, but they were mostly there for the fun and laughs. The times they had been scolded by all the Minecraftians of the village was uncountable, but they still continued.

That day was spent playing tricks on the richer side of the town, where houses built with oak and brick dominated the area. The boys were from the poorer side, meaning they took special delight in harassing the rich. When they got back from their day of pestering, each of them went back to their houses and agreed to meet the following day.

Stevie was the one with the strictest parents, and there hadn’t been an evening where he hadn’t been grounded or scolded. Yet, he still managed to escape his punishments and continue the pranking delight.

Day 2

Today’s plan was to visit one of the most reputable farmers of the town and trouble his entire farm. The group also loved farms because of the large amount of prank possibilities that appeared. They started with the pigs. Pigs are noisy, big and dirty, perfect to annoy a farmer. As usual, Stevie jumped over the fence first and looked around the property to make sure no one was about. It was 8 pm and the family was retiring to bed. He checked where the pigs were and noticed they were all kept in a small field surrounded by a fence.

‘All clear!’ Stevie beckoned the others to follow him.

They opened the fence gate and tried pushing the pigs towards the exit. They made a lot of noise but no one came from the farmer’s house. As five of the boys were trying to push the pigs out, Stevie noticed a light coming from a little hut on the other side of the field.

‘I’ll be right back, just noticed some weird light. I bet you it’s some magical stuff’

‘Steve you gotta help us do this’ Tim stopped him

‘I’ll be 5 seconds’ He ran past Tim and reached the door of the little hut. It was made of a nice brick and had a thatched roof. The little wooden door was closed but let out enough light through the cracks to be noticed.

He took a breath and mustered as much courage as he could. ‘Now ain’t the time to despair, Stevie’ He whispered to himself.

He opened the door and heard a little squeal. It was a pig. Stevie exhaled in relief. He closed the door and kneeled towards the little pig. He grabbed it between his arms and left the little hut. Suddenly, the pig popped out of his arm and fell to the ground. It was missing two legs. Without notice, the pig started growing two arms and was getting taller and bigger. Stevie, shocked and frightened to death started walking backwards. The pig was slowly turning himself into… a zombie? It didn’t look like a zombie though. Stevie gasped in realisation.

‘ZOMBIEPIGMAN!!!!’ He screamed and waved at the others to follow him. Soon all the six boys were screaming and howling, running away from the creature. They had left the pigs in a hurry, which were now scattered across the farm.

Stevie rushed to his nice cosy house, panting and sweating. This had definitely been the scariest prank of them all. He had never seen a zombiepigman in his life, but he was pretty sure that the creature he had seen was indeed one, he recognised it from fairy tales and myths which circulated round Minecraftia. The boys had dispersed to their houses without another word, too scared to even look behind. Only Stevie had seen that Zombiepigman, but they were all just as scared.

Stevie went to bed trembling and terrified that night. All they had wanted to do was play an innocent joke, and instead they got the fright of their lives. What if they had been pranked? What if it had just been a zombiepigman in disguise? Stevie suddenly grew angry at that thought. Obviously, zombiepigmen didn’t exist, it was just a really good disguise. Stevie went to sleep with the determination of going back to that farm and seeing if the zombiepigman was really there.

The Train Ride

I gazed into the daunting emptiness. This was my future, this was what it had come to. What would Granny Meg say? I didn’t want to think about it. My steps were hefty on the snow leaving clear footprints behind. I felt as if I was leaving all my past behind, all those reminiscences, positive and negative. The frost was biting into my skin, I could feel my wet hair slowly turning into ice, the mist evolving itself in front of me for each breath I exhaled. The wind was static, nothing was moving, the bare trees stood frozen in front of the isolated houses like weak soldiers defending their already half destroyed fortress. At that moment I felt glad I was leaving this icy, emotionless landscape.

As I slowly paced myself to the train stop, a feeling of freedom came to my heart. I could sense the train arriving, a smile crept up on my face. I was going home! All those hours of work and suffering were worth it, I was certain of that now. Slowly the rails started trembling faster and I could hear them rattling as if in excitement. In the foggy distance I could distinguish two bright yellow lights. My smile had spread into a grin as I stared into the fiery lights. The snow divided itself hastily as the train arrived. The train was my rescuer ploughing through the dull colour of snow. I could feel its power through the gust of wind throwing me a wave of frozen daggers at my hands. I rubbed my hands together trying to warm my body up and waited till the doors unlocked. I breathed in heavily, smelling the aroma of coal and smoke, instantly reminding me of the stove at home. Suddenly, I started shaking violently, I was just realising to what extent this was going to affect me. I steadied my breath carefully, I had to act normally; if I was caught, that would be my life ruined.

I settled myself on the most comfortable seat in the train compartment and opened up my odd-looking newspaper. I wasn’t actually paying attention to the words working down the page, the couple sitting opposite me were much more remarkable. The man was a traditional  farmer with fur covered boots and coat, along with his scruffy, scrawny beard. He smoked a pipe and would breathe out slowly, the smoke reaching as far as my nose. I occasionally coughed for him to recognise how I highly disapproved of smoking and therefore detested the smell. He would occasionally glance at what looked like his wife and mutter a few words. On the other hand, she was a complete contrast to him. It was as if she had been plucked out of a bourgeois setting and shoved into a train next to someone she had never met before. Her dress was very long with botanic features. Her contemporary hat took up most of the space available, as she tried to knit with difficulty; it was clear she had never picked up a pair of needles before. They were an amusing couple and I enjoyed watching their constant fiddling.

I finally got tired of analysing them and turned my attention to the view. I sighed when I realised there was nothing to see in the gloomy scenery. The train was being swallowed up in a sea of darkness and discolouration, the wind whistling as if in search of someone. Possibly my someone.

“Do you get off here?” I woke with a jump. Bleary-eyed I looked at the scruffy man I had been scrutinising earlier. “Pardon me, I did not mean to alarm you.” He seemed disturbed and exhaled an especially big puff of smoke.

“Don’t worry, thank you for waking me up.” I coughed and slowly got up. Quickly I checked I was at the right station. I looked carefully and noticed how much the vista had cleared. I was able to see the tops of the trees and the place was bustling with life. This was what I had been dreaming of; I was now one step nearer to home and to my fiancé. I squinted at the bright sun, it felt good to finally be able to appreciate it. On the far side of a street I saw a sign with ‘Omsk’ written on it. This was definitely my homeland. I was surprised but relieved no one had asked for my papers yet. As I was getting out of the carriage, a ticket officer asked for my passport. I straightened up and looking confident handed him my fake passport in. He looked at it carefully. I could feel my heartbeat accelerating. This could not fail, I had got this passport from a professional. Seconds ticked by, I could feel myself sweating. The officer looked up.

“Could we have a word with you, please?” I started panicking and bit my lip. I was surprised to hear the peasant man again.

“Good luck, but I don’t think you’ll get yourself out of this one.”

I froze.

Trade reform in Latin America

In the past decade Latin America has completely changed its handle on the market. It has shifted from protectionism and import substitution industrialization polices to liberalization and promotion of exports (Aggarwal & Espach, 2004). Latin America is now very included in the international market, even more than in its own regional one. This means that when there is a slowdown in a major foreign country, this deeply affects them. One clear example is China, the second largest source of Latin American imports and the third largest destination for its exports (“China’s Role in Latin America is Much More Than a Trade Issue | Global Trade Magazine”, 2016). The recent recession has hit a blow to Latin America, meaning they now must expand their access to the market even more. In the past decade Latin America has developed at amazing speed, so it must a solution in order keep their progress rate up. The answer could be to look towards the continent and to view itself as separate countries instead of a united entity. This will mean that international bodies such as the Common Market of the South (Mercosur) and the Union of South American Nations (Unasur) will allow an even greater trade network and will benefit all the nations joining in.

This progress was brought about mainly by the different trade reforms implemented at the time when Latin America was aiming to liberalize the trade on economy-wide effects and consumers’ welfare, as well as trade policy changes on agriculture and rural population. These included reforms of quantitative restrictions on imports with tariff, removal of all export taxes, quotas and licenses and reduction of state trading (“Trade and related economic reforms in Latin America”, 2002). The general principle adopted was the removal of quantitative restrictions and the process of tariffication. The main goal was to eliminate explicit export taxes and to focus on international trade, since it was viewed as a potential engine of growth. These reforms brought both advantages and disadvantages. The advantages include the fact that the direct taxation of exportables declined and that employment did increase in the long run. Also, this did increase the divergence among the trade arrangements of various Latin American nations and help focus their political and economic objectives. However, not all protection was removed, which meant that there were still patterns of effective protection in the initial years of reforms and they were still sizable and negative for exportables. The reforms mainly changed the relative incentives affecting the production of exportables and importables, as well as creating a significant increase in the output of exportables.

As a whole, it is said that Latin America did succeed in liberalizing their trade relationships internationally, since they now play a big role in the international market. This progress is visible in Argentina, for example, which has seen a 70% increase in oil production after the privatization of Argentina’s national oil company and the deregulation of its upstream production (Moshiri, 2002). Or even Chile, an example of a successful trade reform of unilateral liberalization. It has managed to maintain popular support for liberalization and can pursue trade at a transregional level successfully. Venezuela also progressed very much after opening parts of its petroleum sector de foreign investment, including deposits such as the Orinoco Belt Heavy Oil deposits – the world’s largest petroleum reserve. These different results show how opening up to the international market generally benefitted Latin America and allowed its economy to advance.

We conclude by underlining the fact that Latin America has a powerful role in trade nowadays. By liberalizing its trade relationships it has managed to become one of the principal exporters in the trade world and with many powerful countries. However, this may not last long if there is no attempt to establish a proper trade network within the continent. Nowadays, cross-border transactions in Latin America are hampered by regional trade agreements and by the difficult topography of the continent, so it is by working on these issues that their progress on trade will increase dramatically.

Obsession with productivity

Productivity. Such an interesting word used by nearly everyone. What does it mean exactly? Efficiency. It means doing more work in less time. That sounds like the optimal state to be in at all times. Everyone wants to be productive, everyone wants to be efficient. However, it comes to the point of obsession. The word is plastered on every blog, every book, every billboard. Dozens of apps are centered around being productive, you have special productivity journals, productivity alarms and productivity pens. I bet you soon there will be productivity nail polish.

It’s an attractive word with an attractive meaning, and since today’s society is all about technology and using time efficiently, no wonder this is the case. As Max Weber said: ‘waste of time is the first and in principle the deadliest of sins’, one I think we could all agree with.

Now I am not saying we should stop being productive, stop using productive apps and stop trying to ‘improve ourselves’, I am simply commenting on how popular it is getting. I love being productive and I am addicted to blogs which help you with time management and efficiency. The basis of productivity is ‘work smarter not harder’, which I think is absolutely great. People are trying to use their brain in creative ways to bring out their maximum potential, it’s fantastic! It’s about controlling time. We are so busy nowadays and everything happens so fast that we like that feeling of owning our time, and that is what productivity essentially facilitates us.

You are waiting for the big BUT. To be honest, I don’t think there is one, only that we need to be careful. Instead of spending hours reading articles on how to be productive, or downloading productivity apps, we need to actually put them into action. The system includes organisation AND action, since without the action there is absolutely no point in organising. Once you set your schedule in, start following it and putting it to use.

The only dangerous part of productivity is the empty promise of ‘I’ll start tomorrow’ and the waste of time of elaborating that promise. Apart from that, I encourage everyone to look to be more productive and seek to improve their time management! Instead of obsessing with the ideology of productivity we need to start applying it and that’s when we will see our lives drastically change.

How to be an idea machine

Here is a situation which has happened to all of us: you’re holding your head in desperation at the world around you. Everything seems to be going wrong, and just when you think it can’t get any worse, it does. There seems to be no solution and you’re trying not to panic. Suddenly, however, a lightbulb appears. You have an idea. An idea which could be a good idea. An idea which could help you get out of this mess. You lift your head and slowly start developing this thought into a great idea, into a solution.

This situation could be called survival mode. It is when you are reaching rock bottom you’re your brain suddenly comes up with a great idea, like a second chance. It might not happen every time, but when it does, it feels great. So, what if could get your brain to create more of these great ideas, but without having to go into survival mode? This is what will be discussed in this article: how to create excellent ideas whenever and wherever.

Idea generating is like a muscle. As you put more practice into creating ideas, the more ideas you will be able to create, and the better they will become. If you want more good ideas, you will have to practice creating both bad and good ones. Your objective right now might be to produce high quality ideas, but I’m telling you for the moment focus on creating ideas in high quantity. The quality comes with practice. As you have more and more ideas, you will have more and more good ideas. Good ideas will open another world to you. They will generate good experiences, good investments and good solutions. It will feel like a superpower, the ability to always have an idea and to always be creatively thinking out of the box. You will learn how to follow through with good ideas, how to throw away the bad ones and to be constantly thinking for more options.

So how do you get this superpower? This method is taken from James Altucher, a successful blog writer. He says it’s very simple: practice. Every day write down 10 ideas. It doesn’t matter if they are rubbish or excellent, they just have to be ideas. If you can’t think of 10 ideas, do 20. The concept is that your muscle won’t build until you make it sweat. Buy a small writing pad, and every day write a list of 10 ideas about something. It could be ways to make money, business ideas, book ideas, etc. Can’t find any inspiration? Read a book, talk to someone, watch a video. Find creative ways to exercise those 10 ideas. A tip: the first list you could write could be 10 different titles of each list of ideas. According to James Altucher, after 6 months you will notice a drastic difference. People will come to you for ideas, your opinion will always be taken into consideration, you will end up being paid for them, your business will never be boring, and endless other benefits.

These 5 to 10 minutes a day you spend writing that list will make a huge difference. Once you see a great idea, follow through with it. Plan the small steps to make it successful and effective. Join it together with other ideas to develop it even further. Once you get this muscle going, you will be unstoppable. You will realise that money making is only a side benefit, that what you are creating is a mechanism of greatness. You will become a source of solutions, concepts, whatever you want. You will become an effective idea machine.

 

Originally posted at www.selcpro.com

Diversity of Spanish

When you think of Spanish what comes to mind? The delicious paella of Spain or the scrumptious asado of Latin America? Flamenco or Reggaeton? Spanish Sangria or Cuban Mojito? Latin America or Spain? In fact, Spanish is both of these places, and although they speak the same languages, there are a few differences to keep in mind.

I’ll start with a short history lesson. The Spanish language started in the south of Europe, in a country called Spain. In 1492 Christopher Columbus went to Latin America, full of indigenous tribes at the time. The process of ‘hispanization’ started and the continent started learning Spanish. However, as Spain renovated Spanish in their country, word didn’t come across to Latin America, which meant Latin America was eventually speaking older versions of Spanish. They both evolved differently, and so nowadays we are left with Latin American and Castilian from Spain. However, that is not all. Latin America is made of up many countries, which means each country has a slightly different accent or way to talk. It’s not different for Spain, which has three more languages appearing in certain regions. The large variety of languages, dialects and accents can be confusing, so stay tuned.

The main differences between Latin American and Castilian is the pronunciation and some vocabulary. You can immediately recognize whether you are talking to a Latin American or a Spaniard simply by how many s they say. This term called el seseo happens, for example, in the word cereza. The Latin American will pronounce it seresa and the Spaniards will pronounced theretha, so it sounds like they have a lisp of some sort. Another distinction is the yeísmo, where the ll pronounced as y in Castilian and is pronounced like a j in Latin America. There are a few other differences but which are harder to notice when distinguishing the two.

Before going on to vocabulary I will mention another important difference: how they say you. It’s something called the voseo where the Latin American use vos instead of . In Latin America they only use vos, but in Spain they use and usted, the latter used for more formal occasions.

Now on to vocabulary. I will just mention three important ones, since they are the ones most used. The first one is ‘car’: LA is carro and Castilian is coche. Carro in Castilian is a horse carriage, which is why you can imagine their confused face when you say you’re taking the horse carriage to work every day. The next one is computer: LA is computadora and Castilian is ordenador. The third important one I would say is the ‘ok’: in LA it’s simply ok but in Spain everyone uses vale. Of course some Spaniards will also say ‘ok’ but that’s mainly from English influence not far away from them.

The language differences are one thing, but the culture is something much more different. If you are to compare the culture and personalities between the Spaniards and the Latin American, you will see some interesting differences. When the Spaniards colonized Latin America, they brought their character with them: extroverted, full of emotions and the love of arguing. This, of course, has not changed too much in Spain and neither has it in Latin America. Through time, though, this has evolved, and since both areas have received different influences, they are definitely not the same culture now. In Brazil the African people brought them music, giving them the Samba and a great dancing style. In Peru there was influence from the indigenous tribes and the Japanese, making their society much more hierarchic and with importance regarding family relations. In Chile the German influence also gave them a sense of hierarchy. Argentina received more influence from the Mediterranean, making them more individualist. These are just a few of the countries which occupy Latin America, and it is already visible how different they are.

There are also many dialects and accents in Latin America, simply because of the large amount of countries which received different influences. There are too many to describe in one article, but it is worth keeping in mind the variety they have. Spanish, in addition, is not the only language spoken in South America. There is also Portuguese and many different indigenous languages, giving it a lot of diversity.

Meanwhile, in Spain, it seems Spanish has evolved in a different way. Six of the 17 provinces in Spain have an additional language coexisting with Spanish. What’s more, five of them want independence! The most famous pro-independence are Cataluña and País Vasco, which hold the languages of Catalan and Euskera, however there is another language which is Galician. In terms of culture, Spain is mainly divided into two. The northern half is more conservative, and the southern half is more liberal and more alike with Latin America. Similarly to South America, the south of Spain has the seseo, something the northerners love making fun of. The accents vary a lot depending on where you go in Spain, as well as the many different dialects, but generally people will understand you if you speak the standard Spanish.

Spain and Latin America have large differences, but they do not form a barrier of communication. It is amazing how although they all speak the same language, they have different cultures and traditions. To be able to travel in one language, yet experience so many different societies is really something to be appreciated and taken advantage of. Choosing between Latin America and Spain to learn Spanish may not be easy, but there wherever you go, there will never be a loss of diversity and ethos. That is what makes Spanish such a beautiful and worth learning language.

 

Originally posted at www.selcpro.com

Top 5 benefits of hiring a social media manager

You decide to take your business to the next level: social media. Can’t be too hard, can it? You think that all you have to do is post a few articles, answer some comments and you’ll be away. You spend a whole day working on what you think looks like a great Facebook page. Satisfied with your work, you wait for the followers to come tumbling in. In one week you get about 10 followers. You just spent an entire day working just for 10 followers, and it feels useless. What’s missing? You don’t know how to attract more followers and you don’t want to go down the ‘fake likes’ path. Plus, you’re very busy and you want an audience as soon as possible. You are overwhelmed and you don’t know what to do. The solution: social media manager. A professional in charge of keeping track of your social media and who knows exactly what to do in order to attract more clients. Here are 5 perks of having one:

  1. They are professionals

This person/group of people you are hiring is a professional. They have experience in many different social networks and they know exactly what to say and when. They know how to build a relationship with the audience, and they know how to keep a presence. Consistency is key in social media, so they will have a schedule of when and where to keep updating. They understand the different trends and they know how to adapt to them.

  1. Brand Recognition

You want people to notice you and to be interested in you. A social media manager will make sure this is the case. They know how to build your brand and reputation in such a way that you have a strong presence which cannot be ignored. They know how to make sure your work is exposed to an audience.

  1. The effort

People think that social media managing is something anyone can do with enough effort. That is true, but the key word here is efficiency. You could spend 10 hours a day working on each social media platform and you might not get the response you were expecting, meaning it will take you much longer to gain a larger audience. A professional knows how to get feedback rapidly, and you won’t be the one wasting the effort.

  1. New ideas

You might think a social media manager won’t know what to post or whether they are giving the right impression of you. First of all, the manager will have in depth knowledge of your business content and what you wish to be posting. Second of all, you will always be in contact. Third of all, this person will have the ability to ‘think out of the box’. If you get worried that your posts are becoming too monotonous, try it out with a professional. A little bit of variation is great for business.

  1. You have the advantage

It is clear that you have the advantage when you hire a social media manager. As stated before, everyone thinks that managing social media is something any amateur can do. Doing it yourself can get you far, but getting a professional to do it assures your number one place. You will be able to connect better with others and you will have actual people interested in your business, which means a large increase in traffic. It is the social media manager who will make you, and therefore your business, stand out from the rest.

 

Originally posted at www.selcpro.com

Autism is not a disability, it is a different ability

How would you react if one day you found an anonymous letter on your door? You would be intrigued and open it. What you might not be expecting to find is a letter wishing the death of your child. You would probably be shocked and scared at the same time. That is exactly what Marianna felt when she read the letter threatening to ‘exterminate’ her son because he had autism. Just one piece of paper with some ink on it turned her life upside down. Marianna and her family changed house, street and town because of that paper. Her son was being despised just because of how he was. This made her hate autism and weep over the fact that her son had been cursed with this condition.

I am here to convince you to accept autistic people for the way they are. So that they do not live in humiliation and are not set apart into special institutions. People do not understand the exceptional abilities that come with autism. I will make sure that after this speech you do, and that you appreciate how great they are.

 

The dictionary describes autism as a mental condition existing from early childhood, which includes disabilities with interacting amongst other people. However, the dictionary is wrong. It is missing the most important! Where does it say that some autistic people can recite the number pi for hours? Where is it written that some can just glance at a complicated structure like the Taj Mahal and draw it out perfect to the last stone? Where is it shown that some can say on which day of the week any date will fall? People should be told the advantages of autism as well as the disadvantages. Autistic savant George Widener stuns everyone with his superhuman calculating and memory skills. Gary McKinnon, a computer hacker who broke into high-security military and government site. Daniel Tammet who can talk 10 languages and learnt one in a week. These are all autistic people who have learnt to take advantage of their exceptional abilities. This is what parents should be told when they are presented with a child diagnosed with autism. This is what everyone should be told so that no parents or autistic child should have to suffer rejection and humiliation.

 

To be able to accept autism, you need to understand it. Autism is very hard to understand since there are so many different and unique cases. Here is a bit of background explanation: in the last 50 years, scientists have tried to understand how an autistic brain works and how it is formed. Before that, scientists believed an autistic child was simply a very insecure and unstable child. It was only during those years that scientists realised it is something present at the birth of the baby; the brain is physically different when compared to a non-autistic child. After many experiments, they concluded that autism is to do with genes, which is believed to cause the unusual behaviour. What do I mean by unusual behaviour? They feel uncomfortable around other people, making eye-contact, having close friends… They do things like pinching, kicking, slapping, they will not talk for a few days, not liking being touched, they like routines, do repetitive actions like tapping, etc. The hardest part for parents is to deal with their child not showing affection for them and to seem disconnected from the world. This makes them focus on trying to change their child instead of helping their problems and working with their abilities. This is natural in parents since they want to have a ‘normal’ child and do ‘normal’ activities with them. It is tough for them to realise that they have to adapt to this unexpected speed bump. If our civilisation works on the parents’ attitudes’, many things can be accomplished. What if an autistic child cures your cancer one day? What if one invents a rocket that will bring us to Jupiter? What if one solves our economic crisis? There are endless possibilities with autistic people. Let us turn those ‘what ifs’ into ‘oh wells’ and see if these dreams are actually possible. However, this is only achievable if we make parents and the child work together to create a secure environment for everyone. Then discoveries and inventions will happen.

Temple Grandin’s mother was not affected by all the criticism directed towards her, and forced her autistic daughter to go to school and then university. It was thanks to her determination that Temple was able to overcome her fear of people. Temple Grandin is now able to present lectures everywhere about her autism and explain what a great gift it is. It was her autism which allowed her to observe small details other people did not. She noticed how nervous cows would get, before being slaughtered, simply because of the surface they walked on. She revolutionised slaughterhouses, which resulted in less cows suffering and meat being much tenderer. This could not have happened without her autism. She says it herself that she is glad she has autism and identifies it as a wonderful gift. This is what autistic children should be encouraged to think at an early age. Temple was only able to do this with the encouragement of her family. Autism does come with incapacities, but in an environment where everyone supports them, they will strive through our society. Then, autism will not be regarded as a disability anymore.

 

If you now believe autism is more of an ability than a disability, support and accept them. It is the least we can do for them. Prevent scientists from trying to find a ‘cure’ to autism. Autism is not a disease! Autism should not be treated like the enemy; it should be benefitted from by supporting those who have it.  By making them focus on their talents. By repeatedly telling them that they are not abnormal, but that they are unique just like everyone else. They are human beings, just like everyone else. They have the right to be respected, just like everyone else. Why are autistic people being kept in special institutions? Is it because they have brilliant minds? Or is it because they are ‘socially awkward’? They are indispensable to humanity; they make our culture more vivid, more remarkable. Together with autistic people, anything is possible. Great minds should not and cannot be ignored.

Bibliography:

TED talk by Temple Grandin

www.autism.org.uk/about-autism/autism-and-asperger-syndrome-an-introduction/what-is-autism.aspx

http://www.webmd.com/brain/autism/history-of-autism

http://www.autism.org.uk/living-with-autism/real-life-stories/real-life-stories-from-people-with-autism/as-bad-as-things-can-get-when-you-have-autism-they-can-get-better-too.aspx

Why Politics?

This is my first post on this website, and I wish to dedicate it to my future major. If you read the ‘About me’, you know I wish to study Political Science in university, so here I will explain the why.

After introducing myself to someone new, the usual question comes up: What do you want to study? Each time, I say Politics, and each time there is a different reaction. Some people grimace in horror, some people look at me strangely and some people suddenly get very interested. I still don’t know exactly what each reaction means, but I find all of them interesting. If the conversation goes on, they might ask me why, and here it gets a bit complicated. Only once have I been able to explain properly why I wanted to study this major, and it was in French with two Moroccans.

I did a pretty good summary of how I got to the idea of politics in the ‘About me’ page, and why I liked it, but now I would like to explain the topic in itself, without linking it to me.

If we go back quite a few centuries to look at the origin of our society, we see that the very first advances on anything were done by philosophers such as Plato and Aristotle. As they observed the world around us, they drew conclusions and from then on other subjects were created such as biology, chemistry, maths, etc. So for me the real basis of our evolving society is philosophy, since it is the subject which allows us to reflect on basically everything. Now, what is the other ingredient to make sure our society keeps evolving? The people. We have out philosophy, now we need our philosophers. We can all agree that the more philosophers we have, the more advances we can make. In order to do this we need a stable community, a safe one, one where everyone can develop their talents and bring the best out of themselves.

The job of the politician is to organise this. Make sure there is health care, there is protection, there is food and there is education. A good governing system is one which allows everyone to flourish in their society, which will in turn make the society advance more efficiently. It is the foundation of any community. We could say philosophy is a community’s parent, starting point, and politics is the young child which takes over and makes sure the society moves steadily forward.

Being the foundation of any community, politics consists of a little bit of each subject. I could go on and on about the geography, history, maths, science and endless other subject which are involved in this one area of study. And this is why I like it so much. It may sound cringe, but politics has a little piece of each subject in the world, so when I’m studying the foundation of our society, I get to work with all the different subjects which exist, something I find absolutely fascinating and mind-boggling and the same time.

So when people ask me why I like politics, I’m not sure how to phrase all I’ve explained into one sentence, which means either we both end up having a very deep conversation on our society (the best), or the other person thinks I’m just in it for the money (not the best).

Anyway, here is my tried explanation which I hope you understand, if not, go ahead and comment anything you like 😀