SOCIAL MISREPRESENTATION: WHY DO SO MANY PEOPLE PORTRAY A LIFE ON INSTAGRAM THEY DON’T ACTUALLY LIVE

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“Come one man, you’re not that interesting.”


I like millions of others belong to the Instagram community. A platform where millions of people share their photos and video content with the world. Some people only have a few followers while people like Selena Gomez have 125 million plus people following them. And with a following like Selena, she can really put herself in position to make a really good living. With so many marketers and advertisers, this has become a very lucrative space to operate. But this topic is not about the lucrative side of Instagram, it’s the misrepresentation of the application. Too often, people are sharing a lifestyle that is not conducive to the life they actually live. And what is the real reason why so many post photos that don’t represent who they are in life?

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Jack Morris and Lauren Bullen are famous on Instagram and make incomes from their traveling and posting their leisure life on Instagram.

One of the reasons comes from what I had previously stated about Selena. People put up a lifestyle that they don’t live because believe it or not, there is an income to be amassed from these photos. And how can one make an income from taking Instagram photos? Well, let’s say you’re a traveling type of person. And every time you travel somewhere new, you feel the need to take a photo and share with the world. But something you also do is link other like profiles and hashtags. Then people will like that particular photo or photos, and comment. Now, if you’re a hotel and your name is hash tagged in the photo, you can see this because chances are the hotel has an Instagram account. But the hotel only takes notice when you are consistently out-liking them and their organization. They’ll eventually reach out to you because your traffic tends to be greater than theirs. This is a way to make income off of lifestyle.

Now, on the other hand, you have the people who are just a complete misrepresentation of themselves, which is the aim of this topic today. They show you how they’re off in some foreign country on a beach drinking expensive champagne living the life. When in reality, you can get a cheap flight and hotel to Monaco or St. Tropez, especially if it’s a hostel (sharing with like five or six other people) stay. And since a beach is surrounding everything with the Mediterranean Sea facing you, you can get some really get images. As far as the relaxation, you might have boosted an empty bottle, and then bought a glass of champagne to make it appear you’re popping bottles. When in reality, you don’t have bottle service money; you barely have money for that glass you’re drinking. So why do we live these lives through the medium of Instagram when we don’t have what we say we do.

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It’s the seeking of not only validation, but it’s even more confirmation through the seeking of validation that you don’t have a real existence, and you’re playing up to a character you’re wishing to become. So many people want to be something other than themselves, so they latch on to others or create an alternate persona so they can disconnect themselves from themselves. It’s the reason why an average person posting their daily life is not getting likes on Instagram and this person with them drinking expensive alcohol is getting followers. The person posting their mundane daily lives is not interesting because they are engaging in an activity that further forces me to think about my daily existence. I want to follow someone not me, just off of perception. Now, the person taking what is seen as average photos might actually have the lifestyle of the fake profile, they just don’t show it.

And in the end, that is what it all boils down to, the perception. We don’t care about the facts because the lie feel so much better than truth. But that truth is not someone else’s truth. We are running from our truth and living vicariously through another person’s fake actualization of what to them is a hope and dream of being what you look at them as: a somebody. We all want to be a somebody even if we are known for being around known people and latching on to their shine. Instagram is a perfect tool that explains not how interesting someone is, but also exemplifies how lonely and yurning for companionship and friendship we really want but don’t know how to attain.


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CONTENT NOT JUST TEXT: HOW I AM GROWING MY WORDPRESS BLOG

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“Growing my community, one post at a time.”


I have been blogging since August of 2015, and now that I have found myself in the groove of things, I am planning on growing my blog a little more in the year 2018. In the beginning, I was just posting a little bit at a time. And what’s crazy, I wasn’t even proofreading, just getting what’s in my head on the site. Now, I’ve wanted to go back and check out my earlier posts for editing purposes. But the fact that it shows how I grew over time, I have decided not to do so. You are able to see the full transformation of how I took a bunch of thoughts and started writing them down in an unedited posts, to now more thought out posts. And like I said before, next year, I want to grow my blog more; with what you ask, content, more content.

I have already posted some close to 550 posts, but now, I need to take things a step further by adding more pictorial and video content. So along with my views pertaining to certain topics, there is now an actual image driven aspect of my writing. I will also be incorporating more graphs and charts for the year 2018. What started as a means of making me a better writer so that I could be contributing to something other than just my screenplays, books, and playwright ideas, has now turned into an daily activity. And when I miss a day, I try my best to double up on the next day. The site was also a free space for so long, but as of two months ago, I have chosen the paid subscription. So what exactly will be on my blog for the coming year?

For instance, when I am writing about a topic that interest me such as politics, if the topic is geared toward a specific aspect of politics like something the president spoke about, I will have the video of the president speaking. I will also still have the written content, but may also incorporate graphs of whatever political issue he may be covering that can either back up or refute his points. That interactive aspect of blogs is what people want to be apart of today. Just reading is not good enough, they want something that gives them an experience. And if I am going to continue to contribute and grow, I need to also create a story behind what I am writing. People would love to be connected to the topic for more than just insight.

And wrapping my posts will no longer close out with, “in the end” as this overall viewpoint to the topic. The topic will close with a strong statement, so get use to not seeing that, in the end, close. But for the time being, in closing, I have a lot of work on my blog for the upcoming year. Also in the year 2018, I will be working on photography, trying to attain a literary agent, and also starting my podcast. So hopefully 2018 brings good things as I will be pretty busy throughout the year.


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GENDER FRIENDSHIPS: CAN MEN AND WOMEN REALLY JUST BE FRIENDS

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“Friendzone is a hard zone.”


I was contributing to a discussion on a Facebook page of a woman I know who was having a hard time regarding finding male friends. And she was saying how it’s hard to have male friends because there is always some way of bringing the situation back to him liking and pursuing her. And I started to think about that, can men and women truly be friends, given the two are heterosexual. Because it’s obvious they can be friends when one or both of them are gay. But what happens when both are attracted to the opposite sex, but also are physically attractive. Can two people find each other attractive and still be friends? Because men and women are biologically on this Earth to procreate, but socially we are expected to behave a certain way in certain situations.

That’s what is interesting about both genders, is that there is this scientific piece, then there is the societal element. Society says, you are supposed to give the other person space when they just want to be friends and respect that space. Science dictates that I am attracted to this person, and want to intimate with his person. So what happens is that the friendship sometimes degrades when one person is trying to date the other person, while the one being pursued just wants to be friends.So how do you get across to the person that you just want a friendship, yet you know how we are designed as men and women?

This is all the reasons above why so many women have their gay friends. This is so they don’t have to deal with the stress of having a guy every single second of the day trying to create means of getting with her. She can also go to the night spots that this guy frequent and have a good time as well. But on top of this, she can also have the comfort of being able to hang with her guy friend and receive man advice with no pretense. Now, on the other hand, be careful if you want someone to just be your friend and they are fine, but then you turn around and change up the contract. This is also known to happen as well. You can’t hold someone to a friendship and then you don’t hold up your end of the bargain.

In the end, men and women can ultimately be friends, but I think that happens with time and maturity. Your objective when you are a young man is to meet women and date. So when you come across a woman that you find attractive, the last thing you’re thinking is let’s hang out. You would almost sound phony in situations trying to act as if you do want to be friends as a means of getting close to her. But once people do age, they take on certain viewpoints making it easier to have opposite sex friends.


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FED UP: WHY BLACK WOMEN HAVE CHOSEN TO BE WITH NON BLACK MEN

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“Slim options, forced to keep an open mind.”


Over the recent years, interracial dating and marriage have climbed in the African American community. And for the longest it was the men who were opting to date outside our ethnicity, but now it’s more women. So what has taken hold, is this just some coincidence, or is there another reason as to why? The answer is yes, from what I have noticed for the most part, there is a reason for this jump cross racial lines lately. And don’t get me wrong, interracial dating and marriage is nothing new in America, but I have seen the rise over time. And there are some clear indicators as to why these numbers have risen. Reasons for dating outside are due to environment in which you were raised or currently reside, options when choosing to date or marry, and off balanced numbers of Black women to men.

The first reason why Black women have chosen to date outside their ethnicity points to the environment where they grew up and/or live now. Black people who are generally raised in predominantly White communities tend to date within that given community. Not the least bit odd because you tend to marry in life what is within your immediate community. So if there are Black women who grew up in these White populated neighborhoods, they are more likely to marry White men. Or, if they are living in a community where these are the men around, this is who they most likely will gravitate toward. Which leads me into the other reason why Black women are now dating more outside their ethnicity; options.

And I don’t mean options as them expressing their options to date and marry. I’m referring to the availability of Black men for Black women to date. The most educated block of women in America are now Black women, while Black men sit at the bottom of society. So that in itself is enough to make so many Black women choose to be with men outside the community. Also within the options is the place at which Black women may be financially and socially versus where he might be at the moment. We have more and more Black professional women in the workforce, surrounded by predominantly White males in power positions. So if you’re a woman, you think to yourself, I would prefer someone in the same position as myself. But who do you date when everyone else is choosing within their ethnicity and you’re stuck single; you choose whoever comes along.

But when looking at why Black women are choosing to date outside their ethnicity, you look at the numbers alone and there are way more Black women than men. As matter of fact, millions more. And then when you factor into the equation that so many Black men are incarcerated, not in college, not going to college, not in the employment pool, in the employment pool, but barely surviving, then you can’t blame Black women for their choices. The numbers are so titled, that it’s almost as if you have to encourage interracial dating for Black women to have a chance. But in the end, could this just be in Black women’s heads because White women themselves are waiting, generally for a White male. Also is it always a conscious decision for Black women to date outside her ethnicity, or dating who approaches you. Whatever the case may be the numbers are still climbing, and Black women are becoming more and more open.


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PEER PRESSURE: WHY SO MANY YOUNG PEOPLE DON’T FIGHT IT

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“A time in life without a sense of self.”


When you’re growing up in school, you seek to fit into the environment of that academic space. And coincidentally enough, that space is not attaining the best grades, but more so trying to wear the latest fashion, and hang out with what is perceived to be the cool kids. And that word perception sticks out the most because your perception of each other is what’s the strongest, not the real person. Why is perception the most important, well it has to do with lack of facts. The facts that lead you into the inner workings of the real person. But who cares about facts, when you can easily makeup a perception that suits you just fine. And that is what we live by all growing up until we become adults and take on our own identities. That keeping your image together for what people think you is known as your reputation.

Now, considering your reputation proceeds you wherever you go, you work hard to keep that image in tack. But what if your image is not the image of what your peers think is acceptable for you to have in life. See, it’s easy as an adult to say, screw that, this is such a small window into the outside world, but kids don’t understand your advice. We can look at life from such a rational perspective, once you step out into the world. You have realized as an adult that no one truly cares how much swagger you have in life. You have to be able to be productive, but that built in understanding is not present in kids and teens. You can’t fully expect children to have that level of self-awareness, or that built in rejection mechanism that you get once you become adults. To them, this is your circle of friends for life. As adults we understand you may never see these individuals ever again once you graduate high school.

And not because you think you’re better than your friends, but more so, you start to out grow people’s mind frames. So the kids who were once your adversaries, eventually become people you have as associates. Now, there are those exceptions to the rule; such as the kids you just walk to the beat of their own drum. These kids are very few and far between, but they do exist. I took on the walk to my own beat after getting injured in sports. You go from, “Who is that boy that runs track and plays football so well,” to “He use to fly playing sports, oh well.” That’s when I learned people like you for what you’re doing, not necessarily because of you. So they generally gravitate toward that because we all want to be attached to something we perceive to be great, even if it’s for a short stint. Yet again, there goes that word perception; people perceived me to be great.

And in the end, that’s why fighting peer pressure is so difficult for so many young people. It’s not just the idea of wanting to not be the odd one out, but you want to be attached to something you perceive to be better than yourself. We all have this time in our lives where we want to be something other than ourselves. And once we see someone who appears to be doing anything remotely better than us, it looks appealing to us. So if the kid who has the latest sneakers growing up walks into school, we seek to be close and attach ourselves to that person. That person could potentially have a trouble home life, but they are perceived to be better because they are in a social class outside of where we see ourselves.


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POLITICAL SHIFT: HOW THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY COULD REIGN SUPREME ACROSS AMERICA

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“The pendulum is starting to swing.”


Since the mayoral and other council races back in November of this year, party lines have already began to show a sign of turning back blue. Some say that people are already getting fed up with the current President Donald J. Trump, and others have stated that these are places can typically swing in either direction: Democrat of Republican. Now, as it comes to no surprise places in Florida and Texas has still kept their political views going strong for the Republican party. But, when you look at the political maps across the country, you can’t help but notice that the pendulum is swinging back in the opposite direction. And what is this due to in America? Could it be that Trump supporters are getting tired of him already, or does it have to do with new voters.

There were three of age at the time Trump was elected President last year who are now 18 years old. Which may very well be the very few voters. Or, there could be the population of people that did not get involved in the general presidential election, who came out to vote. Because remember, in this past election of Donald Trump, nearly half the country didn’t vote for a president. These non-voters could now be getting involved because of their lack of initiative in the national election. And lastly, there are the people who voted Republican, who are now saying they made the wrong decision, and now want to flip sides.

Because if you observe the election percentages, you have Democrats that have won by major percentages. And yes, if you look at the major metropolitan cities, you tend to see a more Democratic win, but these are wins even in small cities and towns. So what has happened that has caused so many Republicans to lose their position in the party? Could it really be that since Trump was elected, he has caused all of the mistrust in the party? This is only his first year in office, and already, confidence could begin to be lost in a party. And with a new generation coming into the voting pool for the year 2020, the Republicans better start seeking out young people and fast. Why, well the millennials and the newly introduced Generation Z will be the majority. Two generations that have become turned off by the Conservatives on the right.

And in the end, that’s the biggest issue, is that a young generation is being shaped by a party. But not just one generation, two back-to-back generations. All the while, being turned off by the other. So if the Republicans don’t start to find ways of reaching out to young voters, then you’ll start to see a close to impossible win by Conservatives in any election whether it be city, state, or national. Because what we have is an aging declining older generation and a growing younger generation shifting to the left.


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THE NEXT GREAT MIGRATION: WHERE WILL THE BLACK COMMUNITY GO NEXT

Image result for BLACK MIGRATION“On the road again.”


I was recently reading an article in the newspaper from the city I grew up in which stated that it is the 4th worst city for Black people in America. Now, the city to the north Milwaukee is ahead of ours. So that is two cities in the top five in proximity to my previous home. Today, I live in New York City, which seems like a world away from my small Midwest city in Wisconsin. But this issue that Black people face isn’t just a small Midwest issue, it is in other parts of the country as well. Gentrification has pushed a lot of Black families out of the community. So that leaves a question on the table.

Will there be another migration in my lifetime of the Black community? During the industrial revolution there was a leap from the South into the major cities in the north. Families were escaping Jim Crow South and finding better work opportunities. But today, the South of the past is becoming the life of today in other American regions. And my small city along with metropolitan Milwaukee are not the only places where Black people facing hardships. So, where will the migration exist? Will Black people head back south, or disperse even more throughout the country? Or, will we leave America and disperse elsewhere all together?

Because the young generation, unlike our parents are more fluid to move about. We could disperse more throughout the country. Or given there is only 11% of us in the country, we could easily disperse throughout the globe. When there is 40 million introduced to a country, that’s a lot, but around the globe is not. Because something has to happen considering we are dipping further and further down. With the signing of the Civil Rights Act and the Voters Rights Act in the 1960’s, coupled with the election of President Barack Obama, we thought life would be different. But it’s turning out to be worst than the past.

The schools today are worst than the past, the family is more fragmented, and our health is going down. We were 10% of the American population during the 1950’s and only set to be 14% by 2050. A population growth of 4% in 100 years is tiny, so another trend is taking hold. You could very well start to now see the numbers declining over time as well. Because if opportunities are slim, then fewer Black children born, and numbers decrease. So you could easily see the Black population of what was once descendants of slaves in this country become Black people immigrating from other parts of the world.

In the end, the Black community is decreasing in the financial morale department and could see a decline in numbers over time. Yet on the other hand population in America is growing, while White men and women’s numbers decline over time as well. Giving rise to America being a majority Hispanic nation over time. I am old enough to bare witness to such changes in America; and I wonder what the country will look like by the time I reach elderly years.


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