Black Lives Matter
Black Lives Matter was started within an aim to fighting against racial injustice and attempting to bring to an end the colorblind racism currently in the modern society in USA. The Black Lives Matter Movement was triggered by the death of Treyvon Martin in 2012 thereby leading to the coining of the phrase, “Black Lives Matter” The idea gained momentum through the social media platforms. It was created into a hashtag and it then occurred to some people that this could be used to bring a social change in the society. The death of Michael Brown in the hands of a white police officer was the catapult that propelled the movement into action. This civil rights unrest was caused by the increased cases of young, unarmed African-American males being killed by police officers and no action being taken against the officers. The follow up events saw the public engaged in the peaceful demonstrations where police responded by arresting the protesters with others being violently put down by the police. The action of the police was clearly against the Fourth Amendment provided in the US constitution that prohibited any search of seizure from being carried out without a warranty. Police are only protected by the Fourth Amendment in case they shoot and kill and killed a suspect who was posing a threat to their lives and that of others. However, in most cases being raised by the movements, the police would shoot the suspects despite them having surrendered and therefore no threat (Anderson et al. 2016). The goal of the movement was to rebuild the Black Liberation Movement and make the society more socially responsible by attempting to remove the “us versus them” in the society.
The Sit-in Movement
This was a Civil Rights Movement that took place in 1960. The tactic of sit-in was added to the other peaceful civil activists’ strategy. This was initiated by four African American college students who went to a Whites-only lunch counter in Woolworths Store in North Carolina and event after being refused any service, received threats and intimidation, they refused to leave hoping to be served. The civil event in this case was marked by sit-in that involved the students siting quietly in the eatery joints waiting to be served. They would be threatened, jeered at, and event attacked by white customers but would not respond to the provocations for fights. Such was the case in Nashville where young white teenagers attacked the protesters and Police never stopped them but only watched and later arrested the black students. These were then be replaced by others in the protest.
The trend had spread out all over the country and paralyzed the lunch counter system and other forms of segregation in libraries, beaches, hotels and other social establishments. This saw many students engaged in the protests arrested and the nation -media coverage gave attention to this trend. This lead to the formation of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee that was among the great forces in the civil rights movement and organized freedom rides and also the historic match when Martin Luther King gave his “I have a Dream” speech (Morgan & Davies, 2012).
One of the recent media events that has helped shaped the public opinion on a government agency is the coverage on water crises in Flint Michigan. This water crisis was due to the lead seepage into the drinking water thereby causing a huge public health crisis that made President Obama to declare a federal state of emergency in the area. The reports on poisoning had been established as early as 2014. It was reported that the Michigan officials, including the governor, were well aware of the contamination but had not taken any action. The crises was caused by the action the government joining a new pipeline project that would draw water from Lake Huron. The water had salts that caused corrosion in pipes. The situation was made worse due to failure of using the right mix of corrosion inhibitors. The residents complained of the foul water but it was later discovered that the pipes contributed to contamination of the water (Masten, Davies, & Mcelmurry, 2016). The controversy involved the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality and EPA. The Media coverage of this event caused lead to a negative public perception over the inadequacy of these government agencies in dealing with important issues of public health.
Another media event that facilitated the shaping of public opinion on a government agency is the Ruby Ridge Standoff. This represented a standoff between the Weaver family in their remote Idaho residence and the federal agents from FBI and USA marshals service. The standoff involved an attempt to issue an arrest warrant against Randy Weaver for making and being in possession of illegal weapons. The standoff that lasted for 10 days resulted to the death of Randy’s wife, a son, and US marshal (Waxman, 2002). There was a public outcry about against the aggressive and ruthless used of force by government agencies in controlling the citizens especially in gun ownerships related issues.
Difference between Republican and Democrats
While the Republicans and Democrats differ on several critical issues, one of the most recognized issue in on abortion. This issue has been a controversial issue since1973, after the Supreme Court indicated termed it as a fundamental right. Republicans have held an anti-abortion stance referred as pro-life while Democrats have held the a pro-choice based that requires that abortion be accessible to all women. The current law in USA allows for early abortion for any reason and later in the pregnancy is it introduces a physical or mental issue to the mother. This issue still presents a persistent ethical and legal issues that the Republican and Democrats political factions use to draw their political battle lines (McCurdy, 2016).
Another prominent issue that marks has the Republicans and Democrats have taken a separate side in on views of immigration policies. This has been an ethical issue that is directly connected to the lives and livelihoods of people. The Republicans hold more restrictive views in reference to immigration policies as compared to the position held by Democrats. Republicans indicate that immigration is directly related to national security therefore important to keep a check on persons entering the country through strict enforcement policies. Democrats on the other hand, view immigration as opportunity to enrich the American Community and advocates for a comprehensive immigration reform (Reeves & Johnson, 2017). This issue remains to be a hot topic for discussion with President Trump making calls for building a wall on the USA-Mexico border. Such an effort is seen by Democrats as piecemeal and therefore not effective.
Anderson, J. F., Reinsmith-Jones, K., & Brooks Jr, W. M. (2016). Black Shootings, Conflict Theory, and Policy Implications. Int’l J. Soc. Sci. Stud., 4, 10.
Masten, S. J., Davies, S. H., & Mcelmurry, S. P. (2016). Flint Water Crisis: What Happened and Why? Journal-American Water Works Association, 108(12), 22.
McCurdy, S. A. (2016). Abortion and public health: Time for another look. The Linacre Quarterly, 83(1), 20–25.
Morgan, I., & Davies, P. (2012). From sit-ins to SNCC: The student civil rights movement in the 1960s. University Press of Florida.
Reeves, R., & Johnson, J. (2017). Republican vs. Democrat- Platforms on Immigration. Retrieved from https://www.rreeves.com/immigration-news/republican-vs-democrat-platforms-on-immigration/Waxman, S. P. (2002). Federalism, Law Enforcement, and the Supremacy Clause: The Strange Case of Ruby Ridge. U. Kan. L. Rev., 51, 141.
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