I read an article on poverty. This article was entirely made up of statistics with little else to go on. First off, the graph used is from 2005 and so is quite a bit of the other data it uses. This outdated data leaves me wondering why piece written in 2013 would have to use so many numbers from the early 2000’s. I don’t exactly think they are straight up lying to me, but I am left with a lot of doubt about what their statistics truly mean.
Statistics are easy to believe. Humans love numbers, to a fault even. You can state any claim you want, but for it to be fully accepted as a fact, people would prefer if there were some numbers in that claim as well. It puts teeth into your words. Of course, just because people love statistics, doesn’t necessarily mean they should. 9 out of 10 times the stat is a fallacy, just like those random numbers I threw in this sentence. I remember learning in sociology class my sophomore year all about how the statistics used in advertisements and other persuasive things were completely swayed. The sample space was biased or not big enough to really mean much. After that shocking revelation I have never taken any stat at face value ever again. But is this a good thing? Now I’m left questing every statistic an article may through at me. In some aspect because I have been lied to by a stat sometime in the past I find it hard to ever trust one again, even if it is the most genuine stat out there. Yet, even though I don’t trust them, I still love to see numbers as a part of some “fact”, and this is what truly baffles me about statistics.
I am incredibly fascinated with the 26th president of the United States. I remember being in the 5th grade and having to give a basic report about him and the moment I saw his picture with his goofy smile and dorky glasses I knew I wanted to know all about that guy. I have found plenty information on all the great things Theodore Roosevelt did for the country, but what really interests me is his character. The story of Theodore that really captured my attention is that of when he got shot, but continued to give his speech anyway. To me that says more about him than any legislation he may have passed. The research I would be able to do would be looking at various primary documents from sources that could give a good perspective on Theodore. These documents would be things like journal entries from him or his immediate family members, pictures that capture leisure activities or his true emotion, and really anything from the time period that could give a hint as to who he really was. It may take me my whole life before I am able to truly find what makes Theodore Roosevelt such a captivating figure, but considering I am already completely fascinated by him, I look forward to going beyond the surface information.
Growing up I was all but pampered throughout my entire childhood. I was the youngest child and the very clear favorite. January 1st, 2010 was a very significant date for me because that is day my nephew Dallas was born, and the day my whole life changed. A couple years passed by and I was finally getting a hang with the whole diaper changing thing, but Dallas’ parents started to have other priorities and gave up on trying to be parents deciding they would rather go live their own lives elsewhere. My mom and dad took Dallas in but because they are older, the little guy was all but tossed into my arms and therefore my responsibility. Raising someone else’s kid while only being a 16-year-old in high school was freaking tough, but I gained so much from this experience. I went to only living for myself to adjusting to being responsible for a tiny human’s life. The first time I heard Dallas curse was the biggest wake up call for me because it all hit me that I was this kid’s role model, his only parent figure and every thing I say and do was being absorbed by his crazy sponge-like toddler mind. I adjusted my entire life and from then on have lived out my life always keeping in mind there’s a little dork following in my footsteps and I have become the person I am today because of the little boy who stole my heart.
I believe Stephen King means that fear conquers imagination and therefore fantastic writing cannot happen. Humans naturally want to be accepted and that applies to writing as well. By being afraid of criticism and disapproval, one can never truly write and therefore produce bad writing. One example of when fear put a big damper in my writing was when I had to write an essay for a college application. I was so scared because I made the paper into a big deal and thought my entire admissions decision would be based on how well I could write this essay. Of course this wasn’t the case, but my writing was still affected because I was so afraid of messing up that I forgot to be real and write how I know best. Thankfully I had my English teacher help me edit the paper and turned it into a narrative I felt represented me a bit better. I learned that fear creates a paper significantly worse than one written in a more laid back fashion. Being at ease with your writing capabilities allows your imagination run wild, which can ultimately give way to a more genuine and well written paper.