Photo series on cotton and exploitation

In society today, we as consumers are a part of a large, complexed, on going cycle. Our economy is driven by business which reflects the culture that exists. It is both positive and negative that our society’s premise is a business model. Consumers need various solutions for their issues or ideas for their individual needs. The freedom to exchange goods and services to receive profit which is regulated by the law seems rather fair on the surface. However, that freedom like many freedoms can be taken too far. In his photo series, Franko states that, “profit over people” is the ideology that propels some of the world’s most profitable businesses. I believe that is where it becomes an overreach as a freedom.

After reading A Glimpse at the workers who make your clothes, you remember that businesses have a social responsibility to their consumers and their workers from which they rely upon to receive profit and success. When businesses take advantage of either the consumer or the worker it constitutes hypocrisy. Exploitation lives in the holes of the law. Otis speaks out about how some large corporations are wanting to shift production to countries where wages are lower and are not protected by law. “What emerged, he said, was a story of exploitation, where the quest of corporations to find cheaper production in the globalized economy obscures the human cost”. The photos open your eyes to what you don’t physically see each and everyday but, what some corporations see, expect and normalize. This investigative journalism in this case, asks what about the lives of the employees? Are they giving more than they are receiving? What would it mean for companies to rightfully compensate their employees? What can we as consumers demand from companies who charge us and neglect their employees their compensation?


The photographs definitely help the story. I think that with most physical evidence or proof we tend to compare and connect better. The photographs are also edited in a chronological order with no splash of color. The editing introduces the idea of this being an issue of the past but yet currently still remains an issue. When i see these people who work for these corporations I can’t help but think of slave labor. These employees rarely see minimum wage. From the photographs, we can clearly see that their work most certainly is not freelanced or volunteered. These workers are not being compensated fairly. These shots range from young girls and boys to older women and men who seem to be working daily within extreme conditions. They are picking, sorting, harvesting, and carrying cotton. The photos show an owner of one of the farms. Mr. Button is shown laying down waiting for his employees to begin their work. While some local factories gave workers a place to sleep, I would have to say that the reason why those people did not have places to begin with is because they are not being rightly compensated for their time. Therefore, it does not justify the factory in giving them a place to stay. These photos also explore the finished products we see at places such as Urban Outfitters in London. The pictures work well in the order they were placed because, there is cohesion.

They show you the process of the factory work step by step which strongly demonstrates how these workers are treated at various factories. I believe that Franko explored why today is much like the past. It explains why he precisely chose to make the first photo of “[a] farmer picking cotton in a field near Toussiana, in Burkina Faso, in December 2015 and the last photo being of [a] retail clothing store in London. September 2016”. The captions show different periods of time, places, and work which ultimately give the story facts. I just find it exploitative that they would sell a pair of jeans for $30 and up but will not fully compensate the workers who created those very jeans they are selling for profit.



Santa Clarita diet review

Reviewed by Amanda Lyles


curtesy of Netflix

Green lawns, spotless streets, and a typical family living in suburban California.

Right away we are introduced to a modern picture of what this suburban family is really like however, the episode does not leave us guessing about anything. The Hammonds, Sheila (Drew Barrymore) and Joel (Timothy Olyphant) a team of realtors who also have a daughter, Abby (Liv Hewson) are friendly and clever people. They also have neighbors who are involved within their community for instance, the classic nosey neighbor, Dan who works for the L.A. sheriff’s department. He suspects everything and anything to have potential problems. Victor Fresco, the show’s creator is known for taking ordinary situations and adding irrational humor to mock an unusual situation that would most likely be taken seriously in all actuality. The acting in my opinion is on cue. Timothy Olyphant is and Drew Barrymore are fantastic in portraying their characters. The show’s premise is a unique portrayal of the undead or if you must call them zombies. In many ways this series is relatable, in other ways not so much. The typical reaction of one family to one member’s change in behavior as well as, this show’s underlying unpredictability with their community’s interaction is there. As the series begins we notice that Sheila is ill. This leads to her throwing up and leaving evidence of a red ball figure.


Courtesy of Bustle

Sheila begins to emotionally transform from a woman who was once uptight, to a woman who has no impulse control due to her illness. Sheila encourages her neighbors to have affairs and she even buys a Land Rover. Vesco also adds slight emotion which gives the show balance and meaning. It constantly has its humorous moments however, at times the overall premise emanates which does make viewers sympathize for Sheila and her family. Sheila’s diet begins to change as she once only craved raw meat but, now only human beings. After Sheila realizes that she can no longer feel her heart beat she tells Abby and Joel who also cannot hear one. This Netflix original becomes increasingly witty in humor as they try to understand Sheila’s threatening condition. When the family understands that Sheila’s condition is complexed and they need answers fast this clever humor arises, “How could this happen, we are realtors!”. –Joel Hammond

“I’m so glad that these aren’t one of those diseases that dries your skin out” –Sheila Hammond

As the show continues, the Hammond family tries to find solutions for Sheila’s zombie-like condition which makes this show perfect for unpredictability. The story does have a foundation and isn’t just completely random with characters and their encounters with one another. The family works together and soon realizes that it isn’t as easy as they had hoped. Since Sheila’s condition has caused her to lose almost all impulse control, this leads Sheila and Joel down a dangerous, life changing path. Although, Joel often questions his ability to commit such cruel acts for his wife to stay sane and ultimately survive. Joel and Sheila try to kill those who are out casted out (rapists, murders, drug dealers and human traffickers) of society to justify their reasons for keeping Sheila alive.  I think the writing certainly brings up existentialistic questions about humanity. However, I wish it could have more of an impact. The writing could have more substance and mystery which would contribute more of an impact onto its viewers.

“It’s like my life is spiraling toward disaster and there’s no way out. I can’t even talk about it with the person I love the most because, she’ll blame herself and that’s not what I want.” –Joel Hammond


Image from The Sun

Joel tries to obtain more answers, we see that Sheila is beginning to have more symptoms. For instance, one of her toes falls off in which case, she tries to glue it back on. The writing does have times where it surprises or brings up more questions for the viewers. However, it could be more impactful if it didn’t answer all the questions right away. In other words, it could find solutions later and have more significance. At the end of the first season, Joel bumps into someone who happens to know about his wife’s symptoms. He knows an ex CDC scientist Cora Wolf who is experimenting in fringe biology (Portia de Rossi) and gives Joel the scientist’s number. The scientist and Joel come into contact and meet at the Hammond’s house. The ending of the series leaves us with a cliff hanger.  Joel is arrested for trying to get one of the ingredients for Sheila. Sheila is moving to the next phase of becoming a zombie in which she has become more aggressive and has asked Abby to tie her up in the basement. Lastly, the ex CDC scientist leaves because of Joel’s arrest. These cliff hangers could be used throughout the show rather than at the end of each episode to excited its viewers more. Although, I think they left off with a good cliff hanger.




How the news and social media makes an impact today

                I believe that a portion of the public relies heavily on news sources to give them the information they know they cannot obtain whether that is through investigation, connections, interviews, or live footage. The problem with the news industry today is how they are acknowledged and how they represent who they are. A portion of the public is interested and informed, while another portion is disinterested and uninformed. Here in America, the public’s trust and understanding in receiving news is divided due to ethics and biases. Some news sources fail to remain neutral on issues or fail to focus on certain issues.  While other news sources remain constantly neutral and focus on as many important issues as they can.

         Not every reader or viewer is informed. Most readers and viewers don’t have the access that news organizations have in order to receive local or international news information for the day. When a reader or viewer depend on certain news sources to receive their news they are not familiar with how another organization would relinquish the information they may need or want to know.  According to Farhip(2012) an editor for the The Washington Post, “There’s more media and more overtly partisan media outlets, too. The Internet has given rise to champions of the left — Huffington Post, Daily Kos, etc. — as well as more conservative organizations such as Drudge and Free Republic. This means your chance of running into “news” that seems biased has increased exponentially, elevating the impression that “bias” is pervasive throughout all parts of the media.”(p.1) I can not determine how the future of news will turn out however, I can certainly say that the news organizations just like, scientists have duties to the public.

     News organizations must stay neutral not only on the topics they choose to share but also, when it comes to the topics they choose to cover and relinquish otherwise i believe, the public becomes confused. ““There’s a kind of self-fulfilling perception to it,” said Robert Lichter, a pioneering media-bias researcher who heads the Center for Media and Public Affairs at George Mason University. “Once people see something they don’t like, they notice things that reinforce the belief that there’s bias” in the media as a whole.” The news organizations, although independent of each other will lose credibility from their readers and and viewers if they continue on a divided confusing path. “Nowadays…an entire cottage industry exists to highlight the media’s alleged failings. This includes ideological outfits such as Media Matters for America and the Media Research Center; the satirical “Daily Show” and “Colbert Report”;…blogs by the hundreds.”(Farhip, 2012,1)

When you find out that the “watch dogs” you are supposed to trust with your information, your life and safety through could possibly be purposely biased for political reasons, dishonest in the information they share, or wrong in giving the public the correct information they need…it all becomes confusing. “According to a new survey by Pew Research Center, most Americans suspect that made-up news is having an impact. About two-in-three U.S. adults (64%) say fabricated news stories cause a great deal of confusion about the basic facts of current issues and events…across incomes, education levels, partisan affiliations and most other demographic characteristics…”(Barthel, M., Mitchell, A., & Holcomb, J. (2016, December 15) When you realized that the watch dogs themselves are currently being scrutinized by research centers, where do you turn to find real truth?

             As far as social media is concerned, various platforms give voices to the voiceless which is both a positive and negative element within society today. When freedom of speech becomes a factor within social media it becomes a complexed issue, very difficult to maintain and control. Social media has made sharing news instantaneous whether or not the information is false or true. Freedom of speech protects an individual’s voice in stating certain beliefs and opinions. People can abuse this particular privilege because, without regulation they can. In this case, an individual uses their voice to intentionally misinform or because, they are unable to gain full access to the  whole, full truth.  I do not see any way to combat this threat due to the lack of regulation on freedom of speech.