Discussions Unit 2

Unit Two- Reflective Annotated Bibliography

Topic- Should the death penalty be abolished in the United States?

I chose this topic, because I find it interesting that capital punishment is still legal in 27 states. I had to do something similar to this topic in high school and I feel like I only touched the tip of the iceberg on this topic and would like to revisit it, there is enough information for both sides of the argument, and I feel like I have a lot to work with on this topic.

Source One: Should the Death Penalty Be Abolished? – The New York Times (

In this New York times article, The journalist mentions several times how putting prisoners on death row is a violation of the 8th amendment. That no matter the crime, the government should not have the right to take a persons life away, as it is unfair and unjust. She mentions that thirteen inmates faced capital punishment during the trump administration, the author states “Until July, there had been no federal executions in 17 years. Since then, the Trump administration has executed 13 inmates, more than three times as many as the federal government had put to death in the previous six decades.” -(Nicole Daniels Should the Death Penalty Be Abolished? – The New York Times ( The journalist seems to be more on the side of abolishing the penalty. Which I agree with her on, because the 8th amendment states that the individual who committed the crime should be charged with a fair consequence, however in what terms is it fair to take someone’s life. What I would want to ask her is when and where is it the proper time to use capital punishment against an individual, because even though I agree with her on it being a cruel punishment, what about the prisoners who committed murder themselves, should they get a taste of their own medicine, like an eye for an eye sort of thing?

Source Two: Ashley Nellis Pro-Con: Should the death penalty be abolished? – Opinion – Columbia Daily Tribune – Columbia, MO (

In this article the journalist recurring theme is that prisoners should just receive life in prison without parole. She mentions it serves the same purpose, without actually taking the life of an individual. She also mentions the other side of the argument, and mentions prisoners who committed sexual abuse, child abuse, massacres etc all these terrible things, where the death penalty would seem fair. She mentions how capital punishment is also cheaper, rather than collecting taxpayers money and feeding and sheltering a prisoner for the rest of their life. I agree with her on some things like the individuals who torture children should be punished. I think that would be the proper time to use the penalty, and as sad as it is to say would it be worth spending taxpayers money on that individual, when the money can be spent on other things? What I would ask this author is, what is her definition of the eight amendment. What is considered proper and fair? This document helps my research, because she wasn’t biased towards whether it should, or shouldn’t be abolished, She stated good points for both sides of the argument

Source Three:  Should the Death Penalty Be Allowed? – Death Penalty –

My favorite of the three sources that I used was this, because it is a compilation that the website created, of all politics views on the situation. There’s one statement by Kamala Harris as a senator that mentions how expensive death row actually is. The senator states ” California would save $150 million a year if it replaced the death penalty with a sentence of life without parole. That’s money that could go into schools, health care, or restorative justice programs.” – (U.S Senator of California Kamala Harris 2019)

In conclusion I found that it is not worth it to abolish the death penalty and we would save money if we just leave it as long as the 8th amendment is obeyed


Unit 2 Weekly Assignments

“Liking is for Cowards Go for what Hurts”

In the Article by Jonathan Franzen he explains his opinion on the difference between being liked and being loved. He mentions most people fake their personality, or in his words “manipulate” people into liking themselves. I think he nails it when he says this, most people nowadays, especially Generation Z would do anything to be “liked” I see it everywhere, and its sad that we live in a world that to be “cool” you need hundreds of likes on Instagram, or show up to school with a Gucci belt or a Louis Vuitton bag. Which I don’t think is wrong, but is it necessary? And are you wearing it for yourself, or to impress others? Most people spend so much money on things to impress people that they don’t even like, just to keep up with this fake persona and remain “liked.” Franzen then goes on to mention that once this façade is over you’ll see yourself being someone your not which I agree with completely.

I believe that my relationship with my smartphone is not concerning, because I was never into social media. In fact I delete my Instagram and snapchat from time to time for about a week and live my life without it, and I honestly find my self happier. Most of my friends and family make fun of me and say I am the least tech savvy Gen Z kid they know.  I think its sad people spend most their time on social media, and wasting the day, when they can be doing something productive, or even having fun and living their life. But if you look at the bigger picture I think we are all becoming zombies to these big corporations such as Instagram and Facebook, and I think this nation as a whole needs a break from social media, so everyone can diminish these fake personality’s, and be themselves.

Unit 1

Unit One Education Narrative Draft- Nicholas Contrada

Have you ever felt like your back is against the wall when it comes to school? Cant understand a subject, lessons aren’t making sense? Or maybe even having too much homework/assignments due that you just cant seem to focus on. Have you ever wondered how you learn? Everyone has a personal learning type which could be a key to your education, or even just life in general. Finding a mental routine can help keep your work consistent and your mind refreshed, understanding your learning type can play a big part in your education.

Throughout my education I was never really an A+ student, nor was I a failure. I always found my self just evening out, average. Nothing more nothing less. My friends would exceed onto honors society, and institutes of science and such. This motivated me, and drove me to do better in a way. But I always found my self not focused, always procrastinating. A lot of the time; not really interested on the subject at hand. I later came to realize I just wasn’t putting enough effort into my work, I should be doing more. I started asking more questions in class to help me understand subjects more, I started asking classmates there take on an assignment and how they approached it. Asking more questions for better understanding on things opened up a road for me I had not yet been down, but needed to be.

Getting more involved with class opened up a new way of thinking for me. I realized you can always be a good student; handing stuff in on time, passing tests, speaking well during presentations etc. But what’s it all really worth if you don’t have an understanding of it? A colleague of mine in the Electric industry once told me, “anyone can connect a red wire to a blue wire. Its why you are connecting wire A to wire B.” If you have a full understanding of the task at hand you can do anything. Understanding; “I have to do this to make this work” instead of  being told instructions and doing it. “Why” compared to “what” separates the good students from the great. But to get to “why” you have to know your learning type.

There are three learning styles that exist, Visual, Auditory, and Kinesthetic. Seeing, hearing, and hands on. I would mostly associate myself with Kinesthetic, I usually play with something until I figure it out. But I find myself using all three. Every person uses them but may not even notice. The key is to become familiar with the three. Ask questions, ask to see something, ask to touch something. Once you find out your learning type, you will have a different perspective of learning in general. You will find yourself asking the right questions to fully understand something, knowing what you have to visually see to comprehend something, knowing how to approach something with your hands to understand the mechanics of it. Understanding how to learn will help you understand.

In conclusion, your learning type will help you for the rest of your life. Not just with school, but outside of school also. Discover yours and learn how to learn!