On Connecting Egypt and Schools

With the power of instant news, we watched the events in Egypt as they happened. Whether the peaceful gathering of the masses or the few days of violence, there were and still are so many stories intertwined into this overthrow of a long-standing regime.

These two thoughts repeatedly played in my mind: the desire of people to be free and the peaceful nature of the masses – and each of these took me back to the 1960s and the way Martin Luther King treated civil rights. However, the Egyptians had something that Dr. King’s followers did not have: social media.

Some have described it tweets versus tanks. Columnist Kathleen Parker wrote these words:

Unarmed men and women inspired by tweets of freedom stared into the bullying armaments of dead ways. It was a stark image of the prolonged battle between good and evil that human apparently have been fated to fight. This time, enabled by what we casually call social media, evil finally may be outgunned.

Today, news travels faster than ever – and Revolution 2.0 has spread to other countries in the region – yet we are witnessing different behaviors by those with the tanks. Nonetheless, the events in Egypt have demonstrated social media’s power – and as this outstanding video shows, the numbers are staggering. (Sorry, this one can’t be embedded.)

Many people use social media as modern-day paparazzi to keep up with the latest news from someone they deem important. Businesses use social media to increase revenue through communication, customer service, and marketing. Many people (as me) use blogs to fuel our appetite for learning through informal means. Some corporate training departments are now incorporating social media tools. Meanwhile, can social media tools be the lightning rod to ignite public education reform? Do you really think schools entrenched in the industrial age model could react that fast?

On Opinions in the Shorts: Vol. 30

On the Tribute
I admit that a side of me was leery about the Michael Jackson tribute being an out-of-control sideshow – thus am glad that didn’t happen, so here are a few thoughts.

Positives: Very well done planned, dignified, balanced blend of tribute and memorial, focused on the good, contained many great statements I wish I would have written down because they were applicable and meaningful to all

Negatives: I can’t help but wonder how much was designed with future DVD sales in mind.

Future: I can’t wait to see Rep. Peter King’s (R-NY) vote on the mentioned House resolution.

On Odd Timing
On the day after the Jackson tribute, I saw this headline: Thin-looking Kim Jong II makes rare appearance at memorial

On Classic Dignity
Although many reality-show-based attitudes promote the contrary, many people still admire, seek, and promote dignity. This recent David Brooks column is worth reading.

On Twitter
Twitter was in Cincinnati’s news twice this morning. The first about a city council member sending tweets during a council meeting, and secondly, Bengals WR and self-promoting egotist Chad Ocho Cinco desiring to send tweets in team meetings, during games, and at halftime. To both I say this: Read the Brooks column and do your job.

On an Interesting Artist
For those enjoying art, Stephanie Clair’s works caught my eye, thanks to Maxi at Ovah’ Coffee.  This link shows Stephanie’s work, and the Artists link on the left sidebar leads viewers to other artists. Enjoy.

On Evolution and Religion Journey
I continue to read interesting information and learning about this subject. I’m currently reading by Nature, Reality, and the Sacred by Langdon Gilkey. Now deceased, Gilkey was a Professor of Theology at the University of Chicago’s Divinity School and was an expert witness at the historic evolution-creationism in education trial in Arkansas.

On Mickelson Prayers
Thoughts and prayers to Phil Mickelson and his family as they also deal with his mother’s breast cancer.

On Something to Ponder
Not long ago I purchased a book light for $4, which included 2 batteries. Replacement batteries cost $6.

On an Ambitious Energy Project
Masdar is a planned city located in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates that is based on renewable resources and zero-carbon, zero-waste technologies. To stimulate thoughts, watch the 2-minute+ video below. To learn more, use this link to CNN Search Results that include many interesting resources, including one from GE.