Tag Archives: Jason Miller

Superior’s Municipal Water.

Jason Miller

11/13/13

Water Paper

Superior’s Municipal Water

The town of Superior, Colorado gets its municipal water from Marshall Lake and Carter Lake. Both sources are classified as “intake/water surface”.

According to the 2013 Town of Superior Water Quality Report, Superior’s tap water is safe to consume. No violations or restrictions are in place at this time. The report states that there are contaminants in the water. However, they are at a low enough level for it to be safe, and the report states that most water contains contaminants to some degree without being dangerous. The report notes that sources of contamination are soil run off, erosion of natural deposits, discharge from drilling, and discharge from petroleum and metal refineries. Prominent contaminants are Turbidity, Gross Alpha, Combined Radium, Barium, Selenium, and Fluoride, the last which is due to erosion but is also added into the water to “promote strong teeth”.

Obviously, human actions have caused a lot of contaminants to enter the water. Activities such as farming, mining, and refining are well known in Colorado, especially near Boulder. Superior was founded on mining one hundred years ago, but is now just a suburb between Boulder and Denver. One hundred years ago, knowledge about poisonous materials derived from mining and refining was not as good as it is now, so it is likely that waste products from back then may still and be lingering in the local environment, especially the water.

Although the report states these chemicals are diluted enough to not be harmful, it is still a little concerning to know substances like Gross Alpha, Combined Radium, Barium, and Selenium are in our water. I already knew they put Fluoride into the water on basis of promoting health. Fluoride, however, is very poisonous and is the main ingredient in rat poison, so I wonder how exactly they determined it was okay for consumption.

It is important to know about the things that surround you, especially things you consume like air, food, and especially water. In many places, people die from drinking contaminated water, or die from dehydration because they know the water is contaminated and don’t want to drink it, but do not have access to purified water. If human beings keep dumping garbage into our water supplies, especially radioactive chemicals and poison, then many, many people will die, along with all the animals, fish, birds, and other species that all depend on water.

Map of Superior’s location.

Map of Marshall Lake’s location.

Works-Cited

Town of Superior 2013 Water Quality Report. Rep. Town of Superior, 2012. Web. 13. Nov. 2013.

KW Boulder. Superior, CO. Map. Boulder: Keller Williams, n.d. Print.

“Google Maps.” Map. Google Maps. Google, n.d. Web. 13 Nov. 2013.

Celiac Disease.

Jason Miller

Final Project Research Paper

Celiac Disease

            Celiac disease is an allergy to a protein called gluten. Gluten is found in wheat, barley, and rye, as well as everything processed with them or on the same machinery. Many people in the U.S. are finding out they have Celiac disease or other health issues caused by the protein gluten, sometimes being labeled as gluten sensitive or gluten intolerant. The existence of such issues is an example of food and agriculture and what the causes and consequences of changes in the global distribution of economic activities.

Until the advent of agriculture, human beings survived by hunting and gathering food. Their diets were based off meat, fish, fruits, vegetables, and other things that could be foraged or killed with a spear. After the agricultural revolution, humans were able to grow foods rather than look for them, and the human diet shifted towards massive grain consumption. This new system of food production allowed many hunters and gathers to stay home and develop ideas about art, religion,  etc. Prominent grains were rice, corn, and of course, wheat, barley, and rye, the three gluten laden objects of suffering for everyone with Celiac disease.

Not much is known about how Celiac disease began or when it started. The current school of thought is that it is an inherited allergy from your parents, somewhere in your DNA. If one of your parents has Celiac disease, your chances of having it are much higher. Other researchers suggest feeding infants solid foods to early can cause Celiac disease. In the 1800s, a doctor in England labeled children with Celiac disease and attempted to cure them by placing them on a strict diet of meat and sliced toast, devoid of all fruits and vegetables. None of the children were able to stay on the diet. During World War II, the Netherlands did not have adequate distribution of wheat. During this time, the child mortality rate dropped. However, after World War II ended the Dutch were able to resume their regular cuisine, the child mortality rate rose back up to where it had been before the war. Today, more is known about Celiac disease due to far better medical technology than what was in the past. However, I myself had severe medical issues for years, and the doctors I saw never figured out I had Celiac disease. I didn’t find out the cause of my issues until I was about 19, when I googled gluten allergies after a friend’s family suggested I may have been gluten intolerant, like their daughter was.

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder in which the gluten molecules cause the body to go haywire and attack the small intestine, destroying the precious villi within the digestive tract. Without these villi, the body cannot absorb precious nutrients and is harshly affected by dairy products. Symptoms of Celiac disease include chronic diarrhea, swollen belly, pain, failure the thrive, weight loss, constipation, short stature, delayed puberty, ADHD, neurological problems, headaches, lack of muscle coordination, anemia, loss of bone density, softening of bones, itchy, blistering skin rash, damage to dental canal, fatigue, nervous system injury, numbness of body parts, problems with balance, join pain, reduced functioning of the spleen, and acid reflux and heartburn. The only known treatment for Celiac disease is to go on a gluten free diet, meaning that any products made with, derived from, or processed on the same machinery as wheat, barley, rye, (and oats, since they are almost always on the same machinery as the previous three) are strictly forbidden. It is also suggested that newly diagnosed people go without dairy for many months to allow their stomach to heal. I can tell you that avoiding gluten is far easier said than done, and if I had a nickel for every time someone else got me sick when they thought they were cooking gluten free, I would have many nickels. There is also a lot of misinformation out there, making people who do not have Celiac disease either ignorant or misinformed about the suffering of others. Things like regular M&Ms and even pepper have made me sick. Undiagnosed Celiac disease can lead to malnutrition, loss of calcium or bone density, infertility or miscarriage, lactose intolerance, and cancer.

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Today, some manufacturing companies are producing gluten free foods like bread, cereal, cookies, pasta, etc. And there are other companies that will label allergens on their products. Sadly, many manufacturers do not, which causes people to get sick because the people buying it (like a child’s parents or someone’s significant other) simply don’t know. The only way to help people with Celiac disease is to spread the word, educate everyone! You most likely do not have it, but you likely do know someone who is suffering. I was 19 when I finally learned I had it, despite my numerous trips to the hospitals and doctor’s offices. And the sad thing is… Finding out is as easy as one google search.

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Works-Cited

Anime and Manga.

Jason Miller

Human Geography

Final Paper

Alex Bullen

Anime and Manga

Anime and Manga are a  worldwide cultural phenomena. Anime means animation, while manga means “whimsical pictures”, the native Japanese word for comic books. Although Japanese, these two products are beautiful proof of how goods and ideas spread from one place to another.

Manga was founded by Osamu Tezuka in the 1950’s. Tezuka was inspired by old European cartoons and Walt Disney’s early works, such as Betty Boop, Bambi, and Mickey Mouse. Tezuka’s first public creation, Astro Boy, was astronomically successful. Its adaption into anime was the first of its kind to be broadcast into America during the 1960s. Although Tezuka spent part of his career in anime, he returned to drawing manga sometime before his death. Despite his passing, anime and manga would only become more popular as time went on.

Today, the anime and manga industries rake in billions of dollars for Japan, also allowing job opportunities in other countries for the subtitling or voice over dubbing of anime into English, Spanish, and other languages, as well as the translation of the manga books for foreign readers. Anime and manga’s art style has also influenced the work of artists here in the United States. The Nickelodeon shows Avatar the Last Airbender and its sequel The Legend of Korra have beautiful anime inspired art styles. Noticeable anime characteristics are large, expressive eyes for youthful characters (like Bambi), narrow eyes for sinister characters, triangular hair, vibrant colors for anime, and very expressive line work and numerous gray tones and patters for manga. A big difference between anime and manga is color. Anime, being shown on TV, is very colorful, using base colors, highlights, and shadows. Manga, however, is hand drawn and can have 20-40 pages a chapter (they are usually serialized, a new chapter published in a magazine at least once every month, sometimes twice), so it is not colored, but done in black, white, and gray tones to save time. They are both very wonderful to look at.

From their inception, these art forms were destined to popularity. These Japanese art forms were inspired by European and America cartoons, and today have returned the favor by inspiring cartoons and comics here in the USA! They both spread ideas about Japanese culture, such as cuisine (sushi, ramen, rice balls, and dumplings), and popular words like kawaii (cute) and baka (idiot). Today, manga and anime have entertained, spread culture, and inspired many to pursue their own artistic endeavors, which is something only the great art forms in the course of history can truly brag about.

ImageOsamu Tezuka

ImageWalt Disney and Mickey Mouse

Image Astro Boy

ImageNaruto Vol. 1 Cover (One of the most popular manga in the world, Naruto began 14 years ago and has over sixty volumes and counting!)

ImageAang from Avatar: The Last Airbender

Works-Cited

Altschuler, David Skorton and Glenn. “America’s Foreign Language Deficit.” Forbes. Forbes Magazine, 27 Aug. 2012. Web. 07 Dec. 2013.

“Astro Boy.” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 12 July 2013. Web. 08 Dec. 2013.

“Graph.” Byte Level, n.d. Web. 8 Dec. 2013.

“Naruto.” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 12 July 2013. Web. 08 Dec. 2013.

N.p., n.d. Web. 8 Dec. 2013.

“Osamu Tezuka.” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 12 June 2013. Web. 06 Dec. 2013.

“Picture.” WordPress, n.d. Web. 8 Dec. 2013.

“Research.” Little Pim. N.p., n.d. Web. 08 Dec. 2013.

“The Walt Disney Company Turns 90! 7 Things to Know About the House of Mouse.” Babble RSS. N.p., n.d. Web. 08 Dec. 2013.

Second Langue Acquisition in the USA.

Jason Miller

Human Geography

Final Paper

Alex Bullen

Second Langue Acquisition in the USA

                Learning a second language is important. However, the American school system doesn’t think so. Competency in a foreign language is important for trade, travel, and security, as it is a core form of communication on the planet Earth.

Like a living organism, languages are born, spread, evolve, and eventually die. When they die, they take with them culture, stories, and history, since many of these things are ingrained in language. Many words in Spanish have to do with Christian, particularly Catholic, ideas. The word el rector means principle in Spanish, taken from a title held within Catholic churches. In Japanese, omoshiroi means entertaining. However, the literal meaning is “white face”, taken from the custom of play actors painting their faces white.

So why is language important to trade? Because people trade ideas about everything. Speakers of foreign languages, particularly the younger ones, mix English words like cool and sexy because, to them, it’s cool. But more worldly, the ability to communicate in other languages is important for the exchange of physical goods and money. Many business schools around the world require fluency in a language popular to trade. These could be Mandarin, English, Spanish, Arabic, German, etc.

Anyone who has ever traveled to another country knows if neither the travelers nor the domestic people can converse in a common tongue, or pantomime their way to understanding, it becomes very, very frustrating. When I was in Italy, I knew not a single world of Italian except pasta, bonjourno, pizza, escuzzi, none of which were any help. Also, immigration often requires the learning of a new language. Perhaps not from Colombia to Mexico or New York to London, but from Asia and Latin America to the USA, which are the two largest sources of immigrants to America now, people must know English or learn it when they come here. Sometimes they know someone who speaks both, but the American dream isn’t about relying on others to help you with everything.

National Security depends on knowing more than English here in the USA and abroad. Intelligence agencies must know languages like Russian, Chinese, Korean, Persian, and Arabic to name a few. They need to because of the work: espionage, deciphering letters, interviewing people, sending diplomats, and hopefully signing peace treaties.

However, despite all these necessities… second language acquisition in America isn’t the best. According to Forbes, only 18% of American report that they can speak speak a language other than English. Also according to Forbes, 53% of Europeans report that they can speak a language other than their mother tongue. Being that America is one of the most wealthy and powerful languages in the world, why are we in a “foreign language deficit?” Well, language acquisition happens when humans are much, much younger, before age 5. When they are toddlers, the brain is engineered to soak up language. However, as you grow older, it becomes harder and harder as the years go by. In Germany, students are required to begin learning French or English beginning 2nd grade. By 8th grade, students still in school are required to begin learning the other language they did not select. One of my Japanese pen pals told me in Japan, students are taught how to read and write English beginning at a very young age, even though they aren’t really taught how to speak it. As I can attest from my American public school education, foreign languages are not offered until middle school. Furthermore, I was not required to take one until high school. This is far past the age of toddlers. Even more so, the Forbe’s article stated that many people here in America who speak second languages say so because they came from a family that spoke a language other than English (like Spanish).

If we don’t change the American school system, we won’t evolve as a country or a people. Personally, I think there are many things in the curriculum that need to be redone. But as I have just dished out for you, Americans are missing out on a lot of opportunities because of our low second language acquisition.

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Works-Cited

Altschuler, David Skorton and Glenn. “America’s Foreign Language Deficit.” Forbes. Forbes Magazine, 27 Aug. 2012. Web. 07 Dec. 2013.

“Research.” Little Pim. N.p., n.d. Web. 08 Dec. 2013.

“Picture.” WordPress, n.d. Web. 8 Dec. 2013.

“Graph.” Byte Level, n.d. Web. 8 Dec. 2013.