Friday, April 27, 2012

Final Portfolio Cover Letter

Toccarra McEachern
Professor Melissa Tetterton
English 1200-078
26 April 2012
The Road to Riches
            For my final portfolio I chose to revise project two which was my blog on premarital sex and abstinence.  I chose to revise this work because it was the project that I took for granted.  I waited until the last minute to do it, and I figured it would be easy to do in a short amount of time.  I was wrong, so I found myself rushing to complete it to the best of my ability in the last few days.  Because of this, I feel as though there was a lot of editing and revising that needed to  be done on top of the mistakes that were pointed out. 
            A major issue that needed to be fixed in this project was my proofreading.  When reading through these blogs one can tell that it was rushed through, and it had many mistakes that a freshman college student should not be making.  I went through and corrected all my proofreading mistakes such as adding periods, changing certain words in some sentences, and I found ways to make each blog flow better.  Proofreading would not be necessary to include in this letter if it was not serious, but as embarrassing as it is to say, my works were very poorly edited.  Editing a paper makes it easier to read, allows the information to be processed easier in the reader’s mind, and helps the overall flow of the paper.
            A second issue that I needed to revise was pointed out to me.  It was the fact that I needed to take a stance in my blog posts and show why and how I am taking that position.  In my blogs I gave a lot of useful information, but at times I did not put my own views into the works to add to the conversation. I did not give the “I say” to the “they say” when needed.  Revising this and taking a stance gives the conversation more meaning, detail, and support because it would not make sense to just write on a controversial topic but not take a side in how you as a writer feel about it.     
            I also went through my annotated bibliography and added the relevance of the sources to my paper.   I had not done this the first time because I did not know whether I could write it in first person for that part of the annotation, but since I now do, I went back and corrected it.  The relevance is important to the annotation because one needs to know how this sources benefits the paper.
            From this my English 1100 class I learned to think in different ways that I was not accustomed to think before I came to college.  I had to think and read beyond what was obvious to the naked eye.  English 1200 has added on to this by not only making me think outside of the box, but to also take a stand about how I feel and what I have to say about the situation, issue, or topic.  This class has also made me a better research paper writer because before this class I had never understood how to use and cite works from online databases or how to correctly construct a research paper.  I feel like a completely different student than what I felt before taking these two English courses, but that is a good thing because I feel more prepared and informed for future writing classes. 

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Annotated Bibliography

Toccarra McEachern

Professor Melissa Tetterton

English 1200-078

21 March 2012

Annotated Bibliography

Espiritu, Stephanie. YAHOO! VOICES. Yahoo! Inc., 2010. Web. 20 March 2012.

This source is giving information on how important it is for parents to actively be involved in their kids’ lives.  It tries to convince parents to get their children involved in activities at school and church and to give them the information on what the bible says about their decisions on having sex before marriage.  The information adds to the conversation by suggesting ways to fix the problem of teenagers participating in premarital sex.  This is important because premarital sex can result in STDs and babies that were unprepared for.  More specifically the source mentions that parents should get their teens involved in extracurricular activities to stay busy in their lives outside of school.

Guttmacher Institute. "Facts on American Teens' Sexual and Reproductive Health." In Brief:
Fact Sheet (2012): 1-4. Web. 20 March 2012.

This source is giving a collection of most of the facts about teens who engage in premarital sex and their health.  A couple of areas it hits on are the amount of sexual activity teens are having in America and the use of contraceptives.  The authors give useful information on how premarital sex is evolving more and more in the United States.  These statistics contribute to the overly repeated fact that teenagers should practice abstinence.  It adds more factual segments to the paper and adds credibility and proof. 

Nelson, Tom. "The Bible: Sex, Intimacy, Relationships, & Dating." 20 March

This video tells the viewer about what God says about sex and how he created it for married couples.  The speaker tries to convince the audience to remain abstinent because there are many benefits from God that will result from this decision. I can incorporate this source into my paper because it gives information on the most important reason one should be abstinent which is because God says to.

Paul, Pamela. "A Is For Abstinence". The New York Times. New York Times, 5 Nov. 2010. Web.

             20 March 2012.

This article tells about how the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that high school students who are abstinent or celibate have better grades than those who are not.  It was also found by two universities that high school students who do have sex but are in a romantic relationship also have good grades.  The article is suggesting that students should stay away from sex so they can completely focus on school and do what is right which is to abstain from premarital sex.  It compliments the issue at hand by stating an important benefit that can result from abstaining from having sex before marriage.  This article has a higher message in it than just grades that students get as a result of having sex.  This article shows that students who practice abstinence will be more successful later in life because they are the ones getting the best educations because they are not distracted by sexual activity or other peer pressures.  

Planned Parenthood Greater Orlando. Planned Parenthood of Greater Orlando, 2012. Web. 20      
          March 2012.

This website is committed to helping people with their sexual health. They have different pages on their site, organizations, and hotlines educating readers on how to be safe with sex or to even be abstinent and prevent it. The site contributes to my paper by giving the readers a place to go for help and more information in case they are interested.

"The Teen Pregnancy Epidemic." Tyra Banks Show. Prod. Tyra Banks. The CW. YouTube, 24

             July 2010. Web.

These interviews the famous model produced on her show were with teenage girls who either want babies or have babies. These girls are under 17 years old.  They are engaging in outrageous premarital sex and Tyra is trying to convince them to turn their selves around and be smart young ladies. This episode contributes well to the issue of premarital sex by showing America how it is really a problem amongst young girls.  This episode gave me specific examples to use in my paper about the hardships teenage mothers go through by interviewing young girls who have already been through this "wanting babies" stage that many teenage girls go through.

Parents Effect On Teenagers Engaging In Premarital Sex

    Parents play a major role in whether or not a teenager will have premarital sex or not.  They cannot make the decision for the teen or be there with them every second to prevent it, but they can put the right ideas in their heads, raise them right, and maintain a good relationship with them.  Because parents are able to do these things and take a stand in their children's sex lives, they should.  Why would you even want there to be a possibility that your child is having premarital sex where they can get diseases and babies of their own?

     This yahoo source recommended some reasonable and good ways to enforce abstinence among young people that parents can do to make sure they play their part in this important decision for the teenagers.

     The source says that parents should make sure their children know the "biblical truth" if they are a Christian oriented family. They should make sure there children are engaged in extracurricular activities that are school related such as sports, academic challenge, etc.  It also says they should volunteer at a daycare or help out with Sunday school to get real life experience with how important and tiring it is to work with babies and children, so they will not try to get any of their own.

     These are definitely good suggestions to keep our kids away from the influence of peer pressure and sexual activity.  Being home alone while the parents are at work or hanging out after school with friends can lead to sexual activities, depending on the type of friends the teenager has.  It would be hard for parents to strictly enforce the types of friends their kids can have, so it would be better to take a stand by getting them involved. 

     This source may not be as credible as the others I have formally blogged about because it is coming from a random yahoo "Voice" contributor.  However, it is still credible.  The author establishes her ethos by first stating facts on why and how most teens get involved in premarital sex. According to the author it is because of feeling abandoned by their parents. The purpose of this article is to encourage parents to take a part in their kids' lives and encourage them to try to prevent premarital sex.  With this said the obvious intended audience is parents of teenagers or kids of adolescent ages.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Sex & Grades

     Studies from the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention have shown that there is a link between high school students who do not have sex and who are more aware and protective when it comes to alcohol and using condoms with having good grades.  Also studies from the sociologist at the University of California, Davis, and the University of Minnesota show that students who are having sex in romantic relationships are also showing the same characteristics of having good grades as the ones who are abstinent or celibate.
     This goes to show how it is better to abstain from sex before marriage because most people are in their college years or getting ready to start their career when they are considering marriage.  By this time the adult is mature enough to start a life with someone else, settle down, and handle the emotions that come along with having sex for the most part.  If 69% of the students are sexually active and have the D's and F's, then this is a problem.  If sexual activity is affecting the education of these kids, something should be done to try to convince them that it is better to wait, and get their life together first.
     The fact that sex between a romantic relationship also shows the same statistics as does the students who are celibate show that they are serious with each other and most likely plan on marrying in the future.  I am not saying that it is okay to have sex if the two partners are serious about each other and planning on spending their lives together, but I am saying that the reason they show these characteristics are because they share characteristics with married couples.  They are not sleeping around with multiple partners and engaging in a bunch of premarital sex with random people creating emotional disruptions in their lives.  I still do not condone premarital sex, and I agree with the article's statistics that abstinence and celibacy does cause students of all ages to have higher performance in school because it gives them less disturbances to worry about.
     The author's purpose for this article is to convince the reader that smarter kids do not engage in sexual active as much as those who get lower grades.  The author tries not to be biased by adding these lines stated by Nancy Brener who is a health scientist at the C.D.C, "We don’t know whether students get good grades because they’re not engaging in risk behaviors,”.  The author establishes his ethos by using the information from the Center For Disease Control and Prevention and from the University of Minnesota and the University of California, Davis.  The article is also credible just because it is found in the NY Times which is known to deliver true facts because of how prestigious it is. Just the fact that studies show that better educational performance is done by those who are abstinent or celibate should convince teenagers to focus on what is important, which is school not sex.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Teen Pregnancy Rates Steadily On The Rise!

     Teen pregnancy is rising among young girls at high levels and one of the main reasons is because young girls are wanting to have babies.  Why do they want to have babies? Well, because they think it is cute and that it doesn't come with that much work.  These teen girls are making their selves look stupid by giving up their bodies and lives to unprotected sex to get pregnant by young boys who are most likely not going to stick by their sides once they do get pregnant.  Tyra Banks had girls on her show ranging from ages 13-17 at random who are either pregnant with their first, second, or third child or who are wanting and currently trying to get pregnant. 
   "Studies show that teens who do not participate in afterschool programs are 3 times more likely to have sex." -Tyra Banks.  This statement shows that parents should make their children especially young girls be involved in sports or other school related extracurricular activities.  It is very important because of the rise of teen pregnancy and std infections traveling around through unprotected sex.  I agree with Tyra that parents also need to be actively involved in their kids' lives to help prevent this.  Having babies during the teenage years should not be a trend.  Having a baby is not something to play around with.  When young girls do it, it is a human being brought into the world under extreme, unprepared for circumstances that they should not be brought into.  It's like babies having babies. 
   This goes on to prove how premarital sex is not right even though there are methods of protection.  Kids are having sex to fit in or because they think it's cute or because they want to be like their favorite celebrities.  Many girls have been trying to have babies ever since Jamie Lynn Spears had hers because many look up to her.  They feel like she is a teen mom, so why can't they be? They do not think about the fact that she made a mistake, but she is also rich. So she has the financial means to support and raise a child.  This does not make it okay for rich teens to have premarital sex either though.  These young girls should think about who they will hurt and affect in the long run.  First and foremost they are betraying God and his word, second they are betraying and letting down their parents and friends,  and third they are majorly affecting the unborn child's present and future.  They are making life harder for the unborn baby even though they are innocent and because they will be brought into conditions less than what they deserve just because of some teen's irresponsible acts. 
   Tyra establishes her ethos with these interviews and appeals the audiences by using a topic that is very important to the generation x's health as well as our future.  Her audiences she is trying to reach are young people who are currently and who are thinking about in the future engaging in unprotected sex as well as the parents of America.  Unprotected sex not only leads to babies being born but sexual transmitted infections could be passed along also which can be deadly without proper clinical treatment.  Her purpose for producing this episode of her show is to try to change young girls minds on wanting to have babies at such young undeveloped ages and to try to stop this epidemic of teen pregnancy in America. 

The following link is the url where the episode can be found.  The title of the videos is "Teen Pregnancy Epidemic".  There are 7 parts and the first one is listed below. 

Friday, March 16, 2012


      According to the bible premarital sex is against God's law in every way. Fornication is defined as the having of sex between a man and woman who are unmarried. This is a form of sexual sin, and the bible specifically speaks against fornication in many different verses and chapters within it such as in 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 where it says, "Don't you realize that those who do wrong will not inherit the kingdom of God? Don't fool yourselves.  Those who indulge in sexual sin, or who worship idols, or commit adultery, or are male prostitutes, or practice homosexuality, or are thieves, or greedy people, or drunkards, or abusive, or cheat people- none of these will inherit the Kingdom of God." NLT. A few other verses where this is found is in 1 Corinthians 6:13 and 18, Ephesians, Galatians, Thessalonians, and Revelations.  
     Because of this fact, the fact that God said it is wrong, one should not behave in fornication, but I know that many will not agree because they do not believe in Christianity.
     This series of videos I have included at the bottom of this blog explain what the bible says about premarital sex, the benefits of waiting until marriage, and how God created sex for the married couple.  The titles of the videos are "The Bible: Sex, Intimacy, and Relationships, and Dating." In the videos Tom Nelson preaches from the book of "Songs of Solomon".  He explains the significance of intimacy between a man and a woman who are in love and the significance of waiting until the time is right AFTER marriage.  He speaks on how Solomon treated his wife so precious and tender and showed her everything she was worth.  
      These videos are very touching and convincing.  Virginity is a precious thing that should be given to the one you want to spend the remainder of your life with. I agree with the speaker who feels as though having sex should be intimate and between two married man and woman who are very physically, emotionally, and sexually attracted to each other.  It is not to be played around with because it is a part of marriage, and it was created for marriage as a type of bonus. 
      The speaker in these videos establishes his ethos by appealing to the younger people who are confused as to whether or not it is okay to take part in this trend.  He is credible because he speaks directly from the bible which is of high credibility and he refers to different verses to explain and endorse his points.These videos may be biased towards the bible, but isn't the bible what we are all supposed to live by anyways?  Watch these videos to be enlightened on what the bible has to say about sex, and then decide what you think is right. 

Part 1:
Part 2:
Part 3:
Part 4:

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Basic Facts on Premarital Sex

     Premarital Sex is also known as fornication, and it is when people engage in having sex before marriage. It is constantly rising and it's very controversial as to whether or not it is acceptable.  This should not be an argument and it should not be acceptable because having premarital sex has more disadvantages than benefits.  When you have premarital sex you get pleasure for a few moments, and then it is over. You now become connected to someone who is not your spouse and have the risk of there being STDs transmitted or a child getting conceived. 
     If one is going to engage in premarital sex they should at least use contraceptives.  With this said, along with the rise of premarital sex is the rising of the use of contraceptives.  The author of this source states that the majority of teens use contraceptives their first time, and teens who do not have a 90% higher chance of getting pregnant in a year. This shows that it is possible to accept premarital sex as being okay if teens use contraceptives, but because there is no way to guarantee that contraceptives will be used, I feel as though premarital sex is not okay. 

     Premarital Sex leads to unwanted sexually transmitted diseases,  pregnancy, and emotional feelings that most teenagers who are taking a part in this trend can not handle.  Why can't they handle it? They cannot handle it because they are physically and emotionally immature and undeveloped  for these types of actions that were created for the married couple. If teens and other young adults would be abstinent, studies show that their marriages would indeed be healthier also.  If it was up to me, all states would allow teens to obtain contraceptives without parental consent because they are going to have sex anyways, and most will not feel comfortable asking their parents about it.
    They should feel free to get them on their own because the rate of teens getting STIs  are steady rising.  Also according to Guttmacher Institute, 175,000 girls or women aged 15-19 get pregnant each year, and 10% of all U.S. births come from girls age 19 or younger. Although pregnancy rates are going down because of the increased use of contraceptives, the best thing to practice is abstinence!