Thank You for Visiting my Blog

Hey everyone! Thank you for visiting my blog. This blog is dedicated to writing, which is one of my greatest passions. My posts are assignments I have been given in school. I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I have enjoyed writing them. I do my best to make them fun, interesting, and worth reading. Look around and find something that interests you! Also, feel free to leave comments!

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The Importance of History

The children of Israel continually struggled with fearing God. The reason they struggled with this was simply because they were bad history enthusiasts. They didn’t like to study their history and remember just how good God was.

Pslam 78 taught me the importance of history by showing me the deadliness of Israel’s forgetfulness. History is a big deal. If you don’t remember the things that happened in the past then they can’t affect your future. If nothing affects your future then you never learn anything but continue to stumble around in the dark. Richard Weaver said, “The recollection of the past is only useful by way of provision for the future.”

Keep in mind that forgetfulness is a choice. Israel chose to forget God. They chose to disregard Him in their mind. Right now many people are stumbling around in the dark because they are choosing not to apply the lessons that past experiences teach us. They are choosing to forget them.

I hope you now see history in a new light. I hope you realize that without knowing what happened in the past we are just going to make the same mistakes over again.

 

Believe

Not everyone is brave enough to run,
To run with their heart and soul.
They will let up when they want to be done,
Not enough courage to meet their goal.
Never give up if there is still a chance,
Be daring, be fearless, be strong.
Forget the pain and focus on advance,
You will be done ere long.
Remember you aren’t promised tomorrow,
So don’t hold anything back.
For then you will reflect with sorrow,
That you wish you would have picked up the slack.

A life that is easy is cowardice,
If you are afraid of the pain.
You will be frightened and anxious,
And you will never experience gain.
What’s more, you yourself as a person,
Will be a weak and cowardly sort,
You can never rely on your actions,
And hard things you will always abort.
Your denying yourself when you do this,
And trampling your life under-foot.
You were meant to do hard things I insist,
Your life could be a better output.

So how do you overcome hardship?
How do you combat your weakness?
When pain is telling you to up and quit,
When doubt and fear leave nothing but bleakness?
Sense whisper lies about what’s possible
Doubt claims you are not enough.
Fear wishes to ruin your potential,
But it is crucial to be tough.
The way to conquer your trials,
I wish to give you the key.
To win your inward battles,
You simply must believe.

The Aftermath of the Civil War

America has just been through five years of raging bloodshed and terrible, terrible violence. At least six hundred thousand Americans have fallen dead having killed each other. Everyone knows that America can’t just pretend like the Civil War never happened, but how can they bring about peace? Each side is still as passionate as ever, and no one wants to compromise. This essay is going to explain a concept called reconstruction which was the Union’s effort to piece back together their broken nation. In addition to that, I will list some amendments and acts passed to bring about and enforce reconstruction, explain the South’s reaction to these new policies, and briefly summarize where the next three presidents (who were in office during this time) stood on reconstruction.

Reconstruction is very easy to understand. The North believed to reunite the nation they would have to change the culture of the South. This might have worked, but they went about it in a very forceful way. They laid down new laws demanding they be followed, and enforced them through military. It was definitely not the right way to go mending a relationship and it simply brought on more violence. To start reconstruction, they passed three amendments so that new laws could be made. They were called Reconstruction Amendments. These were amendments thirteen through fifteen.

Amendment thirteen abolished slavery, and said that it could only be used as punishment for a crime. This was proposed and ratified the same year the Civil War ended. Amendment fourteen had many parts. It defined citizenship and dealt with post civil war issues. It also contained three clauses called the Privileges Clause, the Due Process Clause, and the Equal Protection Clause. These clauses protected U.S. citizens from having their rights and privileges infringed, applied the right of due process to state as well as federal courts, and regardless of any Black Codes that had been instated, provided protection to both to blacks and whites. Amendment fifteen stated that no one could take away someones right to vote based on race, color, or previous conditions of servitude. These amendments were so important to the Union that they even passed the Enforcement Acts which were three bills that gave the Union authority to enforce these amendments.

Despite the Reconstruction Amendments, it wasn’t until one hundred years later that any of these new laws were actually followed. The south was still seething at having lost the war, and the fact that they were being overseen by military, and so harshly treated made them furious. Because of their anger, organizations like the Klu Klux Klan or KKK formed. The KKK was an organization founded on the belief that whites should have supremacy. They acted on this belief by destroying property, and threatening and killing republicans, blacks, and anyone that didn’t support their way of thinking.

The first president after the Civil War was technically Lincoln, but his sudden murder soon forced his vice president to step up. It is important for you to know that Andrew Johnson was a southern democrat, and Abraham Lincoln was a northern republican. Congress definitely did not get along with their new president. Though Johnson supported reconstruction, he didn’t support it in the way Congress supported it. He had more sensible ways that didn’t included enraging the south. As a result, while Congress was trying to pass all of these formidable laws, he was trying to pass more reasonable ones. His bad reputation in the Congress made him the first president to be impeached. He escaped by one vote being thrown out of the presidency for doing nothing wrong.

The following president, Ulysses S. Grant, believed in the policies that the Congress did, and so wasn’t a help to the growing tensions. The next presidential election however, was one like never before. It was confusing because their were some votes so disputed that Congress didn’t know who they should go to. Because of this, the Compromise of 1877 was made. It stated that Congress would give Rutherford B. Hayes the unknown votes if he promised to end reconstruction when he became president. He accepted the invitation and thus was responsible for ending reconstruction.

This essay has explained what reconstruction was, the amendments and acts that were made for reconstruction, the South’s reaction to these, and finally where three presidents stood on the issue. Though it will be many more years before we have a peaceful nation again, it is important to know how we began trying to recover from the hideous scars the Civil War left with our nation.

Four Civil War Heroes

The Civil War was a series of very violent years. During this time, uncountable numbers of fellow countrymen died on American soil. Because of all the passion which each side had for their own cause, this war had numerous ardent and strong generals. In this essay I will be discussing these leaders, and comparing them to each other.

The first general we will go over was the most famous general on the Union side and a legendary hero. His name was Ulysses S. Grant. Surprisingly however, he was not born as Ulysses S. Grant, but Hiram Ulysses Grant. He changed his name right before his father entered him into the U.S. Military Academy because there had been a mistake and he had been listed wrong. Funny that this little mistake was later taken advantage of when he was given the nickname U.S. Grant.

Ulysses S. Grant was born April 27, 1822 to Jesse and Hannah Grant. He was the oldest of five brothers and sisters, and his father owned a tannery business in Georgetown OH where he grew up. Grant described his childhood as “uneventful”, and he was reserved and scrupulous. His father enrolled him into the military academy and though he was not very fond of the idea of the military for a while, he ended up becoming one of America’s best generals.

He served in the Mexican-American War during his required four years of military service after graduating the U.S. Military Academy in 1843. This was the time when he developed his outstanding leadership skills that brought him so far during the Civil War. He observed his generals and learned valuable lessons from them. Not only that, but he got a chance to prove his fearless courage, and was recognized by those above him. His scrupulous character came out as well, when he decided that the war was wrong because it was only being waged so that the U.S. could gain more territory.

When the Civil War broke out, Grant returned to military life. He was passionate that the rebellious ways of the South needed to be dealt with. Because of former drinking habits as a result of stress in his life, he started out in a low field. Slowly however, he made his way up, and he soon became in charge of a very successful western campaign. Unlike many, Grant believed that it was more important to hunt down the enemy than conquer their land.

He set himself to this, and persistently pursued Robert E. Lee, the top Confederate general. He had many victories including Fort Henry, Fort Donelsone, and the Siege of Vicksburg. The Siege of Vicksburg was his best victory though, because it split the Confederate’s territory in half, and used the Mississippi to block the enemy. After this, he was promoted to Commander of all the Union Armies. He then organized the Shenandoah and Atlanta campaigns which where also very successful and ended up being instrumental to the end of the war.

Grant was elected president of the United States in 1868. He served two terms. Grant supported reconstruction, but not discrimination. He died on July 23, 1885.

Robert E. Lee is our next general. As mentioned earlier, Lee was the Confederate’s top general. He was Chief Commander of Confederate Armies from 1862 to the end of the war. He and Grant were always feverishly fighting against each other because both of them were the commanders of all the armies on their respective sides.

Another way these two were similar, is that they fought on the side of their home states. (Lee decided to follow Virginia’s path even though he believed the U.S. should stay unified). They also both served in the Mexican-American War. Grant and Lee were incredible generals, but the lack of supplies on the Confederate’s side led to Lee’s defeat.

I have demonstrated how Lee and Grant were similar in many ways, so I will mention one way they were completely different. After Lee resigned, he became President of Washington and Lee University. He did not have a hard time getting a post war career. When Grant resigned the military however, he had a very hard time. He failed countless business ventures and couldn’t always support his family. He just didn’t know how to do much of anything except fight. He never overcame this difficulty, and he had it even before the Civil War began. While he did become president, that was only a temporary thing. He couldn’t serve forever, and if it wasn’t for a book of memoirs Grant published right as he was dying, his family would have been destitute.

Nathan Bedford Forrest was born in 1821, and he grew up to be a talented cavalry office in the Confederate Army. His talent was so conspicuous that Lee admitted he should have utilized him better. Not only was this man a capable officer, he was a capable leader overall. He believed very strongly in what he was fighting for, and even after the war was passionate about the needs of the south, being a incredible advocate and sympathizer as I have heard said.

Though Forrest is the only cavalry officer we will discuss, he is more similar to the other two generals, than the last one I am about to introduce. He was serious about the military and very talented. He was well recognized, and a passionate leader just like the other two.

The final general we will cover is Ambrose Everett Burnside, born in 1824. Burnside wasn’t only a general, he was a railroad executive, an inventor, an industrialist, a politician, a senator, and the first president of the National Rifle Association. As you can see, he was not as serious about the military as the other generals we have discussed having several other occupations. He had a balanced amount of success and defeat in the Civil War, and seems to me like any other man valiantly serving his country, as he was not particularly as talented as the other three generals we have talked about. Something interesting about this man however, was his personal hairstyle, that later became known as “side burns”.

While Burnside may have just been an ordinary man serving in the military he was more of an exciting character than the others we have talked about. He had his own sense of style and an inventive imagination. At the same time, he served in the same war the other three did, so in this way was similar.

This essay has been focused on four military leaders of the Civil War. Two were on the Union side, the other two on the Confederate side. I hope you saw the similarities and differences I was trying to relate that are between these four generals. They all helped bring us through the Civil War, and have earned respect in my eyes through their sacrifice for our nation.

The Life Cycle of the Eastern Tailed Blue Butterfly

My goal in this research paper is to first describe the events that take place during the life cycle of any ordinary butterfly, and then go into detail about the Eastern Tailed-Blue butterfly’s life cycle. This way you can see all of it’s unique characteristics. I also included this butterfly’s habitat and description.

Before we begin, you need to know that the butterfly’s life cycle consists of four distinct stages, each one playing an important and specific role. They are the egg stage, the larva stage, the pupa stage, and finally the adult stage. When an insect undergoes these four stages, it is called complete metamorphosis. There are many differences between complete and incomplete metamorphosis, but the main one is the different stages. Incomplete metamorphosis is when an insect has only three stages; (egg, nymph, and adult). Complete metamorphosis is when an insect has four stages; (egg, larva, pupa, and adult).

During the egg stage, an adult butterfly lays it’s eggs on the leaves of the plant they need to hatch on. This is called the host plant. Along with the egg, comes a sticky material that attaches it firmly to the plant. The size, shape, and color of the egg all depend on what kind of a butterfly is laying it’s eggs.

When the egg hatches the larva stage occurs. The tiny caterpillar eats it way out of it’s shell, and then begins to feed on it’s host plant. Caterpillars have been called eating machines, but I think of them as little green monsters. They eat voraciously all the time in order to grow the right length, width, and weight. Caterpillars molt 4-5 times before entering the pupa stage.

The most fascinating part of a butterfly’s life cycle is the pupa stage. This is usually how it goes down. The caterpillar spins a little bit of silk on the underside of an object, and then attaches itself to it (usually using it’s hind legs). It then sheds it skin, to reveal a beautiful shiny chrysalis underneath. In the chrysalis there is a lot going on. While the caterpillar is hibernating, it goes under heavy construction so to speak. Tissues get broken down, and the body is completely reorganized. It is a miraculous process.

After the butterfly emerges from it’s chrysalis, it rests on a branch and lets it’s wings dry. It then begins to flap them and pump blood into them so that they are strong. It takes butterflies generally 3-4 hours to learn how to fly well, and then they go seek out a mate. The goal in this stage is reproduction.

The Eastern Tailed Blue butterfly lays pale green or white eggs. They are laid singly and not in clusters like some. Between the stalks, leaves, and buds of a plant, it is most usual for them to be laid on the buds, as the larvae seem to the eat the flowers more than the other parts, and the mother is known to lay the eggs on these ripening flowers.

For this specific species, the host plant is from the legume family, (better known as the pea or bean family) (1). Some examples of these kinds of plants are the cow vetch, clover, alfalfa, wild pea, and aster. The caterpillar that hatches is hairy and dark green. It has dark brown stripes and a small black head. It crawls around on it’s host plant as it devours it.

It is interesting that these larvae rely on ants to help protect them. The Animal Diversity Web explains how these caterpillars “secrete a honeydew from their abdomen.” This serves as nourishment for the ants who in turn do their part to protect the caterpillar from predators. (2) The caterpillar itself feeds on leaves, seeds, and as before mentioned, mostly the blooms of the host plant.

The caterpillar which is now finished eating, spends the coming winter in a safe chrysalis where it finishes it’s transformation process. A beautiful butterfly appears in the spring.

Because this butterfly is not very strong in flight, it stays low to the ground and sips nectar from flowers easy to reach. Flowers like the clover, shepherd’s needle, wild strawberry, and winter cress get constant visits, and are easy for the butterfly to come by.

The male and female easily find each other as the male waits for the female butterfly near the host plant usually during sunny hours. They have around three broods a year, and lay plenty of eggs like all butterflies (just in case some don’t live).

The Eastern Tailed Blue butterfly is found in the Eastern U.S., Central America, Canadian regions, and a bit around Washington, Oregon, and California. It is mainly found along roadsides and in sunny clearings, but also enjoys being in meadows, at the base of foothills, and in weedy fields and gardens.

The male butterfly is mainly blue, and the female is lighter blue, brown, or charcoal. (3) On the edge of their wings you will see 2-3 black and orange spots. On the inside of the wings where the spots begin, is a small, thin tail that sets these butterflies apart from others. The underside of the wings of this butterfly are colored bluish white to tan, and their wing span ranges from 2.2 – 2.9 cm. These butterflies are known to perch with their wings, at a 45 degree angle.

This research paper has been about the life cycle of the Eastern Tailed Butterfly. I started out by explaining the life cycle of any butterfly, and then I went into the specifics of the Eastern Tailed Blue Butterfly. I added the habitat and description of this butterfly as well. While the Eastern Tailed Butterfly isn’t drastically different than just any butterfly, there are several unique traits it alone possess that I hope you noticed.

Works Cited:
1. “Eastern tailed-blue”. Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia. Wikimedia Foundation Inc., 16 March 2017. Web. 29 April 2017. (1), (3)
2. Clammer, Chelsey. “Cupido comyntas eastern tailed-blue”. Animal Diversity Web. Regents of the University of Michigan. Web. 29 April 2017. (2)
3. Godart. “Eastern Tailed-Blue”. Butterflies and Moths of North America. Web. 29 April 2017. [http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/species/Cupido-comyntas].
4. “Eastern Tailed-Blue – Cupido comyntas”. Wildlife Journal. New Hampshire Public Television. Web. 29 April 2017.
5. “Cupido comyntas Eastern Tailed Blue”. EOL : Encyclopedia of Life. Web. 29 April 2017.

The Bloody Battles of The Civil War

My past few lessons in history have been dedicated to the major battles of the Civil War. As a result, this essay is going to give you an outline of the different failures and successes of both the Confederates and the Yankees. In chronological order, I will keep you abreast of the general area the battles are taking place in, and let you know what campaign they are in. This war was full of dangerous ventures, and desperate struggles. As I describe these battles, keep in mind they are some of most gruesome and violent battles in U.S. history. When I end, I will explain the result this war had on our country.

The Battle of Fort Sumter was the beginning of this horrid, yet inevitable war. This was a feud that occurred because South Carolina, a recently succeeded state, fired upon Fort Sumter, which was Union property. The Confederates fired a 34-hour barrage, and the Union General was forced to surrender. The Civil War was now a reality.

The Union struck back during the First Battle of Bull Run. Their goal was to capture the Confederate capital, which would be a hard blow to their enemy. This was a failed attempt however, executed by U.S. General McDowell. Only going by popular ideas, he foolishly dove into something he was not prepared for, disgracing his men, the Union, and losing his position in the process.

General Grant started a successful campaign in the west, strongly contrasting to the feeble attack of the Eastern campaign. He captured Fort Henry, and opened the Tennessee River up to Union ships. He was also able to destroy bridges before moving on to Fort Donelson. This fort was now seized and under Union control, along the Cumberland River.

Moving on, we come to the bloodiest battle in American history up to that time. This was the Battle of Shiloh. Grant was deep within Tennessee, continuing his western campaign, when he was surprised by two Confederate generals. They succeeded in completely slaughtering his men, and there was great losses during this horrifying fight. Another bloody struggle, (the Battle of Antietam), followed soon afterwards, but was in the South. It was the bloodiest one-day battle in all American history, taking place Sep. 17, 1862. The Union claimed a victory, but simply because the Confederates retreated first. Not surprisingly, U.S. General McClellan (leader on the Union side this time), was replaced afterwards.

The Second Battle of Bull Run, was a retry to the eastern campaign, and occurred because the U.S. was set on overcoming the Confederates capital and forces. One fail was not going to set them back. This second try didn’t end as badly, but it didn’t accomplish anything either. It was nearly the same as the first, the only difference being, it was a longer, harder, and closer matched struggle.

The Battles of Fredericksburg, and Chancellorsville were easy Confederate victories. Afterwards however, came the sobering Battle of Gettysburg. It was as if the Confederates won two battles, and then the Union brought down the hammer. Gettysburg ended the victory the Confederates had been experiencing in their campaign to the north and east, and resulted in 46-51,000 soldiers dying during the awful three days of fighting. Pickett’s charge, a strategic move, ended up being a poor idea on Confederate General Lee’s part. He was known for his astounding and successful risks, but this one didn’t follow through.

The Siege of Vicksburg was another proud moment for General Grant. He surrounded the Fort of Vicksburg, and overcame all of Mississippi along with it, even using it to block off the Confederates from the other half of their own territory.

Everything ends, and so ended the Union’s influence in their northern and eastern campaign. A miscommunication during the Battle of Chickamauga, proved fatal to the Yankees. U.S. General William Rosecrans was leading in this battle, and it looked as if his side would win, until a horrendous gap in the ranks of his soldiers appeared because of a misinterpreted message. There was a mass of confusion as the enemy saw his chance to redeem himself, and suddenly plunged in and took the victory.

There are four major conflicts remaining. I can not call them battles, because they are more of a series of battles occurring over long periods of time. Because I can’t relate to you the adventures of every little skirmish and fray in them, I will simply outline the mission, outcome, and key points of them instead.

The Battle of Cold Harbor comes first. General Ulysses S. Grant, and Confederate General Robert E. Lee, were both involved in this battle. The reason I mention this, is because both of them were outstanding in the face of danger, and are recognized today. These military legends face off during this time, making it even more exciting. The Battle of cold Harbor was long and hard, and lasted from May 3rd to June 12th. The hardest day though, was on the 3rd of June, when these generals were fighting feverishly against each other. The final outcome was a victory for Lee, even though it was his last in this war.

The Battle of Atlanta, was led by another outstanding general, William Sherman. He was the man to replace Grant after his higher promotion. These battles accomplished quite a lot, including the capture and burning of Atlanta, and the seizing of Milledgeville, and Savannah.

Yet another series of battles is the Battle of Shenandoah Valley. Grant sent a corps to attack and destroy parts of this valley, which held an agricultural base, and was the best passage north. His troops were nearly defeated but made it through.

The last long and extended struggle was the Siege of Petersburg. This lasted nine months, and finally General Lee surrendered Petersburg, and Richmond. You can see now that the Confederates knew the end to their rebellion was coming. A final battle waged on April 9,1865. It was called the Battle of the Appomattox Court House because Grant followed the Confederates to that Court House after their surrender of Petersburg. After five long years of war, and quite a few paragraphs of explaining it all, the Civil War ended.

In this essay I have gone to great effort to highlight to you the influential battles of the Civil War. We have discussed the Battle of Fort Sumter, Fort Henry, and Fort Donelson, also both battles of Bull Run, and the bloody affairs of Antietam, and Shiloh. Don’t forget the Confederate victories of Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville, and the come-back of Gettysburg, and the Siege of Vicksburg. Finally we have the Battle of Chickamauga were the Union slipped, the four series of battles, and the final battle of Appomattox Court House.

The two main outcomes of this war, was the re-uniting of the Union, and the abolition of slavery. You need to know though, that the slaves still worked hard years after the war ended, before they got complete equal rights. Also, because of the intensity of this war, the U.S. went under a huge reconstruction process to rebuild what had been lost, and pick up the frayed pieces of their nation. To this day, the Civil War can be a touchy subject, but also a very sad one when you think of the 620,000 Americans who died during the bloody battles that ensued.

Unnecessary Items

This paper is going to be focusing on the fact that most of what people buy now is totally unnecessary. I will be defending my view with examples, observations, and experiences.

Many reasons people buy things in the first place is for luxury. Humans can survive with very little, they just choose not to. All they really need, is a home, food, clothing, and an income. If we managed our money smartly, all that could mean very little, but everybody wants to be comfortable. As a result we buy luxuries. Most luxuries are things we don’t need in the least. There are so many things that fit this description. Just go into a store. Stores are filled with luxuries such as those new slippers you’ve been wanting, or that beautiful painting that has been there forever, or those delicious doughnuts on sale.

Another way we as humans buy unnecessary items, is by buying the things we want from the best and most expensive brands. There are many different brands for anything you could buy, but we usually get the most expensive, because they are the best quality. Everyone has their favorite brands because there are brands for anything you could want, makeup, tea, clothing, food, homes, and anything that exists.

Some people buy things they don’t need simply to impress others. They want to show that they can afford, and so they buy it. This is a very petty and sad waste of money, if it is the only reason they are buying it. Such things could be a swimming pool, a boat, the most beautiful china, anything really.

In this essay I have summarized three reasons why people buy things they don’t need. I believe I have proved my point.