Exactly one year ago, I started this blog as a response to the SCSU Scholars blog, authored primarily by King Banaian, the chairman and a professor of the economics department at SCSU. Following a particularly egregious post where he characterized the civilian victims of the the U.S.-Israeli offensive in Gaza as virulent terrorists deserving to die, I was fed up and thought I should have a place to voice my own opinions. I did not know much about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict before the Gaza offensive, but with a greater awareness of global issues I began to investigate the issue further. I spent countless hours researching the issue, exploring the history, reading articles, watching videos, and hearing the personal testimonies. What I learned was shocking and disturbing. My response had to be principled: I had to oppose all aggressive violence. In this vein, I stood firmly against the Israeli attacks on Palestine. I wrote a letter to the school newspaper condemning U.S.-Israeli war crimes and posted a modified version of that letter on this blog. That same week, two professors led a panel along with some students discuss the plight of Palestinians, which had caused some controversy after another professor in the audience had erupted during the presentation. I criticized both the professor and the school newspaper’s handling of the story, which I found to be highly biased. That post still remains the second most viewed post since I started this blog. From there, things took off.

The blog has expanded to cover a wide range of topics, from the abstracts of moral theory to the goings-on around campus. Today I mostly write about economics and politics, evidenced by the “Categories” section to the left. On occasion, I’ll still respond to posts made by Dr. Banaian at the SCSU Scholars blog, but I prefer to explore independent issues that are on my mind. I believe this process, this blog in general, has been very transformative for me. It has helped me develop my ideologies and beliefs, has fostered my understanding of important issues, and has allowed me to sharpen my writing, arguing, and explaining skills. Who says writing blogs is useless? 😉 I admit that I am often brash, crude, or sometimes even impudent in my writing—surely a function of writing online. I apologize for this and will always try to improve. Many times things can become disconcerted by the vary nature of the topics I write on, which are often highly ideological or controversial to begin with.

However, I believe open debate and the flow of information and ideas are critical to a healthy society and community. For this, I owe a tremendous thanks to people to who take the time out of their day to visit this blog and read my ideas, even if you don’t always (or ever) agree. Your interest is what makes writing this blog worthwhile. To the people who comment, I cannot say thanks enough and am highly appreciative. Your input is important and highly valued. One year later, and 95 posts and 275 comments later, none of this would possible without you guys. Thanks.