A discourse community is quite the essential system for social interaction due to its practices of writing that establishes the way of socialization for the society. The importance of a specific phrase or lexis that resides within that community allows one to distinguish the meaning behind it aside from the many commentaries made. Such powerful accounts can be expressed in different platforms that can assist in getting those certain messages to be recognized within such large quantities of people. Within society, the forms of communication have continuously been changing throughout time and the way it reaches to a certain group that is affiliated with a certain topic or area of interest. Examples of these so-called platforms are local news outlets and more commonly used: social media networks. By voicing these messages online, they can be specified in detail by associating them to a certain sub-group by using, for example, a hashtag.
Commonly used for categorizing shared interests or topics amongst others, hashtags are a crucial amenity for social media to gather such posts for others to search and potentially add on to them. In using it, it can make certain posts accessible and allows for others to contribute their own knowledge or personal points of view. As their use increases, so do the many topics being discussed and can vary from simple life activities to important life actions. This has contributed, for example, to political standings and has changed how messages are being given and received. Often, only one word is used when doing a hashtag, so it can be further defined and emphasized and can be read simply without it being a jargon of words behind a symbol. People, then have an opportunity to become part of a community that wouldn’t have existed if it weren’t for the use of hashtags. Although it associates anything and everything by using the same hashtag it can become rather difficult for one to go through and look at what they may need to find. With so many users contributing to the same ideology it brings up the question of ‘How effective is using a social media approach, such as a hashtag, in holding the value of certain political discussion and or commentary such as DACA?’
In this case, the value is within the discussion of the hashtag, #DACA, and how its posts make a difference in the standing of political figures and everyday bystanders. DACA, better known as ‘Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals’, “…allows for individuals who were minors when they entered the U.S. illegally to remain in the country for a period of two years”. (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), 2018). It was established during the Presidency of former President Barrack Obama in 2012. The term #DACA is for people who believe and stand with the policies of DACA which allows for many to attend college and serve our country and ultimately live without the fear of being deported. Many of the young children who are protected by this act have established a life here in the U.S and are not familiar with the lands their families are from. It brings up the ethical question of is it morally correct to deport thousands of individuals to a country that they are not even familiar with? And if it is what is to become to these groups of individuals who contribute to the U.S just like regular citizens do? DACA recipients, for the most part, do everything a normal citizen does which includes paying taxes and renewing their status every 2 years, which is a financial burden for most. Now with President Trump and his administration potentially removing the act, it has led to a public outcry with many supporting and sympathizing for people who are affected by the decisions made by Congress and the Presidential administration.
As discussed in an article found in ‘Writing about Writing A College Reader’, “…a discourse community has a broad set of goals, mechanisms of intercommunication, genres, lexis, and members” (Johns pg. 321). A majority of this community post about their opinions by using #DACA to inform local political and authoritative figures to reevaluate the standing of DACA. The ones who are personally being affected by this are called Dreamers and is part of the slogan that goes alongside with #DACA. Words that are associated with the cause are either of defense, immigration, politics, social justice, dreams, equality, etc. All these words contribute to the defense of DACA each holding personal anecdotes and each trying to inform others around the world of the situation at hand. There is a personal connection between the community and its members especially when it achieves a goal of spreading the word and having a reputable member act. Such member usually are the people who started the convention of using the hashtag to spread awareness or it potentially be a politician or congress member in favor of continuing the program.
In researching this topic, the question that’ll be researched will be, ‘How effective is using a social media approach, such as a hashtag, in holding the value of certain political discussion and or commentary such as DACA?’ My methodology will consist of targeting Instagram users who have hash-tagged about DACA and its recipients. Personally, knowing some of the recipients of DACA should allow for easy access of acknowledging how supportive DACA has been for them and how it will affect their future. Although there are some faults within this procedure, it being that there are still many extraneous variables that need to be controlled. Specifically, should the focus group be on those who hash-tag about DACA or should it be on people who are just affected by it or both? In addition, will any sort of government texts contribute to the results of the research? If so, how does that change the dynamics in which we view how the recipients are being treated and whether it complies with our moral conduct? In the end I expect there to be some sort of opposing opinions about what is being done within Congress concerning DACA and perhaps suggestions as to what steps should be taken or what should be done.
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