Zach Post #12 – Muslim Integration in Scandinavian Countries and Spain


Integration in Scandinavian Countries

General Integration –  So far Muslims have not integrated at the general level. “The persistence of communalism among Muslims plus segregation in housing and labor markets symbolize this failure” (Hunter 137).  This is that Muslims are living all in the same area as other Muslims, and they are not living amongst other people. Also the “labor market” being the jobs they have are all the same, and not mixed in with non-Muslims.

Political Level – There is as some would say little to no integration for Muslims in Scandinavian counties in the political level. In Sweden out of 349 Parliament members (government officials) only 3 are Muslims. “Immigrants are interested in politics, but they feel that they are unable to change their own conditions and those of the society by acting through the existing political systems” (Hunter 127). It seems that they want to be involved but they are afraid of what others will think if they change something.

Level of Religious Rituals –  Muslims have not integrated with others to the point of religious rituals. “Muslims attacked the Freedom of Religion Act from 1951 because of the restrictions on the Islamic way of slaughtering animals” (Hunter 138). If they are being restricted on their religion, it is very hard for them to integrate with the other people in the country.

Ideological Level – At the Ideological level Muslims in Sweden are positive. They are thought of more than they were before and they are a part of a development they call Euro-Islam. This is Muslims getting away from all the bad in the middle east and wanting to be more of a real Islam in Europe.


Integration in Spainmspain

“The presence of Islam in Spain has less to do with the historical past than it does with Spain’s becoming a recipient country of immigrants” (Hunter 172). This is saying that the presence of Islam was not really seen until Spain was allowing immigrants and that the immigrants make up the community. It is a small community but Islam is becoming more seen in the public eye, getting attention from the public, politics, and government authorities. “Spain’s small and diverse Islamic community has found it difficult to make progress in various fields, and it has faced many problems.” (Hunter 172). They have made this worst because they are talking bad or against the government. The Spanish Muslims consist of small communities and they are trying to better themselves by practicing their religion and pasting it down to their children.

In the community level or general integration, the Muslims are not doing a great job integrating with non-Muslims. They are living in separate neighborhoods and not interacting with each other. Authorities are also having problems finding good partners in Muslim communities to know what is going on around them to try to keep them safe.

In the Political Level of integration, “Bonds with Islamic countries-countries of origin and other are being strengthened because of the need for funds to build places of worship” (Hunter 173). This is a good aspect of integration in between counties they are helping them build a stronger bond. But there is also fear that foreign nations try to manipulate them through Islamic associations.

Legal Recognition, In July 1989 Islam was officially recognized by the government of Spain because there is a great presence of Muslims in Spain. This is good but has also created more problems for Muslims in Spain. Such as the government does not provide financial assistance to religious intuitions. “Consequently, even today, conditions for the practice of Islam in Spain are not as good as they could be. Because the agreement is a framework… and its content has been modified within a long and complex process” (Hunter 169). This sums up as saying that there are loopholes for the government to jump through so that they can and cannot do thing for the Islamic community in Spain.





HUNTER, Shireen T., and Charles BUCHANAN. Islam, Europe’s Second Religion: The New Social, Cultural and Political Landscape. Westport, CT: Praeger, 2002. Print.


Zach Post #11 – Muslims in Italy & a”Muslim Problem”?

“Historically, Islam’s presence in Italy is not a novel phenomenon; it is rather a “return” (78 Hunter). Islam has been a part of Italy for a very long time, since the seventh century. Their history has been forgotten by many of the Italians. “Immigrants in the 1980’s and 90’s came to Italy from the Maghreb and Sub-Saharan Africa countries, plus Albania, Latin America, other Middle Eastern countries, and more recently Europe” (79 Hunter). This is when the Muslim immigrants came to Italy, they mostly came from Maghred, Africa, and the Middle East. These people “reintroduced Islam to Italy” (79 Hunter). Muslim immigration become organized and they started to set up mosques in cities. I believe that the reasons why the Muslim immigrant population in Italy is different from other European countries is because: Many of these immigrants are from different places before, many have come over at different times and they came at different ages, and there are a lot of people coming and going from Italy.

All religions that want to be recognized legally in Italy must have a system of agreements (Intesa). When these religions are recognized legally in Italy they gain juridical and economic advantages. The system of agreements (Intesa) was started in 1984. Many religious groups have signed Intesa’s and are legally recognized. But Islam is not recognized legally by Italy. Since 1990 the Muslims in Italy have been negotiating an agreement with Italy to have a Intesa. The Muslims in Italy have enough people to have an Intesa, because many smaller religious groups have gotten an Intesa. “An Intesa is not, juridically, a duty of the state but always a bilateral agreement with a particular religious’ community” (89 Hunter). This means an Intesa is not a thing that the government has to do, it is something they do if they want to. An Intesa is a political decision. There are many factors that there is not an Intesa with the Islamic community in Italy.

-Most Muslims in Italy are not Italian Citizens. They are immigrants that hope, one day to return to their country of origin.

– The number of Italians that have converted to Islam is very small.

– Culture differences, especially language. Arabic is the language of Islam and it makes Muslims appear separate from the rest because they speak a different language.

– The public awareness/media coverage of the negative people that are Muslim


According to Naveed Jamali the United States of America does not have a “Muslim Problem” and that Europe does have a problem. The main reason why Jamali believes that Europe has a “Muslim Problem” is because Europe does not know how to welcome and fully understand immigrants and this tension creates a way for ISIS to recruit people. The population in Europe and the population in the United States of America differ A LOT, there are 19 million Muslims in Europe and only 3.3 Million Muslims in the United States of America. But we need to take in percentages because more people live in Europe than in the United States. With this factored in, the Muslim Population in Europe is about 2.5%, and in the United States of America it is about 1%. These two numbers now do not seem too far from each other. So population is similar in the percent of people. The author (Jamali) might have some bias, because if he in like any other AMERICAN, he is PROUD TO BE AN AMERICAN and he believes his county is the best, most powerful in the world.  One will always think his life or country is better than others, and it is always easy to find facts that you agree with and that will support you.





HUNTER, Shireen T., and Charles BUCHANAN. Islam, Europe’s Second Religion: The New Social, Cultural and Political Landscape. Westport, CT: Praeger, 2002. Print.


Zach Post #10 – Jaihadi, Sharia Law, Islamic Feminism

The historic foundation that the jihadi movement is dates back to the 1950’s when many Muslim countries got their independence. When these countries gained their independence, they did not know what to do with leadership. The problem was that the leadership was in the power of Westernized elites, this arose to conflict. The 1979 Islamic revolution sparked in Iran, which the “militant jihadis who brought the Soviet empire to its knees” (Sardar and Davies 115).  When the Soviet empire was defeated many new nations came in to the Muslim world. The jihadis were trying to create a good Islamic state. “The Taliban literally student regime in Afghanistan was an attempt to implement that vision (Sardar and Davies 115).

Sharia, Islamic law was established when the fundamentalist gained power. “The Sharia… is still in practice today, and owes very little to the Qur’an” (Sardar and Davies 117). This is a problem because if it had not really come from the Qur’an it should not be taken as “laws from god” but it is taken that way. “The sharia is intrinsic to Islam and therefor has a claim on the allegiance of all Muslims” (Sardar and Davies 120).  It is odd that sharia laws is essential to being a Muslim because it has not come from the Qur’an, it has come from other leaders trying to gain power over people

“Puritan fundamentalists are concerned with the crime and punishment part of the sharia, or what is known as the hudud laws. (Sardar and Davies 118).  Hudud laws are the punishment, the punishment is the most extreme punishment that is given for certain laws broken. An example of a hudud punishment is that a thief should get their hands cut off so they cannot steal anything again. I do not believe that the fundamentalists were obsessed with punishment. “fundamentalists are only concerned with hudud punishments as demonstrable proof that the state is enforcing the whole of Islam” (Sardar and Davies 118). This being said, I believe that they only used punishments as a way of using a scare tactic. They would do it when a person committed a crime, the reason that they did it was to show other people that if you break the law, you will be punished and humiliated. They are using this tactic to make people not commit crimes.  The sharia is trying to change by these actions of stoning, beheading, and cutting of body parts.

There are also problems between what sharia law says and what the Qur’an says about women rights. “The Qur’an provided women with explicit rights to inheritance, to property, testify in court of laws and rights to divorce” (Sardar and Davies 121). Sharia law did not also this to happen, it was pretty much striping the rights away from women.


Islamic Feminism is about equality in the family. “Islamic feminist discourse has made two potentially useful theoretical advances: (1) breaking down the notion that the sphere of the family constitutes a separate domain positing instead a continuum of private/family and public/society; and (2) dismantling the notion that Islam ordains a patriarchal construction of the family” (Badran 78). While Western Feminism is about the individual rights of women in political roles, economic roles and social roles, and equality of sexes. Islamic Feminism has been a good tool to show that gender inequalities exist in Islamic societies and communities.  Islamic Feminism came from Sisters in Islam they are scholar activists.  “Sisters in Islam proceeded from women’s real-life experience to Qur’anic investigation. They took up the issue of wife-beating, for example, and demonstrated that the Qur’an did not condone the practice as many have been led to believe” (Badran 81).





From Islamic feminism to a Muslim Holistic feminism.pdf from


Davies, Merryl Wyn., and Ziauddin Sardar. The No-nonsense Guide to Islam. Oxford: Ni, 2008. Print.

Zach Post #9 – Escaping Syria, Islam and The West

My assessment of The Dispossessed article is that it is a great article for telling about how the refugees are being treated and the reasons why they are leaving their home country.  Islam plays a small role as that the Islamic State is threatening them, but this is really just a group of bad people that are trying to take over a country to make it theirs.

Screen Shot 2017-03-20 at 4.23.56 PM.pngThe comic also does a wonderful job of showing the situation that the refugees are in as they are trying to reach a country that will take them in and watch out for them. The comic really showed in a good about of detail the problems endured on the trip to Germany. It showed the emotions of how people felt about missing their family, problems with money, afraid of getting caught and what would happen to them if they did get caught.

The film My Escape is a really emotional film to watch. It shows the hard path to getting to be free, the things that people had to do to get freedom amazes me. Freedom to me is just a given right and to these people it is not, it makes me really think how good we live our lives.

The story of Intercultural Confrontation from Islam and the West: Narratives of Conflict and Conflict Transformation by Nathan Funk and Abdul Said is about how people in America and people in Middle East view each other in negative ways.  “Muslims and Westerners who narrate the story of confrontation seek to place Islamic-Western relations within an “us versus them” framework that posits continuous historical antagonism from the rise of Islam in the seventh century to the present day” (6 Funk & Said). This is a problem between Muslims and Westerners, they are contrasting each other (Muslim vs. Westerner) instead they should be comparing us (how we are the same).

The Story also talks about how people form their views and where they come from. “Like Western ideas about the Muslim Middle East, the images have at least a provisional basis in reality, but are often more representative of Hollywood than of day-to-day life” (6 Funk & Said). This is the problem, people are not actually seeing what is going on in their day to day lives, they are only seeing what Hollywood or the “media” is showing them. This is what they want you to believe even if it is not true.

The story of Intercultural compatibility from Islam and the West: Narratives of Conflict and Conflict Transformation by Nathan Funk and Abdul Said is about how people in America and people in the Middle East are similar and how they could better understand each other. “alternatives to narratives of confrontation exist, and have found expression in Western and Middle Eastern Muslim consciousness alike… Insofar as both the West and Islam partake in a common human heritage of “civilization,” they share many values which provide a basis for understanding and cooperation” (15 Funk & Said). There are values that are shared such as learning, peace, and human dignity. “Islam and the West are dangerously out of touch with each other, and misperceptions and mistrust have led to an ever-deepening estrangement” (20 Funk & Said).  This is another main problem, that we really don’t know each other and that if continue this path we will grow farther apart. This cannot happen because we must know one another before we can say something about each other. People from the Middle East are people, just like people from the West are just people. People are people and everyone should be respected as such.


Nathan C. Funk and Abdul Aziz Said. Islam and the West: Narratives of Conflict and Conflict Transformation. From:

Zach Post #8 – Failure of Integration and Headscarves

“The social construction of the migrant and the Muslim migrant in particular as a problematic participant in European recent social and political life for the curtains the back of two of the active demographic movements during the last half century” (Hunter 235). The Muslim migrant has been having problems integrating into Europe since the 1950’s. In the 1950’s European economies encouraged immigration for workers but in the 1970’s during an economic down European countries stopped immigration. Another reason why people went to European countries is because they were fleeing conflict and political problems. Europeans called these people from Turkey, Morocco, and other Islamic countries “others” these “others” being Muslim, Europeans did not want these “others” to integrate with them. This perspective is saying that Europeans will not see immigrants as the same as them, not even if they live in the same neighborhoods, or even if they are citizens of a European nation. This is making Muslims believe that they are not normal and that they are kind of like outcasts.

Islam in Europe, is a socially constructed issue. “the construction of this discourse of both of those profoundly influences the way if European publics and policymakers view and interact with Europe’s Muslim communities” (Hunter 236). This has real consequences for Muslims, how they view the Europeans, and how there are discriminatory practices that put Muslims in a defensive position.

The Islamic gender system is completely different that the French gender system. The Islamic system is that sex poses a threat of social and political problems, the veil is to curb the dangers sexuality of women and men. According to women headscarves showed a sign of modesty and sexual unavailability.

The French system celebrate sex and sexual freedom to social and political points, “at the same time sex poses a tremendous difficulty for the abstract individualism that is the basis for French republicanism: if we are all the same why has that will differences been such an obstacle for real equality?” (Scott 154).

The Islamic headscarf poses a challenge to the French idea of abstract individualism because the headscarf is showing that you are closed off to others, that it is alienating women from their rights and their sexuality. Also some French people link headscarves to terrorism, which is completely wrong because it is just part of their religion, but people think that it is a big bad scary thing. According to French “norms” it is that religion is supposed to be private, an at home thing, but when you go out in public (out of the house) you need to leave your religion at home. This is an idea that Muslims in France that are wearing headscarves out in public is show that they are not a part of the French culture, and that they are outsiders.

My personal thought on this debate is that it simply should not matter if a woman wants to wear a headscarf or not, it should be the choice of the women. “Banning the headscarf, French legislators insisted that they were really a sign of women’s equality can function and doing sodic there that quality of women and men were the first principle of the republic” (Scott 168).  I do believe that it should NOT be banned. People should be able to express themselves as they want to and there should not be a law against it. This law also talked about girls in headscarves as too much and too little being revealed, this should not matter to law makers, only to the person that is wearing it.  This banning of headscarves would be the same as saying that people cannot wear baseball caps, yes banning baseball caps would be silly just as banning headscarves is silly.


HUNTER, Shireen T., and Charles BUCHANAN. Islam, Europe’s Second Religion: The New Social, Cultural and Political Landscape. Westport, CT: Praeger, 2002. Print.

Scott, J.W. (2007) The Politics of the Veil. Chapter 5. Retrieved from: 

Zach Post #7 – Myths, Religion vs Political, Challenges

Justin Vaisse is a senior fellow for the Center on the United States and Europe and Brookings. Justin has written an article on Muslims in Europe he talks about Myths, Challenges and he compares it to America. There are many myths he has written about and I will cover a few of them.

The first myth I would like to discuss is the myth of Being Muslims constitutes a fixed person identity, sufficient to fully characterize a person. This is that people assume being Muslim is religion and not a nationality. Also people are judging others because they are Muslim and put them in a category in their own mind that all of these people are the same and like the same things. This myth needs to be resolved because everyone is their own person, everyone likes and dislike different things. This is discrimination, this would be like saying everyone that lives in Louisiana likes a crawfish boil, I know this is false because I know people in Louisiana that hate crawfish.

Another myth about Muslims in Europe are inherently foreign, the equivalent of visiting Middle-Easterners who are alien to the native culture. This is a Myth because Europe has always had Muslim elements in it, it can be traced back to the 8th century. Many of the Muslims in Europe hold a French, German, or British nationality, many of them only thing of themselves as Europeans and nothing else. This is the world they have been and grown up in, carrying their heritage. There is not much difference in-between a French Muslim and a French person of a different religion. The Muslims in Europe are just like everyone else, they are a part of the culture, they are the culture.

The last myth I would like to discuss is the myth that Muslims in Europe form a distinct cohesive and bitter group. People are judging people on past experiences with other Muslims, first of all this is very wrong and people should not do this but the do anyways and secondly people are people they have bad days and good days you can just catch a person on a bad day and think that they are a bitter person, when they are actually a nice and open human being.


There is a difference between the religion of Islam and the politics of Islam. Many people think that it is all the same thing, but it is nowhere near the same. “Regarding ‘ibadat (worship), Muslims have to do what is strictly prescribed…in social affairs, the situation is completely different one can do whatever one wants as long as is not a pre-described principal” (Hunter 209). What Hunter is saying is that for Worship a person needs text on what to do and how to do it, and in social affairs (politics) text is required on what not to do.


There are many challenges that are brought upon the Muslims in Europe from education. “School is no longer what it used to be and everything is wrong (Hunter 216). School is no longer teaching technical abilities and performance, they are focused on questioning meaning of life and discussing values, this is not what the Muslim communities want, this is not what a lot of other Europeans want. This way of schooling is making people wonder who they are, they are in an identity crises and are lost they don’t know who they are anymore, school is making them question themselves.

Muslims in Europe are also facing challenges in social rifts. Europe is going through social and economic crises, Unemployment and social exclusion. Muslims also have to face discrimination when they are looking for a job because employment places are discriminating against religion, names, skin color, or even where they are from. This is terrible for Muslims in Europe because there is high unemployment all around and they are having problems getting jobs because of discrimination.




HUNTER, Shireen T., and Charles BUCHANAN. Islam, Europe’s Second Religion: The New Social, Cultural and Political Landscape. Westport, CT: Praeger, 2002. Print.

Zach’s #6 – Development Aid

Chapter 10 of Poor Economics by Banerjee and Duflo has put two great economists, Jeffrey Sachs and William Easterly against one another. There are good and bad things that they both say, but on this argument of developmental aid I side with William Easterly. Jeffrey Sachs has some great points but overall I believe that William Easterly has the best idea for the issue of developmental aid.

I side with William Easterly because he thinks that people from another place in the world do not have the “power” to judge a place on how good or bad they are. William Easterly also believes that people that are in the problem/people living their (NOT people from other countries AKA “the west”) need to sort out their political process, and if the politics are good, good policies will come from it. Easterly “believes that countries can find their own way to success, but they need to be left alone to do so” (241 Banerjee). This can be seen as a “tough love” situation, but this is what needs to happen because the people that live in the country know their problems and need to problem solve for themselves. Easterly also claims that there is no “one size fits all” meaning that there is not just one set answer or way to fix problems in different countries. I like this idea because every country is different and they all have different problems. Easterly says that “big problems require big answers”, these can take time, months to even years. I believe that Easterly is not trying to force anyone in to doing anything, he wants people to had a mind and voice of their own.

“Easterly also argued that aid is not a successful means of promoting development because enormous amounts of aid -$2.3 trillion worth- have already gone to developing countries without successfully eradicating extreme poverty.” ( I can see that many people could be upset that there has been this much money spent and they is still extreme poverty.


Jeffrey Sachs sees corruption in countries, and claims it as a poverty trap. Sachs wants to come in and tell people what they need to do to make their country “less poor”. He wants Aid to be seen in certain areas that can be monitored. “Sachs believes that poor institutions are a disease of poor countries: we can successfully address poverty perhaps in a limited way and even bad institutional environment by focusing on concrete and measurable programs; and making people richer and more educated and starting a vicious circle where good institutions will emerge” (264 Banerjee). The problem with this is that he is taking a person from another place and putting them in this country to tell them what to do, this person has never lived there, so they do not know how the country works. Every country is unique, and a single person or even a group of people (from another place) do not know what really needs to be done without living a life there. Sachs wants to go in and tell people what to do, where are he should just go in and observe and then give advice on what they should do, not just take over.

“Foreign aid certainly has many problems associated with it; much of it is wasted by corrupt government officials in impoverished nations… But aid has successfully eradicated many serious illnesses in developing countries, including polio and small pox, and has played a critical role in the takeoff of several successful economies, including South Korea, Taiwan, and India.” ( There are many other sides to developmental aid, there have been many success stories from people giving to other countries, but there is just as many “bad” government officials that are just keeping the money or other items of aid for themselves.




Banerjee, Abhijit V., and Esther Duflo. Poor Economics: A Radical Rethinking of the Way to Fight Global Poverty. New York: PublicAffairs, 2011. Print.


Zach’s Post #5 Micro-credits, Nigeria, M-PESA

There are Micro Finance Institutions (MFIs), these institutions are small full of small accounts for saving or micro-credits. Micro-credits are very small loans to people in poverty that do not have collateral or a verifiable credit history. In Poor Economics by Banerjee and Duflo they have arguments for and against micro-credits.

Against: People say that Micro Finance Institutions (MFIs) are preying on the poor by lending them money that they cannot repay. When there are many small accounts banks have to spend even more money for people to manage them. Some MFIs are charging a 10% and even up to 20% “tax” for people to save their money in a bank.

For: Some MFIs are helping and teaching the poor how to save their money.  “250 poor families in Bangladesh, India in South, Africa describe every single one of their financial transactions to survey researchers who visit them every two weeks for an entire year” (Banerjee 186). This quote is showing that some of the MFIs are teaching people how to budget and what they are spending their money on, usually writing everything down that you buy will make you spend less money. Micro-Credits are great for when poor people need money for an emergency as in medical or starvation emergencies. They are also good for if people are trying to start a business

I believe that there are the goods and bads of micro-credits. I like that MFIs are helping people save money, but I do not like that they are “taxing” people high amounts to keep their money in the bank. I think that micro-credits are also good for emergencies or a way to help start a business.


Micro-credits or Micro Finance Institutions in Nigeria seem to be working well. According to the Central Bank of Nigeria 53% of the population is a part of a savings “club/pool”, these are people that are helping each other out while they are trying to save money. The other 47% of the population in Nigeria still do not have assistance from financial services, This 47% could be from a number of reasons, people might now trust the banks, people might not have access to banks because they are too far away from where they live, people might not have the need for a bank because they are doing just fine on their own, or people might live in a closed off community and they do not have anything to do with people outside of their community.



Following amounts are in USD (United States money system). According to mix market, there are $550 Million in loans and 1,701,000 borrowers, this being about $330 a person if it was all divided equally. The good thing is that people are saving their money. There is $265 Million Dollars in deposits and about 3,277,000 depositors an average of $80 per person. This is not a whole lot of money, but if you compare it to items that Nigerians could have bought this could have been four pairs of jeans, about 2 pair of shoes, 53 cheap meals, or even four pretty nice meals for two people.



Digital technology is making a huge difference is the way people are using their money and the way that they are using it. M-PESA is a service on people’s cell phones that allow them to put money from their bank accounts on to their phones or M-PESA corr220px-An_M-Pesa_Payment_Till.JPGcorrespondents (you give them cash, they put money on your phone this could be like a super market). After they have loaded their cell phones with money they are able to either transfer money to others such as a family member of friend, or they even have the possibility to buy items with their cell phones. This is allowing them to have access to their money without going to a bank.





Banerjee, Abhijit V., and Esther Duflo. Poor Economics: A Radical Rethinking of the Way to Fight Global Poverty. New York: PublicAffairs, 2011. Print.

Central Bank of Nigeria:

Zach Post #4 – Nigeria’s Presidential Cheetah, Freedom, and Heath Investments

Part 1:

A “Cheetah” or the cheetah generation according to Emerging Africa: How 17 Countries are Leading the Way by Steven Radelet, as the new generation of young Africans that look at Africa’s issues and in a new way. These “cheetahs” are leaders and entrepreneurs focused on good governance, human rights, and economic opportunities. My country of focus is Nigeria, in the past for presidents they have been having the same “old” people come in and out of office and nothing has been changing until now with the newest president Muhammadu Buhari.  I have chosen Muhammadu Buhari and his political party The All Progressive Congress (APC) as one of the “cheetahs” in Nigeria. Muhammadu Buhari is an older person (74 years old) but has these different ideas than the “old” way of doing things.  Muhammadu Buhari has run for presidency many times (2003, 2007, 2011) but has lost those elections.  Muhammadu Buhari has been saying that the government is corrupt and that needs to be changed. The corruption comes from the “gangs” that have been controlling the government. The All Progressive Congress has many great things, they are focusing on a better National Security, Peaceful Conflict Resolution, Nation Unity, Social Harmony, Job Creation, Growth Centers for Industrialization, Enhancing Education, Prioritize HealthCare making it more accessible, Environmental regulations, and empowering women. These are all great ways to start “fixing” Nigeria. Muhammadu Buhari isn’t young but he is young minded like the “cheetahs”.

Democracy “a system of government by the whole population or all the eligible members of a state, typically through elected representative”. A Democracy is what we have in the United State, we get to vote on our leaders. The United States is one of the freest countries in the world. Democracy is judge by Political Rights and Civil Liberties

According to Think Tank Freedom, Nigeria is a partly free country their aggregate score is a 48 out of 100 (0 = worst, 100 = best), Freedom score is 4.5, Civil Liberties 5, Political Rights Screen Shot 2017-02-14 at 7.59.11 PM.png4 (1= most free, 7=Least free). Nigeria has been becoming more free recently with the 2015 election with the president of Muhammadu Buhari which I talked about earlier. Muhammadu Buhari is combating corruption, leading in defeating the militant Islamist group Boko Haram, and he is making better living standard for his people of Nigeria.


Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) is active in Nigeria, YALI is active in training young people in leadership, entrepreneurship, and professional development.


Part 2:

What are effective health investments?

“Every year, nine million children under five die from preventable diseases such as diarrhea and malaria. Often, the treatments for these diseases are cheap, safe, and readily available. So why don’t people pick these ‘low-hanging fruit’? Why don’t mothers vaccinate their children? Why don’t families use bednets, or buy chlorinated water? And why do they spend such large amounts of money on ineffective cure instead?” Banerjee and Duflo talk about how good health investments can prolong life and let you have a better life. We have these “low hanging fruits” (health care items) which are easily accessible but many people are not choosing these options to help their health. Some answers to the questions Banerjee and Duflo ask can be that there is not a good way to get the supplies needed, a lack of trust in the product or people selling it, or the already low price is just too high for them and they buy other things that are not necessarily needed for their health.  Anyways good health investments are Vaccinations, mosquito nets, clean water (or cleaning their water), de-worming medicine, and sanitation. Sanitation is a big factor on a good health investment. Sanitation can be body sanitation, taking care of your body cleaning infections. Also sanitizing your water with boiling or using bleach.





Banerjee, Abhijit V., and Esther Duflo. Poor Economics: A Radical Rethinking of the Way to Fight Global Poverty. New York: PublicAffairs, 2011. Print.

Nigeria.” Freedom House. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Feb. 2017. <;.

“About | YALI Network.” U.S. Department of State. U.S. Department of State, n.d. Web. 14 Feb. 2017. <;.



Zach Post #3 – Cheetahs, Hippos, Nutrition, Witches, and Nigeria

Part 1:

A “Cheetah” or the cheetah generation according to Emerging Africa: How 17 Countries are Leading the Way by Steven Radelet, as the new generation of young Africans that look at Africa’s issues and in a new way. These “cheetahs” are leaders and entrepreneurs focused on good governance, human rights, and economic opportunities.  The hippo generation is the “slow or old moving generation” is the generation that is stuck in the past and think about issues in the “old ways”. The “hippos” are creating problems for Africa only to benefit from it. “Cheetahs” are trying to change this and make their world a better place.


Part 2:

“The typical poor household could spend up to 30 percent more on food than it actually does if it completely cut out expenditures on alcohol, tobacco, and festivals” (Banerjee & Duflo 23). This is showing that poor people have choices but sometimes do not make the best choices, this might be because they do not know any other way.   “A Poverty Trap” the poor get poorer and the rich get richer. This is happening because the poor are not eating enough food to do hard work, while as the rich eat well and build strength letting them do more work. If the poor could eat as much as they wanted (more than just to survive) they could become healthier and be able to work harder and get more money to buy more food, but they are only eating enough food to survive.

The food policy needs to be changed, currently we are focusing on the amount of food that people are eating, but not actually what the food that they are eating is. A change needs to be to the quality of food that people are eating with good nutrition and not just “beans and rice”.

Witch-Hunts according to Banerjee and Duflo happened because certain people had crop failures or did not have a good season of fishing these people were killed because they did not bring enough food in and that when there are less people to feed in a shortage of food that was the best for them. Most of the people that were killed were single women and widows this somewhat makes sense because they did not bring a lot of food in because they did not have a man with them to help.


Part 3 Nigeria:

The county that I was assigned was Nigeria. According to World Bank data Nigeria has had a real fast increase in GDP from $46 Billion in 2000 to $568 Billion in 2014,7457de7b64ef4b7b0860059b4bfab7fe this a great increase in GDP in only 14 years. Nigeria’s population has been steadying increasing overtime without any spikes. Nigeria has a 85% of their population enrolled in primary education in 2015. Life expectancy has been increasing from 37 years old in 1960 to about 53 years old in 2015, this is still a pretty low life expectancy.  As of 2009, 46% of the Nigeria population is living below the poverty level, this is pretty bad for about half of the country is living in a bad situation.


The sustainable development goals that Nigeria is focusing on is access to clean water, child mortality, income poverty and school enrollment. Nigeria is doing pretty good with school enrollment with 85% enrollment.  It is hard to say about child mortality but overall life expectancy has gone up so I could this as a plus to better health for the children.

“After lurching from one military coup to another, Nigeria now has an elected leadership. But the government faces the growing challenge of preventing Africa’s most populous country from breaking apart along ethnic and religious lines” (BBC 2017). This is showing that Nigeria is changing up to a new government with a leader the people have chosen from the old way of “military” groups running the country, I believe this is a great start for a new beginning for Nigeria.



Banerjee, Abhijit V., and Esther Duflo. Poor Economics: A Radical Rethinking of the Way to Fight Global Poverty. New York: PublicAffairs, 2011. Print.

“Nigeria Country Profile.” BBC News. BBC, 19 Jan. 2017. Web. 07 Feb. 2017.

“Sustainable Development Goals.” UNDP in Nigeria. United Nations Development Program, n.d. Web. 6 Feb. 2017.

“World Bank Data – Nigeria.” World Bank Data. N.p., n.d. Web.