I think you should not start your post with an adverb. First paragraph is for context setting. I dont think there is any need to put two contrasting things in the same paragraph that too in the first one. Your essay is good overall but that second line in your first paragraph ruined it.Conclusion is a little bit repetitive and does not look like finishing the paragraph.
I think the most strongest aspect in an essay should be its introduction and conclusion. That is definitely going to affect the reader's attitude towards your essay. Make it strong