Posts tagged with "politics"

Meghan McCain Speaks Against Antisemitism

Top Individuals Positively Influencing Jewish Life include Attorney General of New York Letita James, Comedian Bill Maher, Selma Blair, Noa Tishby

“I cannot stay silent when I see or hear antisemitism,” said actress Debra Messing on receiving the Algemeiner newspaper’s ‘Warrior For Truth’ award. “During Will and Grace it was important to me that Grace’s Jewishness be central to her identity because representation matters. I know that speaking up is a value shared by all of us here.” TV personality Meghan McCain followed Messing in the award ceremony, passionately declaring, “Antisemitism is abhorrent and innately un-American. We are Americans. What do Americans do when we meet up with the fanatical movement bent upon the eradication of Jews? We fight them. We’re going to fight these people too,” said McCain, “there is no place in America for antisemitism.”

The Ambassador of Israel to the U.S. and U.N. Gilad Erdan, philanthropist Nina Rennert Davidson, and Algemeiner Editor in Chief and CEO Dovid Efune, with his wife Mushka Efune were also honored at the Algemeiner newspaper’s 8th annual J100 Gala at the Rockleigh Country Club on October 12, 2021.

Joseph Borgen, the victim of a vicious antisemitic attack earlier this year in Manhattan and who McCain invited onto ABC’s The View, was a guest speaker.   It was an emotional moment at the J100 gala when McCain and Borgen met in person for the first time. “The only publication that continues to act as a voice for me and bring attention to my situation is The Algemeiner,” said Borgen, “They bring light to the issue and hold people accountable for what took place. They make sure that antisemitism is not washed away or forgotten.”

Ambassador Erdan, introduced by Malcolm Hoenlein, reinforced this position, saying, “The biggest threat facing Israel and the Jewish people today is the deadly combination of lies and disinformation. Disinformation may begin as words but violence is only one small step away.” 

Dovid Efune and Chairman Simon Jacobson shared the importance of the evening, “After the events of the past year,” said Efune, “when we witnessed again 1,000 strands of falsehood weaved together into a thick rope of hate, that a line has been firmly drawn under our long-held conviction that lies can kill and that the truth saves lives. It is often the case that stories first reported by The Algemeiner would simply not see the light of day, that the historical record would remain uncorrected, without the diligent skills of our team. The voice of the Algemeiner is indispensable.”

Nina Rennert Davidson implored the live crowd to join her and the other honorees in their fight, “Please speak up at board meetings and parties. Please do not allow your schools to have speakers, teachers and curriculums that attack Israel. If we do not respect our heritage, how can we ask anybody else to?”

TV journalist Dana Arschin served as Master of Ceremonies. The Event Chairs were Neil and Sharon Book, with Bernard-Henri Levy as Honorary Chairman. 

The J100 Gala celebrated the release of the Algemeiner’s highly anticipated J100 List. The Algemeiner newspaper releases an annual list of 100 significant individuals who positively influence Jewish life, called the J100 List. On the importance and relevance of the J100, Efune said, “This year we’ve placed particular emphasis on those standing at the forefront of the battle for truth.” 

The 2021 list includes Attorney General of New York Letita James, comedian Bill Maher, actresses Noa Tishby and Selma Blair, actor Jonathan Lipnicki, celebrity chef Jake Cohen, Morton Williams Supermarket owner Avi Kaner, publising mogul Mathias Doepfner, Papaya Global CEO Eynat Guez, and MLB athlete Jacob Steinmetz. 

Watch all speeches HERE.

Billed as the Jewish answer to the TIME 100, the full list, and a description of why they were chosen, can be found at HERE

ABOUT THE ALGEMEINER

Now celebrating its 49th anniversary, The Algemeiner newspaper has been labeled the “fastest growing Jewish newspaper in the US” by CNBC. It has been described by former Israeli Ambassador Ron Prosor as “the voice of the Jewish people and Israel” and hailed as “brave and relentlessly accurate” by longtime New Republic editor Marty Peretz.

Illustration by Reb Czukoski for use by 360 Magazine

Columbus/Indigenous Peoples’ Day

By Reb Czukoski

Today is Columbus Day, October 11th.

Columbus day is a U.S. holiday celebrated on the second Monday of October each year to mark the landing of Christopher Columbus on October 12, 1492. This holiday is oftentimes associated with days off for most schools and businesses, and in some areas parades and street fairs are held. 

Columbus was born in Genoa, Italy in 1451. Given his nationality, the federal holiday created in the 19th century was intended to honor Columbus’ discovery as well as Italian American heritage because of the persecution that Italian immigrants were facing during the period in which it was made. The day is a reminder for Italian Americans of their culture and to remember that the United States is an immigrant country. 

The reasons that Columbus day is renowned are also the basis for criticism. Columbus did land in the Bahamas, but he was not the first to find it. Believing he reached East Asia, Columbus actually landed on an island in the Bahamas that he called San Salvador, disregarding its name from the native Lucayan inhabitants of the island, Guanahani. The identification of the holiday, as mandated by the government, fails to acknowledge the native populations that were displaced and decimated. 

During his lifetime, he completed four voyages across the Atlantic Ocean and paved the way for future European exploration and colonization of the Americas. His first expedition, to what is now known as the Caribbean, he placed his men to settle down, kidnapped a great number of Native Americans, and took gold, native birds and plants to bring back to Spain and his financiers upon his return. The abduction and maltreatment of the Native people were only the beginning of the transatlantic slave trade and genocide, which is why many people nowadays reject the endorsement of Christopher Columbus on this day. 

Although the appreciation of Indigenous people on Columbus Day is slower to be incorporated in youth education, many higher institutions such as Colleges and Universities are conscious of the historical significance of the day and their curricula are reflective and validating of Indigenous awareness. 

Beyond schooling, the discussion on whether or not to change the values of Columbus Day extend to corporate. Companies and retailers are open with their stances on the holiday, choosing whether or not to support Columbus Day or as it was previously and informally recognized, Indigenous Peoples’ Day. Their contributions come from choosing to keep their stores open, posting their views on social media, or using their platforms to boost Indigenous voices and businesses. Brands such as Sephora, Ben & Jerry’s, Patagonia, and Vogue Magazine, are known supporters for Indigenous Peoples’ Day on Twitter and used their accounts to amplify their principles. Equally, there are retailers that support Columbus Day causes for Italian American legacies.

On October 8th, the 47th president of the United States, Joe Biden, issued the first ever presidential proclamation of Indigenous Peoples’ Day to be observed on October 11th. The objective of this domestic pronouncement was to shift the focus from a holiday celebrating the controversial efforts of Columbus and instead to appreciate Native folk, “On Indigenous Peoples’ Day, our Nation celebrates the invaluable contributions and resilience of Indigenous peoples, recognizes their inherent sovereignty, and commits to honoring the Federal Government’s trust and treaty obligations to Tribal Nations” (Joseph R. Biden Jr.).

Indigenous Peoples’ Day does not replace Columbus Day and his statement does not condemn the celebration of Columbus day. However, for Indigenous people, the affirmation that there have been systemic inequalities because of the annexation of their ancestral land is a positive move in the direction of keeping the existing native land autonomous and protected.

OffScript Illustration by Rumnik Ghuman from 360 Magazine for use by 360 Magazine

CreativeFuture × RIAA – New Video Podcast

The first three episodes of OffScript with Ruth and Mitch are available now on all podcast platforms and on YouTube. They feature guests in music, film, and government.

Today, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) and CreativeFuture released the first three episodes of OffScript with Ruth and Mitch, a video podcast hosted by CreativeFuture CEO Ruth Vitale and RIAA CEO Mitch Glazier. The podcast blends conversations about creativity with discussions of relevant policy and social issues.

The first three episodes feature founding members of the Supremes Mary Wilson, Representative Ted Deutch (D, FL-22) and producer Jonathan Yunger (The Expendables, The Hitman’s Bodyguard), and Representative Maria Salazar (R, FL027) and Miami music legend Emilio Estafan. 360 Magazine is interested in the other podcasts that are going to be released by CreativeFuture and RIAA. 

“While recording this podcast, Mitch and I had so much fun speaking with some of the world’s most acclaimed creatives and leading policymakers,” says CreativeFuture CEO Ruth Vitale. “Our guests on OffScript – in addition to being great conversationalists – share a passion for creativity and an appreciation for the massive economic contributions made by the creative communities. Their stories of hard work, passion, and dedication are certain to resonate.”

OffScript brings creators and policymakers together to share stories – from life in the arts and coping with COVID to navigating politics in these strange and challenging times,” says RIAA Chairman & CEO Mitch Glazier. “Ruth and I had a blast talking with these legends and leaders and I think anyone who cares about music, politics, and our culture will find something in Off Script that lifts them up and makes them laugh.”

LGBTQ+ illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

People Mourn the Loss of LGBTQ+ Activist James Hormel

Following the news of the passing of longtime People For board member, LGBTQ+ advocate, and the first openly gay U.S. Ambassador, James Hormel, People For the American Way President Ben Jealous and People For the American Way Founder Norman Lear released the following statements:

“Jim was a true hero, so full of courage, humor and generosity,” said People For President Ben Jealous. “As a longtime board member of People For the American Way, he understood that building power among young people was critical to the future of our democracy. Jim was a truly kind and lovely soul, and his loss will be felt deeply. Our hearts and prayers are with his husband Michael and their extended family.”

“I loved Jim Hormel deeply,” said People For founder Norman Lear. “Through the years he was an incredible asset to People For the American Way, a provider of ideas and insights and deep understanding. He was also a fighter, passionate about so many issues we hold dear, from voting rights to free expression and the fight against censorship. I will miss him tremendously.”

About People For the American Way

People For the American Way is a progressive advocacy organization founded to fight right-wing extremism and build a democratic society that implements the ideals of freedom, equality, opportunity and justice for all. We encourage civic participation, defend fundamental rights, and fight to dismantle systemic barriers to equitable opportunity. Learn more: People For the American Way.

Stacey Abrams Blue Peach illustration from Felecia Bearden, The Purple Agency, for use by 360 Magazine

Black-Owned Crowns × Hops Brewing Beer in Honor of Stacy Abrams

This past weekend, Crowns & Hops Brewing Co., the first Black-owned craft beer brand in Inglewood, CA, released “The Blue Peach” – a Blueberry Peach gose that is brewed in collaboration with Barrel & Flow (Black beer festival in Pittsburg, PA) and Black Calder Brewing (first Black-owned brewery in Grand Rapids, MI). The beer was made in honor of Stacey Abrams, and a percentage of the funds generated from its sale will be donated to Fair Fight, a national voting rights organization focused on voter suppression and protecting voting rights. “The Blue Peach” is a limited edition beer and is currently available in select retailers in Los Angeles. Please visit Crowns and Hops Brewing Co. to learn more about the release of the beer.

In addition to the release of “The Blue Peach,” Crowns & Hops Brewing Co. will co-host a panel discussion and mixer with the Inglewood Chamber of Commerce and the City of Inglewood. The event takes place on Wednesday, August 25, and is held in celebration of Black Business Month.

Crowns & Hops Brewing Co. recently launched their equity crowdfunding campaign “OWN CROWNS” to invite the community to invest in the brand’s mission and success. The capital raised will go directly to the buildout of their new flagship restaurant/brewpub Crowns Inglewood, a 14k sq foot location off of Manchester & Crenshaw and a little over a mile from the SOFI Stadium. In an effort to collaborate with the community of Inglewood and those who champion racial equity in the U.S., co-founders Beny Ashburn & Teo Hunter believe this opportunity will allow for the community to invest in the city’s development while supporting Black-owned businesses in the region.

As stated by Beny Ashburn, CEO, “Our brand started with the community. Now, we want to offer the community an opportunity to own a part of Crowns in the City of Champions and wherever we expand.”

Crowns Inglewood is a community establishment based in the heart of Inglewood, and will provide a safe, family-friendly space to gather, dine and have delicious independent craft beer. During a time where most Black & Brown communities feel left out of the development of their own neighborhoods, this investment opportunity allows for the community to participate in the revitalization efforts of a city. Crowns & Hops will offer locals and visitors alike an opportunity to publicly connect in Inglewood/South L.A. to enjoy premium products produced in Inglewood.

“We have always celebrated the mission of community and ownership in the craft beer industry. We’re excited to bring these concepts of investment and equity to a region that has been starved of resources for generations,” said Teo Hunter, COO & Head of Beer Operations.

To learn more about the Crowns & Hops Brewing Co. equity crowdfunding campaign and to invest, please visit here.

For additional updates, keep a close eye on the Crowns & Hops social media channels: Instagram | Twitter | Website | Facebook | To Invest

About Crowns & Hops Brewing Company:

In 6-years, Co-Founders Teo Hunter & Beny Ashburn have become the leaders and voices of a craft beer movement bringing much-needed diversity and inclusion to the industry. Hunter & Ashburn disrupted the status quo of the craft beer industry and built a brand that is bigger than beer. Through their global social movement #BlackPeopleLoveBeer & #BrownPeopleLoveBeer, they have been able to galvanize the voices of people of color in craft beer. Crowns & Hops Brewery Co. will be the first Black-owned brewery in Inglewood, CA, a few short miles from the new Rams/Chargers Stadium.

Crowns & Hops Brewing Co’s mission is to create spaces that are community-centric, driving diversity, racial equity, economic growth, and influencing inclusion. This creates jobs and new career paths for people of color in and around the beer industry. Crowns & Hops Brewing Co. is the first-ever craft beer brand that bridges lifestyle, communities of color, “dope” culture, and delicious craft beer. Welcome to The New Now of craft beer. #OWNCROWNS

Rita Azar illustrates March on Washington for 360 MAGAZINE

Al B. Sure! and Joe Madison co-MC March on For Voting Rights

The organizers for the March On For Voting Rights announced legendary R&B singer and radio host Al B. Sure! and national radio host and activist Joe Madison will serve as co-MC’s for the August 28 event in Washington, DC. The two hosts will lead a day-long march through Washington, DC and the speaker’s program which will include human and civil rights leaders like Rev. Al Sharpton, Martin Luther King III, and many others who will issue a call to action to pass federal voting rights legislation. 

Al B. Sure! is a singer, songwriter, record producer, radio host and former record executive who exploded onto the scene from Boston in 1988 with the best-selling single Nite and Day, and has been a force within the music industry since. As a writer and producer, he introduced to the music industry such multi-platinum acts as Jodeci and teen R&B performer Tevin Campbell, as well as Faith Evans, Dave Hollister, Case and Usher. Al B. Sure!’s work as a change agent finds him intersecting his role as the host of a leading nationally syndicated radio program, Love and R&B, to becoming a mouthpiece for the amplification of social justice and civil rights issues. In  the current climate, he utilizes his platforms to highlight the needs for racial justice, education equity, voter education, criminal justice reform, mentorship and much more. 

Al B. Sure! commented, “It is an honor to help mark this urgent moment by sending a message to the country that our votes will not be suppressed! Our voting rights are under attack all over America, and the people of D.C. are still being denied the full representation they deserve in Congress. I am looking forward to a great day of peaceful collective action and a clear message that the time is now for Congress to act in defense of our rights.” 

Joe Madison is a groundbreaking radio personality and civil rights activist who has devoted his career to raising awareness about issues around the world, encouraging dialogue among people of different backgrounds, and raising money to support multicultural education and institutions. Known as “The Black Eagle,” Joe can be heard weekday mornings on SiriusXM’s Urban View.

Joe Madison added, “My radio audience cares deeply about the issue of voting rights, so I look forward to using this opportunity to give voices to the millions of Americans who demand action from Congress to protect our voting rights, and seek full representation for the 700,000 residents of Washington D.C., most of whom are Black and Brown. This march will bring together leading civil rights advocates and every day people fighting the good fight at the grassroots level. We will put democracy into action.”

About March On For Voting Rights

March On for Washington and Voting Rights is a mass mobilization to demand that elected officials protect democracy, denounce voter suppression, make D.C. a state, and ensure fair, easy access to the vote. On August 28, the 58th anniversary of the historic March on Washington, we will march on cities across America to demand that the vision of MLK’s “I Have a Dream” speech be deferred no longer. That means passing the For the People Act, the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, and the Washington, D.C. Admission Act. The march is led by Drum Major Institute, March On, the National Action Network, Future Coalition, SEIU, and 51 for 51, and is joined by over 140 other partners. The march is funded through the #ForJohn campaign, a grassroots effort co-founded by Martin Luther King III and Arndrea King to fight voter suppression. 

About March On

March On is a political organization composed of women-led political activist groups that grew out of the women’s marches of January 21, 2017. They have come together as a united force to take concrete, coordinated actions at the federal, state and local levels to impact elections and move the country in a progressive direction. For more information, click HERE.

About the Drum Major Institute

The Drum Major Institute advances the core mission of our founder, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., to assure that the arc of the moral universe continues to bend toward justice. Dr. King’s legacy and voice are as important today as they were upon our founding 60 years ago. To meet this historic moment, we are lending our unique ability to facilitate dialogue and collaboration to support the countless courageous acts of individuals and organizations across the nation and the world to ensure that the vital conversations that are now starting will sustain and advance far beyond this moment in time—and lead to tangible lasting outcomes. We encourage all people to embrace their role in the King legacy, take action in their community and strive to build the Beloved Community. Learn more HERE.

About SEIU

Service Employees International Union is an organization of 2 million members united by the belief in the dignity and worth of workers and the services they provide, and dedicated to improving the lives of workers and their families and creating a more just and humane society. For more information, click HERE.

About National Action Network

National Action Network is one of the leading civil rights organizations in the Nation with chapters throughout the entire United States. Founded in 1991 by Reverend Al Sharpton, NAN works within the spirit and tradition of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to promote a modern civil rights agenda that includes the fight for one standard of justice, decency and equal opportunities for all people regardless of race, religion, ethnicity, citizenship, criminal record, economic status, gender, gender expression, or sexuality. For more information, click HERE

About Future Coalition

Founded by youth activists for youth activists, Future Coalition is a network and community for youth-led organizations and Gen Z and young millennial leaders from across the country that came into being as a project of March On in the fall of 2018. Future Coalition works collaboratively to provide young people with the resources, tools, and support they need to create the change they want to see in their communities and in this country. For more information, click HERE.

About 51 for 51 

51 for 51 is a coalition of D.C.-based and national groups committed to equal representation for the over 700,000 D.C. residents who remain locked out of our democracy. The coalition of 20 progressive groups believe American citizens living in the District deserve a voice in Congress and control over their own local laws. Already, President Biden, Vice President Harris, and Senators Warren, Markey, Gillibrand and Hickenlooper have endorsed 51 for 51’s proposed path to statehood.

ANTHONY HAMILTON NEW ALBUM – LOVE IS THE NEW BLACK.

After teasing more music for the past year and building anticipation among fans worldwide, GRAMMY Award-winning, multiplatinum singer, songwriter, producer, and actor, Anthony Hamilton returns with his anxiously awaited tenth full-length and first album in five years, Love Is The New Black., on September, 24th 2021. Billboard made the exclusive announcement. It notably will be the flagship release under his own label My Music Box in partnership with BMG. Pre-order Love Is The New Black. – Here.

The 14-track R&B opus boasts a bevy of A-list friends and collaborators such as Academy Award winner Jennifer Hudson on the powerhouse “Superstar,” rap powerhouse Rick Ross on “Real Love,” and crunk king himself Lil’ Jon on “I’m Ready.” Other standouts include the smooth “White Hennessy” where his vocals simply intoxicate, the confessional “Mercy,” and one of the most emotionally charged tunes in his storied catalog, the George Floyd-inspired finale “Mama Don’t Cry.”

Check out the full track listing below.

Hamilton literally poured blood, sweat, and tears into Love Is the New Black. After initially pursuing a more political-leaning direction, he shifted focus to speak to this hefty emotional need, while also covering the full spectrum of human emotions.

“Going through the Pandemic, we were faced with challenges, in general,” he states. “Then, we were attacked, slaughtered, and slain. In the beginning, the music was really for people who wanted to stand up in honor of Black Lives Matter. It was initially geared towards those souls, hearts, and the people we had lost. There were some really heavy and strong songs on there. As the world started to open, I wanted to lessen the heavy load and allow everyone to celebrate again. We still got a little bit of that, because it’s not going away, and we’ve gone through a lot. That side will be heard, but we’re taking from a bunch of experiences now, getting through it, and taking a turn. I feel like that’s what people need right now.”

He elaborates, “When creating this album, I wanted people to feel. I’m going into a new era and mindset expecting greatness, love, and peace. I wanted this album to feel like what was missing throughout the pandemic. This is the restoration. We’re making this thing called life, sexy, beautiful, and powerful again.”

His most recent single “You Made A Fool Of Me” has amassed more than one million streams to date. Rolling Stone called it a “pour-salt-in-the-wound ballad.” Soul Bounce called Hamilton “the modern king of churchy, soulful crooners,” and The House That Soul Built hailed the single as “crisp contemporary soul.” The Musical Hype wrote that Hamilton “can do no wrong,” adding that the track “is lushly produced, sounding idiomatic of both the neo-soul and adult contemporary vein of R&B.”

The accompanying video, directed by Terrence Crowley, premiered exclusively on BET Soul and brings back a familiar character with Charlene, reprising her role as the love interest.

It arrives on the heels of last year’s powerful and poignant “Mercy” [feat. Tamika D. Mallory], which Rated R&B praised as an “urgent soul track,” and his electrifying performance at the 2021 NBA All-Star Game.

Love Is The New Black. in 2021.

Track-listing:

  1. Love is the New Black.
  2. Threw It All Away
  3. Real Love feat. Rick Ross
  4. I’m Ready feat. Lil Jon
  5. White Hennessy
  6. Coming Home
  7. You Made a Fool of Me
  8. I Thought We Were in Love
  9. Superstar duet with Jennifer Hudson
  10. Pillows
  11. I’m Sorry
  12. Mercy
  13. Safe
  14. Mama Don’t Cry

KEEP UP WITH Anthony Hamilton!

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

About Anthony Hamilton:

With over 50 million albums globally and proclaimed a “national treasure” by the Los Angeles Times, Anthony Hamilton’s voice will resonate louder than ever in 2021 with more music and performances on the horizon.

GRAMMY Award winning singer, songwriter, producer, and actor Anthony Hamilton has achieved global sales of over 50 million albums. The North Carolina Music Hall of Fame inductee notably performed for former President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle, cementing his place in the history books as the “narrator of love.” Introduced by way of the iconic 2003 smash “Charlene,” his raw, awe-inspiring performances garnered the attention of NPR where he starred in their Noteworthy documentary series. He made his film debut in the critically acclaimed American Gangster, and lent his vocals to the song “Freedom” from the Academy Award-nominated film Django Unchained. Hamilton now adds author and publisher to his list of accomplishments with the unveiling of his first self-published book, Cornbread, Fish ‘n Collard Greens, where he shares the inspiration for some of the iconic songs in his illustrious career and his love of southern food. Hamilton recently starred as Kyle Kirby in the feature film Carl Weber’s Influence, now streaming on BET+.

Illustration by Alex Bogdan for use by 360 Magazine

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo Resignation

By: Emily Bunn

Amidst searing scandal, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has resigned. Many have supported this decision after Cuomo’s many scandals came to light. First there were sexual harassment allegations, then a report exposed the Governor’s use of state resources to aid in the writing of his memoir. Cuomo was also pinned for undercounted nursing home related deaths during the COVID-19 pandemic. After that, tragically, even more sexual harassment charges against Cuomo were reported. The investigation in these charges has now been concluded to determine that he did sexual harass multiple women, violating state and federal law. Politically ostracized and facing the grim reality of impeachment, Gov. Cuomo decided to resign on Tuesday.

Also on Tuesday, Mayor Bill de Blasio remarked on Cuomo’s circumstance in a statement: “It is beyond clear that Andrew Cuomo is not fit to hold office and can no longer serve as Governor. He must resign, and if he continues to resist and attack the investigators who did their jobs, he should be impeached immediately.” Many politicos in New York have also agreed with Cuomo’s departure. Hakeem Jeffries, Gregory Meeks and Tom Suozzi issued a joint statement saying, “the time is right” for Cuomo to resign.

After this statement was issues, each of New York’s 19 congressional Democrats called for their governor to resign. A lawyer for two of Cuomo’s sexual harassment accusers, Alyssa McGrath and Virginia Limmiatis, added: “My clients feel both vindicated and relieved that Cuomo will no longer be in a position of power over anyone. Taking things a step further, some Democratic lawmakers are requesting for Cuomo to be impeached. The governor is currently the subject of an impeach inquiry in the state assembly, reports The Hill.

Taking this place is current lieutenant governor and Buffalo native, Dem. Kathy Hochul. In 2011, Hochul ran for a congressional seat in a special election, in a Republican leaning district between Buffalo and Rochester, NY. Hochul ran against Rep. Jane Corwin at the time and won by 47% of the vote. She held the seat until 2012. In 2015, she became the lieutenant governor and before that, spent more than a decade on the Hamburgh Town Board. Now, Hochul looks to set up into the political arena. Hochul, 62,  is set to become the first female governor of the state of New York.

MLWXBF chapter 4 illustration via Alison Christenson for use by 360 Magazine

Ivy League BLM Courses

By: Emily Bunn

Ivy League Schools to Begin Teaching “Black Lives Matter” Courses

Proving their commitment to diversity and understanding, several Ivy League colleges will begin offering courses on the Black Lives Matter Movement. Whereas other Ivy League schools, such as Cornell, have created Africana Departments that focus on the centrality of Africa and the African Diaspora to the modern world, BlackLivesMatter classes are situated in a specific cultural moment. Though, of course, the Black Lives Matter falls under the umbrella of contemporary African history, it is positioned in a more concentrated, modern application. Princeton and Dartmouth are the two first schools to begin accrediting this intersectional coursework. While Princeton most recently enacted their BLM coursework, Dartmouth has been pioneering this change since 2015.

Dartmouth’s Black Lives Matter course discusses topics such as The Ivory Tower, understanding St. Louis and its racial history, race and class, racial violence, and systemic and unconscious racism, among other topics. Part of Dartmouth’s course description reads, “though the academy can never lay claim to social movements, this course seeks in part to answer the call of students and young activists around the country to take the opportunity to raise questions about, offer studied reflection upon, and allocate dedicated institutional space to the failures of democracy, capitalism, and leadership and to make #BlackLivesMatter. Developed through a group effort, this course brings to bear collective thinking, teaching, research, and focus on questions around race, structural inequality, and violence.” The course is taught by a wide variety of professors from different academic disciplines and social backgrounds. Taught for ten weeks by close to 20 different professors, Dartmouth’s Black Lives Matter coursework stands as a comprehensive example of a cross-disciplinary concentration that recognizes and situates history in a contemporary, American context.

Princeton’s #BlackLivesMatter class looks to examine the “historical roots and growth of the Black Lives Matter social movement,” and is “committed to resisting, unveiling, and undoing histories of state sanctioned violence against Black and Brown bodies.” Princeton’s #BlackLivesMatter’s course description reads as such: “This seminar traces the historical roots and growth of the Black Lives Matter social movement in the United States and comparative global contexts. The movement and course are committed to resisting, unveiling, and undoing histories of state sanctioned violence against Black and Brown bodies. The course seeks to document the forms of dispossession that Black Americans face and offers a critical examination of the prison industrial complex, police brutality, urban poverty, and white supremacy in the US.” The course’ sample reading list includes selections from Angela Davis, Claudia Rankin, and Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor.

Princeton’s course will be taught by Professor Hanna Garth, who has previously taught “Race and Racisms,” “Postcolonial and Decolonial Theory,” and “Theories of Social Justice.” Garth’s self-defined interest in “the ways in which people struggle to overcome structural violence” and past experience has well-prepared her for teaching this class. Garth remarks, “All of my research, teaching, and mentoring is designed around my commitment to feminist methodologies and critical race theory.”

While some have aggressively asserted that Princeton’s course readings are from a former communist party leader who once made it on the FBI’s Most Wanted List, their negativity further highlights the necessity of this course. While these assertions may be true, it is telling that certain critics commonly overlook the individual’s many (more recent) accomplishments. The author in question is Angela Davis – a revered, respected, and well-educated civil rights activist, philosopher, academic, and author. By painting Davis as an unpatriotic, dangerous criminal, it distracts from the important lessons that are to be learned from this influential leader. Similarly, Fox News’ article on Princeton’s new course links their mention of the “Black Lives Matter” movement not to an explanation of what the movement is, but instead to a page on US protests. As opposed to creating an educational resource for what the BLM Movement is, conservative critics are quick to jump to claims of Black violence and riots.

Especially in 2021, as the United States grapples with the fight for racial and civil justice, discussions surround race, policing, prison reform, and politics are more pertinent than ever. It is absolutely essential that our nation’s college students are exposed to critical race theory and critical thinking. By shielding America’s youth from the necessary history of this country – which is still being experienced today – we are only putting them in a position of increased vulnerability and ignorance. Knowledge is power and educating oneself on society’s issues is the only way to efficient work towards progressive social change. Hopefully, as the most prestigious academic institutions begin to model examples of intersectional and anti-racist coursework, other colleges and universities will soon follow suit.

Image of Telescope via Gabrielle Archulleta for Use by 360 Magazine

New Report Underlines Importance of Science and Tech Funding

Investments in science and technology research are vital to the United States’ economic growth and global leadership, according to a new report from Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy.

The Biden administration has made science and technology (S&T) a centerpiece of its early policy agenda with ambitious targets for federal investments in research and development (R&D). There are also growing concerns in Congress about the United States’ global leadership in S&T-focused industries, especially in relation to China.

“As the high technology sector (e.g., advanced computing and communications, social media platforms and other web-based services) becomes an increasingly large part of the overall U.S. economy, federal funding for early stage R&D, which has been at the root of much of the technological progress of this past century, is more important than ever,” wrote the Baker Institute’s Kenneth Evans, a scholar in science and technology policy, and Kirstin Matthews, a fellow in science and technology policy.

While President Biden’s first budget proposal aims to authorize historic increases to federal R&D agencies, the authors argue that significant challenges remain to ensure long-term, international competitiveness across scientific disciplines and advanced technologies.

According to their report, shifting priorities between administrations, changes to the ideology of Congress and broader economic conditions in the U.S. at large have resulted in inconsistent funding for R&D. 

“Traditionally, federal funding for R&D receives bipartisan support in Congress, particularly for health and defense-related research activities,” the authors wrote. “However, since the mid-1990s, government spending on basic research has declined or stagnated as a share of the U.S. GDP, in part due to the intrinsic uncertainties about the ultimate impacts of basic research.”

Science and technology R&D is essential to creating new knowledge and tools, the authors argue, because it ensures the development of new products and technologies that can drive domestic and global economies. Economists estimate innovations stemming from S&T accounted for more than 60% of economic growth over the last century. 

Yet scientists have placed relatively little value on evaluating and communicating the broader societal impacts of basic research to the public and especially to policymakers, the authors argue. The authors encourage researchers, especially academic scientists driven to action by anti-science rhetoric during the Trump administration, to continue to engage in public outreach during the Biden presidency. 

“Universities should encourage and incentivize avenues for public engagement through increased support of existing programs or funding new activities for interested faculty, postdocs, graduate students and research staff,” they wrote. 

“Building public support for R&D, strengthening trust in scientific institutions and expertise, and increasing scientists’ participation in decision-making related to S&T issues are critical to ensuring that scientific discoveries and innovation benefit the broader public and that increased investment in R&D serves the public interest,” they continued.

The report was a collaboration with two Rice undergraduate students and research interns in the science and technology policy program—Gabriella Hazan and Spoorthi Kamepalli.