Rehab vs. Control

Over 2.3 million people, adults and juveniles alike, are currently in some sort of correctional facility in the United States. Our country has the highest rate of incarceration per capita in the world, yet over the years, many have come to realize that our prison system does not work. The main source of this error is the prison system’s hyperfocus on punishment and control rather than the rehabilitation of its inmates. Prison itself should be a system of rehabilitation. Most people who go to prison do not go for life…

Are the Politics of Today Having a Deterrent Effect?

There is no denying that the process by which a citizen strives to attain public office, whether elected or appointed, entails a great degree of public exposure and risk of character damage. Political candidates are regularly subject to a vetting process by which individual Americans, the media, and other members of government evaluate the suitability of a particular individual for a political position. These evaluations can range from more benign measurements of education level, experience, and their intended policy agenda (which I fear is becoming less commonplace a metric), to…

No, Amazon in New York is a Terrible Idea

“It is a great day for New York City” said New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio, as he and Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the plan to host half of Amazon’s headquarters in Long Island City. Yes, the same guy who suggested that private property just doesn’t make the cut in New York City is now welcoming a company through billions of dollars in incentives. He even said “I think people all over this city, of every background, would like to have the city government be able to determine which…

“Pro Not-Dying”

February 14th, 2018:  Nikolas Cruz kills seventeen people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. May 18th, 2018:  Dimitrios Pagourtzis kills ten and wounds ten in his own high school in Santa Fe, Texas. October 25th, 2018: Gregory Bush kills two black men in a supermarket after being denied access to a predominantly black church in Jeffersontown, Kentucky. October 27th, 2018:  Robert Gregory Bowers kills eleven people in the Tree of Life Synagogue on the Jewish Sabbath in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. November 2nd, 2018: Scott Beierle kills two women and wounds…

Chasing the Communist Bait: How America Has Spread Itself Too Thin

It was only a few months ago that the leaders of North and South Korea made a historic agreement to formally end the Korean War, thus ending the 65 year-long armistice, and one of the key conflicts within the Cold War. Yet, after all of this time, America’s military has continued to increase its global presence. We continue to send billions in foreign aid to other countries and participate in costly alliances like NATO. I’ve come to see the negative effects of our global presence: not only in our abandonment…

Oil Sanctions, Barter Systems, and the State of U.S.-Europe Relations

In May of this year, the Trump administration announced their intent to withdraw from the Obama-era Iran-P5+1 nuclear disarmament deal and plan to re-impose prior sanctions placed on Iran’s oil sector. Earlier this November, these new sanctions began taking effect. It is important to note that Iran, as far as the interested parties are concerned (including Iranian adversary Saudi Arabia), was abiding well within the parameters of the agreement; furthermore, the participation of the US is not essential to the continuation of the agreement. Although there is much speculation as to…

Pink, White, and Blue: The Most Recent Transgender Fight

The LGBT community has made great strides in the past few years with the nationwide legalization of same-sex marriage, as well as the growing visibility and awareness of LGBT issues.  However, the community does still face discrimination and ignorance, and the latest example of this is the reckless fervor with which the Trump administration is attempting to roll back rights.  The Department of Health and Human Services is currently trying to establish an “explicit and uniform” definition of gender.  According to a memo obtained by the New York Times that…

The Complications of Simple Majorities

“I don’t believe that I can support a cloture resolution providing for cloture by a simple majority vote. The difficulty with any cloture is that it changes the entire character of the debate, and that it is liable to great abuse on the part of a bare majority.” – Robert A. Taft Let’s have a recap of the past two years in the U.S. Senate. Republicans took control of the Senate back in the 2016 election, holding 52 seats. With the help of the Senate Finance Committee, a new tax…