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…

Why Representation Matters

If you are a straight, white, cisgender, able-bodied man or woman, it is likely that you have never given diversity much thought because you have always been represented. You have always shopped in a store, turned on the TV, or read a book wherein the names and faces match what you see when you look in the mirror. For many people, this is not reality. Occasionally LGBT and non-white people are given a bone – as if to say, “here, now stop complaining” – but the amount of times in…

Towards a Secure and Effective Emergency Powers Doctrine: A Reflection on the Dark Knight Trilogy

If we could unleash a Batman-like force to solve an emergency of either domestic or international politics, should we? This was a question that occurred to me while recently watching Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy. Batman’s job is to save the city of Gotham, which is too corrupt to be saved by conventional means. The mob has such a stranglehold on the city that the typical crime fighting institutions cannot bring about justice. Batman decides that in the fight for justice, extrajudicial means are necessary. Acting as a vigilante, he…

The Shroud of Objectivity

Racialized immigration has reentered the contemporary national discourse following Donald Trump’s presidential campaign and his “Muslim Ban.” Trump’s immigration policies, like “family separation” and the Muslim Ban, call for the exclusion of “undesirable” immigrant groups with appeals to order and national security; this exclusion, he argues, is a logical and impersonal precaution which serves the nation’s best interest. However, these appeals to order prove insincere when he and others effectively describe the citizens of the targeted nations as “lesser,” “untrustworthy” racial groups. Trump’s immigration policies and corresponding justifications echo the…

The Dire State of Our Environment

On November 23rd, the U.S Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) released the Fourth National Climate Assessment, a Congressionally-mandated report about global warming and related issues.  The document detailed the findings of more than 300 scientists, with input from 13 federal agencies, concluding that the planet is getting warmer, humans are greatly contributing to that warming, and without mitigation efforts, the effects will be devastating.  With warnings concerning an overall decrease in the American quality of life and substantial damage to the U.S. economy and human health, it is a severe…

A Culture of Ignorance: How Humans Are Bringing About Their Own Demise

We hear the word “climate change” thrown around a lot today, but when asked to define it, few can speak beyond “global warming, right?” In reality, climate change is far more complex. The phrase refers to the alteration of aggregated patterns of weather, meaning averages, extremes, timing, and spatial distributions of what we consider the different aspects of weather. The reason global warming is most people’s immediate go-to on the subject is that global average temperature is one way to check the state of the holistic climate. Climate change accelerated…

The Legacy of Robert Moses

Robert Moses’ legacy has survived long past his death. It is seen in every corner of New York City, from his highways, to his private and public housing projects, to his contributions to major New York landmarks. Moses is accountable for the extravagant building projects of Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, the United Nations headquarters building, Shea Stadium, campus buildings for the Pratt Institute and Fordham University, and the since demolished New York Coliseum. Along with these projects, Moses ensured the construction of parks and playgrounds around the city…

“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…