Since the first residents descended upon Zuccotti Park in lower Manhattan, the Occupy Wall Street movement has grown from a few hundred supporters in this tiny enclave to an international discussion. With thousands of people in cities across the globe – from New York to London to Sydney to Rome – announcing their support for economic parity, it’s not all surprising several narratives have emerged. Continue reading
Over the past 48 hours, there have been two major press conferences from two different universes that, at the root, are about the same thing: sexual misconduct. We see two different worlds – politics and sports – enmeshed in sexual assault allegations and a press corps that seems to be crossing lines from professional journalists to everyday consumer. Continue reading
David Crosby and Graham Nash appeared and performed in Zuccotti Park this afternoon to a couple hundred people. Without amplification – both for instruments and vocals – it was difficult to hear them, but they were audible enough to hear their melodious harmonies (even though they were missing the third of their triumvirate). As they were playing songs of protest, it was hard not to imagine it was 1968 where groups of longhairs would sit cross-legged, smoking a joint and passionately discussing the evils of war, of government, of society; how they were the new generation, the generation that would change the world for the better. Continue reading
Should the NBA forfeit its season, my generation will have witnessed 2 of the 4 major US sports to lose a season due to labor disputes. The NHL lost the 2004-2005 season. Unfortunately for fans, this is a recurring trend over the last 30 years. Since 1982, all 4 major US sports have sustained work-stoppages. Baseball: 1981, 1994-1995; Football: 1982, 1987, 2011; Hockey: 1994-1995; 2004-2005; Basketball: 1998-1999, 2011-2012. Continue reading
On Yom Kippur, Jews around the world fast for 25 hours. On any given day, hundreds of millions around the world go with out food.
Dan Patterson and I speak with Abdul Mubarek, a Halal cart owner who has been in Zuccotti Park for the past six years. He spoke with us about his thoughts of the protests and how it has affected his business.
I wrote this about 15 minutes after learning of the death of Steve Jobs on my Tumblr blog: Going to step away from my iMac and onto my iPad as I wait for my iPhone to ring. Possibly the biggest outside influence in my life, in all of our lives – he changed the way … Continue reading
Yesterday evening, I strolled down Broadway from Houston to Zuccotti Park, about a half hour walk, anticipating what the Occupy Wall Street protests would look like a week after I last visited.
I passed the inelegant federal buildings on Broadway and Reade, and saw ahead of me, a couple blocks away on the sidewalk in front of City Hall, a group of protesters and picketers marching side by side. I maneuvered around them and noticed there were several police officers and quite a few paddy wagons with more cops sitting inside them. It began to rain.
Upon exiting the 2/3 at Wall Street, I was expecting to be swept up in a crowd of people marching down that corporate alleyway, playing music and chanting, “We shall overcome.” Or, at the very least, see some of New York’s Finest pepper-spraying protesters while men in $5,000 suits stood back and watched. Instead, I saw the typical throng of tourists gawking at the Fed, taking pictures of the George Washington Statue and lining up to pose with the New York Stock Exchange in the background. I also saw steel barricades, which obviously meant protest.
Our nation is faced with certain evils. Many of them, we bring upon ourselves. We allow our lives to be guided by a set of contradictions and when those contradictions play out on a globally televised scale, we huff and puff and very rarely blow the house down. How are we to evolve if we don’t recognize these contradictions before they come to, as a famous author may say, a tipping point?
We landed in Florence in the early afternoon, after a relatively painless six-plus-hour flight across the Atlantic, with a layover in Amsterdam. Upon reaching our hotel, Hotel Rosso 23, nestled in the Piazza Santa Maria Novella, we debated for a whole three-minutes if we should walk around the city or take a nap and hope we didn’t sleep through the day. We walked. Of course…
Josh’s Note: Guest blogging today is my good friend, E. Anyanwu, who writes about differences in black culture using John Ogbu’s concepts of involuntary and voluntary minorities…
I woke up this morning much in the way I wake up every morning: languidly stuttering out of bed. Normally, though, I make a bee-line towards the coffee maker, make some joe and then glide over to the computer (if we call the television, “the idiot box,” what can we call the computer?) to begin … Continue reading
Imagine this scenario: you are a doctor – a heart surgeon – who is away on a much needed vacation overseas. You booked your flight months in advance, followed all the rules, and after 2 weeks away, as you get ready to board your flight home, you are told, “Sorry, sir, but the flight is overbooked and there are no seats available for you. Not even in business class or first class.” Now imagine you are supposed to fly home on a Monday so that you can perform open heart surgery on Tuesday on a 6 year old child who, if she doesn’t have this surgery, will die. Instead, you are stuck in a foreign country, with no way of getting home.
I am not a doctor. Obviously. But the subtext of this scenario, getting bumped from a flight, happened to me recently. And according to the concierge at the Courtyard Marriott in Amsterdam, this happens at least 15 times a day.
Tomorrow I leave for Italy. We fly into Florence and I’m very excited to see the birthplace of the Renaissance. After a couple of days in the city, we head out to some small towns in Tuscany for a few days. We then will head south to Rome, where I’ve already bought my tickets for … Continue reading