Monthly Archives: January 2012

Time to Do More than Just Thinking About Brain Drain

As Published in the Democrat and Chronicle’s Young Professional Blog

You leave home for college, study hard, develop skills, graduate, and then take those skills and education to a bigger market – that is the story of Rochester’s brain drain. But does it have to be that way?

Last May, I graduated from the University of Rochester with a concentration in religion and a minor in business. As a born and bred Brooklynite, I figured that it would be poor judgment for me to stick around Rochester while there are a plethora of opportunities in NYC.

But I was wrong. After flopping around like a fish on deck for the past 4-months, I am moving back to Rochester to work at Foodlinks as an Americorps’ Vista. I always had a hunch that I would find myself back in the old Genesee, but I wasn’t quite sure how or when.

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Filed under Democrat and Chronicle, Education

After TSA Patdown, Rand Paul and Ron Paul Should Condemn NYPD’s Stop-and-Frisk

As posted on PolicyMic

This week, Nashville, Tennessee, “The Athens of the South,” nearly transformed into an ordinary day on the streets of Brooklyn, New York. After the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) detained Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) at the Nashville International Airport when he refused to partake in an invasive pat down, the Senator and his supporters had every right to cry foul. However, Monday’s narrative is all too similar to the oft-downplayed reality that many innocent black males face when confronted by the NYPD’s Stop-and-Frisk. It would be quite a powerful statement if Sen. Paul uses his situation to link the two and confront the misguided supporters of the so-called “security” practices.

The TSA’s paranoia-masked safety measures are hardly different than the NYPD’s stop-and-frisk policies — both are over-the-top practices that hardly protect the public as much as they create a dichotomy between the innocent and “the system.” Unfortunately, the biggest difference between Paul’s scenario and a black male in Brooklyn are the collateral consequences. For the man in Brooklyn, he will either be issued a trumped-up ticket or held in the stationhouse so that officers can take his information and improve their precinct’s push to meet 250s and C-Summonses quotas while the detainee accepts it as another day in the neighborhood. On the contrary, Paul and his father, Congressman and presidential hopeful Ron Paul (R-Texas), can use this situation to magnify how our “police nation” is violating our civil liberties — and make a few dollars for their campaign war chests while they’re at it.

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Filed under Criminal Justice System, Policymic, Politics, Race

Nevermind Romney,Young Energy is Obama’s Only Challenge in 2012

As published in the Democrat and Chronicle’s Young Professional Blog

Every election season, we learn more and more that the press is hardly an objective news provider as much as it is a prizefight promoter. As the 2012 Presidential election unfolds, news mediums of all sorts continue to paint an image of an HBO Pay-Per-View showdown looming in the midst of Main Street. But their insistence that President Barack Obama may be dethroned by the likes of Mitt Romney are as desperate of a ticket seller as Don King’s disillusioned rants that a washed up Larry Holmes would press the young and untested “Iron” Mike Tyson to his limits in their 1988 faceoff.

While political pundits give Obama a 245 – 242 edge in electoral points with 51 up for grabs in swing states like Virginia, Ohio, Nevada and Colorado, I suspect that the final results will be more of a blowout than the promoters are leading us on. News Corps infatuation with Obama’s 47 percent approval rating (which still towers over former president George W. Bush’s 23 percent rating in 2008) and the 70 percent Gallop poll sample population that thinks that America is heading in the wrong direction (again, significantly better than the 93 percent of Americans who felt that the economy was in a poor state under Bush in 2008) grossly dismisses the role that the public’s dissatisfaction with the GOP ran House, which suffers from an all-time low 11 percent approval rating and a lower ethics rating than that of a car salesman, will play at the ballot.

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Filed under Democrat and Chronicle, Politics

Atlanta tells the truth. What’s the big fuss?

As posted on the Democrat and Chronicle’s Young Professional

There seems to be a lot of hoopla surrounding Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta’s recent ad campaign to battle America’s childhood obesity epidemic. Psychologists from the around the world are flexing their years in the field by slamming the ad for shaming parents, further ostracizing obese youth and fundamentally failing to offer or motivate any sort of progress in the fight against the American phenomena.

I wish I could say that I entirely agree.

Despite the plethora of angry facebook comments and online threads from, presumably, the same parents that the ads are targeting, I do not chastise Children’s Healthcare Atlanta’s boldness and edgy approach. With a third of American youth being obese, a rate that has tripled over the past three decades, the time is ripe for a new strategy. Perhaps all older methods have been futile because they focus on sugarcoating obesity. Whatever the case, frivolous battles to get cartoon characters off of our cereal boxes and the good ‘ol “he’s just big-boned…it runs in the family” arguments are not doing the trick. Read More

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Filed under Democrat and Chronicle, Health