Ray Kelly and NYPD: How the NYPD Has Opened the Floodgates for Social Media Spying

As Published on PolicyMic

The new media culture has infiltrated every sector of society. It has created careers and positions in the nonprofit and marketing world, political campaigns, entertainment industry, and news publications. Now, we can add law enforcement to the growing list.

Last week, NYPD Commissioner Raymond Kelly issued a memo that lays out the groundwork for utilizing social media for police investigations. According to the memo, officers who use social media for investigations can register their social media aliases and pseudonyms with the department. They are also limited to using the user account and trolling the web on a department computer/laptop on site.

While the NYPD’s blatant racial/ethnic profiling and wanton disregard for any concept of privacy is clear in their surveillance of Muslim communities and unwarranted frisks of young black and brown men, the line is conveniently obscure when it comes to online practices.

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Filed under Criminal Justice System, Policymic

Hunger Action Month Testimonial

As published by Foodlink

Standing in a long line outside of St. Peter’s Soup Kitchen’s large edifice is a couple with a hungry 6-year-old daughter at home. For the past four months, Ed O’Brien and Mary Ripley have relied on St. Peter’s, their food stamps are not enough for the whole family. For Ed, Foodlink’s partner agency has proven to be an integral part of getting him through tough economic times.

“It’s real tough out there,” he said. “I have over 18-years of experience with working with machines, but I’ve only had two interviews in two years.”

Both Ed and Mary continue to search for job opportunities with no avail. Recently, they are facing greater hardship than ever before.

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September is Hunger Action Month! Help Us Help Rochester

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

Hunger Action Month is here! And Foodlink is going full speed ahead with an array of programs and initiatives to mobilize the Rochester-Genesee Valley Region in the fight against domestic hunger.

Every year, a network of over 200 food banks across the nation provide a voice for the 1 in 6 Americans who face hunger on a daily basis through a variety of special events and initiatives. From hosting a potluck to donating your time, money and nonperishable foods, there are a number of ways for every Rochesterian to be active for Hunger Action Month and help Foodlink end hunger in our backyard. Just visit our Foodlink website for a listing of programs and initiatives that Foodlink has lined up in our “30 Ways in 30 Days” calendar or follow us through our Facebook pagePlease help Foodlink reach its goal of raising $5000 for Hunger Action Month through our Facebook account by following the donate link on our page.

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Filed under Democrat and Chronicle, Hunger, Social Justice

Chased from the Classroom, Locked out the Prison

“When you came to Lovdjieff’s classes, you came to learn. If you betrayed other motives, ‘Get out of here this minute!’—without malice but without equivocation. He was a magnet, an institution. His classes were works of art. He made ancient history contemporary by evoking the total environment—intellectual, social, political, economic—of an era. He breathed life into the shattered ruins of the past. Students sat entranced while The Christ performed, his silver-rimmed glasses reflecting the light in eye-twinkling flashes…he was drawn to the student who seemed impossible to teach—old men who had been illiterate all their lives and set in their ways. Lovdjeiff didn’t believe that anyone or anything in the universe was ‘set in its ways.’ Those students who were intelligent and quickest to learn he seemed reluctant to bother with, almost as if to say, pointing at the illiterates and speaking to the bright ones…he returned my essay—ungraded. There were instead spots on it which I realized to be his tears.” Read More

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Filed under Culture, Democrat and Chronicle, Education, Race, Social Justice

Lyrically Speaking

Seven years ago, I was a mild mannered chubby kid from Brooklyn who physically sat in silence in the classroom, but academically dominated the honor roll. The only time I could talk myself into public speaking was when my GPA depended on it. A matter of fact, even one-on-one conversations with new people were rather daunting.

Seven days ago, I was presenting to a group of outgoing and strong-minded high school students from the Urban League who are the same age I was when I could not even fathom talking into a microphone. In high school, I had a phobia of being noticed; now I proudly and anxiously hop on any opportunity to speak in front of as large a group as possible to share ideas, thoughts, jokes and entertainment.

I am not the same Jerome from seven years ago — but I do not merely attribute that to my physical transformation. Between high school and today, I fell in love with an expression of art that is often muddied by the perpetrators and frowned upon by critics that have made no attempt to comprehend its true essence. Hip hop has given me a way out of my shell and a path to the top of a podium. Now when I hear Lupe Fiasco’s “hip hop has saved my life,” it all makes sense…Read More

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Obama Has Mixed Record on African American Issues

Much has been made of President Barack Obama’s so called controversial statements in last week’s Black Enterprise magazine. As the Reverend Al Sharpton put it, President Obama finally stood up to his handful of critics from black organizations when he said that he is “not the president of black America. I’m the president of the United States of America.” Still, many segments of the black community continue to ponder whether or not the president takes their vote for granted (as most Democrats do).

 

But one of the major distinctions that I’d like to point out about Obama, and the black vote, is the divide between the vote and the admiration. In many ways, I will always be enamored by Obama the man; the black father with a strong family, the historic figure, the stoic and classy demeanor and the message of hope and change that he sends to blacks who have fallen prey to generational poverty and political complacency. However, Obama the politician is just as vulnerable to the assessment of the black community as the next politician who relies on the black vote…Read More

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Filed under Policymic, Politics, Race

The New Media Flexes its Muscles in Gabby Story

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

Once upon a time there was a small group of high school girls that would sit in the back lunch room table and gossip their heads off. Every day, they would crack jokes on everyone who spent anything less than the hundreds they spent on clothes and the hours they spent in the mirror.

One day, they decided to pick on the wrong one. The immature bunch decided to post demeaning comments online about a peer who boasted straight As, made the front page of the local paper for getting a full-ride scholarship and became the first Black valedictorian. Before the three mocked and jeered her, half of the student body hailed her achievements. But once the word got out that the three mean girls posted rude comments online, the entire student body, even those who never saw or patted their valedictorian on the back before, came together to embrace her and shun the ‘haters.’ By the time graduation came around, the mean girls were old news and the valedictorian’s academic achievements were the only thing worth talking about…Read More

 

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Filed under Culture, Democrat and Chronicle, Race