Army Refuses to Change Names of Streets Honoring Confederate Generals

Aug 10, 17 Army Refuses to Change Names of Streets Honoring Confederate Generals

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In the 1840s two army soldiers who later fought for the South were stationed at Fort Hamilton, twenty years before the eruption of the bloody US Civil War. Those soldiers later became Generals Robert E. Lee and Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson, among the most famous of the military men who fought on the side of the Confederacy. After the war was won by the North, the streets were named after these important generals in an act of reconciliation, according to an army spokesperson. But now four Brooklyn lawmakers, Representatives Yvette Clarke, Jerrold Nadler, Nydia Velazquez and Hakeem Jeffries are calling for the street names to be changed. They say they took their inspiration from the city of New Orleans, who took down statues of Lee and other Confederate officers in their city. “These monuments are deeply offensive to the hundreds of thousands of Brooklyn residents and members of the armed forces stationed at Fort Hamilton whose ancestors Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson fought to hold in slavery,” Clarke said. “For too many years, the United States has refused to reckon with that history. I commend the city of New Orleans for initiating this important and often difficult work. I will continue to petition the Department of the Army to contribute to that effort.” The army, however, had refused the request, saying that the streets were named after Jackson and Lee “in the spirit of reconciliation” and that they were honored as individuals and not as the representatives of any “particular cause or ideology.” “After over a century, any effort to rename memorializations on Fort Hamilton would be controversial and divisive,” acting Assistant Secretary of the Army Diane Randon wrote in a letter responding to the lawmakers’ pleas. Clarke says she is not going to give up so easily, retorting that “‘reconciliation’ was actually complicity by the North and the South to ignore the interests of African-Americans and enforce white supremacy, effectively denying the result of the Civil War for generations.” “We are still living...

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Brooklyn DA Thompson Dead from Cancer at Age 50

Oct 10, 16 Brooklyn DA Thompson Dead from Cancer at Age 50

Posted by in All, News, Politics

Only five days after announcing publicly that he was ill with colorectal cancer, Ken Thompson, Brooklyn District Attorney, is dead at age 50. He died at Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital surrounded by family members. Although diagnosed this past spring, he carried on with his duties until last week when he appointed his chief assistant, Eric Gonzalez, to head the office until he won his battle with cancer. “As a man of intense faith, I intend to fight and win the battle against this disease,” Thompson said. Thompson’s wife Lu-Shawn wrote on Facebook: “The world lost a great man. Rest in Peace to my husband.” said: “I am profoundly saddened. Ken was a dedicated public servant who embodied the highest principles of the law.” Thompson became the Brooklyn DA in January 2014 after beating the incumbent Charles Hynes, who had served as Brooklyn DA since 1990. It was the first time anyone had defeated a sitting Brooklyn DA since 1911. Thompson was also the first African-American in history to fill the job of Brooklyn’s chief prosecutor. Thompson was known for ordering his office to refrain from prosecuting low-level marijuana arrests. This was partly so he could dedicate more resources to violent crimes such as rape, gun crimes, and domestic violence. He also wanted to spare New York youth from “the burden of a criminal...

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Daniel Taub and others on the Changing of the Guard in England

Jul 17, 16 Daniel Taub and others on the Changing of the Guard in England

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Much of England, and perhaps leaders around the world, are spinning with the quick changes happening in England’s government. Resigning recently at 10 Downing Street, David Cameron delivered remarks to the public. As he said, “It’s not been an easy journey, and of course we’ve not got every decision right, but I do believe that today our country is much stronger.” He went on to wish May the best as she negotiates the country’s “Brexit” from the European Union. When asked what one wish he had, he said it would be the “continued success of this great country that I love so very much.” Many other world leaders have weighed in on Cameron’s departure. In an article recently in the Times of Israel, Israel’s former Ambassador to the United Kingdom Daniel Taub said that the remarkable constant with David Cameron was “the genuine friendship and support he has consistently shown towards the State and people of Israel.” Daniel Taub explained that Cameron’s commitment to learning the lessons of the Holocaust was unprecedented and included his own visit to Auschwitz, his visit to the Holocaust Museum in Berlin with his children and the established of a Holocaust Memorial Commission with a commitment from his government of 50 million pounds. Looking now to the future, the former Home Secretary Theresa May will take over the job Cameron is vacating. Congratulations and analyses have poured in from around the world. London Mayor Sadiq Khan congratulated May and urged her to address the post-EU future for Britain. Russian President Vladimir Putin thanked Cameron for the work that they did together and said that he looked forward to working with May. About the transition, Daniel Taub said that May was very supportive as home secretary of “our efforts to deepen British- Israel ties in the area of homeland security, and also very receptive to the concerns of the Jewish community regarding anti-Semitism and violent extremism.” Finally, European Council President Donald Tusk and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker wrote “The...

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Former Rupert Murdoch Chief of Staff Natalie Ravitz Joining NFL

May 16, 16 Former Rupert Murdoch Chief of Staff Natalie Ravitz Joining NFL

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In early May the former chief of staff at 21st Century Fox and News Corp Natalie Ravitz, was hired by the National Football League to be their senior vice president of communications. Ravitz will be working with Joe Lockhart, another new hire for the NFL, who began there in January. This new team of PR experts has great experience in the world of political communications. Lockhart was President Bill Clinton’s press secretary from October 1998 until September 2000. He also worked for Walter Mondale, Paul Simon, and Michael Dukakis. Ravitz earned her stripes working for Rupert Murdoch as his chief of staff; as press secretary and speech writer for Senator Barbara Boxer of California; and communications director for the New York City Department of Education under then Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Considering the experience Ravitz and Lockhart share between them, the NFL should be well-positioned for any developments which might arise during the coming months and years. Ravitz will oversee the league’s communications and media strategy from NFL headquarters in New York...

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The Battle of the Dems Comes to Brooklyn

Apr 11, 16 The Battle of the Dems Comes to Brooklyn

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After a few accusations and finger pointing, the two left-standing Democratic candidates, Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton, have agreed on a date for their face-off debate. The two presidential wannabes both have deep roots in the Empire State: Hillary is a former New York senator, and Bernie is a homie who left to the greener pastures of Vermont, where he presently serves as a senator. The great debate date is inscribed to take place on April 14, in Brooklyn, and will be hosted by CNN in partnership with Time Warner Cable’s NY 1, a channel which is focused on New York news stories. Coming into the debate Clinton is ahead of Sanders by quite a bit delegate-wise. Sanders’ Wisconsin win last Tuesday gives him a nice boost and builds momentum. He has succeeded in the last five out of six primaries last held, helping Sanders campaign and giving Clinton a run for her money. The New York primary will be held on Tuesday, April 19, only five days after the...

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Sanders Challenges Clinton to a Brooklyn Debate

Feb 02, 16 Sanders Challenges Clinton to a Brooklyn Debate

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Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, the two front runners in the Democratic bid to win their party’s nomination, already have a series of debates scheduled for the campaign. Coming up is a debate in New Hampshire this week; a debate in Wisconsin on February 11; and a third in March in Florida. Presumably Clinton checked her appointment book and saw time for at least one more debate, and challenged Sanders to meet her in Flint, Michigan as a way to keep the nation’s eyes on the contaminated water crisis in that Midwestern city. That debate would be scheduled for early March, right before the Michigan primary on March 8. Sanders’ answer: We’ll be there, but only if Clinton agrees to another debate in Brooklyn. Brooklyn has meaning for both candidates. Sanders is a native; growing up in Midwood and attending Brooklyn College for one year. Clinton chose to put her national campaign headquarters in Brooklyn, at 1 Pierrepont Plaza in Downtown Brooklyn. No particular reason was given for the Clinton Brooklyn challenge. We can only speculate that as a strong ‘blue’ state and the newest ‘hipster capital”™ winning New York State and the City would give either campaign a big boost....

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