The scene at The Bahche, a popular coffee shop on Third Avenue and 7th Street in Gowanus, Brooklyn, was far from a typical pre-protest gathering.
Katie Toth Almost 100 protesters stood outside a manufacturer on Second Avenue in Brooklyn to rally against a parole center being built nearby.
Rather than the requisite leather-clad anarchists and angry militants, more than 60 Gowanus residents were sipping free hot chocolate while they toiled away with a rainbow array of colored Sharpies. There were smiling parents. There were little children. Soon they would all be braving the elements -- it was an unseasonably frigid 33 degrees on November 18 -- to march two blocks away to a dead-end street full of manufacturing and industrial sites. And there, they listened to a band of pre-teens called Eye of Time jam out to a selection of classic rock favorites.More »
Can The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 keep up with the first two films? Why was the final book split into two movies? Does Katniss even want to be part of this revolution? On this week's Voice Film Club podcast, we discuss all things Hunger Games before moving on to a documentary about Sheffield, England's Pulp, and finishing with a recommendation for Happy Valley, a documentary on the fallout after the Penn State scandal. Be sure to follow our hosts on Twitter: Alan Scherstuhl (@studiesincrap), Stephanie Zacharek (@szacharek), and Amy Nicholson (@theamynicholson).
Photo: Murray Close Jennifer Lawrence in Mockingjay
So it's not surprising that she has a lot to say about the nuisance -- and dangers -- that plastic shopping bags can pose to the city.
During a City Council hearing on November 19, though she stopped short of giving a full-throated endorsement of a new bill to impose a 10-cent fee for single-use shopping bags, Garcia said that the city is certainly sick of dealing with the plastic vessels that litter our streets, choke our storm drains, and get stuck in our trees. "They're nearly impossible to get out of trees," she told the council during the hearing. Worse yet, they end up in the city's rivers, she added, "posing a threat to marine animals that confuse them with a food source."More »
On November 17, New York City announced an ambitious new plan to replace payphones across the five boroughs with nine-and-half-foot pylons beaming free Wi-Fi to any device within a 150-foot radius, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The new network, Mayor de Blasio declared, would be "the fastest and largest municipal Wi-Fi network in the world."
Jim Pennucci via Flickr
The NYPD has been going to the legal mat recently to protect records that might shed light on a now-infamous spy program targeting Muslims in the New York City area.
Irene Chidinma Nwoye Three of the four graduates with members of the United Women Firefighters
History was made in the Fire Department of New York on Tuesday after four female firefighters graduated from the FDNY Fire Academy, raising to 44 the number of women in a department of more than 10,500 members -- the most ever in the FDNY's 149-year history.More »
Courtesy Rev. Billy and the Stop Shopping Choir via IndieGogo "Honeybeelujiah!" is secular pastor Reverend Billy's go-to worship catchphrase.
Reverend Billy Talen is taking his merry band of rabble-rousers to Missouri. Not surprisingly, he's prepared to get arrested.
The environmental and anti-capitalist activist and his Stop Shopping Gospel Choir are setting out for the Gateway to the West, where they plan to make separate appearances to protest genetically modified food producers and, in Ferguson, civil-rights-violating cops.
First stop: Creve Coeur, an affluent St. Louis suburb that's home to agricultural-chemical and -biotech giant Monsanto -- or as Talen calls it, "the world headquarters of the Devil Monsanto."More »
Time was, this country responded to rape accusations against America's Sweater Dad, Bill Cosby, the same way Cosby's Noah did to God's command that he put two of each animal onto a boat: by saying, "Riiiiiiiiiiigghhhht" and then moving on.
Bill Cosby's It's True! It's True! album.
It's been a rough year for Rachel Noerdlinger. New York City first lady Chirlane McCray's chief of staff has had her love life, her family, her family's friends, her home, and even her parking tickets -- pretty much everything except the actual work she did as a City Hall aide -- dragged out as evidence that she was unfit for the job.
The coup de grâce came on Friday, when Noerdlinger's 17-year-old son was arrested and booked on a trespassing charge after he and some friends were caught drinking in the lobby of a building in Washington Heights. It was her 44th birthday. On Monday morning, Noerdlinger announced she will be taking a leave of absence from the administration.More »
In a world of more than 7 billion people, we can probably assume that at any given time, somebody somewhere is protesting something.
Photo credit: tripletstate via Flickr "Because our generation cares about more than cat videos" - #protestify
And although it's not for lack of trying (journalists love themselves some protests), reporters are simply not able to cover each and every one. Sometimes this is just because there isn't enough time to cover everything that goes on in any city on a given day. But often it's because organizers have difficulty getting their content to appropriate news agencies. One group from Columbia University, calling itself "Protestify," has taken it upon itself to solve this problem by making it easier for organizers to spread the word.More »
Cleaning windows in New York City is a tough, thankless, and, quite frankly, terrifying job. The city saw that last week when window washers Juan Lopez and Juan Lizama found themselves trapped on a dangling scaffold outside the 68th floor of 1 World Trade Center. For more than 90 minutes, the two were suspended hundreds of feet in the air outside the tallest building in North America, to the horror of onlookers below, before they were rescued by members of the FDNY and Port Authority police department.
Photo credit: angeloangelo via Compfight cc
When the scaffolding suspending window washers Juan Lopez and Juan Lizama outside the 68th floor of 1 World Trade Center began slipping, Lopez followed the procedures he remembered: He hit the emergency brake. But it didn't work.
SEIU Juan Lizama, left, and Juan Lopez
He recounted the moment to a room of reporters gathered at the 32BJ SEIU union headquarters on Friday.More »
In the months since the death of Staten Island man Eric Garner sparked an intense debate about the use of chokeholds as an acceptable police maneuver, Rory Lancman has been adamant that officers who administer chokeholds should be criminally charged. On Thursday, Lancman, a New York City Councilman from Queens, introduced a bill that would allow the city to do just that.
Timothy Fadek An apparent chokehold during an arrest in September.
The Third Rail is the name of the supporters group for New York City FC, a team that has yet to play a game, put together a full squad, or find a permanent stadium. And up until the 11 a.m. hour on Thursday, they didn't know what their team's jersey would look like.More »