This Week in The Voice: A Call To Harm

This week in the Voice, out today, Nick Pinto track's the NYPD's poor judgment with the mentally ill, recently culminating in the death of a schizophrenic woman, writing: "With a growing international consensus on the best practices for police interactions with the mentally ill -- practices the NYPD has so far resisted adopting -- the story of how Shereese Francis died once again raises the question of whether the NYPD is doing everything it can to train its officers on how to do the delicate work of serving New Yorkers with mental illness."

Robert Sietsema dines at Ootoya, the "Denny's of Japan," and says of the mega-chain: "Ootoya is a type of restaurant called a teishoku. Partly aimed at shoppers, it specializes in set meals that include entrées plus sides that run to white rice, steamed pumpkin, potato salad, chawanmushi, assorted pickles, miso soup, and salads. These repasts, most costing from $15 to $22, constitute an amazing bargain considering the quantity and quality of the food."

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This Week in the Voice: Rikers Con Job

This week in the Voice, out today, Graham Rayman chronicles a Corrections Department jail con, which has resulted in investigations for "falsifying reports, beating inmates, and violating department regulations."

In food, Robert Sietsema heads to Hazar, a Turkish newcomer in Bay Ridge, and finds the city's best falafel, "Pleasingly studded with sesame seeds, they're aerodynamically streamlined like Frisbees, so frying produces more crisp surface area proportionate to the interior, and also allows the insides to cook thoroughly."

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This Week in The Voice: Julie Delpy Rocks New York

This week in the Voice, out today, Karina Longworth talks with Julie Delpy about her film career, writing of Delpy's third writing/directing/starring effort: "A film about a neurotic creative navigating tricky issues of love and domesticity in Manhattan, featuring a protagonist who intermittently wears big black-frame glasses and is played by a performer who is also the film's writer and director, 2 Days in New York all but begs for Woody Allen comparisons. Certainly, Delpy's portrayal of hapless attempts to balance work and artistic ambition with the emotional and logistical demands of family brings to mind a famous Allen self-deprecation: 'The only thing standing between me and greatness is me.'"

In food, Robert Sietsema travels to Bushwick's slice of the Iberian peninsula with a visit to El Mio Cid, explaining that the establishment reflects a broader trend about Spanish restaurants, which have long been disappearing from Manhattan: "The genre is being kept alive in the so-called Outer Boroughs, where Spanish immigration continues at a low ebb. What is really driving the trend are Spanish speakers from the Caribbean and South America, who look upon Iberian food not only as an ancestral birthright, but also as one among a range of Latin cuisines they'd like to consider when dining out."

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This Week in the Voice: I Fought The Landlord

This week in the Voice, out today, Araceli Cruz and Steven Thrasher tell the tale of landlord Moshe Samovha's bad Upper Manhattan building and the lone resident who fought for better living conditions: "This is a landlord who has acted with impunity for decades, content to let the city repair his boiler in winter while taxpayers pick up the tab, for example. The city has been powerless to keep Samovha from operating a slum...The one person who did stand up to Samovha was one of his Amsterdam Avenue tenants, a single mother of four children and an undocumented immigrant named Maria Montealegre."

Robert Sietsema goes to Food Gallery 32, a food court in Koreatown, and observes: "The ground floor is devoted to seven counters -- predominantly purveying Korean, Korean-Japanese, and Korean-Chinese food -- plus a beverage seller and a Red Mango yogurt concession. The ground floor offers a cluster of tables, and there's mezzanine seating above, presenting dramatic views of the food seekers below. Teenagers favor the isolated third floor, where they hang with their buds, excitedly chattering and sharing cheap snacks until the place shuts down at midnight."

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This Week in the Voice: 4Knots

This week in the Voice, out today, Eric Sundermann headed to Hoboken, where he chats with San Diego-based Crocodiles, which is performing at 4Knots: "In 2009, they released their debut, the bedroom-recorded, grungy Summer of Hate. And even though Endless Flowers is only the band's third full-length, their maturity is evident. They've grown in membership: Endless Flowers is the first album to be recorded with their five-piece touring band. The group's sound has similarly evolved from hollowed-out, scratchy guitars and sometimes-inaudible vocals to full-fledged -- and at times anthemic -- power rock 'n' roll."

In food, Robert Sietsema yearns for the hard-to-find provincial picks at Yunnan Kitchen, "The place evokes the cuisine of Yunnan, a People's Republic province situated in the southwest, bordering Burma, Laos, and Vietnam. Most of the population is not ethnic Chinese, but a combination of hill tribes that originated in Southeast Asia, who are often treated as second-class citizens by the Chinese government."

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This Week in The Voice: When a Cop Lies About Sex

This week in the Voice, out today, Graham Rayman tells a sordid story of sex, power, and text messaging involving a Palisades Interstate Parkway police officer's relationship with a Brooklyn woman, writing: "During the course of her interaction with the Palisades cops in 2010, she had an affair with an officer, Vincent Roberson, including consensual sexual liaisons with him while he was on duty, according to documents obtained by the Voice. When he threatened her, Lawrence filed a complaint with his bosses. He denied the allegations. Without looking for any independent verification of her claims, PIPPD arrested Lawrence and charged her with filing a false report and lying to investigators. But phone and text message records, as well as Roberson's eventual admissions, proved that she had been telling the truth."

Robert Sietsema samples Yemen Cafe's specialties and writes of the area's bourgeoning Arab population: "The new place is located along a bustling stretch of Fifth Avenue that feels like a Middle Eastern souk: Filigreed brass cookware dangles in glinting displays, bakeries mount racks of baklava in their front windows, and groceries flaunt barrels of olives in shades ranging from deep green to purple to midnight black. And everywhere, carried by the evening's maritime breezes, the smell of roasting meat perfumes the air."

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This Week in The Voice: 'Gay Inc.' and Free Speech

This week in the Voice, out today, Steven Thrasher wants to know whether "Gay Inc." believes in free speech: "Today's movement is quite unlike ACT UP, the Gay Liberation Front, or the Mattachine Society. In their use of confrontation, those groups looked far more like Occupy Wall Street than the Human Rights Campaign. Today's gay organizations tend to present queer voices that are well polished and well financed. And sometimes what they endorse isn't liberating for queers or supportive of free speech at all."

Robert Sietsema snacks on slices at Crown Heights' Pete Zaaz, which "makes fun of the venerable foodstuff with its very name...the premises is so narrow and dark that you pass the pizza makers -- a wonderfully ragtag crew who giggle as you enter -- as if they were an animated diorama in the museum."

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This Week in The Voice: Can Occupy Wall Street Trust Its Own Candidate?

This week in the Voice, out today, Nick Pinto profiles Congressional hopeful George Martinez: "This is all the basic stuff of Brooklyn retail politics, the story of an upstart candidate backed by a ragtag crew of idealistic volunteers pulling 18-hour days in a desperate effort to make up with sweat what they're lacking in money. What makes Martinez's candidacy unique is that he's proudly announcing himself as an Occupy Wall Street candidate -- the first one ever to get on a congressional ballot."

In food, Robert Sietsema channels the cheap on Eldridge Street: "This quintessential Lower East Side thoroughfare--where an 1887 synagogue and the ragtag appearance of the narrow storefronts on the southernmost block still suggest what the neighborhood looked like more than a century ago--never lets grass grow under its feet. Recently, three wildly inexpensive restaurants have opened up, each with its own unique attributes. "

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This Week in the Voice: The War on Mexicans Has Gone Too Far

This Week in the Voice, out today, the Village Voice Media series "Crossing The Line" offers several different perspectives on U.S. immigration policies. Chuck Strouse writes of Sunday voting bans: "In a brazen attempt to steal this fall's election, Florida's Republican lawmakers have outlawed voting on Sunday, an African-American tradition. Indeed, across the United States, from Montana to Maine and Texas to Tennessee, 41 states have recently passed or introduced laws to restrict voter registration and early voting, and generally limit suffrage."

For the food section, Robert Sietsema samples Boukiés, unorthodox Greek cuisine in the former Heartbreak space, "Although the food can be remarkable, the space remains badly laid out, a challenging labyrinth of wicker chairs and tiny tables that force you to tack back and forth like Odysseus's galley to visit the bathrooms. Watch out for the Minotaur!"

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This Week in the Voice: Schools Need Education in Gay Bullying

This week in the Voice, out today, Jessica Lussenhop looks at schools' failure to address gay bullying but notes the paradigm shift in discipline: "Gay kids have long been a target of bullying. Until recently, incidents could be laughed off as 'pranks,' and no one suffered any consequences, save for the gay kid. But in the past few years, that has begun to change."

In food, Tejal Rao tries Prima, and says of the East Village French fish bar: "They have not gussied up Prima with silly maritime knickknackery -- knotted ropes, vintage photos of ships -- to indicate that they are serving fish. Nor do they offer the seafood lover a prolonged, erotic, expensive experience to reaffirm the value of his obsession. Prima is for the everyday -- for when a hard seat, a cold drink, and a hot fish will do you nicely."

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