LAW ENFORCEMENT & CRIMINAL JUSTICE
Triumph of The [Rupert's] Will: How Murdoch Manipulates Voter's Perceptions & Public Policy
Australian born Billionaire Appears to use his Media Outlets to Shape Voter's Views, Loading them with Misconceptions, So They'll Elect Compromised Fox Nation Pols, Who Upon Assuming Office, Seem to Reward Murdoch's Media Support, by Crafting Public Policy to Conform to Murdoch's Will, Favoring his Business Interests
As mentioned previously, I've been doing a fairly deep dive into learning as much about the Third Reich and Nazi Germany as time permits, in order to more fully understand what's happening in present day events.
Media Manipulation for Fun & Profit
I began noticing similarities between Australian born billionaire Rupert Murdoch's manipulative use of his large share of Amerian media in 2016, to what Joseph Goebbels, the Reich Minister of Propaganda for the Nazis, did beginning in the 1920's until his end in 1945. On May 1, 1945 Goebbels poisoned his children, his wife and himself as the Allied forces neared his home. Hitler and his companions had committed suicide the day before, as Allied forces invaded Berlin. None of them had the courage to stand trial for their crimes against humanity ... although like Mussolini, they may not have made it to court.
1. Did Fox 'News' Attempt to Protect the Reputation of a Propaganda Asset via Omission?
So today, we're going to look at just a few of Murdoch's media manipulations made in just the past couple of months - and I'm nearly certain that this is just the tip of the iceberg. Unfortunately, I don't have the resource to fact check what is the largest misleading news content producing organization in the nation, and possibly the free world.
Let's start with the first two photos on this page. This story broke in the Guardian on July 7, 2020.
The first photo shows Fox News 'reporting the news' regarding the sexcapades of Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislane Maxwell. In the first photo, Fox News conveniently cropped out Donald Trump. In the second photo [at right] we have the 'full picture' aka the truth.
The man who calls everyone else a 'sleezeball' is seen with Melania 'being best', and two of the people alleged to be among some of the sleeziest on the planet [Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislane Maxwell]. Do birds of a feather flock together?
So we must ask why Rupert Murdoch would crop Donald Trump out of the photo? Is it to avoid portraying the Donald in a negative light in order to keep him - a Murdoch asset - in office?
Trump appears to have been a boon to billionaire Murdoch through massive billionaire tax cuts funded by debt to be paid for by America's children and unborn? Or is because Trump's actions in the Middle East vis a visIsrael seemed to serve to legitimize Murdoch's investment in Genie Energy in the illegally occupied Syrian Golan Heights? Or was it because Trump loosened up the FCC ownership limits for mega media companies like Murdoch's thus allowing the few to control our media, which givens them the power to influence the national democratic conversation - and in Murdoch's case - it seems the power to corrupt it in order to profit from it. Or was it because Trump famously fired all U.S. Attorneys, including Preet Bharara - who was investigating Murdoch's companies for sexual harrassment and phone hacking - less than 24 hours after Sean Hannity on Fox News told him to do just that? Perhaps most importantly, Trump's Attorney General Bill Barr, greenlighted the merger of Disney / ABC, which was an inverted takeover resulting in Rupert Murdoch becoming Disney / ABC's largest shareholder.
The Republican National Convention - Where Trump 'Reality' TV Mixes with Murdoch's Fox Fake News
The Donald's Deceit, Disrespect & Demagoguery were on Full Display
Has Trump Taken America from 'Reality' TV to Staged Fiction?
It was a garish experience, watching the Republican Convention on TV this past week. The scripted and repetitive misleading and false statements, combined with what appeared outright lies, were delivered by different genders and colors of people so as to seem like it wasn't the choreographed theatrical production that it was. This is very much like what Rupert Murdoch's Fox News seems to do every night, and what Joseph Goebbels did for over a decade as the minister of propaganda for the Third Reich.
Has Trump Taken America from 'Reality' TV to Staged Fiction?
What I found interesting about the Republican Convention, was how it showcased women and people of color, who were representing what has essentially been a nearly All White Male Administration. Of the 22 cabinet level positions, only four [18%] are filled by women [Education, Transportation, CIA & Small Business] and only one [5%] person of color [Housing].
But you'd never, ever know that by watching the Trump RNC mirage this week, as women were showcased between a third and half the time [rough estimate is 40%] and there were at least three people of color [9%] - meaning the Republican Convention didn't look anything like the reality of the Trump Administration.
Trump Republicans of the Fox Nation Share Similarities to the Nazis of Goebbels Germany
I've been researching Goebbels, Hitler and the Third Reich since 2016. While investigating how Rupert Murdoch seemed to use his 'news' outlets as one big propaganda machine, I kept stumbling across references to all of them. Eventually I quit ignoring the references that popped up, and began following those threads, which have since led me to believe that the parallels between 1933 Nazi Germany and present day America are inescapable.
Fox News is comprised of seven hours of seemingly demagogic, even racist, propaganda programs including party line speeches and pseudo interviews by Sean Hannity, Tucker Carlson, Laura Ingraham, The Five, Fox & Friends as well as numerous Pinocchio pundits such as Jeanine Pirro, Greg Gutfield, Steve Hilton, and even Maria Bartiromo on Fox Business These 'news personalities' seem to deviate from a fair and balanced reporting of the facts far too often. Here's a link to what appears to be a distorted, even racist, report of the shooting of an African American in Georgia by Tucker Carlson.
Some of the other shows appear biased, but I haven't had the time to really tune into analyze them, as the primetime propaganda machine is already far more than I can stomach, of what seems Murdoch's continuous demagogic deceit.
To legitimate the propaganda machine, Murdoch provides an hour of real news, the Special Report with Bret Baier weekdays, as well as Fox News Sunday which is another hour of real news hosted by Chris Wallace. Murdoch reportedly fired Shep Smith after Attorney General Bob Barr was sent on a Trump campaign errand to tell Murdoch to pull Smith because Smith wasn't towing the Trump train party line. Murdoch appeared to oblige and Shepard Smith has remained silent.
I. Murdoch's Demagogic Press Manipulates People's Perceptions to Deliver Votes at the Polls - Goebbels Shaped Germans' Perceptions to Align with the Fuhrer's
Usurpation of power is the point of the propaganda machine posing as a news organization. If people know it to be a source of false information, it would be discredited and not believed. But by disguising it, by combining the propaganda with real news, Fox News is able to believably portray the world the way Rupert Murdoch wants his audience to see it.
In this manner he can deliver millions upon millions of Americans, Brits and Australians into the voting booth loaded with his propaganda machine's manipulated perceptions of events and candidates, so that his audience will vote for those pols he favors and from which he, and by virtue of payola - his propaganda pundits - will profit. Since Trump became president, multi-millionaire Sean Hannity cut a favorable multi-million dollar low interest government loan deal with HUD Secretary Ben Carson related to Hannity's $90 million property holdings.
Both Trump and Murdoch are demagogues which Merriam Webster defines as,
"... a leader who makes use of popular prejudices and false claims and promises in order to gain power ..."
Hitler and Goebbels were also demagogues and that is how they usurped and retained so much power in Nazi Germany in the 1930's and 1940's, which is why when I was doing my research, Hitler, Goebbels and the Third Reich kept showing up in my searches.
II. Trump Disrespects American Traditions & the American People by Personalizing Government Power - Hitler did the Same
The background for the Republican National Convention was a couple of taxpayer funded sites - the White House and Fort McHenry in Baltimore, Maryland. This represents yet another Trump break with American tradition of respect for the rule of law. Trump is using these taxpayer funded public sites for free, to accumulate more power. Not paying for the use of the White House lawn as a Convention site isn't the worst of it - it's the politicization of the public's property - and the seat of power that I find most disturbing.
Again, Hitler did something similar after he was elected Chancellor of Germany in 1933. He started personalizing the buildings of the German republic by adorning them with Nazi flags. That was the beginning of the personalization of power, which culminated in Hitler becoming the sole decision maker for the entire nation on everything, on whatever level he wanted. Earlier this year I identified Trump's abusive use of the Department of Homeland Security as a national police force as a disturbing parallel. Click this link a story detailing how Donald Trump has been personalizing the power of the U.S. government.
Our Founding Fathers instituted a system of checks and balances in the U.S. Constitution in order to prevent someone from personalizing power. The personalization of power, if left unchecked, leads right back to an authoritarian regime, which is exactly what the American War of Independence was all about. Kings are dictators, who have personalized all of the state power.
CLICK here to read the rest of our report on the Republican National Convention 2020 - where the Donald's deceit, disrespect and demagoguery were on display where 'reality' TV morphed into televised illusion.
Democracy in Action: Blue Lives, Black Lives, All Lives Matter in Queens & NYC
A Blue Lives Matter Parade Met by a Black Lives Matter Protest
On Saturday morning around 11 am a Blue Lives Matter parade began on Greenpoint Avenue and 39th Street in Sunnyside Queens. I arrived shortly after it began and followed it up to Joseph Sabba Park where several people were to give speeches to the parade participants and attendees.
As the parade arrived at Joseph Sabba Park they were met by a group of Black Lives Matter protesters who were kneeling on the sidewalk holding placards making Black Lives Matter statements. The Blue Lives Matter parade participants paused as they came in direct contact. As I sat there video recording the 'confrontation' I wondered whether things might take a turn for the worse and go badly.
Blue Lives Matter Parade & Speakers Queens NYC
Whoever was leading the Blue Lives Matter parade, wisely led the Blue Lives Matter parade around the Black Lives Matter protesters - rather than risking walking through them - where someone on one side or another might have escalated the tension to a higher level.
The Blue Lives Matter parade participants and attendees settled in the middle of Joseph Sabba Park and the speeches began. The first speaker, whose name I didn't catch, spoke supportively of the police and the important work they do in the community. He struck a human chord, noting that the men and women who serve in the police force are dedicated to serving the community, among whom are their own families and children. He ended saying we're all human.
The second speaker struck a more passionate Blue Lives Matter tone, remarking that the 'Diaphragm' Law hindered police from doing their jobs. The Diaphragm Law allows police officers to be subject to a misdemeanor if they constrict a person's diaphragm in the process of making an arrest.
What I recorded of both of these speeches will be shown in the video.
The signs of the Blue Lives Matter parade participants also showed a range of thoughts and emotions, ranging from striking a supportive and yet harmonious chord, while others were defiantly in support of the police - seeming to ignore the validity of the Black Lives Matter social unrest. They included Enough with the hate, respect goes both ways, to Reform is for criminals, drug addicts and sex offenders.
Murdoch's Fox News Racism Revealed
Tucker Carlson Omits Key Facts of African American Deaths by Police
As far as I know, nobody has ever accused Rupert Murdoch of running an unbiased news operation. In fact, it's seems just the opposite, as countless people have found countless significant reporting errors by his mammoth news operation, which in the U.S. alone represents about half the large corporate branded news content viewed by Americans including Fox News, the Wall St Journal, the NY Post, Barron's, MarketWatch and increasingly ABC News where Murdoch is the largest shareholder.
What is most disturbing, is how the pinocchio propagandists on some Murdoch media outlets appear to omit key facts, in order to put forth narratives that are at odds with the truth, which are then imprinted on the minds of the millions upon millions of viewers who watch and believe what they see and hear on Fox News.
Manipulating what ends up in people's minds is exactly what Joseph Goebbels did as the Minister of Propaganda in Nazi Germany in the 1930's and 1940's. As in Nazi Germany, Herr Murdoch's propaganda ministry in the U.S., appears to use the media to favor some people or groups at the expense of other people and groups in its reporting. Oftentimes the groups Murdoch appears to favor break along race and economic class lines. We're going to look at how Tucker Carlson appears to have put forth a false Fascist narrative that further victimizes the African American victims of unnecessary violence at the hands of rogue policemen, whose errant behavior is defended far too often by the police unions.
Thomas Jefferson said,
"Ignorance of the law is no excuse in any country. If it were, the laws would lose their effect, because it can always be pretended."
We saw this pretension of ignorance and denial of responsibility by many Germans following World War II, including from those operating in influential posts with access to top levels of the Nazi high command. They pretended their ignorance, but generally the truth wills out.
I'll make my case regarding Murdoch's Fox News and Tucker Carlson's reporting of African Americans appearing to be victimized by rogue policemen on Fox News Tucker Carlson's nationally televised show. I identified a couple of shows, which were broadcast over American airwaves using a high number of FCC licenses, reaching millions upon millions of Americans who appear to have been disinformed in what seems a systematic effort by Australian born billionaire Rupert Murdoch's media to provide distorted reporting with respect to incidents of police brutality vis a vis the African American community.
Fox News & Tucker Carlson Twist the Facts to Make a Trap for Fools?
The first incident we're going to review, is Tucker Carlson's Fox News coverage of the Rayshared Brooks shooting in Atlanta on Friday, June 12th, 2020. Rayshard Brooks was a 27 year old African American and father of three who was found misparked in a Wendy's parking lot, apparently sleeping. He was found to have a blood alcohol of nearly .11 which is above the legal limit for driving of .08. Brooks was not stopped while driving, but rather after he had misparked his car in a Wendy's drive thru queue.
Law Enforcement, the Economy, but First Home Sweet Home?
Is Home is Where the Heart is or Where We Sleep?
Casino Royale: Will the Donald Bankrupt America with Trillions in Spending?
The Administration, meanwhile, seems terribly out of touch with reality. Their retarded response to the CoVid pandemic paved the way for the viral explosion. One of their greatest mistakes was that they politicized Americans' choice to defend themselves from the virus by wearing a mask, and they squandered away trillions of the public's money - with the enabling help of the Democrats - to keep businesses functioning, without obtaining much in the way of concessions from them.
If the Donald is a great negotiator, then he's negotiating away American's future, in exchange for a junkie boost to his reelection prospects, and self-enrichment [there was a $160 billion tax break given to real estate developers like Trump and his son-in-law Jared Kushner and he fired five Inspector Generals within the six weeks that the largest spending bills in American history were passed totallying $3 trillion].
In Germany, Chancellor Angela Merkel obtained an equity stake of 20% - 25% from Lufthansa, in exchange for the German government bailout of that airline. And now the Donald and Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell are in discussions to throw away another trillion or more in added stimulus - again without obtaining any concessions from those who will receive it.
The image at right shows the headline of a January 9, 2019 report in Vanity Fair. This report was published over a year before the $3 trillion in stimulus spending done in March / April of 2020.
Bread Crumbs for the Masses & Melania's "I Don't Care Do U?"
There was $3 trillion in stimulus spending bills passed in late March and early April of 2020. But the money that working class Americans [161 million people] received in the form of U.S. Treasury $1,200 checks amounts to only $193 million [161 x $1,200] of the $3 trillion stimulus spending done to date. And then there was the extra $600 per week in added stimulus payments - which paid many unemployed workers more than they had been making and reportedly cost the American taxpayer over $15 billion per week according to a July 17, 2020 CNBC report.
The CNBC report noted that 25.6 million were on this $600 per week government payout program. According to the report the reason the total pandemic relief recipients are higher than the unemployed is because the package includes people who are,
"... business owners, self-employed Americans, gig workers and independent contractors who are not typically eligible for unemployment."
So a rough estimate of the cost of this $600 per week program is 13 weeks x $600 per person per week x 26 million = $203 million. If you add the payments from these two payout programs together then the total payout to working Americans was [$203 billion plus $193 billion] was $396 billion or 13% of the stimulus spending. Thus it seems - a relatively small number of mega millionaire and billionaire real estate developers like Donald Trump, son-in-law Jared Kushner and their [industry segment] friends - collected over a third as much as what all working classs Americans collectively received in stimulus handouts.
This self dealing doesn't seem to be anything new for the Trumps. And the Trump insensitivity to those who less fortunate than they are, appears equally legendary. As you can see in the June of 2018 Bazaar report above, Melania Trump demonstrated an incredible insensitivity during a visit to the Texas border detention centers for immigrant children, when she wore a jacket that had the words "I don't care do u" on it.
July 4th Week - NYC Events & Happenings
City Restaurants Turned Inside Out, NYC NYPD Protests Continue, Broadway Cancels Fall Season, Major League Sports Update, Elections Results Still Unknown with Lessons for the Fall & July 4th Fireworks Begin
NYC entered Phase II of its economic reopening a week ago. As part of that phase, restaurants were allowed to serve customers on the sidewalks in front of their establishments. Over the past week or so, more and more people have returned to enjoying a restaurant meal in a social milieu. Now when I'm returning home around or after dinner time I feel as if I'm walking right through the center of several restaurants.
Restaurants Turned Inside Out
It's kind of interesting, because I get to see the entire clientele without having to enter the restaurant and I can also see what the food looks like. I reckon the downside is that while it seems generally the customers have masks which I see lying on the tables, they take them off or pull them down while there. This makes sense as eating and drinking with the mask on is not feasible. The downside is that while I used to walk around the neighborhood without wearing the mask [it's ok out of doors when distancing six feet ], I've started wearing my mask out of doors while I'm walking through these restaurant seating areas ... just to be safe. The photo above was taken in Sunnyside Queens this week.
Phase III is expected to begin next week, and on Wednesday the Governor and Mayor will announce whether or not restaurants will be allowed to serve customers inside. There's reluctance to do so, as it is believed that the in house social interactions are one of the leading contributors to others states now seeing a surge in CoVid cases.
NYC Life: Juneteenth, Summer Begins, Fathers Day, NYC Phase II, Atlanta Shooting & Election
The NYC Boroughs Showing Increasing Signs of Economic Life, but ...
June 19, 2020 / NYC Neighborhoods / News Analysis & Opinion / Gotham Buzz NYC.
The Mayor announced we're moving to Phase II of the economic reopening beginning Monday. According to a missive by Councilmember Van Bramer, Phase II means that restaurants can resume serving people on sidewalks, at curbside, in opens streets and plazas and in backyard seating - but they need permits which may be obtained at nyc.gov and he notes that restaurateurs do not need to apply separately for the liquor permit.
Retailers can now serve people in their shops by limiting capacity, while following mask, [barrier?] and cleaning protocols. The same is true for hair salons and barber shops. And realtors and auto dealers can resume working with clients, as can commercial building operations and offices on a case by case basis.
The photo at right was taken near Borough Hall in Brooklyn earlier this month.
On June 19, 1865 the Last Texas Slaves Were Freed
Juneteenth Celebrates the End of Slavery in the U.S.
Juneteenth is the date when the Union Army arrived in Galveston, Texas and informed all of the slaves there, that they were free. Abraham Lincoln had issued the Emancipation Proclamation in January 1, 1863 - but rumor has it that word didn't reach Texas slaves until two and a half years later.
On Wednesday, June 17th, Governor Cuomo signed an Executive Order making today a holiday for NYS employees. There are also a number of marches and rallies to celebrate Juneteenth in all five boroughs, most beginning between 12 noon and 4 pm, which you can find by doing a search for 'juneteenth nyc'.
|George Floyd Protests NYC George Floyd Protests Videos Brooklyn Manhattan NYC|
George Floyd Protest Cinematography, Music & Narrative
The video below is an interpretive depiction of a protest event in McCarren Park early last week. The piece is meant to be savored - like food, music and cinematography.
George Floyd & Pink Floyd
Trying to Make Sense in a Senseless World
I watched the George Floyd protests unfold on the nightly TV newscasts for a couple of days before venturing out myself to see what I might learn. The protests began on Friday, May 29th in NYC, following the death of George Floyd, an African American who was asphyxiated, apparently due to a Minneapolis policeman holding a knee over George Floyd's neck for nearly nine minutes which was caught on video.
TV News Appears to Sensationalize More than Inform
On Saturday night Fox News ran and reran the same footage multiple times of a car burning, seeming to hype and sensationalize the footage into a full blown 'riot'. The a lot of the Fox footage was taken from the air, in a helicopter which they lease (reportedly) for millions annually, which again repeatedly showed video of the crowd below, which appeared to be mostly our men in blue. So given little good video, they talked about groups dallying into the police and back again - but really didn't seem to have any video to support their claims. The next day Mayor de Blasio reported that there were no deaths and no serious injuries to members of the NYPD or the crowd. But there was some looting.
An NBC news account made the situation seem far more chaotic than it was by shaking the camera, providing the appearance of chaos. And so on.
More Photos & Video Coming Wednesday
Covering the George Floyd Protests in NYC from the Ground - Not from a Cushy Corporate Media Chopper
The 'crisis' seemed to be more manufactured by the TV news, than by what was actually happening on the streets, which is why I decided I needed to cover this myself. Second hand TV news seems increasingly like garbage news, but before I could make such a claim, I had to see for myself.
Having grown up in a newspaper family, I've been watching the news and presentation of it all of my life, beginning with the Kennedy assassination, which my father made all of us watch as he said it was history in the making. Back then the news was owned by dozens, if not hundreds of independent newspapermen and broadcasters, so like social media, there was a variety of news presentations and you could pick from them.
Today large multi-billion dollar corporations control most of the news we see, and it seems their focus is largely centered around profit driven ratings instead of a fair and balanced presentation of the news. This is why they seem to hype, sensationalize and distort Americans' perceived reality in order to keep them glued to the tube. And the hyping and sensationalizing is not getting better - it's getting worse.
No longer can you turn on the TV to be informed, but rather to be scared, angered and far too often - to become disinformed.
Neighborhood Policing in Queens & NYC
The NYPD Program Helps Build Trust & Stronger Community Relationships
Last night I attended one of the New York Police Department Neighborhood Policing programs. It was held at the Information and Technology High School on 44th Road in LIC beginning at 7 pm. The NYPD Neighborhood Policing program began in 2015 under the leadership of NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton and was rolled out under the leadership of NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill who replaced Bratton in 2016. The program became citywide in 2019.
In the photo at right are the two NYPD Police Officers in charge of the 108th Precinct Neighborhood Policing program - Jorge Ozuna and Andrew Ali.
The NYPD Neighborhood Policing program is designed to build trust and a robust two-way communication mechanism between the New York Police Department and the neighborhoods they serve. To that end the NYPD works to enable the same officers patrol the same neighborhoods at the same times / shifts in order to build a consistent rapport between the officers and the neighborhoods they serve. By building this two-way conversation about community safety and other policing issues, the NYPD becomes more aware of the concerns of neighborhood businesses and residents. Conversely, the folks living in a neighborhood develop a rapport and trust in the NYPD staff who patrol their communities, which enables the residents to collaborate with the police in ensuring community safety.
It makes perfect sense, which causes one to wonder why we're only getting to this place now.
In some of the police journals I scanned a few years back, one of the key concerns of police department professionals, was that generally the only contact / interaction that citizens had with police were largely negative. By this they meant that the police were doing their job of enforcing the laws by: issuing traffic tickets & parking tickets, making theft arrests, or arrests for drunk and disorderly behavior and as well as all sorts of other bad behavior. Thus there was a sort of distrustful relationship developed by many in the community toward the police - who were just doing their job. But for whom many had negative interactions, while few had positive interactions with the police force.
NYPD Neighborhood Policing Program
Enter the Neighborhood Policing program where the police are becoming familiar faces to whom you talk to about issues related to law enforcement within your community. And that is what the program this night was all about. In the photo to your right is a map of the 108th precinct coverage area.
The Neighborhood Policing program began with refreshments at the Information & Technology High School in LIC at 6.30 pm. At 7 pm the police officers in charge - Jorge Ozuna and Andrew Ali - provided a review of the issues discussed at the last meeting and progress made in addressing them. They also highlighted crime patterns the NYPD is seeing in the area, which in this case is the theft of motorcycles by folks driving vans, stopping and grabbing the bikes and taking off. They noted that this is a seasonal crime.
After the review of the notes and follow up from the last meeting, the community had an opportunity to raise issues related to law enforcement affecting them. At this particular meeting and some of the past two meetings [the meetings began in January of 2019] the issues included blocked bike lanes, double parking and abandoned vehicles. The Long Island City precinct, the 108th, is a generally low crime precinct encompassing Long Island City, Sunnyside and Woodside.
NYPD Precincts in Queens North & NYC
In the NYPD Queens North section, there are six precincts. They include the 108th described above, as well as Astoria which is the 114th, Jackson Heights which is the 115th, Corona which is the 110th, Flushing which is the 109th, and Glendale / Ridgewood which is the 104th. Jamaica falls into the NYPD Queens South section and is served by the 105th, 107th and 113th precincts. You can look up the precinct in any borough using the website below.
NYPD Neighborhood Policing Program - Build the Block Website
The two NYPD officers in charge of the meeting, Jorge Ozuna and Andrew Ali, told me that residents seem to like the interaction. They noted that while attendance to these quarterly events is fairly small - in this case just less than a dozen residents - as people become more aware of the program, attendance is likely to increase. Also, given that LIC, Sunnyside and Woodside are fairly low crime neighborhoods, there are fewer pressing issues to take up at these meetings.
The meetings are posted about a month or so in advance. You can find the meeting times and locations - which vary - on their website at www.buildtheblock.nyc. The site is a valuable resource as it also has all sorts of other information about the precinct.
NYC Crime Continues To Drop, Breaking Records
Mayor de Blasio & NYPD Discuss City Safety & Ongoing Improvements
February 7, 2017 / NYC Neighborhoods / NYC Government / Gotham Buzz NYC.
This just came in on the heels of our coverage of the Public Safety discussion below. Mayor de Blasio and NY Police Commissioner O'Neill spoke in the Bronx regarding ongoing efforts and results in improving safety in the city. The following are some of the crime statistics noted in their meeting taken directly out of a press release sent by them.
Chief of Crime Control Strategies Dermot Shea, NYPD: Thank you, Mr. Mayor. Good afternoon, everyone. As you've heard, we have begun a strong start to 2017 in terms of overall crime reduction. Strategies that have been put in place to address repeat offenders, illegal gun possession and gangs are having the desired effect. We're building on the momentum of the last few years.
- So, some of the highlights for crime statistics from this January - overall index crime is down 0.2 percent for the month of January. When you carry it over to this morning, we are now down 2.7 percent in overall index crime in New York City.
- To note - with the overall index crime, January marks the tenth consecutive month of reduced index crime. That's the momentum we've been talking about. Currently, four out of five boroughs in New York City - all but Queens - are down to start the year.
- Homicides - we recorded 20 homicides in January. That's down two from 22. That 20, as the Mayor alluded to, is the lowest January that we have ever recorded going back a minimum into the 1960s.
- Shooting incidents - down 1.7 percent in January. Last January we hit the modern mark with 59 shooting incidents. We came in with 58 this January.
- Talking about momentum again - nine of the last 13 months we've had a reduction in shooting incidents. Nine of the last 13.
- Three months in a row we've had a reduction in shooting incidents in New York City. We have now, when you look at New York City as a whole, we now have 24-hour periods where we do not record a shooting incident in New York City. That kind of thinking was impossible in the not too distant past.
- This is the new normal. We want to build on it and we feel that we will build on it but there's still plenty of work to do.
- Stabbings and slashings for January - down 7.2 percent.
- Robberies - down 7.5 percent. Lowest January robbery number we've seen.
- Felony assaults in New York City - down 5.4 percent.
- Burglaries tied the lowest mark set last year.
- Transit crime - down 1.4 percent.
- And housing crime - not to be outdone - down 1.9 percent.
- Clearly, a wide breath of crime across New York City - property and violent crime, down.
But there is, I alluded to, there is still work to do - three categories we saw increases in January.
- Rape was up 8.9 percent.
- Grand larceny, specifically, credit card related skimming and forging of checks - those two drove grand larcenies. And grand larceny was up for the month of January 4.7 percent.
- And lastly, rounding out the crime totals - stolen vehicles which we have seen drop to unprecedented lows saw an increase of ten cars for January. So, that's 480 versus 470 - a two percent increase.
Commissioner O'Neill: Okay, thanks, Dermot. We'll take your questions.
Question: Do you think it's possible, really to keep driving crime down further at this point? And how could you achieve that?
O'Neill's response was yes, with some added context.
Theater: Unpacking American Identity
Want to Know What it Feel like to be a Minority Living in the USA?
A Black Lives Matter - All Lives Matter - Play
I attended A Black Lives Matter Play performed at the LaGuardia Performing Arts Center in Long Island City. The play is part of a theatrical theme developed by LaGuardia College Performing Arts Center to explore the intricate mosaic of humanity that comprises American society. A wide number of the cultural composite represented in American society may be found in the culturally diverse student body at LaGuardia Community College in Long Island City.
Last year the program focused on exploring Muslim identity in New York City. The intent was to provide a more holistic view of Islamic peoples than portrayed by the American media, whose primary depiction of Islam, a culture representing over a fifth of the world's population, is centered around those working in the field of terrorism. And by American media, it's important to include the Hollywood entertainment industry, which accounts for a huge portion of time people spend absorbing programs factually or fictionally portraying the world around us.
The obsession with the more gruesome events and villainous people of a culture is not uncommon for the American media. One doesn't have to look far to find lopsided depictions of the culture of Italian Americans, through the obsession of those working as mafiosos, of Latin Americans as drug lords, and of African Americans, by depicting them as hoodlums.
Enter LaGuardia Community College Performing Arts Center and 'Unpacking American Identity', which strives to use theater to educate, elucidate and eradicate the inherent biases and popular misconceptions disseminated via the unrelenting sounds, images and lopsided portrayals of the cultures of the members of their student body.