18-year-old Aretha Franklin at her first Columbia recording sessions, New York City, August, 1960.
"An image of an eye is projected onto a building at New York by a skyjector. February 1960."(Getty
The Studio Museum in Harlem and the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture are pleased to announce a major collaboration celebrating the 100th anniversary of the birth of one of America’s greatest writers, Ralph Ellison. On Saturday, March 1, 2014—a century after Ellison’s birth in Oklahoma City—Ellison at 100: Reading Invisible Man will kick off a year of programs and initiatives celebrating the Ellison Centennial.
Ellison at 100: Reading Invisible Man is free and open to all, and is organized by the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture and The Studio Museum in Harlem with the generous support of the Ralph and Fanny Ellison Charitable Trust.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not one of those wise ones who try to put Hollywood down. It just happens that I fit into the cadence and pace better here as far as living goes. New York is vital, above all fertile. - James Dean (photographed by Dennis Stock)
Two emergency actions to stop NYC’s homeless purge on trains
February 21, 2014We knew this was coming - NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton is rolling out his first major anti-homeless policing initiative. And we’re ready to fight back. And we need your help.DNAInfo is reporting that at 3AM on Monday, the City will start purging sleeping homeless people from the subways, stopping trains at two stations to force people off and into a shelter or a hospital. But the NYPD will be on hand, presumably to arrest people who refuse to go. It’s framed as an MTA response to the increased volume of homeless people during this bitter cold winter, but this is a police action, pure and simple. Homeless people who ride the trains have already assessed and rejected the shelter and the hospital as alternative options.Our main concerns are:
- Folks will be profiled as homeless and told to leave the trains after they’ve paid their fare
- Folks will be told to leave the train if they are homeless regardless if they’ve been on the train for 15 minutes or 15 days. It isn’t against the law to be riding a subway while homeless!
- Besides being a misguided, broken windows strategy, this is a clear violation of the newly-passed Community Safety Act, and its ban on profiling based on “housing status” or perceived homelessness.
- While it is problematic that there is a huge increase in homelessness in NYC policing is not the solution, housing is.
Some of our members have already written powerful responses, captured here on our blog. But statements are not enough.
On Sunday, February 23rd, we’ll gather at NYPD headquarters to hold a press conference condemning this blatant violation of our rights.
3PM, Sunday February 23rd
1 Police Plaza (4/5/6 train to Brooklyn Bridge/City Hall; behind the Municipal Building)And then at 3AM, when the MTA is scheduled to roll out this new policy, we’ll be on hand with legal observers to monitor the enforcement and ensure no ones rights are violated!3AM, Monday February 24th
Jamaica Center Subway Station, E PlatformWTC Subway Station, E PlatformWe really really need your help, at either or both of these important actions. We knew that when Bratton returned as NYPD commissioner, bad policing was on its way - but if we fight back fast and hard, we can show him that a lot has changed in New York City since he’s been away, and folks won’t stand for profiling of any kind!
In news related to NYC’s homelessness crisis & deplorable shelter system, 400 children & their families will be removed from two city shelters - Auburn in Brooklyn & Catherine Street in Manhattan - for more than 400 violations, including “vermin, mold, lead exposure, an inoperable fire safety system, insufficient child care and the presence of sexual predators, among them, a caseworker.”
Disgusting shelter conditions, high rates of sexual abuse, violence, & pure bureaucratic bullshit people have to deal with when entering the shelter system are exactly why there are so many street homeless people & subway sleepers here. Now people will be kicked out of the only warm (& relatively safe) shelter they can find in the city.
The homeless population in New York City includes more than 52,000 people, including 22,000 youth.
Signal boost for tomorrow’s action:
3PM, Sunday February 23rd
1 Police Plaza (4/5/6 train to Brooklyn Bridge/City Hall; behind the Municipal Building)
+ News update: MTA has announced it will not help NYPD remove homeless people who are sleeping on trains on Monday morning.