News Views

The opinions and information expressed through News Views posts are solely those of the individual authors and not representative of NCCJ’s overall stance on related issues unless specified. Any information presented as fact could entail inaccuracies or be incomplete. We encourage open discussion through our blog, and welcome respectful responses from everyone.

Gender-Neutral Bathrooms: Some Ways to Meet Everyone's Needs

Wed, 05/04/2016 - 11:10am -- [email protected]
By Amanda Siskind - NCCJ Contributor


On October 24th, 2013, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter signed into law legislation that requires all new or renovated city-owned buildings to have gender neutral bathrooms. The number and location of these bathrooms is dependent on how the building is used. The new law does not mandate any change in the current bathrooms of any buildings unless they are legislated.

The law has not passed without controversy. The most common concerns are comfort and safety. Having gender neutral bathrooms, it is said, will make many people who are now forced to use the bathroom with people of other genders uncomfortable, and will increase verbal harassment or even physical assault (these hypothetical scenarios often place women as the victims) in these bathrooms.

Common Core and Learning Ability

Thu, 12/18/2014 - 9:24am -- [email protected]

            I will assume many people reading this are familiar with the Common Core Initiative. It is set of rigorous learning standards given to students in over 45 states, including Connecticut. I, an 11th grader in West Hartford, obviously have a personal connection to the subject. It just so happens that I am on the autism spectrum, which makes learning and school work more complicated for me.

Response to Ferguson

Tue, 12/09/2014 - 1:18pm -- [email protected]

I sit here trying to figure out how to respond to the recent incidents of police violence against black boys and men and I’m finding it challenging.  I find it challenging because of my feelings of anger, as well as feelings of hopelessness for change.  However, I have been doing social justice work all my adult life and I have seen change and I need to believe, that we, as a people, can do better if we understand how we got here.  So this is my attempt as well as my pledge to do my part to make a difference. 

A Night at the Oscars: Systems of Representation, and Their Failure for the Rest of Us

Mon, 03/17/2014 - 11:02am -- [email protected]

By Justin Kilian - NCCJ Intern


The Oscars – A pinnacle in America’s Hollywood culture. It’s a fine night! The best of the best, our living definitions of success and beauty are sculpted perfectly for the evening, hair just right, swathed in coveted designer couture, socially and cosmetically putting their best face forward. We love it. More than half the country tunes in for the Oscars every year in hopes of their favorite actor going home with the gold, usually over hors d’oeuvres and cocktail parties.

Why 12 Years a Slave was Oscar-nominated and Fruitvale Station was Not — White Guilt

Wed, 02/19/2014 - 9:36am -- [email protected]
By Christopher Peck - NCCJ Contributor


As you may have noticed due to all the self-congratulatory speeches and smugness in the air, it is awards season! The Academy Award nominations were announced on January 16 by Thor (Chris Hemsworth) and there weren’t many surprises, except for a few regretful snubs. One film that confronted racism in an unflinching and emotionally resonant way, 12 Years a Slave, earned nine Academy Award nominations, including Best Motion Picture. Another such film, Fruitvale Station, despite memorable performances by Michael B. Jordan and Octavia Spencer and the amazing directorial/screenwriting debut by Ryan Coogler, was shut out completely.

The Victimization of Richard Sherman – Let’s talk about Masculinity and Race in Football

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 1:39pm -- Anonymous (not verified)
By M’Liss DeWald - NCCJ, Youth Program Specialist

Minutes after Richard Sherman made the amazing final play during the 2014 NFL’s NFC Championship game, he was immediately questioned about it. Though his response—as everyone now has heard over and over—was less than “professional,” the response from the public and the zeal with which the media has gone after Sherman is appalling. One could hear the excitement, pride and adrenaline in Sherman’s response. And for the public to respond with mostly race and class stereotypes directed at him is disturbing and dehumanizing.

A White House Task Force and its Rape Culture enemy

Mon, 02/03/2014 - 5:16pm -- Anonymous (not verified)

By Christopher Peck - NCCJ Contributor


President Obama addressed the nation in his weekly video on Saturday to talk about his new initiative—The White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault. His initiative started over a year ago when he gave the Pentagon a mandate to reduce the astronomical number of rapes occurring in the military. After he wasn’t satisfied with their progress (16,500 rapes were reported last year), he gathered his cabinet members and senior advisers to discuss what measures had been already taken and should be undertaken to address sexual assaults in society at-large, with a renewed focus on another vulnerable community: women attending college.


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