News and Announcements

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Presidential Primary Debate Watch Party!

Join us for the second night of the Democratic Party Primary Debate Watch Party!

Come cheer or jeer the crowded field of ten candidates who will take the stage on the second night of the first televised debate for the 2020 election! We'll play political bingo and have pre-debate social gathering. It's gonna be a long primary season, but this debate is sure to be a doozy!

There's no fee to attend this event and you can purchase food and / or drinks on your own tab.

Here's the proposed schedule:
7pm: the doors open
7pm to 9pm: pre-debate social gathering
9pm to 11pm: watch the televised debate!

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IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: The NYCPF is a nonpartisan organization. As such, we do not promote, endorse, or advocate on behalf of any particular candidates, parties, issues or causes. Rather, our aim is to foster independent, critical thinking by the exchange of views and ideas at the highest level of intellectual rigor.

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The Tiananmen Square Massacre of 1989 . . . a 30-year lookback

Thirty years ago, on this month, the massive student protests in Beijing resulted in a declaration of marshal law and a military crackdown by the Communist Regime -- later to be remembered as the Tiananmen Square Massacre, which resulted in deaths of thousands.

As we look back at this watershed moment in history, we'll discuss the following:

- The post-Cultural Revolution period reforms giving rise to demand for more reforms.

- China's tensions and alliances with other Nations during the Cold War, and how they influenced the protestors' demands.

- The impetus giving rise to the April 1989 protests and the protestors' momentum in May 1989.

- The role of domestic and international media in covering the protests, as well as the international reaction.

- The Communist regime's declaration of marshal law.

- The death toll from the massacre and the government's systematic cover up in a concerted misinformation campaign.

- The continuing censorship and oppression by the Communist Party on the mainland.

- The recent extradition bill proposed for residents of Hong Kong and the "Yellow Umbrella" protests of 2014 -- how they were influenced by the Tiananmen Square protests.

- FINALLY, the legacy of Tiananmen Square in the context of "modern" China.

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Live Oxford Debate: "Economic inequality is unjust and harmful."

Come watch a live debate on the contentious topic of "Economic Inequality."

Justin (https://www.meetup.com/NYC-Politics/members/225541364/) and Karina (https://www.meetup.com/NYC-Politics/members/227895669/) will team up against Chuck (https://www.meetup.com/NYC-Politics/members/80554492/) and Rob (https://www.meetup.com/NYC-Politics/members/191279019/) to engage in a civil and thoughtful debate on this topic.

Here's the final debate resolution:
"Economic inequality is unjust and harmful."

The debate will be in an "Oxford-style" format (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Debate#Oxford-style_debating).

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The event schedule:

6:00 -- doors open
6:15 -- introduction by the moderator
6:30 to 8:00 -- the debate!
8:00 to 8:15 -- event wrap-up

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The U.N. Partition Plan for Palestine of 1947 (Law, History, and Politics)

For this meeting, we'll discuss:

1) The U.N. Partition Plan for Palestine (c. 1947).

2) The creation of the State of Israel.

To that end, we'll discuss and analyze each of its three distinct components: Law, History and Politics.

I. Law
The U.N. Resolution 181 (III)
(https://unispal.un.org/DPA/DPR/unispal.nsf/0/7F0AF2BD897689B785256C33006...)

II. History
- A very brief historical overview of the region in the late 19th and early 20th Centuries.
- The displacement and exodus of 700,000 Palestinian Arabs from their homes.

III. Politics
How Zionism and Palestinian Nationalism developed into a modern political force -- and thereby creating tensions that formed obstacles for a peaceful resolution.

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Ralph S. will give a short presentation and will moderate this discussion. There is a *bonus* topic added -- we'll spend the final 30 minutes of the meeting discussing the outcome of the recent Israeli election results.

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More about LHP:

The LHP series explore the intersections of its namesake -- an in-depth study of a particular law, court decision, or a legal precedent that shaped the political forces and its historical ramifications.

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A preview of the 2020 U.S. Presidential Elections

As we begin to enter yet another busy Presidential Election cycle, we'll preview what's ahead in this crowded field of candidates vying to unseat President Trump.

We'll do a candidate-by-candidate analysis and comparison on the proposed SUBSTANTIVE POLICIES -- with less emphasis on platitudes, media hype, "scandals" and the cumulative fundraising status.

One thing's for sure -- 2020 will be yet another memorable (and quite possibly historic) Election!

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IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: The NYCPF is a nonpartisan organization. As such, we do not promote, endorse, or advocate on behalf of any particular candidates, parties, issues or causes. Rather, our aim is to foster independent, critical thinking by the exchange of views and ideas at the highest level of intellectual rigor.

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NOTE: the Primary Debate watch party will take place on June 24th. Stay tuned for details!

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Black Conservatism (#Blexit, #Walkaway) (Movement Politics, Part 7)

The "Movement Politics" series explore various social movements, political forces, and coalitions that aim to bring about certain political changes, reforms or outcomes in furtherance of advancing a particular ideology.

Our aim is to explore these movements or groups, in depth, without the veneer of tribalistic hyperpartisan rhetoric. As such, the discussions will be based on factual evidence, coupled with sound reasoning and any persuasion at the highest level of intellectual rigor.

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For this meeting, we'll discuss and evaluate the state of Black Conservatism in the U.S. in 2019. To that end, we'll discuss and explore the following themes as they related to Black Conservatism:

- The early origins and notable figures (e.g., Booker T. Washington).

- Its role during Reconstruction.

- The influence and dominance of Liberalism leading up to and including the Civil Rights era.

- How certain recent political phenomena contributed to further defining the Movement (e.g., the Obama Presidency and Black Lives Matter).

- The rapid role of pervasiveness of identity politics and political correctness in shaping the Movement.

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Formation of UN + Univ. Declaration of Human Rights (Law, History & Politics)

For this meeting, we'll discuss:

1) The founding of the United Nations; and

2) The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (circa Dec. 1948)

To that end, we'll discuss and analyze each of its three distinct components: Law, History and Politics.

The Premise: In the previous episode of LHP (Season Two), WWII had just ended. Various international tribunals were formed, adjudicating the "crimes against humanity." The rise and fall of "ultra-nationalism" during the early part of the 20th Century has now given way to grand reconstruction efforts (i.e., Marshal Plan and the formation of the UN).

Here are the discussion topics for this meeting:

I. Law

- The Charter of the United Nations
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charter_of_the_United_Nations

- The Universal Declaration of Human Rights
http://www.un.org/en/universal-declaration-human-rights/

- Conflict of Laws vs. customary international law.

II. History

- Earlier efforts and failures in coalescing intergovernmental organizations, such as the League of Nations.

- A very brief historical summary of the outcome of WWII.

III. Politics

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Live Debate: "Capitalism is the most morally superior political + social system."

Come watch a live debate on the contentious topic of "Capitalism."

Chuck (https://www.meetup.com/NYC-Politics/members/80554492/) and Rob (https://www.meetup.com/NYC-Politics/members/191279019/) will team up against Erica (https://www.meetup.com/NYC-Politics/members/263655776/) and Derek (https://www.meetup.com/debateclub-6/members/4404967/) to engage in a civil and thoughtful debate on this topic.

Here's the final debate resolution:
"Capitalism is the most morally superior political and social system."

The debate will be in an "Oxford-style" format (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Debate#Oxford-style_debating).

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The event schedule:

6:00 -- doors open
6:15 -- introduction by the moderator
6:30 to 8:00 -- the debate!
8:00 to 8:15 -- event wrap-up

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Political Thinkers: Noam Chomsky

We'll continue the "Political Thinkers" series. It critically examines the political and ideological viewpoints of prominent public figures, considered to be tremendously influential as a trendsetter.

Here, the goal is to discuss fresh viewpoints -- some of which might be "unconventional" in nature -- in analyzing its applicability in our ever-increasingly complex society. Just like every issue that our group discusses, we examine and evaluate it with an independent and critical lens, at the highest level of intellectual rigor.

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For this discussion, we'll evaluate the legacy and the work of Noam Chomsky.

To that end, we'll explore the following questions:

- What are the deep-rooted philosophical basis for his theories and views?

- What makes his appeal so controversial?

- Have his views and positions always remained intellectually consistent?

- What do his rise to popularity indicate about the cultural or political climate of his time period?

We will then examine Chomsky's theories and key policy matters, including:

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Current Events Forum: Bye Bye Amazon HQ2, Mueller Report, and New Zealand

As we wrap up another busy month, we'll take a look back at the important events and stories unfolding in our City, Nation and around the world.

▨ The City: As Amazon's plans for its HQ2 in Queens has reversed its course (for now), we'll look at the fallout. Was it a net positive or negative for New Yorkers? Who bears the responsibility, if any , for this abrupt reversal?

▨ The Nation: Now that the Special Counsel Mueller's investigation into the Russia Probe has now finally concluded, we'll have our VERY FIRST (and probably the only) discussion on the outcome of the findings . . . pending the release of the report from the Attorney General's office.

▨ The World: As New Zealand is still mourning over the mosque killings, we'll discuss the larger ramifications, if any, of this incident, including: 1) the government of New Zealand's swift response in proposing restrictive changes to gun laws; 2) the apparent rise in hate crimes and rampant Islamophobia in some corners of the world; and 3) the role of social media and the press in covering this event.

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