Written by Maryann Sinclair Slutsky Friday, 18 January 2013 00:00
Be Able To Agree?
Election Day should have marked an end to some of the shouting that’s taken hold of our politics. However, with the fiscal cliff crisis in Washington only narrowly averted, and more legislative brinksmanship apparently on the way, that may have been too much to hope for.
However, there is one thing on which all sides should be able to agree: Common sense on immigration issues.
There’s popular support for that, of course. A common theme between President Obama and those of so many others up and down the ballot was that people who support fair and commonsense solutions to fixing our broken immigration system tended to do very well.
It’s clear that immigrant voters played a huge role in re-electing the President. And immigration played a huge role in mobilizing the Latino and immigrant vote, in part due to unprecedented voter mobilization work by the labor movement, community groups and ethnic communities.
But it wasn’t just candidates who won on the issue. The state of Maryland put their own version of the Dream Act on the ballot, to allow young immigrants who graduate from high school and know America as their home to pay in-state tuition at Maryland’s colleges. Voters in Maryland resoundingly rejected attacks on immigrants and resoundingly voted for a basic and needed immigration reform. Immigration solutions are smart politics. Marylanders can soon expect to discover that it’s smart policy, too, as the state begins to retain more of its most talented high school graduates and see them get to work creating jobs.
And it’s clear that this dynamic will get stronger over time. The current generation of young voters – millennials – are the most diverse voting group in American history. And the generation rising just behind them are even more diverse.
In Nassau County and across America, immigration issues present an opportunity for leaders willing to take them seriously, and a challenge for politicians at risk of being left behind.
President Obama apparently recognized this when he explicitly called out immigration reform as part of his second-term agenda in his election night remarks. So have a number of Republicans, who have begun to call for a change in the party’s recent hard-line stance against immigration reform.
That’s welcome news. But now comes the need to get to work. Working our way towards immigration solutions that work for native and immigrant Long Islanders alike is a challenge too big to leave to one party. Let’s hope, for once, that the folks in Washington can agree.
Maryann Sinclair Slutsky is the executive director of Long Island Wins, a communications organization promoting commonsense policy solutions to local immigration issues. longislandwins.com.
Friday, 07 March 2014 00:00
On Feb. 27, parents in the Levittown, East Meadow, Massapequa and Farmingdale school districts came together for an informal pannel discussion on the New York State Education Department and the implementation of the state Common Core Learning Standards. Panelists included New York State Assemblyman Thomas McKevitt, Jeanette Deutermann of the Long Island Opt Out Facebook page, and former public school teacher David Greene, who came to the Farmingdale Public Library to talk with local parents about key concerns and questions with the curriculum.
Outspoken parent and founder of the Long Island Opt Out movement, Deutermann, delved into some of the factors behind what led to the state’s adoption of the Common Core, and how the state education department cites High School graduation rates as its reasoning behind the curriculum.
Thursday, 06 March 2014 09:33
The iPad, the laptop, the smartphone; everyday instruments to many people all throughout the world, but to someone just being indoctrinated into the world of cutting-edge technology these tools might seem rather daunting. Unless there is a patient hand guiding the way.
Those guides were at the Massapequa Public Library’s Bar Harbour branch recently, where they offered a session of their ongoing Electronic Device Demonstration and Tutoring series, where community teenagers donate their time to turn tech-deficient adults into masters of the digital domain; free of charge and all within the span of one hour or less.
Thursday, 06 March 2014 09:47
One of Major League Soccer’s top front office executives has many fond memories of growing up in the Long Island Junior Soccer League (LIJSL). Bill Manning, the President of Western Conference champion Real Salt Lake and the club’s field, Rio Tinto Stadium, played for the LIJSL Select Team from 1979 to ‘83 as well as the Massapequa Soccer Club from 1972 to ‘83.
Manning’s Massapequa teams had virtually the same players from Under-10 to Under-19, but kept changing their name depending on who their coach was. He played for the Massapequa Flying Dutchmen (coached by Kurt Knoblauch), the Massapequa Bugs (Dick Roche), the Massapequa Cosmos (Jerry Lyons) and the Massapequa Bulls (coached by his father, also named Bill Manning). The Bulls might have lost in the Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association (ENYYSA) State Open Cup finals to B/W Gottschee in overtime in 1983, but his teams won the LIJSL division championship in 1974, ‘76 and ‘79 plus the Long Island Cup in 1980 and ‘83.
Thursday, 27 February 2014 10:58
If the games were played on paper, Massapequa would’ve had no shot. The Chiefs faced a tall order last week playing Elmont, which boasted a 12-3 record and four premier scorers. They gave a tremendous effort, but ultimately had their season cut short, 69-62, despite Alex Cosenza leading the scoring with 29 points.
“I can’t ask for anything else from these guys,” said Head Coach Matt Voigt. “I am so proud of them. I applaud their efforts,”