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What to Make of Heroin Deaths

BY NATHAN RILEY | Philip Seymour Hoffman’s end was no anomaly. Overdose deaths have risen dramatically in New York City and the nation. He is one among thousands. The fact that he was the object of critical accolades was also not unusual. Hoffman was a high-performing heroin user — Charlie Parker, Billie Holiday, John Belushi, and […]

A Canadian Breakthrough on Sex Work Sanctions and Safety

BY NATHAN RILEY | In a unanimous ruling, the Supreme Court of Canada has decriminalized prostitution, making that nation the second to go this route. The court’s December 20 decision relied heavily on social science data introduced into evidence that found the safety of sex workers is best protected by allowing them to conduct business in […]

From Bratton, A New Direction Needed

BY NATHAN RILEY | For Bill de Blasio and William Bratton’s NYPD to make a clean break with the troubled recent past, there must be a fundamental redefinition of the crime problem in New York City. No doubt due in large measure to the massive focus on the abuses of stop and frisk, Commissioner Ray Kelly, […]

De Blasio’s Progressive Values Showing Teflon Strength

BY NATHAN RILEY | Bill de Blasio is showing a remarkable immunity to charges he is too far to the left. In part, his success can be traced to Occupy Wall Street, which put income redistribution and the progressive economics the Democratic mayoral nominee emphasizes on the political map. Also, Joe Lhota, the Republican candidate, is […]

A New Script for Law and Order?

BY NATHAN RILEY | Anyone following the stop and frisk story knew that Judge Shira Scheindlin would curb the practice, but the reaction among Republican mayoral hopefuls and their supporters was noteworthy. Glee is too strong a word for it, but GOP boosters clearly believe the Democrats have walked into a trap with their frequent criticism […]

Bradley Manning and the State of Our Republic

BY NATHAN RILEY | Bradley Manning is an American hero who against great odds and without regard to his personal safety defied US secrecy laws. In recent months, his actions have increasingly been viewed in a more favorable light. By the end of July, in a sudden change of direction, Congress investigated the National Security Agency […]

All the World’s A Stage

BY NATHAN RILEY | Homeless LGBT youth, for all the challenges they face, are beginning to organize as never before, in recent years learning about lobbying for the services and housing they need by dramatizing their plight and enlisting allies in their cause. And through the good work of the Theater of the Oppressed NYC, drama […]

Mayor’s Race Gets More Complicated, But Advantage is Still Quin

BY NATHAN RILEY | Chris Quinn remains the frontrunner in the race for mayor, but she is not likely to be win the Democratic nomination flat out in the September 10 primary election. The City Council speaker’s leg up among her party’s field has been narrowing, but she had enjoyed such a large lead that this […]

Compassion and a Mayoral Campaign that Could Put a Crimp In It

BY NATHAN RILEY | With a Democratic mayor, New York City’s government would be more compassionate than the business-like regime of Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Just how far this sympathy should extend caused the biggest division among the candidates at the March 20 LGBT mayoral forum at Baruch College. Chris Quinn, the speaker of the City Council […]

The Lessons of Benedict — And Why They Won’t Be Learned

BY NATHAN RILEY | Pope Benedict XVI is leaving defeated, with the Catholic Church’s problems unresolved. Bracketing the Pope’s retirement were votes approving marriage equality in France and Great Britain. The rejection of the Church’s teaching, said the Tablet, a British Catholic newspaper, “undermined [its] authority” in the global dialogue on gay rights. Staunchly defending traditional […]

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