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–The Miami Urban Future Initiative is a think tank that is 100% devoted to researching how to make South Florida better.
–A joint venture between FIU, the Knight Foundation and the Creative Class Group, it is connected to well known urbanist Richard Florida.
–The group produces white papers on topics relating to growth and development in the region.
–They consider “Miami” to be Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties.
–Operating under the theory that politicians don’t have a longterm view of the future, the group is trying to create data that can lead to better policy outcomes.
–It is run by Chris Caines- a former interim director of the Knight Foundation’s Miami Program and Michael Aquino, a Miami native who grew up in Wynwood before it was gentrified.
–The group hosts live events that are free to attend.
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About the AuthorRich Robinson is the CEO and publisher of Rise News. He is also a journalist and a native of Miami. Robinson graduated from the University of Alabama and can be followed on Twitter @RichRobMiami.
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Snarky Obama Bashes Republicans For Weakness In Handling CNBC Debate, Says They Couldn’t Deal With PutinBy Staff Report
President Barack Obama made fun of the Republican candidates for President for their complaining over perceived unfairness in the last GOP primary debate hosted by CNBC.
“Every one of these candidates says, ‘Obama’s weak, Putin’s kicking sand in his face. When I talk to Putin, he’s going to straighten out,'” Obama said to a group of Democratic Party supporters at a fundraiser in New York City Monday. “And then it turns out, they can’t handle a bunch of CNBC moderators. If you can’t handle those guys, I don’t think the Chinese and the Russians are going to be too worried about you.”
Obama also used humor to defend his record in numerous area including on climate change where he said that opposition to climate science would be like ignoring the advice of 99 out of 100 doctors.
WATCH: Snarky Obama attacks GOP over “weakness” (Video: NBC News)
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RISE Reporter “Bumps” Into Unexpected Demonstration At Thai Consulate in Admiralty After Wong’s DeportationBy Contributor
By Raphael Blet
Around a hundred protesters marched to the Thai consulate, prompting the Thai government to explain Joshua Wong’s deportation.
On Wednesday afternoon, about one-hundred protesters marched to Fairmont House in Admiralty, where the Thai consulate is located.
The protesters attempted to enter the office building to reach the consulate but were blocked by the police and security guards who cordoned the building’s main lobby.
Protesters demanded Thailand’s government some explanations on Joshua Wong’s detention and removal from the country.
Amongst the protesters were Demosistō members, legislators Leung Kwok-hung (Long Hair), Raymond Chan, Fernando Cheung and the newly elected Eddie Chu.
Protesters were later able to handle petitions to representatives from the delegation.
Joshua Wong was due to give a speech at Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok. He was invited by local students activists to commemorate the the fortieth anniversary of the Thammasat University massacre.
After spending hours being detained at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi airport, Wong arrived in Hong Kong during the evening.
While it is too early to determine the official reason behind Wong’s detention, a Thai immigration officer reportedly said that Wong was blacklisted ‘on Beijing’s request’. However, the Thai government denied the officer’s allegations.
Before departing for Bangkok where he is due to head a delegation promoting Hong Kong’s legal profession, Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen promised to use this opportunity get more information from the Thai authorities and Chinese government.
Speaking to the press, Wong said that he was prepared to such a situation. Last year, Wong was barred from entering Malaysia and returned to Hong Kong on the same plane.
Hong Kong citizens visiting Thailand are not required to hold visas prior to their arrivals.
Hong Kong residents who need consular help abroad can contact the Assistance to Hong Kong Residents 24-Hour Hotline (+852) 1868.
This is a developing story. Stay with RISE NEWS.
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By Mariam Ansar
For the reader, whether partial to the Young Adult genre or not, John Green’s name is a familiar one.
Recognizable film titles like The Fault In Our Stars and more recently, Paper Towns are easy sentimental watches for many, based on Green’s meandering narratives of young people juggling life-threatening diseases, big swelling crushes on the girl next door, and generally attempting to survive life with all the emotions of your common teenager.
Green’s success as a writer is one which has enabled him to have two of his books translated to film already, and with another prospectively in the works, many now place him as the face of Young Adult literature.
Whether it’s the realism that is seen as relatable in his writing, or the fact that his fame partly derives from Green’s Internet presence, creating educational videos with his brother under the name Vlogbrothers, there’s no getting around the fact that John Green’s name is one which is either greeted with contempt, or adoration.
Teenagers have no qualms listing Green alongside J.K Rowling, Suzanne Collins, and Stephenie Meyer. While his books are not so widely renowned as the Harry Potter series, The Hunger Games, or The Twilight Saga- some see this as indicative of substance.
Green’s books feature stand-out lines readers of his find relatable and inspiring at the same time. To search his name on any social media source is to come face to face with this outpour. But exactly what is it about this man’s writing which has propelled him to book-to-film fame? To be hailed as a permanent, important member of the Young Adult genre?
Before and alongside Green’s writing, chock-full of painful love, identity crises and existential doubts that plague his intelligent-pretentious-boy-protagonists, there existed, and exists, a treasure trove of Young Adult books and writers who delve into those exact same feelings.
Dessen was given one shot at the silver screen when two of her novels were combined to produce the 2003 rom-com How To Deal.
Rosoff’s How I Live Now, a staple of formative reading experiences as a recurrent feature in classroom book collections and libraries, took 9 years to reach the big screen.
“It is no surprise that the Young Adult genre is dominated by women writers. To place Green on a pedestal then, is to reinforce the notion that the creative white male voice is the most important.”
This isn’t to say that the measure of a book’s success, the integration of it as a frontrunner of the Young Adult genre, relies on whether it has been converted into a film or not. It is merely significant to note exactly the size of Green’s cultural impact and how the cinematic treatment of his books bookends this. The truth is, Green’s writing being centralised as the most prominent of the Young Adult genre in the minds of teenagers and teachers feels unfair, and a little sexist.
After the release of The Fault In Our Stars in 2014, The Wall Street Journal was happy to congratulate Green in “ushering in a new golden era for contemporary, realistic, literary teen fiction following more than a decade of dominance by books about young wizards, sparkly vampires and dystopia.“
Now that Paper Towns is out and talks on Looking For Alaska’s screen-time are rumoured, that ‘new golden era’ looks to be continuing. But actually, there is nothing new about this golden era. Where book editors are looking for ‘contemporary realism’, relatable characters after what some call ‘the John Green effect’, writers of important teenage discourse, Anderson’s Speak, Dessen’s Dreamland, Blume’s entire track record, are shoved to the background, ignored despite their effort to communicate important experiences like body issues, mental illness, sexual and physical abuse, alongside relatable characters. Contemporary realism at its ignored best.
It is unfair to also argue that the genre, as diverse as it is, is only valuable if it is solely realistic. Books about young wizards, sparkly vampires and dystopia do not feature somehow superficial sentiments if the character in goofy infatuation also happens to wield a wand or if the girl struggling to save the life she knows is living in a dystopia which, actually, may not be so dystopian depending on which part of the world one lives in. To take this view of the Young Adult genre is to erase the significant triumphs of many books and their effects on the consciousness of young people.
“crucially, YA books present the teenage perspective in a fundamentally uncritical way.”
It is this perspective which is truly indicative of the Young Adult genre and which deserves to be lauded, whether it is by Green or by his contemporaries.
Alongside those I have mentioned previously, Meg Cabot, Malorie Blackman, Lois Lowry, and many more equally deserve to be congratulated for well-written analyses of the teenage experience, of teenage emotion, whether they have the Internet, book agents, and Hollywood idolizing them or not.
It is no surprise that the Young Adult genre is dominated by women writers. To place Green on a pedestal then, is to reinforce the notion that the creative white male voice is the most important.
It is to, as literary tradition makes the mistake of doing and despite both their valued contributions to literature, cast aside Austen’s voice for Salinger’s. To portray the male narrative as a bildungsroman with all the integrity we afford men speaking and to cast off the female narrative as YA self-satisfying trash, just one part of a much bigger pile.
Green himself seems to be aware of the issues surrounding discourse on the genre. He said the following on his Youtube show, as quoted by The Atlantic:
“From a pop culture perspective, or a general media perspective, there can only be one thing…. There can only be paranormal romance, there can only be dystopia, or now, there can only be The Fault in Our Stars. But it’s not the truth, that isn’t the way the actual world of YA books looks or has ever looked.
“To me, the real story of young adult literature is not actually about whatever the big cultural book of the moment is. The real story of young adult literature is that more than a thousand books are read by at least ten thousand teenagers a year, that we have incredible breadth, that we have great dystopia and great fantasy, great sci-fi, great mystery, great romances, and all of that stuff can live together and be in conversation because they all – we all – share the same shelf.”
So it is important to recognize that the general media perspective is not the one we should consistently place value in. When it comes to something as immersive, as personal, as the reading experience, it may be beneficial to pay attention to the reading trends, but it is a significant move to take stock of the whole shelf.
It is the shelf which is the most important feature of a teenager’s love of literature, and if that literature is mostly of the YA genre, it may feature John Green’s writing- and may also feature the writing of many, many others.
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