Thursday, September 9


CUNY Closes Applications Early

By Bill Crain

The City University stopped accepting new freshmen applications for the current semester
on May 8—earlier than anyone can remember. The reason, CUNY’s central administration
said, was that enrollment had grown too large. At a June hearing called by the New York City
Council’s Higher Education Committee, CUNY administrators estimated that about 2,600
applicants would be considered too late. Perhaps some of them would be given preference in
future semesters, but this wasn’t made clear.

Ydanis Rodriguez, the chair of the Council Committee (and a former CCNY student), urged
CUNY to find seats for the Fall semester. But the CUNY administration didn’t seem very

The administrators’ main focus at the hearing was not large enrollments, but the generally
weaker credentials of later applicants. As I listened, I wondered if the University was using the
enrollment problem as a new way of restricting admission to well prepared students—a concern I
raised when I had a chance to speak. CUNY’s greatness hasn’t come from limiting admission to
those students who had the benefit of a fine preparation for college. It has come from extending
opportunities to those students who were forced to attend underfunded, overcrowded schools that
couldn’t provide this preparation. It has given thousands such students their first real chance in
Must CUNY cap enrollments? Or can it handle growing enrollments? I believe it can handle
them. It can find the space, often in the evenings, and it can hire more part-time instructors. I
realize that many of my colleagues oppose an increase in part-time instructional staff. They
point out that students already have difficulty finding instructors because so many are teaching
part time. My colleagues also point out that a high proportion of part-time faculty members
can lower an institution’s prestige. However, part-time instructors are often excellent teachers.
In any case, we must think about our priorities. Our highest priority should be our mission of
opening doors as widely as possible—not shutting them.

True, the “late” applicants aren’t actually denied admission. Their opportunities are simply
postponed. But what are the emotional effects? I am reminded of Langston Hughes’s poem, “A
Dream Deferred.” Deferring people’s dreams can be corrosive.

Bill Crain is a Professor of Psychology at The College.


Dear Vogue!Fun, Eclectic, and Useful Tips from the Teenage
Fashion Guru! This is an autobiographical letter to Vogue Editor-
at-Large André Leon Talley.
My name is Sparkle Sterling and when it comes to fashion I am a COBRA! I have what it takes to work for you. I’m a style columnist for my amazing college newspaper The Paper because I’m addicted to fashion! I'm a film/journalism major at The City College of New York, and a full-time hipster. I've appeared in many newspapers, fashion blogs and magazines because of my unique, classic-yet-edgy sense of style. I've been involved with the fashion industry in one way or another since age four. Now I'm 19 years old, I'm Black and I know more about fashion than any of my peers.
I've modeled my fashion after Hollywood starlets and Old Hollywood divas, along with the help of Anna Wintour, and Coco Chanel. I've attended every New York Fashion Week since moving to the city. I show up in my own designer duds and cameras flock to my
wardrobe as if I were Kate Moss. I blew Anna Sui away with my eloquence when I greeted her with, "Ahhh... the woman that never reveals her age." I broke up a crowd full of lushes at Bergdorf's Fashion’s Night Out just to tell Peter Som that sailor pants look stunning on me and that he should make more. “But next time with red leather piping going down the side to give it some more edge!” He laughed and replied, "You are very charming" then gave me huge hug. He loved my knowledge of his clothes – even his previous clothing lines.

If I came to Vogue for an interview, I know I would blow you away with my knowledge of fashion, film, and music. Having me in your corner would only add to your fierceness as Editor-at-Large (a little ego stroking), and I would bring youthful insight to the table. Another thing you'll like about me is that I'm not a "yes" girl. I'm real, honest, and down to earth, I know when to humble myself yet I'm assertive and I think fast on my feet. For instance, at Bergdorf’s Fashion’s Night Out I got an oil spot on my chiffon dress and I was not meeting you like that! So I went to the Chanel section and robbed a mannequin of its decorative chiffon flower (sorry Karl), hiked the corner of my dress up, pinned it, and the whole night everyone asked me where I got it! Even you eyed it. I'm ready to do whatever it takes to be the best employee Vogue has ever had! I'd work as an unpaid intern, fetch coffee, and be sure not to wear stockings around Anna. I'll hold your turban while contributing young, fresh, and innovative ideas. I can note-take, clean showrooms, and sew – the works! I can write well, both structurally and creatively. I would shine in any field but this is the one I want to shine in. I've spent many grueling hours in showrooms, so I'm familiar with how it works. I'm amazing at putting together ensembles, concepts, and photo shoots. I'm the 19-year old Fashion Guru! I'm extremely outgoing and fun to be around. I'm punctual and efficient. I landed a fashion column my first week as a freshman by convincing the editor that I was the Carrie Bradshaw of my generation. She recruited me on the subway without even knowing I could write! The interesting thing is that not only do girls my age look to me for fashion and shopping advice, but middle-aged women who attend my college as well. I receive emails all of the time from older women asking about inexpensive ways to revamp their style.

My daily highlights include picking out rocking getups to wear around my favorite island, sharing my fashion adventures with my readers, and locating designer steals. I'm living proof that you don't have to be rich to be a fashion socialite! I love fashion, I know fashion, I live and breathe fashion and I love to share my knowledge and love of it with others. I've never been one to confuse Hervé Léger and Preen! But it doesn't end there! I have a vast and eclectic erudition in the arts, having attended performing arts school myself. Music, hotspots, restaurants, the club scene, underground fashion events, parties and vintage boutiques – I AM the New York lifestyle and I'd love to bring that to Vogue, Look Books, showrooms, fashion shows, displays, and celebrities! By being an African American Vogue editor, you are among
those who have given me the opportunity to do so. All I'm asking for is an interview. Ten minutes of your demanding schedule and I know you would agree with everything I've written. Looking forward to meeting with you. Je sais que vous m'aimerez.



Facebook: Sparkle Sterling
Twitter: @sparklesterling


“The Langston Hughes Festival: A Celebration of African American Writers” in the
Morris Raphael Cohen Library Archives

From August 30th through December 31st, 2010, the Cohen Library is thrilled to
present an exhibition on the prestigious Langston Hughes Festival and its medallion’s
recipients. This exhibition’s opening reception on Wednesday, September 15th, at 5:30pm
will feature welcoming remarks and a student choral performance of Hughes’ work,
which is free and open to the campus and community. During the semester, “A
Celebration of African American Writers” will display a fascinating range of documents
and memorabilia housed in the Archives and Special Collections Department on the 5th
floor of the City College’s Cohen Library.

The Langston Hughes Festival has sustained profound cultural value for
over three decades since its inception at City College, and with its amazing list of
award recipients. In 1977, the Festival’s launch honored the repatriation of James
Baldwin, one of Harlem’s most distinguished people of letters, to the United States.
Following Baldwin, other major literary figures graced these campus grounds to
receive the unique award. Toni Morrison was here. Ralph Ellison was here. Alice
Walker, Ishmael Reed, Maya Angelou, Amiri Baraka, Octavia Butler—all were here!

The exhibition—“A Celebration of African American Writers”—signals to
our students that sharing stories is an honorable and worthy pursuit, particularly for
African Americans who may thirst for closer contact to, and greater awareness of, model
writers in their own pursuits in the fine art of writing. Moreover, the exhibition seeks
to reinvigorate the legacy of dynamic conferences that the Festival at one time annually
hosted with professors and students presenting scholarship on writing and literary
histories. With such events co-sponsored by the Division of Humanities and the English
Department, the Festival has for over 35 years directed men and women of high renown
and eminence from around the African Diaspora to the City College campus. Original
pamphlets and photographs of these conferences will be on view in the exhibition.

Principally sponsored by the Langston Hughes Festival, the Cohen Library
(headed by Dean Pamela Gillespie), and the Black Male Initiative (administered by
Dr. Claude Brathwaite), “A Celebration of African American Writers” also honors the
Langston Hughes Festival itself with the intent to re-inform the City College community
of this gem within its midst. This exhibition will inform newer campus arrivals of the
legacy of the Langston Hughes Festival. With its sharpened profile, the Festival will
continue to contribute to the bright luster that once again will be associated with The City
College of New York.

Faculty co-curators Professor William Gibbons (Reference Librarian) and English
Professor Gordon Thompson (current Director of the Festival) amassed the materials
for the exhibition from the resources saved during the tenure of the long-term founder
and Director, Professor Emeritus Raymond Patterson, as well as under its proceeding
distinguished Directors, including Professors Eugene Nesmith of the Theatre Department,
Jo-Ann Hamilton of English, and Victoria Chevalier.

Archivist Sydney Van Nort was critical in helping to catalogue this historic
material. With the assistance of Lecturer Daisy Dominguez, student curators Conor
Tomás Reed and Taqiyya Haden, the expert design work of Zita Szatmary and the

behind-the-scenes services of Joel Rudnick (Archivist Research Assistant) and
Samuel Sanchez (Office Assistant), The Langston Hughes Festival and Cohen
Library are delighted to bring this exhibition to the campus of City College.

The Other Oil Spill

The Deepwater Horizon explosion on April 20th released an estimated 4.9 million barrelsof oil and an unknown amount of methane into the Gulf of Mexico. The leak was successfully capped on July 15th. The fiasco was characterized by overly optimistic statements from BP and the White House on the impact of the situation. Even mainstream media responded with skepticism and evidence to the contrary. Despite the biblical scale of this catastrophe, it can only claim to be the worst marine oil spill in history, as Nigeria is home to a series of spills that dwarfs both the duration and magnitude of the Gulf Coast disaster.
British newspaper The Guardian reported in May on the lax regulations and maintenance
that contributed to the spills, which have all but destroyed Nigeria’s Niger Delta for local fishermen and farmers. The exact quantity of oil spilled is uncertain, as the companies involved have generally refrained from comment. Our best guess comes from a study performed by the British branch of the World Wildlife Fund in conjunction with the Nigerian federal government. They estimate that between 10.5 and 12 million barrels of oil were released into the environmentin the last fifty years. Most prominent among the oil producers responsible is the international giant Shell. Their official explanation for the massive damage done to the environment? Terrorists and thieves, naturally. Shell concedes that a great deal of oil has leaked from its pipelines, but it has denied culpability. It cites inept thieves and malicious terrorists as the cause of the spills, not decrepit infrastructure or poor design. In August, the Associated Press relayed a statement from Shell's Nigerian branch decrying the increased incidence of theft and the damage done to the environment and to society by black market suppliers and anti-Shell terrorists.
An upcoming report by the United Nations Environment Programme seems set to confirm Shell's cover story. The Guardian, never missing a beat, reports that after a $10 million study, the UNEP found that only 10% of the oil spills were caused by poorly maintained infrastructure, with the remainder caused by sloppy theft from local malcontents. The study was funded by Shell.
Shell is interested in shifting the blame in order to preserve not only its image but its bottom line as well. The Oil and Gas Journal reports that on August 16th, Shell attempted to declare force majeure, more commonly referred to as ‘Act of God’. This legal maneuver would absolve the company of liability for the spills as long as their cause was unpreventable, unpredictable, and unrelated to the way that Shell conducted operations.
The UNEP's findings could not have come at a better time for the company, as it gives
Shell the perfect cover to make their move. Shell is now able to redirect funds that would otherwise have been earmarked for oil spill cleanup toward the completion of a new 230-square mile oil and gas production complex eighty miles west of the Niger Delta.
Shell: Honesty, integrity, and respect for people.

Trading a closed fist punch for an open handed slap!

Key Provisions of Arizona’s Anti-Immigration Legislation are blocked, but
Racist law remains in effect.

By Diana Carolina Sierra

Police officers mobilized on July 28th to begin enforcing Arizona’s anti-immigrant
legislation SB 1070 at the stroke of midnight. Meanwhile opponents of the bill organized vigils
and acts of civil disobedience. Hours before SB1070 took effect on July 29th, U.S. District Judge
Susan Boltan issued an injunction against four key provisions; the remaining aspects of the law
remain unchallenged. Bolton blocked Section 2 of the bill, which obligated police to determine
the immigration status of individuals stopped, detained, arrested, or for “reasonable suspicion”
of undocumented status. Defending SB1070’s racial profiling, Rep. Steve King (R-IA) stated: “I
think it's wrong to use racial profiling for the reasons of discriminating against people, but it's
not wrong to use race or other indicators for the sake of identifying [those] that are violating the
law…” He added law enforcement officials can use “common sense,” their “sixth sense,” and
factors such as “what kind of shoes people wear, what kind of accents [sic] they have” and “type
of grooming” to detect if someone is undocumented. My word of advice to undocumented
immigrants: pop your collar and get a pair of boat shoes. This aspect of the bill is an open
invitation for racial profiling, arbitrary detention, and is an outright assault on not only on the
immigrant community, but towards all people of color. Judge Boltan rejected this portion of the
bill on these grounds: “There is a substantial likelihood that officers will wrongfully arrest legal
resident aliens under the new (law). By enforcing this statute, Arizona would impose a 'distinct,
unusual and extraordinary' burden on legal resident aliens that only the federal government has
the authority to impose.”

Judge Bolton also blocked Section 3, which criminalizes the failure to apply for
documentation (a tedious, long, and expensive process), and failure to carry documentation.
According to the law as written, you're a criminal if you fail to carry a piece of paper with you.
Judge Bolton also blocked Section 5 and Section 6: the former criminalized undocumented
immigrants who solicit, apply for, or perform work, and the latter authorized the warrant-less
arrest of a person if there is “probable cause to believe the person has committed a public offense
that makes the person removable from the United States.”

While the injunction of the most controversial aspects of SB1070 has provided temporary
relief to some, for others there is little to celebrate given the portions of the anti-immigrant
legislation that remain. Carlos Garcia of the Phoenix-based Puente Movement
commented: “While they can breathe a sigh of relief for the minimal injunction, our breath
catches with the added boots on our communities’ necks. Deciding to use an open hand instead of
a closed fist makes this no less of a blow to the people of Arizona.” The law criminalizes
transporting undocumented persons, stopping traffic to hire a day laborer and allows Arizona

residents to file suit against law enforcement bodies that restrict enforcement of federal
immigration law. Police officers can impound vehicles being used to transport immigrants, even
if one is giving a ride to a family member.

In light of the injunction some liberal politicians have called off the boycott (economic
sanctions) to Arizona; originally organized in order to protest the signing of the bill. However
many immigrant rights groups see the struggle as being far from over, and continue to support
the boycott. These groups mobilize against raids, increased deportation and separation of
families— there has been a 10% increase of deportations under Obama (279,035)—and the
militarization of the border that is resulting in the death and murder of immigrants at alarming
rates. The organizing efforts of immigrant rights groups are important. Maricopa County Sheriff
Joe Arpaio responded to the court by saying “It doesn’t matter what the ruling is by the federal
judge. We’re going to do it anyway.” For anti-immigrant groups, the injunction represents
a “bump in the road,” in the words of Governor Jan Brewer, who signed SB 1070 in April.
Governor Brewer and supporters plan to appeal Judge Boltan’s decision.

Governor Jan Brewer also signed bill 2281—a legal ban on ethnic studies. Imagine if
New York made it a crime to teach Black, Latino and Asian studies at CUNY! Learning cultural
history is critical for developing social consciousness and a responsible society. This legal ban
says that the contributions, struggles and history of non-white peoples are subordinate and
irrelevant. Yet, the history of people of color is American history, and our struggles continue
to drive it. This demonstrates that anti-immigrant agendas extend beyond direct issues of
immigration; anti-immigrant groups are driven by a racist vision of US society and foreign
policy. The vision not only denies people of color civil liberties, but also the human right to
self-determination and cultural autonomy. This point is further proven by the reality that anti-
immigrant groups are fierce supporters of imperialist policies.

Immigrant organizers must continue to educate the public about the root causes of
immigration by discussing the role of US foreign policy, past and present, which creates and
perpetuates the economic and social conditions that make immigration to the US inevitable.
This point is completely absent from the mainstream debates on immigration, particularly Latin
American immigration.

Although President Obama has openly criticized Arizona’s immigration law, his
administration implemented Arizona-like federal policy through ACCESS programs
(Agreements of Cooperation in Communities to Enhance Safety and Security), increasing
collaboration among local law enforcement and Immigration Customs Enforcement. Huffington
Post writer Roberto Lovato dubbed Obama’s administration a “frenemy” of SB1070: “friendly to
the point of continuing and expanding Bush-era policies that brought about SB-1070, enemy who
sues parts of a law that his own administration helped create.” Furthermore, on 12 August 2010
Congress approved $600 million dollars to increase militarization at the US-Mexico border;
Obama is expected to sign the bill.

Despite the obstacles, immigrants hold a tremendous amount of social power—our
nation’s and states’ economies depend on their exploited labor—from the laborers picking fruit in

California, to domestic workers pushing white children in strollers in New York. We must
continue to fight for reforms that can improve the everyday lives of immigrants while
challenging the institutions that perpetuate economic displacement abroad.
“Power never takes a back step - only in the face of more power” -Minister Malcolm X

Subsection 2(A) prohibits Arizona officials, agencies and political subdivisions from limiting or restricting the enforcement
of federal immigration laws;

Subsection 2(C) requires notification of ICE or Customs and Border Protection whenever an unlawfully present alien is
discharged or assessed a monetary obligation;

Subsections 2(D) and (F) permit law enforcement to securely transport unlawfully present aliens and send, receive,
and exchange information related to immigration status; Subsection 2(H) permits legal residents of Arizona to bring
actions in state court “to challenge any official or agency of [Arizona] that adopts or implements a policy or practice
that limits or restricts the enforcement of federal immigration laws to less than the full extent permitted by federal law;”

Section 4 of S.B. 1070: The Arizona Legislature revised A.R.S. § 13-2319 by adding a provision that permits officers
enforcing Arizona’s human smuggling statute to stop any person who is operating a motor vehicle if the officer has
reasonable suspicion to believe that the person is in violation of any civil traffic law.Id. § 13-2319(E). Section 4 does not
make any other changes or additions to Arizona’s human smuggling statute, A.R.S. § 13-2319.

Sections 7, 8, and 9 amend Arizona’s law imposing sanctions on employers who hire unlawfully present aliens.

Section 10 amends A.R.S. § 28-3511 to allow for the immobilization or impoundment of vehicles used in the
transporting and concealing of unlawfully present aliens where the driver of the vehicle knew or recklessly
disregarded the fact that the alien was unlawfully present.

Section 11 creates the “gang and immigration intelligence team enforcement mission fund” for civil penalties
paid pursuant to Subsection 2(I).

Section 12 provides for the severance of any unconstitutional provisions, and Section 13 provides a short title
for the enactment.


On October 22nd, the National Day of Protest to Stop Police Brutality, Repression
and the Criminalization of a Generation – WEAR BLACK! FIGHT BACK!
Assemble at Union Square South (14th Street) at 3pm

Justice For Oscar Grant National Actions

6:30 Brecht Forum

454 West Street (between Bank & Bethune Streets)

More information on taking action against police brutality in October Issue.

Under Image of Oscar Grant:

Oscar Julius Grant III

February 27, 1986- January 1, 2009

Shot by BART police officer

Johannes Mehserle

Convicted of Involuntary Manslaughter. Sentencing on November 5, 2010

Justice for Oscar Grant! Convicted of Involuntary Manslaughter. Sentencing on November 5,


Wednesday, April 28



coming soon