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Originally posted on Network and Be Recognized:

The First Lady, Michelle Obama is serious about the get fit life.  As part of her Let’s Move campaign for healthier lifestyles, she has been interacting with citizens through social media, giving advice on better eating habits.  One of the questions she received, prompted this hilarious response.  Check it out in the video clip below.

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Originally posted on Network and Be Recognized:

An NYPD officer was filmed violently slamming a pregnant woman to the ground early Saturday morning in Sunset  Park, Brooklyn.A five months pregnant Sandra Amezquita,  reportedly suffered vaginal bleeding after the incident and has bruises on her arms and stomach.

The incident started when Amezquita and her husband, Ronel Lemos, attempted to intervene as their 17 year old son, Jhohan, was arrested by police for possession of a knife.

After some “disorderly conduct” by Amezquita and her friend, the video shows an NYPD officer forcing the mom-to-be to the ground on her belly and handcuffing her.  The officer proceeds to shove the friend to the street.

Lemos was arrested for assaulting a police officer after striking the officer who was arresting his son.

The NYPD’s Internal Affairs unit is reportedly investigating the incident, which took place just one week after an officer from the same precinct—the 72nd—was filmed kicking…

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Originally posted on Network and Be Recognized:

Janay Rice, wife of former Baltimore Ravens running back, Ray Rice, fired back on social media after video surfaced of the couples domestic violence incident.

Yesterday morning, TMZ released the video, that took place earlier this year, of Ray punching Janay and knocking her out in an elevator.  Hours later, the Baltimore Ravens announced that they were terminating Rice’s contract and that he was suspended indefinitely.

The media went into a frenzy at the sight of the domestic incident.  However Janay Rice stood by her man and made a statement on social media:


Earlier this year, only a partial clip of the incident was released.  It showed Ray Rice dragging his then fiancé Janay out of an elevator.  Ray Rice had made a public apology and Janay even admitted to her part in the argument.  He was sentenced to two weeks suspension and later returned to the team.

However, with…

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Camille J. Cruz:

Learn, Cherish and Celebrate Black History

Originally posted on Network and Be Recognized:


Founded on this day, 105 years ago, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, is currently the nation’s oldest, largest and most widely recognized grassroots-based civil rights organization. In response to the horrible practice of lynching and race riots, a group of white liberals, including Mary White Ovington and Oswald Garrison Villard, both the descendants of abolitionists, joined together to address racial justice. Believe it or not, there were more White Americans involved with the formation of the organization that African Americans.  However those African Americans involved, such as W. E. B. Du Bois, Ida B. Wells-Barnett and Mary Church Terrell, played huge roles in determining the groups focus and approach to the racial issues of the time.

naacp march

The NAACP aimed to secure rights for ALL people, granted in the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments, which promised an end to slavery, equality in law protection and enforcement and universal male suffrage…

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December is AIDS Awareness month. Companies such as Watchful Eye, Treatment for Life Center, and Love Alive have traveled throughout the NYC area spreading awareness and prevention tips for this disease.

The first case of AIDS was reported in 1981 and since then is has been plaguing communities, especially those of African American decent. Although deaths due to HIV AIDS have been declining, the amount of reports of the disease have increased. One of the problems is that the testing rates have remained stagnate over this time. The same people that would normally get tested are. So these companies are finding new ways to get the information out there and relieve the stigma around the disease.

Jessica Allen, CEO of Watchful Eye organizes various panels, performances, and informationals in order to help start the conversation about status. It is crucial for people to be able to talk about what’s going on and for them to get tested.

Visit the watchful eye website for more information on testing centers near you.


by Shanice Ross and Camille Cruznew media v. old 1

With social media becoming such a huge part in everyday lives, it poses the question: is mainstream media irrelevant because of social media?

In the days of short attention spans and immediate satisfaction, some people find it easier to look to social media sites to retrieve their latest updates. It takes less than 30 seconds to type 140 characters on a cell phone and that’s all you need to publish information. Social media sites are a bundle of information about anything and everything, all in one place. This takes away from the use of traditional news mediums such as newspapers, radio and television broadcasts.

Social media leaders such as twitter and Facebook each reach about 554,750,000 users daily. With such a large demographic, the content is updated constantly. Since the applications are available on the web and on the phone, the information on these networks is portable and accessible at any time. For students and children growing up in this technology dependent world, many of them find it easier to get the information on portable devices such as cell phones and tablets. With a few simple clicks, they can access tons of information from just about anywhere in the world.

However, for some, mainstream media is a more reliable and trustworthy news outlet. Since almost anyone has access to publish information, finding credible sources on social media sites may be a little more difficult. Allowing anyone access to publish information has also created a shift in professional journalists versus amateurs. It is harder to find actual and reliable news stories, containing more fact than opinion.

Social media can break news faster than mainstream media, however, mainstream media can go more in depth and provide more detailed information than a tweet of 140 characters. They can also update viewers more frequently and get exclusive interviews with the key people in a news story.

Mainstream media continues to remain relevant by adapting to the tech savvy society. News apps such as NYT & CNN allow their publications to be taken on the go. By incorporating social media, when producing news content, mainstream media networks can maintain and increase their audience. Instead of competing against each other, these outlets should continue to work together to ensure the necessity of both.

For more in-depth information, check out this report from the university of Oxford.


By Camille Cruz, Scott Burgess, James Cecire, Emma Sugar




Hofstra students are supposed to think again before lighting up a cigarette on South Campus. But, many don’t. Despite the smoking ban that went into effect last spring, many students continue to light cigarettes on their walk to class.

“The problem with the smoking ban is while people know about it, there’s no one that really enforces it,” said Zoe Hoffman, a resident assistant at Hofstra University. During last year’s winter break, the university sent out emails to all students, notifying them of the smoking ban on the south side of campus. However, by the time students returned to school for spring semester, administration of the ban were scarce.

“It is to be enforced by the appropriate jurisdiction,” said Billy Finnegan, member of the University Senate, which was responsible for the placement of the ban on campus. The ban was first implemented on a trial basis. The university hoped for community policing, but after almost a year, some students are reluctant to participate in the ban and its enforcement.

“I still see people smoking on this side of campus,” said one Hofstra student. After a simple stroll around campus, it is apparent that there is a lack of “non-smoking” signs on the south side of campus, especially in the popular smoking areas. There are “non-smoking” signs located at every entrance to the campus, signs not much larger than a sheet of paper. The location of the signs plays a major role in their effectiveness. If no one sees the signs, how are they going to comply with them?

Many believe the system will continue to be ineffective if there is no new way to implement the ban. With the participation of public safety and an increase in signs in popular smoking areas, the smoking ban could be more operational.


Millions of people lined the streets of Manhattan this morning to experience the 86th annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. With Mother Nature’s cooperation, the tolerable weather conditions allowed for people from all over the world to attend this traditional New York event.

The excitement for this parade could not go unnoticed.  You could see families with their faces pressed against the windows of buildings looking down on the parade route and children posted on the shoulders of family members standing in the street.  One out-of-state attendee even referred to the parade as “The number one thing on my bucket list.” (Interview 1)

With over 150 dancers, 12 marching bands and hundreds of volunteers, the streets filled with colorful costumes, floats and balloons.  Kermit the Frog, Charlie Brown and Sonic the Hedgehog balloons made their expected appearance down the parade routes, exciting those of all ages.  However, many people awaited the arrival of this year’s newest balloon additions, Hello Kitty (2nd edition), Papa Smurf, and Elf on a Shelf.

Taking a new route, the parade started on 77th Street and Central Park West.   The parade then traveled through Columbus Circle and turned on Central Park South. It then made it’s way onto Sixth Avenue toward 59th Street.  The parade’s final path lead down 34th street and concluded at Macy’s Herald Square. The parade’s new route, allowed for the elimination traffic from Broadway and Times Square.  Standing on West 65th street and Central Park West, I was able to get a clear view of all the floats, balloons, marching bands, and dancers.

Some celebrity appearances included, Flo Rida, Whoopi Goldberg, Neon Trees, Rachael Crow, Jimmy Fallon, Carly Ray Jepsen, and Jeanette McCurdy.  But the crowd went completely ecstatic for the appearance of the Fierce Five, US Olympic Gymnastics team, Gabby Douglas, MaKayla Maroney, Aly Raisman, Kyla Ross, Jordyn Wieber.

Last but not least, Santa Clause made his grand entrance on his bright sled full of goodies.  Although his arrival marked the end of the parade, it sparked the start of the Holiday Season.  And on that note, it is now safe to play Christmas music.

Happy Holidays

Click here to listen to more interviews from the parade. (Interview 2) (Interview 3)



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With the election only hours away, voters must make their final decisions on which candidate they will be electing for President of the United States of America. As a first time voter, the excitement over this election is extremely high. The power of every single vote is crucial to the election, so I hope every person eligible gets to a poll and casts their vote.

The chaos from Hurricane Sandy has caused a major issue in preparation for this election. With power outages still remaining in New Jersey, Queens, Westchester and Long Island, many polling sites have been relocated. However, getting in contact with the voters is posing a difficulty. Without power, these voters may not be notified of these relocations.

Radio stations and news casts will be announcing new polling sites all day.

For current voting locations, New Yorkers can text “NYCVOTES” to 877-877. Spanish speakers can text “DONDE” to 877-877 for information. With the aid of the social media world, hopefully we can spread the word of the new polling sites.

The misplacement of absentee ballots has also developed an issue for this election. I applied for an absentee ballot but it never came in the mail. This has been the case for many, especially those affected by Hurricane Sandy. I will not let this stop me from voting and I hope others do the same. It will be a long commute, but I will be making a trip to my registered voting site in Westchester County, so that my voice is heard.

Poll sites open Tuesday from 6 a.m to 9 p.m. If you are a New York resident, and you can’t make it to your polling site, you are allowed to vote in person at the Board of Election’s borough offices until 5pm today.

Those locations are:

Bronx: 1780 Grand Concourse, 5th floor

Brooklyn: 345 Adams Street, 4th floor

Manhattan 450 West 33rd Street, 10th floor (temporary BOE office)

Queens: 126-06 Queens Boulevard, Kew Gardens

Staten Island: 1 Edgewater Plaza, 4th floor

For more information about New York polling sites, visit the website of New York 1.

Every vote counts. It is imperative that all eligible voters do their research and vote for the most qualified candidate.


Who knew a something with a name as gentle as “Sandy” would bring such a disaster to the tri-state area?  After a night full of whirling winds and rough rainfall, millions woke up with no electricity and damaged homes or neighborhoods.  Power outages, public transportation closures, and gas shortages have left people strongly affected by Hurricane Sandy.

At first, I hadn’t paid much attention to the storm watch that had been all over the news for days.  On Sunday afternoon, while I was out running errands, I noticed all grocery stores were filled with people in search of items in preparation for Sandy’s arrival.  Many stores were already selling out of water, batteries, and flashlights.  On my ride home, the cloudy skies, light rain, and heavy winds that literally almost blew me away, were indicators that Sandy was, in fact, making a grand entrance very soon.

Monday started out as a day of relaxation for me, especially since school was closed.  However, it quickly turned into a frantic, cold day once Hurricane Sandy officially landed upon us.  By Monday afternoon, my neighborhood, Springfield Gardens in Queens New York, no longer had power.  Luckily we have a gas stove in my house and we were able to cook.  Unluckily, my sisters and I had to take turns holding candles so my mother could see what she was cooking.  After dinner, there wasn’t much to do, so everyone went to bed, as the sounds of the winds and rain from outside rocked us to sleep.

The next morning, my neighborhood looked like it was a scene right out of a war movie.  Pieces of different houses were scattered across all yards and streets.  Many trees had fallen all around the neighborhood, blocking almost all roads.  A huge tree had fallen from across the street towards my house.  On its way down, the tree took the light post and electric wires with it.  My car was buried under the branches of another fallen tree.  I thanked the man above that the damage to my car was extremely minimal.  It could have been so much worse if that tree had landed on my car.

One of the worst parts about this disaster was not being able to get in contact with anyone.  Since power was all over the tri-state area, no one could call their family or friends.  And with the closure of bridges, tunnels, and the public transportation system down, no one could go anywhere.  You just had to sit, wait, and hope that everyone was okay and making it through as you were.

By Thursday, power was restored to my house and I was finally able to find out what the rest of the world was going through.  I thought I had it rough, however, after watching the news, I realized I was lucky. Besides knocking out power and trees, Hurricane Sandy also left 100 dead, sparked a fire destroying 80 homes in Breezy Point Queens, ripped up the boardwalk of Coney Island and Jersey Shore, and flooded the subway and rail system (to say the least).  I hope the area will be able to make a quick recovery from this disaster.

One of the most memorable moments of this disaster would definitely be the gas shortage.  People camped outside for hours, and in some cases, days, just to put gasoline in their cars.  Every gas station had a line of over 50 cars, plus a line of people physically standing out in the cold with gas containers to fill up.  Police cars were stationed at many of these gas stations just to keep the peace, and the Red Cross appeared at some, offering light snacks to those waiting in line.  I personally, am not a fan of long lines, and just decided to stay home and conserve gas until this shortage was over.  However, since the start of the work week is quickly approaching, and the gas shortage is still not over, I might have to reconsider this no waiting in lines policy.  Oh Sandy!


The third presidential debate between Governor Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama was a debate on Foreign Policy. The debate happened to be on the 50th anniversary of the night President Kennedy announced that the Soviet Union had nuclear missiles installed in Cuba, which only made the topic of the debate that much more important. The debate started well with a discussion of the attacks in Libya. However, throughout the debate the conversation often switched from foreign policy to domestic issues that tended to favor each candidate. Other than that this debate was much like the others- the candidates focused on attacking their opponent and their comments seemed repetitive.  However, the President won this debate because he elaborated and explained his answers and policies, a practice which Governor Romney lacks.

Governor Romney didn’t do too badly in this debate against President Obama. He did exactly what his campaign needed him to do- pass the acceptability bar. He doesn’t need to come off as the best in national security because most Americans’ primary concern is the economy.  He only needed to be acceptable and he did that. The problem is that he did it too much. He agreed with the President so much you would think they were running mates. Meanwhile the president came down with attack after attack against Romney’s competency and recklessness. It didn’t hurt Governor Romney too much to take this approach, but if he was looking to pull ahead in the polls then his strategists had it wrong.

President Obama on the other hand had a pretty good night. I’m sure he was probably caught off guard with how much Romney agreed with most of his policies, but that didn’t affect the president at all. Obama came to the debate with proof that he can handle the country’s national security, especially seeing the fact that his administration is responsible for the death of Osama Bin Laden. However the president was on the attack maybe too much. One of the quotes of the debate that has been getting a lot of play is one from the president where he notes, “Well governor, we also have fewer horses and bayonets…” This was in response to Romney saying we have less Navy ships than under any other president. This scored the knockout punch in this debate for Obama because not only did he make Romney seem incompetent, but he made him seem old-fashioned as well.


The 2nd Presidential Debate between candidates Governor Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama, was by far, the best debate yet.  The battle was very intense and it was evident that each of them had been well prepared and brought their “A” game.  However, the general consensus is that President Obama finish on top this round.

On Tuesday October 16th 2012, Hofstra University had the opportunity of hosting yet another presidential debate. Unlike the first debate, which was mostly dull due to the lack of energy, this presidential debate was exciting! One of the most interesting elements was the town hall-style setup, which allowed for community involvement and for the candidates to walk around and interact with each other.  At one point, they got so close to each other, it seemed as if they were going to physically brawl right in the middle of the debate hall.  It was obvious that both men came to fight ’til the death. This time around Obama seemed to be back from his mental vacation and  Romney had more details in his answers.

President Obama’s campaign advisers must have told him about his lack of energy and aggression from the last debate because he came to this one a new man. His first words after his introduction were “What governor Romney said just now, just isn’t true.”  Within this first statement, you can see he was more aggressive than in his entire last debate.  From round 1 of this debate,  the president was anxious for a knockout.  His aggressiveness landed him a knockdown when it came to Libya and foreign policy. Mitt Romney attempted to call the president out on his classification of the Libya attacks, but he did so poorly, and it led to moderator Candy Crowley fact checking him on the spot.  This was a point for the president and,may have well been the tie breaking moment.
In this debate Governor Romney did things good, but not great. He could have scored points if he chose his words correctly when dealing with the president.  He also missed out on the opportunity to tell the American people how he differs from previous President George W. Bush. When the audience member asked the candidates what qualities they possess and why they should be elected, Romney didn’t do enough explaining of how he differed fundamentally from previous Republican presidents, and that may hurt him more than the polls show. He did however, as he always does, do a good job in bashing the presidents last 4 years. Though repetitive, he was very effective at making the president seem less qualified for his position given certain circumstances, but is it enough to win him an election?


October 3rd, 2012 marked the start of the Presidential Debates between Governor Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama. This is debate is important because, for many Americans, it is their first time hearing Governor Romney’s take on certain social and economic policies. It also takes place after a bad press month for the Romney campaign with attacks from the left about his remark on the 47% of Americans that don’t pay federal taxes. For this debate, Romney would need to be on his A game if he wants a chance at becoming the President of the United States. For Obama, his same zeal and charismatic energy would be needed to retain his seat in the White House as Commander-in-Chief.

The debate initially began with remarks from Jim Lehrer, the moderator for the event and he immediately gave the floor to President Obama for his 2 minutes of speech on the economy. Obama began by wishing his wife, Michelle Obama, a happy 20th marriage anniversary and from there he went straight to business.

Overall the debate was interesting but still lacked the substance I believe the American people were looking for. The candidates only minimally answered the questions that the moderator asked and often time the topic of conversation was lost in argument. For example, Governor Romney didn’t give enough details on his actual economic plan because he was too busy defending, as the President put it, his $5 trillion tax cut.  President Obama seemed lethargic and disinterested in being in Colorado for the debate. It seemed as if he had a plan to talk to the American people and in executing that plan he failed to adequately defend himself against some of Romney’s false statements. This was evident when Obama failed to address Governor Romney’s classification of Obama’s tax plan as “trickle down” which is false.

One thing the President did do a good job at was keeping his composure. He never seemed faltered by any of Romney’s claims and he seemed to be sharing control of the debate with the Governor. From the non-verbal cues, it was apparent that Obama was more comfortable in his position as he tended to look at the audience more often than Romney (which seemed to be hardly ever). He smiled respectively at Romney’s attempts to be funny along with a few other things that were noticeable.

Governor Romney was a livelier candidate and also seemed to be more prepared. However, this was Romney’s moment to paint a picture of himself for the American people. Instead he attempted to paint a rather ugly picture of President Obama and told the American people he won’t be the same way. Instead of talking about the policies he planned to implement, Governor Romney tried his best to discredit the President’s policies and his handling of certain situations.

To this moment, I guarantee you that not even 3 out of 10 Americans can speak to more than one policy Romney plans to implement if elected President of the United States. That’s mostly because he didn’t touch on them too much during the debate. He may have made a mention here or there, but the things the American people want to know, such as: what Romney plans to cut to fund such policies, who’s taxes will be increased, what, if any, programs will have their funding reduced or eliminated to pay for the policies Romney wants to implement. These are questions the people want to know and Governor Romney didn’t answer them well enough.

In all, both candidates were just okay at the first presidential debate. The next Presidential Debate will be held on October 16th, 2012 at Hofstra University in Hempstead New York.  I believe everyone is expecting President Obama to come out in full force in response to his loss in the last debate.  I hope both candidates are prepared and ready for a big show down.

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