I won’t lie — school has been wearing me down. Classes have started to take their toll; I’m tired, hungry, exhausted and I think I stepped on the Pembroke seal earlier today.
For all these reasons and more I was particularly excited to see notices around school announcing that Professor Josiah Carberry would be lecturing today, Friday September 13th, on his specialty — psychoceramics (the study of “cracked pots”). This year the topic was “metapsychoceramics,” a groundbreaking topic the depth, width and length of which far exceeds the Blog’s scope.
Was today to be another Watson and Crick (and Franklin?) announcing the double helix structure of DNA? Could it compare to the moon landings? I was confident it would at least dwarf NASA’s supposedly exciting news this week that Voyager I, a spacecraft launched in the 1970s, has become the first man-made object to leave our solar system.
For Carberry, I didn’t spare a single thought to that hunk of metal wandering 11.5 billion miles from Earth carrying the recordings of Blind Willie Johnson, a man who lived in abject poverty his whole life, whose stepmother blinded him with lye, and whose music just left the solar system.
Yesterday Rhode Island residents received a shock when—in a hastily convened press conference outside of the Cranston branch of the R.I. Department of Motor Vehicles—Gov. Lincoln Chafee ’75 P’14 P’17 announced that he would not be seeking reelection next year.
The announcement sent shock waves through the state’s political world and will almost certainly jump-start what was already expected to be a heated 2014 gubernatorial race.
During the press conference Chafee explained his rationale for opting out after his one term expires in January, 2015: “The challenges we have in this state are very significant and I want to put all my energy and time into addressing those challenges,” Chafee told reporters at the press conference. Here’s a video of the announcement.
Part of what made the announcement so surprising was Chafee’s other big decision this year — that he would be switching his party affiliation from Independent to Democrat. Most observers interpreted the switch as an indication he was gearing up to seek reelection. Continue Reading
The Rhode Island Senate will determine today whether Rhode Island legalizes same-sex marriage. If the measure passes, Rhode Island will be the 10th state to allow same-sex marriage.
The Senate convenes at 4pm today and the proceedings can watched online here.
After overwhelming approval by the House in January, passage of the bill would essentially send it straight to the desk of Gov. Lincoln Chafee’75 P’14. Chafee will sign it. Technically the House has to approve the bill again due to a few additional amendments beefing up the protections for religious leaders who do not support same-sex marriage, but that process should be perfunctory.
The bill cleared a significant hurdle yesterday when the Senate Judiciary Committee approved it 7-4, undermining efforts to kill the legislation where it has died in previous years. Dawson Hodgson, R-North Kingstown, Paul Jabour, D-Providence and particularly William Conley Jr.,D-East Providence were considered swing votes- and all voted to send the bill to the floor of the Senate.
Though Hodgson and Jabour will probably vote for same-sex marriage today, many analysts still see Conley’s vote as up in the air. A vote to send a bill to the Senate for discussion is not a vote to legalize same-sex marriage — necessarily.
The five Republicans in the Senate all committed to vote in favor of same-sex marriage early Tuesday.
The fight over same-sex marriage has taken place across the country, in homes, schools, campaigns and bedrooms, an incredible number of times through recent decades. The issue holds a special place in the American political process for the emotions it raises among both its supporters and its detractors.
Nine states and the District of Columbia have legalized same-sex marriage and one of the two major political parties have embraced it as a part of their platform. Now the debate has taken over Rhode Island. Lawmakers in the R.I. House of Representatives passed a bill in February that would legalize same-sex marriage. If the Senate approves the bill, Rhode Island’s governor Lincoln Chafee’75 P’14 will sign it. The matter, however, is far from settled.
Owen Patrick Kennedy, son of former Rhode Island congressman Patrick Kennedy, was born Sunday and released from the hospital yesterday, destined for a path of political greatness. According to media reports, the young future president slept through his first press conference, an apparent attack on what the 2-day-old today called “the media’s polarizing and irresponsible behavior over the last three years of Obama’s presidency.”
Anthony Gemma, famous for his fictional “yo momma” fight with Congressman David Cicilline ’83 last week, has officially announced his candidacy challenging Cicilline for the Democratic nomination in the race to represent Lil Rhody’s first congressional district in D.C. In his announcement, Gemma told Cicilline his “campaign is so weak, [his] grandmother’s super PAC could raise more money than him.” In response, Cicilline mocked Gemma, saying he “couldn’t understand why a man [he] beat so badly two years ago would want a rematch.” He added, “Unless of course he just wants to see firsthand how a congressman makes a grown man cry.” (Source: Wikipedia)
Newt Gingrich’s wife Callista was spotted campaigning for her husband in a library in East Providence yesterday. Sitting next to someone dressed as an elephant, the national animal of the United States (maybe?), the First Lady-hopeful read to local children from her own children’s book, called Sweet Land of Liberty. Though we at BlogDailyHerald have not read the book — it shockingly hasn’t been assigned in any of our classes — we presume the title of the book is referring to the moon, the Gingrichs’ favorite destination.
Fake ID trumps true identity. Governor Chafee’s son Caleb, 18, was arrested trying to buy alcohol at a liquor store in Jamestown, R.I. Police were called and Caleb was charged. He could face a $500 fine. Caleb, word of advice — when you’re the governor’s son and you’re buying liquor in his state, just get a friend to get you booze. Or, another option: go to Spiritus, where they’re very apolitical.
Back-and-forth gets personal. Anthony Gemma, prospective primary challenger to Representative David Cicilline ’83, questioned the timing of former Providence mayor Cicilline’s admission that he made false statements during the 2010 campaign about the city’s financial situation. The accusation was challenged by Cicilline, who told the Providence Journal (#projoswag) he doubted the timing of Gemma’s decision to register as a Democrat. Gemma countered by saying he questioned the timing of Cicilline’s mother’s decision to register as a Democrat. Cicilline responded with “Yo momma’s so far to the right, the Tea Party told her to get with the times.” (At least half of that story is true.) #electionseason
The crumbling masses. In a story that’s sure to light the country on fire, the R.I. Coastal Resources Management Council has denied a South Kingstown petition to build a retaining wall alongside Mantunuck Beach Road, an initiative that would work to secure the road against further erosion damage. President Obama, where is the federal leadership on this issue?! The country is eroding in front of your very eyes! (“Eroding,” did you catch that?)
Minor offenses. Two people were arrested in East Providence over the weekend for serving alcohol at a party to a number of children — one as young as 6 years old. Though police said the child only consumed a small amount of alcohol, at least one woman has been charged with purchasing alcohol for a minor as well as contributing to the delinquency of a minor. Hard to say if this is funny, or if we should preserve the dignity of minors along with their identities.
Who let the dogs (food) out? Rhode Island will no longer allow the beef additive known as “pink slime” in its school food starting next year. Pink slime was outlawed as an additive in human-consumed food until 2001; before that, it was only used in dog food. If it’s not melted pink Starburst, why are we even bothering to consume something called pink slime? That mystery meat is goin’ to the dogs.
If planking on city property is cool, then consider them Miles Davis. Providence police are investigating pictures of two women “planking” on a city police van, according to the Providence Journal (how is this possibly “BREAKING NEWS?”). Planking — individuals lying in the plank position in funny or outrageous places — burst onto the online scene in the past year, leading to thousands of such pictures. The Providence Police discovered the criminal photos on Facebook. Further ProPo investigations will explore who put a picture of chief of police Hugh Clements’ cat on Cats that Look Like Hitler and who managed to take a nude picture of Governor Lincoln Chafee ’75 P ’14 and post it on BrownBares.
No taxation without protest(ation). Opponents of Chafee’s proposed meal tax increase are staging a “tea party” downtown Wednesday to protest the two percent hike that they say will hurt business. Despite a desire to emulate our good founders, this group is taking precautions to make sure the tea they are throwing into the Providence Harbor does not pollute it. Other examples of protests utilizing historical references: retail stores burning their bras, car dealers holding a million van march, and of course, Pawtucket’s controversial decision to secede from the Union. It’s about states’ rights!
He’s a centenarian, not a centaur. A Providence local has turned 100 years old. At a surprise birthday gathering, Albert Gabriel revealed to ABC6 that his secret for living a long life was to not “get aggravated.” Is he trying to say he has lived in Providence for a hundred years and not gotten aggravated? Not even when FishCo closed? How about the demise of pizza in a cone? What about its rise? Really?
Tigers are not cooler than bears. In disappointing Rhode Island news, the Roger Williams Park Zoo has nixed plans to bring in some additional polar bears, instead opting to build a new tiger exhibit. Tigers over bears?! I know with Christina Paxson coming in from Princeton, this might look suspicious, but we’re still the same old Brown Bears that we used to be. Or is this because we won’t increase our payments to the city? One controversy over some money and suddenly you’re off courting Tigers? Really Roger Williams Park Zoo? Really?! Leaving your old-faithful Bears in the dust? Really Zoo?! Really?!
Blurring the line. In Barrington, R.I., an attorney who specializes in defending people charged with D.U.I’s has been charged with a D.U.I herself. Hey, we all know how difficult it is to keep our personal and professional life separate.
Remember to honk your horn. A new study shows that Providence drivers are as bad as they seem. Providence was ranked 95th worst out of 100 cities considered by Men’s Magazine. Don’t worry, Providence, you don’t need their validation! We know you have your strong points — WaterFire, for example. Providence is the #1 WaterFire city in the country!
An 81-year-old woman from Newport has claimed the $336.4 million jackpot from the Rhode Island Lottery. Louisa White will receive $210 million, having chosen the lump sum payout option. This report came on the heels of the Rhode Island House of Representatives’ approval of casino-style games at the Newport Grand. Come on, Louisa! Double your money! You can’t lose!!
Fenway Park received recognition today from the Federal Government as the newest addition to the National Register of Historic Places. Scandal alert! Fenway Park a historic landmark before McCoy Stadium, the home of the Paw-Sox (thats the Pawtucket Red Sox for those of you who aren’t very cool). Fun fact: McCoy is the stadium where the Sox played the longest game in Baseball history, 33 innings, against those disgusting Rochester Red Wings. Where is their recognition?!?!
A seal that swam into Narragansett Bay has returned out to open sea according to reports from the ProJo. Apparently this is news, according to the Providence Journal. Wait, this little guy is actually adorable. Touché ProJo.