Picture1

JOHNS | China’s Effort to Influence American Academia Warrants Scrutiny

The time has come to begin speaking frankly about China’s ongoing, wide-reaching and systematic human rights brutality, which now ranks among the world’s most troubling. For many years, in part because China was (wrongly) perceived to be navigating a complex liberalization process that assumed (again wrongly) that these conditions would ultimately improve and in part because China has spent vast millions of dollars buying influence and manipulating its global image to its strategic advantage, the nation has largely escaped the human rights scrutiny and consequences that its repressive policies properly warrant. The list of human rights violations by the Chinese government is long and exhaustive. China’s suppression of Tibetans, its destruction of Christian churches, its jailing of political dissidents and its unrelenting control over Hong Kong have received some level of attention. The same cannot be said of one of China’s most egregious violations: its brutally repressive treatment of the nation’s largely Islamic Uyghur population.

Picture1

JOHNS | New York Democrats’ Twelve-Year Road to Nowhere

Correction appended. 

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo faced his Democratic primary challenger Cynthia Nixon in their only scheduled debate last week. It was an unimpressive and shallow display. For an hour, the two Democrats shouted over each other and spouted political clichés, allegations and factual inaccuracies as they each postured to embrace a policy agenda further to the left of the other. The debate’s obvious takeaway is this question: Why would we seek to entrust this state to either of these candidates for the next four years? It is not a rhetorical question.

Picture1

JOHNS | Don’t Pour Medicaid Gasoline on New York’s Opioid Fire

Ithaca Mayor Svante Myrick ’09 wrote a letter to Governor of New York Andrew Cuomo last spring, offering his solution to a problem that no state seems to be able to shake: the opioid epidemic. In his May 16 plea, Myrick included stark data about the way opioids have gripped the city and the county; he noted correctly that 2017 was the “deadliest year for fatal overdoses on record” in Ithaca and that 55.3 of every 100,000 emergency room visits and 15.2 of every 100,000 hospitalizations were overdose-related in Tompkins County in 2016. The mayor’s solution is to allow individuals to legally inject heroin in the city under city government supervision. While federal and other legal challenges almost certainly linger, he wants the governor to approve his plan. Myrick argues that his proposal, “The Ithaca Plan,” lowers fatalities and gives addicts a better opportunity to seek help, though it almost certainly violates both international and domestic drug control laws.