APD Captain Fernandez: “Red light cameras are about public safety”

first_img January 23, 2017 at 6:04 pm Safety my ass…It’s all about money .They also have been proven to cause accidents. They got rid of them in Collier County because of that fact. By the way Randy How much of a kick back does the Apopka PD get from these???Right.. TAGSApopka Police DepartmentRed Light Cameras Previous articleEverything you want to know about red light cameras…Next articleWhere was the City on MLK day? Denise Connell RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Please enter your name here Please enter your comment! 6 COMMENTS LEAVE A REPLY Cancel reply January 24, 2017 at 4:53 pm OpinionBy Reggie ConnellI hate red light cameras. Who doesn’t?I’m not going to get into specifics about my ire for them, but it has merit. Trust me.Okay, well I will get into a little of my angst about RLC’s… first of all they are sneaky. They sit on a pole and judge you, and they judge you without any immediate human interaction. Then a month later you learn in the mail of your infraction. It’s frustrating and maddening.Okay my venting is over.I know my readers are shaking their heads “yes” emphatically and agreeing with every word I write and adding their own experiences to their disdain for RLC’s. And I hate to trick readers who are in agreement with my premise, but here is the thing…We may be wrong.Spend some time with Captain Randy Fernandez and Lieutenant Steve Brick of the Apopka Police Department, and your mind might be changed. They are advocates for the ugly black boxes that are sprinkled all over Apopka.Fernandez and Brick insist the RLC’s are 100% about public safety, and they make a good case for it.I pointed out the report on RLC’s by the Florida Department of Highway Safety that states both crashes and revenues are up… which would suggest that revenues are the primary reason if public safety has not improved, but Fernandez pointed out an alternative cause – growth.“What you have to look at is the increase in driving and in community growth,” said Fernandez. “We wrote more tickets and responded to more calls in 2016. There is growth in the area. It’s expected that with growth and increased driving there will be an increase in crashes and revenues.”In Fernandez’s confident viewpoint, this is entirely about public safety and changing the way driver’s think behind the wheel. And in Apopka, the statistics show a different outcome than the statewide report indicates.“We have not seen the same results in this community. We are modifying behavior. One of the deadliest crashes is an intersection T-bone. Red light cameras modify driver behavior that would create that type of crash.”This is particularly true of brand new drivers who have not built up years of driver behavior.“We’ve all been driving for a long time,” Fernandez says. “But the 16-year-old who just got their license is just beginning their driving behavior. The next generation will be better drivers. Every generation is going to be better.”They also take exception to the notion that cameras are being put in places with a high volume of traffic as opposed to where there are safety concerns.“We have intersections that don’t produce, but they modify behavior,” said Brick. “We are changing the philosophy of stopping at red lights. Either way, we are focusing on community safety. At Sheeler and 441, pedestrian injuries and fatalities are down from 2007-current than from before we installed a red light camera, and the rate of red light infractions are down as well.”Fernandez also points out that RLC’s are only one part of APD efforts to improve public safety on the Apopka roads.“The red light camera is not the pill that cured the disease. It is a component. But pedestrian access, sidewalks, etc. are also a part of the improvement.”He also insists that the revenues from the Red Light Camera Program are not the focus.“The money is not important. We want the program to pay for itself. And it’s the violators who pay for it instead of it being an additional tax.”According to Apopka Public Information Officer Robert Sargent, the net revenue from the red light camera program is $700,626.58 for 2016 which sounds like a lot of money but put into perspective with a budget of over $100 million, it amounts to less than one percent. In fact, the entire category of revenues generated from fines and forfeitures is 5% of the City of Apopka budget revenue.Here is how it is described in the budget:FINES AND FORFEITURES – 5% of this year’s general fund budget“The City accounts for revenues generated from traffic tickets and code violations in this category. This source has decreased by approximately .4% due to a decrease in traffic light detection device infractions. The long-term outlook for this source is not good. The state is taking a larger and larger share of the ticket revenues to support the cost of the courts.  Therefore this revenue source may be increasing now, but could decrease in the long-term.”And Fernandez can foresee a day where no red light cameras exist.“It wouldn’t hurt my feelings if we had no red light cameras and no one running red lights. It’s about the public’s safety, not the cameras.”It wouldn’t hurt my feelings either, but after spending time with the APD, I better understand their use. And I have to admit, my driving behavior has changed for the good.Reggie Connell is the Managing Editor of The Apopka Voice. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. If my husband runs to the store in my car, registered in my name only, and he gets a red-light ticket, I get sent the bill, even if I was not the one to get the ticket, and wasn’t even in the car, but at home………..unfair.If I test drive a new vehicle from a dealer, and run the red-light, the red-light camera reviewers send the car dealer a ticket in the mail……unfair and costly for them.If my mechanic works on my car that I left him to fix, and he takes it for a test drive to see if it is fixed, and runs a red-light, the reviewers send the red-light ticket to me in the mail……this whole red-light camera ticket is an unfair system. Plus, your car insurance will investigate any tickets and will up your car insurance that is already too much and jump it up!!! Unfair!!!If you let your children, your friends, your neighbor, your relative, or anyone else use your car and they get a red-light ticket you get the bill……unfair! Red-light cameras suck and are unfair!!!! Markie Reply Share on Facebook Tweet on Twitter Reply Reply J You have entered an incorrect email address! Please enter your email address here January 26, 2017 at 8:55 pmcenter_img David Shaw January 24, 2017 at 8:53 am Reply Free webinar for job seekers on best interview answers, hosted by Goodwill June 11 Red light cameras save lives! Some people can make good decisions, some have to be led to good decisions. What a dumb article with zero critical thought put into it. The author provides ONE safety statistic from ONE intersection, which was self reported by city employees in the revenue stream. Nothing is mentioned regarding engineering countermeasures like longer yellows to reduce violations. I see nothing in this article regarding decreased traffic during the recession. This would have an obvious positive effect on violations and crashes, but the PD and their cronies at shady traffic camera contractor ATS have no problem jumping on excuses for increases in crashes. Meanwhile, Apopka’s new desk jockeys will continue to click away, issuing chicken-s*** tickets for ‘violations’ as little as one tenth of a second (most ticket camera violations pose zero safety hazard). This is the same concept as issuing a vehicle owner an illegal speeding ticket for 1mph over the limit. One has to wonder how the folks issuing these tickets and the ones running this scam can look themselves in the mirror every morning. Mama Mia Mama Mia Support conservation and fish with NEW Florida specialty license plate If you can tolerate the RLCs for 3 more years, they will be gone bye-bye in Florida come 2020, hello…!!! So says they, if the stars and planets all line up correctly in Tallahassee. Reply Reply January 24, 2017 at 11:20 am Red-light cameras suck. Mama Mia The Anatomy of Fear January 25, 2017 at 11:06 amlast_img read more

Soybean Rationing: Has it Been Working?

first_imgHome Indiana Agriculture News Soybean Rationing: Has it Been Working? Soybean Rationing: Has it Been Working? By Ashley Davenport – Jan 4, 2021 Previous articleIn Indiana More Meat Inspectors Needed and Dry Weather Ahead on the HAT Monday PodcastNext articleUSDA Extends Crop Insurance Flexibilities Amid Continuing Pandemic Ashley Davenport SHARE SHARE Facebook Twitter Facebook Twitter Stock crisis red price drop down chart fall on screen / Stock market exchange analysis graph business and finance money losing moving economic inflation deflation investment loss crashAudio Playerhttps://hoosieragtoday.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/KS-12-31.mp300:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Between U.S. soybean crush continuing at a record pace and an anticipated drop in soybean stocks in the next USDA reports, some analysts have been waiting for signs of rationing.While some rationing is taking place, market analyst Karl Setzer of AgriVisor said it really isn’t working for two reasons.“Number one, we’ve got to look at the value of the U.S. dollar,” he said. “The dollar has traded to the lowest value we’ve seen in the past three years.”Commodities are more affordable when the dollar is cheaper. Buyers can purchase more because their currency is stronger than the U.S. dollar and has been since the beginning of December.“When commodities start to rally and a weaker dollar, basically it offsets each other, so you have to rally your commodity values even more to slow down your demand,” said Setzer. “As the U.S. dollar continues to fade, we have to keep pushing values up higher and higher, especially in soybeans.”Setzer said the second reason is there’s no cheaper alternative for importers.“If you’re a soybean importer and your prices are getting high, what are you going to shift away to?” he said. “There’s palm oil, sunseed oil, there’s meal from those too,” he said. “There’s distillers grains and other alternatives, but those commodity values have rallied along with soybeans. If you’re going to have to pay an elevated value, you’re not going to do it for a substitute.”How long will rationing last? Until South American soybean harvest is in full swing, Setzer estimates that could last until February.“We’re not going to see the need for rationing as much because we’re going to have a global supply comeback,” he said. “The next four to six weeks are going to be critical in whether or not we need to ration even more soybeans.”Setzer said it’s impossible to tell at what price level rationing will occur.Setzer talks about Argentina’s decision to restrict corn exports, as well as news from 2020 that will still be making market headlines in 2021 in his full comments above.last_img read more

American journalist still imprisoned at airport

first_img to go further Receive email alerts IsraelMiddle East – North Africa Malsin is being held in cell 106 at the airport where it is difficult for him to have any contact with his lawyer, Mr Daoud. His girlfriend, Faith Rowold, who was arrested at the same time, was expelled from Israel on 14 January. 14.01.2010 – Imminent deportation of US journalist working in West Bank RSF_en January 18, 2010 – Updated on January 20, 2016 American journalist still imprisoned at airport “That’s ridiculous,” a Ma’an journalist said. “Everyone knows that the Israelis don’t issue work permits for the West Bank. He is clearly being made to pay for working for this Palestinian news media.” —– IsraelMiddle East – North Africa News Reporters Without Borders condemns the detention and imminent expulsion of US journalist Jared Malsin, who has worked for the past two years as an editor with Ma’an, an independent Palestinian news agency based in the West Bank city of Bethlehem. US journalist Jared Malsin is still being held in a detention centre at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion international airport. He was arrested on arrival at the airport on 12 January and questioned for eight hours about his work as a journalist for Ma’an, an independent Palestinian news agency based in Bethlehem. He was due to be taken before a judge on Sunday 17 January but the hearing did not take place. RSF asks ICC prosecutor to say whether Israeli airstrikes on media in Gaza constitute war crimescenter_img Help by sharing this information Follow the news on Israel News News Organisation WhatsApp blocks accounts of at least seven Gaza Strip journalists News The Israeli authorities have accused him of working without a permit. Israel now holding 13 Palestinian journalists May 28, 2021 Find out more Malsin, 26, was arrested and placed in a detention centre on arriving at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion airport on the afternoon of 12 January on a flight from Europe. One of his colleagues told Reporters Without Borders he was due to be deported to the United States on a flight departing at 6 a.m. today. June 3, 2021 Find out more May 16, 2021 Find out morelast_img read more

Jeffrey Epstein accuser files lawsuit naming female associate as his enabler

first_imgMarilyn Nieves/iStock(NEW YORK) — Jennifer Araoz, who claimed Jeffrey Epstein raped her when she was 15, filed a lawsuit naming Epstein associate Ghislaine Maxwell as his enabler, as well as three unnamed employees and Epstein’s estate. “Jeffrey Epstein’s network of enablers stole from me. they robbed me of my youth, my identity, my innocence and my self-worth,” Araoz said in a press teleconference along with attorney Dan Kaiser. “For too long they escaped accountability.” With this suit, Araoz is pursuing her wish for Epstein’s alleged co-conspirators to be investigated in the wake of the millionaire sex offender’s death by apparent suicide in jail.“Epstein is gone, but justice must still be served,” Araoz, 32, said in a statement on Saturday as news of his death broke. “I hope the authorities will pursue and prosecute his accomplices and enablers, and ensure redress for his victims.”The lawsuit was filed in New York Supreme Court in Manhattan, and the three unnamed people who worked for Epstein were described in the court papers as the “recruiter,” the “secretary” and the “maid.”ABC News reached out to Maxwell’s attorney for comment, but has not received a response.The lawsuit comes after the Child Victims Act, a New York state law, went into effect at midnight Wednesday, allowing survivors of child sexual abuse from any time period to make civil claims, in spite of existing statutes of limitations, for a one-year period.Maxwell has previously been named by another Epstein accuser as acting as an enabler and recruiter of young women and girls for Epstein. Virginia Roberts Giuffre, who alleges she was made a teen sex slave to Epstein and a victim of sex trafficking, alleged that she was directed by both Epstein and Maxwell to have sex with Epstein’s friends and associates.Giuffre sued Maxwell for defamation in 2015 after Maxwell denied Giuffre’s claims in another lawsuit, but the case was settled prior to trial.Maxwell has consistently denied Giuffre’s allegations about her. “Ghislaine Maxwell did not participate in, facilitate, manage or otherwise conspire to commit sex trafficking” as alleged by Giuffre, her attorney wrote in a 2016 court filing.Before the Epstein case broke open, Maxwell was a British socialite long associated with Epstein. She is the daughter of the late Robert Maxwell, a British press titan who died in 1991 and was later revealed to have embezzled funds from his employees’ pensions and having mounting debt.This lawsuit comes amid an increasing focus on Epstein’s alleged co-conspirators in the wake of his death. Earlier this week, two unnamed accusers requested the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida invalidate the non-prosecution agreement Epstein made in 2007 that shielded Epstein from further prosecution and protected his alleged co-conspirators.It is unclear when a judge will hear arguments on the non-prosecution agreement.“The case will continue on against anyone who was complicit with Epstein,” U.S. Attorney General William Barr said Monday.Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Employee choice is the key to success

first_img Previous Article Next Article Providingdevelopment opportunities and giving staff autonomy are the best ways topromote competitivenessEmployersmust be prepared to give employees more choice, greater autonomy and improveddevelopment opportunities to compete in the future.Keynotespeakers, Gary Hamel, Lynda Gratton and CK Prahalad, told the HR delegates thatcompanies are operating in the most turbulent times in history and have toinnovate to survive.Prahalad,professor of business administration at the University of Michigan BusinessSchool, said the deregulation of industries, globalisation, growth in emergingmarkets, convergence of technology and the internet were working simultaneouslyto change the relationship between producers and consumers.Traditionalactions taken in response to increased competition – making efficiencies – areno longer enough, he warned. “You can only prune the rose bush so muchuntil you’re left with a stub,” said Prahalad.Strategyis the new source of competitive advantage, and it is critical for HR to”take a strategic view on where the business is going”, he said. Gratton,professor at London Business School, warned that the traditional command andcontrol model of employment is no longer appropriate because it does not allowemployees to develop or contribute to their full potential.Sheexplained that new technology, such as laptops, and employee portals, givingstaff more autonomy, and the changing expectations of the next generation ofemployees, must be harnessed if employers want to become the newhigh-performing democratic organisations.Todo this, companies must encourage their people to be the best they can be bycreating opportunities for them to make choices, such as providing variety atwork and training and development based on the interests and strengths of theirstaff.Thesechoices should extend to areas such as reward, location and the hours peoplework.”Youmust allow people to build their potential and the potential of yourorganisation,” said Gratton.Hamelsaid HR directors must develop a learning system for senior managers to helpthem react to the changing world.Hetold the conference that improved internal communication will become even morecritical in empowering commitment and personal development.Grattonused the example of BP as a democratic organisation that is already makingefforts to empower its staff. Thecompany’s intranet has a search engine, which matches employees’ interests andabilities to vacant positions within the organisation.”BPaccepts people into jobs for which they have little or no prior experience. Forexample, Greg Grimshaw, the head of e-HR, was previously an engineer and willbe going back to his specialist field,” said Gratton.Thefinal part of the jigsaw for employers wanting to evolve into democraticorganisations is ensuring staff have absolute clarity about their companies’goals.Grattonbelieves that organisations which successfully evolve into the new model willbe the new employers of choice and gain competitive advantage.ByBen Willmott Related posts:No related photos. Comments are closed. Employee choice is the key to successOn 29 Oct 2002 in Personnel Todaylast_img read more

Los Angeles-Class Fast-Attack Submarine USS Jacksonville Departs for Western Pacific Deployment

first_img Training & Education View post tag: Pacific View post tag: News by topic Back to overview,Home naval-today Los Angeles-Class Fast-Attack Submarine USS Jacksonville Departs for Western Pacific Deployment View post tag: Angeles-Class View post tag: Jacksonville View post tag: Naval View post tag: Deployment View post tag: Los Los Angeles-class fast-attack submarine USS Jacksonville (SSN 699) departed Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Nov. 5, for a scheduled six-month deployment in the Western Pacific region.Jacksonville’s commanding officer, Cmdr. Nate Sukols, said of the 115 enlisted and 16 officers aboard, this is the first deployment for more than 50 percent of the crew.“They are anxious to go out there and do what submarines do at the pointy end of the spear,” said Sukols.Sukols said the submarine’s goals are to have a safe deployment while performing missions vital to national security.“I’m a little nervous because this is my first deployment, but I have a good division. They support me, and it’s one big family,” said Machinist’s Mate 3rd Class Andrew Blouch.Commissioned in May 1981, Jacksonville is named for Jacksonville, Fla. Nicknamed “The Bold One,” she is a nuclear attack submarine that is 360-feet long and displaces 6,900 tons. She can be fitted with Mk-48 torpedoes and harpoon missiles.[mappress]Naval Today Staff, November 7, 2012; Image: US Navy View post tag: Fast-Attack View post tag: Departs View post tag: Navy November 7, 2012 View post tag: Western View post tag: submarine View post tag: USS Los Angeles-Class Fast-Attack Submarine USS Jacksonville Departs for Western Pacific Deployment Share this articlelast_img read more

Canadian Surface Combatant bids delayed again

first_img Share this article The Canadian government has extended the deadline for Canadian Surface Combatant bidders who previously said they didn’t have enough time to prepare.This is second time the submission deadline is postponed after the original April 27, 2017, deadline was moved to June 22, 2017.The current deadline is expected to be no sooner than mid-August 2017. The government said it extended the bid to answer all questions from the bidders.“As per the RFP, bidders can submit draft bids for review until June 15, 2017. These bids will not be scored, and financial information will not be submitted, but bidders will be informed if any part of their submission is non-compliant, so they can make adjustments before submitting a final bid,” the announcement read.This extension will move the targeted completion of the procurement process from fall 2017 to 2018, according to the government, while ship construction remains scheduled for the the early 2020s. View post tag: Royal Canadian Navy View post tag: Canadian Surface Combatant Authoritiescenter_img June 6, 2017 Canadian Surface Combatant bids delayed again Back to overview,Home naval-today Canadian Surface Combatant bids delayed again last_img read more

Browne review released

first_imgAnother recommendation is that the government should be allowed to reduce funding, and that what remains should be focussed on courses “that are important to the wellbeing of our society and to our economy,” such as medicine and engineering. Oxford’s current budget is £863 million, out of which just eight per cent is received directly from the state, in the form of a teaching grant. According to predictions this grant might be cut by up to 75 per cent. In this case, it is estimated that Oxford will be paying the government back between £35m and £40m per year in levies, and receive just £17.5m back as a teaching grant. The government said that it welcomes the report, although it has not yet agreed to implement its recommendations in full. Despite predictions that it could lead to a rift in the coalition, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has been urging Liberal Democrat MPs to go back on their promise to voters to oppose tuition fees. “Like you, I am painfully aware of the pledge we all made to voters on tuition fees ahead of the general election,” he said. “Departing from that pledge will be one of the most difficult decisions of my political career. It means doing something that no one likes to do in politics – acknowledging that the assumptions we made at election time simply don’t work out in practice.” Business Secretary Vince Cable has also stated that he plans to “put specific proposals to the House to implement radical and progressive reforms of higher education along the lines of the Browne Report.” The Institute for Fiscal Studies thinktank described the review as “more progressive than under the current system … in the sense that lower-earning graduates would pay less and higher-earning graduates would pay more.” However, universities would lose money under the threshold scenario of a £6,000 fee, the IFS said. “While their fee income would nearly double in this case, buried in the detail of the review’s recommendations are proposed cuts to the teaching budget that would see some courses become entirely self-funded.” Sir Peter Lampl, chair of the Sutton Trust education charity, said there was a danger that higher fees for the most prestigious courses would make them “the preserve of the most privileged”. “There are some sensible measures in these proposals. But our concern is that the headline figure of the costs of attending more prestigious universities might still deter those from non-privileged backgrounds from applying in the first place.” Universities should be allowed to set their own level of tuition fees, according to Lord Browne’s review of higher education, which was published this week. The review, released on Tuesday, has recommended that the current cap of £3,290 per year should be lifted and universities should be free to charge what they like. This could mean the introduction of tuition fees of up to £12,000 a year. If Browne’s recommended measures are accepted by the government, students could graduate with debts of up to £50,000. These debts would then attract interest at a real rate. Graduates would not have to start repaying the loans until they were earning £21,000 per year. But after this they would have to make repayments worth 9 percent of their income, regardless of how much it is. Interest would also start accumulating at a rate of inflation plus 2.2 percent. The student loans system would be simplified, with one government agency placed in charge of handling loans, grants and bursaries. Browne has also suggested that there should be “a minimum entry standard, based on aptitude”, so that “only those who are qualified to benefit from higher education” would be entitled to a loan. The proposals, which are designed to save money for the government and help struggling universities, were called “highly progressive” by Browne, on the grounds that “the lowest 20% of earners will pay less than today”. These proposals immediately attracted criticism about the impact they will have on middle-rate earners. Those students who start earning high salaries straight away will be able to pay their loans off before the interest grows too much. Those earning less than £21,000 will not have to pay anything – but those in between face decades of repayments and mounting interest. There is also a concern that the high costs will put those from less well-off backgrounds off applying to university. Universities will be entitled to charge as much as they like in tuition fees. However, those charging more than £6,000 a year will have to give a large percentage of their extra income to the government, to help them pay the upfront costs of students’ fees. last_img read more

The aesthetic attitude to art

first_img ‘Art of Looking’ sharpens students’ critical eye We found in each study that people unschooled in abstract expressionism selected the artists’ works as better and more liked, identified them as by artists rather than animals and children, and did this at a rate significantly above chance. Even when we tried to trick people (mislabeling the child work as by an artist and the artist work as by a child or animal), people recognized the actual artist’s work as the better work of art, uninfluenced by the false label. In addition, working with a computer scientist, we showed that a deep learning algorithm was able to learn to differentiate works by artists versus by children and animals, and succeeded at the same rate of correctness as did humans. And so, when you hear someone say, “My kid could have done that,” you can say, “Not so!”GAZETTE: What do you think was going on?WINNER: To get at this we asked another group of people to look at each of the 60 paintings, 30 by the preschoolers and animals and 30 by the great artists, one at a time and randomly ordered. We asked them to rate each work in terms of how intentional it looked, and how much visual structure they saw. The works by the artists were on average rated as more intentional and higher in visual structure. When we asked people why they thought the artists’ paintings were better works of art, they gave us mentalistic answers, saying things like, “It looks more planned” or, “It looks more thought-out.” So, it appears that we make a clear discrimination: We perceive artists’ abstract paintings as highly planned, and those by children and animals as unplanned and somewhat random. Tellingly, we found that some paintings by artists were incorrectly identified as by children or animals, and these turned out to be the ones that had been rated as low in intentionality and structure. Our conclusion is that people see more in abstract art than they think they see. They can see the mind behind the work.GAZETTE: You mention that art that evokes negative emotions can also be positive thing. Can you explain?WINNER: We gravitate toward art that depicts tragic or horrifying events (think of paintings by Hieronymus Bosch or Lucian Freud, whose portraits are often distorted and somewhat grotesque); we flock to sad or suspenseful or horrifying movies or plays or novels; we listen to music that conveys grief. Given how we strive to avoid feelings of sorrow and terror and horror in our personal lives, this presents us with a paradox — one that interested philosophers such as Aristotle, Immanuel Kant, and David Hume. This puzzle is resolved by studies showing that when we view something as art, any negative feelings about the content are matched by positive ones. For instance, one study demonstrated that presenting photographs of disgusting things like rotting food either as art photography or illustrations to teach people about hygiene led to different reactions: Those who viewed the images as art reported positive feelings along with the negative ones; those who viewed them as hygiene illustrations reported only negative feelings. Other studies have shown that people report being highly moved by art with negative content, and the experience of feeling moved combines negative affect with an equal level of positive affect. In short, we can allow ourselves to be moved by tragedy and horror in art because it is not about us; we have entered a fictional world of virtual reality. And the experience of being moved by such works is not only pleasurable, but can also be highly meaningful as we reflect on the nature of our feelings.GAZETTE: You also explore how theater can inspire empathy.WINNER: We often hear that the arts are good for our children because they make them more empathetic. But this is the kind of claim that ought to be closely examined. Is there truth to this claim, and if so does it apply to all the arts? My former doctoral student Thalia Goldstein, now an assistant professor at George Mason University, reasoned that it is in acting that empathy is most likely to be nurtured. She directed a longitudinal study of children and adolescents involved in acting classes over the course of a year, comparing them to students taking visual arts classes. At the end of the year, the acting students in both age groups had gained more than the visual arts students on a self-report empathy scale, and the adolescent acting students had also grown stronger in perspective-taking. These results have the plausible explanation that acting entails stepping into different characters’ shoes over and over, practicing seeing the world from another’s eyes.There is still a lot we don’t know about the arts and empathy. Does reading fiction or watching a drama on stage have the same effect as enacting fictional characters? And if so, can any of these experiences change people’s behaviors (in the direction of greater compassion), or do they just change people’s ability to identify and mirror what others are feeling? The answer is not obvious. William James asked us to consider a person at the theater weeping over the fate of a fictional character onstage while unconcerned about her freezing coachman waiting outside in the snow. It is possible that when we expend our empathy on fictional characters, we feel we have paid our empathy dues. This fascinating problem cries out for further research, which I hope to be able to do.GAZETTE: After all of your research, have you landed on any concise definition of what art is?WINNER: Since philosophers have been unable to agree on a definition of art that involves necessary and sufficient features, I certainly do not think that I will come up with one! Art will never be defined in a way that will distinguish all things we do and do not call art. Art is a mind-dependent concept: There is no litmus test to decide whether something is or is not art (as opposed to whether some liquid is or is not water). Our minds group together the things we call art despite the fact that no two instances of “art” need share any features. And artists are continually challenging our concept of what counts as art, making the concept impossible ever to close.But philosophers such as Nelson Goodman, who was the founder of Project Zero at the Harvard Graduate School of Education — a group that had a deep influence on my thinking — had something profound to say about this. Don’t ask, “What is art?”; rather, ask, “When is art?” Anything can be treated as art or not. And when we treat something as art, we attend to it in a special way — for example, noting its surface formal features and its nonliteral expressive features as part of the many meanings of the work. So maybe we can’t define art, but we can specify what it means to adopt an aesthetic attitude. And while elephants and chimps may make “art,” and while birds may make “music,” I am confident that humans are the only creatures who step back from something they are making to decide how it looks or sounds and how it should be altered — in short, to adopt that aesthetic attitude. Some musical meaning may transcend cultural boundaries and be universally human, study says The nature of sounds Related Seeing more Songs in the key of humanity Ellen Winner ’69, Ph.D. ’78, BI ’99 concentrated in English at Radcliffe, but she’d always planned to be an artist. She attended the School of the Museum of Fine Arts after college to study painting but soon realized “it was not the life I wanted.” Instead, Winner turned her focus to psychology, earning her doctorate at Harvard.A summer job listing at the University’s career office led her to the Harvard Graduate School of Education’s Project Zero, where she interviewed with her future husband, Howard Gardner — currently the John H. and Elisabeth A. Hobbs Professor of Cognition and the senior director of the project — and took a two-year position researching the psychology of art. For her doctoral degree at the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Winner studied developmental psychology. She is currently a senior research associate at Project Zero and a professor of psychology at Boston College, where she founded and directs the Arts and Mind Lab, which focuses on cognition in the arts in typical and gifted children as well as adults. Her latest book, “How Art Works: A Psychological Exploration,” is based on years of research at both Harvard and BC, and looks at art through psychological and philosophical lenses. The Gazette spoke with her recently about her findings.Q&AEllen WinnerGAZETTE: Why do we need art?WINNER: It’s interesting to note that the arts have been with us since the earliest humans — long before the sciences — and no one has ever discovered a culture without one or more forms of art. Evolutionary psychologists have postulated various ways in which natural selection could explain why we have art. For example, fiction allows us to safely practice interpersonal relationships and those with strong interpersonal skills are more likely to mate and spread their genes. Sexual selection could also be at work: Artists might attract mates because artistic talent might signal high reproductive fitness. There is no way of testing such claims, though. My best guess is that art itself is not a direct product of natural selection, but is a byproduct of our bigger brains — which themselves evolved for survival reasons. Art is just something we cannot help but do. While we may not need art to survive, our lives would be entirely different without it. The arts are a way of making sense of and understanding ourselves and others, a form of meaning-making just as important as are the sciences.GAZETTE: In your book you suggest that people have stronger emotional reactions to music than to the visual arts. Why?WINNER: Of course, we do respond emotionally to both music and visual art, but people report stronger emotional responses to music. I have asked my students to look at a painting for one uninterrupted hour and write down everything they are seeing and thinking (inspired by Jennifer Roberts, art historian at Harvard, who asked her students to do this for three hours). The students wrote about all of the things they started to notice, but strikingly absent was any mention of emotions. They reported being mesmerized by the experience but no one talked about being close to tears, something people often report with music.There seem to be several reasons for music eliciting stronger emotional reactions than the visual arts. The experience of music unrolls over time, and often quite a long time. A work of visual art can be perceived at a glance and people typically spend very little time with each work of art they encounter in a museum. We can turn away from a painting, but we can’t turn away from music, and so a painting doesn’t envelop us in the same way music does. In addition, music, but not visual art, makes us feel like moving, and moving to music intensifies the emotional reaction. One of the most powerful explanations for the emotional power of music has to do with the fact that the same properties that universally convey emotion in the voice (tempo, volume, regularity, etc.) also convey emotion in music. Thus, for example, a slow tempo in speech and music is typically perceived as sad, a loud and uneven tempo as agitated, etc. The visual arts do not have such a connection to emotion. Movies may be the most powerful art form in eliciting emotion since they unfold over time, tell a story, and of course include music.GAZETTE: Can you talk more about your studies involving a person’s ability to distinguish between artwork by an abstract master and a painting done by a monkey with a paintbrush and palette?WINNER: We were interested in the often-heard claim about abstract art that, “My kid could have done that.” We wanted to find out whether people really cannot tell the difference between preschool art and the works of great abstract expressionists like Hans Hofmann or Willem de Kooning. We also threw animal art into the mix: Chimps and monkeys and elephants have been given paint brushes laden with paint, and they often make charming, childlike markings — with the experimenter taking the paper away when the experimenter deems it “finished.” My former doctoral student Angelina Hawley-Dolan created 30 pairs of paintings in which she matched works by abstract expressionists with works by children and animals — matched so that the members of each pair were superficially similar in color and composition and kinds of brush strokes. In a series of studies, we showed people these pairs and asked them to decide which work was better, which they liked more, and which was done by an artist rather than a child or animal. Sometimes we unpaired the works and asked people the same questions when they were presented one at a time. “When you hear someone say, ‘My kid could have done that,’ you can say, ‘Not so!’” The cacophony of wildlife is music to his ears last_img read more

Rebels Pause Play, Jackals Cancel Season Due To Virus Concerns

first_imgJAMESTOWN – The Jamestown Jackals cancelled their season and the Jamestown Rebels paused theirs Thursday due to Coronavirus concerns.The cancellation of The Basketball League’s 2020 season comes after when the NBA and the NBA G-League indefinitely suspended their 2020 seasons Thursday.Prior to the announcement, the Jamestown Jackals were 8-3 on the season, good for second place in the league.During a team press conference at the Chautauqua Harbor Hotel Thursday, Kayla Crosby, the Executive Director of #IntegrityFirst and Team Market Owner said, “It was with sadness, but encouragement for the future that we announce today that The Basketball League has come to a conclusion for the 2020 season, we were hoping to move straight to a playoff series next weekend, but with the recent announcement from the NBA, it has been decided that the season will be completely ending.” Continuing on, Crosby added, “We want to be sure that we put forth the safety of our players, our staff and the community.”Crosby also spoke about how grateful she was for the Jackals who were in their year number two in The Basketball League“It has been a blessing to have our second season in The Basketball League”, Crosby said. “Starting from semi-pro and moving up to giving paychecks to the players has really increased the caliber of basketball that we’ve been able to provide in Jamestown.”In spite of the abrupt end of the season, Crosby did provide information on future events the Jackals will partake in.“At this point, we are going to regroup, we are going to continue to be active in the community as much as possible. This summer, the The Basketball League has announced it will be hosting a TBL Summer League in Las Vegas in July, and also potentially travelling overseas for tours this summer sponsored by The Basketball League. ”There will be an RSVP farewell dinner party Friday at the Chautauqua Harbor Hotel at 6 p.m.Leventrice Gray, the head coach of the Jamestown Jackals, spoke about how much he has enjoyed his time in Jamestown coming from Birmingham, AL.“It’s a very hospitable town, people that look out for you.” Gray said. “When I started to make my rounds around Jamestown starting as a coach and then a player, it was always a warm reception.”When asked about the team as a group on the court, Gray said, “Honestly speaking, they began to gel together. They found reasons to stay here and fight and found reasons to find reasons to push themselves towards adversity. They continued to push and found a way in a lot of situations where it can be tough.”The Jackals had been on a hot streak prior to the season cancellation, winning six of their last seven games, including a 124-112 win over the Dayton Flight last Sunday which would prove to be both teams final game of the 2020 season.Meanwhile, the NAHL indefinitely put on hold the Jamestown Rebels season, as the NHL issued an indefinite suspension Thursday as well.In a statement from NAHL Commissioner Mark Frankenfeld, he said, “This is an unprecedented time and situation. First and foremost, we want to be sure we are doing what is best for the hockey community: players, teams, fans and officials. In the past 24 hours, it became clear that we needed to follow a path that was consistent with our partners at USA Hockey, the NCAA, the NHL and the USHL.”Frankenfeld added, “We will continue to monitor the situation daily with everyone involved and we understand that given the current landscape, things could change at any moment. Our number one goal is to resume play as soon as possible, but only when it is safe for all of the parties involved. The NAHL Board of Governors will reconvene on a conference call Friday to discuss further action.”Jamestown was preparing to take on the Maryland Black Bears for a two-game home series prior to the announcement of the pausing of the season.The Rebels are in fifth place in the Eastern Division with 45 points, two points behind the Black Bears, who hold the final playoff spot in the East. Share:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)last_img read more