The California Honeydrops Cover R. Kelly, Al Green & More In NYC Throwdown [Watch]

first_imgThe California Honeydrops put their soulful rock n’ roll on display at the Bowery Ballroom last night, November 13th, playing to a packed house at the NYC venue. The band rolled out a ton of original music, and slipped in a few great covers as well. Fortunately, Marc Millman Photography was on the scene to capture the magic.Check out videos from last night’s performance, below.“Let’s Go Get Stoned”“Bump & Grind”“I’ve Never Found A Girl”last_img

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Stranger Things Star Finn Wolfhard Plays Guitar On Mac DeMarco’s Shoulders In Atlanta [Video]

first_imgThankfully, Wolfhard’s Stranger Things co-star Natalia Dyer (aka Nancy Wheeler) was side-stage to watch the action unfold, and posted some photos of the feel-good sit-in. Check them out below, via Dyer’s Instagram: Cooking up something good, full cover. By @Msldemarco pic.twitter.com/lo1HcegHux— Finn Wolfhard (@FinnSkata) December 10, 2016DeMarco commented on being covered by the young actor/budding musician in an interview with Pitchfork earlier this year, noting “You know, I liked it and thought that it was great. I have texted with him a little bit, and he’s a really nice dude. It’s pretty wild. I like the show, too. He’s so young!”Over the course of those texts, DeMarco must have invited Wolfhard to join him at a show, because during his performance at Atlanta’s The Tabernacle on Saturday, the This Old Dog rocker invited the young actor onstage to “jam,” even putting him on his shoulders while he played. Is there anything this kid can’t do?[h/t – Pitchfork]center_img Child actor Finn Wolfhard has had a big year. The 14-year-old Canadian turned heads in the role of Mike Wheeler, the fearless leader of the rag-tag A/V club gang in hit Netflix sic-fi/thriller series Stranger Things. He will also star in the upcoming remake of Stephen King‘s It, due out this fall. But while Finn is already a successful actor at a very young age, he’s only just scratched the surface of his diverse ambitions in the entertainment industry: he’s also a guitarist, as the world learned last summer when he began to post self-made videos of him playing popular songs on guitar to his Twitter feed, including covers of Nirvana‘s “Lithium,” and Mac DeMarco‘s “Salad Days.”Early morning Lithium! pic.twitter.com/qmIRnaO3y5— Finn Wolfhard (@FinnSkata) August 14, 2016last_img read more

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Health care rationed in U.S., HSPH ethicist says

first_imgDaniel Wikler, Mary B. Saltonstall Professor of Population Ethics and professor of ethics and population health, was interviewed Dec. 17, 2010, on Public Radio International’s “The World,” about health care rationing. The interview was part of a week-long series, “Rationing Health,” which looked at the issue in the United States, South Africa, United Kingdom, Zambia and India. Wikler, who has served as an ethicist with the World Health Organization and has been involved in international efforts to ensure equitable health rationing, also led an online discussion on the topic with Sheri Fink, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and physician.Rationing is the shortfall between what a health system provides for its citizens and what it could provide if the money were used more efficiently and fairly, Wikler told “The World.” In the U.S., there’s “implicit rationing” that’s often not recognized because the people subjected to it “don’t have much of a voice,” he said.“The number of people who die because they don’t have health insurance or they have inadequate health insurance is staggering,” Wikler said. Many lacking coverage will forgo a lifesaving treatment or a preventive service or go to a community center or emergency room where they cue up and are likely turned away, he said. Later they get sick and end up in the hospital where they may die because, by then, they’re “just too sick,” he said.Most people think of health rationing as “God committees that say ‘yes’ to this patient and ‘no’ to that patient when actually those committees are quite rare,” Wikler said. “But we should be asking if people are getting the care they need … If the answer is no, then there’s rationing,” he said. “It’s just not the death squad rationing that is booted about in the political debates but it’s rationing.”last_img read more

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By phone and online, the care continues

first_img Managing the coronavirus exodus from campus How the information technology staff moved classes and operations online on a tight, coronavirus-threatened deadline Related Expects to have 1,000 face shields by end of week When it first became known that a novel coronavirus was spreading through Wuhan, China, Harvard University Health Services (HUHS) began preparing for its possible arrival. Since then, HUHS has been working to implement new protocols to serve the Harvard community, even as the majority of students, faculty, and staff left campus.The Gazette spoke with HUHS Executive Director Giang Nguyen about new safety measures, including a shift to remote care by telephone and Zoom-based clinical visits. He also shared a wealth of new resources designed to inform the community about the latest developments.Q&AGiang NguyenGAZETTE:  Your office first communicated with the Harvard community about the coronavirus in late January, before it was evident that COVID-19 would make such an impact worldwide. Would you give us a sense of what your early preparations looked like?NGUYEN:  Early on, as the threat of the virus was starting to be reported elsewhere in the world, HUHS began preparations, knowing that it was likely to affect our community at some point. So, as you mentioned, in late January we began having daily huddles of our internal outbreak response team to ensure that we were all informed about the quickly evolving science, and that we were also on the same page in terms of how we would respond should it arrive in our surrounding communities and on campus. Shortly thereafter, we started meeting on a daily basis with the University’s outbreak response team as well, with the support of Executive Vice President Katie Lapp.We also formed a medical expert advisory group around the same time that included individuals with international expertise in epidemiology, virology, public health, and medicine. And they have been instrumental in guiding the policy and procedural decisions we’ve made at HUHS with regard to COVID-19, as well as the decisions that have been made by the University more broadly. I am particularly glad that we de-densified the campus when we did, and the University benefited tremendously from the input of our medical expert advisory group. Provost Alan Garber has also been very engaged from the beginning, and his expertise as a physician has helped tremendously.We’ve been preparing our clinical staff over the past several months by making sure that all are familiar with the proper protocols for protecting themselves, as well as for recognizing patients who might be at risk for the coronavirus, and for collecting specimens from patients under investigation for COVID-19. These activities have been guided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.What has been unusual about this particular epidemic is that many of these recommendations have changed rapidly over a short period of time. As a result, the things that HUHS did in response had to evolve quickly. Many of our responses have also been influenced not only by the medical and public health knowledge at the time, but also by the degree to which resources were available. For example, as readers undoubtedly know, testing is still quite limited in the region and in America overall, and as a result we have to follow very specific guidelines from the Department of Public Health about whom to prioritize and when to test.GAZETTE:  Do you have the ability to test at HUHS?NGUYEN:  We have the ability to collect the specimens, and these specimens are sent to external laboratories for analysis. The type of testing that is done for COVID-19 requires a laboratory that is different from one in a standard ambulatory health center such as ours. “While clinical care can’t shift entirely to a remote work protocol, we have been able to significantly limit the degree to which patients actually need to come into our office.” Design School turns 3D printers into PPE producers Harvard details coronavirus outbreak planscenter_img GAZETTE:  Have you noticed that HUHS continues to serve a similar clientele since its move to telemedicine?NGUYEN:  We have continued to care for a broad range of patients, including students, faculty, staff, and retirees. This hasn’t changed. Counseling and Mental Health Services (CAMHS), which provides care exclusively to students, is very active, and has been providing remote visits to students all over the country and internationally as needed. CAMHS will soon be resuming group therapy as well, which is another valuable resource for many of our students. The HUHS Behavioral Health Department, which provides counseling and psychiatric services to faculty, staff, and retirees, is keeping the same schedule of patients that they normally keep when we are operating at full scale, with the difference that these are now remote visits.From the medical side, we have also seen a broad range of patients, students and nonstudents, and we’ve seen patients of all age ranges as well. I just heard about one of our clinicians who provided a video visit to a patient in their 80s, and they told me that it went very well. The clinician explained how helpful it was to be able to see the patient on the video screen and to incorporate that into the assessment, and how reassuring it was for the patient to be able to see the physician as well.I also want to point out that the Center for Wellness and Health Promotion has been offering online meditation and yoga sessions that have been hosted through Zoom, and that the Office of Sexual Assault Prevention & Response has continued to offer remote events to educate the community, as well as one-on-one direct support to students through Zoom. The Office of Alcohol & Other Drug Services also continues to provide remote one-on-one services to our students.GAZETTE:  What is the best point of contact for individuals who need to access HUHS services?NGUYEN:  Patients seeking an appointment can reach out to HUHS through our secure online patient portal, or by calling us at 617-495-5711. Due to the safety and physical-distancing issues we talked about before, we discourage patients from walking in for appointments unless they have been advised to do so. If people in the Harvard community want to know more about COVID-19, or if they have questions about what new information is available about the novel coronavirus, since that is changing rapidly, I would recommend that they first start with the Harvard coronavirus website. We are frequently updating that site with new content as the science evolves. The Health and Wellbeing section is a great resource, and HUHS updates this when new information arises. We’ve also included information about how to maintain emotional wellbeing during these stressful and uncertain times.We’ve put together a guidance document on that page that can help individuals understand if they should be self-isolating or quarantining based on their exposures. This has been particularly useful, and I’ve heard from other universities all over the country asking to use that document themselves. If folks have reviewed all of these materials and still have questions, they can reach out to our email address, [email protected], where we can provide answers to nonurgent questions. This is also the address for Harvard affiliates to email if they have tested positive for COVID-19 somewhere outside of HUHS; this allows us to assess the impact on Harvard’s community. We are also available by phone, 24-7, for those who have medically urgent questions that need a response. For example, if someone is experiencing certain symptoms and needs to know whether they should go to an emergency room right now, or whether they should they come in to urgent care, these questions are worth a conversation with us, and our team is available for that.GAZETTE:  Can people be in touch to donate resources or additional supports, as well?NGUYEN:  Harvard has been blessed with an extraordinarily generous community of alumni and donors, and HUHS has received many donations of personal protective equipment (PPE), including masks and respirators. We do not need any additional PPE right now. But while some of these materials are not necessarily needed within HUHS, they might be usable within a critical-care hospital setting. To this end, we have been able to work with our campus partners to share extra supplies with local hospitals. We also encourage people to visit a webpage we’ve built devoted to donations of PPE and other critical supplies. It has been so heartwarming to see the response from members of the worldwide Harvard community who have made donations to us, and we are grateful.This interview has been edited for length and clarity. Campus Services VP Meredith Weenick on Harvard’s work to prevent the spread of disease and help students move out on a tight timeline Turning Harvard virtual Executive Vice President Katie Lapp discusses preparations to ensure safety, health, and productivity of community GAZETTE:  The University has undergone a dramatic shift to virtual learning over the past several weeks. Amid this transition, how has HUHS adapted to provide care as the Harvard community moved to remote study and work?NGUYEN:  While clinical care can’t shift entirely to a remote work protocol, we have been able to significantly limit the degree to which patients actually need to come into our office. We’ve established telephone and video visits through Zoom, and we’ve found that the majority of clinical encounters that we’ve had don’t require a patient setting foot into our space, especially if we can visualize them through Zoom.The reality is, all visits to HUHS could potentially begin with a remote visit, with the exception of something where a person would be calling an ambulance — if a person has crushing chest pain and is unable to breathe, for example. But if it is something that is more of a moderate concern, much of that initial evaluation can be done remotely. When I’m looking at an individual through a video screen, I can see their respiratory effort, and I can observe their overall neurological status because I can see the way they are moving in front of me, I can see how quickly they’re breathing, I can observe whether they are pale or flushed, and I can see how their eyes are moving. I can also observe their emotional affect. All of these things can help guide my decision-making. Of course, there are some things that cannot be done from afar. I cannot press on your liver from across the screen, but if that ends up becoming a necessity based on what I’m seeing, and from what I hear the patient saying, then I might ask a patient to come into our office.Even then, the time on our campus is limited, thanks to the fact that much of the information I need for an in-person consultation is already collected through this remote visit. In some cases, a patient might only need to come in to provide a urine sample or get an X-ray. So, we don’t need to have extended interactions when patients come in, and, in the context of COVID-19, if we can keep an in-person visit as short as possible, that helps everyone.GAZETTE:  What kinds of precautions are in place for patients who do need to come into the office, and for the medical professionals who provide their care?NGUYEN:  We recognize that health care workers are at an extraordinarily increased risk for infection, since they are at the front lines working with patients who may be infected with COVID-19. We have put in place a number of protocols to help protect our staff, and at the same time our patients.We now require masks for anyone who is present within our facilities. This means any clinical and nonclinical staff who are in the office, as well as all patients or visitors. This includes all individuals who are coming in for appointments, or coming into the pharmacy to pick up prescriptions, or coming into the lab for blood tests, or to the radiology suite for X-rays. We also check everyone for fever upon entry, we advise everyone to maintain a six-foot distance from other people, and we limit elevator use to one patient at a time. By doing this, even for those people who don’t have any active symptoms, we are reducing the chance that any one person who might unknowingly be infected could spread that infection to other people.We are also rotating our staff through the office so that only a small percentage are present at HUHS at any given time. That reduces the amount of time that any one staff member spends physically present in our office. The rest of the time they are providing remote care. It also reduces the staff density in our office.GAZETTE:  How have you managed the transition to remote care?NGUYEN:  The transition to video visits is actually something we had started preparing before COVID-19. Once the requirement for physical distancing became the norm for our region, we realized that we needed to move forward with that project at a much faster pace. I have to give a tremendous amount of thanks to our information technology team and our overall COVID-19 response team which has worked so hard to prepare our staff for the transition to telemedicine.This was not an easy lift, and I have been so impressed by the work they’ve done to make this happen and the flexibility my staff and our patients have shown throughout this process. Our patients have been incredibly gracious and thankful that HUHS continues to provide care for them, even at a distance.GAZETTE:  What platforms does HUHS use for providing remote care, and how does HUHS ensure patient confidentiality?NGUYEN:  We use Zoom for remote visits, but what’s different for our version of Zoom, from what students are familiar with in the classroom, is that when a patient receives an invitation for an appointment with HUHS, that Zoom encounter has additional security features that a classroom encounter does not have. Our business agreement with Zoom provides a Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)-compliant version of the platform.What does this mean in practice? The experience of a patient doesn’t feel that much different from a student in a classroom, except that they are going to be the only other person in the encounter as opposed to a classroom with 300 people. Our security features mean that sessions cannot be recorded and posted online, and each appointment has a unique link provided to the patient that protects against “Zoombombing.” There are additional security features that are largely invisible from the user standpoint. We have been very pleased with our experience with Zoom, and we’re very comfortable with the added security features it allows us.last_img read more

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Digital Week lecture examines ethical use of robots

first_imgAt a lecture last night, philosophy professor Don Howard was introduced by a robot.To kick off Notre Dame’s second annual digital week, Howard delivered a lecture discussing the ethical issues regarding the widespread implementation of robots. After a screen attached to a mobile stand projected the face of a man named Elliot who introduced Howard, the professor said something which quickly proved difficult to refute.“There is a revolution underway that is going to transform our world more rapidly and more radically than even the Internet and information revolution did. This is the robotics revolution,” Howard said.This will be even more widespread than the industrial revolution, he said. Both individuals with jobs in the service industry and those requiring higher education are being threatened by mechanization. Howard said this could lead to the unemployment of hundreds of thousands of people.“Already we’re seeing the almost total displacement of human drivers by wholly automated transport,” he said. “Personally, I think this is the single biggest ethical problem facing us today in connection with robotics.”With this advent of widespread robots and their increased capability, Howard stressed caution is of the utmost importance when implementing these machines.“In the past, we have made some really huge mistakes with technology,” Howard said. “We failed to anticipate what the downstream, long-term consequences of a carbon fueled economy were going to be, and now we pay the price for that failure.”However, Howard said the ethical implications of this sort of replacement are not all negative.“Driver error is the ultimate cause behind most fatal accidents,” Howard said. “In theory, we could save 30,000 lives in the U.S. alone and 1.2 million lives globally every year if we replaced human drivers with self-driving cars.”This benefit is impossible to discount, Howard said. Another similar, near future use for robots could include using teleprompters like the one used to introduce Howard earlier to actively engage bedridden students in the classroom, he said. Howard said he expected schools and universities like Notre Dame to begin implementing similar systems soon.“What is a robot?” he asked. “Not all robots have humanoid features. … We cannot let uncertainty about the consequences of new technologies simply stifle technological development because, as we all know, there are many examples of new technologies which are, for the most part, for the good of human kind.”Howard urged those attending the lecture to rethink what they consider to be robots. By doing so, their greater capacity for good might be revealed. Rather than create robots and then discuss their ethical implications, Howard said the two processes should be intertwined.“I think that we need to build a world in which engagement with ethics is an everyday part of the world,” he said.Howard also said it is ultimately humans who determine the ethical implementation of robots. Nobody else is going to ensure this is done fairly.“Why are most humanistic robots white or Asian?” asked Howard. “And why do so many of those robots have attractive female features? Have you ever seen an African-American robot?”According to Howard, humans need to carefully watch themselves to ensure this robotic revolution happens in an ethical manner. It is not the machines which we need to fear. Any concerns regarding an emotionally complex or sentient robot should be distant thoughts, Howard said.“Whatever you do, don’t turn to Hollywood for advice,” he said. “There is no robot apocalypse in the offing.”Tags: Digital Week, ethics, robotslast_img read more

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Course organizes prayer service in honor of DACA recipients

first_imgRosie LoVoi | The Observer Becky Ruvalcaba, assistant director of multicultural ministry in Campus Ministry, speaks in the Geddes Hall chapel on Monday at a prayer service honoring DACA recipients. A course known as “Advocacy for the Common Good” organized and hosted the service.Members of the Notre Dame, Saint Mary’s and Holy Cross College community gathered in the Geddes Hall chapel on Monday for a prayer service in honor of recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.Hosted by members of the “Advocacy for the Common Good” — a one credit course that aims to inform students of advocacy tools and mechanisms — the prayer vigil featured two speakers, Juan Constantino, development director of program staffing at La Casa de Amistad, and Becky Ruvalcaba, assistant director of multicultural ministry in Campus Ministry. The course, offered by the Center for Social Concerns, is taught by Michael Hebbeler, the Director for Discernment and Advocacy at the Center for Social Concerns, focuses on the building of a DREAM Act campaign as a focal point for the class to rally behind. The timeline of the class’s advocacy strategy was altered with the announcement that the congressional vote was moved up from March 8 to Thursday.Freshman Grace Stephenson, chair of the event team, said the class chose a prayer vigil as its platform of advocacy because it embodies the Catholic identity of the University.“This is not a protest but a chance for the community to come together in solidarity for the 40 plus DACA students on the three campuses,” Stephenson said.Jackie Navarro, a junior at Holy Cross College and member of the event planning team, said this issue is a big part of the campus identity.“We can’t just be Catholic by name,” Navarro said.Following an opening prayer, Ruvalcaba spoke on the definition of an eligible DACA candidate. She provided the government definition and then incorporated scripture.“There’s a moral and spiritual commitment we all have a role to play,” she said. “Regulation and security are necessary, but Catholic social teaching dictates that all initiatives be oriented for the common good.”Costantino followed with his own testimony as an recipient of DACA. He told stories of growing up in South Bend with the constant fear of deportation and the opportunities Holy Cross provided him with scholarships. “Like many other DACA recipients, I’m the member of a mixed family with undocumented, DACA registered and citizen members.” The prayer service concluded with a prayer to St. Frances Cabrini, the patron saint of immigrants. Stephenson said one of the biggest obstacle with the nature of advocacy is increasing participation when not everyone has a personal stake in the issue.Junior and member of the event team, Rathin Kacham, said he is a DACA recipient himself, having immigrated from India. He said he credits the support he’s received on campus with having encouraged him to become more public about his status as a DACA recipient.“We all probably have friends who are on DACA and don’t want anyone to know,” Kacham said. “There’s a fear that comes with that status, but it also can be liberated.” Tags: Center for Social Concerns, DACA, Dream Act, Geddes Hall, La Casa de Amistadlast_img read more

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WCAX-TV wins journalism awards

first_imgWCAX-TV,WCAX-TV News has won a series of Edward R. Murrow Awards sponsored by the Radio Television Digital News Association or RTDNA. The station received four Murrow awards, including overall excellence for its 6 pm news broadcast. The judges recognized WCAX-TV for its continuing coverage of Vermont captain Richard Phillips who was held hostage by Somali pirates and for investigative journalism for a report concerning harassment at the Vermont Agency of Transportation.Senior Producer Christine Hinkel said, We are honored to receive these prestigious awards for our in-depth journalism.WCAX-TV also garnered honors for story telling and stellar photography for its popular series Destination Recreation. We thank the judges for recognizing our efforts to tell compelling stories that are important to our community. said WCAX-TV Vice President Alex Martin.The station will receive its awards on April 16th at a ceremony in Boston.WCAX, which is based in Burlington, maintains bureaus in Rutland, Montpelier, West Lebanon, NH. WCAX-TV is the CBS affiliate in Burlington, VT and is owned and operated by Mt. Mansfield Television, Inc.Source: WCAX. 4.7.2010last_img read more

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Compliance: Should credit unions check status of every applicant?

first_imgAs questions continue to arise regarding the changes to the Military Lending Act (MLA), CUNA is not only submitting guidance language at the Department of Defense’s (DOD) request, but also answering questions from credit unions.In a recent entry, CUNA was asked if prior to establishing a loan, credit unions need to check the name of every loan applicant to determine whether the applicant is on active duty in the armed forces or is a spouse or dependent of an active duty member of the armed forces.The answer? Yes, the name of every loan applicant should be checked to determine whether the loan will be subject to the DOD’s MLA regulations.Without this check, a credit union might not realize a particular applicant is on activeduty, or a dependent of the active duty member, and make a loan that is not in compliance with the MLA regulations. continue reading » 3SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

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Don’t let coronavirus deliver a knockout blow to your strategic plan

first_imgBoxing legend Mike Tyson once famously said “Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.” Sound familiar for your community bank or credit union strategic plan?For most credit unions and community banks, this thought is extremely poignant when thinking about your strategic plan as it existed pre-coronavirus. More than likely, you had what you thought was a functional strategic plan that was serving your goals at some level until earlier this year when it took a vicious right uppercut from the coronavirus.So, there lies your community bank or credit union strategic plan, flat on the mat with the ref working into his ten-count. What are you going to do?Think like another great boxer (albeit from the world of fiction). Rocky Balboa remarked “… it ain’t about how hard you hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward; how much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done!” 1SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr continue reading »last_img read more

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Trump’s motives on Jerusalem are unclear

first_imgThe Palestinians would get a state, though the 1967 lines would not be its borders.According to some, the territory they get would not be contiguous.That would amount to substantially less than the Palestinians demand and far more than Israel’s right flank intends to give them.If the administration is serious about such a deal, Trump needs to buy the allegiance of both sides.The capital announcement is a prize that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (weakened by corruption scandals and in no position to push back) can use to assuage his right flank.At the same time, Trump may have told Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas (who is 82 and running out of time) that no one will object if the Palestinians protest or burn flags, but serious violence will not be tolerated.If Abbas wants his state, he may have heard, he had better make sure to keep the response to Trump’s announcement muted.Netanyahu, in return, may have been warned that in return for his prize, he will be expected to deliver support for the plan Trump’s team plans to proffer. For decades, the Western world has allowed fear of Palestinian terrorism (or Palestinians backing out of negotiations) to silence claims that everyone knows to be true.Such capitulation serves no one. It doesn’t serve the West, for it renders even the U.S. impotent in the face of Palestinian threat.It doesn’t help Israel, which wants the world to acknowledge that its capital being near the seat of King David’s kingdom and the location of the two Temples symbolizes with utter clarity that the Jews have returned home.And it doesn’t serve the Palestinians, who through the use of threat, have immobilized the West and put off the serious deliberations they will have to undertake if they are ever to get the state they want.Whether the president has the focus, skill and interest in making this move the beginning of a positive and far-reaching process, though, remains to be seen.Daniel Gordis is senior vice president and Koret distinguished fellow at Shalem College in Jerusalem. Categories: Editorial, OpinionCalling it a “recognition of reality” and “the right thing to do,” President Donald Trump announced Wednesday that the U.S. was recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, and that the American Embassy will be moved from Tel Aviv to the contested city.The announcement leaves many questions, two of which are primary. Trump’s core supporters will likely stick by him through thick and thin.But there have to be some religious voters who find the president’s open endorsement of Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore — widely believed to have forced underage women into sexual encounters — distasteful to say the least.The Russia investigation looms, as do increasing questions about whether Trump, his family or his innermost circle may be legally vulnerable.It hasn’t been a good period for the president; if Trump was looking for a diversion, he seems to have landed on an effective one.There is one much less cynical, although unlikely, possibility that deserves mention.Trump has long said he will forge a deal between Israelis and Palestinians, and rumors on the street are that the “key principles” of his team’s agreement are emerging.Accounts vary. If anyone can deliver the Israeli right, it is Netanyahu, likely the most skilled political manipulator the country has had as prime minister.With his political life possibly nearing its end and with little to show for his years in office, Netanyahu would like a deal like this to ensure his place in history.How likely is this scenario?It’s hard to say.A careful plan in which the Trump moves slowly and stays on script would hardly be characteristic of his modus operandi so far. But it’s not entirely out of the question.Trump, not surprisingly, is taking heat from all corners, including Palestinians, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May, Christian leaders in Israel and even the liberal American Jewish community.Yet even if he was motivated primarily by his own selfish needs, Trump is right — he did the right thing. The first is whether violence will ensue.The Palestinians and Turks are making threats, and Israel’s security establishment is said to be on alert.But many Israelis are dismissing the dangers of what they call “Trumpocalypse.”Unlike hypothetical steps, such as assigning the Palestinians a smaller state than they demand or ending U.S. support for a two-state solution, recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital changes nothing on the ground.Many Israelis and even Palestinians thus doubt that, grandstanding aside, the Palestinians would risk much in response to a statement merely acknowledges what the world has long known to be true.The other major question is, “Why now?”Theories abound, of course, but the most obvious explanation is that Trump is seeking both a diversion from his growing problems at home and a bone to throw to his evangelical Christian and Orthodox Jewish base before his support there erodes. More from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censuslast_img read more

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