Against a State Constitutional Convention

By Jeremy C. Toth This article was originally published in The Public. PART I Hassan Minhaj performed at the White House Correspondents Dinner this year. At one point, he quipped how the phrase “Anything is possible” used to be an indicator of hopeful optimism but now, in the age of Trump, has become a dire warning: “Anything is…

Why New York Needs a Constitutional Convention

By Peter J. Galie and Christopher Bopst This article was originally published on the Rockefeller Institute of Government blog as part of a series on the New York State Constitutional Convention process. See also by Galie and Bopst: When Rhetoric Attempts to Trump Reality: Why a Constitutional Convention Would Not Take Away Public Employee Rights…

The “Back to School” Issue – 2017

We decided that for our third month of Counterpoint “conversations,” we’d go back to school. Primary and secondary education in Buffalo is in a state of crisis. Our school system suffers from abysmal graduation rates, rampant truancy, tension between different stakeholder groups, struggles to meet the needs of immigrant and non-English-speaking students, a state-driven assessment…

“The Poor You Will Always Have With You” – Another Reflection on Poverty

by Mark Zirnheld, CEO and Director of the Society of Saint Vincent dePaul … I have seen that offering material assistance, while temporarily beneficial, is only addressing the obvious. Increased funding and creating new programs has not eliminated poverty in one of the world’s wealthiest nations. The real poverty I have observed is a poverty…

Poverty in Buffalo: A Problem that Needs a Plan – Mark J.F. Schroeder

Progress in a city is not solely determined by downtown luxuries, things that many residents cannot even afford. Progress in a city is achieved when every resident can reach their full potential, when families feel safe in their neighborhoods and secure in their homes, when kids can receive a quality education and grow into adults…