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Reading Mayor Reverses Course, Will Allow LGBTQ Rainbow Flag To Over City Hall

Read and Listen CBS Philly

Scott said his change of heart came after a 'very prominent woman' he would not name told him of her experience of realizing she was gay and telling her mother.
'READING, Pa. (CBS/AP) — The mayor of the eastern Pennsylvania city of Reading has reversed course and says he will allow the LGBTQ rainbow flag to fly over City Hall for the first time. Mayor Wally Scott last week called off a scheduled ceremony to raise the “pride flag,” calling it a political symbol, but posted a video Saturday on his Facebook page saying he had changed his mind. “I told them they can put the flag up,” he said. “I just asked them to keep the politics out of it.” Scott said his change of heart came after a “very prominent woman” he would not name told him of her experience of realizing she was gay and telling her mother. “What I am interested in is that the people that the flag represents have suffered,” Scott said. “Wow, to remember the very day you broke the news to your mother. You knew as a child that you were a boy in a girl’s body. I still choke up. ‘Blatant, Unacceptable Discrimination’: Reading Mayor Calls Off Ceremony To Raise LGBTQ Flag Over City Hall “Your flag is something we should support,” Scott said. “This one here, you hit home. Please put your flag up.” The LGBT Center of Greater Reading welcomed the mayor’s decision, saying his change of heart “is exactly in alignment with our mission, our hopes for the community, and what we will continue to work toward in the future,” executive director Michelle Dech said. “Education is our primary purpose and today’s events highlight the importance and value of interpersonal relationships in changing attitudes and policies at the local level,” she said. The organization had blasted his earlier decision, saying “what was supposed to be a proud and historical moment” became “blatant, unacceptable discrimination.” (©Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)'

Poetry of the City in Summer

Read and Listen BOOK RIOT

These past few months I have been on a hunt of poetry set in the city during the summer heat. ..
'These past few months I have been on a hunt of poetry set in the city during the summer heat. I was searching for contemporary poetic voices that extolled the smells and sounds of the sun’s relentless heat waves pounding the city’s sidewalks and the sun absorbing our skin. These excerpts from the six poems below will delight your summer senses before the sun goes down in a few months. There are romance scenarios set by the Hudson River and lots of beer on the fire escapes and city fireflies. Summer Night, Riverside by Sara Teasdale In the wild soft summer darkness How many and many a night we two together Sat in the park and watched the Hudson Wearing her lights like golden spangles Glinting on black satin. The frail white stars moved slowly over the sky. And now, far off In the fragrant darkness The tree is tremulous again with bloom For June comes back. Soon the City by Liam Rector Soon the summer Now the pleasant purgatory Of spring is over, Soon the choking Humidity In the city On the fire escapes In a sleeveless T-shirt Smoking a cigar In tune with the tremor Of the mindless yellow Commercial traffic Moving in the city, Where no one really Buys a car, American Or otherwise, Where we will, As Rilke said we would Where we will Wake, read, write Long letters And in the avenues Wander restlessly To and fro On foot in The humidity, Where soon I’ll shower, dress, Take the dog out for a piss, And mail this. Chinatown Diptych by Jenny Xie I. The face of Chinatown returns its color, plucked from July’s industrial steamer. …Four noodle shops on East Broadway release their belches collectively. They breed in e a hankering for family life. Hey, there’s no logic to melons and spring onions exchanging hands. No rhythm to men’s briefs clothes-pinned to the fire escape. Retirees beneath the Manhattan Bridge leak hearsay. The woman in Apartment #18 on Bayard washes her feet in pot of boiled water each evening before bedtime. But every handful of weeks she lapses. I lean into the throat of summer. Perched above these streets with whom I share verbs and adjectives. II. Faces knotted, bangs softened with grease. The East River pulls along a thread of sun. While Sunday slides in. Again, in those plain trousers. How the heat is driven off course. How one can make out the clarified vowels of bridges. Who’s keeping count of what’s given against what’s stolen? There’s nothing I can’t trace back to my coarse immigrant blood. Uncles tipple wine on the streets of Mott and Bayard. Night shifts meet day shifts in passing. Sweat seasons the body that labors. And in each noodle shop, bowls dusted with salt. Morningside Heights, July by William Matthews Haze…A clatter of jackhammers. Granular light. A film of sweat for primer and the heat for a coat of paint. A man and a woman on a bench: she tells him he must be psychic, for how else could he sense, even before she knew, that she’d need to call it off? A bicyclist fumes by with a coach’s whistle clamped hard between his teeth, shrilling like a teakettle on the boil… The sky blurs – there’s a storm coming up or down. A lank cat slinks liquidly around a corner. How familiar it feels to feel strange, hollower than a bassoon. A rill of chill air in the leaves. A car alarm. Hail. First Blues by Saundra Rose Maley That summer night Was hot Steaming like a crab Luscious under the shell Television gone bleary Blinked In front of men In undershirts drinking beer Wives upstairs took showers Caught A glimpse of their backs In hallway mirrors I sat in the dark Invisible On the back porch Drinking in the night And it tasted good So good Going down And somebody like me Blew night through an alto sax Blew and blew His cooling breath His hot cool breath on me – And I came alive Glowing In the dark Listening like a fool 40 Ounce by Marcus Jackson Summer has salted our neighborhood to thirst; tar that patches the wounds of roofs heats to sluggish bubbles; sun obligates paint on car hoods to blotch. Emphasized by the light inside corner-store beer cooler, your malt lusters. Your cold gold down throat. Foam-skinned as any cleansing. Through an uncurtained pane, a music video is visible; women’s shimmer slurs like jewelry worn on a passerby. We drink you to the pale bottom, we drink until night sinks into skin like silk, until graveyard cops circle our block like a clock arm, until blood slides like alloy through veins, until words hammer from the anvil of the brain, until America’s continental wheel unbolts and everybody can see we gleam like greased bearings.'

Haunting Photos Show the Gritty Side of 1970s Tokyo

Read and Listen InsideHook

Canadian photographer Greg Girard has earned acclaim over the years for his richly detailed photographs of cities around the world.He’s also a favorite artist of acclaimed novelist William Gibson, who wrote the foreword for Girard’s 2007 book
'Canadian photographer Greg Girard has earned acclaim over the years for his richly detailed photographs of cities around the world.He’s also a favorite artist of acclaimed novelist William Gibson , who wrote the foreword for Girard’s 2007 book Phantom Shanghai . Girard’s works frequently focus on subcultures, hidden structures or unexpected histories.His latest book, Tokyo-Yokosuka 1976-1983 , finds Girard exploring the recent past of Tokyo — but also his own artistic development.Tokyo-Yokosuka 1976-1983 includes a host of photographs taken by Girard when he was a young photographer first venturing across the Pacific and shaping his distinctive style.In his introduction, curator Christopher Phillips writes that “[f]ew would have described the Tokyo that Girard discovered in 1976 as one of the great destinations of the world.Foreign visitors were more likely to complain that Tokyo was a planless maze: chaotic, featureless, polluted, a city concerned only with economic growth.” It would be a few more years before Tokyo became the iconic city — and muse to designers and artists around the globe — that it is today.Reading Tokyo-Yokosuka 1976-1983 also offers the opportunity to see how Girard would develop some of the themes he’s explored in the years and decades since then.In 2012, Hyperallergic wrote about the International Center of Photography’s exhibit Perspectives 2012 , in which Girard was one of the featured artists.The review hailed Girard’s exploration of the American military presence overseas, stating, “[w]ith his provocative series of photographs, Girard manages to question our military presence in the Pacific by simply showing that we are there.” One can see the genesis of this work in Tokyo-Yokosuka 1976-1983: there are glimpses of military facilities seen from a distance, providing the viewer with an empathic glimpse of those structures and the security systems around them.Some of the most impressive images within Tokyo-Yokosuka 1976-1983 contain within them a sustained atmosphere, evoking the everyday atmosphere of the city and its residents going about their daily routines.In some of Girard’s images of buildings and signage, you can practically hear the hum of the glowing signs as they provide a signpost to viewers traveling through the city at night.In another, an empty playground structure is bathed in a wash of green light, turning a familiar sight into something disconcerting.The people glimpsed in Girard’s photographs are also instantly memorable.Whether he’s capturing them in intimate moments or showing them channeling an inner levity, Girard finds unexpected moments in the lives of his subjects.Phillips’s introduction memorably cites one in particular: “At one of his regular late-night haunts, a 24-hour Mr.Donuts shop in his Tokyo neighborhood, he bends down to photograph a drunken off-duty sushi chef who is good-naturedly performing a ‘yakuza greeting.’” The photographs seen in Tokyo-Yokosuka 1976-1983 offer a window into a great photographer’s formative years, and to an oft-overlooked period in the city that they depict.But Girard’s work never loses sight of the human element, and it’s what lends these photographs considerable power, decades after they were first taken. . The post Haunting Photos Show the Gritty Side of 1970s Tokyo appeared first on InsideHook .'

eBay CEO: Why We Should Teach All Students to Code

Read and Listen Fortune

And all technologists should take English literature.
'Everyone should learn to code.  Some would argue that coding is not a necessary skill for people who are not working in an engineering-related function. But digital technology now powers every industry, business, and profession.  Learning to write code, whether you want to be an engineer or not, gets you thinking about the world differently. That’s why I believe that you’ll be a better English professor if you take computer programming.  That said, I would also argue, just as strongly, that you’ll be a better technologist if you take English literature. Or international relations, philosophy, or art history, for that matter. As thousands of newly minted college graduates begin charting their career paths this year, it’s crucial that they draw inspiration from the liberal arts along with technical skills as they navigate the infinite possibilities of the professional world. I see many debates about technical skills versus liberal arts. This misses the point. The future is about integrating the two in a way that builds technical proficiency informed by a sense of humanness.  We’re in the midst of big platform shifts happening in the technology ecosystem which in many ways have already changed our lives. Machines are reaching, and sometimes exceeding, human performance on tasks. While this will open up new opportunities for the economy and society, it also has the potential to disrupt millions of lives and prompts debates on what the future will look like—humanistic or robotic.  Navigating this and many other complex ethical and societal questions is where the liberal arts play a vital role. It’s our responsibility to shape our society in a way that is inclusive and adaptive to change. The varied subjects that comprise the liberal arts help us think critically about both the implications and opportunities of the technology that our society is advancing. Coding enables me to be more structured in my thinking. It also forces me to make connections between different concepts, which is important whether I’m dealing with art or politics. On the flip side, my love of art makes me think about beauty and design, which is a critical component of the user experience in technology products.  The founding of eBay is a classic case study of all of this coming together. It certainly took programming expertise to execute our founder Pierre Omidyar’s vision to connect buyers and sellers around the world. But every line of code was also centered around bringing complete strangers together in mutual trust. Learning how to adapt in the real world isn’t a task that can be programmed. It’s a skill that is nourished by empathy, critical thinking, and creativity. Engineers are creative, but it’s typically their passion outside of ones and zeros that inspires the most life-changing technologies. Leaders of institutions of higher education are responsible for bringing the right combination of arts, sciences, and technology to students, be they future engineers or poets. One of the main reasons I left New York for Silicon Valley is because the valley is a place where the entire culture drives creation. That’s why extraordinary companies and products are built by 20-year-olds who say, “Leave me alone; I’ve got an incredible idea and I’m going to change the world.” They often do.  It’s also a place that can also become untethered. It’s going to take philosophers, artists, mathematicians, and technologists alike to help set the guardrails for the disruptive technology that we know is inevitable. Technologists will blaze a trail into the future, but artists will make the journey worthwhile. When we harness the creativity of both, we build amazing things. Devin Wenig, president and CEO of eBay, studied political science at Union College and law at Columbia University. He learned to code on his own on weekends several years ago. More opinion in Fortune : — Renewable energy is booming. Here’s how to keep it going —Bernie Sanders: America is drowning in student debt. Here’s my plan to end it —Business needs a better way to predict the next economic downturn —Most states still enforce noncompete agreements —and it’s stifling innovation — Mike Gravel : Why the American people need their own legislature Listen to our new audio briefing, Fortune 500 Daily'