Monthly Archives: October 2013

Like many people, I consider myself a big Law & Order fan. I will sit there and watch a Marathon on USA all day even if I’ve already seen the episode a million times already.

I can recite the opening dialogue perfectly.

I like to guess the plot twists early on.

And I feel like I’m one of the only people that was happy that Olivia and Elliot never got together. I cherish their platonic relationship. It meant that men and women can coexist together and love one another without jumping into bed.

I’m also one of many people who were upset to see Elliot leave.

However I’ve been happy with the new faces in the last couple of seasons. Amanda and Nick have been good editions to the show. And so has the new ADA.

Law & Order was actually really good tonight. One of the stronger episodes I’ve seen in awhile with tonight’s “October Surprise”.

It was also pretty diverse. It mostly focused on the ADA Rafael Barba (played by Raul Esparza) and his former childhood friend who is also running for NYC mayor (and in this fictional world would be the 1st Hispanic mayor). They grew up together, and both wanted to leave their low income areas to become successes. Barba becoming a lawyer and now the ADA and his friend running for Mayor.

There was a lot of spanish being spoken and a lot of brown faces. To me, this was great. To see more people of color on television is always a great thing, especially if it’s a show I love.

I know NBC Universal bought a major Spanish speaking network and are trying to diversified their Network (especially in the Latino department). 

Tonight’s episode dealt with race, class, culture, ethnically, and ‘passing’ (i.e passing for white). The storyline similar to the Anthony Weiner situation seemed like just a backdrop. But the political scandal of it all ties in all of these topics quite nicely.

So I give my applause to them. I was expecting a corny ripoff of Weiner, when in reality I got a fleshed out episode about friendship and loyalty, with race and class used as a tension filled backdrop.

My report on the recent march for Charter Schools in NYC and NBC’s Education Nation.

Across the Brooklyn Bridge. Photo by Bianca Clendenin.

Across the Brooklyn Bridge. Photo by Bianca Clendenin.

“My school, my choice” was one of the many chants sung out by students…teachers… and their families who are fighting for equality in their education.

Tuesday morning on October 8th students, teachers, parents, and many supporters came out to Brooklyn to support Charter Schools in New York City.

In attempt to have there voices heard…according to NY1 over 17,000 supports walked across the Brooklyn Bridge to City Hall on Tuesday.

With the upcoming election in November one of the main topics bought up by democratic candidate for Mayor…Bill de Blasio are Charter Schools and their use of space in public school buildings.

De Blasio believes that charter schools should pay for rent.

His stance on Charter Schools:  “There are charters that are much, much better endowed in terms of resources than the public sector ever hoped to be. It is insult to injury to give them free rent. They should have to pay rent. They have the money.”

His opponent, Republican Joe Lhota disagrees and was at the march on Tuesday to show support.

Supporters of Charter Schools were singing a different tune. To many, Charter Schools are Public Schools and deserve to continue existing in their spaces without being charged rent.

In New York City alone there are 183 charter schools in existence.

Current Mayor…Michael Bloomberg has been an avid supporter of the Charter School system since he took office in 2002. For this he has been seen as progressive.

New York City has been the hub for charter school success stories… For example, KIPP (which stands for Knowledge is Power Program), which I’m an alumnus of their 1st school…Opened in 1995 in the Bronx. The program has branched out both nationally and locally, with multiple schools within the 5 boroughs as well as an elementary and high school.

If De Blasio wins in November, this could lead to many of these Charter Schools closing because they don’t have the funds to afford to pay their rent. It can also mean that the dozens of Charter Schools that planed on opening up in the next few months may have to be put on hold.

Education has been a hot topic in New York in the last few days. Just finishing up their two-day summit, NBC’s 4th annual Education Nation just took place during the 6th through 8th.  Having all kinds of panels filled with educators and supporters…discussed methods on how to better education and to have this dialogue on a national scale.

One of the more popular discussions that I was grateful to be apart of was the Student Town Hall from this past Sunday. Moderated by MSNBC’s Melissa Harris-Perry this event gave a telecast platform for students of ages ranging from 11 to 25 to come and speak out about issues in regards to education that matter to them.

Personally it inspired me to want to do more. As a recent college graduate and aspiring journalist, I realized being active in some sort of policy or advocacy work is a great way to give back to your community. Without my support from my charter school I wouldn’t be who I am today. This is why I hope to blend my growing interest in advocacy and journalism to get back to my roots and give a voice to folks who need to be heard. We can all agree that education is vital to a thriving society and we need to all work together to provide a better future for our children.

Sound off: Do you agree that Charter Schools shouldn’t have to pay rent or do you agree they need to pay up? Remember be respectful in the comments sections. Thanks, B.

Fall is here which means time to breakout all the dark colors. The blacks, the neutrals, the dark blues, the forest greens, and deep burgundies.

If you’re like me I enjoy these colors all year round.

When it comes to makeup dark lipstick is the current trend.

For weeks now I’ve been on a search for the perfect dark purple/red lipstick for someone of my complexion. It’s been an interesting journey.

To be honest, I’m a newbie when it comes to makeup. I didn’t seriously start wearing makeup until maybe my first year of undergrad. Even nail-polish is kinda new for me.

But I adore lipstick, especially a good matte lipstick.

The first dark lipstick I tried was by Mac. It was way too dark. It was very close to a black. A woman working their told me because I have yellow undertones, I should stay away from cooler colors. This of course made me disappointed because all the cool tumblr girls seem to get away with damn near black lipstick and it look killer in it. This also made me realize I’m not a cool tumblr girl either. So my search continues.

I tried a color by Sephora, but Sephora brand lipstick didn’t work for me. I would have to continue reapplying throughout the day.

After having success with a bright purple color from Stila, I realized maybe spending a little bit more money on makeup means I’ll get better options.

So a few weeks ago I tried out some lipstick from Make Up Forever.

Both were ok. I ended up getting the N50.


I like the N50, but I felt like I could do better. I almost gave up on the whole dark lipstick thing, when I found the perfect dark lipstick.

Kat Von D’s Rosary

And I was about to buy it when I also started looking for a good nude lipstick. The woman at Sephora helped me find a good one by NARS. Since I really could only afford one lipstick at the time, I decided to go with the nude. I needed a good everyday lipstick. I’ll get the dark lipstick later, after I return the Make Up Forever.

NARS Satin Lip Pencil in Cognac

To be honest? I’m obsessed with this nude lipstick now. It’s kinda perfect. This entire time I was looking for a dark lipstick, but I’m realizing nude looks amazing on me. Will I give up on my dark lipstick? Nope. I’ve spent too much time and money looking for the perfect dark lipstick. Plus it’s good to switch it up.

Throwback Thursday, my story about Hurricane Sandy.

My Portfolio

Bianca Clendenin and her team braces the beginnings of Hurricane Sandy, which started to hit earlier this afternoon. The campus was pretty deserted, besides a few students still craving cigarettes. But overall students who decided to stay on campus are coping with the incoming weather

The brute of the storm is expected to hit this evening between 9pm-12am, according ABC 7 News.

Additional reporting done by Erik Alfonseca.

Originally published for The Purchase Brick

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To seed out all the terrible jokes on Facebook and Instagram about folks who won’t be able to receive their welfare checks or people who just don’t know about the current situation so they leave obnoxious comments, may leave some of you confused about what’s going on in Washington right now.

I’m sorry one Parks and Recreation screenshot was needed! In their fictional town, the government was shut down for 3 months.

If you’re a little confused about this government shutdown, that’s fine! There’s more to this current situation than you see from your social media circle.

Here is a short breakdown of everything you need to know about this government shutdown:

On October 1st at midnight the House and the Senate couldn’t come to an agreement on bill that would fund the federal government. This comes right after the Republican dominated House had recently just voted against the current Affordable Health Care Act, with a 231-192 vote along party lines. This bill was supposed to allow the health care act to be delayed another year. However this bill died in the Senate.

On Monday President Obama came out and said that “no matter what Congress decides to do today. The Affordable Care Act is moving forward. That funding is already in place. You can’t shut it down.”

The problem is Congress basically can’t play nice. The reason why we’re getting our first government shutdown in 17 years is because Congress can’t agree on how to fund our government.  The lack of compromise is daunting, but not surprising.

This isn’t all about the Affordable Health Care Act, Congress needs to agree on 12 different bills to pass that would fund different parts of the federal government. So far they’ve had more stopgag budgets than bills passed. A stopgag is basically putting the bill on hold and dealing with it later. As you can tell this hasn’t been the best method.

So you’re question is, what’s actually being shutdown? The answer would be, let’s talk about what’s staying open.

The Military, air traffic control, emergency medical care, border patrol, federal prisons, most law enforcement, emergency and disaster assistance, overseeing the banking system, operating the power grid, and guarding federal property are some of the many “essential to the protection of life and property of the nation” that will still be open.

Financial benefits like Social Security and veteran benefits will still be put into effect. While unemployment and food stamps will still continue for the time being. However depending on how long the government shutdown lasts, these benefits could soon stop.

The postal service and the federal reserve will still be operating, as well as all agencies of independent U.S funding.

Now you’re thinking, ok so what’s actually being shutdown then?

The list is fairly long. Here are some of the agencies that will be included in the shutdown:

All of the national parks and museums will be closed, including the Statue of Liberty in New York and the Yosemite National Park in California.

Women, Infants and Children program, also known as WIC will be cut off, which allows pregnant and new mothers to buy food for their children. A service that reaches almost 9 million Americans, it is estimated that most States have enough funds to keep the program afloat with federal government assistance until the end of the month.

The Justice Department will suspend many civil cases for as long as the government is shut down. However the FBI and Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) will stay open.

Here’s a complete list of all the government agencies that are closed and open:


Now that you have an idea of what this shutdown means, who does this effect?

Well currently about 800,000 federal workers will be send home because of this shutdown. This leaves about “1.3 million “essential ” federal workers, 1.4 million active-duty military members, 500,000 Postal Service workers, and other employees in independently-funded agencies who will continue working”, according to the Washington Post.

For a breakdown of the different agencies what impacts this shutdown will bring. Check out this detailed list by the Washington Post.

What about all the” non-essential” workers? Will they get paid?

This is still unclear. This really all depends on Congress.

How will this effect our economy?

Well considering stocks went up yesterday, you would think our economy isn’t doing too bad even while our government is crumbling.

It’s reported that the local economy for D.C is expected to lose almost $200 million everyday the shutdown occurs.

Going by my research, it’s all still pretty unclear what exactly will happen. It all depends on many factors, ones we may not know for a few days or maybe even in a few weeks. The best we can hope for is for Congress to finally come together to create a way to basically fund the government and then get back to work.

Now that you have a little bit more information on the government shutdown, please go out and read more! My little write up on scratches the surface.

Most of my important came from this super helpful Washington Post Breakdown. For more details check it out here:

Ok one more joke and a reference to another show to be obsessed over with. Seriously go watch House of Cards!