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Associate Cathy Reisenwitz Published by Reason

Today Reason magazine published a column by Young Voices Associate Cathy Reisenwitz, Better Mental Health Care, Not New Gun Laws, Will Prevent Future Mass Shootings.

Earlier this year, stand-up comedian and talk-show host Joe Rogan tweeted, “This country has a mental health problem disguised as a gun problem and a tyranny problem disguised as a security problem.” As more facts come to light about the Washington Navy Yard shooting last week, it seems he hit the nail on the head.

Read the rest here.

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Social Justice: The New “White Man’s Burden”

Recently and continuously the issue of race in the Miley Cyrus video and allegations of prejudice and racism arose and continuously have circulated on the Internet. Miley is using the black women as props they shout, she’s shaming and making a mockery out of black culture they furiously type on their keyboards, however, I have one question: Since when did privileged white bloggers feel they are society’s last great defense against racism and must defend minorities? No one asked for a great white defender, and arguably no one needs one.

When watching the performance for the first time on YouTube, I just turned it off after 10-20 seconds. I saw no reason to continue. Be that as it may, those with a PhD from Interwebs University in Psychology and Sociology felt the need to dissect this video in multiple ways. Deep inside the bowels of a trendy metropolitan area, you will find society’s newest self-proclaimed freedom fighters. They are individuals often who are privileged enough to go to school to study something almost entirely academic, and often at the best schools this nation has to offer. They raise themselves to what they believe is the highest moral standard and admonish anyone else who doesn’t agree as either racist, ignorant, or a number of other things no one arguably should want to be called. However, if they were not white, would they be able to reasonably make this claim?

The hypocrisy that pervades this social group is repulsive on levels to which I’m surprised I don’t vomit on my keyboard before I’m at an article’s end. As they type from their Chinese- mass-produced laptops, some lambast Capitalism as an evil system, despite supporting the companies which embrace the system most strongly. Others talk of how their adversaries either suffer from or are affected by someone’s “white privilege” yet the only reason they know that term is from being formally educated, one of the key indications of privilege. However, the most infuriating aspect of these individuals is what they feel is their right, their need, their duty to defend minorities from racism, especially in events when no minority groups clamor to do so.

Who allowed you to defend the black performers who performed alongside Miley Cyrus? I don’t recall the CEO of Viacom instituting a urban-wide program of rounding up black females and pointing guns at their heads, screaming at them to “OBJECTIFY YOURSELVES OR DIE!!” Since when did you get to decide what is considered indecent for anyone to do, regardless of race? Wait, I know exactly what it is! Your White Privilege, the burden of being a white, educated individual!

“Wait!” they say, “I’m not privileged! I’m a white person fighting against the social constructs of society! I’m fighting FOR the minorities!!.” No, you aren’t. You take your white privilege that was given to you at birth, reinforced by your ability to obtain higher education, and then to publicly admonish anyone who violates your principles of decency because you believe society should be the way you want it to. Before Barack Obama, the possibility of a black president was laughable, even if you were to ask any black person. It only became a possibility when the people in your culture decided they would vote for him. In the opposite direction, you have rejected the twerking because you decide it’s racist since you re uncomfortable with the situation.

The retorts will be, “But, the camera panned on Rhianna! Even she was outraged!!” News Flash: Rhianna’s light skin and relaxed hair allows her to pass as white in the same way that Beyonce is allowed to, and even she is just as much a prostitute to the “patriarchy” they complain about as any other mainstream media personality, including Miley. You all have been fooled horrifically and you go on these moral crusades because you feel you have the right to do so on behalf of a black person or any minority. You feel as if you are the only people, the only generation who can change this, because no generation previously has had to deal with this before.

Every time I see these blog posts on the VMAs or anything dealing with black racism, no matter what they actually type I only hear the same thing:

“You can’t expect those negroes to stand up for themselves! They’re down trodden and disadvantaged. They need a Great White Defender!! Someone who isn’t afraid to challenge the patriarchy or the man!!”

If you’d like to speak with or book Taweh or any of our other Advocates, please contact Young Voices now.

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Young Voices Director Fred Roeder Quoted By Largest English-Language German News Site!

The Local, “Germany’s News in English,” and the largest English-language German news site, quoted our own Young Voices Director Fred Roeder in an article entitled Reasons why the election matters to non-Germans:

Health economist and Young Voices Advocate Frederik Roeder told The Local: “The SPD’s and Greens’ plans would make labour more expensive in Germany since they want to burden employers with more of healthcare costs.”

This comes on the heels of Fred’s interview on health care policy with Canadian news outlet Sun News Network.

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Advocate Wolf von Laer featured by Atlantic Community

Young Voices Advocate Wolf von Laer has been featured by one of the leading trans-atlantic think tanks, The Atlantic Community. His recent piece on the free trade negotiations between the European Union and United States has been republished by The Atlantic Community and can be found here.

Atlantic-community.org is the first online think tank for international relations. With more than 7,000 members, http://www.atlantic-community.org is one of the strongest and most comprehensive policy networks in the field of transatlantic relations. Our mission is to give a voice to a new generation of thinkers and to contribute to a more diverse strategic community.

If you’d like to speak with or book Wolf or any of our other Advocates, please contact Young Voices now.

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Danish Property over-taxation keeps Youth from Buying Property

In a new report, the National Audit Office of Denmark criticizes the Danish tax agency for over-taxation of properties. According to the audit office, three out of four properties have been wrongly evaluated. The overtaxation on top on already-high taxes risks keeping young people from buying property and starting families.

A new report has shocked Denmark. According to it, 41% of all properties in Denmark have been overtaxed. Incidences like those make it very difficult to trust a tax agency, especially since Danes already suffer from one of the world’s highest tax burdens (49% of GDP is used on governmental spending). For property taxes alone, an average homeowner in some of the wealthier municipalities pays about DKK 45,000 (6,000 EUR) a year.

This is, simply put, a scandal. And while it hits property owners the hardest, high property taxes also lead to both higher rent rates and prevents young people from buying property. This is a problem on a multitude of levels. First of all, there is the risk that the public stipend of around 5,000 DKK (670 EUR) monthly to Danish students, which is already among the highest in the world, is too low to help pay rent, pushing taxes even higher to raise the stipend. Secondly, for most people, buying your own property and starting a family go hand in hand.

Unfunded liabilities in the social security system (especially in healthcare and the pension system) are indicators for a potential collapse of tax- or contribution-funded pay-as-you-go systems. Our generation is aware of the lack of inter-generational justice in Denmark and tries to build up private savings for our retirement. Raising the price of acquiring and owning property, which also serves as a private way of saving, in no way helps solving the problem of an uncertain future of the public pension system.

We Danes already have very low trust in our taxing agency after many previous scandals and this might be the drop that makes the bucket overflow. There is a huge need for both a simplification of the taxes and for cutting taxes in general. One of the most important things would also be to lessen the rights of the tax agency that, for example, last year gained the right to walk into people’s private property without a warrant if they suspect fraud.

Being taxed for owning property is already economically and morally questionable. Being overtaxed due to government-caused over-evaluation of properties is definitely a violation of the principles of the rule of law and illustrates how tax authorities act as if they were above the law.

This is why my generation demands that overtaxation of property ends. This would lower rents and to help us achieve the dream of homeownership.

If you’d like to speak with or book Rasmus or any of our other Advocates, please contact Young Voices now.