social media – Helviti http://helviti.com/ Fri, 25 Mar 2022 21:09:47 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://helviti.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/icon-1-1-120x120.png social media – Helviti http://helviti.com/ 32 32 After a year-long hiatus, the North American Division hosts third Religious Freedom Prayer Breakfast https://helviti.com/after-a-year-long-hiatus-the-north-american-division-hosts-third-religious-freedom-prayer-breakfast/ Wed, 02 Feb 2022 12:33:22 +0000 https://helviti.com/after-a-year-long-hiatus-the-north-american-division-hosts-third-religious-freedom-prayer-breakfast/ On January 13, 2022, more than 40 people from various faith traditions gathered for the third Religious Freedom Prayer Breakfast hosted by the Seventh-day Adventist Church in North America (NAD). The event recognized January 16 as National Religious Freedom Day in the United States and included a prayer for elected officials, community, nation, global health […]]]>

On January 13, 2022, more than 40 people from various faith traditions gathered for the third Religious Freedom Prayer Breakfast hosted by the Seventh-day Adventist Church in North America (NAD). The event recognized January 16 as National Religious Freedom Day in the United States and included a prayer for elected officials, community, nation, global health and healing, peace, religious freedom and unity. of mind. Representatives of several faith groups prayed over these topics, including participants from Adventist, Jewish, Muslim, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Baptist and non-denominational Christian traditions. Several NAD leaders and local church leaders participated with prayer and music.

Eric Baxter, president of the Silver Spring Stake—Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and senior counsel for Becket, a nonprofit, public-benefit legal and educational institute, delivered special remarks for the event, which was scaled back due to the coronavirus pandemic.

During the prayer breakfast welcome, Orlan Johnson, NAD Director of Public Affairs and Religious Liberty, provided a brief summary of the program and shared the significance of the January date for the event. . “We are here to celebrate an important day: National Religious Freedom Day, which commemorates the signing in 1786 of Virginia’s historic Statute of Religious Freedom. It was a law by Thomas Jefferson, which included powerful language that later served as the basis for our First Amendment to the US Constitution – language that means you and I can each worship God in any way we see fit. appropriate.

Johnson further shared, “No matter what religious tradition we represent, we can celebrate together and be grateful to live in this country that respects religious freedom. Sometimes here in America, however, we begin to feel convinced that this is how it is, and this is how the world should be. But the Pew Research Center estimates that 80% of the world’s population lives in areas where religious freedom is severely restricted. The reality is that it’s a bit like looking in your car’s rear view mirror: the objects you see in the rear view mirror can come at you faster than you think! And if religious freedom is restricted in someone else’s garden, we need to be aware that it’s possible it could happen in ours as well.

Orlan Johnson, director of public affairs and religious liberty for the NAD, welcomes attendees to the 2021 Religious Liberty Prayer Breakfast at division headquarters on January 13. [Photo by Pieter Damsteegt]

During his address, Baxter noted that although people represent different traditions and beliefs, we can still work together toward the common goal of promoting and protecting religious freedom for all. “In today’s world, we have so many opportunities to feel division and discord. It is good, on the contrary, to focus on what brings us together,” he said.

Baxter told the story of one of the many religious accommodation cases he fought. Captain Simratpal “Simmer” Singh is a devout Sikh and decorated army captain who was forced to choose between serving his country and wearing the articles of his faith: his uncropped hair, beard and turban.

“He was forced to make the difficult choice between following his religion by serving his God or following his religion by serving his country. It was basically an impossible choice that no one should have to face,” Baxter explained. The case allowed the military to end its 30-year beard ban and issue new regulations stating that Sikh soldiers will not be forced to give up their religious turbans, uncropped hair or beards while throughout their military career.

“We need to stand in solidarity with those who don’t share our faith and even with those who have no faith at all,” Baxter said. “When we get to know each other, we can find ways to work together to protect religious freedom for all…We still have many challenges ahead of us, including a general decline in religiosity and a fairly widespread apathy toward the importance of religious freedom. ”

He acknowledged the difficult issues that have emerged in recent years, including the need to preserve religious freedom while ensuring non-discrimination. “I believe that the well-being of our society, and the world at large, depends heavily on our ability as individuals and religious organizations to support one another as we seek in good faith, with humility and compassion, to meet some of these challenges.”

prayer time

Seven special prayers were offered during the event. The prayer for religious freedom was delivered by Kyoshin Ahn, executive secretary of the NAD. Ahn gave thanks for the gift of religious freedom – the right to love and worship God. “We know that not only is religious freedom central to our relationship with you, but we also recognize that it is the foundation of human rights, justice and the common good,” he said. he declares.

A Prayer for the Community followed from Jennifer Gray, Director of Interfaith Outreach for the Governor’s Office of Community Initiatives.

“Our Lord, we pray that our nation, the United States, will remain loving and compassionate. Remove prejudice from our hearts and enable us to love our brothers and sisters of all faiths,” Missionary Umar Nayyar, of Wasaya Baitur Rehman Mosque, said during his prayer for the nation.

As he prayed for the elected, Lt. Col. YS (Lonny) Wortham, State Chaplain for the Maryland National Guard, said, “We pray for these officials, that you root them and root them in love. [for] their Lord, and it would not be by their purpose or their will, but they would hunger and thirst for the things of God. Father, we pray that You’ll save them from their pride; we pray that you save them from their desires for power, so that they may become servants of the people of this country and this nation.

Reverend Jerome Stephens, director of community outreach to Senator Ben Cardin, offered a prayer for global health and healing. He asked God to help overwhelmed healthcare workers during the pandemic. Stephens also said: “It is our prayer that all be encouraged. As we endure this season, it is our faith in God that [we know] a change will come for better health and better healing.

A prayer for peace followed from the Rev. Jennifer Hawks, associate general counsel for the Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty. Hawks addressed disturbing trends in society with domestic violence, racism and negative cultures in social media. She prayed: “Critics are ready to replay our mistakes and failures, trapping us in this negative loop, telling us we are never enough. May we find peace through rest so that we can be agents of shalom within our networks.…May the day soon come when we will treat everyone with the worth and dignity that comes from being created in your image.

Ivan Williams, director of the NAD Ministerial Association, closed the event with a prayer for unity of spirit.

“Oh, God, our maker of every race, tongue, language and people. From your providential hand, we have received our right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. You called us as your people and you gave us the right and the duty to worship you. Thank you for calling us to live out our faith in the midst of the world, accepting the faith of all,” Williams began.

He continued, “Give us the strength of mind and heart to easily defend our freedoms when they are threatened. And give us the courage to raise our voices – even beyond our own rights – for the rights of others. We pray [for] a clear, compassionate, and united voice for all your sons and daughters gathered together in your creation at this defining hour in our nation’s history, that with every trial withstood and every danger overcome now and with our children and grand- children… that this great earth will always be “one nation, under God, indivisible, with freedom and justice for all”.

This article originally appeared on the North American Division news site

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Actress Shweta Tiwari convicted of insulting religion as remark sparks controversy | Latest India News https://helviti.com/actress-shweta-tiwari-convicted-of-insulting-religion-as-remark-sparks-controversy-latest-india-news/ Fri, 28 Jan 2022 10:48:02 +0000 https://helviti.com/actress-shweta-tiwari-convicted-of-insulting-religion-as-remark-sparks-controversy-latest-india-news/ Madhya Pradesh Home Minister Narottam Mishra earlier asked the Bhopal Police Commissioner to investigate the matter and take action. BHOPAL: Madhya Pradesh police on Thursday night charged actress Shweta Tiwari with insulting religion and hurting religious feelings following a controversial comment she made at a press conference in Bhopal on Wednesday in the promotion of […]]]>

Madhya Pradesh Home Minister Narottam Mishra earlier asked the Bhopal Police Commissioner to investigate the matter and take action.

BHOPAL: Madhya Pradesh police on Thursday night charged actress Shweta Tiwari with insulting religion and hurting religious feelings following a controversial comment she made at a press conference in Bhopal on Wednesday in the promotion of a web series.

The actress had made a remark referencing her loungewear and God.

State Home Minister Narottam Mishra had previously asked the Bhopal Police Commissioner to investigate the matter and take action. On Friday, he said Tiwari was convicted under Section 295 A of the Indian Penal Code (willful and malicious acts intended to outrage the religious feelings of any class by insulting religion or religious beliefs).

A video of Tiwari’s comment went viral on social media and Sanskriti Bachao Manch members staged a protest in Bhopal and demanded action against her on Thursday. Later, Bhopal resident Sonu Prajapati filed a complaint against her.

Deputy Police Commissioner Riyaz Iqbal said he filed a complaint against Tiwari over Prajapati’s complaint. “Now we have asked the manager of the hotel, where the press conference was held, to share the video footage so that we can investigate the matter. Further action will be taken after the investigation.


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Betty White’s Death and Upcoming 100th Anniversary Inspires Donations to Animal Groups: “Betty Always Put Animals First” https://helviti.com/betty-whites-death-and-upcoming-100th-anniversary-inspires-donations-to-animal-groups-betty-always-put-animals-first/ Thu, 06 Jan 2022 21:32:00 +0000 https://helviti.com/betty-whites-death-and-upcoming-100th-anniversary-inspires-donations-to-animal-groups-betty-always-put-animals-first/ America has lost her favorite golden daughter, but her death creates a golden opportunity for the animal causes she championed. Fans of actress and comedian Betty White, who passed away on December 31, honor her memory by donating to nonprofits that help animals, White’s lifelong passion. Monetary tributes appear to have started within hours of […]]]>


America has lost her favorite golden daughter, but her death creates a golden opportunity for the animal causes she championed.

Fans of actress and comedian Betty White, who passed away on December 31, honor her memory by donating to nonprofits that help animals, White’s lifelong passion.

Monetary tributes appear to have started within hours of news of White’s death, and fans are now hoping to turn what would have been White’s 100th birthday into a fundraising boon for animal groups. A social media campaign called the Betty White Challenge encourages people to send $ 5 to a local animal shelter or animal shelter on White’s behalf on January 17, when White would have turned 100.

When she wasn’t busy charming audiences on “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” and as St. Olaf’s Rose Nylund on “The Golden Girls,” White was an ardent advocate for animals – not just cats and animals. dogs, but sea creatures and monkeys, too. She was a trustee at Greater Los Angeles Zoo Association, the Morris Animal Foundation and Actors and Others for Animals, and was a long-time supporter of the Marine Mammal Center, a nonprofit ocean conservation organization.

“Almost immediately after the press about his passing, we started receiving donations,” said Susan Taylor, executive director of Actors and Others for Animals, a nonprofit in North Hollywood, Calif., Which provides support. financial assistance to animal owners to sterilize or sterilize their animals. . As of Jan. 4, the group had received approximately $ 5,000 from more than 105 people who donated in the name of BlancTaylor said.

Betty White greets Sgt. Nevis, a sea lion who was a patient at the Marine Mammal Center hospital in Sausalito. White was a “loyal donor” to the center for more than 30 years, a spokesperson said.

The Marine Mammal Center

“Betty always puts animals first”

At the Morris Animal Foundation, more than 850 individual donors gave nearly $ 60,000 to the Betty White Wildlife Fund between Dec.31 and Jan.4, said Carol Borchert, Marketing Director. White established the fund in 2010, in part in response to the adverse effects of the Deep Water Horizon oil spill on marine life. White has also sponsored more than 30 animal health studies “to improve the health of cats, dogs, horses and several species of wildlife, including California sea otters and mountain gorillas,” have Foundation officials said in a statement.

“Betty always puts animals first,” said Dr Rob Hilsenroth, former executive director of the Morris Animal Foundation and longtime friend of White.

In the 1990s, White funded studies of pain management in animals, Hilsenroth said. “Today, if a veterinarian performs elective surgery, such as spaying or neutering without using pain management, he could face a malpractice charge. You can thank Betty White for this revolutionary change in the way we practice all phases of veterinary medicine today, ”said Hilsenroth.

White “would always be there to help us when we needed to raise funds for sterilization,” added Actors and Others for Animals President JoAnne Worley. In 2005, White authorized the group to host a Celebrity Roast of Her as a fundraiser. “She will be missed by all who loved to laugh with her,” Worley said.

“Anything that has a leg at every corner”

White hosted a TV show called “The Pet Kit” in the early 1970s, where famous guests were showing off their pets. She wrote a book in the 1980s called “How Animals Take Care of Us” and another book on zoos to raise funds for the Greater Los Angeles Zoo Association.

Her love for animals comes from the fact that her family took care of more than a dozen dogs during the Depression, she said. told The Associated Press, and she wrote in the zoo book that both of her parents were crazy about animals who passed on their love of creatures to her. White is said to have owned up to 26 dogs herself. She liked “anything that had a leg on every corner,” she told the AP.

Animal causes get the smallest share of charitable donations

Animal-related charities don’t feature high on Americans’ charitable giving priority list, but they have grown in popularity in recent years, according to Giving USA, an annual report on charitable giving. Americans gave $ 16.14 billion – the highest amount ever – to animal and environmental causes in 2020, the latest year for which data was available.

Animal and environmental groups received about 3% of all charitable donations – the smallest of the donation categories tracked by Giving USA. However, amounts going directly to animal causes are difficult to measure because Giving USA counts animal groups in the same category as environmental organizations. The top three recipients of charitable donations in the United States in 2020 were nonprofits related to religion, education, and social services (or organizations that provide food and shelter to people in the need).

See also: Greenpeace wants donors to take inspiration from ‘succession’ and embrace ‘despite philanthropy’



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Readers write: Holidays, religion in schools, “It’s a wonderful life” https://helviti.com/readers-write-holidays-religion-in-schools-its-a-wonderful-life/ Sat, 25 Dec 2021 00:00:54 +0000 https://helviti.com/readers-write-holidays-religion-in-schools-its-a-wonderful-life/ The beauty and depth of thoughtfulness of David Brooks, “A Message to Those Who Are Deeply Desperate” (Opinion Exchange, December 11), made me cry. As a retired healthcare chaplain (who is still fully engaged in life), I thought of the countless patients who, upon leaving their rooms, commented, “Chaplain, thank you for listening to me. […]]]>


The beauty and depth of thoughtfulness of David Brooks, “A Message to Those Who Are Deeply Desperate” (Opinion Exchange, December 11), made me cry. As a retired healthcare chaplain (who is still fully engaged in life), I thought of the countless patients who, upon leaving their rooms, commented, “Chaplain, thank you for listening to me.

In this hectic and troubled holiday season, I invite all of us to put down our electronics and really listen – listen to others, to the nature and calm of our hearts that beckons us to hope, kindness and compassion. .

Jerry C. Vandrovec, Plymouth

•••

Today I have decided to speak as a therapist as well as a grieving person. I hear so many sad stories during the holidays. Many of them are sadder because of unfulfilled expectations, photos of happy families on social media, Christmas cards showing everyone posing together, the assumption that we’re happy – and together. I ask that we consider how many vacations have been perfect or even close. How many were OK, average, or just not that good? And how many were “I couldn’t wait to go” bad?

Holidays are an event where the sense of perspective is seldom used, adding to the intensity of feelings producing good and bad results. All the planning and preparation makes the event potentially more stressful – if you’ve done all that work to make it special, it better be good!

We should, I suppose, expect everyone to behave well; kind, caring, cheerful. Although we haven’t seen each other since the last vacation when Cousin George had a fight with Cousin Susan over politics, and they both sulked the rest of the time. In fact, consider how putting a group of people who only see each other a few times a year in a house for, say, eight hours could go wrong.

Here is my therapeutic solution: Lower your expectations. And find something you can do to feel good about yourself. Like talking to cousin George, who is a funny guy who you never talk to. Think maybe of a holiday regret from last year. This year you will give your mom a hug. Or say a toast to your mom in heaven. Or to all those who are gone.

Yes, there is a place for loss during the holidays. I believe when it’s not said it’s worse – lonely, isolating and ashamed. And my last thought, times being what they are, is to close the vacation door knowing that you, personally, did your best: you told people you love them. At least let the holidays be a chance to love and feel loved.

Margot Storti-Marron, Sugar bush

•••

As a longtime resident of Loring Park, it was great Saturday night to see the Holidazzle lights, people lining up for the merry-go-round and sliding down the high slide, and the kids posing with Santa Claus. Best of all was the magnificent fireworks display that lit up the park and the pond. The food and gift vendors were top notch. Lights on trees and buildings made families feel safe, as did the park police.

The Downtown Council has shown the neighborhood that it values ​​our downtown park. The board, its funders and staff deserve a lot of thanks for reminding everyone of how much of a gem Loring Park is.

Pat Davies, Minneapolis

RELIGION IN SCHOOLS

I strongly support Tom Duke’s comments on the Minnesota Social Studies Standards Revision Project on Religious Education (“Religious Education is Better in New Standards,” Opinion Exchange, December 20) . In particular, I agree that instruction must include not only the history, but also the understanding of “how individuals interact with religious identity here and now”. Part of the opposition to religion in the school curriculum stems from parents’ fear that education will be used in defense of religion. Every effort should be made to ensure that the training will be completely neutral.

In his discussion of “religious identity in the here and now,” Duke overlooks the dramatic rise of the non-religious. According to a report released this month by the Pew Research Center, 29% of Americans now describe their religious identity as “atheist, agnostic, or” nothing in particular. ” 10 points more than ten years ago.

The teaching of the religious identity of Americans cannot ignore this trend. It should cover the causes, including the intellectual rationale for rejecting belief in the supernatural, ethics based on humanistic values, and support for secular government, which ensures that private religious beliefs are protected from government influence.

Advocating for inclusive norms for religion in social science education, Duke points out that one in four students are bullied, some because of their religion. I would like to remind everyone that atheist children are also bullied.

George Francis Kane, Saint-Paul

•••

I grew up in a strong Catholic family 70 years ago, and we were taught that we are part of the one true religion, to the point of not even attending a wedding in a non-Catholic church. Times have certainly changed with the ecumenical movement and religious freedoms in America offering everyone the opportunity to learn about all the options being practiced. I had a fascinating year in weekly faith training classes that studied the history to the present day of all religions in the world, and this was perhaps the best educational opportunity since my college days. .

I was delighted to read Duke’s comment. After decades of ignorance of religion due to the separation of church and state, educators plan to add a broad religious curriculum to social studies in our public schools in Minnesota. Real progress on accepting diversity can be made much better with a comprehensive understanding of all different religions, races and cultures and how they affect each person around us. We can finally understand that we are not that different and face similar challenges in finding our way through this life embracing a faith in the hope of more.

Michael Tillemans, Minneapolis

‘IT’S A MAGNIFICENT LIFE’

I enjoyed Chris Hewitt’s December 20 post on the holiday classic “It’s a Wonderful Life,” but as a copyright professor, I have a small gripe (“It’s a “wonderful” birthday ”). The article is correct that Republic Pictures’ non-renewal of copyright (a formality that US law eventually abandoned) meant that the film appeared to fall into the public domain in 1974. This in turn allowed to TV channels to stream it for free, and over time. helped develop the grateful audience the film lacked when it debuted in 1946.

However, a 1990 Supreme Court ruling – regarding another Jimmy Stewart film, “Rear Window” – prompted Republic, who still owned the copyright to the short story “It’s a Wonderful Life” was based on, to assert that any unauthorized distribution of the film would infringe the rights of the story. Republic made a deal with NBC, and as a result, the film doesn’t air as often as it did in the 1970s. (For a more in-depth discussion, see the article by Samantha Kosarzycki to which Hewitt’s article refers.) In contrast, the bad-it’s-good “Santa Claus Conquers the Martians” lost its copyright when it debuted in 1964, for failing to comply with another formality that the United States has taken. later dropped, and as far as I know it still remains in the public domain.

Thomas Cotter, Hopkins

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Cole Attends ASG For Student Feedback After Task Force Report Is Released – The Campus https://helviti.com/cole-attends-asg-for-student-feedback-after-task-force-report-is-released-the-campus/ Thu, 16 Dec 2021 02:51:42 +0000 https://helviti.com/cole-attends-asg-for-student-feedback-after-task-force-report-is-released-the-campus/ Provost and Dean of College Ron Cole, 1987, was the guest speaker for the last Allegheny Student Government Assembly on Tuesday, December 7, although he listened more than spoke. Cole attended the meeting to receive student body feedback on the report of the Academic Curriculum Review Task Force, a team of faculty members tasked with […]]]>


Provost and Dean of College Ron Cole, 1987, was the guest speaker for the last Allegheny Student Government Assembly on Tuesday, December 7, although he listened more than spoke. Cole attended the meeting to receive student body feedback on the report of the Academic Curriculum Review Task Force, a team of faculty members tasked with reviewing Allegheny College’s academic programs and advising the President on where the college can best allocate resources.

“I know myself and a lot of the students were nervous about the release of this task force report,” said Senator Veronica Green, ’23. “I was really shocked – in a good way – by the report, and wanted to say that I really agree with some of the sustainability initiatives and the reconfiguration of Reis Hall into an interdisciplinary center. “

Green’s comments kicked off a night of constructive commentary, far from a more controversial one. meeting with Link and his cabinet on November 16 and one student demonstration against the working group on October 21. ASG Vice President Sophie Adams, ’22, clarified that Cole was there to listen in his introduction.

“He will be able to take comments,” Adams said. “It won’t be a casual question and answer; he didn’t write the report, so don’t attack him, please.

The task force report categorized some university programs into three mutually inclusive categories. The first category includes programs that require strategic investment: programs that have been identified by the working group as needing additional faculty members and resources in order to strengthen the program. The second group is that of programs that need to be reconfigured: it is recommended to divide these programs or adjust them in some way. The third category included programs with “challenges to sustainability”; the working group “(suggests) options for these programs to adapt to the changing university landscape, but the status quo is not sustainable”. A fourth category of “maintain” programs has been created for programs not included in the first three groups for which the report does not recommend action at this time.

The third category of programs facing sustainability challenges received the most attention throughout the night. For example, in the same comment where she noted her positive response to the report, Green highlighted the programs the report identified as “unsustainable.”

“The only thing that really worried me was the Energy and Society minor because it’s a fairly new program,” Green said. “I understand the reasoning because I read it, it’s just that, especially if we are going to question the sustainability of geology in the long term, that the Energy and Society minor has a little more leeway.”

In response, Cole reread what he got from Green’s comments.

“Sustaining (energy and society) keeps some of the interest in geology going and gives this program a chance to grow,” Cole said. “I hear that, and that’s the type of feedback or input that would help me right now. “

Senator Joe Leszcynski, ’25, also expressed his support for the Energy and Society program.

“I find it disheartening that energy and society is on the chopping block even though, as you noted, it’s kind of related to geology and environmental science and sustainability,” said Leszcynski.

Cole responded by reminding the organization that programs presenting challenges to their sustainability weren’t necessarily going to be eliminated immediately.

“I would ask a favor: those programs listed under ‘challenges to sustain’ – I don’t necessarily mean to equate that to a chopping block,” Cole said.

Geology was also supported. Senator Clarissa Miller, ’24, noted that the program still has many applications in environmental science.

“I came to this school for the environmental science program and found, by taking classes here, that for me geology was a more direct route to work with oil and gas companies that are working on. general problems of environmental science, ”Miller said. . “There are more options in the workplace, it’s a more specific major, and having both Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science options in this department really shows the variety. that the department can offer. ”

Another program that received support was religious studies.

“I want to admit that I am part of a fairly small category of students in terms of the program that interests me,” said June Gromis, 25. “I would just like to make an appeal on this basis for religious studies as something that should be preserved in a meaningful way. Just because of the history of the college, especially as a Methodist institution, and I think a lot of the connections that religion makes in a social context is rooted in religious life, but also in an academic context.

However, the report notes that Religious Studies has struggled to attract and retain majors, specifically citing that the program has averaged just over two majors per year since 2016.

“Allegheny’s majors are having an impact for a number of reasons – in terms of people, because of the senior project required,” Cole said. “Maybe if it weren’t for the senior project, we’d give less weight to, say, major or minor labels and look more at the entries as a whole. “

A student, Piper Martinez, ’24, suggested that a program that retains the character of religious studies could be created in a more sustainable way.

“I would like to propose the idea that – if religious studies is not a major – potentially try to replace it with a major which can be supported by several different programs already in place, which has the same feel of religious studies”, Martinez said. . “Religious studies definitely introduces you to different thought processes and honestly every religious studies course I have taken has been the most difficult for me simply because it actually makes me think and challenge my views. , which I think is a very critical point of the goal of Allegheny College.

Even if a major or minor is removed from Allegheny’s curriculum, students currently registered in that program will still graduate through what Cole called “teaching.”

“I was careful to say that the students who self-declared in a particular program that we would work with to try and help with teaching,” Cole said.

While he did not guarantee a “teaching” option for undeclared students, Cole said there may be some opportunities for currently undeclared students to complete a program that is being reduced.

“Let’s work on an one-to-one basis for students who might fit into this category,” Cole said. “Maybe, no, we can’t do that. Or, there might be other avenues to support this student’s interest, or maybe there is a way to continue this major as a self-declared (major). It’s hard to say without the details, but I’m trying to give you an idea of ​​the options that I hope are available.

Overall, Adams felt that the meeting went well, especially given previous assemblies in which the administration had attended.

“I’m really happy with the students – their composure was good,” Adams said. “I thought people respected each other, and we hung out really well together.”

Adams also acknowledged that the meeting was held on a relatively short notice, with ASG only announcing on that day via social media that Cole would be attending the meeting.

“(Director of Communications and Press Ryder Sullivan) just released the post late today,” Adams said. “Obviously we would like to give more notice; this is something that we have been working on with our Instagram to communicate more. It’s ours.

However, in a November 19 email to the campus community, Cole informed the campus community in advance that the task force would release the report on December 6. In that same email, he wrote that he would be attending the ASG General Meeting on December 7. Assembly.

After the meeting, during his weekly office hours at the Campus Center, Cole suggested that part of the reason the campus community struggles so hard with the program review is the psychological weight of adjusting the way. of which things are made.

“There is heartbreak with the loss,” Cole said. “If we stop doing something – anything – there’s a sense of loss around it. This is, psychologically, an important thing to recognize for me and for others.

Cole said that whenever a change happens, the people involved try to deny that the change is necessary and try to resist it, before accepting that the change is necessary and working with it.

“I believe we’ve been through denial, past some resistance, and we’re heading towards acceptance,” Cole said. “In this place, this is the space where I think Allegheny can make his best decisions which include a large contribution to move forward. We have to move forward in the best possible way. This doesn’t mean that everyone will be happy with the results, but it is the best possible way given the parameters we are currently working with.

AC Unite, the student group organized in opposition to the task force and planned program cuts, posted a petition on Change.org on the day the report was released. The petition calls, among other things, for “the preservation of all majors, minors and other degrees offered from the fall semester 2021”. No such comments were provided to the General Assembly and AC Unite did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

According to his presentation, Cole will use the comments from the General Assembly, along with the comments from the Faculty Council, to prepare an academic program and faculty staffing plan. This plan will be submitted to President Link in mid-January for review; Once Link reviews it, the plan will go to the board for review and final vote. Cole expects final plan to be presented to the college community in mid-February


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What is the religion of Naughty Boy in I’m a Celebrity? https://helviti.com/what-is-the-religion-of-naughty-boy-in-im-a-celebrity/ Tue, 23 Nov 2021 10:56:57 +0000 https://helviti.com/what-is-the-religion-of-naughty-boy-in-im-a-celebrity/ Music producer Naughty Boy is featured this year I am a celebrity, which kicked off last Sunday. I’m a celebrity, get me out of here 2021 is well advanced and the camp comrades are all installed in the camp. We’ve seen a few hardships so far, from the plank walk to the dreaded dinner for […]]]>


Music producer Naughty Boy is featured this year I am a celebrity, which kicked off last Sunday.

I’m a celebrity, get me out of here 2021 is well advanced and the camp comrades are all installed in the camp. We’ve seen a few hardships so far, from the plank walk to the dreaded dinner for two.

Naughty Boy is one of ten campmates currently in the Welsh Castle. Reality titbit found out what the musician’s religion is and explored why he turned down the offer to be on the show last year …

Introducing Your 2021 Celebrity Camp Fellow! | I’m a celebrity… Get me out of here!

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Introducing Your 2021 Celebrity Camp Fellow! | I’m a celebrity… Get me out of here!

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What is the religion of Naughty Boy?

Naughty Boy is a Muslim. Before heading to Wales, he explained that he wanted to share everything about his faith with his fellow campmates.

In a press interview, he explained that he was “excited” by the conversation around his religion, and said:

“It’s something I want to get into because I’m a British Pakistani Muslim and I want to shine my light there and share my light with people, and we can also get to know each other’s religions.”

Earlier this year, Naughty Boy shared an Instagram post celebrating Eid with his close family. They celebrated by tasting dishes prepared by Naughty Boy Kitchen.

Naughty Boy was invited to appear on the show in 2020

Naughty Boy is best known for working with major artists such as Zayn Malik, Beyoncé, and Sam Smith, so it’s no wonder he was asked to take part in I’m a celebrity, get me out of here! before.

In 2020, the 36-year-old was invited to appear on the show, but declined the offer for his mother’s sake. Her mother was diagnosed with dementia in 2019, and Naughty Boy has been her caregiver ever since.

He explained that last year it would have been too risky to leave her alone for a few weeks, especially during COVID-19 when it was difficult to get support. Naughty Boy has since said:

“She was very worried that I was leaving last year but this year it’s the other way around – she’s excited”

  • NETFLIX: Here’s where Blown Away Christmas is filmed

I’m a Celebrity: Viewers Respond to Naughty Boy

Although we’ve only been 2 days on the new series, Naughty Boy has already made a big impression on viewers. During Sunday night’s episode, we saw him really live up to his name as he smuggled spices into the camp to lighten up his rice and beans – and of course, the memes no. ‘have since stopped driving.

A Twitter user wrote: “Naughty boy has been here for less than 2 days and I already love him”. Many viewers are surprised that he is called “Naughty Boy” in the castle, rather than his real name Shahid Khan.

LOOK I AM A CELEBRITY… GET ME OUT OF HERE! ON ITV EVERY DAY AT 9 P.M.

AND BECOME FREAKY WITH US ON INSTAGRAM AND FACEBOOK

Do you have something to tell us about this article?

Has Tammy Slaton had forehead surgery on 1,000 pound sisters?



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Columbia Law Prof explains why public schools keep us apart https://helviti.com/columbia-law-prof-explains-why-public-schools-keep-us-apart/ https://helviti.com/columbia-law-prof-explains-why-public-schools-keep-us-apart/#respond Mon, 25 Oct 2021 11:07:45 +0000 https://helviti.com/columbia-law-prof-explains-why-public-schools-keep-us-apart/ To denigrate parents who are fed up with their children’s school as “domestic terrorists” seems like a savage and inflammatory accusation with little basis in reality. Yet it is on this basis that the United States Attorney General assembled an FBI task force to monitor and intimidate parents who object to what their children are […]]]>


To denigrate parents who are fed up with their children’s school as “domestic terrorists” seems like a savage and inflammatory accusation with little basis in reality. Yet it is on this basis that the United States Attorney General assembled an FBI task force to monitor and intimidate parents who object to what their children are taught and how they are taught. are treated with taxpayers’ money. The organization that colluded with the Justice Department to create the pretext to cool voters’ rhetoric has backed off, but the FBI threat remains.

School closures have clarified and accelerated the deep and irreconcilable differences between parents and American citizens in how to educate children. Americans want completely different things from their children’s school, often contrary things. It is simply impossible to teach both that there is a hierarchy of races and that all humans are created equal, let alone teach the “two sides” of other educational hotspots, such as teaching. social justice or math in math class. Schools must choose.

K-12 schools largely choose the political establishment over the wishes of the people who elect them and provide their children with the pretext for public funding of schools. The political establishment that enjoys the monopoly of public schools to teach future voters what to think is increasingly blunt about this arrangement.

In 1996, Hillary Clinton tell the Americans “It takes a village to raise a child. It was the soft sell. Today we are getting the hard sell: ‘I don’t think parents should tell schools what they should be teaching,’ he said. Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe during a debate in September.

As Democrats force millions of American children to stay home for a new school year while their international peers safely learn in person, a Harvard University conference has suggested banning home schooling . One of its organizers, a Harvard law professor complained that home schooling is “an area of ​​almost absolute parental power. . . . incompatible with a good understanding of children’s human rights.

Governor of California, and next federal coercion, also communicate contempt for parental authority by substituting theirs by making COVID vaccines mandatory even though Data from the Centers for Disease Control shows these injections pose more health risks to children than COVID. Requests to substitute non-parental authority for parents provoke even stranger protests, like this teacher’s one on TikTok.

Contempt for the kind of self-government that begins with families is also evident in the thousands of teachers openly challenging – with legal backing from major Democratic Party donors – laws enacted at the behest of parents seeking to ban the teaching of things like critical race theory.

Regardless of how it turns out, all of these incidents point to what is at the center of today’s heated debate over public schools: Should parents or bureaucrats control what children learn. It has been at the heart of all public education debates since the days when the benefactors of the progressive era began the road of American schools to nationalization.

Using schools to co-opt the children of others

Columbia law professor Philip Hamburger reflects on this story by a Friday Wall Street Journal essay explaining why public schools will remain a fierce battleground of cultural warfare until lawmakers force them to loosen their grip on American children. “[T]Schools remain a means by which some Americans impose their beliefs on others, ”writes Hamburger. “That is why they are always a source of contention.”

He notes that the constant transfer of American K-12 education from private schools, mostly run by the church, to government agencies was intended to control what the next generation of voters believed. In the late 1800s and early 1900s, this manifested itself in the effort of the white Anglo-Saxon Protestant establishment to convert Catholics by placing their children in Protestant public schools. It ultimately turned into an effort by the laity to convert Christians of all kinds by banning Christianity from public schools. Both have succeeded.

“[T]The idea that public education is a central government interest was popularized by anti-Catholic nativists. Beginning in the mid-19th century, they elevated public schools to a key American institution in their campaign against Catholicism, ”notes Hamburger.

… As today, the hope was to free the children from the supposedly blind views of their parents and thus create a different kind of regime. Today as yesterday, this kind of project stinks of prejudice and indoctrination. There is no legitimate government interest in shifting the educational discourse of parents who do not have government endorsed views, let alone changing the identity of their children or creating a government endorsed electorate.

Indoctrination is unconstitutional in two ways

Today, public schools don’t just move children from one denomination to another, but instead replace Christianity squarely with the most visible secular religion as an identity politics, as the former prosecutor explained. United States General Bill Barr in June. That’s why Barr warned Americans that public schools are “the greatest threat to religious freedom in America today.”

This is supported by many studies. A Scholarly Journal of Research 2020 on this topic concludes that “in particular the increasingly secularized government control of education … can explain virtually all the increase in secularization in the developed world”.

“The brutal application of secular progressive orthodoxy in government-run schools is totally incompatible with mainstream Christianity and other major religious traditions in our country. In light of this development, we must face the reality that it may no longer be fair, practical or even constitutional to provide publicly funded education solely through schools run by the State, ”Barr said.

Hamburger complements and expands Barr’s argument that public schools in their current form constitute an unconstitutional establishment of religion by also suggesting that they constitute an unconstitutional restriction on Americans’ free speech.

“The public school system, by design, pushes parents to substitute the government’s educational discourse for their own,” Hamburger writes. “Public education is a benefit linked to an unconstitutional condition. Parents receive subsidized education on the condition that they accept the educational discourse of the government instead of home or private schooling.

He notes that this particularly disadvantages poorer parents, but it affects everyone by allowing the government to decide what future voters think about its limits and powers. Using public resources to convert children to the government’s preferred political and religious ideologies is not only unconstitutional, Hamburger observes, but it also inflames social division.

The temptation to indoctrinate the children of others, to impose a common culture by force, is an obstacle to the development of a true common culture. There is no excuse to uphold the nativist fiction that public schools are the glue that holds the nation together. They have become the focal point of everything tearing the nation apart. As good as some public schools are, the system as a whole, being coercive, is a threat to our ability to find common ground. It is the opposite of a compelling government interest.

The public school system is therefore unconstitutional, at least with regard to parents who are pressured to abandon their own educational discourse choices and instead adopt those of the government.

What parents need is direct control over school money

Real political power is measured, not in viral social media videos, but by winning elections and subsequently making real changes to institutions and money flows. What would really put pressure on schools is to fund them and replace their leaders, either by voting for better leaders or by moving children to a better school.

Voting for better leaders is risky, time consuming, and can be overturned in the next election cycle. The education of our children should not be so precarious. Instead, legislatures should give parents a way not to devote their children’s entire school careers to battles to the death (or the next election), to name just one example, if it is to be masked. and quarantine all children.

It’s not ultimately about masks, or critical race theory, or letting boys into girls’ toilets: it’s that our education system forces people to fight over which faction controls them. people who hate what they believe. This dynamic makes these fights bitter and existential. They don’t have to be.

If schools don’t give up their power, they should be forced to. It is not fair for schools to take children hostage. Parents shouldn’t have to force everyone on board to get what they want.

Hamburger offers a new avenue for truly ending these zero-sum culture war battles: “asking judges to recognize – at least in declaratory judgments – that the current system is deeply unconstitutional.” Once this is clear, states will be forced to find solutions. Some may choose to offer tax exemptions to dissenting parents; others may provide vouchers. Either way, states cannot deprive parents of their right to educational discourse by pushing children into public schools. “



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Religious mobs reproduce blasphemy laws, “threatening” freedom in a free country https://helviti.com/religious-mobs-reproduce-blasphemy-laws-threatening-freedom-in-a-free-country/ https://helviti.com/religious-mobs-reproduce-blasphemy-laws-threatening-freedom-in-a-free-country/#respond Sat, 23 Oct 2021 00:30:00 +0000 https://helviti.com/religious-mobs-reproduce-blasphemy-laws-threatening-freedom-in-a-free-country/ Nihangs, Lakhbir Singh By Ajit Singh * A Dalit, Lakhbir Singh, was mercilessly beaten and lynched to death near the farmer protest site in Haryana state, allegedly by Nihang Sikhs. It was alleged that he had committed blasphemy by desecrating the holy book guru Granth Sahib.The group sees themselves as a self-proclaimed guardian to protect […]]]>


Nihangs, Lakhbir Singh

By Ajit Singh *
A Dalit, Lakhbir Singh, was mercilessly beaten and lynched to death near the farmer protest site in Haryana state, allegedly by Nihang Sikhs. It was alleged that he had committed blasphemy by desecrating the holy book guru Granth Sahib.
The group sees themselves as a self-proclaimed guardian to protect their religion. In 2016, he played a leading role, under whose influence the Akali-BJP government in Punjab proposed the Blasphemy Law, which included criminal provisions for sacrilege of the Sikh holy book. The law was later rejected by the Center on the grounds that all religions should be treated equally.
Cynical behemoths always find refuge in all political parties, regardless of the ideological spectrum to which they adhere. In 2018, the Amarinder Singh government in Punjab attempted to pass a law that imposed life imprisonment on those who sacrileged the holy books of Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs and Christians.
The reach of blasphemy laws and the emergence of radical extrajudicial entities in democracies around the world are known to have taken a long time to serve their false pride. In a pluralist and multi-ethnic society, one avoids discussing the sensitive issue of blasphemy in the name of maintaining religious tolerance and peace in society. Our deadly silence has compounded the severity of the wound, allowing divisive leaders to ride the wave of community politics.

islamic nations

In many countries of the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia, blasphemy is a capital crime and this notoriously draconian law has become a tool to quell dissent against the political and military establishment.
A university professor in Pakistan, Junaid Hafeez, was arrested in 2013 for defaming Islam and for publishing material considered derogatory to the Prophet. He remained in solitary confinement for eight years pending the arrival of his death awarded to him in 2019 by a local court in Multan.
Soheil Arabi, a political activist in Iran, was jailed the same year for a double allegation of fierce criticism of the Islamic Republic and insulting the Prophet on social media. In 2017, he won the prestigious Reporters Without Borders award in the journalism category. He was praised for having protested in the Gandhian way by organizing hunger strikes to highlight the poor living conditions of the prisoners and the deprivation of any medical treatment for them.
Due to his open criticism of the theocratic regime, new fabricated cases have been opened against him, including propaganda activities against the government and turmoil in public opinion.

Intolerance in Europe

Western democracies are seen as an indicator of liberal ideas where individual freedom and free speech are put on the highest pedestal. Last year, in an act of cowardice, a social science professor Samuel Patty was beheaded by a Chechen immigrant in France for drawing a cartoon of Mohammad that was originally published by a satirical magazine “Charlie Hebdo” in 2011. As a result, 12 people, including the editor of the magazine, were shot dead by terrorists in 2015. Another thing, the French constitution does not prohibit insulting a religion, its figures and its symbols.
Countries that have repeatedly taken in victims of blasphemy accusations in Islamic countries are now adopting an increasingly conservative view of things. Some politicians, even those who take a center-left stance, advocate some sort of blasphemy law to flatter gullible minorities and gain their support in elections.
Take for example the UK, where Labor MP and shadow minister for Community Cohesion Naz Shah pleaded for 10 years in prison for those who vandalize or destroy religious cartoons. In Canada, Prime Minister Trudeau reiterated that freedom of expression is not without limits.
According to the report of the United States Commission for International Religious Freedom (Blasphemy Law Fact Sheet), about 20 percent of European countries formally criminalize blasphemy or religious insult. The demand for repressive laws in the name of protecting religious feelings and providing a safe space for religious minorities is a deeply flawed argument.

MF Husain, Salman Rushdie

A recent survey conducted by Ifop shows that 57% of Muslims under 25 prefer Sharia law to be incorporated into the French legal system. Will European lawmakers be prepared to implement those parts of the same Islamic law in which apostasy results in a death sentence or at least severe public and private censorship?
Redefining the concept of secularism to make everyone happy on the boat will destroy years of cultural progress Europe has made since the Renaissance movement when people began to question the unscientific rituals and dogmas of Christianity. .

Pimping in India

The policy of appeasement in India is just as destructive and dangerous as the policy of polarization. In 1989, India was the first non-Muslim country to ban Salman Rushdie’s book “The Satanic Verses”. In 2006, artist MF Husain suffered a similar fate when he was forced to leave India due to the depiction of Hindu goddesses in his seemingly obscure paintings.

Intolerance in India is not a new phenomenon and if we try to correlate the murder of the Dalit man with the above incident, we can come to this sad conclusion that our collective conscience is dead and the assertion society’s deliberate rule for the rule of the crowd left no room for creativity of any kind.
Any demand for blasphemy laws in India will only act as a catalyst to turn it into an ultra-Orthodox state engulfed in the reign of endless terror. Democracy will die the day we restrict free speech. This can be best explained in a quote from Osho where he discussed the destruction of creative minds and individuality by society which promotes machines like obedience and discourages the rebellious nature of humans.

“Mankind will only truly be born when an individual is respected in his rebellion. Mankind has still not been born, it is still in its mother’s womb. What you see as humanity is just that. a very random phenomenon, ”he said.

* Amateur writer, graduate in economics, second year student of the B Ed program


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The Dark Money Secretly Bankrolling Activist Short-Sellers — and the Insiders Trying to Expose It https://helviti.com/the-dark-money-secretly-bankrolling-activist-short-sellers-and-the-insiders-trying-to-expose-it/ https://helviti.com/the-dark-money-secretly-bankrolling-activist-short-sellers-and-the-insiders-trying-to-expose-it/#respond Fri, 22 Oct 2021 15:04:47 +0000 https://helviti.com/?p=356 John Fichthorn had been in the hedge fund business for more than 20 years when a half-hour phone call with a stranger put him on high alert. In December 2017, Fichthorn — a veteran short-seller and the founder of hedge fund Dialectic Capital Management — had joined the board of a troubled small-cap company called […]]]>

John Fichthorn had been in the hedge fund business for more than 20 years when a half-hour phone call with a stranger put him on high alert.

In December 2017, Fichthorn — a veteran short-seller and the founder of hedge fund Dialectic Capital Management — had joined the board of a troubled small-cap company called Health Insurance Innovations. But when he happened to mention its name to a prospective investor a year later, the man told him an alarming detail.

“There’s a multibillion-dollar fund out there going around with a short report trying to pay people to publish it on their behalf,” Fichthorn recalls the man saying.

“He was very nervous about telling me any of this,” says Fichthorn. Short-sellers soon began pounding the stock, so he called the man back and says he finally convinced him to provide the alleged name behind the offer. According to Fichthorn, that name was a Hong Kong-based hedge fund.

“Who the fuck is that?” thought Fichthorn.

Fichthorn may never have heard of the fund, but it has become well known in short-seller circles for being what’s called the “balance sheet” behind some of the activists who trumpet their short research on social media — a phenomenon that has turned the world of short-selling upside down over the past decade. These noisy activists, many of whom are anonymous and have little money of their own, have taken on outsize importance during a time when the bull market has ravaged short-sellers and a Twitter mention can move a stock.

Fichthorn, of course, is from the pre-social-media era. The 47-year-old launched Dialectic in 2004 after a stint at Maverick Capital, the Tiger Cub headed by Lee Ainslie III, who learned the trade under famed hedge fund pioneer Julian Robertson. Behind the scenes, Fichthorn has been involved in some of the most well-known short bets of recent years, including Wirecard, the German financial firm that collapsed in scandal in June, and MiMedx Group, the Georgia biomedical company whose former CEO was charged with fraud by the Department of Justice — years after Fichthorn contacted the DOJ with such allegations.

“I thought my role in life was to be the cop in the markets,” he says. 

That’s of course exactly what the activist short-sellers say. More than a dozen short-sellers interviewed by Institutional Investor in an effort to penetrate this murky terrain say there are numerous players and various permutations of the model that may involve the sharing of ideas and research along with either a cut of the gains on the short trade or a set fee. In fact, some short-sellers believe that almost all of the activists have such backing — even those running small hedge funds themselves. 

Wary of both reputation risk and litigation risk — and eager to avoid the drama that swirls around activist short-sellers — some hedge funds even give away their research for free to the activists. The hope is that, once publicized, a damning report will be the catalyst for a downward move in a stock they’ve shorted. 

The backdrop for all this is the stock market’s relentless rise, which in recent years has brutalized short-selling. Many short-biased hedge funds have either shut down or bled assets; industry insiders say that more could close shop in 2020. 

Into this vacuum has stepped a slew of upstarts, often touting their research on Seeking Alpha and posting links to their blogposts on Twitter. As of October 21, 38 activist short-sellers — many anonymous — had published short research on 128 companies this year, according to Activist Insight Shorts, which tracks the naysayers. The Bear Cave, a weekly online newsletter, reported that during one week in October alone, eight new short research pieces were published. 

The trend has raised alarms — and not just from the companies they target. Seasoned short-sellers say the information overload risks “commoditizing” the research and also raises red flags about its originality, accuracy, and depth. Critics also note that reports sometimes arrive just prior to the expiration of options that can send stocks into a tailspin, risking market manipulation allegations. They also fear that these problems could lead to tougher regulation of short-selling, which could make it even less profitable — and allow frauds to go unchecked in the markets. 

Short of a court order or federal investigation, however, it is impossible to know who is behind the action. 

But there are clues.


Start with Carson Block, the founder of Muddy Waters Capital, who launched the new breed of short-seller activist in 2011 with his blockbuster research on Sino-Forest Corp., a Toronto-listed Chinese company whose investors included then-hedge fund star John Paulson. Block also appears to have pioneered the balance-sheet approach. And now that he runs a hedge fund with more than $200 million under management, Block occasionally offers such financial support to other short activists whose research he deems worthwhile.

“There are some firms out there that are in the balance-sheet business,” asserts Block. “Full disclosure: We are.” 

He declined to say which activists he has funded. However, Muddy Waters has an investment in Wolfpack Research, which was launched last year by short-seller Dan David.

A decade ago, Block was living in Shanghai and running a money-losing storage business when he authored his first short report, alleging that a New York Stock Exchange-listed Chinese company called Orient Paper was a fraud. The next year, he decided to look for a balance-sheet partner, using one exclusively until 2013.

“When I started out, I had no money. I had negative net worth,” he says. “So I worked with balance-sheet partners.” 

Block declined to say who his original balance-sheet partner was. According to The Wall Street Journal, Block sold his research on Rino International Corp., another suspected Chinese fraud, to Oasis Management, as well as to other hedge funds, in 2010. That was just before Block says he turned to the balance-sheet model, offering his research reports to a single fund for a cut of its profits on the trade.

Muddy Waters’ next big short was Sino-Forest, and Oasis was short that Chinese company three weeks ahead of Block’s report, according to a lawsuit Oasis filed in London in an effort to get Morgan Stanley to pay the $9.3 million Oasis claimed it was owed by the investment bank for its Sino-Forest puts.

Oasis founder Seth Fischer and portfolio manager Alexander Shoghi did not respond to requests for comment for this story.

Block defends the practice, saying it is a collaborative effort that benefits both parties.

“Activist short-selling is a hardscrabble life,” he says. “It’s actually a shitty business for a number of reasons. One of the reasons is that it’s subscale. There are very few activist short-sellers who can regularly short names that have real capacity in the trade,” he explains. 

Most don’t have enough capital to start a hedge fund. “If your trade capacity is around five to ten to 25 million dollars, that doesn’t justify raising a fund. You won’t be able to generate returns on that.”

Instead, Block says, with a balance-sheet partner “the performance fee is effectively paid by a hedge fund. It has the capital and the institutional pipes.” Short-sellers borrow stock, hoping to pay it back at a lower price and profit on the differential. Hedge funds have relationships with prime brokers at investment banks that can lend them shares — relationships Block found he could not form in the early days.

“A lot of these names — U.S.-listed Chinese scams — were hard to borrow,” he recalls. “We went to the big, pretty institutional primes who had access to borrow, and they told us we were too small and controversial.” 

Big hedge funds also have analysts who can call both the companies and sell-side analysts to get information they aren’t going to reveal to a known activist short-seller. Perhaps most importantly, a balance-sheet partner can also provide legal support, which can run up to $1 million if the short-seller gets sued or investigated by a regulator, Block says. 

From their end, hedge funds prefer to work in the shadows for a number of reasons — one being that their own investors, particularly institutional investors like endowments and sovereign wealth funds, may look askance at short activism. 

One case famous in financial circles involved one of the largest and oldest hedge funds, whose investors know it as one that “never shorts,” says someone familiar with the details. 

That hedge fund was the balance sheet behind Harry Markopolos’s short report on General Electric Co., which he released last August. 

Markopolos, a former Wall Street portfolio manager whose claim to fame was warning the Securities and Exchange Commission about the Madoff Ponzi scheme years before it collapsed, has since served as a whistleblower to the government in other cases, notably the investigation of insurer AmTrust Financial, which settled with the SEC this summer over charges related to its accounting for losses from insurance claims. 

When he took on GE, Markopolos disclosed that he had given the report to a major hedge fund that had veered from its long-only stance to short GE and that he would be paid a percentage of the gains from the bet. He had no control over the trading.

Markopolos also noted that he had turned over the report to regulators. “If you do SEC fraud cases and bust fraud guys, you better be transparent,” says an individual knowledgeable about his thinking.

The stock fell 14 percent on the report, which claimed that GE was under-reserving for its long-term health insurance claims. But the focus quickly shifted to an excoriation of Markopolos’s arrangement with the hedge fund, and the stock ticked back up.

GE investors like Citron Research’s Andrew Left — who is better known as a short-seller — attacked Markopolos’s deal and said he had never been compensated by a third party to publish research. Then hedge fund billionaire Stanley Druckenmiller jumped in, saying he had added to his position in the stock. GE CEO Larry Culp denied Markopolos’s accusations.

“Unfortunately, when Markopolos disclosed that he was working with a balance-sheet firm, he was unable to keep the focus on his work, and the media seemed distracted by what is really a faux salacious detail,” says Block.

Today, the famous whistleblower appears to have been vindicated: GE reported in October that it had received a Wells notice from the SEC — a warning that the agency may take enforcement actions — over the very issues Markopolos had highlighted. 

Given the blowback, if Markopolos were to do another short report for a hedge fund, he would insist on more disclosure, says the individual familiar with his thinking. He “would only do it with a hedge fund side by side — and public,” this person says. “It’s easier if the backers are disclosed, and the reason is that the people should focus on the research and not on attacking it for being [tied to] an ‘evil’ hedge fund.” 

When it comes to short-selling, however, disclosure is not something most hedge funds want.

John Fichthorn

Short-sellers are part of a clubby, cantankerous community that has derisively been called a cabal. They often share research and reinforce each other with what are called “pile on” trades. There is nothing inherently unusual, or illegal, about that. Market participants say that short-sellers at hedge funds skilled in the strategy, like Eminence Capital, Valiant Capital Partners, Sophos Capital Management, and Kingsford Capital Management, also pass along research to activists — but they aren’t believed to have offered to finance them.

Citron’s Left is one short-seller these men have turned to to get out their message. For example, a blockbuster short report on Nu Skin Enterprises, a multilevel marketing company, that Citron published in 2012 was research undertaken by another party for Third Point, but Jim Carruthers, who ran Third Point’s equity short book, gave it to Left, according to two individuals familiar with the specifics. 

In 2014, Carruthers formed Sophos with seed money from Yale University’s endowment; by the end of last year, it had become the largest dedicated short-seller in the world, with $1.16 billion, according to its ADV filing with the SEC. The hedge fund is so secretive it doesn’t even have a website. 

(Left says he does not remember the details surrounding the Nu Skin report. Neither Carruthers nor Valiant responded to a request for comment. Third Point, Kingsford, and Eminence declined to comment.) 

“There is a lot of pressure on hedge funds to generate short alpha,” says Fahmi Quadir, the founder of Safkhet Capital, a short-only hedge fund that is not an activist. “You’re doing all this work, and you want to make the profits, so you lean on these activists to make sure it happens.”

For many hedge funds, sharing research is better than a financial arrangement with the activist. “By letting someone else put out the research, then you’re not out there at all and you have total flexibility in how you trade the thing,” says one hedge fund manager. “Once you have a fee arrangement, then it’s a bit problematic.”

Potential legal headaches aren’t the only issue. Hedge funds may have a “belief on a position but don’t want to deal with all the blowback and harassment and the doxing,” says Nathan Anderson, whose Hindenburg Research gained notice after its September short call on electric-truck maker Nikola Corp., which led the SEC and the DOJ to investigate the company and the stock to plummet.

Though Anderson is this year’s hot new short-seller — and says he still has a major short in Nikola — the troubles he has faced make him understand why hedge funds prefer to stay in the background.

“People call me and say they’re going to murder me and my entire family,” he says. Anderson, who worked for years behind the scenes as a fraud investigator and whistleblower before becoming a short-seller in 2017, says he was “naïve” about what it would entail. “Being a public activist is an inherently contentious business.”  

Hindenburg has been the most prolific short activist this year, launching 21 campaigns, according to Activist Insight Shorts. The volume of Hindenburg’s reports has raised eyebrows among short-sellers, but Anderson says he can do so many because he has five employees working on research. He also uses outside consultants. 

And now that he’s famous for the Nikola short, Anderson says he has gotten more than 50 leads a week “from all over the place.”

“Any market participant will talk to a short activist,” he says, adding that “it’s extremely important to independently vet anything.”   

As a relative newcomer, Anderson also turns to others for financing and acknowledges he had a balance-sheet partner for the Nikola short. “If there is more capacity in a trade than we can handle on our own, then we seek to augment with a balance-sheet partner,” he says. “I think that’s pretty standard in the industry.” 

He declined to name any of those partners, but he says there is no shortage of money wanting to get in on his action. “We’ve had dozens of offers,” he says.

This year, the stocks Hindenburg has shorted were down an average of 25 percent a month after the release of its reports, according to Activist Insight Shorts. That’s evidence that the stocks continue to fall, not just pop back up in a V shape, which critics have noted can happen if a short-seller covers on the day of the report. 

But the existence of the V-shaped pattern elsewhere has led to calls for more disclosure from several places — including, interestingly, from inside the world of short-selling.


In April, outspoken short-seller Marc Cohodes stunned the short-selling community when he teamed up with Joshua Mitts, associate professor at Columbia Law School, to author an op-ed in the Financial Times calling for a mandatory ten-day holding period by a firm or individual after the public dissemination of market-moving information. 

To protect themselves from market-manipulation accusations, short activists typically say upfront that they are short the stock of the subject of their report. Buried in the fine print, however, are more details — as well as caveats.

In a recent report, Muddy Waters, whose generic disclosure has been used as a template by others, states that as of the publication of the report, the firm was either long or short the name, “possibly along with or through its members, partners, affiliates, employees, and/or consultants, Muddy Waters Related Persons clients and/or investors and/or their clients and/or investors.” It states these parties may be trading the securities and adds that “neither Muddy Waters Research nor Muddy Waters Capital will update any report or information on its website to reflect changes in positions that may be held by a Muddy Waters Related Person.”  

Such language allows the activist — and any balance-sheet partner — to trade in and out at will. But Cohodes argues that it’s not good policy.   

“Whether you own shares or are betting against a company, I believe it is misleading to tell investors that you have a specific view on a company and then profit from a trade in the opposite direction,” he wrote.

Cohodes alleged that “many bloggers and social media personalities who promote or attack stocks do not conduct a deep investigation of the companies involved. Instead, they republish theses acquired elsewhere and buy and sell quickly to make a fast buck.” 

In a rulemaking proposal to the SEC in February, Mitts, Columbia securities law professor John Coffee, and ten other law professors asked the SEC to force short-sellers who publicize their position to “promptly” say when their disclosure of being short “no longer reflects current holdings or trading intention.” They want short-sellers to make that disclosure within 24 hours of a change in trading or by the beginning of the next day’s trading. 

“Rapidly closing a short position after publishing (or commissioning) a report, without having specifically disclosed an intent to do so, can constitute fraudulent scalping in violation of Rule 10b-5,” they argued, referring to the SEC’s anti-fraud rule.

Short-sellers like Block rail against Mitts, dismissing him as a “shill” for corporate clients. (Mitts has worked for corporate plaintiffs in lawsuits filed by at least two known targets of short-sellers, Farmland Partners and Burford Capital; Muddy Waters is short Burford.)

Moreover, activists say the work is so hard that it’s almost imperative to take the money — or at least some of it — and run. It’s simply risk management.

“The vast majority of short activists would not even be viable if their balance sheet wasn’t getting really concentrated in each name . . . then closing out a decent portion of that position,” says one short-seller. 

“If you don’t take advantage of the elevated volume, in subsequent days you could start bleeding some money and giving back,” he explains. “You know that on day two, the company comes back with everything they’ve got. And you don’t know how long it’s going to take for the market to become skeptical of management,” he adds. “In the meantime, you could get hit with a lawsuit.”

Short-sellers in the U.S. are protected by the First Amendment, which gives them broad discretion to offer their view on a company as long as it is stated as an opinion they believe to be true. While making false statements is not protected, and companies frequently claim “market manipulation,” cases against short-sellers have been few and far between — as proving illegality hinges on intent.

Mitts says short-selling is good for the markets but nonetheless argues that if the intent of the report is to “crash the price so that you induce a panic and a bunch of selling that wouldn’t have occurred otherwise, that strategy is going to be illegal.”

He is critical of the role of balance-sheet providers and thinks more transparency regarding their involvement would be “better for our markets.”

“If all I’m doing is just putting out my opinion about the company, and I have my short position, why do I need a massive hedge fund?” he asks.  “But if the purpose of a balance-sheet partner is to inject so much selling into the stock that it mechanically drives the price down because there’s not enough demand anymore, and that in turn triggers stop losses and triggers other people to sell . . . that may be evidence of manipulative intent.”

“Is the market really reacting to the information, or is the balance-sheet partner crashing the price?” he wonders. “That’s a big question that needs to be asked.”

Mitts also mentions the short-sellers’ use of the word “catalyst” — a term commonly used by traders that refers to what will make the stock move. 

“By ‘catalyst’ do you mean you need something to start the snowball so that it starts to pick up momentum on its own and makes a lot of money? And if that’s what we’re talking about, then it’s not clear to me that is legal,” he says.

Mitts raised some of these issues in a declaration filed in support of a defamation lawsuit brought in Colorado federal court in 2018 by Farmland Partners against short activist Rota Fortunae, a front for Quinton Mathews, the managing member of QKM, a Dallas-based registered investment adviser with no assets under management, according to its most recent ADV filing with the SEC. This year, Mathews was forced by the judge to reveal his identity. The short-seller later disclosed the name of the Dallas hedge fund, Sabrepoint Capital Management, that was paying him for his short research on a monthly retainer basis. Sabrepoint is now also a defendant in the case, which is pending. Both Mathews and Sabrepoint have denied the accusations.

Before the Farmland report was issued, put positions were opened in thousands of contracts, according to the Mitts declaration. The trading activity showed that traders had bet the stock would drop precipitously on, or soon after, July 11, 2018 — the day of the report — and had taken an extraordinary derivatives position that would have the effect of inducing a massive sell-off in Farmland stock, Mitts wrote in the court filing.

Here’s how it works in theory: As the stock starts to fall, the puts become more valuable, and market makers who have sold them have to short more shares to hedge against those puts, known as delta hedging. Such selling is likely compounded by algorithmic or high-frequency trading, putting more pressure on the stock and forcing the market makers to continue shorting.

Farmland’s stock has never recovered from the pounding it took, which to Mathews’ mind means he was correct in his assessment of the company. “Nearly two years ago, I published my research on [Farmland Partners]. Six days later, the company issued a public rebuttal that failed to address any of the questions raised in my report or deny any of my findings. Shortly after, the company sued my pseudonym,” he wrote on Seeking Alpha in June.

But companies say it can be hard to recover from an assault that makes creditors and customers wary.


At least that’s how Fichthorn sees it. 

Fichthorn declined to give the name of the short-seller who alleged a hedge fund was offering to pay activists to publish its short thesis on Health Insurance Innovations.

But for the next year and a half, short-sellers battered the company on Twitter and elsewhere. One anonymous short activist, Marcus Aurelius Value, wrote five reports on Health Insurance Innovations, starting in November 2018 and ending in June of this year.

Aurelius Value did not respond to a Twitter message asking if he had worked with a balance-sheet partner on the short and, if so, whether the partner provided him with research. 

The Capitol Forum, a subscription-based news service that often covers short targets, also wrote articles that hammered the stock. Its stories sometimes came out on the Friday of options expiration, says Fichthorn. “At 11:00 a.m, the stock would start going down, and at 12:00 the company would learn of the article,” he says. “We had an hour to respond.”

At one point, the options action made Health Insurance Innovations the biggest short in the market, with more than 100 percent of the shares shorted, says Fichthorn. “It was kind of ironic that I, as a professional short-seller, was on the board of the company that was the most shorted stock in the market.”

When II approached Capitol Forum reporter Vikas Kumar about the stories, he demanded proof from II’s editor-in-chief that this writer was working for II. Eventually, Jake Williams, Capitol Forum’s COO, told II that it was not approached by a hedge fund to run negative research about Health Insurance Innovations. “We’re an objective investigative news organization and would not accept such an offer from any company or on any topic,” he said in an email. 

For their part, short-sellers say they based their case on the company’s use of boiler-room tactics to sell worthless insurance products. At least one lawsuit by individuals claiming to have been victimized by the company is still pending.   

But Fichthorn says Health Insurance Innovations only offered a platform for brokers to sell products and that state insurance regulators had found no wrongdoing. Moreover, he says he joined the board because new management was trying to “clean up” the company and any legacy problems associated with prior CEOs had been dealt with.

“The reality is if enough of them pile on and write enough bad stuff, they can destroy companies. I watched it from the inside. They called our customers and they were making shit up,” bemoans Fichthorn, pointing specifically to a short-seller rumor that the FBI was at the company’s headquarters. It wasn’t. 

In July, the company — which renamed itself Benefytt Technologies earlier this year — was sold to private-equity firm Madison Dearborn Partners for $31 per share — a 40 percent premium to where it was trading at the time.

Before the short-selling drama began, Fichthorn had effectively sold his hedge fund to B. Riley Financial. He recently left that firm and is relaunching Dialectic, but says he is out of the short-selling business for now. 

“Someday,” he says wistfully, “it will be worth shorting stocks again.”

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Capturing Los Angeles’ COVID-Closed Venues https://helviti.com/capturing-los-angeles-covid-closed-venues/ https://helviti.com/capturing-los-angeles-covid-closed-venues/#respond Fri, 22 Oct 2021 15:01:08 +0000 https://helviti.com/?p=335 In the current coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic, music creators and many of the professionals who support them have been greatly affected. The Recording Academy’s Los Angeles, San Francisco, Pacific Northwest and Texas chapters are committed to creating, amplifying, and sharing resources that will provide some form of comfort. Below you will find resources available to those in […]]]>

In the current coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic, music creators and many of the professionals who support them have been greatly affected. The Recording Academy’s Los Angeles, San Francisco, Pacific Northwest and Texas chapters are committed to creating, amplifying, and sharing resources that will provide some form of comfort.

Below you will find resources available to those in the music community who live in the Recording Academy’s West Region. Please visit regularly for updates.

ARIZONA

Tucson Musicians COVID19 Relief (GoFundMe)
The COVID-19 outbreak has created an unprecedented loss of work for Tucson’s local musicians. This fund is set up to temporarily help those who could use some money for food, medicine, bills, childcare and other essentials.

CALIFORNIA

Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs

This program provides emergency relief grants to City of Los Angeles-based dance, music, and theatre artists, as well as small ensembles who have had their public performances, shows, or concerts canceled. Solo artists are eligible for up to $400 and ensembles up to $1,200 to cover losses in time and/or materials that were committed toward events, which were to have taken place at a venue within the City of Los Angeles and were to be open to the general public. Eligible events should have been publicly advertised and scheduled to take between March 16, 2020 and May 16, 2020, AND must have been canceled (or postponed to after August 30, 2020).

Due to a modest amount of available fund in round one of this fund, artists who were scheduled to perform pieces within a festival, teach private solo or group lessons, or perform at a private function for an invite-only audience are not eligible. The first round will focus on artists and groups who were headlining an entire public event/evening.

COVID-19 Emergency Health Grant for Artists
In light of the rapidly escalating impacts of COVID-19 on the health and wellbeing of our Southern California creative community, Women’s Center for Creative Work has re-worked its 2020 Emergency Health Grant for Artists, and is now offering $1,000 grants. Low-income artists who work in any genre or medium, who identify as a woman, as Trans or non-binary, and/or as a person of color, who live in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside or San Bernardino Counties are eligible to apply.

Creative Community Fund
Winston House, a musician’s social club based in Venice, CA, has set up a fund that pairs people in the music industry who need financial help due to COVID-19 with people who can help.

Backline Care
Billed as “The Music Industry’s Mental Health and Wellness Hub,” this organization’s mission connects music industry professionals and their family with a trusted network of mental health and wellness providers.

COVID-19 California Arts Field Survey
The California Arts Council is surveying the arts field at-large to gather data on the potential financial impacts of this public health emergency. If you are an organization or individual in the arts field that anticipates losing personal or business income related to COVID-19, consider filling out this brief survey. This data will be an important resource to inform the California Arts Council and the state of California.

Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation COVID-19 Response Page
This online hub is designed to help employers and related workforce in L.A. County respond to the challenges of the COVID-19/coronavirus. Updates are made daily. 

The Musicians Union of Los Angeles – Coronavirus COVID-19 Emergency Relief Funds
AFM Local 47 and the Music Fund of Los Angeles have established Emergency Relief Funds to assist members in need who have been subject to work stoppages relating to the coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak.

Music Fund of Los Angeles Emergency Relief Fund
The Music Fund of Los Angeles Executive Board has established an Emergency Relief Fund for AFM Local members who have lost revenue due to work stoppages resulting from the coronavirus COVID-19 emergency. This fund will be able to extend a limited amount of grants for members who work for employers covered by a Local 47 contract or collective bargaining agreement (CBA).

Musicians Union Local 6 – San Francisco
For members of this union who have lost their income from playing and teaching, run the risk of losing their homes or healthcare due to their inability to pay. The Local 6 Board of Directors is meeting on March 30, 2020, to evaluate all applications, and evaluate relative need.

LA Mayor’s Economic Relief Package
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced an $11 million economic relief package for small businesses impacted by COVID-19. Small businesses anchored in the city of Los Angeles can apply for no-fee microloans of $5,000–$20,000 that may be used to cover working capital. The program will offer relaxed underwriting with no credit score minimum, a generous allowance to meet debt service and a 100% loan-to-value ratio.

Opera San José Artists and Musicians Relief Fund
The opera company has set up an emergency cash reserve to support the “musicians, singers, carpenters, stitchers, designers and other hourly company members” that make its productions possible.

COLORADO

Denver Metro Area Artist COVID-19 Relief Fund
Artists are one of the largest segments of the Denver metro area population that make up the “gig economy” and are being hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. This fund aims to help said artists basic daily expenses. Priority will be given to those artists who are part of historically marginalized groups “because of the intersectional economic realities they face already.”

NEW MEXICO

New Mexico Musicians Relief Fund amid COVID-19
Freelance classical musician and music educator Thomas Goodrich organized this fund, with a goal of raising $30,000 to help New Mexico musicians who have been financially impacted by coronavirus-related cancellations. Priority will be given to artists of color, LGBTQ and non-binary artists, and disabled artists.

OKLAHOMA

Red Dirt Relief Fund
The Red Dirt Relief Fund has offered financial assistance to Oklahoma music professionals in times of need since 2012. It has pledged $50,000 to a new coronavirus relief fund, offering one-time emergency grants of up to $250 on a first-come, first-served basis. Apply for a grant here.

PACIFIC NORTHWEST

Northwest Folklife: COVID-19 Artist & Community Resource List
Northwest Folklife is committed to supporting artists and community groups and has compiled a list of resources for financial assistance, mutual aid and advocacy, and informational support.

Seattle Artists Relief Fund Amid COVID-19
This fund is aimed at helping those in the greater Seattle arts community who have been financially impacted by cancellations due to COVID-19. Depending on funding levels and amount of requests, priority may be given to artists from communities that have been historically and systemically economically disadvantaged in the Seattle Area: BIPOC artists, transgender & non-binary artists, and disabled artists

Seattle Foundation COVID-19 Response Fund
A coalition of philanthropy, government, and business partners has joined together to create a COVID-19 Response Fund that will rapidly deploy resources to community-based organizations at the frontlines of the coronavirus outbreak in the Puget Sound region.

Seattle Hospitality Emergency Fund
Seattle hospitality workers are currently able to apply for full or partial unemployment, and the city is working to pass a ban on evictions during this time. Despite these reliefs, there is no 100% rent forgiveness, and unemployment payments take time to arrive and are often not enough to cover basic living costs in one of the most expensive cities in the nation. Additionally, those laid off from jobs that also pay for their medical insurance may have to buy into COBRA or the open market, which can be a devastating cost while relying on unemployment payments alone. The aim is to provide everyone who applies with emergency funds, but the fund will prioritize the BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, disabled, and immunocompromised members of the community.

Seattle Independent Artist Sustainability Effort
A comprehensive document listing all available resources for every gig-based sector, including actors, musicians, composers, choreographers, dancers, designers, directors, drag performers, DJs, and more.

Seattle Music Teachers Fund
For musicians living and working in Seattle “the odds are you make 30%-50% of your income teaching lessons.” Often the length of shifts falls short of state requirements for state income programs like disability or worker’s compensation. This fund is meant to help with income lost due to canceled lessons and other non-performance music work.

Financial Resources for Washington Residents Impacted by COVID-19
The Washington State Department of Financial Institutions has developed a list of financial resources for Washington consumers impacted by the coronavirus.

COVID-19 Oregon Musicians Relief Fund
This fund organized by the Jeremy Wilson Foundation is raising $25,000 to go toward medical expenses, lodging, food and other vital living expenses for musicians based in Oregon and Clark County, Washington, impacted by sickness or loss of work due to the pandemic.

Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan’s Arts Stabilization Fund
In addition to donating $50,000 to the Seattle Artists Relief Fund and another $50,000 to the Artist Trust COVID-19 Artist Relief Fund, the city’s mayor has launched a $1 million Arts Stabilization Fund to help mitigate revenue losses due to the moratorium on events and public gatherings.

Seattle Musicians Access to Sustainable Healthcare
SMASH helps connect Seattle musicians to healthcare, dental services and health education.

COVID-19 Handbook for Creative Industries
King County, Washington has created an online handbook that “is being rapidly updated to bring together resources to take care of yourself and your family; to support the arts and culture community; and to prepare for recovery.”

COVID-19 AND THE FILM, MUSIC, NIGHTLIFE, AND EVENT INDUSTRIES
Seattle’s Office of Film + Music and Special Events’ online resource for current activity and updates on permit restrictions and resources small businesses, employees, contractors, and gig workers can take advantage of during the current climate.

COVID-19 Relief Resources for Hawaii Based Artists
List of resources available to Hawaii locals seeking information on relief funds, health and prevention tips, resources for musicians, information for small businesses and ways to donate to help those in need. 

GRAMMYs

TEXAS

Houston Music Foundation
Houston Music Foundation is a crisis relief fund created to help our city’s musicians in times of need. The goal of Houston Music Foundation is to raise funds for local musicians residing in Harris County during times of crisis, and to get donations into the hands of those in need as quickly as possible. Qualified applicants are eligible for a one-time grant of $500. 

Banding Together – ATX
The Red River Cultural District is Banding Together with the Austin live music community to support the venues, artists, creatives, service/hospitality and production workers, businesses and additional organizations that rely on SXSW, regular programming and continual income to survive. Donations to the local non-profit will help provide financial relief to those in the Austin live music community that have been economically impacted by the cancellation of SXSW and COVID-19.

DFW Musician & Gig Worker Fund
This fund aims to assist two groups of people: full-time musicians who perform at bars, restaurants, weddings, and private gigs; and live music gig workers (stagehands, FOH, box office employees, etc.) who are having a hard time paying necessary living expenses.

Health Alliance for Austin Musicians
HAAM provides access to affordable healthcare for Austin’s low-income working musicians, with a focus on prevention and wellness. Many Austin musicians are self-employed and have no access to health insurance or basic healthcare. They often work multiple jobs and struggle to pay for food, clothing and shelter, with nothing left for healthcare. Since 2005, HAAM has helped 5,300 musicians access over $73 million dollars in healthcare value. These include routine dental work, doctor visits and prescriptions, psychiatric counseling sessions, eye exams, out-patient procedures, specialist referrals, hearing screenings and more.

Southern Smoke Foundation
Southern Smoke Foundation provides funding to individuals in the food and beverage industry who are in crisis. Established in 2017, our emergency relief fund has distributed more than $830,000 to individuals in the food and beverage industry in crisis. The application process is completely anonymous.

SIMS Foundation
SIMS Foundation provides mental health and substance use recovery services for musicians, music industry professionals, and their families to support the well-being of the Austin music community.

Creating Our Future Dallas Low Income Artist Relief Fund
For Dallas area artists and/or freelancers who are experiencing a decline in business as a result of Covid-19 closures.

Austin Texas Musicians
The musician advocacy nonprofit formed by local artist Nakia Reynoso is working to secure relief funds and resources for musicians. In the meantime, it has created a continually-updated resource list.

Dallas Artist Relief Fund
Creating Our Future is a group of artists and arts advocates in Dallas who are raising money to support artists and freelancers who are taking financial hits as a result of closures and lost income from COVID-19. The GoFundMe campaign has set a goal of $5,000 to raise funds to provide emergency and preventative resources to those at financial risk. The support is aimed at helping support for low-income, BIPOC, trans/GNC/NB/Queer artists who can apply here.

Health Alliance for Austin Musicians
HAAM provides access to affordable healthcare for low-income musicians living in Austin.

Housing Opportunities for Musicians and Entertainers
H.O.M.E provides financial housing assistance for needy aging musicians in Austin with grant assistance and other support, including referrals to additional available resources.

I Lost My Gig- Austin
Designed to benefit Austin locals who lost work due to SXSW’s cancellation, I Lost My Gig is currently soliciting donations. As of Sunday (March 15), it had already received over 750 submissions representing over $4.2 million in lost income.

Small Business Administration Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program
This centralized guide was created for small businesses and nonprofits in Texas who have been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic and are looking to apply for SBA loans. Those who have suffered “substantial economic injury” from COVID-19 may be eligible for economic injury disaster loans of up to $2 million.

Texas Music Office
Though the office isn’t offering benefits itself, it can help music workers affected by the pandemic apply for the state’s disaster unemployment assistance, which extends unemployment benefits to those who don’t traditionally qualify.

Texas Workforce Commission
Texas residents can submit an application for unemployment benefits here.

Workforce Solutions Capital Area
WFS, the nonprofit governing body for the regional workforce, is offering layoff support both for businesses and workers in light of the coronavirus outbreak.

GENERAL RESOURCES:

Crew Nation
Live Nation has committed $10 million to Crew Nation – contributing an initial $5 million to the fund, then matching the next $5 million given by artists, fans and employees dollar for dollar. Crew Nation is powered by Music Forward Foundation, a charitable 501c3 organization that will be administering the fund.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Small Business Guidance & Disaster Loans
The U.S. Small Business Administration notes small business owners in the following designated states are currently eligible to apply for a low-interest loan due to Coronavirus (COVID-19): California, Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Rhode Island, Utah, and Washington.

Creative Capital’s List of Arts Resources During the COVID-19 Outbreak
Creative Capital has created a list of resources for artists working in all disciplines, as well as arts philanthropists, and arts professionals.

Foundation for the Contemporary Arts Emergency Fund
The Foundation for Contemporary Arts has created a temporary fund to meet the needs of artists who have been impacted by the economic fallout from postponed or canceled performances and exhibitions. For as long as the foundation’s Board of Directors determines it is necessary and prudent to do so, the Foundation will disburse $1,000 grants to artists who have had performances or exhibitions canceled or postponed because of the COVID-19 virus.

Jazz Foundation of America
The Jazz Foundation’s Musicians’ Emergency Fund provides housing assistance, pro bono medical care, disaster relief and direct financial support in times of crisis.

Rauschenberg Emergency Grants Program
New York Foundation for The Arts has partnered with the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation to administer a new emergency grant program that will provide one-time grants of up to $5,000 for medical emergencies. The grants are available to visual and media artists and choreographers who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents in the United States, District of Columbia, or U.S. Territories.

SAG-AFTRA Foundation COVID-19 DISASTER FUND
The SAG-AFTRA Foundation and the SAG-AFTRA Motion Picture Players Welfare Fund (MPPWF) have created the COVID-19 Disaster Fund that is now available to eligible SAG-AFTRA members who have been impacted by this pandemic.

Sound Girls
Sound Girls, an organization that supports women working in professional audio and music production, is compiling a list of resources to utilize during this forced downtime and unemployment. From best business practices, career development, continuing education, and side hustles to get you through this trying time.

Sweet Relief Musicians Fund
Sweet Relief Musicians Fund provides financial assistance to all types of career musicians and music industry workers who are struggling to make ends meet while facing illness, disability, or age-related problems.

American Association of Independent Music
A2IM is surveying indie music companies about how the coronavirus pandemic is disrupting their businesses. The results will inform the organization’s discussions with the New York Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment, as well as its investigations of federal assistance programs.

American Guild of Musical Artists Relief Fund
Any AGMA member in good standing is invited to apply for financial assistance under the AGMA Relief Fund, which has temporarily doubled the amount of assistance available to those in need during the coronavirus pandemic.

Artist Relief Tree
Anyone who is an artist can request funds from the Artist Relief Tree, which plans to fulfill every request with a flat $250 on a first-come-first-serve basis. The fund is currently not accepting new requests until it can secure more funding, but if you would like to be informed if and when the opportunity becomes available again, click here.

AudioAssemble.com
AudioAssmeble.com has put together a list of online remote opportunities for musicians that are available for U.S.-based musicians during the COVID-19 outbreak. Their financial resources page has short-term and long-term job opportunities, as well as governmental resources to help musicians generate revenue.

Blues Foundation HART Fund
The HART Fund helps underinsured or uninsured blues musicians and their families in financial need due to a range of health concerns.

COVID-19 Music Production Response Group*
A Facebook group meant as an “open forum for constructive debate about the effects of COVID-19 on music production industry professionals,” according to administrators. Its nearly 4,000 members (as of March 18) are sharing news updates, suggested actions, job opportunities and other resources.

Equal Sound Corona Relief Fund*
Equal Sound, an organization that strives to break down traditional genre boundaries through events and advocacy, is inviting musicians who have lost income due to the pandemic to apply for funds. Applicants must provide proof they had a confirmed concert canceled over the coronavirus to receive the money.

Facebook Small Business Grants Program
In response to the pandemic, Facebook is offering $100 million in cash grants and ad credits for up to 30,000 eligible small businesses around the world, including music and live events businesses. More details to come (you can sign up for updates here). Facebook also has a new Business Resource Hub to help small businesses prepare for and manage disruptions like COVID-19.

Freelance Coop Emergency Fund
The Freelance Coop, which connects creative freelancers with business resources, created an emergency fund for freelancers adversely affected by the pandemic. Examples of funding usage are unexpected childcare costs due to school closures, client cancellations, and medical expenses due to the virus itself. As of March 18, the fund had $35,279 in requests and $5,299.69 raised, and is continuing to call for donations to keep up with demand.

Gospel Music Trust Fund
Individuals working in the gospel music field can submit a request for financial assistance to the Gospel Music Trust Fund, which grants funding in the event “of an emergency or major catastrophe, terminal or severe illness,” according to their website.

Independent Venue Week*
Non-profit organization Independent Venue Week has compiled a list of indie music venues that have launched GoFundMe and other fundraising campaigns to stay afloat during the nation-wide closures.

International Bluegrass Music Association’s BlueGrass Trust Fund
Current or former bluegrass music professionals can apply here for financial grants and loans, which are generally between $500 and $5,000. The association has also created a coronavirus-specific resource page.

Leveler.info
The “peer-to-peer wealth distribution” service is a tool for salaried workers to donate funds across a database of freelancers, service industry and gig economy workers who are impacted by coronavirus health and safety restrictions.

Missed Tour*
Artists and bands who have been displaced from touring due to the pandemic can list their merchandise on this site to help offset lost revenue — with zero charges or fees. Apply to be added to the site here.

Music Health Alliance
The Nashville-based Music Health Alliance provides healthcare support services to uninsured members of the music industry.

Music Maker Relief Foundation
The foundation, which provides ongoing support to American artists 55 and older who live in chronic poverty, also gives out emergency grants to artists in crisis. It is now soliciting donations to ensure the stability of vulnerable elderly musicians during the pandemic.

NOMAD Fundraiser for the Touring Crew (GoFundMe)
Touring manager Frank Fanelli is aiming to raise $20,000 for touring crew members and roadies who have lost income due to gig cancellations and postponements. Donations close at the end of March.

Pinetop Perkins Foundation’s Assistance League
PAL provides financial assistance to elderly musicians for medical and living expenses. Preference is given to blues artists, though musicians in other genres may be eligible depending on available funds.

Small Business Administration Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program
The Small Business Administration has designated COVID-19 as a qualifying event for economic injury disaster loans. However, you must be located in a “declared disaster area” to apply for assistance. Check if your state qualifies here.

Tour Support Free Online Therapy
Tour Support, a mental health nonprofit for the live music industry, is offering independent touring contractors whose tours have been postponed or canceled one month of free online therapy through Better Help.  

Viral Music — Because Kindness is Contagious
Independent musicians are invited to use this more than 21,000-member Facebook support group to connect with music fans. “Use this joint to post links to your merch store, online shows, Patreon, or online music lessons,” organizers write. “If you’ve had a gig canceled, post the city and your Venmo/PayPal — many of us would love to pass along our ticket refunds to you.”

Resources for Writers in the Time of Coronavirus
As writers, teachers, publishers, and booksellers in local, national, and international communities “grapple with how to proceed in their creative, financial, professional, and personal lives during this time of uncertainty,” POETS & WRITERS has compiled a list of resources.

Queer Writers of Color Relief Fund
Started by Luther Hughes, founder of Shade Literary Arts, this relief fund seeks to “help at least 100 queer writers of color who have been financially impacted by the current COVID-19. Priority will be given to queer Trans women, and queer disabled writers of color. The minimum disbursement is $100, and the maximum is $500.

The New Music Solidarity Fund 
This fund is an artist-led initiative that aims to grant emergency funding to musicians impacted by COVID-19.
The Fund has raised over $130,000, primarily from fellow musicians, composers, and music professionals. At least two hundred and sixty, $500 emergency assistance grants will be made available to applicants who meet the criteria.

American Guild of Musical Artists Relief Fund
Any AGMA member in good standing is invited to apply for financial assistance under the AGMA Relief Fund, which has temporarily doubled the amount of assistance available to those in need during the coronavirus pandemic.

AudioAssemble.com Online Resources For Musicians The website has compiled a list of online remote opportunities that are available for U.S.-based musicians during the COVID-19 outbreak. Their financial resources page has short-term and long-term job opportunities, as well as governmental resources to help musicians generate revenue. 

Coronavirus: Resources for Property Owners
National Association of Realtors has compiled an online hub of resources for property owners impacted by the global pandemic

The Creator Fund
The fund covers up to $500 per creator to help cover medical, childcare, housing or grocery needs.

Federal Housing Finance Agency’s Mortgage Help for Homeowners Impacted by Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac (the Enterprises) and the Federal Home Loan Banks are taking steps to help people who have been impacted by the coronavirus.   If your ability to pay your mortgage is impacted, and your loan is owned by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, you may be eligible to delay making your monthly mortgage payments for a temporary period

Feeding America
The Feeding America nationwide network of food banks secures and distributes 4.3 billion meals each year through food pantries and meal programs throughout the United States and leads the nation to engage in the fight against hunger.

HART Fund (Handy Artists Relief Trust)
The Blues foundation’s fund helps underinsured or uninsured blues musicians and their families in financial need due to a range of health concerns.

THE INNER LIGHT CHALLENGE
The Material World Foundation, created by George Harrison in 1973, is today donating $500,000 to the MusiCares COVID-19 Relief Fund, Save the Children, and Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders) charities, which are providing much-needed aid and care during this COVID-19 pandemic. For every person that shares their own “Inner Light” moment on social media using the hashtag #innerlight2020, the MWF will give another $1 to help those affected by COVID-19 (up to $100k.)

Harpo Foundation Visual Arts Grant
This grant provides direct support to under-recognized artists 21 years or older. Amount awarded can be up to $10,000. Application deadline is May 1, 2020

MORE RESOURCES:

Resources For Music Creators & Professionals Affected By COVID-19: East Region
Resources For Music Creators & Professionals Affected By COVID-19: South Region

Recording Academy And MusiCares Establish COVID-19 Relief Fund

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