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Speakers
May 31, 2017
The Underground Scholars Initiative: A Pathway to Education at UCB
Jun 07, 2017
Veterans Journey Home
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Grant Applications Due June 15th
Grant applications for the first grant cycle of 2017-18 are due June 15.
Look at the application instructions on our website (click here).
Questions contact either Kurt Hauch kurthauch@sbcglobal.net or Grier Graff gg@graffarchitects.com.
News From Our Members
Congratulations to one of our newer Rotarians - Rowena Tomaneng.  She received her Doctorate in Education from USF this week.  She said "It's great to be done with my dissertation!”
Trump's First 118 Days
David Peritz, Ph. D., Co-chair of the Politics Department at Sarah Lawrence College, spoke about "The First 118 Days of Donald Trump's Presidency" in his May 17th presentation to Berkeley Rotary. His original title, "The First 100 Days" was modified because of late-breaking developments in Washington D.C., including ongoing concerns related to investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 election and the firing of FBI Director James Comey. Dr. Peritz added that recent indications that President Trump may have shared classified inappropriate information with the Russians last week contributed additional media attention on the administration, creating even greater concerns among the American people. The speaker posed the questions of how we got here and what is likely to ensue, going forward, given that that we are experiencing one of the most disruptive presidencies in recent history.  
 
Dr. Peritz defined a populist candidate as one who sees himself or herself as "speaking for the people as a whole" and not as a member of a specific political party. He referenced movements in the Netherlands, Italy and France, as well as in the U.S. He commented on the phenomenon of the economic decline in the middle class, which used to encompass a majority of 60% in our country, as opposed to 40% today, creating a political polarization which led to the election of Mr. Trump. He specifically emphasized the frustration among this group at the decline in social circumstances and their anger at their level of inequality.  
 
Dr. Peritz ended his presentation by pointing out four crises in American politics: 1) a political system that is responsive to the top 10% of American voters, leaving out the bottom 90%; 2) the digital age, which directs people's attention in transitory "spurts," creating an audience of people who don't sustain their attention span by reading; 3) a crisis in democratic justice, whereby people feel the longstanding social compact has been broken, i.e., their sense of fairness is violated; and 4) the crisis of white identity, in which white, high school graduates who have worked hard all their lives believe the American dream has failed them. Dr. Peritz indicated that this latter group composes the 39% of American voters who have continued to support the newly elected President.  
 
A number of members stayed after the meeting to engage Dr. Peritz in Q & A.  
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