a letter from the former editor

Dr. Alice Green, Executive Director of the Center for Law and Justice

When the first issue of The South End Scene was published in the 70s none of those involved believed that it would become a major vehicle for social change in the Albany community. Residents embraced it as a major source of their information-gathering on education, politics, local events, social action and much more. The paper unified and hence, empowered the community to demand changes in civil rights, the political and economic structure, and the delivery of social justice to many.

Since the paper’s demise in the 80s, residents have longed for its return in the hope of unifying the community again. Many expressed their exasperation over the state of information sharing. There is frustration over fake news, the dwindling of print media, and the mistrust of social media. These have operated to set differing generations apart.

Upon learning of the current endeavor by the Howe Branch and others to launch The New Scene, many community residents expressed great joy and hope that this new publication can help bring us together to tackle the unfinished business of social change and community empowerment based on reliable information.

A number of important changes have taken place in Albany since the Scene’s historic launch by Trinity Institution. Among those changes, we have witnessed the growth of a more ethnically diverse community; increasingly segments of the population are actively demanding their civil, political, and economic rights; and many young people are energetically struggling to be heard and involved in social change.

For 35 years, the Center for Law and Justice has played a major role in these and many other change efforts; as Trinity did during the Civil Rights Movement of the 60s. With our many community partners, such as the Howe Branch, the Center continues to provide reliable information and community education on serious issues affecting our community. Our commitment to The New Scene is strong and we commend the growing number of adult volunteers and students who have become dedicated to making the paper an integral and reliable source of information and involvement. We recognize the potential of The New Scene to make a significant contribution to our community as we struggle to find ways to communicate with each other for the common good.