Student’s Lesson: Georgetown’s Contemporary Story

September 7, 2016

Georgetown is a neighborhood known for its history. The name of one of its restaurants pays homage to the year …

Police Seek Burger-Making Burglar (the Sixth Guy?)

July 7, 2016

On Sunday, the Metropolitan Police Department issued a press release asking for the public’s help in identifying a man who burglarized a Five Guys location on Irving Street NW in Columbia Heights last month.

According to the famed burger chain’s security footage, released by the police department, a man entered the restaurant, got a drink from the soda fountain and cooked himself a couple burgers while talking on his phone. He then stole bottled water and made his exit.

The video shows a man in a fedora with a spatula, rummaging through cabinets and wandering around the kitchen while preparing his meal on the grill.

According to the release, the perpetrator originally entered Five Guys by following a delivery person inside. The incident, which took place between 3 and 5 a.m. on March 18, has been classified as second-degree burglary.

Anyone with information that could lead to the apprehension of the burger burglar is being asked to call police at 202-727-9099 or to text the tip line at 50411.

Rev. Daniel Berrigan, S.J. (1921-2016)

May 20, 2016

In an interview for the 2009 PBS documentary “William Kunstler: Disturbing the Universe,” Rev. Daniel Berrigan, S.J., was asked, “Do you think we can change the world?”

He replied, “Well, I think we can live as though we are changed, you know, and that’s a start.”

Berrigan lived his life by that sentiment, becoming famous for his intense activism and wartime protests. The Jesuit priest, teacher, writer and professor died April 30, age 94, at the Jesuit infirmary at Fordham University in the Bronx.

He grew up near Syracuse, New York, entering the Jesuit seminary after high school. In 1968, he and his brother, Father Philip Berrigan, joined seven others in taking files from a draft board office in Catonsville, Maryland, and burning them in the parking lot with homemade napalm. He and the other Vietnam War protestors, who became known as the Catonsville Nine, were found guilty in federal court and sentenced to prison, but Berrigan managed to hide from the FBI for four months before serving his time.

That act was Berrigan’s most famous, but was by no means his only such protest. He broke into a General Electric plant — again with his brother — and hammered on the nuclear weapons. He continued to speak against war and violence throughout his life, in his later years turning attention to conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq, among other issues.

Berrigan also made use of the written word, publishing more than fifty books as well as numerous poems.

His name will forever be connected to Dorothy Day and Thomas Merton, two famous faces of Catholic spirituality and social justice who were mentioned in Pope Francis’s speech in Washington, D.C., last year. Berrigan’s relationships with both greatly influenced his active stance in the anti-war movement.

In the PBS interview, reflecting on all his years as a protestor, Berrigan said that he did not see much progress in peace movements. But he was not discouraged.

“The value of the work is vindicating your own humanity and that of your friends, and living as though the truth were true. There’s a mood that can set in easily that would say, because I can’t do a big thing, I’m gonna do nothing. But, I mean, I love the Buddhist teaching that the good is to be done because it is good, not because it goes somewhere. I think that’s powerful, and I think, too, that if it’s done for the right reason, it will go somewhere.”

District Doughnut to Pop Up in Georgetown

May 9, 2016

District Doughnut announced on April 26 via Twitter that the company is about to pop up in Cady’s Alley.

According to a report by Eater DC, the pop-up will temporarily fill a vacancy at 3327 Cady’s Alley NW, in a part of Georgetown known for its furniture and design stores.

The company recently posted a photo to its Instagram account of construction work on the Georgetown site. The countertops are handcrafted oak with wood from an old Maryland barn. Another Instagram post announced that the Georgetown location will also offer espresso drinks.

District Doughnut serves fresh, handcrafted doughnuts with creative flavor combinations, such as fluffernutter and chocolate crème brûlée. Founded by two D.C. natives, the company opened its first store in 2014 on Barracks Row.

This will not be the Georgetown debut of the sought-after doughnuts, which often make an appearance at the weekly Wedneday farmers’ market on the Georgetown University campus.

House Speaker Asks Millennials to Help ‘Build a Confident America’

May 4, 2016

“Only we the people can build a confident America. So, today, I am asking for your help,” House Speaker Paul Ryan told students April 27 at Georgetown University. The town hall event in Gaston Hall was hosted by the Georgetown Institute of Politics and Public Service.

Ryan spoke about building a confident America before taking questions from students in the audience and via Twitter.

He began by telling the student crowd that he wanted to make the case for supporting Republicans.

“The America that you want is the America that we want: open, diverse, dynamic. It is what I call a confident America, where the condition of your birth does not determine the outcome of your life — where we tackle our problems together so that all of us can thrive.”

Ryan’s remarks covered student debt, the war on poverty and rehabilitation for criminals, among other issues, examples of the work needing to be done in this country. He urged the students in front of him to step up and get involved: “We need your ideas.”

After his speech, in keeping with the town hall format, Ryan took off his suit jacket and rolled up his sleeves as he prepared to answer questions.

Inevitably, the talk turned to the current election, with one student asking what advice Ryan had for young Republicans who feel they have few desirable options in this race.

Ryan said that, beyond the person, young voters should consider the ideas and the platforms that are being advanced. “In front of you is not just a vote for a person, a political personality. In front of you, if we do our jobs the right way, will be a choice of two paths that you will have to take.”

Ryan also addressed questions about immigration, the Republican opposition to the Affordable Care Act and the difficulties students face in paying for higher education. He said he opposed the Democrats’ solutions to these problems and gave his reasons why. Though he highlighted the need for viable Republican alternatives, he did not always explicitly share those in his answers.

In his response to the question of paying for college, perhaps the issue closest to the hearts of the millennials in the hall, Ryan called for more competition in student lending and among colleges — and the need to have credits more easily transfer. He even commented on his host Georgetown University’s high tuition.

“Not everybody can afford a place like this. So how do we get this kind of an education within reach of people who have no chance of affording it?”
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Georgetown Lacrosse Player Dies

May 3, 2016

Updated at noon, April 26.

Georgetown University undergraduate Edward Blatz Jr. passed away early Sunday, according to an email sent to the Georgetown community by Vice President for Student Affairs Todd Olson.

On April 26, Aquita Brown, a public affairs specialist for the Metropolitan Police Department, confirmed to The Georgetowner that the death which occurred April 24 at 1401 33rd Street NW was that of Edward Blatz, Jr.

Blatz, 21, was a junior in the McDonough School of Business and a member of the men’s lacrosse team. From Garden City, New York, he is survived by his parents, Edward Sr. and Anne Marie, and his two older sisters Elizabeth and Jessica.

The 7:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. Sunday Masses at Georgetown’s Dahlgren Chapel were held in Blatz’s memory. At the earlier service, students and faculty filled the chapel and lined the sides and the back of the church; many more stood outside in the courtyard. Father Raymond Kemp urged the congregation to hold one another close.

The Georgetown University Athletics Department released a statement Sunday quoting Kevin Warne, head coach of the lacrosse team: “Eddie was a great young man who was well-respected and well-liked by his teammates and the Georgetown lacrosse family. He was a very bright student and a talented player and words cannot express the loss we are feeling right now.”

On Sunday, a person familiar with the case said that the deceased was a Georgetown student and that the accidental death may have been caused by a combination of prescription drugs and alcohol.

FilmFest DC Is Here

April 27, 2016

FilmFest DC, the largest international film festival in the District, is back, running from April 14 through April 24.

The festival first came to the district in 1987. This year it celebrates its 30th anniversary. Opening night is tonight, April 14, at AMC Mazza Gallerie, with a showing of “The Dressmaker,” an Australian movie starring Kate Winslet that was nominated for five Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts awards.

Over 11 days, the festival will screen 75 movies, including foreign films, dramas, comedies and international shorts. Cine Cubano is showing three different Cuban films that feature life in contemporary Cuba.

In addition to the film screenings, the festival will host panels, workshops and Q&As with people in the business, from actors to directors to producers.

Landmark’s E Street Cinema and AMC Mazza Gallerie are the primary venues. Other events will take place at the Embassy of France and the National Gallery of Art.

A full schedule of events can be found here.

Georgetown Professor Speaks About University’s History With Slavery

April 22, 2016

Dr. Adam Rothman, a member of Georgetown University’s Working Group on Slavery, Memory & Reconciliation, spoke in Lauinger Library today, April 18, about the university’s history in connection with the Jesuits’ sale of 272 slaves in 1838.

“It seems to me that the story of Georgetown and slavery is a microcosm of the whole history of slavery,” he said.

The discussion, scheduled in honor of D.C. Emancipation Day, comes on the heels of a front-page story in Sunday’s New York Times detailing Georgetown University’s history with slavery and asked what, if anything, should be done for the descendants of those slaves, sold at the initiative of President Rev. Thomas Mulledy, S.J.

Rothman, an associate professor of history at Georgetown, spoke about documents found in the university archives that document the transaction that sent 272 slaves from the Jesuits’ Maryland plantation to former Louisiana governor (later U.S. Congressman) Henry Johnson and his associate Jesse Beatty.

Entries from 1813 and 1814 in the diary of Rev. John McElroy, S.J., offer insight into the connections the Jesuits had with slavery, and the articles of agreement between Mulledy and Johnson and Beatty detail the terms of the sale: $115,000 to be paid in a series of installments. Rothman estimated that in today’s dollars the amount would be equivalent to, conservatively, $3 million.

“Humans were transformed into commodities,” he said.

Rothman highlighted another document, an 1848 letter from James Van de Velde, S.J., of St. Louis, who inquired into the circumstances of the slaves who were sold. Van de Velde found that their families had been separated and that they had not been given ample opportunity to practice their religion, violations of the terms in the articles of agreement.

Rothman pointed out that while these documents are vitally important to the understanding of Georgetown’s involvement in slavery, they only tell one side of the story.

“What we so often lack is the perspective of enslaved people themselves,” he said.

At the end of the talk, a man named Joe Brown spoke up from near the back of the room. He said that his ancestors had been slaves whose lives followed a similar trajectory at the hands of the Catholic Church in Maryland. Coincidentally, he had been at the library researching his family history at the same time as the discussion.

Brown shared his story of being raised in the Catholic Church and then coming to understand how the church had been part of his family history in a terrible way. He spoke quietly and emotionally about his new doubts and whether he could still have faith and raise his children in the Church.

His comments made Rothman’s earlier remarks about looking at slavery in its local context, in order to humanize a difficult subject, very real to the listeners. When Brown’s story was followed by another attendee’s question about reconciliation, Rothman himself was overcome with emotion and could not answer.

Rothman later said that the first step of truth and reconciliation is truth. He spoke of the possibility of scholarship programs and memorials on campus, while noting that conversation is ongoing and no decisions have yet been made.

“My own personal opinion is that nothing is sufficient,” he said.

Zannchi Brings Bibimbap and Bachan to Georgetown

April 21, 2016

Zannchi, Georgetown’s new Korean restaurant, was a long time coming for owner Eunjung Kim, though she hadn’t always planned for it. Her family owns a chain of restaurants in Korea, and that experience helped her successfully launch Zannchi, which opened March 29.

Growing up with the family business — and having spent many years in New York with its rich food scene — Kim, an MBA student at Georgetown University, was surprised to find that Korean restaurants were scarce in the District, especially in the Georgetown neighborhood.

“I think there’s a high demand, but the supply of the food scene was not meeting expectations,” she said.

Kim realized that, given her family background, she was well equipped to fill that void. And so Zannchi was born. She partnered with fellow MBA student Brian Yu and received guidance from the Georgetown Entrepreneurship Club advisors, who answered the many questions she had about starting a business.

Located on Wisconsin Avenue between Volta and Q Streets, Zannchi definitely has the look of a Georgetown restaurant. Part of the wall is made up of exposed brick original to the building. The rest of the interior is a dark wood, with bright lanterns strung overhead. The combination gives the restaurant a rustic and natural feel with a modern twist.

Zannchi’s specialty is bibimbap bowls, rice topped with vegetables, meat and eggs, with the spicy pork the most popular dish so far. Tapas-style items like dumplings and bulgogi (barbecued beef) are also on the menu.

Everything is prepared fresh in the restaurant; Kim suggests that diners share the bachan (tapas) before ordering their own bibimbap bowls.

The food, and its freshness, is definitely a hit. Though the restaurant opened only recently, Kim said they have already seen neighbors returning and have had a line out the door for dinner.

It’s a nice addition to the Georgetown dining scene. One neighbor came in during lunch to grab a menu, expressing excitement about Zannchi and promising to return soon for a meal.

Kim looks forward to seeing Zannchi grow as people become familiar with it. She even hopes to expand in the future, though she is not looking too far ahead, preferring to focus for now on graduating from Georgetown with her MBA next month.

“It’s a lot of work. I’m glad it finally took off,” she said. [gallery ids="102406,122243,122247" nav="thumbs"]

Treasury: Harriet Tubman New Face of $20 Bill

April 20, 2016

U.S. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew announced today that the image of Harriet Tubman will replace that of Andrew Jackson as the face of the $20 bill.

Tubman, who was born a slave in Maryland in 1822, is famous for her abolitionist work and for helping slaves escape through the Underground Railroad, a secret network of safe houses and routes to free states and Canada.

The news diverges from the currency replacement plan originally announced by the Treasury on June 17, 2015, in which Lew said he planned to put a woman on the $10 bill — one who was “a champion for our inclusive democracy,” he commented at the time.

Alexander Hamilton, the first Secretary of the Treasury, will remain the face of the $10 bill, CNN reported, in part due to his resurgence in popularity thanks to the Broadway musical “Hamilton.” According to CNN, Lew is also expected to announce that various women will appear on the back of the $10.