University News

Recent alum wins primary for Mass state legislature

Goldstein-Rose ’16 heads into uncontested general election, emphasizes education, environment

By
Staff Writer
Thursday, September 22, 2016

Solomon Goldstein-Rose ’16 won a Democratic primary for the Massachusetts state legislature.

Solomon Goldstein-Rose ’16 won the Democratic state primary for the Third Hampshire District seat in Massachusetts Sept. 8. As he is running unopposed in the general election, Goldstein-Rose has effectively won the seat for Massachusetts State Legislature.

The district is known for its young population, placing Goldstein-Rose in a unique position to represent the young voices of his generation. As a state representative, Goldstein-Rose will serve as one of 200 state legislators to make laws, set budgets and advocate positions in his platform. In particular, he is dedicated to environmentalism and education reform.

“I’ve been an environmental activist my whole life,” Goldstein-Rose said. “My parents have always been involved with politics, and they talked about politics at home.” While he entered the University intending to study chemical engineering, Goldstein-Rose shifted his focus over the course of his education. “Instead of inventing something amazing, I decided to work on the policies that would govern those inventions,” Goldstein-Rose said.

He calls education reform his long-term project. Timelines for some of his plans extend “for decades to come” while others can be implemented within months. Among reforms of interest, he listed better funding for public schools, changes in testing and updated teacher evaluation practices. Goldstein-Rose will also look to reform education culture by introducing diversity and inclusion workshops and training, he added.

In terms of environmentalism, Goldstein-Rose said long-term thinking is the wrong framework in which to consider the issue, which he calls “urgent.” He cited carbon pollution as a leading problem that could be rectified with carbon pricing, which charges carbon emissions to both discourage its use and return revenue to residents in the form of a dividend. Having spearheaded the push for a carbon pricing bill that was passed in Rhode Island, he is now looking to get the same bill passed in Massachusetts.

The issues Goldstein-Rose aims to tackle are daunting, and he recognizes he will not resolve them by himself. Taking advantage of the time he would have spent on further campaigning for the general election, Goldstein-Rose is already meeting with other legislators to gauge who has similar visions and whom he can look to for wisdom and advice.

For fellow Brown students interested in politics or legislation, Goldstein-Rose has simple advice: Just do it. “Brown students have a unique opportunity — Rhode Island is so small,” he said. “If you want to get involved, Brown is a 15-minute walk from the State House. Just walk over.” While he acknowledges the benefits of on-campus activism, he also encourages passionate students to expand their spheres of influence. “If you get a bill passed for Rhode Island, you affect at least a million and a half people, and you become a role model for other states,” he added.

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