Maryland Has Created a Truth Commission on Lynchings – Can It Deliver?

Maryland, United States (Conversation) – Between 1850 and 1950, thousands of African American men, women and children were victims of lynchings: public torture and killings carried out by white mobs. Lynchings were used to terrorize and control black people, notably in the South following the end of slavery. Yet despite the prevalence and seriousness of the practice, there has been an “astonishing absence of any effort to acknowledge, discuss, or address lynching,” reports the Equal Justice Initiative, the leading organization conducting research on lynchings. Until now. In April 2018, the…

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Undocumented Immigration Into U.S., Especially From Mexico, Is Down

United States (Cronkite) – Undocumented immigration from Mexico has dropped so significantly over a decade that Mexicans no longer make up the majority of those living in the U.S. illegally, according to a Pew Research Center report. Mexicans make up less than half the total undocumented immigrant population for the first time in more than half a century, the report says. Arizona is among more than a dozen states showing a decline, with 220,000 fewer undocumented immigrants in 2017 than 2007. More undocumented people are leaving the U.S. than staying, the…

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The Real Story of the Barbie Doll: Strong Female Leadership Behind the Scenes

United States (Conversation) – In marking the 60th anniversary of one of the world’s best-known toys, the Barbie doll, scholars and journalists have a wealth of angles to explore. The impact of the Barbie doll on girls’ body images and the spread of a stereotypical model of womanhood has been the subject of extended reflections. They can also focus on the American company that markets it, Mattel, and its current difficulties in dealing with more interactive toys. Yet one story that’s much less known is that of Ruth Handler, the…

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Women Have Been the Heart of the Christian Right for Decades

United States (Conversation) – Alabama’s new abortion restrictions were signed into law by Gov. Kay Ivey. But more has been said recently about the fact that the bill was passed by 25 white men in the state Senate. Media reports have pointed to how this law will disproportionately affect black and poor women. Only four women currently serve in Alabama’s state Senate. Three voted against the bill, while one abstained. In response to the Alabama vote, Democratic State Sen. Linda Coleman-Madison compared men’s votes on abortion legislation to “a dentist…

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Medicaid Expansion Linked to Better Health Outcomes for Thousands of Americans

United States (JR) – Two new studies demonstrate a link between Medicaid expansion and positive health outcomes, adding quantitative evidence to inform the nation’s ongoing debate about health insurance coverage. Medicaid is a health insurance program for people who don’t have sufficient income or resources to otherwise attain health insurance. It is funded by both state and federal governments, but is managed at the state level. As of March 2019, 65,949,108 individuals were enrolled in Medicaid, and 6,662,765 were enrolled in the related Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), according to the Centers for Medicare and…

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A Concise History of the US Abortion Debate

United States (Conversation) – On Nov. 14, 1972, a controversial two-part episode of the groundbreaking television show, “Maude” aired. Titled “Maude’s Dilemma,” the episodes chronicled the decision by the main character to have an abortion. The landmark Supreme Court ruling in Roe v. Wade was issued two months after these episodes. The ruling affirmed the right to have an abortion during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. “Maude’s Dilemma” brought the battle over abortion from the streets and courthouses to prime-time television. Responses to the episodes ranged from celebration to…

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The Racist Roots of American Policing: From Slave Patrols to Traffic Stops

United States (Conversation) – Outrage over racial profiling and the killing of African Americans by police officers and vigilantes in recent years helped give rise to the Black Lives Matter movement. But tensions between the police and black communities are nothing new. There are many precedents to the Ferguson, Missouri protests that ushered in the Black Lives Matter movement. Those protests erupted in 2014 after a police officer shot unarmed 18-year-old Michael Brown; the officer was subsequently not indicted. The precedents include the Los Angeles riots that broke out after…

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Tribal Leaders, Lawmakers Push Bill to Ban Mining Near Grand Canyon

United States (Cronkite) – Tribal and environmental officials urged House lawmakers Wednesday to protect sacred land and natural resources by supporting a permanent ban on mining on just over 1 million acres around the Grand Canyon. The “Grand Canyon Centennial Protection Act” would prohibit all mining in the affected area, but supporters were focused on the uranium mining that has a troubled history on tribal lands. “Uranium mining has already poisoned and will continue to poison the springs and waters of my Grand Canyon home,” said Havasupai Councilwoman Carletta Tilousi at…

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Who Are the 1 in 4 American Women Who Choose Abortion?

United States (Conversation) – The abortion debate is at the center of U.S. political dialogue. Voices from both sides flood social media feeds, newspapers, radio and television programs. In the last year, attacks on reproductive rights sharply increased. In 2019, Georgia, Missouri, Ohio, Kentucky and Mississippi successfully passed so-called “heartbeat” bans to prohibit abortion as early as 6 to 8 weeks. Alabama is the first state to pass a complete abortion ban without exceptions for rape or incest. Due to ongoing legal challenges, these bans have yet to go into…

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Half of Transgender and Non-Binary People Hide Their Identity at Work in Fear of Discrimination – Here’s How You Can Help

United Kingdom (Conversation) – For people who identify as LGBT+, the workplace can be a difficult environment to manage. One in five lesbian, gay and bisexual employees say they have experienced verbal bullying. For those who are transgender and gender non-conforming things can be even more difficult. Gender non-conforming people who do not identify as either male or female (non-binary) are more likely to suffer abuse, violence and harassment. Research in the US and in the UK shows that transgender and gender non-conforming employees are more likely to be discriminated against…

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