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What We’re Reading: July 14, 2016

How Was Your Smartphone Made? Nobody Really Knows (Wall Street Journal)
by Geoffrey A. Fowler
“The more I ask about my phone’s roots in African mines and Asian assembly lines, the more uncomfortable I become. My phone might have supported forced labor or warlords.”

Indiana Governor Stunned by How Many People Seem To Have Gay Friends (New Yorker)
by Andy Borowitz
“Pence said that from what he has been able to gather thus far, the phenomenon of ‘ordinary folks’ having gay friends ‘has been going on for years.'”

The Church Camps That Aim to Bridge Race Relations (Atlantic)
by Jesse James Deconto
“Many American Christians still grieve something Martin Luther King Jr. articulated more than 50 years ago: Churches are among the most segregated spaces in America.”

When College Students Need Food Pantries More Than Textbooks (Atlantic)
by Emily Deruy
“The report found that many universities have been offering emergency aid to students at risk of dropping out for financial reasons for years, but often in an ad hoc fashion.”

What We’re Reading: July 7, 2016

Climate change: the missing issue of the 2016 campaign (Guardian)
by Ed Pilkington and Mona Chalabi
“Many of the respondents vented despair at a political system that in their view allowed a matter of such overwhelming significance to be so overlooked. ‘The fact that no one is really talking about climate change, to me, is indicative of just how lost we are,’ said Linda Hayden, 51, from Oregon. ‘Our house is on fire and we are arguing about who is more angry!'”

The Fines and Fees That Keep Former Prisoners Poor (Atlantic)
by Alana Semuels
“The uptick in LFOs comes as states look for ways to pay for their corrections system while facing other revenue shortfalls. The fees levied on the formerly incarcerated include bench-warrant fees, filing-clerks fees, court-appointed attorney fees, crime-lab analysis fees, DNA-database fees, jury fees, and incarceration costs.”

“The Best Revenge is Your Paper”: Notes on Women’s Work (LA Review of Books)
by Alice Bolin
“If dating and marriage are work for women, in today’s economy they have found many ways to monetize them.”

Adding Classes and Content, Resurgent Libraries Turn a Whisper Into a Roar (New York Times)
by Winnie Hu
“No longer just repositories for books, public libraries have reinvented themselves as one-stop community centers that aim to offer something for everyone. In so doing, they are reaffirming their role as an essential part of civic life in America by making themselves indispensable to new generations of patrons.”

What We’re Reading: June 9, 2016

Untangling Gun Violence from Mental Illness (Atlantic)
by Julie Beck
“Unfortunately, a consistent and dangerous narrative has emerged—an explanation all-too-readily at hand when a mass shooting or other violent tragedy occurs: The perpetrator must have been mentally ill. ‘We have a strong responsibility as researchers who study mental illness to try to debunk that myth,’ says Jeffrey Swanson, a professor of psychiatry at Duke University. ‘I say as loudly and as strongly and as frequently as I can, that mental illness is not a very big part of the problem of gun violence in the United States.'”

This New Neighborhood Will Grow Its Own Food, Power Itself, And Handle Its Own Waste (CoExist)
by Adele Peters
“In Almere, the village is likely to grow about half of the food that the community eats—it won’t grow coffee or bananas, for example. It will also feed energy back to the local grid. But in some locations, the company believes that the neighborhood could be fully self-sufficient.”

When ‘Diversity’ and ‘Inclusion’ Are Tenure Requirements (Atlantic)
by Conor Friedersdorf
“Last November, student activists at Pomona College, a selective liberal arts school in Southern California, demanded a change in the way that professors are evaluated. Alleging ‘unsafe academic environments,’ they wanted future candidates for promotion or tenure to be judged in part on ‘a faculty member’s support of a diverse student body.’ College President David Oxtoby dubbed it ‘an idea with merit.’ And a semester later, faculty were set to formally vote on the matter.”

Black students in US nearly four times as likely to be suspended as white students (Guardian)
by Ryan Felton
“As early as preschool, black children are 3.6 times as likely to receive one or more suspensions as white children. According to the data, black girls represent 20% of female preschool enrollment, but account for 54% of preschool children suspensions. Black students were also twice as likely to be expelled as white students.”

What We’re Reading: June 2, 2016

The Donald Trump dove myth: why he’s actually a bigger hawk than Hillary Clinton (Vox)
by Zack Beauchamp
“Trump isn’t a leftist, nor is he a pacifist. In fact, Trump is an ardent militarist, who has been proposing actual colonial wars of conquest for years. It’s a kind of nationalist hawkishness that we haven’t seen much of in the United States since the Cold War — but has supported some of the most aggressive uses of force in American history. As surprising as it may seem, Clinton is actually the dove in this race.”

Welfare Utopia (Atlantic)
by Alana Semuels
“That Oregon still maintains a safety net while other states have eradicated theirs is testament to the state’s progressivism. But the example of Oregon also highlights a troubling aspect of federal policy that turns social programs over to the states. Now that states have so much discretion, a few miles can make a big difference in how a poor person is helped by the government. Across the border, in Idaho, poor people are not as lucky.”

President Obama’s Overtime Pay Plan Threatens the ‘Prada’ Economy (New York Times)
by Noam Scheiber
“For decades, bosses at publishing houses, glossy magazines, consulting firms, advocacy groups, movie production companies and talent agencies have groomed their assistants to be the next generation of big shots by working them long hours for low wages.”

Finished reading? Check out this video from The Atlantic: Why Virginia’s Restoration of Voting Rights Matters

What We’re Reading: May 26, 2016

Machine Bias (ProPublica)
by Julia Angwin, Jeff Larson, Surya Mattu and Lauren Kirchner
“Yet something odd happened when Borden and Prater were booked into jail: A computer program spat out a score predicting the likelihood of each committing a future crime. Borden — who is black — was rated a high risk. Prater — who is white — was rated a low risk.”

Scientists say there’s such a thing as “ethical amnesia” and it’s probably happened to you (Quartz)
by Katherine Ellen Foley
“A study published (paywall) today (May 16) in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences indicates that when we act unethically, we’re more likely to remember these actions less clearly. Researchers from Northwestern University and Harvard University coined the term “unethical amnesia” to describe this phenomenon, which they believe stems from the fact that memories of ourselves acting in ways we shouldn’t are uncomfortable.”

The Federal Government Quietly Expands Transgender Rights (Atlantic)
by Emma Green
“Something big just quietly happened to the Affordable Care Act. More than a half decade after the law’s passage, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has explicitly ruled that hospitals, clinics, and other health-care providers can’t discriminate against patients on the basis of gender identity.”

It’s Gotten A Lot Harder To Act Like Whiteness Doesn’t Shape Our Politics (NPR, Codeswitch)
by Gene Demby
“Whiteness has always been a central dynamic of American cultural and political life, though we don’t tend to talk about it as such. But this election cycle is making it much harder to avoid discussions of white racial grievance and identity politics when, for instance, Donald Trump’s only viable pathway to the White House is to essentially win all of the white dudes.”

What We’re Reading: May 12, 2016

Harvard to ban members of single-sex clubs from student leadership roles (Guardian)
by Alan Yuhas
“Harvard University will bar members of single-sex clubs, fraternities and sororities from fellowships and leadership roles on campus, college president Drew Gilpin Faust announced on Friday, in an effort to prevent sexual discrimination.”

Should We Really Be Keeping Cats And Dogs — And Geckos — As Pets? (NPR)
by Barbara J. King
“The pet industry encourages people to buy pets, and the way animals are advertised and sold gives the impression that pet keeping is easy and fun. You can buy an animal for less than you can buy a new pair of shoes. And this makes it easy to underestimate the seriousness of the decision to bring an animal into our homes, and feeds into an attitude that animals are disposable.”

North Carolina’s ‘bathroom bill’ battle embarrasses residents on both sides (Guardian)
by Matthew Teague and Lawrence Richards
“Every level of government – local, state, federal – has now asserted itself over the one below, like a series of civic nested dolls. Along the way, the contention has grown from a dispute over bathrooms to encompass civil rights protections for all lesbian, gay and transgender residents. The sequence of doings and undoings began in Charlotte, the state’s financial center.”

Germany had so much renewable energy on Sunday that it had to pay people to use electricity (Quartz)
by Michael J. Coren
“Critics have argued that because of the daily peaks and troughs of renewable energy—as the sun goes in and out and winds rise and fall—it will always have only a niche role in supplying power to major economies. But that’s looking less and less likely. Germany plans to hit 100% renewable energy by 2050, and Denmark’s wind turbines already at some points generate more electricity than the country consumes, exporting the surplus to Germany, Norway and Sweden.”

Finished reading? Check out Reply All’s “Milk Wanted,” an incredible podcast episode about how hard it is to obtain breastmilk in the United States.

What We’re Reading: May 5, 2016

When in drought: the California farmers who don’t water their crops (Guardian)
by Charlotte Simmonds
“Is it possible to grow healthy grapes without watering them? Actually, if conditions are right, he says, it’s possible to grow even better ones. Less water means smaller, more intensely flavoured grapes with a higher skin-to-fruit ratio.”

What Fiorina Has In Common With Palin And Ferraro (Other Than Gender) (FiveThirtyEight)
by Julia Azari
“But as much as Cruz’s move defies campaign convention, it fits perfectly into a brief but depressing tradition: choosing a female running mate as a desperation move.”

White House ducks questions on Larry Wilmore’s use of N-word to greet Obama (Guardian)
by David Smith
“The comment immediately divided people both in the room and beyond. Jonathan Capehart of the Washington Post blogged: ‘Never before has the n-word been used to address the president. At least, not in public and most definitely not to his face. That’s why Wilmore’s use of it was as shocking as it was disrespectful.'”

Democracies end when they are too democratic (New York Magazine)
by Andrew Sullivan
“Could it be that the Donald has emerged from the populist circuses of pro wrestling and New York City tabloids, via reality television and Twitter, to prove not just Plato but also James Madison right, that democracies ‘have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention … and have in general been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths’?”

A complete guide to carbon offsetting (Guardian)
by Duncan Clark
“Over the past decade, carbon offsetting has become increasingly popular, but it has also become – for a mixture reasons – increasingly controversial.”

What We’re Reading: April 28, 2016

Obama administration urges states to curb use of solitary confinement (Guardian)
by Ed Pilkington
“This year Barack Obama announced far-reaching reforms that would dramatically reduce the use of solitary, or ‘restrictive housing’, within the federal prison system. He said the practice of placing inmates in tiny cells with virtually no human contact was overused and an ‘affront to our common humanity’.”

War In The Time of Selfies (Guernica Magazine)
by Nicholas Miriello
“The crudely staged terror-porn of Abu Ghraib has evolved into the highly stylized and sun-kissed wartime selfie.”

How to persuade rich people to pay more in taxes: remind them how lucky they are (Vox)
by Robert H. Frank
“Hatred of taxes by the wealthy has had real consequences. Due in part to lobbying efforts on the part of high earners, for example, top marginal tax rates around the world have gone down dramatically since the 1970s. Rich people paying lower taxes means there’s less money for public investment in infrastructure and education. And less public investment is bad for everyone, including rich people.”

Shut Up About Harvard (FiveThirtyEight)
by Ben Casselman
“It’s college admissions season, which means it’s time once again for the annual flood of stories that badly misrepresent what higher education looks like for most American students — and skew the public debate over everything from student debt to the purpose of college in the process.”

Video: Empathy Doesn’t Make You a Good Person (Atlantic)

What We’re Reading: April 7, 2016

The Shocking Sexualization of Female Politicians in Porn (The Establishment)
by Soraya Chemaly
“Arguably, these sexist words and images are part of a long history of political satire employing sexualization. However, while male politicians have been and are sometimes skewered in similar ways, it happens relatively rarely and with very different outcomes in terms of potential voter perceptions.”

Teaching Men to be Emotionally Honest (New York Times)
by Andrew Reiner
“Despite the emergence of the metrosexual and an increase in stay-at-home dads, tough-guy stereotypes die hard. As men continue to fall behind women in college, while outpacing them four to one in the suicide rate, some colleges are waking up to the fact that men may need to be taught to think beyond their own stereotypes.”

The disturbing reason some African American patients may be undertreated for pain (Washington Post)
by Sandhya Somashekhar
“Researchers who study health disparities have said that unconscious stereotypes about African Americans likely contribute to this problem, as well as physicians’ difficulty empathizing with patients whose experiences differ from theirs.”

A Free-Speech Debate Devoid of Facts (Atlantic)
by Vann R. Newkirk II
“The apparent gulf between student viewpoints and commentary could have a deeper cause: Some American students may have novel conceptualizations of the appropriate boundaries of free speech.”

What We’re Reading: March 31, 2016

An Ethicist Reads The Art of the Deal (Atlantic)
by John Paul Rollert
“If you’re a few dozen deep on the waitlist at the local library for The Art of the Deal and don’t have $11.95 to shell out for the Kindle edition, I can save you some trouble: The answer to all of your deal-making questions lies in your gut. But, you might say, what if I don’t have the brains in my gut to be a deal-maker?”

Using Twitter and Facebook images of tragedies raises ethical dilemmas (Guardian)
by Martin Belam
“The proliferation of cameras in people’s hands, embedded in their phones, connected to the web, has changed reporting of events like Brussels. News organisations no longer have to rely on professional photographers or camerapeople getting to the scene of a dramatic event several hours after it has happened, and getting some pictures of police tape cordoning off a place where something quite clearly isn’t happening any more.”

Revealed: how Associated Press cooperated with the Nazis (Guardian)
by Philip Oltermann
“Associated Press, which has described itself as the “marine corps of journalism” (“always the first in and the last out”) was the only western news agency able to stay open in Hitler’s Germany, continuing to operate until the US entered the war in 1941. It thus found itself in the presumably profitable situation of being the prime channel for news reports and pictures out of the totalitarian state.”

Lost in Trumplandia (New Republic)
by Patricia Lockwood
“The great crush around me seemed to be made up of two kinds of people: Trump supporters, and people there to goggle at Trump supporters.”

What We’re Reading: March 17, 2016

CDC: 1 in 2 black gay men in US will be diagnosed with HIV (AP)
by Mike Stobbe
“New HIV infections have been falling in the United States, to about 40,000 annually. A disproportionately large share — about 10,000 cases — has been in gay and bisexual black men. That number has been holding steady while infections in other groups have fallen.”

Obama Nominates Garland to High Court, Challenging GOP (AP)
by Kathleen Hennessey
“President Barack Obama nominated appeals court judge Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court on Wednesday, thrusting a respected moderate jurist and former prosecutor into the center of an election-year clash over the future of the nation’s highest court.”

How the 2016 election undermines Fukuyama’s “end of history” argument (Vox)
by Jedediah Purdy
“Saying that history had ended didn’t mean nothing more would ever happen, but that there was no more debate about how to organize a large, complex society. The fight that had shaken the world in the 20th century, from the struggle between right and left in European politics to the wars of postcolonial Asia and Africa, was now done.”

Finished your reading? Check out this amazing podcast episode from Radiolab: Debatable

What We’re Reading: March 10, 2016

J.J. Abrams created a hiring system that considers women and minorities in proportion to the US population (Quartz)
by Adam Epstein
Star Wars: The Force Awakens had a relatively diverse cast, and now director J.J. Abrams has enacted a new hiring system that will ensure all of his future films will be equally, if not more, diverse.”

The most racist places in America, According to Google (Washington Post)
by Christopher Ingraham
“So some people are sitting at home by themselves, Googling a bunch of racist stuff. What does it matter? As it turns out, it matters quite a bit. The researchers on the PLOS ONE paper found that racist searches were correlated with higher mortality rates for blacks, even after controlling for a variety of racial and socio-economic variables.”

‘Battlefield Hardline’ Is Still a Political Game Even When It Tries Not to Be (Vice)
by Ed Smith
“March 2015’s Battlefield Hardline is a great example of a game trying hard to say nothing and be irrelevant, but in the process becoming not just highly political but politically dubious.”

Everything Is Crumbling (Slate)
by Daniel Engber
“This isn’t the first time that an idea in psychology has been challenged—not by a long shot. A “reproducibility crisis” in psychology, and in many other fields, has now been well-established. A study out last summer tried to replicate 100 psychology experiments one-for-one and found that just 40 percent of those replications were successful.”

Can a 3-year old represent herself in immigration court? This judge thinks so. (Washington Post)
by Jerry Markon
“Legal and child-psychology experts ridiculed Weil’s assertions, noting that key milestones for 3- and 4-year-olds include cooperating with other children, saying simple sentences and building towers of blocks.”

As millennials, we’re all in dire straits. But I worry most about our men (Guardian)
by Rose Hackman
“Millennial men are coming of age in a world that has left them little space to fulfill what they have been taught are positive ideals of masculinity: to work hard, find a decent job and earn a decent wage, to provide for themselves and then hopefully contribute towards providing for a family; to demonstrate value by being strong, stable, reliable and present to people around them, including women.”

What We’re Reading: March 3, 2016

Everything You Make Is an Engine (lindaholmes.tumblr)
by Linda Holmes
“What I mean by that is that anything you make – a podcast, a book, a TV show, a business, really any endeavor that you undertake – is not just the thing it is, but it’s also an engine that powers, directly or indirectly, other things and other people. And that’s more true the more success you have.”

The Instagrams of Food Deserts (Atlantic)
by Julie Beck
“In every region of the United States, the foods shown in Instagrams posted from food deserts had higher cholesterol, sugar, and fat than the posts from non-food deserts.”

Nato commander: Isis ‘spreading like cancer’ among refugees (Guardian)
by Alan Yuhas
“Pressed by reporters to back up his assertion with statistics, Breedlove said: ‘I can’t give you a number on the estimate of the flow.'”

The cult of memory: when history does more harm than good (Guardian)
by David Rieff
“Collective historical memory is no respecter of the past. This is not simply a matter of inaccuracy, wilful or otherwise, of the type one encounters in the many contemporary television miniseries that attempt to re-create a past historical era – Showtime’s The Tudors, say, or HBO’s Rome. When states, political parties, and social groups appeal to collective historical memory, their motives are far from trivial.”

The ‘Truth’ About Why We Lie, Cheat And Steal (NPR)
by NPR staff
“Chances are, you’re a liar. Maybe not a big liar — but a liar nonetheless. That’s the finding of Dan Ariely, a professor of psychology and behavioral economics at Duke University.”

What We’re Reading: February 25, 2016

A Black Police Officer’s Fight Against the NYPD (New York Times)
by Saki Knafo
“Over the last two years, Raymond has recorded almost a dozen officials up and down the chain of command in what he says is an attempt to change the daily practices of the New York Police Department.”

When Parents and Surrogates Disagree on Abortion (Atlantic)
by Katie O’Reilly
“In January, Melissa Cook, a 47-year-old California surrogate currently pregnant with triplets, sued the commissioning father, a single 50-year-old Georgia postal worker, who wanted her to abort one of the fetuses.”

Why Political Correctness is So Annoying…and Why It Works (Micropolis)
by Arun Venugopal
“Among the many striking aspects of the 2016 presidential race is this: ‘political correctness’ is regularly touted as one of our greatest societal evils.”

Does Ben Carson Suspect His Campaign Was a Scam? (Atlantic)
by David A. Graham
“Carson has taken in incredible amounts of money during the race. His campaign has raised more than any other Republican presidential rival, though they’ve raised more when super PACs are included. But he’s also spent more than any of them, so that despite his prolific fundraising, he has barely $4 million in cash on hand.”

The Scourge of the Female Chore Burden (Atlantic)
by Olga Khazan
“All over the world, women are doing work they’re not getting paid for.”

Texas academics told to avoid ‘sensitive topics’ if gun law goes into effect (Guardian)
by Tom Dart
“Students and academics have warned of a chilling effect on freedom of expression ever since Texas became the latest state to pass a “campus carry” law last year. It compels public universities to allow license holders aged 21 and over to bring concealed handguns on to most areas of campus.”

The Evolution of Shaming (Atlantic)
by Ed Yong
“So why bother? Why censure someone who hasn’t harmed us directly? Some scientists have suggested that it helps to cement human societies together by enforcing social norms and discouraging selfishness or bad behavior.”

What We’re Reading: February 18, 2016

Stop Bernie-Splaining to Black Voters (New York Times)
by Charles M. Blow
“It is not black folks who need to come to a new understanding, but those whose privileged gaze prevents them from seeing that black thought and consciousness is informed by a bitter history, a mountain of disappointment and an ocean of tears.”

If Republicans block Obama’s Supreme Court nomination, he wins anyway (Washington Post)
by Linda Hirshman
“What a moment for Scalia to depart: The court faces a wild array of closely divided decisions. It is an election year. And President Obama has stacked the lower circuit courts with Democrats.”

Is a Surrogate a Mother? (Slate)
by Michelle Goldberg
“The United States is one of the few developed countries where commercial, or paid, surrogacy is allowed—it is illegal in Canada and most of Europe. In the U.S., it’s governed by a patchwork of contradictory state laws.”

Why aren’t all the primaries on the same day? (Vox)
“The power of the media, and how people respond to earlier results, makes a huge difference. A win in Iowa or New Hampshire can give candidates momentum in later states, and a loss can force others to drop out before most states even vote.”

The Power of Buying Less by Buying Better (Atlantic)
by Elizabeth Cline
“Combatting this wastefulness is at the heart of a growing number of clothing brands offering alternatives to so-called ‘fast fashion,’ the trendy, throwaway method of selling clothes pioneered by companies such as H&M, and the cultural force to blame for the world’s overflowing and underutilized closets.”

Finished reading? Check out this video from MTV: Are the Primaries Racist?

What We’re Reading: February 11, 2016

Ai Weiwei’s Photo Reenacting a Child Refugee’s Death Should Not Exist (Hyperallergic)
by Nitasha Dhillon
“Why was this image created, and why is it circulating?”

What happens next in Aleppo will shape Europe’s future (Guardian)
Natalie Nougayrède
“It is hardly a coincidence that the bombardment of Aleppo, a symbol of the 2011 anti-Assad revolution, started just as peace talks were being attempted in Geneva.”

Formation Doesn’t Include Me — And That’s Just Fine (Medium)
Kate Forristall
“How many centuries were our black brothers and sisters relegated to the position of audience — the thrills of competitive sports, television and movie screens, even the petty dramas of middle class servitude demanding their attention.”

Understanding a White Perception (The DePauw)
by Taylor Jones
“You acknowledge that bombing and burning churches is a little extreme, but Black people are out of control for thinking that an infant’s body exploding to pieces or the burning of the only place that brought a run-down community together to pray, eat, and sing is enough to stop someone else from going to work. Why should a city shut down for Black people?”

We May Not Need An Electorate Of Scientists (NPR)
Tania Lombrozo
“Here, then, is a recipe for a more effective democracy: Everyone needs to know science.”

What We’re Reading: February 4, 2016

Letter of Recommendation: Cracker Barrel (New York Times Magazine)
by Jia Tolentino
“Based on my recent investigations, it’s possible to spend an hour, as an adult of middlingly sound mind, enthralled by the offerings of the Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, the soul of the Cracker Barrel experience, a buffet of slightly cranky kitsch.”

Why Zika is a huge Catch-22 for pregnant women (Vox)
by Emily Crockett
“Right now, the only sure way for women in Zika-infested areas to avoid giving birth to a baby with microcephaly is not to get pregnant at all.”

Chicago Professor Resigns Amid Sexual Misconduct Investigation (New York Times)
by Amy Harmon
“The professor, Jason Lieb, 43, made unwelcome sexual advances to several female graduate students at an off-campus retreat of the molecular biosciences division, according to a university investigation letter obtained by The New York Times, and engaged in sexual activity with a student who was ‘incapacitated due to alcohol and therefore could not consent.'”

When Texas defunded Planned Parenthood, women got less birth control and had more babies (Vox)
by Sarah Kliff
“This new Texas study is important because it demonstrates that there is a risk that comes with cutting Planned Parenthood out of public programs: Women won’t get the care that they used to, and births can increase as a result.”

What Is Sexual Orientation? (Philosophers’ Imprint)
by Robin A. Dembroff
“Inadequate understandings of sexual orientation can reinforce heteronormative assumptions…”

What We’re Reading: December 17, 2015

Focus Fracas (Chronicle of Higher Education)
by Frank Furedi
“Serious reading, I’m told, has become a lost art. Indeed, the precarious status of people’s attention has acquired the status of conventional truth.”

The Necessary Recklessness of Campus Protests (Atlantic)
by Nshira Turkson
“Over the past few weeks, college students in the U.S. and abroad have turned into activists, demonstrating against racial injustice on their campuses. Critiques, of course, pursue these protests. A large portion focus on behaviors they term reckless.”

When 8-Year Olds Kill: What Happens To The Youngest Murderers (Vocativ)
by James King
“Juveniles who commit murder can also still spend their entire lives behind bars, even when parole is an option, at the discretion of probation boards who’d approve their appeals for release.”

In San Bernardino, an Epidemic of Questionable Arrests at School (KQED)
by By Susan Ferriss and Amy Isackson
“Muniz’s arrest in November 2012 sounds extreme, but it was hardly isolated. In fact, he was one of tens of thousands of juveniles arrested by school police in San Bernardino County over the last decade. The arrests were so numerous in this high-desert region known as the Inland Empire that they surpassed arrests of juveniles by municipal police in some of California’s biggest cities.”

What We’re Reading: December 10, 2015

29 Scholarly Societies’ Statement on ‘Campus Carry’ (Inside Higher Ed)
“Twenty-nine scholarly societies on Monday issued a joint statement opposing the Texas “campus carry” law that will significantly expand the right to carry arms on public university campuses.”

How Mark Zuckerberg’s Altruism Helps Himself (New York Times)
by Jesse Eisinger [PRO PUBLICA]
“Mark Zuckerberg did not donate $45 billion to charity. You may have heard that, but that was wrong. Here’s what happened instead: Mr. Zuckerberg created an investment vehicle. Sorry for the slightly less sexy headline.”

What the Hell Just Happened on MSNBC and CNN? (Atlantic)
by David A. Graham
“Reporters were given free rein to walk through an apartment that is an important part of the investigation, and they were allowed to handle what one would expect to be evidence. Police didn’t appear to know the media tour was going on.”

Trigger Warning Skepticism (Inside Higher Ed)
by Colleen Flaherty
“A majority of respondents — 62 percent — said they believed trigger warnings have or will have a negative effect on academic freedom, and 45 percent think warnings have a negative effect on classroom dynamics. But 17 percent — what the report calls a substantial minority — were favorable to trigger warnings, and many of those said they see them as a sign of respect that builds trust between a professor and students, and helps students better engage with difficult material.”

“Political identity is fair game for hatred”: how Republicans and Democrats discriminate (Vox)
by Ezra Klein and Alvin Chang
“But even as American voters remained relatively centrist, they seemed to be getting angrier and more fearful of the other side.”

How Obama Thinks About Terrorism (Atlantic)
by Peter Beinart
“While Republicans think ISIS is strong and growing stronger, Obama thinks it’s weak and growing weaker.”

Supreme Court Justices’ Comments Don’t Bode Well for Affirmative Action (New York Times)
by Adam Liptak
“In a remark that drew muted gasps in the courtroom, Justice Antonin Scalia said that minority students with inferior academic credentials may be better off at ‘a less advanced school, a slower-track school where they do well.'”

What We’re Reading: November 19, 2015

When Free Speech Becomes a Political Weapon (Chronicle of Higher Education)
by Kate Manne and Jason Stanley
“The notion of freedom of speech tends to be ambiguous. It is used to refer to both the political right it enshrines, and the ethical ideal it embodies.”

Did the media ignore the Beirut bombings? Or did readers? (Vox)
by Max Fisher
“The media has, in fact, covered the Beirut bombings extensively. The New York Times covered it. The Washington Post, in addition to running an Associated Press story on it, sent reporter Hugh Naylor to cover the blasts and then write a lengthy piece on their aftermath…”

China’s Bold Push into Genetically Customized Animals (Scientific American)
by Christina Larson
“The goats were made not by breeding but by directly manipulating animal DNA—a sign of how rapidly China has embraced a global gene-changing revolution.”

Do women and minorities have an advantage on the job market? (What Is It Like to Be a Woman in Philosophy?)
by Jenny Saul
“This story is for everyone who thinks women and minorities have an unfair advantage on the job market in philosophy.”

What We’re Reading: November 12, 2015

A clash between administrators and students at Yale went viral. Why that is unfortunate for all concerned. (Washington Post)
by Daniel W. Drezner
“As you can see, I was one of the people who found the op-ed problematic. Indeed, it’s problematic in many of the ways that Lukianoff and Jonathan Haidt chronicled in an Atlantic cover story a few months ago. That said, I also find the outsize reaction to this campus contretemps — including my own tweet — to be troubling as well.”

Terry Gross and the Art of Opening Up (New York Times Magazine)
by Susan Burton
“This fall, Gross marks her 40th anniversary hosting “Fresh Air.” At 64, she is ‘the most effective and beautiful interviewer of people on the planet,’ as Marc Maron said recently, while introducing an episode of his podcast, “WTF,” that featured a conversation with Gross.”

Analysis: At The University Of Missouri, An Unlearned Free Speech Lesson (NPR)
by David Folkenflik
“…you expect college students to make mistakes during their years on campus. It’s part of the point of coming to campus. You screw up, you learn, and you take those lessons with you. You don’t expect people holding positions of authority to make those same mistakes. Yet in several instances, faculty members and administrators were documented — some on video — harassing those merely seeking to report what was unquestionably news while standing in an unquestionably public space.”

There’s a good reason protesters at the University of Missouri didn’t want the media around (Washington Post)
by Terrell Jermaine Starr
“We in the media have something important to learn from this unfortunate exchange. The protesters had a legitimate gripe: The black community distrusts the news media because it has failed to cover black pain fairly.”

Should I Help a Classmate Who Sexually Harassed My Friend Get a Job? (New York Times)
by Kwame Anthony Appiah, Amy Bloom and Kenji Yoshino
“He would probably be a leading candidate, and by passing his résumé on, I would be implicitly giving my stamp of approval. The problem is that freshman year he sexually harassed and attempted to sexually assault a good friend of mine.”

Please Pass the Cheese (On Being a Black Philosopher at a PWI in Rebellious Times) (Philosophical Percolations)
Olúfẹ́mi O. Táíwò
“But in philosophy, it would seem, a Black person must do serious work to advance the discussion to the value comparison stage. This is because, in philosophy, one must first argue that Black people exist.”

What We’re Reading: November 5, 2015

Jeb Bush has a liberal arts degree. It didn’t stop him from belittling liberal arts majors. (Washington Post)
by Valerie Strauss
“Not surprisingly, liberal arts majors, especially psychology majors, were not amused.”

The Narrative Frays for Theranos and Elizabeth Holmes (New York Times)
by James B. Stewart
“Her wealth and fame rest almost entirely on a simple but nonetheless ‘revolutionary’ and ‘disruptive’ technology: Theranos’s ability to run a wide range of lab tests from a tiny sample of blood from a finger prick, in that way eliminating the need for intravenous blood draws.”

Republicans ‘cautious’ about confronting Black Lives Matter on campaign trail (The Guardian)
Sabrina Siddiqui
“Many in the conservative media, along with candidates such as Christie and Cruz, have sought to delegitimize the Black Lives Matter movement by seizing on a handful of examples in which protesters have used controversial rhetoric.”

Zip it: GOP students ‘intimidated’ on campus, say views less tolerated (Washington Examiner)
by Paul Bedard
“The rise of the Tea Party and a rowdy 2016 Republican presidential primary has done little to boost conservative speech on the nation’s college campuses where right-leaning students say they feel intimidated and their views sneered at.”

Silence is Broken (Real Change)
by Rianna Hidalgo and Martha Tesema
“The two stayed nearly silent while “think pieces on think pieces on think pieces” — as Willaford calls them — swept the Internet. On volatile online forums and around the water cooler, questions were rehashed: Why Bernie? Why be so disrespectful? Are they real Black Lives Matter activists or secret plants by Hillary Clinton’s campaign? Aren’t they harming their own cause?”