• Uniquely American event marks the nation's birthday: Yet another mass shooting

    The major shooting of the Fourth of July weekend was the one in Highland Park, Illinois, that killed six and wounded dozens more But while that was the only mass shooting to draw significant national attention, it wasn’t the only one In the early hours of the holiday, five people were wounded in a shooting elsewhere in the Chicago area On Monday night, during a fireworks display, two police officers were grazed by bullets as crowds fled gunshots

  • Cartoon: If Watergate happened with today's media

    I thought I’d resurrect this classic given the 50th anniversary of Watergate and the comparisons being made to the January 6 hearings As I wrote earlier, it’s worth remembering that the origins of Fox News can be traced back to the Nixon White House The Nixon administration wanted more favorable coverage in the media and hatched the idea of creating a pro-GOP “news” network Roger Ailes offered to do it, though it took some 25 years for the network to actually materialize  And the rest, as...

  • Cheers and Jeers: Tuesday

    Let’s Check the Ukraine Relief Tote Board

  • Listen: J pod orcas look, sound healthy in Salish Sea visit, but UBC study says they’re underfed

    Friday Harbor, Washington: The trend that San Juan Island whale watchers observed in late May—when the entirety of the endangered Southern Resident J pod spent eight days cruising the Salish Sea, with repeated visits to the island’s west side—picked up again in the third week of June Once again, J pod came back to repeatedly forage for Chinook salmon in Haro Strait and other areas, but this time they were accompanied by the L12 subpod, comprising 10 orcas, including the Southern Resident...

  • 'Top Chef' contestant and DACA recipient Byron Gomez calls policy 'a life-changing experience'

    Byron Gomez worked his way from Burger King worker to Top Chef cooking competition contestant to executive chef at an Aspen, Colorado, restaurant In between that time, he’s also worked under noted chefs Daniel Boulud and Daniel Humm

  • The first published Black composer is finally getting his due

    Those with a passable knowledge of classical music composition might be excused for assuming that this genre was almost exclusively the province white men (with a smaller subset of often overlooked white women)  But in the late 18th century, for example, fans of no less stature than former U S President John Adams were describing the orchestral leader Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges, a prolific composer of concertos and string quartets, as “the most accomplished man in Europe ”...

  • In praise of the great outdoors, wherever that may be for you

    Sometimes I think the only thing keeping me alive in the face of an ongoing pandemic, intensifying climate crisis, and many, many more issues worsening with a swiftness is the outdoors I’m not saying I’m holding onto this mortal coil for dear life, but instead that I see meaning in the life I’m living thanks to my surroundings I can think of so many moments when clearing my head meant a walk to the river, a run on the Lafitte Greenway, or getting away even farther and exploring more of the...

  • Workplace heat injury and death are 'vast underestimates,' and likely to worsen as climate changes

    Heat deaths in the U S  peak in July and August, and as that period kicks off, a new report from Public Citizen highlights heat as a major workplace safety issue With basically every year breaking heat records thanks to climate change, this is only going to get worse without significant action to protect workers from injury and death

  • 'Immigrants we get the job done': Poems to make you appreciate immigrants more this July 4

    Despite the strides of progress immigrants have taken since the start of America’s history, acceptance is still lacking It is often difficult to speak about the experiences of immigrants and people of color while discussing justice As a result, creatives have taken to their craft to speak about political events and experiences surrounding refugees, immigrants, and others Our country has seen a lot of immigrant-targeted violence, from the way we have treated migrants and refugees to our very...

  • On July 4th, we should never forget that true patriots are not bootlickers

    Samuel Johnson famously wrote in 1775 that “Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel ” In The Devil’s Dictionary, Ambrose Bierce made the appropriate correction: “With all due respect to an enlightened but inferior lexicographer I beg to submit that it is the first ”

  • How progressives talk about July 4 and our national history in the post-Trump presidency era

    I always enjoy Meteor Blades’ post about July 4, which highlights Frederick Douglass' iconic speech, The Meaning of July 4th for the Negro, delivered in Rochester, New York, in 1852 The speech described the alienation from July 4, and from America more broadly, that enslaved people and African Americans in general felt Although the most often-quoted section discusses that sense of alienation, it is also important to remember Douglass' conclusion to the speech: