Good journalism

some links to take or leave

I hope you and your loved ones are doing okay. If you’re in the mood for article recs, read on.

Be warned: these are GRIM! Two of them say something like “Don’t Stand a Chance” in the title. But they all left me with a sense of being more equipped than I was before. So many of these facts, histories and questions have been clouded by corruption for most of our lives. The sharper our sense of the world, the more truthful and innovative we can be in our work.

Many of these are also handy for sharing with others. I’ve found that few people in power understand what millennials are facing economically; they need to be shown the history and their role in it. Likewise, few people have read extensively on AIDS history, prison abolition or the material effects of living in a culture that devalues mental health. All of these articles are easy reads that furnish a vocabulary to start engaging with some of these issues.

  1. I Study Prisons and AIDS History. Here’s Why Self-Isolation Really Scares Me,” by Steven W. Thrasher

    “The world will be rebuilt, and we have a chance to make it better—but this will only happen if we can figure out mutual care and mass mobilization with tactics that have never been used on such a scale before.”

    (Thank you for sharing this, Travis Ballenger!)

  2. America’s Other Epidemic,” by Beth Macy (see also: “The Mountains Aren’t Empty,” also by Beth Macy, “The Wrong Way to Fight the Opioid Crisis,” by Paige Williams, and “Why Americans are Dying from Despair,” by Atul Gawande)

    “The program she’s developed is still small and new, but its results are promising, and it appears to be replicable in states that have expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. Perhaps most important, it bridges the gulf between a medical culture that too often abandons people the moment they become addicted, and a legal system that incarcerates them when they can’t recover on their own.”

  3. America Has Abandoned Its Shadow Workforce,” by Henry Grabar (see also: https://www.nysylc.org and Informed Immigrant’s coronavirus Resources for Immigrants)

    “As the coronavirus lockdowns deepen, no group finds itself in a more difficult situation than America’s 12 million undocumented immigrants. Certainly, none is less likely to get the help it needs.”

  4. Millennials Don’t Stand a Chance,” by Annie Lowrey (see also: “The Gig Economy Celebrates Working Yourself to Death,” by Jia Tolentino; “A Catastrophe for the Night Economy,” by musician Torquil Campbell; and “The Hidden Cost of GoFundMe Health Care,” by Nathan Heller)

    “Put it all together, and the Millennials had no chance to build the kind of nest eggs that older generations did—the financial cushions that help people weather catastrophes, provide support to sick or down-on-their luck relatives, start businesses, invest in real estate, or go back to school.”

  5. Empty the Jails Now,” an interview with Bret Grote, by Jonah Walters

    “If activists are prepared to seize the initiative and be as audacious as the circumstances demand, we may find that we have an opportunity to influence institutions that would otherwise be utterly resistant to us.”

    Emphasis mine.

  6. Cities After Coronavirus,” by Jack Shenker

    “After decades of increasing atomisation, particularly among younger urban residents for whom the impossible cost of housing has made life both precarious and transient, the sudden proliferation of mutual aid groups – designed to provide community support for the most vulnerable during isolation – has brought neighbours together across age groups and demographic divides.”

Take care, everyone.