Economy Goes Down, College Enrollment Goes Up; Economy Goes Up, College Enrollment Goes Down

I knew this from my days working in the edtech space. Sinking into reports and analyses, I learned that when the economy is bad, people go back to school to acquire more skill (or to pay the bills with loans and grants). And as the economy improves, people return to the workforce as jobs get better and pay more than school. Countercyclical. This piece is great for going further into this story: states cant spend more than they take in, and they usually take in less during recessions, precisely when they need to spend more money on community colleges and state schools for the rise in enrollment. Who can spend more than they take in, especially when the economy is bad? The federal government. And thats where a solution to this skills-enrollment-funding issue lies. 

 http://suburbdad.blogspot.com/2017/04/the-limits-of-states.html

Not So Fast, North Carolina

The state is still bigoted. But at least there is a reprieve from formal homophobia. Whereas yesterday Republicans in the state legislature filed HB780 to invalidate Marriage Equality in defiance of the US Supreme Court, today the state's Republican House Speaker said the bill would not be heard for constitutional reasons. Whatever, Carolina. We'll keep watching you.  

Sexual Assault And Sexual Abuse Are Rampant In Immigration Detainment Centers

This is absolutely disgusting. Thank you to Community Initiatives for Visiting Immigrants in Confinement for the public records requests and investigation into this. From the article: 

  "The inspector general received more than 33,000 allegations of a broader range of abuses from January 2010 to July 2016, including 702 for coerced sexual contact, 714 for physical or sexual abuse and 589 for sexual harassment, according to the group. The group's analysis showed the inspector general investigated 247, or less than 1 percent."

This hurts. Women, men, trans people... People of Color bear the brunt. This hurts.

 https://apnews.com/1f886c36b8e345019a1eef9eb5832c1f/Report:-Homeland-Security-fields-1,000-sex-abuse-complaints

The Connections: Mass Shootings, Domestic Violence, And Violence Against Women

A full 57% of mass shootings in the last 5 years were of a man targeting his wife, girlfriend, or family. And its not just mass shootings. This is the truth that women know, and men avoid. Shootings regulary involve abusers, men rejected by women who merely assume agency over themselves, and just about every situation where toxic masculinity and misogyny meet the availability of a weapon. Men should be checking other men on their behavior, and doing everything we can to stop the violence, support women and girls, and punish violent men so they can no longer do harm.

 http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/mass-shootings-2016-domestic-violence_us_586d39abe4b0d9a5945d8941

Colorism, Seeking "Good Minority" Status, And Latinx Riots

This piece from CityLab is a great summary of the dynamics of Latnix unrest in America. Far from being a "Black" thing, Latinx riots have occurred all across the country and many since the Civil Rights Era. Why dont we know about this? The piece proposes a number of theories: Latinx people themselves want to avoid ties to Blackness, they want to present as "good" immigrants and minorities, and from the outside, Latinx people are never given credit for their ability to rebel against injustice--where newspapers and civic leaders see riots as merely desteuctive acts, they are more than willing to blame it all on Black folks, even when there are clearly non-Black Latins involved in and at the heart of these riots. 

 https://www.citylab.com/politics/2017/04/the-forgotten-history-of-latino-riots/522570/#disqus_thread

Large Police Departments Full Of Insecurity, Act Like Interest Groups

Pew Research has polling of departments with more than 100 sworn personnel. Larger departments are more likely to think the media treats cops unfairly (81% of cops surveyed generally agree, 42% strongly agree), more likely to say they feel frustrated (65% of those who strongly agree), more likely to feel dosconnected from the public (56% of those who strongly agree). Another interesting finding: white cops are most likely to say police officers are treated unfairly in the media. Some people have suggested solutions, but cops would rather just be militarized then infantalized then awarded legal protections and union contracts to cost coties $120k-170k a year in total annual costs. They function more and more like an interest group. 

 http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2017/01/25/most-officers-say-the-media-treat-police-unfairly/

Gorsuch Is Bad. Democrats Should Have Ended The Filibuster, Too.

Democrats continue to stand on principles that do nothing to actually benefit or alleviate the pressures their constituents (namely women, people of color, and the LGBTQ family) continue to live under. The Filibuster as an American Tradition? Maybe. Where Trump is the disrupter of traditions and maintaining those is necessary to saving the Republic and staving off disaster, we also know we could have had a Public Option and far more reach instead of what we now have for Obamacare. We could have had support for DREAMers instead of easily dismissed executive action. We could have had a second Stimulus bill once we realized the first one wasnt big enough to fill the 9% economic contraction of a hole created by the Great Recession. The filibuster enables Gorsuch to rise to SCOTUS. But ending it when the Democrats had the chance to could have helped the rest of us. Instead we got less than needed, less than demanded, and Gorsuch ready to judge against us for 20-30 years. Commitment to principle and tradition are privileges that many women, people of color, and LGBTQ people dont have. And the white folks who run the Democratic Party are certainly among the most privileged in society. 

People Of Color, Women More Likely To Say SCOTUS Should Adapt Decisions To Modern Times

Which is why it is crucial that more women and people of color are in positions of power and influence. Because the Constitution as originally written left no room for women and people of color. That was wrong when it was written, but it has absolutely no place in 2017. Diversity not simply for its own sake, but to reflect who we are. 

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Why Art Matters In The Age Of Trump

This is a great read, thorough and thoughtful. Art matters. Its one of the reasons EFNIKS highlights a QTPOC artist to create the headers for each page in each monthly edition of the space, and why we want to have artists collaborate with writers to use a unique piece of their work as title art for our essays and articles. We support art and artists. 

 

https://nyti.ms/2oLKNnN 

Former 4-Star General and JSOC Commander: Save PBS

General Stanley McChrystal was a four-star general and headed the Joint Strategic Operations Command from 2003-2008. In an op-ed for the New York Times, McChrystal says that the small cost (only $1.35 per taxpayer) and significant benefits of PBS to public safety and the public good should keep its funding secure. In effect, the op-ed is a rebuke of Trump's budget that would cut funding to the producer of shows like Sesame Street. McChrystal served until 2010 until he was fired by President Obama for negative comments about Vice President Biden. Until that time, his military career was widely viewed by folks in that world as impeccable and honorable.

 

 https://mobile.nytimes.com/2017/04/05/opinion/stanley-mcchrystal-save-pbs-it-makes-us-safer.html?referer= 

Because of Scalia, 7th Circuit says anti-gay workplace discrimimation violates Federal law

This is beautiful. Deceased former Supreme Court Justice and Paul Sorvino's porn parody body double, Antonin Scalia, once made an argument to extend federal civil rights protections in a case that likely was not intended to be covered by the authors of Title VII. In part because of that argument, the 7th Circuit extended workplace protections to gay and lesbian employees in a case of a lesbian experiencing discrimination at accounting firm Price Waterhouse. Scalia--bigot to the end of his days--had his words used to extend civil rights to gays and lesbians. *cackles* The story of course isnt over: the issue must ultimately be decided by the Supeme Court. 

 

 https://thinkprogress.org/federal-appeals-court-holds-workers-cant-be-fired-for-being-gay-c6b20caab068