- Laws Aimed at Banning Critical Race Theory in K-12 Schools Are a Poorly Written, Misguided Mess – Arc Digital“…it is currently illegal in the state of Tennessee for teachers to include any material in the classroom that promotes ‘division between, or resentment of, a race, sex, religion, creed, nonviolent political affiliation, social class, or class of people.’ How is a civics teacher supposed to operate within those limits? Can she have her students watch a modern presidential debate? Evaluate a partisan campaign ad?”
- Where Jobless Benefits Were Cut, Jobs Are Still Hard to Fill – The New York Times (an an alternate link)
The unwillingness of business owners and conservatives to admit that basic economics applies to job markets – i.e., if you can’t fill a position, you need to offer a higher wage – is mind-boggling.
- A succinct explanation of the case against using SATs for college admissions.
- How Twitter can ruin a life: Isabel Fall’s complicated story – Vox
AFAIK, this article is the only time Fall has spoken to a reporter about what happened. Complex and heartbreaking.
- Beyond Tulsa: The Secret History of Flooding Black Towns to Make Lakes | The Amber Ruffin Show – YouTube
The video is about six minutes long and the history it’s talking about is pretty jaw-dropping.
- The Best Welfare Reform: Give Poor People Cash – The Atlantic
This article is from 2015, but it’s point still applies. Giving poor people cash and letting them spend it as they will gives more “bang for the buck” than programs that control how they can spend money (like food stamps).
- Tardigrades Survive Being Shot Out of Gun at Speeds up to 2,000 Mph
But over 2,000 mph and they’re toast.
- Revealed: The huge change coming to pedestrian crossings in London | Evening Standard
The crossings will default to showing “walk now” for pedestrians, and will only switch to something else if cars are approaching. I haven’t thought about it before, but of course that’s how pedestrian crossing signs should be programmed.
- The Surprising Problem With Star Trek’s Most Celebrated Episode | by Noah Berlatsky | The Establishment | Medium
“But after all the praise, it’s a bit of a let-down to return to “The City on the Edge of Forever” and realize that it’s actually an elaborate exercise in justifying violence and would-you-kill-baby-Hitler ethics.”
- Weight bias and grading among middle and high school teachers – PubMed
The same essay was given to teachers, accompanied by a photo of the “student.” If the photo was of a fat kid, on average teachers gave lower grades.
- Diets Don’t Work, So Why Do We Still Pretend They Do?
Lots of useful links for the “diets don’t work” case in this article.
- Winners of the 2021 BigPicture Natural World Photography Competition – The Atlantic
It’s a bunch of really really pretty photos of wildlife.
- Transgender People, Bathrooms, and Sexual Predators: What the Data Say | by Julia Serano | Jun, 2021 | Medium
Did I already link this one? If so, I don’t mind linking it twice. (And it includes a cartoon by me and my friend Becky Hawkins!)
- What I learned about male desire in a sex doll factory | Sex | The Guardian
A more accurate title would be “I visited a sex doll factory and that gives me an occasion to write about some of the things I’ve learned about male sexuality,” but still a good article, I thought.
- Shashinkan – YouTubeEnglish title: “The Portrait Studio.” This wordless fifteen-minute animated film, about a portrait studio photographer and one of his clients over the course of many decades, is the best thing I’ve watched all week. Written, directed, and principle animation by Nakamura Takashi, best known as the animation director of the movie “Akira.”
- Gender-Neutral Pronouns Aren’t New – The Atlantic
I really like “thon,” a gender-neutral singular that was proposed, and actually made it into the dictionary, in the 1800s. It was short for “that one.”
- The Incredible True Adventure of Gay Activists Recruiting for the Black Panther Party in 1970
“In 1970, five gay activists took a road trip to meet with the Black Panther Party. Here, historian Hugh Ryan collects their memories of communes, free love, coming out, getting arrested, consciousness-raising rap sessions, gun shooting, acid dropping, and trying to be macrobiotic at McDonald’s.” A delightful small slice of oral history. Great photos, too.
- Fentanyl, Guns, and Murder Mean You Should Get Ready for a Bloody Summer
Why have homicide rates been going up since 2014? This author argues that open-air drug markets and increased gun ownership are the most likely culprits.
- Voter suppression: A short history of the long conservative assault on Black voting power – CNNPolitics
- Biogen’s new Alzheimer’s drug could cost Medicare billions after FDA approval – Vox
The drug’s effectiveness is in great doubt. But the biggest problem is, unlike other countries, the government has no power over the price of the drug.
- Of all the COVID mitigation policies, other than vaccinations, the most effective seems to have been indoor masking.
- The Ames Window Illusion – what it is, how it works – YouTubeThis video shows the Ames window illusion, which I’ve never seen before and it’s pretty spectacular. (If you like optical illusions). But like a lot of optical illusions, not everyone can see it. The video, about 15 minutes long, also explains how the illusion works in some detail.
- In China, Canon creates software that locks workers out of meetings unless they smile. | Financial Times
“And you’ll note that the people in Peaksville, Ohio have to smile. They have to think happy thoughts and say happy things because, once displeased, the monster can wish them into a cornfield.”
- Amazon’s Greatest Weapon Against Unions: Worker Turnover | HuffPost
“Turnover can be expensive for employers, since they have to constantly hire and train new workers who, for at least a period, will be less productive than the ones leaving. But labor experts say a company of Amazon’s size and sophistication would not have high churn if it didn’t prefer it that way.”
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