LAWRENCE WITTNER – On June 19, 2019, President Donald Trump bragged at his re-election kickoff rally in Orlando that, thanks to his leadership, the wages of American workers â€œare rising at the fastest rate in many decades.â€ The reality, however, is that they are not. Indeed, wages rose at a faster rate only a few years before, under his predecessor. And a key reason for the very limited wage increases since Trump entered the White House is his administrationâ€™s success in blocking any wage increases for some workers and in reducing wage increases for others.
STEPHEN M. WALT – American elites used to see war as a tragic necessity. Now theyâ€™re completely addicted to it.
MEL GURTOV – The President of the United States is a criminal. Iâ€™m not referring to the twenty-odd investigations of him currently underway for violations of the Constitution, obstruction of justice, and collaboration with the Russian election attack, among other misdeeds. No, Iâ€™m referring to his and his administrationâ€™s intentional and reckless pursuit of national policies that condemn American and the worldâ€™s citizens to environmental destruction and the end of life as we know it.
ZOE SCHLANGER – â€œPellets make up the second most common type of microplastic that we find, second to fragments which break down from things that are bigger,â€ says Sherri Mason, a plastics pollution researcher at Pennsylvania State University who has published foundational studies on microplastics found in freshwater. She spends much of her time collecting and counting bits of plastic in the environment. â€œI can go to any beach, give me five minutes and Iâ€™ll find a nurdle,â€ she says. â€œAlong a river, 10 minutes. Once you know what a nurdle looks like you find them everywhere.â€
ADAM MCCANN – In an ideal world, all children would live worry-free and have access to their basic needs: nutritious food, a good education, quality health care and a secure home. Emotionally, they all would feel safe and be loved and supported by caring adults. When all such needs are met, children have a better chance of a stable and happy adult life. But in reality, not every child is so privileged â€” even in the richest and most powerful nation in the world.
NATYLIE BALDWIN – Russia’s vast size â€“ the largest country geographically in the world â€“ and its prodigious resources are present for all to see. But now, having overcome its historical issues with poor agricultural policies, it also has the ability to feed itself, a highly educated citizenry, and the industrial infrastructure to support a space program as well as a sophisticated nuclear and defense system. It has the ability to build cars, trucks, and airplanes completely within its own borders. Unlike many countries in the world, it has very little external debt and major gold reserves. It is weathering the sanctions against it better than Iran or Venezuela.
ALICE SLATER – August 6th and 9th mark 74 years since the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, where only one nuclear bomb dropped on each city caused the deaths of up to 146,000 people in Hiroshima and 80,000 people in Nagasaki. Now, with the US decision to walk away from the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Force (INF) negotiated with the Soviet Union, we are once again staring into the abyss of one of the most perilous nuclear challenges since the height of the Cold War.
EMMA SNAITH – Officials fear deadly radioactivity could seep into earth if another high-magnitude quake strikes Nevada desert.
KATHLEEN ROBERTS and DR. SHENGGEN FAN – Our food system is broken, but not irrevocably so. The challenges are enormous, but by understanding the problem and potential solutions, we can effect critical changes in the ways we produce, consume and dispose of food.
DERRICK BROZE – â€œThe United States is brokering land deals to enrich corporations and deprive the Shoshone of our lawful property rights and interests,â€ Ian Zabarte, a member of the Western Shoshone nation, says while sitting at his home in the Las Vegas area. Zabarte recently celebrated his 54th birthday and also marked 30 years of defending his community against the controversial Yucca Mountain Nuclear Waste site.
WINSLOW MYERS – The United States is strong enough to lead the way into a new paradigm of self-interest, where dominance is replaced by a global network attuned directly to meeting human and ecosystem needs. Anything less threatens everyoneâ€™s survival. If we can offer help to our adversaries because we see it as self-interest, a different world is possible.
OAKLEY HILL – As the climate crisis becomes more prominent and imminent, the world has looked to the top echelons of global power to save us from ourselves. Too often, we look for top down change when problems so profound and systemic must also be addressed from the bottom up. Everyday citizens can slash emissions and move the planet toward environmental sustainabilityâ€”especially if they leverage their power at the community and city levels. Around the world, this is already a growing reality as hundreds of communities take matters into their own hands to resist the climate crisis and build alternative institutions.
ANDREW MOSS – Considering the magnitude and urgency of human suffering involved in the situation of asylum seekers, the larger task ahead will be to foster a rights awareness that will lead to genuine, substantive change in the foreseeable future.
ROBERT C. KOEHLER – A serious part of a new consciousness concerning climate change must be addressing what it means to live as part of one global community that is in peril from the consequences of exploitative human behavior. This is not a mere moral abstraction, something to do because itâ€™s right and good. We will disappear as a species if we donâ€™t â€” no matter how much money we have.
KATHY KELLY – Palestinians in Gaza cope with constant tension. Denied freedom of movement, they live in the worldâ€™s largest open-air prison, under conditions the United Nations has predicted will render their land uninhabitable by 2020.