American Schools Are Criminalizing Black Girls

American Schools Are Criminalizing Black Girls

A recent video from a school in Texas showcased a brutal assault by a school police officer on 12-year-old student Janissa Valdez. Quite appropriately, it sparked an outcry over the state of school discipline. These images, while shocking, are nothing new. From the...
Georgia’s Educational Neglect

Georgia’s Educational Neglect

I worked as a substitute teacher in a Newton, Massachusetts middle school a few months ago. I taught a wide range of kids, including some with behavior-related disabilities. A few of these children needed in-class aides and extra academic support, but they met their...
Flagging Hate Speech

Flagging Hate Speech

I’ve spent my whole life in the Northeast, but I have Southern roots. My late grandfather came from a long line of sharecroppers who toiled in the fields of Decatur, Georgia for generations. Their history of hardship was common in the South. Where my grandfather grew...
The Cold War Never Ended

The Cold War Never Ended

In ’89, it looked as though the war had finally ended. For five decades the conflict had ground on, and both sides had grown weary of it all. There had been previous pauses in the hostilities, even a détente or two, but this truce looked permanent. Sure, there were...

IPS Salutes a Golf Win

A longstanding gender barrier recently cracked in the heart of the Old South. Augusta National Golf Club accepted two women — former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and businesswoman Darla Moore — as its first female members. This change comes years...
Health Care Access Shouldn’t Require Good Luck

Health Care Access Shouldn’t Require Good Luck

I may have lupus, but I’m lucky. When I was 13 and growing up in Augusta, Georgia, I began to experience the same symptoms of the chronic inflammatory disease that my mother was diagnosed with in her early 30s. A group of capable doctors identified the problems...
A Radioactive Conflict of Interest

A Radioactive Conflict of Interest

The U.S. government is going out of its way to downplay radiation hazards in the aftermath of one of the world’s worst nuclear accidents. Last month, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) heralded an Energy Department-funded study indicating that...
No Nuclear Nirvana on the Horizon

No Nuclear Nirvana on the Horizon

Is the nuclear drought over? When the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) recently approved two new nuclear reactors near Augusta, Georgia, the first such decision in 32 years, there was plenty of hoopla. It marked a “clarion call to the world,” declared...
Go Deport Yourself

Go Deport Yourself

I bet Mitt Romney has a sweatshirt that says I (heart) Florida. His victory in the Sunshine State revitalized his campaign for the GOP presidential nomination. Florida also gave him an opportunity to explain his immigration policy. Asked how he would deal with...
Legislating Under the Influence

Legislating Under the Influence

It’s all the rage in state legislatures and even in Congress. More than a dozen states are debating proposals to require jobless Americans who receive unemployment benefits to submit to mandatory drug testing. The argument for forcing the unemployed to relieve...
A Long Shadow of Doubt: The Execution of Troy Davis

A Long Shadow of Doubt: The Execution of Troy Davis

September 21, 2011 was a sad day for American justice. On that date at 11:08 pm, the state of Georgia administered a lethal injection into the body of 42-year-old Troy Davis and put him to death. With his dying breath, Troy Davis maintained his innocence in the 1989...

Georgia on My Mind

Since the execution of Troy Davis, whose shattering story activated thousands of people across the country to speak out against a flawed justice system and the brutality of capital punishment, Georgia has been on my mind. I was born there, in a small town outside of...

The Ugly Business of Lethal Injection

The pretense of lethal injection as a peaceful and painless way to execute prisoners is unraveling, and this may change the face of the death penalty in the United States. In September 2009, the state of Ohio tried to execute Romell Broom. The execution team, with...

Russia’s Anti-Democratic Paradox

With one hundred days in office and a war with Georgia under his belt, Dmitry Medvedev still has Western politicians confused. Who is really in charge – he or his mentor, Vladimir Putin? Is Medvedev really a liberal? But then why the...