1049 posts tagged with america.
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'A welcome rebuke to dead white men'

A century in the making, and now completed by Britain’s David Adjaye, the Smithsonian’s gleeful, gleaming upturned pagoda more than holds its own against the sombre Goliaths of America’s monument heartland.
Preparations are in full swing for a historic opening on 24th September 2016 when America's first president of African heritage will ring an equally historic bell. Related.
posted by infini on Sep 23, 2016 - 19 comments

Symbols matter

What I Pledge Allegiance To. "I am a black Mississippian. I am a black American. I pledge to never be passive, patriotic, or grateful in the face of American abuse. I pledge to always thoughtfully bite the self-righteous American hand that thinks it’s feeding us. I pledge to perpetually reckon with the possibility that there will never be any liberty, peace, and justice for all unless we accept that America, like Mississippi, is not clean. Nor is it great. Nor is it innocent." -- Author Kiese Laymon, Professor of English and African American Studies at the University of Mississippi [more inside]
posted by zarq on Sep 21, 2016 - 19 comments

What right has he to speak about things which concern us alone

A large part of our attitude toward things is conditioned by opinions and emotions which we unconsciously absorb as children from our environment. In other words, it is tradition—besides inherited aptitudes and qualities—which makes us what we are. We but rarely reflect how relatively small as compared with the powerful influence of tradition is the influence of our conscious thought upon our conduct and convictions.
Albert Einstein, 1946
posted by infini on Sep 18, 2016 - 15 comments

Grief and empathy

"In the past several weeks I, like countless other New Yorkers and Americans, have found solace in the epic acts of heroism displayed by the firefighters, police officers, and rescue workers who have risked their lives to save "others. My aunt's neighbors displayed a quieter, more quotidian heroism in her final weeks, setting up a cooking schedule so that a fresh dinner would always be delivered, taking turns watching the kids, and even lending my uncle a new coffee pot when his broke." -- Chris Hayes, in an unpublished article from the fall of 2001.
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Sep 11, 2016 - 9 comments

Drained of meaning

The premise of Jack Hamilton’s deep new study Just Around Midnight: Rock and Roll and the Racial Imagination seems like something that’s been on rock history’s tongue for a long time without ever quite leaving it. Chuck Berry, a black man with a guitar, had been a rock and roll archetype in 1960, but by the end of the decade Jimi Hendrix would be seen as rock’s odd man out for being... a black man with a guitar. How did that occur? "Tracing the Rock and Roll Race Problem" an interview in Pitchfork.
posted by Potomac Avenue on Sep 6, 2016 - 27 comments

...a moment in history where it is almost hard to catch your breath.

Today, the Hillary Clinton campaign launched a new "With Her" podcast, chronicling her historic run for office. Clinton also released her 2015 tax returns while Sen. Tim Kaine released 10 years’ worth of his. With just 87 days until Election Day, 538's "Election Forecast" looks dire for Republican nominee Donald Trump, who continues to rely on wild, desperate claims to capture each news cycle.
posted by zarq on Aug 12, 2016 - 2661 comments

Voter suppression in America

When the deputy sheriff’s patrol cruiser pulled up beside him as he walked down Broad Street at sunset last August, Martee Flournoy, a 32-year-old black man, was both confused and rattled. He had reason: In this corner of rural Georgia, African-Americans are arrested at a rate far higher than that of whites. But the deputy had not come to arrest Mr. Flournoy. Rather, he had come to challenge Mr. Flournoy’s right to vote. - From the county and town level to the state level, voter suppression in America is all about race.
posted by Artw on Aug 2, 2016 - 55 comments

The Weed Route

In the winter of 1980 The Chicago Milwaukee St. Paul and Pacific Railroad (Milwaukee Road) abandoned almost 2000 miles of track between Miles City, Montana and Cedar Falls, Washington -- part of a passenger and freight shipping route known as the “Pacific Coast Extension.” Today, what's left of the Extension is "cut up among different railroads and the best engineered rail line through the rugged Rockies and Cascades is but weeds and trails, a vital transportation artery no longer available to shippers and the American economy." But in August 1980, before it was abandoned, two former locomotive firemen and engineers spent $400 to rescue a track-maintenance railway car, a 1952 M-19 Fairmont Speeder, from a scrap heap in a Maine train yard. They used it to travel the route and took photos along the way. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jul 27, 2016 - 20 comments

 What do people do when they can’t afford end-of-life care?

 The Devastating Process of Dying in America Without Insurance [more inside]
posted by poffin boffin on Jul 18, 2016 - 45 comments

When the joke backfires

Women Were Included in the Civil Rights Act as a Joke And a racist joke, at that. But working women and black civil rights lawyers had the last laugh when they brought women’s workplace rights to the courts and won.
posted by infini on Jul 11, 2016 - 15 comments

Coney Island Top Dog

Previous title holder Joey "Jaws" Chestnut, 32, has eaten his way back to victory by downing 70 hot dogs and buns in 10 minutes at this year's Nathan's Famous annual Fourth of July hot dog competitive eating contest -- and it's the most hot dogs and buns ever eaten at the Coney Island event. Joey "Jaws" Chestnut regains title as top dog at eating hot dogs.
posted by Mister Bijou on Jul 5, 2016 - 25 comments

#weareamerica

15-time WWE World Champion, actor (and Mandarin speaker) John Cena has a message for you this Fourth of July: loving America means loving all Americans.
posted by The demon that lives in the air on Jul 4, 2016 - 92 comments

Happy America Day!

Enjoy thirteen versions of "The Stars And Stripes Forever", wince with self-recognition at The Oatmeal's America Explained To Non-Americans and schedule a trip to one of ten distinctive July festivals and events. [more inside]
posted by Johnny Wallflower on Jul 4, 2016 - 44 comments

‘I’m not black, I’m O. J.’

Why ‘Transcending Race’ Is a Lie [The New York Times] Few American athletes have been as widely beloved as Simpson was. Even today, his popularity seems inconceivable. “O. J.: Made in America,” the ESPN “30 for 30” documentary [ESPN] directed by Ezra Edelman that is airing this week, busies itself with the making of the man at the myth’s center and with the country that helped him become a monster. It’s the best thing ESPN has ever produced. And it answers my question: Simpson’s story is that of a black man who came of age during the civil rights era and spent his entire adult life trying to “transcend race” — to claim that strange accolade bestowed on blacks spanning from Pelé to Prince to Nelson Mandela to Muhammad Ali. Which is to say, it’s the story of a halfback trying, and failing, to outrun his own blackness. [more inside]
posted by Fizz on Jun 17, 2016 - 42 comments

The Privilege of Longer Working Hours

We used to think that as living standards improved, less work would deliver more income and thus more leisure time. But now, more and more work hours are what everyone's after. Because in today's economy, the alternative to working more isn't enjoying quality time with friends and family. The alternative is nothing. The American workplace has basically become a Thunderdome where the victors are rewarded with long hours. How insane work hours became a mark of American privilege by Jeff Spross in The Week [via NextDraft]
posted by chavenet on Jun 16, 2016 - 90 comments

Like it or not, all of our rights are intertwined.

Maybe there’s some woman who has had four abortions and maybe that feels really wrong to you. But my rights are wrapped up with hers, so I have to fight like fuck for her to have as many as she wants—not just for her sake, but for mine, too. If I ever have a daughter, the way things are currently going, she’s going to be fucked if she ever goes through this.
From "Interview With a Woman Who Recently Had an Abortion at 32 Weeks"
posted by AceRock on Jun 15, 2016 - 57 comments

Most American mass shooters use legally obtained firearms.

A Mother Jones Investigation: Fully Loaded: Inside the Shadowy World of America's 10 Biggest Gunmakers. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jun 15, 2016 - 277 comments

Police: 50 killed in Florida nightclub terror attack.

Fifty people were killed and at least fifty-three more were injured in the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history. According to ABC news, "The shooter has been identified by officials as Omar Mateen of St. Lucie County, Florida, an American-born citizen with Afghani parents." Mateen had previously been considered a person of interest by the FBI in 2013 and 2014. Mateen was shot and killed by police. [more inside]
posted by Drinky Die on Jun 12, 2016 - 1239 comments

McDonald's: it's the glue that holds communities together

When many lower-income Americans feel isolated and empty, they yearn for physical social networks. All across US, this happens organically at McDonald’s.
posted by standardasparagus on Jun 9, 2016 - 79 comments

Why European Children Are So Much Quieter Than Yours

The playgrounds weren’t just beautiful. They were quiet. That was what struck me when I first moved to Vienna, Austria. Children there played and laughed, but rarely yelled across the park.
posted by veedubya on May 4, 2016 - 136 comments

The Victim

A Marine's Convictions. "After a flawed sexual assault investigation, a Naval Academy instructor fights to prove he has done nothing wrong. But did he?" (content warning: rape) [more inside]
posted by zarq on May 3, 2016 - 20 comments

Maybe we need to find more non-edible uses for it

Consumerist: The U.S. has a giant cheese surplus and unfortunately, this is a bad thing. Bloomberg graph: Welcome to Cheese Mountain. (n.b. not a real, visitable, place) nymag: "Our great nation apparently had an inventory of 1.2 billion pounds at the end of March, the highest in 30 years." FoodDive: "Startups may see an opportunity to create marketable products out of inexpensive ingredients, and more cheese-based product startups could pop up and generate interest from investors and major manufacturers." Mashable: "Do your part. Eat more cheese."
posted by Wordshore on May 2, 2016 - 140 comments

"I stop talking, realizing that everyone at the table is looking at me"

Patrick Blanchfield writes for The Revealer: God And Guns
Setting aside both its lyrical merits and ideological upshot, of all responses to Obama’s remarks, Skynyrd’s song had the distinction of being perhaps the most honest – and, as a matter of simple description, the most analytically accurate. For the bare fact of the matter is that whatever you may think of God, or of guns, American history would be unrecognizable without the influence of both. God and machine, ever-in-tandem, producing a nation “strong” not just in the narrow sense of being powerful, but also in the etymological sense of resolute violence, of an abiding legacy of wreckage unparalleled by any other nation on Earth.
[more inside] posted by the man of twists and turns on Apr 30, 2016 - 6 comments

The myth of the "Irish slave"

How the Myth of the "Irish slaves" Became a Favorite Meme of Racists Online [more inside]
posted by brundlefly on Apr 26, 2016 - 96 comments

The Old New World

Meticulously built using 3D camera projections of historical photos, Alexey Zakharov's The Old New World is perhaps the best chance of seeing American cities as they were at the dawn of the 20th century.
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul on Apr 26, 2016 - 16 comments

A New Map for America

Rethinking the Map: How the lower 48 could be realigned into seven mega-regions.
posted by standardasparagus on Apr 16, 2016 - 96 comments

A Target Rich Environment

The incredibly gracious way Muslims welcomed a man who had drunkenly shot their mosque [SLWP]
posted by chavenet on Apr 11, 2016 - 15 comments

"We don't know why it came to this."

White women between 25 and 55 have been dying at accelerating rates over the past decade, a spike in mortality not seen since the AIDS epidemic in the early 1980s. Why?
posted by Shepherd on Apr 11, 2016 - 142 comments

On poverty, surviving, taxes and economic justice in America

"The Throwaways" by Melissa Chadburn, from 2012. (Via. tw: mentions rape, but not graphically.)
posted by zarq on Apr 9, 2016 - 24 comments

The Bribe Factory

The Company That Bribed The World - It was the company with jet-set style and dirty hands. From the tiny principality of Monaco, Unaoil reached across the globe to pay multi-million dollar bribes in oil rich states. The beneficiaries? Some of the biggest companies in England, Europe, America and Australia.
posted by unliteral on Mar 30, 2016 - 33 comments

A fine day

The New York Public Library has digitized the diary of one Elizabeth De Hart Bleecker as part of their Early American Manuscripts Project. Bleecker wrote about her life in New York City for seven years, beginning in 1799 when she was eighteen years old and ending in 1806.
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Mar 29, 2016 - 22 comments

A Study of Perceptions

The Lunch Date is a ten-minute short film directed by Adam Davidson. It won the 1990 Short Film Palm d'Or at Cannes, the 1991 Academy Award for Best Short Subject, and in 2013 was placed in the Library of Congress. h/t Open Culture’s list of free movies
posted by Going To Maine on Mar 27, 2016 - 9 comments

Whitewashing the Green Rush

America's Whites-Only Weed Boom.
posted by naju on Mar 17, 2016 - 52 comments

USA Football/Soccer :(

ESPN estimates nearly a third of young Americans play soccer, so why can’t a sports powerhouse of 320m people produce a Messi – or even a João Moutinho?
posted by josher71 on Mar 16, 2016 - 81 comments

↑↑↓↓←→←→BA

The Forgotten Politics Behind Contra's Name by Matt Morey [Kill Screen]
Do a quick Google search of “contra.” Browsing the first few pages, you should see a saturation of links about the videogame—the now-primary version of the word—sprinkled with other definitions. Next in the deck is contra as preposition: “against, contrary, or opposed to,” suitingly enough. Then, a “contemporary New York cuisine” restaurant; contra-dancing, a folksy flirty form adaptable to many musical styles; the second album by Vampire Weekend; and eventually, peeking through before being closed out again, you’ll stumble upon the elephant in the room.
posted by Fizz on Mar 7, 2016 - 69 comments

My images investigate America.

"Coming from a background in Political Science, I find the rapid changes in social structure unique to this country an abundant source for creating pictures that stand as visually and historically interesting." [more inside]
posted by entropone on Feb 25, 2016 - 4 comments

"Single Women Are Our Most Potent Political Force"

Almost a quarter of the votes in the last US presidential election were cast by women without spouses, up three points from just four years earlier. They are almost 40% of the African-American population, close to 30% of the Latino population, and about a third of all young voters. The most powerful voter this year is The Single American Woman.
posted by zarq on Feb 22, 2016 - 53 comments

It must be nice to have Washington's hairdresser at your side

National Geographic's Robert Krulwich discusses George Washington’s Oh-So-Mysterious Hair (which was red, and not a wig!). Includes a set of delightfully-illustrated instructions for replicating Washington's signature look, just in case you want to look like a dollar bill.
posted by schmod on Feb 14, 2016 - 30 comments

Snack Check

Last year Regal Cinema started checking bags and backpacks in their theaters. [more inside]
posted by kittensofthenight on Feb 12, 2016 - 195 comments

[E]verything I have done will be held against me and spun by my accuser

Zoë Quinn explains “why [she] just dropped the harassment charges [against] the man who started GamerGate.” (via Ellen Pao’s Twitter.)
posted by Going To Maine on Feb 10, 2016 - 67 comments

Think you can tell a Democrat from a Republican?

Think you can tell a Democrat from a Republican? You are presented with a bill from 2005-2014, and have to decide if that bill was sponsored by a Democrat or a Republican. Some are obvious, some are tricky, and some are really surprising! [via mefi projects]
posted by aniola on Jan 25, 2016 - 19 comments

Meet Ted Cruz’s Secretive $11 Million Donor

Critics warned that Citizens United would bring about a new era of corporate influence in politics, with companies and businesspeople buying elections to promote their financial interests. So far, that hasn’t happened much… Instead, a small group of billionaires has flooded races with ideologically tinged contributions. Zachary Mider profiles the enigmatic Bob Mercer, the single biggest donor of the current campaign, for Bloomberg: “What Kind of Man Spends Millions to Elect Ted Cruz?” [more inside]
posted by Going To Maine on Jan 24, 2016 - 62 comments

The Death of the Midwestern Church

Rural neighborhood churches, once the heart of many Iowan communities, are disappearing along with local schools. The result is a tear in the social fabric of life in the Midwest. “There is no glue holding these communities together ... and it’s making us forget how to neighbor. ... If someone is working all the time and has less disposable income, where can they go for help? It used to be church. Now?” ... “you can’t survive unless you become a neighbor and then let other people neighbor you in turn.”
posted by jillithd on Jan 20, 2016 - 45 comments

The Likely Persistence of a White Majority

In The American Prospect, Sociologist Richard Alba discusses two reasons why the Census-projected relative demographic decline of White Americans may prove illusory.
posted by save alive nothing that breatheth on Jan 19, 2016 - 52 comments

“A tear in this fabric is all it takes for a story to begin.”

Why the British Tell Better Children’s Stories by Colleen Gillard [The Atlantic] Their history informs fantastical myths and legends, while American tales tend to focus on moral realism.
If Harry Potter and Huckleberry Finn were each to represent British versus American children’s literature, a curious dynamic would emerge: In a literary duel for the hearts and minds of children, one is a wizard-in-training at a boarding school in the Scottish Highlands, while the other is a barefoot boy drifting down the Mississippi, beset by con artists, slave hunters, and thieves. One defeats evil with a wand, the other takes to a raft to right a social wrong. Both orphans took over the world of English-language children’s literature, but their stories unfold in noticeably different ways.
posted by Fizz on Jan 10, 2016 - 89 comments

The Forgotten Plague.

By the dawn of the 19th century, the deadliest killer in human history, tuberculosis, had killed one in seven of all the people who had ever lived. The disease struck America with a vengeance, ravaging communities and touching the lives of almost every family. The battle against the deadly bacteria had a profound and lasting impact on the country. It shaped medical and scientific pursuits, social habits, economic development, western expansion, and government policy. Yet both the disease and its impact are poorly understood: in the words of one writer, tuberculosis is our "forgotten plague." [54:11]
posted by Blasdelb on Jan 1, 2016 - 28 comments

We settled in Astoria and it was here that I met Christopher Walken

Lidia Celebrates America: Home for the Holidays "This special features Lidia and six celebrity guests—Christopher Walken, Ann Curry, Padma Lakshmi, Rita Moreno, Marcus Samuelson and Carlo Ponti, Jr. as they share their immigrant experiences and holiday traditions."
posted by kliuless on Dec 24, 2015 - 1 comment

"I need my community to understand your message directly impacts them"

Killer Mike interviews Senator Bernie Sanders at The SWAG Shop for about an hour, in six parts:
  1. Economic Freedom
  2. Social Justice
  3. Rigged
  4. Free Health Care: It Ain’t A Big Deal
  5. This Country Was Started AS An Act Of Political Protest
  6. Democrats Win When People Vote

posted by Going To Maine on Dec 15, 2015 - 112 comments

“America represents wilderness and freedom, and also a big house,”

Living a Frontier Dream on the Outskirts of China’s Capital by Andrew Jacobs [New York Times]
Welcome to “Hometown America,” as Jackson Hole is called in Chinese, a mammoth real-estate venture that is an exacting pastiche of an American frontier town, albeit one with a wine-tasting pavilion, a spa and security guards dressed as park rangers, who salute every passing car. Modest entry-level homes sell for $625,000. Larger abodes — described by Jackson Hole’s developers as castles — have an attached vineyard and fetch nearly $8 million. The developer, Ju Yi International, says that more than 90 percent of the 1,500 homes have already been sold. Occupying more than a square mile of arid land in northeast Hebei Province, Jackson Hole has plenty of room to expand.
posted by Fizz on Dec 11, 2015 - 25 comments

the tenuous blue wall

"There’s no question that recent demographic trends have aided Democrats enormously. In 1980, Ronald Reagan won 56 percent of all white voters and won election in a 44-state landslide. In 2012, GOP nominee Mitt Romney carried 59 percent of all white voters yet lost decisively. What happened? African-Americans, Latinos, Asians and other non-whites — all overwhelmingly Democratic-leaning groups — rose from 12 percent of voters in 1980 to 28 percent in 2012.

It’s true that if every demographic group were to carry its 2012 levels of turnout and party support into 2016, Democrats’ lead in the national popular vote would expand from 3.9 percentage points to 5.1 points based on population trends alone. But, as FiveThirtyEight editor-in-chief Nate Silver and others have argued, Democrats’ advantage in the Electoral College is much more tenuous than it’s often portrayed
." Run your own simulation with 538's Swing Tracker.
posted by Potomac Avenue on Dec 4, 2015 - 34 comments

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