The Common Good

Weekly Wrap

Weekly Wrap 8.23.13: The 10 Best Stories You Missed This Week

Editor's Note: Daily Digest is now the Weekly Wrap! Sojourners' new weekly newsletter offers you the best stories from the week''s news that you may have missed. Enjoy this weekly dose of in-depth articles and commentary? Share with your friends and tell them to sign up HERE.

1. One Dream — 50th Anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.'s 'I Have a Dream' Speech
Time.com commemorates the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington and Dr. King''s historic speech with a beautiful multimedia essay, featuring file photo, video interviews, and archival coverage. 

2. Toward a New Understanding of Modesty
The Atlantic uncovers a broad movement in the Christian — and secular — communities to talk about modesty in new ways that acknowledge the problem of objectification of women and keys in on ways some Christian theologies on the topic of modesty is actually linked to rape culture. 

3. Help Unwanted
Texas Monthly — publishing from the home state of hardline voices like Rep. Ted Cruz — has the following take on the immigration debate. "Not only did we Texans deliberately leave the back gate unlocked, but for decades our businesses have avoided the legal consequences of employing undocumented workers by misclassifying them as ''independent contractors'' responsible for checking their own papers. It’s the height of hypocrisy to blame willing workers for breaking the law when they were so eagerly welcomed by their employers, no questions asked." 

4. Sometimes You Have to Pay a Heavy Price to Live in a Free Society
"… I realized in our efforts to meet this risk posed to us by the enemy, we have forgotten our humanity. We consciously elected to devalue human life both in Iraq and Afghanistan." Bradley Manning — the Army private who this week received 35 years for disseminating documents to WikiLeaks, and who has since indicated a desire to be known as Chelsea and live as a female — offered this statement on Wednesday, read by lawyer David Coombs. 

5. Christians and the Myth of the 'Hookup Culture'
Jonathan Merritt writes for Religion News Service about new data that debunks this generation''s supposed "hookup culture" — that young people are actually not being more promiscuous than their parents'' generation — and that many Christian''s assumptions about a downward moral decline are just incorrect. "How did so many Christians get this one so wrong?"

6. Immigration Reformers Are Winning August
The Atlantic talks about how the Republican efforts to stymie immigration reform over the August recess, led by Congress members like Rep. Steve King — who famously stereotyped young undocumented immigrants as drug mules — has largely fizzled out, as reform advocates are rallying at the local level. 

7. Saying Goodbye to My Child, the Youngster
"Eighteen years is not enough." Michael Gerson''s moving op-ed in the Washington Post about taking his eldest son to college made parents ''round the country tear up on Monday morning. Four days later, you''ll still want to grab your hankies before taking a read.

8. The Party of No Compromise
Sojourners magazine editor Jim Rice examines some Republicans'' attempts to prevent the Obama administration''s Affordable Care Act education efforts. "Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell and whip John Cornyn sent a threatening letter to the NFL, saying that the football league shouldn’t help teach people about the health-care law because of the ''persistent unpopularity of this bill'' (conveniently ignoring the fact that once it’s enacted into law it’s no longer a ''bill'')." 

9. Bob Filner vs. 'Mad Men:' Our View
San Diego Mayor Bob Filner — the guy who at least 18 women have now accused of some form of sexual harassment or misconduct — will reportedly resign today after reaching a deal with the city. A 1986 Supreme Court ruling recognized sexually hostile workplaces as a thing. USA Today wonders why it is taking so long for some people to get the picture. 

10. What I Won't Tell You About My Ballet Dancing Son
Ashleigh Baker at ''A Deeper Story'' tells the tale of her ballet-loving 7-year-old son in this moving first-person piece. 

+Continue Reading

The Top 10 Stories of August 16, 2013

Quote of the Day.
"It's not just about burning churches, it''s about burning churches to initiate a response that then spirals into even greater violence — and that is a very, very dangerous game to play." - Bishop Angaelos, the Cairo-born head of the Coptic Orthodox Church in the United Kingdom, in response to the violence against Christian churches in Egypt
(CNN Belief Blog)

+Continue Reading

The Top 10 Stories of August 15, 2013

“We have reached a state of harder polarization and more dangerous division, with the social fabric in danger of tearing, because violence only begets violence. The beneficiaries of what happened today are the preachers of violence and terrorism, the most extremist groups, and you will remember what I am telling you." Mohamed ElBaradei, former interim vice president and  a Nobel Prize laureate and former diplomat who had lent his reputation to selling the West on the democratic goals of the military takeover, wrote in a public letter to the president.

+Continue Reading

The Top 10 Stories of August 14, 2013

"I was always focused on negotiating for my team but never as good at negotiating for myself." Dawn Lepore, former chief executive at Drugstore.com, in a new Bloomberg report that finds that out of the top executives at each of the companies in the S&P 500 index, only 8 percent were women, and that these women at the top ranks of Corporate America earned 18 percent less than men.

+Continue Reading

The Top 10 Stories of August 13, 2013

"I feel like I’m stuck in a perpetual nightmare. I can’t seem to adjust to this life. In the Marines, we have a motto that we never leave a man behind. I feel like I’ve been left behind.” Milton Tepeyac, a deported veteran who served eight years as a U.S. Marine, scrapes by on $3 an hour in the northern Mexican city of Hermosillo.

1.
Al-Qaeda expands in Syria via Islamic State.
A rebranded version of Iraq’s al-Qaeda affiliate is surging onto the front lines of the war in neighboring Syria, expanding into territory seized by other rebel groups and carving out the kind of sanctuaries that the U.S. military spent more than a decade fighting to prevent in Iraq and Afghanistan.
(Washington Post)

2. Bulger found guilty in racketeering case.
James "Whitey" Bulger, who ruled this city's violent underworld before eluding capture for 16 years, was convicted Monday in a sweeping racketeering case, including involvement in 11 murders. Mr. Bulger stood grim-faced with his hands clasped in front of him as the verdict was read. The 83-year-old, who has been in federal custody since 2011, faces life in prison at a sentencing scheduled for Nov. 13.
(Wall Street Journal)

3. North Carolina governor signs extensive Voter ID law.
North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory (R) on Monday signed into law one of the nation’s most wide-ranging Voter ID laws. The move is likely to touch off a major court battle over voting rights, and the Justice Department is weighing a challenge to the new law, which is the first to pass since the U.S. Supreme Court struck down part of the Voting Rights Act. 
(Washington Post)

4. Racial discrimination in stop-and-frisk.
Judge Shira Scheindlin of Federal District Court in New York upheld the bedrock principle of individual liberty on Monday when she ruled that the tactics underlying New York City’s stop-and-frisk program violated the constitutional rights of minority citizens. She found that the city had been “deliberately indifferent” to police officers illegally detaining and frisking minority residents on the streets over many years.
(New York Times)

5. Two powerful signals of a major shift on crime.
Two decisions Monday, one by a federal judge in New York and the other by Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr., were powerful signals that the pendulum has swung away from the tough-on-crime policies of a generation ago. Those policies have been denounced as discriminatory and responsible for explosive growth in the prison population.
(New York Times)

6. U.S. retail sales data points to improving economy.
A gauge of U.S. consumer spending rose in July at its fastest pace in seven months, a sign of quicker economic growth that could strengthen the case for the U.S. Federal Reserve winding down a major economic stimulus program.
(Reuters)

7. Hillary Clinton calls for election reform.
Potential 2016 presidential candidate Hillary Clinton kicked off a series of speeches on Monday with a call to combat what she called an "assault on voting rights." She spent most of her 45-minute talk to about 1,000 members of the American Bar Association assailing a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling striking down a significant part of the Voting Rights Act and discussing what she sees as "deep flaws in our electoral system" as it relates to racial discrimination at the polls.
(Associated Press)

8. Air pollution takes toll on China's tourism.
China, one of the most visited countries in the world, has seen sharply fewer tourists this year — with worsening air pollution partly to blame. Numbers of foreign visitors have declined following January's "Airpocalypse," when already eye-searing levels of smog soared to new highs.
(Associated Press)

9. Clashes break out in Cairo between pro-and anti-Mursi factions.
Clashes broke out in central Cairo on Tuesday when supporters of ousted President Mohamed Mursi came under attack as they marched to the Interior Ministry, a Reuters reporter said. Supporters of the new military-installed government hurled stones at the marchers and threw bottles at them from balconies. Police then fired tear gas at the pro-Mursi protesters.
(Reuters)

10. Kerry works to shore up relations with Brazil.
Secretary of State John Kerry will seek to allay the concerns of Brazil's top leaders about U.S. surveillance in their country while highlighting the expanding relationship the U.S. is nurturing with the economic powerhouse in Latin America.
(Associated Press)

+Continue Reading

The Top 10 Stories of August 12, 2013

Editor's Note: Starting next weekDaily Digest is getting an update! Click HERE to learn more about the change.

“A vicious cycle of poverty, criminality and incarceration traps too many Americans and weakens too many communities. However, many aspects of our criminal justice system may actually exacerbate this problem rather than alleviate it.” Attorney General Eric H. Holder plans to say Monday, ­according to excerpts of his ­remarks that were provided to The Washington Post. 

+Continue Reading

The Top 10 Stories of August 9, 2013

Quote of the Day
“This Eid comes with a lot of stress and pain all over the Islamic world. The message I would send is that we need to stand with our Muslim brothers and sisters in these countries, and to pray to God that he relieves their pain and suffering." Omar Shahin, president of the North American Imams Federation, and a native of Jordan who attends the Islamic Center of Laveen in Arizona.
(Sojourners / Religion News Service)

+Continue Reading

The Top 10 Stories of August 8, 2013

"I am good, very excited. It's a big surprise. This opens a path for other Dreamers in Mexico." Maria Peniche, 22, one of the nine activists known as the Dream Nine, who have been released from federal custody after spearheading a campaign against mass deportation.

+Continue Reading

The Top 10 Stories of August 7, 2013

"Humanity is the major influence on the global climate change observed over the past 50 years. Human-induced climate change requires urgent action." A headline in a newly released two-page statement by the American Geophysical Union, which represents some 60,000 scientists who study the Earth.

 

+Continue Reading

The Top 10 Stories of August 6, 2013

Quote of the Day:
"The values of The Post do not need changing. The paper’s duty will remain to its readers and not to the private interests of its owners. We will continue to follow the truth wherever it leads, and we’ll work hard not to make mistakes. When we do, we will own up to them quickly and completely." Jeff Bezos, in a statement to Washington Post employees after purchasing the paper.

+Continue Reading