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Author: TheConversation

Immigration Enforcement: Migrant deaths in Mexico puts spotlight on how U.S. policy has shifted south

By Raquel Aldana, Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Diversity and Professor of Law, University of California, Davis The fire-related deaths of at least 39 migrants in a detention facility in Ciudad Juarez, just across the U.S. border with Mexico, will likely be found to have had several contributing factors. There was the immediate cause of the blaze, the mattresses apparently set alight by desperate men in the center to protest their imminent deportation. And then there is the apparent role of guards, seen on video walking away from the blaze. But as an expert on immigration policy, I believe...

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How a company like Fox can claim to be a news organization to publish lies with impunity

By John C. Watson, Associate Professor of Journalism, American University Headlines in early March 2023 implied Fox News mogul Rupert Murdoch had made a damning confession. He had affirmed that some of his most important journalists were reporting that the 2020 presidential election was a fraud, even though they knew they were propagating a lie. It was an admission during pretrial testimony in a libel lawsuit filed against Fox by a voting machine company that says it was defamed by the lie. For journalism practitioners and devotees, the admission should signal the end of the Fox News empire. Nope....

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Ukrainian forces consider how to “de-occupy” Crimea as Russia prepares for a likely spring offensive

By Christopher Morris, Teaching Fellow, School of Strategy, Marketing and Innovation, University of Portsmouth To paraphrase the words of the Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelensky, everything began with Crimea, and everything will end there as well. When Russia first occupied Crimea in 2014, it was a major win for Putin, who successfully called the west’s bluff by proceeding to annex the peninsula with minimal international opposition. Now, as Ukrainian forces consider how to “de-occupy” Crimea, the Russian high command needs to think about how to prevent the recapture of the one territory that they cannot afford to lose. Ukraine watchers...

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A National Divorce: States are already withdrawing from a United America

By Michael J. Lee, Professor of Communication, College of Charleston Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene, a Republican from Georgia, wants a “national divorce.” In her view, another Civil War is inevitable unless red and blue states form separate countries. She has plenty of company on the right, where a host of others – 52% of Trump voters, Donald Trump himself and prominent Texas Republicans – have endorsed various forms of secession in recent years. Roughly 40% of Biden voters have fantasized about a national divorce as well. Some on the left urge a domestic breakup so that a new egalitarian...

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A swollen prison population: How America can recover from its addiction to mass incarceration

By Jeffrey Bellin, Mills E. Godwin, Jr., Professor of Law, William & Mary Law School The incarceration rate in the United States fell in 2021 to its lowest levels since 1995, but the U.S. continues to imprison a higher percentage of its population than almost every other country. The U.S. incarcerates 530 people for every 100,000 in its population, making it one of the world’s biggest jailers – just below El Salvador, Rwanda and Turkmenistan. The U.S. actually had the greatest percentage of its population imprisoned until 2019. This followed steady growth in prison and jail populations in the...

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Cognitive Decline: Scientists have known for years that diets high in fat and sugar can impair the brain

By Sara N. Burke, Associate Professor of Neurobiology and Cognitive Aging, University of Florida Scientists have known for years that unhealthy diets, particularly those that are high in fat and sugar, may cause detrimental changes to the brain and lead to cognitive impairment. Many factors that contribute to cognitive decline are out of a person’s control, such as genetics and socioeconomic factors. But ongoing research increasingly indicates that a poor diet is a risk factor for memory impairments during normal aging and increases the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. But when evaluating how some diets may erode brain health...

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