How will COVID-19 impact the economy?

Economics professor Stephen M. Miller shares his insights in this exclusive interview.

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  • Stephen M. Miller, director of the Center for Business and Economic Research at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, gives insight into how the COVID-19 pandemic impacts American economies.
  • Calling it a "trade-off between public health and economic health," Miller explains why social distancing is a necessary measure to avoid a total crash of economies.
  • The SIR model, which is a guide to assessing how much of the population is actively infected, shows what could happen if the active cases of infection goes above 10% of the population.
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Will conversion therapy be banned in the U.S.?

The answer depends on how we choose to balance religious freedom, social inclusion, and the search for self-identity.

  • Most medical and mental health organizations have condemned conversion therapy as injurious and lacking support of empirical evidence.
  • Today, 19 states and many cities have passed laws protecting youths from the practice.
  • However, lawsuits and pushback by religious organizations have limited what laws can be passed.
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People in rural areas more likely to die of preventable causes, according to the CDC

Preventable deaths for all five leading mortality causes are "consistently higher" in rural communities.

  • A CDC report found a large and consistent urban-rural gap when it comes to preventable deaths.
  • The gap results from many factors, from lifestyle choices to a lack of quality health care.
  • Expert recommendations are varied but focus on education, preventative screening, and other methods of cultivating America's medical deserts.
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3 ethical catastrophes you can help stop, right now

Deciding how we ought to live is one of the greatest challenges of being alive. Ask yourself these important questions to gain clarity, with philosopher Peter Singer.

  • Philosopher Peter Singer cites his top three ethical issues in the world today as: extreme poverty; climate change, which is related to poverty; and the way humans treat animals.
  • Any rational being should be interested in trying to understand how they ought to live, and whether they are doing things that are right or wrong. Singer suggests asking yourself important questions. When it comes to extreme poverty, ask: "Is it okay for me just to be living my life in my society and not doing anything for people who, through no fault of their own, are living in extreme poverty?"
  • For climate change, ask how you can put pressure on political leaders to take serious steps to prevent a climate change catastrophe that will disproportionately affect the poor. When it comes to animal cruelty, ask: "Am I complicit in the suffering that's being inflicted on animals, especially in factory farms but in other forms of farming as well? Am I complicit in that when I buy those products? And, if so, does that mean that I need to stop buying them?"
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How is diversity being weaponized?

Striving for diversity is honorable — but the focus should settle on something much deeper than phenotypic traits.

  • In efforts to achieve diversity, whether within workplace teams or elsewhere, leaders often focus on variation of identities regarding race, gender, sexual orientation, and physicality.
  • Evolutionary biologist Heather Heying urges that these efforts be taken a step further to focus on diversity of viewpoints and socioeconomic status — two forms of identity that are less apparent without thoughtful conversation.
  • Achieving diversity in these ways adds varying life experiences and opinions that enrich office or team culture and provide more innovative solutions.
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