Yale: White liberals dumb down speech when talking to minorities

The researchers call it a "competence downshift."

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  • The study examined how Democratic and Republican presidential candidates used language when speaking to black and white audiences.
  • A second study focused on how white people use language in emails to strangers with stereotypically white or black names.
  • The lead researcher called the findings "kind of an unpleasant surprise."
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Why non-conformists always end up looking alike

Go ahead, try and be different.

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  • Anti-conformists have an odd way of ending up looking like each other.
  • A Brandeis mathematician looks at how this synchronicity occurs.
  • Understanding the mechanism behind non-conformist conformity has applications in other areas, like the stock market.
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Edible cannabis products are displayed at Essence Vegas Cannabis Dispensary before the midnight start of recreational marijuana sales on June 30, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. On July 1, Nevada joins seven other states allowing recreational marijuana use and becomes the first of four states that voted to legalize recreational sales in November's election to allow dispensaries to sell cannabis for recreational use to anyone over 21. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
  • Researchers noticed a spike in sales of ice cream, cookies, and chips after the legalization of marijuana.
  • They studied 2,000 U.S. counties over the course of a decade, focusing on data from Colorado, Oregon, and Washington.
  • While research is confirming the medical benefits of marijuana, obesity is an unintended consequence of legalization.
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UC Berkeley study finds link between inequality and racism

Inequality and racism are connected, but maybe not as much as you think.

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  • A new study finds a relationship between income inequality and racist attitudes.
  • The effect is small, and doesn't exist for every kind of racial bias.
  • The data won't be the last word on the subject, but it could give insights into how to remedy long standing issues.
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What were the 'dancing plagues' of the Middle Ages?

Throughout history, hundreds — sometimes thousands — of people have been spontaneously compelled to dance until collapsing or dying from exhaustion. What explanations are there for this bizarre phenomenon?

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  • In 1518, Strasbourg, 400 men and women danced until collapsing from exhaustion.
  • These "dancing plagues" occurred throughout the Middle Ages.
  • Similar spontaneous, mass compulsions have occurred throughout history, some very recently. What are they, and why do they happen?
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