When soldiers talk about being "in the shit," they sometimes mean it literally. This week Iraq veteran Jason Christopher Hartley, author of "Just Another Soldier: A Year on the Ground in Iraq," reveals the grungy, scary, and often darkly funny reality behind a war most Americans know only through television packaging. A Utah native who joined the Army National Guard at 17, he guarded the fallen Twin Towers on 9/11 before being shipped overseas for a tour of duty. There he began his dual career as soldier-blogger, posting candid on-the-ground stories and photos until he was forced to stop, having been accused of running afoul of the Geneva Convention.
In his interview with Big Think, Hartley discusses the sobering calculus of death in modern warfare, the relative difficulty of writing versus soldiering, and why the play ("Surrender") he's based on his war experiences has been as confusing to his sense of identity as it has been terrifying for New York audiences. As a bonus, he names his personal heroes--and they're not the ones you might expect from a trained warrior.
Upstreamism advocate Rishi Manchanda calls us to understand health not as a "personal responsibility" but a "common good."
- Upstreamism tasks health care professionals to combat unhealthy social and cultural influences that exist outside — or upstream — of medical facilities.
- Patients from low-income neighborhoods are most at risk of negative health impacts.
- Thankfully, health care professionals are not alone. Upstreamism is increasingly part of our cultural consciousness.
A plan to forgive almost a trillion dollars in debt would solve the student loan debt crisis, but can it work?
- Sen. Elizabeth Warren has just proposed a bold education reform plan that would forgive billions in student debt.
- The plan would forgive the debt held by more than 30 million Americans.
- The debt forgiveness program is one part of a larger program to make higher education more accessible.
America isn't immune to attempts to remove books from libraries and schools, here are ten frequent targets and why you ought to go check them out.
- Even in America, books are frequently challenged and removed from schools and public libraries.
- Every year, the American Library Association puts on Banned Books Week to draw attention to this fact.
- Some of the books they include on their list of most frequently challenged are some of the greatest, most beloved, and entertaining books there are.
In most states, LGBTQ Americans have no legal protections against discrimination in the workplace.
- The Supreme Court will decide whether the Civil Rights Act of 1964 also applies to gay and transgender people.
- The court, which currently has a probable conservative majority, will likely decide on the cases in 2020.
- Only 21 states and the District of Columbia have passed laws effectively extending the Civil Rights of 1964 to gay and transgender people.
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