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Having Chris Rock Host the Oscars May Harm the Diversity Discussion
Chosen as host long before the #OscarsSoWhite controversy, Chris Rock's prominent presence at the Academy Awards risks appearing as compensation for inequality in Hollywood.
A. O. Scott joined The New York Times as a film critic in January 2000, and was named a chief critic in 2004. Previously, Mr. Scott had been the lead Sunday book reviewer for Newsday and a frequent contributor to Slate, The New York Review of Books, and many other publications.
Mr. Scott was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in Criticism in 2010, the same year he served as co-host (with Michael Phillips of the Chicago Tribune) on the last season of "At the Movies," the syndicated film-reviewing program started by Roger Ebert and Gene Siskel.
A frequent presence on radio and television, Mr. Scott is Distinguished Professor of Film Criticism at Wesleyan University and the author of Better Living Through Criticism (2016, Penguin Press).
A.O. Scott: I think that the Academy has put themselves into a very uncomfortable position. And they deserve all of the discomfort that they're experiencing. And the question of the broadcast itself is an interesting one because Chris Rock as host, and, of course, he was put in place as host before the nominations came out and before the protest against them, no matter what he does, and I'm sure his jokes will be very pointed and very honest and very strong because that's the kind of comedian, the kind of performer he is. Nonetheless, it can't help but be a kind of window dressing or a sort of compensation: "Well see, we didn't nominate any black people, but our host is African-American so it's all fine. We're all good." But I think that the one thing that Chris Rock will inevitably do; I don't think he will or can or would want to dispel this controversy, but in a way to focus it. Because the real matter is not just the Academy and the Academy's membership and the voting and nominating rules; that's all an important local issue, but the controversy over the Oscars and the "#OscarsSoWhite" idea has so much more to do with the film industry; with how it's structured; with what movies get made; with what kind of opportunities are available to different people. The fact that the power in the film industry resides with white men whose perspective — it's not that any of them are individually necessarily racist or bigoted, but there is a collective myopia that comes in and I think an unconscious bias where you're a middle-aged white guy and you see a young white guy and you're like, "Oh yeah, let's give that kid a break," and there are women and there are people of color who are just as talented whose work can be just as strong, but you don't to see them. And that's a very big problem and that's a problem that, I think, that it is nothing but good news that that problem is now being talked about, being aired out in public, becoming an issue of controversy and discussion.
A.O. Scott, chief film critic for The New York Times, says the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences deserves all the discomfort it is currently experiencing. For two years in a row, the Academy has nominated only white actors to receive the golden Oscars at its annual awards ceremony, broadly recognized as the biggest event in film. The problem isn't with the Academy, however, but with the film studios themselves. More complicated, still: The presence of an African-American host, Chris Rock, risks appearing as window dressing for the present inequality.
Sallie Krawcheck and Bob Kulhan will be talking money, jobs, and how the pandemic will disproportionally affect women's finances.
Health officials in China reported that a man was infected with bubonic plague, the infectious disease that caused the Black Death.
- The case was reported in the city of Bayannur, which has issued a level-three plague prevention warning.
- Modern antibiotics can effectively treat bubonic plague, which spreads mainly by fleas.
- Chinese health officials are also monitoring a newly discovered type of swine flu that has the potential to develop into a pandemic virus.
Bacteria under microscope
needpix.com<p>Today, bubonic plague can be treated effectively with antibiotics.</p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"Unlike in the 14th century, we now have an understanding of how this disease is transmitted," Dr. Shanthi Kappagoda, an infectious disease physician at Stanford Health Care, told <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health-news/seriously-dont-worry-about-the-plague#Heres-how-the-plague-spreads" target="_blank">Healthline</a>. "We know how to prevent it — avoid handling sick or dead animals in areas where there is transmission. We are also able to treat patients who are infected with effective antibiotics, and can give antibiotics to people who may have been exposed to the bacteria [and] prevent them [from] getting sick."</p>
This plague patient is displaying a swollen, ruptured inguinal lymph node, or buboe.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention<p>Still, hundreds of people develop bubonic plague every year. In the U.S., a handful of cases occur annually, particularly in New Mexico, Arizona and Colorado, <a href="https://www.cdc.gov/plague/faq/index.html" target="_blank">where habitats allow the bacteria to spread more easily among wild rodent populations</a>. But these cases are very rare, mainly because you need to be in close contact with rodents in order to get infected. And though plague can spread from human to human, this <a href="https://www.healthline.com/health-news/seriously-dont-worry-about-the-plague#Heres-how-the-plague-spreads" target="_blank">only occurs with pneumonic plague</a>, and transmission is also rare.</p>
A new swine flu in China<p>Last week, researchers in China also reported another public health concern: a new virus that has "all the essential hallmarks" of a pandemic virus.<br></p><p>In a paper published in the <a href="https://www.pnas.org/content/early/2020/06/23/1921186117" target="_blank">Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences</a>, researchers say the virus was discovered in pigs in China, and it descended from the H1N1 virus, commonly called "swine flu." That virus was able to transmit from human to human, and it killed an estimated 151,700 to 575,400 people worldwide from 2009 to 2010, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.</p>There's no evidence showing that the new virus can spread from person to person. But the researchers did find that 10 percent of swine workers had been infected by the virus, called G4 reassortant EA H1N1. This level of infectivity raises concerns, because it "greatly enhances the opportunity for virus adaptation in humans and raises concerns for the possible generation of pandemic viruses," the researchers wrote.
The word "learning" opens up space for more people, places, and ideas.
- The terms 'education' and 'learning' are often used interchangeably, but there is a cultural connotation to the former that can be limiting. Education naturally links to schooling, which is only one form of learning.
- Gregg Behr, founder and co-chair of Remake Learning, believes that this small word shift opens up the possibilities in terms of how and where learning can happen. It also becomes a more inclusive practice, welcoming in a larger, more diverse group of thinkers.
- Post-COVID, the way we think about what learning looks like will inevitably change, so it's crucial to adjust and begin building the necessary support systems today.
Scientists uncovered the secrets of what drove some of the world's last remaining woolly mammoths to extinction.
Every summer, children on the Alaskan island of St Paul cool down in Lake Hill, a crater lake in an extinct volcano – unaware of the mysteries that lie beneath.
The coronavirus pandemic has brought out the perception of selfishness among many.
- Selfish behavior has been analyzed by philosophers and psychologists for centuries.
- New research shows people may be wired for altruistic behavior and get more benefits from it.
- Times of crisis tend to increase self-centered acts.