Equity & Justice

Race, Ethnicity, Gender, Culture, Income, and Justice

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Joshua Harris, one of the most influential voices on sex and relationships for a generation of evangelical Christians, announced this past week that he and his wife are separating after 19 years of marriage.

Harris's book, I Kissed Dating Goodbye, was published in 1997 when he was in his early 20s. It became a manual for young evangelicals looking for love.

In recent years, Harris has apologized for some of the ideas he promoted and publicly wrestled with them in a documentary.

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After President Trump attacked four progressive congresswomen in racist remarks last week, Republicans defending him often base their support on what they say is anti-Semitism — a familiar line of attack for the president as well.

Should Republicans still call themselves the Party of Lincoln?

Kevin McCarthy, the House Republican leader, declared, "We are the party of Lincoln," as he contended President Trump was not racist for suggesting four Democratic representatives, US citizens who are also women of color, should "go back" to the places they came from.

Brian Mackey / NPR Illinois

The federal government plans to cut funding to clinics that provide abortion referrals. But in Illinois, any clinics that lose that funding can get grants from the state. 

Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced the plan Thursday, saying it amounts to about $2.4 million for 28 clinics throughout the state. Those clinics normally receive federal Title X grants, which cover services like family-planning and HIV screening for low-income, under-insured and uninsured women.

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Updated at 9:50 a.m. ET

Rep. Ilhan Omar, one of the freshman Democratic congresswomen facing attacks from President Trump and his supporters, was cheered as she arrived back at her home district in Minnesota on Thursday.

A crowd of people at the airport in the Twin Cities held banners with slogans such as "Stop Racism Now" and chanted "welcome home Ilhan" as the congresswoman emerged from her flight.

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What does it mean to call someone racist, and what do people mean when they deny it? A scholar of racism says we don't all mean the same thing, which makes it hard to discuss. We called him after President Trump told four American lawmakers to go back where they came from. Ibram X. Kendi of American University says many people reject calling a statement like that racist because the word seems so extreme. They fear it's a mark of hopelessly bad people. Kendi says racism is really a set of ideas which we can argue about and change.

Updated at on July 18 at 1:52 p.m. ET

President Trump continued his attacks against four freshman Democratic congresswomen at a campaign rally in Greenville, N.C., on Wednesday, with the crowd breaking into a chant of "send her back" against one, echoing the president's racist message from the weekend.

Trump on Thursday disavowed the chant.

Perhaps the greatest irony of the road trip, what Escalante's Dream author David Roberts calls "that quintessentially American concoction," is the façade of structure.

Weight-bearing or purely ornamental, nearly all of the classic road trip narratives establish a framework for the journey. As John Steinbeck writes in Travels with Charley, "When the virus of restlessness begins to take possession of a wayward man, and the road away from Here seems broad and straight and sweet, the victim must first find in himself a good and sufficient reason for going."

The news that federal prosecutors will not charge a New York City police officer in the death of Eric Garner, who repeated the phrase "I can't breathe" almost a dozen times while being arrested for an alleged misdemeanor, closed another door for Garner's family and police reform activists seeking accountability.

Editor's note: NPR made the decision, this week, to call President Trump's tweets about a group of Democratic congresswomen, "racist."

On this week's Code Switch podcast we discuss why the word "racist" was used in this instance with NPR's Standards and Practices Editor, Mark Memmott.

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How do four Americans respond to the president suggesting they leave?

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Health insurers that treat millions of seniors have overcharged Medicare by nearly $30 billion over the past three years alone, but federal officials say they are moving ahead with long-delayed plans to recoup at least part of the money.

Mark Schultz / Illinois Public Media

White extremist propaganda surged by almost 60 percent on Midwestern college campuses last academic year. That’s according to a new report from the Anti-Defamation League.

Illinois groups against cash bond and pretrial detention rallied in Springfield last weekend to call for reform of pretrial practices.
Daisy Contreras / NPR Illinois | 91.9 UIS

Illinois groups against cash bond and pretrial detention rallied in Springfield last weekend to call for reform of pretrial practices.  

Updated at 7 p.m. ET

A group of four women lawmakers responded to attacks by President Trump with a news conference of their own on Monday evening.

Earlier in the day, Trump said the members of Congress are "free to leave" the country if they are unhappy with the U.S. and accused them of hating America.

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Exit polls from the 2016 presidential election suggest that only 1 of 6 white evangelical voters supported Hillary Clinton. It was the worst such performance of any recent Democratic nominee.

"She never asked for their votes," says Michael Wear, who directed religious outreach efforts for Barack Obama's successful reelection campaign in 2012.

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When Andrea and Leslie Isham got married in December of last year, they had a pretty unique wedding.

"We literally went into the bar, we paid the cover charge," Leslie Isham says. "We walked through the doors and sat down and just waited for the show."

The "show" was a drag show, the backdrop to the couple's wedding at a gay nightclub in Clarksville, Tenn., alongside friends, drag queens, bartenders — and like-minded strangers.

"We didn't have to worry about protesters showing up, or people being like, 'We don't want that here,' " Andrea Isham says.

Jessica Freeman / Community Unity

Springfield will host an unusual basketball tournament later this month, designed to have a lasting effect on the players long after the games are over.

It’s an idea cooked up by former basketball coach Al Klunick. He came up with the notion about 10 years ago, when he was scrolling through YouTube, looking for videos about his hometown, and stumbled upon a documentary that shocked him: a four-part series about a race riot in Springfield.

“I can’t believe that I grew up on the North End, born and raised, lived here all my life, and didn’t know the true history,” Klunick says.

Seattle is grappling with a crisis of what is sometimes called "visible homelessness" — people who live in the street and struggle with mental illness or drug addiction. It's a population that often commits small crimes, such as disorderly conduct or shoplifting to pay for drugs. And public frustration is growing.

Some accuse a reform-oriented local criminal justice system of becoming too tolerant.

For years, Beatriz Basurto's family has had to make hard choices about when to pay for medical care, and who should get treatment.

"To me, it was always the doctor would be the last resort," she says. "But for my parents, the doctor was never a choice. No matter how sick they got, they had to suck it up."

For months, the crisis at the southern border has overwhelmed Border Patrol facilities.

Many faith groups are stepping up to fill the demand for volunteers and resources.

One respite center, Catholic Charities for the Rio Grande Valley, has aided 100,000 migrants since it opened in 2014. Here’s what its director, Sister Norma Pimentel, wrote in an op-ed for The Washington Post that’s addressed to President Trump:

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