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What difference will President Obama’s executive order make for this family? Sandy Huffaker/Reuters

The president’s executive order: what difference will it make for immigrants?

Editor’s note: On November 20, President Obama announced a plan - through an executive order - to protect millions of undocumented immigrants from deportation if they meet certain criteria. His move has…
Crocodiles keep their own secrets. Tambako

The unknown crocodiles

Slow, lazy, stupid? It's time to update your impression of the crocodilians. These animals are up to amazing things that we're only beginning to observe and recognize.
Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria and slugger Giancarlo Stanton are all smiles as Stanton signs his $325 million deal. USA Today Sports/Reuters

Breaking down Giancarlo Stanton’s $325 million deal: could the first billion dollar contract happen sooner than we think?

In baseball history, nine players have signed guaranteed contracts worth over $200 million. Five of those contracts have been for ten years. Two of the five belong to Alex Rodriguez; the others include…
Islamic dietary law requires that certain methods be used when preparing meat, such as that a Muslim be the one butchering the animal. Reuters

Regulating the sacred: why the US halal food industry needs better oversight

For many Muslims, adherence to Islamic dietary laws, known as halal, is an intrinsic part of their everyday lives. Even those who are relatively lax with other rituals of the faith tend to adhere to halal…
Not everyone can pay out of pocket. Stock image of counseling session via Monkey Business Images/Shutterstock

Need to see a psychiatrist? Call your insurance company first

Last week, a patient contacted me to find a psychiatrist because his anxiety was beginning to get out of control. He wanted to see someone who could do therapy and prescribe medications if he needed them…
Detroit has emerged from bankruptcy, but the process has been sharply criticized, which could impair its success. Reuters

What are the costs of Detroit’s rise from bankruptcy?

Earlier this month, we learned that the biggest municipal bankruptcy in history would also be among the swiftest. The emergency manager for Detroit filed for bankruptcy in the summer of 2013 without a…
Lynda Carter as Diana Prince in the New Original Wonder Woman. Her bullet-deflecting bracelets are made from an impervious metal: feminum. Retrogasm/Flickr

Where have all the wonder women gone?

In the epilogue to Jill Lepore’s new book, The Secret History of Wonder Woman, we learn about Wonder Woman’s importance to the American feminist movement of the 1960s and 1970s. Lepore briefly notes Wonder…
Faced with uncertainty and unpredictability, your brain’s on its way to anxiety. Woman image via www.shutterstock.com.

Brains transform remote threats into anxiety

Modern life can feel defined by low-level anxiety swirling through society. Continual reports about terrorism and war. A struggle to stay on top of family finances and hold onto jobs. An onslaught of news…
He’s not done yet Larry Downing/Reuters

Is the Obama presidency over?

Is the Obama presidency over? This has been the burning question on the lips of many Washington DC pundits and beltway insiders in the wake of devastating Democratic midterm election losses. According…
Some US bridges are currently living out their twilight years. Bob Jagendorf

Here’s how to fix America’s crumbling bridges

There are about 600,000 bridges in the United States, and about one in four is classified as functionally obsolete or structurally deficient. This doesn’t mean they’re in danger of imminent collapse; they…
Curbing teen pregnancy rates will take more than just access to contraception. Image of pregnant women via Coffeemill/www.shutterstock.com

How to bring the teen pregnancy rate down

Teen pregnancy is a public health problem in the United States. According to 2010 estimates, girls aged 15-19 years accounted for 614,000 pregnancies in the US. An additional 11,000 pregnancies were recorded…
Alex Rodriguez is back on the Yankees’ roster following his one-year suspension for using banned performance enhancing drugs. Reuters

A-Rod may get his millions but his future remains murky

Alex Rodriguez, the New York Yankees’ erstwhile third baseman, has had an interesting career in more ways than one. His use of steroids has resulted in a sullied reputation and a one-year suspension without…
Hundreds of ISIS militants are rumored to be disillusioned. Handout/Reuters

What makes a terrorist stop being a terrorist?

“Feet first”. That’s how one terrorist leader told recruits was the only way out. It makes sense. Allowing members to just walk away wouldn’t be good for the group’s image. And yet – at the same time as…
Drummer Nick Mason and guitarist David Gilmour dug into recording sessions from 1994’s The Division Bell to mine material for their professed last album: The Endless River anyonlinyr/Flickr

In Pink Floyd’s river, time is endless

For a band that once sang “Every year is getting shorter / Never seem to find the time” – which followed an explosion of alarm clocks – Pink Floyd’s songs always seemed to take their time. During the band’s…
Temporary security measures often become permanent. Larry Downing/Reuters

Access denied: how security is transforming public space

The recent security lapses at the White House have brought to the forefront the 13-year-old question of how to effectively secure public spaces. As officials weigh increasing perimeter security and installing…
Uncritically invoking neuroscience is a risky proposition. Image of head via www.shutterstock.com

Why brain science won’t cure poverty

Recently I’ve seen news reports with headlines like this one: “Can Brain Science Help Lift People Out Of Poverty?” This particular article described the near miraculous recovery of a woman who grew up…
Kansas Governor Sam Brownback was re-elected despite a tight fight over his tax cuts and resulting deficit, which were revealed to be worse than expected just days after the election. Reuters

Brownback’s Kansas tax experiment may prove death knell for corporate reform

Republican gains in this month’s election, which handed the GOP united control of Congress for the first time since 2006, have lifted hopes that the government can pass corporate tax reform next year…
A view of the atrium from the Calderwood Courtyard. Zak Jensen

A preview of Harvard’s $350 million art museum renovation

After ten years of planning and six years of construction the Harvard Art Museums opens its doors to the public on November 16. The $350 million renovation combines the collections of three distinct museums…
Will stricter controls on painkillers curb abuse and addiction? Stock images of pills from www.shutterstock.com

Do stricter controls curb opioid abuse?

Americans consume a staggering amount of the opioid painkiller hydrocodone - about 99% of the world’s supply. In October, after 10 years of debate the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) reclassified medications…
Opioid addicts now being armed with overdose antidote. Gretchen Ertl/Reuters

Explainer: naloxone, the antidote to opioid overdose

Many first responders’ – even some university police officers – are carrying a new tool in their first-aid kits. It’s naloxone, the opioid overdose antidote drug, and today it’s more widely available than…