Politics + Society – Articles, Analysis, Opinion

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Utah residents show support for a ballot initiative that would legalize medical marijuana in the state. AP Photo/Rick Bowmer

Marijuana is on the ballot in four states, but legalization may soon stall, researchers say

Midterm voters in Utah, Missouri, Michigan and North Dakota will decide whether to join the 31 US states that have some form of legal marijuana. But ballot initiatives can only take pot so far.
Vigil held in the Squirrel Hill section of Pittsburgh for shooting victims, Oct. 27, 2018. AP/Gene J. Puskar

Pittsburgh’s lesson: Hatred does not emerge in a vacuum

Mass murders like the killings at a Pittsburgh synagogue are seen as the work of disturbed individuals. But America has allowed violence to become unexceptional, ignoring its root cause.
New York police officers at the Time Warner Center, Oct. 25, 2018, in New York after report of a suspicious package at CNN. AP/Craig Ruttle

Bombs are part of American political history

Bombs have long been a tool for devotees of the range of fringe American political thought. From anarchists to racists, their methods have wrought havoc – but also have created backlash.
Supporters of Brazilian president-elect Jair Bolsonaro hope he will ‘transform’ their country, which has been mired in political and economic crises since 2015. AP Photo/Leo Correa

What Bolsonaro’s presidency means for Brazil: 5 essential reads

Bolsonaro promised angry Brazilians he would transform their crisis-stricken country. But he didn't say how. Five Brazil experts examine his policies on crime, the economy, women, the Amazon and more.
Money in politics? Somebody’s got to pay for those signs. AP/John Raoux

Money in elections doesn’t mean what you think it does

Is money the root of all evil in politics? It’s easy to see a correlation between winning and fundraising – money flows to likely winners and competitive races. But correlation is not causation.
Demonstrators with cut-outs of congressional districts in front of the Supreme Court. Reuters/Joshua Roberts

4 reasons gerrymandering is getting worse

One of the main reasons polarization in the US is on the rise – the way congressional seats are drawn to favor parties – isn't going away anytime soon.
Bolsonaro supporters celebrate outside his home in Rio de Janeiro after exit polls on Oct. 28 declared him the preliminary winner of Brazil’s 2018 presidential election. AP Photo/Leo Correa

Bolsonaro wins Brazil election, promises to purge leftists from country

Jair Bolsonaro, a right-wing congressman and former army captain, is Brazil's next president, with 56 percent of votes. Critics see a threat to democracy in his scathing attacks on Brazilian society.
A memorial vigil for the victims of the shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue where a shooter killed 11 and wounded six on Oct. 27, 2018. AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar

Terror isn’t always a weapon of the weak – it can also support the powerful

The attack at a synagogue in Pittsburgh and the sending of pipe bombs to critics of the current administration are examples of the increase in the violence on the margins of the right.
Central American migrants face extortion, robbery, assault, kidnapping, rape and murder on their weeks-long journey through Mexico. Some find safety in numbers. AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd

Migrants travel in groups for a simple reason: safety

More than two-thirds of Central American migrants will experience violence on their journey through Mexico, from robbery and extortion to rape. Caravans create safety in numbers.
‘Women for Trump’ listening to President Donald Trump speak at a campaign rally in Wheeling, WV, in September. AP/Pablo Martinez Monsivais

Republican women are just fine, thank you, with being Republican

The GOP's handling of sexual assault allegations against prominent GOP figures has led some to conclude that the party does not respect women. But GOP women are sticking with their party.
Latinos make up 12 percent of all registered voters in the US, but less than half vote regularly. AP Photo/Isaac Brekken, File

Democrats can’t count on Latinos to swing the midterms

Latinos are less likely than other Americans to vote in November, new polling shows. Here's why Democrats shouldn't expect a Latino blue wave to swing the midterms in their favor.
Civil rights organizations have sued Georgia’s Republican secretary of state for failing to register 53,000 new voters, most of them black. Reuters/Christopher Aluka Berry

Georgia election fight shows that black voter suppression, a southern tradition, still flourishes

Georgia's secretary of state has stalled voter registrations and accused Democrats of hacking. His tactics recall past efforts in the South to suppress black votes, from poll taxes to literacy tests
Trump, like Obama before him, has enjoyed a close relationship with Saudi Arabia’s royal family. AP Photo/Evan Vucci

Saudi Arabia is a repressive regime – and so are a lot of US allies

Critics say Trump's defense of Saudi Arabia in the Khashoggi affair betrays American values. But many presidents have cozied up to dictators, ignoring human rights abuses to serve US interests.
2016’s warm winter meant not enough snow for the start of the Iditarod sled dog race in Anchorage, so it was brought by train from 360 miles north. AP/Rachel D'Oro

In Alaska, everyone’s grappling with climate change

For everyone from traditional hunters to the military, the National Park Service to the oil industry, climate change is the new reality in Alaska. Government, residents and businesses are all trying to adapt.
Robert Mahoney of the Committee to Protect Journalists on Oct. 18 appealed to the U.N. to investigate the disappearance of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

Jamal Khashoggi: Casualty of the Trump administration’s disregard for democracy and civil rights in the Middle East?

The Trump administration’s abandonment of support for democracy and civil rights abroad may be behind the sort of attacks on individual freedom that likely claimed journalist Jamal Khashoggi's life.