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America’s mass transit agencies need a bailout, too

America’s mass transit agencies need a bailout, too

Normally, mass transit agencies celebrate ridership gains rather than declines. But the coronavirus pandemic and the logic of social distancing have turned that on its head. That’s leading to situations like the New York City Subway tweeting a celebration of declining readership, while the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority brags about empty vehicles. March 17,…
Why Is It So Hard To Get A Coronavirus Test In America?

Why Is It So Hard To Get A Coronavirus Test In America?

Nicole*, who is in her early 40s and lives in the NYC area, said both she and her one-and-a-half-year-old daughter started exhibiting symptoms like coughing, congestion, and fever. "We had been doing everything right," she said, including washing their hands and sanitizing everything. "I essentially had coronavirus without a positive test confirmation," Nicole told Refinery29.…
America’s hospitals are not ready for coronavirus

America’s hospitals are not ready for coronavirus

The coronavirus surge is coming, America’s hospitals are struggling to prepare, and the eventual demand for intensive care unit beds for Covid-19 cases could far exceed what US hospitals will be able to provide. Researchers at the Imperial College London wrote in a devastating new analysis that even stringent mitigation measures of case isolation, home…
What It Means To Wear A Face Mask In America

What It Means To Wear A Face Mask In America

The sight of face masks can be agitating and anxiety-inducing. Under these conditions, they can trigger people to think the worst about their neighbors, and even inspire them to act on their most odious prejudices and impulses. There’s been a rise of violent anti-Asian discrimination, oftentimes targeting those wearing masks, all made worse by establishment…
America’s crisis of trust and the one candidate who gets it

America’s crisis of trust and the one candidate who gets it

The biggest problem facing US democracy did not come up at the Democratic debate in Charleston this week. It hasn’t really been discussed in the election at all. But it lurks behind all the more specific issues, an unwelcome presence no one quite wants to acknowledge. It is simply this: The US is in a…
If the coronavirus hits America, who’s responsible for protecting you?

If the coronavirus hits America, who’s responsible for protecting you?

The outbreak of the coronavirus — and Covid-19, the disease it causes — in mainland China has provoked a response the likes of which the world has never seen. Hundreds of millions of people in the country have had their travel restricted; many have not even been allowed to leave their homes. All of this…
America’s presidential primaries, explained

America’s presidential primaries, explained

Before Americans even vote on the next president in November, both major political parties have primary elections to decide the nominee. In 2020, that process consists of 64 different contests, held on 22 different days from February to June. And for the past 50 years, this process has started in Iowa, moved to New Hampshire,…
America’s failure in Afghanistan, explained by one village

America’s failure in Afghanistan, explained by one village

MUSSAHI DISTRICT, Kabul Province, Afghanistan — A small group of men, and children who quickly grow bored, are standing by the riverside. All of them are staring at the contraption before them: a small water pump that, despite their best efforts, won’t turn on. A young man tries to set it in motion by pushing…
America Has As Many Victoria’s Secrets As It Has Malls. So — Now What?

America Has As Many Victoria’s Secrets As It Has Malls. So — Now What?

Despite the major decline in sales and relevance, Victoria’s Secret is still the undisputed market leader for lingerie, a testament to just how successful the brand formerly was. As one of the most popular single-brand retailers in the United States, Victoria’s Secret was everywhere, as integral to the shopping experience as a food court. According…
America’s monopoly problem, explained by your internet bill

America’s monopoly problem, explained by your internet bill

In the summer of 2017, I decided it was time to put my big-girl pants on and try to talk to my internet provider about my bill. It had been gradually ticking up over the past several months without explanation — let alone better service — and I wanted to know what was up. When…

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