News & Features

Media Hype and the Myth of Ageless Baby Boomers

Paul Kleyman

At the same time, the media’s appeal to older Americans too often translates into marketable nostalgia for the Sixties (cue PBS pledge break here!) and with fiftieth anniversaries, some of them truly historic (the Selma march, the moon landing, three shattering assassinations), and some of more questionable gravity (Woodstock, Altamont, and, yes, the Summer of Love). My view, from more than a half-century in the countercultural epicenter of San Francisco, is that the headlines have largely missed the essential stories of (cue The Who) “M-m-my Generation.”

Comedian/Activist Dick Gregory Dies at 84

Monée Fields-White

In the 1970s, after moving to Massachusetts, Gregory became very interested in vegetarianism, nutrition and overall fitness, eventually advocating a diet of raw fruits and vegetables (this from a man who once weighed 350 pounds, drank heavily and smoked several packs of cigarettes a day). He was particularly opposed to the typical soul food diet, attributing to it much of African Americans’ disproportionate health challenges. 

Warriors’ Move to San Francisco Highlights City’s Racist Past

Allen Jones

Warriors’ history in fact starts in Philadelphia. A maverick of a man, Mieuli – a flamboyant radio and television producer known for his full beard and preference for motorcycles – got together with some investors who together bought and brought the team west to San Francisco in 1962. Technically, the team’s home arena at the time was the “Cow Palace” in Daly City, a one-time venue for livestock expos built in 1941 just beyond the southern borders of San Francisco. 

White Supremacy in the Age of Donald Trump

Keri Leigh Merritt

Certainly, there is no apology for the racism of working-class whites, nor any excuse; but we should seek to understand the ways in which white supremacy and power are completely intertwined. Throughout American history, the economic elite have used vile forms of racism to perpetuate the current hierarchy — politically, socially and economically. 

Three Trump Speeches and the Death of a Nation

Michael Winship

Donald Trump is not a president but he plays one on TV. And a terrible one at that. Watching him last week during what were, arguably, the worst of many horrible days of this presidency, was to see pure, rampaging id. Aggressive, needy, without logic or reason, Trump continues to rule with ignorance and incoherence, seemingly oblivious to the havoc he causes or maybe just thoroughly enjoying it. 

Robots Are Paving the Way of Our Aging Future

Elizabeth Payne

Paro, which has been used in Japan and through Europe since 2003, has helped demonstrate that technology can be used and embraced in previously-unheard-of ways for eldercare. The robot seal, which responds to touch and makes eye contact, has been found to reduce patient and caregiver stress, to stimulate interaction between patients and caregivers and to improve the socialization of patients. 

When Did Democrats Become the Party of Elites?

Leonard Steinhorn

From the New Deal through the ’60s, the Democrats were able to show that government was an essential tool to correct market inequities, protect the little people from unchecked power and special interests and ensure that the American birthright included safeguards against crippling poverty and misfortune. Government, most Americans believed, was their defender and their voice. 

How Hate Speech Became a Movement

Andrew Lam

Indeed, if political correctness was an effort to police offensive language in institutional settings – in school, at the workplace, in the media – the backlash against such restrictions is a kind of bacchanalian road rage that took root in cyberspace and is now in full bloom on and off line. It is as if, constrained in real life, America’s id knee-jerked itself into virtual space, making a permanent home there.

Will Mike Pence Pardon Donald Trump?

Marty Kaplan

But bullies like Trump are cowards at heart. However appealing he finds sliming his prosecutors like a stressed hagfish, the thought of running away to spend more time with his 9-iron might prove irresistible. Would Pence trade the Oval Office for Trump’s holding his resignation hostage to a pardon? Pence could use the same reason Gerald Ford gave for pardoning Richard Nixon in 1974: To write the ending of a nightmarish chapter in our history. 

McCain’s Health Battle Casts Ugly Glare on GOP Healthcare Assault

Earl Ofari Hutchinson

The high-risk pools that McCain touts supposedly would move thousands of medically indigent persons in pools to ensure low cost access to coverage. In fact it would do just the opposite. The bulk of those in the pool would be the sickest and most in need of continuous medical treatment. They would pay more, not less for that coverage. To cover the high cost of maintaining these pools, states would have to pony up more tax dollars or impose premium assessments on insurers who in turn would simply hike their prices to cover the assessments. 

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