United Nations Economic And Security Council, Statement By Experts On Problems Of Race

Racism is not a new phenomenon. After World War II, the United Nations published a document on race and racism with the goal of debunking many of the myths and misconceptions about race. While this document was published over 66 years ago, it contains facts and ideas that are very relevant to today's events.

The statement begins with a general description of human biology, specifically that "the likenesses among men are far greater than their differences" and that what we consider to be important differentiations between "races" tends to fluctuate and is ultimately arbitrary: "What is perceived is largely preconceived, so that each group arbitrarily tends to misinterpret the variability which occurs as a fundamental difference which separates that group from all others." It goes on to say that "Unfortunately, however, when most people use the term “race” they do not do so in the sense above defined. To most people, a race is any group of people whom they choose to describe as a race."

The statement concludes that there is no scientific basis for race, nor is there any academic or intellectual difference; "The biological fact of race and the myth of “race” should be distinguished, for all practical social purposes “race” is not so much a biological phenomenon as a social myth." 

It challenges us to ask ourselves why we continue with these labels considering how much harm and devastation they have caused.

United Nations

The Trump Administration's Solution To Climate Change: Ban The Term

The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently began instructing its employees to refrain using the phrase 'climate change' and other phrases commonly associated with it. In this article, originally published in The Guardian, Bill McKibben unpacks this 'what you can't say won't hurt you' approach to dealing with a very real issue. 

Medicaid, Explained: Why It's Worse To Be Sick In Some States Than Others

This video from Vox looks at the Medicaid system through the eyes of an individual on Medicaid, Matthew, who has Crohn's Disease. He is one of the 1 in 5 Americans who get their healthcare paid for by Medicaid. 

The video states “The thing about Matthew is, if he lived in a different state, he might not have Medicaid.” It explains the history of healthcare in the United States, the attempts of certain presidents (FDR, Truman, and LBJ) to create a national healthcare system, the reason behind the emergence of a private healthcare market, and the ultimate expansion of Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.

Due to the Supreme Court decision that made this expansion voluntary by state, the video explains that the specific states get to decide who gets covered and what service gets covered. Some individuals are consistently covered across the board, like children and Pregnant women; However, coverage of other groups like individual who make below a certain amount per year are only covered in certain states. 

The video goes on to describe the rising costs of Medicaid, due to the rising costs of health care in the United States, and ways that Republicans have proposed to change Medicaid.


Health Care Research Paper Delivered to Congress

The Sanders Institute and National Nurses United delivered a research paper, titled Medicare For All vs All the Healthcare Each Can Afford, to every Senate and House of Representatives office on Capitol Hill. This report analyzes our current fragmented healthcare system and suggests a system of healthcare reflecting the nurses' values of caring, compassion and community.

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