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Dispatches From the Culture Wars – April 23, 2024

Rights in free fall

Ruben Bolling
  1. Rev. Barber’s Challenge to Christian Nationalism
  2. Passover 2024
  3. Weaponizing DEI
  4. Three Big Myths About Climate Activism
  5. Pro-Palestine Campus Groups Share Strategies
  6. Neurodiversity and Justice
  7. Ken Loach Speaks
  8. Scotus’s Big Crackdown on Protest
  9. Why LeBron is the GOAT
  10. The Trial and the Election


Rev. Barber’s Challenge to Christian Nationalism

By John Nichols
The Nation

The “New Haven Declaration of Moral and Spiritual Issues” is a call to action. The statement’s signers promise to “launch a season of preaching the moral issues of living wages and union rights, healthcare and ecological justice, an end to the spilling of innocent blood, a reimagination of criminal justice, and the protection and expansion of voting rights and equal protection guarantees.”

Passover 2024

By Rabbi Brant Rosen
Shalom Rav

So many people have told me that they are not sure how – or even if – they will celebrate Passover this year. With the genocide and forced starvation of the people of Gaza deepening with no end in sight, they say, it just feels beyond challenging to celebrate a festival of Jewish liberation. Many in the Jewish establishment are framing Passover by focusing exclusively on the Israeli hostages in Gaza. 

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Weaponizing DEI

By Andrew Lawrence
The Guardian

DEI – short for diversity, equity and inclusion – has become the latest dog-whistle term in the conservative war of words to frame basic egalitarianism as a net negative. It comes against the backdrop of huge row-back and assaults on bedrock civil rights measures after more than a half century of legislative and social gains.

Three Big Myths About Climate Activism

By Dana R. Fisher
The Conversation

It’s easy to get caught up in the myths about climate activism, particularly in today’s polarized political environment. So, let’s take a moment to explore the truth about three of the big myths being told about climate activism and the climate movement today.

Pro-Palestine Campus Groups Share Strategies

Hammer and Hope

Student collectives make up a major part of the pro-Palestine movement in the U.S. They have mobilized support all over the country. Here, a few tell us about their organizations and their work.

Neurodiversity and Justice

By Dr. Raheleh Tarani 
MR Online

It is time to embrace autism as a form of neurodiversity and position ourselves at the pivotal intersection where the celebration of neurodiversity meets the call for social justice. This intersection is crucial, as it highlights the inherent tensions between the dominant capitalist narrative and the lived experiences of neurodivergent individuals.

Ken Loach Speaks

By Ed Rampell

Hollywood is about building famous people in films — the star system. It’s about creating fame, people to look up to and worship. That works against credibility because you’re watching a great performance, but you have the star’s previous performances in mind. The essence of Hollywood filmmaking is antithetical to the real working-class experience.

Scotus’s Big Crackdown on Protest

By Ian Millhiser

The Supreme Court announced on Monday that it will not hear Mckesson v. Doe, a lower court decision that effectively eliminated the right to organize a mass protest in the states of Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas. Under that lower court decision, a protest organizer faces potentially ruinous financial consequences if a single attendee at a mass protest commits an illegal act.

Why LeBron is the GOAT

By David Masciotra

LeBron James is statistically superior to any other player to ever wear an NBA uniform, with unprecedented achievements, and yet most of the sports commentariat, along with millions of fans on social media, are hostile to the notion that he is the greatest of all time (GOAT). 

The Trial and the Election

By Dahlia Lithwick and Anat Shenker-Osorio

Voters who only barely register the drumbeat of political news will still see a man they are supposed to consider the potential leader of the free world falling asleep, muttering threats at jurors, and generally looking sad and trapped and small. And if he is declared guilty, this process will render him, in many voters’ understanding, a criminal.