Tuesday, May 17, 2022

These strategies and life hacks can help anyone with ADHD, as well as those who struggle with attention problems but don’t have a diagnosis

  Imagine that it’s 4:59 p.m., only one minute before your deadline. You swore you’d never put yourself in this position again, and yet you have. This isn’t your best work, and you’ll be lucky just to turn anything in. What would you do differently if you could turn back the clock?

  Living with ADHD can feel like this on a daily basis, but it doesn’t have to.

Monday, May 16, 2022

Legacy of Jim Crow still affects funding for public schools

  Nearly 70 years ago – in its 1954 Brown v. Board decision – the Supreme Court framed racial segregation as the cause of educational inequality. It did not, however, challenge the lengths to which states went to ensure the unequal funding of Black schools.

  Before Brown, Southern states were using segregation to signify and tangibly reinforce second-class citizenship for Black people in the United States. The court in Brown deemed that segregation was inherently unequal. Even if the schools were “equalized” on all “tangible factors,” segregation remained a problem and physical integration was the cure, the Court concluded.

Sunday, May 15, 2022

Too poor to give

  When Teresa, a widow with four young children, saw a notice that members of her church would gather to deliver presents and food to a needy family, she took $10 out of her savings jar and bought the ingredients to make three dozen cookies. She got to the church parking lot just in time to join a convoy going to the home that was to receive the congregation’s help.

Saturday, May 14, 2022

Elon Musk says relaxing content rules on Twitter will boost free speech, but research shows otherwise

  Elon Musk’s accepted bid to purchase Twitter has triggered a lot of debate about what it means for the future of the social media platform, which plays an important role in determining the news and information many people – especially Americans – are exposed to.

  Musk has said he wants to make Twitter an arena for free speech. It’s not clear what that will mean, and his statements have fueled speculation among both supporters and detractors. As a corporation, Twitter can regulate speech on its platform as it chooses. There are bills being considered in the U.S. Congress and by the European Union that address social media regulation, but these are about transparency, accountability, illegal harmful content, and protecting users’ rights rather than regulating speech.

Friday, May 13, 2022

When it comes to spending, Alabama is ‘bluer’ than New York and California

  When you rank states in terms of their political leanings, places like California and New York are probably near the top of the list of liberal states. And that’s certainly true in terms of social issues.

  And while Alabama may be one of the most socially conservative states, would it shock you to know that when it comes to spending and tax issues, Alabama’s state government is about as blue as it gets?

Thursday, May 12, 2022

Getting out of jury duty

  Last week, I dyed my hair orange - not red, not the subtle hue of a delicate tiger lily bloom, but bright, shiny traffic cone orange. This is actually not an unusual occurrence. I've dyed my hair various less-than-conservative shades on the color wheel, and invariably I have received contrasting responses that have ranged from "Hey, cool!" to genuine concern from those who believe that I am yet another victim of the devil's crack rock.

Wednesday, May 11, 2022

How shops use psychology to influence your buying decisions

  You might think that you only buy what you need, when you need it. But whether you are shopping for food, clothes, or gadgets, the retailers are using the power of psychological persuasion to influence your decisions – and help you part with your cash.

  If you think back, I’ll bet there’s a good chance that you can remember walking into a grocery store only to find the layout of the shop has been changed. Perhaps the toilet paper was no longer where you expected it to be, or you struggled to find the tomato ketchup.

Tuesday, May 10, 2022

Why we can’t ‘boost’ our way out of the COVID-19 pandemic for the long term

  With yet another COVID-19 booster available for vulnerable populations in the U.S., many people find themselves wondering what the end game will be.

  The mRNA vaccines currently used in the U.S. against COVID-19 have been highly successful at preventing hospitalization and death. The Commonwealth Fund recently reported that in the U.S. alone, the vaccines have prevented over 2 million people from dying and over 17 million from hospitalization.

  However, the vaccines have failed to provide long-term protective immunity to prevent breakthrough infections – cases of COVID-19 infection that occur in people who are fully vaccinated.

Monday, May 9, 2022

I just have to outrun you

  During a camping trip, Sam and Tom saw a bear coming their way. Sam started to take off his backpack and told Tom he was going to run for it. When his surprised friend said, “You can’t outrun a bear,” Sam replied, “I don’t have to outrun the bear. I just have to outrun you.”

Sunday, May 8, 2022

We need to reclaim the original intent of Mother’s Day

  I vividly recall the first time my kids made me breakfast for Mother’s Day. I lay in bed patiently listening to them giggle and rustle around the kitchen … wait, was that the blender? They brought their creative concoction out to the yard, where we had an idyllic, quiet morning in the May sunshine. As a single mother, I cherished this moment of respite and respect.

  But as a sociologist, I know that my longing for the ideal Mother’s Day was cultivated by the ubiquity of Hallmark’s sentimental greeting cards, by traditional notions of the family and motherhood, and by a historical amnesia that has buried the origins of both Mother’s Day and Father’s Day.