Category Archives: Politics

The Eugene McCarthy, George McGovern, and Bernie Sanders Campaigns

Bio-box: While a student, Al Kagan worked on the Eugene McCarthy campaign for president in New Hampshire, Indiana, Rhode Island, and Washington, DC., and experienced the 1968 Democratic Convention. He also did a bit of work on the Bernie Sanders … Continue reading

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Champaign County Facing Million Dollar Lawsuit for Jail Death

On August 8, 2016, attorney Shayla Maatuka sent a letter to Champaign County Board Chair Pattsi Petrie requesting a million dollar settlement for the wrongful death of Toya Frazier, who died in the Champaign County jail. The letter is a … Continue reading

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Orlando Shooter Was A Product of US Hyper-Masculinity

Like so many others, I’ve been at a loss trying to make sense of the heinous act of anti-queer mass murder in Orlando. The following are some of my scattered thoughts on the topic, some of which I originally posted … Continue reading

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Independence Day 2016

We have just celebrated the independence of our nation with fireworks and other reminders of the “glories” of war. Only a few weeks ago I saw our president laying a wreath at the tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Somehow it doesn’t … Continue reading

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From the Arab Spring to the Syrian Civil War: Looking Again at the Modern Middle East

It’s tempting to put the Arab Spring and the Syrian Civil War in separate boxes, but like other forms of compartmentalization, that only hides but doesn’t resolve the underlying problems. The dynamics that helped the Syrian War erupt into one … Continue reading

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African Liberation, Socialism, and Ghana Today

What do most Americans know or think they know about Africa? A number of stereotypes come to mind. African countries are unsafe and unhealthy, always at war, unstable, and poor. People are uneducated and lazy, and live in rural villages … Continue reading

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The Beheading of a Saint: Junipero Serra and the California Monument Wars

During his visit to Mexico in February, Pope Francis apologized for the “systematic and organized” exclusion of indigenous Americans over the centuries. This took place in San Cristobal de las Casas, the epicenter of the indigenous-identified Zapatista uprising in 1994, … Continue reading

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Students Rally for Coal Divestment

On April 4, the student group UIUC Beyond Coal rallied on the Quad to push the Academic Senate to pass a resolution urging the University divest $5.1 million held in the coal industry through stock index funds, in order to slow … Continue reading

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“Old” Urban Renewal in Champaign-Urbana, 1960-1969

Forcing people to move from their homes is one of the most intrusive exercises of state power. It is difficult to overstate the combined financial and psychological impacts that the loss of a home has on an individual. It is … Continue reading

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Cuba Libre?

By David Prochaska President Barack Obama visited Havana March 2016. Perhaps even more important, the Rolling Stones played a free concert right after. Commercial airline flights to Cuba are likely to begin in October. Even as the US moves to … Continue reading

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