This week's stories ranged from Kony 2012 to the top 5 reasons you should care about International Women's Day, with some SXSW and Rush Limbaugh in between. Here are the stories people were reading, sharing, Tweeting, Facebooking, and commenting on this week:
Nada Zohdy highlights five examples of the pervasiveness of women’s marginalization and lack of equality around the world to serve as reminders for why everyone, both men and women, should see female empowerment and gender equality as an utmost global priority. Did you know 1 billion women are the victim of violence, and nearly 80% of the world's 27 million refugees who are displaced by conflict are women and children?
Hanalei Somar writes, "While there is absolutely no doubt that Joseph Kony is a heinous human being, responsible for traumatizing a generation of young Ugandans, I want to let you know that this is not how change is created in the world. Invisible Children has unfortunately manipulated you into thinking that spending some money on two bracelets will rescue some African children."
Avantika Krishna counters, "I have worked with the organization for the past two years, before Joseph Kony was well-known and before Invisible Children received the publicity and attention it attracted through the now famous video. I can say, whole-heartedly that Invisible Children is not an organization that’s only after your money and that it is definitely not a scam. Its volunteers, executives, and supporters are all committed individuals who are truly passionate about stopping Kony from targeting any more communities and children, rehabilitating the affected communities, and ending war and terror once in Central Africa."
30-year Marines veteran T.X. Hammes argues that the current debate on whether or not to bomb Iran is being framed as a false choice. He says Iran is a classic wicked problem. Any “solution” brings a new set of problems. "There is no sure way to stop the Iranian weapons program short of invasion and occupation. Bombing makes sense only if you think a nuclear armed Iran that has been repeatedly bombed will be easier to deal with than a nuclear armed Iran that has not been bombed."
Co-founder of Voters Act Hudson Baird profiles the leading political startups at this year's SXSW conference in Austin, TX. Find out which cool, hip political start-ups made the list. (No, PolicyMic is not one of them).
Matthew Rozsa's overview of American history exposes the lie of right-wing claims about progressive economic policy proposals. Although figures like Paul, Glenn Beck, and the Tea Party claim the constitution was written to promote a vision of limited federal involvement in the economy, it turns out one of the driving factors behind the calling of the Constitutional Convention was the need for central economic authority.
Our funny piece of the week. Michael Luciano compiles a light-hearted dictionary to help you "cut through the b.s." of American politics. Some highlights: Campaign, n. a glorified fundraising contest held by reincarnated used car salesmen. Earmark, n. legislative K-Y Jelly. Politics, n. the process by which most people are made worse off.
Stephanie Dreyer writes that politicizing contraception jeopardizes women’s health by taking away access to a basic, preventative health care that treats and prevents many health conditions affecting women. "Contraception keeps women and families healthy, reduces unintended pregnancy and abortion, and saves the United States billions of dollars in health care costs." Here's her list of five reasons why we must make access to affordable birth control coverage a priority.
As a Brit, Matthew Feeney says American politics "offers a level of theater, hilarity, depression, and confusion that no other country can match. From America's level of religiosity to our reverance for the military, here are the top five issues that most set America apart from Europe culturally and politically.
Music streaming platforms like iTunes and Spotify have transformed the music industry. Record labels can no longer own talent as they did in the A&R-driven era, and stars are now born in bedrooms, shine on YouTube, and tweet directly with their fans. Jonathan Weidman argues that while artists and record labels are suffering in the new era, there's one big winner: consumers.
Photo Credit: lighternorth