Welcome to Vidor, a town most famous for its racism

A welcome sign for my hometown that sits alongside I-10. (Michael Corcoran )

When folks ask me where I’m from, I have a stock answer: You’ve probably never heard of it and if you have, whatever you heard probably wasn’t good.

Vidor, Texas, is a little strip of fast food restaurants and gas stations that bisects Interstate 10 at the midway point on…

A man who was mistakenly held at gunpoint and handcuffed by Seattle police responding to a hoax suicide call in 2018 is suing the city for physical and psychological damages, according to documents filed on July 29. The plaintiff, Reymon Leavell, is a man with visible physical and mental disabilities…

Haitian refugees line up for relief at Camp McCalla (U.S. National Archives)

In 2018, Robert Bowers carried out the deadliest antisemitic hate crime in US history, killing 11 Jewish worshippers in Pittsburgh. He chose the Tree of Life synagogue as the target for his massacre because of its work with refugees. …

Capital freely crosses borders — people should too.

A child collects water in a camp for displaced in Cité de Dieu, Port-au-Prince. (United Nations / Creative Commons)

News about the thousands of Haitian refugees at the Texas border has dominated the national conversation in the past week. On the margins of the standard mainstream discourse about immigration reform, there has been a parallel discussion on the left about abolishing borders altogether. …

(Twitter / @moleburps )

The Democrats are the party that stands for immigrants and other marginalized groups — so long as there are no political costs involved. During the presidential campaign, Joe Biden denounced the naked cruelty of Donald Trump’s immigration policy loudly and often. …

From Satanic panic to critical race theory, one psychological phenomenon helps explain why the right gets so riled up so fast.

Christopher Rufo appears on Tucker Carlson Tonight in September 2020 (Screenshot / YouTube)

A year ago, almost nobody knew what critical race theory was. This arcane academic niche was the dominion of a tiny group of left-leaning legal scholars until very recently. Today, it’s practically all conservatives talk about. Pundits rail against it from their bully pulpits on cable news. …

Our “awareness” is about as “raised” as it’s going to get. Now what?

(Nrkbeta / CC-BY-SA 2.0)

The designer “Tax the Rich” dress that Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez wore to the Met Gala sure pumped a lot of fuel into the ol’ discourse machine. Everybody had a take. Conservatives were calling it hypocritical. Critics to her left dismissed it as performative. …

People are calling out The Activist, but sadly it’s an accurate portrayal of what “activism” has become these days.

Indian model-actress Priyanka Chopra at the Cannes Film Festival (Joan Hernandez Mir / CC-BY)

CBS just announced it would be coming out with an Apprentice-style competition reality show called “The Activist” in which six contestants will be paired up with celebrities like Usher and Priyanka Chopra to promote their causes. So far, the show has been widely ridiculed online — and for good reason.

As we mark the 20th anniversary of 9/11, we should also recognize the terrible cost paid by the Afghan people.

A soldier patrols near an Afghan graveyard. (U.S. Army / CC-BY)

Like anyone else who was old enough to remember the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, I have the memory of that day etched into my brain. What I recall most clearly is sitting on the couch of my little one-bedroom college apartment watching the news that morning. …

All eyes are on the Supreme Court right now, but what’s going on at the appellate level is also terrifying.

(Justin Ward / CanvaPro)

Ever since the Supreme Court functionally overturned Roe vs. Wade last week, national attention has been laser-focused on the ruling’s dire consequences for women’s health. Meanwhile, other horrifying decisions are being handed down one level lower on the judicial hierarchy. …

Justin Ward

Journalist and activist. Founder and co-chair of DivestSPD. Bylines at SPLC, The Baffler, GEN, USA Today. Follow on Twitter: @justwardoctrine, @DivestSPD

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