Our World Today

Our World Today

September 22, 2021 Uncategorized 40

If you have read the newspaper, watched the news, or listen to the radio recently you would know there is a lot happening. Take a moment to research something that is happening in the news today. The event you decide to research can be on the local, national, or global level. This is your chance to educate yourself and fellow Bonners. Tell us: what is the issue occurring. where is it taking place, what is being done about it, and how can other people, countries, or governments support those in this crisis?

40 Responses

  1. Michelle Villa says:

    An ongoing issue I’ve read was the support of missing migrant families who have to find their loved ones through smugglers or informal networks. Families are being ignored by the government and with the pandemic hitting globally it caused more exclusion. It causes a psychological and financial impact on the disappearance of their loved ones. One story was told of how a farmer’s son went missing and reported “They used to help me till and farm the land and now I am getting older and weaker and can’t work, he said. ” I rely on my relatives for agricultural labor but my farm is plowed later and cannot produce much. My life is becoming hell.” I believe no matter what legal status, families should have resources to find their family members and have this support. When reading the article, I was not aware of this website called the Missing Migrants Project and I personally checked the website out. The website is amazing for giving resources for families to find their loved ones and share their stories to raise awareness of this issue. The project is there to give resources regardless of legal status and the service is completely free including being available in 12 languages!! This website creates inclusive content offering advice and data globally to implement safe and accessible ways. Instead of receiving no information of loved ones or authorities turning a missing person case into migrant smuggling. The missing migrant’s project offers a database of reported missing people to save lives and implement a humane and safe route for migration.

  2. The issue occurring is the Texas abortion law that has been in the news a lot recently. The Justice Department is requesting a block on a the controversial law. “At stake is the ability of women in the country’s second-largest state to get an abortion after about six weeks of pregnancy, a time before which many people don’t realize they’re pregnant,” (NPR.org). People made petitions against the law, object to it on social media as headlines are reposted everywhere we can see. This judicial hearing is taking place now, coming from department’s lawsuit against Texas for the new law within the last month. We can support the women whose reproductive rights are at stake by lifting up women’s voices and listen to their concerns about the law, and let the court rule over the issue in hopes that the equal rights amendment will be protected in the midst of this pivotal time.

  3. Kayla McKay says:

    In the past, the government in China had enforced strict laws and rules about abortion. In past years they enforced strict abortion laws because it was linked to cultural values. Only males were preferred over the female gender which led to a significant divide in the population. This act of selective abortion led to a skewed ratio in the country. An example of this divide is in the 2021 census of the population in China where there were almost 35 million more males in the country which has a population of 1.4 billion. This law of selective abortion was referred to as the one-child policy. This policy also lead to millions of non-medical abortions and research explains that women were increasingly suffering from psychological disorders. Not only were the consequences of selective abortion affecting the ratio in the population, but it was also impacting the workforce because as that was decreasing, the country’s economy was as well. Now, the country has made drastic measures to change its approach to abortion and encourage women to only get it for medical emergencies instead of for the traditional selective abortion reason. Since women started to stick up for themselves, the policy has not changed and women have advocated being more in control of their bodies instead of the government. By China’s government removing policies and laws about selective abortion, they are promoting gender equality and representation.

  4. Tori Mangelli says:

    In Texas, a new law was just passed that banned most abortions, starting September 1st, despite the fact that Roe v Wade established a constitutional right to have the procedure done. The way they got around this was by establishing a “bounty system” where ordinary people could sue those involved in the procedure. If someone sues and wins the lawsuit, they could win $10K, but even if they lose they still do not have to pay for the defendant’s legal cost. This allows anyone inside or outside of Texas to be a vigilante and file a complaint in any court in Texas and limits women’s constitutional rights.

  5. Kimberly Lopez says:

    Climate change has been an ongoing crisis that has affected our world with short-term consequences that can later grow to a long-term consequence causing a threat to the world as we know it. This crisis does not affect one but all nations, the United Nations has recently held a COP26 climate change conference in which countries are gathered to discuss innovative ways to combat climate change. In this conference, they have discussed resolutions one of them being reducing or phasing out coal; coal is responsible for 46% of carbon dioxide emissions worldwide and also covers 72% of total greenhouse gas. Furthermore, the motion that they also want to put in place is the Honour $100 billion commitment regarding the financing for climate change in which developed countries are held responsible to increase pledges and commit to the $100 billion a year that can help save lives and livelihoods. Climate change is an important issue that needs to be discussed and acknowledge because it not only affects the earth but it affects our health as well.

  6. Maura+Lynch says:

    In NY’s news this week, Governor Kathy Hochul announced a healthcare worker vaccine mandate, followed by the termination of those who did not comply. This could be viewed as a step in the right direction, or as an infringement on rights. Many healthcare workers are speaking out from the frontlines of the pandemic, outraged that now their jobs are being taken from them, after being called “heroes” by these same people only a few months ago. In a nursing shortage, it could be detrimental to terminate those who have decided to stay at the hospital, especially when they wear masks and face shields anyway during patient contact. This is a topic that I find hard to pick a stance on, because while I am pro vaccine, I think it is even more harmful to patients to have a high nurse: patient ratio. I also find it interesting that these are people who are extremely educated on how viruses and vaccines work, so I don’t understand why they did not jump at the opportunity to get the vaccine when it was first released, especially since they saw the terrors that hospitals faced, and still face, during this pandemic.

  7. Brianna Rodriguez says:

    Puerto Rico has dealt with a troubled electric grid for a long time, which was worsened during Hurricane Maria. After Hurricane Maria struck, 80% of Puerto Rico’s power grid was knocked out, leaving a majority of the island without power. Due to the fact that Puerto Rico’s power grid was already in shambles, there were still cities on the island without power in 2021. This year, about $2 billion was released to Puerto Rico to finally repair their electric grids. The new electrical system is meant to be more resistant to future storms and climate change, while also emitting less carbon dioxide. The amount of money given to Puerto Rico also requires the government to outline how it will ensure the money reaches marginalized and underserved populations. In recent months, the Puerto Rican government has changed the electric grid company that they previously had to an American company. Although this was a step in the right direction for the island to finally restore its power grid, this new transition has caused more parts of the island to lose their power. Despite the people’s protests against the new company worsening the power in Puerto Rico, change has not been prompt on the island. The American company should do their jobs and fix the electric grids. Puerto Rico’s government should also take its role as the people’s voice to demand that the American company’s restore the island’s power.

  8. Giavanna+Pitagno says:

    This week there was big news about the economy of the United States. The fiscal year for the country was set to end on September 30th. Each year a new budget needs to be passed and without doing so the country would technically not have the funds to pay for certain agencies. This would include effects to federal employees, the post office and so on. Ultimately this was a result of an ongoing divided country. No matter what side of the aisle you sit on, each side wants the money to be allocated to certain areas. At the end of the day the United States is a democracy and the two sides must come together and try to compromise so the bill could get passed. It would not be the first time the country fell into this panic and it would not have been the first time the country failed to resolve the issue by the deadline. The Democratic led House and Senate passed the bill and President Biden signed it. What can we learn: we need to get away from such a polarized country. Yes, both sides have good and bad points, but people are people. We need to be able to have productive conversations and have less divide so events like this do not occur so often.

  9. Erin+Spence says:

    This week, in particular, I have been hearing a lot about the changes that have been made to the endangered species list. As of Wednesday, September 29th, 23 species have been removed from the endangered species list because they have been declared extinct. In 1973, the Endangered Species Act was created and put into place to conserve and protect endangered and threatened species. Unfortunately, most of the species were extinct or nearly extinct when they were added to the list. I think this is a prominent example of an act of government that is created for the appearance of working towards solutions related to climate change and animal extinction, with no real change occurring. One of the main issues that are causing these animals to become extinct at such rapids rates is the lack of urgency from the government. The process of protecting species needs to be reformed, and additional funding needs to be provided to continue effective conservation efforts. Entire species of animals are dying because of the impact that humans are having on our earth, which is causing changes to our climate as well. Although there are many people who do not believe this is a serious issue, there is concrete science that declares that our earth is in crisis. I think WWF is a great example of an organization that is working hard to help these endangered species with a focus on the ways that our actions not only impact animals but humans as well. This is an issue that should be at the top of the agenda because the current way of life on earth is not sustainable.

  10. Since the COVID-19 pandemic began the word “mas” has become part of our daily vocabulary and the mask mandate is something we are all familiar with. In NYS, our former governor urged residents in accordance with CDC guidelines to wear masks, however, in other states, residents are being penalized for wearing masks.
    Although masks are a science issue, it has become a political one. Within the last month, a couple was kicked out of a restaurant for wearing masks in a Texas restaurant because their son was immunocompromised and in Florida, money has been withheld from school districts that required masks because they went against DeSantis’ No-mask executive order. Thankfully both these events have received attention from news sources and although the restaurant owner will not change his policy, people know that this event and others similar to it occurred. In addition, the education department reimbursed the Florida school districts for the money they got withheld from them.
    The fact that individuals are being banned from restaurants and schools are not receiving funding because they want protection from a virus that is still prevalent is shocking. The fact that masks-something that science created and that has been in existence to protect one from harmful pathogens/antigens has because the source of a political debate is immensely frustrating and disheartening.

  11. Samantha Lunt says:

    Vaccine Shortages is something that has not been a major issue in the United States and Europe. However, in poorer countries this has not been the case. In wealthier and more developed countries they have had the ability too distributed and put money towards getting vaccines, while other countries have not been able to do so. Also, the fact that making the vaccine takes time and more powerful countries are able to get their hands on the vaccine faster and also have the ability to distribute it better than other countries. Many countries in Africa have not even been able to start administering the vaccine. During this time many countries are focused on themselves, but I think it’s important that governments step up and also help each other. So that this can end for everyone.

  12. Nancy Rasmussen says:

    Greg Abbott, the governor of Texas, recently signed into law one of the nation’s strictest abortion measures in history. This law bans procedure as early as six weeks into pregnancy. The law took effect in September. The signing of this bill and the implementation of it has sparked a nationwide uproar, as it should. The bill bans abortions after whenever an ultrasound can detect what lawmakers defined as a fetal heartbeat.

    As of today, abortion providers, doctors, women’s rights groups and even some U.S. government officials are battling to overturn this law. The scariest part about this law is that most women do not even know they are pregnant at six weeks. Last week, the U.S. House passed a reproductive rights bill that would nullify Texas’ by implementing the right to an abortion into federal law. This legislation, however, is unlikely to pass in the Senate, and therefore, unlikely to become law. Something definitely needs to be done about this inhumane, violating law.

    • Samantha Lunt says:

      Hi Nancy, thank you for sharing this. It is definitely an issue that has been talked about, but not talked about enough. This is an injustice that affects so many women and limits peoples access to safe healthcare. I think it’s important always for the conversation to continue so that change will come from it.

  13. Victoria Taco says:

    Criminal injustice and corruption in the prison facilities has been seen throughout the globe, however, recently in Ecuador they are facing prison riots that are killing many people. In this year over 100 people have been killed in the three combined riots in Andean’s Prison. 24 people died on September 28th due to a five hour riot where the people in charge could have prevented many lives lost. The facility faces a lot of backlash due to how it treats their inmates and many organizations in Ecuador including The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights organization urged the government to take action. The treatment of the prisoners is barbaric and on top of that the people in charge of the facility run close with some notorious gangs which is another reason why there are so many deaths at this prison. There is currently a 5 year plan in order to try and change the incarceration in Ecuador and I think if more people were aware of these issues and organizations that are trying to help would help this problem. The government needs to hear more people complain about the mistreatment in that facility.

    • Cody Romani says:

      Hi Taco, thank you sharing this information about corruption in prison facilities around the world. I agree that the treatment of prisoners is unjust even in prison facilities in our country. More people do need to be aware of these issues. Thank you for educating me about the mistreatment of prisoners in Ecuador.

  14. Liz MacMurray says:

    In the Tigray region of Ethiopia, famine is currently a rising issue. Due to the conflict that took/is taking place in this region between Tigrayan and Ethiopian forces, many people have been left in a state of a humanitarian crisis. Communities were torn apart, crops were burned, factories were destroyed and many families were left with nothing. There was a cease-fire from the Ethiopian government but citizens in the Tigray region still aren’t getting access to aid. 12 aid workers have been killed trying to deliver supplies and aid. It looks like the United States, the European Union, and the United Kingdom are trying to ensure aid. Help seemed to be very delayed and slow and no true concrete action has taken place. To help now, I think that more people need to become aware and involved with these issues because I’ve never even heard of this issue until I did further research on my own. Even though aid is trying to be delivered, I think another plan needs to be formed in order to deliver it safely and successfully. This is seen as the worst hunger crisis in a decade and more attention needs to be brought to that fact.

    • Erin+Spence says:

      Hey Liz, thank you for sharing some information on this topic. This was something that I was also unaware of, but it is such an important issue. I think one of the most fundamental human rights is the right to food, and there are so many people across the world who are denied access.

  15. Rachel+Gifford says:

    In Berlin, there is a housing crisis. German voters want the local government to buy up hundreds of thousands of housing units. Germany used to have a very cheap rental cost, but as the population grew lack of housing became a huge issue. As a result, rental costs went up and the lack of housing has become a crisis. Voters have backed a referendum(general vote) for the government to buy back the housing units from major landlords through article 15 which states that the state can take control of land or resources that are privately owned, for the common good. The goal is to buy the rentals and distribute them as public housing. During the recent elections, it was put to a vote and passed. The mayor of Berlin now says that a bill must be drafted, but she is ready to move forward. Berlin has already started the move by buying up over 14,000 rental properties. This is controversial because it will be costly for the government and many people are against the use of article 15 for this purpose. However; this is major news because this could set a precedent for other countries to do this where they are as well. I think something like this could really help major cities as well as small towns that have increasingly higher rent rates and are pushing people out.

  16. Stephanie Da Fonseca says:

    There was a law that was supposed to pass through the senate parliamentarian Elizabeth MacDonough that would reform our policy about immigration. This would help document and give immigrants a path towards citizenship for many who were in the front line, first responders and emergency workers that worked all throughout Covid to help our nation move forward. Unfortunately, MacDonough turned down the plan and now Chuck Schumer, Senate majority leader, said he will continue to fight for these immigrants because they fought through the pandemic, paying all their taxes and were not able to receive any assistance from the government since they are not citizens. I am not completely sure if as citizens we can do anything about it because it is something that one person in the government has to approve, but any awareness, petitions and conversations about this is greatly appreciated because these people risked their lives day after day, without any access to any financial help although they pay taxes and are still not able to call this place their home.

  17. Mara Golden says:

    One thing that has been happening in the world today is the slow down of treatment across the world because of Covid. Health care workers have faced so many hardships over the past year, especially in the shortage of staff. It can be easy for someone who is not in need of immediate treatment to see and understand this but for those who need specific treatments, struggle with this concept. People who, within the past year or so, diagnosed with cancer have been forced to wait for their treatments to start. Having this life stressor hanging over a person’s, and their families’, head can be beyond frustrating. Being a part of a family who has to watch a family member wait for treatment because there’s not enough staff or enough resources is very difficult. I cannot imagine the struggle our health care workers face everyday and how difficult it is to tell people that they must wait for treatment.

  18. Chandler+Edbauer says:

    Over one month into Taliban control of Afghanistan, fears for women’s and girl’s rights and education have only grown fueled further Tuesday by a top Taliban official’s comments that “women will not be allowed to come to universities or work.” The tweets from the Taliban-appointed chancellor of Kabul University set off a fresh firestorm, prompting a clarification and a complaint about media coverage before the outspoken chancellor deleted his Twitter account. The U.S. and other Western countries have called on the Taliban to respect women’s and girls’ rights, especially access to education. The Taliban have already taken steps to restrict them, including announcing earlier this month that certain subjects may be off-limits and female students would be barred from studying with males. That could mean they’ll be excluded entirely, given the limited resources at Afghanistan’s schools and universities. Already, the militant group has named an all-male cabinet and prohibited women from returning to work, saying there were security concerns that temporarily prevented it. A handful of women-led protests against Taliban rules have faced violent crackdowns in Kabul and other cities. When the Taliban controlled Afghanistan from 1996 to 2001, they largely barred women and girls from public life without a male relative and excluded them from schools and universities entirely. Kabul University chancellor Mohammad Ashraf Ghairat suggested a return to that policy Tuesday, tweeting, “As long as a real Islamic environment is not provided for all, women will not be allowed to come to universities or work. Islam first.” After media outlets reported on his comments, he issued a second tweet, criticizing the New York Times in particular for what he called a “bad misunderstanding” of his comments. And then deleted his account.

  19. Abby James-Vickery says:

    One thing that is going on that is not being fully recognized is how Covid-19 has impacted the foster care system. Covid-19 has delayed the entire process for so many children because for a year court did not happen. Cases have piled up because there were no in-person hearings. This has also resulted in many kids aging out of the system so they lost their chances at a permanent placement. Many kids end up homeless, in danger, or even in prison because they aged out of the system. Many kids are also having their adoption days pushed off and so they are sort of floating in the system worried and without answers. These children are living in fear each day and do not know what comes next for them. The system is constantly changing and with Covid-19 on top of that, many kids and resource families (foster families) are left with questions and do not know what comes next. Social Workers and others are fighting every day to better the system and are in constant need of support. I hope that we all become more aware of this issue so that we can raise awareness and help in any way that we can.

    • Mara Golden says:

      Hi Abby,

      This is an amazing topic to discuss! I wish it was talked about more because our system is very flawed! The imprisonment rates have sky rocketed over the past year in younger age groups, unfortunately a lot of them being from the foster system. This is a problem I hold close to my heart and hope one day is not as flawed.

  20. Jonathan Limey says:

    On September 15th, 2021, the Order of Friars Minor and Sisters of St. Joseph of Orange had a major thing to celebrate. Sister Mary Beth Ingham was honored at an affiliation ceremony at Mission San Luis Rey. Sister Ingham was honored with three things. First, she was given the honor and recognition she deserves. She has lived and continues to live a faith-based live helping and serving others while following in the footsteps of St. Francis. Second, she was given a habit. Habits are the brown robes which the Friars where, which symbolize their vows of Chasity, Obedience, and Poverty as well as their connection to St. Francis. Finally, Sister Ingham was honored with being welcomed into the Franciscan brotherhood being called Brother Mary Beth Ingham by the Friars after the ceremony. Brother Ingham said after the ceremony “It’s beyond anything I could ever have imagined. It’s very, very heartwarming and humbling.” With Brother Ingham being welcomed into the Franciscan brotherhood we are moving to a better world. One where women can be priests and equality is seen everywhere including the strict stuck in the past Catholic Church. Personally, I am happier to know I am at a Franciscan College when seeing the Friars push to make a change and welcome people like Brother Ingham into the world.

    • Mara Golden says:

      Hi Jonathan!

      I love how you took this topic and made it a positive post! There is a lot of negativity going on in our world today and we need to be reminded of the good people are doing!

  21. Cody Romani says:

    As a result of Covid-19, students have worn masks in school to protect themselves and others. One issue in the news today is mask mandate bans in school. Why would an institution or school district ban masks especially for children? Arizona Governor Doug Ducey has attempted to instill a mask mandate ban in Arizona schools. This decision has faced much backlash from parents, teachers, and other government officials in Arizona. This mask mandate ban was tucked in to the Arizona budget by Republican lawmakers. On Monday September 27th, a Arizona judge thankfully found that the mask mandate ban is schools was unconstitutional. School districts in Arizona now can enact their own mask standards and protect teachers and students from Covid-19. This was a major victory for many families and schools. People have a right to wear a mask and protect themselves and others from Covid-19. As an American, I need to continue to educate myself about Covid-19 and do my best to protect others.

  22. Amanda Molloy says:

    I decided to do some research on the Gabby Petito domestic violence case. Her disappearance and death have created an uproar in this country about the issue of domestic violence. I thought this was an important thing to talk about because it is such a prevalent yet hidden issue that invades so many peoples’ lives. I take Relationship Violence with Dacey Bonney on Monday nights as a class and this past week we discussed this case and its importance. As my professor explained, Petito’s case has caused a surge of calls to domestic violence hotlines and has also forced many courts, both local and national, to reopen missing person cases that are suspected to be related to domestic violence, with overall, about 10,000 of these cases being reopened. This is something important to look at because it shows how one specific instance of something can create waves of awareness. Gabby’s tragic story helped so many others get the courage to call and try and get help and helped so many families have hope again with court cases being reopened. I think domestic violence is a topic that everyone should be educated about because it affects people on a personal, community- based and national level.

  23. Jack McKenna says:

    30 minutes north of here in Saratoga, BLM activists are being arrested for a peaceful rally that happened 2 months ago. Officials are remaining silent and there are warrants out for people accused of “blocking traffic.” Using videos and surveillance cameras they are identifying people and arresting them, some by undercover cops without proper explanation, and they are targeting the organizers and leaders. Many are people our age who were peacefully protesting with signs and chants, no violence. The Police Chief has gone on record during press conferences claiming that BLM activists from Albany were coming up to Saratoga and he would do everything in his power to keep them out and protect their city. When in reality they come from all over, especially from Saratoga because people see the injustice and want change. But they won’t admit that, and they want to play on people’s fear of Albany and Black people, which is a disgusting display of racism and they should be ashamed of themselves. He made slight racial comments, using generational history and “their way of life” as reasons for being fearful of the change the BLM is advocating for. The protests are still going strong in Saratoga because of the way the police have addressed and handled the protests over the past few years. We can speak up on social media, write and call to the news outlets, write and call to Saratoga officials, or go and join protests outside the police stations and court house. (or prank call and send hate mail to the Saratoga police department.. jk… unless). The city officials could easily step in, and maybe it wouldn’t hurt for someone to abolish the police and set up community based programs, relocate funds to social programs for certain issues such as mental health and domestic disputes. Or maybe we could reform the police union so they can be held accountable. I’m also a big fan of firing racist cops and sending them to rehab centers or therapy retreats (that last 45-life). But I’m just spitballing here.

    • Erin+Spence says:

      Hey Jack, I can tell how passionate you are about this topic. I love that you are bringing up an issue that is so close to home at Siena. I think so often, people don’t understand the real power they have to speak their minds and create change. You gave so many great examples of ways that people can get involved and speak up against this violence.

  24. Ava Bibisi says:

    As everyone knows, COVID-19 has created a shortage in healthcare, but not just for providers, but also the occupancies in the healthcare facilities. Currently 5 states, Alabama, Georgia, Texas, Florida, and Arkansas, has less than 10% left of their bed ICU capacity. This means that hospitals are needing to renovate their facilities, turning surgical units into patient care rooms, and turning away unhealthy, or pregnant women from the opportunity of receiving care. On top of this, many hospitals across the United States have reported oxygen shortages due to this over occupancy of individuals. This really strikes me and is one of the reasons I feel so passionately about becoming a nurse. Help is needed more so now than ever and its tragic to see what healthcare workers and their patients have to go through admits this pandemic.

    • Chandler+Edbauer says:

      Hi Ava!
      I think the national and global shortage of healthcare workers is a very important message that needs to be spread. I think the ICU capacity is an important statistic that should be shared. I hope your endeavors becoming a nurse work out for you and I value your call to order.

  25. Nia Colon says:

    One thing that stuck out to me was the COVID-19 pandemic and how it is related to healthcare workers. Just last night New York Gov. Kathy Hochul singed an executive order to address the potential shortage of healthcare workers. In addition to the addressing the shortages there was also a vaccine mandate that went into effect Monday night. This is only specific to New York state but I do know that in California this has already been in effect. The shortages will be addressed by looking for both new graduates and those who are in retirement to come back into the healthcare filed.

  26. Jackson+Regan says:

    One thing that is obviously being covered a lot is the big infrastructure bill, not the $3.5 T “soft” infrastructure bill, but the “hard” one that deals with our roads, rails, water and other pieces of American infrastructure that have been poorly maintained and deferred on for decades now. The two pieces I find interesting are the lack of unity among Democrats as well as the one part no one is covering; how most of what is in the bill won’t be immediate. Why? Bureaucratic red tape. Comedian Bill Maher, who has been identified as a “traditional liberal”, summed it up best in one of his “New Rule” segments on his show “Real Time with Bill Maher”. He said, when referring to ambitious projects in America, “it turns into a giant money grab… so much bull*** is built into everything that it’s a boondoggle before it starts…the ever-ballooning costs, the inflated contracts, the back-scratching, the kickbacks, the private contractors, the padded expense accounts, the layers of consultants, the permits the fees…the red tape. Graft on a scale untamable.” So as much as everyone is focusing on the in-fighting among Democrats because party unity for them is as dead as bipartisanship is in this country (both of which are never a good sign for solving national issues that are literally killing people daily), it’s also important to notice what’s written in the fine print. No one actually seems to pay attention to what’s written into the laws that get passed. Everyone focuses on whatever is trending on social media news, when what matters, and what will impact the most people, is usually written and debated when no one is looking. Focus on, and pressure your lawmakers on those topics, because they are usually the severely under-reported issues, and they also are the ones that need the most activism and attention. This red-tape and bureaucracy needs to be thoroughly looked at with level-headed eyes and people willing to talk and make compromises for the good of the nation. Party hard-line stances equal gridlock and government shutdown. Vote for lawmakers that can get actual, meaningful bureaucratic reform and bipartisan laws passed, because those are the lawmakers that will actually be able to deliver beneficial results to people

  27. Michael Averill says:

    2021 has been a turbulent year for the nation of Haiti, which has a long history of repression and struggles, being that it was the first ever nation formed by former enslaved people who fought off their French colonizers to earn their freedom. This past July, the democratically elected president of Haiti, Jovenel Moïse, was assassinated, sending the country into a widespread panic. Since then, a 7.2 magnitude earthquake hit Haiti, killing over 2,000 people and resulting in the ongoing humanitarian crisis we are witnessing today. It is estimated that 650,000 Hatians are in need of humanitarian assistance, as reported by a September 14th USAID report.
    As a result of the compounding conflicts in the country, many Hatians have attempted to flee and find refuge in other countries, mainly the United States. The situation culminated in roughly 12,000 Hatians setting up camp under a bridge outside of the U.S. border in Texas, with horrifying images of U.S. border patrol images riding horses and using whips to prevent the asylum seekers from entering the country. We must continue to advocate for the people of Haiti and for the humane treatment of immigrants at our border. We owe it to our neighbors in the Caribbean to support them in their time of need.

  28. Annabelle says:

    President Xi Jinping has pledged that China will not build new coal-fire projects abroad. China has historically funded coal projects in countries like Indonesia and Vietnam under an infrastructure project known as the Belt and Road initiative designed to increase trade and stimulating economic growth. As the worlds largest greenhouse gas emitter, this pledge is a significant step to reducing the global temperature and carbon footprint. The decision was made as a step to reach the standards set in the Paris Climate Agreement and China’s goal to reach carbon neutrality by 2060. While restricting new coal projects abroad is an important commitment, the majority of pollution originates from inside the nations borders. This pledge is an incredible step toward a carbon neutral, sustainable planet and China has held true by not funding any coal projects so far in 2021. This display of commitment will hopefully inspire other nations to also make concrete policy changes and implement sustainable environmental practices as well.

    • Samantha Lunt says:

      Hi Annabelle, thank you for sharing this. I had not heard about this, but it is definitely a step in the right direction. It is definitely powerful for a country to take this first step to better the climate and like you said, hopefully this will help other countries follow.

  29. Abeer Jafri says:

    In Afghanistan, an extremist group called the Taliban has declared restoration of the Islamic Emirate. They have many oppressive rules that impede the humanitarian rights of the country’s civilians, especially women. Women are now forbidden from getting jobs, education, and even going out without a male accompaniment, while wearing a burqa. The last American troops recently left the country, and many people of Afghanistan were trying to exit the country to get away from the Taliban’s rule. We can help by donating, volunteering, and advocating for refugees in America. Albany itself has had a large influx of them, so there are many organizations are in search of volunteers. There are many websites where you can send monetary donations, and calling on Congress can also make a difference in terms of finding resources to help. Lastly, stay informed by reading reliable news outlets, and educate others about the situation.

    • Cody Romani says:

      Hi Abeer, thank you for sharing this news story and thank you for educating me. It is a major injustice that women in Afghanistan are held back from getting jobs and pursuing an education. This is a humans rights issue too. You pose some great solutions such as donating, volunteering, and advocating for refugees in Afghanistan as well as in America. Education and awareness are certainly key.

  30. Nora Diede says:

    In Guatemala there is a crisis taking place due to the impacts of climate change. Many individuals are being negatively affected by the flood and mudslides resulting from heavy rainfall and flooding. This, mixed with periods of drought, are causing farms to be ruined and farmers having no other option but to migrate. They are attempting to sell whatever aspect of their farm that they can, then borrowing sums of money, and seek refuge in cities within Guatemala. As a result of this, jobs within the area are scarce and people are unable to advance economically. Many people also seek refugee north of Guatemala. As a result of climate change 1 in 5 children are stated to be malnourished within this country, and as already explained people’s lives are being displaced, while their finances are being devastated. Of course there are efforts to decrease climate change on a global scale, such as The Paris Agreement. There must be deep cuts on global emissions to begin to aid and resolve the issues people in Guatemala are facing, and other issues that are apparent world wide. It is important to note that Guatemala is an example of what is to come for many other regions if these changes are not made globally. The best way to address this enormous issue is to work on decreasing the impacts of climate change, which can take many forms.

    • Chandler+Edbauer says:

      Hi Nora!
      I did not know that all of this was going on in Guatemala. The farm issue is a big deal because of job scarcity as you mentioned and deepening the economy. I think your interest in climate change is important and your warning to other regions should be taken seriously.

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