Social Issues

 
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As furor over reproductive rights grows louder, number of states that are ‘hostile’ to abortion doubles, study finds

Long before the furor over contraception erupted this year, lawmakers at the state level began a coordinated effort to curtail reproductive rights, peaking with a record number of anti-abortion laws in 2011.

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  The inner city jobs crisis: What’s the solution?

Deborah Simmons of The Washington Times and Algernon Austin of the Economic Policy Institute discuss possible solutions for the unemployment crisis in inner cities.

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  Thoai Nguyen on bridging the racial divide through hip hop

A Vietnamese-American essayist, Thoai Nguyen, talks about tensions in the inner city of Philadelphia between African-Americans and newly arrived south Asian immigrants.

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  ‘The Corner,’ revisited: Have recent economic gains changed anything in inner city Baltimore?

Scott Simon returns to inner city Baltimore to see if recent economic gains are improving the lot of under-employed and unemployed young African-American men there.

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  Portraits of hunger: Stories of Americans on food stamps

Food stamps have become a political issue in the campaign, and Need to Know examines why a record number of Americans need help buying food every month.

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  Jeff Greenfield on food stamps and the American safety net

In this essay, Jeff Greenfield asks, “What does it tell us about our country that so many require assistance to meet some of the most fundamental of needs?”

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  Ramesh Ponnuru offers a critical take on the food stamp program

Jeff Greenfield asks Ramesh Ponnuru, a food stamp critic: “Do you have a problem with a federal government program that says, under a set of circumstances, we’re going to help you eat?”

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  Presidentiality: Are colleges encouraging atheism?

Are colleges anti-religion? Our “Presidentiality” series examines a claim by Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum that higher education breeds secularism.

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  Economics lesson: The student-debt dilemma

With student loan debt now nearing $1 trillion, Need to Know looks at the dilemma facing young people: go to college and likely accumulate tens of thousands of dollars in debt, or skip it and risk never qualifying for a higher-paying job.