The Year in Hate and Extremism–2015

Mark Potok, The Year in Hate and Extremism. Southern Poverty Law Center, 17 February 2016. “The number of hate and antigovernment ‘Patriot’ groups grew last year, and terrorist attacks and radical plots proliferated. Charleston. Chattanooga. Colorado Springs. In these towns and dozens of other communities around the nation, 2015 was a year marked by extraordinary violence from domestic extremists — a year of living dangerously. Antigovernment militiamen, white supremacists, abortion foes, domestic Islamist radicals, neo-Nazis and lovers of the Confederate battle flag targeted police, government officials, black churchgoers, Muslims, Jews, schoolchildren, Marines, abortion providers, members of the Black Lives Matter protest movement, and even drug dealers.”

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The Price of Nice Nails: Manicurists are routinely underpaid and exploited

Sarah Maslin Nir, The Price of Nice Nails: Manicurists are routinely underpaid and exploited, and endure ethnic bias and other abuse. The New York Times, 7 May 2015. “UNVARNISHED: Articles in this [two-part] series [examine] the working conditions and potential health risks endured by nail salon workers.”

Update from the Public Editor of The New York Times: Margaret Sullivan, New Questions on Nail Salon Investigation, and a Times Response, The New York Times, 6 November 2015. “My take: The series and its author, Sarah Maslin Nir, had admirable intentions in speaking for underpaid or abused workers. And the investigation did reveal some practices in need of reform. But, in places, the two-part investigation went too far in generalizing about an entire industry. Its findings, and the language used to express them, should have been dialed back — in some instances substantially…. There is a legitimate and important subject here about low-paid work done by immigrants in New York City — not just in nail salons. It includes, for example, the food-delivery business and many other services that affluent New Yorkers take for granted. I’m always glad to see The Times take on situations in which the poor and voiceless are exploited. But, in doing so, it must protect its reputation for accuracy and rigor above all. My recommendation is that The Times write further follow-up stories, including some that re-examine its original findings and that take on the criticism from salon owners and others — not defensively but with an open mind.”

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Where Are the Children? For extortionists, undocumented migrants have become big business

Sarah Stillman, Where Are the Children? For extortionists, undocumented migrants have become big business. The New Yorker, 27 April 2015. “Tougher border security has made migrants [from Central America] more vulnerable. Routes are more perilous, and organized crime controls many smuggling operations. One activist says, ‘The harder you make it to cross, the more people can charge, the more dangerous the trip becomes.'”

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Beyond the Border: Texas has become the deadliest state in the US for undocumented immigrants

Melissa del Bosque, Beyond the Border. The Texas Observer and The Guardian, 6 August 2014. “Texas has become the deadliest state in the US for undocumented immigrants. In 2012, 271 migrants died while crossing through Texas, surpassing Arizona as the nation’s most dangerous entry point. The majority of those deaths didn’t occur at the Texas-Mexico border but in rural Brooks County, 70 miles north of the Rio Grande, where the US Border Patrol has a checkpoint. To circumvent the checkpoint, migrants must leave the highway and hike through the rugged ranchlands. Hundreds die each year on the trek, most from heat stroke. This four-part series looks at the lives impacted by the humanitarian crisis.” A partnership between The Texas Observer and The Guardian.

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