Rights & Liberties

Word(s) of God

Religions traffic in what they claim to be divine certainty. So why is it so difficult for them to decide what to think of same-sex marriage? Surprising many, the Church of Latter Day Saints recently decided to endorse it.   While you’re here enjoying Ted Rall’s latest cartoon, please take a moment and read articles on related topics: 


Opponents of abortion in some states want to ban pregnant women from traveling out of state for an abortion. They want the police to deploy license-plate scanners in order to enforce their travel bans. What next?   While you’re here enjoying Ted Rall’s latest cartoon, please take a moment and read articles on related topics: 

Mass Shootings: Words That Hide Reality


  It’s time to talk about the words we use whenever the subject of gun violence arises.   National Rifle Association CEO and Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre has said, “The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun, is a good guy with a gun.”  

‘My Body, My Choice’: How Vaccine Foes Co-opted the Abortion Rallying Cry

LOS ANGELES — In the shadow of L.A.’s art deco City Hall, musicians jammed onstage, kids got their faces painted, and families picnicked on lawn chairs. Amid the festivity, people waved flags, sported T-shirts, and sold buttons — all emblazoned with a familiar slogan: “My Body, My Choice.”  

When the Heat Is Unbearable but There’s Nowhere to Go

This story by originally appeared in and is republished here as part of , a global journalism collaboration strengthening coverage of the climate story.   

“Justice” Is Unkind

After half a century of legalized abortion, the United States Supreme Court is about to roll back the clock of women&;s rights to 1972. Can&;t wait for their next contribution to the march of progress.   While you’re here enjoying Ted Rall’s latest cartoon, please take a moment and read articles on related topics: 

On Abortion, US Gets What It Deserves

If you woke up to the news that a Saudi judge had ruled that any man could punch unaccompanied women in the face, or that the Taliban’s Sharia court had decided that girls were no longer allowed to have appendectomies, would you be surprised? Of course not. Maybe outraged, but certainly not surprised. After all, this is the kind of nonsense that women-hating theocracies do.

A Friendship Born at an Abortion Rights Rally

As teenagers, Kellee Southern and Amy Beumer had very different experiences with the issue of abortion. Southern had to make the difficult decision to terminate a pregnancy when she was 16. At the same age, Beumer marched in Washington, DC, to deny young women the right to make that decision. On Tuesday, the two became friends at a rally for abortion rights in front of the Supreme Court.   

Hanger Judges

Justice should not be blind. The reality if the Supreme Court does overturn Roe v. Wade is as obvious as it is bleak. While you’re here enjoying Jon Richards’s latest cartoon, please take a moment to read these articles on related topics: 

Human Rights Report Blasts World Leaders, Corporations for Continued Inequality

Citing the grossly disproportionate distribution of vaccines as an example, a damning new report condemns world leaders and “corporate titans” for putting their profits and power ahead of facilitating an equitable global recovery from the pandemic. 

The Struggle to Open Churches in the World’s Most Populous Muslim Nation

The Religious Harmony Law in Indonesia was created to regulate religious issues on the construction of houses of worship, celebration of religious holidays, and religious teachings.    It has proven to be anything but harmonious.    

Black Journalist and Civil Rights Activist Remembered on Presidents Day

She received threatening phone calls at all hours. Strangers threw rocks through her windows. And the Ku Klux Klan burned crosses on the front lawn of her Little Rock, AR, home. 

MLK Jr. — From ‘Give Us the Ballot’ to ‘Why America May Go to Hell’

In honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, we asked our staff to reflect on their favorite quotes from King and how they resonate today.   This dearth of positive leadership from the federal government is not confined to one particular political party. Both political parties have betrayed the cause of justice. …  These men so often have a high blood pressure of words and an anemia of deeds. 

My Great-Grandpa’s Execution and Putin’s Attempt to Erase the Stalinist Past

More than just another Russian human rights group, Memorial sought to keep alive the memory of the horrors that took place under Stalin. It even helped me find the truth about the execution of my own great-grandfather.   “Grandpa died somewhere in Siberia, around 1953,” my 85-year-old aunt told me recently about how she’d learned of the death of her grandfather, my great-grandfather. 

When Reproductive Rights Are Stripped Away, Women Do It for Themselves

It’s easier to get an abortion in Ireland than it is in many states in the US. Let that sink in. In an overhwhelmingly Catholic country, the citizens made their opinion known, and the government legalized abortion in 2018. And yet Texas has installed a vigilante justice system to rat out anyone who helps a woman get an abortion, and the Supreme Court thinks that’s just fine. How did we get to this?

Midwives Deliver More Than Babies With Roe v. Wade on the Line

As the Supreme Court heard arguments in the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, pro-choice hearts sank. One of the most significant challenges to Roe v. Wade in years, the case centers around a gestational age ban, meaning it would outlaw abortion after 15 weeks. Why 15? It seems to be a random number, independent of fetal viability, which is generally set at 24 weeks.

Trump’s Supreme Court Clearly Pro-No Choice on Abortion

The Supreme Court, with a super-majority appointed by Donald Trump, is poised to create two nations when it comes to abortion rights — and birth control could be next.

‘Right To Repair’ Is a Fight for a Certain Kind of Freedom

  Once upon a time, God invented entropy so that stuff would break. This is because God is a tinkerer at heart, which is why we have such evolutionary experiments as the armadillo and the cargo short. But because of entropy, God set in motion a process that led to decay, broken eggs, cracked iPhone screens, the eventual heat death of the universe, and then more cracked iPhone screens after that.  

Why Does the Kremlin Keep Purging Crimea’s Muslims?

Early in the morning, while most people were still asleep, a dozen masked men stormed into an unfinished house outside Simferopol, the administrative capital of Russia-annexed Crimea. They rousted the pro-Ukraine Tatar community leader Nariman Jelyalov, his wife, and four children, searched the house, and confiscated his laptop.

I Was a GI in Afghanistan: Here’s Why I Can’t Forget the Women

I went digging into my box of Army memories in my garage — a box I tend to keep shut tight. I grabbed a little toy ring, I had a cry, and I went to bed.

The Bill’s in Manchin’s Court

Joe Manchin has a lot of power.   The West Virginia legislator is one of 50 Democratic senators, but, as a representative of a small, conservative state, he has no problem breaking rank with his party. And with the Senate split evenly along party lines, this means the fate of the Biden administration’s initiatives often rests in his hands alone.   Which means the Democrats have to please him to pass their agenda. Which means he can hold out for whatever he wants. Which he does.  

Reflections on the Tiananmen Square Massacre

Reading Time: 4 minutesOn June 4, 2021, the national flag was raised at 4:46 a.m. to the Chinese national anthem in Tiananmen Square. Bathed in the first rays of sunshine, streams of people — tourists, police guards, and morning exercisers — shared a moment of silence and watched as the flag rose.