Social Issues


SHIT SHOW AMERICA — July 4, 2018
According to many Americans their country is experiencing a dark, “un-American” moment. But almost all problems the US is dealing with are as American as apple pie and as old as Methusalem — Trump or no Trump. An essay.
Groene – essay “Eternal decay” (LINK, Dutch)

TODAY’S YOUTH — May 1, 2018
Millennials are said to be lazy and narcissistic. Malcolm Harris prefers to point at the economic and ecological challenges his generation has inherited. “Most millennials don’t like capitalism.”
Zuiderlucht – Interview Harris (LINK, Dutch)

“UTOPISM IS IN THE AIR” — November 8, 2017
Everything Naomi Klein has ever written seems to be meant for this moment in time. “Trump isn’t the crisis,” she says. ‘He is a symptom. We need to understand the underlying trends that made his rise possible.”
Groene – Interview Naomi Klein (LINK, Dutch)

gunsAMERICA’S GUN NIGHTMARE — June 22, 2016
If the gun control debate after the massacre in Orlando teaches us anything, then this: reform starts with understanding gun owners and ends in the impoverished inner cities, where gun violence claims the most lives.
Groene – Na Orlando (LINK, Dutch)

schoolkeuzeOWN CHILD FIRST – April 20, 2016
How more school choice, charter schools and gifted & talented programs can’t negate the problems of an underfunded public school system in a city that is segregated by wealth and race.
Groene – Schoolkeuze in New York (LINK, Dutch, €)

blank terrorismeIN THE NAME OF FREEDOM — January 25, 2016
The US regularly goes to war to fight terrorism abroad, while ignoring the very real threat of white, extreme right-wing terrorism at home.
Groene – White Terror (LINK, Dutch, €)

— October 14, 2015
One of the core beliefs of the environmental activist and thinker Derrick Jensen reads: what we call “civilization” is unsustainable by default. Is Jensen a radical? “Destroying the planet, that’s what I call radical.”
Groene – A Portrait of Derrick Jensen (LINK, Dutch)

The anger among blacks in Baltimore is sparked by the ongoing police violence in their city, but has deeper causes than that. Liberal politicians resign to condemning the “riots” and promising “reform.”
Groene – Baltimore (LINK, Dutch)

Opinion piece about the death of Walter Scott, another unarmed black man who was shot to death by a white police officer.
De Morgen – Walter Scott (LINK, Dutch)

— February 15, 2015
The majority of America’s poor no longer live inside the big cities, but in the suburbs. There—with hardly any access to public transportation— they are on their own.
De Correspondent – Poverty in Suburbia (LINK, Dutch)

— November 12, 2014
Interview with George Packer about The Unwinding, his “non-fiction novel” that depicts the social breakdown of American life from the late Seventies until now. “I wanted to write a book that is not easily forgettable.”
Groene – Interview Packer (LINK, Dutch)

yesmenPRANKS FOR SOCIAL CHANGE — August 28, 2014
The activist duo The Yes Men can’t fix the world, but they can make good things happen. “Without Occupy we would look differently at the events in Ferguson.”
Groene – Interview The Yes Men (PDF, Dutch)

Cecily-McMIllan43WHODUNNIT IN ZUCCOTTI PARK — May 6, 2014
The Occupy activist Cecily McMillan has been found guilty of second degree assault of a police officer. That a victim of police brutality wound up being tried as the aggressor may have been a reality the jury just couldn’t accept: too disturbing.
Groene – Cecily McMillan (LINK, Dutch)

Pete Seeger – This Land Is Your Land, We Shall Overcome – wasn’t just a troubadour for the good: he was was an optimist with a deep love for his country and its music.
Groene – Pete Seeger Obituary (LINK, Dutch)

TimothyAIDS ACTIVIST BY NECESSITY — August 14, 2013
Timothy Ray Brown decided he had to be an AIDS activist after he became the first man who has been cured of HIV. An interview.
Knack – Interview Timothy Ray Brown (PDF, Dutch)

— March 27, 2013
In their books about today’s America the Dutch authors Tom-Jan Meeus and Geert Mak describe a deeply polarized nation that lives in a pseudo reality. Both books make no mention of Occupy Wall Street.
Groene – Review of Two America Books (PDF, Dutch)

SwartzDEATH OF A COMPLICATED GENIUS — January 16, 2013
Was it his depression, the harsh prosecution by the American government or a combination of both that drove the cyber-activist Aaron Swartz to suicide?
Groene – Aaron Swartz Obituary (LINK, Dutch)

essayACTIVISM AS LAST RESORT — October 25, 2012
Structural change of the political and economic system will not come through the electoral process. For that, large-scale activism is needed, as was last seen during the Civil Rights Movement.
Groene – Essay on Activism in the US (PDF, Dutch)

graeberTHIS IS WHAT DEMOCRACY LOOKS LIKE — January 4, 2012
The Occupy movement has no hierarchy and prefers direct action over making demands to the establishment—principles that the anarchist and anthropologist David Graeber has been proclaiming for years. A portrait.
Groene – David Graeber (PDF, Dutch)

ows“WE’RE NOT TAKING IT ANYMORE” — October 6, 2011
As Occupy Wall Street activists argue against the influence of corporations and social inequality in the country, the question looms: are we witnessing the birth of a broad social movement?
Groene – Occupy Wall Street (PDF, Dutch)

michelleJIM CROW IS BACK — June 15, 2011
The mass incarceration of blacks—a direct result of the War on Drugs—is the contemporary equivalent of the segregation laws of long gone days, says Michelle Alexander, who calls for a broad social movement to take on the issue.
Groene – The New Jim Crow (LINK, Dutch)

berksharesSMALL IS BEAUTIFUL — May 5, 2011
In the Berkshires one can pay both in dollars and in BerkShares, the local currency. Its objective: to increase local production and build a sustainable economy.
NRC – Local Currency in the Berkshires (PDF, Dutch)

Food movementEATING IS POLITICAL — July 29, 2010
The food movement stands for more than the availability of affordable, healthy, locally produced food: a yearning for community and a more equitable political system.
Groene — Food Movement (PDF, Dutch)

no logoTHE DURABILITY OF A BIBLE — June 24, 2010
Ten years after Naomi Klein published No Logo, the anti-corporate movement of which she became the spokesperson, seems to have dissolved. That doesn’t mean the book’s message doesn’t resonate anymore.
Groene – 10 Year Anniversary of No Logo (PDF, Dutch)

Bitter pillOBAMA’S BITTER PILL — July 27, 2009
While Washington is bickering about reforming the health care system, a team of volunteers flies all over the country to provide medical care to Americans in remote areas.
Groene – Remote Area Medical (LINK, Dutch)