How the president could use the virus as a pathway to authoritarianism

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Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

As of Tuesday, Covid-19 has already killed over 3,000 people across the country, further bolstering the U.S.’s standing as the hardest-hit nation in the world. Throughout the crisis, Trump’s leadership has done almost nothing to mitigate the effects of the disease; at almost every turn, the president has taken actions that have hindered relief efforts recommended by scientists and left the country ill-prepared to manage the spread of the virus.

Those actions are telling, and taken together can be used to extrapolate a worst-case apocalypse: one in which the Trump administration and the Republican party use the crisis to accelerate…


Deadspin, Splinter, and ThinkProgress are gone. The mainstream media is hopelessly neutral. Who’s left to check capitalism?

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Credit: sutthinon sanyakup/Getty

About a month before Deadspin was throttled by its new private equity owners, those same owners shut down Splinter, the progressive politics website I contributed to for a little over a year. Last week, at an emergency all-hands meeting, G/O Media’s editorial director, Paul Maidment, elaborated on the decision to kill Splinter. Progressive politics “is a very, very difficult sector to operate in,” he said, according to audio of the meeting provided to me. “And it’s a sector that’s essentially operating at a bigger and bigger deficit.”

Maidment said, in my opinion, a lot of dumb shit during his seven-month…


How gaming could help treat many of the worst symptoms of old age

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Illustration: Saiman Chow

The raid to destroy Ragnaros started after dark. It was 10 p.m. on the East Coast, and behind his keyboard, Drakenwulf knew his role. He was a warlock, one of four in the raiding party. The group had been planning all week. If they failed, they’d have to wait another week to try again; it wasn’t easy to get 40 players online at once to make a run at the Molten Core. The entire group had to work as a unit. Hunters — masters of beast and bow — used mighty wolves and boars to lure fearsome enemies into traps…


“I feel like my generation is kind of a me, me, me generation.”

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Illustration: Ricky Linn

Clovis, California

Medium: When did you make the decision to join the Air Force?

Ally Minenna: I started thinking about it the beginning of my junior year, because that’s really when people were like, “You gotta start thinking about what you want to do, and where you’re going to go to college,” and stuff like that. Then I went to see my brother’s boot camp graduation. He’s in the Navy. Seeing like all those people — I just felt like that’s where I wanted to be. I went to talk to a recruiter at the Air Force recruiting center, and I just fell in love with everything that he was saying.

What about the Air Force specifically appeals to you? What kind of job do you want?

Just…


“We’re good people, and we accept people from the U.S. here, and we don’t discriminate toward them.”

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Illustration: Logan Faerber

San Juan, Puerto Rico

Zashira Meléndez is at the beginning of her senior year at a vocational high school in San Juan, Puerto Rico. She was born and raised on the island, where her mother is a nurse and her father is a refrigeration technician.

Medium: What do Americans from the mainland get wrong about Puerto Rico?

Zashira Meléndez: Maybe in some cases, people from the U.S. think that youth here don’t set high goals for themselves and sometimes they act, like, racist, or discriminate. I think they’re wrong. We’re good people, and we accept people from the U.S. here, and we don’t discriminate toward them.

What was it like for you after the hurricane?

It was scary. I didn’t know…


“When I get out of where I’m living, I’m going to be good.”

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Illustration: Rebecca Clarke

Harlem, New York

Medium: How did you first end up in the juvenile detention system?

“Matthew”: When I was little, my parents separated, and me and my sister moved to Harlem with my mom. When I got to Harlem, I started hanging on the street. School wasn’t really my main priority — I was trying to be in the street, making money. One time, I was outside, selling weed. I was caught. That was the first time I got arrested. I was 12.

My first year of high school, I started [selling weed] again. I got caught doing it in school — I had been smoking outside and I came in and…


“If the message of salvation is true, and there is eternal damnation for our souls, why am I not doing more?”

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Illustration: Mallory Heyer

Pineville, Louisiana

Medium: What drew you to the church?

Tobey Williams: I’ve grown up in the church, but it wasn’t till I was like 14 or 15 that I came to realize and understand what Christianity was about. I knew all the facts and could tell you everything about Jesus and God and all these things, but I didn’t have my own faith, I guess. It wasn’t my own; it was just how I was raised and what I was a part of. …


“Not all millennials and not all Generation Z are lazy or, you know, antifa supporters.”

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Illustration: Claire Merchlinsky

Glenwood, Arkansas

Medium: How did you get involved in politics?

Justin Hill: It started with my dad. He was a big supporter of Trump, and I wanted to be able to argue with him. Then, in 2016, just hearing all the stuff the media was talking about, that’s when I really started to get into politics. I started arguing with my teachers. But through those arguments, I became a lot more willing to hear people out.

What issue will you vote on?

It depends. [I am pro-choice] but I could overlook that some if someone was pro-life or something like that. But if they were a fascist or a socialist, I really don’t think…


The Reinvention of Ray Rice

On February 15, 2014, Ray Rice, the star running back for the Baltimore Ravens, punched his fiancee Janay Palmer in the face. She was knocked cold, either by the punch or when her head hit the handrail of an Atlantic City hotel elevator, a moment immortalized by the small security camera in the corner.

Four days later, TMZ released security footage from a camera in the hallway of Rice dragging an unconscious Palmer out of the elevator. That video was enough to convict him in the eyes of much of the public, although NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and Ravens executives…

Jack Crosbie

Writer-photographer, mostly in New York, preferably elsewhere.

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