Tag Archives: everyday

Disease Expert’s Ominous Warning: Omicron Could Shutter Schools, ‘Everyday Life’


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These Are the Best Butter Substitutes for Vegan and Everyday Baking, According to Our Food Editors


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Opinion: Tiger Woods crash wakes us up to the everyday nuisance of car culture


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Fear, confusion, despair: the everyday cruelty of a border immigration court

Fear, confusion, despair: the everyday cruelty of a border immigration courtAt a federal immigration court in El Paso, Texas, asylum seekers wait in limbo as a result of Trump’s policiesA resident of a migrant shelter watches a soccer match at a nearby park on 9 June. Photograph: Paul Ratje/AFP/Getty ImagesJudge Sunita Mahtabfar, presiding over the El Paso immigration court in south-west Texas, kicked off the hearing by asking the 16 asylum seekers a question.“Is anyone here afraid to return to Mexico?” she said.There was a chorus of “Sí”, at least from the adults. Three of the four children in court dozed, slumped against their parents on the unforgiving wooden benches. They had been up for hours, having been summoned to a meeting point in Juárez at 4.30am. One five-year-old boy was lying on the carpet floor, softly singing as he played with a plastic water bottle.“Let me ask it a different way,” Mahtabfar said. “If anyone here is not afraid to return to Mexico, please raise your hand.”No hands were raised.Most of the 16 people in court had made the long, frequently dangerous, journey from their homes in Central America, hoping to live in the United States.But upon arriving at the US-Mexico border, and attempting to apply for asylum, they had instead been ordered back across the Rio Grande River that forms the border here, to Juárez – one of the most dangerous cities in the world.A migrant from El Salvador shows her documents from Migrant Protection Protocols on 16 June. Photograph: Paul Ratje/AFP/Getty ImagesThis was the first hearing in a months-long process to determine whether they will be granted asylum in the US. It got off to an inauspicious start. The court’s computer system was experiencing difficulties. After changing out the desktop computer at the judge’s desk three times, the hearing was eventually switched to a different room. It was 10.30am, two hours behind schedule, before the session began. While they waited for a working computer, the people in court were kept under heavy security. To use the bathroom, each was escorted by security guards, there and back. They would be returned to Juárez immediately after the hearing.Their exile to wait in limbo in Mexico is the result of the Trump administration’s controversial Remain in Mexico, or Migrant Protection Protocols policy, which has turned back tens of thousands of women, men and children since being introduced in March.With little money, these asylum seekers are forced to live in shelters, in abandoned properties or sometimes on the streets just south of the US border, in cities where immigrants have been sexually assaulted, kidnapped and murdered.On 17 July those in the court, a small, windowless room on the seventh floor of an austere building in downtown El Paso, were well aware of the danger in Juárez. Many were terrified of returning.One 24-year-old woman, wearing a grey T-shirt with her dark hair pulled back into a ponytail, sobbed as she pleaded with the judge to let her stay in the US. She was living in Juárez on her own, she said, and a group of men had been following her in recent days.She said she was aware that she was not meant to enter the US without permission, and had intended to wait in Juárez until she was allowed to enter.“But when I went to work at 8am in the morning there were some people following me,” she said.“So I turned myself in at the bridge.”Another woman, a 26-year-old from Cuba, had tried to enter the US on 4 May, but had been sent back to Juárez. She, too, was in tears as she told the judge she was in danger in Mexico.“I just wanted to tell you I have an affidavit from my family, who are American citizens,” she said through the court translator.“I am over here by myself in Mexico, and it is quite hard for me to be here by myself.”Under Remain in Mexico, the judge told her: “Unfortunately that is not possible.” Both women were told they could have “credible fear” interviews – essentially where a government official gauges how much danger they would be in if they returned to Mexico – but there were no guarantees. The interviews are not open to the press.The Guardian spent two days attending the El Paso federal immigration court, gaining an insight into the fear, confusion and, in some cases, incompetence, that the Trump administration’s immigration policies have led to on the US-Mexico border.Despite the well-documented, appalling conditions in some government detention centers north of the border, there was a stream of people pleading to taken into US custody. One woman, María, said she was afraid to return to Juárez. Two men had been killed two blocks away from where she was staying. A Cuban man said five of his countrymen had been kidnapped in recent weeks.Members of the Mexican national guard patrol the banks of the Rio Bravo in Ciudad Juárez. Photograph: Hérika Martínez/AFP/Getty ImagesBut some of the most harrowing stories coming to light were of the people who had not made it to court.On Wednesday, the attorney for a 19-year-old Honduran told Judge Nathan Herbert that the teenager was unable to make her court date because she had gone missing.The woman had attended court for her preliminary hearing on 22 May. She had told the judge she was afraid to return to Juárez, and was granted a credible fear interview. She was deemed not to be in danger, and was sent back to Mexico, with instructions to reappear in court in July.The 19-year-old has not been seen or heard from since.“The last contact was 22 May,” immigration attorney John Moore said in court.Moore said the day she returned to Mexico was the last day she used WhatsApp, her primary mode of communication, and she never returned to the shelter where she had been staying. Despite hiring a private investigator, Moore had been unable to contact the sponsor the teenager had named in the US, or her family.The judge heard all this on Wednesday afternoon, then tried the 19-year-old’s case in absentia anyway. She was refused entry to the US. Her bid for asylum was denied.A view of the Richard C White federal building in El Paso, Texas, where immigration court hearings take place. Photograph: Paul Ratje/AFP/Getty ImagesIn El Paso, where thousands of migrants have arrived in the past few months, few are able to find lawyers amid the chaos.Instead, many attempt to represent themselves – an almost impossible task, given that asylum application papers are legal documents that have to be filed in English, with supporting evidence also translated into English by a certified translator.Until recently, immigration advocates were allowed to speak to asylum seekers in court, before their cases are heard. They could explain what the hearing would entail – many migrants believe that on their first day in court they might be admitted to the US immediately, when in reality it is a months-long, arcane process – and advise them of their rights.But in an example of the on-the-hoof policy introduced in courts, that was abruptly stopped on 24 June.“All these people are at imminent risk of danger and I could be helping them with that, for free,” said Taylor Levy, an immigration lawyer who was in court on Tuesday, and has previously represented immigrants in El Paso pro-bono.Levy said she was given no prior warning by court officials that she would no longer be able to talk to asylum seekers, until the day it happened.A week later, she was told she could no longer give out coloring books and crayons, something she had been doing for months to help occupy children while their parents pleaded their cases during the long hearings in court.> We already spent one month in Mexico. We haven’t been able to sleep for two nights> > DarwinAdam Serwer, a staff writer for the Atlantic, coined the phrase “the cruelty is the point” to describe Donald Trump’s approach to politics. The term was swiftly picked up and applied, in particular, to the government’s approach to immigrants: the children in cages, the people crammed in dirty shelters or border detention. And the asylum seekers who have terrifying stories of violence and exploitation in their home countries, then are turned around and sent to wait in fear in Mexico. It was deliberate, some have argued, designed to stop people seeking asylum in the US.There is evidence that the practice might be working.On the Tuesday afternoon, a 30-year-old Honduran man named Darwin sat at the front of the court with his 10-year-old son, Christopher. They had crossed the Rio Grande, at El Paso, on 7 June. He was hoping for a better life, looking “to work, and for him to study”, Darwin said, gesturing towards Christopher.Both looked exhausted, red-eyed and dishevelled. Christopher seemed to be crying as his father spoke, to tell the judge that he had changed his mind about entering the US.“We already spent one month in Mexico,” Darwin said, through the court interpreter.“We haven’t been able to sleep for two nights. Look at him, and look at me.”The judge told Darwin that he and Christopher would be taken into custody, and flown back to Honduras. Despite the gang violence and unemployment that has caused thousands of people to flee their country, both father and son looked relieved to be returning home – at least to bring their ordeal at the US border to an end.Perhaps the cruelty really is the point.



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The Link Between These Everyday Chemicals and Breast Cancer Risk Just Got Stronger

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Exposure to certain chemicals in household and industrial products is a significant risk factor for breast cancer, according to a new review, especially when the exposure occurs at an early age.

Scientists have been studying the link between breast cancer and environmental exposures—to chemicals in the air we breathe, the food we eat, and the products we use on a daily basis—for many years. In 2007, a widely cited review from the Silent Spring Institute identified 216 such chemicals that cause mammary tumors in animals, providing a roadmap for future studies in humans.

A decade later, Silent Spring scientists have published an update in the journal Environmental Research, and they say that the evidence today—including documented effects in people of all ages—is stronger than ever. They hope their report will help shape prevention strategies and increase public awareness as breast cancer rates continue to rise worldwide.

RELATED: A Smart Guide to Scary Chemicals

For the new review, researchers identified and analyzed 158 studies, with human participants, published between 2006 and 2016. “We wanted to pair the human studies with what had been found in the lab and in animal studies, and see how much their findings were similar,” says lead author Kathryn Rodgers, a research scientists at Silent Spring.

In many cases, says Rodgers, they were. The researchers concluded that exposure to certain chemicals in the womb, during puberty, and through pregnancy all increase the risk of developing breast cancer later on. “During these periods, the body is changing and cells are dividing quickly, and the breasts are very sensitive and vulnerable to environmental chemicals,” says Rodgers.

For example, early-in-life exposure to air pollution, dioxin, the chemical PFOSA (used in some food packaging), and the pesticide DDT are all associated with a two- to five-fold increased risk of breast cancer, the review found.

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Workplace exposure before age 36 to solvents, textiles, and inks were associated with postmenopausal breast cancer in one study. In other research, exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons—a chemical in vehicle exhaust—was associated with increased risk for women with certain genetic variants.

Evidence linking breast cancer and chemicals like bisphenol-A (BPA) and phthalates—found in plastics, cosmetics, and countless other store-bought items—is still limited in humans, says Rodgers. Most research in this area is relatively new, she adds, but animal studies so far have suggested a connection. These chemicals have been shown to disrupt the body’s endocrine system and hormone production, which researchers suspect may fuel cancer growth.

Despite the fact that breast cancer is the most common cancer in women worldwide, and that rates in the United States are among the world’s highest, only 5 to 10% of cases are due to inherited high-risk genes, the researchers say. Other well known risk factors include obesity, smoking, synthetic hormones, and a sedentary lifestyle.

RELATED: 9 Ways to Detox Your Home

“We hope that physicians and nurses will start to talk to their patients about their environment—like occupational exposures, neighborhood air pollution, or hobbies or household activities—in the same way they talk to patients about smoking or diet,” says Rodgers.

People who are concerned about their risk or their children’s risk can also reduce their exposure to these chemicals by avoiding flame-retardant and stain-resistant chemicals, not microwaving food in plastic containers, and researching the chemicals in products like pesticides, cleaning products, and cosmetics, she adds. (Silent Spring also offers a free smartphone app, Detox Me, with more helpful hints.)

But ultimately, Rodgers says, better regulation and public-health policies are needed. “It shouldn’t be someone’s job when they’re going to the store to scrutinize every chemical to see if there’s something in there that can harm you,” she says. “We need stronger health protection at the state and federal level—and so voting and letting your elected officials know that you care is also something you can do.”


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Mom Who Criticized Louise Linton: She Doesn't Know 'What Everyday Americans Deal With'

Mom Who Criticized Louise Linton: She Doesn't Know 'What Everyday Americans Deal With'"I don't think she has any idea what everyday Americans deal with"



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Warren calls Obama’s message out of touch with everyday Americans

Warren calls Obama’s message out of touch with everyday AmericansSen. Elizabeth Warren criticized former President Barack Obama’s economic message for supposedly not aligning with the lived experiences of regular Americans.



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Bana Alabed after chemical attack: ‘My people are dying everyday as you watch’

Bana Alabed after chemical attack: ‘My people are dying everyday as you watch’A seven-year-old Syrian refugee has a message for world leaders after the chemical attack in Idlib: “It’s never too late. Save the people of Syria.”



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#BlackWomenAtWork hashtag uncovers the everyday racism black women face at work

#BlackWomenAtWork hashtag uncovers the everyday racism black women face at workThe disrespectful and condescending treatment of two prominent black women in the U.S. has sparked a global hashtag campaign about everyday racism.  On Tuesday, Fox News commentator Bill O'Reilly said he couldn't listen to Congresswoman Maxine Waters' latest speech about Trump because of her hair, which he called "a wig." Later that day, U.S. Press Secretary Sean Spicer told veteran journalist April Ryan to "stop shaking her head" in response to an answer he gave. SEE ALSO: Bill O'Reilly attacks Maxine Waters' hairstyle, triggering world's largest eye roll Women around the world have since been sharing their "Maxine and April moments," using the hashtag #BlackWomenAtWork to highlight the everyday reality faced by black women. Activist Brittany Packnett kicked off the hashtag #BlackWomenAtWork "so people don't think this is rare."  "It isn’t new. It is the daily experience of black women in the work place — at all levels — laid bare for the public to finally see with naked eyes," Packnett told
Mashable. "These women at least deserve respect as humans, let alone as professionals. They received neither. It is absolutely unacceptable. They deserve the respect that their humanity, their accomplishments, and their work demands."  SEE ALSO: Angry Sean Spicer tells April Ryan, a veteran black female journalist, to "stop shaking" her head Today, we were told a Black woman's hair matters more than her voice, and our choices are under the control of others. — Brittany Packnett (@MsPackyetti) March 28, 2017 This happens to black women everyday at work.Share your Maxine and April moments, so people don't think this is rare. Use #BlackWomenAtWork — Brittany Packnett (@MsPackyetti) March 28, 2017 "Every day we are told that our body language is wrong, that both our silence and our speaking are 'combative,' that our mere presence is intimidating, that our looks matter more than our work, that our natural hair is 'unprofessional,' that we couldn’t possibly have attained our station by our merits, are looked over and ignored, or endure a worse pay gap than our white women counterparts," said Packnett.  "It happens to black women of every station, whether we’re wage earners or pull in high salaries, whether we are domestic workers or in the C-suite.  Black women have been at work since the dawn of this nation and have worked ourselves to the bone. We deserve dignity and respect.  We have earned no less.  No matter what, we will show it to ourselves and each other," Packnett said.  Hundreds of women took to Twitter sharing their experiences. For example, women working in academia talked about prejudice in the workplace.  I say I teach. People ask "what grade?" I say I teach college. They ask "community college?" I'm on UC Berkeley's faculty. #BlackWomenAtWork — {((Aya de Leon))} (@AyadeLeon) March 29, 2017 Me: I'd like to check on the status of the books for this class.Staff: The faculty member does that.Me: I am faculty.#BlackWomenAtWork — Nyasha Junior (@NyashaJunior) March 28, 2017 Some women talked about their coworkers underestimating their qualifications.  Surprised from white folks when you tell them you have a graduate degree as well, like they didn't expect it. #BlackWomenAtWork — Mina the Autodidact (@BEAUTYBRAINS25) March 29, 2017 Once, I asked for a raise after 2 yrs. I discovered my manager lied saying I didn't have a degree.I had 2 college degrees. #BlackWomenAtWork — Lisa Barber (@PhysicalCanvas) March 29, 2017
True Blood actor Jurnee Smollett talked about her experience of discrimination in Hollywood.  Me: hey I really loved this script..is that role open?Them: Oh, we aren't will to "go ethnic" on that role #BlackWomenAtWork in Hollywood — jurnee smollett (@jurneesmollett) March 29, 2017 Some of the tweets revealed the assumptions made about black women's level of seniority in their roles.  #BlackWomenAtWork a guy from another office told my mom to make him coffee. He didn't know she was the regional buyer aka HIS BOSS'S BOSS  — Synthra (@ZhiteraWiggins) March 28, 2017 #BlackWomenAtWork Constantly getting mistaken for his personal assistant/ secretary when we are both QUALIFIED Quantity Surveyors. — Abigail T. Letsholo (@abbz_lets) March 29, 2017 @NyashaJunior me:can I get the key from no.19? Staff: Can only give it to teacher. Me: I am teacher. #BlackWomenAtWork or #YoungPeopleAtWork — Jaromir Mazak (@JaromirMazak) March 29, 2017 One woman tweeted that a white colleague used the N-word in her presence, claiming that it was fine because rappers use the word.  #BlackWomenAtWork a yt colleague used the N word & said "I don't get the big deal all your people use it", when I probed she said rappers — Hayley Mills (@LenahLang) March 29, 2017 A lot of women shared stories in which colleagues made inappropriate and racist remarks about their hair. #BlackWomenAtWork my boss: your hair is making too much statmentMe: Susan's has 4 different colorsMy boss: yes but it's not an afro — Lisa Craddock (@LisaCraddock1) March 29, 2017 #BlackWomenAtWork being told ur natural hair is unprofessional and makes u look aggressive — Liquid nitro (@Palesamadiba) March 29, 2017 #BlackWomenAtWork Her: " Your hair is so curly. Can I touch it??"Me: pic.twitter.com/xHQxMf5tLd —  (@Divinelylogical) March 28, 2017 Coworker: what are you doing with your hair ? Me: Going natural Him: Stop it, it looks bad you're ruining yourself #blackwomenatwork — KAY RO$ $ ♎️ (@Bluntlioness) March 29, 2017 This was my hair when told "I don't like your hair like that it's awful." #BlackWomenAtWork pic.twitter.com/74RVfNiVMj — Freedom Nicole Moore (@freedommomusic) March 29, 2017 Maxine Waters responded to the incident with O'Reilly, tweeting a powerful statement alongside the hashtag, stating she's "not going anywhere." I am a strong black woman. I cannot be intimidated, and I'm not going anywhere. #BlackWomenAtWork — Maxine Waters (@MaxineWaters) March 29, 2017 "I’ve met Congresswoman Waters and worked with April Ryan — it was like someone came for my aunties. They laid the groundwork for so many of us," said Brittany Packnett. "We will love and support one another — especially when others don't. Period."  WATCH: Across the globe, nasty women and men hit the streets one day after Trump's inauguration



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