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The Online Magazine of the Institute for Southern Studies

October 23, 2020 - Across the rural South's Black Belt, the lack of adequate sewage and water infrastructure has created serious public health problems. We spoke with Catherine Coleman Flowers, a longtime environmental justice activist in rural Alabama and the recent recipient of a MacArthur Foundation "genius" grant, about her work to draw attention to the region's intersecting crises and how grassroots activism can impact federal policy. 

Federal judges block efforts to ease rules for mail-in ballots

October 22, 2020 - As millions of voters cast ballots this month, federal courts in the South shot down attempts to make voting easier during the pandemic, and some relied on a novel argument giving them more power to overrule state courts. The rulings have led to calls to expand the Supreme Court and lower courts if Democrats take the White House and Senate. 

THE STAKES 2020: Aranza Sosa on voting out racist officials in a rural North Carolina county

October 19, 2020 - Alamance County, North Carolina, has been the site of recent protests over a local Confederate monument, and its sheriff has long been accused of racism for public comments and his participation in ICE's controversial 287(g) program. We spoke with local activist Aranza Sosa about growing up in the shadow of 287(g) and the power of elected officials who come from the same background she does.