The Mahsa Amini Protests: The Fight for Freedom and Women’s Rights in Iran
On September 16, 2022, a 22-year-old Iranian woman named Mahsa Amini died on her third day in police custody after being arrested for allegedly violating Iran’s strict dress code rules by wearing her hijab too loosely. While Iranian authorities claim that Ms. Amini died of heart failure, her family and protestors across the country are alleging that she was killed by law enforcement. Thousands of Iranians have taken to the streets to protest, which has led to demonstrations in over 40 cities across Iran, resulted in thousands of arrests and dozens of deaths from clashes with security forces, and the implementation of communication restrictions by the Iranian government. Now, the United Nations and its member countries are taking action in response to Iran’s persistent violations of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights treaty, to which they are signatories.
The Discriminatory Policies against Gay and Bisexual Men that are Fueling the National Blood Crisis
This past January, the American Red Cross announced that the United States was facing its worst blood shortage in over a decade, posing a significant risk to patient care and causing doctors to make difficult decisions in determining which patients should be prioritized for blood transfusions given the dwindling supply. The staggering decrease in blood and platelet donations can be attributed to the global COVID-19 pandemic driving up the need for donations and the hesitancy people have had to leave their homes over the past two years. Even in this desperate time of need for blood, gay and bisexual men in America are still prevented from donating because of discrimination.
First Amendment Rights and Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” Bill
Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” bill, which would bar Florida educators from speaking to students about LBGTQ+ topics that are not considered “age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students” has passed in Florida’s House and is likely to pass in the Senate as it now moves to the Republican-controlled Senate floor for a vote. The horrific piece of legislation, formally known as HB 1557, has raised questions as to whether the bill, if passed, would violate the First Amendment rights of teachers or students in public primary schools across the sunshine state.
NATO Membership and the Rising Tensions Between Ukraine and Russia
Russia has recently been assembling their troops along their shared border with Ukraine in what is seemingly amounting to a planned invasion of the country. While Ukraine is warning that Russia is attempting to destabilize and invade the country, Russia denies any potential plans to attack and insists that NATO support for Ukraine is a threat on Russia’s border. As the world watches in suspense, the United States and other NATO members are at a crossroads as to whether Ukraine may join the pact.
The Free Britney Movement and the Call for Conservatorship Reform
Britney Spears: global pop superstar, Grammy award winner, songwriter, dancer, and … the face of the conservatorship reform movement? Ms. Spears can add a new line onto her prolific resume, as legal issues stemming from her decade-plus long conservatorship have shed a light on conservatorship abuse. Britney has subsequently fueled the push to reform conservatorship regulations that affect over an estimated 1.3 million adults in the United States.
Avengers Assemble for Battle Over Copyright Claims
The Walt Disney Company has filed multiple lawsuits in the hopes of retaining the copyright to some of their most popular Marvel superheroes, including the likes of blockbuster characters such as Spider-Man and Thor. While Marvel Entertainment, a subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company, has been in multiple long-term licensing deals to maintain the rights to these characters for many years, some of those are approaching a potential expiration date as the original artists and illustrators of these characters seek to reclaim their creative rights.
Should the United States Government Continue Subsidizing the Fossil Fuel Industry?
In his proposed American Jobs Plan, President Biden has stated that if the United States wants to achieve its decarbonization targets and get climate change under control, cutting off government support to the fossil fuel industry is a crucial first step. Eliminating government subsidies for fossil fuels is the most logical step in fighting back against climate change, but Biden is facing an uphill battle to get his American Jobs Plan passed through Congress.