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Across the United States, conservative politicians are leading a backlash against L.G.B.T.Q. identity, framing legal restrictions as protection of children. Several states have introduced laws to ban medical treatments known as gender-affirming care—including hormones and puberty blockers—prescribed to adolescents. Major medical organizations have approved the treatments, but Rachel Monroe, who has been following efforts to ban gender-affirming care in Texas, found that doctors wouldn’t speak out about the political furor because the resulting attention could endanger themselves, their clinics, and their patients. One specialist, however, was willing to go on the record: Dr. Gina Sequeira, a co-director of the Gender Clinic at Seattle Children’s. “I was growing so frustrated seeing the narrative around gender-affirming care provision for youth so full of misinformation and so full of blatant falsehoods that I couldn't in good conscience continue to stay quiet,” Sequeira told her. Doctors cite a body of data that gender-affirming care reduces the risk of suicide, which is high among trans youth. Sequeira’s Seattle clinic has been fielding calls from Texas families looking to relocate if the proposed ban in Texas prevents their children from accessing care. “If we were to stop care, I would be afraid that our child wouldn’t survive,” the mother of a trans girl told Monroe. “There’s no question that she’s not safe to herself.”
Before the pandemic, Megan Stalter was an unknown comedian, trying to catch a lucky break at clubs in New York City. But with the arrival of COVID-19, social media became her only outlet, and she quickly found an audience with her short-form, D.I.Y. character videos,  portraying the “breadth of American idiocy,” as Michael Schulman puts it, with such accuracy and heart that it’s hard to turn away. After her rise to Internet fame—she was dubbed the “queen of quarantine”—Stalter was offered the part of Kayla, the overprivileged and clueless assistant, on HBO’s hit series “Hacks.”  It was her first acting job.  Plus, Helen Rosner joins the chef Andy Baraghani in his home kitchen for a lesson on cauliflower ragu. Baraghani, best known for his YouTube cooking videos for Bon Appetit, is out with a new cookbook called “The Cook You Want to Be.”
Assuming that Justice Samuel Alito’s final opinion in the Mississippi abortion case Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization gets majority support, there will be profound social, political, and health-care implications across the United States.   Margaret Talbot, Peter Slevin and Jia Tolentino assess the world after Roe.  Opponents will surely not stop by leaving abortion at the state level but will try to ban it under federal law.  Tolentino discusses fetal personhood, the legal concept that a fertilized egg is entitled to full legal rights, which severely compromises the bodily autonomy of a pregnant woman.  There is already speculation that access to birth control and same-sex marriage could be challenged. “If people feel panicked about all those things, I wouldn’t invalidate that,” Tolentino says. But focussing on the immediate post-Roe future, she says, presents enough to worry about. “This is a universe of panic on its own.   
“Everything Everywhere All At Once” is in a genre all its own—you could call it sci-fi-martial-arts-family-drama.  Stephanie Hsu plays both Joy, an angsty teen-ager struggling with her immigrant mother, and Jobu, an omnipotent, interdimensional supervillain.  “The relationship between Evelyn and Joy in its simplest terms is very fraught,” Hsu tells Jia Tolentino.  “It’s the story of a relationship of a daughter who’s a lesbian who is deeply longing for her mother’s acceptance … but they keep chasing each other around in the universe and they can just never find one another. Until of course they launch into the multiverse and become nemeses.”
Last week, a draft opinion was leaked which suggests that a majority of Supreme Court Justices are ready to overturn the precedents of Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey—the decisions that have guaranteed a right to abortion at the federal level.  The case in question is Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, in which Mississippi officials seek to close the state’s last remaining abortion clinic under a law that bans performing an abortion after the fifteenth week of pregnancy—a point well before the time of fetal viability.  In November, Rachel Monroe visited the Jackson abortion clinic, speaking to its director, Shannon Brewer; a physician who asked to remain anonymous, describing the risks to abortion providers; and a patient, who had driven all night from Texas, where she was not able to obtain an abortion. “Somebody else is telling me what I should do with my body, and it’s not right,” she said. “It’s my body. It’s my decision. It’s my choice. It’s my life. It’s my soul, if it’s going to Hell.” Produced with assistance from Ezekiel Bandy and Kim Green. This segment originally aired November 19, 2021.   Plus, the staff writer Alexis Okeowo talks with the producer Ngofeen Mputubwele about why the Ukrainian refugee crisis seems both familiar and startlingly different from conflicts in other parts of the world.
Rickie Lee Jones emerged into the pop world fully formed; her début album was nominated for five Grammys, in 1980, and she won for Best New Artist. One of the songs on that record was “The Last Chance Texaco,” and Jones has made that the title of her recent memoir. The song evokes a service station on a long stretch of highway, and Jones’s book reflects on her almost obsessive need to travel and uproot herself at almost any cost. “All I wanted to do was leave” from a very young age, she says. “When I talk about it from here, it seems like it was so horribly dangerous.” She adds, “Suddenly I’ll [say], ‘I think I’ll go to Big Sur,’ and I’m in a car, going. But the chaos and trouble that brings to a life!” The producer Scott Carrier, who hosts the podcast “Home of the Brave,” interviewed Jones near her home in New Orleans. This story originally aired April 9, 2021.
As the Russian invasion of Ukraine enters a third month, prospects of ending the conflict are still nowhere in sight, and there seems to be no end to the destruction that Vladimir Putin is willing to inflict. Sergiy Kyslytsya, Ukraine’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations, tells David Remnick that he expects Russia to continue escalating its attack leading up to May 9th, a day of military celebration in Russia commemorating the German surrender in the Second World War. “They will escalate attacks by missiles from the sky to terrorize Ukraine in general,” he predicts, “and to make the government more susceptible to surrender.”    In contrast to President Volodymyr Zelensky—who was a political rookie when he took office, in 2019—Kyslytsya has spent his career in Ukraine’s foreign service. In the years after the Soviet breakup, he says, Ukraine wanted to both placate its neighbor and ally itself with Western institutions. This created a “cognitive dissonance,” he says, that prevented Ukraine from recognizing the extent of Russian aggression. Having watched as diplomacy failed, Kyslytsya still has to separate his work from the personal toll of Russia’s invasion on his family and friends. “I try not to engage emotionally because if I engage emotionally too much, I am not operational,” he says. “And if I am not operational . . . I’m of very little use for my government.”
The Oscar-winning actor Viola Davis traces her career in Hollywood back to a single moment of inspiration from her childhood: watching Cicely Tyson star in the 1974 movie “The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman.” “I saw excellence and craft, and I saw transformation,” Davis tells David Remnick. “And more importantly, what it planted in me is that seed of—literally—I am not defined by the boundaries of my life.” In a new memoir, “Finding Me,” Davis writes of a difficult upbringing in Rhode Island, marked by poverty and an abusive father. She pursued her dream of attending the prestigious Juilliard School, but felt alienated by a white-focussed approach that left little room for her background or identity. She talks with Remnick about how she grew past these early challenges, the lingering impostor syndrome that many successful people experience, and how she prepared to play Michelle Obama in the series “The First Lady.” Plus, the cartoonist Liana Finck, a regular presence in The New Yorker, explains how a ride on the Long Island Rail Road gets her creative ideas flowing; she can work among people without anyone talking to her.
Ronan Farrow has published an investigation into a software called Pegasus and its maker, NSO Group. Pegasus is one of the most invasive spywares known; it allows users—including law-enforcement officials or government authorities—to hack into a target’s smartphone, gaining access to photos, messages, and the feeds from a camera or microphone. NSO markets Pegasus as a tool to catch terrorists and other violent criminals, but once a surveillance tool is on the market it can be very difficult to control. Farrow finds that Pegasus is being used to suppress political opposition in democratic nations, including Spain. The largest known cluster of Pegasus attacks has targeted people in Catalonia who support the independence movement, which the Spanish government views as a threat. “This is not just an information-gathering tool,” Farrow tells David Remnick; “It’s an intimidation tactic, and it works.”
The Internet can be a scary place in real life, and far more so in Jane Schoenbrun’s film “We’re All Going to the World’s Fair,” which premièred at the Sundance Film Festival last year and is being released in theatres and streaming. It’s a horror movie centered on a lonely and bored teen-age girl named Casey, who spends most of her time being online and trying to figure out who she is. She undertakes a ritual that she’s read about—the so-called World’s Fair Challenge—which is said to cause unknown and possibly dire changes. “Everyone wants to know, ‘Do you think the Internet is good or the Internet is bad?’ ” Schoenbrun told the Radio Hour’s Alex Barron. “That’s like asking, ‘Do you think that people are good or bad?’ There’s not a simple answer.” They spoke about the forty-year history of movies depicting the online world.
Jennifer Egan’s new novel, “The Candy House,” one of the most anticipated books of the year, has just been published. It is related—not a sequel exactly, but something like a sibling—to her Pulitzer Prize-winning “A Visit from the Goon Squad,” from 2010. That earlier book was largely about the music business, and Egan, a passionate music fan, has described its unusual structure as having been inspired by the concept albums of her youth. “The very nature of a concept album is that it tells one big story in small pieces that sound very different from each other and that sort of collide,” she tells David Remnick. “I thought, How would I do that narratively? I ask myself that all the time.” We asked Egan to speak about three concept albums that influenced her, and she picked The Who’s “Quadrophenia,” about a disaffected, working-class mod in the nineteen-sixties; Patti Smith’s “Horses”; and Eminem’s “Recovery.”  Plus, a story about two young boys, obsessed with basketball cards, who schemed to get a rare triptych card from a third friend. Decades later, their ill-gotten prize might be worth a lot of money—but whose money is it? The staff writer Charles Bethea looks at the grown-up consequences of a childhood prank.
Ketanji Brown Jackson has been voted in as a Supreme Court Justice—the first Black woman to serve in that role. But, to reach this milestone, Jackson has faced enormous hurdles at every turn, including confirmation hearings that featured blatant political grandstanding and barely disguised race-baiting. Nominations have become so partisan that, on both the left and the right, the Court itself is commonly viewed as merely a tool of the party that picked its members, and several polls report a decline in public confidence in the Court. “The real political end” of the attacks on Brown Jackson, Hill believes, “is to denigrate her personally, honestly, but also to really reduce the validity of any opinions that she ultimately writes. Even though . . . many of her opinions will be dissenting opinions, dissenting opinions can carry a lot of weight.” Meanwhile, Justice Clarence Thomas’s decision not to recuse himself from cases related to the January 6th insurrection, even after it came to light that his wife Ginni Thomas actively sought to influence Trump Administration officials to try to overturn the Presidential election, also undercuts the court’s impartiality. It seems that the reputation and independence of the Court is in serious trouble.  Anita Hill, a professor of social policy, law, and women’s studies at Brandeis University, spoke with David Remnick about the Ketanji Brown Jackson hearings, along with the staff writer Jane Mayer, who is reporting on the Ginni Thomas controversy. (Hill, who testified in the 1991 Thomas nomination hearings, has declined to speak about his stance on recusal.)
The Missing Boater

The Missing Boater

2022-04-0522:444

Dick Conant spent years of his life crisscrossing America by canoe, like a Mark Twain character. On land, he worked a variety of jobs and was often homeless, but paddling on a river, he was king. By chance, on a voyage which began near the Canadian border, on his way to Florida, Conant met Ben McGrath, a New Yorker staff writer, outside McGrath’s home on the Hudson River. McGrath’s piece about Conant appeared in the December 14, 2015, issue of The New Yorker this week; here, he tells the story of a troubled man who found refuge in adventure. Ben McGrath’s book about Conant, “Riverman: An American Odyssey,” will be published in April.  Originally aired December 11, 2015.  
With a judge declaring that Donald Trump “more likely than not” committed a felony in his attempt to overturn the Presidential election, the congressional committee investigating January 6th is racing to finish its work before the looming midterm elections. Amy Davidson Sorkin and the legal scholar Jeannie Suk Gersen talk with David Remnick about the law and the politics of holding Trump accountable. And the music writer Sheldon Pearce shares three artists that didn’t get their due in the Grammy nominations. 
An aspiring actor named Connor Ratliff thought he had it made when he got a small part on the 2001 miniseries “Band of Brothers,” in an episode directed by Hollywood legend Tom Hanks. The day before shooting his scene, Ratliff was unceremoniously fired by Hanks, who said the rookie had “dead eyes.” It was a life-altering disappointment for Ratliff. He told Sarah Larson how he came to launch the podcast “Dead Eyes,” which explores failure as a universal part of life—in show business and beyond. When Ratliff was able to land Tom Hanks as a guest on the show, fans thought their interview would bring “Dead Eyes” to a close. But Ratliff has other ideas. Plus, Helen Rosner talks with the cookbook author and food-justice activist Bryant Terry about uplifting diverse traditions in Black cooking and reclaiming veganism from white hipsters.
A wave of book bannings sweeping the country, along with conservative fury over titles like “Antiracist Baby,” seems like a backlash against the heightened racial consciousness of the post-George Floyd era. The historian and staff writer Jill Lepore sees these conflicts as the continuation of an old dynamic. She relates today’s “anti-anti-racism” movement to the anti-evolution campaign of the nineteen-twenties, which included the prosecution of a Tennessee teacher for teaching Darwin’s theory in a high-school class. Lepore tells David Remnick that what links these battles over biology and history is the argument that parents have the right to determine their children’s education in public schools.
“Coming back to work is partially about surveillance and micromanagement,” Keisha, a podcasting executive, says. “Everybody feels it, but people of color feel it in a different way.” For workers who have been remote for the better part of two years, returning to the office is undeniably complicated. For some Black workers who didn’t feel at ease in majority-white offices to begin with, the complications are even greater. Racial microaggressions abound, and, for some, the stress of excessive visibility that comes with being a minority never goes away. “I would love to be ‘feet on the couch relaxed,’ like some of my colleagues in the past,” Keisha says, but “I don’t know if I could allow myself that.” As an entrepreneur named James put it, “Black folks aren’t really allowed to have bad days.”    The Radio Hour’s KalaLea talks with four Black professionals and compares their experience to that of Robert Churchwell, a Black reporter hired by the Nashville Banner in 1950. Churchwell was excluded from the white newsroom and worked from home for five years.     Audio from an interview with Robert Churchwell comes from the Civil Rights Oral History Project, Special Collections, Nashville Public Library.
Radio Ukraine

Radio Ukraine

2022-03-1833:233

Kraina FM is a radio station that broadcasts in Kyiv and more than twenty other cities, playing Ukrainian-language rock and pop. When Russia invaded Ukraine, it took on the mantle of “the station of national resistance,” airing news bulletins and logistical information like requests for supplies. The radio hosts began adding jokes about the invading Russians, and advice from a psychologist about talking to children about the war; a writer told fairy tales on air to occupy those kids during the stressful nights of wartime. The station staff has dispersed, with Bogdan Bolkhovetsky, the general manager, and Roman Davydov, the program director, holed up in a town in the Carpathians, keeping production moving over unreliable Internet and communicating with listeners by text. They don’t know how many of their broadcasting stations are still functioning, and their tower in Kyiv could be destroyed at any time. But “we are not doing anything heroic,” Bolkhovetsky told Nicolas Niarchos, who visited their makeshift studio. “We are still in a lot of luck, having what we have right now. Thousands of people were not so lucky as we are. . . . We’re just doing what we can under these unusual circumstances.” Plus, we present the 2022 Brody Awards—the critic Richard Brody’s assessment of the best performances and the best films of the year.
Jane Campion’s “The Power of the Dog” opens like a classic Western: cattle are herded across the sweeping plains of Montana, with imposing mountains in the distance. But the plot of the film, based on a 1967 novel by Thomas Savage, isn’t exactly a Western. It’s a family drama about two brothers who share in the ranching business but couldn’t be more different, and what happens when one of them brings his new wife and her teen-age son to live on the ranch. “The Power of the Dog” is nominated for twelve Academy Awards, the most of any film this year, including Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Actor. Campion talks with David Remnick about Benedict Cumberbatch’s starring performance; her experience working with Harvey Weinstein, and how #MeToo has changed the film industry; and why she’d really like to direct a comedy. Plus, Caetano Veloso, a living giant of Brazilian music, was recently profiled for The New Yorker by Jonathan Blitzer. The staff writer picks some key tracks from Veloso’s vast catalogue that illuminate his long career.
It’s impossible to understand the destruction and death that Vladimir Putin is unleashing in Ukraine without understanding his most basic conviction: that the breakup of the Soviet empire was a catastrophe from which Russia has yet to recover. Some experts, including John Mearsheimer, have blamed NATO expansion for the invasion of Ukraine, arguing that it has provoked Vladimir Putin to defend his sphere of influence. Stephen Kotkin, a professor of history and international affairs at Princeton University, and a research scholar at the Hoover Institution, respectfully disagrees. Putin’s aggression is “not some kind of deviation from the historical pattern,” he tells David Remnick. Russia in the nineteenth century looked much as it does today, he says. “It had an autocrat. It had repression. It had militarism. It had suspicion of foreigners and the West.” Kotkin describes how and why the Putin regime has evolved toward despotism, and he speculates that the strategic blunders in invading Ukraine likely resulted from the biases of authoritarian rulers like Putin, and the lack of good information available to them. Kotkin is the author of an authoritative biography of Joseph Stalin, two volumes of which have been published; a third is in the making.
Comments (64)

Rob Kosman

regarding the Brody awards...not sure if wad a live take or edited, but the last question to the female critic was shocking. in the middle of her answer Brody impatiently interrupted her mid sentence and forced his viewpoint upon us. both Brody and the Daily's host owe her an apology.

Mar 25th
Reply

Mae Arant

AOC gave a perspective that didn't show her unwillingness to compromise so a bigger part of BBB could be implemented. Pull up your big girl pants and face reality that compromise is a two way street when we are saddled with blue dog democrats. President Biden is herding cats and faced every obstacle from every angle. Yes I want the Green New Deal but we didn't get it is just as much as on AOC as anyone else. And don't go to Florida for holiday where covid runs rapid and not be masked and bring it back.

Feb 27th
Reply (1)

s.ilxam

He is second to none))

Feb 4th
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Philly Burbs

I'm so sick of this topic. no one gave me anything. ever. Because I was white. I watch black students get all of the money, the breaks. those whose families made more than ours. I done with this. Go to real America.

Feb 1st
Reply

Philly Burbs

I have been a Wes Anderson fan before most heard of him. I looked forward to the French Dispatch & paid $19 to watch it from my bed. I watched it twice. Turned on closed captioning not to miss any quick dialogue. Maybe I'll like it better in a few years.😎

Jan 1st
Reply

Philly Burbs

80% of the country wants to keep Roe. if Roe goes it may be the only way to get rid of Trump & his rigged Republicans.

Nov 23rd
Reply

New Jawn

Listening to Parul, for example, is another reason why I won't renew my one-year trial subscription to the New Yorker.

Sep 28th
Reply

Philly Burbs

Farrow is a lawyer, right? Represent Brittany.

Jul 3rd
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Philly Burbs

I'm so sick & tired of hearing about George Floyd' murder many more men have been murdered from all races. if you want change with the whole country behind you you need to highlight new situations & include white males at the hands of police. it happens. I have seen it in my family. the 24/7 coverage has desensitized the American public to his murder. "Defund" only helps increase fear & racism of black males. Work with that & stop banging your heads against the wall by ending the Filabuster.

Jun 1st
Reply (4)

Philly Burbs

thank you for an article that isn't about race.

May 15th
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Eumenides LBNAEMG

Does the U.S really has a right to talk about human right? The non-stop wars and massive bombing in the Iraq, Sudan, Syria, etc yet "What does the administration have to show for eight years of fighting on so many fronts? Terrorism has spread, no wars have been “won” and the Middle East is consumed by more chaos and divisions than when candidate Barack Obama declared his opposition to the invasion of Iraq. In 2016 alone, the Obama administration dropped at least 26,171 bombs. This means that every day last year, the US military blasted combatants or civilians overseas with 72 bombs; that’s three bombs every hour, 24 hours a day."--- The Guardian. If you are the president and terrorism exists in your country, what would you do to tackle the issue? China has tried ALL possible solutions: anti-terrorist signs, peace campaigns, big-red banners with peace quotes hanging around the country, identity check at customs. Yet, terrorism still rampant. So tell me, what would YOU do if you are the president and terrorism thrive in your country? At least the Chinese government sent children of the Uyghur family to kindergarten and primary schools to receive an education, instead of bombing the entire country and massive killing the innocents. Moreover, jobs such as cotton harvesting and working in textile manufacturing sitea are given to the Uyghurs for them to make a living instead of deprive their lives through approaches mentioned above. Subsequently, it is these approaches to terrorism that substantially plummet the extent of death rate due to terrorist attacks.

Apr 26th
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James Knight

whats happening on your southern internment camps, Amerika?

Apr 22nd
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ncooty

The story on race in the tax code is race-baiting, irresponsible garbage. The New Yorker and The Radio Hour should be ashamed of this level of pseudo-journalistic trash. The interviewed guest out-right admitted that the effects are fully mediated by wealth (for which we have good direct measures). She merely injected race as a proxy or surrogate measure for wealth--as if all poor people are black and all black people are poor. (Imagine if that logic were used as a legal defense regarding lending decisions.) Her methods and interpretations were clearly reverse-engineered, and should be condemned by anyone who understands responsible research. (But then, responsible research doesn't get you interviewed, does it?) Not only does this create a needless wedge issue that further divides society and foments us-vs-them stories (with imputed and implied racism), but it also misdirects public policy. By her lights, we'd collectively address her racialized red herrings rather than the actual problems of economic inequality. This pseudo-journalism isn't merely wrong and misdirected, it also actively harms society. Moreover, in a pragmatic sense, it risks alienating voters who are capable of thought and would prefer to address the actual issues rather than fueling unfounded hate. I had expected more from The New Yorker than click-chasing, race-baiting, weak-minded, destructive, pseudo-scientific rabble-rousing.

Apr 3rd
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ncooty

@9:40: That's the last straw: using "ask" as a noun. That's it; the GOP has gone too far.

Apr 3rd
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ncooty

So much BS, poor logic, and disingenuous misrepresentation in this interview that I can't stand to listen to more of it. 10 mins was my limit.

Apr 1st
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ncooty

@6:20: The admiral is plainly wrong about failures of imagination. That's rarely the problem. Instead, the problem is much more often--including in the cases he mentioned--that those who imagined such trajectories were dismissed. Of course, only one imagined trajectory can come true in a given domain. That's the difficulty: choosing what resources to allocate to various imagined trajectories, since money spent on avoided trajectories is often politically cast as "wasted" (see COVID). So, it's disheartening to hear such simplistic and small-minded thinking from an admiral... though that explains a bit.

Mar 20th
Reply

BillyBlazko

This is such a beautiful episode

Mar 20th
Reply

ncooty

The sound of the congressman saying thank you at the end shot through me.

Feb 20th
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Philly Burbs

since 2015 then after Trump became President he made it clear Do not to come to the USA. Obama made it clear do not come here so did Bush & Clinton & Reagen. I'm so sick & tired of this topic. our streets are full of homeless. Americans live in cars & under bridges & qualify for nothing despite being attacked. now Biden is supposed to let everyone in? We haven't got enough food, books, medical for our citizens our kids. I'm sick of being expected to learn Spanish unlike when people came from Europe, English became their #1 language. I'm so sick & tired of the money & time spent on this issue. I can not feel sorry for someone who tried to get in knowing what is going on here. are we expected to take in all people who are mugged or raped? who's family has been threatening? Then open the doors to 75% of women below the Border? why do they deserve protection? that is the problem thinking they deserve it. why do they deserve it?

Feb 8th
Reply

ncooty

I didn't have an opinion about Rep. Pressley before this interview, but I dislike her now. Her responses were fluid but unintelligent. She kept changing the subject and attempting to counter-strike rather than talk cogently or sensibly about individual issues. In short, she sounds like just another bull$hitting rabble-rouser.

Dec 13th
Reply
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