Articles by: Liz Theoharis

The Lessons of Suffering in a Covid-19 World

The Lessons of Suffering in a Covid-19 World

In June 1990, future South African President Nelson Mandela addressed a joint session of Congress only months after being released from 27 years in a South African apartheid prison. He reminded the political leadership of the United States that “to deny people their human rights is to challenge their very humanity. To impose on them a wretched life of hunger and deprivation[Read More…]

by February 17, 2021 World
Why Martin Luther King Day Should Matter

Why Martin Luther King Day Should Matter

2020 will go down as the deadliest year in American history, significantly due to the devastation delivered by the coronavirus pandemic. In addition, count in nearly two trillion dollars in damage from climate events (many caused by, or heightened by, intensifying global warming), a surge of incidents of police violence inflicted on Black and Native peoples, and millions more Americans joining the ranks of the poor even as[Read More…]

by January 18, 2021 World
 Pandemic Lessons for the Rest of Us Or Vaccine Thinking Applied to All of American Life

 Pandemic Lessons for the Rest of Us Or Vaccine Thinking Applied to All of American Life

Martin Luther King, Jr., offered this all-too-relevant comment on his moment in his 1967 speech “Where Do We Go from Here: Chaos or Community?”: “The contemporary tendency in our society is to base our distribution on scarcity, which has vanished, and to compress our abundance into the overfed mouths of the upper classes until they gag with superfluity. If democracy is to[Read More…]

by December 14, 2020 World
The Other America

The Other America

The New Politics of the Poor in Joe Biden’s (and Mitch McConnell’s) USA In the two weeks since Election 2020, the country has oscillated between joy and anger, hope and dread in an era of polarization sharpened by the forces of racism, nativism, and hate. Still, truth be told, though the divisive tone of this moment may only be sharpening,[Read More…]

by November 17, 2020 World
 The Rise of Christian Nationalism in America

 The Rise of Christian Nationalism in America

On August 26th, during the Republican National Convention, Vice President Mike Pence closed out his acceptance speech with a biblical sleight of hand. Speaking before a crowd at the Fort McHenry National Monument in Baltimore, he exclaimed, “Let’s fix our eyes on Old Glory and all she represents. Let’s fix our eyes on this land of heroes and let their courage inspire.”[Read More…]

by September 28, 2020 World
Which America Will Be Ours After the Pandemic?

Which America Will Be Ours After the Pandemic?

In the summer of 1995, when I was 18, I started visiting Tent City, a temporary encampment in an abandoned lot in northeast Philadelphia. About 40 families had taken up residence in tents, shacks, and other makeshift structures. Among them were people of various races, ages, and sexual orientations, all homeless and fighting for the right to live. Tent City was set up[Read More…]

by June 5, 2020 World
 Inequality and the Coronavirus

 Inequality and the Coronavirus

My mom contracted polio when she was 14. She survived and learned to walk again, but my life was deeply affected by that virus. Today, as our larger society attempts to self-distance and self-isolate, my family has texted about the polio quarantine my mom was put under: how my grandma fearfully checked my aunt’s temperature every night because she shared[Read More…]

by April 22, 2020 World