Amelia Thomson-DeVeaux

Amelia Thomson-DeVeaux is a writing fellow at the Prospect. Her email is ameliatd@prospect.org

Recent Articles

Daily Meme: Northern Liberal Elites Are the Real Racists

On Tuesday , Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas indulged in a bit of nostalgia for the glory days of the segregated South, telling a group of Florida college students, "My sadness is that we are probably today more race and difference-conscious than I was in the 1960s when I went to school" in segregated Savannah, Georgia. (Meanwhile, on the other side of the state, an elections supervisor in Manatee, Florida was defending a plan to cut 30 polling places that mostly serve low-income minority neighborhoods.) Thomas, who was nominated to the bench in 1991 to replace Thurgood Marshall, doesn't speak often on the job , but he's not shy about talking about the abuse he's suffered at the hands of "left-wing zealots draped in flowing sanctimony" during his three decades in D.C. According to Thomas, Barack Obama was only elected because he fits "prescribed things" that "elites and the media" expect from a black person. When allegations of sexual harassment came up during his confirmation...

The Conversation: Elizabeth Kolbert and Bill McKibben

AP Images/Kike Calvo
F ive great extinctions have occurred in the history of Earth. Now, in The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History , journalist Elizabeth Kolbert eulogizes the decline of a handful of species and makes the case that a new mass die-off is under way. Industrial processes that pump carbon dioxide into the ocean are making life untenable for the thousands of plants and creatures that live in its depths, especially the vast but fragile coral reefs. Whole populations of bats in the northeastern United States have been decimated by a fungus brought to New England by an unsuspecting European traveler. The great auk, an extinct bird, suffered its last stand on an Icelandic island after being relentlessly hunted for just a few decades. By the end of the 21st century, scientists estimate that half of the world’s biodiversity will be gone. This extermination, which has the potential to be the most cataclysmic, is almost entirely driven by humans. The beginning of the sixth extinction coincided...

Daily Meme: Buy Thin Mints, Support America's Decline

If there was any group that seemed capable of rising above the culture-wars fray, it's the Girl Scouts. After all, what could be more American than scrumptious treats, capitalism , and crafting? ( The cookies are even gluten free !) Anti-choice organizations say the Girl Scouts have pulled the wool over honest Americans' eyes for too long. After the organization tweeted out links to "inspirational women" like Kathleen Sebelius and Wendy Davis, an anti-choice group in Wisconsin called for a boycott of Girl Scout cookies . (A "CookieCott, if you will.) Way back in 1984, Girl Scout leaders in Detroit eliminated talking about the dangerous duo of abortion and birth control in their program on teenage sexuality . The reason? A local anti-choice group sent a newsletter to its members about the Scouts' plan to indoctrinate their kids, and the cookie cancellations started rolling in. But as time went on, the efforts to turn America's girls into "little comrades" continued. In 1993, the Scouts...

Why Anti-Choicers Can’t Take Credit for the Falling Abortion Rate

On Monday, the Guttmacher Institute released a study that seemed, at first blush, to vindicate the anti-choice movement’s increasingly feverish attempts to end abortion through state-level restrictions on women and providers. Using survey data from 2011, the research organization—which leans pro-choice—found that abortion rates have plummeted to a 30-year low. Since 2008, the number of abortions performed in the U.S. fell 13 percent. Anti-abortion activists pounced to take credit, criticizing Guttmacher for “failing to acknowledge the impact of pro-life legislation” in its explanation for the sudden drop. The Guttmacher researchers point out, quite reasonably, that the most recent wave of anti-choice legislation began in earnest in the months after the 2010 midterm election, when abortion rates were already falling. If anything, abortion’s decline was in spite of anti-choice sentiment, not because of it. As the abortion rate was falling, so was the birth rate. Fewer women were seeking...

What Can Obama Actually Do to Solve Campus Sexual Assault?

AP Images/The News and Observer/Travis Long
Courtesy Alexandra Brodsky Last week, student activists against sexual assault got some exciting news: The president announced that he was forming a task force to tackle the epidemic of sexual violence on college campuses. “An estimated one in five women is sexually assaulted in college, and that’s totally unacceptable,” Obama said in his weekly address. “We’re going to do help schools do a better job of preventing and responding to sexual assault on their campuses, because college should be a place where young people feel secure and confident.” Obama gave the task force ninety days to come up with an “action plan” for combating campus rape. In conjunction with Obama’s announcement, the White House Council on Women and Girls released a report full of grim statistics . Only 12 percent of college sexual assault survivors report their rape to law enforcement officials. Alcohol plays a major role, with perpetrators preying on incapacitated students or plying their victims with drugs or...

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