Church of the Informed Citizen: May 22, 2017

Yesterday, I said it had been quite a week for news. In fact, I can’t stop reading. This is a special edition, with news unrelated to James Comey or Russia.

By now you’ve probably heard more than once about the “opioid crisis” facing the United States. In Philadelphia, things are so bad that some librarians have been trained to administer the life-saving antidote Narcan to people who are overdosing. This story on captures both the sadness of the drug epidemic and heroism of a group of librarians doing something they almost certainly never dreamed they would be doing: For These Philly Librarians, Drug Tourists and Overdose Drills Are Part of the Job.

The Washington Post published The Painful Truth About Teeth more than a week ago, on May 13, and I didn’t see it until today. I’m glad I did. “You can work full time but not have the money to fix your teeth – visible reminders of the divide between rich and poor,” says the subhead. I think it’s a must-read if you (a) take decent dental care for granted in any way or (b) are interested in better understanding the nature of societal and political divisions in the United States.

Here in Illinois, we’ve gone nearly 700 days without a state budget. That’s coming up on two years, which is way too long. We’re coming up on a(nother) key deadline, as the current legislative session closes May 31. So I’ve been digging through news coverage of the morass. I can’t recommend any one single story, unfortunately. Here are a couple of the best recent offerings I’ve found, but I’d welcome additional links:

Keep sending me more reading suggestions in the comments and on Twitter with hashtag #ChurchOfInformedCitizen.

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