Tuesday, December 18, 2018

LIFE

This Is Victor: Woman Helps Homeless Man Build New Life

For three years everyday, Ginger Sprouse and other residents of Kemah, Texas, would drive past Victor Hubbard, rain or shine. Victor Hubbard did not...

Single Mom Faces Eviction, Then Her 9-Year-Old Daughter Finds Amazing Way...

Young mom, Natalie Koltes was quickly approaching eviction from her Las Vegas home. She was struggling to meet ends meet while trying to pay...
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MORE ARTICLES

Is it unethical to give your cat catnip?

As the Christmas season gets underway thoughts turn to buying gifts for the entire family. For some, companion animals are on the gift list, particularly cats and dogs who share our homes and hearts. Whether...

In ‘Mary Poppins Returns,’ an ode to the gas lamp

“Mary Poppins Returns” transports audiences back to 1930s London. The beloved nanny at the center of the original 1964 hit film will return, this time played by Emily Blunt. But Mary’s original companion, Bert, a chimney...

Who is responsible for migrants?

President Donald Trump tends to portray migrants as a foreign problem that has suddenly – and unfairly – been “dumped” at America’s doorstep. Migration “is a way they get certain people out of their country...

Cargo ships are emitting boatloads of carbon, and nobody wants to take the blame

Maritime shipping transports 90 percent of the goods traded around the world by volume. Moving large amounts of goods such as oil, computers, blue jeans and wheat across oceans drives the global economy, making...

An economist’s take on the Poland climate conference: The glass is more than half...

The global climate change conference in Katowice, Poland, that wrapped up on Dec. 15 had a challenging mission. Three years ago in Paris, 196 countries and regions agreed to curb global greenhouse gas emissions...

How to handle the return of a long-lost family member during the holidays

Humans are social animals who crave connection with others. It’s a drive that seems hard-wired into our systems so that when we experience rejection or estrangement from others, the experience can feel much like...

Advanced digital networks look a lot like the human nervous system

Parents have experienced how newborns grab their finger and hold tight. This almost instantaneous response is one of the sweetest involuntary movements that babies exhibit. The newborn’s nerves sense a touch, process the information...

You can probably eat more Christmas cookies than you think – just take a...

It’s that time of year when cookies, cakes, candy and treats show up at work, home and every place in between. As researchers who have investigated obesity, people’s body image, and fast food and other...

If you recycled all the plastic garbage in the world, you could buy the...

This year, I served on the judging panel for The Royal Statistical Society’s International Statistic of the Year. On Dec. 18, we announced the winner: 90.5 percent, the amount of plastic that has never been...

How T.M. Landry College Prep failed black families

Of all the challenges that vex black parents, perhaps none is more frustrating than to be forced to send their children to schools where their children’s talents go unrecognized, overlooked, ignored or even squashed. As...

Shockwaves from French ‘yellow vest’ protests felt across Europe

Mostly peaceful demonstrations in Paris on Dec. 15 showed that recent concessions by President Emmanuel Macron have quieted – but not satisfied – the outraged French protesters whose weekend marches have gripped and unsettled...

Exorcisms have been part of Christianity for centuries

“The Exorcist,” a horror film released 45 years ago, is a terrifying depiction of supernatural evil. The film tells the story of a young American girl who is possessed by a demon and eventually...

The math on why the Trump administration’s fuel standards report is seriously flawed

Fuel economy standards are an important way for the U.S. to combat climate change. However, a 2018 study conducted by the Trump administration proposes hitting the pause button on regulations, potentially leaving billions of...

Indian bill to ‘protect’ trafficking victims will make sex workers less safe

Hoping to protect women from sexual exploitation, Indian lawmakers are pushing a bill that amend the criminal code to harden legal and financial penalties for sex trafficking. The “Trafficking of Persons (Prevention, Protection and Rehabilitation)...

Why you should give your grandparents a 3D printer for Christmas

Senior citizens might really like – and use – a 3D printer. That’s the surprising, and money-saving, conclusion of a new study I co-authored: 3D printers can save arthritis patients money by more cheaply...

China’s win-at-all-costs approach suggests it will follow its own dangerous path in biomedicine

The world was shocked by Chinese scientist He Jiankui’s recent claim that he’d brought to term twin babies whose genes – inheritable by their own potential descendants – he had modified as embryos. The...

Why the Texas ruling on Obamacare is on shaky legal ground

A Texas judge has ruled that the Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional. For now, his decision has no immediate effect except to toss another fire bomb at a law that has helped 20-plus million...

Can your heart grow three sizes? A doctor reads ‘How the Grinch Stole Christmas’

At the beginning of Dr. Seuss’ “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” the green, pot-bellied, feline-faced Grinch is a bitter, foul-tempered misanthrope whose heart is “two sizes too small.” In the middle of the story,...

Is the FDA being Grinch-like in raising concerns about raw cookie dough?

For many people, the holiday ritual of baking cookies isn’t complete without also eating some of the raw dough. In my family, questions like “Who gets to lick the beaters?” and “Can I grab...

As hunting declines, efforts grow to broaden the funding base for wildlife conservation

Hunting is a seasonal ritual for more than 11 million Americans in fall and winter. For those whose quarry includes ducks, geese or other waterfowl, one essential item is a Federal Duck Stamp –...

The NRA’s financial weakness, explained

The National Rifle Association’s political spending fell during the 2018 midterm elections. There’s talk of ending small perks like free coffee at its offices and even employee layoffs. These and other trends indicate that at...

Trump administration ban on NIH use of fetal tissue should worry all scientists

Throughout history, politicians have restricted or outright banned certain areas of scientific or medical research based on moral or ethical grounds. In some cases, these measures were justified and prevented unethical human or animal...

What the US could learn from Thailand about health care coverage

The open enrollment period for the Affordable Care Act (ACA) draws to a close on Dec. 15. Yet, recent assaults on the ACA by the Trump administration stand in marked contrast to efforts to...

How wireless recharging works – and doesn’t, yet

Though the days of hardwired wall-mounted phones are ending and wireless internet connections are common at home and on the go, people are still dependent on cords to charge their mobile devices. My research,...

We train Colombian woolly monkeys to be wild again – and maybe save them...

Colombia’s Andes Mountains used to be loaded with wildlife, including South America’s sole bear species, the spectacle bear, and the mountain tapir, which lives only in the world’s highest altitudes. You couldn’t walk a mile...

Nearly all sexual harassment at work goes unreported – and those who do report...

The #MeToo and #TimesUp movements have brought renewed attention to workplace sexual harassment. However, the vast majority of allegations go unreported, and those who do report tend to face troubling outcomes. Our new research, released...

Nearly all sexual harassment at work goes unreported – and those who do report...

The #MeToo and #TimesUp movements have brought renewed attention to workplace sexual harassment. However, the vast majority of allegations go unreported, and those who do report tend to face troubling outcomes. Our new research, released...

Who are Yemen’s Houthis?

Fully half of Yemen’s population – 14 million people – are on the brink of starvation. Some analysts blame their inability to access basic foodstuff on escalating conflict between two religious factions: the country’s...

Worry over kids’ excessive smartphone use is more justified than ever before

Parents who fear their kids are spending too much time in front of screens now have more reason for concern. New research funded by the National Institutes of Health found brain changes among kids using...

Looking for a high-tech gift for a young child? Think playgrounds, not playpens

Shopping for a new high-tech gift for the child in your life this holiday season? It’s easy to be overwhelmed by all the options. Bright boxes, colorful apps and cute plastic robots will promise...

Why shaming your children on social media may make things worse

Matt Cox knew he would be criticized when he forced his 10-year-old daughter to walk 5 miles to school in 36-degree weather as her punishment for being suspended from the school bus twice for...

The key to our humanity isn’t genetic, it’s microbial

What if the key to perfecting the human species were actually … yogurt? The fantasy of trying to perfect humanity through genetics was recently reignited by the announcement of the Chinese scientist claiming to have...

In 2019, women’s rights are still not explicitly recognized in US Constitution

Over nine decades, efforts to amend the U.S. Constitution to recognize women’s rights have faced major challenges. Congress finally passed such legislation, known as the Equal Rights Amendment, in 1972. The amendment would recognize women’s...

No coups occurred in 2018. Will next year be so stable?

The past year may have felt politically tumultuous, between Saudi Arabia’s brazen killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Turkey, the resurgence of authoritarianism in Eastern Europe and Donald Trump’s unorthodox approach to U.S. foreign...

What winter solstice rituals tell us about indigenous people

On the day of winter solstice, many Native American communities will hold religious ceremonies or community events. The winter solstice is the day of the year when the Northern Hemisphere has the fewest hours of...

How big data has created a big crisis in science

There’s an increasing concern among scholars that, in many areas of science, famous published results tend to be impossible to reproduce. This crisis can be severe. For example, in 2011, Bayer HealthCare reviewed 67 in-house...

Time travel is possible – but only if you have an object with infinite...

The concept of time travel has always captured the imagination of physicists and laypersons alike. But is it really possible? Of course it is. We’re doing it right now, aren’t we? We are all...

With a limited on-screen presence, autistic characters have emerged in another medium: Fan fiction

In one Harry Potter fan fiction story, Hermione Granger anxiously awaits the results from a recent test. It isn’t her performance on an exam in a potions course that she’s concerned about. Instead, the higher-ups...

With a limited on-screen presence, autistic characters have emerged in another medium: Fan fiction

In one Harry Potter fan fiction story, Hermione Granger anxiously awaits the results from a recent test. It isn’t her performance on an exam in a potions course that she’s concerned about. Instead, the higher-ups...

China’s climate progress may have faltered in 2018, but it seems to be on...

Despite clear signs that the need to act on climate change is becoming more urgent, global greenhouse gas emissions are set to rise for the second straight year. China, the world’s second-largest economy and ground...

Think teens need the sex talk? Older adults may need it even more

Humans are sexual beings. This urge does not stop when the clock strikes 60. Or even 90. Young adults may deny older relatives are having sex, but sexual activity is a strong indicator of healthy...

Brexit rooted more in elite politics than mass resentment

Thirty months after the British voted to exit the European Union, or the EU, nobody knows where Brexit will end up. Champions of the exit hoped to free themselves from the EU’s constraints – especially...

You may not even need a telescope to see Comet 46P/Wirtanen in the night...

As comets blaze across the night sky, they can bring wonder and excitement to those watching from Earth – or even a sense of impending doom. In the past, people debated what comets even...

Where’s my package? Common carrier freight lockers can ease city traffic and prevent failed...

Online shopping is a big convenience for many Americans, but porch piracy can ruin the experience. For example, Mikaela Gilbert lived in a row house in West Philadelphia while she studied systems engineering at...

Don’t worry about screen time – focus on how you use technology

Many Americans find themselves bombarded by expert advice to limit their screen time and break their addictions to digital devices – including enforcing and modeling this restraint for the children in their lives. However,...

Diamonds are forever – whether made in a lab or mined from the earth

It’s diamond season. Almost 40 percent of American engagements happen between Thanksgiving and Valentine’s Day, with Christmas the most popular day to pop the question – and hand over a sparkly piece of ice....

How stereo was first sold to a skeptical public

When we hear the word “stereo” today, we might simply think of a sound system, as in “turn on the stereo.” But stereo actually is a specific technology, like video streaming or the latest expresso...

Cheap oil is blocking progress on climate change

The relationship between supply and demand, a fundamental economic concept, holds that when the price of something rises, people use less of it. Similarly, when prices fall, they use more. And it may seem logical...

Wisconsin GOP’s power grab is a danger to democracy

In Wisconsin, Democratic candidates won the 2018 elections for governor and attorney general. But the Republican-controlled legislature quickly introduced and passed lame-duck legislation that takes power away from these incoming officeholders and hands it to...

Cannabis use in teens not a gateway to conduct problems, study suggests – but...

With the legalization of cannabis for adults becoming increasingly widespread, more adolescents will be trying the drug. And parents will be wondering what the consequences will be for their teens should they try and...