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Opioids & Missing COVID Workforce; Social Justice vs. Algebra in California

The pandemic took a lot of people out of the labor force and there are many reasons why—including substance abuse. University of Pennsylvania economist Jeremy Greenwood and colleagues found that opioid and methamphetamine abuse had a sizable impact on keeping people off the job.

Some unelected government officials have a lot of power over our lives. For example, Dr. Anthony Fauci, head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, since 1984. In America Q&A, we ask “how do you feel about unelected officials having more power than elected officials?”

California will soon have a new framework to guide K–12 math teachers. Critics say the proposed guidelines focus too much on politics and not enough on algebra. One of them is Ze’ev Wurman, a former senior advisor in the U.S. Department of Education and a ​​research fellow at Independent Institute. He co-wrote an open letter to the state saying, “California is on the verge of politicizing K-12 math in a potentially disastrous way.”

As the Biden administration prepares to deliver an announcement about student loan forgiveness, in our second America Q&A, we ask if you think mass student loan forgiveness is fair to people who’ve already paid their debt.

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