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There Aren’t Serious Enough Consequences for Those Trying to Break American Democracy

Donald Trump will not serve a second term. The litigation launched by his campaign and the Republican Party to overturn the election results has no chance of preventing Joe Biden from swearing the oath of office on January 20—as Trump himself seemed to haltingly recognize last week after his administration finally allowed the presidential transition...

Pandemic Pod Means Something Different to Everyone

Editor’s Note: The Atlantic is making vital coverage of the coronavirus available to all readers. Find the collection here. Americans’ social lifelines are beginning to fray. As the temperature drops and the gray twilight arrives earlier each day, comfortably mingling outside during the pandemic is getting more difficult across much of the country....

The Mastermind Behind Biden’s No-Drama Approach to Trump

When Julián Castro wasn’t given a speaking slot at the Democratic National Convention in August, he complained that Joe Biden’s campaign wasn’t showing proper respect to Latino voters. The real explanation for the snub is much simpler: The former housing secretary and presidential candidate had implied that Biden was senile in a primary debate and then...

Trump Is Leaving Biden a Mess in Afghanistan

Since the day he entered office, President Donald Trump hasn’t been able to make up his mind about whether the United States should keep fighting in Afghanistan. His most recent decision to arbitrarily reduce U.S. troops’ presence to a nice, round number by January 15 was no different. Far from ending what he calls an “endless war,” Trump has only put...

The Trump You’ve Yet to Meet

How well do we know Donald Trump? Pretty well, it would seem. Nobody has ever accused the outgoing president of possessing a complex personality. His behavior in office confirmed the common view, barely disputed even by his allies, that he is a shallow narcissist, blind or indifferent to common decencies, with poor impulse control and a vindictive streak....

Pennsylvania: Images of the Keystone State

Pennsylvania is the fifth-most-populous state in the U.S., home to nearly 13 million residents. From Lake Erie, through the Ridge and Valley region, across Pennsylvania Dutch Country, to the city of Philadelphia, here are a few glimpses of the landscape of Pennsylvania, and some of the wildlife and people calling it home.This photo story is part of...

Against Heaven

double golden shovel with Saba and Nick HakimThere’s Earth. Amethyst. Cherries in heat. Trees drooling sugar. Midnight’s blue song. So what heaven? That kingdom wholed by a coy god’s touch? Where green and the river began? If all-father tells it: first you slave and shiver and shuck and die and die for heaven’s around-back gate to budge loose at...

What James Beard’s Ubiquity Says About American Food

In April 1954, James Beard flew from his home in New York to San Francisco and set out on a culinary road trip across the western U.S. The prolific cookbook author was about to turn 51, and feeling stuck in a loop of magazine deadlines, TV appearances, and product shilling. The hustle was constant, satisfaction elusive. “I am pooped, bitched, bushed,...

Is American Healing Even Possible?

On November 7, after four days of counting votes, Democrats celebrated the end of a “long national nightmare.” And when former Vice President Joe Biden took the stage in Wilmington, Delaware, to deliver his victory speech that Saturday night, he quickly extended a hand to President Donald Trump’s supporters, who may have felt demoralized by the loss.“I...

Hillbilly Elegy Doesn’t Reflect the Appalachia I Know

GIRLS ON A PORCH IN the APPALACHIAn REGION OF OHIO. Rich-Joseph FacunMy Aunt Ruth won’t watch Hillbilly Elegy, the movie adaptation of J. D. Vance’s memoir about growing up in and eventually escaping Appalachia and a mother coping with addiction. Practically speaking, my aunt doesn’t have a Netflix account or any of the smart technology she’d need to...

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