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Roundup: Six Good Reads that Have Racial Equity in Common

Resources to make sense of the student debt crisis, the administration's Public Charge rule, the realities of our big-money political system, and more

This week, we're sharing resources to help make sense of a host of subjects—our country's student debt crisis, the administration's Public Charge rule, the realities of our big-money political system, and more.

P.S. Read all the way to the end for career opportunities at Demos!

Economic Justice

  1. Student debt cancellation is a hot topic right now. So what do you need to know? Here are three weekend reads to help inform your next policy conversation:
  2. The Public Charge rule is xenophobic, classist, and based on faulty logic. The Supreme Court just allowed the administration to enforce its Public Charge rule—a move that could restrict green cards and visas for immigrants who the government believes might use public benefits.

    The rule would, among other things, let the government use credit scores to keep immigrants from qualifying for permanent residency in the U.S. (see more below on why credit scores are flawed for any purpose). It may also send shockwaves through the college financial aid system.

    Read the thread: 
    @MarkHuelsman — The Public Charge rule is odious in its intent and design, and a back-door way to both reduce legal immigration and keep people poor. I also don't think people quite grasp the profound effect it could have on higher education. 1/
  3. Credit reports and scores are highly flawed. Not only is personal credit information completely unsuitable for determining a family’s eligibility to remain in the U.S., the defects in the credit reporting system go much deeper. In a powerful move to support consumers and job seekers, the House of Representatives just passed a bill imposing strict new regulations on the credit reporting industry, including restrictions on employment credit checks that Demos has long advocated

    Congress should seriously consider going one step further and replacing our failed for-profit credit reporting system with a public credit registry—it would benefit consumers and reduce racial wealth inequality.

 Democratic Reform 

  1. We don't need to restore democracy—we need to realize democracy. Listen to Demos President K. Sabeel Rahman on what it would take to make America’s democracy work for everyone for once and why the time for structural change is now.
  2. The National Day of Racial Healing was last week, but our work doesn't stop there. "What do we plan to do for the next hundred days that follow today that will help to heal the racial divide?," asks Rodney McKenzie, Jr., Demos Executive Vice President of Movement Strategies.
  3. When in doubt, consider the impact of money in politics. You can explain a lot of what happens in our current political system by looking at who makes up its donor class. Or to use real-world examples:
    @chiraagbains — With three candidates of color out in quick succession, and two billionaires spending $317 million on ads in a matter of months, perhaps it’s time we talk about the racial equity consequences of our big money political system?

 We're Hiring! 

  1. Apply to be one of our Summer 2020 Legal Interns or to be our next Associate Director of Media Strategies.

"It's not just about winning an election or having the best policy ideas. A lot of it turns on who actually gets to make the decisions in the first place, who decides." — K. Sabeel Rahman, President, Demos
Demos President K. Sabeel Rahman on how we realize American democracy, on the No Jargon podcast.