Michelle Chen

Michelle Chen is a contributing editor at In These Times. She is a regular contributor to the labor rights blog Working In These Times, Colorlines.com, and Pacifica's WBAI. Her work has also appeared in Common Dreams, Alternet, Ms. Magazine, Newsday, and her old zine, cain.

Articles by this author

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Wednesday, June 07, 2017
How the States Can Still Fight Climate Change — Without the Federal Government
Con fronting the climate crisis shouldn’t be rocket science—to push society to decarbonize, just treat greenhouse gases the way governments treat liquor and cigarettes: Raise the price. With the climate-change movement at an impasse as the Paris climate treaty clashes with Trump’s anti-science...
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Tuesday, March 14, 2017
Trump’s Childcare Plan Will Only Help the Rich
P esident Trump portrays himself as an expert at marketing designer ties and gourmet steaks, but now, as chief executive of federal social policy, his new childcare plan might be a tougher sell. The promise he has made of universal childcare, accompanied by a marketing campaign led by his glamorous...
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Wednesday, March 01, 2017
Trump’s Budget Proposal Is an Attack on the Working Class
T he world’s eight richest individuals possess the same amount of money as the world’s poorest 3.6 billion. According to Oxfam’s annual assessment of wealth distribution , “collectively the poorest 50 percent of people have less than a quarter of 1 percent of global net wealth,” based on data from...
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Friday, August 19, 2016
This Town Is Sick of Drinking Polluted Water
In Alabama’s Black Belt, a region where the vestiges of slavery still manifest in chronic poverty and crumbling infrastructure, a more recent legacy of mining and industry is haunting the land through poisoned waterways and toxic soil. Yet the region has long been the rural core of civil-rights...
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Thursday, January 28, 2016
The Refugees of Flint's Water Crisis
After being slowly poisoned by their government, the people of Flint, Michigan are finally getting some relief. But like the water itself, the crisis is spreading steadily and converging with an environmental crisis of global proportions. Flint has been systematically immersed in toxins and disease...
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Thursday, September 03, 2015
The Rebellion Against Standardized Tests Is Exploding
O pting out is in. Over the past two years, the movement to boycott standardized tests across New York State has mushroomed from a fringe rebellion to a mass mobilization against what many see as an anxiety-provoking, creativity-stifling, and hypercommercialized testing regime. With record numbers...
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Monday, August 17, 2015
Prison Education Reduces Recidivism By Over 40 Percent. Why Aren’t We Funding More of It?
P rison isn’t the most intellectually stimulating environment, but the dimmest corners of the criminal justice system may actually be a perfect place to liberate an otherwise wasted mind. A new initiative by the White House to issue Pell Grants to incarcerated students is about to test just how...
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Saturday, August 08, 2015
 Is the Senate Finally Getting Behind Fair Pay for Government Contractors?
A ugust on Capitol Hill is, like many things in Washington, divided. Lawmakers take a summer break. But Sontia Bailey, a food service worker, doubles up on work, splitting her days between the Capitol, where she serves meals for most of the year to some of the nation’s most influential decision-...
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Monday, August 03, 2015
 The War on Planned Parenthood Is Also an Assault on Poor Women of Color
O ur elected representatives have taken to the airwaves to proclaim they are extremely concerned with the fate of discarded fetal tissue; the fate of the health of poor women? Not so much. Conservatives have again vowed to defund Planned Parenthood , now with even more gusto, following a...
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Thursday, July 23, 2015
 New York Fast-Food Workers Win Their Fight for $15
T hough New York’s lawmakers are infamous for their ethical failings, Albany just did the right thing for once: serve the state’s fast-food workers some long-overdue justice. Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Wage Board , a three-member panel representing business, labor and the public, has for weeks heard...
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