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

Rep. Deb Haaland speaks at a reception hosted by the Congressional Native American Caucus in Washington on Jan. 3, 2019. (Photo: Brian Snyder / Reuters) Views
Tuesday, January 08, 2019
Two Native Women in Congress Isn't Enough to End the Systemic Violence Native Girls Face
A shifting power balance on the Capitol — including the first two N ative women elected to the House — might change the political landscape for disenfranchised indigenous communities. For now, though, Washington remains gridlocked and native communities persevere as sites of resistance, struggling...
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A Central American girl travelling in a migrants' caravan, rides a bus outside a temporary shelter in eastern Tijuana, Baja California state, Mexico on December 6, 2018. (Photo: Guillermo Arias / AFP - Getty Images) Views
Tuesday, December 11, 2018
Trump's Caravan Problem Isn't Which People Are Coming, But What Kind of Country America Will Choose to Be
A bleak irony is emerging in Tijuana's border zone. For all the raging conservative rhetoric about how Central American migrants are lawbreakers who refuse to just “get in line” and enter the “legal” way , the asylum seekers are actually "getting in line ” — or what passes for a line — by forming...
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Even with the proposed pay hike, teachers’ salaries are still devastatingly low, despite being years into the economic “recovery.” Views
Friday, April 06, 2018
The Oklahoma Teachers’ Strike Is a Mutiny Against Austerity
Oklahoma teachers proudly marked themselves absent from school since Monday, and they had an excellent excuse: They made themselves present in politics instead, with a historic march on the Capitol in hopes of finally capturing the legislature’s undivided attention Lawmakers thought they could eke...
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"So while the decennial census should be a comprehensive social survey, it has no business questioning our citizenship." (Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP/Getty Images) Views
Friday, March 30, 2018
Trump Wants to Reframe the Census to Fit His Definition of America, Not Protect Americans
The purpose of an accurate census count is to help the government understand the people for whom it is responsible — full stop. A fully inclusive census is vital for informing policy-making, whether determining how many roadways are required for a region’s population, monitoring local public health...
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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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