The Law and Mental Health: Because many police officers don’t receive training on how to recognize and interact with people who may have autism, they sometimes read autism-related behavior as suspicious—and initiate encounters that can quickly escalate. Mental health is also a serious problem within the U.S. prison system, where hundreds of thousands of mentally ill inmates are incarcerated rather than receiving help from other institutions. A reporter who is himself a prisoner provides an inside look at the crisis.
Meters from where the leaders of North and South Korea recently planted a pine tree to memorialize their blossoming bid for peace, North Korean soldiers once crushed the skulls of two U.S. soldiers with the blunt end of their axe heads. The attack came after the Americans tried to trim a poplar tree. The men’s disfigured bodies were left beside the tree …
When the axe attack occurred, in 1976, Kim Jong Un hadn’t yet been born. The New York Times was, at the time, describing Donald Trump as a rising, Robert Redford–esque real-estate promoter with “flair” and “dazzling white teeth.” As for Moon Jae-in, the current president of South Korea, he was serving as a corporal in a special-forces brigade that would later help avenge the murders by carrying out the most elaborate and dangerous tree-cutting operation in history—an act that brought the United States and North Korea closer to all-out conflict than they have been at any other time since the end of the Korean War.
When the author Sarah Rich’s son started insisting on wearing dresses to school, she saw how little the stifling limits of American masculinity have changed. “There are so few positive variations on what a ‘real man’ can look like,” she writes, “that when the youngest generations show signs of reshaping masculinity, the only word that exists for them is nonconforming.” Another writer, Sarah Prager, faced the challenge of raising a daughter with her wife in the wake of the 2016 U.S. presidential election, when adoption rights for same-sex couples fell into legal uncertainty and reports of harassment toward LGBTQ people increased. “For us,” Prager writes, “the tone of life a year ago was terrifying.”
Can you remember the other key facts from this week’s family coverage? Test your knowledge below:
1. The TV icon Fred Rogers took such pains to understand how children communicate that his team of writers jokingly referred to his on-air language as “___________.”
After Anthony Bourdain died last week, at 61, Khanishk Tharoor memorialized the chef and writer’s deeply empathetic approach to the people and places portrayed on his TV shows. Elmer comments:
His is the first celebrity death which has impacted me. I was trying to think why for the last couple of days. I came to the conclusion that I was a partner in each of his shows. He was always talking with me, not talking at me. He was always empathetic. He treated his guests as friends, and his wonderment and his questions were the same as mine.