News Above the Noise—Week of June 25, 2023
Editor's Note: Every week, The Sunday Paper's team of journalists sifts through the news to make sense of what's happening in the world and provide hope for your week to come. We find what Rises Above the Noise and do our best to highlight what we think matters. If you’d like to read more in-depth, please note that while we do our best to feature articles that are not behind a paywall, some of the news pieces we recommend require their own subscriptions beyond our control.
1. The Coup D'état That Wasn’t
Tensions between Russia and a private military army, the Wagner group, came to a head over the weekend. The group had been fighting alongside Russian forces in Ukraine, but on Friday, Wagner boss Yevgeny Prigozhin accused Russia’s military of striking a Wagner camp leading to an armed rebellion marching toward Moscow. On Saturday, the Wagner group announced it had reached an agreement with Belarus and would head there instead. For more on this story, click here.
2. For the First Time, Anxiety Screenings Are Recommended for Most Americans
If you’re an adult between the ages of 19 and 64 in the U.S., you’ll now be screened for anxiety disorders thanks to a new recommendation from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. “Anxiety disorders are common, and they can really impact people’s quality of life,” Dr. Michael Silverstein, vice chair of the task force told CNN. “What the task force found is that screening for anxiety disorders in the general adult population can lead to identifying these conditions early and then, if those people who are identified get linked up with appropriate care, they will benefit.” For more on this story, click here.
3. Yesterday Marked One Year Without Roe v. Wade
One year ago, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling, which legalized abortion nationwide. This had an immediate impact: Republican-controlled legislatures in multiple states passed restrictive legislation and near-total abortion bans are now in place in 14 states, while abortion rights supporters in other states managed to fight off new proposed restrictions or codify abortion protections. To learn more about the reaction from both sides of the aisle about yesterday’s anniversary, click here.
4. What it Really Means to Have Intrusive Thoughts
Did you know you have an average of 6,200 thoughts each day? Given that kind of volume, it’s no surprise many of them will be unwanted and possibly even intrusive. “We all have these thoughts, and for the most part, we don’t really do anything with them,” Jon Abramowitz, a professor of psychology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill told TIME magazine. “We just kind of say, ‘Oh, that’s a doozy. I don’t want to do that, and I’m probably not going to do it,’ and the thought ends up being like a brain fart—like mental noise.” For more on what intrusive thoughts really are, and how they’re treated, click here.
5. The U.S. Population is Older Than Ever Before
The median age in the U.S. reached a record high, according to the latest Census Bureau data: In 2000, the median age was 35 compared to a median age of 30 in 1980. Low birthrates are the main driver for this change, an international trend that has nations aging and having fewer children—a combo that poses challenges for the economy, social programs, and the work force. For more information about the latest Census data, click here.