To close out 2015, Pacific Standard editors all put our heads together to create a "best of" list—singling out our staff's favorite, most impactful stories from what had, thankfully, been another successful year.
While we didn't have particularly high expectations for that post (what with our friends at Digg and This. laying claim to the curated-news aggregation territory), that "Best of 2015" collection actually received quite a bit of recognition on social media. Moreover, writers who were recognized seemed to really appreciate the gesture.
After talking among ourselves, we've decided to make this a thing—a weekly thing. We publish stories every day that we're proud of; why not give special mention to those pieces more often?
So, without further ado (and we promise not to be so long-winded in the future), here are this week's best Pacific Standard stories:
- "The Bundy Militia's Revisionist History in Oregon," by Aaron Bady For centuries, the federal government has bailed out cattle ranchers in Oregon and other Western states. It requires a lot of magical thinking—and historical erasure—to see "tyranny" in Harney County.
- "How Can We Treat the Seriously Mentally Ill Before Tragedy Occurs, Instead of After?" by Jeneen Interlandi Laura's Law could provide a middle ground between the old norm of total institutionalization and the new one of total abandonment. But the statute is struggling to reconcile forestalling tragedies with patients' rights.
- "The Radioactive Remedy," by Madeleine Thomas Each year, hundreds of desperate patients seek relief from extreme pain in Montana's retired uranium mines.
- "Wrongful Imprisonment and the Limits of Tabloid Journalism," by Colette Shade Reuven Fenton's new book Stolen Years: Stories of the Wrongfully Imprisoned tells infuriating tales of wrongful convictions.
- "The Little Pink Pill That Sparked a Feminist War," by Maya Dusenbery The Food and Drug Administration's approval of a pharmaceutical treatment for low sexual desire in women has launched a heated debate over the dangers and benefits of medicalizing sex.