Welcome to U.S. birthday month! We hope you rang it in with fireworks and not too many tears over loud noises. Didn’t have time to keep up with the news during the festivities? We got you covered:

  1. A woman climbed the Statue of Liberty. Well, she got to the base… On July 4th, Therese Patricia Okoumou scaled the structure to protest the separation of families at the border.
  2. ISIS families are also in limbo. Much of the fighting has ended but many wives and children of fighters remain without a home as both Syria and their home countries reject them.
  3. Women are gaining in the government. A look at the electorate in the United States reveals how some state legislatures are winning and losing in the race towards gender parity. Maybe we could learn something from Mexico.
  4. Children are expensive to raise. And the New York Times is now linking the thing that every parent already knows to declining birth rates in the U.S.
  5. Women in India want to get paid. As India’s economy grows, the number of women in the labor force declines. At the same time, studies show that greater female participation would make the country 27% richer.

Giving us life this week: A woman with her son confronts Scott Pruitt about his environmentally unfriendly policies at the Environmental Protection Agency. Days later, he steps down; coincidence, maybe not? This dog dancing salsa is making us laugh so hard, we can’t, and lastly, if you haven’t seen the Mr. Rogers documentary, be ready with a whole box of Kleenex when you go.

Ali Feldhausen is a writer, illustrator, Mindr research intern, and advocate for care work, basically all the work done in the home. Not yet a mama, she hopes to use her passion for this field to create both policy and individual level changes that help everyone be happier and healthier.

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