Hard Numbers

610,577: The latest experiment with guaranteed basic income will be the world's largest so far. In India, the governing party in the small Himalayan state of Sikkim has announced a plan to provide a universal basic income for every one of its 610,577 citizens. Promoters of this idea and its skeptics around the world will be watching.

1,330: In Brazil, criminal gangs have posed a serious challenge for the state for many years, and the problem is getting worse. In the state of Ceará, gangs are reportedly paying young people in poor communities to plant bombs and start fires. The latest wave of destruction is now in its third week. It includes attacks on banks, bridges, and other infrastructure. The kids can reportedly earn 1,000 reais ($266) for torching a bus and 5,000 reais ($1,330) for igniting "a fire of great proportions."

6.6: The enrollment of new foreign students in the US fell by 6.6 percent in the 2017-18 academic year, double the previous year's rate of decline. This is the steepest drop in new enrollees since the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The number of F-1 visas, those issued to foreign full-time students, fell from 644,000 in fiscal 2015 to about 394,000 in fiscal 2017.

2: Before this week's attack that killed four Americans and injured three others, only two Americans had been killed in action in Syria since the US-led military campaign began in late 2014.

Howard University President Dr. Wayne A. I. Frederick joins That Made All the Difference podcast to discuss how his career as a surgeon influenced his work as an educator, administrator and champion of underserved communities, and why he believes we may be on the cusp of the next "golden generation."

Listen to the latest podcast now.

When hundreds of thousands of protesters in Ethiopia brought sweeping change to their government in 2018, many of them were blaring the music of one man: a popular young activist named Hachalu Hundessa, who sang songs calling for the liberation and empowerment of the Oromo, the country's largest ethnic group.

Earlier this week, the 34-year old Hundessa was gunned down in the country's capital, Addis Ababa.

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As the United States celebrates its Independence Day on July 4th, we thought we'd take a look at two places in the world that have emerged from the colonial rule of Uncle Sam, and a third that may do so in the future.

Liberia: The West African nation of Liberia was never formally a US colony, but from 1816 to 1847 it was administered by the American Colonization Society — founded to return freed American slaves to Africa. Liberia in 1847 became the first independent republic in Africa (and just the second Black republic after Haiti). Its first president was Joseph Jenkins Roberts, a former slave from Virginia. With a similar flag and a US-modeled Constitution, Liberia has remained independent despite several periods of extreme turmoil, including two civil wars. Its current president is former soccer star George Weah...whose son plays for the US national soccer team.

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As the coronavirus continues to sweep across the United States, hospitals around the country are seeing a crush of COVID-19 patients requiring urgent care. In recent weeks, medical professionals in a number of states have said that they were unprepared not only for the number of infected people that would require treatment, but also for the length of time patients would need to stay in the hospital. Many cities and towns are now facing the possibility of massive hospital bed shortages. Here's a look at hospital bed occupancy rates, state by state.

The Wall Street Journal says that it's partisan to compare the US pandemic response to Europe. In this episode of The Red Pen — where we do our best to keep op-eds honest — Ian Bremmer and Eurasia Group's Scott Rosenstein point out some flaws in the WSJ's argument.

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