This week, we’re sharing stories from Leah Sottile, Elon Green, Lisa Whittington-Hill, Kate Morgan, and Virginia Morell.

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1. Did James Plymell Need to Die?

Leah Sottile | High Country News | March 1, 2021 | 26 minutes (6,500 words)

The toll of criminalizing homelessness in small cities and towns across the American West.

2. The Dissenter

Elon Green | The Appeal | March 2, 2021 | 37 minutes (9,288 words)

“Former Louisiana Supreme Court Chief Justice Bernette Johnson’s fiery dissents on mass incarceration and sentencing in America’s most carceral state garnered international attention. But the rise of the first Black woman on the court was characterized by one battle after another with the Deep South’s white power structure.”

3. OCD is Not a Joke

Lisa Whittington-Hill | The Walrus | March 1, 2021 | 12 minutes (3,114 words)

“People with obsessive-compulsive disorder are often depicted as Type A clean freaks. The reality is much worse.”

4. Once Upon a Tree

Kate Morgan | Sierra Magazine | Febuary 25, 2021 | 14 minutes (3,685 words)

“Before a disastrous blight, the American chestnut was a keystone species in eastern forests. Could genetic engineering help bring it back?”

5. The Dogs That Grew Wool and the People Who Love Them

Virginia Morell | Hakai Magazine | February 23, 2021 | 16 minutes (4,105 words)

“The dogs did more than provide fur. They were also part of village life: sometimes, a favorite wooly dog would keep a weaver company.”