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BC-The Conversation for September 20, 10am, ADVISORY

September 20, 2021 GMT

Here’s a look at what The Conversation, a non-profit source of explanatory journalism from experts in academia, is offering today.

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TODAY’S HIGHLIGHTS:

-Boosters

-Facebook

-SCOTUS

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STORIES:

Louisianans’ way of life on the coast is threatened by the very plans meant to save their wetlands and barrier islands from rising seas

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COMMENTARY As the state copes with hurricanes and climate disasters, it is figuring out how to manage the slow-motion loss of its coastal land. But its plans could endanger the cultures that define the region. 1072 words. By Craig E. Colten, Louisiana State University

How many stars are there in space?

SCIENCE OR TECHNOLOGY Scientists have a good estimate on the staggering number of stars in the universe. 579 words. By Brian Jackson, Boise State University

Facebook’s algorithms fueled massive foreign propaganda campaigns during the 2020 election – here’s how algorithms can manipulate you

COMMENTARY You have evolved to tap into the wisdom of the crowds. But on social media your cognitive biases can lead you astray, something organized disinformation campaigns count on. 1254 words. By Filippo Menczer, Indiana University

New treatments for COVID-19 may stave off the worst effects of the virus

COMMENTARY Medications to treat COVID-19 are in no way a substitute for the vaccine. But under the right circumstances, some show great promise for helping patients. 1145 words. By Patrick Jackson, University of Virginia

The Supreme Court has overturned precedent dozens of times in the past 60 years, including when it struck down legal segregation

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COMMENTARY There is value in observing legal precedent, but sometimes circumstances, logic or judges’ views determine it’s time to overturn it. 1031 words. By David Schultz, Hamline University

A giant space rock demolished an ancient Middle Eastern city and everyone in it – possibly inspiring the Biblical story of Sodom

SCIENCE OR TECHNOLOGY New research suggests that fire from the sky in the form of a small asteroid annihilated a city near the Dead Sea 3,600 years ago. 1103 words. By Christopher R. Moore, University of South Carolina

FDA panel recommends limiting Pfizer booster shots to Americans 65 and older, and those at high risk of severe COVID-19

COMMENTARY An FDA panel has voted against recommending approval of a booster COVID-19 shot for the general population – disappointing some public health officials. 786 words. By Matthew Woodruff, Emory University

Are COVID-19 boosters ethical, with half the world waiting for a first shot? A bioethicist weighs in

COMMENTARY Scientists debate the medical benefits of booster shots. But there’s another aspect to consider: bioethics. 878 words. By Nancy S. Jecker, University of Washington

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