Author: Michael Vargas (Michael Vargas)

Vargas: Betsy DeVos’ new Title IX rules are dangerous

I spent 4 years working in Student Affairs at the University of Southern California. In 2006, I got my first job working with students as a resident advisor, and then served in a number of other roles until 2010 when I finished my masters degree in education. During this period, the higher education community was...

Vargas: We are still not prepared for the economic fallout

The COVID-19 crisis is really two interconnected crises: the public health crisis created by the pandemic and the economic crisis sure to follow. During the public health crisis created by COVID-19, our elected leaders are understandably focused on “flattening the curve” to prevent devastating strain on our already over-taxed health care system. Their response has...

Vargas: Let’s end the ‘gay candidate’ test

In the wake of Pete Buttigieg’s surprise and historic win in the Iowa caucuses, the prospect of American’s electing their first LGBTQ President suddenly feels like a real possibility. Buttigieg’s victory in Iowa also virtually guarantees that he will stay in the race long into the primary and Democrats around the country will have the...

Vargas: Mountain View’s RV ban should be repealed

The Great Recession hit my parents hard. In 2009, my parents’ mortgage was underwater, despite their having lived in their house in Minnesota for nearly a decade. Their only choice was to walk away, so they decided to move back to the Bay Area, where they had both gone to graduate school. They were lucky...

Vargas: The attack on Katie Hill is a gay-bashing

The saga of Congresswoman Katie Hill’s resignation provides a stark illustration of how LGBTQ continue to be victimized in public life. On Oct. 18, Red State, a trashy, right wing blog with the journalistic integrity no better than 4Chan, published a trove of revenge porn provided by Hill’s abusive soon-to-be ex-husband. If you expected a...

Vargas: Why you should care about Aimee Stephens

Aimee Stephens worked as a funeral director and embalmer at R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Homes in Michigan from 2008 to 2013. By all accounts, she was a model employee, friendly and respectful to clients, and never disciplined by the owner. In 2013, Aimee, who was presenting as a man at the time, informed the...

Vargas: Expect the unexpected from the Supreme Court this year

On Oct. 1, the U.S. Supreme Court will return from its summer recess to a term already packed with potential blockbuster cases. In the spring, the court agreed to hear major cases on race, sex, age, and sexual orientation discrimination, the administration’s decision to wind down the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, the...

Vargas: A call for mandatory liability insurance on firearms

In the wake of yet another mass shooting, this time in Gilroy, Californians are justifiably outraged. Our children are being murdered, and yet our government in Washington has proven unequal to this challenge, while our neighbor, Nevada, has undermined our gun control policies with their grotesquely lax ones. Evidence from around the globe demonstrates incontrovertibly...

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