A selection of key work, sorted chronologically and searchable by topic.
Cumulative Impacts (Border Belt Independent, May 2022)
North Carolina permitted a plant that burns poultry waste for electricity—despite protests that it was a repeat polluter in a poor community. State regulators claimed they lack power to consider environmental-justice factors. Do they?
The Youngest Operative (Border Belt Independent, May 2022)
Cutler Bryant is 17. He is also a key political strategist in Robeson County, N.C., where Lumbee voters are in the forefront of a hard shift to the Republican Party.
Between Place and Party (The Assembly, April 2022)
Charles Graham has rejected party orthodoxy, gone internet viral, and run a dozen points ahead of the Democratic ticket. His congressional race highlights the challenge for moderate rural Democrats.
Birds of a Feather (Audubon Magazine, April 2022)
Avian DNA holds secrets that reveal where birds migrate and their resilience to climate change. The Bird Genoscape Project aims to unlock them.
The state of the union, according to Biden’s worried supporters (The Washington Post, February 2022)
Even among those who — enthusiastically or reluctantly — voted for the president, there is concern that things are not going as they’d hoped. (Shared byline.)
Q&A with William J. Barber III (Food & Environment Reporting Network, February 2022)
A leader in North Carolina’s environmental-justice movement explains why we can’t solve the climate crisis on the backs of the most vulnerable communities.
EPA to investigate North Carolina biogas (Food & Environment Reporting Network, January 2022)
The feds will investigate whether state regulators discriminated against communities of color when they approved four applications to convert hog waste into fuel. Plus, earlier coverage of the North Carolina hog industry.
The Contested Swamps of Robeson County (The Assembly, September 2021)
A behemoth natural-gas facility, sitting atop a disrupted archeological site, represents just the latest environmental challenge for one of North Carolina’s most diverse yet burdened counties.
Good Chemistry (Duke Magazine, July 2021)
On the science podcast Dope Labs, you’ll hear about Beyoncé, Black Panther, hair transplants, cuffing season, vaccines, friendship, and pandemic burnout. Hosts Titi Shodiya and Zakiya Whatley want to prove that science belongs to everyone. (Opens as a PDF; click here for web version.)
A New Democratic Playbook (The Assembly, April 2021)
Ricky Hurtado bucked party strategists to run a different kind of campaign. Is he the vanguard of Latinx electoral power-building and millennial campaigning in North Carolina?
Secrets of the Bovine (Duke Magazine, March 2021)
In the 1920s and ’30s, cattle were put on trial, then convicted and executed, for being genetically impure. The human eugenics movement was on the rise too.
Battle Hymns of the Old South (The Baffler, March 2021)
A report from Graham, N.C., a former textile city where a homegrown racial justice movement percolated up through the most unforgiving terrain and then persisted through months of escalating government repression.
Room to Roam? (National Wildlife, February 2021)
When Covid-19 froze us in place, the resulting “anthropause” triggered a massive unplanned experiment. The results are more complex than the funny videos of animals taking over the streets. (Opens as a PDF; click here for web version.)
The Fierce Urgency of Now (Carolina Alumni Review, January 2021)
At the University of North Carolina, faculty of color are working to undo the legacy of a campus founded by and for slaveholders, and to craft an institution that reflects the diversity of 21st-century America. They say it’s an exhausting slog. (Opens as a PDF.)
Peaceful March to the Polls is Met with Pepper Spray (The Washington Post, October 2020)
They paused, silently, at the Confederate monument. Then a peaceful march to a voting site in Graham, N.C. turned chaotic. Co-authored with Isaac Stanley-Becker. Plus more reportage from Graham during a tense year.
A Hierarchy of Needs (Carolina Alumni Review, September 2020)
As the Covid-19 pandemic shuts down campuses, professors at one university reckon with teaching off-script. (Opens as a PDF.)
Our Stutter (The Nation, September 2020)
Joe Biden’s “overcoming” narrative is rooted in shame. There are deeper and more life-giving ways to frame how we talk.
Is Any Protest a Threat to Public Safety? (The Washington Post, July 2020)
A report from Graham, N.C., where civil-rights activists have been sparring with elected officials over what constitutes free speech.
Using Generations of Resilience to Handle the Pandemic (Southerly, May 2020)
Louisiana’s Grand Caillou/Dulac Band has long practiced self-isolation and sustainable food production. Tribal members hope will help keep their number of COVID-19 cases low.
As the Sea Level Rises, a Louisiana Tribe Fights to Stay Put (onEarth, April 2020)
They survived the BP oil disaster, Hurricane Katrina, and decades of industry spoiling their wetlands. Whatever their future holds, the people of Grand Bayou want to decide it for themselves.
A Woman Not of Her Time (Carolina Alumni Review, March 2020)
Rejected by the all-white University of North Carolina, civil-rights leader Pauli Murray had a triumphant homecoming four decades later. (Opens as a PDF.)
Raising a Stink (Food & Environment Reporting Network, December 2019)
Rural North Carolinians sued the world’s largest hog producer over waste and odors, and won. Will the judgments hold up on appeal? (Also published in The Nation.) Plus, more coverage of the North Carolina hog industry.
Stammer Time (The Baffler, November 2019)
A personal essay about my stutter, and about looking beyond the medical model of disability.
The Healer (Carolina Alumni Review, September 2019)
Charles van der Horst, an AIDS researcher and social-justice apostle, left an outsized legacy. (Opens as a PDF.)
The Vanishing Act (Food & Environment Reporting Network, August 2019)
After years of burying complaints about hog-farm pollution, North Carolina officials began posting them online. What changed? (Also published in The Guardian and McClatchy North Carolina papers.)
A Plague of Plastics (National Wildlife, June 2019)
From the Arctic to the Antarctic, our debris is killing marine wildlife. But the problem is addressable.
New Sheriffs in Town (The Washington Post, January 2019)
African Americans have won the top law-enforcement posts in North Carolina’s seven biggest counties. It will change policing.
Making a Marriage Work (Carolina Alumni Review, January 2019)
As an elected official, Jessica Holmes uses her childhood stories of homelessness and hunger to advocate for the most vulnerable. (Opens as a PDF.)
ICE Puts Immigrants Into a Cruel Catch-22 (The Nation, December 2018)
By complying with one government agency, Samuel Oliver-Bruno exposed himself to deportation by another.
Out of the Paper Cage (Charlotte Magazine, November 2018)
Twenty years ago, Ray Warren—Republican judge, former state legislator, suburban dad—called a pair of press conferences to announce he was gay. In North Carolina, it was a political watershed.
“We’re At That Tipping Point” (Talking Points Memo, October 2018)
Anita Earls has spent years beating back assaults on voting rights. Now she’s running for the North Carolina Supreme Court. (Update: She won.)
Power Play (National Wildlife, October 2018)
Can studying sexual aggression in baboons, chimpanzees, zebras, seals, and butterflies teach us why some human men behave so badly? (Opens as a PDF; click here for web version.)
Is the World Bank Group Above the Law? (The Nation, October 2018)
A fishing community in India, worried about survival, challenges the bank’s private-lending arm in the U.S. Supreme Court.
The Soul of Community (Craftsmanship Quarterly, September 2018)
How do we stoke economic vitality in a city without leaving cultural vitality and diversity behind? An intimate view from Durham, N.C.
The Hidden Resilience of “Food Deserts” (Sapiens, August 2018)
Studying Washington, D.C.’s Deanwood neighborhood, anthropologist Ashanté Reese found that life on the ground is considerably more complex than a supermarket map might suggest.
The Cookhouse Shepherd (Carolina Alumni Review, July 2018)
A remembrance of Mildred “Mama Dip” Council, who preserved rural North Carolina cooking and inspired numerous chefs. Plus an exploration of the persistent myth of the “magical black cook.”(Opens as a PDF.)
A Voice of Dissent in the GOP (The Nation, March 2018)
Haunted by his vote to authorize the Iraq War, North Carolina Congressman Walter Jones Jr. is standing up against U.S. military actions.
By Whose Authority? (Carolina Alumni Review, March 2018)
Politics and higher education have long been entangled. Where’s the line between setting policy and micromanaging? (Opens as a PDF.)
Why Southern Schools are Talking Secession (CityLab, February 2018)
Citing inefficiencies, North Carolina is considering breaking up its countywide school districts. Critics see this as opening the door to resegregation.
How Gerrymandering Silenced North Carolina’s Cities (CityLab, January 2018)
“Packing” and “cracking” voters boosted the GOP and muted urban voices. Now federal judges have struck down the latest redistricting plan.
Shutdown (Carolina Alumni Review, January 2018)
The University of North Carolina’s Center for Civil Rights taught litigation by going after governments on behalf of people who lacked legal clout. The system’s Board of Governors had a problem with that. (Opens as a PDF.)
Law and Disorder in North Carolina (The American Prospect, December 2017)
Throttled by the courts, Republican state legislators are trying to curb judges’ powers.
Democracy on the Line (The Nation, September 2017)
How the GOP uses redistricting to maintain power in the purple state of North Carolina.
Citizens of Carolina (Carolina Alumni Review, September 2017)
As a DACA recipient training to become a social-studies teacher, José Cisneros knows that his fate is now in Congress’ hands. (Opens as a PDF.)
The Eradicator (Atlanta Magazine, August 2017)
Dr. Donald Hopkins helped wipe smallpox from the planet. He won’t rest until he’s done the same for Guinea worm disease.
Timelessness on His Hands (Carolina Alumni Review, July 2017)
Folklorist William Ferris—who has chronicled Southern musicians, farmers, worshippers, barbers, prisoners, and writers—takes aim at threats to humanities funding. (Opens as a PDF.)
Born Before Stonewall (Medium, June 2017)
LGBTQ Baby Boomers face isolation and discrimination. But we also bring special wisdom to the process of growing older.
Reclaiming Native Ground (The Lens, January 2017)
Can Louisiana’s tribes restore their traditional diets as their land crumbles into the Gulf of Mexico? A multimedia story produced in collaboration with the Food & Environment Reporting Network and Southern Foodways Alliance.
History Matters (The Washington Post, December 2016)
North Carolina’s strongarm rule will feel familiar to anyone who lived here in the 1980s. But then there was a bipartisan push for reform.
A New Suppression Tactic: Voter Defamation (New Republic, December 2016)
By challenging the results of a governor’s race, North Carolina Republicans lay the groundwork for a Trump-era assault on voting rights.
The Trump Show (Indy Week, July 2016)
Three North Carolina delegates—libertarian, a moderate, and a Christian conservative—try to resist the Trump juggernaut.
The 30 Years That Brought Us HB 2 (Indy Week and Triad City Beat, July 2016)
Bathroom panic was the spark. But the law that shot North Carolina to the front of the culture wars has a much deeper history.
The Gulf War (Food & Environment Reporting Network, June 2016)
In the Gulf of Mexico, commercial and recreational fishing interests square off over the coveted red snapper. Click here for the newsier Texas Monthly version.
Healing Racial Fault Lines (Mindful Magazine, June 2016)
Can the simple act of sharing personal stories bridge racial fault lines? A report from three Mississippi and Louisiana communities.
This Professor is His Own MAN (Duke Magazine, June 2016)
By challenging traditional ideas around academia, Mark Anthony Neal has broadened what it means to be a scholar.
Lifting the Emotional Embargo in Cuba (Sapiens, March 2016)
An unorthodox blend of anthropology and poetry is cultivating reunion and reconciliation among people and cultures that have been estranged for decades.
Blues Brothers (Atlanta Magazine, February 2016)
Eddie Tigner was nearing the end of his musical career when he met Daniel “Mudcat” Dudeck. Their friendship gave Dudeck a mentor and Tigner a second chance at success.
Earthquake Nation (Popular Science, January 2016)
There’s a whole lot more shaking going on lately—and humans are causing it. Can we stop the rattling? Should we?
The Inside Story of Shell’s Arctic Assault (Audubon Magazine, January 2016)
How Shell pressured the Interior Department during its gung-ho Arctic push—and got much of what it wanted (except oil).
A Watertight Argument (Duke Magazine, December 2015)
J Nichols believes we’ll better understand the value of ocean conservation if we think about our emotional connection to the sea.
The Algae That (Almost) Ate Toledo (onEarth, August 2015)
A year ago, a massive algal bloom shut down drinking water for 500,000 Midwesterners. Might it happen again?
The Uncounted (ICIJ and Huffington Post, May 2015)
On India’s coast, a coal-fired power plant backed by the World Bank Group threatens the traditional livelihoods of Muslim fishers. Part of the Evicted & Abandoned series, which includes a follow-up about a village chief facing reprisals for speaking out.
Beach Wars (Saturday Evening Post, March 2015)
Who owns America’s coastlines? How much access does the public deserve? Communities from California to Maine are struggling with these issues, which are rooted in almost 1,500 years of legal history.
Can Moral Mondays Produce Victorious Tuesdays? (The American Prospect, January 2015)
North Carolina’s protest movement has galvanized the state’s progressives, but couldn’t stop 2014’s Republican tide. Its leaders say they’re only just beginning. Part of a year-long project.
The Son God Gave Me (Woman’s Day, October 2014)
Gina Kentopp’s child’s struggle to figure out who he was called everything she believed into question. With strong faith and soul-searching, the answers became clear. Co-authored with Kentopp.
Life on the Mississippi, Now (onEarth, June 2014)
We’ve spent billions of dollars on dikes, locks, and levees in a vain attempt to subdue what Mark Twain called “that lawless stream.” Is it time to let the river have its way? Plus a follow-up after the 2015 floods.
Brothers in Arms (Parade, May 2014)
Brendan Looney and Travis Manion were inseparable friends killed in separate wars. Now they lie side-by-side at Arlington National Cemetery.
From Billions to None (Audubon Magazine, May 2014)
On this, the centenary of the last passenger pigeon’s death, scientists reflect on what was lost, whether the species can (and should) be revived, and what other species remain are risk of joining the flock.
Nervous Energy (Sunset, April 2014)
Billions of barrels of oil lie in the Monterey Shale. The windfall from tapping into that deeply buried cache could be mind-blowing—and so could the damage. Produced in collaboration with the Food & Environment Reporting Network.
The Gutbucket King (The New New South, December 2013)
New Orleans bluesman Little Freddie King’s epic story of migration, music, violence, race, and redemption, told in a multimedia format. Includes 45 minutes of audio (interviews and music) plus interactive maps and archival photos and documents.
The Shale Rebellion (The American Prospect, December 2013)
In Pennsylvania, a band of unlikely activists fights the fracking boom. (Opens as a PDF.)
Women Vets: A Battle All Their Own (Parade, November 2013)
While female warriors confront the same problems as men, they also face their own distinct struggles. Meet two brave women on their emotional journey from the front lines back home.
Journey to Turkey (Audubon Magazine, September 2013)
Some of Turkey’s wildest places face threats from massive construction projects. Trying to provide a better way, one visionary biologist aims to put his country on the birding map.
Could California’s Salmon Make a Comeback? (onEarth, Summer 2013)
After years of decline, the rich human community that depends on California’s salmon runs might at last be rebounding.
Free to Go (Indy Week, June 2013)
Suffering from advanced-stage ovarian cancer, Sue Otterbourg declined aggressive treatment to spend her last months living fully. Why can’t more people do the same?
Rebel Towns (The Nation, January 2013)
Call it municipal disobedience: communities facing environmental threats are defying laws they deem illegitimate.
Rebuilding America’s Schools (Parade, August 2012)
Roofs are leaking, kids are breathing toxic air, and mice are eating the wiring in our schools. But some communities are finding solutions.
The Death and Life of Detroit (The American Prospect, May 2012)
Neighborhood groups are bringing the blighted city back, one block at a time. Will City Hall stand in their way?
Wealth for Everyone (One Nation Indivisible, May 2012)
Immigrants in Durham, N.C. had become easy targets for robbers. The community’s response: start its own wildly successful credit union.
The Organic Food Paradox (Saturday Evening Post, March 2012)
As industrial growers rise to fill the demand for organic food, will it spell the end of the family-run, lovingly tended, earth-friendly farm?
Moon Bears in Distress, All for the Love of Bile (onEarth, December 2011)
Across China and Vietnam, thousands of endangered moon bears live locked up behind bars, where “farmers” regularly drain their gall bladders for a prized liquid. Here’s one woman’s effort to save them.
Facing the Future (Audubon, September 2011)
While environmental groups often work toward preserving biodiversity in ecosystems, many are now grappling with trying to figure out how to diversify their own ranks.
Lake Erie Death Watch (onEarth, August 2011)
Brought back from the brink once before, a Great Lake again faces biological collapse.
Here’s Lookin’ at You, Kid (American Way, April 2011)
When an American ex-diplomat decided to re-create an icon from Casablanca in Morocco, it was the beginning of a beautiful friendship.
Fork in the Road (Audubon, March 2011)
Today organic foods seem as mainstream as frozen waffles, but the United States still lags far behind Europe. It’s time for Washington to give the industry a jolt.
Do-It-Yourself Genetics (Duke Magazine, November 2010)
The mapping of the human genome inspired not only a flood of research, but also a flurry of commercial genetic tests aimed at the curious consumer. The author submitted his DNA and gained access to a trove of information that purported to reveal where his ancestors lived and his risk of disease.
Losing Louisiana (onEarth, October 2010)
An online series exploring the economic, cultural, and environmental crisis on the Gulf Coast-a crisis that began long before the BP oil spill.
The Mines that Build Empires (Archaeology, September 2010)
For 5,000 years, Spain’s mineral riches created cash economies and global pollution.
School of Hard Knocks (Good Housekeeping, June 2010)
Record numbers of women are enrolling in career colleges, hoping for better lives. Instead, many of them are ending up with useless diplomas and staggering debt.
Crude Awakening (Audubon, March 2010)
Right here in North America could lie the answer to our energy needs. But at what cost? Mining the tar sands of Alberta threatens to strip the world’s largest intact forest of its ability to hold carbon and to wipe out the breeding grounds for millions of birds.
Living on the Edge (AARP The Magazine, March 2010)
Millions of older Americans don’t have enough money to put food on the table, but the government doesn’t count them as poor. How did this happen—and what’s being done about it?
Work Plan (Audubon, July 2009)
Maytag’s departure left a small Iowa town’s economy reeling. Today, however, workers are building wind machines instead of washing machines, and validating studies about the potential of green-collar jobs.
Operation Rescue (O, The Oprah Magazine, June 2009)
Barbara Woodley hoarded more than 300 dogs in deplorable conditions. It took a three-year legal battle and an army of volunteers to save these broken creatures. A winner of the Humane Society’s Genesis Award, this article includes four audio slideshows about the families who rescued the Woodley dogs.
Laid Off (AARP The Magazine, March 2009)
For factory workers in America, especially those over 45, job security has become a dying dream as the economy shrinks and jobs move offshore. Plus a profile of Hometown, Penn., after its textile mill closed.
Delta Blues (onEarth, Fall 2008)
Drinking water for 23 million Californians. Lifeblood for our farm economy. Why it’s so vital to save the Sacramento Delta.
When Wounded Veterans Come Home (AARP The Magazine, July 2008)
As more troops are surviving fearsome war injuries, parents are being increasing thrust into the role of long-term caregivers. A multimedia special featuring a radio documentary narrated by Barry.
The Case of the Battered Pet (O, The Oprah Magazine, June 2008)
Who would suspect that a family’s animals could be pawns in domestic violence? The terrifying truth about cats and dogs.
The Redemption of Chris Rose (Columbia Journalism Review, January 2008)
A New Orleans newspaper columnist, like the daily he works for, finds a stronger voice in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
R.I.P. Off (AARP The Magazine, Jan. 2008)
Thousands of Americans have been fleeced by funeral homes that sell prepaid contracts—then fail to honor them at the time of death.
Messianics Rising (JTA, November 2007)
Evangelical Christian efforts to win Jewish converts have become better funded and more sophisticated. A three-part series.
What Makes Elizabeth Run (O, The Oprah Magazine, September 2007)
Not one to walk away from a fight, Elizabeth Edwards might be the most refreshing political spouse since Eleanor Roosevelt.
Katrina: The Untold Story (AARP The Magazine, September 2007)
Two years after the hurricane, the Gulf Coast’s older residents still fight despair and search for hope. A multimedia report that includes a radio documentary produced by Rachel McCarthy and narrated by Barry.
The Wal-Mart Effect (Audubon, May 2007)
By stocking its shelves with affordable organic foods, the world’s largest retailer is about to prove that what’s good for the company is good for the planet and consumers. Or is it?
Putting Science in the Dock (The Nation, March 2007)
In an effort to exclude dubious experts, judges have assumed unprecedented power—and tilted the legal system against injured consumers.
When Is a Corporation Like a Freed Slave? (Mother Jones, November 2006)
In rural Pennsylvania, township supervisors battling sewage sludge and hog manure stumble up against one of the biggest mysteries in constitutional law.
Sudden Debt (AARP The Magazine, September 2006)
Overdrawn by $5? Need a loan until payday? Hidden bank fees and usurious storefront lenders plunge millions of Americans into downward financial spirals.
Schweitzer’s Dangerous Discovery (Discover, April 2006)
When this shy paleontologist found soft, fresh-looking tissue inside a T. rex femur, she erased a line between past and present. Then all hell broke loose.
When a Woman Goes Bald (Discover, February 2006)
A scientist’s painful battle with hair loss drives her to find its genetic basis.
Fall of a True Believer (Mother Jones, September 2005)
How Jack Abramoff gained the whole world and lost just about everything.
Whitewash (Indy Week, Sept. 2005)
In his new autobiography, Jesse Helms sees himself as a humanitarian—not as a racist supporter of brutal right-wing regimes.
Whose House Is It Anyway? (AARP The Magazine, May 2005)
A city’s quest for renewal sometimes means the death of an old neighborhood.
Going Home (AARP The Magazine, January 2005)
The hospital couldn’t save Jack Smith’s life. But hospice gave him something to live for. Why can’t all Americans have such satisfying end-of-life care?
Lights Out (Discover, December 2004)
Depression, dementia, and plummeting IQs: Contact sports extract a terrible price for the excitement they create.
Forbidden Science (Discover, August 2004)
What can studies of pornography, prostitutes and seedy truck stops contribute to society? A look at the current NIH funding controversy.
Deadly Dependence (Creative Loafing, Aug. 2004)
The South’s economic reliance on military bases has left a toxic legacy throughout the region.
Need An Army? Just Pick Up The Phone (The New York Times, April 2004)
The deaths of four civilians in Falluja, Iraq, raises serious questions about the use of private military companies in war zones.
Can We Trust Research Done With Lab Mice? (Discover, July 2003)
New studies by a soft-spoken Swiss scientist show that animals used in critical experiments may be out of their minds.
Soldiers of Good Fortune (Mother Jones, May 2003)
Profit-making private military companies like Blackwater are replacing U.S. soldiers in the war on terrorism. Plus, this follow-up on human-rights abuses by soldiers for hire.
Colleen’s Choice (AARP The Magazine, March 2003)
When her cancer became unbearable, Colleen Rice chose death. Now the law that helped end her agony is under siege.
The Scientist Who Hated Abortion (Discover, Feb. 2003)
A pro-life biochemist has launched a national crusade to link abortion and breast cancer in the public’s mind.
Unhappy Meals (Mother Jones, January 2003)
School lunches are loaded with fat—and the beef and dairy industries are making sure it stays that way.
Can Turtles Live Forever? (Discover, June 2002)
A quiet study in the Michigan woods—conducted by a fascinating scientist—opens a new window on aging.
The Stealth Crusade (Mother Jones, May 2002)
Inside one Southern university, Christian missionaries are being trained to go undercover in the Muslim world.
Airline Insecurity (Mother Jones, January 2002)
When it came to airport security, the federal government repeatedly placed politics and profits above the public’s safety.
Journalist, Interrupted (Journal of Michigan Fellows, December 2001)
“These days, I think my success is not in spite of my stutter, but rather because of it.” A window into the personal side of my work.
“I Had an Abortion When I Was Six Months Pregnant” (Glamour, October 2001)
Confronted with desperately ill unborn twins and great risks to her own health, a young woman steps into a political minefield. By Gina Gonzales as told to Barry Yeoman.
The Quiet War on Abortion (Mother Jones, September 2001)
After decades of noisy protests and violence, anti-abortion activists are relying on a new “stealth” strategy to shut down clinics.
Subsidies at Sea (Mother Jones, May 2001)
Taxpayers spent $400 million on incentives for a multinational shipbuilding company. Did Philadelphia workers benefit?
Wild Cats in Carolina (Discover, March 2001)
Is the Carnivore Preservation Trust saving threatened felines like ocelots and caracals? Or is it simply creating genetic junk?
Silence in the Fields (Mother Jones, January 2001)
The federal government permits agribusiness to bring Third World labor to U.S. farms, with working conditions to match.
Steel-Town Lockdown (Mother Jones, May 2000)
How one corporation is turning the Rust Belt city of Youngstown, Ohio, into the private-prison capital of the world.
Into the Closet (Salon, May 2000)
An up-close and personal look at the Christian movement to turn gay people straight. Meet “ex-gay” man John Westcott.
Walking Home (Indy Week, January 2000)
This two-part series intimately chronicles a year in the life of an immigrant Baptist church in Siler City, N.C.
1990s and earlier
Wrestling With Words (Psychology Today, November 1998)
For people who stutter, speaking is not just a physical handicap but also a crippling psychological problem. Now gaining popularity is a radical notion: that stutterers are better off learning to accept their impediment rather than striving to overcome it.
Embraced in Spain (Salon, June 1998)
The author, stuttering in Spanish with a group of working-class 20-year-olds. An all-time favorite.
Spiritual Union: A Case Study (The Nation, December 1997)
Guatemalan immigrants build a remarkable labor organization at a North Carolina poultry slaughterhouse.
The New Men’s Movement (New Woman, October 1997)
What happens when 50,000 evangelical men gather for a Promise Keepers convention? Check your preconceptions at the stadium gate.
Rain of Nails (Out, June 1997)
When an anti-gay bomb shattered the peace in Atlanta, was the far Right’s new “leaderless resistance” to blame?
Murder on the Mountain (Out, November 1996)
A love story of two women murdered in Virginia’s Shenandoah National Park.
No Ways Tired (Southern Exposure, Summer 1996)
Kmart workers in Greensboro, N.C., are invoking the spirit and tactics of the civil rights movement to create a new model for union organizing. (Opens as a PDF.)
Statesmanship vs. Helmsmanship (The Nation, February 1996)
How the senior senator from North Carolina holds the world hostage to his isolationist agenda. Also, this story from Out about Helms’ anti-LGBTQ crusade.
The Marines Face a New Fight (Boston Globe and Indy Week, February 1993)
Meet a few good men—some of whom are gay.
Highway Robbery (Indy Week, May 1992)
An award-winning five-part investigative series examining how campaign contributions influence North Carolina’s $1.6 billion transportation budget, harming communities and the environment in the process.
Don’t Count Your Chickens (Southern Exposure, Summer 1989)
Poultry companies promise farmers good money—but some growers end up with big debts and empty barns. Part of a package that won the National Magazine Award for Public Interest. (Opens as a PDF.)