Rural Reporting Project

Texas has the largest rural population of any state — 3.8 million people — yet many journalists treat much of the state as flyover country. The Observer has made reporting on rural Texas a priority with this long-term project. Staff writer Christopher Collins, who has investigated how crop dusting is putting Texans’ health at risk and the connection between destructive Panhandle wildfires and a mismanaged federal land program, is spearheading the effort from West Texas.

 

Public Camping Bans Won’t Solve Homelessness. But Could They Get Us Talking About Real Solutions?

by | Fri, Sep 6, 2019 at 9:51 CST
In Victoria, an anti-camping ordinance stands to harm the homeless. But it could also lead to important conversations about a statewide problem.
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Heartland is an Honest, Poetic Meditation on Class in America

Journalist Sarah Smarsh’s book encapsulates what it’s like to grow up in the forgotten farm fields of America, artfully mixing anecdote with political context and societal commentary.

Having fun during a Kansas winter, as Sarah Smarsh writes in her new memoir, Heartland, requires creativity: “Lots of snow, no hills.” In one memora...Read More

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