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The pandemic, a bad economy, police killings and a fight for racial equality: It's a lot of take in. For some, music has been a way to cope and try to make sense of it all and that is the premise behind the Morning Edition Song Project, in which we asked musicians to write and perform an original song about this moment.

In 1954, the Supreme Court ruled in Brown v. Board of Education that racial segregation in schools was unconstitutional. The decision is often framed as a landmark decision that transformed education for Black students, allowing them equal access to integrated classrooms.

Philando Castile, Eric Garner and George Floyd. The deaths of these Black men at the hands of police have fueled outrage over police brutality and systemic racism.

Men make up the vast majority of people shot and killed by police.

On an unusually sunny morning at Ocean Beach on the west side of San Francisco, photographer Sachi Cunningham is putting on her wetsuit, and getting her camera gear ready. A sign in the parking lot warns: "Danger: People have drowned. Enter at your own risk.'

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AILSA CHANG, HOST:

Today the Trump administration formally notified the United Nations that it is pulling out of the World Health Organization. For more on this move, NPR's global health correspondent Jason Beaubien joins us now.

Hey, Jason.

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

Philando Castile, Tamir Rice, George Floyd - all Black men who died at the hands of police. But are there names missing from our collective memories, names of Black women who suffered the same fate - Michelle Cusseaux, Kayla Moore, Breonna Taylor? Remembering those names, too, that is part of the message behind the Say Her Name campaign, which was started by the African American Policy Forum. Kimberle Crenshaw is co-founder and executive director of the forum. She joins us now.

Professor Crenshaw, welcome.

On Feb. 9, 1950, Joseph McCarthy, a junior senator from Wisconsin, stunned the nation — and stoked the paranoia of the Cold War — when he alleged that there were 205 spies working within the U.S. State Department. It was the beginning of a four-year anti-communist, anti-gay crusade in which McCarthy would charge military leaders, diplomats, teachers and professors with being traitors.

I always remember how a beloved college professor of mine responded when I told him the news that I'd gotten a fellowship to a Ph.D. program in English. "Well," he said, "at least you'll be able to read Finnegans Wake in the unemployment line."

At the time, I laughed along. I, too, believed literature would be enough of a consolation were I ever to find myself jobless and broke. But no more. The passing years and the present economic crisis make Finnegans Wake seem like cold comfort.

It's become known as the Old Town melee. Protesters gathered last month in Albuquerque, N.M., around the bronze statue of Juan de Oñate, the controversial Spanish conquistador, in the city's historic quarter.

Videos of the event show men with guns — in military garb and tactical gear — stationed around the statue, tussling with protesters. Soon, the protesters bring out a chain and pickax to topple the figure, as police watch from afar.

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RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Joining us now on the line is the mayor of Miami-Dade County, Carlos Gimenez. Mr. Mayor, thanks for being with us.

CARLOS GIMENEZ: It's my pleasure.

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