This month also brings one of America's most beloved holidays, Independence Day, commemorating our successful break from British rule over two centuries ago, and celebrating so much of what makes this country great. We rejoice at the freedoms guaranteed us by our Constitution and by the Declaration of Independence, and at the prospect of dreaming big and realizing those dreams. This year, the Supreme Court of the United States handed down a number of historic and life-changing decisions, and while they may have gotten it wrong in striking down Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, they followed up that egregious error with two stunning and far-reaching opinions that bring us closer to realizing the promise of the Declaration of Independence, that "all men [sic] are created equal." On June 26, 2013, the final day to hand down decisions on the cases put before them, the nine justices of the nation's highest court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act and overturned California's Proposition 8 - two decisions seen as huge victories and important precedents in the LGBT community's fight for marriage equality, and for full protection under the law.
Keeping summer as our starting theme, we take you now to a decision you'll likely want to weigh in on if you're wont to travel by government-subsidized rail, and a forecast for this summer's threat of pests, along with some information to help you prepare. Let's go!