Communities

Life after death in Swan Valley
Life after death in Swan Valley
The Meyers turned their 120 acres in Montana into a natural cemetery, where bodies can be buried with as few frills as possible.
When public lands become tribal lands again
When public lands become tribal lands again
A story of fire, stolen lands, and how hard it is to get the U.S. to follow its own laws.
The West’s hidden corners offer a safe space for polygamists
The West’s hidden corners offer a safe space for polygamists
Each year, Mormon fundamentalists gather on a remote slice of southeastern Utah.
Why was a study on trafficking in Indian Country canceled?
Why was a study on trafficking in Indian Country canceled?
After the Trump administration transition, the Department of Justice killed a critical needs assessment initiative.
See iconic photographers’ forgotten work in 1950s Mormon towns
See iconic photographers’ forgotten work in 1950s Mormon towns
Ansel Adams and Dorothea Lange capture a time when the religion was growing.
My great American family
My great American family
And why we have a right to be here.
Why bulldoze one of the wildest places on Earth?
Why bulldoze one of the wildest places on Earth?
The Trump administration wants a road built through an Alaska wildlife refuge for medical needs – but commerce may be the real reason.
Elizabeth Warren’s claim to Cherokee ancestry is a form of violence
Elizabeth Warren’s claim to Cherokee ancestry is a form of violence
Be it by the barrel of a carbine or a mail-order DNA test, the American spirit demands the disappearance of Indigenous people.
Adoption didn’t solve the ‘Indian Problem’
Adoption didn’t solve the ‘Indian Problem’
An author recounts how 1960s policies ripped apart families and communities, including her own.
It’s time to start eating roadkill
It’s time to start eating roadkill
Salvaging meat in Alaska is commonplace. Can it catch on in the Lower 48?
The stories that defined the West in 2018
The stories that defined the West in 2018
The year in essays, analysis and investigations from across the Western U.S.
The metalheads of the Navajo Nation
The metalheads of the Navajo Nation
See photos of the thriving music scene in backyards, abandoned houses and parking lot shows.
As the ecosystem of news changes, will journalists adapt fast enough?
As the ecosystem of news changes, will journalists adapt fast enough?
Blooms can still be found in the West’s news desert.
As the influence of newsprint erodes, Westword prevails
As the influence of newsprint erodes, Westword prevails
Despite the state of the media, Westword Editor Patty Calhoun maintains hope.
How the Los Angeles Times went from union-busting to media role model
How the Los Angeles Times went from union-busting to media role model
Resistance to deep cutbacks have brought about change to the 137-year-old paper.
Where the news is drying up — and where it’s not
Where the news is drying up — and where it’s not
Rural areas can be hit hardest, but many small-town papers persevere.
What you lose when you lose local news
What you lose when you lose local news
People are less likely to vote, and politics become more polarized.
No news is bad news for public health
No news is bad news for public health
Losing local news sources and public health reporters hampers disease detection and outbreak response.
See winter solstice around the West
See winter solstice around the West
After the longest night of the year, earth tilts once again toward the sun.
Fact check: the Goldwater Institute’s statements about the Indian Child Welfare Act
Fact check: the Goldwater Institute’s statements about the Indian Child Welfare Act
The Institute’s claim that ICWA harms Indian children relies on dubious assertions and dog whistles.
Senate hears stories of Indian Country’s missing and murdered
Senate hears stories of Indian Country’s missing and murdered
Data gaps, understaffing and lax investigations have deepened the crisis.
Arizona’s wild horse paradox
Arizona’s wild horse paradox
Activists and agencies try to balance the West’s horse mythology against herd impacts.
Elk run the show on Oregon’s north coast
Elk run the show on Oregon’s north coast
When humans and wildlife clash, sometimes an animal bites your minivan.
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