January 13, 2020

Capitalism, the climate crisis and hope: your priorities for 2020
Thank you! With the support of more than 30,000 Guardian supporters, we’ve raised more than $1.3m to fund our reporting in 2020. Here’s what you asked us to cover * It’s not too late to contribute. Support our fact-based journalism todayIn November, we launched an ambitious year-end campaign to to raise $1.5m from our US readers to support our journalism in 2020. We’re excited to report that thanks to more than 30,000 Guardian readers from all 50 states, we’ve already raised more than $1.3m. Your support will give us the resources to cover what’s already proving be a pivotal year for America – with everything from the presidential election to climate policy to the supreme court at stake.We also asked Guardian US readers to vote on what they want our newsroom to focus on in 2020. More than a thousand of you voted on topics, and almost as many submitted story ideas.The five topics that received the most support were, in descending order: * Disinformation and the 2020 election * America’s sick healthcare system * Climate refugees and forced displacement in the US * The high price of American food production: pollution, pesticides, etc * America’s neglected schools and classroomsWe’ve already started tackling all five winning topics in the new year, from to the Americans dying young because they lack healthcare to the strain that our insatiable appetite for almonds is placing on America’s bee population. And in the coming months, we’ll be developing bigger series and investigations based on some of the hundreds of story ideas readers submitted. Here are some of the topics that came up most frequently. The future of capitalismDozens of you want to see more reporting on wealth inequality, executive pay, out-of-control housing costs, and the economic pressures confronting ageing Americans.Many of you also linked American capitalism to the planet’s growing climate crisis. Garry Thomas, for example, asks that the Guardian “explore the economic barriers to adjusting our capitalistic society to deal with climate change”. Another reader wants to hear from “scientists, ethicists, theologians and ordinary people what their ideas would be for how to shift our values to an ethical economic system that will be less destructive to our environment”. The climate crisisThe plurality of story ideas we received had do with the climate crisis. Readers want coverage on clean water shortages, the climate’s impact of American food production, how the Trump administration’s rollback on environmental protections is contributing to the crisis, whether recycling makes a meaningful difference, species extinction, overpopulation and more.“Everything must be framed through the lens of climate change as every societal ill will be exacerbated by it,” writes Marshall McComb. Anne Fenimore agrees: “Climate change is the most important issue of our time. All the stories suggested are worthy of coverage, but they are meaningless if we do not address climate change.”Sign up to the Green Light email to get the planet’s most important stories 2020 elections and voting rightsGuardian readers are particularly concerned about the health of America’s elections going into 2020. Readers expressed anxiety about voter suppression, the electoral college and money in politics, among other electoral ills. “Keep us informed about the real effects of political gerrymandering and how it has taken the voice from voters in many states, and defeats the popular vote by increasingly wider margins,” Mike requests. Another reader asks that the Guardian “state the number of people purged from the voter rolls since the supreme court gutted the Voting Rights Act”. (We’re tracking the purges closely in our Fight to vote project and will keep doing so through the election.) America’s broken healthcareIn a country where up to 25% of the population delays medical care because of costs, it’s no surprise that readers want more coverage of America’s broken, convoluted healthcare system. A number of readers want more coverage of the pharmaceutical industry. Bart wants us to dig into the “collusion between government, doctors, hospitals and pharmaceutical industries”. Another reader asks: “If the motive of the medical industry was wellness instead of profit, and if the goal of the insurance industry was care instead of profit, then could we realize universal healthcare for all?” Hope and solutionsWe also heard repeated requests to break up the relentless pace of bad news with inspiring, solutions-oriented reporting on activists and innovators bringing change to their communities. Here, too, the overlap with climate change kept coming up. A reader named Nicholas asks for “stories about people and organizations that are effectively organizing and working against systemic injustice, inequality, and climate change … Reading about people who are creating solutions and being their own change is also critical for instilling hope and offering models of how we can work against humanity’s worst impulses.” Another reader wants stories about “people doing amazing and proactive changes to better our world. I want to meet the people who made paper straws, bamboo diapers, eco-friendly products etc.”We couldn’t agree more with the need for more news that inspires hope and optimism. That’s the thinking behind the Upside, a project that focuses on the people, ideas and initiatives trying to solve some of the world’s biggest problems. For a weekly antidote to the gloom so prominently featured in daily headlines, you can sign up for the Upside’s weekly newsletter here – and we’re committed to finding more hopeful stories in the US as well. Less Trump?On what’s perhaps a related note, a lot of you would like to see less of Trump. Literally – several readers acknowledged the necessity of reporting on the American president but want fewer visual reminders. “Skip the picture, please,” writes one reader.To everyone who voted, shared an idea and supported the Guardian in the last year: thank you. Your input and support make our work possible.It’s not too late to support the Guardian’s journalism in 2020 and beyond; you can do so here
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