This is a picture of a balloon seller at the Plaza Bolívar in Bogotá. A careful bit of online research revealed that the balloon gazing down on the seller is one Doc McStuffins, a Disney character “who decides she wants to become a doctor like her mother, a pediatrician.” However, unlike ordinary mortals who need to study hard and take organic chemistry to become doctors, Doc M has some extra help: “When she activates her magic stethoscope, she can create a variety of supernatural effects, including traveling through time. Her most regular use of it in the TV series is to cause toys, dolls, and stuffed animals to come to life.”

Well. I suppose I could become a doctor too if I had a magic stethoscope. Or, in any case, as rich as one if I could travel through time and bring toys to life. Frankly, I think Doc McStuffins needs to think bigger.

August 4, 2019 — Bogotá, Colombia

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is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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