The Week Unwrapped: Votes, Cuban vaccines and empty churches

Are the Democrats falling into a hypocrisy trap? How did Cuba develop such a strong biotech industry? And will anything reverse religious decline?

An American church
(Image credit: SpaceX)

Olly Mann and The Week delve behind the headlines and debate what really matters from the past seven days.

In this week’s episode, we discuss:

Dems in charge

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A recent attempt by the Democrats to overturn the result of an election to the House of Representatives ignited charges of political hypocrisy - particularly as it coincided with a news blackout at the US border with Mexico. What do these stories tell us about Joe Biden, and will they affect what we think if him in the UK?

Cuban jabs

Cuba is on the verge of pulling off a medical coup with two Covid vaccines in late stage trials and a further three in development. If successful, the communist island would become the world's smallest country to develop multiple jabs. But doing deals with the one-party state comes with ethical pitfalls that could put off prospective buyers.

Churches in decline

This week a poll found that US church membership has dipped below 50% for the first time in 70 years. Half of that is thought to be attributable to the growing number of non-believers in the country, but half is due to people who are still religious simply no longer going to a church, synagogue, or mosque anymore. High levels of church attendance have long made the US an outlier among wealthy nations, which tend to be less religious than poorer countries, but if current trends continue, that may soon no longer be the case.

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