For the week of Martin Luther King Jr. Day and the return of the Polar Vortex, here’s our round-up of the most interesting and talked about pieces about race and class.

Remembering Martin Luther King, Jr.’s solution to poverty
In honor of MLK’s birthday, Jordan Weissmann of the Atlantic reminds us that the great orator was more than a civil rights leader – he was a crusader for the poor, black and white alike.

Richard Sherman and the plight of the conquering negro
Deadspin’s Greg Howard calls out the critics of Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman after his post-game rant. Howard argues that black public figures are held to an unfair standard: A person can be black, talented, or arrogant, but he can’t be more than two of these traits at once.

A surprising map of where it’s hardest to escape poverty in America
Ezra Klein of the Washington Post highlights a new study from Harvard’s Equality of Opportunity Project, which compiled the best and worst areas for upward mobility across the nation. Don’t worry, Chicago isn’t in the bottom 10 metro areas but it’s not in the top 10 either.

The right’s fantasy is shattered: Why Obamacare has already succeeded
On a more optimistic note, Salon’s Brian Beutler defends the Affordable Care Act by citing the latest Gallup data, which indicates a modest but substantial drop between December 2013 and January 2014 in the percentage of uninsured American adults.

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Cathaleen Chen

is an intern at The Chicago Reporter.