The Angle

The Angle: The Repeat Stuff Edition

Slate’s daily newsletter on Iran warmongering, the NFL’s continued vendetta against Colin Kaepernick, maternal mortality, and a debut novel about an Instagram influencer.

Here we go again: A lot of pundits and political noisemakers who helped drag us to a disastrous war in Iraq in 2003 have now seized upon recent events in Iran to make the case for more war. But as Ben Mathis-Lilley argues, there’s literally no good reason to do this all again, and if we let it happen, it will end up being dumber and more catastrophic than the Iraq insurgency, for many reasons.

No excuses: The NFL had to try very hard to get Josh McCown, who is currently a part-time high school football coach, out of retirement to play with the Eagles—which is funny, because one of its reasons for not hiring Colin Kaepernick again is that it seems like he’s the one who doesn’t really want to commit to playing full time in the league. Pro football keeps bending over backward to not hire Kaep, only to keep contradicting its own justifications time and time again, as Samer Kalaf writes.

Rethinking the approach: More women are dying in pregnancy today than ever before, sparking a crisis that’s been addressed by everyone from OB-GYN organizations to politicians. Yet the way we look at maternal mortality is possibly much too narrow, only factoring in obstetric causes and ignoring deaths caused by violence or injury. Chavi Eve Karkowsky diagnoses what needs to change if we want to truly grapple with what’s affecting so many women throughout the country.

Side hustle: It’s easy to feel for Emira Tucker, the flailing 26-year-old babysitter of Kiley Reid’s debut novel, Such a Fun Age. But Reid’s real feat is making you empathize with Emira’s employer, Alix, an Instagram influencer “who ought to be repellent and yet somehow isn’t.” Laura Miller calls the novel a “shrewd, omnivorous, absorbing depiction of the way we live now.” Read her full review.

For fun: Eccentric vicars in British Pathé newsreels, ranked.

Who beats the railway vicar and the vicar who sells a mobile church? Click to find out,