If you thought this summer was already hot, well, it’s about to get hotter. Starting today and lasting through the weekend, a potentially dangerous heat wave is coming to town, with possible triple-digit temperatures feeling even warmer because of the humidity. Also heating up: Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner’s crusade against the death penalty, as he asked the state Supreme Court this week to declare the punishment unconstitutional. And, in other news, reporter Stacey Burling examines the complexities of hoarding disorders, and how you can effectively help someone in your life who may be struggling with clutter.

It affects 3 to 6 percent of Americans, up to 77,000 people in Philadelphia alone, and can lead to isolation, eviction, and compromised safety.

Hoarding disorder is a complex condition that needs more attention, experts say, and its challenges mount as people age. In the Philadelphia area, several groups and task forces are working with self-professed hoarders to clear their clutter, focusing on solutions like “harm reduction” over complete cleanouts, which won’t solve problems in the long term.

Is there a hoarder in your life? Remember, subject experts say, the problem didn’t start overnight, and it won’t be fixed overnight, either. But, there are ways you can help someone overwhelmed by their stuff — and it’s all about setting goals and making progress.

It’s time for the Pennsylvania Supreme Court to declare the death penalty unconstitutional, District Attorney Larry Krasner said Tuesday, calling the punishment racially biased, arbitrary, and discriminatory against the poor.

The progressive prosecutor’s office filed a brief in response to a Philadelphia death-row inmate’s petition in a case that could have far-reaching ramifications, asking the court to invoke its King’s Bench power and strike down the death penalty. The Office of Attorney General has said the issue should be resolved in the legislature, not the courts.

When Krasner took office in 2018, he vowed to “never” seek the death penalty. A May Inquirer analysis found that the former civil rights lawyer has taken steps or signaled a willingness to overturn more than one-third of the death sentences for the then-45 Philadelphia convicted murderers on death row.

Gentrification. Depending on whom you ask, the controversial term can be synonymous with displacement or urban renewal, and some argue the word should be retired altogether.

But according to a study from the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, the consequences of gentrification for original neighborhood residents are often better than they are typically perceived.

The study, which takes a national look at gentrification, offers a rather upbeat portrait of neighborhood change using U.S. Census microdata — something that the researchers acknowledge cannot quantify the emotional, nonmonetary costs associated with gentrification.

What you need to know today

Through Your Eyes | #OurPhilly

Sometimes, it pays to look up. Thanks for the photo, @falseclimax.

Tag your Instagram posts or tweets with #OurPhilly and we’ll pick our favorite each day to feature in this newsletter and give you a shout out!

That’s Interesting


Signe Wilkinson

“Rapinoe gives me hope that more women, including myself, will worry less about others’ opinions and worry more that topics often treated like taboos in mainstream platforms — such as the LGBTQ+ community, sexism, and political opposition — are addressed head-on.” — Staff writer Carmina Hachenburg on why Megan Rapinoe will not stop giving American women hope.

What we’re reading

Lorraine Healy of Husky House in Matawan, Nj, gives “Arya”, a 1 year old female husky rescue dog, a big hug after she deplaned from Al Ciardi’s, right, single engine plane at Northeast Philadelphia airport on June 30, 2019.
MICHAEL BRYANT / Staff Photographer
Lorraine Healy of Husky House in Matawan, Nj, gives “Arya”, a 1 year old female husky rescue dog, a big hug after she deplaned from Al Ciardi’s, right, single engine plane at Northeast Philadelphia airport on June 30, 2019.

Your Daily Dose of | The UpSide

With dogs, cats, and sometimes chickens flying copilot, volunteers at this nonprofit transport precious cargo every day via private plane across the East Coast — providing free, first-class flights to no-kill shelters and furever homes.