Brentin Mock reports from the Gulf today with an on-the-ground look at the working conditions for the folks cleaning up BP's oil spill. I point it out as an important article itself, but I also want to plug our new Dispatches feature.

As I wrote when we relaunched earlier this summer, we'll be trying out lots of new features as we ramp up the site. But I'm particularly excited about the Dispatches. We're doing a lot of fast-paced news blogging here--and that's terribly essential for engaging the proverbial conversation on race. But both people and places are often lost in the news cycle. Our Dispatches column will reinsert that human perspective in the stories we're following. So far, Ruxandra Guidi has talked to young voters in Port-au-Prince, Aarti Shahani has visited the "sanctuary city" of Mesa, Ariz., and now Brentin introduces workers in Port Fourchon, La. Stay tuned for more. And you can keep up with the full set of Dispatches here.