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Photo: AFP Contributor/Getty Images.

The racial disparity in cancer deaths is getting smaller, the American Cancer Society reported yesterday.

The big picture: Three cancers — lung, colorectal and prostate — have driven most of that improvement, which ACS attributed to a big decline in smoking.

By the numbers: The death rate from cancer is 19% higher for black men than white men — which is still a very large disparity, but is down from a 47% difference in 1990.

  • The disparity between black and white women dropped from 19% to 13% in the same time frame.

Yes, but: There's clearly still a long way to go, in cancer and overall. According to the advocacy group Families USA, African-Americans are 25% more likely to die of heart disease, 72% more likely to be diabetic, and 900% more likely to die from HIV.

This very bad situation is generally attributed to factors outside the immediate health care system — namely poverty. People with lower income have less access to care, and the persistent racial disparities in socioeconomic status filter through into giant disparities in health.

Go deeper: As cancer mortality declines, gap between rich and poor emerges

Go deeper

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
4 mins ago - Economy & Business

Stuart Haselden steps down as CEO of luggage startup Away

Away co-founder Jen Rubio, who will step in as interim CEO. Photo by Craig Barritt/Getty Images for Glamour

Stuart Haselden is stepping down as CEO of smart luggage-maker Away, Axios has learned. He'll be succeeded on an interim basis by company co-founder Jen Rubio, and an outside search firm has been retained to find a permanent successor.

Why it matters: Haselden, formerly with Lululemon, appeared to have established executive stability at Away, whose co-founder Steph Korey previously resigned as CEO before retaking the reins alongside Haselden and then resigning again.

Kendall Baker, author of Sports
2 hours ago - Sports

2021 Tokyo Olympics hang in the balance

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

10 months ago, the Tokyo Olympics were postponed. Now, less than six months ahead of their new start date, the dreaded word is being murmured: "canceled."

Driving the news: The Japanese government has privately concluded that the Games will have to be called off, The Times reports (subscription), citing an unnamed senior government source.

Biden's centrist words, liberal actions

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

President Biden talks like a soothing centrist. He promises to govern like a soothing centrist. But early moves show that he is keeping his promise to advance a liberal agenda.

Why it matters: Never before has a president done more by executive fiat in such a short period of time than Biden. And those specific actions, coupled with a push for a more progressive slate of regulators and advisers, look more like the Biden of the Democratic primary than the unity-and-restraint Biden of the general election.