Lex Talionis Unleashed: The Art of the Escalation

Lately, as the airwaves and data bytes have been poisoned with yet another presidential online freak out, I’ve been reading the comments from various sources. People say things like if you get hit, you hit back harder and he’s just fighting fire with fire. It’s emblematic of any toxic relationship I’ve ever had – from a friend or family member or romantic partner. It’s that person who overreacts to any slight, who doesn’t speak to you for days or even years after you disagree with them. It’s the one you laugh nervously… Read More

Imagine There’s No Politics

Of late, I’ve really loathed my writing on this blog. Despite this, I hit that Publish button each time, a twitchy trigger finger serving my need to be read and to be heard. This need has thrown me off, as has the public discourse. I’ve been less thoughtful and about as reflective as Narcissus. I’ve been lacking in scope and imagination. Currently, I’m reading The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen about a double agent following the fall of Saigon. The author describes the final, brutal scenes of people fleeing, trying to catch the… Read More

The Marauder’s Map

It‘s 2am and I’m wide awake, as I have been many mornings in the last week. There is no end in sight to the destruction of the country I thought I knew. Moves are being taken in every quarter to quash protests, disenfranchise voters, eliminate safety nets, knock the legs out from under air and water safety, gift power to the already empowered. The baby, the bath water and any ethics are right out the window. The Doomsday Clock will likely click one minute closer to midnight. I keep thinking about history…. Read More

Fired Up, Part 3: Mitigating Despair

This was not my intended post. I wrote my intended post about economics and the importance of financial literacy. It was boring and long and preachy. To sum it up in a nutshell: if you’re like me and find that when it comes to the economy of our country, you do not know enough to argue more than talking points, it’s time to learn. I wrote a second post that stretched into 3,000 words, exploring the nature of my own prejudices – how I am the product of poor, white, uneducated people… Read More

Fired Up, Part 2: Softening Perspective, Steeling Resolve

Apologies for the length of this post. Like many people, I’m still working through a lot of emotions and ideas following this election. It looks like it is going to take several posts to get it out of my system. See Fired Up, Part 1: Changing Where, When and How I Get Information. Moral ambiguity is a hard line to walk. In an election where people became tribal and primitive in their powerlessness, where everyone was an us or them, it was hard to feel like an ethical, decent person. I’ve always… Read More

Fight Harder

At midnight, I woke up and checked the election results and began to cry. My first thought was about the conversation I’d have to have with my daughter in the morning. She stood by me as I proudly filled in the circles on my ballot. Like many of my friends and family, we were optimistic that the world might look different in the morning. It does look different this morning. It looks like misogyny and racism and anti-intellectualism are now the colors that this country flies. How could it not look like… Read More

Dear Trump Apologists: No Apology Required

Dear Trump Apologists, In the wave of unrelenting Trump antics, you are leaping in chivalrous desperation, demanding apologies for the wives and daughters of the nation. Sit down and shut up. Please do not do anything on my behalf. Do not feign horror at transgendered people in my bathroom (where they’ve been for years). Do not explain my biology to me. Do not offer transvaginal probes to save my fetal cells. Do not shriek think of the mothers, daughters, sisters when trying to convince rapists not to rape. Do not act dismayed… Read More

For What It’s Worth

I’ve been as guilty this political season of thinking in hyperbole and polarity as anyone else. Conversations trail off into head-shaking and agreeing to disagree and at times, feeling a level of hatred that I know is unhealthy and unwise. What to do? It’s easy to become addicted to outrage. Social media and commentary sections of news articles make one realize how easy it is to take sides, to devolve into name-calling and to become someone of whom no one should feel proud. Anger is addictive as well. And exhausting. For months,… Read More

Inside Out: Coming to America

Yesterday was a perfect day in my neighborhood. The sun was out. Pasty white Minnesotans emerged from their Netflix caves after months of winter. Immediately some started their leaf blowers (which I posit is the worst invention ever). I went to the park with my daughter and one of her besties. They played basketball, as I sat at a picnic table and read. I love my neighborhood more frequently than I hate it. It was built in the late 1950s, tracts of little nondescript ranch houses. We add shutters and paint different… Read More

The Anatomy of One American Voter

This post is unusual in that it is excessively long. Apologies on that count. Politics have been eating at my brain all week and it made me think about my motivations as a voter. The unethical, monied arena of American politics is picking up steam. Political support is reaching all the frenzy of a stock exchange pit. I find unwavering, unquestioning support of any human or organization to be slightly creepy. This is what puts me off about religion and sports teams and BeyoncĂ© fans. Essentially, any group that seems to demand… Read More